By: Sippachai KUNNUWONG / Agence France-Presse
Sporting flak jackets, machine weapons and smouldering stares, 4 Thai heartthrobs have been enlisted to woo followers — and a few say spruce up the ruling junta’s image — in a brand new cleaning soap opera dividing the army-run kingdom.
The collection, titled “Love Missions,” follows 4 main males — one from every department of the armed forces, plus the police — as they take down drug traffickers, overseas terrorists and naturally, traverse the battlefield of affection.
The junta, which seized energy in 2014, will not be straight funding the collection however has been lending props and extras for the manufacturing.
“We are allowing them to use military camps as a filming location and making suggestions on the right costumes and make-up,” Ministry of Defence spokesman General Kongcheep Tantravanich advised AFP.
“We are also letting them use our soldiers, military vehicles and helicopters.”
The primetime present, which premiered on Saturday, proved an prompt hit with legions of viewers swooning over the love story between a nurse and soldier battling overseas drug gangs on the border.
The identify of the primary instalment, “Pull the Trigger on My Heart,” rapidly grew to become a trending hashtag on Twitter.
But others have slammed the collection for romanticising life within the barracks, calling it propaganda for an establishment that regularly topples democratically elected governments and has an extended historical past of taking pictures protesters.
One on-line commentator mentioned the present ought to replicate the truth of life beneath military rule: “The drama should be based on real life: coups, violation of people’s rights…ruining the country’s economy.”
The junta’s 2014 coup marked the 12th profitable military takeover since Thailand embraced parliamentary democracy 85 years in the past.
The generals have promised to a return to democracy however maintain delaying elections.
They have additionally written a brand new constitution that curbs the ability of elected politicians and enshrines the military’s oversight of any future authorities for the subsequent 20 years.
In latest weeks junta chief Prayut Chan-O-Cha has refused to rule out working for workplace, fuelling hypothesis that he’s making ready to contest the ballot.
Prayut — a mercurial chief who has proven glimpses of a softer aspect by penning patriotic songs and poems — mentioned he had but to watch the brand new collection.
“But I know I won’t be the hero, because if I was nobody would watch,” he advised reporters, maybe a cheeky reference to the low viewership of his weekly discuss present referred to as “Returning Happiness to the People”.
Last 12 months Prayut mentioned he wished Thailand’s cleaning soap operas have been extra patriotic after watching the South Korean drama ‘Descendants of the Sun’, which he urged Thais to watch.
The junta chief regularly feedback on tradition he disapproves of.
Last month he used three separate conferences with the press to berate a teenage pop singer for her suggestive dance strikes and racy clothes.(AFP)