Dr. Bunnakit is a medical examiner based at a provincial hospital. One day, after carrying out an autopsy on the body of a woman who had seemingly hanged herself, Dr. Bunnakit rules out suicide, as his findings point to homicide. His conclusion suddenly makes him the target of someone very powerful. When an anonymous man breaks into his house and threatens him to change his report to suicide, Dr. Bunnakit doesn't take this threat seriously. But all that changes when one of his friends, a prosecutor, suddenly disappears. Dr. Bunnakit quietly conducts his own investigation in order to get at the truth. All clues lead to one suspect, a man named Tan, who denies any involvement. Tan convinces Dr. Bunnakit to team up together in order to find the real murderer. (Source: Soju at MyDramaList; parts were from Lazy Subber, and polished by Last Subber) Edit Translation
Cast & Credits
- Max Nattapol DiloknawaritWiraphong Inkhamwiang / Tutor TanMain Role
- Tul Pakorn ThanasrivanitchaiBunnakit Songsakdina / Dr. BunMain Role
- Great Sapol AssawamunkongInspector MSupport Role
- Foei Patara EksangkulSongsak / PuedSupport Role
- Mint Nutwara VongvasanaRungtiwa SookyodSupport Role
- Meiko Chonnikan NetjuiJanejira Sookyod / Ms. JaneSupport Role
EVERYONE SHOULD WATCH THIS SHOWI wrote this review crying, I never in a thousand years when I started MoD think it would make me cry but after watching episode 13, I was wrecked, I just could not stop crying. Like that episode hit so good, so I just decided to start my review now.
I will start by saying, I came to Manner of Death for MaxTul and I stayed for the great series, I genuinely did not have high expectations for the series going in [I mean we all know Thailand for its great variety of genre of BL series outside schoolboy love, lol]. I was not going to write my review of MoD until it was done, but after what I felt in episode 13, I just felt the urge to pen this review down.
To unofficially start the review, I feel a lot of people [most of whom I believe do not have a background in law and criminal investigations] came to this with weird expectations, I guess while I came with no expectations from the show. So, I am going to be writing this review with the years I have spent as a Criminal Prosecutor [lawyer], which I have led several investigations, but also as a fan of great storytelling, please note I am not saying this series was the perfect series on legality and investigations because I don't know what the law is like in their country and how they separate jurisdiction in crimes in Thailand, but the under thought was appreciated for some parts of legality. I would also like to note that the purpose of this story/series is not to be an action intense, passion-driven story, it is meant to be more of a criminal investigation, a murder mystery. Seeing as it is a murder mystery thriller, it sets up the tone a lot for what the series has to offer, which I believe was beautifully met, I love that they didn't make the show about insane crime plots, but more of a slow revelation of people involved in a heinous crime (which about 90% of the time in real life cases, that is what happens, I mean I have had a guy convicted for murder just because he didn't want his wife to know he cheated (his mistress was his alibi), so most times crimes aren't what a lot of shows paint them out to be) or this girl who knew he boyfriend was involved in a series of crimes but kept quiet because she "loved" him and I was like, where look at where that landed you. An example is KinnPorsche the series is a pure action series, which is totally different from MoD, just because both pertain to ‘mafia’, does not mean the elements of the series would be similar, they are two quite different genres of series, can't expect the same level of action
Alright, so for my general review, I would say that Manner of Death was a refreshing breath to the BL industry when I first heard about it, because while I love my fluffy cute boys, but as someone that is older and out of university/working, I would love to believe that people fall in love outside school too. I was already pretty excited for a non-school Thai BL and by the first episode I was super excited, as a criminal prosecutor because I saw the attention to detail in certain aspects of the series, like the mentioning of the 5 manners of death, that was the first indication to me that they knew where they were going with their series and that there was a vision [this is one of the first things we are taught under murder and homicide in criminal law and how to differentiate each one for charging purposes], so it was refreshing to see detail in that sense, as well as the amount of detail paid to medical terms, autopsy, etc. Yes, they had a lot of sloppy parts, there were parts that were so convenient, but in a general overview, I loved how they handled a lot of things.
I was happy with the level of intrigue they left us with after each episode like they gave us tiny crumbs of information which keeps you want to know more by next week and there was a form of intricacy with the amount of intention paid towards the mystery. Seeing the motivating factors of each character, being ultra-suspicious of every character because everyone was basically a suspect until we started getting towards episodes 6 and 7, when they started to be clarified on so much more of the story, even when we thought we knew definitively who the killer was, by the time we got to episode 13 and we got the full back story, I was left so gut-wrenched, not just by the shock of who the killer was, I mean I had my suspicion about the character as a whole, but the entire story behind it, like I was hurt so much I didn’t know when I started crying and that's because it kinda brought me back to some dark cases that I have handled, it just hit differently for me.
I loved the series for so many things, they always made me laugh and roll over with laughter with how suspicious Bun was of Tan like Tan could breathe and Bun would look at him like ‘you breathe suspiciously’, I mean Tan’s phone literally rang and he gave Tan a side-eye in the earlier episode, it was always funny. What made me cackle was Bun warning Sorawit against That like he was literally playing housewife with one of the prime suspects as of when we knew nothing. Or after the shooting, when Tan and Bun were together with Inspector M and being all lovey-dovey and inspector m smirked like, ‘these kids really about to act like I am not right here.’
STORY – 9.5
I loved the story in this, it follows Dr. Bun as he tries to uncover the mysteries of Viangpha Mork, the town he grew up in, which makes him learn, everything is not what it seems. I mean every revelation comes like a gut punch. He is helped by a dark and somewhat mysterious man [tan], whom he comes to fall in love with. The story is a story of mystery, suspense, betrayal, and manipulation. I absolutely loved it. I do not want to give out more than this here.
The story had a lot of moral lessons for me like
1. Everything is not always what it seems to be and even when we think we know someone, a lot of the time we really do not.
2. Most people go through their pain quietly like Jane and Natty and by the time we get the courage to speak out, it might be too late.
3. It spoke on the problems of trafficking and rape that is ever so prevalent in the society and that sometimes it goes to the very top of the society, those who are meant to tackle it
4. That love can make us do a lot of things, like a lot of things.
I loved the story overall
CHARACTERS – 9
I love the characters, while they were core characters that make up the entire story, I love how they tried their best to give each character a little bit of something, they did not always succeed but it was great though, I love that they had 3D characters, no caricatures of characters though I wish they did more with some characters.
Bun, our main protagonist, I love Bun because he represents a lot, friendship, love, and confusion. Bun was a bit of representation of how naïve we can be sometimes, and through him, we get to view it and understand that everything is not always what it appears to be, his friend Pued was not the good man he grew up with, Rung that was like a sister to him was a twisted person. His growth on the show was interesting to watch. He kind of kickstarts everything with his pursuit for truth. He teaches us to fight for what we believe in and what is right, even at those hard moments. In the grand scheme of things, I actually don’t think he was the most important character [in my opinion]
Tan, as a character, Tan was a bit more complicated than Bun, a victim of circumstance. Rejected by his own father and eldest brother, yet still loving them in a way [when he said he could not let Por die despite everything]. He represents conflict, conflict on thoughts, conflict of emotions. Bun and Tan worked together to reveal the story to us, while a lot of us came for MaxTul, which means we technically came for BunTan, which they delivered to us, good acting, smut, and fluff. They gave us the mystery and gave us the love feels. The characters who ended up standing out to me the most were Jane, Rung, and Pued [that is at the ending]
Rung, Jane, and Pued as characters show us how we can be so wrong about people just from outward appearances. They also make us understand, that there is this idea, that family are the people who care for you the most or have your back the most and these characters show us the errors in this reasoning. They show us how easily a person can be manipulated, they show us how twisted and cruel family can be, they show us how weak those who are meant to love us and protect us can be. I feel the greatest moral story of the series lies with this set of characters.
I love Inspector M as well, he represents this inner struggle we have with ourselves sometimes, between taking the right path and the easy path.
Of course, we have evil and disgusting characters like the Congressman, Police Chief, and Judge, which shows us how often people in power misuse the trust placed in them, even if it is not through sex rings and trafficking, stealing, embezzling and so much more… gosh I hated them.
Sorawit and That, they kind of just plotted characters, gave us cute scenes, they really didn’t add or take away anything from the series, so I don’t mind them. Oat too as well, he is cute.
I think overall, the core 5 or 6 characters showed a little bit of depth, that they were thought out to some extents and to make us understand that humans are complex 3 dimensional people, we dong just fit into a one for all box... Though I wish they did more with side characters sometimes but it's fine
ACTING - 9
Gosh, episode 13 was a masterpiece in acting and emotions, you know when I started MoD, I felt a little bit misplaced about the acting, the men felt like overall better actors but shit, episode 13 changed my mind heavily.
I mean they had acting misses do not get me wrong, examples are when nam was drugged and she was back with sorawit and she was able to regain coordination or it appeared so despite being drugged. Also, there were some acting misses in terms of pain and stuff, but the thing is that in moments when it mattered, THEY ALWAYS DELIVER [you can quote me on that]
Like, I walked away from episode 13, which was the most important episode in my view, with pain in my heart, the sequence was executed so well I could not stop crying, it was just so much. MaxTul as well were also great in their parts, but I have to say, episode 13 kinda took the cake for me in acting, which hurt me in ways I did not know I could be hurt, memories of things to be forgotten.
Though like I said there were some acting misses but I don't think it was prevalent in this show.
Now, MoD was a great show, it had thought put into it but there were just some few misses, some which I have already noted
But episode 11, 12 and 13 had some plot issues that were kinda weird, like how Por was conveniently at the school. The phone with the video was in the exact place they were (though it makes sense seeing as Pued had taken refugee there for a while, but it was just a little convenient)
They had very great storytelling, although their pacing was a little off, what I mean, is how fast somethings happened or how slow it happened
Sometimes like there were some fluffy parts of Tan and Bun that were just kinda unnecessary to the overall plot, [but hey, who am I to complain, after all, MAXTUL for life]. Sometimes the way patients recover from shootings or beatings in life seconds was kinda funny like characters had super-regenerative cells in this show like I do not know how Tan survived like he was beaten numerously, shot, kidnapped, and somehow, he could still walk, lol.
I mean in the grand scheme of things; I understand why the judge allowed them to bring everything to him so he could monitor anyone getting to close to the truth and I think because it is a small town everyone knows everyone but I think it was just weird how everyone could just turn up at the judge's office for a favor or how they took evidence on them at the police station. But like I said earlier, I don't know how the legality in their place works because I do not practice there, so it might make sense for a small town to have that.
I mean MoD had misses, but I don't think any of the misses was so fatal it made the show unenjoyable, but I just thought to note them
Production – 8
Well, the production was kinda weird at first, I thought like there was just low lighting, but as we moved forward, I got to understand that was meant to the feeling that was created, it was meant to be a foggy town and the low lighting was to add to the chill vibe of the murder mystery. The Pacing was generally okay, so I do not seriously have any issues with them, I just wished they didn’t waste as much time on some things or some things that didn’t seem so out of the blue.
REWATCH VALUE - 10
I would absolutely rewatch this a thousand times, but episode 13 has me scarred, so I do not know, anytime I think of it, I cry… But I do not think that would stop me from watching it because the series overall is great.
OST - ?????
They do not have an outstanding OST in MoD,
well point of correction they don't have an ost at all in MoD. Which was an interesting choice, I don't know how music would have changed the show but I think it was a safe choice, better no Music and the show came out great or they inserted music and potentially ruined key moments.
They rely heavily on instruments, which worked out for them in. I do love the introduction to the episodes when they are showing the characters. I think they did an overall good job with their use of sound for effect.
As a series in whole, I definitely loved this, I look forward to a season 2 and I hope they fix a couple of issues here and there but I am ranking it among my top BL series ever and that is going up against Gaya sa Pelikula, UWMA, and many more
COMMENDABLE JOBAre you curious why I wrote "commendable job" in the title? It's because the writer and director of this MoD actually need some applause for making this unique Thai BL.
I am so so so happy that finally Thai BL makers are coming out of their comfort zone and trying out genres which are way beyond of their league. Crime thriller is absolutely not what their area of interest.
To be very honest, I found many flaws but I think it's worth looking them away for they've come out of their box probably for the first time. In fact, they've done a pretty good job in direction, screenwriting and screenplay, which I thought they might not work out.
It was a pretty good story with plots, twists and turns placed at their rightful places. Few things felt absurd but can be totally ignored. They didn't research about the forensic stuffs properly which they could have done by consulting experts of the respective fields. And the thing about the police station organisation didn't feel right either.
But anyways, I was intrigued by the ending and tbe way the main culprit was revealed.
It was overally a good watch. I hope they keep making such Thai BLs.