Ateam, a nickname for the beloved onscreen pair “Aum” Atichart and “Aff” Taksaorn, has reunited for their fourth lakorn installment titled Roy Mai (Silk Trace), where they gifted the fans with a tale of two forbidden love: one of a teacher (Rerin) and a restaurant owner (Suriya) that unequivocally tied to another tale of their past life, a princess (Maneerin) and prince (Siriwong) some 70 years ago. And Aff, as Rerin, must release the bond that tied the past to the present, in the form of an unfinished loom, in order to free a wandering spirit of her former betrothed as well as awaken her own dying spirit. The conflict lay in her foe, Bua Ngern who was determined to stop her.

Ateam encountered several challenges while filming this particular drama; they must bring characters from the book to life, overcome the language barrier (that of the Thai Northeastern dialect) and still keep the audience compelled by their excited reunion together. Have they succeeded? Let’s take a closer look at their portrayal of their characters.

Aum Atichart plays a devoted, gentlemanly and righteous man in Silk Trace, a 180-degree difference from that of his previous characters. Gone are the sadistic personality that of Harit Rangsiman in JumLoey Rak (Defendant of Love), the heartbroken son who was constantly rejected by his father in that of Botan Gleep Sudtai (The Last Peony Petal) and the soul so much in need of love that he confusedly seeks them from several females in that of Namtan Mai (Burnt Sugar.) Instead, Aum draws the fans in with his expressive eyes, emotional performance and comfortability with his costar, Aff. Clearly Aum’s acting is still top-notch, only improving as he ages, like wine. I only wished that his character Suriyawong and Siriwong played a bigger role in the plot. What we have in actuality is merely a man waiting ever so patiently for the woman he could not have, both in his present life and a life dated 70 years ago. Despite it all, when Aum is on screen, you simply cannot look away and you fall even more in love with the phenomenal actor that he is.

Aff Taksaorn fits the bill for both Rerin and Maneerin’s character, no one can look better in the traditional Lana costumes or the tasty, traditional outfits of silk textile teacher, Rerin. She transitions well between the quiet, classy but unfussy Rerin to that of stubborn, cheeky and tough princess Maneerin. Do recall the young and pretty Soriya in Jumloey Rak, the feisty ngiew performer and mechanic Tanyong in Botan Gleep Sudtai and the sophisticated yet spineless female in Namtan Mai: it is obvious that Aff has chosen better characters, improved her acting and has compelled fans to empathize more with her, especially her portrayal of Maneerin. I enjoyed watching Maneerin pursuing Siriwong, her stubbornly talking back to her maid as well as her tough attitude with Bua Ngern. But unfortunately, the storyline left me wanting more for the other love story- Rerin and Suriya- but by all means, it is no fault of Aff or Aum.

I do believe that Ateam has succeeded in bringing the characters to life, speaking believably in the Thai NE dialect as well as igniting their “Ateam fever” once again. And in the end, despite the failed evil characters and lack of better closure between Rerin and Suriya, they have rekindled the Ateam fire and overall, brought us a wonderful lakorn to love and remember. I only hope that this will not be their last installment together.

(You can read my reflections (all 7 of them) of Roy Mai (where I wrote wrote and wrote) while it was being aired. You can get a better idea of what occurred in the storyline as well as character development for the rest of the cast.)

Ch.3, 15 episodes, Aired on Sept. 15th
Act Art Production, Go here for Cast List

Just some quick thoughts on the other characters in this story:

  • I thought Chai’s portrayal of Siriwattana was great, his acting was natural and you like him despite the fact that he’s the main reason why the present and past was such a mess.
  • Maneerin’s maid was precious, every princess should have someone like her in their lives. The director picked a good actress for this role.
  • May as Bua Ngern was annoying, she screamed too much made even worst because her character had no depth. As a nang rai, she failed in all of her attempts, well, aside from turning her devoted maid into a pet ghost and killing Siriwong.
  • Speaking of her pet ghost, she was the freakiest, creepiest, and most loyal thing on this planet. A little unrealistic. Actually a lot.
  • Rerin’s mom is a gullible woman who believes everyone but her own daughter. I imagined slapping her a few times.
  • Jason Young as Thanin was pointless. Seriously, can’t you move on to other females, you control freak? I wish he had more depth too..
  • Wongprajan and Saranya makes you ponder their purpose aside from irritating the crap out of me.
  • The king and queen, appearing on this lakorn just for show, makes you understand why their kingdom is in such a shamble.
  • So cardboard box villains and pointless characters aside, go Ateam! Haha..

Going down memory lane of Ateam’s lakorns

Jamloey Rak, who misses the undeniably hot bad boy Harit?

or the talented, soft spoken Ah-Joo in Botan Gleep Sudtai

or the psychotic, desperate to find love in Namtan Mai

Yes we love Ateam in all of their endeavors together (well maybe not so much Namtan Mai) and will miss their charismatic chemistry onscreen. But at any rate, this is my favorite picture of them: fresh and cute.

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