Hasmukh is an amalgamation of dark comedy and drama which portrays the life of a small town comic Hasmukh who aspires to be a comedian but has terrible delivery skills. Set in Saharanpur and later in Mumbai, the show stars Vir Das as Hasmukh, Ranvir Shorey as Jimmy and Ravi Kishan, Manoj Pahwa, Raza Murad and Suhail Nayyar in supporting roles. Directed by Nikhil Gonsalves and written by Nikhil Advani, Vir Das, the series can be streamed on Netflix.
The show follows the story of Hasmukh who is an understudy of Manoj Pahwa, a decently popular comedian who promises to let Hasmukh deliver his content in front of people. But seeing his poor delivery skills, he goes back on his words, filling Hasmukh with rage which led to Hasmukh murdering him. Somehow Hasmukh is filled with confidence after that and goes on to present a stand-up in front of the audience like nothing had happened.
Amazed by the response from the audience, Hasmukh falls under the impression that the murder helped his stand-up. This went on for a while and the word about his comedy spread like fire, so much so that a company hired him. Now Hasmukh with his friend, Jimmy starts killing people before every stand-up in order to make his shows a success.
In his defence, he only targeted ‘bad people’ in the society which included, a corrupt PA, a greedy lawyer, a girlfriend-beater, a rapist superstar. Though the murders continue, Hansmukh is seen becoming more humane with each murder. Despite everything, he is so enticed by the lifestyle of a ‘famous comedian’ that with each murder it becomes more like a mechanical job for him.
The acting of the actors in the series is the only saving grace. Ranvir Shorey, who has portrayed the character of Hansmukh's partner in crime is a delight to watch as his eyes lit up when presented with a fat cheque and well up when accused of being disloyal. The actor seems to be in touch with his character. Apart from that, the cinematography is decent.
The writing of the series is very weak and has a lot of loose ends. The show has a rustic love theme without proper character backing. The jokes presented at the stand-ups by Hasmukh, which is the central theme of the show, fail to impress. Moreover, the audience in the show is shown applauding and cheering for Hasmukh where it did not deserve at all. At some parts, the writers seemed confused whether they wanted to make their characters deep or robotic.
The story, though has a novel concept, fails to be gripping because of weak writing of characters and plot. Vir Das, who is well known in the entertainment industry for his comedy, disappoints when it comes to writing jokes. At some points, the scenes seemed prolonged and unnecessary. A show based on ‘stand-up comedy’ fails to make anyone laugh as the jokes are lame and of substandard. Overall, the show can be avoided.