Aired on: 5th February 2011
Broadcasting Network: Hum TV
This gripping telefilm stars Nausheen Shah and Babar Khan as lead characters. It is produced by Hum TV’s Head of Drama Department – Moomal Shunaid, written by Syed Atif Ali and directed by Siraj-ul Haq.
Aapa explores how a harmless and innocent love can intensify and make someone suicidal. Hashir, a young boy of 7 years, adores his cousin sister, more than twice his own age. They are always seen playing and mucking about . Hashir from time to time asks his aapa a rather mature question for his age, as if wanting a verbal oath that they will spend the rest of their lives together. Rehana or Aapa – as he addresses her – always takes it as a joke every time Hashir asks her if she would marry him when he grows older.
When Hashir gets into college, his fantasy world begins to crumble as Aapa gets a marriage proposal – just like the ones he used to put in front of her – only difference being that this time Aapa would actually be married off to a guy and it won’t be him. Hashir’s obsession with Rehana begins to take its toll and the silent one-sided-attraction becomes known to the entire immediate family which also proves disastrous for Rehana’s married life. However, that changes nothing about the way Aapa feels so concerned for her cousin. But the heartache of unrequited love becomes too much to bear for Hashir and he commits what in our religion is considered the most formidable sin.
Aapa is an extremely well-directed, well-written and acted telefilm with heart wrenching scenes. My most favorite and somewhat scary scene, was the one at the Mayoon, when Hashir takes Aapa to the terrace and when she asks him what he’d be wearing at the wedding, he casually requests for a Kafan (funeral cloth). Also the scenes when Hashir is imagining moments (which had never happened, in real life) with the aid of classical music were very tastefully done.
As the main lead, Babar Khan gives a stellar performance and completely owns the character of Hashir. Nausheen Shah as Rehana is incredibly convincing and realistic, presenting a stark resemblance to her character of Shaista from Mohammed Ahmed’s 2010 hit soap aired on TV One. Though the telefilm revolves around a very dark theme – a fatal obsession – it doesn’t become cliched or boring at any point. I will go with 4.5 out of 5 for Siraj-ul-Haq’s Aapa, it’s an emotional heart-in-the-mouth drama and would make you blue for the sheer tragedy of it.