Disney+Hotstar's latest web series Aarya based on the Dutch drama Penoza, is about a mother of three who is forced to take up her husband's drug trade after he is shot. Amidst all this, she finds herself tangled up with smuggled heroine, a mob boss and her own father's history of crime.
With just 9 episodes, here is why you should be binge-watching this crime drama over the weekend:
1. Sushmita Sen is a visual treat
It's been years since we saw this brilliant actress on-screen and in her first web-series, she sure does a great job as the titular role. Playing a housewife who has to figure out a way to keep her husband's illegal business afloat after his death, she doesn't waver for a second. Her character is strong, charismatic and determined, to which she does complete justice. Sushmita is reason enough to watch this crime drama.
2. This show doesn't waste a single brilliant actor's potential.
From Maya Sarao, Sikandar Kher and Jayant Kripalani to Namit Das, Vikas Kumar, Manish Choudhary, Vishwajeet Pradhan and Chandrachur Singh. Every single actor in this show commits to their role. Be it an art collector or a mob boss, they each have something to add to the storyline. Every single one of them reaches their true potential, never once making it seem like they don't belong on-screen or have been forced into their roles.
3. It has a cop in an openly gay relationship and it isn't in your face.
Vikas Kumar plays an openly gay cop whose boyfriend visits the police station with dinner. Everyone seems to know about it but the show doesn't revolve this entire character around his sexual orientation, normalising it to a certain extent. Even though he is harassed for being gay with a snide remark from his boss, the show does justice to his role.
4. The show isn't melodramatic but will surely play with your emotions.
Aarya is driven by emotions, from the loss of a parent, the workings of a dysfunctional family to how every single character grieves in their own way. However, the show strikes the perfect balance of being dramatic without the melodrama. You'll find yourself hooked to it right from the start, even when it is merely establishing the family bonds.
5. It captures the chaos behind being a teenager who just lost a parent.
With two teenage kids who are dealing with the loss of their father in their own way, Aarya captures the confusion behind their actions. On one hand, the daughter is drawn to the Bhagwat Gita and divulges into the narratives of death in the holy scriptures. On the other, the son dives into a relationship where he feels wanted and loved.
6. Every single character is grey and you can't trust anyone.
And that's exactly what makes this a great show! From the teenage son's girlfriend to the bodyguard to the father, brother, house help, basically everyone is a suspect and Aarya is all by herself. It'll keep you at the edge of your seat right till the last episode.
You won't regret sitting through 9 hours of this fast-paced show.