Posted by: digirak | February 2, 2010

Mahabharata fascination

Its been a bit of fascination from my child hood to actually keep watching the Mahabharata and it still continues, even today the BR chopra epic seizes me like nothing else has.It amazes me that a serial made nearly 20 years back continues to fascinate me.

The selection of characters obviously is inimitable, Nitish bharadwaj as Krishna is possibly the best ever his charisma is almost all encompassing though i never picture krishna as such an emotional character it still suffices because he has the right chutzpah to pull off those punch lines befitting an highly shrewd individual at the same time does not come across as a cruel and cunning gamester like shakuni.

When i talk of Krishna i must talk of Gufi Paintal as Shakuni, exceptional is the word that comes across, truly magnificent as he simply coldly and cunningly denies the pandavas their kingdom and rips the royal household apart to take what he wants and at each stage keeping a tight leash on his nephew duryodhana, constantly at tenterhooks with the idealistic and ascerbic Karna. He ingratiates to Krishna, spews venom at the pandavas, mocks Duryodhana, cunningly manipulates his sister Gandhari and weeps for Gandhara. Yet his motives are clear and his mind is set.

Karna is another interesting character, he has the subtle persona reflected off a socially outcaste person with all the attributes of ruling society, truly speaking he has the brilliance which Karna has to portray. The flaming indignant eyes and the ascerbic tongue all characterised beautifully by dheeraj kumar, the epic itself does not talk much of Karna but one can glean much from the character sketch that is offered by the general persona. It certainly gives a lot of weightage to the confrontation between shakuni and Karna but it does not tell us of his character inherently except a glimpse in his confrontation with Krishna. Of course one needs to reconstruct most of it, Chopra does a good job picking it up and executing it with elan

I have loved Arjun as Arjuna, he is possibly the most apt character in the epic, the portrayal of the emotionally charged Arjuna yet highly war like in nature. Not the cool thinker but the fighter and the exceptionally talented archer, which is what possibly arjuna was. In reterospect one does not lend the credence of thought to any of the sons of Kunti with the exception of yudhistira and karna, they were mostly, at least as the epic portrays splendid warriors and good administrators. We dont see evidence of BhimA for instance silencing his elder brother’s historonics or attempting to see through Shakuni’s ploys.
Panchali Draupadi Krishna is possibly the most willful character played brilliantly by roopa ganguly to be honest i dont really respect Draupadi, i find her repungant in terms of the fact that she caused the blood lust by slowly letting the anger sink into her husbands. I obviously do not support many of her claims in avenging an insult but i must say i was quite a bit mistaken, not only are her claims justified in many respects but they even have subtle characterisations of her forceful personality, but obviously we cannot but miss her amazing zeal


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