Well, Ku Kaen San Rak (2021) looks to be a lot of fun. This remake of a 2011 lakorn that starred Aum and Chakrit has the English title of ‘My Beloved Enemy.’ The lakorn airs February 21, 2021 on Channel 7. Main couple this time is played by Mookda Narinrak and Micheal Pattaradet, whostarred together in 2019’sSuparburoot Jorm Jon: Maturot Lohgan and most people loved them in that so it’s no wonder they look so natural together. No word yet on if this will be English subbed, but we do have lots of Mookda fans out there so hopefully someone comes through.
Synopsis: Songkran is a real estate mogul a total womanizer with a son named Pe. But he didn’t start out like this, though. Pe’s mother left him when he was young to be with another man. Kran was heartbroken and began treating women like toys and gained the nickname ‘Invincible Casanova’ along with his best friend Sia Ou who runs a modelling agency. Ingdao and her family own a large orange farm. She’s the type that takes no crap from anyone. Thanks to her huge mole and unkempt appearance she is often viewed as ugly. Nevertheless, she has a boyfriend named Nu, a dashing and mild-mannered teacher from the same town. Songkran and his father have been eyeing a piece of land that Ingdao’s father, Saeng, currently owns. It was given to him by his late wife so he cherishes it very much.
One day, Ingjun, Ingdao’s little sister who had been studying in Bangkok, finally gets sick of all the odd jobs she has and decides to apply for a job at Songkran’s company along with her friend, Marin. Both Ingjun and Marin are accepted as accountants. Songkran made connections between Saeng and Ingjun and came up with a plan on how to get his hands on that piece of land. Songkran begins to woo Ingjun and she falls for him hard and fast. His family is even in on the plan, acting all loving when she visits their home. Soon, she willingly signs over the rights to that piece of land her father had given to her. She was able to come to this decision because of her rocky relationships with her own father. After Songkran obtains proper documents, he leaves her. Ingjun was devastated.
Furious, Ingdao wants to take revenge for her younger sister who tried to commit suicide along with getting their land back. But knowing that Songkran will never fall for her in her current state, she is helped by her best friend Moddaeng and transformed into a gorgeous woman named Daopradub.
So I guess I took a week off the blog, (I actually had posts scheduled in advance cuz I knew I’d be busy this week, but it turned out I had the wrong dates scheduled, 😅 OOPS.). I did manage to watch the six episodes out of So Wayree (2020), and oh boy, where to begin? The very first episode is soo problematic, I continued watching hoping there was a twist or something that would redeem the show. Was there? Eh, not really. MASSIVE SPOILERS for first 6 episodes ofSo Wayree (2020) ahead. And yes, I will be talking about rape, so trigger warning for those who may be troubled by it.
Myth: Rape and sexual assault are about sexual attraction and gratification.
Fact: Rape and sexual assault are all about control and domination.
Synopsis: Two hotel moguls, once family friends since the grandparents generation now sworn enemies, are fighting over who will reign supreme. Prinoot never thought that he would be part of the hatred. Although his father is the son in law of Sirimontra, his mom was only a mistress who was abandoned in America. Growing up he never knew what having a father was like. Pramida is the only heiress to the famous Emporium real estate mogul. She was pulled into this warring game after being drugged and sent to Prinoot as ransom. 4 years later, she came back with a set of twins but she told everyone that those were her siblings. Prinoot and Pramida meet again but standing on opposite sides of the line as sworn enemies. Although they have the twins, not as chains of love but chains of enemies that tied them together unwillingly. (Source: asianfuse.net)
Summary of Episodes 1-6
Myth: Rape happens only to “certain” types of women.
Fact: Any person of any gender, age, race, class, religion, occupation, physical ability, sexual identity, or appearance can be raped. The perpetrator does not choose the victim because they are young, pretty, or provocatively dressed; the perpetrator chooses the victim who is vulnerable.
So let’s begin with the story in episode 1. We see the heroine Mitra (played by Mookda Narinrak) is having a graduation party with her close friends, they’re taking pictures and I guess later they go to a bar in her father’s hotel where they drink nonalcoholic drinks. Meanwhile, it seems like the “hero” Parin (Kem Hussawee) is watching her from afar. One of Mitra’s so-called friends, Naphasiri, drugs Mitra’s drink and then we see Mitra being carried/dragged by Naphasiri (Kochakorn Songsangterm) to a hotel room, and Parin takes over. There is also money exchanged and words between Naphasiri and Parin. There are some bed scenes and Mitra wakes up with Parin next to her and she has no idea what happened. She leaves as quickly as possible and goes away to cry. So basically what happened was Parin paid Naphasiri as a pimp for Mitra’s services, never mind the fact that it’s obvious Mitra is drunk and has no clue what is happening. This is rape by any definition. I hoped I was wrong about this interpretation of what happened, but so far, nope, I’m not.
And in the next episodes, we see Mitra going overseas to live with her aunt, learning she is pregnant, having twins and putting them up for adoption, only to change her mind and have her aunt adopt them. She comes back to Thailand to help her dad run his company, which is in direct competition with Parin’s dad’s company. There she meets Parin again, and he chases after her, she tries to play him and keep him from finding out her secrets, while gathering admirers, and enemies.
Myth: If you wouldn’t have been drinking, you wouldn’t have been sexually assaulted.
Fact: Alcohol is a weapon that some perpetrators use to control their victim and render them helpless. As part of their plan, a perpetrator may encourage the victim to use alcohol, or identify an individual who is already incapacitated. Alcohol is not a cause of rape; it is only one of many tools that perpetrators use.
We also learn a lot about Parin in six episodes. Apparently, according to his friend, he has a reputation with the ladies. Parin thinks he’s in love with Mitra, whose name I’m not even sure he knows until a couple of episodes in, spends years pining over his lost love, 🙄 without any sort of realization apparently that what he did was rape her. So he is pleased when he sees her again, she not so much. Parin attempts to rationalize what he did by saying that she was asking for it, that he thought she was for sale and well she put herself in a position to be drunk and therefore whatever happened to her, happened. In the later episodes 5 and 6, we see Parin seem to realize that he was mistaken about her, she is a good person, not a slut like he thought and she wasn’t a drunk whore slept with anyone for money like her friend said. He starts to try to help her behind the scenes in episode 6, so on.
Rape in So Wayree
There are sooo many problems with this lakorn, I don’t even know where to begin.
Myth: Women shouldn’t go out alone at night as they are likely to get raped.
Fact: Only one in 10 of rapes are committed by ‘strangers’.
Being careless/making a mistake doesn’t excuse rape. First, there was a moment in the drama where Mitra’s father learns what happened and he says to Mitra, you were guilty because you were careless and Parin says something similar, that she put herself in a situation like that by being drunk. 🥵There’s so much wrong with that. Nobody can be careful all the time, we’re human, we’re going to make mistakes. So if by his metric, we happened to have a car break down in a bad neighborhood, or we overslept and got to work late and we had to stay late because of that and something happened to us, we were raped or hurt, that’s our fault? Those things happened to me, fortunately I was safe, but I guess I shouldn’t be since I wasn’t being careful enough. NOBODY is capable of being careful, proactive or mistake free 100% or even more than 60% of the time I would say. We’re only human. We’re not robots.
Not being a virgin doesn’t excuse rape. Parin is told by Naphasiri that Mitra has slept with lots of guys and I guess that gave him the green light to rape because he says or implies numerous times that he thought she is/was a slut (even though there was blood on the bed after the rape). Regardless, whether she or anyone is a virgin or not doesn’t and shouldn’t give anyone leeway to rape them. Lakorns are notorious for this really. Often times, we see the ‘bad girls’ in lakorns, like in Marn Bang Jai being raped and she is never saved by anyone. Many lakorns have the good virginal girl, the nang’ek in situations where there’s an attempted rape and she’s usually saved by the hero (aka Prom Pissawat). The main exception to this is if the hero tries and/or rapes the heroine himself (no saving nang’ek from that!) and most slap and kiss lakorns are like that, with the rape mostly resulting in a romantic relationship and a happy ending. (And yeah, that’s a whole another discussion I don’t have space to write about now).
Being drunk (or not) doesn’t excuse rape. Uh, do I even need to explain this? In fact, I would say being drunk means you can’t really give consent, so having sex with someone who’s drunk is a no-no. Mitra doesn’t know what happened, the lakorn makes it plain she and her friends were not drinking (though even if they were, that still wouldn’t excuse raping her), and her friend drugged her, but so far only the friend knows this and most assumed she was drunk, including Parin.
Personal responsibility – a double standard. This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t use our brains that God gave us to protect ourselves, that’s just common sense of course. Yes, we should be careful where we are and what we do and educate ourselves, but this same argument is NEVER used for the rapist. Parin never seems to think about his own responsibility to like not rape someone, to make sure they are consenting to sex and oh, maybe actually use his brain at times. Instead, he and others rationalize their behavior so much it’s ridiculous. Parin’s father hears about the incident and basically claps him on the back and says good job, that Parin won’t be hurt at all from people knowing he is promiscuous. So Mitra should have been careful, but Parin did a good job, according to the views in this lakorn.
I want to make it clear that these views or myths about rape are widespread in every country to some degree and in many dramas besides lakorns (Koreans had to deal with a number of real life rape issues regarding a number of popular actors like Kang Ji Hwan recently), so this isn’t just a Thailand/lakorn problem, it’s much, much more pervasive than that. But this is a blog mostly based on lakorns, and So Wayree is a currently airing lakorn that features rape, so it seems like the ideal time to tackle this subject.
The lakorn tries to redeem Parin, he’s a great son, good at his job, likes kids, but all I can think is the dude paid someone to have sex, a drunk person at that. This doesn’t seem like my idea of a good person, or even a bad person. That seems pure evil. And yet, I liked Kawee and Sawan Biang (2008), so why does this bother me more? I’m not sure, maybe because it’s the first picture we get of Parin as a rapist. Or, quite frankly, while both Kem and Mookda are okay actors, neither of them are on the same level as Ken or Ann in Sawan Biang. Maybe also most rapes in lakorns are framed as being impulsive, spur of the moment fits of anger/jealousy or both and that’s what makes this cold blooded rape seem especially heinous.
Regardless, this lakorn really leaves me with a very bad taste in my mouth. There are some things to like here, kids are cute, Parin’s half brother Chanathip might be a lazy spoiled rich kid, but he’s also treats his girlfriend with respect, is horrified by Parin’s treatment of Mitra and seems an overall nice guy. And Mitra seems like she may become a stronger person or at least she’s trying to become one. I also like how Parin’s friend Gun tells him some home truths about his behavior.
But this lakorn embraces and justifies the many rape tropes and myths out there without trying to challenge them in any way. There’s these underlying assumptions that we’re supposed to be okay with and that’s not right. I really don’t know if I can keep watching it, as it doesn’t seem likely to change, but I see a number of people raving about this lakorn, so maybe I will watch more to write more about this lakorn. It is not okay.
Marn Bang Jai (2020) has been on my radar for awhile (I talked about it here in January), but they’ve finally completed editing and now it is coming out. It airs May 28 and stars my favorite actor Weir Sukollawat and Mookda Narinrak. This is a Channel 7 lakorn and should be English subbed by neko.
Synopsis: Fuenglada studies at a boarding school and her father lives with his new wife Soithong and step daughter Soisoun. One day on the way to see Fuenglada, her father had an accident with Taen’s car and passes away. Taen is a rich widower with two children and lives with his brother Tai. On knowing that Soithong is trying to sell Fuenglada to an old chinese man, he offers to marry her himself and thus begins their marriage life. Path to a peaceful love is not easy with Tai being suspicious of Fuenglada’s family and Soithong trying to make Soun closer to Taen.
Marn Bang Jai (2020) has one of my favorite plots, a marriage of convenience, plus we have a cute kid. This is a remake of the 2000 Marn Bang Jai (2000) starring Kob Suvanant (which you can watch on youtube by the way, without subs if you’re interested). Ah, they look like a cute couple!
I’ve written about Girl Next Room (2020) before. At the time, I thought that this was one lakorn featuring multiple couples, but this is actually a 4 part series, similar to the U-Prince series. The 2nd part of the series, Girl Next Room: Midnight Fantasy (2020) will be airing April 19. Hopefully, this will be subbed by GMMTV. Thank you ❤!
Series Synopsis: Four girls named Duchess, Sundae, Mimi and View Viva live in a dormitory that is owned by Mrs Jam and her son Sky. One strict rule is that no boys are allowed in the dormitory. However, four love stories happen inside this dorm. Sundae is torn between her ex-boyfriend and a new potential love, who will she choose? Mimi gets scared easily and DJ Titan, a presenter on the radio comforts her. She develops a crush on him. Her friend Tan speaks against DJ Titan. However, Tan is DJ Titan. Why does he hide it? Duchess loves buying anything she wants. However, her friend knows her past and that she was a poor girl. He threatens her to give him money in exchange that he would not tell anyone her true origin. What will happen next? View Viva is a famous superstar. One of her fan tried to kiss her, but a security guard helped her. She falls in love with him. However, if people find out that she loves a security guard, her career will end. What will she do next? (Source: Based on the trailer found on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UNoo43883cM)
Girl Next Room: Motorbike Baby (2020) aired March 1 – April 5. Synopsis: Sundae lives in a dormitory that is owned by Mrs. Jam and her son Sky. One strict rule is that no boys are allowed in the dormitory. However, Sundae is torn between her ex-boyfriend and new potential love, who will she choose? (Source: Based on the trailer)
Massaya (2017) is on my list of want to watch lakorns as I’ve heard many good things about the story and characters. It seems like one of those sweet, coming of age romantic dramas. This week, I’ll be talking about various things, including the coronavirus. The coronavirus has not only been deadly, but has disrupted a lot of lives and businesses. I’m going to be talking about it in regards to Thailand in another post. For now, enjoy!
Massaya’s father is kicked out (along with his wife and child) of the Rattanamahasarn family for marrying her mother, who’s believed to be a “low class” Malay woman. Both parents have passed away early she was brought up by her maternal grandfather. Years later. Massaya grows up as a free spirited, boyish and a little crude woman.
Head of Rattanamahasarn family (Massaya’s grandmother) feeling sad and guilty about the past, orders her grandson Lak to bring back Massaya. Massaya after coming back to Rattanamahasarn family feels like an outcast with overbearing rules, etiquette and a family who looks down on her. She can only feel comfortable with Lak; while she constantly faces bullying from her cousins and their mother
Yep, Marn Bang Jai (2020) is another remake in lakornland of a 2000 lakorn with the same name. We have a new pairing here, Weir Sukollawat and Mookda Narinrak. This is a Channel 7 lakorn and should be English subbed.
Fuenglada studies at a boarding school and her father lives with his new wife Soithong and step daughter Soisoun. One day on the way to see Fuenglada, her father had an accident with Taen’s car and passes away. Taen is a rich widower with two children and lives with his brother Tai. On knowing that Soithong is trying to sell Fuenglada to an old chinese man, he offers to marry her himself and thus begins their marriage life. Path to a peaceful love is not easy with Tai being suspicious of Fuenglada’s family and Soithong trying to make Soun closer to Taen.
Marn Bang Jai (2020) stars Mookda Narinrak and Weir Sukollawat in an older man, younger woman relationship. There is an eleven year age gap between the pair, but they look good together and both seem to be the appropriate ages according to the plot, Weir is a widower in the lakorn and Mookda is in school. This also features one of my favorite plots, a marriage of convenience, so I’m waiting impatiently for it to air.