Disclaimer: PLEASE DON’T READ UNLESS YOU’VE SEEN THE EPISODE. THIS CONTAINS SPOILERS.
First off let me just preface this by saying this is a hard one to watch. It’s an emotional rollercoaster, especially for those of us who have become emotionally invested in the love story of Fighter and Tutor. That said, it was beautifully executed and worth watching. Please don’t skip it and read my analysis. Please watch it, even if you cry. You need to see the brilliant performances of the cast who deliver every scene in this episode with heart and conviction.
Ok. We start off with this sweet scene. They are finally home from their wonderful beach vacation, and are in front of Tutor’s condo. Of course Fighter wants to stay overnight as he’s not ready to be apart from Tutor yet. He’s still in the honeymoon period of their relationship. You know, the period when everything is fresh and new, you want to spend all your time with your lover. Tutor is ready to get back to the real world. Tutor still wants to spend time with Fighter but he also knows if he lets Fighter come over, not much will get done. He’s still a responsible person who has things he needs to do, studying, tutoring, and working are all commitments he has. Fighter is still reluctant to leave, so they exchange cute kisses goodbye. Honestly I love all their kisses, but these little smooches warm my heart. I’m going to make a quick little video of all the cute kisses and put it below because we need a cute kiss montage before we get into angst.
We end with Tutor on his bed looking at the necklace given from Fighter. This makes him happy. He remembers Fighter’s words to him, and he also remembers his words to Fighter. I will feel you beside me when I wear this. As he drifts off to sleep he’s smiling. We know he’s thinking of his love and their time together. Happy for the first time in a long while.
We arrive back at Fighter’s house for a “study session”. Not gonna lie, it’s a study session of sorts, but quickly devolves into a make out session. We’ve been there too. Especially in the beginning of a relationship it’s hard not to keep your hands and lips off each other, lol.
Of course to quote popular YouTube reactor Revil “Unlocked doors are the enemies of gays everywhere.”😂 We know what’s going to happen. But before that we get playful Fighter, and happy Tutor which I love. Their affection for each other shines through in this moment. Also, on a side note, Tutor really enjoys the feel of Fighter’s bare skin. I’ll add a video here of how handsy Tutor can be. Basically just watch the hands. 😁
But back to the scene at hand, sorry couldn’t resist. Fighter’s dad opens the door slightly and sees this.
Ok, at first Fighter’s dad looks shocked and unsure. This is a normal reaction when you think your son is straight and you accidentally see him making out with a guy. So I can give him this reaction. However, as he begins to fish around with suspicious eyes and words, I start to get annoyed. And honestly…..Could Fighter and Tutor stop looking at each other with the “Oh Shit did he see us?” eyes? They look so freaking guilty. But to be fair, I definitely would have too, your heart is racing like mad and you are waiting for the explosion from an adult. The dad asks them if they are reading a book, tells Fighter to please dress properly and mentions a suspicious noise he heard (yeah, thats the sound of your son and his boyfriend making out, nothing suspicious about it, 😁) He leaves them alone and Tutor gets onto Fighter for almost getting them busted. They go back to actual studying. However, this look at the dad walks away from Fighter’s room lets you know there is definitely trouble brewing.
Honestly if we look at what we have seen from the dad until now, we know he’s not a warm person. And that he and Fighter do not have a good relationship. We know that the dad is very wealthy, upper class, and owns a business. To be fair to the dad, Fighter has never really put much effort into anything before. His studies, his relationships, he’s a little spoiled and is used to doing whatever he wants. But it seems like the dad is ok with that because Fighter also doesn’t ask too much from him either. He is emotionally unavailable to his son, but is happy to throw money his way, thinking that that’s all Fighter really needs.
We also know that Fighter’s dad is in a business and personal relationship with Hwa’s mom. Which is why it made sense to pair up two wealthy single kids together, because it suited his business and personal needs, he encouraged Fighter to be with Hwa. Before this, Fighter really had no reason not to. He also wanted to get closer to Tutor who was Hwa’s best friend, so it seemed ok. The point is that Fighter went along with what his dad suggested, so the dad thought he was ok with everything.
The first time the dad met Tutor he basically implied his son was stupid and lazy, so good luck with him. This has always bothered me, but in a way, I understand. Fighter didn’t have any motivation or reason to change, so he just drifted. The dad doesn’t know how to reach him, so he just leaves him be. But I just rewatched this scene with different eyes.
Before he sees his dad, look at Fighter’s body language to Tutor. He is touching the small of his back, guiding him towards the exit. Remember that Fighter doesn’t bring anyone home, not friends, not Hwa. Then his dad sees the way in which Fighter is touching Tutor and he’s genuinely worried his son is about to drop the, this is my boyfriend line on him. Which is why he’s relieved when Fighter tells him that Tutor was hired to teach him English. This is something he can understand. A business transaction. So he basically tells Tutor, hey my son isn’t so smart or studious, so good luck. The next sentence uttered is a warning to Tutor. When Fighter’s dad asks about Hwa, he wants Tutor to know his son is in a relationship that he approves of, and to back off if he has his eyes on him. Remember, Fighter said he was paying Tutor to teach him English, but their body language implied more. Therefor I think the dad is worried that Tutor is a money hungry guy who is going to take advantage of his son. With that in mind, please view this next scene with a little different eyes.
Also look at this picture of Fighter and his dad. They were once on good terms. They both looked happy in this picture, but something has fractured their family. We don’t know what or why, but something happened.
I’m pretty sure this was his warning to Tutor, I see you. I think the dad is convinced that Tutor has led his son down a path and is taking advantage of his dumb son. Also remember when the dad said to him before Hwa breakup scene.
He asks Fighter who he’s seeing and to bring the girl to meet him. This is him telling Fighter, if you have a new girlfriend, let me meet her and see if I approve. Is she a good match for you? But when he said he wasn’t seeing anyone and started to tell his dad something, the dad cut him off fast. He didn’t want to hear about his son’s feelings for Tutor or that he might be interested in a guy. In his mind, if it’s not a girl with whom he will have a successful future, it might as well be Hwa because she fits the image in his mind, she’s pretty, she’s nice and it benefits both of their families to see them together. Fighter’s dad reminds him that Hwa loves him and he just needs to be nice to her. In Fighter’s dad’s mind, they could have a successful relationship or even marriage because they come from the same social circles, they know each other’s family, etc.
Of course this is all misguided as Tutor has no interest in Fighter’s money. He loves Fighter for who he is, flaws and all. He comes back upstairs and is very upset over what happened with Fighter’s dad. This is the beginning of the end of their relationship that plays out on screen.
Tutor is understandably worried. When Fighter accuses him of overthinking, I am with Tutor at being a little annoyed at Fighter for saying this. Of course Tutor is overthinking. The dad basically just told him that he wants his old son back, and he doesn’t like the way Fighter is behaving right now. Tutor reassures Fighter that he knows how they both feel about each other, but he’s worried.
Fighter tells Tutor he’s worried too about the dad thing. But when Tutor asks what they should do, he says he doesn’t know. Then tells Tutor that he loves him. In Fighter’s mind, it will all work itself out. Remember, he’s never had to struggle like Tutor has. He has been handed everything but love. And now that he found love, he doesn’t want to focus on anything else. His strategy is be happy today and tomorrow will sort itself out.
This is extremely difficult for Tutor. He knows what hardship is. He is worried about what will happen between Fighter and his father. Tutor is not resentful about the dad. Remember this as we go through the episode. Tutor is very much attached to his family and their needs and happiness. He places family needs above his own. He didn’t move forward with Fighter until things were settled with his family.
Also Tutor is a planner. He studiously follows a plan for his life, he needs money to help his family and to live so he finds a job, he tutors students, he plans out his day making sure that he has time to study because school is also important. When he asks Fighter what they are going to do, it’s because he needs reassurance that there is a plan. He wants to brainstorm what to do because that is who he is at his core.
Fighter, however, wants to embrace their happiness. He doesn’t want to talk hardship. In his life usually things get sorted through time. For once in his life he has someone who can make his heart sing just by being by his side. In his mind, he will make it happen so they are together because being apart isn’t an option for him. He cajoles Tutor out of a serious mood, but the issue is far from resolved. It’s just shelved for the night.
Once he has the picture, he has to take action. Yes. He suspected his son was being played by this guy, but this is too much for him. You know what he does next. He sends the pic to the one person who can get in between them, Hwa.
The next morning Tutor gets a photo from Hwa asking if he was ever going to tell her about this. She tells him they need to talk. He asks to meet her face to face as he doesn’t want to do this over the phone. Hwa is his best friend in the world and now she knows about him and Fighter. What’s more, he wasn’t the one to tell her. He is so anxious, he calls Fighter and asks him to come over. All the while he remembers the scene that happened a few days ago with a student of his. It’s better if they had left this scene in from episode 6 before the last episode of studying. I’ll put the two scenes together for you.
The worry is real for Tutor. He wanted to tell Hwa himself, but hadn’t done it yet. His relationship was just outed before he had any ability to control it. I get his feelings of anxiety and stress. This could impact his relationship with Hwa, his tutoring business. Remember he’s always had to worry about what others think of him as he was reliant on his positive attitude and good people skills to make a living for himself and his family. He has no idea how many people know about the two of them.
Fighter arrives and immediately goes to Tutor with concern on his face, placing his arms around Tutor, giving love and support. Tutor shows him the picture which of course leads Fighter to reassure Tutor that he didn’t show that pic to anyone. Tutor responds that it was send by Hwa and that they trust each other, but would Fighter please go with him to meet Hwa to tell her about them. It’s really Tutor’s second time to lean on Fighter. The first was when his sister left. He now has a shoulder to lean on and someone to support him. You can see he’s anxious and he’s willing to be vulnerable to Fighter, letting Fighter lend his support to him. What he says next is important to remember when things go south for them.
They go to meet Hwa, who is understandably pissed off until she see’s that Tutor is upset and uncomfortable. She’s mad at Fighter for dragging things out and not telling her sooner. But once Tutor tells her he intended to tell her when they got back from the beach, she see’s he’s really worried and anxious. This is a side to Tutor she doesn’t see because usually he’s the one who comforts her and lifts her up when she is sad or anxious. She reassures him that she’s not mad anymore because they are best friends, which leads to him smiling in relief.
Fighter, however is not off the hook yet. He has to answer to her. And she’s mad at him and protective of Tutor at the same time.
Kudos to Janistar Phomphadungcheep here! She does a great job during this scene, showing the different sides of Hwa, the angry ex girlfriend, the hurt best friend, the protective best friend. And this next bit is the cutest of all, the fangirling best friend. It’s all in the span of like 3 minutes and she pulls it off brilliantly.
Of course life is like a box of Dominoes so of course the next day at work who should show up but Fighter’s dad. I honestly am not going to put the scene in here as it’s painful to watch. A grown man should not intimidate a kid like that. He starts off by asking Tutor to sit down and stares in silence. Then he tells Tutor, I know everything about you and Fighter.
He proceeds to tell Tutor that Fighter is his only child, whom he wants to see him with a stable family and pretty children. Tutor replies that he’s not wrong for wanting that. But I’m proud of Tutor for what he says next. What if their relationship is Fighter’s happiness? That takes a lot of courage when facing a powerful adult. I felt Tutor’s anxiety very keenly.
Fighter’s dad responds that he wasn’t happy about the situation. And implies that he knows what’s best for Fighter and Fighter’s future. He asks him to not tell Fighter about this conversation. He says this with his hands over top of Tutor’s hands, basically an intimidation move.
Tutor makes one last ditch effort to convince Fighter’s dad to talk to him. Fighter’s dad responds that since Tutor knows him well, he should know how Fighter would take this. He’s not wrong, Fighter would be furious and rebellious due to his father’s demands. His dad is such a jerk right here, but I’m trying to view it from the prospective I’ve seen before. He says “if you love my son, please stay away….or you can tell me how much money you need.” This is the final slap in the face for Tutor. He gathers up what’s left of his dignity and pride, then stands up to excuse himself, telling Tutor’s dad that if the request is for the sake of their families happiness he will try to do as asked. Then he politely but firmly rejects the money and walks away. Tutor’s dad is surprised that the offer of money was turned down. But he looks contemplative but happy.
This is what Saint had to say about this scene.
Then we have Tutor in the garden letting his tears flow as his heart begins to break. He remembers all the beautiful moments of their time together as tears silently run down his cheeks. He recalls Fighter telling him that he’s a fighter, the sweet morning kiss of lovers and the promise to hold his hand unless Tutor tells him to let go. This is pain beyond anything he’s ever experienced. He really did try to fight back, but he’s still just a boy. A boy who loves someone and is loved in return. But his love is coming between his lover and his lover’s father. He values family so much, he doesn’t want Fighter to suffer. He doesn’t want Fighter and his father to fall apart. So he silently makes up his mind to sacrifice his love for the sake of his lover’s family. As he said earlier, when he dates he wants it to be with happiness and he knows that if he and Fighter continue Fighter and his father will fight each other, thus leading to their unhappiness.
This scene was cut out from the One31 broadcast and I don’t know why. It’s so freaking powerful, I’m putting it in here because I honestly don’t think I’ve ever seen a scene like this is a bl before. Kudos to Why R U for inserting a positive representation and an open discussion on LGBTQ issues to the forefront.
Congratulations to James Rusameekae Fagerlund who gave a magnificent and heartwarming performance as P’Kae the bakery owner, Tutor’s supportive friend and surrogate big brother. He brought me to tears. And I think Fighter’s dad heard it, he may not have been willing to open his mind yet, but I feel that this moment will come back to him again when he needs to hear it the most.
P’Kae goes to offer Tutor encouragement. I’m putting these as images, as I still have more videos to insert and don’t want to overwhelm the page. I’m sorry this post is so long, but after this section I’ll split the post.
Continued on next post. 1/2