Anwar Kharral is a fictional character in the television series Skins, and was portrayed by Dev Patel.


Anwar is portrayed as a young Muslim boy with overbearing Pakistani parents that attempt to regulate both his faith and his life inside of the Mosque. He is not a very devout Muslim, he takes drugs whenever at a big party, drinks and has premarital sex; although he does pray five times a day and believes that homosexuality goes against his religion. His best friend is Maxxie Oliver, although his views on Maxxie's homosexuality sometimes put a strain on their friendship. He does lament that as a Muslim boy, he feels he has no choice in his faith.

According to the official website, his favourite things are "Tequila, Dope, Pills, Lupe Fiasco, Breasts and X Factor".

According to fellow actors Mike Bailey (who portrays Sid Jenkins) and Hannah Murray (who portrays Cassie Ainsworth), the characterization of Anwar was partly based on the personality of the actor Dev Patel and the role was written specifically for him after he was cast for Skins.

Character history

Series 1


Anwar in Series 1

In "Tony" he is convinced by best friend Maxxie, to go to a "big gay night out" (because Maxxie said "there would be lots of beautiful women there and they (Chris and Anwar) would be the only ones there to shag") along with Chris, but being bored they eventually go to Abigail Stock's party instead; Maxxie, Chris and Anwar eventually turn it into a brawl on arriving. Anwar is not in the group's stolen car when it rolls into the canal, as he is busy taking a piss.

In "Maxxie and Anwar", on a school trip to Russia, he finds himself at odds with Maxxie who views Anwar's pick-and-choose approach to Islam as hypocritical. He also loses his virginity to a married Russian girl, Anka, who he along with Sid Jenkins believed they were rescuing from her abusive father who turned out to be her husband. By the end of the episode, despite its' previous events, he admits to Maxxie that he is a hypocrite; he refuses to take the vodka Maxxie offers him, signifying his sacrifice of their friendship for his faith because he feels he has no choice. Maxxie walks off in tears; in the next episode, Anwar shows some guilt when Maxxie confesses his motivation for taking head from Tony.

The beginning of the first series finale opens with the celebration of Anwar's 17th birthday and his upcoming party on the same day. Maxxie rings him to wish him happy birthday, and asks that Anwar's parents know that he is gay or he would not attend. Anwar's party turns out to be a complete shambles with his uncle as the DJ, Anwar's relatives also introduce one of their friends with him who he wants to introduce Maxxie to. Anwar and Maxxie meet outside the party hall where Mr. Kharral, Anwar's father, spots them talking. As Mr. Kharral converses with Maxxie he blurts out that Maxxie is gay. Mr. Kharral seems to be oblivious, until Maxxie tells Mr. Kharral seconds later. Mr. Kharral much to both Maxxie and Anwar's surprise actually explains that homosexuals are something he does not understand, but would never discriminate against, as he has faith that God will one day enlighten him. Maxxie and Anwar seem to have once again become best friends. In Chris's brawl later at the party, Anwar displays some impressive fighting moves, using spinning kicks to knock over Chris's attackers.

Series 2

Anwar 1

Anwar in Series 2

In "Sketch", he sleeps with Sketch after Maxxie turns her down (and whilst doing so makes a subtle reference to one of Nicholas Hoult's other screen appearances, in About A Boy, whilst listing a filmography of actor Hugh Grant). Despite telling Anwar that she always liked him, Sketch still has feelings for Maxxie, as she touches and looks at a picture of him while she has sex with Anwar.

In "Sid" it is shown that he and Sketch are continuing their sexual relationship, implying that Anwar may be particularly interested in her. When the two are caught by Sid's mum, Anwar once again expresses discomfort for his life under a Muslim household, stating that "Sex hasn't been invented" in his house.

In "Chris", while at Chris' house-warming party Maxxie confronts both Sketch and Anwar about Anwar's recent choice of style which disturbingly mirrors that of Maxxie. Anwar, oblivious to Sketch's designs reacts first in disbelief then informs Sketch that she is dumped.

In "Final Goodbyes" after getting two E's and a U in his A-Level (which means he doesn't have the grades to get into University), he decides to live with Maxxie and James in London. Sketch, having previously tried to convince him that his friends would forget him, is seen watching him board the bus to London.

Series 3

Anwar was briefly mentioned in "Freddie". Cook mentions that he met "some guy named Anwar" busking and asked if he could join him. He then goes on to say that Anwar asked him in turn if he knew the "'buddha buddha cheeeese buddha' routine or something." This indicates that Anwar may have moved back to Bristol from London, where he was staying with Maxxie and James.

External links