Netflix's latest Hindi series Bombay Begums served us flawed but real female protagonists we could relate to. And not just because of the actors' stellar performances.
But also because they voiced the thoughts, concerns, and confusing emotions we all experience, but can't always express.
From Shai's voiceovers to Fatima's confessions, here's a look at some of the best dialogues from the series:
Some women are born to rule. We call them queens. They bleed for their dreams and expect others to bleed for them. I'm not sure I want to be that kind of queen. I think I'd rather lead the rebellion.
Some women secretly aspire to be queens. But society has stopped them. They can't dare aspire for these things. So they lie about their true desires. And make choices they don't fully believe in. Do all women have to lie to themselves to survive?
Women can have a career and a family.
Tere bete ke paas jo mauka hai, apun ke bete ko bhi chahiye. Tere beta zero hai, phir bhi ache school jaata hai. Apun ka beta hoshiyar hai, usko bhi ache school jaane ko mangta hai. Apun ko sirf paise nahi, izzat chahiye.
Where do we find love? Do dead mothers still love their daughters? Do dead daughters still love their mothers? I don't think I ever want to be a mother. I wouldn't want to be separated from my child by death.
Karva chauth! Patni ke kartavya ke naam par auraton ko bhookha marte hain aur tum log apne fayde ke liye prachar karte hoi inn pichhde rasmon ka.
Zindagi ne ek mauka diya hai, toh apun jo chahte hain vahi karenge. Samjhauta nahi karenge... achut nahi hai apun, izzat chahte hain.
Tu karle na ishq, jisse bhi karna hai, dil kholke... kisi se bhi.
Then there is desire. It just burns, like a flame, coursing through my whole body. I feel so many things... like I'm becoming a woman. But my body is not in sync.
Sometimes our bodies just betray us and we hate our bodies for not letting us live the life we want.
There's nothing wrong with being a prostitute if it's your choice. I mean you own your body after all.
Kabhi kabhi aisa lagta hai ki society humari body aur choices ke aage dekh hi nahi sakte. They're so obsessed.
Sometimes what we want is to push it all away. To forget, to pretend that it never was. But the memory stays alive inside of us, like a living, breathing thing.
At the end of the day, I'm a failure, no? I can't even fucking give birth to a child.
It's like I'm constantly at war with my body. Making it do stuff and... hating it, being angry with it. It's like I'm constantly on a treadmill, and there's no getting off. People have all these expectations of me, and I have them too. But I'm just failing. It's like I don't know what I want anymore. But right now, being here with you, I can feel myself breathe. I can actually feel joy in my body. Or maybe I'm just a little less angry with it.
Aap mujhe believe karein ya na karein Fatima ma'am, sachai toh sachai hoti hai. You're choosing to believe the person who assaulted me, woh aapka faisla hai.
Tere paas jo choice hai na woh apun ke paas nahi hai gudiya... apun ke sapne humesha murda hi paida hote hain. Toh hakeekat mein jo chance milta hai na, ussi ko cheen kar jeete hain apun. Insaaf ki ladai ladne ki luxury nahi hai apun ke paas.
It's funny, isn't it? Who you think you love? Who betrays you? Who stands by us? I just loved the way Mahesh made me feel... so young, so alive, so wanted. (I don't know what's worse, feeling betrayed or betraying). I guess they're both their own kind of hell.
- Rani and Fatima
What matters is we mend the pieces and move on, until it (heartbreak) happens again. Because it will happen again.
I want you to know that you don't have to do anything to please a boy, okay? Fuck that asshole...You need to own your life. Risk your life for your art. Not for some stupid boy.
I don't want to be here with you, par pure dil se nahi, kyunki usne reject kiya aur tum available ho. Mahine se ghum rahi hun. I need to find my own place and figure my life out.
To own my life means to own my wounds. To let the blood flow and grow me up. To wear my scars with pride and find the courage, to survive.
Our wounds can heal, and our souls blossom. And the jagged and sparkling dreams of women can find both earth and sky.
All images are screenshots from Netflix.