I feel like I’ve been hearing about this lakorn forever! I mean, they finished filmingSong Sanaeha last year, and there’s been numerous rumors about this lakorn airing soon. And yep, there’s another rumor going around now that it’s coming ‘soon.’ No idea what that means exactly, but hopefully this isn’t another false alarm. This is one of those high profile lakorns that’s getting plenty of buzz, thanks to the star power of the main couple, KimberleyVoltemas and James Ma, not to mention it’s their much anticipated reunion (they both starred together in 2016’s Piang Chai Khon Nee Mai Chai Poo Wised!
Song Sanaeha is an upcoming Channel 3 lakorn that is a remake of a 2005 lakorn about twin sisters and the one guy they both love. Not a big fan of the twin lakorns, but I do like the cast well enough so I might check it out. Muse was going to sub it, they’re gone now, but I’m pretty sure another subbing group will pick this up although no airing date has been announced yet.
Synopsis: Two twin sisters, so similar in appearance, but so different in nature, go through life in different ways. Duen is a capricious model and actress, she’s not considerate of anybody’s interests and feelings. Pit, after the death of their parents, takes care of her sister and constantly helps her. While Duen was in a scandalous relationship with a rock musician, Pit met Warit, a worthy young man who first was confused by the twins, but soon realized the difference between them. By a strange coincidence, he turned out to be the nephew of Duen’s new lover. Duen, tired of the elderly uncle, switched her attention to the nephew. And the more he resisted, the angrier and terrible her tricks became to quarrel the lovers. (Source: MyDramaList)
It’s no wonder we got a Thai remake of Who Are You: School 2015, since there are a number of components in it that reminds me of lakorns, the twins thing, and the amnesia definitely takes it into lakorn territory. There is also supposed to be a love triangle as well, though that, and the school bullying aspect as well as being set in high school are more like a Korean drama.
WHO ARE YOU (2020) started airing on GMM on May 2 and currently airs two days a week, Saturday and Sunday, you can watch it with English subs on Youtube.
WHO ARE YOU (2020): After enduring vicious bullying, orphaned student, Mind, attempts to take her life in hopes of escaping her problems. Miraculously, she survives with the loss of all memory and wakes up with a new life as she takes on the identity of Meen. Mind and Meen couldn’t be more different, of course, besides the fact that they are identical twins. Living as Meen, Mind is granted the opportunity to meet Natee, a young swimming athlete who is Meen’s close friend, and Gunkan, a mischievous handsome boy at the school who later comes to help her recover her lost memories. But, as time passes, unveiling the truth causes her to feel more pain than she had ever experienced. (source: GMMTV)
Cast of Characters
I recently watched two episodes of the Thailand remake of the 2015 kdrama Who Are You: School 2015. You can actually watch both versions on YouTube with English subs, the original Korean drama and the Thailand remake. Also, you can look at the recaps of the Korean drama online at Dramabeans.
There will be lots of spoilers here. In Episode 1, we are introduced to the characters and in particular the main character, of which there are two, twins Mind and Meen. Mind is an orphan who is the subject of much bullying by her vicious classmates. She’s very sweet, nice type who apparently can’t fight back. The one spot of joy in her life is the gifts she receives from a mysterious donor we later find out is Meen.
Then we get a glimpse of our male lead Natee or Na as he is swimming in a competition. He wins of course and we see him presenting the medal to Meen, who seems like she could care less about it and him.
Instead, Meen is focused more on an ominous text she receives from someone named June, which says “You seemed to have been happy ever since I died.” Whoa. That’s not the only message either. Meen is going on a school trip and she’s distracted the whole time. She goes off by herself and it turns out she’s in the same town as her twin, and she seems to know about her twin, but Mind doesn’t seem to know about Meen. Meen goes to the bathroom and while she’s in a stall, she hears her twin come in, followed by the mean girls who beat her up, but Meen hesitates to do anything until she finally bangs on the bathroom stall and the bullies run off.
Next we see that Meen is missing, and no one seems to know where she went. Around the same time, Mind is facing a charge from the main bully Tida that she’s the one who was bullying Tida, not the other way around. Tida and her gang took pictures in the bathroom when Mind fought back a little and Tida takes it to her mom and the school. So the school forces Mind to resign. Mind goes back to her classroom where she was bullied some more, and we see her? in different clothes at the edge of a bridge, remembering all of the bullying, and she jumps off into the water. All is well as we see her or her twin? in a hospital bed and she’s fine except for a few bruises and a head injury.
Ep 2 is mostly about Meen? (probably it’s Mind) having amnesia and reuniting with her friends, Natee in particular is taken aback by this kinder, nicer Meen. Meen? also meets Tida in hospital, who’s about to lay down some more bullying on her, but is stopped by Meen’s mom. Later Meen? looks at different photos from her? youth, but notices there are no baby pictures, so Meen’s mom tells her they met when she was ten.
Meen? and her friends party thanks to rich girl Koykaew, who seems to have a particular dislike of Meen, although they used to be friends? At the end of the episode, Koykaew can’t pay for her friends when they party at her expense and it turns out she’s been stealing things from home. Koykaew says Meen? has been making her steal, and asks them to look in Meen’s locker. Which they do. And they find Koykaew’s mom’s diamond necklace. (By the way, we saw Koykaew place it in Meen’s locker previously in ep 1 I believe).
WHO ARE YOU (2020) has a number of mysteries that interest me enough to continue watching, with some caveats.
I’m not particularly engaged by any of the characters and the whole weak twin, strong twin thing, that’s sooo like Raeng Ngao or Song Naree (1997). Mind seems weak as anything, while Meen isn’t particularly likable either, witness her treatment of Natee and how she hesitated to come to her sister’s aid. It’s obvious Meen knows a lot about what’s going on too, and that’s one of the things I’m interested in watching to find out. Where is Meen? What does she know and why? The trailer also makes me want to continue watching to find out.
I’ve been working towards my April watching goal I listed here to watch more lakorns. I’ve been watching Japanese doramas mainly because they’re shorter and I’m finding my attention span is shot for the most part. But I have watched 3 episodes so far of Tawan Arb Dao (2020) that Thippy is subbing. Thank you Thippy! Here’s my thoughts on it.
MINOR SPOILERS AHEAD!
Tawan Arb Dao (2020) started airing on Channel 7 on March 26 and currently airs two days a week, Wednesday and Thursday.
Tawan Arb Dao (2020): Siwakorn disguises himself as Siwath, his twin brother in order to investigate his death. He tries to avoid sleeping with Chorprae who is Siwath’s lover and meets Daopradub, Chorprae’s daughter who was called out from abroad to help with the family’s company. (Source: MyDramaList)
Cast of Characters
Our main couple. Kem Hussawee who plays twins, Siwakorn, Siwath. Thisa Varitthisa plays Daopradub
In episode 1, we are introduced to the characters, with the main couple meeting in a battlezone. Our pra-ek Siwath is a reporter who happens to save the nang-ek from gangsters when he covers a story about gangs. They meet again in Thailand as Dao returns from school overseas, a very common trope.
Yui Chiranan is Chorprae – married to Daopradub’s adopted father and Daopradub’s aunt (and rival)
There’s an award ceremony going on for Chorprae that Dao interrupts and we can see there is no love lost between the two though they are aunt and niece. But Dao definitely loves her adopted Dad, who was married to Dao’s mom before her death. Dao hears of a rumor that Chorprae has a lover and starts investigating who it is around the company her dad owns.
There are other characters, most of them are servants of Dad, and we also have another relative of Dad who works at company, but these are the main characters for these episodes.
Meanwhile, we see the pra’ek has amnesia, but… not really. We learn this early on, Siwakorn got to Thailand in time to see his brother die and he pretends to be him, saying he was in accident and has amnesia as a result. He’s determined to find out the truth about his brother’s death and starts at the company EVERYONE in this lakorn seems to work at, lol.
In ep 3, there is a big welcome home party for Dao, which Siwath uses as an opportunity to spy more at the company his brother worked at. The nang’ek works there too now and of course she finds out Siwath is the rumored lover of Chor and sparks fly between the two. Siwakorn learns from Chor the real relationship between her and Siwath.
TawanArb Dao is mildly entertaining, but nothing special. The characters follow the usual formula, with one exception, the main villain of the piece, or is she? Chorprae. Chorprae is easily the most complex character of the lakorn, she openly shows her disdain for her husband, but her acting avoids much of the standard nostrils flailing stereotypes of most ‘rai characters. Yui Chiranan endues her acting with enough vulnerability that makes me wonder who the the real villain is, her or her bratty niece Dao who always tries to show her up.
Apart from her, the most intriguing part of the lakorn is the mystery of Siwat’s death, who’s behind it, but there are also other things I want to know. Why is Dao’s dad in a wheelchair, what happened to him and Chor, and why is it poor people are often such caricatures?
Which leads me to my main critique. The writing is very pedestrian in most instances, and that was shown in cringe worthy detail in one scene. The nang’ek is sent by Chor to handle workers who are protesting and demanding a wage. What follows is a scene sooo awesome in its awfulness, its tone deafness and complete lack of empathy for the working poor that, well, I’m gonna be writing more about. What I want to say is way too long.
In conclusion, the mysteries in the story may drive you to watch further, but I’m doubtful whether I shall bother.
Twin stories are a staple in lakornland, and now we have Tawan Arb Dao (2020) airing on Channel 7 on March 26. Our pra’ek is Kem Hussawee, who disguises himself as his twin for revenge. Naturally, there are many pitfalls he must avoid. Currently, this is on Thippy’s list to sub.
Tawan Arb Dao (2020) synopsis: Siwakorn disguises himself as Siwath, his twin brother in order to investigate his death. He tries to avoid sleeping with Chorprae who is Siwath’s lover and meets Daopradub, Chorprae’s daughter who was called out from abroad to help with the family’s company. (Source: MyDramaList)
There are definitely similarities in plot between this lakorn and kdrama Resurrection (2005), namely male twins, one is killed and the other one investigates his death, but it doesn’t seem to be a remake. Hopefully, this lakorn will have some of the intensity and great acting of Resurrection.
Twins. Another not very favorite trope of mine, overdone and usually done badly. But when it works like in Lom Sorn Ruk? 😍. There are a few dramas and lakorns that does things right, and more importantly, it looks like this trope is not going away. Song Sanaeha (2020) is also coming up, starring Kimberley Voltemas and James Ma which also looks appealing and I talked about here.
Nadech plays a twin; one is a doctor and the other one is a businessman. Each of them have their on love interest. Patarin is a young girl weak towards the world and thought that her boyfriend gave his love to her sincerely but realized she got deceived and was used as a tool. Now she has to pay for the things he left her to pay. One day she goes home to her birthplace in the countryside to rest and treat her deeply injured heart. Patarin meets and receives an offer from Pranon, a doctor who is an idealist to marry with him to deceive his parents in exchange for a large sum of money for her to pay off her debt. Nadech also plays the twin and businessman named Pran. Pran has his own loveline with Anna.