‘The Trial’ Ending, Explained: Was Rajeev Innocent Or Guilty?


The Trial is one of the worst things in existence, despite being a remake of the immensely popular The Good Wife. Bollywood has never been good with remakes. But this Disney+ Hotstar show is a new low. Nothing about it works. There’s no momentum to the story. It has the worst dialogues I’ve ever heard. And it’s a chore to sit through. Anyway, as my attention ebbed and waned throughout its excruciatingly long 8-hour running time, I figured out that Noyonika used to be a lawyer before getting married to Rajeev and having two kids with him, Ananya and Anaira. There’s a grandmother who keeps entering and exiting the plot to do some moral policing. So, she’s hardly a character. Rajeev was accused of taking sexual favors on the job and jailed. In order to keep the lights on at the house, Noyonika is forced to resume her career as a lawyer by joining her former flame, Vishal Chaubey’s firm, Khanna and Chaubey. But the path is apparently not easy because she’s constantly judged for her husband’s actions. There’s a lot of nonsense that happens in the show that can seem like it’s important to the central plot, but they are not. Therefore, let’s just stick to everything that happens between Noyonika, Rajeev, Vishal, and a few other characters before discussing that ending.

Spoilers Alert

Rajeev’s Infidelity

I am not entirely sure what The Trial was trying to say through Rajeev’s case. At one point, it wants to say that men are trash and that, despite having a happy family, they will go behind their wives’ backs and cheat with younger women. But then Noyonika starts to care for him because people can fall out of love but not stop caring, apparently? And what the hell is up with that grandmother? I mean, she keeps moral policing Ananya and Anaira for everything, but she never doubts Rajeev? Is that a commentary on internalized misogyny? Yes, Rajeev ends up being innocent of the crimes he has been accused of. However, the grandmother doesn’t know that! Then why is she so defensive about Rajeev from the get-go? Why don’t you have a single inkling of doubt? Why is Noyonika portrayed to be overly doubtful while everyone is on Rajeev’s side? What are they doing here? Is this just yet another attempt to peddle the notion that working women want to throw their husbands under the proverbial bus after “leeching off” of their money all their lives? Is that what this is? Because it does seem like that! And it reeks of misogynistic writing. If you don’t see the need for female writers in your writers’ room when your protagonist is a woman after watching this show, then nothing ever will.

The Daksh Rathod Case

The Trial tries to critique mainstream news channels sensationalizing every piece of information and conducting media trials via panel discussions. It actually starts with the death by suicide of a cricketer. That cricketer’s girlfriend is blamed for his death by news anchor Daksh Rathod. Noyonika takes up that case and proves that the girl is innocent, and instead, his coach is responsible for his death. But that doesn’t dissuade Daksh from discussing the case because he’s convinced that the girlfriend is the perpetrator here. It’s to show that male anchors have it out for women instead of addressing the real issues, i.e., irresponsible men. Since Daksh starts to go after Noyonika as well because she’s apparently the wife of a disgraced lawyer and she is working with her former flame, she decides to take him to court for defamation. Kishore Ahuja, who was associated with Khanna and Chaubey, decides to jump ship because of his disagreements with them and represent Daksh. Kishore apparently has dementia. So, on Malini Khanna’s orders, Noyonika decides to exploit his illness to derail his defense, and Daksh is asked to pay a hefty fine and apologize to the girl on primetime. That said, the girl doesn’t live to learn that she has won because public shaming and constant harassment force her to take her life. I am guessing this is supposed to send the message that if you try to win by hook or by crook, even if it’s an open-and-shut case, the victory isn’t going to be worth it. As I said, this show is just straight-up cruel towards women, and it doesn’t even try to hide its intent.

Everyone Is About To Go Broke But Doesn’t

The Trial keeps reminding us that Khanna-Chaubey and Noyonika are on the brink of running out of money. One major dilemma that Khanna-Chaubey faces is that their clients can’t afford them; hence, they have to do Pro Bono work. Noyonika can’t pay her daughters’ school fees. At one point, she has to sell one of their posh cars. However, it doesn’t really affect them because they carry on with their extravagance and indulgence. I mean, if you are broke, why are you going to an expensive bar to have expensive drinks? The show tries to be “self-aware,” as Sana tells Noyonika that she wishes everyone’s version of going broke was as convenient as that of Noyonika. But like most self-aware movies and shows, addressing the central flaw in your writing doesn’t make it smart. It just serves as a reminder that the writer(s) didn’t try to solve an issue that they created. Did they really want me to believe that at the end of the 6-month period (which doesn’t really feel like six months, BTW), Noyonika wouldn’t have bagged the job, and Dhiraj would’ve? Also, the gall to write a scene where Noyonika lectures Dhiraj about how some people whine about their struggles while others turn them into opportunities. The guy just told her how much he needed the job, and we saw that, regardless of the job, Noyonika is cruising through life. So, what’s the point of that lecture? Did the writers want to make an anti-poor and pro-nepotism statement? I don’t know! What I do know is that this whole subplot is stupidly executed.

The Photoshop

Oh my god! I think I nearly slammed my head into my laptop as I saw this particular aspect of the narrative unfold. So, there are photos and videos of Rajeev engaging in sexual intercourse with a girl named Tina. These photos and videos have apparently been leaked by Municipal Commissioner Sharad, and he promises that there’s more where that came from. He keeps mailing those files to Noyonika. However, she never gets them because it’s intercepted by Ananya and Anaira. Although they are initially disgusted by it, they figure out that those images and videos are actually fake. When they share their observations with Rajeev, he says that he knows that. But, as far as I can remember, it’s never brought up in court. If the very basis of the accusations that have been leveled against someone is on such flimsy grounds, why isn’t it used? Even Noyonika doesn’t know that those images and videos are fake. Instead, the focus shifts to Rajeev paying for Tina’s services instead of accepting her as a bribe from Mr. Joshi. So, which is it?! Did Rajeev pay for Tina’s services, or are those videos and images fake? Or are those images and videos real, and Rajeev is lying about their authenticity in order to preserve his image in front of his daughters? Which is it? I feel like I’m losing my mind. Did they just introduce the Photoshop argument to show that Noyonika is being dismissive about Rajeev for nothing? Was that the whole point of that reveal? Because if it is so, then that’s further proof that the writers are truly messed up.

‘The Trial’ Ending Explained: Was Rajeev Innocent Or Guilty?

During the penultimate moments of Rajeev’s trial, Sana is brought in to testify against him because she used to work for him and look over his financial transactions. Back then, she had complained that Rajeev had indulged in some kind of malpractice. But when she’s asked to confirm those allegations, Sana says that she did it in the heat of the moment and that her statements from the past aren’t relevant anymore. A few days later, the judge announces that the prosecution’s case was weak and malicious. The funny thing is that this is how the show resolves every single primary, second, and tertiary case spawned by the narrative. The convenience with which everything gets resolved is laughably bad. Anyway, Rajeev turns out to be innocent, and, as per Ilyas’ advice, he decides to run for office as a political figure. Noyonika gets the job while Dhiraj is shown the door, and Sharad asks Dhiraj to come and work for him because he wants to take revenge against Noyonika and her family. Vishal keeps going on and on about how much he loves Noyonika and that he wishes that she divorces Rajeev and starts a new life with him. I mean, read the room, dude! She has said multiple times that she can’t, or she won’t do that. And what kind of an idiot thinks that there won’t be a media circus around their affair after everything that has happened? The fact that the characters and the actors don’t have any chemistry makes this subplot all the more irritating. 

Anyway, at the end of The Trial, Vishal sends a voice note to Noyonika, telling her that if she responds to his lovelorn message, then he’s going to understand that she wants to start a new life with him. If she deletes the message, then he’ll take it as a “No.” Ilyas gets a hold of Noyonika phone while she goes to share the stage with Rajeev as he begins his political career, and he deletes the message because he knows about the repercussions of this affair (sort of). The end. I don’t have any takeaway from this show because the whole exercise feels pointless. What am I supposed to learn from this? You can be falsely accused of bribery and solicitation and then become a politician? If your husband gets falsely accused of bribery and solicitation, can you resume your career as a lawyer? No, seriously, what’s the message? What’s the point of this web series? What is it saying? The dialogues are littered with life quotes about misogyny, sexism, trust, betrayal, and power. But there’s no depth to them. My only real takeaway is that the geniuses behind The Trial compressed the first season of The Good Wife, which had 23 episodes, into eight episodes. That’s why everything feels so flaky and haphazard. What’s my incentive to watch this? All seven seasons of The Good Wife are available on Prime Video. I’d rather watch that, and I advise you to do the same.

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Pramit Chatterjee
Pramit Chatterjee
Pramit loves to write about movies, television shows, short films, and basically anything that emerges from the world of entertainment. He occasionally talks to people, and judges them on the basis of their love for Edgar Wright, Ryan Gosling, Keanu Reeves, and the best television series ever made, Dark.

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