Sacred Games season 2 is an absolute binger that lives up to the hype

Netflix’s most anticipated series Sacred Games is back with its most anticipated season. And we have been on the edge of our seats with curiosity and excitement since it first announced the date of release. The best part of it? No character let us down this time as well.

Saif Ali Khan and Nawazuddin Siddiqui are in top form, setting the standards high for more. The thrilling, intriguing and hooking nature of this series with the perfect combination of dark humour and dialogue that are too real to be. 

The plot

As the makers follow the storytelling style of the previous season and narrate the story in a non-linear fashion, the twists and turns give it a massive thrilling touch. The story transverses from one time period to another – a sort of juxtaposition of the lead characters – Ganesh Gaitonde (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) and Sartaj Singh (Saif Ali Khan) – and their storylines. As Nawazuddin himself turns orator for his story in flashback, Saif unfolds key points of what danger is Mumbai in and amidst it, also deals with his complicated personal life. 

Gaitonde, who was last seen breaking a jail, is now seen somewhere in the seas. He has nothing on his mind but revenge. Nawazuddin reprises his role as the notorious gangster, but not in Bombay or Mumbai, Gaitonde is now setting up his business overseas in Mombasa, Kenya. But things are changed – Gaitonde, who called himself Bhagwan, is now coming to terms with his own fall. His empire is in deep waters and he is away from the city he loves, Bombay.

Simultaneously, Saif Ali Khan as Sartaj is looking for the mission puzzle pieces. Delivering a restrained performance with just the right amount of intensity and ease, Saif as Sartaj keeps you hooked. It might be his duty as a cop to investigate and solve the intricate process, but as a viewer, you cannot help but start looking for clues yourself as the story progresses. Pankaj Tripathi as Guruji and Kalki Koechlin as Abelman deliver a stellar performance as expected.

The verdict

Sometime during the show, a prominent character says, “Nucleus se hi nikle the, nucleus mei hi waapis jaayege” and that, can be an apt and short description of the season. Crime, corruption, and communalism – the three facets of Sacred Games have been dealt with sensitively. The elemental and mental chaos, both, have been truly portrayed with finesse. Anything more about the plot will be a giveaway, but it would suffice to say that the show is a ticking bomb, one that you need to invest your time and attention to.

With the show being both mysterious and thrilling, it doesn’t yet lose sight of its commentary, plot and story. As with the first season, it leaves you with questions and things to think about for the next season.

Season 2 of Sacred Games gets a 5/5 from us easily.

Definitely keep this season on your watch list this vacation because it’s worth the time.

Let’s talk about F.R.I.E.N.D.S, the most overrated TV show ever

I am going to attempt to shed some light to one of the all-time favourite classic TV series ever written, Friends. While the series was an absolute delight for my 17-year-old self, the series was pretty overrated. 

The show justifies stereotyping with humour 

Rachel, a dumb yet pretty blonde woman who is only of any use when it comes to the fashion industry. Phoebe, another pretty yet dumb blonde who has no idea about the real world whatsoever. Joey, an Italian American misogynist whose character is garnished with humour to help overlook miles of sexism that hides beneath the layers. Ross, the only character in the show with a PhD. But who cares about that? Guys with PhD. are nerds who need 10 years to end up with any woman that is even mildly beautiful because sexy and smart doesn’t go together.

Helped create a culture of toxic humour 

All throughout the show, apart from misogyny and lack of diversity, we can also see how the show tried to justify body shamming in a subtle way. We get myriads of flashback episode from the time when Monica was obese and how she had to change herself because she had a crush on Chandler.

In another episode, we get Brad Pitt as a guest star where we find out Rachel’s character used to bully him. At no point did the show endorse body types that were anything other than perfect according to conventional societal standards. And they tried to justify such discrimination by hiding behind a curtain of toxic humour.  

Lack of depth for characters

Was “Friends” a funny show? Yes. But is it because the characters were funny? No. If you take any line said by Monica and make Rachel say that line instead, the show would still be funny. If you take one of Joey’s line and make phoebe say it, it would still be equally funny. 

While the show had a lot of good jokes, it didn’t have much depth when it came to its character’s character. 

Read more: That ’70s Show: The criminally underrated sitcom you need to binge.

Not realistic enough 

The show was targeted to the general mass as a representation of the day to day struggles of a group of friends. The only problem was, it ended up being a story about six straight white adults who are privileged enough to not care about their careers and can still end up living in fancy NYC apartments. Tagging this as “Relatable and Realistic” is just another way to justify white privilege through humour. 

Read more: TV shows you shouldn’t have watched but did anyway

Too much love too little friendship

I want you to try and imagine a world where Rachel and Ross were never in love, Monica and Chandler didn’t get married with kids, would the whole plotline still make sense and be as touching? No. And this is the biggest problem with the show. The show claims to be about friendship but it refuses to go in-depth about different dimensions of friendship that exists beyond the world of romantic relationships. 

I will never try to argue that Friends was not a good TV series because it was. It was iconic.

It was a series that will probably live on for generations to come. That is exactly why it is important for us to recognize the flaws in the series as well. Because if we keep idolizing a series that will live on for ages, if you let our love for the series cloud our judgment, the generation to come will end up with the same misconceptions.

While the hype around Friends is something that can’t go away, and it shouldn’t, but it should also be criticized in the same way that we would for any other TV series. Friends is a good Tv series but it does have its flaws. 

TV shows you shouldn’t have watched but did anyway

TV series usually helps us to waste our time in a productive manner. However, there are a few TV series that we watched while growing up even though we knew that these were not worth our time and energy. Here is a glimpse at such mistakes –

Grey’s Anatomy

Everyone has been through the Grey’s Anatomy phase during their high school days when watching McDreamy and McSteamy on the screen made them want to join Med school. Weirdly enough, some of us probably even joined med school just for the Grey’s Anatomy experience. But then we grew up, had children, our children went through puberty and are now going through a mid-life crisis but Grey’s Anatomy is still running on tv.

15 seasons of absolute fantasy fiction about the love life of one woman who happens to be a doctor.

We all know that this show wasn’t going anywhere right after the death of most of the major characters. Sadly enough, we are loyal enough fans who have absolutely nothing to do in life than to watch Meredith Grey mess up stories over and over again.

Read more: 6 Bangladeshi Superheroes You Should Know About

Riverdale

Watching Riverdale was proof of how cool and pop culture aware you are. But that was back in 2015 when the first season of the show was released. The first season was excellent. Totally worthy of the “Netflix and Chill”. But then right after the release of the first episode of the second season, 3 min into the first episode and we all realized that this is a colossal waste of our Netflix subscription.  But we refused to let go of the show throughout the black hood tragedy which encouraged the producers to give us a season 3, which was ….. let’s just say the finale of Game of Thrones made more sense than the season 3 of Riverdale

Read more: Bangladeshi graphic novels: 5 essential reads

Supernatural

Watching Sam and Dean kill demons and pay a visit to Purgatory every few seconds was fun until Season 5. Then we decided to give them 9 more seasons just so that they can run out of Villans to fight and come up with extremely complicated mythology that makes the plot a giant spider web.

Bojack Horseman

Bojack Horseman, a show about a horse that talks and walks and somedays he feels like he is in love with an owl, somedays he feels like he is in love with a cat and on other days he likes humans and underaged deers. And we have watched this series for 5 whole seasons because somehow we all feel like this horse is a reflection of who we are.

Honorary mention: SplitsVilla

Watching Roadies for an infinite number of seasons can make sense if we imagine ourselves as masochists but even then I can’t make sense as to why we secretly watched 12 seasons of Splitsville.

Russian Doll: The Perfect Weekend Binge

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. A cynical person is compelled to relive a certain day in repeat, over and over again and stuck in a time loop.

Of course, you have. Because this is the exact same premise for a whole host of movies and TV series episodes. For example, Groundhog Day, Source Code, Edge of tomorrow and even recent Black Mirror event, Bandersnatch to a certain degree.

So can the same plot, that’s been done so many times over be any good or entertaining? In the case of Netflix’s new comedy-drama “Russian Doll” very much so.

Produced and co-written by Amy Poehler of “Parks and Recreations”, Russian Doll, as the show itself describes itself, “a long story involving multiple deaths.”

Minor Spoilers for the 1st and 2nd episode.

It starts off with Nadia Vulvokov (Natasha Lyonne), a cynical New Yorker who is seen at her 36th birthday party thrown by two of her closest friend at their apartment.

Nadia happens to be a chain-smoking, alcoholic, video game programmer with a self-destructive nature and pretty bleak outlook on life. After an accident involving a local deli cat, Nadia is run over by a speeding taxi and is killed on the spot on the night of her birthday.

Russian Doll a bingeworthy netflix show

But surprising enough she’s transported back to the where the episode started off. At birthday party her friend threw for her, giving her the worst case of Déjà vu. Although writing it off as her imagination and side-effects of the narcotics she took at the party, she realized that the loop she’s in is very real after she ends up dying a few more times. Nadia is left to figure out how to free herself from this never-ending loop or if it’s even possible to free herself at all.

What makes it binge-worthy

Even with the worn out plot, Russian Doll has a lot going for it in term of making it one the most binge-worthy shows out there. For one, with having just eight episodes and a runtime less than 4 hours, it hits the sweet spot in terms of keeping the audience glued to their screens as the show keeps peeling off its different layers.

On the topic of different layers, the show is very smart right down to its characters. Dark humor and how it portrays it and handles heavy subject matter and even the theory of relativity at one point. The title of the show itself is a reference to depression and mental health which gets more prominent as the story progresses.

Russian Doll a bingeworthy netflix show.

The protagonist Nadia Vulvokov is a great reason to watch Russian doll in itself. The deaths were comically hilarious and some hilariously dark but the drama of the show was very genuine and heartfelt. Being funny, brash, cynical, and hedonistic from the beginning to the revelation of her troubled back-story and characters growth, she is the life of the show. Although the show can get a bit confusing and disjointed at times, everything comes together beautifully by the end of the final episode.

Verdict

Overall, Russian Doll is a solid show to watch with enough twists and turns and character development to keep the audience hooked. Although its overused plotline might turn away some initially, you could do much worse than giving it’s a shot and hopefully love it by the end.