After receiving widespread critical acclaim for 'Mohanagar', director Ashfaque Nipun has followed it up with his latest series 'Sabrina' on OTT platform Hoichoi to huge hype.
'Sabrina' is a dramatic thriller that was released on 25 March, pre-empted by a teaser trailer on International Women's Day 2022, 8 March. Consisting of 8 episodes, the series is an anthology of the struggles of modern women in societies that consider them second-class citizens. In service of that theme most major female characters are named Sabrina, an on-the-nose allegory of how women are stereotyped, generalised and denied their individuality at every turn.
The plot kicks off with Sabrina who sustains major burns due to an accident. Two bystanders help her to the hospital; however, the institution refuses to admit her without the involvement of police as they claim that it is an attempted murder case. Right from the get go, the show charts how victims are subject to injustice at every systemic and societal level.
Burn specialist - Dr. Sabrina - gets assigned to oversee Sabrina's injuries and recovery. Apart from sharing a name, the titular characters also have more than just traumatic experiences in common. Dr. Sabrina herself is haunted by a miscarriage of justice, which precipitates the suicide of Dr. Sabrina's sister. The doctor's backstory imbibes her nurturing actions and her justice seeking nature.
Politicians, investigators, and all third parties try to manipulate the events to their own ends, or blame the victim. Justice is a rare commodity in the world both Sabrinas find themselves in.
Sabrina's husband Showkat Hussein, a crime reporter, is considered the primary suspect. A suspicion that is further exacerbated by the fact that their marriage was fraught and the husband has been missing since the accident.
Showkat gets manipulated into a fraudulent business scheme and becomes indebted to the wrong people. His colleague Avi joins Dr. Sabrina to decode the mystery together and bring the truth to light.
On the other hand, a political group of people illegally seize a piece of land Sabrina owns. Sabrina and her husband try to defend their rights but fail against the establishment.
Nazia Haque Orsha plays the protagonist of Sabrina while Mehazabien Chowdhury plays the role of the doctor. The series is a debut for both actresses on OTT platforms. Mehazabein delivers her best as a bold and courageous doctor and Orsha portrays a believable counterpoint as the innocent housewife and collateral victim.
The show also stars Intekhab Dinar (Showkat), Hasan Masood (Bahadur), Runa Khan (Baby), and Yash Rohan (Avi) in pivotal roles. The appearance of Dr. Ejajul Islam and Faruk Ahmed on one screen is impressive to their fans. The famous duo acts as two officers of DB (Detective Branch of Police).
Sabrina represents all women in our society. The series shows how innocent Sabrinas become victims of injustice. At the same time, it shows how courageous Sabrinas are also left to fight their fight all alone.
The series is replete with soaring thrills and well-crafted plot twists. The show ends on a cliff-hanger with many plot threads being unresolved. Pulling on even one of these threads begins to unravel the larger machinations and systemic apathy that the characters find themselves in. The season ends with a poignant 'to be continued' and accomplishes one of the most important axioms of storytelling: leave them wanting more.