VUSLAT EPISODE 31 ENGLISH SUMMARY
Stories, people and objects from the past are the keys to understanding this episode. An old adage says that “Those who forget their past are condemned to repeat it”. I believe this to be true at a personal level for many of the players in Vuslat. From a more systemic point of view. families, relationships, communities can be challenged by “unfinished business” and secrets from the past, as is so true of the interconnecting stories in this dizi.
As the episode begins we are with Aziz who seems bemused and remarkably calm after being robbed of the photograph of the miniature. The old man with the gun, as Aziz and Altan soon find out, was a ‘plant’ in an empty apartment in the building where the elderly owner of the photo gave it to Aziz. The pair are puzzled by the man’s motivation, but are drawn to a small glass case mounted on the wall in the dilapidated apartment. The case contains a pinioned butterfly. Aziz recalls Yalcin mentioning a butterfly being mentioned by the person being interrogated for attempting to kill Feride. Aziz is certain that whoever owned the butterfly knew that he would come to the apartment and left the case there to be seen.
Later in the episode the impact of very small actions causing a chain reaction, the “Butterfly Effect”, is a strategy called into play by Bulent, who can view the two friends through a camera planted inside this display case. Bulent’s comment of self-congratulation gets under my skin. I think he fancies himself as smarter and infinitely superior to other people, patronizing and controlling. Altan is uneasy, saying,
“It’s like there is an invisible enemy walking around you.”
Aziz concurs. Men show up and know what he’s about, he senses himself being stalked and this leads him to be suspicious of everyone.
Moving day has arrived for the Caglars and Hasibe is in fine form, moaning, criticizing and blaming her stepdaughter and husband for conspiring against her and enforcing the shift. She’s very firmly put in her place when deciding to get rid of existing furniture. Both Faik and Feride are adamant that the stuff stays and Hasibe is seething with rage, determined on pay back. Her hatred of Feride grows daily. And reaches almost frenzy point when she bursts into Feride’s room demanding the money which Nehir had given her and which her stepdaughter is determined to return to its source. An unpleasant altercation has led to Faik telling Feride that she can have her mother’s former bedroom,which opens up as a treasure trove for the young woman especially when she discovers her mother’s sewing kit and old manual sewing machine.
She has a greater appreciation of the talent inherited from her mother whom she remembers working on an intricate lace collar. Later, she tells Emine that she looks forward to creating new designs in this inspirational workspace.
A scene from the past replays in Faik’s memory as he enters the now empty lounge of the house. He is back with his young wife as they prepare to move into their home, so many years ago. The physical similarity between Suheyla and her daughter, Feride, can only be an added reason for Hasibe’s resentment of the young woman. This scene is one of several in this episode which honour the tenderness and emotional depth of some of the men of Vuslat.
Feride has found her mother’s wedding gown in the wardrobe. Dreamily, she holds it up to herself and is unaware for a short while that Aziz is outside her window, watching her and smiling.
The two meet a little way down the road and Aziz tells of the miniature , the robbery and his conversation with Uncle Necmi. He has learned that he and Feride have done their part of the task and that the next part is for Kerem.
They are so good together, these two and they part comfortably as Aziz tells Feride he loves her. There is a lovely moment which he notices, as her step becomes decidedly bouncier and her smile wider as she leaves after his “Seni seviyorum.”
Back at the Korkmazer mansion, Gulten is worried for Alice’s safety and her own ability to cope in an emergency. She asks Kerem to find an alternative home for his mother. After the very distressing time Kerem has had getting free both physically and emotionally from his grandfather’s toxic interference in the forest, Kerem is exhausted, almost at breaking point. He needs love and lays his head in his mother’s lap. In another one of the highlights of this most emotional episode, we witness the tentative fingers of Alice reaching cautiously to touch her hurting son, then see her instinctive maternal caress as she gently strokes his head. Kerem smiles. I did, as well.
A refuge for his mother is eventually found with Alice’s childhood friend, Zehra who is also Feride’s much loved aunt.
Aziz has moved back into the mansion, which delights Sultan. He has
been worried about the weight of responsibility his little sister has been carrying since their mother’s death and thinks that he can help by bringing the family feeling back to their home. He is affectionate and gentle with Sultan and she responds with delight. Kerem is not so easily won over, however.
He has decided that Aziz has been lying to him, particularly about his parents being murdered by Tahsin. Obviously, his mother is still alive and he has just introduced her to his foster brother. Disconcertingly, Aziz has greeted his aunt with a radiant smile and obvious delight at her return. He explains the mismatch of the old story with the new reality by reminding Kerem that the person who saw the murder was a five year old boy who may have made a mistake, not a grown man seeking to deceive. But Kerem is having none of it.
Neither is he going to pick up his part of the three-person task that Necmi outlined. He’s clearly angry and hurting. Aziz realizes that Kerem still blames him, unfairly, for much of the hard stuff he’s had to deal with.
His return to the mansion has given Aziz a chance for a treasure hunt. Like, Feride with her mother’s “reminiscences”, Aziz has found a cache of precious objects that belonged to his grandfather, Mehmet Seyfik Korkmazer. He is delighted with his find, such things as his grandpa’s fountain pen, a photo of the three little grandsons, a rather lurid necktie, several rosaries, a comb and a beer mug and best of all, a hat. A wonderful, stylish trilby which Aziz puts on in the time-honoured manner of children playing dress-ups in discarded adult clothes. He fancies himself in the hat!
Deep down in the trunk where all these treasures have been stored is something of greater significance, however. Piece by piece, Aziz extracts a dismantled Satranc-i- Urefa board and reassembles it. What significance does this have for his relationship with Salih, or for
the quest he currently finds himself on? The question is obvious.
“Grandpa, where are you in this game?”
Aziz has become aware that his sister has ben excluded from family stories and secrets in order to “protect” her. He decides to introduce her to her dead brother, Firat, realizing that she has no idea that there was another child in her family. She is grateful for his honesty and Aziz tells her that he will never again keep family secrets from her.
Tahsin is making the staff at the Holding company very uncomfortable. He is bad tempered, unpredictable and not coping particularly well with the work. As Mr Enes puts it,as long as Tahsin Bey sits on the manager’s couch, anyone could get fired at any time
Aziz makes it very clear that his father is welcome to the job of manager and that his main interest is preventing Tahsin from hurting Feride, whom he rescues from an ugly scene in the manager’s office, The pair leave hand in hand and there is a real sense that Aziz is relieved that he can get on with his main mission now, to find out who he really is and what his Quest is all about. Feride is talking about a change of job. Much change is in the air.
There’s a lot of movement for other people, too, Nehir has got wind of the partnership changes in the company and wants in. Her strategy is to form a working relationship with Firat, built at least in part by their mutual dislike of Feride. Nehir wants more money, Firat (and his mother) want what they can get.
Altan has found his courage and has gone to Yalcin to discuss a possible marriage with Emine. Surprisingly, Yalcin is open to listening and offers to talk with Emine’s parents about such a proposal. The only problem is that he has not actually proposed to Emine and is bemused by Aziz’s advice that he should do so. Altan has assumed that she will agree without asking her to marry him. There’s a way to go to sort this one out.
Salih Baba has been missing for some time and Ahmet is feeling fear ansd worry about the man he regards as his real father. Tekin has been recruited into some hard-ball duties, having been given a gun by Necmi. Accepting it reluctantly the young man is prepared to take on new responsibilities, but we don’t know the details yet.
Salih has been in the crypt with the green-draped coffin where he has had a long night of the soul, I think directly related to Aziz’s accusations of arrogance and failure. The former surgeon has been reliving the failed attempt to save the life of the first Firat and we see the agony he has been through. First, the violent outburst from Tahsin outside the waiting room,
“You couldn’t save my son!”
Then the arrival of Uncle Sefik, grandfather of the dead boy, who listened to Salih,
“I know my sin, Sefik uncle, I wish it didn’t happen”
…and told him that he was playing out his destiny, that God was aware and that he should, “Lift your head.”
That advice rings in Salih’s ears. As then it is what he must do now. He does so, gathers himself together and leaves the crypt.
He has two stops on the way home. One is outside the new Caglar home, where Hasibe has taken her revenge on Feride for returning the money to Nehir. All of her mother’s precious possessions have been put out on the road for garbage collectors to rifle through and take away, even the valuable antique sewing machine. Frantically, Feride is trying to convince two rag and bone men to accept money and to leave her treasures alone. Salih arrives in time to help her move the machine, wishes the family the best and calms Feride down.
The other stop is to the Kormazer mansion where we learn that Salih has grown up as a foster brother to Tahsin, who bitterly resents the time and effort his father spent on the ‘outsider’ I wonder how this has affected the way Tahsin has treated Kerem over the years that he has, in turn, been a foster father. What Salih is there to say relates to Aziz, however. He tells Tahsin to get out of Aziz’s way, that the young man is pursuing his destiny and Tahsin should stand back and let the quest take its course. Tahsin is neither impressed nor cooperative and comments on the way Salih has “ruined” his own life.
Abdullah has been in possession of a painting of the miniature which has so exercised the quest participants and the arrogant Bulent who sees Alice as a threat to himself and others. Why we don’t yet know. Abdullah puts the artwork into the care of a woman who appears to be a reputable gallery owner.
I wonder, given what we see in the last scene, whether Salih is preparing to step back from leading the Traveller in the current game of Satranc-i -Urefa, After all, Aziz has discovered his own board courtesy of his grandfather. Uncle Abdullah puts the Wheel of Fortune securely into Aziz’s fist as if it now belongs to him, and it appears that Salih is about to burn his board. There is a change in the way Salih holds himself. He seems stern, focused, sure of himself. He has lifted his head.
“It wasn’t about the Board,” he tells Aziz as they stand in front of a fiery brazier outside the antique shop. His game board is in his hand, near the fire.
So just what is it all about?
And is that sarcophagus with its green cover and carefully wound turban the current resting place for the dead Mehmet Seyfik Korkmazer?
Is he waiting to be properly buried once his grandson can complete his quest?
Is Aziz to become the new teacher of Satranc-i-Urefa?
Is that his grandfather’s real legacy?
Or am I totally off course with all this conjecture?
Who knows? That’s the best part of this series. You never know the next twist or turn of the plot.
WRITTEN BY: Judith Kelleher
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.