This stupid saga has finally come to an end, and like its predecessor, Selvi, it is clumsy, cluttered and leaves many questions unanswered and unresolved.
"Radhika the Head of Creatives" should retire into obscurity and allow "Radhika the Actress" to show her talents. There is no doubt that she is a versatile and talented actress. In fact, both my favourite actresses are Rs - Radhika and Revathy. I also had tremendous respect for Radhika as an educated, forward thinking individual. I was wrong. She too at the end of the day, fell victim at the altar of materialism. Common sense, logic, ethics, morals, or to put it in a simplistic nutshell - doing what is right - was either ignored or worse, blatantly defied. The goal of the stories seem to be to appeal to the baser instincts of mankind: trivialise, sensationalise, titillate. However, what seems to have been forgotten is that people are not stupid. People, whether they are educated or otherwise, want interesting stories. That does not mean:
1. Men having two wives, and going after third or fourth mistresses.
2. Mothers being treated badly by the children, forgive them, treated badly again, forgive them...ad nauseam.
3. Kidnapping, rapes, kidnapping, rapes. People being murdered at the rate that could qualify for mass murdes.
4. Soppy, witless, spineless women. Or men.
5. Bitchy, evil, malicious, conniving, manipulative women. Or men.
6. Immensely loving and respectful children who turn nasty. Then become loving and respectful. Change back into nasty.
Arasi (as well as Selvi) has been a huge disappointment. Plots have not been well thought out. Characters are not developed. There are no shades of grey. It is either black or white. Characters disappear with no plausible explanation - Selvi' s sisters (except Mahi), GJ's son, Yogeswaran, GJ's brother, the sister and her family (Devi Priya). Yes, I understand that Arasi was about Arasi, but there was no satisfactory closure to these characters. Then what about the existing characters? I found Karthikeyan being killed off and the reason for his death totally unconvincing. Anyone else was impressed? Thilaka falls at Arasi's feet and that was that. So easy. US gumbal did not get their just desserts - from the sl*t of a daughter to the avaricious parents - all were nasty unpalatable characters - not one redeeming characteristic. Yamini gets off as well. What a nasty piece of work she was. What about Ganga? I could go on.
I have one suggestion for Radhika, Thiruchelvam and all serial directors. Don't over-egg the pudding. Don't introduce new characters at the drop of the hat and get rid of them....at the drop of a hat. Better still, take a sabbatical. Go to UK. Join the staff of Eastenders/Coronation Street. See how they work. For example, they don't have one person dictating the story, you have a pool of writers. They meet together, sound off stories, make sure all discrepancies are covered, their characters are developed. They create sad stories, happy stories, realistic stories. When mild-mannered Lil Mo takes the iron and smashes her husband's head after snapping from years of unimaginable domestic violence, you hear resounding cheers throughout the land. Yet Lil Mo does not get off scot free. She gets arrested, finger-printed, charged and is tried in open court. The judge, prosecuting counsel and defence are all actors, but they do the trial so professionally that you actually think you are in a court of law. She is found guilty not of murder but of manslaughter. Which is again realistic. She is sentenced to prison but leaves after serving one-third of the sentence. Meanwhile the serial (or soap) proceeds to another story, focussing on other characters. The sweetest story was the courtship of Jim and Dot, old widower and widow, so charming, so sweet and funny. I can assure you, Sunday afternoons, I am stuck at the telly watching EE Omnibus.
Now, we had a similar Lil Mo situation in Arase when Kalai is tortured by her husband and their family. What happens? She reconciles with her husband and adores him. So Indian women are spineless? Men can slap and torture their wives, including burning the soles of the feet with irons and there is no retribution? What sort of message are you delivering to your viewers?
With Arasi, Selvi etc, I feel that I have lost hours of my life which I can never get back. It is a pity because there is so much potential and Radhka and co have just abused it. She could have done wonders with Arase but Arase came across as an unlikeable, arrogant, egoistic character.
The only serial I ever liked was Premi.