Year-end Roundup: Best Hindi web series of 2022 (2024)

The format of “web series” has given wings to several filmmakers to experiment more. A web series doesn’t necessarily need a big star.

Indeed, web shows have turned out to be a great platform for actors who generally don’t get the same scope in films.

For example, Delhi Crime Season-1 turned out to be a major boost for the career of Shefali Shah. It showed the actress in a different light.

Here’s the list of some of the Hindi web shows that caught our attention most this year:

CAT

In Hindi cinema, Punjab has been largely restricted to mustard fields, Bhangra dances and families living in big havelis. Thankfully, there have also been exceptions.

The most important of them is Abhishek Chaubey’s Udta Punjab.

Though the movie faced a lot of problems with the censor, as it showed the menace of drug abuse, it eventually came out with flying colours.

CAT, directed by Balwinder Singh Janjua, tackles two dark aspects of Punjab. One is militancy and the other is drugs.

A poster of ‘CAT’ web series. (Supplied)

Its central protagonist, Randeep Hooda, plays Garry aka Gurman Singh.In the past, he was roped in by the Punjab police to spy against the militants. Hence the name CAT.

He quits that line of work and starts leading a peaceful life. But the peace is short-lived as his younger brother is doing drugs, much like several other young men of Punjab.

This leaves Garry with no option other than to become a CAT again. This time, the mission is busting the big trafficking gang run by a political leader.

However, this is just the surface of the story, as many things are happening simultaneously. Revealing anything more about the plot would be inappropriate.

The best thing about CAT is juxtaposing militancy and drugs. These are serious issues which need nuance both from the director and the writer. Thankfully, Balwinder Singh and Co did a fantastic job.

CAT is filled with many backstories. These stories continue to unfold even in the last episodes and make the plot more engaging.

The past and the present of Gurman have also been superbly done. The audiences constantly root for Gurnam to come out safe.

Special mention to Abhishant Rana who plays the younger version of Randeep. He is simply terrific.

CAT gave Randeep a vast platform to display his histrionics and the actor didn’t disappoint one bit. With this performance, he showed once again why he deserves so much more.

Being a CAT is not as easy as it seems 🐈
This exciting story is coming soon, only on @netflix_in. #Tudum pic.twitter.com/3Ju6upQ5t0

— Randeep Hooda (@RandeepHooda) September 24, 2022

Delhi Crime 2

The first season of Delhi Crime was a big winner on several counts. It was based on the aftermath of the Nirbhaya case, but it was much more than just the typical police manhunt.

Director Richie Mehta made some subtle yet effective points on the socio-political conditions we live in and how these conditions influence the police force.

A poster of Season 2 of ‘Delhi Crime’. (Supplied)

Richie Mehta was immensely successful in humanising the police force by showcasing their humane and vulnerable side.

Expectations from Season 2 of the web series were naturally bigger. Shefali Shah returned as DCP Varthika. Some of the faces from Season 1 were also in this series, like Rasika Dugal.

Delhi Crime 2 focuses on the crimes committed by the much-feared “Kachchha Baniyan” gang.

Senior citizens living in gated communities are their target. The reason for their name is their dress while committing these crimes. All the members of this gang are dressed only in underclothes.

Additionally, their bodies are smeared with oil. As a result, it is difficult to catch them during a chase.

Season 2 of Delhi Crime is directed by Tanuja Chandra, with Richie Mehta as the creative head. Tanuja Chandra highlights an important class issue through this “Kachchha Baniyan” gang.

The director makes a strong statement on the injustice done to the underprivileged tribes and the prejudices attached to them. The show also addresses the disparities in society and how it leads to such crimes.

The aspect of social discrimination is reflected through Tillotama Shome playing Lata Solanki. Her character is used to make a point about how no one is a born criminal.

As Varthika, Shefali Shah took off from Season 1. She continued her winning form with a performance that adds to her versatility.

Delhi Crime Season 2
NOW STREAMING! 🚨⚡️#NeetiSingh #DelhiCrime #DelhiCrime2 #DelhiCrimeSeason2 #Season2 #VartikaChaturvedi #Netflix pic.twitter.com/nSH8sIZSty

— Rasika Dugal (@RasikaDugal) August 26, 2022

Rocket Boys

As the title suggests, Rocket Boys is essentially about India’s two eminent scientists: Dr Homi Bhabha and Dr Vikram Sarabhai (Jim Sarbh and Ishwak Singh in the series). This web show looks at the journey of India’s nuclear and space programme.

Director Abhay Pannu spans his story across three decades starting from the events of 1942.

A poster of ‘Rocket Boys’ web series. (Supplied)

A young Sarabhai is forced to return to India on account of the war in Britain. He has an ambition of sending rockets into space someday. With this in mind, he joins Homi Bhabha’s atomic research unit. A deep bond develops between them.

With a story like this, it is easy to get into the zone of jingoism but thankfully, Abhay does not commit that mistake.

Instead, he focuses more on the distinct personalities of the two scientists. While Jim Sarbh as Homi Bhabha is more of an extrovert, Ishwak as Sarabhai is more of a calm-going man.

The juxtaposing of these two qualities makes the screenplay more riveting. Their journeys and the dreams of making it big are well captured by the director.

The Rocket Boys series does not confine itself to just science. It also looks at the politics of those times. The technical departments of the film did a fantastic job of recreating that period.

Both Jim Sarbh and Ishwak live their parts. Jim in particular does a swell job of capturing the madness of Homi Bhabha.

The women characters are thankfully not relegated to the background.

Regina Cassandra brings an old-world charm and her scenes with Ishwak are wonderful to watch. Saba Azad as the lawyer brings a certain fire to her part.

We are ecstatic to announce that our series #RocketBoys and #Aranyak have together bagged NINE awards at the #FilmfareOTTAwards2022, including Best Series for Rocket Boys! 🏆@realabhaypannu #SiddharthRoyKapur @nikkhiladvani @EmmayEntertain @SonyLIV @SonyLIVIntl @jimSarbh pic.twitter.com/LdvmTGoJMU

— Roy Kapur Films (@roykapurfilms) December 22, 2022

The Great Indian Murder

The Great Indian Murder is based on the book The Six Suspects written by Vikas Swarup, who also wrote the book Q&A, which was later made into Slumdog Millionaire. The book explored the different aspects of our society like the rampant corruption that runs through all the systems.

Vikas Swarup used the mode of investigative thriller to highlight this issue. For those who have not read the book, the story focuses on the murder of a playboy called Vicky Rai.

A poster of ‘The Great Indian Murder’. (Supplied)

He is the spoiled son of a politician in Uttar Pradesh. He gets embroiled in a murder case. but thanks to his social status, he comes out scot-free.

Vicky throws a party to celebrate his acquittal in which he gets killed by a gunshot. Six guests are arrested on the grounds of suspicion.

Tigmanshu Dhulia adapted this story and did a good job for the most part. The best thing about his direction is his use of each character. Each one of them reveals a different side of our society.

My favourite one is the track by Shashank Arora. Though a thief, he has inherent decency in him and Tigmanshu did a very good job of exploring it.

The trajectory of his role has an emotional touch. His love for Vicky Rai’s sister and how he goes out of the way to help her leaves the viewers emotional.

Another track worth mentioning is that of Raghubir Yadav. His split personality gives the series some of its best moments.

The scenes where he plays Gandhian are very amusing. Tigmanshu takes several jibes through his character.

Needless to say, Shashank and Raghubir Yadav are the best performers in this ensemble.

Tigmanshu also made it effective by using the Rashom*on approach. There is a lot of back and forth and the events keep on changing. Still, the tightness of the script makes sure that the audience does not get bored.

An underlining theme of the show is the manipulation of evidence for political mileage.

The Great Indian Murder web series has its share of flaws too. For example, Paoli Dam playing the actress is given a strong beginning but midway through, she disappears.

Also, the tying up of some subplots could have been better. Apart from these, it is a binge-worthy series.

Glad to present #HotstarSpecials #TheGreatIndianMurder – all episodes streaming now only on @DisneyPlusHS@ADFandRLE @ajaydevgn @pritisinha333 @VikasSwarup pic.twitter.com/SGT0WTdSwJ

— Tigmanshu Dhulia (@dirtigmanshu) February 4, 2022

Year-end Roundup: Best Hindi web series of 2022 (2024)
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