Tabbar Review: Pavan Malhotra Led Web Series Is Unmissable

Tabbar Review: Pavan Malhotra Led Web Series Is Unmissable
Tabbar Review: Pavan Malhotra Led Web Series Is Unmissable

Powered by a performance of astonishing acuity by the ever-trustworthy Pavan Malhotra and anchored in the sensibility of an unusually astute director, Tab key is an eight-episode Punjabi/Hindi series that uses the conventions of a crime thriller to set up a gripping, acute exploration of disaster, guilt, and a clan in crisis. The SonyLIV show is a completely unconventional affair – it relies more on emotions and psychological examinations than on overtly dramatic action. The riveting story centers on a family of four who were accidentally sucked into a situation that quickly spiraled out of control. As the threats mount, the Patriarch is forced to make desperate choices that push him, his wife and his two sons into a moral abyss from which it is difficult to climb.


The drug threat that Punjab has faced in recent years and political scheming set the scene, but do not overshadow the essence of the story. What’s most striking about it? Tab key (Family in Punjabi) is that it uses the mystical poetry of Baba Farid to create an ethical context for the actions of a man desperate to protect his family from harm after an accidental murder puts them all under a cloud. To cover his tracks, the man commits acts that only make things worse.

Omkar Singh (Malhotra), a Punjab police officer, lives with his wife Sargun (Supriya Pathak Kapur) and two sons, IAS aspiring Harpreet ‘Happy’ Singh (Gagan Arora) and drifter Tegi (Sahil Mehta) whose ambition it is to star on social media. One night everything changes for the family – they’re left with the body of an intruder who was shot and killed in panic by Happy and a pack of drugs.

Happy has just arrived from Delhi for a short break from the coaching institute. Tegi rummages through his duffel bag in search of a gift his older sibling promised. He fishes out a package and hides it. It turns out that there has been a mix-up and that the bag is not Happy’s. The real owner comes by. One thing leads to another and the aggressive visitor loses his life.

The dead man is the only brother of a politically ambitious crime boss, Ajeet Sodhi (Ranveer Shorey), whose henchmen fan out to search for the missing boy. For Omkar and his family, safety lies not only in getting rid of the corpse, but also in silencing anyone nearby who has the slightest idea what might have happened in their home that night.

Among them is the man’s cousin, Lakhvinder ‘Lucky’ Singh (Paramveer Singh Cheema), an enterprising police officer tasked with locating the missing man. Lucky and Happy have been more buddies than cousins ​​since school.

Happy hopes to marry a girl from the neighborhood, Palak (Nupur Nagpal), but here too there is a hindrance. Palak’s mom has Lucky in her sights as a match for her. The love triangle is just an afterthought in a story where matters of the heart are overshadowed by far more pressing moral questions.

In one of the first episodes of Tab keySargun claims that nothing will ever work out for her and her loved ones. In the last chapter, Omkar says: “Everything is fine (Everything’s fine).” The irony is hard to miss. Omkar knows full well that he’s lost control of his own story and everything has gone haywire, so there’s another shocking plan in store.

Fate, despair, guilt, remorse, madness – Tab key weaves a multitude of themes around its central concern – a family in need. Omkar is a devoted family man. He is a husband deeply in love with his wife whose failing health got in the way of his police career.

He is a devoted father, determined to help his indecisive sons as they struggle to figure out what their future holds. But he is a man whose desire to save his family takes over and forces him into monumental indiscretions.

Tab key has a distinct moral compass within which Omkar Singh’s actions reside. His transgressions are both inevitable and compulsive, but unlike Georgekutty’s supposedly cool shenanigans in the Malayalam hit DrishyamOmkar’s repeated transgression of the law is not glorified and not rewarded with heroism. Even if there is a faint hope of escape, it is only a hope and still only a faint hope.

Tab key is mainly the story of two families – one of them, Omkar’s, is intact but with dark clouds hanging over them; the other, that of Ajeet Sodhi, is severely exhausted. His brother is the only family to have had it for years. He is surrounded by men to whom he barks orders, but whom he rarely trusts. As Omkar’s family grapples with a predicament with no end in sight, Sodhi confronts his loss the only way he can: hiding his grief in anger.

From a script written by Harman Wadala and aided by mood-setting background music by Sneha Khanwalkar, director Ajitpal Singh Tabbar transcends the genre’s limitations, delivering moments of refined sublimity that come home with power and combine the pain. , perseverance and pathos of a man’s struggle to keep his life together.

For the central character, Pavan Malhotra fits perfectly. A consummate actor who never misses a trick, he instinctively merges with the spirit of Omkar Singh, a conflicted but conscious man who steadily sinks into a swamp.

Malhotra proved his mettle very early in his career in non-mainstream films such as Buddhadeb Dasgupta’s Bagh Bahadur and Saeed Akhtar Mirza’s Salim Langde Pe Mat Ro. Commercial Hindi cinema saw little value in his subtle skills. Tab key gives him the kind of role he’s deserved all along. He grabs the opportunity with both hands and comes with a minimum of fuss with an absolute stunner.

Malhotra is supported to the extreme by another screen artist who we are used to seeing excellent work – Supriya Pathak Kapur. It’s her character that lends Tab key a certain spiritual depth. With little apparent effort, she brings out the many strengths of the woman’s mental makeup and adds a dimension to the series that helps avoid the pitfalls of predictability. Unusually understated but unfailingly invigorating, Tab key is a show that doesn’t look or feel like conventional fare. By creating something new and introspective, it pushes the boundaries of the crime thriller and makes practice count for much more than the genre usually encompasses. Tab key is indispensable.

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