Drama grab-bag

Let’s start with Discovery of Romance… What a nice surprise it turned out to be. My track record with the writer-nim hasn’t been stellar but this one sort of came out of nowhere and got me good, LOL! Imho DoL is the most balanced work of the writer and even if it tackles many of the same aspects of love and relationships as her previous dramas, it managed to skirt around the pitfalls the others fell in. Jung Yoo Mi and Eric were pure awesome and the rest of the cast wasn’t too bad either. In many ways I think DoL is a little gem, albeit a misunderstood one. Too bad there were so many people who just didn’t ‘get’ it.

Just 4 more weeks of Yoo Na’s Street left, sniffle. This is one long drama that doesn’t feel like it’s dragging on and on. I don’t think it’s lost any steam like I’ve seen some saying, to me every episode is still as fresh as in the beginning. I care what happens to these people, get emotional when they are hurting and laugh out loud at the funnies. YNS has this clever way taking a tired trope and giving it a new twist. What other drama manages to make a ‘love triangle’ come out both rather hilarious and poignant? I still love, love, LOVE the characters!! Well, most of ’em. *g* There are a few I could do without but as YNS is a drama where every character counts, even the bad apples have a special place in the story. Another thing I love about YNS is that problems are never magnified up to wazoo just to add extra (makjangy) excitement. And they tend to get solved pretty darned fast too. People actually talk to each other, unless they make it clear they are miffed and won’t be talking, ha.

Picked up Bad Guys and so far so good. It has the Vampire Proz writer so we can expect a rather twisty story. The cast is grrrreat! I’m finding the characters pretty intriguing and waiting eagerly to know more about each of them. It’s OCN so bloody and violent is a given. This wasn’t instant love like VP but I am rooting for the bad guys. XD

Three Musketeers is still a silly little romp I rather enjoy watching. No brainpower needed so it’s my ‘winding down’ drama. Entertaining and easily digested.

I’m watching Wonderfull Season when I don’t feel like watching anything else, LOL! It’s a pretty traditional KBS weekend family drama. I think I need to find some time to watch more than one epi every once in a while to get back to the flow. It’s just that YNS is SO MUCH better in every way and compared to it the KBS brand of slice of life feels kinda dusty and dry. I like the characters well enough and the story per se isn’t bad at all but it lacks… something. It’ll probably be better to get back to it properly once YNS has ended to avoid any undue comparison.

Endless Love… sigh. Getting through it with a copius use of the FF-button. I did hope it would not succumb to the usual weekend melo malady but alas, that’s exactly what happened. Too much filler and not enough substance. The drama did start out pretty well but it didn’t take long befor it got overly weepy and started going around in circles. The pace picked up a bit around the mid point only to plunge back to treading water and re-using bits of plot from earlier episodes. Most of the characters lost any originality they may have had in the beginning, I was especially sad to see how the Lady Villain turn into a typical screechy hoyden. Jung Woong In’s Park Young Tae is the only truly interesting character left. He is always great as the Dastardy Adversary. 🙂 Endless Love is just too damned long. It’d probably been better as a mini with 20-24 epis, or even 30 epis at a pinch.

I was initially quite interested in Secret Door but the more I read about it, the less I wanted to watch it. My gut instinct was telling me ‘this ain’t it’ and as I’ve learned to trust my gut, I decided not to pick Secret Door up.^^ So, I’m still waiting for a more traditional sageuk to watch.

Next batch of dramas is just around the corner and the ones I’m most interested in are Misaeng, Modern Farmer, and Dr Frost.

First impressions and ongoing dramas…

I need new dramas on my roster as much as I need a hole in my head but what can one do… there’s always a new drama round the corner. One can only hope most of them end up sucking, ha.

The New
Discovery of Romance
I wasn’t initally sure about this one as it’s by the writer behind all three INRs and I didn’t really care a whit for any of those. As it turns out, DoR has so far been pretty enjoyable as fluff goes. It’s just quirky enough to give the story some pzazz and I’ve yet to be irritated by any of the characters, which was my main concern to begin with. Yoon Hyun Min and Kim Seul Gi as trusty sidekicks are all kinds of fun and Eric, Jung Yoo Mi and Sung Joon make an interesting threesome. I really like Sung Joon and have done so ever since SUFFBB, but no matter how deramy his ‘Best Boyfriend in the World’™ is, Eric still pawns him in manliness and screen presence. Gosh, I’d forgotten how mesmerizing Eric can be when he turns on the charm, which btw. seems to be even more potent now that he is older (yummm…). Everyone else sort of fades away, ha. Sung Yoo Mi is always good, even when I can’t stand the character she plays (looking at you INR2). The plot of DoR isn’t exactly new, especially this year, but so far what I’ve seen has left me quite happy and looking forward to what’ll happen next.

Plus Nine Boys
TvN dramas tend to be a bit of a hit and miss with me. Some I’ve loved, some I’ve liked enough to finish them and others I’ve been totally indifferent to. They are rather formulaic and almost perefectly honed to suit the target demographic, but whether they suit me depends mostly on the script and if they’ve managed to find the right actors for the roles. This one was surprsingly enjoyable. It doesn’t feel as calculated as some of the TvN works and the concept is a little bit different from what’s been done before. I quite like the execution, as well as the characters, which is generally the dealbreaker for me. Unless it’s a procedural/crime show and then the plot comes first. 🙂

Three Musketeers
It’s a fun little romp that has mostly kept to the feel of other screen adaptations out there. I hope they don’t loose the humour along the way like so often happens with kdramas. All the (un)necessary angst they love to insert just about everywhere has a tendency to weigh down the stories, sometimes so much so that they become a chore to watch. Yong Hwa still has ways to go before making a competent actor but he is holding his own here, imho. I don’t think any of the main actors are deserving for a gold star. No-one stinks up the place, they are all passable but that is just about it.

Pretty typical OCN fare, slick and looks good. Not sure if I’ll keep up with this, as the first 2 episodes didn’t quite manage to pull me in. It’ll proably end up in the ‘marathon’ pile, to be watched at some later date.

The Ongoing
Endless Love
Korean melodramas, sigh. I was ‘this’ close to dropping Endless Love as there were just too many episodes of The Weepy. There’s only so much of tears and hand wringing a girl can take. It also felt like everyone had caught a bad case of stupiditis, which lead to copious moments of eyerolling and sighing. Well, the plot finally decided to make a move on so I’m giving EL a few more episodes to convince me that this is still worth my time. Not holding my breath though.

Yoo Na’s Street ♥♥♥
Still my darling and the best of the bunch. I just love it and everyone in it almost equally. I think I could watch just YNS and nothing else on a loop, ad infinitum. XD It is SUCH a satisfying drama to watch, full of nuances and little details that seem unimportantat but actually add meaning to the scenes. There aren’t all that many kdramas with this fully realised and well rounded characters. I’m sure there are plenty of people who’d find YNS too slow but I love the pace and how they are ‘building up’ the story by adding new bits and pieces each episode. The slower pace gives us the chance to relish every new revelation and insight into the characters. Moar please!

Win some, loose some

Joseon Gunman just released gorgeous, GORGEOUS new posters. They are even more visually stunning than the drama itself. Which is why I’m ever so bummed that storywise Joseon Gunman has not grabbed me at all. I don’t feel anything for it… well, maybe mild annoyance for some of the more frustrating plot points. I’m stuck on episode 8 and can’t seem to find the interest to move on. I’ve read most of the recaps and that is already telling. I don’t do spoilers for shows I’m truly interested in, sometimes I even avoid all the previews. Sigh. I was SO excited about JG during the promo period and now…. It’s quite likely I won’t ever finish it.

Talking about drama posters. Three Musketeers’ (the Joseon version) ‘artistic’ team has just shown us how NOT to make promo posters. OMG! They are truly hidously bad PS jobs. I could do better, in fact I’ve done better. LOL! Oh well, maybe the drama itself turns out to be awesome or at least more entertaining than JG.

Going by how much I’m enjoying Endless Love, I really must be in a melo mood. Ha! As melodramas go, it really isn’t half bad and I still find all the main movers and shakers quite interesting. Some more than others. Let’s see how long this keeps up. 🙂