Warning: this article contains spoilers

It’s almost inevitable for Bollywood to have a male lead named Vikrant Singh Chauhan and not have him fight only a team of goons with a bottom score that praises his manhood. But, Netflix’s latest romantic thriller Yeh Kaali Kaali Aakhein do not jump in this pool which is already polluted by many.

Yeh Kaali Kaali Aakhein
Source: Instagram/ tahirrajbhasin

Tahir Raj Bhasin as Vikrant tries out an engineer who has mapped out a modest life with his sweetheart Shikha (Shweta Tripathi) and dreams of happily ever after.

Tahir and Shweta in Yeh Kaali Kaali Aakhein

His life on the track, however, is hijacked by Purva, (Aanchal Singh) the girl from his nightmares who sets eyes on him.

What we witness throughout the eight-episode show is an emasculated protagonist whose fate is swallowed by the powerful, yet manages to leave us spellbound, not trying to be your usual hero.

Tahir as Vikrant in Yeh Kaali Kaali Aakhein

What sets Yeh Kaali Kaali Akkhein class apart from others of its genre displays the love and lust of a woman’s eyes, thereby challenging Bollywood’s trope of steadfast male leads.

Tahir and Aanchal in Yeh Kaali Kaali Aakhein

But, justifying the show’s title, Vikrant is a hopeful (not hopeless) romantic who, despite his misfortunes, leaps off balconies, climbs his girlfriend’s window, and makes promises that he’ll get away with it. try to hold on.

Tahir as Vikrant and Shweta as Shikha in Yeh Kaali Kaali Aakhein

Vikrant, unlike our macho heroes, is scared, throws up his guts when he sees goons slaughter bodies, and can barely lie with a straight face, becoming a sweet reminder of exactly how humans are in real life.

It’s satisfying because a vincible hero isn’t what we’re used to seeing on screen.

Tahir as Vikrant

While ‘daydreaming’ is usually woven into the female counterpart storyline, we see Vikrant fantasizing about shooting the bad guys in his life while actually resorting to YouTube tutorials to learn the craft as his hands even tremble to pull the trigger.

Tahir to Yeh Kaali Kaali Aakhein

Even after becoming a trophy groom for the politician’s sinister daughter, his personality doesn’t take a 180-degree turn making him the “bad guy” but rather shifts him from passive to active, without derailing the plot.

He chooses to take revenge with honesty because he simply cannot unlearn the fundamentals of his life.

Aanchal Singh and Tahi Raj Bhasin in Yeh Kaali Kaali Aakhein

Vikrant spends hours in front of the mirror, but fumbles as he confronts the sleazy politician and finds stupid ways to get out of his clutches.

Vikrant to Yeh Kaali Kaali Aakhein

The more the protagonist tries to swim, the more he sinks. This show managed to flip the script in terms of the portrayal of men and women in Indian movies and television.

All images are Netflix screenshots unless otherwise noted.