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Jodha Akbar 167: Ab hamara ek doosre se hi wajood hai

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Jodha Akbar 167: Ab hamara ek doosre se hi wajood hai

Post by sashashyam on 2014-02-06, 14:42

Like Hanuman announcing to Lord Rama ,  on his return after the  Lanka Dahan, Dekha Sitaji ko, the Dekha coming first to spare Rama even that one extra second of worry, let me tell you that  All ij well! ( apologies to the Three Idiots).
The new promo: Caring  togetherness:  We now have it from the metaphorical horse's mouth  that there is to be no reversion to the chilliness and acrid exchanges of old between Jalal and Jodha.
The latest promo, which aired just now on Zee,  is tailormade to cheer us all up. It shows Jalal,  supporting Jodha with his arm  around her shoulders, leading her on a walk in the gardens. They are then shown seated , and when her hand is being dipped in (presumably warm) water, he puts his own hand in to touch hers.  She does not withdraw her own, and smiles slightly at him. Lastly, she is sitting in a garden seat and Jalal, standing behind her, drapes that  red velvet shawl round her . She looks up  at him, her eyes soft,  tranquil and smiling, while his are warm but a tad hesitant,  though hopeful. 
Jodha is in the simplest possible attire, with next to no jewellery and her hair open, and so  she looks  as lovely as she did the night of the shove, like a reincarnated Madhubala. A pity that she cannot be shown sometimes  in black and white. She would look even more stunning.
The commentary - Mizaaz badal rahe hain, seerat badal rahi hai, chhipi huyi nafratein pighal rahi hain - is out of date by a week or more, but never mind.
So you see,  we are in for good times, folks! And no, there is no way this can be anyone's dream.  Wait a second! I hope it is not Mahaam's nightmare! Or even Ruqaiya's!
Ab hamara ek doosre se hi wajood hai: Let us go back a bit to last night. It would be hard to improve on  Lashy's highly emotional post on it,  and this is really an afterthought triggered by the   new promo. Rather like sewing a vest on a button ! So please bear with  me as I try a different approach to last night's episode.
Of course I have to begin with what  is being called, for lack  of  a better term, the "soul talk". At  least, it seemed certain that the rooh in blue was Jodha Begum's,  but seeing the brash aggressiveness of Jalal throughout that segment, I am not sure it was his  rooh at all.  
Surely the rooh of even such a great conqueror would be more subdued  in the other world, just as one instinctively lowers one's voice  in  a place of worship? Jalal's whatever-it-is, on the contrary,  steadily raises the decibel level, and by the end, he  is hollering at her and the Almighty alike.
It is thus more that likely that Jalal has, by  throwing his imperial weight around,  bullied the  guardians of the gates to the Parlok into letting him in.
I loved it that Jalal did not beg or plead for  Jodha  not to leave him. Neither with  Jodha, nor with Kismat/Bhagya or even with  God. 
On the contrary, he denounces her perennial  zid, which  he will not  allow to prevail this once. He  announces his readiness to declare war on all and sundry  if that was necessary to hold Jodha back. 
His constant refrain is Hum aapko nahin jaane denge. Jodha Begum (incidentally, he called her Jodha Begum 37 times during that passage, often twice in a single sentence. This is the rule  for all their conversations. Does  he think she has forgotten her name, or that he is danger of forgetting it?)
His words tumble over themselves in a torrent of soul-baring emotion as he concedes, and immediately counters,  the harshness  of his last words to her,   by telling her how she pervades his zehen hrough and through. Ending, with the stunning declaration: Allah kasam, hum aapse mohabbat karte hain!
I don't know about  Allah, who is all knowing,  but you could have knocked me down with a  feather. It  seemed that the ghostly Jodha felt exactly the same, for her face looks more stunned and still than  moved.  She is  possibly pinching  her spectral form  to make sure she was actually hearing all this.
More in the same vein follows,   all of it decidedly  accusatory in tone: Hamare seene mein dil jagaakar aapko koyi haq nahin banta ise todkar jaane ka!...Aap aisa kucch bhi nahin karengi.. Aapko apni zindagi par koyi haq nahin hai ! (I was saying to myself :  Now this takes the cake! ).
Jalal next shifts to open emotional blackmail to  rout Jodha's  aloof and  depressing pronouncements about shanti,  santrushti, vivah ke vachanon  ki laaj rakhna, bhagya ka vidhan, and finally even a  mysterious new vachan given to God alone knows whom (strangely reminiscent of Jalal's so-called zubaan  that he would not touch Jodha without  her consent)  that  if need be, she would be ready to  give up her life to save his.
He enters the arena firing on all cylinders. Humein aapki zaroorat hai!.. Agar aap rahi to hum rahenge, agar aap chalee gayee to hum bhi zinda nahin rahenge!...
Game point. Game to Jalal.
Then the most vital   assertion of them all,  the one which now lies at the very heart of their present and future relationship. An assertion that Jalal makes confidently on behalf of Jodha as well  as on  his own.
Ab hamara ek doosre se hi wajood hai.. Aapke bina hum nahin, aur hamare bina aap nahin..  
This is his version of  her marriage vow: aapse hi hamara sowbhagya hai. For now he knows, beyond the shadow of  a doubt, that that if his Jodha Begum were to die, something vital  in him would die with her, that he would never be whole again.
He also knows, this too without the  shadow of a doubt, that Jodha too would not survive without him. That this  was why she did not mind dying if that could save him,  for though she  would be no more,  that would, for her, be preferable to surviving without him.  
Set point. Set  to Jalal.
When Jodha's rooh, by now convinced that is ziddi insaan ko manaakar wapas bhejna us  ke bas ki baat nahin hai, mumbles halfheartedly  that they (not, be it noted, he alone) can  do nothing against Bhagya ka vidhaan, and that he will be able to do nothing, that he is not the Shahenshah in the Parlok,  the unfazed Jalal comes back with  a clincher.
Coopting the Almighty to his campaign, he asserts that if there is indeed the Bhagwan (he does  not say Khuda, for he wants to speak her language on this)  before whom she, he and all of  humanity bow their heads and who listens to all their dua and grants all their mannat,  then Woh  aapko kahin nahin jaane dega!
Match point, Match to Jalal.
And so, like the mythical  Orpheus, who was able to  persuade the King of the Underworld, Pluto, to let him take his dead wife Eurydice back to the world of the living, Jalal too fights for Jodha and with  Jodha, and literally drags his beloved  back from the very gates of the other world by the sheer force of his will.
Jalal dominates throughout, with  the lion's share of all those   splendid lines ,  with his voice alternating,  pitch perfectly,  between  raw  pain and desolation,  near panic and  never say die determination, with his  relentlessly combative body language . And  Jodha, her marble stillness and aloof dismissiveness hiding deep hurts,  soft but firm in her desire to  leave  the world for  good,  provides a superb counterpoint.
Her large dark eyes reflect her changing emotions in their shadowy depths -  a hope for peace and  calm content that she herself does not seem to believe in,  incredulous, frozen surprise at Jalal's declaration Hum aapse mohabbat karte hain, then, as he clings stubbornly to his mool mantra,  Hum aapko nahin jaane denge, a dawning  hope against hope. 
The dark eyes become soft and tender as he comes  to the crucial Aapke bina hum nahin, aur hamare bina aap nahin..  And when he ropes in Bhagwan to  grant him the dearest wish of his heart, a lone tear escapes  them and her eyes smile ever so tremulously.
Jalal has won what was perhaps his toughest battle of them all,  the battle for the soul of the woman he has learnt to love.
Back in the land of the living, Jodha's hand stirs in  Jalal's,  her lips part, her chest heaves with laboured breathing. She is back where she belongs, with him.
A gorgeous passage, was it not?
The rest: This time,  apart from the "soul talk"  passage, I  watched the other parts  as a critic would.  I was struck anew by  how  Rajat used his eyes and his voice to splendid effect  throughout.
At the Shafikhana &  with the awaam:  In the scene  where Jalal comes to the Shahi Shafikhana to  check on Jodha's  treatment,  he flinches visibly at  the sight of  her being rolled from side to side, wrapped tightly  like a mummy,  above a steaming cauldron. His eyes reflect tension and helpless anguish.
As he waits for the Hakim sahiba,   eyes downcast to avoid seeing Jodha being so  handled, the hidden fear lurking in  them is clearly  visible, and his voice is hoarse and strained. After he has peremptorily extracted the truth from her, his eyes look desolate and even  more hopeless. The hoarse voice is even hoarser as he instructs Atgah Khan to summon the awaam to meet him.
While addressing the people, his voice becomes almost suspended, but there are no tears. His grief is not for public consumption, not even for his immediate family, bar his Ammijaan.   Still the tremulous  voice betrays his inner anguish, and I wondered whether a Shahenshah should thus bare his sufferings to the public, where it  could be taken as evidence of weakness.  But there could be two opinions on this.
The two takhliyas  he utters to clear Jodha's sickroom, the second, in an unchanged tone, for Ruqaiya,  are the last word in absolute authority.
A great actor needs to be able to use his voice like a fine tuned instrument, and his eyes as well. Rajat can do both.
The Kanha flashback : This was never shown before. Jodha once scolds Jalal for not removing his jootis when Mynavati is visiting them at Agra and they are pretending to be lovey dovey. Then, in the scene where Jodha smashes the glass vase, during the dature ka  ark track, Jalal himself  remembers and removes his shoes before entering the puja area. So this scene of today would have had to be before the dature ka  ark track. 
It was so refreshing to have the old, teasing, exasperating Jalal  back, if only for a few instants.
Now for the  beautiful scene of Jalal lighting the  extinguished diya in front of Jodha's Kanha, painstakingly doing the aarti,  and finally folding his hands in prayer to  beseech Kanha to make her regain consciousness. We, the viewers, are by now a spoilt lot. We are now so used to Rajat doing such sequences  to  perfection that the  tenderness  and aching sense of loss he brought to  this  one must have been almost taken for granted. It should not  be so.
Hamida and not Mahaam:   Lashy had highlighted the significance of the fact  that,   in contrast to all the prior occasions when Jalal faced  a  great loss and  deep grief,  when he had invariably turned to his Badiammi for solace, this time, he did not turn to or even look once at Mahaam. Instead,  though he did not seek her out, still it was Hamida Banu who  held him close at the end of the above scene and sought to reassure him that all would be well in the end. It was a very pleasant change.
Not that I think Mahaam is going anywhere any time soon. I am sure Ashwini has a 400 episode contract with Balaji, and then again,  whom could they possibly find who could match Mahaam Anga for the sheer malevolent brilliances of her take on Lucrezia Borgia and Catherine de Medicis rolled into one?
 Shaguni Bai:  She turns out to be more like a modern politician than a medieval seer. After reams of golden prophecies about how Jodha would help change the  face of Hindustan and would go down in legend and song, she now faces the poor, tormented Dadisaa with the Delphic pronouncement: Kucch to samapt hoga, nasht hoga! Ya toh Jodha ka jeevan, ya uske jeevan ko lekar aapka bhay.  If I had been Daadisa, I would grabbed  Kali Maa's trishul and speared Shaguni Bai with it good and proper.
Hakim sahiba or medieval shrink? : Where on earth does the Mughal imperial HR department find their Shahi Hakims? The mardana one during the post-tiger attack phase was terminally incompetent, and  was hugely relieved when his  senior from Gwalior  arrived.
The present zenani specimen looks for all the world like an undertaker's assistant, with a long lugubrious face that constantly seems to presage doom and disaster. She can surely  induce depression even in a comatose patient.  Just having such  a woman at her bedside would have been enough to make Jodha pack her bags for the other world!
And then  the Hakim sahiba's sudden turn as a (medieval) shrink, intoning solemnly that she could not pull Jodha thru because  Jodha  has lost her will to live,  was pretentious  nonsense.  How on earth  can the Hakima, who knows very little  about Jodha,   and nothing about her state of mind, make such pronouncements on something so intimate and sensitive?

Very likely, Jodha was dying of a large dose of   very strong poison (Benazir must have spat out all the venom she could summon up, just to make sure  the dose worked on the Shahenshah),  and since the  antidote was administered so late, her body could not fight the poison well enough.

Jodha reproachfully reminding  Jalal,  during the soul talk scene,  of his  harsh comments  is one thing. For the Hakima to  suddenly start spouting such pseudo-psychiatrist jargon in an attempt to cloak her incompetence  was way too much.
It was interesting that both  she  and Shaguni Bai finally hit on prayer as  a prescription for what looked like  a a lost case. Thus neatly shifting the blame    for the eventual calamity to the Almighty!

What lies ahead: I  really do not care if Ruqaiya bursts a blood vessel  at being  refused entry to Jodha's sickroom, or what the  strangely  inert Salima Begum (she did absolutely nothing to stop Jodha from poisoning herself)  gets up to, or what happens to Mahaam and/or Adham, not to speak of Abul Mali.

I am off to take another look at that garden promo. So should you, online if not onscreen. It is  a sight for sore eyes!
Shyamala B.Cowsik

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Re: Jodha Akbar 167: Ab hamara ek doosre se hi wajood hai

Post by amimus on 2014-02-06, 15:37

Such a wonderful post. I liked the sequence of the confession and Jalal in front of Kanha. You have explained it so beautifully that the whole scene was recreated in front of my eyes.

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