So I thought I’d do things a little differently today, my friends.
I thought I’d share my actual Patreon episode 1 notes on Yumi’s Cells with everyone, because we’re having so much fun chatting about this show, over on Patreon, and I thought it’d be great to invite everyone else to the party. 🤗
These are my episode 1 notes, exactly as they appear on Patreon, ie, without screenshots (I’m saving those for the actual review). I hope you all enjoy, and I hope you’ll consider joining us over on Patreon, for the rest of the discussions! ❤️
E1. I can’t believe that I enjoyed this episode so much, considering how skeptical I’d been, when this show’s synopsis first came out. I hadn’t thought that the live action mixed with animation concept would work that well in a kdrama, but whaddya know – Show makes it work, so well, and I loved this episode.
I love it coz it’s cute, but I also love it coz it’s clearly very carefully thought out. As I look at the various breakdowns of how the cells interact, and how that pans out in Yumi’s real reactions, it all feels so on point and pitch perfect, that I can almost imagine myself having a whole town of cells who care about me, who work together to push me in what they think is the right direction, heh.
I love the idea that the cells all live in a town, and are essentially a community, where cells each have their own personalities and reputations, and interact with one another. This interaction, particularly the back-and-forth between opposing cells, like Reason and Emotion, or Reason and Hunger, is exactly the kind of thing that we experience, as we navigate our lives and our worlds.
I also love the idea that Hunger is characterized as a very young child who cannot be reasoned with. It’s so true, that you can’t reason with hunger; it’s a basic need that demands to be met, especially when we’re very hungry – which is why I think it’s brilliant that Hunger is drawn as much larger than the other cells. The hungrier Yumi is, the larger Hunger is, and the more power he has, to just stomp on all the other cells. How very relatable! 😂
I was extremely tickled by the concept of Yumi’s love cell being in a coma and on life support, for the 3 years since her ex-boyfriend broke her heart by dumping her for another girl. I mean, it’s sad that Yumi’s ex treated her so poorly, but the idea that her love cell just.. collapsed from that trauma and went into a vegetative state, is so perfect. That’s exactly what happens to a lot of people, I feel, when they’ve been deeply hurt by the ones they’ve loved.
What stands out to me as poignant, though, is the fact that Yumi isn’t jaded by her bad romantic experience; she wants to love again, and just.. doesn’t know how. That layer of vulnerability – of wanting to be vulnerable – really endears Yumi to me. I love the idea that despite her bad experience, and despite her love cell being literally comatose, her heart remains tender.
Which brings me to Kim Go Eun as Yumi. I really like how she’s portraying Yumi. There’s an awkwardness about her, but that awkwardness leans gentle, so it’s pretty subtle, yet is relatable. And, there’s a delicateness about her, which I feel is so well expressed in her hands. Her hands are slender and graceful, which adds to that sense of fragility about her, while still being so gently yet eloquently expressive of her awkwardness, in her gestures.
Also, I find her gaze very expressive. The small shifts in her gaze; her quick blinks; the slight widening of her eyes; they match every scene in such a pitch perfect way, and I find it even more pronounced when they’re matched with voiceovers from opposing cells who are arguing, thus creating an overall effect of confusion, for Yumi.
I also like the fact that Yumi is hardworking and good at her job – but is not a Candy. I love that she’s been promoted, even, for her efforts, and has actually managed to save a lot of money, from not dating, but having a well-paying stable job. That actually makes her fancy stove that much more organic to the story, rather than a convenient spot of PPL.
I like the idea that each person has a prime cell, and that that prime cell determines that person’s main brand, so to speak. It’s so true, that the people around us all have their own schtick, and it’s a cute idea to put that down to which cell is prime.
It’s actually rather poignant, to learn that Yumi’s prime cell is love – because that means that in the last 3 years, Yumi’s basically had to live with her prime cell in a coma. Doesn’t that translate to her feeling unfulfilled, because her main driving force in life, has been missing?
On this note, I’m of the opinion that people’s schticks can change. For example, someone who’s big into shopping, might eventually evolve into someone who’s big on health and fitness. I like the idea that people aren’t stuck with one prime cell, and that a prime cell can be overtaken by a different cell, because I like the idea that people can grow and change.
Therefore, I’m actually hoping that Yumi’s prime cell eventually changes, because while we see in the flashback that Yumi is all-loving and all-giving when she’s in a relationship, this isn’t exactly healthy behavior. She never once thought that her douchey (now ex-) boyfriend was taking advantage of her guilelessness and generosity. I’d like Yumi to learn how to take care of herself better, and I hope Show thinks that this is a good idea too.
I’m extremely tickled by Minho’s casting in this show, as the junior on whom Yumi has a crush. He’s got just the right kind of wide-eyed innocence, to make Ugi’s actions feel hard to read. Is he just doing something nice for a sunbae whom he respects, or does he actually have a personal interest in Yumi? It’s hard to say, from Yumi’s point of view, and Minho’s brand of innocent dorky charm is just perfect for this. Also, I am extremely amused at the fact that Show gives Minho not one, but two shirtless scenes, in the space of an episode. Gotta make that idol body count, eh? 😂
Lee Yoo Bi is really hamming it up as Ruby, and I can’t help but love to hate Ruby. She’s so brazen in how she works to get close to Ugi; I’m half repulsed and half fascinated. That takes some wile and some skillz, and Ruby seems to be in possession of plenty of both.
I am very much tickled at the process of the cells getting Yumi to go to sleep. It literally takes a village, ha. I find it really cute that it’s Reason who’s going around reasoning with &/or knocking out other cells like Emotion, Anxiety and Painful Memory, so that Yumi’s Sleepy cell can do his job of getting Yumi to go to bed.
The cells working really hard to get Yumi to smile, in the face of Ruby’s blithe bragging, of how she and Ugi had spent many hours together, is also very amusing to me. Ahaha. That feels so on point; sometimes, it really IS hard to keep on a smile. 😆
I love-love-love how it’s Love cell, who instructs Rampage to get True Feeling. That makes so much sense! Yumi’s desire to love again, is what’s causing her to be frustrated enough, to indicate her true feelings, in that conversation. That mix of emotion, and the cause and effect, is well deconstructed, in how our cells work it out. I love it.
Yay for Yumi, for having the courage to put her foot down and not allow Ruby to bulldoze over her. Huzzah! That’s cause for celebration in itself. I know Ugi isn’t romantic endgame for Yumi, but y’know, I can’t help hoping that this flower festival date with Ugi goes well, for Yumi’s sake.
*This show is being covered on the Early Access (US$5) Tier on Patreon*
To view episode 1 notes in Patreon, along with everyone’s comments, you can go here!
Episode 4 notes will be out on Friday, 22 October 2021! I hope you’ll consider joining us!
It’ll be a way to have fun, and support me at the same time? ❤️
PS: For more information on what the Patreon experience is like, you might like to check out my Patreon update post for October, which you can find here!