Sacred Games season two came out on the eve of Independence Day and Raksha Bandhan, a strategically positioned release date, or fate? (Only Guru Ji knows)
Our Web Editor, Shaurya Thapa commented that if Season 1 of Sacred Games was set in Kashyap’s Wasseypur world then Season 2 took inspiration from his No Smoking cinematic universe. This review begins on a comparative note because this whole show does the same. It is a comparison within itself, contradicting its characters, creating parallels with the previous season, mirroring the outer world, reflecting on the World’s political climate, driving on India’s history and dramatising on the didactic dilemma of this decade: Is this world worth saving?
Season two is packed with a lot of brand new information, twists and turns wrapped up in the eight hour long cinephile’s dream. It comes full circle with completing almost all the strands left loose in the first season. It is the story of a chase against time, personal conflicts, greater good and men in white tripping over red pills and drinks.
Guru Ji and his ashram, which was barely touched upon in season one, takes the centre stage this season. Kalki has less to do as Batya, but it is ominous, arbitrary and satisfactory. The angle of the third baap and Gaitonde’s Freudian obsession with his baaps make way more sense now.
At its heart, despite all its nuclear bomb threat to Mumbai and Sartaj Singh’s race against time to prove his masculine heroism, Sacred Games is the story of Ganesh Gaitonde. His rise, his fall, his obsessions, his pre-occupations, his business, his enemies, his love, his life, and Mumbai is what makes the revolutionary plot. He has the best lines, direction, writing, acting and side characters. Season one’s ferocious Kantabai and frivolous Kuku take a back seat as compared to the new characters- RAW agent Yadav Sahab, and conflicted JoJo.
Characters in this show don’t pop up out of no-where; they rise out of a connection and become important eventually. Parulkar, Trivedi, and Bhonsle all make appearances in Gaitonde’s formative years to become an integral part of the Sartaj Singh plot. Dilbagh Singh’s involvement in the annihilation plans is ambiguous yet it connects all the dots. Zoya or Jamila’s involvement becomes a full circle and even a minor mention of Anjali Mathur’s father’s death gets an explanation.
The traje(dy)ctory of Inspector Majid Khan is the most surprising of all. With chilling dialogues like “Musalman ko uthaane ka police ko kya bahaana chahiye” and “Majid Khan hone se Parulkar ka banda hona behtar hai” and an equally disturbing scene of a young Muslim boy being forced to “Say It” and eventually being brutally lynched, the show takes a much-needed stand in today’s time. What is even more tantalizing is that among that mob we know one character, a devastated boy who is finding his peace in the brutality of a religious war.
On the other end of this spectrum stands, the almost comical parodies of real-life people. We can easily see the inspiration behind them and how easily the writer’s incorporated them into the story. Ram Gopal Verma and Osho are the influences woven strongly into the story with brilliant writing.
The end is a rollercoaster. The viewers have to scratch the reality away from the imagination. They are stuck together side by side, one striving on the other’s existence, one is real and the other is the influencer. The red pill and tripping play a major part in the culmination, Sartaj is still running on them, making hasty decisions, delayed realisations and maybe even mistakes.
The takeaway from this open end is that the detonation of the bomb doesn’t even matter. The world is killing itself, it is moving towards mass destruction with corruption steeped into its being. The use of a real-life footage in the background during Guru Ji’s convincing ‘let’s kill everyone and bring about Satyug’ speech fuels my conclusion that even without such Guru Ji’s involvement in our real life, American mass shootings are on a rise, Palestine-Israel conflicts is still alive, the Middle-East war seems never-ending and India-Pakistan are still on the Colonial crossroads. Adding to this, without Guru Ji we still have Rohingya annihilation, Sri Lankan bombings, New Zealand mass killings, and climate change. So that bomb, really doesn’t matter, we will get to the end of the world even without it.
Feature Image Credits: Business Insider