Game Sanaeha – Round 4
Posted on July 4, 2018
This round is delicious. Meunchanok launches her new game plan on Luckanai but as she fakes her niceties, she doesn’t realize that she’s also putting down her defenses and letting him in. Luckanai determines that two can play this game and evens out the playing field, but at the end of the day, his heart just wants what it wants, and he uses the opportunity to show her what she has failed to see all this time.
EPISODE 4 RECAP
Pimunkae sees Luckanai at the media center and thanks him for looking out for her even though she didn’t listen to him at the concert, but it’s comforting to know that he still cares about her. Luckanai laments that he cares about his foster family. Meunchanok instigates that she’s surprised Pimunkae is actually working today since she thinks Pimunkae is mooching off her dad, though Pimunkae says she’ll do just fine without dad but the older man on the other hand cannot survive without her, and if only Meunchanok can see dad’s happy face last night. Isn’t that something you’d say to an ex-wife and not a future stepdaughter in law?
Meunchanok says she’s too grossed out to have crepe so they end up going home and she asks Luckanai to join her for dinner. But the dinner was more of a workout event where she takes her anger out on beating the eggs. All of the maids join the fun and start throwing veggies in the hotpot. Meanwhile mom stops dead in her tracks when she hears Meunchanok sweetly encouraging Luckanai to eat. You and me both, mom. It’s cute, but also out of character. Mom tries to get to the bottom of this by using girl talk as an excuse; she asks if Meunchanok hasn’t put poison in the hotpot. Hahaha. But Meunchanok merely says that she wants to pause the war because work has been getting busy and she doesn’t want to have any issues. Mm hm. Mom’s expression says it all.
Penny pays a visit to Wongwait’s hospital and asks him to help her move her things since her condo is finally ready. Her mom opens the door but gets treated by her daughter like a housekeeper – Wongwait is a nice guy though and pays the housekeeper respect. Dad sees Wongwait picking up Penny and looks on with confusion. He asks the housekeeper the next day who had picked up Penny and she replies that it might be a new boyfriend and he seems nice. She adds that if they end up together she would be happy. Meunchanok wonders if the housekeeper would leave her – look who’s taking someone else’s mom – and says that she hopes Nah Phai (aunt Phai the housekeeper) would stay with them forever.
Mom inquires with Luckanai if he knows what’s up with Meunchanok, but Luckanai merely says he thinks it’s momentary peace and he’s sure she would hate him again. Before Luckanai could finish his sentence, an employee alerts him that Meunchanok has taken over his office. Luckanai just chuckles and says his peace is short-lived. Turns out, Meunchanok assigns herself as his executive assistant for the interim and moved a spare desk to his room.
Dad is surprised because he had thought she would want to be in marketing and do some PR for them. Luckanai asks if Meunchanok offered a reason but dad only knows that she isn’t yet ready to take the reins. So while Meunchanok leaves her desk, Luckanai browses her laptop to see if he could find any motive, but there’s only the video she made for Green Dream. She catches him snooping but Luckanai has a handy excuse, that he’s downloading training material for her. She had purchased some fried chicken to celebrate her first position and encourages him to have one while he downloads the program – only she ends up feeding him a drumstick so that her laptop doesn’t get greasy. This is what the secretary/manager/I will get her name eventually sees when she walks in on them. Lol. She steps back out to share the juicy gossip with the office, but one of the employees end up adding Meunchanok to the chat group, much to everyone’s chagrin.
Pimunkae asks dad what he thought about Meunchanok and Luckanai’s interview. Dad says he’s happy they are taking a break from fighting and that he thinks maybe Meunchanok has matured and doesn’t want to have beef with Luckanai anymore. He also thinks that she may come to accept them one day. Oh dad, you are ever the positive guy. He showers Pimunkae with a beautiful diamond necklace, as they get ready for a fancy evening.
Meanwhile mom finds out that Wongwait jilted her daughter for Penny and Mom shuns her own friend then takes her anger out on Nah Phai. But mom can be kinda cute too when she worries over her nephew and doesn’t want him to ride with her own daughter. Luckanai’s car won’t start (someone had cut a wire) and Meunchanok offers a ride, but mom is adorable and doesn’t want Luckanai to go with Meunchanok, so dad has to make the final decision. He tells mom that her daughter’s name is “Nok” (bird), not “Suea” (tiger), and that her nephew will be just fine. Lol.
At the recycling center there’s an assembly line where they’re sorting for reusable bottles – the kind that cannot be recycled but must be repurposed somehow. Meunchanok tries to talk with one of the line workers but gets irritated because they ignore her. She learns from Luckanai that they are deaf, and he explains that the company works with the government to employ deaf people so that both parties can help each other out, just like the things that people don’t think can be useful anymore, there is always a way to make it useful again. Meunchanok finds himself lost in his eyes and the way that he explains it to her, so she has to turn away to regroup. However she almost runs into some of the workers, but Luckanai catches her around the shoulders in time to prevent her.
He tells the workers that he’s taking a special someone to tour the facility and they all remark how beautiful she is in sign language. Meunchanok is also impressed that Luckanai is able to get by with signing as well.
Mom discovers that her daughter must have been the one to cut Luckanai’s car wires as she notices that the maids are searching for a missing clipper. Penny makes her introduction to Pimunkae and tries to weasel into her good graces by saying that she’s dad’s niece and is on Pimunkae’s side. But Pimunkae has heard of her and questions when a housekeeper’s daughter became somehow “related” to the owner. Lol. Displeased with the treatment, Penny decides to talk to the media when she overhears that Pimunkae disregarded the question about the wedding date.
Meunchanok gets a call from grandma and thinks the older woman is going to lecture her again so she starts talking even before the other end could get a word in edgewise. She divulges her ulterior motive to being nice to Luckanai: she just wants to take back everything and that the plan is going along nicely because he doesn’t know otherwise. She hangs up after her diatribe, but little did she know it was mom on the other end, just borrowing grandma’s phone. Worried, mom goes to see Luckanai that evening, and it’s one of my favorite scenes between auntie and nephew, because it goes to show the love and respect they have for one another.
Mom tells Luckanai that it was Meunchanok’s doing, and with an uncertain glance at Luckanai, Mom opens up about a topic she hasn’t broached with him before. She says that she knows how he feels about Meunchanok, he has always looked out for her daughter and it’s not like mom is blind to it. She doesn’t despise him nor will she stand in his way should her daughter feel the same way about him. However she has to tell it how it is, because she knows her daughter well, and what she’s certain is that Meunchanok never has good intentions towards him. This is all just a game to her and she’s afraid that there will be a day in which Luckanai ends up getting hurt. Aw mom.
But Luckanai is all in. He asks a rhetorical question, “what if he wins her heart?” He thanks mom for worrying about him but he’s not going to fold in this game. He’s thankful that mom doesn’t hate him, but at the end of the day, it’s his choice alone. Even if he’s stripped of everything and loses the game, he’s willing to accept the consequences. Once alone, Luckanai isn’t surprised that her being nice was just a game, but two can play this game. YOWZA. And he takes out a clipper. Wait a minute. Omg did he cut his own car wire?
Mom goes into dad’s room to talk through the recent issue but dad gets a call from his girlfriend. It’s funny to see mom get so annoyed having to be quiet to the girlfriend. However she sees an interview with Penny front and center, running her mouth to the public about dad’s family. In the interview, Penny chastises Pimunkae for being a homewrecker because mom and daughter is still living with dad, and the fact that Pimunkae is the only one sharing news about the wedding when dad hasn’t uttered a word. Penny pretends to accidentally slip with the fact that she’s overly concerned because her mom tells her to respect Khun Thawat like a father, though she’s insinuating that she’s another daughter out of wedlock.
Mom is livid because now the whole world thinks Pimunkae won in this battle of being the #1 wife. She prompts dad to make it right with her but dad is past irritated and states that Pimunkae isn’t “somebody else” because mom is, since they are divorced. Meunchanok walks in on time with the housekeeper and hears this. Mom rails into Nah Phai for raising an ungrateful daughter but Meunchanok protects her nanny, she says that Penny only made other people misunderstand that she’s another daughter, but she hasn’t taken dad away. But mom has another bone to pick with Nah Phai, Penny did steal the perfect man that mom had set aside for Meunchanok, like Wongwait is a prime rib waiting for the plucking. Nah Phai is distraught as she realizes what her daughter has done. She asks Luckanai to go somewhere with her.
He takes her to Penny’s condo, who is busy flirting with Wongwait that she doesn’t expect mom to enter like a storm and swallow her up. Nah Phai beats into her daughter and tells Wongwait that she’s the mom and she knows her daughter’s true colors. She adds that Wongwait has made a mistake by choosing the housekeeper’s daughter over Khun Nok. Penny can’t take it anymore and yells at her mom for always taking Meunchanok’s side, and because mom is like this, who is willing to serve Meunchanok for eternity, Penny finds it embarrassing. Nah Phai intakes a deep breath and spits that Penny doesn’t need to call her mom anymore because from this day forward, they are no longer mother and daughter. Ouch and the storm disappears as quickly as it came. Luckanai tells Wongwait that since he has chosen Penny, he ought to take care of her now.
Pimunkae makes use of Penny’s fake reveal to her advantage; she gives dad the cold shoulder so that he could set a wedding date once and for all.
Nah Phai kowtows to mom to apologize on behalf of her daughter, which makes mom uncomfortable and tells her housekeeper that she has done her best, there are things out of her control. And that besides, she has raised Meunchanok and look how great she turned out (erhm) but Meunchanok takes Nah Phai’s hands and places it on her cheek to reassure her nanny that she did in fact raised this one well. Luckanai witnesses all of this and you could tell how much more in love he has fallen. Ok, I’ll admit, Meunchanok’s doe eyes do affect me too. I can’t help it. Even though mom had angrily lashed out at the housekeeper earlier, she still loves Nah Phai like a family member, someone who took care of her daughter better than she did or could ever do.
Nah Phai lies in bed and cries as she thinks about Penny who believes her own mom loves another person more than her own blood. Meunchanok consoles her nanny and spends the night with her, relenting that when she was a kid and her parents were gone on business, the nanny would always be there to hold her as she falls asleep. Meunchanok wants to do the same for her. Aw, I’m not crying, you’re crying.
The next morning Meunchanok walks into the dining room and sits right next to Luckanai and proceeds to have breakfast, all of the maids raise their eyebrows because she traditionally sits across the table. Luckanai knows her game but pretends, wanting to see what she’s up to. Oh god I love this, it’s EXACTLY what I want. Meunchanok says the housekeeper barely got any sleep, to which Luckanai wonders what she’s going to do about it. Meunchanok says he knows her too well, haha, she’s not going to let Penny get away with this.
Meanwhile Penny can’t get a hold of Wongwait and we see in a flashback that he had asked her why she was hiding the truth from him. She tells him that she was afraid he wouldn’t like her and that it’s embarrassing to be a maid’s daughter. Wongwait says he’s disappointed that she would think he’s the type who would judge a person by their wealth. She thinks Wongwait is at the door but Meunchanok greets her instead. She wants to thank her for the interview and for shedding a light at her family affair. The more she wants to break them up, the more Meunchanok is inclined to keep it together. She wishes Penny well and to hold on to the man tightly because karma punishment is always fair and square: since she wants to break up a family, her own love may disappear as well. Penny could only retaliate with a scream.
Luckanai second-guesses himself on whether it was a good idea that he let her go up alone. As he waits for the next elevator up, Meunchanok comes down and questions why he can’t trust her. Luckanai laments that he was worried Penny would do something to her, which surprises Meunchanok, but Luckanai says that there’s not a day where he’s not worried about her. Meunchanok says she’s never noticed that before and Luckanai tells her that she may have noticed him but she’s never had an open mind about him. Whoa there, Romeo.
Dad steps in front of Pimunkae’s car, trying to talk to her. Pimunkae tells him that Penny did bring up one truth: Pimunkae had only been the one to talk about their wedding date, and that she’s starting to believe that maybe she is deluding herself. Pimunkae reminds him that he was supposed to give Meunchanok tough love, but when Meunchanok just does something nice, he resorted to his old self. Pimunkae gives him the ultimatum, if his family causes too much problem for her to the pont that she is unable to handle them, then she won’t keep him in her life. Oh she’s good. Dad looks heartbroken. Next we see that Luckanai his to cover a work meeting for dad, as he’s busy trying to reconcile with his girlfriend. Meunchanok notes that that is why dad loves him so much because he’s always covering for him.
Mom tells dad to show her more consideration, not just his future wife, since she’s his kid’s mom. Dad practically rolls his eyes and promises to do that in the future, but since they’re already talking, he clues her in with the fact that he will be proposing to Pimunkae and will arrange for a wedding as soon as possible. Horrified, mom says she shouldn’t be the first to know and can’t imagine how her daughter would take this. Yeah, me neither.
The aforementioned girl is asleep on her desk. Luckanai notices how uncomfortable she looks so he wedges a pillow under her head, but nothing is as comfortable as laying down completely so he carries her to the couch. He works for a while until she wakes but pretends to be asleep, horrified at her own constitution. He teases her that she had a drool on her cheek, ah so cute, and then they take off to a meeting.
Meunchanok opts to stick around and sort through the paper recycling instead of attending another one of his run-through with the employees. As Luckanai goes through his spiel, he notices that a forklift truck is pushing a pallet load of paper onto the same spot Meunchanok was sitting at. Luckanai moves like lightning as he descends upon the area, but it’s too late because the pallet had already been dumped. In a panic Luckanai peels through the load, shouting her name. Omg.
An employee manages to peel him away and alert him that Meunchanok is actually standing right there, looking at him in a state of shock. Luckanai could not contain his relief as he pulls her into a bear hug. Meunchanok is too shocked to do anything but to stand there and hug him back. SQUEE.
Turns out, Meunchanok had found her old grade school book and went to the car to find a cleaning cloth, that’s when the pallet was dumped. Luckanai covers her bare legs with his jacket and says that he’s thankful for that book. It’s actually their book. Meunchanok is still peeved by the fact that her dad had given her this hand me down from Luckanai, instead of buying her a new one. Luckanai says that it’s because he’s ahead of her in his studies and he always took good care of his books. Haha. Why is this rehash of their childhood so cute? Meunchanok continues on that she was upset because it is a second hand book and would tear the cover off so that she could get a new book, but her dad would use a fashion magazine cover for her book instead. Luckanai says that’s exactly why dad is the recycling king, because he sees the value in things others bypass. He suggests that Meunchanok look at things differently, perhaps in her father’s way and she will notice that her good ole dad hasn’t gone anywhere. Besides, dad gave her Luckanai’s book because there are good notes in there and Meunchanok can score a higher grade. Ah, don’t we all wish for a Lucky in our life?
Penny tries to beg for a second chance with Wongwait but he tells her that he isn’t ready to talk to her. Penny uses a megaphone to attract attention and won’t stop until the doctor at least hears her out. She says that she’s sorry, and that she won’t do this ever again, and she begs for his forgiveness. Everyone cheers them on, and finally Wongwait forgives her. Why do I find these two cute? Ha.
Luckanai takes Meunchanok to dinner, just because. Swoon. She returns the gesture and gives him a paper flower she folded, just because. She thanks him for his word of advice regarding her dad, and the way she peers at him, it looks an awful lot like she believes him, if only for the moment. She reminds herself that this is just a game.
Her mood quickly dissipates as she spots Penny and Wongwait walking into the same restaurant. She approaches the couple, and insults Penny, which Penny uses to show Wongwait how mean Meunchanok is and why she hates her so.
Meunchanok is in good spirits now and offers to make Luckanai dinner. As she disappears into the kitchen, mom pops out and speaks to Luckanai alone, but Meunchanok eavesdrop by the door. To her dismay she overhears an update about dad and Pimunkae. In tears, Meunchanok says out loud that her dad really has not considered her heart. Meanwhile dad picks out an engagement ring for Pimunkae.
Luckanai asks dad to give Meunchanok some time to adjust but dad argues that if he waits for Meunchanok, Pimunkae won’t wait for him. He asks Luckanai to understand him and that it’s time he does something for himself. Luckanai stresses over the unsuccessful talk and Meunchanok approaches him with a glass of orange juice, relenting that it will help take the stress away. Though she prods to see if Luckanai would tell her anything. Luckanai says he’s heading home early, feigning a headache. Meunchanok follows his car closely, determined to find out where he’s going, but she gets into a fender bender instead.
Luckanai goes to see Pimunkae and asks her to reject dad’s proposal. Whoa, gutsy. Pimunkae thinks that the only reason why he would ask this of her is if he’s still in love with her. She walks into his arms but Luckanai pulls her away and says that they are done. He says that he’s doing this for someone he loves, but that person isn’t her. Pimunkae refuses to do as he asked unless they get back together, otherwise she has to look out for herself and start a new life with dad.
Dad plans on proposing that day as he tells Luckanai that he won’t be going into the office, which of course leaves Luckanai in a panic. He follows dad to the Star Hollywood proceeding, with Meunchanok on his tail. Dad steps up to surprise Pimunkae, relenting that he’s sorry for making her wait and that he has set their wedding date for next month, to help alleviate any uncertainties. He bends down on one knee, and as he slides the ring on her finger, Pimunkae looks up. Off to a distance, she sees Luckanai.
Ah, as much as I want dad to be happy and free to love whom he wants to love, I hope that he at least finds someone who loves him back. Pimunkae seems like she’s choosing dad because he’s the next best thing to Luckanai, though she’s ready to drop the older man if Luckanai would only utter a word. And I do love mom but I don’t want her to get back with dad, they are two very different people who cannot live with their differences, and seems to be happier apart. I just want them to be friends at the most and be able to enjoy their time with their daughter.
Speaking of family, I feel for Nah Phai and her conundrum of being a nanny/housekeeper. Her job is to care for someone else’s child and she loves Meunchanok like her own, however she then has less time to be with her own child. It’s heartbreaking regardless, as we see how Penny turned out and how much of that Nah Phai has blamed on herself. And that’s Penny’s downfall too, things might be redeemable for her if only she accepts her roots and became successful in spite of it, but she chooses to lie about her background and pretend to be someone she’s not.
What I like most about this lakorn is the “reusable” theme that runs parallel in our characters’ lives as well as the recycling company that they run. Meunchanok is so affluent and is given a life in perfect working order until things become imperfect and she struggles with how to deal with her world shifting upside down and inside out. She sees thing so straight and narrow and biased, that when she lets her guard down and allow Luckanai in (even if it’s an attempt to play him), he starts to change her perspective, enlighten her towards a different way of thinking.
It’s a wonderful perspective, this reusable analogy. What is considered trash can be redeemable and reusable in another capacity if only you give it a chance, just like him, just like plastic bottles, and just like disabled people. Even a divorced, modern family can be reworked so that it fits again. Even though it may never be the same, but it can be happy and meaningful again. Just like any change, it’s going to take some time for Meunchanok to adapt, because she is so condoned, protected and naïve in this world. She does need some tough love because as much as she thinks she’s tough, her heart is so fragile. It’s what happens when you have people like Luckanai ready to fight your battles for you and will do everything in his power to make it hurt less. If Show keeps up more episodes like this, where Meunchanok is unexpectedly lovely, we just might give in and let her win a little.
Tagged: เกมเสน่หา, Game Sanaeha, James Jirayu, Taew Nataporn
Love this! Thank you! Aww this episode was sweet. She’s falling into her own trap, but is too dense and hurt to see it. Nai is so sweet and considerate to \wards her. And Khae, she wants the younger man now that she knows he has money? Also, he looks good. I feel a little sorry for dad, but he chose this himself despite his daughter’s heart.
And that last line you wrote, about Nok being fragile because Nai is always there to fight her battles, aww! What a sweet and true way to put it.
I love this show! Love your recaps too.
And Nai admits he loves Nok! Great! Awesome! I watched that scene pissed off because Khae was being thirsty, but now I know what he says, I’m gonna rewatch it.
Hi Sania! Thanks for your comments, he didn’t quite say Nok, but we all know what he means 🙂
Yes, that’s true.
I don’t know where to start with Nai. He’s such a deep character who doesn’t seem to show much of himself, even while giving the audience a glimpse into his wants and desires. I feel sorry for him in this show, but I like him too.
I just want him to be happy and have everything he loves, and a real home of his own. And James is nice to look at too.
Love your recaps as always. I was going to comment in the earlier episode recap but things got busy. Anyway, like you i was also pissed at Nok, wondering why in the world Nai would love her. But it’s made clear in this episode. That part where she gets a rag to clean an old book shows she takes care and protects whatever is hers. She loves whatever is hers. She’s possessive like that. Even though she hates Nai for it, she took the time to clean the book, in an act of utter sentimentality. So maybe she feels the same way for Nai. She shows that she doesn’t value him but deep inside she wants to care for him. And as Nai’s song goes, he waits for that day when she finally loves him. And when she does, she would care for him and not let him go, unlike his mother or Khae.
I’m glad you brought this up, I was going to save it for another time. Going back to the first five minutes of the show, Nai probably did what he felt was right, in that Nok must not have wanted the baby and there was no way in hell he would let the baby boy grow up like him, with his mother abandoning him. But Nok will have to show him that she’s not like his mother. Ah so much more to delve into, and I’m curious to see where Show will take us and if the love story will be told in a satisfactory way. Still hoping to hear more about the childhood friendship falling out, if any. Thanks for the comment Greta!
Oh did you see the drumstick feeding blooper? JJ kisses his P’Taew’s hand and apologizes, I think Taew is another mother hen 😂
Hahahaha no one is safe from his childlike charm. Even Taew’s mom is mothering him. I wonder how James can act the part of an abandoned and unloved child so well. He has about a million mothers all over the world *sweatdrop*
I was thinking the first part could even be worse you know, since Nai seemed to be on the offensive and wanting to punish Nok, not just protecting his child. It’s the first time for him to claim anything, when so far, it seems Nai was willing to give up everything in favor of Nok. I am intrigued about this plot point to say the least.
Nai bottles up a lot of his feelings, about Nok, about his own mother. We don’t really get to see how it torments him unless he’s alone and has time to reflect on it. Outside of a couple of people who insult him, he has a lot of people that adore him. I know he’s endlessly grateful to his foster family, but as a grown adult and someone who has made the family a lot of money already, at which point do you just live your life instead of being at their beck and call? I love that mom and dad loves him, but they call on him to clean up their messes all the time, it’s such an entitled thing. 🙄🤷♀️ even my parents don’t demand this much of me lol, but I keep them plenty busy watching my boys 😂 maybe I’m just being protective of Nai.
Now that you mention it, Game Sanaeha seems to be a story about mothers and children too. We have Penny, Khae and Nok as foils for each other, as well as their own respective mothers. How each mother in the story is different. We have the evil matriarchal grandma, the party loving irresponsible but ultimately loving Vi, the sacrificial mom of Penny who ended up loving her charge more than her own child, Khae’s stereotypical social climbing mom and then Nai’s mom who cut off ties with him to give him a better life. All the mothers were imperfect and produced these dysfunctional children and molded them to the way they are now. And it opens with Nok with becoming a mother herself. I wonder how this story would unfold. I heard that the screenplay writer is the same as the one who did Padiwarada (Saran :Nok, Rin:Nai, can you see it?) and the theme in that one was about husbands and wives. I guess here, one of the themes is mothers and their children. Children are, in a sense, a product, or even crudely, a recycled version of their parents in the circle of life or something haha!
Haha well the original title or the book title is “buang sanaeha” so you’re not far off from the circle of life, though in this story, it is the circle of love which starts from the love of a mother. Excellent commentary as per usual Greta!
I will say that Padiwarada had a more seamless storytelling, which speaks to the directing skills. But man is the cast easy on the eyes, especially pretty boy James Ji.