The Fangirl Verdict

Completely biased reviews and fangirling


25 Comments

Review: Who Are You – School 2015

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Youthful, fresh, and with just the right amount of angst, Who Are You – School 2015 is an engaging watch for most of its run, and even manages to feel cracky in parts.

On top of the typical teen problems, Show layers a missing-twin-swopped-lives arc that amps up the dramatic tension. Add on a confusing love triangle which ups the crack factor, and I was a eager happy camper through much of the show.

Despite some of the acting falling on the stiff side and an ending that loses steam, Show manages to remain a fun watch overall.

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23 Comments

Review: Falling For Innocence

THE SHORT VERDICT:

While never terribly strong on the logic front, nor on managing its corporate machinations, Falling For Innocence manages to be a warm, engaging and uplifting watch.

Despite being quite fantastical in its premise as well as its execution, the narrative stays grounded via the emotional resonance and heft imparted by its committed cast.

Amid the many solid performances delivered by the cast, Jung Kyung Ho stands out as THE shining star of this drama world. His fabulous, faceted performance resonates with so much heart that it actually helps to overcome Show’s flawed logic. That’s skillz.

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5 Comments

Review: Let’s Eat 2

THE SHORT VERDICT:

In true sibling fashion, Let’s Eat 2 looks kinda-sorta like the first Let’s Eat, but, like almost all siblings the world over, is really its own beast, with its own distinct personality and character.

The characters took a while to grow on me, but they ultimately proved to be a warm and endearing lot. And even though the food shots aren’t quite as glorious as the ones in Season 1, Show makes up for it this season, with less intrusive PPL in general, and even better, an improved, more cohesive narrative handle too.

While it may take a while for fans of Season 1 to come around, I eventually found Let’s Eat 2 to be just as warm, endearing and tasty as its predecessor.

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22 Comments

Review: Angry Mom

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Well-written and executed with an assured hand, Angry Mom is a dark horse in dramaland that manages to be engaging, thought-provoking and consistent, in spite of its varying tones and sometimes difficult subject matter.

Kim Hee Sun does an outstanding job as our titular Angry Mom, and the rest of the ensemble cast is pretty excellent as well. Almost everyone manages to deliver heartfelt, layered characters who feel like real people, and together, they amplify their drama world by making it feel all the more real, by extension.

Hard to watch at times, but so worth the journey.

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11 Comments

Review: Heart To Heart

THE SHORT VERDICT:

An understated, quiet little drama that started as a slow burn for me, but eventually got under my skin.

The writing’s a little patchy in spots, but the immersive, indie-flavored atmosphere, together with well-delivered characters, more than make up for weaknesses in the writing. Leads Choi Kang Hee and Chun Jung Myung both turn in excellent performances, and second leads Lee Jae Yoon and Ahn So Hee are nothing to sniff at either.

A warm and ultimately enjoyable watch.

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21 Comments

Review: Answer Me, 1994 [Reply 1994]

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Despite its flaws and indulgent streaks, Answer Me 1994 is a lovely little show that’s peopled by likable, bubbly characters that not only feel real, but also feel like they’re real friends with one another.

The characters and their relationships are the shining jewels crowning this show, and together, they shine so brightly that it’s not hard to overlook the occasional uneven writing, the consistently bloated episodes and the dreaded Who’s The Hubs game that Show inherited from its predecessor Answer Me 1997.

Far from perfect, but still So Lovable.

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35 Comments

Review: Misaeng

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Measured, slow and deliberate, Misaeng isn’t the kind of show that lends itself to marathoning.

Allow it the time and space to demonstrate its unique brand of awesome, though, and you’ll likely find a lot to like. Understated in its plotting and realistic in its execution, it’s the character and relationship moments that really shine in this show – and get under your skin as well.

Im Si Wan is quite the revelation in this, Lee Sung Min is just plain wonderful, and the rest of the cast is pretty fantastic as well.

Absolutely worth savoring.

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12 Comments

Review: Marriage Not Dating [Marriage Without Dating]

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Wacky fun with a lot of heart.

Marriage Not Dating’s strength is really in its execution and its primary cast’s committed performances. Han Groo and Yeon Woo Jin both turn in heartfelt performances while being fully committed to The Funny, and the result is cracktastic, laugh-out-loud hilarity with an inner core of true emotion.

Props to Show for maintaining its breezy pace consistently from start to finish, and ultimately giving us an ending that felt true to our characters while delivering the all-important feelz.

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6 Comments

Review: The Technicians [Movie]

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Quite smartly written, but not quite so smartly paced, The Technicians might feel underwhelming for those looking for a zippy, jaunty caper movie.

Despite its relatively slow set-up and its consequently somewhat sluggish feel, though, Show boasts a cohesive narrative with heart, and it doesn’t even ever get too melodramatic while going about it either.

Add on a cast of likable main characters and a good dose of pretty (Woob! On my screen! Eee!!), and The Technicians is still a solidly entertaining watch.

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21 Comments

Review: Sungkyunkwan Scandal

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Light, frothy, fizzy fun, Sungkyunkwan Scandal is perfect for viewers who are new to sageuk and feel intimidated by period / historical settings. Dressed in Joseon robes but possessing a fresh, modern, rom-com sort of feel, Sungkyunkwan Scandal is easy to love, even for the sageuk noob.

Helped by a breezy, ear-wormy OST and a pretty great cast, SKKS manages to pack a lot of fun – and heart! – into a zippy, peppy package.

Plus, everything – and everyone – is just so darn prettyyy.

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