Below is my top list, in order of worst to best, of the BLs that I watched in 2020 and which aired in 2020. This list lacks some notable shows (see below). I also compiled a list of “BEST OF 2020” that follows this list.
What I plan to watch but haven’t watched yet: GenY the series, ITSAY, Gaya Sa Pelikula, Still2Gether, Hookup
Positive: OST, Original Story, some cute moments, competent actors and an attractive cast
Negative: Acting, pacing, editing, sound editing, ending
#16 Skinship The Series
Positive: Great looking male leads
Negative: Terrible acting, boring story, BL baiting ending
Positive: OST, Acting, editing, cinematography, shows us province life, gay adoption is hinted at and gay marriage is discussed
Negative: Pacing, boring story, annoying heterosexual side couple story, some bad acting
#14 My Extraordinary
Positive: Pacing, editing, acting, first BL to air in the phillipines
Negative: Ending, Overly dramatic, some bad acting, Kill-your-gays trope
#13 Ben x Jim
Positive: Acting, story all the way to the last episode, pacing and editing, attractive second lead
Negative: The last episode was terrible and it has the worst kissing scene in any BL I have seen thus far. More insulting to us viewers than the 2gether high five and more cringe worthy than the plastic kiss in Gameboys
#12 Your Home The Series (ONGOING)
Positive: Life in the province, Attractive cast, Seems like an original story, Class divide
Negative: Acting is sometimes lacking, fat girl stereotype
#11 TOL Special
Positive: Cinematography, acting, White Nawat, Great production values
Negative: This felt like an episode that was stretched to long, characters didn’t seem to have developed much since TOL and the conflict came from nowhere
#10 My Friendship
Positive: Acting, story, topic has been rarely discussed in Thai BL
Negative: Too short, The ending left me too sad
#9 The Shipper
Positive: Ohm Pawat, Ohm Pawat, Ohm Pawat, Cute story, Great male leads, Funny, Jennie
Negative: Is it really BL?, kill-your-gays ending, heterosexual couple gets an ending the homosexual couple probably deserved
#8 2gether The Series
Positive: One of the best first episodes in a BL, Acting, Supporting actors, attractive cast, assertive effeminate gay character (e.g. effeminate Seme), Gay protagonist (Sarawat)
Negative: Stereotypical Uke and Seme dynamics, Slightly toxic relationships, little display of affection between couples, the MikeTopTap couple was terrible, high five ending
#7 My Day
Positive: OST (one of the best of the year), Great chemistry between leads, realistic affection, cinematography, kiss scenes are out of this world
Negative: Editing, acting is inconsistent, overly dramatic ending, repetitive, too much ad-lib
#6 My Gear and your Gown
Positive: Acting (overall), production, Fiat, Attractive cast, interesting story
Negative: Lots of clichés, predictable, the main couple’s climactic point and resolution leaves much to be desired, the second leads steal the show (and that should not happen)
#5 Meet me outside (ONGOING)
Positive: Heartfelt and original story, Organic story and direction plus good actors results in many heartfelt moments, It feels closer to reality than the typical Thai Yaoi fantasy
Negatives: Short episodes, at times it feels like it was shot on a budget and it shows, they need better sets
#4 My Engineer
Positive: Attractive cast, Cinematography, Production values, Acting (overall), challenges the notion of top and bottom linked to Uke/Seme and femme/butch dynamics, gay couples are shown as dynamic and capable of a domestic life, no annoying female characters, no annoying heterosexual couples, Inntouch, Poy and Copper are among the nicest and most gay friendly actors in the Thai industry
Negative: Lots of clichés, also unpopular opinion Perth’s acting needs work, annoying voice over for Mek, also engineers and doctors? We are tired of them!
#3 Boys Lockdown
Positive: Attractive cast (Seriously, these guys are sizzling hot), acting, story, cinematography, OST, funny, kiss scene
Negative: Short episodes
#2 Tonhon Chonlatee (ONGOING)
Positive: Funny, Attractive main couple, Attractive and likeable second lead, Chon’s mom is the best mom ever, Gay characters, An Uke who can stand on his own and is assertive
Negative: Full of clichés, Negative stereotyped female characters, Thought they are funny I am still not sold on Mike and Toptap as a couple
Positive: Original storytelling, editing and pacing are top-notch, cinematography is top-notch considering pandemic challenges, superbly acted, brilliantly directed, coming-out and ending kiss among the best ever, positive female character, OST, character development is among the best this year, great cliff-hangers, lots of kilig, most emotional kissing scene I have ever watched in a show (hetero or gay), best ending
Negative: Sometimes it can be a little corny, Kokoy should have smiled a little less and Elijah should have smile earlier and more frequently
Honorable mentions: Hook (not a BL), Your Name Engraved Herein (not a series),Pearl Next Door (Girl Love).
Best Couple: AceSky (My Day)
Best Kiss: AceSky (My Day); Honorable mentions for ChenKey (Boys Lockdown) and GavCai (Gameboys)
Best Actor: Kokoy de Santos for playing an annoying Seme in Gameboys and an adorable Uke in Oh Mando! (I only watched one episode but he was 100% believable and so different from his character in Gameboys).
Best Director: Ivan Andrew Payawal (Gameboys)
Best Intro: Boyslockdown
Best Supporting Female Character: Pearl Gadtula (Gameboys)
Most Original Story: Tie (can’t decide!) Meet Me Outside and Boys Lockdown
Best looking cast: Boys Lockdown
Best OST/video: Basta’t Sabihin Mo lang (My Day); Honorable mention for Panalo ka and Ngayon (Gameboys).
Most second lead syndrome inducing character: Na (Tonhon Chonlatee)
Best secondary couple: FolkPure (My Gear and Your Gown)
Most crying-inducing moment: Ending of Elephant in the room, Episode 7 of Gameboys. I needed about 30 minutes to stop crying.
Best ending: Gameboys (the ending kiss had me crying too)
Best breakout performance: Aun Napat (Folk in My Gear and Your Gown).
Favorite Uke: Chon (Tonhon Chonlatee)
Favorite Seme: Chen (Boy’s Lockdown)
The Special Awards: For those moments and characters that deserve highlighting
Sexiest shorts: Shin in Skinship The Series
Dumbest evil Character: Moira (My Day)
Funniest character: The angel of death (Jennie Panhan, The Shipper)
ROTFL Moment: Boy’s Lockdown scene where Chen dances semi-naked while his sister is in a zoom call. I died.
Most annoying secondary character: Whatever the name of the fujoshi from Oxygen. I wanted to kill her.
Most boring lead: The main couple in Oxygen
Most unexpected kilig: My Extraordinary, when Lawrence tells Jayvee to just keep talking. I wanted to cry.
Most annoying dog: Chuck-chuck (My Day)
Most re-watchable moment: Kiss scene Ace and Sky, episode 8 My Day
Worst ending: Tie (I can’t decide) between Sakristan, My Extraordinary and My Day. The more I think about it, the more I think that each is bad in different ways. In Sakristan, the ending is both unexpected and unsatisfactory. In My Extraordinary it is overly dramatic and heteronormative. In My Day, the ending is overly dramatic, terribly acted and feels anti-climatic to the excellent ending of Episode 8.
Worst acting for an ensemble cast: Sakristan. If I had been able to finish Tossara, I bet they would taken this award.
Worst actor/actress: My Day gave us some great acting and some god-awful terrible acting so it is no surprise that the worst actor in the most unevenly acted series is also the worst actor of 2020: Mr. Tan, Ace Tan’s Dad.
Worst hair: This is a tie between Mr. Tan’s rat tail and Miko’s wet hair (My Day).
Least favorite Uke: The dynamics in pinoy shows are less clear but I have to say I hated Ben from Ben x Jim. He was dislikeable from the first episode.
Least favorite Seme: Solo (Oxygen). He was boring, monotone and behave like a child, which is only cute up to a certain point. Solo, go warm your own milk. Also, don’t go running like a child with your dad’s car and money and then complain when he cuts you off. You deserve it.