We already know Manoj Bajpayee is a class act. We're talking about the character of Atharv (Vedant Sinha), Srikant's younger son and a human storm in a teacup.
As heavy as the source material for The Family Man is - chemical terrorism and Hindu fascism - it's offset by highly relatable humour and quirky characters. From the bumbling JK to Srikant's own eccentricities, the funny bone is strong in this one.
But frankly, Atharv is the downright funniest. It's rare to see such a well-written child character in any show - Indian or not. One of the first glimpses we get of him, he's blowing away at a flute, much to Srikant's chagrin.
Just by the first interaction between father and son, you already know this kid's going to cause a fair bit of damage.
This kid gives no fucks - mom and dad fighting right in front? Let's add to their misery by playing something horribly off-tune.
He's a total wild child, and both parents know it. The only way they can deal with him is with a mix of love and dismissal in equal measure. It's such a unique and refreshing dynamic.
A running gag in the show is his obsession with picking up a new instrument and driving everyone around him crazy with the racket. In his mind though, he's a musical prodigy.
And props to the parents for actually supporting him and paying for his classes, despite the noise.
Most importantly, it's the freakin' random shit he says that really makes it tick. Seriously, kuch bhi bolta hai yeh ladka. Like when he chances upon sanitary pads in a shop.
Like... really random. I mean bizarre. At one point he just starts referring to his mom by her first name for no reason. It doesn't make any sense, and that's what makes it hilarious!
When he has the house to himself, he goes wild - eating chips, chocolate, ice-cream, and every other thing he's not supposed to. It goes from funny to scary when he chances upon his dad's gun.
Luckily, instead of anything untoward happening, he just stows it away. And then our brilliant little evil dude blackmails his dad with this information to get an iPhone. What a guy!
All in all, the cheeky Atharv is one of the best written and most hilarious characters we've seen in a long time. He's a strange little creature who's just eccentric enough to not be annoying. He's not a typical Bollywood younger brother who's only objective is annoying his sister - he's a lovable dude who needs his own show.