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Kurulus Osman Episode 65 Review




Was that a Kurulus Osman renaissance or a false dawn ???

That’s what I was left wondering after the premiere episode concluded. I’m honestly stunned because that was so un-Bozdag like from last season in a GOOD way. After a second season which I thought was a mixed bag with many issues, this was quite the remarkable comeback from Osman Bey & company in the new season. The stage has been set with a phenomenal season debut and I’m absolutely looking forward to what happens next!

The opening sequence laid the foundation for multiple storylines to be explored this season that are going to lead into the main one where Osman Bey will seek to exploit the Great Schism (political & spiritual division between Catholic & Orthodox Christians) to keep the enemies divided … That’s going to form the mission of this season with all other plots converging: Kosses’s cutting off Turgut’s alps’ fingers, the ambush from Tekfur Leo’s soldiers to sever relations b/w Osman-Turgut and draw Osman’s ire towards Kosses, the mysterious figure who executed Karayel … What chaos!
KO premiere had it all, unbelievable to yours truly!

Adding to the excitement was the fact that little details were all in place like Osman reminiscing about his grandfather Ertugrul Gazi while caressing Orhan … Selcan bringing up Hayme Ana to connect the past tradition with present day … Simple explanation of Alaca (Malhun’s assistant in 2nd season) having gone away to settle down with a family of her own.
Why couldn’t we get simple connecting of the dots like this last season? Improvement on the margins were on full display!

I legit enjoyed all new additions. Thought Mikhael Kosses is a top introduction and his relation with Osman Bey is one to watch out for because you are in for a surprise if Bozdag sticks to historical accuracy on this front. The other Tekfur from Lazkaris dynasty too is a nice addition. The entire strategy of Osman Bey revolving around Priest Gregory and his backstory adds much needed layer to the overall script and a refreshing sign. But the most impactful and unquestionably the most exciting introduction since Shaykh Edebali was none other than the new Turgut Bey! WOW !!!

Now I’m on record expressing my displeasure at Bozdag forgoing the character of original Turgut considering the inevitable Inegol conquest and it will remain a major issue of critique. However, this new Turgut Bey in my view softened the blow from the initial shock and I was blown away by the introduction of his character because for the first time in my view Osman Bey’s equal may finally be here. The scene where Osman Bey & new Turgut Bey met for the first time was BOX OFFICE. The actor Ruzkar exudes sheer magnetism and he stood firm in presence of Osman Bey and saw him eye to eye, a first of its kind! That was the highlight and best scene of the episode I thought. I mean WOW Bozdag you are onto something man! And I am pumped up!

The scene with Shaykh Edebali/Osman and Edebali/Bala were great especially latter which got me in the feels because of Shaykh’s heartfelt gratitude for Allah blessing Bala with an off spring and Bala’s reinforcement of it through her own gratitude.

Malhun’s dream was a play on Turkic dynastic rivalries and basically her insecurity which subsequently gets put to ease by Osman Bey tactfully … I liked the casting of both young Orhan & Aladdin in that dream sequence … Wonder if that’s who we will see as grown up versions. Thought Selcan’s re-entry was well done and her nudging both Bala & Malhun to back each other as sisters was savvy touch from the seasoned hatun & mother of Kayis. Even the scene between Bala & Malhun where they discuss Malhun’s dream albeit she lies to Bala to maintain the truce was nice in that after last season’s cringe worthy rivalry between the two it was good to see them get along. I hope we now see a harmonious bond between the two especially after Osman Bey has reassured Malhun hatun.

Last season my biggest frustration was with the lack of character development among peripheral and support characters. But fortunately we got glimpses of it throughout the premiere with Gonca, Cerkutay, Aygul, Boran, Goktug and more importantly Gunduz demonstrated some bits of his personality for a change instead of being a one-dimensional character. This is the aspect of KO that needs significant improvement where these characters all have contributions to make to the main plot in a converging manner and I hope they finally get to have constructive subplots that ensure it is the case.

All in all the story flowed flawlessly, visuals were superb, multiple hooks were anchored and now I’m left wondering what happens next … Early signs indicate that Bozdag’s new team may just turn the ship around and KO may finally vault into the vaunted elite level show. Keenly looking forward to next episode in hopes that it’s not a false dawn but indeed a renaissance in storytelling from Bozdag!

Written By Shehzeb Imam

Watch Episode 65



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Episode 62!

Another brilliant episode that was more engrossing than most movies these days! It was soothingly wholesome & multilayered in the way it approached & focused, turn by turn, on two different types of swords, on values & principles that went – must have gone – into nourishing the roots of the plane tree, that, at this point of narration, was still relatively young. The values & principles that made its roots so strong that the tree itself stood tall and firm, despite innumerable challenges, for the next six centuries.

Here are few of my thoughts in no particular order.

The Sword Of Retributive Justice: Qisas.

Loved how this scene played out from the time Cercutay handed Osman Bey Bamsi’s two swords to the distracted but deft way Osman Bey spun them, one at a time, their blades swishing through the air even as Bamsi’s memories began to play out in his mind (and later, on our screens).

From the memory of the time Bamsi did his special double sword flourish before bringing them down to execute Aybar’s murderers – to Osman retracing his movements in Soğut, spinning & flourishing them (Cossack double sword flourish performed with amazing aplomb. It was lit 👏), before bringing them down to chop heads off murderers of Bamsi, Abdul Rahman & numerous other innocent men, women & children.Taking their lives – and saving the lives of the people they would have surely killed if not executed.

This execution sequence followed by Edebali’s thoughtful sermon on Qisas took this scene to the next level in showcasing the rationale, the logic, behind Qisas or retributive justice.

The Two Swords Of Osman Ghazi, The Sword of Justice & the Sword of Goodness: “Be patient, my Bala”.

Osman Ghazi, who is depicted as a semi-holy person in many early chronicles, always God-conscious & always attempting to follow the footsteps of our beloved prophet (pbuh), passes on this invaluable piece of advice, which he himself learnt from Kumral Abdal, which he himself tries his hardest to follow, to his beloved, his kindred spirit, Bala.

Basically telling her with the help of a story: Deal (try your best to) with those who hurt you, those who wrong you, whether intentionally or unintentionally, with the sword of goodness.

Give them benefit of doubt. Forgive them. Be kind to them.

Because that’s what changes hearts, enables peaceful dialogue, mends relationships & brings people together. And most importantly, keeps one in Allah’s good books.

Although there is no legal requirement to forgive in the Quran, in matters of Qisas, or retributive justice in Criminal Law, (it’s still encouraged however), there may be a moral imperative to forgive, in all other matters, as an imitation of Allah’s boundless mercy. ‘Forgive, so you may be forgiven’.

In following our beloved Prophet’s footsteps, believers should even forgive(or try their best to) those who have not asked for forgiveness. Even enemies.

The Qur’an describes believers as “Those who avoid major sins and acts of indecencies and when they are angry they forgive.”[42:37]

Similarly, another surah asserts, “If you retaliate, then let your retaliation be proportionate to the wrong that was done to you. But if you endure patiently, indeed, it is better for the patient” “Be patient. Your patience is only because of help of Allah. And do not be grieved by them & do not be distressed by what they plan”.

It was absolutely brilliant the way scenarists juxtaposed these two concepts – justice against forgiveness.

Two different contexts.

Two different swords – the sword of retributive justice vs the sword of goodness.

I was really impressed by how competently Kumral Abdal’s story was used to tie together three different scenes, how seamlessly one scene blended into the next – to tell us that (barring cases of abuse or oppression or extreme injustice of-course) it’s the sword of goodness & kindness & empathy & forgiveness and not that of retributive justice, not ‘an eye for an eye for every small insignificant matter’ that keeps families together and societies healthier.

It’s what nourishes the roots of the giant plane tree.

By Allah’s name, Al Adl, the Just: The Sword of Coercion or Injustice can not be justified in any situation.

Another favorite scene. I love how Edebali is settling into his historical role as the first Qadhi or Judge of the Ottoman Empire. I love how Boran learned his lesson, how Osman Bey forgave Boran & volunteered to pay the fine on his behalf & how the Byzantine landlord, moved by his justice decided to sell his property to him.

Osman Bey, Çok Yaşa: The many layers & facets – the fearsome warrior, the just ruler, the shrewd tactician, the brilliant strategist, the gentle lover, the kind & thoughtful husband…

Most importantly, Osman Ghazi the extremely effective & intelligent leader.

Osman Ghazi is portrayed as a dynamic mobilizing leader and an extraordinarily effective & sincere orator. He is someone who is not only able to communicate with passion & enthusiasm, and influence people and their decisions, but also instill in them, faith in his cause, belief in his vision, and passion for his beliefs.

He is also portrayed as someone whose personality is not just strong & dynamic but also uniquely charismatic – someone who has great interpersonal skills & even greater charisma. Someone who is not just able to get himself noticed & respected & followed, but also loved.

Burak Özçıvıt as Osman Ghazi:

I really believe, that in getting BO for this role, MB hit the casting jackpot. Here’s why.

Burak Özçıvıt seems to be genuinely charismatic and possesses great expressive energy that is uniquely his in real life too, and that is probably why he is able to project – seemingly effortlessly – these qualities on screen as well.

Osman Ghazi’s expansive hand & arm gestures, that some people go to great lengths to criticize!, and that I personally love, is reflective of that same expressive energy. It is a subconscious mannerism – an uninhibited expression by a person who is not only passionate but also supremely confident in his own skin.

And interestingly enough, these hand gestures- gesticulating – is not only observed in Osman Ghazi, the character, but also – to a lesser extent – in Burak Özçıvıt, the person as well, in his real life!

Burak Özçıvıt, with his critically acclaimed acting range, brought in, apart from his rather insane superstardom of course, exactly what an unforgettable portrayal of Osman Ghazi needed – His various layers, facets & complexities, his transformation from a reckless boy of 18 to a powerful Bey – to a mature wise ruler – to ultimately a majestic Sultan in the coming seasons.

All things considered, this was an absolutely phenomenal episode! There were several other amazing scenes that I didn’t mention but that were absolutely top notch in terms of direction & script & plot/ arc progression.

Looking forward to the last two episodes of S2 & the big WAR!!!



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Lena Hatun is a difficult woman to discern, there is something enigmatic about her and we haven’t quite been able to fully comprehend her character. She is beautiful, talented and resourceful, and we have seen the caring side to her as she is a healer/doctor. However, despite her positive attributes, she has a bit of a gloomy aura which doesn’t make one feel at ease with her presence, or fully trust her.

When she first arrived, we thought she may be a good friend and support to Bala, and they would pair up against Hazel’s evil plots. Disappointingly she paired up with Hazel instead and even that was interesting to watch because she didn’t fully trust Hazel, but her own personal ambition made her think she would be better of working with her and saw Bala as the threat.

Lena is a practising Christian, married to a Muslim and living in a Muslim dominant tribe. This dynamic nicely demonstrates the inter-faith relations and marriages that were very common in those times. What’s also interesting is that she has brought up her son as a practising Muslim. This aspect of her character and storyline is fascinating as it illustrates how inter-religion marriages used to work cohesively because there were a lot of similarities in the culture such as family dynamics, social values and norms. For example, even though she isn’t Muslim, she dresses like the Muslim women because Christian women at that time used to wear similar attire, therefore easier to assimilate and adapt.

The biggest gripe with Lena is how she riled up Savci and did her very best to negatively influence by turning him against Osman. We got to see her ambitious and evil side actually but this was short lived and her plans didn’t come to fruition. Interestingly, after being defeated in her game, she actually stopped and didn’t pursue her ambitions any further. Well at least that is what has been shown to us as the audience. If you can’t beat them, it is better to join them right? However there are still some doubt in our minds. Has she seen the light and truly come to the right side and joined forces with Bala and Osman, or will she continue pursuing her own ambitions secretly with help from Flatius perhaps? Time will tell.

Her best performance so far in the series was probably when her son, Beyhoca, was kidnapped. Her acting was brilliant and she perfectly portrayed all of the emotions a loving mother would. We got to see her tender side and weakness. Some may think it was ridiculous of her to go to the enemy’s den to rescue her son, but she acted as any mother perhaps would. Also to take it a step further, she was willing to sacrifice her own life and was even ready to take poison for it.

Mixed feelings about Lena Hatun, and her overall character hasn’t been that impressive so far, in fact it has been a little underwhelming. There is always hope for improvements in the upcoming episodes and it would be great to see her character develop and have a more gripping storyline. (Also wish she changes her outfit and wears a different colour as it’s kind of boring seeing her wear the same colour throughout the series so far!)

PS- This review was written right before her epic character transformation after her son Beyhoca died and she converted to Islam. Her performance when her son died, her conversion to Islam, and then ultimately when she lost her husband Savci, was absolutely marvellous and deserves a separate review!


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Aygul has been on quite a journey, and her character is unique, probably one we have really seen grow, develop and transform.

She has always been loyal to Osman, even in the first episode of season 1 where she rather be under the knife herself than give Osman away. Things obviously didn’t turn out as she had hoped, and her heartbreak led her to making some poor decisions.

Having Dundar as your father and Zohra as your mother, didn’t exactly help the poor girl! Her actions were understandable too be fair. She turned against Osman, but she was still loyal and cared about her tribe, hence why she threw the veil and stopped the fight between the Kayi tribe and Alisar’s men. Even when Alisar slapped her, she didn’t regret her action. She brilliantly then coordinated Alisar’s men when they were being attacked, again showing strong leadership skills, even though she was fighting on the wrong side, but of course she didn’t know this at the time.

Her acting was superb and touching when she found out the truth about Alisar, and that he had killed her brother, Batur. The utter shock, pain and grief led her to lose her mind, she acted brilliantly and as an audience, we could really feel her raw emotions.

Then in season 2, we were introduced to a different Aygul. A newly trained warrior who had been on a painful journey, and was suffering from mental health issues. She was also struggling to accept or bond with her baby. Again, these issues are relevant to the times we are living and so many modern day people can perhaps relate to the grief, discomfort and pain she showed.

Under the tutelage of Selcan Hatun, support of Osman and Bala, and as the episodes progressed, we started seeing Aygul heal and transform. Healing takes time and one has to be in the right environment, and she found that. Through fighting, she was able to release her anger and channel her negative energy, and through the support of Selcan and Bala, she was able to find emotional companionship. Now she has met Cerkutay, her match and it’s endearing to see their relationship develop.

The other thing I would like to highlight is that Aygul’s role as afemale warrior gives us a good portrayal of what it is like for females to go into battle alongside the men. This is something we know the female companions of the Prophet ﷺ used to do. Many fought alongside , and even Protected the Beloved ﷺ (Sayyida Nusayba radiAllah anha for example). Therefore is it wonderful and inspirational to see Bozdag bring this Prophetic characteristic into the series.

Aygul’s character is relatable to many different people I think, and the actress has done a phenomenal job. Yes, I do think sometimes she overacts a little and we have seen some unrealistic scenes such as taking down a whole bunch of Byzantine warriors singlehandedly, but hey these are minor things which do not take away the greatness of her character.

I think we are in for more surprises yet, whether she existed in history or not, but Aygul’s character is definitely an asset to the show. She is one of my favourite characters.


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