Hasmukh Review: A terrific Vir Das can't save this promising idea which goes awry

Hasmukh Review: A terrific Vir Das can't save this promising idea which goes awry

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Format: Web Series
Platform: NETFLIX
Movie Rated: 18+ (Language, Violence, Sex, Substance)
Genre: Thriller, Crime

Story
Hasmukh, an aspiring stand-up comic from a small town with dreams of making it big must confront his own fears before getting on stage and making others laugh. Having worked under a local comic Gulati (Manoj Pahwa) doing all kinds of menial jobs for over a decade, Hasmukh finally decides to test his luck as a comic. However, when Gulati doesn’t stand by his promise of giving Hasmukh a shot at fame, something terrible happens. Imagine Hasmukh as the Dexter of the comic world and the events that follow his efforts to become a popular comic while dealing with his urge to kill forms the crux of the story.

Analysis
The show is built on a very exciting idea. A stand-up comic, in order to perform, must kill before he gets on stage, is a great premise for a show that’s dark, twisted and loaded with wry humour. Unfortunately, Hasmukh never quite takes off after showing great promise in the initial episodes. The core idea fails to keep one invested after the first few episodes, in spite of some interesting subplots. Thankfully, Vir Das and Ranvir Shorey really keep this show alive, making it to chug along right till the very end. If not for their performances, Hasmukh would’ve been a tiresome watch from the beginning.

For a show that’s centred on a comedian featuring a real-life comedian, the jokes have no impact whatsoever in terms of entertainments. Apart from a few lines, most of the jokes fall flat and come across like they’ve been written by a bunch of interns. There’s a track about Hasmukh’s abusive uncle and overtly flirtatious aunt. Wish some more time was spent on exploring this relationship but very little time is spent on it to take the story forward and arrive at the next big plot point.
 

Performances
If not for Vir Das stellar’s performance, I would’ve lost interest in the show quite early on. Vir is unbelievably good as Hasmukh, a character he owns and wears like it’s his second skin. The ease with which he transforms from a meek comic to a ruthless killer is extraordinary to watch. The show is proof to Vir’s untapped potential which he unleashes like never before. The ever-reliable Ranvir Shorey doesn’t disappoint, again. Scenes between Ranvir and Vir really hold the show together.  
 

Highlights
One of the biggest highlights of the show will be Vir Das’s presence. It’s a known fact that he’s a very popular stand-up comic but that he could act so well is a myth that just got busted.
 

Drawbacks
The show doesn’t cash in on its wacky premise which fizzles out just when it gets your attention.
 

Did I like it?
I loved the core idea and wish it was explored more. Come to think of it, here’s a show that’s let down by its own promising idea which doesn’t get the execution it deserves.
 


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