Mirzapur Season 2 - A Review
Brilliance, tenderness, and ho-hum go together in this season of the UP gangster tale!
Sample this scene. The new wife of Munna Tripathi (Divyendu), also the widow daughter of the UP Chief Minister, learns of her father’s killing in a road accident. Munna, usually the most uncouth despot, does not have words to comfort his wife and has a bout of tenderness that he himself is very uncomfortable with. The wife is deadened with grief, and her husband finds it hard to comfort her. This is a moment of silence among the usual guns and bawdiness that plays across the ten episodes of Mirzapur Season 2. This spells doom for the Tripathi family, the de facto rulers of Mirzapur, outlaws who rule by the gun, and the fear of death.
There are a few moments of restraint in this season. A season where the writing flits between the ordinary and the sublime across scenes and episodes.
The story is still the same. There’s Mirzapur and a clutch of men and women who wish to rule it, however possible. Also, Munna wants to graduate to being the real boss instead of Akhanda Tripathi (Pankaj Tripathi) and does not have the patience to wait.
The subtle power struggle between the father and son is dealt with, by the writers and directors, with much glee. The best of Pankaj Tripathi and Divyendu happens in these scenes where they seek to turn the tables.
This time, a few women come to the fore. There’s the daughter of the UP CM who is herself very ambitious and chooses an odd route to get to a position of power. Then, there is Beena (Rasika Duggal), wife of Akhanda Tripathi, who has also been having some dangerous liaisons on the side and who’s been waiting to have her own revenge on the men in the Tripathi family for her own reasons. Between them, they tilt the story towards more twists and shoot outs.
The guns and the epithets are still there, a new family is added to the mix in the form of a family in the stolen car trade, from Bihar. Vijay Verma here is present in a double role of twin brothers of the same family named interestingly as Bharat and Shatrughan Tyagi. Someone had a diabolic idea with Ramayana!
That brings us to the two main characters who survived the shootout that Munna unleashed at the end of Season 1. Golu (Shweta Tripathi Sharma) and Guddu Pandit (Ali Fazal) now get together, not a conjugal pair, but as a revenge-seeking partnership to finish the Tripathi family and take control of Mirzapur.
An interesting character named Robin Agarwal (Priyanshu Painyuli) is also added to the mix as Dimpy’s (the sister of Guddu) boyfriend. He is also an illicit banker cum investor for all dons and gangsters in Lucknow. He also informs Guddu’s father about his doings and whereabouts.
The plot is old, and so it tends to drag here and there, but since the plot twists are excellent, the series does not flag all that much.
Divyendu carries this season ably, well supported by Pankaj Tripathi and Rasika Duggal. Rasika Duggal is more like a K-serial wife, and Ali Fazal could have been out of CID or some such home grown serial. Shweta Tripathi is out of her depths with this fiery character that the writers and directors foist on her.
Puneet Krisshna and Karan Anshuman handle the writing. Karan also directs quite a few episodes along with Gurmeet Singh, who also pitches in. This season has more slow and haunting scenes, obviously dwelling on the setting and the diabolic nature of the people and politics in UP. The photography is uniformly brilliant with lots of grainy indoor scenes to marvel at. Low lighting and shadows play a larger role this time. The editing is also interesting, especially in the action scenes. A scene that starts on a ghat on the banks of Ganga and continues through a haveli and finally a shootout, is world class.
So, a season with some good wins and some dull interludes. But Amazon manages to bring us something far better than Netflix has done in the recent past.
- Indraneel Majumdar
Series – Mirzapur Season 2
Showing on Amazon Prime
Stars – 3/5