As people have probably noticed, I haven’t been doing a lot of posting this year. Mostly due to lack of time as I’ve been a lot busier with Real Life than I used to be. That’s not the only reason though. As time goes by I’m finding it much harder to find dramas to watch. I don’t think my taste has dramatically changed but rather I’ve become more and more picky and less forgiving for some of the flaws even decent dramas inevitably have. I’ve started and dopped SO many dramas this year and there are even more that didn’t interest me enough to even check them out.
There are now more dramas produced than ever. This doesn’t necessarily mean more quality content though, as it often feels like lot of the dramas are hastily strung up, trope filled constructions just aimed to grab a share of the dividens. There seems to be much more mediocrity, or even downright rubbish to shift through to get to the fiew gems. Even the somewhat good ones have proved to be quite elusive. It hasn’t been a total bust drama year for me though as I was able to find some dramas that I truly liked but alas, none of them was one that I loved to bits. I’m still waiting for a drama that would grab me and hold me hostage, in a good way. Yeah, one of those rare unicorns that come about once in a blue moon. Guess it’s a bit greedy to hope for one per year. 🙂
I finished total of 11 kdramas, which is actually couple of more than I originally thought. So much for making a lasting impression, ha. The best of the bunch are Life on Mars, My Mister and Just Between Lovers, all of them exellent in their own way. Just behind them are Prison Playbook, Children of a Lesser God and Goodbye to Goodbye, which were pretty good but just lacked that certain something to take them to the ‘top’. I’m still watching God’s Quiz ~ Reboot and Red Moon, Blue Sun and liking both a lot atm, but as they are ongoing, jury is still out on them. There are also couple of finished 2018 dramas on my ever growing List of Doom, that I aim to tackle one day. Whenever that might be.
It was kinda slim pickings with cdramas as well. Many of them start out fine, only to get extreamly draggy later on. I get bored and never finish them. Then there are those that lose their way competely and then crash and burn in the end. Thankfully I avoided those but going by the comments around the internets, many weren’t as lucky. Most Chinese dramas are just way too long, which generally means filler, extra padding and often flashback galore as well. That combined with a plot that is stretched beyond breaking point makes for a bad viewing experience. There are not many stories that can fill 60+ episodes, or even 30+ come to think of it.
As with kdramas, I tried several but only managed to finish 3 cdramas this year. Those being Guardian and Caught in the Heartbeat, both entertaining but nothing spectacular and Moolight and Valentine, which had it’s moments but the execution kinda sucked, especially towards the end (it got cut and the scriptwriter was actually writing the last epis while they were filming ). The dramas that I truly liked either were stalled, are on hold or are ongoing. I loved what I managed to see of Sand Sea before the subs petered out and I had to stop because this is a drama that really needs subs to be properly enjoyed. Still waiting for Viki to release it. Eagles and Youngster was a nice surprise, as I really had no expectations on it. But the subbers took a long break about half way through, then I never found enough time to finish it once subbing was on again. I will get back to it though, as the story was pretty interesting and I liked the young cast. Ever Night is still my ‘go to’ cdrama these days and I love, love, love how gorgeous it looks. The story isn’t too bad either and for once 60 epsiodes is merited as there is a lot of ground to cover. I haven’t been bored so far, nor found the drama getting draggy, like some seem to do. In fact many of the more quiet and contempletive parts have been my favorites. The 2 shifu’s passing had me in tears, the way that was handled was lovely. The world of the drama is rich and the plot moves along in lightning speed compared to the novel, which I’ve been reading too btw. That said, there are characters that make my eyes glaze over and I tend to FF through their parts. 🙂 TPTB also changed fiew things in the plot (verus the novel) that I think would have been better left undone. That hasn’t spoilt my enjoyement of the drama though.
Finished 5 2018 jdramas. That was bit of a surprise as for a mad moment I thought I’d only watched one, ha. The best were definitely Unnatural and BG, both well constructed procedurals but with a bit different setting and both featured a great Team that I just loved, with a wonderful and supportive Boss. I wouldn’t mind if they decided to do S2 for both.^^ Honorable mention goes to Ossan’s Love which was mostly hilarious and kinda crazy but had it’s moments of sadness too. The last epi was a bit… iffy (they should have just skipped some of the stuff all together) but otherwise I had lot of fun with it. Tanaka Kei was great as the hapless Haruta with his two suitors. I also watched Joshiteki Seikatsu (surprisingly thoughtfull) and Kuragehime (just silly). I was really anticipating S2 of Cold Case but it’s now stalled at ep 3 ’cause it took ages before the rest of the epis became available.
So, this concludes my Year End Drama Grab Bag. Happy New Year!