Code M – peeling corrupt layers What did you think ‘Code M’ was about? Perhaps, some secret code that’s being decoded by the Indian Army? Well, the answer to this is both ‘Yes’ and ‘No’. The eight-part series of the AltBalaji and ZEE5 partnership launched on the 15th of January 2020. Each episode pans for an average of 25 to 28 mins. Viewers can find themselves gipped by the well-devised plot, and the kind of momentum it gains right from the very first episode. Honestly, it doesn’t even take a few seconds for the plot to establish itself. The story may seem patchy at first, but the pieces slowly come together to give us a holistic view of the story. Corruption is the mainstay of every society. Growth thrives on corruption. But in India, growth is sabotaged owing to deep-rooted ‘traditional’ values that seem to have formed a mainstay even in the most modern and evolved beings. Code M is about an unwarranted murder in the army, where an army officer and two civilians are murdered in cold blood to fulfill a ‘higher up’s’ flimsy whim. ‘Major Shakti’ (Aalekh Kapoor) and ‘Major Gaurav’ (Keshav Sadhna) are made the bait under the pretext of being gay and being unable to get out of the closet. The very responsible Colonel ‘Sooryavansh Chauhan’ (Rajat Kapoor) sends for ‘Monika Mehra’ (Jennifer Winget), to solve this seemingly ‘open-n-shut’ case. But it isn’t as simple as it’s made out to be. Monika smells a rat the moment she steps in. She isn’t convinced about a case being so easy and decides on delving into the crux of the issue. Later, Monika is joined by a legal representative, ‘Angad’ (Tanuj Virwani), who is also her ex-boyfriend. Initially, Monika faces a lot of resistance on the case, but when certain facts about Major Shakti comes to the fore, she takes her stand, winning Angad over, to look at things from her perspective. After chartering unexplored avenues, the truth is excavated. As a reviewer, I’ve enjoyed the way the plot has progressed. There is a certain hook to the plot, which is compelling, but it is sad to learn that even today our stories are premised around social evils such as the caste system and same-sex marriages. Jennifer Winget has absolutely revitalized her avatar and upped her game with panache. She has shown that a woman isn’t weak. She seems to have delved into the skin of the character and has resumed the required strength and brash appeal. She has truly set an example for the modern-day woman. Tanuj Virwani should choose his plots wisely. Though the part he plays here is refreshing and seemingly different, there is certain callousness to his character that brings him a few notches down. Without any substantial explanation, Angad begins to side Monika on the case. Why? Yes, facts do surface during the interrogation, but Tanuj doesn’t seem to deliver a crystal clear explanation upon being asked. On a serious subject such as this, he could have taken a slight departure from his immature ways. Rajat Kapoor is brilliant. It is hard to maintain a straight face and not let the audience even get a whiff of the ongoings. The production is bang on, every prop, and the uniform proceeding is on point. Only that in the end, when they show the soldiers marching onwards to arrest ‘Major Gaurav’, their March is a little off. The hand-leg co-ordination is not in place. Also, they’ve mentioned Indian single malt. They’ve discretely showed viewers a bottle of ‘Paul John’ and had quite a talk around the subject of whiskey, which was to a certain extent needless, simply because it was baseless. I cannot find any flaws in the direction and post-production. Together they’ve dotted all the ‘I’s’ and crossed all ‘t’s’. Rating 3.5/5.