Flash Review: Yong Pal

In more ways than one, I was drawn to Yong Pal like a moth to a flame.

The teaser of Joo Won being all edgy-superhero-badass, leaping off tall buildings in a single bound while saving people with his scalpel, had me practically jumping out of my skin with excitement (squee!). It all just looked so good. I needed to see this show.

And Show – just like that flame – was beautiful to look at up close too. Y’know, at least for a little while, before it proceeded to burn me on my way out.



As meh as I ultimately found this show, I really, really loved the first 6 episodes.

Everything was fast-paced, cocky, badass and just refreshingly different. It felt like Show knew where it was going, and wasn’t afraid to go where other shows hadn’t gone before. I was kept on the edge of my seat.. until I wasn’t. But we can talk more about that later.

First, for the record, here’re some of my favorite things about the first 6 episodes.

1. Joo Won as Tae Hyun

At least for the first 6 episodes, I thoroughly enjoyed Joo Won in the role of Tae Hyun.

I loved that as Yong Pal, he was gritty, inhumanly efficient and completely badass. And I loved that as Tae Hyun at his day job, he was brilliant at what he did, so much so that professors needed to call him into the operating theater if they didn’t want their patients to die.

I loved that Tae Hyun was presented as sharp, discerning and decisive.

More than that, I was intrigued by the odd and fascinating shades of gray that seemed to make up Tae Hyun’s sense of values. On the one hand, the loving warmth when it came to his sister, as well as the intent desperation he tended to have when saving someone.

On the other, a touch of amoral grease when it came to what he was willing to do, to make money to save his sister.

I found the blend of light and dark a compelling one, and couldn’t help but want to know more about Tae Hyun and what made him tick.

2. Interesting secondary characters

Aside from Tae Hyun, I found several of the secondary characters interesting in their own right.

All at least a little quirky in their own way, I found that put together, they made our drama world a peculiar, surreal and rather bizarre place. Which I don’t consider a bad thing; it was so weird that I couldn’t tear my eyes away.

Creepy Nurse (Bae Hae Sun) was particularly fascinating, with her morbid fascination and obsession with her patient Yeo Jin (Kim Tae Hee).

Her fixation with Yeo Jin was at once manically possessive and lovingly controlling, which I found both creepy and morbidly fascinating. Easily one of the most eccentric, freaky characters that I’ve come across in dramaland.

Cynthia (Stephanie Lee) also brought a good measure of interest to our drama world, with her statuesque confidence and polish, and her hidden ability to kick literal ass.

Combined with her veiled intentions and the random perfect English she spouted, she was definitely fun to have onscreen.

Chae Young (Chae Jung Ahn) was another character I found fascinating. Her ditzy bimbo act in front of her husband was so convincing that I actually felt surprised when she turned on the analytical shrewd.

She felt potentially powerful, and I was interested to see how she would add to our story.

3. Sparky blossoming friendship between the OTP

Just before this show started going downhill for me, there was a small stretch of gloriously sparky OTP interaction that I thoroughly enjoyed.

It’s far from romantic, and that’s exactly what I find so fantastic. Our OTP connect and talk, as business partners at first, and then, as friends. Filled with sharp wit and droll banter, their conversations were truly a joy to watch.


I really liked watching Tae Hyun and Yeo Jin chatting and bonding, in spite of her guardedness.

I loved that no matter how regal and imposing Yeo Jin tried to be, Tae Hyun was never intimidated for a moment, and simply continued his casual cheekiness without ever missing a beat.

Most of all, I loved that they agreed to be friends. Tae Hyun’s request, that they be friends, felt so.. uncalculated. It felt like he was asking to be friends, as much for her sake, as his own, since they were both lonely people who could benefit from having someone to talk with.

I really, really liked that idea, of two lonely souls finding a way to connect, despite their vastly different backgrounds and circumstances.


4. Endearing secondary relationships

Still on the topic of friendship, there were a couple of secondary friendships that I found particularly endearing.

Tae Hyun and Head Nurse

Although we didn’t get a lot of screen time for Tae Hyun’s friendship with Head Nurse (Kim Mi Kyung), I really liked the comfortable, cozy dynamic between them.

I especially liked it when Head Nurse allowed her motherly side to surface, and she talked to Tae Hyun about things that other people weren’t able to. Like the time she talked to him about doctors needing the will to save patients.

In a world where Tae Hyun had so few people that he could truly trust, I really liked that he had a confidante in her.

Tae Hyun and mob boss Doo Chul

Probably because this friendship was so unlikely and so unexpected, I found myself quite amused by Tae Hyun’s friendship with mob boss Doo Chul (Song Kyung Chul).

I was particularly tickled by how Doo Chul’s affection – adoration, really – for Tae Hyun was consistently written all over his face. Doo Chul was a total Tae Hyun fanboy, and his devotion to Tae Hyun entertained me nicely whenever it came to the fore.

5. Overall pacing and direction

There was a lot of suspension of disbelief required in order to buy into the heightened reality of this drama world, and Yeo Jin’s dramatic-yet-elegantly-beautiful slo-mo car accident sequence was served up more times than I’d care to remember.

But. For the first 6 episodes at least, Yong Pal felt assuredly directed and briskly paced. I consistently felt like I was in good hands, and could trust Show to take me to new and fresh drama pastures. That was a really good feeling, really, while it lasted.


Episode 7 wasn’t as strong as episodes 1 through 6, but if I had to pinpoint a single episode where everything seemed to go downhill for me, it would be episode 8.

Despite its strong ratings, I came away from episode 8 with a distinct feeling of meh. Considering how much I’d enjoyed Show’s first 6 episodes, this was painful indeed.

Here’s a quick snapshot of what didn’t work for me, not only in episode 8, but the rest of the show as well.

1. The OTP Romance

I hate to say it, but the moment things turned romantic between Tae Hyun and Yeo Jin, I stopped feeling their connection, period.

For one thing, I just couldn’t feel that romantic chemistry from either Joo Won or Kim Tae Hee. All the skinship and kisses felt off to me, coz I couldn’t buy their romantic connection.

To make things worse, Show did a terrible job of transitioning their relationship from platonic to romantic. It all felt very sudden, forced and unnatural, like it was shoved in just to boost ratings.

All the romantic lines that Tae Hyun was suddenly spouting felt completely out of character, which really didn’t help, since the romance suddenly became one of Show’s big areas of focus.

I literally cringed at every. single. attempt. at romance that Show served up, all the way to its conclusion.

2. The intrusive PPL

To add to the pain of the unnatural-feeling romantic turn of the OTP relationship, Show suddenly seemed to be spilling PPL from its gills.

I know some PPL is unavoidable in almost any and all non-sageuk kdrama, but some of this stuff was downright ridiculous in terms of how random and heavy-handed it all was.


For example, in episode 8, as Tae Hyun is about to go on the run with Yeo Jin, he actually stops to do a mini CF for us, demonstrating to Yeo Jin how handy a particular app is for finding lodging.

I was so aghast at the blatant and very distracting PPL that completely interfered with the narrative integrity, that I honestly couldn’t have rolled my eyes any farther into the back of my head.


3. The plot weaknesses

Starting from episode 8, and then with increasing regularity all the way to the end, Show started displaying weaknesses in its writing.

Some plot weaknesses were smaller than others, but when you put it all together, Show eventually started looking like one big hole-y mess. Sort of like a once gloriously warm blanket that got eaten into by an army of ravaging rats.


Here’s a sampling of plot weaknesses, just for the record.

1. More than a few times, Chief Lee (Jung Woong In) hallucinates that Yeo Jin’s speaking to him accusingly for “killing” her, and this causes him to act in ways that drive the plot forward. It all just feels too convenient.

2. Tae Hyun allowing his sister So Hyun (Park Hye Soo) to go to the States for surgery by herself. It doesn’t make objective sense, to allow a patient who’s reportedly very weak and not far from death’s door, to travel on her own.

Not to mention that it’s completely out of character for Tae Hyun to let her go alone. In my head, he would’ve sent their dad with her, at the very least.

3. In episode 11, when Yeo Jin watches her dad’s recorded message to her, it all feels so reminiscent of Superman, ha.

More importantly, there’s no evidence to support Dad’s claim that Do Joon (Jo Hyun Jae) killed her fiance etc, so it’s all on his word alone, which doesn’t seem very robust, really.

Perhaps most importantly, if all this was true and Dad knew all this stuff, why didn’t he do anything about it while he was still alive?

4. In the later stretch of the show, we see Yeo Jin in war mode and kicking ass while she’s at it. While it’s cool that she’s this good at corporate war, it’s a real stretch to believe that she’s just naturally a genius at it, or that she’d been this way before her coma.

Either way, it just felt really surreal.

5. Perhaps the biggest plot hole of them all, is how Yeo Jin’s enemies actually manage to induce liver cancer in her. Say whut? Seriously, this made zero sense to me. Zero. How can you cause someone to have liver cancer? Liver failure I’d understand more.

Not to mention the fact that Yeo Jin’s personality swings so wildly, all around. From being suddenly Badass Genius Corporate Warrior in episode 16, she’s suddenly very trusting in episode 17.

Plus, there are lots more convenient hallucinations around this part of the show too.

When you put all these writing weaknesses together, Show really is a big, unwieldy, unbelievable mess.

And I haven’t even mentioned the confusing and rather unbelievable trajectory that Chae Young charts in terms of her feelings for her husband.

From scheming against him while appearing to have no affection for him whatsoever, to becoming so incensed by his death that she crusades for his vengeance? I just found that so bemusing, really.



The reason I continued to hang in there with this show all the way to the bitter end, was because I kept hoping against hope that it would somehow regain the brilliance of its early episodes.

In this case, my optimism wasn’t rewarded, but there were a couple of things that helped me stay the course.

Moments with Tae Hyun’s friends

As our story shifted to Yeo Jin’s corporate war and revenge, Tae Hyun actually faded into the background.

From being the gritty, badass Yong Pal who leapt from tall buildings with his trusty surgical to-go kit, Tae Hyun became relegated to a reactionary, almost secondary sort of character; a fact that I mourn greatly, since I loved badass Yong Pal.

Still, the small comic beats of Tae Hyun adjusting to the chaebol life were pretty entertaining, and any time that he got to hang out with his friends and just be himself and be treated like a regular person, felt like literal breaths of fresh air.

I savored those moments whenever they showed up.

A sageuk lens

I found that all the ruthless machinations, particularly between Yeo Jin and Do Joon, were a lot easier to swallow while wearing a sageuk sort of lens.

Without the sageuk lens, everything would’ve felt too melodramatic and OTT, but with the sageuk lens, the story managed to feel reasonably engaging, at least for a while.


I mean, siblings plotting to kill each other over a throne is totally the stuff of sageuk royal families. Add on the literal groveling that all the board members resort to with Yeo Jin, and Show totally feels like a sageuk in modern clothes.

Additionally, the sageuk lens is essential when trying to make sense of how Tae Hyun could be so understanding and patient of Yeo Jin’s murderous ways.

It’s too bad this sageuk lens trick didn’t manage to save this show for me, in the end.


All in all, this show’s ending is as illogical and underwhelming as its later episodes.

I mean, given how this show’s narrative went off the rails for me relatively early on and never managed to get back on track, I can’t actually think of an ending that would’ve felt satisfying. Still, Show managed to surprise me with just how illogical its finale was.

There were just so many things – seriously, So Many – that stretched believability that I honestly didn’t find anything believable in this show anymore. In particular, Yeo Jin’s wildly fluctuating condition felt far-fetched.

One minute she was practically catatonic, and the next, she was lucid and strong enough to not only walk but throw people out of the house.

And what about that scene of the police simply taking away the scheming plotters, with said scheming plotters then conveniently never appearing again. That just seemed way too easy a solution to the corporate machinations.

Back to the topic of Yeo Jin’s condition, she makes what feels like a very unnecessary and dramatic return to the windy hill with Tae Hyun, after which we get a very convenient liver transplant (Head Housekeeper just happens to know that she’s a match) performed by Chief Lee, New Yong Pal (who’s conveniently entered the country, with Cynthia), and Tae Hyun.

Seriously, in what world is it ok for a husband to operate on his wife??

In the end, Yeo Jin lives, waking up from her unconsciousness to Tae Hyun’s voice calling her name. He asks, “Do you know who I am?” In voiceover, she answers, “Yong Pal.” Which is where the scene freezes and the show ends.

I felt so bemused at this ending, seriously.

After Show took away so much of Tae Hyun’s doctoring abilities (what’s with Tae Hyun having to call another doctor to confirm a diagnosis?) and relegated him to a mostly reactionary near-prop, I find it hard to swallow the callback to Tae Hyun being Yong Pal.

After so many episodes of Tae Hyun’s Yong Pal identity having Zero relevance to the plot, this callback feels forced and unnatural.

I get that writer-nim was probably aiming to end the show with a punch of emphasis, but I couldn’t help wondering about everything else that remained unanswered.

Will Yeo Jin leave her chaebol life to be with Tae Hyun? What happens to the company? What about all the bad things she’s done in the name of being a crocodile? Will she actually be punished for those crimes?

Sigh. In the end, Yong Pal as a drama doesn’t live up to any of its promises, and I’m disappointed by that, because I’d wanted to love this show, so much. Too bad Show turned out to be more Delusional than Dazzling.


Brilliant beginning, before Show slumps and completely loses its grip. Ultimately underwhelming.



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4 years ago

Seeing from a medical point off view the shaw was 🤬! and it’s really hard seeing this after the good doctor one of the best medical dramas out there. I kept cringing every time I saw anything medical and I know this is not a 100% medical show but to have nooo level of accuracy what so all is just lazy. This turned me off before even reaching the romantic part!!
Though I loooove joo won. I find this to be a very weak role not necessarily for the way he acts instead for the way his character was written; dr. Lee : ha, yong pal, Tae-hyun: yes sir how can I serve you .like that! without even lying to cover up or anything! for goodness sake he is yong pal a deception master, and the Shaw never gives a good reason for that. Saying that the premise was soo intriguing and as a character young pal is very complex. I would have loved if it the show did actually concentrate on this and kept the relationship development for the last 3 episodes or so.😬 there is more to say but well you guys covers it all.

4 years ago
Reply to  Wejee

If there’s one thing that I’ve learned from watching dramas, is to never put any hope in the accuracy of any and all professions portrayed, especially in the medical and legal fields. 😛 I’m not a medical professional, and even I could tell that there were things that were quite off. I can only imagine how much more you noticed, during your watch! I also agree with you that the relationship development was too front-and-center of this story. It was great for the first little while, but so much just stopped working for me after that, that I really should have quit while I was ahead. 😛

7 years ago

I just finished watching this drama, I had not plan to watched, but it had a bit of hype and many fans, so now, a bit late I did watch it. I can only agree, the drama started off very good, I liked the first half, but the second half, the “revenge part”, of the drama was was not good. Also, the romance thing felt a bit strange from the start, it was like they became an item just by talking to each other 2-3 times. The ending was also really an anti-climax. So overall a bit overrated drama in my opinion.

7 years ago
Reply to  Patrik_k

Oh, I absolutely agree, Patrik! It was so good in the beginning, which is why I was so disappointed when it went sideways in the middle and end. The romance always felt weird to me too, so you’re not alone in finding it strange! The entire drama was an anticlimax for me, except for the initial few episodes. What a pity, coz I think Show could’ve been great if it’d just been handled differently.

7 years ago

K fangirl, right on target as usual. I was so excited for Yong Pal, then epsiode 9 happened. I stopped watching the actual show and just followed through recaps. There was so much show could have been, sigh.

7 years ago
Reply to  Shountae

Thanks Shountae – it’s comforting to know that I’m not alone in not feeling this show. I had such high hopes for Yong Pal, especially given the brilliant first 6 episodes. So much wasted potential, seriously. You were smart to drop it and just follow recaps – now that I know what I know, I wish I’d done that too! XD

7 years ago

The romance is where I stopped enjoying the drama…happened so fast, I thought I’d skipped an episode. The show should have been about Yong Pal and the gangsters, police, hospital, sister…the romance did not click at all for me. Totally loved the gangster boss!

7 years ago

OMG, I’m right there with you, Islander!! I actually went back and checked if I’d accidentally skipped an episode, I was so thrown by the sudden romance! XD I COMPLETELY agree with you about where Show should’ve chosen to spend its screen time. For a show titled Yong Pal, I would expect it to BE about Yong Pal and his adventures. I would’ve loved to see more of Yong Pal wielding his rogue scalpel and being completely badass. Why couldn’t they have weaved the story around that? Gangster Boss could’ve become Yong Pal’s unwitting sidekick! That would’ve been awesome 😉

Andy Mejias
Andy Mejias
7 years ago

I totally totally loved this drama; my wife and I thought it was great! I was fearful of a tragic bad ending, but was pleasantly surprised. I mean it could have been better, but I’ll take the ending over the disaster that it could have ended up in.

7 years ago
Reply to  Andy Mejias

Aw Andy. You are a sweet dude, I must say. 🙂 I’m glad you managed to find love for this drama in spite of its flaws, and I’m even happier to know that your wife watched and enjoyed this with you! I’m always happy to hear of couples sharing their drama interests, it warms my heart so. <3

7 years ago

Another one bites the dust, huh?

Well, I already have so many on my plate, so having another one would’ve created a havoc in my head :))))

Thanks for the lovely review! Again <3

7 years ago

Hee. Let me just say that in this case, I kind of wish I’d let this bite the dust earlier. 😛 I can’t believe I hung on to the bitter end hoping that it would somehow get better, when it really stopped working for me at E8. I honestly wouldn’t recommend this show, but I hafta tell you, Sabina.. there are people who like this show. I just don’t happen to be one of ’em! XD

7 years ago
Reply to  kfangurl

7 billion people on Earth, probably just as many different tastes :))) I’m pretty much on the same page with you, with small exceptions.

For instance, I liked Goong, but I can’t say I absolutely loved it, though I’d come back to it at any given time. I blame this on the fact that I used to be (actually, still am but not that much anymore) a huuuuge fan of mangas and manhwas. So I’ve seen that type of plot thousands of times before already. The setting was, indeed, unique, I’d have to admit (the whole old age in the new era) was really interesting and refreshing, but the main story kept the roots I had already seen so many times 😛 Though being the big fan that I am, I completely understand your infatuation with it.
My case is kinda like you with melodramas of Dramaland, just that I still like the mangas and manhwas and also whatever show might emerge from the fusion between their storylines and Dramaland 😛

And for some reason, I never seem to stick to just the drama your review is about. I always go off track :)))) Sorry for that too :))))

Wish I could leave you with a sweet potato since it’s a long comment, but can’t paste images :))))

7 years ago

Hee! I shall imagine a sweet potato on my screen then! XD

No worries about going off on a tangent, it happens a lot on this site, and it makes the conversations fun and surprising, in the sense that when you poke around the site, you never know what conversations you might find! 😉 I totally know what you mean about not loving Goong as much as I did/do.. Goong’s got a special soft spot in my heart coz it was my first drama. So on top of the unique setting, everything else felt new and novel too. Just like how dramas tell us that we never forget our first loves, we drama fans don’t ever forget our first dramas either! XD

Yes, I do think that in most cases, our drama tastes align quite well! I’ve been so pleased on so many occasions, when you came back to tell me that you really enjoyed a particular recommendation! So I think, in this case, I feel quite safe saying that you might not enjoy Yong Pal too much ^^

7 years ago
Reply to  kfangurl

That was a lightspeed kind of reply :))) Thanks 😀

I think this is what I really, really like about this site (well, second best thing, only exceeded by your expertize in the drama field 😉 )<3 I never stick only to the subject in question but you not only keep up with me, but you also entertain my line of thought with awesome ideas about anything I might "throw" your way 😀 And I've noticed some other fans of your site respond to some of my comments, off topic as they might be :)))) which is, needless to say, awesome <3

OK!! You sparked up my interest once again! I was really busy since it's the end of the year and everybody at work was freaking out :))))), but I'll restart my journey in Dramaland with fresh eyes and powers 😀

Any recommendations that might also have a Christmassy feeling 😀 ?

7 years ago

Aww! I like to be timely with my replies, but sometimes when Real Life demands my time and attention, I do fall behind – at times terribly so! 😛 I really do enjoy the conversations that go on around here, and indeed, it makes my day when you guys start chatting with each other too, coz that makes this feels so cozy and homey. LOVE that. <3

YAY that you're ready to dive back into dramaland this holiday season! Wheee!! 😀 As for dramas with a Christmassy feeling.. Hm. There aren't many Christmas-themed kdramas around, mostly because Christmas is more of a couple's day in Korea, rather than the family and friends sort of event that western culture is more accustomed to. The only actual Christmas themed kdrama I can think of is far from Christmassy 😛 It's titled White Christmas and is more of a murder mystery cum psychological thriller, which (eek) is far from the warm coziness one would expect from a drama with that title! It's considered a bit of a cult classic but I liked it only moderately. I felt the writing was much weaker than most people were willing to admit, and Show was trying (& sometimes failing spectacularly) to be clever. My review is here, if you’re curious 🙂

Trying on a different tack, I figure warm, feel-good dramas would fit the Christmassy bill better, even if they aren’t Christmas themed. 🙂 I’m just gonna give you a handful of suggestions according to a couple of sub-themes.

You could consider Answer Me 1994, which I loved for its lovely blend of nostalgia and heartfelt relationships. I liked this one better than Answer Me 1997, but AM1997 is good too. Both have a “Who’s The Hubby” sort of game that overarches the entire show, and that can get a little trying at times, but the warmth and emphasis on friends and family makes up for it. (I still recommend AM1994 more highly, for the record!)

Let’s Eat (both seasons) are also nice picks. Both are about strangers who come to know one another, eat together, and become a rag-tag “family” of sorts. The food looks amazing, and the eating is inspiringly delicious. The food porn in LE1 is better than in LE2, so I’d suggest starting there – with some Christmas snacks on stand-by, to tide you through the food envy that’s sure to come 😉 My reviews of both shows are here and here, so you can take a peek to see if you’re in the mood. 🙂

For something a little more recent, you could consider She Was Pretty or Twenty Again. Both are warm and uplifting shows that feature heartwarming friendships (between the girls too!), and generally are feel-good and thought-provoking, with a good helping of inspiring. Reviews are here and here, if you’d like to check those out. 🙂

I hope you manage to find your perfect drama fix among these suggestions for the holiday season my dear! <3

7 years ago
Reply to  kfangurl

Thanks a bunch! <3 I'll take my time to read all the reviews 😉

I was thinking of a drama to watch at noon, after having the family meal, right before diving into the afternoon nap <3 I love the feeling of peace and calm Christmas comes with <3 (already bought the presents for my family, hence I'm broke :)))) )

I think I've read your review on Let's Eat 1 and dodged it just cause whenever I see food, especially handsome food, I get such an urge to get in the car and drive to the first restaurant that might sell it!! And it has nothing to do with having eaten a second before :))))) Though, just yesterday I've had one of my wisdom teeth removed and it hurts like hell, so no food for me anyway :))))

I'll take my time watching each and every one of them and I'll come back with some on spot opinions 😉

Thank you again, Kfangurl! Awesome as always <3

7 years ago

Eep, that’s a bummer that you’ve just had your wisdom teeth removed and won’t be able to enjoy Christmassy treats as part of your celebration! 😛 I guess Let’s Eat is definitely not a good pick for you right now then!! Big hugs, I hope it all heals quickly!

If you’re specifically looking for a spot of drama for between lunch and an afternoon snooze, I highly recommend Splash Splash Love. It’s super adorable and light, yet with lots of heart, and is only just over 2 hours long. Sounds like it’ll fit snugly into your available window! You can check out my quick spoiler-lite review here. 🙂 Also, Doo Joon is so swoony in it that you’d probably come away with renewed interest in Let’s Eat, since he starred in that too 😉

Aigoo aigoo
Aigoo aigoo
7 years ago

Agree with you…things started to go downhill from 7th episode. Wish they could have focused on our male lead yong pal but focus shifted on a rather boring female lead. The chemistry did suck.

7 years ago
Reply to  Aigoo aigoo

THANK YOU, Aigoo. It’s always nice to know that I’m not the only one not seeing the romantic chemistry. XD I’ve been told that some people really enjoyed the romance in Yong Pal, but try as I might, I just couldn’t get on board with it. And yes, it definitely bothered me that for a show titled Yong Pal, we ended up totally ignoring his character. That felt so wrong, to me. 😛

7 years ago

I really was surprised how much fans ended up disliking Yong Pal. I really enjoyed it. I started it later in its run and had heard it was going to crash and burn somewhere around episodes 7-9. I was waiting and ready for it, but was pleasantly surprised that it never went downhill for me.

I enjoyed the romantic middle episodes. I found it believable because of the extreme circumstances they had just came out of. It’s common for people to bond quicker in extreme situations.

Of course, Tae Hyun does turn into a big teddy bear after that, but I found it believable because he was able to finally see more hope and meaning in his life than just making money. And I think it was necessary to help balance out Yeo Jin’s very cold and calculating personality. I did’nt care much for her character as a whole though.

I did dislike the cancer bit at the end as it did feel very forced and completely unbelievable, but honestly that was my only real problem the whole show.

I really didn’t take issue with the believability of the other plot points you mentioned. Many people described Yong Pal as having a modern fairy tale feel to it, and I completely agree. I knew pretty quickly into the drama that it would have some outlandish plot points, and I just embraced it as a sort of fairy tale. It certainly had some problems, but with a little suspension of belief, I found it entertaining the whole way through. I’m sorry it wasn’t as good for you. But watching Joo Won for all of those episodes had to be worth it, right? 🙂

7 years ago
Reply to  Kay

Kay you sweet thang, you.. You’re one of the few people I know who genuinely enjoyed Yong Pal. Lady G actually took a lot of trouble to explain to me the modern fairy tale lens that worked for her, with this show. Unfortunately, despite rationalizing everything with that lens, this just didn’t work for me. I guess I couldn’t see the romantic chemistry between Joo Won and Kim Tae Hee. I mean, I loved their platonic sparks in E6 a lot, and I felt really dismayed when I felt the urge to cringe every time I saw them share kisses, hugs or any other type of romantic moment. 😛

Another thing that bothered me was how the show focused on Yeo Jin for the second half of the show, when the show is titled Yong Pal. That niggled at me a lot, like, shouldn’t we be seeing much more of Tae Hyun’s character, through all this? That’s another biggie for me, with this show.

As for whether it was all worth it for Joo Won, that’s a really interesting question actually. I mean, I freaking loved Joo Won in the first 6 episodes, coz he was allowed to be so interesting and layered as a character. Not to mention badass and ballsy. <3 When the show shifted focus and Tae Hyun started to fade into the background more and more, it really frustrated me coz it felt like such a wasted opportunity, given what awesomeness we'd started with, with Tae Hyun as a character. In that sense, it was a sad and frustrating experience for me, coz episode after episode, instead of getting to see Joo Won demonstrate the awesomeness he's capable of, we saw him getting to do less and less.

I really wish I could share your love for this show Kay, but this one really disappointed me. *Heart. Break.*

7 years ago

To tell the truth, I followed the show from the very start and had me all wishing its already next week for the next 2 episodes but stopped abruptly after the 4th week, which was when the romance suddenly started. It just gave me all the bad vibes and wrong chemistry that Im yet to continue watching the rest of the episode still. Maybe in the far future.

7 years ago
Reply to  cathdeary

Ah, high five, drama sista! XD The romance was definitely THE big turning point for me as well. I just didn’t feel their romantic chemistry, even though they sparked off each other so well as friends. Because the romance never worked for me, everything else in the narrative had the odds stacked against them too. After all, many of the subsequent plot points rested on how much they supposedly loved each other. Sigh. I honestly wouldn’t spend limited drama hours on this one if I were in your shoes, cath.. It’s just not worth it. 😛