First Impression/Recap: Trab Fah Mee Tawan EP01

So I’ve pretty much watched everything on my watching list (and more) and will be making a post about my reactions to those dramas soon. But I wanted to make a separate post on Trab Fah Mee Tawan, now known as My Forever Sunshine (2020) because it’s good. Really good. Production wise, directing, writing, acting, this is a grand slam. It’s the only lakorn I’ve watched so far this year that I’ve felt that way about. By the way, I have started posting on instagram as I watch, I might try twitter and/or facebook as well, but my instagram is here, so you can follow along as I watch.

Synopsis: The story about Paeng, a girl with a tragic life. After losing her father, she has to go live at Artit’s house. The only way for her to be able to stay at this house is to be with him. But no one expected that her approaching Artit nearly costs him his life. He ends up hating her to the bones and she is exiled far from home for four years until the day they come across each other again. One might think that time will lessen hate, but not for Artit. Not only he still hates her, but he also hates her even more than before. But in order to keep her final promise to Artit’s father, she must endure it! (Source: VIU)

I’ve watched the only episode out so far, and the airing schedule is really wacko.

I have a feeling this has to do with it being on Viu tv and Tencent, not to mention WeTv. So lots of places for fans to watch. You can watch this on Muse as well.

Our first episode starts with Artit, the pra’ek showing off his soccer skills at a match, then eating with his friends as he moons over the girl of the group, Ling. Next we see our nang’ek Paeng/Fahmai who is getting bullied by other girls, but Artit steps in and helps her. Paeng tries to hid her injuries from her dad, but he seems to know what’s up anyway. Then mom comes home and we get this great shot of a close, happy family in a group hug.

Paeng’s happy family

That happy family? Immediately, immediately undercut a few scenes from now. Paeng comes to eat and learns her mom isn’t there. And she goes off. She goes to a club with her maid and pretends to drink and poses with guys, all to get her mom’s attention. Artit is asked to go after her by her parent and does so, getting in a fight with some guys which lands them at the police station.

At school the next day, Paeng is about to skip school, but is stopped by Artit who tells her he knows what she is doing and asks her if it’s working? He tells her to try being good instead and she takes his words to heart, only to come home to an empty house and she eats all alone.

Meanwhile, we see Artit being greeted by the staff and his parents with warmth and sitting down to eat with them.

What are you doing playing around instead of working? Lah gag. As in this scene made me want to gag.

Later, he goes on a bike ride and passes his servant who’s playing and has the nerve to try to dictate to them how they should spend their FREE TIME and then plays soccer with them. Not sure of the purpose of the scene except to make him out to be a total prick. Writer? Could you elaborate?

That scene was completely typical and awful. But regardless, he redeems himself soon anyway. His father has been fooled by his new business partner and it looks like the family has lost their farm. This lands his father in the hospital. Artit stands up against the lawyer who comes to their farm with hired guns who came to their farm and then Paeng and her father shows up.

Turns out Paeng’s father and Artit’s father are old friends, and Paeng and Artit knew each other when Paeng was just four and Artit was? Not sure how old, at least 8 or 10 or something. Paeng and Artit promise friendship with each other at the same time we see Paeng’s father helps Artit’s family to keep their farm by loaning them money.

Artit and his friends – Love Rival, Comic Sidekick, Ling, Artit

We also see more of Artit’s friends and their connections, don’t really want to go into it, suffice to say both Artit and his friend have a rivalry going on for the only female member, Ling, of their group, and there’s the usual comic sidekick too.

Paeng and her mom mend their fences, for like two seconds, lol.

Paeng and her dad had gone to the farm after Paeng got upset learning her mom went on vacation with friends without telling her first and Paeng and her mom reunite and mend ways after her mom apologizes and gives Paeng one of the matching bracelets she bought.

This doesn’t last long of course, as her mom reneges on a dinner promise she made with Paeng and Paeng goes to find her. Paeng does find her mom after asking around, but when they get in an argument, Paeng accuses her mom of not caring about her and runs away. Artit is tasked with finding her and does so, finding she’s safe and sound, if not a bit hungry. She doesn’t want to go home though, and Artit agrees.

At end, Artit finds Paeng, whom he briefly feared jumped after seeing her backpack on railing.

My thoughts: This is good. It’s been one episode, things can change, but this lakorn really surprised me with the strength of its acting, writing and directing. I loved how we see this picture of a big happy family that Paeng desperately wants, and that is immediately undercut as we see Paeng’s desperation to keep her mother close and how she tries to get her family together (in one scene, she orchestrates an elaborate date for her parents, telling them she wants a sibling.)

Paeng eating alone.

I also loved the way the director (I’m assuming it was a directing choice) chooses to layer scenes together and ties them together. For example, the picture of Paeng sitting alone is cut by scenes of Artit with his family. Then we have Paeng and Artit promising to be friends while we see their parents SHOWING their deep friendship to each other. The directing reinforces the previous scenes, giving both more weight. That’s what good directors do, give more underlying meaning to scenes.

And can I just say how much I appreciate Kao Supassara’s performance as a 15 year confused and vulnerable teen? She nails it! The deep yearning in Paeng for a real family, the desperation she feels when she thinks that family is slipping away from her. The relationship between Paeng and her mom makes me uneasy. I can’t tell if its because of the acting (and I’m not talking about Kao) or that their relationship is supposed to make me anxious, because it’s so unstable and fraught (on Paeng’s side) at least with emotion.

I also appreciate Mark’s performance here as well. It’s not just that his character is much more likeable than in My Husband in Law, his caring scenes with his father, his brotherly advice to Paeng and how he looks after her feel very nature and realistic. Maybe this has something to do with the directing as well.

I was unsure based on the synopsis, which seems to suggest Paeng tries to get Artit by seducing him, that I wanted to watch this because, yuck. That’s more a nang’rai’s action then the nang’ek. But now I totally understand and get it. Of course Paeng would do ANYTHING, ANYTHING to have the warmth and love of a family forever. We’ve seen how loving Artit’s family is and I can imagine Paeng wanting to hold on to that by any means necessary. Definitely will be watching more. In terms of recapping, this will have back to back to back episodes, so I don’t know about more recaps, that would be alot to do in a timely fashion. But who knows? We’ll see.

Credits: mydramalist.com, asianfuse.net, asianfuse.wiki

It’s Okay To Not Be Okay – Recap 4

This episode was pure love for me. I’ve taken a break from watching IOTNBO because I want to store up those episodes for a marathon. But I’ll get back to watching this weekend most likely. Relationships are the main thrust of this episode and we get to see more insights into various relationships in the drama. My recap of It’s Okay to Not Be Okay (2020) Chapter 4 – Zombie Kid begins now.

SPOILERS AHEAD!

Synopsis:

It’s Okay to Not Be Okay (2020): The story of a community health worker at a psychiatric ward who lives on 1.8 million won (approximately $1,520) a month and a storybook writer suffering from an antisocial personality disorder. A man who denies love and a woman who doesn’t know love defy fate and fall in love, finding their souls and identities in the process. Moon Kang Tae is a community health worker at a psychiatric ward who was blessed with everything including a great body, smarts, ability to sympathize with others, patience, ability to react quickly, stamina, and more. Meanwhile, Go Moon Young is a popular writer of children’s literature, but she is extremely selfish, arrogant, and rude. (Source: Soompi & Koreandrama.org)

Episode 4 Recap

Kang Tae asks her if he should have fun with her?

The episode starts right back where we left off in episode 3, with Gi Do making a scene at his father’s campaign rally and Moon Young and Kang Tae watching him. Then Kang Tae asked ‘Should I just have fun with you?’ But almost immediately Kang Tae backtracks when Moon Young presses him on it. There are ramifications to their actions and those are soon made apparent as the scandal hits the news and the hospital is affected as well.

Also Gi Do’s mom is upset at him and hits him. Gi Do is actually pleased by it as he says it made him realize how much his mom loves him. Kang Tae watched Gi Do with his mom and has a flashback to his own relationship with his mom. His mom hit him for going off alone and leaving his brother get beaten up. His mother asked him to always look after his brother and he agrees, but when she says that’s why I gave birth to you, we can tell he didn’t like that at all.

Kang Tae and Moon Young stop for some ramen. Notice the framing. They’re both very much separated.

Back in the present, Kang Tae decides to go with Moon Young even though he didn’t have to, since Joo Ri is there too. Kang Tae and Moon Young talk as they ride back to the hospital and she tells him to tell him when he wants to run away and she’ll kidnap him. There’s a beautiful scene with cherry blossoms floating down, but Moon Young hates them and says she likes flowers like a magnolia that falls down all at once instead of petal by petal. Hmm, wonder what significance this scene has?

But then we see them in the same shot, but now they’re blurred by rain. A foreshadowing?

Kang Tae and Moon Young stop to have ramen and then Kang Tae gets a call from Moon Young’s CEO Sang In who warns him about her, saying Moon Young will eat him alive. Then Kang Tae learns that her book Zombie Kid has been banned from being sold and he relates the news to Moon Young. Moon Young tells him it’s not because of the event with his brother, but the story and pictures are considered too gross for kids and scoffs at that. Moon Young tells Kang Tae that he’s like a kid cuz she can tell that he wants to be loved.

Moon Young doesn’t understand why Kang Tae is upset and tries to manipulate him by saying she loves him, Kang Tae keeps walking.

On the road again, Kang Tae asked her why she doesn’t take her father up for walks. She just says it’s a waste of time, that it’s better if he died and Kang Tae starts to get really pissed off at her attitude. The more they talk, the more upset he gets at her until he finally says he forgot for a moment what she’s really like. He asks her to stop the car and he gets out and she runs after him and asks why he’s upset? But he just keeps walking, so she pulls out the big guns. With a slight smile on her face, she calls after him ‘I love you.’ He stops for a moment, but then continues to walk away, and she continues to yell after him more desperately. Kang Tae then meets up with his brother and asks him about school, but all he says is it was really boring. So is Sang Tae really going to school or not? Because I thought he was working at the pizza place instead or is he just lying to Kang Tae?

Meanwhile, Moon Young has arrived home to find her CEO Sang In is there waiting for her. There is a scene of her as a young girl with her mother brushing her hair, telling Moon Young she’s very special. She tells her that she’s her greatest creation. More nightmare images of a dead body and blood seeping from beneath a door. And then we see Moon Young sitting before her mirror as an adult, brushing her long hair.

Sang In meets Joo Ri at the pizza place and they both separately complain about Moon Young.

Sang In goes to get pizza at what is apparently the only pizza place in town, the one owned? by Kang Tae’s friend Jae Soo. Joo Ri comes in and Sang In is dazzled by her and tries to get her to join him, but she refuses and they both sit and drink, grousing about the person they’re both upset at: Moon Young, at their separate tables. The assembly man, Gi Do’s father, arrives at the hospital to complain about what happened with his son Gi Do and like always, Kang Tae takes the fall for it and he gets blamed and slapped by the assembly man.

Moon Young has come to the hospital as well and there’s cuteness abound as she finally meets Sang Tae face to face, and then she meets up with Kang Tae and tells Kang Tae tells him she’s here to take her father for a walk because he wanted her to basically. Kang Tae has been suspended and he is upset, even yelling at his brother for the first time (first time that we see at least). Moon Young gets riled up to see that someone slapped them and she’s all ready to make some noise, but he asked her why is she upset? He is really biting to her, asking her do you even know what kind of emotion you have? And he tells her she’s empty inside, and just loud. He tells her stop acting like she understands him and to stop being delusional.

Moon Young goes to take her father on a walk and wonders if his memories are really lost or if he’s just pretending? She whispers in his ear, ‘Did you really forget what type of person I am?’ Her dad puts out a hand and says ‘die,’ starts calling her ‘monster’ and chokes her. The hospital staff manages to get him off her and Moon Young just lays there laughing, but with a tear rolling down her cheek. In a zombie state, she starts walking. And we hear someone say who was watching her, ‘Serves you right, you don’t belong here, you shouldn’t have come here.’ Interesting. We don’t see the person, just a voice over, but it sounds like a woman.

On the bus ride home, Kang Tae sees Moon Young walking by, but doesn’t do anything and goes home. He does chores at home and empties his brother’s backpack which has the book Zombie Kid in it since his brother is still hiding out in the kitchen (because Kang Tae yelled at him) so someone else will take him home later. Kang Tae reads the story of Zombie Kid about a baby boy who was born into a small village and was a very unusual baby, all he did was eat. His mother found out he had no feelings at all and the only thing he wanted to do is eat and so he ate and ate. His mother locked him up in the basement so the villagers wouldn’t see him and she raised him in secret. Years went by, and then an epidemic happened and it killed off the animals and some people and her son was hungry and so the mother started chopping off her limbs and feeding them to him. When she was left with only her torso, she hugs him close to her for the last time and the zombie kid speaks for the first time and says ‘mom, you’re so warm.’ and we start to see a flashback of young Kang Tae with his mother and how he clung to her as she slept.

Kang Tae bursts into tears.

Kang Tae bursts out crying, while Moon Young pauses and thinks of her own parents and and asks the question, what did the boy really want, to satisfy his hunger or his mother’s warm embrace?

His friend Jae Soo comes home cuz he heard about Kang Tae being suspended from work and tells him about how Moon Young had been choked by her father and Kang Tae thinks back to how he saw her walking down the road and he goes after her on Jae Soo’s motorbike. It’s raining, pouring outside now and Kang Tae finally finds her still walking in the rain, comes to her, takes off his jacket and puts it around her.

My Take:

Like with any episode, there is a lot going on here, a lot of unsolved mysteries and intriguing moments and it would take time I don’t have to go into all of it (plus there are other recaps out there which I don’t read so forgive me if I’m going over the same territory), so I’ll just focus on one thing: relationships.

Zombie kid with his mother

I’m an adult now, but as a teenager growing up, I remember so many incidents where I felt my parents were being unfair to me, where I thought my mom loved my siblings more then me and so on. It took years as a grown up for me to look back on it all and realize that I’m very lucky in my parents, they may have been unfair at times, may have yelled or shouted, but they love me and did their best. We see Kang Tae going through the same realization now, and he’s beginning to realize that all the angst he’s carried that made him what he is today, made him feel that his only role was to take care of his brother, was probably based on an incomplete understanding of his mother and their life together. People aren’t perfect, they mess up, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t love you or care about you, they just have their own hang ups too.

Compare Kang Tae’s memories with his mother to Moon Young’s.

But if we contrast Kang Tae’s relationship to his mother to Moon Young and her parents, his relationship looks so much more normal and less dysfunctional as opposed to hers that it’s like night and day. Moon Young’s mother seems to have had almost an obsession with her, wanting to keep her to herself and away from anyone else. And the father? Oh, don’t get me started. Moon Young’s father mumbles stuff about Moon Young being a monster, yet he’s the one who’s choking her, trying to kill her.

A young Moon Young with her mother, whose face we never see. Why? Is it… someone we know?

The last thing I wanted to point out is the moment where Moon Young is sitting for a moment after her big blowup with first Kang Tae and then her choking incident with her father and as she sits, an ant comes crawling up to her. Moon Young blocks the ant from crawling on her with her shoe, not once, but twice, not killing it even though had it been me or most people, I would have done so in a flash. (Hey, I step over ants too at times, and try to avoid unnecessary killing of them, I’m not pscyho, I’m okay.)

How does this square with the girl who rips butterflies in half though? It would be easier in that instant for Moon Young to just crush the ant with her shoe, yet she doesn’t. It’s true that we all (or most of us) have our moments of compassion and mercy, but this and what Moon Young’s father says about her, doesn’t seem to add up to the picture of Moon Young as a heartless monster. And it seems that Kang Tae, and us as the audience, are realizing that more and more as the drama goes on.

Credits: mydramalist.com, asianfuse.net, asianfuse.wiki

It’s Okay To Not Be Okay – Recap 3

Our quest through fairyland continues with a cursed castle, ghosts and even, a Sleeping Beauty (or two)! Along the way, we get further insights into our main characters Moon Young and Kang Tae. My recap of It’s Okay to Not Be Okay (2020) Chapter 3 Sleeping Witch begins now.

SPOILERS AHEAD!

Synopsis:

It’s Okay to Not Be Okay (2020): The story of a community health worker at a psychiatric ward who lives on 1.8 million won (approximately $1,520) a month and a storybook writer suffering from an antisocial personality disorder. A man who denies love and a woman who doesn’t know love defy fate and fall in love, finding their souls and identities in the process. Moon Kang Tae is a community health worker at a psychiatric ward who was blessed with everything including a great body, smarts, ability to sympathize with others, patience, ability to react quickly, stamina, and more. Meanwhile, Go Moon Young is a popular writer of children’s literature, but she is extremely selfish, arrogant, and rude. (Source: Soompi & Koreandrama.org)

Episode 2 Recap

In the hospital we learn was built where a cemetery used to be (Poltergiest anyone?), Moon Young meets Kang Tae again, whom she calls her red shoes. So they speak and Kang Tae basically tells her he doesn’t want her there, and she tells him that she’s surprised by the way he grew up, how he evolved to which he replies, does she know him? She tells him that when she wants something pretty, she takes it, steals it and otherwise make sure she gets it.

Director Oh Ji Wang of Ok Psychiatric Hospital

Then Moon Young goes to see the director of the hospital about her father and she seems completely uninterested in what he says, as the doctor/director tells her her father seems to have a brain tumor, his memory is messed up, and he keeps saying things that makes no sense. Moon Young just says maybe he (her father) is possessed and she should get an exorcist? But the Director Oh wants Moon Young to conduct a class at the hospital.

Afterwards, Moon Young hunts down her prey, Kang Tae and tries to touch his chest while he’s changing his uniform, and Joo Ri sees them. She wants to know how Moon Young knows Kang Tae? We see bits of their meetings as Moon Young says she’s doesn’t how to describe their relationship.

Moon Young is stopped by the deer.

Later when Kang Tae is getting off work, Moon Young tries to get him to leave with her but he refuses. So she is driving up a mountain side by herself in the dark, when she thinks she sees something and almost has an accident. But there is just a deer in front of her and they yell at each other basically in a bizarro scene, lol.

Meanwhile Kang Tae is having dinner with his friends as Moon Young arrives at a decrepit looking house or mansion. We also see her CEO Sang In discussing the ‘Cursed Castle’ as he calls Moon Young’s house with his assistant Seung Jae and she wonders why Moon Young never got rid of it, but he says it’s not sell-able. The assistant wonders why she went there, but he says it because she told Moon Young that Kang Tae was there. We see Moon Young going to her spooky room and lying in the bed and it’s very macabre while at the same time we see Kang Tae and friends having a nice dinner together, a little matchmaking going on cuz Joo Ri’s mom likes Kang Tae, but very nice and normal. A great little moment of compare and contrast going on here.

A mysterious greeting by? Who knows?

There, with Moon Young lying in her bed, amidst the dust, cobwebs and ghosts? (a ‘Welcome’ is written by someone, something? on a window), we get a story of a Sleeping Princess. It is the story of Sleeping Beauty, which you can read more about at the link. The main theme of the story seems to be you can’t escape your destiny and there appears to be a ghost over the body of Moon Young and she just lies there shaking and trembling and the ghost says ‘I will kill that Prince’. It’s unclear how much of this is real, how much is a dream.

A young Moon Young hears “Save Me” in her dreams?

But we next see Moon Young as a little girl, standing, looking into the water and we hear the words ‘Save me’ being repeated over and over again.

Moon Young wakes up and she’s terrified and she thinks of Kang Tae and she imagines that he’s there. We see herself soothing herself, using the butterfly hug technique Kang Tae taught her.

The next morning, a new guest has appeared at the hospital, Gi Do, the son of an assembly man. Moon Young is speaking with her CEO about how to manage her PR. Meanwhile, Gi Do strips for the camera in his hospital room. Apparently he has manic episodes and the staff talk about them. Gi Do talks about what happened to him and we see his story playing out onscreen as if he’s actually there going to a club where he tells everyone he’ll pay, only to find his dad reported his credit cards as being missing and so he’s running away, being chased by the people from the club. Good example of showing a story, not just telling it.

A fairy tale is a cruel fantasy that illustrates the brutality and violence of this world in a paradoxical manner.

Moon Young

We next see where others are working. It turns out that Sang Tae is working at a pizza place with Jae Soo, drawing pictures for people as a promotion for the place unbeknownst to Kang Tae who thinks he’s elsewhere. We get to see Moon Young at her job too, teaching a class on fairy tales, and it goes about as well as can be expected, as she in turn enthralls, alienates and shocks the class. She waits for Kang Tae after class, wants to get him to admit to being unsatisfied and tells him she had a dream about him, again bringing up their sexual chemistry. She tells him if he wants to have fun, have fun and calls him a hypocrite. She sees him so well, that he might pretend to be above the fray, his only desire is to be the perfect little brother, but the reality is far from that. More on that later.

As she’s leaving, Moon Young walks past her father in his wheelchair and we see flashbacks and he starts having an attack. Sang Tae is there and he sees her and follows her, but Kang Tae catches him and stops him from following Moon Young. Apparently he’s there to see the director so we see him diagnosing him.

Director Oh immediately goes into a spiel about the stegosaurus which captures Sang Tae’s attention and interest. Kang Tae asks if his brother mentioned anything about butterflies, but nope they got along fine and Sang Tae even gave him a gift. He tells Sang Tae he wants him to paint a mural on the wall for the hospital, but Sang Tae says he has to pay him. Later at home, Kang Tae wonders why Sang Tae needs money and it turns out Sang Tae wants to buy a camping van so they can always have a home when they move and of course Kang Tae is very touched by that 😀.

Moon Young meets Gi Do, who promptly flashes her, causing her to call him “Teenie Weenie.”

In the last part of the episode, we have Gi Do meeting Moon Young after he escapes from the hospital. He exposes himself to Moon Young, but she just derides him, calling him ‘Teenie Weenie’. She does help him escape by offering him a ride and they go on a wild car ride. Kang Tae hears about the escape and commences to chase them, even catching up to them at one point, but he lets his guard down and they get away.

Kang Tae stops Moon Young and Gi Do’s car, but lets his guard down.

They end up at a campaign event that Gi Do’s father is hosting and Gi Do takes over the microphone and starts talking about his dad and how he basically looks down on him cuz he’s stupid, so he says he did a lot of things to try to get his dad’s attention. Moon Young and Kang Tae watch as he tries to evade the people after him to prevent him from speaking, laughing and whirling around.

Kang Tae watches Gi Do speak at his father’s campaign rally.

And Kang Tae is looking at him like, yes that’s me, I’m that free and we see an image of Kang Tae in place of Gi Do, as if he’s the one dancing around invading his captors, as if he’s the one… that’s free. Very powerful moment, and so telling as we see Kang Tae turn to Moon Young and ask, ‘Should I just have fun with you?’

Kang Tae asks her if he should have fun with her?

The episode ends with the story Gi Do told of him going to the club, running from people and getting in trouble, only this time, the setting is in the hospital as he really told the tale and we don’t see the club, the dancing, the chasing. It’s as if that was how Kang Tae saw it, like he was transported to that world through Gi Do’s story.

Everyone watches Gi Do as he enacts his story.

My Take:

There are so many little things that make the characters’ in here great, like the impressive acting by the main leads, but also small character moments, like how Moon Young drags her umbrella on the pavement, holds her fingers out like scissors to have a paper placed in them. Lots of little character details like that really make the character, but I can’t really say if they’re planned or on purpose, from Seo Ye Ji or the director or the writer. Regardless, it all combines together to make Moon Young a real character. And in this episode, we finally begin to get a glimpse of the real Moon Young behind her careless, brazen facade, we finally get a more vulnerable Moon Young as she shivers in the darkness all alone after her nightmare.

But the one who has really been exposed in this episode is Kang Tae. I’ve mentioned before in my previous recap about how Kang Tae is framed in the drama in a variety of scenes. He is boxed in, shut in, and doesn’t reveal his true self. He wants to have the freedom of Gi Do (or Moon Young) to act crazy, but he is the nice brother, the smart brother, the dependable one. All of this is a burden on him of course, Kang Tae loves his brother, but it can still be a heavy burden at times to have to care for family. There was a series of great articles on mydramalist.com by 3GGG on boxing and other visual cues that will give you a lot to think about it regards to this and other dramas I recommend to anyone who wants to learn more about visual cues in dramas.

Kang Tae images he is Gi Do, being free to do what he wants.

There are so many things I want to say about what I suspect will happen later, but I won’t go into it because, 1. I don’t want to spoil things and 2. I could be wrong, and 3. I want to keep the ideas flowing and if I write them down, they’ll become too heavy for me to have any flights of fantasy about what will happen next. I’ve tried deliberately to keep these recaps as brief as possible in regards to speculation because I want to really enjoy the journey without knowing too much about what is coming next. Moon Young is not the only sleeping beauty here and I only hope that Kang Tae will wake up to achieve some measure of freedom and Moon Young will get someone who’ll comfort her and understand her truly.

Credits: mydramalist.com, asianfuse.net, asianfuse.wiki

It’s Okay To Not Be Okay – Recap 2

It’s Okay to Not Be Okay (2020) continues to be a dark fairy tale sprung to light. And like with any Grimm fairy tale, we begin to see the bits and pieces of a dark past filled with blood and violence that brought this fairy tale to life. You can find this drama English subbed at Netflix.

SPOILERS AHEAD!

Synopsis:

It’s Okay to Not Be Okay (2020): The story of a community health worker at a psychiatric ward who lives on 1.8 million won (approximately $1,520) a month and a storybook writer suffering from an antisocial personality disorder. A man who denies love and a woman who doesn’t know love defy fate and fall in love, finding their souls and identities in the process. Moon Kang Tae is a community health worker at a psychiatric ward who was blessed with everything including a great body, smarts, ability to sympathize with others, patience, ability to react quickly, stamina, and more. Meanwhile, Ko Moon Young is a popular writer of children’s literature, but she is extremely selfish, arrogant, and rude. (Source: Soompi & Koreandrama.org)

Episode 2 Recap

Episode 2 starts right where episode 1 left off, Kang Tae and Moon Young are discussing why he’s here and he says her she reminds him of someone who is messed up. Then we see a flashback of a boy in an icy pond drowning. Meanwhile, a girl stands nearby and picks petals from a flower, asking should I help him or not?

A reference to the giant in Jack and the Beanstalk?

Back to the present, where they talk about bad memories. Kang Tae then tells her to tell the manager not to call again, but the manager Lee Sang In has already arrived, loaded with boxes filled with money. Moon Young learns that Kang Tae wanted her autograph and gives him it, while the manager tries to give Kang Tae the money, but he refuses the money and leaves. Moon Young watches as he leaves and says ‘he’s beautiful’ and ‘I want him’. And then we have this flight of fantasy as we see this gigantic version of our heroine trying to grab him.

When Kang Tae looks at the autographed book, he finds that she has invited them to go to her new book’s launch party and he enlists his friend Jae Soo to take his brother instead. Jae Soo has a guest, an old friend Joo Ri whom he’s excited to see and they go drinking at his place where Joo Ri asks him about Kang Tae. Meanwhile, Sang Tae is very excited to go to launch party, looking at his clothes and figuring out what to wear, while his brother is more concerned with wrapping things up so they can move. And Moon Young? She’s in the middle of a meeting at her company, queening it up as she shoots down any and all queries, she’s more interested in queries about Kang Tae, which she gets Jin Joo, the assistant to Sang In, to look for info on him.

Joo Ri meets with Kang Tae, whom it’s obvious she has a thing for as she tries to scoot closer to him on the bench, and he scoots away. She tells him that her hospital, the OK Psychiatric Hospital, is looking for a caregiver. Joo Ri tells him it’s in their hometown and there is a flashback.

Flashback: There is a stream of blood and a crime scene in a tunnel. A younger Kang Tae is seen crying over a dead body as the other brother (Sang Tae?) keep talking about a butterfly. Younger Kang Tae tries to get more details out of his brother, but Sang Tae just says that the butterfly said it will kill him if he said anything. When Kang Tae hears people arranging to split them up, he tells Sang Tae to leave and they hit the road.

Joo Ri and Kang Tae at the bus

Meanwhile back in the present, Kang Tae goes to see Joo Ri off on the bus. She offers him a place to stay if he comes with her and her mom if he took the job. Kang Tae thanks her but says he won’t go. As she leaves on the bus, Joo Ri remembered something she had previously talked about with Jae Soo about how Kang Tae never builds deep relationships because he’ll just leave. She wondered why he leaves, but Jae Soo just says it’s because of that butterfly.

Later, Kang Tae looks up jobs and then looks at Ok Psychiatric Hospital where he sees an article saying that you have to face your traumas to overcome them. The next day, he calls his friend Jae Soo, but he doesn’t answer because he’s out cold, so Kang Tae has to take his brother to the launch party and stuff. There’s this wonderful little sequence of pure joy as Sang Tae walks to the launch party with his party, seeing these balloons and birds and animated sequences in a full blown musical number.

At the launch party, it’s obvious that Moon Young is looking for them. When they arrive, Kang Tae gets a call and leaves to take it, making sure his brother is in line. The CEO Sang In is having a conversation with a critic of Moon Young. Then Sang Tae sees someone wearing a dinosaur costume and he’s absolutely entranced by it and he goes and starts to point out details about dinosaurs to the kid in the costume. He’s not doing anything really, but the dad pushes him and makes a scene. When the dad touches him, Sang Tae starts screaming and his brother runs back from the call to calm down. And we see the heroine making a calculation, to help or not? She decides in his favor, and joins the group, says that you need to apologize to the father who pushed Sang Tae. She tells him he’s ruining her book’s launch party and basically turns the table on him, not accepting his excuses. The mom steps in to protect her husband, calling the brother a lunatic harassing her son, but the heroine just ask her are you a psychiatrist? She then calls her Crazy B*tch and everyone is shocked. Moon Young goes on to explain that lady was talking about random stuff so she thought she was a lunatic.

Moon Young faces down his critic on the stairs she pushes him down.

Next we see that Sang Tae has isolated himself and is trying to calm himself down. Kang Tae and Moon Young are waiting for him, and she’s getting impatient. They’re interrupted by her critic who is carrying bundles of money thanks to Moon Young’s CEO Sang In and he starts messing with her calling her sexy and so on. He also talks about her mother, a famous writer, who passed away somehow and her father went crazy after that and got locked up.

Moon Young goes after the critic, as Kang Tae tries to stop her. The critic threatens her and he tells her he can destroy her career with his pen. He tells her he’s tired of just receiving the money, and he would rather she humor him a little. She takes his pen and jabs at him and he totters back. She pushes him down the steps with a finger as he’s tottering on the edge and then we see an ambulance coming to take him away.

Kang Tae comes over to her and shows her a technique to help her calm down, a technique called the butterfly hug method. This is the same thing that Sang Tae was doing to himself, but she turns in his arms as she moves in close as if for a kiss. Sang Tae has come out of the closet, and Kang Tae turns to go back to him. But Moon Young is not finished with him, she has an offer for the hero and tells him that he could keep her in check, preventing her further from going out of control and that she’ll pay him a lot. He tells her that unlike his patients, drugs and injections can’t help her and so it’s just best to avoid her. Moon Young tells him he’s not avoiding her, he’s running away and we see a flashback to their younger selves where Kang Tae runs away and Moon Young calls him a coward.

The brothers ride home on the bus, and it looks like someone has a surprise for his brother as Kang Tae pulls out the dinosaur encyclopedia for Sang Tae to cheer him up. Ahhhh.

Kang Tae realizes he’s been running because HE wanted to.

At their stop, he tries to take the book from him, but Sang Tae doesn’t want to give it back and they’re interrupted by his friend Jae Soo. Kang Tae and Jae Soo have a talk, Kang Tae telling him that he needs to stop following them and get a life. Kang Tae tells him that he thought he was on the run because of his brother. But he realized that maybe he was just running away because he wanted to because life was just too hard and the easiest thing is to run away. Later, Kang Tae approaches the subject of them going back to their hometown as they are packing, but much to his surprise, his brother Sang Tae is all for it, talking about the great food they have.

The phones are off the hook and everyone is talking about the scandal that Moon Young created. We see the CEO and his team watching the news as even her past scandals are dragged up. The book burning begins and there are new calls to censor her new book, saying that it is too cruel for kids. Meanwhile Moon Young hits the road, she just got back the report from Jin Joo so she’s on her way to Kang Tae’s or their hometown.

Red shoes = obsession, excitement, invigorated.

Jin Joo also tells Sang In and he calls Moon Young, who asks him if he knows the story of the red shoes. She goes on about the story and says she is on her way to meet her pair of red shoes, Kang Tae. And so they meet again at the Ok Psychiatric Hospital, where we see Kang Tae at his new job.

My Take:

Sang Tae’s musical number

I love some of the movie musicals of the 1940’s, 1950’s and 1960’s. (If you haven’t watched some Fred Astaire or Jane Powell you’re missing out). The musical number here with Sang Tae and balloons and dancing very much reminded me of them. And it’s somewhat surprising that in the same episode we can also learn about the death of their mother. Not to mention Moon Young’s tragic life, with her mother dead (killed?) and her father at a psychiatric hospital. Kudos to Director Park Shin Woo and the writer Jo Yong for making it work.

One of the most important moments here was when Kang Tae realized he was running away not because of his brother, but because it was easy to do. After he started running off with his brother after his mother’s death, perhaps it was just easier to move then deal with whatever problems occurred and it became a habit. But when he met Moon Young again, he woke up. Sleeping Beauty perhaps?

And Moon Young, too, has been newly invigorated, newly awakened. She probably spent her years toying and playing with her food (aka the people around her) and Kang Tae was always the good brother, the one who took care of his brother, but lead a lonely life by his side.

In fairy tales, characters have to be tested and tried before they are found worthy and deserving. Cinderella’s whole life at the hands of her stepmother was a test, Hansel and Gretel had to face a witch and Jack a giant. This isn’t just a facet of fairy tales of course, a lot of stories do this, but how many lakorns have you watched which are basically Cinderella tales with the poor, but good nang’ek has to deal with being treated like crap before she gets her hea (happily ever after) ending? So this makes me wonder, will there be a happy ever after? I think the answer is probably yes, but we’ll keep our fingers 🤞🏽.

Credits: mydramalist.com, asianfuse.net, asianfuse.wiki

It’s Okay To Not Be Okay – Recap 1

I debated whether I should write about It’s Okay to Not Be Okay (2020) at all, as I’m sure there will be many people (some who actually know Korean, I will be depending upon English subbed version at Netflix), who will be recapping this. But the quality of the production is a master class in so many ways that I wanted to write about, to talk about it. I could discuss the characters, the bromance, the music, the directing, the writing, but in the end, I want to focus on two things, fairy tales and cinematography.

SPOILERS AHEAD!

Synopsis:

It’s Okay to Not Be Okay (2020): The story of a community health worker at a psychiatric ward who lives on 1.8 million won (approximately $1,520) a month and a storybook writer suffering from an antisocial personality disorder. A man who denies love and a woman who doesn’t know love defy fate and fall in love, finding their souls and identities in the process. Moon Kang Tae is a community health worker at a psychiatric ward who was blessed with everything including a great body, smarts, ability to sympathize with others, patience, ability to react quickly, stamina, and more. Meanwhile, Ko Moon Young is a popular writer of children’s literature, but she is extremely selfish, arrogant, and rude. (Source: Soompi & Koreandrama.org)

Episode 1 Recap

The animation sequence ends with a shot of Moon Young (played by Seo Ye Ji), who hears a different voice (her mother?) saying no one will ever stay by your side and then we hear Moon Young’s voice saying yes, mother.

“No one can ever stay by your side because you’re a monster. Do not ever forget that. Do you understand?”

Shadow of death

“Yes, mother.”

Moon Young replies.

Back in the real world, we see a book called The Boy Who Fed On Nightmares by Go Moon Young that is beloved by Sang Tae (Oh Jung Se), the brother of Kang Tae (Kim Soo Hyun). Sang Tae had an incident where he caused a ruckus at the Daun Vocational School he attends and his brother came to talk to the people in charge. He wonders if his brother is angry, and seeing Kang Tae’s face, knows he is. Kang Tae sees Sang Tae is upset and reassures him beautifully, saying Sang Tae was never meant to stay there long anyway and they’ll find somewhere else.

Our first view of Kang Tae’s face. We saw a back view of him on the bus and walking to the school, but the first view of his face is through Sang Tae’s perspective.

Next, here’s our heroine Moon Young eating in a restaurant, dressed to the hilt. Moon Young’s lunch is interrupted by a young fan and her mom and Moon Young writes an autograph for her, but when the young girl babbles about being a princess cuz they’re pretty, Moon Young says cutting words to her, suggesting that the girl must not have read her books, because in her books, the witches are the pretty ones. She suggests the girl tell her mom she’s going to be a pretty witch, which sets the girl off. The CEO of Moon Young’s publishing company, Lee Sang In comes in as the girl and mom run off and he immediately knows what’s up as it seems like a situation he’s very familiar dealing with. As they leave, Moon Young casually steals a knife from the restaurant and puts it in her purse.

Moon Young is often set apart from others in public.

At Kang Tae’s workplace now, we get a view of various scars on his upper torso as he dresses in scrubs for his work in a mental hospital. He has to deal with a woman who is gobbling up food on the floor and elsewhere and he tries to talk to her. Eventually she hugs him, she thinking he’s her cheating hubby, but then the woman makes herself vomit all over him (presumably because said cheating hubby left her for a skinny woman). A flight of metaphors appear in place of actual vomit, an image of a waterfall and others. Kang Tae is also told of a new case, a man with an anxiety disorder who tried to kill himself and his daughter Go Eun, who is fine because she threw up the pills, but the father is being restrained.

Back to Moon Young who is headed to the hospital to do a reading of her story for the kids and their parents there. Sang In (CEO/manager) gets a call from another hospital that Moon Young’s dad stays in. Apparently, a nurse there by the name of Nam Juri (Park Kyu Young) is trying to get in contact with Moon Young to get her to sign papers as her father’s guardian so he can get a surgery. But Moon Young just says her father is dead and asks why are they trying to resurrect the dead? Juri is told by her supervisor to visit Moon Young to get the signature and we see a scene of the dad who get upsets when Juri mentions his daughter visiting him, talking about death.

A coworker asks Kang Tae about why he’s worked at so many different hospitals, changing them every year, but Kang Tae just shrugs it off. He notices that his brother Sang Tae’s favorite author is coming to the hospital and calls his brother, who immediately gets ready to go see her, but Kang Tae tells him it’s only for kids and that he’ll try to get her autograph instead. He asks his brother who’s better, he or Moon Young, but his brother hung up already and went back to his drawing.

The first meeting. Or is it? Moon Young wonders if it is destiny.

There’s a beautiful scene when Kang Tae sees someone smoking and asks them to stop. It’s Moon Young, who of course, isn’t about to just obey orders, but makes a scene of stubbing out her cigarette in his cup.

Moon Young’s reading

Moon Young starts her reading and things go beautifully until the patient Kim Seung Cheol who tried to kill his daughter tricks a worker into letting him loose and comes looking for his daughter Go Eun. As the hospital workers shut down the reading and ask families to leave, the father finds his daughter and manages to shuffle off with her and Moon Young sees them. She follows after them, taunting the father he’s too cowardly to die alone and smacks him with her purse. The knife she took falls out, and both reach for it, but she knocks it away.

Eventually, the father manages to get her in a chokehold, and we see Moon Young remembering? another scene of a young Moon Young and her dad choking her. Kang Tae comes to the rescue and ties the father up, but then he has to stop Moon Young, who has the knife now and is trying to hurt the dad. Kang Tae stops the knife with his hand around the blade, cutting himself, and Moon Young tells him he overreacted, she was only going to hurt the father a little. She tells him that there are people who kill vermin like the father without most people being aware of them.

In another frame of his horrible, no good, very bad day, Kang Tae learns he’s to take the blame for the incident, and well, he probably would have left soon anyway since he doesn’t stay in the stay place long, so he’s fired. He’s waiting for the bus, when his old friend Jo Jae Soo (played by Kang Gi Doong) comes by on a motorbike and gives him a ride. His luck being what it is, of course, it breaks down and they have to push the motorbike to his home.

“Fake.”

Kang Tae then remembers the autograph he never got, thankfully Jae Soo makes a forgery, which Sang Tae takes only one look at to denounce it as fake and goes off in a huff.

Moon Young and Juri

Meanwhile Moon Young gets an unwelcome visitor in Juri, who is trying to get her signature so Moon Young’s dad could get his operation. There is something uneasy between the two, Juri and Moon Young, who seem to have known each other in the past. After much verbiage from Moon Young about her father being physically alive with a dead soul and her mother dead, but her soul is alive, Juri gets her to sign and collapses outside the apartment, talking about how much she (Moon Young) pisses her off.

And in an almost throwaway clip, we get a brief shot of news saying someone died in solitary confinement. Go Eun’s father, the man who caused the incident at the reading. Interesting, no?

Bedtime, with both thinking of each other. Kang Tae starts to read Moon Young’s book, The Boy Who Fed On Nightmares. Basically the story goes as follows (paraphrasing here.) A boy was besieged by bad memories and nightmares that he wanted to forget so he went to a witch and she helped him. But the boy grew older and noticed he wasn’t happy. He meets the witch again to pay the price, his soul and tells her that, and she replies that the bad memories are what makes you grow stronger, more passionate and without them, you don’t have happiness.

The Boy Who Fed On Nightmares

In other words, what doesn’t kill you will only make you stronger.

We see the little girl Go Eun, unable to sleep, looking at the autograph of her book, in which Moon Young wrote to the girl, “Never forget today.”

Another person has nightmares as well, Sang Tae, where he’s younger and is being chased through the woods by butterflies. His screams wake up Kang Tae and his friend Je Soo who spent the night.

In the morning, Kang Tae heads out to get the autograph. He meets Moon Young of course, and she wonders what’s he’s there for? Money or even… sex? He denies it, saying he came only to see her again, her eyes that reminds him of another girl he knew, one without warmth or conscience. Moon Young asks if he was afraid of her and he tells her it was just the opposite, he liked the girl. And we see flashbacks of a boy drowning and a girl, picking flowers with the boy trailing after her. And the two stare at each other, the boy with the beautiful eyes, the girl with eyes lacking warmth.

My Take:

From the opening sequence.

When I was young, I discovered fairy tales. I would go to the library and check out swathes of Andrew Lang’s fairy tale books. I would go on to become a fan of Disney movies like The Little Mermaid and TV shows such as The Storyteller. But along the way I discovered something, that there was and is a big difference between the Disney versions of fairy tales and the Grimms Brothers original tales which contained more violence, sex, and many other facets of society. I started to watch more Hayao Miyazaki films such as Princess Mononoke, which contained multiple scenes of violence and gore as well as a more nuanced look at good and evil.

It’s Okay to Not be okay is such a tale. It is the darker side of fairy tales, the Grimms Bros version, that wants to remind you that there are always things hiding in the dark and it is better to face them, rather than pretend they’re not there.

We could argue about who is the princess in this drama, who is the villain, the Big Bad Wolf, the evil witch (Moon Young obviously wants this role 😁) or the prince (Sang Tae perhaps?). I could debate whether Kang Tae is the fairy godmother, the wise old man who sets the characters on the right path. Or whether he is the Big Bad Wolf. Because of all the characters in the drama, the most closed up and less unknown one is Kang Tae. He appears framed as if closed in a box, from the first shot we get of his face, to another frame shown below. Perhaps he is the sweet brother, competent worker he appears to be. Perhaps not. From fairy tales, we should know by now that the sweet old grandma could indeed be the wolf in disguise, or the beautiful polished apple is also a poisoned one.

Another image of Kang Tae framed by the drink machine, looking a Moon Young’s poster.

But what is clear is that it is the fairy dust sprinkled around, the visual flights of fantasy that make this a fairy tale. What is a fairy tale that is just reality with no fantasy elements? So for vomit, we see waterfalls, we see animated trash, milk. Think of these visual flourishes as Tinker Bell’s pixie dust.

Fairy tale vomit.

The main character, Moon Young, is a pure wonderful, glorious fairy tale creature. She wears clothes that mark her as such, acts as if she’s a princess (she claims to be a witch or monster, but only a princess is that entitled). What or rather who is the shadow of death that follows her? What parts do her parents play in this? And why do those around her end up dead? To be continued…

Credits: mydramalist.com, asianfuse.net, asianfuse.wiki

My Husband in Law – Recap 1

Director Aew Ampaiporn is responsible for many of the best lakorns, Kleun Cheewit, Sawan Biang, Game Rai Game Rak so when I heard about her new lakorn, My Husband in Law (2020), it made me all the more anxious to watch it. Plus, it also stars Mark Prin and Mew Nittha in a marriage of convenience story, so what’s not to like?

SPOILERS AHEAD!

Synopsis:

My Husband in Law (2020): Muey is a young girl who lived with her mother, who has a very close friend. Muey also has a crush on Thien who is the son of her mother’s close friend. Although Muey loves him, Thien never seems to love Muey, instead, he always teases her, messes with her, and sometimes bullies her. Muey never got angry or responded to Thien when she got bullied because she loved him too much.

One day, Thien was forced to marry Muey just to get rid of the wife of a powerful man. As Thien never looked at Muey as his life partner, he was not really okay with the marriage. In addition, Thien wanted a perfect woman as his wife, but Muey was never perfect in his eye. Will Thien fall in love with Muey at the end? Will Muey be the perfect wife for him? (Source: Collin Hypercuz at MyDramaList)

Cast of Characters

Episode 1 Recap

Muey’s wedding outfit

We begin with a voiceover of our nang’ek Muey as she describes an incident when she is saved from being bullied by a boy whose face she doesn’t see. And now a quick peek at the beaming Muey (Mew Nittha)on her wedding day to Thien (Mark Prin), our pra’ek and her rescuer? But will Thien even show up to be married? This seems to be the main question on his family’s minds, as he goes off the last minute to the bathroom and doesn’t return for a while. His brother starts looking for him and Thien finally shows up, a reluctant groom. We see why as we flash back to two weeks ago.

Two weeks before the wedding, we see Thien with a woman named Yada in a heated embrace. They have a night together when the phone rings and Yada’s husband Pon-Det learns about their affair. Thien didn’t know she was married and basically says screw you to Yada and takes off to his home, where we see that Muey is there as a housekeeper?

Flashback

Muey and Thien slip easily into a bickering conversation that seems to be their forte, as Muey manages to throw as many adoring looks at Thien as she can, while he seems oblivious to her adoration. We see another flashback to when a young Muey, high schooler maybe, meets the pra’ek and his family for the first time as his mother announces she will live with the two boys as their sister, and Thien’s like ‘What?!’, but mom persists.

Thien goes out to meet Yada again, and Muey sees he got a threatening message on his phone and follows him. Yada wants to continue their relationship and says she’s divorcing her hubby, who beats her (another flashback to Yada’s and Thien’s first meeting when she’s distraught and he saves her from stepping in front of a car), Thien sympathizes with her, but tells her he doesn’t want any problems. With that he leaves.

Thien is followed by Yada’s husband Pon-Det and a car chase ensues. Pon-Det manages to drive Thien’s car off into the water and drives off, but Muey arrives to save the day. His whole family visits Thien in the hospital, including an unwelcome vistor, Yada. Yada says she’s divorcing her husband, but Thien just says he has no feelings for her. Yada answers that he doesn’t have anyone, so Thien replies that he does have a fiancee, Muey. Pon-Det shows up then and implies the marriage better happen or else. Another eavesdropper was Thien’s mom, who tells him he must make the lie the truth to avoid being killed by Pon-Det, to save Muey’s reputation as well and to avoid facing other consequences as it appears Pon-Det is related to a well connected family.

Before: Our beautiful couple.
After: A smirking Thien after a storm disrupts the wedding.

So the marriage is on and we’re back in the present now as Thien reluctantly shows up to his wedding. Then things start going downhill, as the dog runs off with the ring, only to poop it out, and the rain and wind starts and we see Thien enjoying the chaos.

Wedding night sees an ecstatic Muey and a complacent Thien, where an argument over who gets the bed ends with Thien getting the bed, and Muey sleeping on the floor. Thien attempts to continue life as normal, but his mother basically leaves him no choice but to stay with Muay. At the end of the episode, we see the two moving in together and a little story about their pets, a cat for Thien and a dog for Muey.

My Take:

Really this is all Director Aew Ampaiporn‘s show right now. Aew’s has directed a number of romantic comedies before, Oum Ruk and Soot Sanaeha and there are a number of comic moments here handled with a deft touch, namely the wedding chaos scene.

Mew Nittha is sure to win hearts as the cheerful, optimistic Muey. Yes, it’s very much a stereotypical Mary Sue character, but in spite of that, I still can’t help but root for Muey. Muey tries to live in the present, and makes things easy for her love, but she also attempts to be close to him, tries to sleep with him and make them share the same room. In other words, she doesn’t seem as passive as some nang’eks are.

Thien, played by Mark Prin, isn’t supposed to be the villain of the piece, but he is smug, self adsorbed and it’s obvious that he’s due to get knocked off his pedestal, like so many other spoiled, entitled pra’eks. His view of Muey is skewed of course, he sees her as a nuisance, and not getting stressed over things. But Muey is in the perfect position to start getting stressed over things, as she is closer then ever to the one she loves, yet must still stay away from him.

Good start to the series, and I can’t wait to watch more.

Credits: mydramalist.com, asianfuse.net, asianfuse.wiki

My Love From Another Star Episode 1 Recap

So we start off with a quick overview of when our hero comes to Earth with rather laughable computer generated shots of a ship. Immediately he saves a girl called Bua from falling over a cliff in her runaway carriage, with his freezing time skills and and then we see him in modern-day time, where he talks about how he’s been here for 333 years and how his skills and senses are superior to humans. In 3 months, he will finally have a chance to go back to his home, his star.  I am totally getting Spock-like flashbacks from Nadech’s styling.

Then we have our heroine, the actress Falada (played by Matt Peeranee), at the scene of one of her lakorns.

Cut to our heroine, a famous actress who right on cue, sheds a tear, much to the delight of the director and crew, staff. And then we are immediately shown another side of the story, as she immediately shows her lack of knowledge and vanity. Love it as the lakorn goes on to show she has some smarts as well as she plays her managers to avoid getting censured by them by telling them about how other companies are interested in her joining them. 

Falada’s main talent, crying on cue.

They’re upset at her because she always shows her lack of knowledge of the Thai language through her social media posts, which make her seem ignorant and stupid. Falada is upset to be reminded of this, and in this mood, goes to her new apartment building where she meets our hero.

Falada think she’s got a stalker when our hero steps onto the elevator with her. Of course, he’s just going to the same floor and he doesn’t even know who she is. Falada can’t believe he doesn’t know who she is, everyone knows she is and she’s further upset when she goes online and she sees lots of comments about how stupid she is.

Look at the expression! lol

And then we get a look at her mother, who like Falada seems to be a lot of fake bluster, boosting about her famous daughter at a luncheon of women, but showing at the same time she doesn’t have a close relationship with her. We find out one of them is the mother of a supporting actress in Falada’s drama. The other mother shows up Falada’s mom’s bad relationship with her daughter by having more knowledge of what Falada is doing then she does.

Falada’s mom calls to get some money out of her and complain that Falada has nothing, everything she’s got, her beauty and talent of crying, is from her. Oh, and Falada is to check in on her brother as her mom hasn’t heard from him in awhile, so we get a fast peep of the brother next, who’s at an Internet cafe and gets upset at some teens who are talking about Falada.

It’s bedtime, the hero is soundly asleep, except he hears first the faucet running, then Falada singing. So he goes to have a word with his new neighbor about noise control, and in the process, manages to insult her intelligence. Well Falada, as she should, goes off on him, Talking about how she didn’t get enough nutrients for her brain because she can’t get fat and all the things she never got to do like anybody else because she had to start working at 13. So the H gets to hear her cry throughout the night.

Next, we have a look at the second female lead Roong or nang-rai? and  her manager Thot? who is upset at the treatment that her client is getting. Thot is pleased to inform Roong about a show that is dissing Falada. So we see Falada and her team watching the show, and they begged her to go back to school.

The villains of the drama enter (or at least they look like the villains) and it looks like a meeting at a corporation regarding a mall with the father in charge, who’s pleased with his son’s behavior. He has another son, we learn as we cut to Mork.

Mork is a confirmed playboy who picks up Falada and they chat as he takes her to school, where she is greeted like the superstar she is. But to Falada’s surprise, the professor is none other than her new neighbor, and she thinks back to what happened between them. Bored by the mating habits of a fly lecture, Falada drifts off, and later tries to appease the professor,  who ain’t having it.

Mork, our heroine’s bf, or wanna be bf. Not sure which.

We’re next introduced to Arun, the professor’s lawyer friend and only friend, whom Archira informs him that he’s leaving in three months, so he’ll need another death certificate. And a quick scene change to Falada having dinner with Mork and friend Roong, and Mork pulls out a ring to propose. They already talked about marriage in the car, but Falada said that she didn’t want to get married right now cuz she wanted to continue to get leading roles, so I have no idea why he is proposing, but Roong looks upset.

There are a number of scene changes between the two groups, Professor Archira and Arun, and Falada, Roong and Mork as they both tell their side of the same story. Arun asks why Archira never returned before to his home, and the professor talks about a woman named Bua he met when he first arrived, who gave him a gift. She died three hundred years ago. But something strange happened 12 years ago when the Professor was working in a hospital. He had a vision of the future where a truck is about to run down someone who looks like Bua.

Of course, that girl 12 years ago was Falada and Mork had come over there to see her and saw Falada running away in tears (Why? We don’t know yet), about to be run down by a truck. The professor saves Falada from the truck naturally. Falada says that she still thinks of the man and wants to see him again.

Flashback to the past, where we see aliens’ gathering insects, flowers and other specimens and our hero seems particularly fascinated, we see him going to wander around village looking at the people playing games, fighting.

Bua is there too, copying some writings on hell that her mother-in-law had her do. Bua bemoans her state, her mother-in-law blames her for her son’s death, but Bua says that she didn’t want to marry, she had no choice and wonders if her mother-in-law wishes her in hell. That’s a possibility, Because she falls unconscious, and an assassin comes in to carry her away. He carries her to the forest, where he prepares to kill her, but Bua wakes, sees she’s in danger and tries to get away.

Bua is saved by our hero, Archira and seems to recognize him from before, when he saved her life in the carriage. She wants to exchange names, but he doesn’t speak, instead he levitates. Bua is amazed at this and wants to learn to fly too, but all he does is give her a hair pin. Briefly flash back to the present, where the hairpin is being shown in a museum setting and a tour guide explains about it and the anonymous donor of it, it’s of course the professor, who’s shown listening in.

W…want to see something special?

To finish the story, Professor Archira tells Arun that he wants to meet the girl again, and we see the two of them later on the elevator together. Falada tries to explain away her previous behavior, But the professor just gives her another lecture and leaves, although he’s secretly spying on her through his spyglass in his home with an amused look a moment later. In the middle of the night, he has a vision of a person in a silver dress and heels falling off a building.

Wait a minute. Stop the presses!!!! Let me back that up.

Is that a hint of an emotion???

I want to continue the investigation into whether Nadech was actually emoting there, but the lakorn continued and so must I. Sigh. Archira tells his friend Arun about the vision, Arun thinks that it means he should try to save the person, but Archira doesn’t agree. He tells Arun he did that before in the past, only to have a bad outcome. When he helped a guy win a game, the guy continued to gamble and later on ends up trying to sell his daughter for money. But Arun tries to convince him it’s different this time, maybe it’s someone important to him.

So to recap this recap, Archida had a dream or vision where he sees someone (no face shown) fall off a building, someone in silver high heels.

Now we go to Falada being asked to star in a show, she doesn’t want to do it until she learns her rival Mina is going to get the part instead. Mina wanted the part and asks Falada’s friend Roong why Falada took it even though she doesn’t like doing shows. Falada’s friend talks about how Falada does things just to take it away from Mina. Which upsets Mina even more, of course, and Falada’s friend, who was with Falada and Mork at the restaurant (seemed to have a thing for Mork), watches with a small smile as Mina rants against Falada.

In the last part of the episode, we see the professor growing things, having a relaxing time until…. Someone comes home drunk and rowdy and trying to input her passcode on his door. Archira tries to tell her that this is not her apartment, but she slips past him and falls onto his couch. Bemused, the professor picks up after her and he turns and looks at her and they’re having a moment.

Shh. They’re having a moment.

Random Thoughts

So yeah, if you haven’t noticed from my commentary, Matt as Falada was killing it, she’s cut down on the overacting (hopefully for good) since the last time I saw her in Kuan Kammathep. And yeah, that was 10 years ago, but glad to see she’s changed. Nadech, on the other hand, seems have been stuck in a time loop, emotionwise. And I love him. Since, uh, Rang Pratana (2013). (I have a massive lakorn backlog to watch….)

But anyway, Nadech, don’t just be a beefcake. I know you can do more!

Random shower scene because, why not?