The Fangirl Verdict

Completely biased reviews and fangirling

Review: Marriage Not Dating [Marriage Without Dating]

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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.

Marriage Not Dating OST – Love Lane

THE LONG VERDICT:

If you’re in the mood for a light, well-done rom-com, Marriage Not Dating might just be your ticket. It’s overarching tone is cute, amusing and fun, but is also underscored with lots of heart. On top that, it’s easy and breezy to watch, and doesn’t require a lot of brain power to appreciate, even at its deeper levels.

Granted, one needs a pretty flexible lens to enjoy this drama.

Sometimes the comedy is so broad and physical that it’s impossible to take this show seriously. Yet at the same time, there are moments of emotional resonance that you can genuinely enjoy, interspersed throughout the show.

Alongside the shifting tone, the writing sometimes feels a touch erratic, in that some scenes, quite frankly, feel randomly conceived and don’t feel organic to the narrative.

Make your viewing lens an agile, flexible one to accommodate these variations, though, and Marriage Not Dating ought to be a fun, wacky, yet emotionally satisfying watch.

STUFF I REALLY LIKED

Looks Great, Sounds Great, Feels Great

With high production values, a gorgeous, beautiful bright Spring palette, and a cheerful, peppy OST, the world that Show creates is just so enjoyable to watch, really.

Pretty much no matter what was happening on my screen, I often felt like I was kinda eating happy springtime with a spoon. Yum.

Jaunty Pace, Deft Writing

Aside from the scenes that sometimes felt randomly shoehorned in, the writing in the show is mostly pretty robust, and our main characters quite quickly start to feel real and three-dimensional; each of them has at least some measure of backstory and depth, which is something that I appreciated.

The Funny often is built up to, even in its campiness, and therefore it doesn’t feel like physical gags are shoved in just for laughs. The Wacky is just the way this particular world works, is all.

Combined with its cheerful pace, I quickly got into a happy, enjoyable rhythm with this show, and it wasn’t hard to put on a bit of my wacky hat too, for a change.

Yeon Woo Jin as Ki Tae

Yeon Woo Jin is great as the proud, vain and petty Ki Tae, who also happens to be more of a dork than he’d care to admit.

As a character, Ki Tae is great to mock for his apparently small-minded ways, but he’s also great to root for, as we watch him slowly but surely start to rediscover the heart that he forgot he had. Ki Tae’s development over the course of the show feels organic and believable even amid the comedy, and that’s a solid achievement indeed, for both actor and writer.

Yeon Woo Jin is thoroughly committed in his delivery, and tackles the comedy with perfect comic timing, never hesitating to look silly for the camera. Gotta love a leading man who isn’t afraid to let go of the need to protect his image.

Han Groo as Jang Mi

Much as I enjoy Yeon Woo Jin in this show, it’s Han Groo who stole my heart as Jang Mi.

Jang Mi, bless her heart, is the kind of girl who consistently wears her heart bravely on her sleeve, even when she’s not so sure that it won’t be crushed to a pulp.

Props to Han Groo’s delivery; not only is The Funny executed without a shred of vanity, Han Groo as Jang Mi comes across with a substantial amount of emotional resonance right off the bat, even when her character makes choices that we question.

In a world of characters where almost everyone has a calculated agenda, Jang Mi shines as a woman who isn’t afraid to act according to what her heart says, even when it disagrees with her head.

One of my favorite things about Jang Mi, is her inherent compassion. Throughout the show, we see her demonstrating compassion to even the most undeserving people around her.

[SPOILER ALERT]

In episode 2, at the swimming pool, I didn’t think douchebag ex-boyfriend Hoon Dong (Huh Jung Min) deserved saving, to be honest. But Jang Mi goes ahead and saves him anyway, not because he deserves it, but because she desires to honor the feelings that she’d had for him, which were genuine. This, even though he’d basically stomped all over her heart.

Which just says so much about her as a person, really.

I truly loved that about Jang Mi, and it was her happiness that I rooted for juust a little more, all series long, despite the fact that I also had a lot of affection for Ki Tae.

[END SPOILER]

Ki Tae & Jang Mi

Yeon Woo Jin and Han Groo share a pretty fantastic chemistry as Ki Tae and Jang Mi, whether they are in each other’s faces bickering and (sometimes literally) tearing each other’s hair out, or in each other’s faces with big fat smooches.

Whichever the case, they are in it to mean it, which makes for a fantastically believable dynamic between them, all series long. I just love how unafraid Han Groo and Yeon Woo Jin are, in getting up close and personal with each other.

From the initial I-can’t-stand-you bickering, to the I-think-I-might-love-you stretches, to how Ki Tae and Jang Mi eventually navigate their transition from Fake Couple to Real Couple, the development between these two consistently feels natural and organic.

With committed, natural deliveries by both actors, our lead couple is a delight to watch, in the funny bits, the swoony bits, and even during the angsty bits in between. Their couplehood just feels so genuine and believable that watching them sometimes even feels a touch, well, voyeuristic.

[SPOILER ALERT]

Here’s a quick list of shout-outs, to just a few of my favorite moments in the show, between this OTP.

  • E5. They are adorable as they stage date photos together. Even more adorable is the fact that Ki Tae unconsciously smiles to himself as he looks at the photos that night, while Jang Mi smiles dreamily to herself while looking at the rose he gave her. Aw.
  • E7. Ki Tae realizing that he’s not ok with Jang Mi getting close to Yeo Reum (Jung Jin Woon). Yay, feeelings alert!
  • E10. Ki Tae opening up to Jang Mi, and them crying together, and then Jang Mi taking his hand, and giving him permission to cry. What a powerful moment. It feels so.. deep, in terms of an emotional connection between them.
  • E10. Ki Tae’s and Jang Mi’s obvious reluctance and dread that they’re about to end the farce. That lingering last hug is such a dead giveaway, that they don’t want to let each other go. It’s a touch bittersweet, but says so much about how they truly feel about each other.

And because this couple’s easy skinship with each other feels so wonderfully natural, I couldn’t resist giving them the loving spotlight with a quick screenshot spasm.

Enjoy:

[END SPOILER]

Jang Mi & Ki Tae’s Mom [SPOILER ALERT]

Aside from the relationship between our OTP, it was the relationship between Jang Mi and Ki Tae’s mom (Kim Hae Sook) that moved me the most.

Mom comes across as extremely intimidating, demanding and downright scary from the get-go, and Jang Mi is as far from Mom’s ideal daughter-in-law as one could arguably get. And yet, Show finds a way to allow these two women to break down the barriers between them over the course of its narrative, and even bond in a deep and meaningful way. Respect.

Through it all, it’s Jang Mi’s compassion that gets to Mom, bit by little bit, even when Mom won’t admit it.

I love the pivotal scene in episode 10, when Jang Mi smashes the fake ring and speaks out about how Mom really feels.

Mom consequently breaking down is sad to watch, but it’s a necessary, cathartic purging of hurts pent-up over many years. It’s not hard to guess that Mom probably never faced her own feelings head-on, or even allowed herself to crystalize the thought, and the only reason she can now deal with all those complicated, repressed emotions, is because Jang Mi’s finally crystalized it for her.

What strikes me most about this entire scene, is Jang Mi’s ability to speak words that pierce past the layer of pretend, and pinpoint the truth, and yet at the same time, manage to so fully empathize and articulate how Mom’s actually feeling. It’s like she truly feels what Mom feels.

That’s a kind of wisdom and perceptiveness that works from the heart, and not the head. And it’s Jang Mi’s heart wisdom that becomes the key to the marked change in the relationship between the two women.

The single most satisfying moment of this relationship, which even outshines several lesser OTP moments that I’ve seen in other dramas, is the cat-fight showdown with Dad’s Other Woman in episode 11, when Mom makes An Extremely Firm Stand for Jang Mi.

Nobody’s gonna talk trash about her daughter-in-law!

So. SO. Awesome.

To me, this was The Other OTP of the show, I felt for them so much.

Special Shout-Out: Ki Tae & Mom

While the spotlight on Ki Tae’s relationship with Mom is less dramatic than that between Jang Mi and Mom, I have to at least mention my favorite scene between mother and son.

All series long, mother and son share a contentious relationship, and I honestly didn’t see the twist in episode 15 coming, when Ki Tae realizes that he wasn’t ever alone in the house, but was with Mom.

That single reveal turns everything on its head. His happiest memories turn out to be her most painful ones. And the fact that the very thing that he’s despised her for doing all this while – maintaining a shell of a marriage – was really all for him, is a fantastic reversal.

The scene where Ki Tae calls his mother and just cries into the phone as she listens with tears welling up in her eyes – it brought tears to my eyes.

So touching, so full of meaning and heart-tugging pathos, and so healing, with hardly anything said at all.

Love.

[END SPOILER]

STUFF THAT COULD’VE BEEN BETTER

The Cold Open

One device that this show uses with each episode, is the cold open, which plays with timelines. The episode starts with a future scenario, and then goes into a flashback, counting down to the actual incident.

When this is done well, it’s done really well.

[MINOR SPOILER]

I was particularly impressed with how the cold open played out in episode 13, where our perceptions change as the show builds the context during its flashback, and eventually completely changes how we perceive and understand the scene itself. I thought that was very well-played and well-executed indeed.

[END SPOILER]

When the cold open was not done well, though, it felt manipulative, which annoyed me.

Sometimes, Show even used two different versions of the scene. One version at the cold open, and then a different version during the actual scene later in the episode.

That’s not clever. That’s lying.

C’mon now, Show, blatantly lying to your audience is just Not Cool.

Secondary Character Arcs

As much as I loved the characters that I’ve mentioned so far in this review – Ki Tae, Jang Mi and Mom – I found most of the secondary characters rather underwhelming. Which in and of itself is not a big deal. After all, they’re secondary characters and therefore aren’t as critical to the story, right?

Well, yes and no.

While Se Ah (Han Sun Hwa), Yeo Reum and Hoon Dong weren’t terribly interesting to me for much of the series, what I found most underwhelming, were their almost unanimous, convenient character turnarounds at the end of the show.

It honestly feels like lazy writing, to just suddenly make them more positive forces than they’d been prior.

Still, in the grand scheme of things, I don’t consider this too big of an offense. After all, when these characters had been meddling forces, I’d found it irksome. So I didn’t mind closing an eye to the convenient change in tack with the second leads.

Plus, on top of the abrupt niceness of the second leads, pretty much everyone else in this world started being nicer as the show drew to a close, even applying to minor characters such as Hoon Dong’s mom. So I guess in that sense, it’s.. cohesive?

RANDOM TANGENT: Jung Jin Woon looks too buff

Ok, so this is a completely random tangent, but I couldn’t resist including it, just to see if you guys felt the same way as I did.

In the random-feeling beach getaway in episode 9, I couldn’t help but notice that among the more normal looking people, Jung Jin Woon’s bare body looked strangely overly muscular. Like he would fit right in on the idol stage, but just wouldn’t manage to fit in or look natural among normal, regular people.

It isn’t as obvious in the screenshot above, but take a look at this still.

See? Even Jung Jin Woon’s not convinced that he’d fit in, heh.

Not that I’m complaining. I’m just sayin’, is all. 😉

THEMES

In the sea of comedy mixed with romance, Show managed to surface a few strong themes that I found interesting and meaningful, such as:

  • The idea of Now being better than Sometime or Someday.
  • What you show the world, vs. the truth and what you really feel.
  • Pride and that facade: Is it worth it?
  • Pride vs. Honesty. Which, when you boil it down, is really everyone else vs. Jang Mi.
  • The idea that love isn’t just between 2 individuals, but involves families as well.

In spite of Show’s light, cheery tone, I enjoyed chewing on these strong, meaty themes, which were consistently brought up, and which I found thought-provoking as a viewer.

CLOSING THOUGHTS [MILD SPOILERS]

In its closing episode, Show wraps up everything quite nicely, while bringing out the idea that the worst comes along with the best & vice versa. Essentially, that life isn’t perfect, and that the good and the bad come together in one package, but because there is good, that it’s possible for us to keep going.

Which is such a fitting tone on which to end, for a show that was never about perfect fairytale romance anyway. Instead, throughout its run, Show doesn’t gloss over the hairy parts of being involved with people in life. There can be betrayals and unhappiness, and misunderstandings and hurts. People and relationships can and do get messed up. But still. It’s possible to choose happiness; it’s possible to choose love. And I like that a lot.

I think Ki Tae’s proposal and Jang Mi’s answer really sums it up perfectly for me.

Ki Tae: “You can’t… and shouldn’t be sure about marriage. But I want to marry you nevertheless. There’s no such thing as eternal love. Nevertheless… I want to love you forever.”

Jang Mi: “Ok. You can’t trust any men. Nevertheless… I want to trust you.”

That, to me, is this show’s appeal in a nutshell.

For all it’s manhwa-esque, cheery, comical tone while presenting its modern take on romance, dating and relationships, Show’s charming and juust a little sappy at heart. Which is precisely why I like it.

THE FINAL VERDICT:

Irreverent, with liberal spots of sweet. Perfect for when you’re in the mood for fun, cute and a bit of campy.

FINAL GRADE: A

VISUAL TREATS:

Rather than the official teasers, I find the opening credits a closer representation of the breezy, boppy tone of the show:

Here’s an extended trailer, which gives a great flavor for the tone of the show, with just mild to moderate spoilers, since it uses only scenes from the show’s earlier episodes:

For those who don’t mind spoilers, here’s a breezy MV featuring the adorable OTP:

Here’s another signature track off the OST, a little angstier, and so earnest:

Author: kfangurl

Proud to be a k-fangirl since 2007. Main diet of kdramas with movies and kpop on the side.

23 thoughts on “Review: Marriage Not Dating [Marriage Without Dating]

  1. Pingback: Year In Review: 2014 | The Fangirl Verdict

  2. I am so stoked you loved MND! And because you touched on all the wonderful parts of the show, it made me realized why this was on my favorites list (up there with Healer, Pinocchio, and YFAS hahahahhaha). I also remember the not so great parts. I disliked Ki Tae’s ex and her story arc really strongly. Perhaps if I watch this a second time I can push the ffwd button? Can I? Can I? Please? 🙂 also didn’t like the male second lead. Although he was a catalyst to some development for the OTP, I found him downright annoying. I would rather watch Hoon Dong than him.

    Speaking of the OTP, I looove them to bits. Not only because of how they fell for each other but because how they leaned on each other, being each other’s sounding board. They were just so honest with each other most of the time without pretense that one can envy not just their romance but their solid friendship as well. Thank you for this review!

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    • I did love MND!! It was a touch underrated, and not on a lot of people’s radars, I think. But it turned out to be such a cracky sort of watch, and I’d felt quite addicted while watching it, which explains the A rating despite its flaws. I was heavily influenced by how cracky it had felt.

      Definitely agree about Se Ah’s arc – her insistent clinginess in spite of the fact that she was no longer dating Ki Tae got into truly WTH territory by the later stretches. And I was also uncomfortable with Yeo Reum as a character.. I felt like I couldn’t ever really trust him. Which was a slight pity for me, since Jung Jin Woon was the single bright spot that got me through (the truly terrible) Dream High 2. (Don’t watch that show!) So yes, if you’re gonna rewatch this, the FF button might come in VERY handy indeed! 😉

      And absolutely YES, to OTP love! Those two were wonderful to watch together and separately. Loved how grounded their feelings felt, for each other. I loved revisiting them for this review – and I’m so glad you enjoyed this review too! ^^

      Like

  3. LOVE.THIS.DRAMA.TO.BITS.
    -end of story-
    I’m in the middle of burning the midnight oil as of this writing so please forgive my incoherent thoughts. 🙂 Forever grateful that you introduced this funny yet witty show last holiday, kfangurl. Easily one of my favorite rom-coms. And oh, thank you for keeping your words. 😉 (Pls see year-end review) Gotta go back to reality now.
    P.S. I’ll read this recap in a much peaceful and breezy time. Still a fan of yours 🙂

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    • Xia!! 😀 Great to see you, even in the midst of your midnight oil burning! I hope things are settling a little more, by the time you read this! I apologize for taking this long to reply – life’s been hectic these couple of weeks. 😛

      I’m really SO GLAD that you loved MND as much as you did, since you didn’t have a lot of time during your holidays, and could really only commit to one drama. I’m just so happy that MND turned out to be such an enjoyable watch for you!! ^^

      As for keeping my promise – yes! I remember I promised to review this show when I wrote my year-in-review post. Besides this, I still have a few more promises to keep, actually. Eep. So many dramas to review – & watch! Must magic more time out of my schedule! ^^

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  4. I needed something breezy and fun…stumbled into this and it made me so happy. Love your term: cracktastic, indeed! I agree with everything you wrote (shout out to ahomeonie). Ki Tae in the shower made me laugh so loud I almost fell off the sofa 😂

    But.

    I feel I need to make the case for Yeo Reum. I almost feel like he was a stand in for us – the audience. He fell for Jang Mi. He saw through Ki Tae’s aloofness and liked him, too. He shrugged off Hoon Dong. And he whispered asides to the OTP when they got too far off the rails. In a crazy free for all, he was my anchor. And his was the ONE story I feel they didn’t wrap up…where did he go? What about his heartbreak?

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    • YAY that you enjoyed this show too, bakazen!!! 😀 This was a surprise find for me too, in that it seemed to have slipped under a lot of people’s radars. And YES to a shout-out to halmeoni, she was awesome. And OMG Ki Tae’s shower scene! I laughed so hard at that too!! XD

      You make an intriguing case for Yeo Reum.. I didn’t feel the same way about his character, but your take on it definitely makes him more sympathetic. Yes, the show didn’t give us closure on his story. While it’s true that that would’ve given us a clearer sense of a proper wrap-up, I didn’t feel the loss too keenly. I think it’s because I felt that even in his love for Jang Mi, Yeo Reum – for the most part, anyway – seemed to care for himself and his own agenda more than he cared for her. Props to him for helping out at the new restaurant, but I also clearly remember examples of his self-focused behavior, like how he dove for cover to protect himself and left Jang Mi by herself that time in Hoon Dong’s restaurant. And I’m saying this as someone who started this show wanting to like him. Very much. Coz Jung Jin Woon was the single bright spark that got me through (the jaw-droppingly terrible) Dream High 2, and I actually looked forward to seeing him on my screen again in MND. Just, somehow, Yeo Reum didn’t work for me, as a character. 🙂

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  5. Waaaahhh!! You also love MND!!! It was one of the accidental KDrama finds that I was soo glad I found it accidentally!! And one of the few Kdrama’s that I’ve watched real-time!! I saw a teaser trailer in Youtube, then was really intrigue with the premise, and BAAMMM!! From the first episode, I. WAS. HOOKED.

    Agree on every points, specially about the OTP and the the side OTP – that of JangMi and Kitae’s mom! And I love Kitae’s Grandma, too!

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    • YAY for more MND love in the house, WOOT! 😀 Wow, watching it real-time must’ve been challenging – when I’m hooked on a drama, I find it so hard to wait for new episodes! 😉

      And definitely YES, I loved Gran too, she was really cute. Her sly looks were THE BEST! XD

      Like

      • Oh, it really was challenging! I am always antsy for the next episode! And, even though I don’t understand anything I still enjoyed watching it, and when the subs are available, re-watching again with full understanding, hehe! Just like when I was hooked with the JjongAh couple, I’ve started watching them real time too! (around their Jjong neighborhood/zoo date episode) And watching real time from the other side of the world = sacrificing precious hours of sleep because of time difference, hehe!! 🙂

        Oh, and have you watched “Surplus Princess”? Its really good, and really funny too, but its too bad that they’ve abruptly cut it into only 10 instead of 16 episodes, so the ending was really rushed.. But, it was really good, and I think you will love the characters, too. And, it has Song Jae Rim (actually, he was the reason how I’ve found out about WGM, and eventually got hooked to HJH and Yura..

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        • Wow, you even stayed up late to watch WGM, Joan?? You are seriously dedicated!! I salute you for sacrificing precious sleep in the name of fangirl love! XD Now that JjongAh is off the air, are you still watching WGM? I’m still hanging in there, but just barely at the moment. I might drop it for a while soon since I’m not overly taken with any of the couples at the moment.

          I started on Surplus Princess but stalled at about.. E4? I guess I wasn’t quite in the mood.. I couldn’t muster up the goodwill to root for our mermaid, who seemed so self-centered. Also, I found it hard to swoon at SJR coz whenever I saw him acting cool, I could only think of his goofy-dorky persona on WGM, and all the potential swoon fizzled 😛 Since you recommend it so highly, I might give it another shot when some space clears up on my drama plate 😉

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  8. Hey, Kfangurl ❤

    I have just finished MND and I really, really liked it ❤ Of course, I have a couple of complaints but I really liked it nonetheless.

    Kudos to Han Groo! She did a splendid job! For someone who had to go through so many emotions, so many faces she handled them like a bo$$. Usually, I get annoyed when I see leads that play fluffy and carefree characters, but try too hard in doing so. She did it with finesse and as natural as breathing.
    Jang Mi was a breath of fresh air, expecially for Ki Tae's family (and in Dramaland too, if you ask me 😛 ). She stirred and poked and annoyed and danced around and pushed the bear to its limits, but instead of hating her, the bear (Ki Tae's entire family) fell in love with her and decided to keep her, at some point against her will. Being able to make yourself genuinely liked by only speaking your mind is awesome (wish I could do that as well :))) ) And the fact that she didn't change herself, not even after she fell in love with Ki Tae and the fact that she held her head up, never bowing down in front of old and outdated traditions was truly incredible. Really, awesome ❤

    Yeon Woo Jin was really good as well. His right lazy eye bugged me at times, but very handsome and really talented too. What I loved most were the subtle changes in his facial expression whenever Jang Mi was around or word was brought up about her. And I really loved that in spite opening some very nasty wounds, Ki Tae let Jang Mi in and told her everything (especially when he never did that with Se Ah) despite making himself extremely vulnerable in the process.

    Their chemistry was smoking hot!! ❤ I'll have to say, when we were already half way in the show and she was still smitten with Yeo Reum, I thought that Show will speed up her feelings in favour of our OTP and would fail miserably at making everything feel natural. But the fact that they spent a considerable amount of time together and the fact that at some point she would just be at his apartment every evening played a huge role in convincing me that she was blinded because of the star in front of her (Yeo Reum) and was unable to see the moon beside her (Ki Tae) 🙂

    Loved Ki Tae's family, even if at times I was extremely frustrated with the women. But Show made it look like a real family, with flaws and feelings and ugliness. All three women spoiled Ki Tae's dad and he turned out to be an insensitive jackass. And Mom, even if a more accurate term would be Momzilla, was so beautiful. What annoyed me before getting to where she started to peel off the hard exterior was that I was watching yet another drama where the big bad wolf was one of the parents. It felt soooo, sooooo uninspired and cliched. Good thing that changed :)))
    I also think that Mom was definitely ready to make THE change and Jang Mi was just the catalyst.

    Now, on with the less satisfying things 😛

    I'll say that Yeo Reum was annoying but he was the unintentional kind of bad wolf. At some point I think he actually started to feel for Jang Mi and wanted to keep her to himself. I feel the role could've been played better because it reminded me of the second leads in mangas and manhwas that fall in love with the female lead and tease her just because she's cute and also to keep her away from the male lead because even if the second lead doesn't like the female together with the male lead, he also doesn't do much in claiming her because he knows he doesn't stand a chance and is afraid. But if that's what they were aiming for, they should've tried harder. Or better.

    Se Ah, on the other hand, was plain annoying. I disliked her and I expected breaking news of her suffering from an anneurism when she changed her behaviour completely at the very end of the show. If I tried really, like reaally hard I could say that she found a new toy (the foreign guy) and decided to switch. But that's seriously far fetched. I would have to give props to the actress though (don't know her name) because as awful as this role was, she gave the character some nuance and she was quite relatable at times.

    One last rant and I am done, for now :)))
    Show kept such a light tone that I found it hard sometimes to feel the angst the characters were trying to convey. The music though helped quite a lot.

    I think that's my really short, really non-professional review :)))) Thank you so much for the recommendation and keep 'em coming! The unicorns are still here :)))))

    Keep up the awesome work ❤

    Like

    • Sabina!! ❤ I’m so sorry this reply is coming so late. October was a pretty crazy month for me and my family, and I’m only just now getting caught up with blog stuff.

      I’m sooo glad you enjoyed Marriage Not Dating – it’s one of my favorites, and one of the rare dramas that managed to meld laugh-out-loud funny with genuine poignance, and I loved it whichever angle of itself Show was presenting to me. Han Groo is fabulous and wonderful and I hope she will come back to dramas at some point. I recently read news that she’s expecting her first child with her husband, so it might be a while before we get to experience her brand of natural, organic awesome again.

      Yes, Yeon Woo Jin’s lazy eye bugged me too. I wonder if he’s wearing contacts to fix it? But yes, he does do a very good job with the funny AND the heartfelt, and I thought he was a perfect match for Han Groo. Those two were perfectly cast for this show, in my opinion. 🙂 I didn’t enjoy Jung Jin Woon so much in this show, and I’m not sure if it was the writing or the acting or both. I did like him in Dream High 2, but perhaps that was more in his wheelhouse, since he got to play the guitar and sing songs. I disliked Se Ah’s character too, and found her unbelievably tiresome and clingy. And YES, I loved Mom’s turnaround as well. In the beginning, I’d found it odd that they cast Kim Hae Sook to play such a stock character like a controlling mom, but when they started delving into Mom’s story, I finally understood why they needed a powerhouse like Kim Hae Sook to play her. She was awesome. 🙂

      If you’re still in the mood for light and sweet, I really love Moonlight Drawn By Clouds. Even if you’re not big on sageuks, I think you’d likely be able to enjoy this one. ❤

      Like

      • Don’t worry, hun 😀 I’ve been quite busy myself (=.=) Three of my colleagues left the company in the past two months and me and 2 other colleagues had to take over their responsibilities, it’s been hectic. I still have to go to school every evening and to top it off, the choir I’m directing has started to have a lot of shows and it’s draining all of my energy :)))))

        Han Groo is really a very lovely, cute woman and a very good actress too. I’m happy for her and her hubby for their new family member :d I hope it all goes well ❤

        When the show started and Kim Hae Sook was (again) playing a Momzilla part (see dreadful Hotel King) I thought "that's my limit, I can't take it anymore" :))))) But since you strongly recommended I put on my big girl pants and sucked it up. Besides, she really is a good actress. She makes you believe everything is actually happening as you watch the drama. So imagine my relief when she reformed, so to speak ❤

        Right now, I don't have time to watch anything :(. I'm pretty much struggling with school too… But I will keep your recommendation in mind and will get to it as soon as time will allow.

        Thank you so much for the reply, even when you're busy as you are 😀

        Kisses and hugz ❤

        Like

        • Oh dear, I’m so sorry to hear that life’s been so hectic for you, Sabina!! But, I’m happy that you’re still able to commit to your non-work passions – fighting, my dear! *fist pump*

          I really hope your schedule lets up soon, and that you’ll get more time to rest – and watch dramas too! 😉 You know I’ll be happy to point you to more dramas once you’re able to make some time for them! In the meantime, kisses and hugs back! 😘😘😘

          Like

  9. i love this romcom! nice acting from the actors, from those with small parts and leading actors! nice story, very funny! one of my favorite!

    Like

    • Glad you enjoyed this one, vans – this one is one of my favorites as well. It’s not often that I find a kdrama’s idea of funny actually funny, but I genuinely laughed out loud many times with this one. And it’s so heartfelt at the same time too. 🙂

      Like

  10. Oh-My-Lord
    What a cracker-jack of a show.
    Thanks mefriend for the reco. *Warm Hugs*
    Total thumbs up! I owe you one…

    How do I start…
    This one show had so much modicum-of-insanity that my heart was was dancing with happiness and laughter.

    Lets begin with the leads…
    The girl menace meets the almost-there-but-not-quite-there-boy-menace.
    Result: Full on Ipso Facto.
    Their chemistry is Dae to the Baaaaak!
    And so much Sengsara’ness flowing between them that it kicks in viewers joie de vie the moment they share screen together. Bicker-love-argue-love-fight-love-like-love-love-love. All mediums was conveying, naaah, screaming fun-fun-fun.
    I don’t know about others, but there were very few times I could stop smiling, if not laughing.

    Some may find the OTP a little OTT but for me it worked coz there was an inherent comfort level the leads shared that oozed out in their scenes together. And in spite of the jolly-merry-happy-go-go, I could connect with the leads and their insecurities, their confusion leading to minor heartaches. As a viewer, I grew with them as these characters metamorphosed into genuine loving relationship.
    And that beautiful lets-be-open-to-each-other talk in episode 14 had so much feeeeeelsssssss my heart bloomed like it had just received some restorative stimulant. Such simplicity, yet to so profound.

    Add to this a whole lot of all-crazy-brigade of side characters and you have a full-on loony-bin show.
    Lets whoop together with laughter!

    My sign off shot, may they make many more like these.
    ~N~

    Like

    • Ah! I’m so glad you enjoyed this one, N!! It flew under the radar somewhat, I feel, so it didn’t receive as much love and attention that it deserved. I don’t often find kdramas’ Intended Funny necessarily all that funny, but I genuinely laughed out loud, and often, with this one. That’s very special indeed, and that wash of off-center crazy just worked. Of course, it totally helped that the leads are both great with the comic timing, and have such excellent chemistry with each other. Best of all, this show managed to have heart, in spite of the insanity, and that, to me, was its greatest shining virtue. Kudos to the show for taking all of those elements and meshing them together so well!

      I’d love to see more of Han Groo, but I think it’ll be a while yet before we see her back on our screens again, with the recent delivery of her baby. But still, YES, let’s keep hoping for more shows like this one, in dramaland! 🙂

      Like

  11. Sorry for anyone who love this drama. I was excited to finally watch this drama, after i see great rating from you and javabeans-girlfriday (dramabeans). Turned out i dont feel the hype, i just cant find the excitement i always feel when i enjoy some kdama. Strange, because if you guys give great rating for kdrama, i always kinda agree with it. Maybe because i’m tired of kdrama? I dont know it for sure, because i watch this drama after i finish jealousy incarnate and i really love that drama, but for this drama, i try very hard to love this drama and force myself to finish without skip or fast forward any scene but still dont like this drama. I always love fake to real theme love story but i dont like this story, it just feel too ridiculous for me and i dont feel it when they realize their love for each other. I dont know maybe because i had high hope for this drama but turned out i dont enjoy it. One thing that i enjoyed the most is the sound effect when jang mi and gi tae talking or fighting, like the sound of cat to express jang mi or when they tease each other and pokes each other, i really love it. Maybe this is the reason i finally finish this drama. LOL.

    Like

    • Aw, I’m sorry this one didn’t work for you, San.. It’s that weird thing where some dramas just don’t work for you the same way they work for others. I feel ya. I’ve been bemused by highly-buzzed, popular dramas before, because no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t get into it. Happily we agree on many other dramas, so there’s always hope for next time! 🙂

      Like

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