If you are looking for a Thai BL series that will make you hungry, then you’ve come to the right place because the new drama Bite Me the Series will not disappoint. It’s probably best to watch this drama with snacks close at hand. I spent most of the first episode gawking at the food and salivating, which isn’t a bad thing. But it also isn’t necessarily good.
The real winner of the first episode is the chemistry between our leads. It’s real, it’s palpable, and it’s the main reason I’ve decided not to drop the show. Add the fact that it stars Mark Siwat (a favorite actor of mine who portrays Aek), and I have a definite reason for continuing to tune it despite admittedly being disappointed with the first episode.
Honestly, the beginning of this drama felt like an awkward cooking show with a handsome chef and a cute aspiring cook that seemed a little lost at times. Although the production quality is excellent, the first episode suffers by making the food the star of the show. I get it; it’s a drama about cooking, so food is supposed to be the focal point, right? To an extent, yes. However, Bite Me The Series focuses so much on the food bringing these two men together that we lose the burgeoning romance to the dishes. The stars take backstage to something we could turn on the cooking channel to see: lots and lots of cooking.
I love dramas where the lead is as passionate about a dream as the person he falls for. It’s a bonus when the dream he wants to achieve feels just out of his reach because it makes finally attaining the goal that much more satisfying. But I want to see the lead actively striving for those dreams rather than an hour-long drama of him sniffing the air, guessing flavors, and spending long moments awkwardly ogling a chef that comes across a little odd in his own right. It was love at the first sniff of food. While I found that endearingly original (Aek is like a food whisperer, able to discern an ingredient just by the scent), I also found it hard to be pulled into the original plot by the lack of communication between the leads. They rarely used words to express their needs, and when they did, it felt lacking.
Chef Aue (actor Zung Kidakarn) is taken aback when Aek, a delivery boy picking up an order at his restaurant, recognizes an ingredient in his food simply by scent. As the viewers must, I’m guessing that the particular ingredient mentioned is hard to discern in a dish by smell. I’m not familiar with the ingredient personally, so I gladly assumed it has a subtle aroma. This one-time “scent” power leads to a low-key obsession with Aek. Aue wants to work with him, to figure out how he’s so tuned into food (from only one sniff, mind you), that he has his staff alert him every time Aek appears.
Cue the utter lack of communication replaced by long, awkward gazes.
Aek returns to the restaurant to celebrate a friend’s birthday, and Aue jumps on this opportunity. When Aek doesn’t seem entirely satisfied with the food served, Aue invites him to the kitchen so that Aek can show him exactly how he would prepare it.
There are a lot of plot holes in this first episode. How does Aue know Aek would be a good cook? Maybe he’s like one of those professional food critics who relishes and understands food but doesn’t know how to prepare it. Why does Aek simply follow meekly behind Aue every time Aue summons him to the back of the restaurant, no questions asked? Are they reading each other’s minds? Is their chemical attraction and connection to each other so strong that they instinctively understand each other that well?
These plot holes lead me to my final reason for being disappointed. There is too much show and not enough story in the opening episode. So much time is spent showcasing the food and panning the camera back and forth between two staring men without much to say that the entire first episode could have been told in fifteen minutes rather than forty-eight.
The saving grace for me is the chemistry between our leads and the hope that this episode is a lengthy, drawn-out appetizer to a drama that’s going to surprise viewers in a big, big way. I also have very high expectations for Mark Siwat as an actor, especially after seeing his role in The Stranded.
So, although I realize my first impression seems a lot more distasteful than it does appetizing, I highly suggest viewers give Bite Me a chance. I think this show will be a dish that appears lukewarm at first but ends up catching on fire. I look forward to seeing Chef Aue pull the shy, quiet Aek out of his shell.
Rating- 3 out of 5
(Krishna’s Side-note- We are sharing some pictures of the appetizing dishes served in the first episode. Bon Appetit!)