The current watch list… sorta

Know what, I’m pretty happy with my current drama choices. None of them have me panting for the next episode but they make me happy, each in their own way. And that’s what matters, really.

Kill Me, Heal Me turned out to be lot better than I expected. I guess that’s rather the common assessment of the drama. There were so many people doubting that anything would come out of a drama that had so many problems in getting everything together. Just goes to show that you really can’t tell how things will turn out in the end. There have been several very hyped up and looked forward to dramas that have turned out to be solid disappointments too. I think they were very, very lucky to get Ji Sung to fill in on the lead position, right at the last minute. He is the one that drives the drama and gives it it’s emotional centre. There’s also the comfortable way he and Hwang Jung Eum act together. The elusive ‘chemistry’ at work. I’m just as intrigued as everyone else about the central mystery of who Do Hyun really is and what is his connection with Ri Jin and Ri On. I have a theory or two but I’m probably just as far off with them as the next person, ha. Show is very good at muddying the waters and probably filled with red herrings too. This is one show I do like to speculate and can’t wait to see how wrong… or right I actually was. 🙂 I’m also glad it still has funny moments but we are now at that point of the story that usually ushers in the aaannnngst. I’m just hoping they’ll make it organic and something that fits in. Manufactured angst is one of my pet peeves and it usually manages to disrupt the flow of the story as the strings of the pupetteer become overly obvious. I’d like to feel them emotions, not be forced to accept the angsty bits as something that starts about ep 11 because the Grand Kdarama Manual says so.

Ok, I admit it, I’m enjoying Persever, Go Hae Ra quite a bit now. ;D The scenes have started to look like they are actually part of a whole and I think the young cast has finally found the flow and don’t seem so awkward anymore. It’s also laugh out loud funny at times. Most of the fun served by Shim Hyung Tak’s Tae Poong. He is fracking hi-la-ri-ous! I love the guy. OMG! I feel like giggling just thinking about ep 5. LOL! The drama is at it’s best when it’s fun or in the more quiet, contemplative and heartwarming moments. It’s the times they try to go full on angst when things sorta fall appart. I’m just not buying it.

Heart to Heart is my darling atm. It just makes me feel overly happy and content. I’m not big on shipping but Hong Do & Yi Suk are SO darned cute. PIE especially makes me squee, he’s so, so adorable. XD Hong Do is my girl. Quirky and lovable with the ability to see things other’s don’t. She is so wonderfully direct with everything, not just with her feelings. I love how compatible those two are. They don’t so much complete each other than complement each other. Each brings the other out of his/her shell and makes the other bloom. The courting isn’t without it’s conflicts but they get solved at lightning speed. I guess I’ve become sort conditioned to expect a misunderstanding or some other mishap that gets dragged out for episodes on end but not so in HtH. These people actually talk to each other. They may get angry or disappointed at something the other does… or does not, as it may be but they talk things through. I actually really like how all the chacters have been drawn so far. Even Ahn So Hee’s Se Ro has a proper place in the scheme of things, she isn’t just annoying filler like it seemed to begin with. Oh, and I wish some people would give the ‘but he’s acting so unethically!’ a rest. What kdrama profession actually has been presented as it is in reality? Drama psychology is just like e.g drama medicine or drama law & order – nothing much to do with real life.

Not talking about Healer. It’s in the doghouse.

Curious case of not lovin’ Healer

It’s a funny feeling to be outside of the squee circle. Things look different from this side but as this is not my first time of being outside looking in, I’m sort of comfortable all by me lonesame. 🙂 I’ve never been your typical drama fan as it is.

So, Healer. Not happy with the current state of things. Episode 16 actually made me angry. There’s no real reason to feel this strongly but I guess it all boils down to disappoinment. For the utterly predictable, cookie cutter trajectory of the story. Song Ji Na is seasoned and good enough writer to avoid making Healer a carbon copy of all other similar dramas but she still keeps to the basic format almost to a T. Ep 15 was full of lovey-dovey and cute moments, so it was almost given that the next epi would serve us wall to wall angst. It did. With the typical dumbing down the hero for plotty purposes on the side. So, instead of feeling excited I got grumpy.

I’ve never been a particlar fan of the ending angst-fest and these days I just find it annoying and manipulative. You can do better! Look at Misaeng, they managed to make you invested in just about anything. I bet that if they’d tried, they’d probably been able to turn counting paper clips into high drama, LOL! The ‘high octane’ moments were also doled out throughout the drama and not bunched in some predetermined point according to ‘Tried and Trusted Kdrama Formula’. Gimme diversity! Surprise me, dammit!

I sometimes think that the Healer fandom has a few loose ones. *g* Oh, I’ve certainly been there, done that myself but I’ve given up reading the DB comment section as there are just far too many posts, mostly saying exactly the same thing. Then there are those who apparently think that having contary thoughts on their darling drama means you are a sore looser with no taste what so ever. Never claimed to have any. Taste, that is.

Drama grab-bag

The brouhaha around Healer continues but I’m still not getting the “feels”. It’s an ok drama and I do tend to watch the episodes as soon as they are available but I don’t have any burning need to write about them. I’ve been pondering about the popularity and came to the conclusion that the main draw is a) Ji Chang Wook, b) Ji Chang Wook, c) Ji Chang Wook, d) the OTP + romance and the rest comes somwhere behind these. XD The story is journeying on a pretty well travelled path and the premise of a group of friends, one of which is coveting his friends wife, has shades of Resurrection in it. Anyways, with Healer I’ve got my Mon-Tue covered.

Kill Me, Heal Me turned out to be a lot more enjoyable than I anticipated. It’s sort of bizarre funny with some poignant and lovely scenes sprinkled here and there. Then there’s also the mystery of WTH! happened to Do Hyun to splinter his personality and how are he, Ri Jin and Ri Ohn connected. Ji Sung is wonderful in all the different aspects of Do Hyun. 🙂 There’s something oddly fragile about the character, even when it’s Se Gi. Hwang Jung Eum still overacts like there’s no tomorrow but I don’t think it’s her fault entirely. PD Nim should really tone it down. Park Seo Joon continues to be a delight to watch. His role isn’t all that central, at least atm, but he just grabs your attention whenever he’s in a scene. Definitely holding his own.

I wasn’t initially going to pick up Heart to Heart but after reading few reactions to the first few episodes got me interested enough to give it a go. I really liked it! It’s delightfully quirky and just enough off kilter to suit me, ha. There’s a definite j-drama feel to it. I like the characters, yes even Chun Jung Myung’s Yi Suk. 🙂 Boy is a prat but as that’s not all he is, he gets a pass. Most of the time. He is self-centerd and often thoughtless, saying and doing things without thinking how they affect others but I’ve got the feeling the rudeness is at least partly a defence mechanism. Underneath all that he is oddly childlike, which is something he shares with Choi Kang Hee’s Hong Do. Both are also socially inept, only it manifests differently. I love Hong Do, she is a bundle of contradictions. Extremely shy and wary of people and yet curious about many things and can be very opinionated and vocal but only with Yi Suk or when in disguise it seems. Her years long crush on Detective Jang is adorable but it’s just that – a crush mixed up with hero worship. The good detective is a typical 2nd lead, too nice. His soft approach to Hong Do has not been able to bring her out of her shell. What she needed was someone like Yi Suk who barged through her barreers by treating her just like he treats everyone else. ;P They connect; she cancells out his inability to deal with certain people and he her social phobia and blushing. Together they make a pretty good team. If only he could stop turning into a 3rd grader half the time he is with her. The stunts he pulls thinking they are funny… I’d be ready strangle him too.^^

Still undecided about Persevere Goo Hae Ra. The 3rd epi was slightly better than the two before but it’s still mostly just a collection of scenes stitched together and acting is all over the place. The plot moves at a snails pace and as this is a once a week drama, it feels even slower. None of the leads are as easily and instantly appealing as Sul Chan was, I had such a soft spot for that boy. *g* They are all sorta colourless. I’m also not too thrilled about the use of ‘flash forward’ in the beginning of each epi. It’s clunky and doesn’t really add anything relevant to the episode. Still, I’m mildy interesed in seeing how the ‘new’ addition will shake things up.

I couldn’t muster any interest in the new Binnie drama. Also checked out Shine or Go Crazy but it’s not my cup of tea at all. Instead I decided to go with Ouroboros, which has all the makings of a crack drama. I loved the first episode and can’t wait for more!

New year, new dramas

As dramas in the past few years go, Healer is pretty decent. I like the characters and the story is good enough to draw you in. But… I haven’t gone gaga over it like so many of the international drama fans seem to have. The latest DB episode recap thread has 2000+ comments!!! o_O Mind boggles. The last time I felt The Squee! that keenly myself was back in the days of SKKS. Ah, the copious gushing going on @ Thundie’s Prattle. Sometimes I think I’ve lost the ability to squee as I don’t seem to go for it even with the shows I love. Or Maybe I’ve just become too old and too jaded. I do like the cast though. Ji Cang Wook – there is something very captivating about the boy. He is adorable as the bumbling Park Bong Soo-persona. 🙂 Park Min Young is really fun to watch too. I think this is the most I’ve liked her in a role. Looks like she is finally starting to step outside of her comfort zone. And Yoo Ji Tae brings out the ‘ahjussi’ -love in most people. *g* He is pretty compelling as the conflicted Moon Ho.

Not quite sure what to make of Kill Me, Heal Me yet but I’m keeping it for now.^^ Ji Sung is quite convincing and he really manages to make me care about his splintered persona. Those sad eyes get me every time. Hwang Jung Eum’s character has been a leeeettle too shouty for my taste but hopefully they’ll tone that down. I also hope they keep KMHM somewhat light hearted and refrain from bringing in ‘the crazy’. The minute it turns unnecessarily melodramatic and makjang, Imma gone.

Another show I’ve sampled recently is Persevere Gu Hae Ra and can’t say I’m impressed. The two episodes aired so far were quite disjointed and had really jarring transitions. There often didn’t seem to be any correlation between scenes. It’s also more like a collection of scenes + musical numbers than a cohesive story. Acting is all over the place too and no-one pops out. Maybe that’s a good thing. Dunno. Monstar had it’s problems, most of which had to do with them ending up with ca. 20 episodes worth of story and only 12 to tell it. It was inevitable they had to cut corners at some point. But it had a way better start and several characters I really liked, I’m pretty lukewarm to everyone in PGHR. I’m still undecided whether to continue but EP2 had a surprise ending and I kinda want to see how that is going to pan out. Guess I’ll give Drama a few more episodes to convince me and if things don’t improve, das boot it is.