Critics Corner review

Shriya Pilgaonkar and Iqbal Khan steal the show away in the espionage thriller Crackdown

Crackdown features Saqib Saleem, Shriya Pilgaonkar, Iqbal Khan, Ankur Bhatia, Rajesh Tailang, Waluscha in pivotal roles and narrates the story of secret services across the borders.


Directed by Apoorva Lakhiya, Crackdown marks his digital debut. With an ensemble cast, it features Saqib Saleem, Shriya Pilgaonkar, Iqbal Khan, Ankur Bhatia, Rajesh Tailang, Waluscha, and few others in pivotal roles. An espionage thriller, the web series leaves many loose ends to put together, and yet, it somehow keeps you involved and engaged. With betrayals, internal politics, hackers, RAW agents, as the most obvious tools to their credit, the story does take you on a ride of its kind.

Shriya Pilgaonkar in Crackdown

It all starts with a mystery girl, Divya (Shriya), who is made to be a part of what is a special mission to uncover bigger problems that pose a threat to the country while also taking this journey with her are Riyaaz (Saqib), Ashwini (Rajesh), and Zorawar (Iqbal). Each of them has a peculiar something about them, and while it may sound stereotypical, what more were we expecting? The mystery around Divya (as you will see) is one that is a high point towards the beginning, but it seems to go downhill from thereon. Ankur Bhatia as Tariq also adds a sense of mystery while Waluscha as Garima is another lovely addition to the cast.

None the less, credit where it is due, even with little to no possibilities left in order to explore this genre any further, there are some highs that manage to keep your attention on the show. For on, Iqbal and Shriya are two actors that have managed to shine on, probably even outshine others at few instances. While Divya is on a mission, her transformation to infiltrate a gang they are after, is rather interesting. The tagret here, Hamid, is played by Ajay Choudhary, who manages to do a fair job at his role as well.

Iqbal Khan in Crackdown

While it is true that the performances are what keep you going further ahead in this 8 episode series, the story does get monotonous. However, one cannot blame the writers here, for there isn't much that hasn't been told. None the less, some rather obvious tools that have been put to use here might in fact act as triggers for people who already hold those tropes, in one way or the other. While the writing is not new, it has also not been very careful so as to ensure there is no malice that it could possibly provoke.

Crackdown Saqib Saleem

As the series moves forward, there are instances that you did not see coming, but you are left hoping for more of those until the very end. Left at a cliff-hanger, chances of a second season are only obvious, and with that, also obvious are are hopes to put the actors to better use while coming up with a story that is a tad bit tighter.

My final verdict says that while this may not be the best picks, it isn't the worst either. Watch it for the ensmeble cast that it flaunts, a rollercoaster ride of adrenaline here and there, and an average binge-watching session!

Ratings: **1/2 stars (2.5/5)


Iqbal Khan Saqib Saleem Rajesh Tailang Shriya Pilgaonkar Waluscha de Sousa Ankur Bhatia Voot 

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