Iconic character portrayals we witnessed on TV

Iconic character portrayals we witnessed on TV

Iconic character portrayals we witnessed on TV

There are stars, and then there are actors. There are clichéd drama potboilers, and then there are engaging stories with solid scripts. There are actors, and then there are characters that you go on to remember for years. We’ve rounded up 5 character portrayals from 2021 that we’ll always remember.

Moosa by Imran Ashraf

Riding the year mighty and high with his success of Raqs-e-Bismil, the star has gone on to prove that no one could have played the role of Moosa better than him.

Starting off as the rigid and uptight Moosa, he makes us hate him after he catches his cousin trying to elope with her lover. But things take a turn for Moosa when he falls in love himself with a girl named Zohra. He’s not like other conventional heroes, he is flawed and he is angry – it’s almost like seeing an angel fall from grace. Unlike other protagonists in dramas, love had a different effect on Moosa thus he keeps on convincing Zohra to marry him, despite his family’s reservations. Zohra’s consent is important to him, and when she declines to marry him, he leaves her like a true gentleman and vows never to return again in her life.


The character wasn’t an easy feat to play but Ashraf nailed every layer Moosa had to him, be it aggression, love, family values or respect.

Mashal by Kubra Khan

When it comes to Pakistani dramas, villains just appear out of nowhere with no background, have them wear Westerns and dark lipsticks and you have your stereotypical villain against a painfully plain and helpless heroine. But Khan didn’t sign up to be a stereotypical villain in Hum Kahan Ke Sachay Thay. Dressed the same way as Mehreen and many of us, Khan made Mashal a villain that we strongly empathise with because she has a story to tell.


She grew up with a mother who taught her hate from an age when she didn’t even know what hate was. Being constantly compared to Mehreen, Mashal’s innocence turned into hatred and jealousy because she was forced to become like Mehreen. In that race, she devoted her years to becoming better than Mehreen. And she did it, from tarnishing Mehreen’s image to be the good-girl of the family to even killing herself leaving loopholes behind that could make Mehreen the suspect of her murder. She makes her suffer for what she has suffered through the years but it fills our heart with sorrow that the only way she thought she could ‘look’ better than Mehreen was by taking her own life.


Fajr by Srha Asghar

Topics around sexual harassment and assault are barely talked about in society. But Asghar, has started that conversation with Aakhir Kab Tak, showing how not all girls can stand up to their harasser and why everyone responds differently to trauma. Fajr grew up bearing injustices from her own parents to begin with, the girl grew up thinking she could only spend her life the way others decided it for her.

Added to that her shy nature and her neglected childhood, Fajr barely had a personality of her own. It was only after she married Saim that Fajr started learning how to live life on her own terms and that did not come easy either, thanks to her mother-in-law who mirrors the society that calls PTSD and depression a ‘zehni marz.’ Despite being given the confidence to fly, Fajr could never really take that leap of faith due to abandonment issues, the fear that she’ll have to go back to her toxic household if Saim left her. And as the drama came to an end, we finally saw Fajr bloom, it was the love and support that she had received from people around her that gave her the confidence to stand up for herself. No one could have portrayed Fajr as skillfully as Asghar.

Insha by Faryal Mehmood

Seldom do we see a female lead as strong as Insha from Raqeeb Se. She was born a girl but raised a boy, changing tyres, handling car repairs and house repairs, filing bills, doing taxes and being unapologetically herself – exactly the kind of woman we all aspire to be.


Insha, never afraid to speak what’s on her mind, knows from the very first day that the relationship her parents share isn’t normal. She’s the only sane character who doesn’t buy into the Maqsood sahab and Sakina fantasy, unlike her mother and Ameera. After a failed marriage with Abdul where she realises that she has the same fate as her mother, Insha decides to pick herself up and fights to change her fate. And she does actually end up breaking the chain making Insha a character that’ll be remembered for years to come.

Daniyal by Gohar Rasheed

Rasheed, with every role he does, proves that he’s the one to look out for, especially after his mad portrayal as Daniyal in Laapata. Playing a calm, gentle Daniyal, who we later find out has malevolent nuances simmering beneath his good-boy exterior, Gohar outshined the rest of the cast.

Iconic character

Playing a man who always jumps to the worst conculsions by making up scenarios in his head, it was Daniyal’s spectacular ‘to be or not to be’ monologue that captured our attention this year. Seeing him torn between to be or not to be a murderer, we laud Rasheed for showing the ruthlessness & unpredictable behavior that resides within a man with a charming façade.

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