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How pakistani animation as a medium, reflects sociocultural values of pakistan

Table of Contents

Research Methodology

MPhil. Art and Design (2018-2020)

Semester-1 (Final submission)

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Submitted to: Dr. Ahmed Bilal

Submitted by: Aqsa Tahir

PUCAD

University of the Punjab, Lahore

How Pakistani Animation as a medium, reflects sociocultural values

of Pakistan

Abstract

The customs, culture and traditions of a country are representative of its history, language and

environment. Similarly, the cultural patterns of Pakistan speak of its rich cultural heritage and

traditions. Animation as a mature International industry is rapidly growing and animation films

have taken a role in introducing the cultural characteristics of various nations and backgrounds

This research will shed light on, how Pakistani animations represents sociocultural values of

Pakistan. This paper will tell about the cultural depiction of Pakistan in animated movies and TV

series of Pakistan. How animation as a medium plays its role to present the sociocultural picture

of Pakistan to the whole world. This research will give the comparison of two Pakistani animated

movies, which will tell that how these movies reflects socio cultural values of Pakistan.

1. Introduction

Animation is a series of Drawings moving very quickly, twenty four frames per second. It

involves the manipulation and management of still images to generate the illusion of

movement. 1 In Pakistan animation started in 1990s and now it’s flourishing and

evolving. As it started from animated TV Commercials, then animated TV series and

now it led to 3D animated films.

2. Objectives

1. To find the definite representation of culture in Pakistani animation.

2. To look into the thought process behind each character and environment design.

3. How these animations reflects Pakistan as a nation or Does it help or not to build an image of

Pakistan?

3. Literature Review

In 1990s the first renowned animated TVC was made and aired on the television “Ding

Dong Bubble Gum” by Hilal Foods PVT (LTD). Afterward, now a large number of

animated TV Commercials are on screen for many years. Few of the examples are Tiger

bubble, Prince Biscuit, walls Pedal Pop, Cocomo, candy land Funny bunny etc. 2

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The trend of Animated TV Series was started by P&G’s health care brand Safeguard. It

stepped outside of the norms, introduced Pakistan’s very own animated superhero named

Commander Safeguard. After that many other brands created superheroes for their

products. Like Germ Busters, Lifebuoy, HBL Money Bank, Dettol Warriors are few

of the notable examples. All of these animated series have some social, ethical and

cultural content, where they tapped children as their target Audience.

Unicorn Black animation Studio introduced Pakistan’s first female animated super hero

called Burka avenger. This animated series was also made on a social subject and

characters had strong Pakistani cultural influence. Quaid sy Baatein is another animated

TV Series for children it was about historical and ethical values of Pakistan.

In 2015 Pakistan’s first animated film “3 Bahadur” by Waadi animation was released. It

was a Social/ thriller/ comedy film. The story was based on three brave and extraordinary

children who save their city from the villain, Baba Balaam. Later in 2016 this film’s

sequel 3 Bahadur: The Revenge of Baba Balaam was also released. Allahyar and the

legend of Markhor is another latest animated film by 3 rd world studio. Allahyar is a

young boy who stands against the illegal hunting of Wildlife. This movie was about

social and ethical values that are being followed in Pakistan. Recently in 2018 a new

movie released named “Donkey King” by Geo films and talisman Studio. It’s a Socio-

Political comedy film.

4. Research Analysis

The two movies which are been chosen for this analysis are;

 Allahyar and the legends of Markhor

 The Donkey King

4.1 Allahyar and the legend of Markhor

Allahyar and the legend of Markhor is a 2018 Pakistani computer animated comedy film.

4.1.1 Brief

Target audience: Youth and Children

Subject: Social/ Cultural

Language: Urdu

Allahyar is a kid who lives with his father in the northern areas of Pakistan; he

hates bullies and loves animals so when he encounters an encaged Markhor, he

brings her home only to find out that the men behind her abduction want it back at

every cost. They kidnap Allahyar and abduct the animal only but the former may

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be down, not out. 3

4.1.2 Sociocultural Representation

This movie is made on a social issue in which a young boy stands against the

illegal hunting of Wildlife. The subject matter of this animated movie is a

“Markhor” national animal of Pakistan, Which is about to extinct because of its

illegal hunting. So, this animated film is focusing on a social issue which tells

about cultural as national values of Pakistan. The whole film was made in a

traditional cultural manner of Pakistan. This film presented the northern areas of

Pakistan, literally as originally they are. The highly decorative trucks of Pakistan

are shown in this movie as a cultural element.

4.1.3 Character Stylization/ depiction

The main character of this move is Allahyar. The character stylization and

development of this character is very accurate as per the Pakistani culture.

The boy is wearing shalwar qameez, national dress of Pakistan, with a

small flag of Pakistan on it. He showed as a brave and strong boy.

4.2 The Donkey King

The Donkey King is a 2018 Pakistani computer animated comedy film 4

Target audience: All age group

Subject: Social/ Cultural/ political to some extent

Language: Urdu

A piece of land, Azad Nagar where animals are in power, the King Badshah Khan , a

loin (decides to take a break, leaving his son Shehzada in charge, who has an effeminate

with his presence on social media.. Seeing that other animals didn’t like the idea, he

accepts a proposition put forward by Miss Fitna (a fox), giving the population a chance

to elect their leader. Villainess in the story who tries to double-cross the king when the

animals of the jungle don’t approve of his idea to put his son on the throne. She tells him

to introduce democracy in the country, find a numbskull of a ruler, which ultimately

would put the king’s son back in the saddle. 5 A useless, day-dreaming donkey Mangu

gets to contest the election against the Prince despite opposition from his Pehelwan

Chacha, and wins the election by a huge margin, not because of his popularity but

because everyone hates the Shehzada. It is only after being crowned the King that

Mangu realizes that there is more to the designation than meets the eye; not everything

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is as ideal as it seems from the outside. The same animals who promoted him to win the

elections want him to be their puppet so that they can continue their agenda without any

suspicion. 6

4.2.1 Sociocultural Representation

This film was made on unique and different story outline, its story is based on an

animal kingdom. Although this story is being depicted by animals as a symbol. At

the same time, the dresses and the outlook of these animals are very traditional and

desi, the dialogues and the script had strong sociocultural influence of Pakistan.

The main character of film, Mangu is derived from the famous Pakistani TV

character Jan Ramboo. To some extent it gives some political vibes which has

been shown in he story outline.

4.2.2 Character Stylization/ depiction

The character stylization was bit challenging in this movie as “Mangu” the

leading character, who is a donkey, is an animal character. But still the

charters were being designed successfully as per the need of the story

outline which is based on cultural and social aspects of Pakistan.

Mangu was dresses up in a very typical way as per his role. A dreamer and

a foolish character dressed himself in a western dress. Pent and t-shirt

with a very slight traditional element, the bandana he has been wrapped

around his head. Furthermore rest of the characters were also designed on

this strategy of mixture of western and eastern influences.

5. Conclusion

All these Pakistani animated films, TV series are playing an important role to present the

sociocultural values of Pakistan. Animation is now a powerful medium of expression, which

could help to make an image of any culture and nation. This research analysis comes to a

conclusion that these animated films could portraying sociocultural aspects of Pakistan. These

films are portraying the real picture of culture and tradition of Pakistan but with a slight

western influence. But most of the content and depiction is complimenting Pakistan’s

sociocultural values in an appropriate way.

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