Special Ops 1.5 Review

Life is about going forward, watching a story progress.

Whether Neeraj Pandey’s own Naam Shabana or Salman Khan’s Dabangg 3, prequels tend to be a letdown.

When there’s an audience waiting to see Himmat Singh (Kay Kay Menon) and what’s unspooling a new in his thrilling life, the 4-episode 1.5 season goes disappointingly into rewind mode.

Stitching together several flashbacks that revolve around honey trapping around the globe, this short series is largely retold by Delhi cop Abbas Sheikh (Vinay Pathak) during a ‘character audit’ on Himmat Singh.

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Three writers (Neeraj Pandey, Deepak Kingrani, Benazir Ali Fida) and two directors (Shivam Nair, Neeraj Pandey) move to London, Russia, Dubai, Colombo. Exotic locales but the monotonous honey trapping premise could’ve done with a change of scene too.

There is a back story of betrayal to explain how Saroj (Gautami Kapoor) came into Himmat’s life. The focus is so strongly on someone called Maninder Singh (Aadil Khan) that it could well have been titled ‘The Maninder Singh Story’. A colleague named Vijay (Aftab Shivdasani with a moustache) is also introduced.

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But at the end of it, you can’t help feeling shortchanged. For a prequel, shouldn’t Kay Kay have looked younger, not older and chubbier? Couldn’t Vijay the character have come into Season 2 and been around for a while? Most importantly, why such a pointless distraction instead of progressing with Iklaq, the man Himmat Singh set out to hunt in the first season?

It may have its moments. But to put it simply, 1.5 is rather pointless. Couldn’t we just move on to a full-fledged and racy Season 2?

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