“Unforgotten Nights” First Impressions (Ep.1 & 2)

Thailand’s latest mafia BL romance “Unforgotten Night” premiered both on Gagoolala and YouTube simultaneously on 22nd June, 2022.

Giving viewers a look at the heartbroken Kim (Ton Saran) and the suppisedly evil mafia boss Kamol (Yoon Phusanu) and the inner workings of their two diverse lifestyles. Kim, with the familiar life of an office manager, has two meddling yet affectionate underlings: Metawee (Baitoey Punnisa) and the nosy Jin (Samantha Melanie). For mafia boss Kamol, his world of violence and darkness is shared with his loyal subordinates, as he attempts to control the laundering happening in a newly built casino. Secretly or not so secretly, he is hunting for the perfect man to act out his BDSM fantasies, and here’s where the story gets a bit hazy.

The pilot episode in “Unforgotten Night” begins with Kamol’s latest boy toy being emotionally and physically broken from the duress of Kamol’s version of “fun”. It’s a perfect duality to Kamol appearing in public as a multimillion businessman persona. The men that Kamol trusts completely apologize for another failure in their attempt to find a perfect toy. The scene is shot beautifully on a roof and should feel as serious as the subject matter, but something about the way it is enacted as throws off the mood. Yoon’s Kamol seems indifferent to what is being said and I don’t know if that was intentional or his acting skills; but it was out of sync. Suddenly the perspective switches to Kim, whose sobbing as he watches his ex-boyfriend with his new lover. This seemed an interesting albeit random way to introduce a character, but since we don’t enough about him; I wasn’t bothered about him being sad or getting heavily drunk. But that wasn’t the point of the scene which we discover later.

This brings me to the odd format of the show, which seems to operate on the expectations that the viewer is alright with things being discussed randomly. In the beginning, it was tolerable in the pilot episode. Like when Kim goes to the bathroom and is followed by his ex-boyfriend who he wasn’t even subtly watching with his new boyfriend (who looks ironically just like Kim). The two talk and reference things we don’t know about because again, we haven’t seen enough of Kim to have any sort of opinion on him at this point. Later, we see Kim going to meet his parents for the first time in a bit (apparently); they witness his second breakdown (he will have a few of those sucking up screen time because they happen so damn randomly). Unlike many other Thai shows, Kim’s parents are openly supportive of him and promise he will find someone better.

The next scene randomly cuts back to Kamol, who is brooding because that’s just his default setting until he gets annoyed when a beautiful woman, Cherry (Ging Areeya) comes to see him with information. Rather than just say what she clearly wants to; she makes it as seductive as possible and I wonder if it’s supposed to be written that way. The dialogue felt a bit juvenile for an adult drama where the characters clearly have some form of history but still act like childish like “I know something you don’t know”. Kamol’s brooding intensifies as she rubs his shoulders.

Kamol has had enough when it’s clear she is steering him towards a confrontation with an unseen business rival (whether it’s true or not, he doesn’t investigate). Instead, he decisively heads towards the bathroom and meets Kim. They have a sexually intense conversation on the bathroom counter, leading to some very bad acting on Ton’s part as Yoon nuzzles and kisses his neck (Ton is literally frozen like a statue). The bad acting torch is then passed to Yoon for the BDSM whipping scene. Up to that point, it was enjoyable, loved the fact that they were consenting adults and the intense closeness, but when the actual whipping happens I wanted to cry. Yoon had no passion on his face, no intensity, just this creepy smile that didn’t fit the mood at all. At least when the actual sex happens, the two sync their faces in time with the thrusting, but I couldn’t get that creepy smile out of my head. Then it is cuddle time, and it is time for episode two.

The second episode seemed like a very different creature than the first, as it moved with weird pacing. Kim of course, does not return to work that day due to the bruises and hickeys left behind by Kamol. Instead, it’s his turn to brood over what sort of a person would get off on hurting someone for sexual pleasure (kink shaming); then in a moment of introspection (cherish it there aren’t many), he wonders what kind of person that makes him. The two meddling coworkers meet Kamol when he tries to court Kim at work. I don’t know what is the purpose of this or most of their scenes outside of it being random fillers.

Kamol tracks Kim down at home and Kim no longer feeling drawn to Kamol for god knows what reason. He reacts in a bratty way, trying to get him to leave, and talks about privacy violations. The camera angles here are sharp. The script is confusing, but I think it’s more about how Kim presents himself honestly. Ton acts like it’s an imposition for Kamol to be there. I don’t know who finds the bratty submissive trope cute, but at this point it gets tiring and needs to be abandoned. Kim feigns ignorance on so many things he was introspectively wondering about moments before Kamol’s arrival.

Yoon as Kamol, is quite intriguing. He juxtaposes from being a great actor to a bad one, so many times in such a short amount of time, as he desperately tries to get Kim to let him take responsibility for him. It seems like Kamol is sincere about it, but the whole scene was rushed, so you’ll have to rewind and follow the subtitles to understand it fully. Just as Kim is about to undermine his own point with Kamol on top of him seconds from kissing, they are interrupted.

Kamol is drawn out to an emergency while Kim tries to recover from the apparent shock of being pursued by a BDSM dominant. As I said earlier, we don’t know much about Kim as a person yet, so it’s based on his reactions to events.

Kamol’s situation grows personal when one of his properties is attacked. Here the script bounces off the walls, so allow me a moment to point this out.

-Kamol tells his trusted guys to extract information from him.

-the said guy wait til Kamol walks out of the hallway and then shoots him.

It didn’t make any sense at all how that scene transpired besides the inconsistent script. Then they unexpectedly unveil the real “villain”, who is raging over the fact that Kamol killed the men he sent to damage the property. But in the initial scene, Kamol was told all the vandals got away except for the person they caught. So I have no idea who is lying or telling the truth if optimistically, the inconsistency has a desired purpose. But since the villain is mad, there has to be some truth to it.

The rest of the episode felt like unnecessary fillers. Showing Kim’s ex and new guy having an intimate moment randomly after Kamol travels to South Korea for a new venture, which is mostly a montage where Kamol wears shades on a plane (I kid you not) while Kim has another breakdown over his ex. The final section of the episode focuses on Kim as he gets back to work after that cathartic cry; surprisingly he seems happy again. It doesn’t last as another of his suitor Karan (Title Kirati), arrives to ask him to lunch while Kamol makes a shocking return.

And it abruptly ends. Following the mediocre first episode and a terrible second episode there is no telling how it will go. But I’m a fan of Yoon Phusanu, so I will keep watching.

Rating- 3 out of 5

3 thoughts on ““Unforgotten Nights” First Impressions (Ep.1 & 2)”

  1. Ahhh yes I was thinking whether to watch this because of Yoon but I’ve seen plenty of not-so-great reviews. Thank you for your detailed writeup I think I’ll keep this on my KIV list for now!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think what the director is trying to portray is Kim being a masochist it’s hard for him to expresss his feelings and accepting this kind of attention kamol is giving him , coz suffering from this disorder Kim doesn’t see himself as special or deserving ,that’s why he has been in a one sided relationship with day for years. Masochist like punishing themselves pain is their comfort zone . To me that’s not Kim being a brat but it’s Kim being what he is

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