Sad and bittersweet
Around 40 to 50 minutes
The year is 2002. Nut and Phob are close childhood friends who always hang out together. Their nicknames for each other are B1 and B2, named after the Bananas in Pyjamas TV show. The two of them attend the same classes, live nearby each other, and share a familial rapport. Nut is secretly smitten with Phob, but does not confess his feelings.
An aspiring musician, Phob becomes interested in an indie band. Nut finds the rare CD and gives it as a present, which delights his best friend. When Phob admits that he wants to perform a song for the girl he likes, it upsets Nut terribly. Unsure why his friend is mad at him, Phob still cheers up Nut by playing his guitar over the telephone. The two of them reconcile afterwards.
Currently in their senior year of high school, Nut and Phob’s conversation turns towards their futures. Nut wants to become a doctor. He asks Phob to study in the same discipline as him, even though his friend seems hesitant about this prospect. Nonetheless, Nut manages to convince Phob to follow this ambition. The two of them start studying for their upcoming tests together, becoming even closer.
On an important examination day, Nut is worried when his friend doesn’t show up to take the test. Later, he finds out that Phob has suddenly changed his mind about becoming a doctor. Phob admits that music has been his real passion all along. Nut feels betrayed by his friend’s indecision and refuses to talk to him anymore. Even though Phob tries to reach out to him, Nut puts distance between them. As a result, the two of them begin to drift apart.
In the present day, an adult version of Phob is crying in his apartment. We don’t know the cause of his tears. However, he gets sentimental looking at his high school yearbook, as his gaze lingers on a picture of him and Nut together…
Nut Title Teshin Anusananan (ไตเติ้ล เตชินท์ อนุศาสนนันท์) Title Instagram
Nut is a sweet and sensitive high school student. He is studious, focused, and wants to become a doctor. He doesn’t know how to play the guitar, even though his best friend Phob has tried teaching him in the past. Nut lives with his single mom and older brother Tar.
Phob Man Supakrit Charoonmatha (แมน ศุภกฤต จรูญเมธา) Man Instagram
Phob is a cheeky and outgoing high school student. He has a passion for music and likes to play the guitar. His best friend Nut convinced Phob to study medicine with him in the future. However, Phob suddenly has a change of heart. Phob lives nearby Nut and has an older sister called Pat.
Get Sorawut Arunwattananunt (เก็ต สรวุฒิ อรุณวัฒนานันท์)
Tonnam Piamchon Damrongsunthornchai (เปี่ยมชล ดำรงสุนทรชัย)
Fah Sarika Sathsilpsupa (ษริกา สารทศิลป์ศุภา)
Mean Phiravich Attachitsataporn (พีรวิชญ์ อรรถชิตสถาพร)
Prem Warut Chawalitrujiwong (เปรม วรุศ ชวลิตรุจิวงษ์)
- The actor playing Sarut (Mean) appeared in the 2018 Thai BL drama Love By Chance and its 2020 sequel Love By Chance 2. In addition to his acting role, Mean also serves as the director of The Yearbook.
- Another famous name attached to the production team is Pchy Witwisit Hiranyawongkul, who starred in the 2007 Thai LGBT movie The Love of Siam. Pchy serves as the executive producer of The Yearbook.
The Yearbook Series Review
Drama Review Score: 8
The Yearbook is more compelling in the early episodes, where it focuses on the high school friendship between the main characters. These intimate scenes define the series, brimming with rich and complex emotions. The narrative gradually builds up to a powerful climax in Episodes 4 and 5, resulting in an excellent showcase of sweetness, sensitivity, and sentimentality. Up until the midway point, my review of The Yearbook is: “so far, so good!”
This wordy BL series relies heavily on dialogue. It’s the type of drama where the characters will constantly discuss their feelings, memories, and experiences. There will be lengthy one-on-one chats, where Nut sits down with Phob and talk, talk, talk. Their exchanges feel introspective and personal, giving you immense insights into each character’s perspective. If you have the patience, you’ll often find profound and poignant meaning behind their words. Otherwise, you may start to get annoyed by some of their longwinded ramblings.
The acting in The Yearbook is pretty solid. The young actor playing Nut (Title) has very expressive eyes, conveying a range of feelings with a single gaze. Every time his character stares at Phob, he looks completely smitten with his best friend. The actor also has an authentic rapport with his on-screen partner (Man) and they’re compatible together. With that said, their connection is more cerebral than physical. Nut and Phob kiss during the series, but don’t expect too much sensuality from this safe and delicate romance.
Unfortunately, The Yearbook might have climaxed too early, because those last three episodes stretch thin for content. After the emotional events in Episode 5, you’d think the story is about to burst open with many new opportunities. Instead, the plot stays stagnant and refuses to make progress. We get multiple flashbacks from different character perspectives, which are okay diversions for a while. However, the storytelling seems like it’s moving backwards instead of going full steam forward.
The Yearbook feels as if it’s an eight-episode series with only five episodes of actual plot. The second half of the series not only loses momentum, but everything starts to become repetitive. How many times have we heard about that same childhood memory of ~the dog~? Enough is enough; talk about something else! I wish they spent more time on the high school segment of the series, padding out the story with more relationship scenes. That way, there’re other memories to reminisce about instead of the blasted dog all the time.
Even at its lowest point, The Yearbook still maintains elegant and refined emotions in every scene. Although the drama goes around in circles, it never stops being sentimental. The last episode features a beautifully tender moment that will tug at your heartstrings. Overall, The Yearbook leaves me with a positive enough impression that it overpowers the weaker aspects. I’ll have lasting fond memories of the poignant plot, the complex characters, and the insightful emotions.
I was careful when writing my review of The Yearbook, doing my best to not spoil anything about the story. From the first scene, we assume Nut and Phob are no longer friends since their high school days. A lot of the intrigue in the early episodes is figuring out exactly what happened between them. It was a deliberate storytelling choice and The Yearbook wanted to keep us guessing.
My first thought was that NUT DIED. Even though nothing indicated that he passed away, my mind naturally jumped to that conclusion and I imagined the worst-case scenario possible. Phob must be crying because his friend is DEAHDDD. 😅 Of course, I turned out to be totally wrong, but it still kept me engaged trying to solve ~the mystery~.
Phob’s secret was uncovered in Episode 3, revealing that his character has cancer. In my opinion, The Yearbook could’ve prolonged the suspense longer. Considering the last few episodes barely had enough content, more focus should be allocated to the story’s beginning. If we spent one or two more episodes to establish the friendship between Nut and Phob, the story’s pacing might seem smoother.
Nut vs Phob
Phob’s decision to hide his cancer diagnosis from his best friend is strange. He should’ve just told Nut, right? It makes more sense than causing this bad blood between the two of you. However, I do understand that a teenager who just found out he has cancer may not behave in the most rational way. Not only is he scared, but Phob doesn’t want to burden his friend. It’s understandable why Phob acted erratically, and I’m sympathetic towards his character.
Part of me also thinks Nut overreacted under the circumstances. Why can’t you respect your friend’s decision to become a musician instead of a doctor? Studying medicine is your dream, not his. When Phob said Nut is imposing his will on him, he struck a nerve because this statement is true. However, I’m also sympathetic towards Nut and can understand why he feels betrayed. It must be frustrating that his friend wouldn’t give him an explanation about why he changed his mind.
There’s a lot of dialogue in The Yearbook with the characters talking constantly and lengthily. A single conversation can go on for nearly ten minutes in the same location. These well-written chats are intimate and introspective, where the characters would share their feelings with each other. Their words feel very poignant and personal, like they are speaking from the heart.
I like these chats a lot, but they do test your patience. In the later episodes, nothing happens with the plot. All the scenes involve the characters talking to each other or having inner monologues. It feels like I’m listening to a podcast instead of watching a BL drama. Maybe the wordiness gets too much near the end of the series. I wanted the characters to do more than just talk, talk, and talk.
Oh my god, there are so many flashbacks in The Yearbook. It begins with a flashback, it ends with a flashback, and the entire drama is like a chain of flashbacks, one after another. Sometimes, there’s a flashback from a different character’s perspective, but it’s still the same event that you’ve already seen before. The Yearbook should be renamed The Flashback because it’s a more apt title to describe this drama.
The abundance of flashbacks is a weakness. A better storyteller would be able to convey the narrative without relying on flashbacks so much. These past memories cause the plot to go around in circles rather than make any progress. We’re constantly looking back at the past instead of going forward in the future, and it’s a frustrating feeling.
Nut and Phob
I like these two characters individually, and I also like them together as a couple. Nut and Phob have a close emotional connection, building upon their romance on a solid foundation of friendship. Their bond is convincing, and I believe in their attraction towards each other.
Nut and Phob become physically affectionate in Episode 4, where they also share their first kiss. Other than this episode, there aren’t many romantic moments between them. Understandably, Phob isn’t in the mood for lovey-dovey romance right before and right after his life-altering surgery. As a result, the BL opportunities are limited.
Overall, I’m still okay with the romantic content we got and think it’s perfectly serviceable. The romance is just not the strongest part of the series, but I still like Nut and Phob together.
Tar and Note
For some reason, The Yearbook didn’t focus on the Tar and Note romance. Their relationship was hidden for most of the series and kept as a surprise. My gaydar suspected they were a couple, but we didn’t get confirmation until Episode 6, revealing they were boyfriends all along.
Based on their few appearances, Tar and Note seem like an average, well-adjusted couple. However, it’s difficult to comment further since we don’t see enough of them together. I consider them a missed opportunity in terms of storytelling. You go through the trouble of casting these two actors and making them a couple, but then offer them very limited material. It feels a little counterintuitive to hide the BL in a BL drama. 😔
The two leads do a great job carrying this drama. I don’t love some of their crying scenes, but everything else is solid in their performances. For two young first-time actors, their performances are smooth and natural. Plus, they share a persuasive rapport, looking very comfortable in their interactions.
Nut’s actor (Title) has a talent for emoting with his eyes. Every time he looks at Phob, his gaze is full of love, warmth, and desire. I’m completely convinced by Nut’s crush on Phob, because his infatuation is written all over his face. I want to see Title in another BL role, building upon his experience from this series and carrying it into another exceptional performance.
The Yearbook has a sad ending, but it comes with a hopeful message. The sad ending was inevitable, considering Phob had bone cancer. The only way for him to survive was to amputate his arm. Losing your arm is unsettling for anyone, especially for a guitarist and artist like Phob. Nonetheless, The Yearbook shows us that life goes on for Phob, who cheers up with his boyfriend Nut by his side.
Initially, I was very intrigued by how The Yearbook would handle Phob’s arm amputation after his surgery in Episode 5. Then, Episode 6 came and we got nothing. And then, Episode 7 came and we still got nothing. Finally, in the last episode, we got one scene of Phob during the post-recovery process. The Yearbook’s ending consists of this scene in the hospital, followed by yet another flashback. 🙃
The hospital scene is lovely though, featuring a tender moment between the main characters. Phob looks visibly upset at the start, but perks up for Nut. His boyfriend sits on the hospital bed next to Phob, who teaches him how to play the guitar. The guitar is an important motif in their relationship, so it’s fitting that Phob entrusts this cherished item to his boyfriend. Notice where Nut is sitting in this scene, near the spot the old arm was supposed to be. It’s symbolic, as if Nut is the substitute for the missing arm, supporting Phob in his newly adjusted life.
Of course, I would’ve liked to see more scenes of Phob after he leaves the hospital. I was interested in following how he copes and adjusts to his life afterwards. However, it was a deliberate choice for The Yearbook to not show us these scenes, and I respect their decision. We do see a quick flashforward one year into the future, where Phob and Nut are still together as a couple. Phob is happily playing video games even with one arm, showing us normalcy has been restored to his life.
The Yearbook also ends on a slightly annoying cliffhanger. In the final moment, Nut gets a call from his older brother. It seems like something terrible happened to his relationship with Note. We don’t know what this traumatic event is because the series ends right after they spring this unpleasant surprise on us. Did they break up? Did Note die!? We’ll never know. 😞 My guess is that The Yearbook wants to tease us with a Season 2 sequel between the brother and his boyfriend. Let’s wait for the announcement, I guess…
The Yearbook has a total of 8 episodes. Each episode is around 40 to 50 minutes long, except for the last episode which is only around 30 minutes long. At the end of each episode, there’s a short interview where one or two cast members share their insights.
This is a long BL drama, and you can finish the entire series in under 7 hours. The Yearbook began airing on July 15, 2021 and finished its last episode on September 2, 2021.
⭐ Best episode
As soon as I saw the preview for Episode 4 with all the romantic moments and kissing, I was like, THIS IS IT!!! This is the episode I was waiting for! Not that the first three episodes were terrible, but I was waiting for the BL content to ramp up. It finally happened with this episode.
Surprisingly, Episode 4 was not very sad, even though Nut just found out about Phob’s cancer diagnosis. In this episode, the four of them finally reconnect after four years of absence. The entire episode consists of intimate exchanges between the pair. They talk, eat, sleep, and play on the beach together. If you’re looking for the most romantic episode, Episode 4 easily takes the cake.
😭 Tearjerker episode
Episode 5 is where all the repressed emotions between Nut and Phob finally come to the surface. It starts with Nut getting a phone call from Phob’s sister, where he learns more details about how bad the cancer is. He finds out that the only way for Phob to survive is to amputate his arm. It leads to a heartfelt and poignant exchange between the two main characters.
The two of them spend more time talking intimately for the rest of the episode. Nut and Phob’s conversation on the beach was super long, but it effectively conveyed all their necessary emotions at the moment. After the chat, Phob heads to the hospital, where he finally decides to cut off his arm. The episode ends with Phob putting on a brave face as he’s wheeled off to the surgery room.
😡 Most triggering episode
Episode 2 features a triggering argument between Nut and Phob. We begin the episode wondering why Phob suddenly changed his mind about being a doctor. Nut seems genuinely by his friend’s betrayal, while Phob seems carelessly flippant about letting his friend down.
Later in the episode, Nut remains mad at his best friend, even after Phob tries to reconcile with him. Nut goes to extremes to avoid Phob, making it obvious that he wants nothing to do with him. Even after Phob tries to give him a handwritten comic of Harry Potter spells, it still doesn’t bring him and Phob closer together.
All the conflicts and misunderstandings are brutal to watch. You just want these two friends to put aside any hurt feelings and communicate already! This episode has a nice scene between Nut and Note, where Note mentions an allegory about focusing too much on the black spot on a piece of white paper. Finally, the episode ends with Nut learning that his best friend will relocate to another city, forcing the two of them to chat again.
💋 Episodes with kissing
The only episode where Nut and Phob kiss is Episode 4. There are two kisses in total. The first kiss happened in the bedroom while the two of them were having an intimate conversation. As they lay in bed together, Nut talks about how much he misses Phob and doesn’t want him to disappear again. Phob takes the initiative to go for a kiss, which Nut eagerly reciprocates. It leads to the two of them enjoying a memorable night together, although any physical sensuality happens off-screen.
The other kiss in the episode happened later on the beach. The two of them are talking again, and Phob suddenly surprises his boyfriend with a kiss. According to the cast interview, it was an improvisational moment and Nut’s actor was actually caught by surprise. You can see the genuine shock on his face. Nonetheless, he carried on with the acting and it provided a very authentic moment between the couple.