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Review: Hareem Farooq May Score A Century With ‘22 Qadam’!

Green Entertainment has begun its inning on a rocking note. Just like a batsman who scores a century with a variety of shots in his book, the newly launched channel has taken the entertainment industry by storm by tapping into various genres. Pushing the envelope and sweeping away norms, ‘22 Qadam’ is a breath of fresh air that empowers women to achieve their dreams. Written by Zeeshan Ilyas and directed by Anjum Shehzad, the show is co-produced by Hareem Farooq and Imran Raza Kazmi. Let’s Review.

22 Qadam: Introducing The Plot & Protagonist

‘22 Qadam’ is the story of Farheen Akhtar aka Fari (Hareem Farooq) who dreams of becoming a cricketer and play for the national team. She has posters of her idol Sana Mir and Lala (Shahid Afridi) in her room. She regularly dreams about playing for Pakistan and is woken up by her elder sister Amber (Kinza Razzak). Fari isn’t a bright student, reaching to college late is her routine. Resultantly, she is mostly spotted outside the class.

She becomes friends with Naz Keriana (Alina Abbas Shah) a new student who later becomes her partner in crime. One day she finds out that Sana Mir will be visiting the college. As usual, she arrives late and is shattered to see Sana Mir leaving the campus. In huge desperation, she deliberately comes in from her car and pretends to be hurt. A guilty Mir drops her home and gives her some valuable cricket advice.

Fari is the youngest in her family. Her father played by Shahnawaz Zaidi is disabled while her mother played by Nida Mumtaz runs the house with her small catering business. Amber is busy doing rishta parades. Fearing Amber’s age, her mother doesn’t have any specific criteria to find a suitable groom for her.

There is a parallel track that features Junaid (Wahaj Ali), a passionate cricketer who despite struggling with health issues is determined to make it big. He practices with Liza (Dur-e-Nayab). Both their parents are business partners and foresee their children as the captains of the national team.

What Makes ‘22 Qadam’ Different

‘22 Qadam’ takes an unconventional route and shatters some gender stereotypes. The idea of an ordinary girl who aspires to make it big in cricket is inspiring. Fari’s obsession with cricket looks convincing. Cricket is her only goal in life. She isn’t interested in studies, she gets angry when her mother removes her idols’ posters from the wall. She bets on matches with street kids, defeats them and makes them perform thumakas. We aren’t used to and don’t get much to see such female-led narratives. And that is the biggest USP of ‘22 Qadam’.

The way Anjum Shahzad has handled certain scenes will stir your emotions. Prominent amongst them are Fari’s heartwarming conversation with Sana Mir, Fari apologizing to Amber for not attending her baat pakki, and Fari’s father fake scolding her and Amber on arriving late at home.

‘22 Qadam’ Belongs To Hareem Farooq

Hareem Farooq hits the ball out of the park and delivers a sparkling performance. She is super convincing and carries out the part effortlessly. She emotes wonderfully and gives it her all to make us fall in love with her passion. Watch her in the scene where she asks for lift from Junaid. The way she sits in the car with a stranger, her expressions and body language are spot on. Another scene where she begs Junaid to train her is performed very well.

So far, Wahaj Ali plays the second fiddle which is surprising, especially after the super success of ‘Tere Bin’. That can also be because most of Green’s projects were shot earlier. Nevertheless, he looks dashing and enacts his part well.

Kinza Razzak is adorable. Thank god we got to see loving and caring relationship between sisters. She has a lovely screen presence and generates the desired impact. Alina Abbas Shah is lovely but we wish to see more of her. Dur-e-Nayab is likable, her insecurity towards Fari is convincing.

Summing It Up

‘22 Qadam’ is Hareem Farooq’s show all the way. If all goes well, it has the potential and may register as Hareem’s best performance to date. The drama rests on an engaging plot, fine performances, and captivating moments griping us right from the word go. Highly watchable!

Written by Ozair Majeed

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