Thai dramas finally airing in Singapore!

19 Apr

Hey guys, hope everyone is doing well under the current Covid19 circumstances. I’ve been staying at home mostly since the start of the ‘circuit breaker’ in Singapore and have lots more free time during the weekends since no more meet ups outside! The drama front has been kinda meh for me, I ended up re-reading an old copy of ‘The Picture of Dorian Gray’ I found at home last weekend, and this week I’ve started on the Chinese web novel ‘Chenghua Fourteen Years’ (成化十四年). It’s a detective novel set in the Ming dynasty and while it’s technically a ‘BL (boys love)’ novel, the love line between the OTP is pretty subtle and focus is still on the cases and sleuthing skills of the main character. The current airing Cdrama ‘The Sleuth of Ming Dynasty’ is based on this novel (which was how I found out about it) but reviews of the drama thus far have criticized the scriptwriting so I’ll leave it for now unless the tide turns for it like how it went for ‘The Untamed’.

In other news, Thai dramas are finally on Singapore’s free to air TV channels! It’s been what, 10 years since I started watching lakorns but it’s remain a pretty niche drama choice in Singapore, I don’t even know anyone personally in real life that watches it! Please do leave a comment below if you are a fellow Singaporean who enjoys watching lakorns!

I saw an ad for ‘Buppae Saniwaat (Love Destiny)’ airing on Channel U, I think it’s the weekday 9pm slot? Hopefully this means more lakorns to come on prime time slots. Mediacorp (SG’s official broadcaster) has some tie up with another entertainment company and now has a few lakorns on their free streaming site. The choices don’t look super updated? But guess we gotta start somewhere.

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Maybe it’s time to start poking around for new dramas to watch and get this blog active again! Please send your recommendations my way!

The Eternal Love 双世宠妃

19 Sep

So I ended up dropping Cheewit Puer Kah Huajai Puer Tur after ep8 cos as delicious as Jespipat was as Wayu, I found it hard to believe that Rin could fall in love with him so easily when she barely knew the guy. I re-watched a few old lakorns instead and wonder if it’s a sign that I’ve been watching lakorns for too long when I think they don’t make lakorns like they used to. lol

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After starting and stopping on a few new dramas, I finally found one which I couldn’t stop watching. The Eternal Love 双世宠妃 – not to be confused with Eternal Love aka Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms 三生三世十里桃花, gawd cdramas need less repetitive English titles – is a low budget web drama with a very Mary Sue-ish plot and starring new faces. Doesn’t sound like much but it all came together to form a very addicting show … kinda like opening a giant bag of potato chips, once you start you can’t stop. If you’ve watched Go, Princess Go! 太子妃升职记, The Eternal Love is pretty much in the same vein. While both are about time travel, they each have their own unique spin on it. GPG had a guy who ended up in the body of a crown prince’s consort after travelling through time, while in TEL, a modern lady travels back in time and wakes up as Qu Tan Er in ancient China but the original consciousness of the body she now inhibits is still present, so we have 2 souls sharing the same body! This set up is not spelt out upfront and since I didn’t read the synopsis before starting the drama, I got a bit confused initially but it was easy enough to pick up after one ep. Zhang Tian Ai wowed me at first sight in GPG (she was so perfect as Zhang Peng Peng I feel her performance alone warrants watching GPG) but I was mildly irritated by Liang Jie in the first few episodes especially when she’s playing Xiao Tan who’s from the modern era. It’s surely not easy playing 2 different characters in the same drama and maybe that’s why she plays up the differences by making Xiao Tan very brash but it feels a bit forced? That said, I got used to how the characters were presented after a while and thanks to the love story developing at lightning speed, I was soon swooning over the oh-so-sweet main couple and was ready to ignore everything else. There were so many real kisses omg! and save for a short misunderstanding, the OTP’s love was unwavering. After the head banging experience watching Yu Wen Yue and Chu Qiao in Princess Agents ALMOST GETTING THERE BUT NEVERRRR FOR 58 EPISODES, this was such a joy to watch. TEL’s male lead Mo Lian Cheng is played by Xing Zhao Lin who also acted as Yue Qi in PA and it was hilarious reading the many comments asking ‘Yue Qi’  to go teach his master Yu Wen Yue some moves on how to get the girl.   Continue reading

A love to die for

23 Aug

I struggled through a couple more episodes of Fun Rak Fun Salai but with the various relationships making less and less sense, I finally decided to throw in the towel for this one. It’s a shame really, FRFS had potential but it sputtered out after a promising start. Anyhow, I have plenty of lakorns to catch up on since I was pretty out of touch for the last couple of years so I’ve now started on Cheewit Puer Kah Huajai Puer Tur.

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Jespipat plays Wayu, a reticent hitman with a bartending day(night) job who feeds pigeons in his spare time when he’s not out there shooting people for cash. As of ep3 we are not privy to Wayu’s past and what led him to this lifestyle but money is clearly not the motivator as he only takes enough for his living expenses and has his boss save the rest of his cut. Contract killing appears to be the only life he knows, and it’s a reclusive if occasionally violent one he leads.

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On one of his regular pigeon-feeding trips at the park, Wayu meets Rin, a girl whose sketching session of the pigeons was disturbed by him throwing bird feed in their midst. Rin, a cheerful and sociable girl strikes up conversation with Wayu and as they meet again in the following days, she is like a warm breeze that has unknowingly started to blow into his cold heart. Unbeknownst to Wayu, Rin is actually the daughter of Thanatat (Willy), a drug lord and a regular patron of his services and only finds out when he sees her at the scene of his next hit. I don’t have time to delve into all the plotty bits (need to catch up on more ep!) but as of ep3 Wayu and Rin haven’t gone Romeo and Juliet yet since they are technically on the same side (for now) … only slight problem being Rin has no idea of either Wayu or her father’s actual ‘occupation’.  Continue reading

Fun Rak Fun Salai 7 – 18

9 Aug

After Pakorn brings Meili home, we get to see them interact as individuals instead of police vs illegal immigrant.  Meili slowly realises that Pakorn sincerely intends to help her achieve her goal of going to America while Pakorn starts to see her as Meili the person with her hopes and dreams instead of another illegal immigrant to send home. And of course I have to thank ep8 for this scene.

Does it add anything significant to the progress of their relationship except to dazzle Meili with his pecs? hmm, not really? And Meili doesn’t even notice Pakorn’s bod unlike me lol but it was a nice moment.

Worried that habouring an illegal immigrant will destroy her son’s career, Pakorn’s mom sent Meili packing while he was away at work and she wanders the streets lost and afraid, calling the only other person in this world she could depend on, my dear sweet Chang. I liked how the shots framed Meili against the towering sky scrapers behind her, surrounded by prosperity in this city yet here she was alone with only the clothes on her back and a bit of cash in hand with no where to go nor return to.

That said, by now I could not help feeling sad for Chang cos Meili barely thought of him while she was safe at Pakorn’s house. Yea, the very first night she thought of using Pakorn’s phone to contact Chang but she didn’t exactly try very hard and she didn’t attempt to do so again until she got kicked out. Meili is definitely very grateful towards Chang but it’s clear one means more to the other, no prizes for guessing who.

I really enjoyed FRFS up till ep8 and thought the plot/character setting was a refreshingly different one but unfortunately it gets progressively shaky from there. It’s not bad bad but there’s not enough development in the characters or their relationships for the next 10 episodes to get me behind them. I wasn’t expecting Meili’s time with Pakorn to be so short. Meili probably stayed for a week at most? Then she goes back to Chang and we start all over again. Then after Captain Wu catches up with Chang and shoots him, she goes back to Pakorn’s house and he’s swearing eternal love? Granted he witnessed her breaking down and attempting to kill herself after hearing news of her family’s death and I’m sure that ellicited an outpouring of sympathy but immediately after that we got the love declaration and a willing? And the next morning Pakorn decides to marry Meili!

From how the story played out, I’m not convinced of deeper feelings between them beyond sympathy from Pakorn and gratefulness from Meili. I actually feel more for Chang’s wholehearted devotion to protecting and caring for Meili despite having so little himself, it’s more believable if they ended up together. It was a pity so much screen time was wasted on Om being a stalker and Captain Wu chasing Chang and Meili around instead of giving Pakorn/Meili the necessary development in their relationship.

Speaking of Om, she’s the no.1 nonsensical character here. She goes from wanting to quit because boohoo Captain Pakorn wasn’t nice to me to suddenly, SUDDENLY crushing so hard on him that she secretly follows him (multiple times!!) to see who he is with and her only purpose from then on seems to be to get Pakorn. I don’t have a problem with her liking Pakorn (I like Gade, Parkorn’s neighbour who’s also crushing on him) but it came out of the left field with no apparent reason and the way she went about it was so annoying and disturbing. Oh, the other villain Captain Wu from Meili’s hometown was unexpectedly killed by Pakorn. I never did figure out what why/how he was able to terrorize the town like he did and why he was so intent on catching Chang & co.

Pakorn’s mom didn’t exactly jump for joy at his decision to marry Meili so they moved to an apartment while sorting out Meili’s documents (I think) … and voila, she gets a perm job overnight when she supposedly does not leave the apartment at all to avoid getting caught.

I’m not sure how many more ep FRFS has to go and I’ll probably see it to the end considering I’ve made it this far but by now I’m not holding my breath.

SCREENCAPS: Behind the Scene of Praew Shoot (Ken Ann) —

30 Jul

Wow! It’s been forever since these two did a cover for Praew and I’m definitely shocked to see Ken and Ann shooting a mag together. Didn’t think they’ll ever going to cooperate together again, but I’m glad they did. I can’t wait for this issue to go on sale! I’m definitely getting a copy! Now […]

via SCREENCAPS: Behind the Scene of Praew Shoot (Ken Ann) —

Fun Rak Fun Salai ep 4 – 6

22 Jul

Finally caught their character names: Navin = Pakorn and Bua = On.

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Maybe cos lakorn villains tend to be OTT and not very clever, I generally don’t take them seriously and find them more of a mild inconvenience to the main characters. I mean, in Talay Fai the bad guys tried to kill the pra’nang in almost every single episode and manages to fail every time! So it’s been a while since I was this anxious for the well being of a lakorn character.  While I know Meili is obviously not going to die or be repatriated at this point in the lakorn, she feels trapped at every turn and I keep wondering if the triad or the police will catch up with her first and neither option is appealing. Meili was caught by Pakorn at the end of ep3 but managed to escape with the help of Chang.

They get an extremely brief respite and Chang gets a job for Meili at the restaurant he works at. They are so precious together I wish the world could leave them be, just quietly working hard and living their simple life.

But things go south very soon when Pakorn coincidentally spots Meili, and Jiang also finds out where Meili was staying from Chang’s friend so the world ends up back at her heels again. This time Chang wasn’t around to save her and backed up on the roof top with Pakorn blocking the only exit, Meili threatens to kill herself if Pakorn insists on arresting her. Pakorn tries to convince Meili that sending her home is the best option since she will be forced into prostitution or killed if the triad catches her again but Meili tells him that if she had food and a good life back home, why would she waste her life coming here in the first place? To Meili, dying was a better option than being sent home. Moved by Meili, Pakorn hides her and lies to his disbelieving colleagues that she escaped (from the roof top!) and brought her home instead to his bewildered mom.   Continue reading

Fun Rak Fun Salai ep 1 – 3

19 Jul

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From the light hearted Nang Rai Summer I moved on to Fun Rak Fun Salai which is very much sombre in tone. P’Fia’s post piqued my interest in this lakorn but after poking around it appears there’s no interest in this by any subbing groups out there so I went ahead and watched it raw, wondering if the Thai I picked up from all these years of lakorn-watching will be sufficient to see me through. So far (3 ep in) I could catch the gist of the dialogue so if even if your Thai is lakorn-level, you can still consider giving this a shot.

FRFS deals with a subject very different from what I’ve come to expect of lakorns. Charebelle our n’ek plays Meili, a young lady facing abject poverty in her hometown. I’m not sure if Meili’s hometown is in a fictional or real country bordering Thailand, but it appears to be under some kind of military control? After seeing pictures sent home by her neighbour’s daughter of cozy life in America with food aplenty, Meili decides to risk following human trafficker Jiang into Thailand and onward to the promise land of America. After an almost deadly trek across the border, Meili reaches Thailand only to find out that she has been sold into prostitution by Jiang. Meili manages to escape and is subsequently picked up by fellow illegal immigrant Chang (First) when he finds her eating leftovers from the rubbish bin outside the restaurant he works at. Though she now has an ally,  things are not all that much better for Meili because she has to escape both the triad who wants to catch her back and also the police who will deport her.  Continue reading

Nang Rai Summer

16 Jul

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Had intended to continue on the Cupid Series and maybe it’s the Singapore heat but I found myself wandering back to Nang Rai Summer for a re-watch. I first caught the lakorn almost 3 years ago when P’Fia blogged about it  but somehow my review was never completed. Too lazy or too distracted by other dramas I can’t recall but now I’m finally writing about it after my re-watch! It appears that between my first and second watch, NRS still has not been subbed in English (I watched with Chinese subs) which is a pity because it’s a lakorn that will keep you smiling all the way.

Namfon Patcharin plays twins Ploylada and Praechompoo who were separated at birth when their Aunt Soy took Prae away from their mother through trickery. With twin lakorns you somehow gotta give them disparate personalities whether they grew up together or not (refer to Exhibit (A) Fai Chon Saeng) so Ploy grows up to be a spit-fire who gives as good – or even more – as she gets whereas Prae is thorough lady. Their lives eventually cross and hijinks ensue. I’ll be lazy and point you over to P’Fia’s post for more details on the story. :p

Continue reading

Kammathep Ork Suek (Battle of Love)

9 Jul

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Wow, after my very long lakorn drought I finished Kammathep Ork Suek in a day and half! This is part 2 of the Cupid Series and I actually started off watching Sorn Ruk Kammethep after reading P’Fia’s review but another character Hom caught my eye with her cheerful and slightly ditzy personality plus she looked really familiar though I couldn’t place her right off the bat. Ended up googling for her part in the series and turns out she’s Cris Horwang from Bangkok Traffic Love Story. It’s funny to see her and Ken T reunite on screen after all these years though this time as boss/staff instead of a couple. 

Peem (Ken T) is the boss of Cupid Hut, a match making agency and has offered THB1 million as reward for his group of female staff if they get themselves a boyfriend as he theories that they can be better match makers if they have actually experienced love themselves. Hunsa (Toey) is the first one of the lot to snag herself a boyfriend, a very rich one at that in form of hotel owner Tim (Boy Pakorn) which causes Hom (Cris Horwang) even more stress/motivation to find one of similar caliber. Unfortunately… the only constant male presence in her life is her taxi driver Pee (Punjan Kawin) who has been driving her to and from work since he saved her 3 years ago. Hom had gotten drunk at her university gathering and her university crush had brought her to his house and tried to be funny before she regain consciousness and escaped in panic with only her belongings and a towel to preserve her modesty. Pee’s taxi happened to be parked at the condo and saved her from the nasty guy. In the course of their escape and subsequent interaction, they realise they are both big movie fans and have their own ‘language’ in the form of movie quotes. There begins their driver/passenger relationship which has evolved into an easy friendship over the years.  Continue reading

Bare it all ?

22 Oct

Hey guys, I’m back… from Iceland! What’s the first thing you’d think of when I say ‘Iceland’? Northern lights I bet, and the Blue Lagoon is probably a close second. When I did a bit of googling prior to the trip (not much cos my amazinggggg friend pretty much planned the whole thing, I just showed up with my luggage), I came across a blog with a section on Blue Lagoon. It said that everyone had to shower naked in an open shower area, in the respective male/female bathrooms of course, before you put on your swim wear to enter the Blue Lagoon. There were many comments expressing dismay at this arrangement and wondering why there couldn’t be stalls/curtains set up to protect the individual’s modesty. I can’t remember when that blog was written, but stalls have actually been set up at the Blue Lagoon bathrooms during my visit last week – likely to cater to tourists – so for anyone who’s uncomfortable with the previous arrangement, you can breathe easy if you’re planning a trip there soon. I’ll talk more about my experience there later, but most people I’ve chatted with on this topic were also uncomfortable with the thought of baring it all in front of others. Personally it’s not an issue for me as I’ve been conditioned by my multiple trips to onsens (hot springs) in Japan where you don’t just shower naked in a public bath area, but you’re supposed to remain unclothed in the (gender separated) onsen itself. All those travel hosts on TV you see wrapped in a towel? That’s just so the programme can be broadcasted. I had my awkward moments on my first onesen experience but with more onsen trips, I literally became more comfortable in and with my own skin. I can’t speak for the male population, but as woman I have so many insecurities about my body: better complexion, tauter skin, longer legs, flatter tummy, smaller waist … the list can go on forever. In the onsen there’s nowhere to hide all these imperfections and… it’s ok. The Japanese are so natural and blase about it that it didn’t take too long for me to get used to it. No one’s gawking or judging, just there to have a relaxing time. Onsen trips don’t magically make my insecurities go away, but I learnt to not be scared of facing our own bodies. What’s your take on this?

Myvatn Nature Bath

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We drove round Iceland and first checked out Myvatn Nature Bath in the northern region. We went around late afternoon and you can see from the picture it’s not crowded. It has 2 changing rooms, with the first one connected to the main building you enter in and the second one outside. We decided to head to the second one as there were quite a few people using the benches of the first and it proved to be a good decision because there was only one other lady using the second changing room. It’s fairly spacious with racks for shoes, lockers for your belonging, couple of toilet cubicles and a main shower area. The shower area is an open square section with rows of shower heads and a poster at the side circling the areas you’re supposed to clean before entering the bath. Shower foam dispensers are attached to the walls as well so you don’t have to bring your own. So yes, for Myvatn there’s no hiding. Though if you had the whole place to yourself and your friends (the lady left very soon) like I did, technically you can get away with not stripping but I think it’s only fair to respect the rules of the place you’re visiting. Please clean yourself thoroughly!

Myvatn has two big pools, one warmer and one cooler, and a large bathtub size section (at the side outside of this pic) with water temperate at 41 deg C. The water temperate is not very constant in the warmer pool, I can feel hotter or colder currents at different parts of the pool, so somehow I ended up feeling cold sometimes? We ran over to the cooler pool to snap some pictures and expected to freeze, but once my body got used to the water temperature I felt better actually since the water temperature is more constant. Btw it’s not cold water, just not as warm as the other pool. The view there was absolutely lovely and I love my time at Myvatn. A very relaxing and peaceful time!

Prices & hours for Myvatn

Blue Lagoon

No pics but I’m sure you can refer to Google. :p Due to the large number of visitors, you must pre-book your tickets to Blue Lagoon on their website. When I was there I did see a separate queue line for people to inquire about ticket availability that day but I also saw a couple in front of me being turned away as they did not pre-book tickets.  There are ongoing renovations to expand the place with a luxury hotel so I could see cranes in the background but no construction noise actually interrupted the experience. The facilities look really new, I guess they were recently upgraded as well. The shower section has cubicles with doors (without locks) and each locker section also one changing room (with locks). There are also vanity tables with hairdryers outside the locker sections so facilities definitely on point. There were a lot of people, in the changing room, in the lagoon. The Blue Lagoon is fairly big and since the number of people coming in are controlled by the booking system, it never gets to the point where you need to compete with people for space in the lagoon, but you know this is a tourist spot for sure. But well, I’m part of the tourist group eh? The water temperate is fairly even, if I remember correctly the water is at 38 deg C, but it got too warm for me after a while I had to periodically stand up at the shallow parts to put my torso above water to cool down. We left around 8pm and even then many people were still coming in, quite a few in suits! As the Blue Lagoon is located near the airport, it’s probably an ideal spot for those who only have a short time in Iceland to pop by and enjoy.

Ok, that’s all from me today! I’m not planning to turn this into a travel blog, but if you have any questions about my travels or have travel stories to share, feel free to leave a comment!