Monday, June 15, 2020

O-Negative (a beloved member of our cast gets married)

View of Bangkok's skyline from Kwan's condo
Episode 21 of the Thai TV show O-Negative (Episode 20 ) starts with us back at Kwan's apartment where she is calling Art into her bedroom. He's nervous about what her intentions might be, but it turns out that she just wants him to get a case of camera lenses from an upper shelf. She grabs a camera and a tripod and leads him up to the roof of her condo.

There is a nice view of Bangkok's skyline from the roof. Kwan loans Art her camera and tells him to set up the tripod and start taking pictures. As he does that they have a conversation about how much they both like Bangkok. They also talk a bit about his home town of Kanchanaburi, how the city lights obscure the stars, and how beauty can be observed anywhere if you look for it.

The next day Chompoo is at a copy machine and, as usual, not doing much of anything. She sees  Kit ands Prim together so she jumps onto O Group chat to suggest they all get together at Go's that night. She wants to gossip about Prim, plus she wants to know the details on the car washing incident that caused Peun and Foon to quit their internships.

Meanwhile Art and Kwan are in the darkroom developing pictures. She tells him she's put the money for his night time photos in an envelope for him. Wait, aren't they just now developing those photos? Already they've been paid by somebody for them? Anyway, he tries to turn her offer of money down by saying he is just an intern and learning is a good enough payment. She insists, telling him she has already published them in a book (huh?). Art agrees to take the money, but he says he wants to treat her to dinner with his first pay check. She asks, "is this a date?" Art looks embarrassed.

Art arriving with Kwan gets Foon and Chompoo's attention
We jump to Go's bar that night. Chompoo, Foon and Peun are waiting for Art and Prim. When Art arrives with Kwan the two girl's perk up with interest over that development. Art introduces her and then, conveniently for Chompoo and Foon, she then goes to talk to Go. This gives them the opening to grill Art about who she is and why she is with him.

Chompoo teases him that he's now chasing older women. Art says to behave herself, that Kwan is his boss. He then asks about Foon and Peun's situation. Foon says they'll wait until Prim gets there so they don't have to repeat themselves. Art is surprised that Prim didn't come with Chompoo. Chompoo, looking miffed, tells him Prim doesn't come with her anymore.

At that moment, we hear a motorcycle arriving. Chompoo announces, "There she is." Prim comes into the bar with Kit. She introduces him, but he was just dropping her off and has to leave.The look on Art and Peun's faces is priceless. Art looks shocked and Peun, who normally looks like he just got hit over the head with a 2x4, looks even more dazed than usual. Meanwhile Chompoo and Foon are grilling Prim as to whether she has feeling for him or not. She says no, but they don't believe her.

That's pretty much the same look Peun has given her multiple times
They then ask Foon and Peun about what happened that caused them to quit their intern jobs.  She explains how the director and his crew were perverts who creeped her out. That they dressed her up in a skimpy outfit, made her stand next to a car and squirted water on her.

I suspect the next little bit of dialog went over my head. Chompoo asks, "Peun, what did you do?" Peun insinuates he did nothing (as much as I mock him he did intercede for Foon), saying that he was an intern and that he couldn't punch somebody as lofty as the director. Chompoo replies, "No, but of I was treated like Foon, Go would definitely protect me." Go smiles and nods his head to that remark.

In Asian dramas, at least in the Korean and Chinese ones I've watched, the notion of couples protecting each other is very important. The characters will explicitly promise to protect each other, and there are usually scenes -- for example a guy pulling the girl out of the path of traffic, or a girl jumping in front of a guy to keep him from being splashed -- that reinforce that they are in fact protecting each other. For Peun to so clearly deny actually being able to protect Foon is interesting from that light. We'll see if it goes anywhere.

Peun then worries that If they don't get another internship they may fall behind in school by a year. Foon reminds him that her father, who we may recall is wealthy, can pull strings for them. If worse comes to worse he can even arrange for them to pass the year without interning at all.

Art gets up and rejoins Kwan, who's been sitting at the bar talking to Go. She and Go had been talking about Professor Buddy. She tells Art that when she was a student she had a crush on the Professor, but she never told him. Art, who's watching Prim out of the corner of his eyes, wonders why Kwan never confessed her feeling to Professor Buddy. She tells him it all worked out, because now she and Professor Buddy are good friends.

Art is absorbing that as he gawks at Prim wistfully. She's taking to Chompoo. who apparently has knocked back more than a few drinks, because soon Chompoo turns into a maudlin, slobbering drunk. Chompoo tears up and starts blubbering to them, much to their amusement, that she loves them all.

We cut to a scene showing Chompoo writing in her diary about what great friends they are. We see the passage of time as Art give Kwan a hair tie, Kit gives Prim a sticky note with a heart on it, Peun apparently got another internship because we see him painting a dummy's head blue and Foon as well, who is body painting some guy's back.

We next see Foon talking to her dad. He tells her Ong-art is coming to town and wonders if she can meet him for dinner. She says she would rather not and then runs off before he can ask her anything else. That night she tells Prim she is tired of Ong-art. Prim advises her to tell him that to his face.

Ong-art has some 'splaining to do
Ong-art arrives at the airport. It looks like Foon runs up and hugs him, but when she turns and we see that she is another girl. Oh Ong-art, you rascal. Foon then walks up and when Ong-art sees her he has an entertaining 'oh, shit' look on his face. He tries to make an excuse to Foon as the girl asks him, "who's this bitch?" Foon objects to being called a bitch to which the girl replies, "Why are you messing with my husband, whore?"

Husband? Oh Ong-art, you naughty, naughty boy.

Ong-art continues to try to explain, although it is a bit hard to see how he can explain away a wife. Foon tells him to put a cork in it, and then she apologizes to the girl, saying that she didn't know her boyfriend was married. Ong-art continues to try to weasel his way out of this mess which just gets him slapped by Foon and his wife furious. Being the swell guy that he is, Ong-art just screams at her to shut up and chases after Foon.

We next see Foon in a familiar setting for her -- sobbing her eyes out in her car. After a bit she calls up Peun. We next see her crying and guzzling beer as she sits along side her car with Peun. She's mainly upset and angry that he was two-timing her before she could dump him. He had chased after her in the airport and tried to tell her his wife was just some girl he studied with when he was overseas. No offense Ong-art, but you're a worse liar than either Foon or Peun is, and that's saying something.

She complains that all men are jerks. If she would modify that to all men I date are jerks it would be hard to argue with her. She then says it was karma, that what she did -- I assume she means hopping in the sack with Peun -- has came back to bite her. She starts pestering Peun to tell her if he loves her. Fortunately for him, that doesn't go on too long before she passes out.

Peun takes her to her house where Prim is waiting to help Foon get to her room. Foon is drunk and cursing Ong-art for being a jerk. Prim, who's heard what happened to her, tells Foon that two-timers like him aren't worth being with. Foon asks Prim if Peun used to hit on her. Prim says yes, but then tells Foon she stopped it because she thought Peun was cheating on her. Drunken Foon is giggling by this point. She tells Prim that she knows who Peun was cheating with, that he was cheating with her.

Well, you told the truth - that's pretty weird for you
The next morning Prim is sitting in a chair looking monumentally pissed-off when Foon wakes up. Foon washes up and then tells Prim about what happened to her with Ong-art the night before. Prim is rather terse with her. Foon knows something is wrong and asks if she said something last night when she was drunk. Prim starts to answer, and then shakes her head no.

Foon knows something is wrong and keep pressing Prim about what's upsetting her. Finally Prim tells her what she said about Peun. If you guessed that Foon tries to lie her way out of her drunken confession give yourself a gold star. Foon tries to claim that Prim must have misheard, besides she was babbling drunken nonsense the night before. Prim clearly doesn't buy any of that malarkey.

Later in the day Prim is at her intern job. She's lost in thought when Kit comes up and starts flirting with her as usual. She asks him to please stop teasing her, that it is distracting. He's confused, thinking that she is mad at him for some reason. He keeps flirting, although in a much more low key manner, until Ms. Duang comes and asks him to stop as well, pointing out that Prim is the daughter of her friend. Daughter of a friend? Wasn't Prim her niece a while back? Whatever.

Peun and Foon are at their new internship when Peun gets a call from Prim. Needless to say Foon looks nervous as Peun agrees to meet Prim later because she has something she wants to talk to him about.

That's asking a lot of Peun
Peun is waiting for her in a cafeteria. Prepackaged food is moving on a conveyor belt. He tries to act normal, but quickly sees she's in no mood for niceties. She bluntly asks him if he used to go out with Foon. He has his usual stupid look on his face and he asks her who told her that, but she brushes his question aside and asks him again if he had a relationship with Foon. Seeing that he has no out he says yes.

Prim then asks him when. He tries a vague answer but Prim asks him, "When? Before, after, or while you're seeing me?" Again he has no choice but to tell the truth. Prim looks genuinely hurt, but he continues to try to worm his way out of his mess. He tells her he broke it off with Foon. She asks him, "Why, Peun? Did you get caught? Was she upset that you were seeing me?" Prim pretty much hit the nail on the head with those questions.

He tries to play the 'I have feelings for you' card and tells her he likes her, and her alone, a lot. She's having none of it. She tells him not to even go  there, and that at best they can just be friends. He continues to try to grovel his way into her good graces, but she just gets more and more disgusted with him. He even tries the dramatic Asian wrist grab trope, but that gets her even madder and she tells him to knock it off before she ends up hating him.

Time passes. O Group all successfully complete their internships. We join them in the auditorium watching yet another year's hazing. They are discussing what they are going to do for a senior thesis. They're kicking around ideas when Foon announces that she wants to do body painting. Unsurprisingly the body she wants to paint is Peun's. He sort of resists, but soon gives in and agrees to be her model.

Art meets with Kwan who has something to tell him. She has a friend in Paris who is looking for a photography assistant and she tells Art that she suggested him for the position. He is hesitant because Paris is so far away and he doesn't speak French. However, he tells her he will consider the offer.

Before modeling for Foon Peun calls Prim up and asks her if she has a problem with that. If she does he'll cancel. She tells him that she doesn't care what he does. He asks her if she's still mad at him. She says not really, although it is obvious that she is acting cold towards him. Regardless, he oddly reads this as a good sign and smiles as he gazes at the drawing of her that Art did. I'm beginning to wonder if it hurt much when Peun's mom dropped him on his head as a kid.

An artistic masterpiece is about to be born
I suspect Foon's only hope is grade inflation
He shows up to his modeling session at Foon's house. Her parents are working and Prim is out buying supplies for her thesis project. Peun acts shy when it comes time for him to take his shirt off, but Foon reminds him they have seen each other naked already. He takes his shirt of and she starts slopping paint on him.

Prim comes back from her shopping trip. After some small talk, Foon asks Prim if she would fill in an area on Peun's shoulder while she washes her brushes and takes a brief break. Prim says sure. Foon, are you sure that's a good idea? You are in the midst of a soap opera after all.

At any rate Foon takes over the painting duties. Peun is looking at her lovingly when he suddenly pulls down the hand she's painting with, leans in, and kisses her.

[Episode 22]

Once again, I doubt that Peun has thought things through

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