The Fangirl Verdict

Completely biased reviews and fangirling


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Review: Oh My Venus

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Bursting at the seams with Pretty and Cute, Oh My Venus could’ve been a no-brainer shoo-in for cracky rom-com of the year. Especially since leads So Ji Sub and Shin Min Ah have been proven to possess a combined chemistry of the electrifyingly sparky sort.

Unfortunately, the writing derails the drama (in so, so many ways), and Show turns out to be more Underwhelming Mess than Intoxicating Brew.

Still cute, but far from satisfying.

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Year In Review: 2015

I can hardly believe that 2015 is coming to a close and 2016’s almost upon us. I know I said this last year too, but seriously guys, time is flying.

Even more so when you count the year in drama milestones, or so it seems, since there are more dramas in dramaland than ever before, vying for our limited drama hours. Everything feels like it’s flying by in a blur, and even though I’m dedicated to my dramas, it’s just not humanly possible to stay on top of everything – and that’s before taking Real Life responsibilities into account! XD

Still, I’m pleased to report that I managed to watch at least as much drama as I did last year, if not a little bit more. I’m sorta behind on the reviewing front, but I promise to catch up on that, pinky swear!

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Review: Twenty Again

THE SHORT VERDICT:

A understated, quiet creature compared to its other prime-time cousins, Twenty Again manages to prove its worth while bucking quite a few drama trends.

Despite having a central romance, Twenty Again’s main focus is consistently about one woman’s journey of discovery – discovery of truth, discovery of self, re-discovery of her self-worth – and everything else, including the romance, fits around that in a satisfyingly organic, uplifting way. Wonderful performances by our leads bring that journey to life, and make it completely worthwhile.

Far from flashy, but winsome and inspiring in all the best ways.

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kfangurl’s 2012 Drama Awards [Repost]

So this might be the mother of all throwback posts on this blog. (Wait, this might be the only throwback post on the blog, actually!) Basically, this post had first appeared on Stephanie’s blog Crazy for Kdrama, when she’d invited me to guest on her 2012-in-review series. I’d been super excited, and Stephanie’s invitation basically was the catalyst that inspired me to even start this blog (you can find the blog’s origin story here).

Long story short, Crazy for Kdrama suffered from a takedown a while ago, thanks to DMCA bots, which sucked. :( But, Steph’s since dusted herself off and has started over at Kchat Jjigae.

This post, though, was lost with the original blog. That’s been niggling me for a while, since this post has a special place in this blog’s history. That, and the more OCD parts of my brain felt uncomfortable that the link to my 2012 year-in-review on the Full List page basically led to nowhere. Happily, those same OCD parts of my brain had thought to save my original draft somewhere, so it wasn’t all that hard to reproduce the post here.

So now, for old times’ sake, and for the sake of having my 2012-in-review post available somewhere, I present to you one of the earliest blog posts I ever wrote, in its pure, original state. I’ve simply added links to reviews where available. Hope you guys enjoy the walk down memory lane with me! :)

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Review: Sassy Go Go [Cheer Up]

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Sassy wasted no time in stealing my heart, to be honest.

Yes, it’s not very inventive, in that its plot isn’t anything very new, and feels vaguely like a mashup of Angry MomWho Are You – School 2015, and Shut Up Flower Boy Band, with a bit of Dream High, and even mild shades of School 2013, thrown in for good measure. But I genuinely enjoyed all of those shows, and any resemblance, in this case, is not a bad thing. I loved that Show is breezy, and showcases endearing characters and their heart-tugging relationships, and I was effectively smitten for much of Show’s run.

It’s unfortunate that Show loses its footing somewhat, in the last quarter. That made me sad. After everything is said and done, though, I still felt wistful in saying goodbye to these characters, and that definitely counts for something.

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Review: She Was Pretty

THE SHORT VERDICT:

A fun rom-com that, in-between the comedy and the laughs, manages to get under your skin in the best way, with its warmth.

Some of my favorite things about She Was Pretty are the heartfelt performances, the lovingly-drawn characters, and the relationships brimming with organic, sparky chemistry. On top of these, the breezy pace and the ear-wormy OST – not to mention the uplifting themes of self-worth and self-love – make this a satisfying, enjoyable watch indeed.

Not perfect by a long shot, but Show gets the important things so right, that it’s hard to be nit-picky.

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Review: My Love Eun Dong

THE SHORT VERDICT:

An updated, refreshed, and much more polished take on the classic Retro Hallyu favorite themes of Fate and First Love.

Show is filled to the brim with classic tropes, but manages to be engaging for the most part, thanks largely to solid performances by its cast, as well as careful touches by PD-nim’s clearly loving hand. There are draggy, frustrating stretches, but if you love classic retro dramas, there’s a good chance you’ll like this too.

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Review: Goong [Princess Hours]

THE SHORT VERDICT:

A live-manhwa-meets-contract-marriage-meets-sageuk-meets-fusion-fantasy sort of mashup, Goong is something of a modern classic in dramaland.

Despite its multiple elements, Show is cute and adorable a lot of the time, and manages to serve up some very lovely, melty OTP moments through its run. On the downside, with its mostly raw and inexperienced cast, plus some starkly melodramatic tendencies, the watch can feel uneven at times.

Even so, it’s quite a lovely watch, given the right lens.

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Review: Warrior Baek Dong Soo

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Warrior Baek Dong Soo is an odd creature of a show that just adds up to way more than the sum of its parts.

Show’s got flaws galore – it’s not all that well-written, logic fails abound, pacing is uneven in spots, and the ending, uh, leaves a lot to be desired – but in spite of it all, somehow, it works (for the most part). It managed to keep my attention, creep under my skin, and eventually worm its way into my heart, when I wasn’t looking.

In the end, this show grabbed my heart way more than I’d expected – and I’m not just talking about the easy-on-the-eyes male leads either.

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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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