Series Review: Bhaag Beanie Bhaag (Run Beanie Run)

Series Review: Bhaag Beanie Bhaag (Run Beanie Run)

Starring: Swara Bhaskar, Dolly Singh, Ravi Patel, Mona Ambegaonkar, Girish Kulkarni

Creators: Neel Shah and Ravi Patel

A series based on and within India’s burgeoning standup comedy scene means at least a few punch lines and laughs. This six-part Netflix release is devised along those lines, with several leading comics in India making prominent cameos.

Beanie Bhatnagar (Bhaskar) as a Mumbai-based young professional in a comfortable three-year-old relationship manages to spice up her mundane daily routine by intermittently crashing standup comedy venues of the city as an outlet for her creative side. This precarious balance gets shaken up when her boyfriend proposes marriage and her affluent in-laws-to-be in sheer enthusiasm take complete charge of matters, from not only her choice of outfits but also where the newly-married couple will live.

As her entire future tied down with kids flashes before her eyes, it unleashes a runaway scenario for Beanie – from her marriage, her comfortable salaried job and from all that was planned and organised in her life as she decides to pursue a career as a standup comic instead. In this foolhardy mission, her biggest support is her online influencer pal Kapi (Singh) who offers up moral support and also her couch for her friend to crash on while she finds her feet. While Beanie’s father (Kulkarni) seeks out some divine intervention to ensure he is not deprived of grandchildren by his wayward daughter, her mother’s (Ambegaonkar) main worry is that she isn’t convinced that her daughter is funny enough for her new career choice.

What ensues is a cycle of hits and misses, helped along by fellow comic Ravi Patel who is confident about Beanie’s talent and wants her to push herself out of her comfort zone. Will Beanie have the courage of her convictions to stay the course or surrender to the many pressures to revert to her secure and mundane life?

Swara Bhaskar as Beanie is a great choice for this role, which has strong resonance with the American comedy ‘The Marvelous Mrs Maisel’. Her comic timing may not be spot on but then it fits well with her character’s own shaky steps into the world of comedy. She is well supported by her co-stars, including creator Ravi Patel playing himself.

However, where this show is let down is in the lack of a taut script, which falls short of delivering the laugh riot this could have been. The plot points are clever, but the execution fails to hit the right emotive and comic notes, delivering a semi-entertaining watch largely kept alive by Bhaskar’s assured performance.

As a result, the audience is unable to run away with Beanie’s flights of fancy with complete abandon.

*‘iGlobal’ Review Series

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