14 February 2015

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Ngao Jai (Shadows of the Heart) - Episode 2 (A ScruffCap)

Posted by becca_boo on February 14, 2015
becca: We're back! Let's do this!
Shuk: I'm ready! But I have to warn everybody: be prepared for some rants and snarks from me, because this episode made me angry on more than one occasion!
We'll get through this one and move on to the next one, okay? Let's go!
Walk this way.

Be prepared...
Episode 2

As promised, Wheeze's Dad, who I'm just going to call Uncle from now on, goes to see May and her Mom and asks her to marry Wheeze. To say that they're appalled is a bit of an understatement. Uncle pleads with May to marry Wheeze and save his life - he'll give her half of Wheeze's inheritance if she agrees. Mom turns him down flat, telling him that they're not that greedy and that he's not welcome in this house.
Good for you, Mom!  I can't even believe he would go the "I'll Purchase Your Daughter" routine.  I understand his love for this weak son, but this is the wrong way to go about things.
 
May feels bad, though, and promises to visit Wheeze in the hospital. He is her friend, after all.

So she goes to see Wheeze, who instantly perks up at the sight of her. He asks her to marry him, but she smiles and says she wants to be just friends. He turns away and struggles to hold back his tears as he thanks her for visiting and then asks her leave. She feels awful, but since he won't talk to her, she's forced to leave, passing Uncle in the hallway. When he goes back into the room, Wheeze is struggling to breathe, and the doctor rushes in to take over.
For somebody with lung trouble, I had to chuckle at his speech: "Maythankyouforcomingtothehospitalandseeingme,willyoumarrymeeee?" How much lung power did that take? She was right to turn him down, but he shouldn't have acted like an ass, That certainly doesn't make her want to help him further, little Whiny McWhinyson.
Later, Uncle meets with… Scruff's mom? Oh boy. He tells her about Wheeze's current condition, then takes her to see Wheeze, who is still unconscious. She cries, unable to even bring herself to hold his hand. And now we finally get the scoop on how the boys were separated: when Mom gave birth to the twins, she found out that Wheeze had a weak heart and despaired because he would need treatment for the rest of her life, but she had no money. So Mean Uncle offered to raise him as his own, while Mom kept Scruff.
I can't really call Uncle mean.  Completely tunnel-vision, yes. To the rest of the world, the sun does not rise nor set on Watit's butt. But, clearly, he had a good heart to take him in, in the first place. But somewhere down the line, his disease became the center of both of their existences, and that is very unhealthy for both of them.
Yes, I agree with you. I was mad at Uncle when I wrote that, though, and I forgot to delete, heh.

In the present, the two cry together, and Uncle tells her that Wheeze went into shock because May rejected him. Mom wants to plead with her, but Uncle says its no use. Still, he promises that he'll find a way to save Wheeze.
 
Scruff hears that a car came and took Mom, but when he asks Bestie Wat about it, he doesn't know anything. He's worried because she's not answering her phone.

When she gets back, though, she just says that she was visiting a friend in Chiangmai and won't offer any more information. The kids all worry that she's acting strange.
I love their close relationship! I hope it doesn't splinter once the twin comes to life. [worried look]

That night, Scruff finds her on her own and reminds her that she can tell him if anything is wrong. They're only a little family of three, and he wants them to be happy. Mom muses that there are three: her, him, and one younger sibling. Scruff smiles, saying that they raised Rin, so even he sometimes forgets she's Aunt Roong's daughter. Mom says a mother never forgets how many children she has.
I'm going to do a tiny rant here.  In a lot of lakorns, a 'non-blooded' child is often  overlooked while a genetically-related child can do no wrong even before evidence to the contrary.  I wonder if consanguinity is a societal thing; if so, it must be hard of orphanages in Thailand to place children. If Mom raised Rin, then she has three children (or 2 1/2 really), so dismissing the girl over the little-known twin really bothers me.
She's talking about Wheeze, of course, but Scruff doesn't catch on. He asks if she remembers how happy he was when they took her sister's daughter: he'd always been jealous of the other kids and wanted a younger sibling of his own to take care of. Mom blinks back tears and says she's happy he loves his little sister. Scruff continues to worry about her but remains silent.
Scruff has the right idea: a sister of the heart is just as important as a womb-sharer.  Okay, rant over.
Good rant, unni. I'm with you 100%.

Meanwhile, May is feeling sorry for Wheeze. Flower Boy Mai wonders if maybe she's started to like him back, but she says no. Their personalities don't match at all. She thinks back to their school days, when he other boys would try to get close to her and tease him, and he'd get possessive and lose his temper. Ever since then, she's disliked his personality, so she can never give him more than friendship.
I think maybe she's too nice to tell him to knock it off, which perpetuated the whole thing. I might have whacked him with my racket, if it was me.
Flower Boy figures he made the right choice in rooting for Goon, then, but May corrects him: the more the cousins fight each other, the more determined she is not to love anyone. Because they're the only two guys in the world, apparently. *rolling eyes*
The next day, Flower Boy Mai and Flower Girl Rin meet again at school, when they present flowers to their teachers. They bicker all the way across the stage, and, ha, their teacher finally has to ask if they're going to keep fighting or give him the flowers already. Pfft.
The bickering is cute though, kind of like punching a guy to show him you like him.  Wait, doesn't everyone do that?
Wheeze is awake but refuses to eat or talk to anyone. He just lies there crying, even when his dad pleads with him to fight for his life.
[Yawn] There's always a feeding tube and a psychiatrist.

Uncle goes back to beg Mom for May's hand, but Mom stands firm: she won't force her daughter. Uncle cries that May is the only one who can save Wheeze, who has completely given up. Mom sympathizes with him - every parent loves their child - but still, she can't bear to see her daughter suffer with someone she doesn't love. End of conversation.

After the ceremony, Flower Boy and Flower Girl keep running into each other, and although she deliberately needles him, he tries to ignore her, saying that only bad things happen when they meet. However, when some guys start bothering Flower Girl, he steps in to play the part of her friend, looking out for her. Aww, you're a good guy, Flower Boy.
His momma raised good kids.  And cute ones, too!
The guys almost get into a fight, but it's broken up when a cop sees them. Flower Boy leaves, and Flower Girl chases after him. But instead of thanking him, she just needles him more. He's says trouble always follows when he sees her, and her friends agree that she made the situation worse just now, which… I'm not sure I understand. It doesn't seem like those jerks would have left her alone if she'd been nicer to them.
If she had walked past without saying a word to them, it might have been better.  But she kept responding to their questions and jibes.  I think that's what they meant.

But she definitely was wrong to keep needling Flower Boy, which leads her friends to ask (not for the first time)… does she like him? To which she's like, would I like a guy like that, with fair skin, a prominent nose, big eyes, dark eyebrows, and pink lips? Pfft. Busted.
I believe that's called The Specifically Specific Denial. 
So she chases after him again, this time to make nice. Unfortunately, those annoying guys from early find them again, and this time, a fight really does break out, and it gets ugly fast. While the girls run to get help, the boys get chased all through the streets by the bad guys. When one guy pulls a gun and aims at Flower Boy's friend, Flower Boy grabs him, and as they both try to wrest the gun away from each other, it goes off. Bad Guy falls to the ground, and Flower Boy stands over him, horrified.
Where are the security guards and CCTV?  These thugs are obviously comfortable with harassing people at the park. And Flower Boy was defending himself and preventing a potential murder.  And why are people just standing still, especially when the chaos has been going on for some time?  Can't one of them dial 119??
May and Tippy are chatting in the garden, when they hear a scream from the house: Mom's gotten the call that Flower Boy has been arrested.
WTF??

At the station, Flower Girl has given her statement and now tries to ask what will happen to Flower Boy, but the officer firmly tells her she should go home. Before she goes, she tries to talk to Flower Boy, but he barely even looks at her. Aww. Her friends try to comfort her, but she feels awful.

Flower Boy's family arrive, along with Goon. WHY IS HE HERE. BAH. Bad Guy's parents come in right on their heels, yelling and kicking up a fuss. Their son may never walk again, and they demand 20 million Baht ($613,431 / € 536,722) to cover medical expenses. If they don't get it, they won't settle, and Flower Boy will go to jail.
I don't get it. Dirtbag brings a deadly weapon to a family park, assaults someone by mob violence, and attempts maiming/murder. Karma puts him in a wheelchair for life, and the victim has to pay? Dirtbag should be handcuffed to his hospital bed until such time as he can be incarcerated. And how do you justify an arbitrary value of what he's worth? I think he's only valued around 6 baht since he's a criminal, a bully, and a sexual harassment offender. Not to mention a waste of oxygen.
*nodding furiously* Tell 'em, Shuk.
 
Flower Boy is put in a holding cell, while Mom sobs and begs. Soon the whole family is in tears, and May tells him to hold on a little longer - she'll get him out. The officer in charge kicks them all outs, and Flower Boy falls to his knees, crying.
Without any investigation of the facts of the incident, one young man is indicted and jailed, while all the gauge-earringed thugs walk (or wheel) away to harass another day. This is a heck of a justice system you have there, Thailand.
Mom and May start trying to figure out how they can raise the money, and May suggest selling their property. That would only get them seven or eight million Baht, though, and maybe not even in time to help Flower Boy. Goon offers his savings and says he'll borrow the rest from Uncle - he's the only one who can help them.
Poor Koon. May's family treats him more warmly than his own, but he doesn't really have any way to help them.

When he asks Uncle for the money, though, he doesn't say why he needs it, so Uncle guesses he's in trouble, if he needs 20 million so quickly. Uncle seems willing to give the money, if the reason is good enough, but Goon refuses to tell him and vows to raise the money on his own. Idjit.
Not really, he knows what his uncle with do with the knowledge.  Pretty much exactly what he does.
I know… but I also find myself thinking that he knows he can't do this without Uncle, and wouldn't it be better to just tell him and try to keep him in check than to hide it and lose the chance to fight while Uncle goes behind his back?
That's true.  But based on the verbal arguments between the two of them, I'm pretty sure he's is under the (not wrong) impression that Uncle doesn't listen to him, especially when it comes to Wheeze. So Goon probably couldn't stop his uncle even if he wanted to.  The man is a blind bulldozer when it comes to the Emphysema Drama Queen of 2558.

Uncle summons Tippy (who also works for him) and gets the whole story. The gears start turning, and he tells her not to tell Goon that she told him.
Back at the station, Flower Boy gets excited when he hears that he has a visitor, but instead of Mom and May, he's met by Flower Girl. And, aww, she's so worried about him and apologetic, but he won't even talk to her. Sad face.
Well, I can't exactly blame him.

Naturally, she's still feeling down when she gets home, and good brother Scruff sits next to her and listens. She knows Flower Boy is blaming her - she blames herself, too, and she worries that he'll go to prison. Scruff reminds her that she didn't intend for this to happen, either, but sometimes bad things happen that they can't control. Mom adds that the important thing now is how she resolves the issue, so even if it's hard, she should do her best to make things right. This is how she can pay back Flower Boy for helping her. Aw, I love this family so much.
Yeah, but how about contact Flower Boy's family and asking how they can help?  Bemoaning the facts to your P'Scruff doesn't help OR payback the person behind bars.
Mom and May have a Realtor look at their property - including the house, garden, and store - but her estimate of what they can get for it all is nowhere near 20 million Baht. They cry again.

Goon goes to see a friend of his, who is a manager at a bank, but his friend can't approve a loan for him right away - getting a loan takes time and it would have to be approved by several other teams. He can't speed it up, even for a friend, and other banks will say the same thing. Goon, who apparently cannot understand such logic, leaves in a huff.
No Thai chaebol = No action. Also, as a side note, I track Eiffel Tower sightings among all my Asian drama watchings, and I've noticed that among Thai dramas, they sure love pictures and sculptures of horses, in this case, at the bank. Not that I want to distract our lovely squeeglets. 

So he makes a deal to sell his motorcycle, but that doesn't even raise 1 million.
But I like him for trying with the only resource he has.

At the police station, one of the other guys in the holding cell tries to make a move on Flower Boy, then he and his buddy starts beating Flower Boy when he rejects him. The guard has to take them to another cell, leaving Flower Boy alone at least but even more battered than before.
The Tango of Pain just keeps getting better and better for our battered boy.
 
May finds Mom crying as she works in the garden and tries to tell her to rest, but Mom says she can't - she needs to raise every cent that she can, to help Flower Boy. Just then, she gets a call from Uncle, and her jaw drops. He's going to help.
Let's wait for the shoe that we already know is in the air....

The next day, Uncle goes to see Wheeze and tells him he has great news. Wheeze is still pouting, but he brightens up as soon as May walks in. She looks very grave and can barely get the words out, but she tells him that she will marry him. [The shoe falls with an audible thump] Arrgh! You people! Wheeze is over the moon with joy, and I'm sitting here clucking my tongue. This is bad! Don't do it May!
The familiy is trapped, her mom is crying, her baby brother is stuck  in a steel cage, and she makes the only decision she can. But by golly, that pre-nuptial had better include more than that stupid Thug Payment!!!
While Wheeze thanks May over and over, clinging to her with those sweaty hands (you know they are) of his, Uncle tells him that he should concentrate on his health now. They can marry after he recovers. Wheeze smiles, saying he's already better! Yep. We knew he was a drama queen.
I throw up a little in my mouth, and in my mind, Wheeze is Little Toad, and Uncle is Big Toad.
Naree isn't so happy when she hears that Wheeze is coming home already, but her dad pushes her to go and do whatever she has to in order to marry him. Boo! You are a terrible father!

So they go welcome Wheeze when he returns, and once they're alone, Naree's dad gets Uncle talking about how good Naree is with Wheeze. He says he hopes she can take care of him forever, and Uncle agrees that he wants her to stay, too… even after Wheeze gets married. Hahaha. I love seeing evil dad's frustration.
I love it when any older generation gets thwarted when trying to coerce, force, or control somebody younger. 
 
Bestie Tippy freaks out when she hears what May has done, and May admits that she's not sure if she was right or wrong, but it was the only way to save Flower Boy. Even if marrying for money makes her a bad person, she's willing to do it for her family. Tippy worries about her… and about Goon, who doesn't know yet.
I worry for May, getting trapped with an infantile, useless, brainless husband.

May calls him over that evening to break the news. She thanks him for trying so hard to help her family but says she can't wait anymore. He keeps insisting that he'll get Flower Boy out, but she cries and admits that she's gone to Uncle for help. He pieces the truth together and argues with her, but even as she cries, her mind is made up: this is the only way. She thanks him again, and I feel a twinge of sympathy for the guy.
It really sucks for them both.  Even if May only feels friendship for the guy, we already know that, based on his previous out-of-control jealousy and egotistical egocentric behavior, Watit will be more jailer than husband, and poor May will be forced into a subservient, mentally abusive relationship.

After Episode Extra

View and Toomtam are all smiley and cute, and want you to watch again next week! View promises it will get even more intense! They are adoooorable.
CUTENESS OVERLOAD!!

FINAL THOUGHTS

*sigh* This episode. I don't hate it, but I don't love it either. It's filled with clunky plot maneuvering to get us where we need to go, so it's necessary, but it's not really fun. I want more Scruff! I want to get to the twin-swapping shenanigans! Where are my shenanigans, Show?? Hurry up! Spit spot, chop chop, and get a move on!
Word, little sister.  Like any contract marriage / forced living arrangement, you have to get through the ugly parts that put the characters into that situation (looking at YOU, Full House!).  But I don't like it.  And I don't like the victimization of woman as a plot device.  But we already know that May won't be with Weak Jerk for long, and her current unfettered personality is more than a match for Scruff.  So, I'm taking a deep breath, releasing it along with my irritation, and I'm ready for the cohabitation hijinks.  Please tell me they begin with the next episode!!
Here's a BTS photo from the production! Doesn't he have pretty feet?? 

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