Home TV Shows Reviews ‘Maamla Legal Hai’ Netflix Series Review - Fine Performances, Funny Show

‘Maamla Legal Hai’ Netflix Series Review - Fine Performances, Funny Show

Chaos collides with the letter of the law at District Court Patparganj, where eccentric staff strive to uphold justice but not without some opposition.

Vikas Yadav - Fri, 01 Mar 2024 17:16:00 +0000 984 Views
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From the beginning itself, Maamla Legal Hai announces it is going to be humorous. We hear a man who complains someone slapped him without washing his hands. A lawyer draws a distinction between thieves and dacoits. A character (mis)interprets an inverted, differently abled sign as "CF" (he proudly says it means Client First). A criminal tied to a pole wears a shirt that has this line written on it: If being sexy is a crime, arrest me. And the first episode, after opening with a Hindi voiceover, gives us this English word - Egregious. Well, the alternate title of this show could have been Maamla Funny Hai.

But "Legal" is present in the title because the series deals with lawyers. The main players are VD Tyagi (Ravi Kishan), Sujata Negi (Nidhi Bisht), Ananya Shroff (Naila Grewal), and Vishwas (Anant Joshi). What's so noteworthy about Maamla Legal Hai is that even the supporting players like Mintu (Anjum Batra), PP (Brijendra Kala), Law (Amit Vikram Pandey), and Order (Vikram Pratap) get ample screen time to register their presence (special shoutout to Rama Sharma and Aanya Rawal who appear as "BBF friends" in the seventh episode. These two can have their own spinoff). Not a single person or thing on the screen looks extraneous. This itself is a rare and praiseworthy achievement.

Now, here comes another commendable aspect of this show. In a light-hearted comedy series like this, the characters are usually used as mouthpieces to deliver jokes. In Maamla Legal Hai, however, the characters get beautiful arcs. Tyagi's personality goes from gray to white. Sujata initially abstains from fighting cases (she refers the clients to someone superior who exploits her). But then, she says enough is enough. Ananya is the outsider here. She is a Harvard graduate with "unreal" expectations from the justice system. With a bottle of alkaline water in one hand and dreams of serving the people in another, she walks into this chaotic setting with grand ambitions. Sadly, she only faces disappointment. Yet, she never lets go of her ethics but also realizes that not everything is straightforward.

Maamla Legal Hai, though, shines a bright spotlight on the Ravi Kishan character. He gets the meatiest part, and the actor chews it with aplomb. Tyagi has daddy issues. He performs the typical hero moments (wearing glasses in style after defeating an opponent) and gives deceit an alluring aura. Notice the mischievous twinkle in Tyagi's eyes whenever he overcomes obstacles. He almost motivates you to stand up from your seat and cheer for his success. This man, after all, knows what he's doing - he completes his homework. Tyagi doesn't just praise a singer to impress someone. He even sings a song when asked to do so.

I liked how the series gently made fun of real-world incidents. A husband complains he wants a divorce because his wife didn't feel shy during their wedding night. At the end of the episode, a newspaper clipping informs us that this joke is not entirely made up. Many such chuckle-worthy situations in the show are inspired by newspaper articles. We also hear about the Delhi and Karnataka models. When a kid, while playing cricket, shows no interest in giving up his batting position, he threatens everybody by saying he will take his bat and leave the playground. What do the lawyers do? One of them threatens the baller with a non-bailable offense.

Maamla Legal Hai possesses awesome comic powers. It sometimes skillfully mixes despair with humor. When Ananya apologizes to her client for not being able to provide him with justice, he says he is not sad because he didn't have any trust in the court in the first place. Files of the impoverished class fall from the shelf when a lawyer-cum-facial expert opens his cupboard (translation: no country for poor people). The show raises important issues without lecturing us (a policewoman who loves following rules reveals her station lacks sufficient funds). And Maamla Legal Hai works wonderfully as long as it remains in this "light zone." Oh yes, I was also impressed by its refusal to develop a romance between Ananya and Vishwas.

The series turns into a bore when it becomes overly sentimental. Tyagi's daddy issues and his enlightenment regarding the kick the judges get in the court are some elements that spoil the mood. These emotional moments reminded me of those TVF (The Viral Fever), and TSP (The Screen Patti) videos that unnecessarily, ostentatiously convert a funny sketch into a message-y chore, probably because the writers don't fully trust their comic material to do its job. They believe they must heavily underline their points through tears, or the audience wouldn't understand what the video was trying to tell them. I got this same feeling while watching the emotional scenes here. They could have been a dealbreaker. The actors, thankfully, really prevent this show from falling apart. Because of their fine performances, you can say, "Maamla Admirable Hai."

Final Score- [7.5/10]
Reviewed by - Vikas Yadav
Follow @vikasonorous on Twitter
Publisher at Midgard Times



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