Byomkesh Bakshi has been recreated innumerable times on screen. But Hoichoi App has given it a twist by creating Byomkesh for a younger and a global audience through a web series. Today, most of the information and entertainment are consumed by digital platforms; thus the idea of blending the old and the new to appeal to the next generation audience worked quite well with the viewers of Bengal Digital Content on Hoichoi. Quite truly put forward by the makers of the series that the originality of the storyline penned down by Sharadindu Bhattacharya can hardly be modified; but the freshness to the character has been brought about by changes in the mannerisms and behavioural patterns of Byomkesh. The web series is progressing successfully after having launched two of its episodes. Each episode is gripping than the last and has a lasting impression on the audience.
Byomkesh- Anirban Bhattacharya
Ajit: Subrat Dutta
Satyabati: Ridhima Ghosh
Directed by : Sayantan Ghoshal
Episode 1: Inspired by ‘Satyaneshi’ and ‘Pother Kanta’
The first episode of the web series was an introductory episode to re-establish the image of a man named Byomkesh Bakshi. Despising both the terms Detective and Investigator, he likes to call himself Satyaneshi or The Truth Seeker. Episode 1 was a merger of two well- known stories – Satyaneshi and Pother Kanta. While Satyaneshi was too fast paced and ended within minutes, Pother Kanta being a longer story gave the audience more time to imbibe the nuances of this intellectual truth seeker.
Byomkesh, from the first scene appeared to be reserved, calm and quiet and a great observer. His observation skills made it easier to listen to people and objects thereby recreating entire incidents in his mind. His keen ability to take note of the tiniest information, which otherwise one would preferred to ignore and link them to a greater bad is commendable. While he takes on a drug mafia and a contract killer, who kills through an innovative way, Ajit his faithful friend is always by his side. He adds a much needed comic relief after some gory scenes of murder or theft. It is usually noticed that no detective story is complete without the faithful side-kick and here Ajit fits brilliantly in the role.
Since the setting is that of old Calcutta, care had to be taken to create the ambience, sets, costumes and even make-up adhering to the norms of that time. The challenge lay in the fact that even after adhering to old Calcutta norms, the director had to introduce something modern to attract viewership. This newness was well brought about by the music , especially at high points and during the well-choreographed action scenes which were in sync with the adrenaline pumping music.
Episode 2: Inspired by ‘Makorshar Rosh’ and ‘Arthamanartham’
In the second episode Byomkesh is seen as the leading investigator in the murder of a wealthy elderly citizen while also figuring out the means of smuggling in the spider’s juice for substance abuse.
Contrary to his nature, Byomkesh is seen to be very restless and agitated in the beginning leading the audience to wonder the secret behind his agitated demeanour which is quite opposite to his usual nature. He shifts onto investigating the murder scene where small and subtle evidences are picked up by him which evades the eyes of the police inspector on duty. Collating these seemingly unsubstantial evidences does Byomkesh solve a case more twisted than it normally met the eyes. Throughout the episode the police versus detective dichotomy prevailed where the former tried to establish his superiority as against the later; but successfully failing each time.
The episode ended with a much needed relief, in the form of a romantic proposal where he, like any other gentleman, hesitated to propose the lady love in his life. This highlights that not only is Byomkesh an epitome of intellectual brilliance but he also has an emotional shade to his character.
With Byomkesh now entering into the role of a husband and a lover apart from being a Satyaneshi, it would be interesting to see how the web series progresses in the following episodes. The latest episode of Byomkesh would release exclusively on the Hoichoi App on the 11th of November. For more information regarding the App and its subscription models, the official website can be looked up.
Photograph Courtesy: Hoichoi App.
Disclaimer: I am thankful to Kolkata Bloggers to give me this opportunity to review the first two episodes of Byomkesh.