Why Oh-Aew from #IPYTM is My Spirit Guide

“It takes courage…to endure the sharp pains of self-discovery rather than choose to take the dull pain of unconsciousness that would last the rest of our lives”- Marianne Williamson

Subjectively, I should be talking about the BL aspect of this miniseries or how they have metaphorically portrayed the prudent issues affecting the LGBTQ community with a glaring honesty. But today, we are not going to be talking about that. There are people in our life or characters in dramas or movies that leave behind a deep imprint on our body and mind. Somehow they become an inevitable part of our life history and we are forced to draw comparisons, because they represent a phase in our life we aren’t proud of. Or there could be those, who steered us into new directions. For me, OhAew represents both.

Realistically and ideally!

While the prequel “I Told The Sunset About You” solely focuses on main lead Teh’s journey of self discovery and reconciliation, the show exhibits an outward tendency to stroke a brush over major LGBTQ issues- “Coming Out Phase”, “Sexuality Crisis”, “Body Dysphoria”. The drama with its subtle usage of contrast colors and surrounding memorabilia creates a dynamic effect that leaves you riveted and soul drenched. You can’t walk out without feeling the emotions that the main characters embody with their heart and soul. Billkin and PP make a striking couple, their pairing has an undeniable charisma and even better chemistry. Years of working together supposedly gleams the romance which produces a rather euphoric effect. While I rejoiced watching Teh and Oh Aew growing out of their teenage years, adult life isn’t exactly inviting or negotiable. It’s difficult to accept that fraudulent realities often strike a countenance that either leave you emotionally jarred or intellectually wise.

The beauty of this script lies in the freedom it affords to its characters. They are well written, executed with a honesty that touches your soul and leaves you wounded as well as exasperated. In my career as a writer and reviewer, I have supposedly watched and deciphered shows that range from high to low on the quality axis. But “I Promised You The Moon” drew a rather refreshing parallel to my personal life. Oh Aew became my Spirit Guide for quite a few reasons that need to be evacuated closely. We must appreciate the fact that the scriptwriters choose to focus on problems like adulting and relationship constraints rather than the hightailing the romance between their main character’s who are in a “Same-sex relationship”. Yes, Teh and Oh Aew are together, they aren’t confused and are entirely accepting of their sexuality. The show made it obvious in the very first episode that they are both comfortable in their own skin. Consummating is just another step in their relationship. They are like most couples, who are nervous and maybe even anxious about their first time. While the storyline does a pretty good job of establishing their new relationship, adulting is different from teenage years. You have to leave behind your careful attitude, cheerfulness and even parental guidance to sprout new wings. Now, whether those wings are strong enough to support you, depends on your mental strength rather physical.

In the first episode itself, we are reconciled with the visible cracks in Oh Aew’s perspective. Arriving in Bangkok, away from family and friends; Oh Aew is stricken with homesickness. Teh tries his level best to become his comfort zone, but the time lags tear them apart. Oh Aew is a supportive boyfriend and he had rather suffer alone; than drag his boyfriend down the trench. While I appreciated his concern about Teh’s health, I also felt apologetic. Growing up, I spent most of my studying or preparing for scholastic examinations. My entire life revolved around academics or meeting parental expectations. When you are placed at a pedestal, it becomes difficult to step down. When people expect things from you; it could be your parents, relatives or your classmates; peer pressure kicks in and pushes your innermost desires into deep bowels where they either disappear or are simply lost. At that time, I couldn’t muster the courage to assert my opinion. I couldn’t tell my parents or my teachers that I’m NOT ALL AT interested in studying sciences. My overtly creative mind would have preferred joining the Arts Course, where it could have been given a free rein to design or interpret. I love telling stories; that make me feel alive. Although, I’m fulfilling my lost dreams now, I do feel sorry for my sixteen-year-old self. I wish that I had the courage to stand up myself then.

And that makes me appreciate Oh Aew more. Teh and Oh Aew were both tied together by a promise- to become actors in future. It is pretty obvious that the dream majorly belongs to Teh and OhAew just tagged along, because he loves Teh. So, when training sessions exhaust him and he doesn’t feel the zeal that Teh experiences, Oh Aew does self retrospection. In hindsight, it was awful to watch him break down into tears while sitting in the midst of absolute strangers; but the outburst was warranted. Those tears also bought him a close-knit group of friends, so that’s another plus point.

My favorite scene will always be the one where Teh is sitting beside Q and attending his lecture. It’s not a requisite for Oh Aew, he is simply floating around. But he perks up when the Professor starts questioning them about marketing tactics. The fact that he speaks so casually about women health care products speaks volumes about how comfortable Oh Aew is in his own skin. He has no qualms talking about a subject that most men wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole. The impulse leads him to the second most important decision of his life; something that obviously drives a wedge into his life plans with Teh. But he doesn’t give up on this new-found dream, nor is he afraid. Wishful thinking, but Oh Aew doesn’t bow down to relationship constraints and that is definitely praiseworthy. If you are a teenager, please take a consensus of all available options. Parents always mean well, but at times their choices might not reconcile with your abilities. You should aim to become a better version of yourself, rather than set yourself on a path of self-criticism or destructive tendencies. If you are doing something you love, the output is a thousand times better than the alternative. So, spread those wings and fly high into the horizon that you desire!

Friends become an important part of college life, because they help us bear the brunt of difficult decisionmaking. If you have a group of like-minded individuals who understand your predicament; then you are definitely blessed. Oh Aew is blessed as well; because Q and his friends fill a space in his heart that was left bereft by Teh’s absence. Our couple start deviating from their common pathway, when Oh Aew decides to switch to advertising. Although Teh resolutely accepts his decision, OhAew’s deflection doesn’t sit well with him. He questions Oh Aew’s choices and also his friendships. It was recalcitrant to watch Teh impose his insecurities on Oh Aew. Starting from Oh Aew’s beautifully dyed red hair to the tattoo on his wrist, Teh questions everything. While it is difficult for two contrasting characters to stay together; dormant fears lead to toxicity. The fact that Oh Aew doesn’t break down when faced with Teh’s vehement criticism, portrays his mental stability. Something that Teh lacks and has a difficult time accepting. I have been in the same situation; where my friendships were criticized.

“A man and a woman can never be friends”

A rattle belligerent statement that society likes to stamp onto your mind. Be forewarned, this presumption is wrong. Man, woman or an individual belonging to any sexuality can be friends as long as they respect each other’s personal boundaries and you are comfortable with each other. Don’t let prejudices judge your relationship and destroy their foundations. Even though your better halves play a significant role in your life, they have no right to comment on your interpersonal relationships or life choices.

Relationships require a strong foundation of trust and loyalty. Both individuals are equally responsible and your emotional upheaval isn’t a reason for cheating. Jai here reflects Teh’s insecurities that bleed deep. While Oh Aew is finally free of fears that were bringing him down and has supportive friends; Teh’s life hangs in imbalance. His love for Oh Aew forms an invisible barrier that makes it difficult for him to play his assigned role. It is a big deal for Teh, because he is struggling to contain his feelings for Oh Aew while toeing the line with Jai. Jai is manipulative, but only because Teh’s lets him play on his emotions. They are like mirror images; the only difference being that Jai is past and Teh is present. It was especially difficult to watch Teh follow the guideline rules spelled out by Jai, so he could reconcile the sensuality that is required to portray his character. He has sex with Oh Aew not out of desire, but out of compulsion. While Teh is falling down the rabbit hole, OhAew is facing his demons alone. Watching his boyfriend kissing someone else passionately is heartbreaking. Yet, he keeps his emotions under control and gives Teh the benefit of doubt. I understand his predicament. When we love someone unconditionally, we make concessions for their mistakes. We try to empathize with them, because love blinds our vision. It is especially difficult to be in a relationship with a person who manipulates your feelings to his advantage. I have been through the emotional wringer, where my past lover abused my trust and affections. Unlike Teh who is majorly confused, my ex used me as a fishing net to catch more fish in the pond. The fish were obviously my female friends and he ended up destroying one of my closest friendship. The pain was unimaginable and the guilt was even worse. Being in love doesn’t give you the free rein to cheat, because you are emotionally unavailable or detached. If you can’t be honest to your partner, you should have the decency to break off things, before moving to greener pastures. Your partner shouldn’t bear the consequences of your roving eyes.

Oh Aew reminds me of the Pheonix, which resurrects from its own ashes. His fiery spirit, outspoken honesty are riveting and you can’t help but be enthralled. Oh Aew has a maturity beyond his age and is otherworldly. Also, his forgiving nature might seem like a weakness, but it portrays his emotional strength. People often hold onto old grudges and become emotionally deficit. Unlike them, Oh Aew doesn’t let negative emotions affect his decisions. So much so, that even after their break-up; Oh Aew still wishes the best for Teh in terms of his career. If you still have the heart to wish happiness for someone who has hurt you deeply; that says a lot about your character. Oh Aew is a shining beacon of light in the sea of depressed souls who face the same kind of issues with an entirely different approach. I wish that I was as responsible or even as mature as Oh Aew is, when I was the same age. I Promised You The Moon will teach you important life lessons that will come in handy when you are facing the same problems. It is deeply engaging and definitely strikes a chord with the younger audiences. PP Krit’s depiction will forever be etched in my mind, because Oh Aew has finally set me free of my inhibitions as well!

One thought on “Why Oh-Aew from #IPYTM is My Spirit Guide”

  1. I absolutely love Oh-Aew. I will never forget his character and so inspiring he is. I want to be just like Oh-Aew. PP Krit played this character to perfection.

    Liked by 1 person

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