Paradise Diversion

24 Nov

I’m almost done watching Sawan Biang for the third time and I’m still amazed at how good this lakorn it. The lakorns I watch are limited to those that have been subbed (thank you all subbers btw!) but among the approximately 15 lakorns I’ve watched so far, I would rate this as the best in terms of script and acting.

It’s strange how I didn’t think highly of SB when I first caught it in the initial stages of my lakorn-watching but fortunately Oum Rak got me loving the KA pairing and it led me to re-watch SB much later and it totally changed my mind about this lakorn. The script is tight with fantastic dialogue and when matched with great actors like Ken/Ann, the sparks can’t stop flying. Ah, the dialogue. It’s the only drama where the dialogue really stood out for me because it’s not just the main leads that get good lines but almost everyone has some pretty darn classic lines that actually don’t sound cheesy! (You know how sometimes the stuff people spout in dramas is so ridiculous you roll your eyes ‘cos no one speaks like that in real life?) I especially love the dialogue when Kawee crosses verbal swords with Leela/his dad/Narin, them going back and forth and the play on words … it’s brilliant, you gotta see it for yourself. And this is only based on the subbed dialogue… I imagine it’ll be even better if I understood Thai!

I usually have a thing or two to pick with the scriptwriters but I’m not complaining for SB. They managed to develop a multifaceted character like Kawee whom the audience is able to sympathize with and love despite his many flaws and for that they can be considered successful. The rest of the characters were also well developed and not just cardboard villains or extremely weepy/aggressive nang’eks. There will always be room for improvement but SB is a job-well done in my books. As for the use of rape in SB and Thai lakorns in general, I don’t agree with it (and have already ranted on this topic) but it’s just how it is… in a separate category by itself, farrrr removed from reality.

As well-written as the script was, it would have come to naught had the roles been handed to lesser actors because Kawee/Narin/Leela were not easy characters to portray. Kudos to Ken/Ann for their incredibly layered performance that managed to bring out the nuances of their characters. (imho, Kawee is Ken’s best role to date and Narin ties with Alin for Ann’s best role) I’m not good enough with words to describe their great acting, so if you have yet to catch Ken/Ann in action, it’s time to get started on any of their larkorns!

SB is a pretty intense drama (not to mention the 4 R scenes. you’ve been warned.) and it may not be everyone’s cup of tea … but do give it a shot, who knows, you might fall in love with it like I did. 😉

— — — — — — —
Some thoughts that I wrote on my 2nd watch of SB but I didn’t have the stamina to continue writing episode by episode thoughts, so it’s been left sitting on my PC for the past year. Tagging it on this post!

The plot itself may be farfetched but the raw emotions conveyed and the very real lessons taught make SB such an engaging drama. Around episode 7 when everything starts unraveling, it’s sad to see how much hurt has been passed around because Kawee and Leela were so steeped in their perceived misfortunes. The thing about human interaction is, people’s minds can’t be read. You interpret a person’s feelings by their words and actions, and you respond to it. Then that person responds to you, and the cycle continues. But when hurt and hate is introduced, the negative emotions get multiplied as things play out and it won’t stop until someone is willing to make some sacrifices because of love. As contrive as it sounds, it’s true. Because of love, one will be willing to put down pride, status, comfort or whatever and take the first step towards reconciliation. Because of love, you’d be willing to say what you mean, say I’m sorry, I was wrong, I love you, and not hold it back for fear of appearing weak or to protect your pride (seriously, that’s how misunderstandings happen).
Because of love, you will let the hurt stop at you instead of retaliating or taking it out on others. Because TRUE love is not selfish, you’ll stop thinking ME ME ME ME, and frankly, that’s how most of the characters in SB are acting. They aren’t evil psychopaths (even though Kawee sure acted like one), they are just sad selfish people.

It’s hard not to feel sorry for Kawee when he breaks down in front of his dad’s potrait. Beneath the tough exterior, Kawee really is just a kid begging to be loved by his father. When he said “I want you to care for me”, I immediately thought of Leela saying to Kawee “All I want is for you to look at me, no matter what kind of status” but the big difference here is, Kawee was not obligated to love Leela back as a woman and Leela should have known when to let go. In Kawee’s case, he had been rejected by his own father and it’s just terribly sad to see him asking for a love that should have been given naturally.

3 Responses to “Paradise Diversion”

  1. jamieguo48 December 7, 2010 at 8:11 AM #

    I think why it keeps you fascinated and its so believeable despite its farfetched plot is the performances by Ken and Ann. The whole cast really does it job here. Have to agree with you on all points. I just wish I had a better idea of who’s responsible for the script and dialogue so I could follow directors/screenwriters more, you know what I mean?

    I do that for other countries dramas, like Korea, and Taiwan like I follow the Hong sisters, and I like Winnie’s dramas in Taiwan. But there seems to be little info on Thailand screenwriters and directors. Too bad.

    Another drama I felt was pretty good in terms of plotting and dialogue has to be Rahut Rissaya.

    • J December 7, 2010 at 10:13 AM #

      I read somewhere that SB is based on a novel and the one that we watched is already the 3rd remake so the scriptwriters could probably do a better job of fine-tuning the details and iron out any problems the previous versions had. Still, they did a pretty darn good job! I never notice the directors of dramas.. haaa, but I actually remember the director of SB, Ampaiporn Jitmaingong or P’Aew as Ken/Ann always call her. If I’m not wrong, she directed all of Ken/Ann’s lakorns except Rang Ngao.

  2. rainruma September 17, 2014 at 8:05 AM #

    years after this article was written…but i must reply….
    You made some wonderful observations and I totally agree w/ you… what makes SB Great is the SCRIPT ….
    I just rewatched it for the 3rd time and I love it more each time…
    Because it’s like a great piece of literature that is layered and can be understood on several levels… each time i watch I pick up something new b/c every word that is said is there for a reason !!! …. and w/ foreshadowing and repetitive themes…etc…

    I feel I walk away completely understanding the psyche of each character ….. I understand the motivation behind every action…
    Plus , it is the script that makes us like Kawee…. in RL , a person like Kawee is not likely to change … But the script explained Kawee’s Slow Road to Redemption … it took him lots of tries and each step led him to understand one of the Errors in his thinking …
    until he finally learned how to sympathize , how to forgive , how to mature and come to terms w/ all his past , and how to love … it was all Due to Love… she was all he wanted in this world …and so , that’s when he was willing to let go of his pride and admit mistakes and it motivated him to learn in order to have her love him back…
    Also… the script explained Anne’s pain , which in other lakorns is only a shallow emotion after such abuse… but Not in SB … they did a GREAT JOB !!!
    Ken and Anne gave a PERFECT performance !!!

    thank you for writing about this… I feel lots of people just get offended by Kawee and don’t give SB the credit it deserves !

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