23.5 (Thai GL) Season 1 Review – A sweet, messy and totally relatable rom-com

Season 1



Episode Guide

Episode 1 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 2 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 3 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 4 -| Review Score – 4/5
Episode 5 -| Review Score – 3/5
Episode 6 -| Review Score – 3/5
Episode 7 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 8 -| Review Score – 3/5
Episode 9 -| Review Score – 4/5
Episode 10 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 11 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 12 -| Review Score – 3.5/5

Like any TV era, when a particular genre hits a saturation point, there’s always something better waiting to take over. And with that, it is finally time for GL (Girl Love) dramas to shine. We get representation, sweet romantic stories and a little less of the typical angsty lesbian token character. 

An exciting time for GL fans, isn’t it? Well, say hello to 23.5, a Thai GL drama from GMMTV, the same minds who are responsible for giving us some of the best BLs (Boy Love) of the last few years. Well, 23.5 Season 1 is a high school rom-com where friendships blossom while secret crushes and fake identities create enough drama to have you going through buckets of popcorn.

Say hello to Ongsa, a friendly but clumsy junior with a dash of self-esteem issues who is head over heels for her super popular classmate, Sun who is worthy of that name in every sense, yep, she literally glows at some points thanks to some pretty cleverly placed lighting. Of course, Ongsa is too shy to make a move.

So, with a little bit of fate and deception, she ends up DMing Sun while pretending to be a guy named Earth. As their online bond grows, Sun starts falling for Earth. The plot really thickens when Sun and Ongsa become friends in real life, making it even harder for Ongsa to keep up the act without slipping up.

23.5 has been on everyone’s radar ever since it was announced, as it stars Milk Pansa and Love Pattranite, a popular duo from Bad Buddy, headlining their own show. The rest of the cast includes familiar faces such as View Benyapa, June Wanwimol, Ciize Rutricha, Ford Allan, AJ Chayapol, Earn Preeyaphat and Euro Thanaset.

23.5 is exactly what we crave, a sweet and wholesome rom-com. Milk and Love nail their roles as Ongsa and Sun respectively, making them perfectly imperfect. They’re relatable, flawed and oh-so-human. They bicker, make mistakes, and still remain the charming leads that keep us hooked from start to finish.

The supporting cast adds their own spice, making the whole show a fun ride. The subplots, like senior Luna trying to befriend Ongsa’s cousin Aylin and the teachers Bambam and Nida with their own side drama, are just as entertaining. If there’s one minor gripe, it’s that some characters, especially Ongsa’s sister Alpha, could have been more fleshed out.

23.5 Season 1 also brings in the hilarious, slapstick comedy that GMMTV’s known for. While the tropes aren’t groundbreaking, seeing them in a GL setting feels fresh. We get the classic secret identities, white lies spiralling out of control, and the dynamic duo of the calm and collected one versus the clumsy overthinker. Plus, the Season 1 production going all out with kitschy animations and Ongsa’s wild imagination is just a hilarious bonus.

As for the story, the pacing is spot on. The first half is all about Earth’s identity, the awkward flirting and the budding friendship between the different couples. Characters get their time to shine, and mini-conflicts build up to the main drama.

Just when you think it might drag, the second half switches gears, focusing on character growth that’s both realistic and inspiring; Aylin turned out to be a pretty cool wild card. It’s a reminder that these are high school teens who can be impulsive and selfish but also kind and selfless. 

All in all, 23.5 is a delightful watch that keeps you smiling, laughing and maybe even shedding a tear or two. It’s a charming mix of romance, comedy and heartfelt moments that remind us why we love high school dramas. So grab some popcorn and get ready to fall in love with Ongsa and Sun’s sweet, messy and totally relatable journey.

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  • Verdict - 7.5/10

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