So, once a day I flip through Amazon Prime to check if anything new has come up. I haven’t explored through non indian series and movies yet – with only caution on how it will impact my life given by serious addiction issues with alternate content. Today was good – new web series released – “Pushpavalli”. Come again, what does that mean – CREEPER!
Created by Sumukhi Suresh, this has 8 episodes each with run time of 20 minutes. The quality is good and prime sure streamed fast. Is the webseries worth the time?
Absolutely! First, the things that worked – psychology of a stalker explained picture perfect. The main character – Sumukhi Suresh finds friendship and possibly “love” in a short acquaintance at Food Conference in Bhopal. Why and how she develops a connect are shown in detail with the parting scene showing how she has developed feelings already, when there’s nothing on his mind yet.
Clearly not even acknowledging to herself or her close friends that she’s moving city and crushing all her future plans to “pursue” ( or stalk!) one she thinks she deserves – she befriends tea wallah ( brilliantly played by Ashok Pathak) to know the whereabouts. And then once get spotted – she tries various ways and things seem working in her favor, and then take a U-turn. Sumukhi’s character does not get it, and pursues even harder to get the guy and goes to a point of desperation where the audience can totally understand her, but don’t know what to do with her.
Manish Anand, the prize being chased here – totally drool worthy. Calm demeanor, professional attire and always willing to talk. However, the very thought of someone stalking him doesn’t cross his mind until explicitly uncovered at the very end. Naveen Richard – owner of a kids library who doesn’t like kids. Has crush on a mom but not sure. Cares for Pushpavalli but can only talk in swears. Finds his friend helplessly falling into the rabbit hole, and confronts her only to find her fall even harder.
There is an entire thread about the PG where Pushpavalli stays and the owner is a typical PG Aunty played by Sharaddha. Take a bow madam! Witty dialogue delivery and almost-real scenarios. Pushpavalli’s discussions with her mom are almost stereotyping a tamil mom – didn’t get fun there. Swati , played by Preetika Chawla is good. I almost hated her characterization in Girl in the City 2, this was made it up for me.
Here are things that stood out for me –
- No regrets for Pushpa’s character because she truly believes she is only trying to make the inevitable happen and make a good story for the kids. Disillusioned with the reality at all the times, quite convincingly.
- Standup comedy’s episode where he is supposed to ask if Pushpavalli and Nikhil are a thing. How he never understands that the fat girl can be the one, her ransom-holding friends are asking to uncover. It is always assumed to the the nicer, slimmer one.
- Naveen Richard’s character asking 6 year old to throw a sanitary pad into the dustbin. Anyone running anything for kids doesn’t implicitly mean they love kids and are treating them well.
- Pushpavalli gets called “Chubby” quite few times and is told that she should get married because the guy really likes her.
- Men stalking and Women Stalking happen very differently. Men stalk in open – by opening their zippers in front of the hostel and turning up unasked at the place of girl’s work. Girls work harder – making it look impromptu and so sudden that you’d have to call God to convince otherwise.
What didn’t work – Nothing really! I really enjoyed watching the web series and it kept me up until 4 AM and with this review – 4:45 AM. I only hope up to catch an early lunch tomorrow 😀
Kudos to Sumukhi to take such a sensitive topic and weave layers over it. She delivers a very serious topic with the necessary accessories so the viewer can sit through and still get the gist of it.
Rating : 10/10