Love Bill is a Vietnamese BL series about a runaway teenager who meets an older man.

Love Bill is a Vietnamese BL series about a runaway teenager and his older roommate. After clashing with his family, the rebellious protagonist deserts home with nowhere to go. An aspiring screenwriter allows the youth to live at his house as a renter. Although their relationship begins rockily, they build an intimate bond. As romantic feelings develop, they struggle with the age gap, class differences, and confusion over their sexuality.

A triumphant entry from Vietnam, Love Bill offers a complex romance with compelling main characters. The series shines whenever it focuses on the charming rapport between the quirky, energetic leads. The talented actors deliver stellar performances in both comedic and dramatic scenes. Although the narrative is unpolished, this moving love story can be as emotionally powerful as the best BL dramas.

Love Bill Summary

What is the drama called?

Lời Hứa Mùa Hạ

Where was the series made?

Vietnam

When was the drama released?

2022

How long is Love BIll?

Around 7 hours

What is the genre?

Romance

How would you describe the series?

Spicy and romantic

How many episodes are in Love Bill?

10 episodes

How long is each episode?

Around 35 to 45 minutes

Plot

Nghien and Thien become close despite their many difference.

Nghia is a rebellious teenager who leads a carefree life. His troublemaking friends lead him astray. Nghia gets terrible grades at school, which upsets his strict father. Nghia's loving mother coddles him, excusing his delinquent behaviour. One day, he gambles at a casino and racks up significant debt. Although his wealthy father pays the money, he threatens to disown his son. The dad wants to send Nghia to the countryside, far away from bad influences. Nghia runs away from home instead of obeying his parents.

Nghia has little money and nowhere to live. His friends abandon the runaway teen and won't let him crash at their places. Nghia sneaks back into his family home, where his mom has prepared a warm meal. However, his dad arrives and demands that he leave. Nghia rummages through the house and finds a bill stating that Mr. Tu owes money. Nghia arrives at the debtor's address and meets Mr. Tu's son, Thien. His father has passed away, and Thien knows nothing about the debt. Nghia insists that he is here to collect the money. He won't leave unless the debt is paid.

Thien doesn't have the money to pay off the family debt. However, he lets Nghia stay at his house as a renter. Nghia accepts the arrangement, grateful that he has somewhere to live. Yet, the two new roommates clash over various differences. Nghia is unsettled by Thien's habits since he lives like a slob and never cleans up after himself. Similarly, Thien is annoyed by Nghia's immature behaviour and juvenile personality. They don't get along initially. Over time, the leads grow accustomed to each other's quirks and learn to cohabitate peacefully.

Thien is in his early twenties, several years older than Nghia. He works as an aspiring screenwriter trying to publish his first script. Thien stays at home all day to write his stories. However, he has no success getting filmmakers to purchase his works. His most recent script is a love story between a ghost and a human. He includes a gay romance between the supporting characters. Many studios want him to remove the same-sex couple. Yet, Thien is adamant about including LGBT themes in his stories. He won't make modifications, even if that means receiving no offers.

Thien's friends, Loc and Minh, pay a visit and stay for a few days. Nghia gives up his room to the guests and sleeps with Thien. Their close living quarters cause the two roommates to become a lot closer. Nghia becomes curious and wants to learn more about Thien, from his writing inspiration to his family background. Meanwhile, Loc and Minh behave flirtily around each other. Nghia suspects these two men are in a relationship. As he observes them, Nghia ponders about gay couples and begins wondering about his sexuality.

Love Bill Trailer

Love Bill Cast

Characters

Nghia

Tran Le Duc (Trần Lê Đức)

Nghia is portrayed by the Vietnamese actor Tran Le Duc (Trần Lê Đức).

Nghia is a 17-year-old teenager from a wealthy family. He slacks off in school and hangs out with his troublemaking friends. His strict father is troubled by his unruliness, but his mother coddles her delinquent son. Nghia's family disowns him after he racked up a significant gambling debt. He meets Thien after being kicked out with nowhere to live.

Tran Le Duc

Tran Le Duc (Trần Lê Đức) is a Vietnamese actor. His first BL project is the 2022 series, Love Bill.

Tran Le Duc (Trần Lê Đức) is a Vietnamese actor, also known as Mew. His first BL project is the 2022 series, Love Bill.

Thien

Nguyen Ba Vinh (Nguyễn Bá Vinh)

Thien is portrayed by the Vietnamese actor Nguyen Ba Vinh (Nguyễn Bá Vinh).

Thien is a 22-year-old aspiring screenwriter who lives by himself. Nghia becomes his younger roommate, although they don't get along. Thien has messy habits and doesn't clean up after himself. Thien stays home all day to write his stories. However, he has trouble selling his scripts to filmmakers. He barely has money to support himself.

Nguyen Ba Vinh

Nguyen Ba Vinh (Nguyễn Bá Vinh) is a Vietnamese actor.

Nguyen Ba Vinh (Nguyễn Bá Vinh) is a Vietnamese actor. His first BL project is the 2020 drama, Nation's Brother. He also appeared in You Are My Boy, The Most Peaceful Place, and Mr. Cinderella in 2021. Ba Vinh starred in Want to See You and Love Bill in 2022.

Supporting Cast

Hung is portrayed by the Vietnamese actor Tran Vu Duc Duy (Trần Vũ Đức Duy).

Hung

Nghia's tutor

Dang is Thien's ex-boyfriend.

Dang

Thien's ex

Nghia is close with his mom.

Nghia's mom

Nghia's parent

Nghia is close with his dad.

Nghia's dad

Nghia's parent

Loc is one of Thien's friends.

Loc

Thien's friend

Minh is one of Thien's friends.

Minh

Thien's friend

Phi is one of Ngiah's friends.

Phi

Nghia's friend

Bang is one of Ngiah's friends.

Bang

Nghia's friend

Toan is one of Ngiah's friends.

Toan

Nghia's friend

Cast Highlights

  • Thien's actor has starred in various Vietnamese BL dramas, including Mr. Cinderella (2021) and Want to See You (2022). Hung's actor (Nguyen Ba Vinh) also appears in supporting roles in those series.

Love Bill Review

Review

Drama Review Score: 8.5

B+
Nghia and Thien talk to each other at night.

Love Bill begins oddly. The main characters are strangers who start cohabitating together under unusual circumstances. The scenario seems farfetched, requiring the viewers to go along with the outrageous shenanigans. Once the roommates settle into a cozy living arrangement, their romance blossoms enchantingly. They make a fun couple with snappy banter, silly antics, and sexually charged relationship scenes. Love Bill thrives whenever it focuses on the two charming leads and their delightful rapport.

The early episodes highlight the couple's amusing interactions. The protagonists have quirky personalities, leading to many funny and playful exchanges. While the series never loses its sense of humour, the story introduces various conflicts to enrich the narrative. Despite the growing attraction, Nghia and Thien don't immediately get together. Nghia hesitates because he's confused about his sexuality. Likewise, Thien worries about the age gap, class disparity, and his previous heartbreaks. Both men face so much emotional turmoil as they confront their feelings.

Love Bill has created a surprisingly complex romance with captivating drama. Like in real life, Nghia and Thien have legitimate concerns about initiating a relationship. This nuanced love story explores profound themes, from LGBT identity to adolescent discoveries. The characters must conquer their inner demons as they embark on sophisticated journeys of growth and introspection. The narrative reaches a majestic climax in Episode 9, producing the most riveting encounter of the series. Every line is delivered with powerful emotions. Wow, that scene is a masterpiece!

The talented stars portray their comedic, dramatic, and romantic encounters phenomenally. Nghia's actor (Mew) exudes vivacious charm. He sparkles in every scene, enticing you with his cheeky smile and upbeat demeanour. His costar (Ba Vinh) is just as persuasive and displays an impressive depth of delicate emotions. Both give stunning performances in the final episodes, propelling Love Bill to epic highs. I also enjoy the relaxed chemistry they share with each other. Their colourful relationship dynamic is brimming with charisma, humour, and personality.

Love Bill has glaring storytelling problems. This series falters whenever it shifts away focus from the protagonists. The supporting cast is obnoxious, including Thien's scheming ex-lover (Dang) and stereotypically camp friend (Hung). They bring annoying subplots and perpetuate offensive tropes. In addition, the narrative is riddled with inconsistencies. Some characters suddenly change their behaviour for no reason. Nghia has a hostile relationship with his dad, yet they'd talk amicably in the next scene. The sloppy writing lacks polish and doesn't flow coherently.

Love Bill goes overboard with the cliched melodrama. The plot is driven by contrived events, exaggerated reactions, and needless confrontations. The sad ending has too much excessive angst, leaving me incredulous. Despite the criticisms, the positives outweigh the negatives by a large margin. This poignant love story is packed with emotional depth, lively dialogue, and juicy sexual tension. The memorable couple gets my heart thumping with fierce excitement. Love Bill has exceeded my expectations, and I consider this Vietnamese BL series a triumphant success.

Summary

Inconsistent story

Love Bill has amusing scenes, snappy dialogue, and meaningful themes. However, the unpolished story is inconsistent and doesn't flow smoothly. There's also a lot of cliched melodrama.

Complex romance

This complex romance offers emotionally compelling conflicts, from LGBT issues to coming-of-age drama. The relationship scenes can be fun and lively, packed with juicy sexual tension.

Phenomenal acting

The talented stars deliver stunning performances, especially during climatic scenes. Nghia's actor (Mew) is spunky, charismatic, and vivacious. His costar (Ba Vinh) displays exquisite emotions.

Sad ending

Love Bill has a sad ending when Nghia makes a heartbreaking decision due to his family drama. The angsty finale jumps to three years later, but the leads have a frosty relationship.

Low-budget artistry

This series has visually pretty moments. However, there are noticeable low-budget constraints in various aspects of production. I think they used soy sauce to substitute blood in one scene lol.

85%

Love Bill is an excellent Vietnamese BL series with a complex romance and compelling leads. Despite the writing flaws, this emotional love story resonates powerfully in many epic scenes.

Love Bill Series Explained

Analysis

The bill

Thien's father owes money to Nghia's family.

Love Bill's title refers to the money that Thien's father borrowed years ago. Nghia finds a copy of the bill and uses it to track down Thien at his home. The runaway teen desperately needed money to survive after being disowned by his family. Thien, a broke writer, can't pay his deceased father's debt. In exchange, he offers Nghia a place to live with virtually no rent. That begins the unusual living arrangement between the two leads.

The actual debt is not a significant part of the plot. Neither character mentions the owed money outside of a few occasions. However, this bill receipt is crucial because it brings the protagonists together initially. Without the bill, the love between Nghia and Thien would have never happened. They are two very different individuals whose lifestyles don't typically overlap. A rich teenage delinquent and a poor adult writer share little in common. Under normal circumstances, they wouldn't be living together. Yet, this love bill provides the starting point of their relationship.

The debt highlights the class disparity between Nghia and Thien. Nghia comes from a wealthy family with lucrative prospects for his future. In contrast, Thien barely has enough money to support himself and his mother. Thien never resents his love interest for his fortune. However, it's on the back of his mind that Nghia belongs to the upper class. Nghia wouldn't associate with a guy in the low-income ranks. Despite their unequal status, they're attracted to each other. The exciting part of this love story is watching them overcome their differences to make the relationship work.

Curiosity

Nghia spies on Loc and Minh kissing.

As a gay man, Thien is used to being different from mainstream society. He faces discrimination, especially in his screenwriting career. Thien wants to write a love story with a same-sex couple, but no filmmaking studio accepts the material. Many outright tell him to remove the LGBT themes, or else they wouldn't purchase his script. Yet, Thien wouldn't compromise his sexuality and creative vision, even if it meant not making money.

Although assured of his sexuality, Thien doesn't disclose the information to Nghia when they first live together. It isn't something he broadcasts about himself to every person he meets. However, Nghia picks up on various signs over their time together, particularly after Thien's friends live at the house. Loc and Minh aren't discreet about their affection for each other, flirting everywhere around the premises. Nghia begins speculating on the gay couple's relationship status. He even spies on their intimate moments as they kiss and have sex.

In Episode 3, Nghia asks Thien about Loc and Minh during a conversation. Initially, it seemed like Nghia was just being nosy and invasive. He wanted to have a bit of gossip. However, Nghia's snooping goes a lot deeper than idle speculation. There's a difference between accidentally seeing a couple kiss and actively spying on their intercourse through the doorway. Soon, Thien realizes his companion's curiosity about the two men is a form of sexual awakening. Nghia, who only dated girls in the past, may be interested in the same sex.

Sexuality

Thien has a sexual fantasy about Nghia.

Nghia doesn't recognize his sexual awakening, but his subconscious is starting to reveal desires for the same sex. That night, he has a wet dream about Thien. This erotic fantasy flusters Nghia, who doesn't understand his attraction. In the next scene, Nghia asks Thien many personal questions. He shows a keen interest in learning about his landlord, way more than previously. Nghia's curiosity goes beyond just the physical. He's eager to connect with Thien on an emotional level.

Thien has also developed an attraction toward his tenant. This episode includes two steamy fantasy sequences to depict their lustful desires. Earlier, Nghia dreams about Thien putting a hand down his pants and fondling his package. Later, Thien also imagines grabbing Nghia's junk. They both crave the same thing! Yet, Thien can separate his illusions from reality. Thien believes Nghia is straight and won't reciprocate his romantic feelings. He doesn't want to get his hopes up about an imaginary relationship that will never happen.

Minh notices his friend's crush and teases him about it. Thien immediately shuts down the idea and states, "He's straight." However, Minh isn't so sure. He compares Nghia to a ruler. After dropping the ruler a few times, you won't be able to draw a straight line with it. Although his allegory is a bit crude, Minh wants to highlight that sexuality can be fluid. Yet, Thien has doubts due to his romantic history. His ex-boyfriend, Dang, dumped him after denouncing their relationship as "not normal". Since then, Thien has felt skeptical about guys who aren't sure about their sexuality.

Straight guy

Nghia and Thien sleep in the same bed.

Although Nghia speculates about Loc and Minh's sexuality, notice how he doesn't ask Thien the same question. "Are you gay?" Those three words never leave his mouth. There's no need to inquire because Nghia already knows the answer. Thien's sexuality is an open secret. He leaves various hints, including the BL drama posters on his bedroom wall. Yet, Nghia refrains from prodding about his landlord's sexual orientation. He remains respectful and doesn't pry.

Nghia expresses numerous pro-LGBT messages. He says, "Your gender has no control over love." He also quotes Pink, "It's not a gay marriage. It's just a marriage." His views seem enlightened, particularly for a teenage boy his age. Despite his immature behaviour, Nghia shows empathy and critical thinking skills. In addition, Nghia states his allyship has nothing to do with his sexual orientation. Desiring LGBT equality simply comes from not wanting anyone to suffer injustices. It's a very insightful distinction. You shouldn't have to be gay to support gay rights.

Nonetheless, Nghia clarifies his sexuality. "I've always been straight," he states firmly. Despite his lustful fantasies, Nghia isn't ready to confront the recent confusion about his sexuality. His stance is, "I support the gay community, but I'm not one of you." A look of realization flickers upon Thien's face. He told himself not to fall for this straight guy. Yet, he was swayed and got his hopes up for a moment. Now, Thien feels crushed again, knowing their romance is impossible. The episode ends with a tear falling from Thien's eyes. He feels upset for indulging in a silly fantasy. 

Also, notice their sleeping positions in the bed, which symbolize their current relationship dynamic. Nghia faces Thien, secretly yearning for his bedmate. Meanwhile, Thien turns his back on Nghia, not wanting to give in to his repressed desires. The sexual tension between them is brewing!

First kiss

Nghia and Thien have their first kiss in Love Bill Episode 4.

While Episode 3 highlights the physical attraction between the leads, Episode 4 emphasizes their emotional bond. It's the first time the characters sit down and genuinely learn about each other. Thien and Nghia have intimate chats about their lives, sharing their aspirations and insecurities. Thien speaks about his failed writing career, while Nghia reveals the troubles with his family. Their discussions are serious, honest, and heartfelt.

Later, Thien talks to his mom over the phone. She accidentally outs him by mentioning his ex-boyfriend, which Nghia overhears. After the call, Thien shares his coming-out story and confirms that he's gay. There were no denials, apologies, or startled reactions. Both knew about this open secret, but it was the first time Thien addressed his sexuality candidly. He finally reveals the most intimate detail about himself. Nghia responds to his partner's emotional honesty by also being truthful. He no longer hides his same-sex attraction and initiates a kiss with Thien.

Nghia and Thien's first kiss comes after a day of intense bonding. Despite their physical attraction, this romantic smooch doesn't happen purely because of lust. Nghia and Thien controlled their impulses in the last episode, even though they shared a bed together. Instead, their cerebral connection brings the two repressed characters together. Nghia and Thien understand each other better as individuals, from deep conversations to heartfelt confessions. Their emotional intimacy leads to this first kiss, more so than their sexual desire.

Age gap

Nghia is uncomfortable with Thien's advances.

Thien didn't know Nghia's age until Episode 4. "You're only in Grade 11!?" Thien exclaims in shock and panic. Uh-oh, you can hear the alarm bells ringing mentally. There's a five-year age gap between 22-year-old Thien and 17-year-old Nghia. This age disparity weighs heavily on Thien, adding another complication to their relationship dynamic. He feels uncomfortable about proceeding with a romance since Nghia is so young. In Episode 5, Nghia tries seducing him, but Thien fights his urges and resists these advances.

After the first kiss, Love Bill introduces Hung's character to the series. Hung is an offensive stereotype and makes blatantly inappropriate advances on Nghia. All his scenes are meant to be disturbing. The storyteller uses this problematic villain to highlight Thien's anxieties about his romantic feelings for Nghia. Thien observes Hung's creepy actions and realizes he is no different. He understands his seduction of a teenager is predatory. Thien grows self-conscious and restrains his attraction because he doesn't want to behave like Hung.

Hung is actually a clever storytelling device. He's a physical manifestation of Thien's inner demons, emerging right after their first kiss. Hung sinks his claws into Nghia, leaving symbolic scars on this teenager's body. Hung acts like an over-the-top monster because that's how Thien feels about himself. Or at least that's how I interpret Hung's character at first. Unfortunately, the series goes overboard with the sinister antics, especially after he tries to drug Nghia. I'm appalled by this offensive stereotype of a predatory gay man. 

Confusion

Nghia tries to get physical with Thien.

Despite his forwardness, Nghia isn't ready to commit to a relationship with a man. He uses bravado to mask his insecurities. When Thien calls his buff, Nghia backs down as soon as their exchange becomes too amorous. He has reservations about his same-sex desires. Kissing a guy once on an impulse isn't the same as being physically affectionate with him. As his reaction proves, Nghia feels uneasy and uncertain about his sexuality. 

Thien explains, "You've never liked guys. That night, you saw two men making love. Curiosity, confusion, or love. They all combine to make you feel sexual desire." Sometimes, Love Bill drops these bold and provocative lines that sound epic. Thien insulates that Nghia's gay desires are merely fuelled by temporary confusion. Soon, his inquisitiveness will fade, and he'll return to settling down with girls again. Nghia can't refute these claims because he is genuinely unsure of his feelings. After his recent sexual awakening, he's still navigating his attraction to men.

Both protagonists face mental barriers that stop them from proceeding with a romance. Nghia questions his sexuality, while Thien is disturbed by their age gap. Thien also feels jaded over his last breakup, making him even more cautious about dating again. Their frustrations lead to a heated argument in Episode 6, which ends in tears. After the fight, Thien and Nghia accept that neither is ready for a relationship. Instead, they go back to being friends and getting along platonically. This cooldown period gives them time to figure out their feelings some more.

Commitment

Nghia and Thien kiss in the forest in Love Bill Episode 7.

Nghia and Thien take a short break from their romantic drama. The series shifts focus to another subplot about promoting Thien's story on social media. The project allows the leads to collaborate, bond closely, and achieve something together. These lighthearted scenes remind both lead characters of what they like about each other. Thien is also impressed when Nghia defends the LGBT themes in the love story. Nghia speaks intelligently, showing Thien that his partner is more mature than his age implies.

After a while, Nghia and Thien are ready to start a relationship. Love Bill is a BL series on a schedule. The characters can't take too long to mull over their feelings, or the viewers will get bored! The turning point comes during a conversation in Episode 7. Nghia speaks honestly about his family background, including personal details he omitted in previous chats. He also wants to bring Thien to meet his parents. Nghia shows that he's serious about committing to a relationship with Thien. He isn't confused or experimenting. He sees Thien as a legitimate partner.

Nghia and Thien share a beautiful kiss in the woods, solidifying the start of their romance. Thien changes his mind and eases his concerns about their age gap after recognizing Nghia's emotional maturity. His love interest is thoughtful, serious about dating, and clearly smitten with him. Likewise, Nghia gains more self-assurance about his sexuality. Notice how he has been watching BL dramas. Nghia doesn't deny his same-sex attraction like previously. Instead, he makes a dedicated effort to research, understand his conflicted feelings, and commits to being gay.

Ex-boyfriend

Dang wants to get back together with his ex-boyfriend Thien.

Thien's ex-boyfriend, Dang, arrives at Love Bill looking like a menacing villain. Dressed in a long black trenchcoat, this character exudes a brooding air of dread and trouble. Dang wants to reunite with his old lover and pulls underhanded schemes to win over him. Guess what, I'm your new movie investor! Also, I'm an age-appropriate love interest! However, Thien has no intention to revive their romance. Their previous breakup was too hurtful and left him deeply guarded about love.

Years ago, Dang's mother died of a heart attack after discovering her son's gay romance. Dang dumped Thien, calling their relationship "abnormal". Since then, Thien has carried the burden of perceiving his love as destructive. When Nghia arrives, Thien sees the parallels between him and his ex. Dang and Nghia are conflicted straight guys facing family pressures. Both are cut from the same cloth. After seeing all the red flags, Thien warns himself not to fall for Nghia. He worries that history will repeat itself. Their relationship is destined to end badly, and he'd hurt himself again.

Thien lets go of his past trauma. Nghia convinces him that his feelings are genuine, and Thien cautiously opens his heart to another romance. As for Dang, he accepts his ex doesn't love him anymore. His parting quote is poetic. "I planted a flower that couldn't bloom in a dream that couldn't come true. I hope I can light up a lamp for a love that can be like a dream." Although Dang can't reconcile with his ex, he wishes Thien finds happiness with his new love. Dang's enlightened views are represented in his wardrobe. He leaves in a light-coloured coat, like his darkness has subsided.

Scandal

An intimate moment between Nghia and Thien has circulated online.

Nghia and Thien become boyfriends. They go on dates and express their affection in public. Despite sharing the most innocent kiss, it turns into a scandalous moment that circulates on social media. Unexpectedly outed, Thien can't handle the public scrutiny over his sexuality. He panics over the homophobic reactions from his friends and family. The reality of being a gay couple in Vietnam is that you get thrust into the spotlight, facing unwarranted gossip and criticism.

Nghia thought he was ready to be in a relationship with a man. However, he never anticipated the backlash that would come with his relationship. It turns out that he can't cope with the homophobia. This seventeen-year-old teenager doesn't have the mental fortitude to endure the vicious attacks on his character. Nghia distances himself from Thien, acting standoffish around his romantic partner. Nghia even wants to abandon Thien after finding him drunk in despair. Hung criticizes his gutless behaviour rightfully: "You treat him worse than a stranger!"

Thien had warned himself this heartbreak would happen. The red flags were there, urging him not to pursue the romance. Firstly, Nghia wasn't confident in his sexuality. Secondly, he was too young to withstand the psychological strains. And thirdly, his family disapproves of the pairing. Despite his promises, Nghia behaved just like the previous ex. Thien foolishly opened his heart to another lover and got hurt the same way once again. Thien worried that dating Nghia was a mistake, but he still gave this relationship a chance. And now, all his worst concerns have come true.

Confrontation

Nghia kisses Thien's injured hand.

In Episode 9, Thien wants to end this romance. He explains, "I feel like I'm enticing a teenager. I feel that I am truly destroying a person." Wow, his lines are so intense! These heavy words reveal the gravity of his emotional turmoil. Thien isn't just agonizing about the age gap. Thien believes he's corrupting this youth and ruining his future. Before they met, Nghia led a heteronormative life without being punished by his sexual desires. Thien fears he may have misdirected this young man, steering him to a troubled path.

Later, Thien describes the struggles faced by a gay couple, "Stereotypes, observations, and criticisms. Can you bear all of them!? And your parents, can they bear it!?" Wow, this well-written exchange has some powerfully haunting lines! Each word takes a stab at the romance, conveying why Nghia and Thien shouldn't be together. Thien's arguments sound measured, coming from someone who must've thought carefully about the situation. They aren't off-the-cuff remarks. These are legitimate concerns that have distressed him for a long time.

This series has similar themes to Minato's Laundromat, a Japanese BL drama released months ago. The two stories feature a teen protagonist in love with an older man. IMO, Love Bill has achieved greater complexity and impact. It discusses the taboo themes candidly, explores the anguished emotions, and delivers epic confrontations. Both works have strengths and flaws, but Love Bill moved me significantly more than Minato's Laundromat. Regrettably, this Vietnamese BL series won't receive a fraction of the popularity of its Japanese counterpart. 

Reconciliation

Nghia and Thien kiss in Love Bill Episode 9.

Thankfully, Nghia fights for their romance instead of giving up. He clarifies his ambiguous feelings, leaving no doubt for interpretation. "We are lovers," Nghia states decisively. "You're my boyfriend. The one I love so much." It was the reassurance Thien needed to finally feel secure in the relationship. Nghia confirms he's confident about his love. Previously, it took him a while to come to terms with his sexuality, but now he knows for sure. Nghia tenderly kisses Thien's injured hand as if to say, "I'm sorry for hurting you."

After reaffirming their love, Nghia and Thien enjoy a blissful honeymoon period. From kissing to flirting, this couple doesn't hold back while displaying their affection. No more anxieties about their age gap. No more confusion over their sexuality. Finally, both are at peace, knowing their feelings are equal in this romance. They've gone through so much turmoil in the past nine episodes before reaching this euphoria. Nothing could possibly break up Thien and Nghia anymore, right?

Oh, do you hear that? *ring ring ring* I think that's a phone call from Nghia's homophobic mom, who is dying of heart disease*ring ring ring* But wait, there's more! The same ailment is hereditary and will pass down to Nghia at a young age! *ring ring ring* Okay, maybe we'll ignore the phone and let these lovers stay in their happy little bubble. 🙂

Love Bill Ending Explained

Ending

Sad ending

Love Bill has a sad ending where Nghia dies of his heart disease.

Love Bill has a sad ending where Nghia falls severely ill due to heart disease. He inherited the same condition from his mom, who died due to her sickness. The story implies Nghia will suffer the same fate. Previously, Nghia left Thien's home due to an urgent health scare from his mother. Although she survived, Nghia's mom discovered the social media video of her son kissing another man. She forbids him from pursuing this relationship. He obliges, not wanting to upset his delicate mother.

Three years have passed. Thien's writing career has thrived, and audiences respond well to his sad love stories. However, his romantic life is barren. He hasn't reunited with Nghia, who promised to return for him. Instead, Thien is single and goes on unsuccessful blind dates. Recently, Thien has reconnected with Nghia, who became a famous musician. Nghia acts standoffish, but Thien isn't upset and understands his boyfriend's family must have forbidden their romance. Thien just wants to know Nghia is doing okay. After their meeting, Nghia collapses and must be hospitalized.

Nghia is severely sick. His dad cares for his bedridden son at home. Yet, Nghia keeps his illness a secret from Thien to avoid worrying him. As Nghia's condition worsens, his father contacts Thien. The two lovers finally reunite, although the circumstances are hardly pleasant. They cry, knowing that Nghia's health is failing and he may not have long to live. The final shot occurs in the future, where an elderly Thien imagines a young Nghia sitting beside him. Thien closes his eyes and rests his head on his lover's shoulder. "Finally, I can see you," Nghia says.

Family obligations

Nghia is sick and dying of heart disease.

Initially, Nghia breaks up with Thien due to his family's disapproval. His strict father is surprisingly okay with the gays, but the mom is not as accepting. This woman is so hateful that she spews bigotry in her dying breath. She gives her son an ultimatum. You can choose me, the woman who raised you for seventeen years. Or you can pick him, your gay hook-up over the summer. Nghia makes a tough decision between his love for Thien and his loyalty to his mother. Ultimately, he agrees to his mom's demands and ceases the gay romance.

Love Bill plays around with the idea of debt. Every child has an invisible debt to their parents, who devote their lives to raising their kids in a loving environment. You repay your guardians by obeying their commands. However, the risk of absolute obedience means sacrificing your personal freedom. You don't make individual decisions. Instead, your family tells you what to do. When the series began, Nghia ran away from home because he hated feeling indebted to his father. This teenager cherished his autonomy, even if it meant being a "bad son".

After meeting Thien, Nghia's views evolved. Thien taught him a valuable lesson about balancing his individuality and family obligations. "Being a good child isn't difficult, but the hardest part is making yourself happy while giving your parents peace of mind," Thien said in Episode 4. Nghia takes his message to heart. A part of growing up means you must handle disagreements with your family maturely. Teens may run away, but adults stay to face their problems. Instead of clashing with his mom, Nghia learns to compromise and tries to be a dutiful son.

Emotional debt

Thien reunites with a sick and bedridden Nghia.

Nghia won't reunite with Thien for another reason. His health problems, foreshadowed throughout the series (insert *random cough*), take a turn for the worst. Nghia doesn't want to burden Thien with a sick, dying boyfriend. Caring for your gravely ill partner is a huge moral responsibility. Not to mention, it's an emotionally taxing experience. Nghia keeps his illness a secret and dumps Thien, not letting him know the actual rationale. He breaks Thien's heart out of a complicated kindness.

Nghia makes many promises throughout the story, especially in Episode 7. Nghia says to Thien, "I'll bring you to meet my parents!" That line was what prompted their kiss in the woods. Later, Nghia agrees to Dang's solemn request, "No matter what happens, promise me you'll never let Thien go." At the time, he was sincere about honouring his agreements. Unfortunately, Nghia's health forced him to break his commitments. This young man, whose life is cut tragically short, can't stay with his romantic partner.

Love Bill begins its romance with an unpaid debt. It concludes with an unfulfilled commitment. Despite his sincere intentions, Nghia breaks his word. He abandons his lover, fails to introduce his family, and doesn't come back for him as promised. The tragedy of this story is that Nghia leaves behind an emotional debt he can never repay. The debt weighs on Thien for the rest of his life. As shown by his unsuccessful blind dates, he cannot find another new lover. Nghia's "love bill" comes with a heavy price, costing years of Thien's happiness until he grows old and dies alone. 

Love Bill Episodes

Episode Guide

Thien feeds Nghia food.

Love Bill has a total of 10 episodes. Each episode is around 35 to 45 minutes long. The last episode is around 45 minutes long. It is a long BL drama, and you can finish the entire series in under 7 hours. Love Bill started on October 29, 2022 and ended on January 10, 2023.

Episode 1
Episode 2
Episode 3
Episode 4
Episode 5
Episode 6
Episode 7
Episode 8
Episode 9
Episode 10

Episode Reviews

Episode 1

This clunky introduction suffers from awkwardly written encounters. Still, the episode showcases Nghia's personality & background. The lead actor (Mew) is lively enough to carry the scenes.

Episode 2

I find the circumstances of Nghia and Thien's living arrangement implausible. Would you just let some random kid share a house with you? Nonetheless, their banter and interactions are charming.

Episode 3

This episode depicts Nghia's curiosity and sexual awakening well! The scenes are funny, sexy, and insightful. That final conversation is superb, including Thien's crying face in the last shot.

Episode 4

This episode is excellent, achieving heights many other series don't reach. Love Bill has crafted a complex and engaging BL romance. The series also explores meaningful themes about sexuality.

Episode 5

Hung's character is an offensive stereotype. I understand the story wants to parallel Hung & Thien's predatory dynamic with a teenager. However, the antics go overboard. They're too much for me.

Episode 6

I love the ex-boyfriend's aesthetic. He waltzes around in broad daylight wearing this dark trenchcoat. The exchanges between Thien & Nghia feel riveting! Their scenes are bubbling with sexual tension.

Episode 7

I love that serene and majestic kiss in the woods. Love Bill has been handling the relationship scenes superbly. Dang's quote at the end of the episode sounds beautiful. He gets a poignant sendoff.

Episode 8

Poor Thien! Nghia's reaction is why he didn't want to pursue the romance. I don't blame Nghia for freaking out, but his actions are frustrating. Also, did the production team use soy sauce for blood?

Episode 9

This episode is amazing! I love Thien & Nghia's bedroom confrontation, which has powerfully epic lines. Their relationship scenes are cute too. "WHY IS YOUR BUTT SO SHARP!?" lmaooo~ 😆

Episode 10

This finale has too much excessive melodrama, which seems engineered. The angst doesn't resonate with me like in previous episodes. Still, Nghia's actor does a fantastic job in that final scene.

Love Bill Behind the Scenes

Love Bill Information

Links

O2 Production

O2 Production is a Vietnamese BL studio that has made various gay dramas and movies since 2019.

O2 Production is a Vietnamese BL studio that has made various gay dramas and movies since 2019. Its first project is the short film, Ngay Em Den. The studio's portfolio includes Nation's Brother (2021), The Most Peaceful Place (2021), and Mr. Cinderella (2021). It has also made Want to See You (2022) and Love Bill (2022).

  1. In spite of the age, wealth, education, and other differences, one of the things I appreciated the most about this relationship was the overall evenness of the power dynamic. No one was overbearing and no one was helpless. No one manipulated and no one simpered. They complemented each other. Although he started out displaying serious immaturity, Nghia really grew and periodically dispensed pearls of wisdom. And gentle Thien's smile is delightful. I don't want to see him cry, so for the first time with a series I've come this far and am going to skip that last episode. I don't need to watch them grow apart. Sometimes it's better not to answer the phone.

  2. Thanks for reviewing this- I hadn't heard of it and watched due to your review. Eps 2,3 and 4 were fantastic. Ep 5 I would give an F- absolute disaster taking the worst Thai tropes and throwing them into a blender.
    Highlights for me were actor playing Nghia (best Vietnamese acting in a BL I've seen so far- complex and real). The scenery is jaw droppingly beautiful- kudos for a low budget production to show off the area.
    Overall, the best Vietnamese BL so far for me- the veteran BL actor Ba Vinh was in my previous fave Nation's Brother. A promising production.

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