The second short story presents a man taking on many faces and eventually takes on one too far.
This recap of Netflix’s Ray season 1, episode 2, “Bahrupiya,” contains spoilers.
Well, this is certainly a strange short story that gets stronger nearer the end.
Episode 2 opens with a lawyer visiting a man about his mother’s will. The scene then flits to a make-up artist (Indrashish) doing the make-up of an actress named Juliet — she gropes him while he does her face. She finds a jewellery box in his pocket, and there’s a ring — Indrashish wants to propose to her, but she calls him childish and says he can have sex with her any time. The actress heads out onto the stage, leaving Indrashish devastated. He feels he is being played and talks erratically to himself in the mirror.
A bad day
The next day, Indrashish asks for annual leave from work, but his manager tells him he cannot have any more leave after having many days off due to his sick grandma. When he returns home, his landlord berates him as he hasn’t paid rent, so his roof hasn’t repaired, and it’s leaking. Indrashish tries to explain that he paid for his grandmother’s medical expenses. The same lawyer from the start of the episode gives Indro a make-up book that advises on different prosthetics and techniques — his grandmother left it to him — she was a genius at make-up. He then sees Juliet arranging a hook-up with a man, and he’s heartbroken.
Taking on different people
And that’s when the short story turns sinister, as Indrashish uses different prosthetics to get revenge on people he had wronged.
Indrashish uses his grandma’s book to practise aesthetics. He visits the landlord (Nando) with an entirely new look and pretends to be searching for Indrashish. He enters his own place and starts talking to himself erratically again. And then, he pretends to be part of a production company and meets up with Juliet, who assumes this man will get her a role. After he has sex with her, he’s suddenly threatening, but then he gets off her.
Moving out and avoiding the sack
The next day, Indrashish tells his landlord that he’s moving out and living in a penthouse. At work, his line manager takes him to the senior manager and wants Indrashish firing. However, the senior manager is distracted and promises to handle it. Indrashish explains his grandmother had a fight with cancer last year, and he had to be there for her. The senior manager is understanding and tells him to improve his attendance record. Indrashish offers to deal with his accounts and pass on the information.
At home, Indrashish uses prosthetics and make-up to make himself look like his line manager. He claims to his other colleagues that his flight has been delayed, which is why he’s at work. He opens an account for the senior manager that was not permitted, so the senior manager wants the police to detain him.
What’s your name?
Under the new name Amit, Indrashish visits a guru named Baba, who tells him his life is broken. He’s trying to fool the guru with his prosthetics. Baba tells him he cannot read his face and repeatedly asks for his name. He eventually says his name is Sourav. Baba keeps showing him blank pieces of paper and asking for his name, so Indrashish walks off. The man knew he wasn’t who he said he was. Later on, Indrashish learns on the news that rapist Rakesh Singh is on the run.
So Indrashish uses prosthetics to look like the rapist and visits Baba again. Baba says he is a good-hearted man that took care of his grandmother’s medical bills. He tells him that his grandmother loved him a lot and repeatedly asks for his name again. Indrashish is insistent this time, repeating Rakesh Singh. Baba gives him one last chance to give his real name, and he says he is Rakesh Singh. Baba states he made a mistake and knows he is the real Rakesh Singh, and “his face will remain.” The crowd around gets frustrated, and Indrashish tells Baba that he lost. As he walks off, he tells the crowd he isn’t Rakesh Singh and that he is wearing make-up. He tries ripping off the aesthetics, but it doesn’t work.
Baba refers to him as “Indrashish,” and he asks if this what he wished for. The police turn up, and the crowd chases him. He hides away and tries to rip off the prosthetics with scissors, but then blood gushes from his forehead. The short story ends with Indrashish seemingly putting a sharp object through his eye.
Let’s reflect on Ray season 1, episode 2, “Bahrupiya.”
It’s clear as we reach the end of the episode that Indrashish was not only trying to get revenge on those who had wronged him, but he was desperate to be accepted and to be seen by society. He’s a lonely man who feels he has been on the short stick too many times. The short story has the essence of Joker, as the episode delves into his psychotic tendencies.
In the end, Indrashish wanted to prove his genius ways to a guru who can recognize any face and that person’s story. By trying to be accepted is ultimately how downfall, as the guru curses him to the face he is claiming to be.