Shantaram follows a fugitive named Lin Ford as he escapes prison and looks forward to a fresh start in 1980s Bombay. The first three episodes of Shantaram are now streaming on Apple TV+.
Episode 1 recap: The Three Nos
Set in 1982, Dale, believing that his days at Australia’s Pentridge Prison are numbered, plots a plan to escape the facility, hoping to start a new life.
Dale manages to do that, and instead of going back to his family, he reaches out to his professor, to whom he admits that he regrets everything he did. Furthermore, he can never go back to being a paramedic like he always wanted to be.
The Professor and Dale indulge in a conversation, and the former shows trust in Dale and hands him some money. Dale leaves Australia and flies to India with a new passport carrying the name of Ford Lindsay.
Prabhu, a tour guide from Bombay, tries to befriend Lindsay and helps him out with everything that he needs.
Lindsay starts getting familiar with the city and eventually crosses paths with a woman named Karla. Through her, he is introduced to a place called Reynaldo’s, an unofficial free zone where all the illegal activities are carried out.
Didier, who puts buyers and sellers together for commission at Reynaldo’s, tells Lindsay about names such as Abdel Khader Khan, one of the great crime lords of the city.
As Lindsay gets closer to Karla, he meets her friends: a prostitute named Lisa, a Bollywood stuntman named Vikram Khanna, Vikram’s sister, Kavita, who is a journalist, and lastly, Lisa’s boss, Maurizio, and his friend Modena.
Lindsay impresses everyone with the number of languages and accents he knows, but at the same time, he gets himself in the wrong books of Maurizio, as their first interaction doesn’t go well.
Certainly, Bombay was a new start for Lindsay, but there were some downsides to it as well. Nevertheless, Lindsay was a survivor.
After spending enough time in Bombay, Lindsay decided to move on until Karla came knocking on his door looking for help.
Maurizio sent Lisa to work in a brothel called The Palace, and now she is trapped there. Karla wants Lindsay to help her get Lisa out of that place by pretending to be someone from the American Embassy.
He gave this offer some thought and agreed. The only thing he needed to take care of was Zhou, who runs this place.
Karla has heard that she is quite smart, vindictive, and dangerous. All of that came true when they eventually met her, but despite Zhou’s valiant efforts, Lindsay smartly played his words and convinced Zhou to let Lisa go.
Things fell apart between Lindsay and Karla when the former realized that Karla was using Lisa to retrieve information about a man named Rujul.
Turns out, she now used Lindsay to bring Lisa back. Feeling betrayed, Lindsay left and he later gets mugged by some of Zhou’s men. He gets robbed and loses his fake passport as well.
Amidst all of this, we also see Lindsay reminiscing about his past in prison, which to this day still haunts him.
Episode 2 recap: Down and Out
A cop finds Lindsay and takes him back to his hotel in order to investigate what he is up to. Luckily, Prabhu was right there. He took Lindsay away before the cop could come to Lindsay’s room.
Living with no passport and a lot of money could turn out to be a huge deal for Lindsay. So, Lindsay spends the night at Prabhu’s house, and his nightmares continue to haunt him.
Meanwhile, Lisa feeds Karla all the information she needed about Rujul, a minister who seems to have been betraying Karla by locking a deal with a crime lord named Walid Shah.
Even Lisa felt that Karla is just using her. The next day, Lindsay came knocking on Karla’s door asking for help. Doing the same for Karla got him mugged, and now he wanted her assistance.
Karla, on her side, made it clear that she has nothing to do with this and Lindsay saw this as downright selfish.
While Karla left, Lindsay and Lisa got along. He saw Lisa’s addiction, which reminded him of his own and his girlfriend’s.
While Lisa confessed to Lindsay that she is going to quit drugs, Lindsay questioned her about Rujul, a name he heard from Lisa’s mouth the night they brought her back.
Lisa believed Lindsay is a man with a good heart and asked him to stay out of this dirty business.
Karla was out there meeting the crime lord, Abdel Khader Khan. She informed him about Rujul. Abdel Khader Khan, who often goes by the name of Khaderbhai, invited Rujul to his residence.
He confronted him about his betrayal, and Rujul came clean that he thought Khaderbhai has become weak because of his code of morality.
The moment Khader Khan heard this confession, he stabbed Rujul and closed this chapter right away.
Meanwhile, Lindsay made noises at Reynaldo’s in order to find someone who can help him with the passports. When no one came to help, Lindsay turned to his friend Charlie, who gave him his first passport, but he didn’t help either.
Lindsay had no option but to join Prabhu to start a business in order to survive. On the first day of the business itself, Karla came and gave Lindsay some money and an address to Ahmedabad.
Lindsay said his final goodbyes to Prabhu, but as he left the slums of Sagar Wada, one of Zhou’s goons came looking for him. The struggle between the goon and Lindsay resulted in a fire.
Before leaving, Lindsay gave a second thought to this event he caused and believed that he shouldn’t leave these people helpless. He turned back and joined the people of the slums in an attempt to put out the fire.
Episode 3 recap: Strange Bedfellows
After the fire was put out, Lindsay treated all the injured people with the knowledge he had as a person who pursued being a paramedic.
He aided almost everyone but failed to save a woman named Laxmi. Lindsay took the blame for that on himself.
The event shook Lindsay, which took him back to the time he failed to save a cop while carrying out a robbery. He never had the intention of killing anyone, no matter what, and that forced him to stay.
Lindsay’s urge to help that cop led to his arrest.
Back in present, Khader Khan met Walid Shah, and they both bickered over the area of Sagar Wada. Walid Shah claims that he is way more powerful than Khader Khan, who likes to stay in the past and needs to catch up with the future.
Amidst all of this, the people of the slums had noticed Lindsay’s talent and had thought of him as no less than a doctor. Prabhu further encouraged this thought and urged Lindsay to help the people there with his knowledge.
Khader Khan, on the other hand, paid Zhou a visit, as she had a fair share of the hand in the deal Rujul was making with Walid Shah. For now, he decided to let Zhou go as she can be a lot of assistance to him.
Later that night, Khader Khan paid Lindsay a visit, as he had heard about him from Karla and after the ruckus he had caused at Reynaldo’s. He saw Lindsay as a man who could benefit him.
Khader Khan took Lindsay for a ride. They talked on a number of topics, and Lindsay eventually started liking Khader Khan’s perspective.
The duo also came across Karla, and she acted like she didn’t know Khader Khan. Probably, Khader Khan had staged everything in order to bring Lindsay on his side.
Back in the slums, Laxmi’s son, Ravi confronted and tried to kill Lindsay, but was stopped by Qasim, the leader of the slums. Qasim talked some sense into Ravi and Lindsay as well, as he thought the latter was being selfish for letting a kid kill him.
For now, Qasim offered Lindsay a place at Laxmi’s home, as he perceived this as a punishment for him.
Karla came back home to find that Lisa has left. Earlier in the episode, Lisa had asked Karla to choose between her and Khader Khan.
All Karla had to say was that she cares for her and chose to meet Khader Khan, which might be the reason Lisa decided to part ways with Karla altogether.
- The first episode over here does a good job of introducing Lindsay to the city and the people he will be interacting with. In a way, it has also helped the audience to get familiar with the premise as well.
- Thus, the first episode mostly keeps the main conflict of the show aside and slowly sows seeds for what is about to come for Lindsay.
- The accents in some places are really good, while in some places are completely off and awkward.
- Khader Khan comes out as a regular gangster everyone sees in movies with his own code of honor.
- The show also fails to capture the magic of Bombay and the sets are not that convincing.
- On Charlie Hunnam’s side, he has given his best and the storyline still has some hope if it is presented properly.
Shantaram season 1 episodes 1, 2 and 3
Director: Bharat Nalluri
Date Created: 2022-10-14 00:00
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