Lah Ruk Sut Kop Fah – Episode 2

Thanks to the hour-and-forty episode interval, we manage to establish the main grouping of characters already. Now it’s on to the sparks flying between our Royal Guard and his not-quite-royal charge. Can he also learn to untuck his pants from his boots?

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EPISODE 2

Someone levels a gun at Mattana’s birthday party, aiming for her dad. Kamin quickly tackles Thammarat to the ground, and the bullet misses him. Matt starts chasing the culprint even as Kamin runs after him. The shooter jumps on a motorcycle and takes off. Kamin commandeers a bystander’s bike to give chase.

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But wait! A white Mazda MX-5 Sport Roadster roars past with an angry young woman in traditional dance dress behind the wheel. She quickly catches up to the two motorcycles. Coming alongside Kamin, she ignores his gestures to back off, intent on her prey. But the bikes are more dextrous than her, and she loses them when they make a sharp turn.

With the just the two-wheelers racing now, Kamin throws a shuriken and somehow knocks the other bike over. The three start fighting and Kamin manages to subdue the shooter just as Mattana arrives. Not knowing that Kamin is a good guy, she starts shooting him with a paintball gun. In the confusion, the two bad guys run off, and our royal bodyguard finds himself in defense mode. He finally pins Mattana, who quickly identifies him as the man in the airport and is convinced he is shadowing her to harm her family.

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The police finally arrive, along with Hayman, and Kamin is cuffed and taken away. At the police station, he is clearly frustated but calm, stating he was there to help. He can’t prove that he was a reporter, but promises that Thammarat will vouch for him. Mattana doesn’t believe him, of course, and they argue.

K: I ask you, really, does a face like mine really look like a bad guy?
M: Nowadays all criminals are good-looking.
K: Then a pretty woman should not be trusted, either.

Mattana knows she lost that round, and immediately commands the police to lock him up and throw away the key. The officer is reasonable though. How about if she just lets them do their job?

Dad arrives just as Mattana and Hayman are leaving, and they fill him in on the supposed identity of the suspect. At the name “Kamin” he hurries in. Hayman receives a phone call that Mom has fainted, so the two head back.

At home, Mattana finds her mom perfectly fine. Her relief is short-lived, however, when Mom lights into her for her atrocious behavior. The nobles were scandalized over her dance, and she’s even happy she chased a criminal. Mattana tries to explain what happened until Mom slaps her, furious that she would put her life in danger and consider it fun. Hayman apologizes for the bad guys getting onto the estate.

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Thammarat and Kamin are at his hotel room. They share a manly conversation and complement each other. Dad mentions how clever he was as a boy, and Kamin is suprised that he knew him from thirty years previously. They get down to serious matters, and Dad reads King Inthra’s letter. The king is convinced that his daughter is a model of graceful nobility. It’s obvious that Dad has his doubts when he hesitantly asks Kamin if he thought she had the stuff to be queen. Kamin realizes that she’s a modern-raised woman, but she is intelligent. So she will be a quick study in the ways of Raya. Dad is understandably skeptical.

In Raya, Prince Makey is getting annoyed at the constant shadowng by Sinthorn. He dismisses him while he takes a steam shower. Tayvee, General Witoon’s wife, drags a resisting Hareutai to “accidently” bump into the prince. Tayvee wants her to use any and all chances to secure her position as the future Queen of Raya, and pushes her daughter into the bathhouse.

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Sinthorn sees the movement, and levels a gun at Hareutai. Once he identifies her, he quickly holsters the gun. When Makey comes out in a bathrobe, she faints into Sinthorn’s arms. As a nurse uses smelling salts, the prince comments that she was always weak this way. She wakes up disoriented, but freely admits to mom’s plan that she take care of the prince to become closer.

Hareutai asks the prince to help her one-on-one with her workout, and he decides this might be fun. Her parents are gloating with Queen Savitri that their daughter seems to be making headway with the Crown Prince. Their plans seem to be on the verge of success, as long as they can shake off Kamin’s dog, Sinthorn.

Their daughter makes it back to their house, completely exhausted and alone. The prince is heading out somewhere as well. In a flashback, we see the prince set Hareutai on a treadmill without the safety tether, and set it for a high rate while he sneaked off.

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Now dressed in his uniform, Kamin is grinning over baby photo books of his charge. He finally gets introduced to Mattana’s mother. Marnvika is gracious and well-spoken, and offers him a meal as a form of apology. Also, to meet Mattana more formally as well.

Mattana is still in pout mode after the run-in with her mother. Mintra tries to cajole her into a better mood, but it isn’t working. Mattana asks Mintra to never desert her. They hug, but Mintra’s expression is anything but welcoming.

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The elders and Kamin are at the dinner table, but Mattana hasn’t come down yet. While they are waiting, Kamin receives a phone call. Mattana whines her way down the hall. At the top of the stairs, she spots the Royal Envoy in the foyer. She pretends to trip down the stairs, only to caught by our foreign hero. They stare into each other’s eyes for a moment, before she realizes he’s the culprit of the night before and goes into snarling spitting mode.

She grabs a handy cane and pins him against the piano. He thinks the paintball situation the night before was enough, and slips away. They start sparring in the middle of the foyer. She’s got him pinned against the wall when her scandalized parents show up. He tries to pull out his Rayan passport, but she takes a swing at him instead. Her dad runs up and takes the blow instead. Mintra picks up the passport and confirms his identity.

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 Now that calm has been restored, Mom asks Mattana to apologize to the Royal Bodyguard. Dad is ready to let bygones be bygones, and Kamin states he is not injured and that it was just an accident. Mattana is quick to agree, and has some questions for him. First one: is the country a dictatorship? Kamin explains it as a monarchy with a governing council. Mattana scoffs at the non-democratic government, but he is quick to explain that all citizens enjoy the same rights and privileges of the Thai people. Mattana wonders if the Rayan people can love who they want; Kamin responds that they can love like any other human being, but they must always think of duty and country as well.

She has more questions, but Dad insists that they start eating. Kamin complements the food,and Marnvika tells him Mintra’s cooking skills are excellent, as her parents are servants in the royal kitchen. I don’t think she likes the way she is introduced.

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Mattana readily admits she can’t cook, and offers him a dish to try. It turns out to be very very spicy. Kamin’s game, though, and tries it again. And drains his water glass. LOL

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Now we know where Prince Makey went – to see his concert dancer. Oh no! Despite his promise to Kamin, he gives his consort earring to Karnika and tells her that she will be queen. Clearly he is thinking with the wrong part of his anatomy. She is estatic and promises undying loyalty and love. He leaves her there, but promises to return.

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Sinthorn is on the phone with Kamin. Karnika is missing and Sinthorn has checked every place he could think of. Kamin figures that Prince Makey has hidden her somewhere, and remembers a horseback ride with Makey near a small villa. The Prince was thrown from the horse, and they took shelter there. The prince was ready to shoot the animal, but Kamin reasonably says that the Prince was mishandling it. After all, you can’t just use your authority, but you need to temper it with reason.

The owners of the villa show up, intent on protecting their own. All the prince can do is demand they pay homage, which they laugh at. After all, what are the chances that royalty would end up in their house. A fight ensues, and Kamin overcomes the pair at first. But as the fight continues, the odds go against him. One of them prepares to shoot the prince, when the Royal Guard finally shows up, and the fight is over.

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The owners are dragged out, and Sinthorn tells them the punishment for touching the Royal Body is death. Prince is ready to pass judgement, but Kamin (again the voice of reason) pleads for them. After all, they invaded their house, so it was reasonable for them to defend it. The prince agrees, and the two wai and offer a debt in gratitude.

Back in the present, Kamin tells Sinthorn to check that location for Karnika as well. And we see that it is exactly as Kamin predicted. But as Prince Makey leaves the housed, a strange Zorro-looking figure in a black mask looks at the house from the cover of the trees. Even with the mask, it’s clearly Suthep.

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Queen Savitri is yelling at the Crown Prince’s page, promising all types of bad things for allowing the prince to slip out of the compound. The page admits that the prince has used other means, such as slipping drugs to the guards, in order to sneak out. This only makes the queen more angry, and she remands him to the guard for punishment.

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Mattana is pacing in her room, trying to think up something to derail this whole royal thing. She sees a punk rock concert on her television and gets an idea. Meanwhile, Kamin is stripped down to while boxers (Yay!), and checking his phone for any updates from Raya. A knock on the door is housekeeping. Even though she had already straightened out the room, she wanted to do some extra dusting. Once he leaves back into the bathroom, a punked-out Mattana rolls out from under her cart and hides. When he comes out in an open bathrobe, she gets to see him in all his open-chest, white-boxer glory.

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At the Kiakamjorn estate, Mom is knocking on Mattana’s bedroom door. Mintra intercepts her, telling her that her daughter has a headache and went to be early. Mom is worried that she may be forcing her daughter into this situation too much, but Mintra assures her that Raya is a beautiful country and any girl would be happy to be queen there.

Kamin asks this strange person to leave his hotel room. It takes a few minutes for him to realize who it is. Once he does, he formally bows, which gaps open his bathrobe again. He hurries to change into something more appropriate.

Now clad in a sweater and jeans, he is ready to listen to Mattana. She asks for forgiveness for her previous behavior, but to him it’s uncessary. Still, she insists on taking him out so he can study the high society behavior in Thailand. He looks at her askance, but is willing to go.

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In Raya, Sinthorn arrives at the villa, only to find the two owners bloody and unmoving. He pulls his weapon and goes through the house, but there is nobody there. Outside again, he discover one of the villagers is still alive. The man manages to confirm that Prince Makey was not there when the masked man arrived, and makes a final plea to help Karnika before exsanguinating.

Karnika is being dragged through the woods by our masked man. He sneers that she is unfit to become queen. She flings her hair to reveal the prince’s consort earring and demands he show her the respect she deserves. He chokes her out and cuts her ear off. Sinthorn hears the screams and races to the scene. There’s a fight between the two men; Sinthorn fires at the man when he escapes, clipping him in the shoulder. Rather than chase him further, though, he stays to administer to the hysterical dancer, but not before he picks up the bloody ear and tucks it in his pocket.

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Suthep reports to General Witoon, who is angry that he lost the ear…err…earring.  He commands Suthep to hide until his arm heals.

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Mattana and Kamin make it to a club. He is surprised but willing to go in. But per Mattana, he needed some changes. So she slices off the sleeves of his sweater, cuts holes in his jeans, and gives him some spiked accessories and black lipstick. He’s shocked when he sees a girl with gauges in her ears, but is further surprised at the clientele. Hayman is playing bouncer, and the fun begins. Kamin gets immediately surround by molls; Hayman pulls Mattana aside to ask her why she has to play a joke on this guy. She explains his mission, which Hayman doesn’t like.

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Kamin gets to witness Mattana’s out of control behavior, and her friends play it up as a several-times-a-week drunken rout. Suddenly, some unforseen guys show up and things get dicey as the leader zeros in on Mattana. Kamin comes to the rescue; Mattana is nervousw for him, but she need not worry as he handily kicks butt over the punks. Until one of them pulls a gun and points it at him, then she ends the standoff by smashing a beer bottle over his head.

Mattana is dragged outside. Kamin insists that they head home as this is not an appropriate place for her to be. He muses that she is not what he expected. She is happy there is proof that she is unfit for the position, but Kamin believes this isn’t enough to prove that she can’t be queen. Mattana tries a bribe, and has Hayman take the royal guard home while she “parties” some more. In reality, she sneaks back home, only to be caught by Mintra. She is too happy for a job well done to worry about it.

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Prince Makey is having a massage bath, and Chawaan complains that he has no compassion for his servants. He suddenly sees that the consort earring is missing, and freaks out. The Prince calmly admits to giving it to Karnika. He is smug even as his page gets even more agitated. Just then, his mother shows up to see where he has been. He kneels before the queen and plays the humble penitent who only went out to see how the people of his country are faring. She is happy he seems to be taking an interest in affairs of state. He also tells her he lost his other earring.

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At the Witoon residence, they have an audience with the queen. She dismisses Tayvee in order to talk private with her brother. She tells him about the missing earring, but of course he already knows. He convinces the queen that Kamin must have bullied her son into giving it to his lover so that Kamin could control the throne in the future.

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In the king’s audience chamber, Sinthorn presents King Inthra with an ear-free earring. The monarch praises his quick actions, and they discuss what Witoon will do now. The king is worried that he has heard no news from Thailand, and asks Phokin to quickly call Kamin for an update.

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Kamin assures the king that he will be heading back that day with a thorough report. Once he hangs up, he stares at the check Mattana gave him and goes through her pictures and thinks. We get a flashback from the punk fest. Hayman tells Kamin that Mattana is a dissolute partygoer who can’t be controlled. While talking, he noticed that Hayman’s punked outfit still had the store tags on it. After he was dropped off, our envoy went back to the bar and caught them cleaning out all of the punk paraphernalia, and Hayman paying the bar owner for the night’s trouble so his boss’ daughter could have some pretend fun.

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Mattana is jumping happy when she gets the update from Hayman that Kamin is leaving that day. Of course she turns around and there he is; she covers up that she is talking to a friend who is going abroad. He remarks that she seems very happy that this friend is leaving. She asks if he had made a decision, and he answers in the affirmative. She takes this to mean that she is free, but he asks to speak with her parents, even though he had already talked to them.

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While having tea with the family, Mattana smiles and tells him to tell her parents that she is unsuited for the honor of becoming queen. But before he does that, he returns the check she gave him last night, pretending that she accidently dropped it and he picked it up to return to her. He gets down to brass tacks; King Inthra is anxious and wants to come to Thailand to personally escort Mattana to Raya. She jumps up: No way is she going there! Never!

Kamin continues. He requested that the king give him time to teach Mattana the traditions and ceremonies of Raya to better prepare her. But what about last night? She asks. The parents are suspicious but Kamin smoothly glosses over her gaffe that it involved some webnews, and covertly threatens to expose her little party last night. Through gritted teeth, she agrees.

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As Dad escorts them to the study he will use, Mattana hisses to Kamin of his betrayal with eyes filled with the promise retribution. Mom asks Mintra what kind of trouble occurred the night before. In the study, Dad gives his daughter encouragement as Kamin begins a slideshow of his country. She’s not interested in geography; she wants to know his country is populated with deceitful schemers.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Ooh boy [fans self]. I love a good strong-willed female character.  Pair that up with a stubborn, candid male, and we have the makings of a great show.  I’m not too worried about the machinations of the evil people just yet, since there is still time being used to flesh out and jell the relationship between our couple.  When Kamin examines the two versions of his charge, he’s already come to the conclusion that the spitfire that chased an assassin and that attacked him with a stick is the more accurate Mattana. Now it’s a matter of using his wit and skills to bring her up to snuff.  He’s not completely convinced that she is the right person to share the throne of Raya, but he is willing to know her better before the final decision.

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Mattana is clearly reluctant to leave her country, her home, and everything familiar to her, just to be a stuffy old queen in some backwater country.  But she is honest in wanting to please her parents, or at least not make them too angry at her.  Clearly family is very important to her, so there is the added scary factor of ending up alone in a strange place. Kamin’s help will be crucial in assisting her with this monumental change.

Mintra is already established as the devious and conniving character. Her actions show that she desperately wants to run away from her humble beginnings and be more than society allows her.  No doubt if she travels to Raya she will be the backstabber waiting in the wings.  Hayman is more two dimensional. He likes Mattana, but I don’t see any of the great yearning or angst that a second lead would normally exhibit.  I hope he is just the staunch friend to Mattana.

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Of the palace contingent, I will just touch on them for now: King Inthra is a conscientious king but has little backing other than his faithful retainers. Queen Savitri spends way too much time finding fault in others, and worried about individuals, to be a good queen, wife, or mother. She is also easily manipulated by her brother. General Witoon wants the throne, pure and simple, and the only way he can get it is to control the Crown Prince, either by selling his daughter or by coercion.  Sinthorn is completely loyal to Kamin, and he believes the Crown Prince is a buffoon and an idiot.  And Crown Prince Makey is indeed a buffoon and an idiot, who cares for little besides instant gratification and his own impulses.  Despite examples and teaching from Kamin, he never seems to understand the importance of sober judgement, and this will come back to bite him in the end.

Mattana is also impulsive, but in this she is far superior to her fiance because she will learn from her rash decisions and become a better person. Heres’s to the next episode!

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About Shukmeister

I have a great fondness for chocolate chip cookie dough, 80's science fiction movies, and thunderstorms.

Posted on September 29, 2014, in Lah Ruk Sut Kop Fah (2014), Recaps and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Punk rocker Mat! This was the episode I started to like her character! Instead of seeing her of bratty, I realized that she was just a strong willed woman who generally took no prisoners. What a contrast to Kamin! Talk about oil and water personalities!? Well opposites attract and the chemistry was starting to come clear to me.

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