Review: Thirty But Seventeen [Still 17]


Thirty But Seventeen is a pretty special snowflake of a drama, whichever way I look at it.

I mean, it manages to be sweet, fluffy and cute, yet extremely heartfelt, while dishing out occasional deep nuggets of wisdom, and dealing with our main characters’ trauma-related anxiety in a pretty meaningful manner, to boot.

Plus, no one in this drama world is an actual villain either. On top of that, the drama doesn’t even get boring, despite the absence of a villain. Say, what?

No, this show isn’t perfect, but then again, no show ever is, and this one did so many things right, that I feel like I can’t quibble too much, in the overall scheme of things. Totes recommend.


It’s a rare, rare thing indeed, when I take to a show right away, like, in the first few minutes of the first episode. But that’s exactly what happened for me, with this show.

I was enchanted within minutes of starting my watch, because of how cute it is, and immediately, I found myself thinking, this show knows how to do cute right. That’s No Small Deal, as any drama-watching geek would know. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I loved the warm nostalgia and bashful innocence that our younger actors bring out in the high-school timeline, and felt sucked in and engaged right away. I found the younger actors really, really good, and very likable right away.

I also marveled at how the younger actors and their adult versions basically feel like the same people.

Credit to the actors themselves as well as the casting director, I never felt a sense of disjointedness when watching the younger set of actors, compared to the present-day cast, through the entire run of this drama.

Yes, a big accident occurs early on in the show, but I was prepared for it because I knew it was part of Show’s premise, and because Show had demonstrated by that point, that it’s perfectly capable of bringing the cute, I had faith that Show would bring the cute back, and bring it good.

At the same time, I quickly got the sense that Show knew how to manage its emotional beats well too. Right away in our first hour, we see Seo Ri’s (Shin Hye Sun) confusion and despairย at waking up a 30-year-old woman, against her will, and it’s so well brought out, that I felt for her right away.

Best of all? Show actually lives up to its early promise, and continues to dish out the cute and the deeper feels, all the way to the end. So satisfying.


Here’s the OST album, in case you’d like to listen to it while you read the review.


Shin Hye Sun as Seo Ri

Shin Hye Sun is truly fantastic in this show, and I feel that she deserves a lot of credit, for making this show as believable and as engaging as it is.

First of all, in the transition from the past timeline to the present, I found Shin Hye Sun so good at channeling her younger counterpart (played by Park Shi Eun), that I literally believed within minutes, that this was the same girl, trapped in a body that she didn’t know.

Despite Seo Ri’s adult appearance, she comes across as very childlike and pure, and her emotional whiplash as she tries to figure out what happened, is so accessible and feels so real. Serious kudos to Shin Hye Sun, who makes it all feel so natural and effortless.

Second of all, I’ve come to realize that Shin Hye Sun is really good at physical comedy. Her flailing limbs and elastic expressions do a lot to make Show’s physical gags work.

I mean, the physical gags generally landed well with me – the person who almost always doesn’t take well to physical gags. That’s skillz.

Seo Ri is so earnest and simple and pure, that I quickly found that I couldn’t help but want to root for her.

From the get-go, I felt invested in Seo Ri’s journey in finding herself again, and I didn’t even really care about her supposed loveline with Woo Jin (Yang Se Jong). Which turned out to be a good thing, because the loveline was pretty slow in developing.

Yes, I felt the development of the loveline was worth the wait, but, since I actually felt more interested in Seo Ri’s personal journey than the main loveline, it happily became a non-issue for me, that the OTP arc was taking the slow and scenic route to happiness.


I love that Seo Ri doesn’t hold a grudge even when Woo Jin is brusque with her like he is in episodes 5 & 6, and she sincerely is so happy to have a job even though it’s temporary, that she stays up late to rehearse.

Plus, I really appreciate how she looks for the good in people. Even though Woo Jin is so prickly with her, and she’s kind of scared of him, she is quick to notice things that tell her he’s a good person.

It’s so endearing how Seo Ri jumps to Woo Jin’s defense in episodes 9 & 10, even though that puts her up against two gangstery looking big dudes. She still fiercely defends him and manages to get them to leave, even if it’s because they think she’s crazy.

Over and above everything else, I was most struck by Seo Ri’s deep sense of gratitude, despite her personal tragedy.

A great example is in episodes 15 & 16. Seo Ri’s heartfelt gratitude at being able to live in her childhood home for one last month before it’s sold, is so pure. There’s no unhappiness that the time is limited, or that the house will be sold.

She’s truly grateful that she got to live there one last time, and genuinely sees that one month as a precious gift. It’s so pure, and I love it. <3


Yang Se Jong as Woo Jin

Not gonna lie; it took me a fair while to warm to Yang Se Jong’s character Woo Jin. Mainly, it’s because he comes across as a stiff, aloof and prickly stick in the mud for a good stretch in Show’s early episodes, and we get limited access to his inner workings and feelings.

Even though it was clear that Woo jin was masking hurt from the past, I did not like his apparent lack of compassion, especially when that was directed at Seo Ri, on whose side I’d firmly planted myself.

Happily, by episode 11, my perception of Woo Jin had shifted quite a bit, and for the better. This is thanks in part to the writing unveiling more of Woo Jin’s pain and feelings of lostness, and also thanks to Yang Se Jong’s delivery.


After seeing his tears while he was talking to his therapist friend in episode 11, and that lost-little-boy look in his eyes, I couldn’t not feel sorry for him.

And then there’s the time in episodes 19 & 20, when all the little instances of the present day mirroring the past culminates in Woo Jin experiencing a panic attack relapse.

Yang Se Jong’s delivery sucks me right in, and I feel so sorry for Woo Jin, who just can’t seem to shake the pain of his past, and continues to be paralyzed by the horror that he’d lived through 13 years ago.


Even though it was slow in the coming, I was fully on board and rooting for Woo Jin as a character, by Show’s second half.

Since his progress is most marked by his relationships with other people, I’ll talk more about Woo Jin’s progress in other sections.

Ahn Hyo Seop as Chan

I loved – like, really, really loved – Ahn Hyo Seop as Chan.

I’ll admit that I was a touch slow to take to Chan, because I felt his adorably dim persona was a bit try-hard and not very natural in Show’s initial episodes.

That soon changed, though, because I quickly found myself melting into a goofy grinning puddle, every time Chan showed up on my screen in his earnest happy puppy way. For the record,ย Chan really is a puppy in human form.

The way he prances around with his easy happy grin never far from his face, is just like a happy puppy, and it’s a-dor-able. <3

Aside from his earnest puppy appeal, I loved Chan for often being the voice of reason and the heart of compassion that everyone else needs. He’s guileless and sweet, and feels so intensely, that he often looks like he just can’t contain all of his feelings and needs to find an outlet, or burst.

Here’s a small handful of Chan highlights, which I really enjoyed.


E3-4. Chan really feels for Seo Ri, and I find his guileless cheer endearing.

E5-6. Chan’s simple-minded earnest ways are growing on me in a big way, and I giggled out loud at how dorky he was, getting so worried about Seo Ri when she got a cramp in her leg.

E7-8. Chan starting to “see” Seo Ri around.. that’s so cute. He’s thinking about her and worrying about her, until he defaults to seeing her around.

E7-8. It’s really sweet to see Chan caring about Woo Jin and going to visit his uncle with pork belly. He might be a little dim at times, but he feels, and so intensely. It’s like he feels in 3D.

E22. Chan trying so hard to look like an adult, so that he can be a better match for Seo Ri, is the cutest, saddest thing.

The way he practically bursts with joy when the kid addresses him as “Ahjusshi” and then deflates again and again, when the ahjumma calls him “student” in front of Seo Ri, and then asks if the card belongs to his “noona” or maybe his “aunt.” Poor dear, I feel for him, so bad.


On a more aesthetic note, I do enjoy Ahn Hyo Seop’s dedication to the role. He’s clearly been working out for the role, and he’s showing off a physique that I can believe belongs to a rower, rather than, say, a bodybuilder.

He’s muscular, but also very, very lean and compact, and that’s exactly what I think a rower’s body should look like. Really nice job.

Ye Ji Won as Jennifer

Similar to my trajectory with Woo Jin, I was slow to embrace Jennifer as a character, even though I love Ye Ji Won a great deal.

Right from when we are introduced to her, I found Jennifer’s robotic vibe very strange. Show doesn’t offer any explanation for her odd behavior upfront, and I wondered whether she was written this way just because robots are tending in dramaland at the moment.

In my head, it felt likeย the writers had had a pow-wow to decide on how to keep up with the trend without actually having permission to make this a robot drama.

Happily, I grew to love Jennifer more and more as I got to know her, and by drama’s end, she was genuinely one of my favorite characters in this drama world.

I grew to appreciate her random-sounding nuggets of wisdom, and once I gained some insight into the reason for the oddly wooden way she carried herself, I couldn’t help but feel for her.

We don’t get the full details of her backstory until very late into our story, but just from the bits that Show unveils, I found myself seeing Jennifer in a whole new – and much more sympathetic – light.

Here are just a few Jennifer moments that I wanted to highlight.


E11. Twas sweet of Jennifer to get a present for Seo Ri to congratulate her on her new job. And I especially liked the words of wisdom she spoke to Woo Jin out in the garden, about the passage of time.

E14. That sudden flashback and context to Jennifer and what she went through in the past, suddenly gives Jennifer a sheen of pathos in everything she does.

E19-20. Jennifer’s story is played with a lot of restraint, and we’re not told a lot.

But Show gives us enough to know that Jennifer’s been through some rough times, and there’s estrangement from her family. And the tears that come to her eyes say so much, especially since she’s usually so composed and even.

I feel like the lack of insight isn’t so much to tease the audience; rather, the vibe I get is that this is to respect Jennifer’s privacy. The loving camera angles capturing the elegance of her tears makes me feel like the omission is done out of consideration.

E25-26. The way Jennifer states, so sadly & matter-of-factly, that she doesn’t deserve to express her emotions by smiling or crying, is so heartbreaking. Even though I don’t know the full details of her story, I already feel for her, intensely.



Seo Ri and Woo Jin

I saw some viewer discomfort that Woo Jin is a grown 30-year-old man who is entertaining romantic feelings for a woman who is mentally still 17. Having seen the whole show, I can safely say that I don’t feel the same way.

To my eyes, Woo Jin’s emotional growth got stunted after the accident, and while his body continued to mature into adulthood, in his heart, he’s continued to be that terrified, guilty 17-year-old who thinks that he caused the death of the girl that he liked.

And so, I feel like Seo Ri and Woo Jin are,ย each in their own way, still 17-ish on the inside.

Rather than seeing this as a loveline between a 30-year-old man and a woman who’s mentally still 17, I see this as a loveline between two adults who have, one way or another, been stunted in their emotional and mental growth, and are now helping each other to break through their individual obstacles and difficulties.

Like I mentioned earlier in this review, this loveline was slow to grow on me. That said, this did grow on me, and very well.

Mainly, I loved watching Woo Jin soften towards Seo Ri, in spite of himself, and eventually even leaking smiles, when he’d been so stony and icy prior.

Also, I loved the conversations that this OTP started to have, in that the conversations felt honest and healing, despite a lack of detail, which I’ll talk about later.

Here are handful of OTP moments that I wanted to highlight.


E12. The onion scene of Woo Jin wiping Seo Ri’s tears away with his bare hands, while his voiceover states that he’s terrified when he’s with Seo Ri, but those are also the times when he feels most comfortable and happy. OMO.

E15-16. It’s sweet that Woo Jin wants to ask Seo Ri to stay. And it’s possibly even sweeter that he chooses not to ask her to stay, once he realizes that it’s important to her, to work to stand on her own two feet.

That’s respectful, and that’s making her preference more important than his own, and I appreciate that a lot.

E15-16. The conversation that Seo Ri and Woo Jin have by the beach is so honest, even though many details are left vague.

It feels cathartic for the both of them, and seeing their tears, and the way they comforted and supported each other even without knowing the details, moved me to tears too.

E17. Woo Jin going out of his way to keep the house, is a really sweet beat this episode.

I love the flashback that shows us how he sat down with Dad and talked about how he’d really come to enjoy the house, and how he would not be spending half his time away again. More than that, though, I loved everyone’s individual reactions to the news.

It’s such a relief and a joy to them all; Chan is delighted, and even Jennifer seems pleased with the news. More than anything, though, I felt so happy for Seo Ri, who is so happy she could literally burst. The fact that she grabs Woo Jin for a grateful hug, is just bonus.

E17. Woo Jin is really softening around Seo Ri. The way he is around her, is distinctly gentle and welcoming. And that moment when she started sewing on the loose button on his shirt, and he just studies her, as she steps into his personal space, is quite.. pregnant with meaning.

This was quite a heady moment, I felt.

E18. Woo Jin and Seo Ri getting so antsy being apart from each other when she gets stuck on the island due to bad weather, is amusing and quite sweet.

It feels sudden in a way, because the emotions suddenly feel so pressing, but it’s also the first time they’ve been apart after becoming closer, and they’ve been used to the comfort of being together at work and at home, so it makes sense that it’s a forced separation like this that draws their bond to the surface.

Woo Jin desperately trying to crawl under his bed to get to his phone when Seo Ri called, is just funny icing on the cake.

E21. The sentiment that Woo Jin expresses to his therapist is a very sweet one. He’s sure about his feelings for Seo Ri, and he feels finally liberated, by Seo Ri, and he wants to be with her and tell her everything, but he’s going to take it slow, for her sake.

He knows that she has a lot of stuff to work through, and he recognizes that she needs time. And so, he’s willing to wait, because it’s more important that she gets the time that she needs, and his desire to be her boyfriend can wait.

I mean. How considerate and sweet is that?

E22. Woo Jin trying so hard to protect Seo Ri from being used for promotion of the music festival, and then potentially being cast aside, is understandable and sweet. Seo Ri’s reaction is understandable too.

She loves the violin, and this is her chance to play again. And, the publicity might even alert her uncle and aunt to reconnect with her again.

What a raw and emotional scene, though. I could fully empathize with both sides. Also, a blurted out confession from Woo Jin, who refers to Seo Ri as the woman that he likes. Ooh!

E23-24. The confession and kiss that our OTP shares is really so understated and so sweet. “I like you.” “Me too.” Aw. Lovely.

E23-24. It’s also really lovely that Woo Jin is intent on being open and honest with Seo Ri. It’s a huge, huge step for someone who’s been emotionally closed off for so long, and it’s just very heartwarming to see him take the fences down and lay his heart bare, to Seo Ri.


Seo Ri and Chan

Basically, the more endearing I found Chan, the more I felt like I needed to brace myself for Chan’s inevitable heartbreak.

It didn’t help that I found Seo Ri and Chan really adorable – and funny! – together, and it all just felt so comfortable and easy, because they clearly connected on the same wavelength.

I’m happy to say that despite the obvious heartbreak on the cards for Chan, Show did a wonderful job of fleshing out the bond between these characters, and we end up leaving Seo Ri and Chan in the best possible place. I couldn’t have asked for more.

Here are some of my favorite highlights of these unwitting soulmates.


E9-10. Chan suddenly feeling that he absolutely needs to defend his single-ness in front of Seo Ri, is very cute. He’s totally falling for her, and it’s very adorable.

E11. The way Chan watches over drunk Seo Ri while she wobbles her way home, is so sweet.

E11. I laughed out loud at Chan sweating bullets and yelping desperately, as Seo Ri, riding pillion behind him on his bicycle, clings onto his shorts just as desperately, hurting his groin. Ha.

And also, how endearing and sweet, that Chan still offers to take Seo Ri to work the next day, just as enthusiastically as if he hadn’t had his balls busted the previous day. Aw. Sweet boy.

E12. Poor sweet Chan, running around in the rain like a madman, trying to buy medicine for Seo Ri because he can’t stand the thought of her hurting her hand.

E12. Awww. The tired, resigned look on Chan’s face, as he tells Chick Junior that to him, Chicky and Seo Ri ARE different.

E13. Chan pledging to win at the individual race, and then confess to Seo Ri, is very cute. Poor dear. He’s so smitten that even the color of his cream pasta makes him think about Seo Ri’s new outfits. Which, pfft.

E14. How sweet, that Chan insists on pulling Seo Ri in the cart coz he knows she’s tired, and frames it as her helping him get a workout, so that she won’t feel bad. Aw.

E18. Poor Chan. He’s piecing everything together and is starting to become cognizant of his dear uncle’s feelings for his precious ahjumma. I feel so bad to see his poor innocent heart starting to break. Guh.

E19-20. I love the scene where Chan and Seo Ri sit together in the garden and swap stories to catch up. They really feel like best friends, and I love that they cheer each other on in their respective goals and passions. So much sincerity, care, enthusiasm and support. Love. <3

E29. Chan and Seo Ri hanging out and having fun is lovely to see, even though there’s a poignant undercurrent running through it, coz now Chan knows that he doesn’t have a romantic future with Seo Ri.

But their connection is so genuine that I can totally see them as best friends, and not even feel like it’s a cop out.

E30. OMG. Channn. His confession to Seo Ri is the sweetest thing ever. He speaks in simple heartfelt words that make so much sense, and that analogy of calluses on his heart just made me want to cry.

And he’s smiling to make Seo Ri feel better, when he really is crying inside. I want to reach into my screen and hug him.ย He’s so earnest and childlike and innocent, and yet so mature and wise where it really counts. I love him. <3


The hodgepodge found-family household

This found family is truly one of my favoritest things in this show, I luff them so much. <3

I loved watching this group of mostly unfamiliar strangers come together and slowly become family to one another.

It’s all the more poignant because for some of these characters, they literally have no other family to count on, so it means so much more, when they find acceptance, support and love in the most unlikely place of all.

Here are some of my favorite moments, with this new-found family.


E15-16. The earnest and heartfelt goodbyes all-around at Seo Ri’s departure made me cry. It just goes to show what a difference these people have made to one another, and how grateful they are for one another. I love it.

I especially love Jennifer’s gaze softening with a wistful sheen of tears as Seo Ri hugs her.

And Chan’s desperate advice to Seo Ri to take care of herself, as he’s literally physically removed from the house, is sweet too. All of Seo Ri’s notes and gifts to her found family and friends is really thoughtful and sweet as well.

E17. Woo Jin going out of his way to keep the house, is a really sweet beat this episode.

I love the flashback that shows us how he sat down with Dad and talked about how he’d really come to enjoy the house, and how he would not be spending half his time away again.

More than that, though, I loved everyone’s individual reactions to the news. It’s such a relief and a joy to them all; Chan is delighted, and even Jennifer seems pleased with the news.

More than anything, though, I felt so happy for Seo Ri, who is so happy she could literally burst. The fact that she grabs Woo Jin for a grateful hug, is just bonus.

E19-20. It’s heartwarming to see the concept of family taking root in Woo Jin, with him referring to the people in the house – the very strangers that he’d hated the thought of – as family.

And he’s buying them food, and being considerate, like how he phones Chan just to ask him to call Jennifer to greet her and ask after her day off the day before. It’s really sweet, and I like it a lot.

E21. Jennifer coming up with a meal plan to help Chan win his medal, is such a sweet touch. No one asked her to do that, but she knows that Chan really wants to win, and so she’s doing it to help him. That’s so familial and nice.

E25-26. I like the repeated use of the word “family” by the members of our rag-tag found family. Seo Ri refers to them as family, and then so does Jennifer. I love that they’ve started to seriously adopt the term, after Woo Jin used it before.

E25-26. I do love that Woo Jin feels so much empathy and compassion for Jennifer, that he yells out to her, that he thought he’d never be able to smile again too, but he can now, and he believes that one day she will, too. Aw.


Special shout-out:ย 

The three goofy musketeers

In spite of myself, I found myself growing a soft spot for Chan and his two rowing friends Duk Soo and Hae Bum (Jo Hyun Shik and Lee Do Hyun).

In my head, I totally started thinking of them as the three goofy good-natured musketeers. Not only are they enthusiastic when it comes to helping others, their earnest loyalty to one another is endearing too, and by series’ end, I realized that I’d become genuinely affectionate of these boys.


I found it very cute how the boys enthusiastically pitch in to help Seo Ri with her odd jobs, even if it means that they need to peel a mountain of onions while wearing Halloween masks. Heh.

In Show’s later stretch, I was amused at how Chan and his buddies took to living together and even dressing alike, to increase their teamwork leading up to the competition. Cute.

And, yay that they fulfilled their promise to one another, to win a medal together before graduation. And even though it’s played for laughs, I found the boys’ habit of wearing their medals everywhere quite a sweet touch; it clearly means so much to them. Aw.


Woo Jin’s Noona

We barely meet Woo Jin’s noona (Lee Ah Hyun), but I wanted to give her a quick shout-out because I really liked what we did see of her.


Upon her quick return in episode 17, she observes the change in her little brother, and notices the changes in the house, which are all due to Seo Ri’s presence.

When Woo Jin later confesses that Seo Ri isn’t the housekeeper like they’d said she was, I really appreciate how Noona keeps her focus on the positive changes in Woo Jin, rather than the lie that was told.

Basically, as long as her little brother is happy, she is more than happy to forgive the ruse. I liked that a lot.



The thing with Rin [SPOILER]

I wasn’t super interested in the arc around Rin (Wang Ji Won), but it’s an arc that I can understand the value of.

Some folks probably felt that Rin’s jealousy of Seo Ri made no sense, and that she should’ve just gotten over it already, given her personal success, and Seo Ri’s difficult situation.

I do agree that the discomfort that Rin feels around and about Seo Ri is not logical, and is disproportionate because of her current position and stature, but because it’s such a visceral, deep-seated insecurity, I can buy it.

I can understand not being able to control your feelings. Because of what happened in their formative years, Seo Ri has a visceral effect on Rin, and I can believe that no matter how much Rin tries to shake it, that she still feels insecure around Seo Ri.

I do think that it would have been better if Show could have shown us more of Rin trying to shake these feelings, so that we can see her emotional journey more clearly, rather than hypothesize.

That said, I’m happy with how Show resolves this tension.ย I thought the way Seo Ri was given a chance to perform on stage in episodes 23 & 24 was quite perfect.

Without any pressure to excel at the violin, her only focus is to love and enjoy the music. I’m glad that Rin was the one who gave her that chance; what a timely, suitable way to repay Seo Ri for setting her free from being blinded by comparison and competition.

Also, good on Rin for basically shaking herself out of her jealous funk, and even building bridges with Seo Ri, asking that they play a duet together, when they meet again after her studies abroad.

I like that she’s tackling the root of the problem, and looking for her own enjoyment in music now.

WHAT I LIKED LESS:ย Show having the OTP skirt their previous connection for so long [SPOILERS]

While I genuinely enjoyed watching Seo Ri and Woo Jin becoming closer, Show’s repeated use of the near-miss, in terms of Woo Jin realizing Seo Ri’s identity as the girl he thought he’d killed, did wear me down somewhat.

It made me roll my eyes a little, that Seo Ri consistently says something vague-ish about her personal situation, but when Woo Jin moves to clarify what she means, the subject is always changed.

That said, I concede that I do like the idea of Woo Jin falling for Seo Ri before finding out. I like that he likes her for who she is now, without being hampered by any guilt that he might feel, once he realizes that she is the very girl that he’d thought died.

Basically, I get why Show did what it did with this prolonged non-reveal, and I appreciate the significance, but the execution did make me antsy.


Episodes 27 & 28 turned out to be such a good example of what it means when a show hurts so good, that I wanted to give it its own little spotlight.

It was hard to watch Woo Jin’s agony at the conclusion that he’d been the cause of Seo Ri’s loss of everything; her future, her time, her uncle and aunt, her violin dreams.

And it was hard to watch him cry, just as hard as it was, to watch him try so hard to pretend that everything was ok.

His instinct to hide and run away is understandable, given the magnitude of the blow that this news is to him, as everything falls into place in his head, and he begins to realize just how much his actions have affected Seo Ri’s life.

It’s how he’s coped in the past, and when something this big hits him, it’s understandable that that’s how he instinctively tries to cope.

Chan being on tenterhooks around him, was pretty much how my heart felt, waiting for what Woo Jin would do, in the wake of his conclusion.

Chan really is sweet and earnest, though. He’s carried Woo Jin’s hurt to heart, from the time he was 6. He couldn’t understand it, but he felt it, and he was afraid that Woo Jin would feel that way again. Aw.

Jennifer’s painful past, also to do with the same accident, is so sad. To have lost her husband in the crash, and then to be so distraught that she miscarried. Oof. It’s no wonder she grasped at a way to cope – by shutting off her feelings and replacing her thoughts with information from books.

Woo Jin’s heartfelt confession letter to Seo Ri is so heartrending. It contains so much emotion; remorse and guilt, for what he feels he’s done to Seo Ri, yet also, gratitude that she’s alive, and also, shame. He can’t face her, and it’s just all too much for him. Oof. This made me tear up.

But, phew that Woo Jin decided just in time, that he couldn’t live apart from Seo Ri, and that he needed to keep his promise to her, to not disappear.

That reunion on the bridge, is so emotional. It’s really become the place where these two find each other, when they don’t know where else to look.

And what a twist, that Seo Ri had nursed a crush on Woo Jin back in the day, too. That means she approached him on the bus, not randomly, but to speak with the boy whom she’d christened her crescendo. Ahh!

The strong refrain this hour, is “if only.” Everyone seems slave to the “what if” and the guilt associated with it. That’s tragic, but so real, and we all need to be freed from the slavery of the “what ifs” and the “if onlys.”

This episode hit me in many ways, and on several levels, and my heart felt like it had been pummeled – in a good way! – when I got to the end of the hour. Really good.


Ahh. I really didn’t want to say goodbye to these characters, you guys. But say goodbye we must, and to me, Show gave us an all-around satisfying ending, even if there’s a touch of bittersweet in the mix.

I was really saddened to learn the truth behind Uncle’s disappearance, that he’d died while trying to protect the house and while doing his best to stand by Seo Ri. Sob.

But I was also relieved that Seo Ri could finally be set free from the torture of not knowing; of wondering what happened to the uncle whom she treasured so dearly.

I also found it realistic that Seo Ri’s aunt would feel awkward around her and not really want to connect; to her, Seo Ri is a stark reminder of happier times which are now gone, and unpleasant things which she would rather forget.

But I do like where we leave this relationship, with Seo Ri reaching out and spending a little bit of time with her aunt and her nephew, at least once a year when they visited her uncle’s grave. This felt like the perfect mix of realistic and hopeful, to me.

I thought the roundabout road that Seo Ri took, in deciding her future, was a bit of a tease for us as an audience, but I could believe that this decision-making process was organic to Seo Ri as a character.

And in the end, I very much liked the idea that she chose the thing that would make her happy, rather than the thing that everyone thought was a great opportunity for her.

In that decision alone, I felt that Show emphasized an important idea that we should all take to heart: that we should all feel free to walk to the beat of our own drum, and enjoy that journey, even if it’s a journey that is different from most, and even if it’s a journey that will take a longer time.

I really liked that this idea was echoed in Chan’s own decision, about whether to sign on with a pro sailing team, or attend the College of Physical Education.

In the end, he, inspired by Seo Ri’s decision, also chooses the thing that makes him happy. I really liked the idea that Chan’s no longer rushing to grow up, but is wise enough to savor the journey. Plus, I just loved the idea that he’d be with his best buddies in college, just like before.

I felt distinctly wistful at the little hodgepodge family that I’d come to love, would separate, as Chan and Jennifer moved out. I just wanted them all to live under the same roof always, and enjoy being family to one another, like they’d come to be.

But, I acknowledge and respect Jennifer’s desire to start over on her own, and also recognize that she needs that space to figure things out and begin again.

I very much wish that we could have seen more of Jennifer’s journey after her departure from the household, but I am content to know that she’s happy as the boss of her own restaurant, that she’s made peace with her sister-in-law, and that she’s allowing herself to feel freely enough, that there’s even an item on the menu dictated by her mood for the day.

Very nice indeed.

As Show serves up the time skips at the end of the hour, I feel like we’re getting an epilogue, where we get to peek at how these characters are doing – and how they will therefore likely continue to be, even after the credits stop rolling.

I love the matter-of-fact, understated way we are informed of Seo Ri and Woo Jin’s marriage.

And I love, love, love the idea that our hodgepodge family – Jennifer included, YES! – continues to hang out together in the very house where the familial bonds were cemented in the first place. Just, lovely. <3


Sweet, earnest and heartfelt. Feel-good, warming soup for the soul.




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3 months ago

Great review!

I just watched this show a 2nd time. First time was about a year ago and I rushed through it because I cannot wait to get to the end. This time round, I took my time to enjoy the show. Of all the k dramas that I had watched (80+ and counting), this is one of the most loved one for me. I especially love the confession scene on the bridge where the truths was finally revealed and Seori’s side of the story got fleshed out. A little unexpected but so fitting! This series touches my heart on so many levels, bringing tears and laughter. I cannot thank the writer, actor and actress (especially my favourite Shin Hye-sun) enough that brought so much joy to me watching this series.

Su San
Su San
1 year ago

What a great review–thank you! This has been on my list a long time and I finally watched it within just a few days. Yes, it was WONDERFUL–cracktastically enjoyable. The plot and character development was so engaging and the conclusion was satisfying. I’m so glad I found this after a string of disappoints.

Keep it on your list if you haven’t seen it yet, it’s a GEM!

2 years ago

Ohhh.. Thanks a lot for the detailed review. You’ve said it all. I agree with all of them. I really, really love this show to the max.๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š

2 years ago

Wow that was a deep dive and all the references to moments in the show hit me with some hard nostalgia! T_T
‘ The show has no villains…’ message really resonated with me as we approach the conclusion and actually will stay with me more than the usual hangover of finishing a Kdrama!
I totally agree that Seo Ri is absolutely the star of the show with Channa(Yu Chan; such an Anime name isnt it!) a close second, Chan plays a big part in further fleshing out Woo Jin whose kind soul is most illuminated in his tender affection for his nephew( apart from his arc with Seo Ri obviously)
Also a big fan of the way Chan confessed to Seo Ri, hit me pretty hard in the man-feels but the kid took his heartbreak in a surprisingly sound manner and my fave Yu Chan-Seo Ri moment was where follows drunk Seo Ri-aa home
Also agree with the criticism about the near-miss shenanigans the show was doing to prolong the big reveal of their respective pasts, particularly when in the last few episodes the characters suddenly start to pick up on things like Neo in the Matrix seeing the source code!
I also felt the whole expostion with Seo Ri too having a crush on him was a bit hamfisted and eye rolly but its all good.

Now for some side notes:

  1. For the folks that have watched My Girlfriend is a Gumiho- isnt the old lady listening to Seo Ri play the violin the ‘chicken lady’ from Gumiho!!
  2. I watched the series on Netflix and the episodes have these super short teasers for whats coming up in the next episode, so in the second last episode we see an old lady telling Seo Ri not to hate her aunt since she(the old lady in question) was the one who forced her aunt to abandon Seo Ri, BUT this scene was nowhere in the last episode!?!?! was it a deleted scene??

To end with i was pretty comfortable with the ending of the show and not having my usual hangover after wrapping a Kdrama but reading this review brought back all the feels ( and i am grown ass dude!! )
Super looking forward to the ‘My Girlfriend is a Gumiho” review cause thats my fave Kdrama and the one that left me with the worst hangover
Also glad to be here as this is the first time i have expressed any thoughts about Kdramas cause none of my friends watch any and i literally dont get to discuss with anybody ๐Ÿ˜›

2 years ago

Didn’t know i would love this show so much and I agree with everything you wrote here.

What i feltย was a bit incomplete was the storyline for Chan and the girl who had a crush on him. We saw her many times supporting him and I was somehow sure we would see those 2 together at the end or maybe getting a hint theyย will be aย couple.ย 

She rooted for him and was jumping up and down like a madman at the race. I really liked how she was riding the bicycle along the river and cheering them on and even theย coach said “who is the coach here?”. Haha.ย 

She was willing to peel the onions and it was cute how she got jealous and ended up “donating” clothes to So-ri. How she ran around with a paper bag on her head, because of her “future uncle”, she thought was a weirdo. It was cute she showed up during the rowing with the paper bag covering her face not caring about others as long as she could cheer Chan on.

If I am not mistaken, the last time we saw her was hanging the congratulations banner in front of the school. And that’s it.ย I was really hoping to see more of her and Chan. That he knew someone rooted for him all this time. but he never saw her as girlfriend material from the start of the show i guess, even though they were showing them hanging out together. I was hoping for the typical drama scenario “boy never was interested in girl, but realized he liked her all the time later on”. Maybe i am making too much fuss about this minor storyline. Haha. For me this just ended incomplete.ย ย 

And btw: To me it never felt awkward, that Woo-jin was 30 and she mentally 17 when they developed feelings. He didn’t know about her coma and whole situation for a good stretch of the show and she just grew to like and love him. She never felt attracted to Chan who was “her age”. Also Woo-jin gave her time to find herself and he never rushed anything.

Even when they started living alone in the house, he didn’t rush to marry her. And it took another 2 years, till they finally tied the knot. So I don’t get why this was a problem for some. Also he was also stuck with his 17 year old self somehow, never dated or let anyone come near him. He grew in his profession as a stage designer, but mentally he stayed a teenager.
I have to check out now if you have a review of “Cinderella and the 4 knights”. I started it yesterday and i already love the strong female lead.

3 years ago

Finally got around to watching this and it truly was a gem. My heart felt so full watching the family go about their daily business. I think this show is the closest I have come to that feeling of hopefulness/happiness mixed in with strong pathos since BTIMFL which happens to be in my top 5 kdramas so thats damn high praise. Loved our cast to pieces, especially Seori and Jennifer. Not even sure why but was surprised at how much Jennifer made me feel for her, a lot of my tears while watching were during her scenes. my favorite track from the ost, it just puts me in a great mood ๐Ÿ™‚

2 years ago
Reply to  Kun

Hi, Kun! Funny that you mentioned BTIMFL, because that’s definitely my favorite kdrama, too! <3 At first I didn’t think I’d find any other dramas that would make me feel the way BTIMFL did to me, but then I watched “Still 17” and it quickly became another favorite of mine. While watching “Still 17”, I heard BTIMFL soundtracks being played several times during the scenes at the cafe, and it turns out both shows have the same music producer (the more you know!). Also I realize that both shows deal with the concept of “home” or “shelter”; a safe place where the main lead can unwind and grow and get warmth and support from other characters. Watching them makes me feel safe and relaxed, too, somehow. I’m happy that the main leads of both shows were surrounded by good people (despite the beginning unfortunate situation).

Would you mind sharing your top 5 kdramas? Because it seems like we have similar taste and I need other shows to binge lol (also, it’s very difficult to say goodbye to my favorite fictional characters, oof I need to move on ๐Ÿ˜ญ)

3 years ago

Brilliant show! Loved this special snowflake ๐Ÿ™‚

Thank you for your excellent, well-written review.

Kim Taehyung
Kim Taehyung
4 years ago

What was your insights bout Kim Hyung Tae๐Ÿฅบ I know im a bit late๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜ข but this drama is now my most fave.. really

4 years ago
Reply to  Kim Taehyung

Hi there Taehyung, I’m glad you loved this drama! ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m sorry I didn’t write anything much about Kim Hyung Tae.. off the top of my head, I thought he was a generally good-hearted person, but who perhaps got a little too obsessed with Seo Ri over the years.

Kim Taehyung
Kim Taehyung
4 years ago

What was your insights bout Kim Hyung Tae๐Ÿฅบ

4 years ago

Hi, there’s a tiny correction; the younger Woo Seo Ri is played by Park Si Eun, not Lee Hyo Bi.

Thank you for the review, I enjoyed reading it.

4 years ago
Reply to  alfalfa

Ah, thanks for the correction, alfalfa! I’ll fix that right away! ๐Ÿ™‚ Also, I’m glad that you enjoyed the review! <3

4 years ago

Thirty but Seventeen is proof once more of โ€œnever judge a book by its coverโ€. The synopsis did not do it justice. Ever since your review, 30 has been sitting in the back of my mind. So, I took the plunge this weekend and came out the other side.

For me, the show could have almost been swapped around and called Jenniferโ€™s story. She was an utter delight – robot like to protect herself, immersing her existence in the well of knowledge and all the while very loving. Shin Hye Sun is a personal favourite of mine – her role in Stranger was second to none. So, it was good to see her in 30, after My Golden Life (which I dropped at episode 5). I thought Woo Jin started out well (the beard thing – loved it), but I really didnโ€™t like how his character unfolded after that point.

Yes, Yoo Chan had a good presence throughout and the boys were great. As for the violin rival – it did seem a bit pointless. I would have gone a different path as the writer. Woo Jinโ€™s boss was another fabulous character – full marks to her. Peng and the chicken were nice touches.

I think what this show did really well was the whole concept around the impact that an incident can have on your life, because thatโ€™s how it is. There are those who cope and transform and grow, and those who give it all away, and those who put their lives on hold (in different ways) and then those who just live their lives and close the door on the past. The show also got it right on how people find things after coming out of a coma.

So, at the end of the day I did have some minor frustrations. The near miss thing was over used. The story was dragged out in the last quarter. The beard should have stayed ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚.

The final scene was lovely. I could think of worst ways to spend my time ๐Ÿคฉ

4 years ago
Reply to  seankfletcher

Ah! I’m so glad you gave 30 But 17 a chance, Sean! ๐Ÿ˜€ Although, WOW, you managed to finish it all in one weekend?!? ๐Ÿ˜ฑ I bow to your dramathoning prowess!

Indeed, Jennifer really managed to steal the show, even though she was technically a secondary character. I would’ve loved to see Jennifer’s continuing story as a spinoff from this series. <3 I agree the violin rival thing seemed rather pointless, but for what it was, I thought Show did a decent job of making it meaningful. And YES, the near-miss thing was definitely overused. At one point I found myself getting impatient with Show for serving up so many, one after another. But overall, as you said, there are definitely worse ways to spend one's drama hours. This one was so sweet and heartwarming, that I'd recommend it in a heartbeat, in spite of its shortcomings. <3

4 years ago

I usually visit your blog if I want to check your review and rating on a show that I liked or when I’m looking for something good to watch. I think I’ll try this one. ๐Ÿ™‚

4 years ago
Reply to  vi

Glad that you’ve been finding the blog useful, vi! And yes, I do highly recommend this drama – it’s just very heartwarming and sweet, all-around. I hope you’ll like it as much as I did! <3

Snow Flower
Snow Flower
4 years ago

Also, I just learned to play Liszt’s Consolation No. 3, a piece played at the beginning of Episode 23. Loved the use of classical music in the show. (Every episode was named after classical composition). Loved the theme of music’s role in the healing process.

4 years ago
Reply to  Snow Flower

Wow, look at you go, Snow Flower! I am amazed at how much the dramas have been igniting your passion to play music! ๐Ÿ˜€ And yes, the music in this was a very nice touch, and I’m glad Show shone the spotlight on what music means to Seo Ri, and how much she loves it. ๐Ÿ™‚

Snow Flower
Snow Flower
4 years ago

Such a sweet and uplifting show! I agree with every word in your review. The main actress is wonderful. She can be spunky and vulnerable at the same time (reminds me of Shin Min Ah). I watched the main actor in Duel, a well written thriller with science fiction overtones, and he was very impressive playing 3 different characters. I will definitely follow their next projects.

4 years ago
Reply to  Snow Flower

Aw, YAY that you loved this show as much as you did, Snow Flower! ๐Ÿ˜€ Indeed, Shin Hye Sun did a fantastic job in this. I didn’t see the Shin Min Ah comparison, but now that you mention it, Shin Min Ah does deliver spunky-yet-vulnerable very well, like in My Girlfriend is a Gumiho, for example. <3 I haven't seen Duel, but any actor successfully playing 3 characters deserves some serious respect! ๐Ÿ™‚

Snow Flower
Snow Flower
4 years ago

Started watching this show while waiting for new episodes of Memories of Alhambra to become available. Show is so sweet and full of heart so far. I also like the classical music in it.

4 years ago
Reply to  Snow Flower

Aw, yay that you’re enjoying this one, Snow Flower! ๐Ÿ˜€ It really is sweet and full of heart. I expected to like it, but ended up loving it. <3

4 years ago

Ok, to be honest I waited for your review of this one for about two months. This show ended in mid -september and since then I kept visiting your blog to find if you had a review for this. The day when you finally added it I was super ecstatic and I didn’t read it in a jiffy but read it with full comfort and leisure and savoured everything about it. Basically I loved this show madly and just wanted to catch up on your thoughts about the same. I was so glad that you also thoroughly enjoyed it.

I am late to post my thoughts here but will do for sure. 30 but seventeen was super super heartwarming , touching and so beautiful. I cried buckets from the start to end. My some of the favorite things from the show were the innocence of the leads that resonated with that of 17-year olds. The organic development of Seo Ri character where each thing about her was shown slowly getting on track. Yang se Jong and Shin hye sun were quite great as characters though I was wanting the romance angle a bit more but I guess the storyline was written that way.

I felt they stretched the story a bit too much and instead of decoding all the secrets at one time it would have been better if they unraveled mysteries slowly throughout the show. The audience could have got the chance to breathe and slowly absorb the happenings. I guess the reason might be the episode cut as it was slated to be 20 episodes show and was cut down to 16.

Chan was so so so cute and loving, His love confession needs special mention as I have never felt so much pain for a second lead and somehow I cried during that scene. ๐Ÿ˜›

Special mention to Jennifer how cool was she. ๐Ÿ˜€

4 years ago
Reply to  soumya108

Aw, thanks for waiting for this review, soumya! That makes me feel special indeed! <3 I'm glad you loved this one, it really is a heartwarming little gem. I personally was happy with the slightly muted tone of the romance, as that gave more room for Seo Ri's personal journey. Right off the bat, I found myself more invested in her personal journey than in any potential loveline, so because of that, I was pretty happy with my watch, even when the romance was slow to build.

I do agree that Show could've been a more well-rounded story if they'd revealed some secrets earlier, and therefore spend more time on the aftermath than on stretching out the mysteries. I would have loved to have had the full story on Jennifer much earlier, for example, so that we could've walked at least part of her next chapter with her, and see her starting over and making her restaurant, and how that felt for her. I was a little disappointed that that all happened off-screen, but overall, I enjoyed the show so well that I can't complain too much! ๐Ÿ˜‰ And yes, OMG, I loved Chan! Such a pure-hearted, earnest soul. <3

4 years ago

I think your review is so much on target. I usually am all about the writing, but there’s no way this drama works if SHS doesn’t nail the part of an adult with a 17 year old mentality. I like the theme of people emotionally stuck in place due to medical issue, guilt and with Rin, an inferiority complex. This was an effortless watch week by week where I enjoyed the character growth even though, as some complained, not much happened some weeks. I just enjoyed the journey.

4 years ago
Reply to  Kat

Thanks for enjoying the review, Kat! <3 And yes, I absolutely agree that a lot hinged on SHS's ability to convince us that she was 17 on the inside, something that she pulled off remarkably well, I felt. She felt like the younger actress who played the teen version of Seo Ri. So good. <3 I'm with you on just enjoying the journey, despite – or maybe because of – the lack of Big Drama. I really liked the slice-of-life, healing vibe of this one, and I'm glad you liked it too! ๐Ÿ˜€

5 years ago

Ahhhh! I just finished this drama and I miss the characters. Found myself reading this review and I totally agree with everything. I also thought it was kinda frustrating but satisfying. I sobbed on Episode 28 and the plot twist! I love this drama so much!!!

5 years ago
Reply to  Jiji

This one is really sweet indeed <3 And yes, that plot twist was a relief! ๐Ÿ˜‚ Thanks for enjoying this review! ๐Ÿ™‚

5 years ago

hello, i have been following your website for quite some time now. All of the best dramas i had watched are because of your review. i honestly first go here if you had watched some drama i come across to and what is your verdict with this drama. I fell inlove with your review and your writing style. I just want you to cheer up and be happy always. this is also my first time leaving a comment here and i just want to say thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.
Also, this is my last drama I had watched. I was so curious why you give this an A. It is rare for you this year to give such a high rating so i got interested and watched this show. Thanks to you i got to watch this incredible well-written drama. This is my best drama of 2018 so thank you and fighting!! Will be cheering for you and wishing you a lot of luck and please do continue to write reviews!

Ps. English is not my first language so please bear with me
– J

5 years ago
Reply to  Alina

Aww, thank you J, you are so sweet! <3 Thank you for the encouragement, I'm so glad that you've been enjoying the reviews, and I'm so happy that I've been able to point you towards some drama gems. Your kind words mean a lot, thank you for taking the time to write! <3 Also, your English is fine! No apologies needed at all. ๐Ÿ™‚

5 years ago

Another great review (because I agree with everything you said in this one๐Ÿ˜‰). I adore Shin Hye sun. I was captivated by the violin playing. Can someone tell me if it looked realistic? (It did to me but I know nothing about violin fingerings or technique.)
I must comment on Shin Hye sun’s wardrobe though- I ABHORRED it! It can’t be said that it was done for the character because there was nothing youthful about it. (She also dressed this same way in Five Enough.) It didn’t even fit the script that the clothes were taken from the older sister of the student who had a crush on Chan. The clothes did not look like anything I could see a contemporary young woman or even a contemporary young ahjumma wearing, imo. Frankly, I haven’t seen ahjummas wearing the style either. Most stay-at-home moms that I see in Kdramas wear a loose blouse and skirt. Or if they do manual work, they’ll have on the crazy elastic wild-colored pants.
I’ve heard that unless a character needs to dress for a specific character trait (i. e. rich, poor, professional), then actresses wear their own clothes. If so, I hope she realizes that her height is NOT unattractive or something to try to hide with the loose (actually, kind of sloppy) dresses that she wears. (I heard her on a variety show talking about being glad to be paired with Sung Hoon because it made her not so self-conscious about her height).
But I love watching her act. I even watched My Golden Life because of her. She was the only good thing about GL, for me.

Oh, I also wanted to say how mature Chan’s character was to recognize that his own crush would not work out and that this was his uncle’s one chance for love and redemption whereas he, Chan, would have chances throughout his life for love to come.

5 years ago
Reply to  beez

Lol! Thanks for enjoying this review, beez, and yay that we feel so similarly about this show! <3 I'd enjoyed Shin Hye Sun before, but she really blew it out of the water with this one. She was just fantastic! <3 And omigosh, Channn! ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜ What a dear heart. So earnest and sweet and innocent, yet with wisdom beyond his years. I luffed him. <3

5 years ago

I will comeback to read this later. All I see is spoilers tags although I don’t mind them but…I have been reading lot of good stuff about this one might as well binge watch it soon.

5 years ago

Sure, come back anytime! ๐Ÿ™‚ And yes, this one would be a nice binge watch, I think. It’s just so sweet and fluffy, while managing to bring all the feeeels. <3 Enjoy your watch!

5 years ago

This was one of my favorite rom-coms this year and thought they handled the trauma well. I loved the snippets of classical music that came through and the script was well written. I was a little worried about the โ€œotherโ€ violinist being an all out unbelievable witch, but happily she didnโ€™t turn out that way. And dearest Chan. I made myself his unofficial mother after the 1st episode. He endeared himself to me the second he saved that baby chick from the bicycles of certain doom!

5 years ago
Reply to  FreeTheKimchi

Yay that you liked this one too, Ally! ๐Ÿ˜€ Yes, I thought they handled the trauma very well, considering Show’s boundaries, ie, it definitely wanted to stay in rom-com territory, rather than go the route of, say, Just Between Lovers. That was tricky to do, I think, and I felt Show did a really nice job of it. ๐Ÿ™‚ And yes, I was really relieved that Rin didn’t turn out to be an evil witch. And OMG CHANNN. I couldn’t get enough of him; he and his Chick Junior were just adorable! His ardent, sincere conversations with that little chicklet were just the cutest! ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜ Also! I was so amused that Chan stopped eating chicken the minute he adopted Chick Jr. Awww. <3

Snow Flower
Snow Flower
5 years ago

This show is on my list too. The problem is I can’t find a site that streams it legally.

5 years ago
Reply to  Snow Flower

Hmm, I’m not sure if you get Viu where you are, Snow Flower? Coz if Viu is available to you, they have Thirty But Seventeen, and it’s legal streaming (you can find Thirty But Seventeen’s Viu page here). If you’d like to use Viu but aren’t in a country where it’s available, you could consider using a VPN service to get you access. I hope that helps! ๐Ÿ™‚

5 years ago

Yet another show I’ve not had time to tackle yet. I aim to though, it’s on The List of Doom. Thus, I only scrolled by the post. ๐Ÿ˜‰

5 years ago
Reply to  Timescout

Oh, this one is very sweet, Timescout! Worth putting on The List, I feel. Can’t wait to hear how you find it, when you do get to it! ๐Ÿ™‚

5 years ago

Aah, I so loved this show too, and your review brings it all back – I have the same grin reading this that I had on my face for most of the episodes, always the sign of a great, feel-good show ๐Ÿ˜. Thank you!

5 years ago
Reply to  TorixBear

Hi there Tori! ๐Ÿ˜€ I’m so glad that this post brought back the feels for ya! This show truly is a sweet one, and I’m so happy that you loved it too. <3

Growing Beautifully
Growing Beautifully
5 years ago

Another awesome review kfangurl! Again you’ve echoed my sentiments for this show and the reasons why. This was a show I truly could immerse myself in with all the pathos yet good humour, and feel ‘safe’ that I’d not be disappointed in it’s end.

The character I felt sorry for was Seo Ri’s doctor friend, Hyeong Tae. Poor doctor’s role added nothing significant to the plot. After finding out Seo Ri’s aunt left and that Seo Ri was abandoned, he became a doctor, just so that he could remain close to Seo Ri. But he gets nothing for all his years of devotion. He does not even add to the plot of the hunt for aunt and uncle, or to revealing the connection between Jennifer and Seo Ri who both suffered after that accident. It was left to the guilt-ridden bus driver to connect all the disparate persons feeling loss or guilt.

A special shout out for one of the sweetest, most reasonable, yet sharp bosses around, Kang Hee Soo who hired Seo Ri, just to help her. She was a wonderful mix of wisdom, business savvy and generosity. She enable Seo Ri to gain more independence and increase her sense of self-worth so much, and she did it while taking a risk that she did not need to, with an unqualified, inexperienced and naive employee. More kdrama bosses should be written this way.

I was seriously miffed at the show for giving viewers too many near-misses. On the one hand one might congratulate the writers for their creativity in coming up with yet more and more ways to produce a near-miss, however after 5-6 times, I felt that show was playing the viewers and was not amused.

However the show’s depiction of warmth, healing, growth and humour made up for all that could be criticised. It was truly a very lovable and lovely show, and beautifully shot as well. 😍 I rate it a high 8.8/10. 😃

5 years ago

Hi there GB, so nice to see you! Thanks for enjoying this review! ๐Ÿ™‚ Indeed, this show felt really safe, despite it dipping into pathos and pain, and even PTSD. I never imagined that a show could touch on PTSD and yet still feel warm, sweet and safe to watch. That’s quite an accomplishment, in my books. And yes, it’s the kind of show that you just know is going to give you a happy, heartfelt ending.

That’s a great point about Hyung Tae. He did pattern his entire life around waiting for Seo Ri and wanting to be her support system when/if she woke up, but he ended up with nothing to show for it. That was pretty sad for him indeed. And yes, Hee Soo really was a generous boss. I really liked the way she’d give Seo Ri things, like a bag and a phone, and then find an excuse to help Seo Ri feel alright about keeping it. I also liked that she wasn’t ever portrayed as a potential love interest for Woo Jin. She herself was enough to merit a place in this drama world, and I liked that a lot. ๐Ÿ™‚

Also, absolutely agree with you, that for its various flaws, this show more than made up for it with its heart and its warmth. I would rewatch this one. <3

Gabrielle Tiu
Gabrielle Tiu
5 years ago

I miss you kfangurl!

5 years ago
Reply to  Gabrielle Tiu

AW! That’s so sweet, I feel super special now! <3 I've missed you guys too – it feels good to be back.

5 years ago

For most of the part i really enjoyed this drama , but towards the end ( i still love it ) , but find myself getting irritated with the way Seo Ri talked , but, still enjoyed it <3

5 years ago
Reply to  Nancy

Aw. I didn’t have similar issues with the way Seo Ri talked, but I’m glad that didn’t stop you from loving the drama overall! ๐Ÿ™‚