AARYA Review

AARYA Series Review


Disclaimer: This review has no spoilers.

Ever wonder how American shows would look if they were made in India? Set with an Indian social background and played out with Indian sensibilities? I am not sure how we would react if we saw an Indian version of Cosmo Kramer in a Mumbai neighborhood or Sheldon Cooper with his entourage in IIT Chennai. However, last week we got a glimpse of how a Walter White’esque character would react if they are forced to lead a drug cartel in Rajasthan and I was impressed with it. I am talking about Hotstar’s new show ‘Aarya‘.
Aarya Sushmita
Aarya features a comeback of sorts for Sushmita Sen who plays the protagonist Aarya Sareen. The show revolves around Aarya who is forced to take on the family criminal business after her husband Tej Sareen (Chandrachur Singh) gets shot and a major drug consignment goes missing. Trying to find her way out of a perilous web of cops, drug rivalry, blackmail, family dispute, and parenting, Aarya is seen taking the reins of the business in a fierce and authoritative manner.
Aarya Sush Car
For an actor whose last film was in 2015, Sushmita Sen has outdone herself in this role. She has a calming, yet commanding presence in every scene. While playing a mother to three kids and dealing with external threats, it is refreshing to see an actor using restraint and subtlety to express the inner despair instead of lashing out. Coming off the successful show ‘Paatal Lok’, Manish Chaudhary has done a fabulous job in portraying ‘Shekawat’, the drug rival with whom Sushmita goes toe-to-toe. Chaudhary has played the role of a dignified drug lord in a manner that for the most part, becomes difficult to root against him.
Aarya Sush Man
This show has an excellent ensemble of supporting cast and it gets difficult to pick one and leave the rest. Credit needs to be given to Sohaila Kapur who plays the role of Sushmita’s mother Rajeshwari. Rajeshwari is broken and hurt as her husband has left her for someone younger. Rajeshwari’s character is portrayed in the most human way possible where one sees her manipulative side as well as her care towards her children. Viren Vazirani, Virti Vaghani, and Pratyaksh Panwar play Aarya’s children and each of them has complemented Sushmita Sen perfectly in establishing the family dynamic as well as their own individual stories. Another actor who leaves a mark on this show is Sikandar Kher who plays the role of Daulat, Aarya’s father’s right-hand man at par with Sushmita Sen and Manish Chaudhary. For any actor, it might be a challenge to share the screen with someone as talented as Sushmita but not for Ankur Bhatia. He gives a critical performance as Sangram, Sushmita’s notorious brother that just adds to the overall richness of the show.
Aarya Chandrachur Ankur

The trailer of Aarya makes you believe that this would be a fast-paced show but on the contrary, it is a slow-paced web series emulating how time slows down after a death in the family. While watching the show, I thought it could have ended a couple episodes sooner at a different cliffhanger. This show is a remake of the Dutch series ‘Penoza’ co-produced by the Endemol Shine Group. For those who don’t know, Endemol Shine is known to license reality shows such as MasterChefFear Factor, etc. for different countries.
Aarya Sush Family
Aarya is Hotstar’s newest entry in the world of engrossing over-the-top content. If you want to see graceful Sushmita Sen dominating the small screen in a top-notch thrilling drama, I highly recommend Aarya.

Reviewed by Puneet Ruparel