Don't compare OTT and films, says Piyush Mishra

Debarati Palit Singh
Wednesday, 13 May 2020

While promoting his debut web series – Illegal, Piyush Mishra talks about his characters, working on the OTT platform and his NSD batchmate Irrfan

The coronavirus lockdown has allowed us to watch content in different genres on the OTT platforms. Some of the series and films are so good that you immediately know when you are watching an average one. India Entertainment

Voot Select, since its launch, has offered some very high quality shows like Asur, Th Raikar Case and Marzi. But their latest web series –Illegal, a legal drama, fails to deliver the same kind of impact that these series did. Illegal stars Piyush Mishra, Akshay Oberoi, Neha Sharma and Satyadeep Mishra in the pivotal roles. We watched the first two episodes. Illegal is about an idealistic and honest lawyer –Niharika Singh (Neha Sharma) who gets hired by the country’s best criminal lawyer Janardhan Jaitley aka JJ, who is shrewd and manipulative. The first episode plays out these two important characters. 

We are introduced to Niharika’s back story, why she gets fired from her job. The second episode brings in more characters like Akshay Jaitley (son of JJ, played by Akshay Oberoi), and Puneet Tandon, a former associate of JJ.

What works: The story looks interesting. The drama follows two cases – a pro bono case involving Meher Salam (Kubbra Sait), who is given a death sentence for killing her family members and another one about an industrialist’s son accused of rape by a female bartender. We are intrigued enough to watch the third episode in the series.

The series definitely shines because of Piyush Mishra. He has nailed the character of JJ and plays it beautifully. It is also evident that Satyadeep Mishra as Puneet Tandon will keep us engaged in the next few episodes. Akshay and Neha fit into their characters, and we can’t stop gushing over them.

What doesn’t work: The direction is weak, and it’s evident from the first episode. Scenes just shift from here to there. Either there is too much reaction or nothing at all. Illegal is nothing like Pink or Section 375, where the subject left us disturbed and provoked us to think. It is more like a commercial, stylish and one-time watch series.

So, we have decided to finish off the rest of the episodes by tonight.

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