Th-Drama: 2gether (8.4/10)

If you haven’t watched a Boy Love (BL) drama but love dramas, you are missing out. Honestly, throw you pre-conceptions out the window. They are truly some of the greatest dramas out there.

I love them because a lot of them remind me of 90’s American high school and college movies like She’s All That, 10 Things I Hate About You and Never Been Kissed. The kind that are so fun to watch and always have happy endings, but have mostly disappeared. Thai Bl’s are helping fill this void.

2Gether is about a freshman college boy who is basically being stalked by a guy that has a crush on him. At this point the lead is sure he is straight and can’t seem to get the guy to leave him alone. He tries a fake girlfriend and when that didn’t work, he and his friends decided he needed a fake boyfriend instead. It is a little unclear why they went this route or why they picked the guy did, but it was a plot point they had to forward, so I guess it’s ok.

The guy the lead picks to be his fake boyfriend is a school heartthrob who plays in a band but is otherwise quiet, cold and introverted. The heart throb repeatedly turns the lead down until eventually giving in.

The fake relationship turns into real love, as it should since this is what dramas are all about. BUT this evolution isn’t formulaic, which is something I really liked about this show. The person doing the running after the other is unique, and the story behind it and the responses they get are mostly unexpected. There is also some time spent on the lead character trying to work through whether they really like their fake boyfriend or if they are just infatuated with having someone so hot and sought after next to them,

I should mention that the fake boyfriend is PRETTY. Every episode he got more and more attractive to me. Some study found that the humans that people find universally attractive are the ones with symmetrical features and this guys are pretty perfect. The character also turns out to be adorably shy versus conceited so it is too easy to ship this couple.

There are reviewers out there who didn’t love this drama, but I think that it depends on what a viewer is looking to get out of one. I loved it. It was light-hearted, sweet and romantic, I didn’t get too invested in the second lead love triangles, and I ended the drama feeling even happier as a person than when I started it. THAT is what I watch dramas for.

I highly recommend giving this show or other BL’s a try because they really can be adorable and sweet and funny – basically the perfect pick me up. Love by Chance, 2 Moons and Scotus 2 are my fav, and 2gether just got added to that list.

Thai-Drama BL: TharnType vs. Dark Blue Kiss

I should tell you all that I might be addicted to Thai Boy Love (BL) dramas. This is mostly because really good ones remind me of American romantic comedies from the 90’s like She’s all That and the Amanda Bynes ones from before she started talking to walls and other inanimate objects (Sorry Amanda, I hope you got some help ♥). The first Two Moons Series got me hooked and the show Love By Chance won my heart.

Unfortunately like any good drama binger I have seen almost all of the good BL’s out there and have to wait impatiently for more. This time I waited months for two of the newest BL’s to finish airing since, in my opinion, marathons are the only way to watch these. Both finished their runs in January and I watched TharnType first than Dark Blue Kiss a week or so later.

TharnType is a prequel sequel, the characters were first introduced in Love By Chance, but the story is meant to take place before the stories in Love By Chance occurred. Dark Blue Kiss is part of the Thai Kiss series. The first one of these is on Netflix and is possibly the worst Thai drama I’ve ever tried to watch even though the cast members are all great. This show was followed by Kiss Me Again, which was better, although not great and included the gay love story between Pete and Kao and also the love triangle with second lead Sun, a sweet, hardworking coffee shop owner with a godawful mustache.

The first surprise in TharnType was that they recast Type. Tharn was only mentioned in Love By Chance so this was the first casting for his character. I don’t know why the producers didn’t just cast the original Type, who is a BL vet, but I’m sure they had their reasons. I thought nuType was pretty cute until he did this shifty eye thing when he was mad, the same one that my mom does. Associating a guy with my mom is a surefire way to stop finding them attractive lol. Tharn on the other hand looks like a Thai Ken doll, which I was not too into. He also looks like he is 30 when he is meant to be a young college student. What redeems him is that he looks 10x better when he smiles, has abs of steel, and Mew Suppasit Jongcheveevat who plays him does a pretty excellent job.

The second surprise, which I did not welcome was thatthere was a little too much less-than-consensual activity for me in the first few episodes. Enough that I almost stopped watching the show, but ya know… drama addiction made me want to see it through. Luckily the non-consent stuff ended once the guys became a couple, but note to Thai directors: you should all look up the hashtag #metoo and recognize asap that it’s not necessary to add this stuff to your shows. It’s creepy not sexy.

Dark Blue Kiss on the other hand had a plot that was mostly PG-13 minus some make out scenes, one in a pool (that I am putting on my bucket list to re-enact on my first opportunity ;). It centered around Pete and Kao’s three year relationship and how it was effected by Kao staying in the closet and Pete ‘s anger management issues. It also focused on Sun, who was unlucky in love in the last show and his brothers hotheaded rebellious friend Mork. I liked how the last show set them up as a possible future couple, and it was the main reason why I watched this one. I was pleasantly surprised that someone had the actor who plays Sun shave off his mofugly mustache for the sequel, which made him look so much better. Mork is just adorable. It’s probably because I used to love a bad boy with a heart of gold and still love characters like that.

I really liked how all the couples on both shows seemed to enjoy each other’s company. It wasn’t a stretch to imagine the characters as couples. Tharn and Type had crazy chemistry and the actors did a great job of seeming in love. The actor who played Tharn did a break up scene that I think deserves an award. He managed to perfectly portray the heartbreak that most of us have felt at least once in our lives after a rejection from someone we loved. Sun and Mork were very cute, although there were a few scenes where Mork was trying to get some space and Sun wasn’t letting him which made Sun look codependent. They were meant to be cute, but it didn’t feel that way, more like they need to have a chat about personal space. Pete and Kao were the hardest to root for. I couldn’t have done it if they weren’t so cute together when they were happy. The problem was that Pete was too jealous and Kao was too cowed to stop Pete from being a jerk and had to resort to lying to him just to keep the peace. I wouldn’t consider that a functional relationship.

An issue with TharnType was the beginning, as I mentioned, was not great and there was a whodunnit mystery on the show which I didn’t like. It dealt with non-consent in a really flimsy way and the great unmasking was unsatisfactory because there was no straightforward villain I could hate. Some of the show is really immersing and the characters are well developed, but I would score it lower than most viewers have for the reasons that I’ve laid out.

Dark Blue Kiss is no Love By Chance, but it was better than I thought it would be. The show also had a whodunnit that I didn’t like very much. I didn’t hate the villain and it wasn’t clear what happened to them in the end. Overall though the show was cute, which is all I could ask for and it ended on a good note so I actually preferred it to TharnType.

Thai-Drama: Great Men Academy (8.6/10)

Y’all I highly recommend this show. I had no idea what to expect when I started it, and to be honest, during the first episode I wasn’t sure if I should keep watching. This is because there was strange mix of the realistic, girl wants campus hero and gossips with her girlfriends -and fantastical – she finds a unicorn who grants her a wish, to be with her crush, but the unicorn puts its own spin on it and turns her into a boy.

Thank God I pushed through to episode two because I got to watch a show that I really enjoyed.

Summary:

The main character Love has always been a fan of the popular guy Vier of the famous Great Men Academy but has never had the chance to meet him. One day, she sees the mystical unicorn rumored to fulfill wishes and wished for her love for Vier to get a chance. Unfortunately the unicorn interpreted her wishes in a different way and Love wakes up to find herself… as a guy? (c/o of MyDramalist)

What I enjoyed:

The actors were great

The plot had a little of everything: thoughtful moments, comedy, fantasy, action and romance.

The way the love story played out was both unexpected and very sweet. I won’t tell you what made it unexpected, but I will say I have been hoping so hard that a drama would do what this one did. And it worked!

The story was engrossing and dealt with some interesting dilemmas and ideas around love. The main one was about the capability to love someone no matter what gender they are since the main character transformed back and forth from a girl to a guy. It’s a very Thai theme that I appreciate since I wholeheartedly believe that #loveisloveislove and that everyone deserves to be loved.

What I didn’t like:

There were some moments where I was confused about how something happened, mainly about the unicorn wishes and a contest that students participated in and would have liked some more clarification.

Freaking love triangles. I hate them. The heartbreak of some second and third leads – or sacrificial lambs as someone once ingeniously called them – made me sad.

Random Trivia:

The cast is part of a company created ensemble group 9×9 that also stars in Family We Trust.

Overall:

This drama is fun and interesting and it’s easy to root for the lead. I give it two thumbs up.