From Manager, March 27, 2018
Red Shirt leader Thida Thavornseth: This is a history of the elite… not “phai” like us!!
On the people’s shirts: Phai
On the TV: Bupphesanniwat
Caption: Now, she hardly controls all phai.
[The Red Shirts have claimed to speak for the poor of Thailand and at various times have promised societal upheavals where peasants (“phai”) would rise up to overthrow “aristocrats.”
Despite all of this being conducted on behalf of a deposed billionaire politician–Thaksin Shinawatra–the movement gained many ardent supporters and seemed, at times, to really challenge the traditional Bangkok establishment and its top-down system of governing.
This cartoon shows Red Shirt “peasants” watching the period drama “Bupphesanniwat” (or “Love Destiny”).
The popularity of the drama is so great that street traffic abates on Wednesday and Thursday evenings when it airs and Thais have taken up the fad of wearing old-style Thai dress.
The drama concerns elite aristocrats in the Ayutthaya era so the cartoonist notes how the universal popularity of the shows seems to undercut Red Shirt claims that the common man of the country hates the elites and wishes to overthrow them.]