So this Chinese drama has a lot going on, hidden identities, fake brides, etc., but I like the cast. She Is The One (2021) stars Tim Pei (Miss Truth) as the groom and Li Nuo (Su Yu (2020)) as the fake bride. The screenwriter is Chuan Tian (Your Highness (2017)) and Chen Shi Yi directed 2020’s Love in Time, which Li Nuo had a supporting role in. The drama already started airing April 19, 2021 and will air 3 days a week. This is a Youku production, should have 24 episodes, and you can find episodes already English subbed on youtube.
Synopsis: The bridegroom who concealed his identity and the fake bride who replaced her elder sister. After a variety of experiences on the emotional road of marriage first and then love, the two got caught in the emotional game of cat and mouse. Will they choose to stay together for a lifetime? (Source: Baidu)
Another historical Chinese drama has caught my eye, Oh! My Sweet Liar! (2020)which stars Xia Ning Jun (Love Under the Moon) as Li Hong Bin and Xi Zi (Blowing in the Wind (2019)) in her first main role. Oh! My Sweet Liar! (2020)looks to be a comic romantic story about a girl with a fake marriage and pregnancy. This Youku TV drama will probably be English subbed and airs on September 16, 2020.
Synopsis: Xiong Xi Ruo is a young female painter who infiltrates the family home of the powerful Li family to paint a copy of a precious item. However, her escape from the Li home goes horribly wrong and she finds her fate at the mercy of Li family heir Li Hong Bin. On the verge of arrest, Li Hong Bin and Xiong Xi Ruo hatch a lie – they pretend that she is pregnant with his child. This arrangement suits Li Hong Bin fine, as a marriage with Xiong Xi Ruo will help him escape an arranged marriage with the daughter of the Song family – a union he is particularly keen to avoid.
The Li family grants its consent for Li Hong Bin and Xiong Xi Ruo to get married, but it is not long before some relatives – and the plotting Song family – begin to suspect that the pregnancy is a fake. Meanwhile, as Li Hong Bin and Xiong Xi Ruo spend more time in each other’s company, they begin to develop a growing fondness for one another. Could love bloom between the pair? And can they survive – or even thwart – the schemes at court? (Source: Viki) ~~ Adapted from the novel Wangfei Bukaopu written by author Wan Xia
The director is Cheng Ming Ko (Refresh Man), and the trailer looks like fun. Is it just me or is there a ton of these Chinese faux historical dramas out there, where the emphasis is more on comedy and hi-jinks then historical accuracy? Well, I’m ready to see if this tickles my funny bone, but honestly don’t think it can outdo The Romance of Tiger and Rose which was hilarious as well as very romantic.
Another top three featuring favorite actors, I already did one on Tik and Andrew. I’ll get to the ladies as well, don’t worry. The top three this week will focus on one actor. Instead of focusing on a certain genre like remakes, or genres, today’s top three will focus on one actor: Pong Nawat.
1. Blood & Treasures (2016) – Noon Woranuch as Ubon is a force to be reckoned with in this lakorn, but Pong Nawat holds his own as Akkanee very well and makes his character more sympathetic and realistic then you might believe possible.
Blood & Treasures (2016) synopsis: Present Life: Akkanee is an archaeologist who loves antique so much. He already has a lover who is Thipapa, but they are not yet married because it seems like he is waiting for someone. That’s when Sarochinee came into his life. She is a beautiful and mysterious woman. She is a millionaires who also loves antique from the Ayutthaya period. Most importantly, she has a piece of Siraporn, which Akkanee is researching. When Sarochinee appeared, she caused fear in many people around her. Nobody can answer why unnatural deaths occur with people around her. Everybody whoever breaks a promise has to die. Nobody knows why, but everybody feels that Sarochinee is somehow involved. Sarochinee’s arrival brings back the past of Ubon, a woman from Ayutthaya. Karma starts to circle again, until everybody reincarnates, and meets together in this present lifetime. This is just the beginning.
Past Life: Akkanee is a soldier in Ayutthaya’s ending period. He killed Ubon, who is his wife. He sacrificed her to protect the nation’s treasure. Ubon was very angry at Akkanee. Because of his actions, she was cursed for centuries and was not able to reincarnate. The Heavens pitied her and allowed her to find a successor that will take her place. If Ubon can’t find a successor, she won’t be able to reincarnate again and has to remain a protector of the treasure for eternity. For this reason, Ubon came back as Sarochinee. She come to take Akkanee’s life as her next successor. (Source: asianfuse.net)
2. Tawun Thud Burapah (2015) – I haven’t watched it yet, but this is one of those highly rated lakorns that are on my list. Bromance, action, thriller, crime, romance, this looks to have a little bit of everything. This teaser is pretty intense.
Tawun Thud Burapah (2015) synopsis: Burapa and Tawan are brothers and the sons of a well-known cop. They are very close as brothers. Burapa is into boxing, while Tawan wants to follow in their father’s footsteps to become a cop. One day, they hear a gun shot and go to see what is going on. This way, they witness a murder and when the time comes to point the finger at the killer, Tawan is not hesitant to do the right thing. Burapa knows that the bad guys will not leave their family alone and he begs Tawan not to be a witness. This is how the conflict begins
3. Dum Kum. A slightly more recent lakorn of Andrew’s, this lakorn features Aff Taksaorn as Wanida. This is a period lakorn set in the 1940s. I thought this was a light romantic drama that was sweet. It has a marriage of convenience and a cute main couple. Watch it streaming here.
Dum Kum (2009) synopsis: Not wanting to marry Tuthiya, a man who looks down on country folks, Dum paints her body black and pretends to be an uncultured woman to make Tuthiya despise her and break off their arranged marriage. Sure enough, he does. (Source: Viki)
This is an old post, but I decided to update it as I want to look at specific tropes/genres and what lakorns fall in those categories. I will be making more posts on lakorn genre/tropes as I find the topic interesting and hopefully it can help you find more to watch!
There are a lot of lakorns about married couples, and it’s a favorite trope of mine. Full House (Thai version) is based off of a kdrama and features a celebrity and aspiring writer who enter a contract marriage for various reasons, but ends up falling in love.
Contract marriages is just one of the many different tropes regarding marriages in lakorns. There’s also arranged marriages, fake marriages, marriages of convenience (Jao Sao Jum Yorm) and so on. Read on to find out more. Where can you watch these lakorns? Try here.
Arranged Marriages – The parents/guardians/relatives have arranged the marriage.
Marriage of Convenience – One or both of them don’t want to marry, but they must because of debt or other issues. Literally every lakorn except the ones under the ‘Married for Love’ category falls into this category.
Marrying for Money
Marrying for Money – literally, the bride (or groom) marries to pay off debts or for other money issues. Also, marrying for inheritance.
Our last part in this drama matchup is one of the best matches I’ve made, scout’s honor! Let’s just call this a royal match! Switched brides, arranged marriage, young love. But there is actually a very clear message that the drama is trying to convey. Curious? Read on!
2006 Korean drama Goong or Princess Hours, holds a special place in my heart. I loved the story about a young couple in an arranged marriage who fall in love with each other. If you want to watch a lakorn with the same premise, Roy Marn (2011) is the closest to it (er, outside of the Thailand version of Goong, Princess Hours which I’m trying to forget ever happened🤣.). No royalty in Roy Marn, but they do have interfering exes and lots of sweet moments together.
Roy Marn (2011). Boy Pakorn and Margie Rasri work surprisingly well together as a couple here. And like Goong, there are some boring parts here related to the family’s history. Both Goong and Roy Marn really make a point about how the past affects the future, and that the choices that people made years ago can come back to haunt them. I didn’t find them boring, but some might not care for all the flashbacks.
In both dramas, there are references to a love in the past that directly affects the characters in the present time. Also in both dramas? The male love interest has had a love relationship with another girl and that relationship comes back to haunt him in the present. Watch Roy Marn streaming here.
Roy Marn (2011) synopsis: A lakorn involving a forced marriage that wasn’t meant to be. Bee’s cousin should have married Mark but the day before the wedding, her cousin was kidnapped by a guy who had loved her for years. He kidnapped her, assaulted her, got her pregnant, and thus everything changed. The young and bratty Bee had to take the place of her cousin because it was a marriage to erase a debt. Her uncle owed money to Mark and his father. Since he can’t use his daughter, he’ll use his niece instead.
Part 1 is here, where I made an improbable drama match between Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms and Manee Yard Fah. Now, we’re continuing to pick one lakorn that can be compared to a drama from another country based on similarities in premise. Enjoy!
The 2008 Taiwanese drama, You’re My Destiny (2008) was a smash hit, spawning Korean and Thailand remakes. The plot of the story, about a couple who have an unplanned one night stand that results in a pregnancy, is very similar to Thailand’s Oum Ruk. One big difference? The heroine of You’re My Destiny is a weakling, though she does improve throughout the drama. If you want to watch a drama with a stronger heroine and hero, but also has a surprise pregnancy, look no further than Oum Ruk.
Oum Ruk (2006) synopsis: Napat is a beautiful, but head-strong young lady. Against her father’s wishes to come and live with him in the States, Napat decides to stay back in Thailand and earn her way through modeling.
During Napat’s first magazine photo-shoot, she meets a fast-mouthed photographer, Chen, who predicts she will never be famous in the industry. However, despite Chen’s “prediction”, Napat turns out to be a huge success, with everyone in the business wanting to work with her.
Napat’s lucky streak comes to a halt when she bumped into Chen for the second time, while at a beach-side anniversary party for a famous magazine. Due to a drinking competition during the party, both Chen and Napat get badly drunk and end up in bed together. It isn’t long before Napat realizes that she is pregnant. However, rumor has it that Chen is currently dating Jasmin, one of Napat’s biggest rivals in the modeling industry.
2. Oum Ruk (2006) – Anne Thongprasom and Ken Theeradeth are the leading couple in this romantic comedy, and Anne as Napat is a smart and stubborn young woman who has her own ideas. Ken as Chen, meanwhile, really matures and becomes the perfect dad. You can watch it here. Download it here with English subs.
I’ve labeled this blog Lakorn View because I wanted to talk about more than lakorns here. And for the drama matchup this week, I’m focusing on marriage, but will also be comparing lakorns to other dramas with similar plots or stories.
2018 was a breakthrough year for me in terms of Chinese historical dramas. For the very first time, I watched one, Lost Love in Times and enjoyed it so much, I went on to find my next fix, which turned out to be the highly touted Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms (TMPB for short). I loved the epic romance, the wonderful characters, the tragedy and the depth of the romance. Their love story seemed bigger and larger than the drama itself, iconic.
What makes a love story epic in nature though? This is just my thinking, but I think of epic love stories as ones that have characters that are perfect for each other, have their own distinct moments that stand out, a story rich in conflict, and that they come together after having experienced hardships, tragedy or something else that prevents them from coming together. TMPB definitely fits. But what lakorn could compare?
Manee Yard Fah (2000) synopsis: Princess Areeya was kidnapped, and managing to escape her captors, made it to a small island where she met a solider who helped her with the bad guys. The princess and the solider fought with each other constantly as she was spoiled and used to getting her way, and he laughed at her when she said she was a princess. But still, somehow, for some reason, each night, they fell asleep in each other’s arms. After making it off the island, the Princess found she had to go undercover as the solider’s wife to keep safe.
1. Manee Yard Fah (2000) Anne Thongprasom is wonderful here as the princess and Willie McIntosh is believable as the solider who must marry her. Manee Yard Fah has the same epic feel of TMPB because the princess has another life to get back to, and she must do her duty to her kingdom. There are valid reasons why they can’t be together, and the lakorn is full of intimate moments where they create their own love story. Watch below how they set up their story, based on a tale of a crane and a farmer.
And because it is their story, they refer back to it again. There are kisses and a parting. TMPB is better overall in terms of plotting, better characters, some gorgeous scenery, while Manee Yard Fah had some unfunny comedy bits and problems with pacing in the middle, so it’s not perfect. But the love story, the love story is near perfection. You can watch it here or download it here.
Kao Waan Hai Noo Pen Sai Lub (2019) sounds like a winner! Fake marriage, spies, cohabitation, bickering (if you like that) all coming on November 8, 2019 to Channel 3.
Synopsis: Suam, a girl who grew up in a slum, has to become a spy for the police to help Tuan, a deputy commander, who’s also disguised to spy into Mr. Ha. Suam started to have a crush on Danurut, a good cop, as soon as she saw him because of his handsome looks. They met when Suam took a guy who she thought was going to rape her to the police station. Danurut’s uncle is part of Mr. Ha’s gang. Danurut gets involved with her again when he misunderstands that she’s his uncle’s mistress, then he hires her as his fake wife to avoid Suchada, Mr. Ha’s daughter and his ex. Tuan thinks this is a good chance for her to spy on Danurut, to find out whether he’s involved with Mr. Ha or not. Suam accepts it. Suam and Danurut fight all the time. She moves into his house because he needs her to do anything he orders, meanwhile she must spy into Danurut. (Source: MyDramaList)
I’m familiar with Great Warintorn, but female nang’ek Kao Supassara is new to me. Still, the synopsis is interesting and I love the marriage genre, even fake marriages. This is on neko’s list to sub, so glad this will be English subbed!
Sina, a professional stunt-woman, returns from America to find her identical twin sister, Siriya, a mother of a child from her already married lover Pipop and disabled from her waist below after a mysterious shooting attack. After Pipop’s sudden death, her twin sister finds herself the owner of a large part of Pipop’s wealth. However, Pipop’s will states that in order for all of the members of the household to inherit their share of the wealth, her sister Siriya must marry his younger brother, Athirat at least for a year. If not, Pipop’s entire wealth will be turned donated as charity.
On a mission to find the person who made her twin sister disabled and keeps attacking her twin sister and with the help of the Sutharak’s family lawyer, Kritt, Sina disguises herself as Siriya and moves into the Sutharak’s house with her 2-year-old nephew, Kaosauy and her personal manager, Nuan. Under the disguise of her twin, she also decides to marry Athirat who is extremely suspicious of her from the beginning. Then begins a race to catching who the real villain is. Before they catch her instead. (Source: Soju at MyDramaList) .