In this very unique story surrounding Stand-up, Comedy Couple makes an unsuccessful yet sincere effort at attracting engagement.
ZEE5’s latest offering, Comedy Couple is a sweet, romantic, but predictable film about Deep Sharma (Saqib Saleem) and Zoya Batra (Shweta Basu Prasad). This couple ventures out to become India’s first couple to perform stand-up comedy together.
In the process of tasting success, Deep and Zoya encounter many roadblocks that society puts in their way. Amidst looking for a new apartment as an unmarried couple and trying to keep their careers afloat, they try to keep their romance brewing.
Tensions arise when Zoya starts to observe how Deep’s lies might not be that harmless after all. Grave matters like honesty, sexism and lies are essentially overshadowed by comical background music and some poor jokes.
Director Nachiket Samant sure isn’t a fan of subtlety. The first few minutes of the film will lay out exactly what can you expect to see. The title itself doesn’t try to conceal anything behind guesswork.
For any viewer, it would be next to impossible to overlook Shweta Basu Prasad’s performance. The way she embodies Zoya’s character is flawless. When a predictable storyline is in play, talents are often misused or made a waste of. But Prasad outshines it all with her mature portrayal. She has been a child actor for films like Makdee and Iqbal. Her experience really shows every step of the way.
Saqib Saleem also tries to compliment her but brings nothing new to the table. It isn’t the first time that we see him enact a timid, lying Delhi guy who is afraid of his parents and can’t commit. Right from his debut in Mere Dad ki Maruti, he has been spotted essaying these roles on several occasions.
Real life comedians like Anubhav Singh Bassi and Aadar Malik, are also a part of Comedy Couple, but to everyone’s dismay, their talents remain underused.
In India, if ever any piece of performing arts is to revolve around stand-up comedy, it shouldn’t happen without the politics of it being addressed. Comedy Couple subtly or overtly brushes upon it.
From the audience’s collective joy at hurled abuses to the risks of going religious while preparing content, almost all dimensions of stand up comedy in India are touched.
The film is held up by some of its supporting cast and some natural chemistry between Saleem and Prasad. The film was shot post the lockdown, yet it doesn’t seem evident. Most importantly, the idea of two people doing stand-up is pretty unique.
Despite sincere efforts at delivering something new, ZEE5 often fails to deliver anything fresh. Comedy Couple is a very regular romantic comedy after all, despite the idea being unique.
Sexism is pretty prevalent in the film, and at places it is even glorified. There is an entire sequence where Deep compares a girlfriend to beer, eventually getting warmer. And there’s no logic as to why the independent, mature and upfront Zoya is drooling over this objectification.
The writing is quite unimaginative and predictable. Apart from some hilarious moments and political stances, the film has little to no engagement.
Unquestionable taste in typical romantic comedies is a bare minimum to watch this film on a weekday. But even then, if one hopes to watch some mildly entertaining comedy with a touch of socio-political commentary and romance, can opt for Comedy Couple.