Ongoing 14/14
oddsare Finger Heart Award1
28 people found this review helpful
Nov 2, 2023
14 of 14 episodes seen
Ongoing 4
Overall 9.0
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 9.0

BL to Thriller or Vice Versa?

At first, my fujoshi heart was all aflutter for some fresh BL content, but six episodes down the line, I found myself spiraling into a rabbit hole of thrills and chills instead.

Not a moment of fast-forward was needed through the saga: it's a wild ride through the eerie and the unknown, with narratives that grip you, suspense that keeps you on the edge, and a raw delve into the realm of mental health. It's a murder mystery adorned with a rich blend of folkloric whimsy and literary allegory, each scene more captivating than the last. This series is where the tender allure of BL meets the pulse-racing thrill of a mystery, all wrapped up in a cloak of cultural and literary elegance.

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Completed
BL Compilations
14 people found this review helpful
Nov 2, 2023
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 10
Overall 9.0
Story 8.5
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 8.0

a mystery/thriller series that tried something different

Overall: I appreciate that this series had a unique premise. This is more mystery/thriller instead of horror/gore, there are some very heavy topics and things shown. Aired 14 episodes about 45 minutes each on GagaOOLala. Make sure to watch the entire post credits scene in episode 14.

BL content: I'll put this in a spoiler comment

Content Warnings: there are some really heavy topics, see my comment with a spoiler for the full list

What I Liked
- unique premise
- blended different elements well
- acting
- liked in episode 2 how Dan sought communication from Nai
- a few sweet moments (including the friend cuddle)
- production value

Room For Improvement
- unless I missed it, 2 characters should have been shown being arrested by police but the writing seemed to suggest that their own miserable lives were bad enough (but they should have been arrested)
- how much Josh & Nai believed Dan who they had recently befriended stretched credulity a bit
- where was the teacher at the pool???
- I dislike that the school priest tried to force forgiveness
- open ending

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Completed
QueerDudeGermany
4 people found this review helpful
Dec 11, 2023
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.0
Story 8.5
Acting/Cast 8.5
Music 7.5
Rewatch Value 7.0
This review may contain spoilers

more hitchcock than 2gether

Here we have a pure mystery thriller, enhanced with a few horror and LGBT elements.
In its best moments, Shadow is insanely dark, atmospheric and suspenseful, taking the viewer on a journey of madness where it is sometimes unclear what is fantasy and what is reality. Shadow always has a very mature tone and the telenovela parts are pleasantly turned down. The melancholy is also beautifully portrayed in parts, such as the relationship between Dan and the shadow, which is both his greatest danger and his greatest support.

The first episodes of the two parts in particular stand out and simply compel you to keep watching. But then, unfortunately, sometimes a few lengths creep in and the focus of the horror-mystery disappears a little and the stylistic device of the flashback is simply overused. Unfortunately, the resolution of the mysteries is rushed in the final episodes, but at least with a good, coherent ending

Unfortunately, Shadow also has a second glaring weakness and that is the romances, be it the Love Triangle or the implied (b)romance between Dan and Nai, nothing fits together and somehow makes sense, although there would actually have been enough time to give one of the romances a bigger place. Otherwise it would have been more consistent and better to do without any romances

Fortunately, the cast can cover up this shortcoming, because Fluke and Singto in particular can finally show what great actors they are after their last series was rather mediocre.

All in all, Shadow is a very entertaining thriller series, only those hoping for a BL will undoubtedly be disappointed.

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Completed
vantegguk
5 people found this review helpful
Dec 8, 2023
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 8.5

Thriller but the ending

The ending was unexpected. This is basically not a BL it has slightly bromance and the plot is very interesting.

However the cast gave their best to the series. I hoped that Nai and Dan would end up together at first but it didn't happen as I thought. Overall I think it's worth watching cause I've never thought that Fluke and Singto will act together in the same series.

This is series contain many real life political issues that happened in 1976 in Thailand. Apart from the religious and mythical beliefs In my opinion I think they're trying communicate with the society through the series.

So for me it's worth watching but I'm not sure whether if they make another season for the story because the ending was not really ended. It somehow gave the this is not the end vibe. Anyways overall a great series.

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Completed
Sakura
4 people found this review helpful
Dec 11, 2023
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 7.5
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 8.5
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 6.0
This review may contain spoilers

Eerie, scary, confusing but also a piece of art

Honestly, I am both satisfied and unsatisfied at once. Now, please excuse my oxymoronic statement and let me tell you that I absolutely love this series.

It has components of BL, romance and also horror. But please don't come here for a lovey-dovey happily ever after BL series because you will be massively disappointed.

But all these aspects make it a one of a kind show that will leave it's mark in the Thai drama industry.

READ AT YOUR OWN RISK. MAJOR SPOILER AHEAD.

From my past experience, I love the films/drama which have confusing and ambiguous endings. I am fond of open endings where one has to use their heads to think what may have happened after that. If you did not know , now you know that I love to live in my head making up stories.

Speaking of stories, Shadow is an exceptional one.
The plot, the premise and the storytelling. The directors, the cinematographer, the screenwriters and the editor, need a standing ovation. The storytelling comprise of "show, don't tell" method and the script, cinematography, lighting , costume and music and is exceptionally well done.

Let's see the plot. Honestly, it is a lot.
Dan has a tragic past and tormented childhood. He lost his mother who committed suicide and for his abusive father, he has immense hatred in his heart.

One priest, brother Anurak, comes to his rescue as Dan starts to suffer from insomnia and sees a peculiar shadow figure constantly. Dan's father develop brain tumor and later cancer. Dan is taken under the wings of Brother Anurak in his school to take care of him and also treat him. But Dan's mental health starts to regress further as the shadow seem to have gotten stronger.

What is interesting about the plot is horror is used in many ways - it's trilling, it's supernatural, it is also psychological. And the audience also can't decipher between reality and dreaming.

The characters are very well portrayed along with their backstories. Dan, Trin, Anan and Brother Anurak have very very well developed backstories and character arcs.

Singto as Dan is brilliant. Fluke as Nai too. Poon stole the show as Josh. Fiat is one of the most well rounded actors of Thai BL industry and in a darker role he won my heart. Special mention to Yaimai as Chaim - her expressions and emotions are on display and she did her part very deftly.

Fun fact: Dan probably is bisexual in this drama. He did not recoil when Nai kissed him and he confessed that he liked Chaim but he chose neither.

There are many themes are going on together in this drama with the plot and the symbolism is one of them. The drama is also part dark academia with its symbol of Hamlet and Lord of the Flies. I mean dead father's ghost and children stranded in an uninhabited island aka the school premises guarded by a cursed lake? I see you Shadow the series team. I see you.

The complimentary colours throughout the series, the shots with symmetrical patterns, have given it a special edge. Each shot is an artistic expression. I love the angles to show various moods and emotions.

I would specifically mention how blue tint has been used - blue is associated with sadness. We see Dan's (the MC) mother almost bathed in soft blue after she thought she shot her son with the gun and had to put into mental health institution.

The blue also symbolise mystery. Dan's dorm room at school has the an eerie blue colour. There is also greys- in the smoke and in the shadow. We also see blacks.

The blue's complimentary colour orange/amber shows peace, happiness but in this case almost always we see a muted amber colour. To me it symbolises peace and normalcy but with a tinge of sadness flowing underneath.

The shot where Trin is sitting beside Master Joe in the drama class - Trin wears deep red while Master Joe wears dark blue. The stage is also draped in the two colours. The two are fond of each other but the two can't mix with each other. They are teacher and student. There is a huge difference in their probable relationship if that was to happen that we can't unsee.

Let me applause for the music. The theme music, the ending song by lazyloxy who also acted as Anan and all the background music are splendidly used.

What is that shadow anyway? As the last screen showed that Dan's father did the same ritual and passed and after that Dan was born. So in a way Dan belongs to the shadow spirit. He is probably the food that will keep the spirit go strong.

It became even stronger as he came to the school. As the power was lurking around the school premises due to Trin's mistake in ritual, the shadow spirit quickly takes an interest to Dan and does not let go. It is also a repressed form of sexual fantasy as we see the shadow molesting him when he was high on weeds and also in his dreams.

Nai can see spirits. He also has some natural protection against them, either gifted by the venerable monk or his own capabilities because the shadow usually never harms him nor Josh. But it did hurt Chaim because she did not live in close quarters with them so lacked the natural protection. But also the shadow was probably angry and hurt her as retaliation and she was a soft target.

Trin. Damn this guy. He was a rebel, a guy standing for justice and equality. But he was not above to do his own bids when threatened, even if the process is evil. He was not really a good guy and his spirit was malevolent in desperation to flee from the clutches of the shadow spirit.

The ending was confusing but as we see Trin's face grinning at Dan's, it is actually Trin in Dan's body. Nai failed to bring him back. But it may also be that Dan did not want to come back at all and let Trin come back instead as he wanted to live the life. The shadow spirit just wanted Dan and thus let Trin go.

This show was never meant to have a happy ending. Dan was supposed to be the sacrifice like Hamlet. Brother Anurak was supposed to be the tragic hero. Shadow the series is essentially a tragedy of an individual falling and failing at the end. This is not a story of win but to lose and that is okay because not all of us win. But Dan fought until the end. And he chose to stop fighting. The show succeeded.

Now, unless we have a season 2 or some special episodes, we can't say what exactly happened. Although the chances of getting season 2s are usually slim.

All in all, 2023 will end now with a bang.

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Completed
VonnyLaunchbury
5 people found this review helpful
Nov 1, 2023
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 3
Overall 9.0
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 5.5
Rewatch Value 7.5
This review may contain spoilers

Story..

Enjoyed this series.All the young actors did a brilliant job. Fluke and Singto are truly seasoned young actors who I have seen in many past series and cannot believe they are in their late twentys. They still look like teenagers.I loved the storyline but homophobia raised its head again but I wish that they wouldn't give it such a negative view because its now been accepted in western countrys especially the UK where I'm from but I do find it quite odd that being genders of the same sex is exploited when actors are shipped just to earn company's big profits..bit hypocritical to say the least.The one scene I found disturbing was for Dans mother hanging herself for Dan to find her so no wonder he had visions which affected him from a child. That said great series.Well done to everyone involved..Directors..production staff..
Scripwriters..All the cast..backroom staff and a round of applause for fluke and Singto.????????❤

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Completed
Dreamy-Nali
2 people found this review helpful
Dec 8, 2023
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 9.0

An intense ride

At first, I was disappointed only with the settings at school (because with the cast I expected something mature) but nevermind, they pulled it off well. This is not what I mainly want to talk about.

So I give a chance, and I don't absolute reget it at all! I love how they developed the story, it was well-written, really interesting and captivated from the begining to the end. Although, I won't recommend to everyone because it deals with heavy issues and there's also a depiction of violence as well.

However, they brought the right amount of the thriller, horror and mystery genres. It was also emotional and heartbreaking.

The actors were really good, they gave such great performances and the music gives me goosebumps.

I don't know if I will watch it again because it was dark and heavy but it was so good that I've binge-watching the episode in two days for each part. The only problem that I have is, when I've watched on VIU, they cut it into 4 parts each episodes so I think it broke a bit the atmosphere but in another hand, it let me breath for a second lol

Lastly, I want to say that Shadow becomes one of my favorite serie of this year!!

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Completed
BeanSensei
2 people found this review helpful
Feb 12, 2024
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.5
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 8.0

This is not what you would expect

Most importantly I would like to start by stating very clearly - this is NOT a BL. If someone has advertised it to you as one, don't expect what you would usually expect in BL series.
Being part of the LGBTQ community (being gay) does play a big role in the series - it's a part of what some main characters are, the bullying and stigma around it moves the plot forward and one of our main characters has plenty of feelings for the other. But that doesn't qualify it as a BL by no means.

Now onto what has been so good about the series.

The plot is quite wonderfully crafted - slowly, episode by episode, as the characters learn more we too see everything falling into place and how everything is intertwined and connected. The series has both a mythical and supernatural element, rooted in traditional beliefs and religion, along with psychological horror elements and suspense.
Following a group of three teenage friends discovering the truth behind their school, the staff and their own powers is a thrilling adventure, intertwined with friendship and seeking justice for those wronged is truly an adventure.
For those who need a warning, it does come with bit of blood and injuries present, as well as guns and other weapons. As well as mentions of suicide and self harm.

The acting is truly great! Fluke and Singto absolutely brilliantly portrayed every nuance of Dan and Nai. The roles are serious, heavy and filled with the full spectrum of emotions and they both did an amazing job. I especially have to praise Singto - he did a truly phenomenal job.
The entire cast putting their all into this is definitely a reason to watch series alone.

If you go into this as a crime/mystery/supernatural series, I belive you will thoroughly enjoy it!

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Completed
winteraeon
2 people found this review helpful
Dec 11, 2023
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 8.0
This review may contain spoilers

This is not a BL. This is a Mystery-Horror-Thriller

This is NOT Manner of Death. This isn’t a thriller that has queer relationships in it. This isn’t a suspenseful drama with two leading male characters who are attracted to each other (at least we are supposed to buy the one sided attraction despite early indications that it’s mutual). This is very much your old school typical “we have queer characters but they don’t get to be with who they want in the end, only the straight characters do” (uh well sort of, she’s not that enthusiastic about her consolation prize tbh).

I’m not sure how Shadow winds up in the BL circles. Yes, there is a confirmed gay supporting character. There is another more periphery character who is definitely queer (gay vs bi vs etc not confirmed). But there are zero queer relationships unless you’re counting the teacher and the now dead kid (which you shouldn’t) or Dan and the Shadow (referred to in the masculine).

Does the show feel a little queerbait-y? Yes, a touch. The early episodes feel very much like they are setting up a relationship between Nai and Dan. Then it’s almost like they realized what they were doing, didn’t want to actually be gay and pivot hard toward Dan and Cha-aim. Then there’s that “someone wants to be your date” which doesn’t feel like a friend date but is treated as such once it’s happening. However Dan also consistently protects and stands up for Nai to an extent that suggests it’s not just bros having their bro’s back (you never see Josh do this for Nai nor is Dan ever put in a position for us to see if he’d go to these lengths for others).

The myster/thriller/horror elements are well done and the story is really interesting. However, as I’ve seen someone else mention, there’s a lot of loose ends and loose connections. Perhaps that’s intentional. Everything seems to connect for a bit until they pivot to the full reveal and then you have these disparate events. Maybe it’s supposed to be a commentary on how you can link unrelated events together if you try hard enough.

The actual Thai history with Red October was intriguing but dangled like a carrot for too long.

I feel like sometimes the story was just stretched longer than it needed to be. This could have been a 12 episode series with a narrower focus that delved more richly and deeply into that focus instead of a 14 episode series that was spread a bit too thin.

I loved the ending. Not sure why it’s labeled as an open ending, there’s nothing open about it imo and it’s not the first time I’ve seen an ending like this in horror. Personally, I’d really love a second season that is more focused to see what someone does with their new lease on life. But I’m not expecting it.

This review may seem very critical but I did genuinely enjoy the series and binge watched it in two days. I think it’s worth watching but not if you’re expecting it to be a BL.

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Completed
chickwifey
2 people found this review helpful
Dec 7, 2023
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 3
Overall 5.0
Story 6.0
Acting/Cast 10
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 1.0

?

The first seven episodes was great, had the viewer totally
engaged in what was going on but when it came to the
second half parts of it they just completely lost me with
final seven episodes. The final episode only served to leave
the viewer "well me" scratching "my" their head with even more questions
then when it left at the seventh episode. That cliffhanger in the final ep
wasn't necessary at all. I doubt that they'll have more episodes
or even one follow up episode to explain what the hell I just watched
with that ending. This is definitely not a show I'd rewatch.

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Completed
The BL Xpress
2 people found this review helpful
Feb 8, 2024
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 6.0
Story 6.5
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 6.5
This review may contain spoilers

A Disappointing Watch Despite a Good Casting

This show is a horror series through and through. Dealing with evil entities and spiritual witchcraft that made no sense and would have been enjoyable had they made it fun. But the whole story was dark, brooding, almost pointless, and incomprehensible to figure out. It mixed religious beliefs like you were mixing ingredients for a cake batter and expecting us to believe the cake was going to come out looking like something edible. Instead, it was half-baked, and it fell flat. Frankly, I do know what this series was supposed to be. However, I can tell you what it is not. It is not a BL. And it is not scary. It is not mysterious or even a thriller. But it is confusing as hell (no pun intended) wasted the talents of fine actors, and offensive on two fronts. I am rarely offended by anything, but this series was offensive to gay people and to how it portrayed Catholics, and I am no great admirer of the Catholic Church.

Read the complete article here-

https://the-bl-xpress.com/2024/02/08/shadow-series-review-ep-1-to-14/

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Completed
Prachaya0062
1 people found this review helpful
Feb 22, 2024
14 of 14 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 10
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 6.0

Mindboggling

Mindboggling plot - some parts of the story are too high level for me to understand. Left me and a lot of others guessing. The show ended on a cliffhanger too which I was kindda annoyed about. The actors were excellent though, no complaints there. Each and every one of them. This show touches on many serious and dark topics. It's good that they brought them to light but it makes it difficult to rewatch.
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Shadow (2023) poster

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