Dropped: Monthly Magazine Home

In the spirit of closure (partly because we are getting to the end of the year, eep!), I thought I’d officially call it quits on Monthly Magazine Home.

I’d actually really looked forward to this one, but, to be brutally honest, episode 1 just didn’t appeal to me very much at all. I’d then shelved it, with vague good intentions of giving it another chance, but.. that’s not gonna happen, after all.

Here’s the quick rundown of why this one didn’t work for me, even from episode 1. 😅

WHY I WANTED TO LIKE THIS ONE

I’d been keen to check out this show because I am fond of both leads. I think Kim Ji Suk should get to play romantic leading man more often, and Dramaland is giving me exactly that, in this show. Plus, I am very fond of Jung So Min, and I think she and Kim Ji Suk would make a really cute couple.

WHAT DIDN’T I LIKE ABOUT EPISODE 1?

One episode into this show, I already wasn’t sure whether I’d have the patience to hang on until things turned around and got better.

1. It feels extremely formulaic, to the extent that I find it rather boring.

2. It feels rather mechanical and uninspired to my eyes, like Show is just going through the necessary paces in order to get our characters where they’re supposed to be.

Jung So Min’s character Young Won is really having a hard time and she gets continually backed into a corner, and her path keeps crossing in unfortunate ways with Kim Ji Suk’s character Ja Sung, who’s a jerkwad of a CEO, and it’s all played with a pretty relentless sense of exaggeratedness. This is the sort of thing that either just works or just doesn’t, and in this case, I’m feeling like it.. just doesn’t.

3. The funny doesn’t work for me. I think Ja Sung’s recurring use of the dramatic “STAHP” is meant to be funny, but so far, it doesn’t strike me as being all that amusing. I think it’s because I want Kim Ji Suk to get a break from playing annoying characters, and perhaps this CEO’s jerk tendencies are just too strong for my taste right now.

4. The crew at the magazine office also feels a bit try-hard, like Show’s working to make everyone appear quirky and interesting, but it doesn’t feel natural and so it feels awkward instead.

THE SILVER LININGS

1. On the upside, Jung So Min’s smile is as charming and disarming as ever, and I almost feel like I could watch this whole show, for her smile alone. However, I do need her to stop being so long-suffering, because it’s not healthy, and it’s not fun to watch either.

2. Ja Sung isn’t actually heartless, in that he actually helps Young Won with a place to stay, after she has that terrifying run-in with her landlord sneaking around her apartment in the dark. That’s.. not bad.

3. I get the idea that Show’s trying to serve up, that a house isn’t a home until you make it one, and even the most humble shack can be a home, while the most expensive house can be just a shell. So far, though, the treatment of this idea does feel rather heavy-handed, and I don’t prefer that. I think that a home where you can feel free to be yourself is important, but it also isn’t everything. Hopefully Show manages to achieve some kind of balance, going forward.

SAYING GOODBYE

I’d heard that Show gets better after the first 4 to 5 episodes, and even though, judging from my reaction to episode 1, I honestly wasn’t sure if there was enough in Show to convince me to hang on until then, I had good intentions of at least trying.

The thing is, I got so busy with other shows, that by the time (almost) everyone was raging about Show’s finale, I still hadn’t gotten past episode 1. And, judging from what feels like universal indignation in the face of Show’s chosen ending, it looks like I don’t need to make time to go back to this one, after all. I guess sometimes it pays to be late to the party..? 😅

I still think Kim Ji Suk and Jung So Min would make a lovely couple, but until Dramaland gives them a better drama outing together, I’ll have to be content with their little 2013 drama special Came To Me And Became A Star. If you haven’t checked that one out, you totally should! At least, I liked it a lot better than what I saw of this show. 😁😉

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Kay
Kay(@kdramakisses)
7 days ago

Aww, too bad this one didn’t work for you. I enjoyed this drama and found it very fun and humorous. It definitely gets better as it goes. It is a very old school style drama though in terms of plot and execution though, and I think that’s why it didn’t work for a lot of people. For those of us who like that style, it is very fun. Lots of tropes, cliches, noble idiocy, and less than ideal endings abound though. I enjoyed it nonetheless, hehe 😂

JM
JM
10 days ago

I have to agree with you on the whole, re this series, I love the two lead actors, Kim Ji Suk was so fantastic in Another Ms Oh…there was a lot of wasted potential in terms of talent to this show. One redeeming feature for me as I am an architecture buff was the glimpse into old and renovated houses, and I LOVED this aspect of walking into these streets, places, houses, temples, I can’t wait to see them IRL once we can travel again.

Deepa
15 days ago

“The vague good intentions”..:D

Dannii Willis
Dannii Willis(@curiousdannii)
15 days ago

I watched it all, and Ja Sung just never stops being a jerk. Add on to that not just one but two noble idiocy breakups, and a non-romantic ending. The only redeeming things were the as-always beautiful Jung So Min (though not her character as much), and the cool Yeo Eui Joo played by Chae Jung An. This ended up in my bottom four dramas ever.

seankfletcher
seankfletcher(@seankfletcher)
15 days ago

I lasted three episodes when it was airing, kfangurl. I was hoping it would turn the corner, but the cast could not make it work. It felt to me that the cast were being prompted to read their lines and wait for the canned laughter to kick in. Anyway, there are some good shows unfolding out there, gearing up for a big finish 😊

JJ
JJ
14 days ago
Reply to  seankfletcher

@sean- Ohhhhhh, which good shows have been unfolding out there? I am sticking with YLG, so much fun! Did you give Jirisan another chance this wknd?!!? They seemed to get back in the groove with Epi 8 dealing with a Wildfire. I thought it was a solid episode. 🙂

Jiyuu
Jiyuu
14 days ago
Reply to  JJ

I think when watched as a semi-marathon rather than two episodes weekly the narrative pace is better for Jirisan. I love it a lot, this ode to a mountain disguised as a thriller… but right now I think Happiness has eased it from my on-going watch’s top spot.(And it’s only 12 episodes too.)

Melancholia starring Lee Do Hyun might be good and Now, We Are Breaking Up was surprisingly interesting for the vibrant glimpse into the fashion industry.

Another show I’m looking forward to is One Ordinary Day (starring Cha Seung Won and Kim Soo Hyun) which will premiere next week.

JM
JM
10 days ago
Reply to  Jiyuu

I agree, Jirisan at ep 7 and 8 has really picked up the pace, it’s interesting I am really enjoying it.
I also found Now, We Are Breaking Up, really compelling to watch, it’s very fast, full of glamour, beautiful people, interesting re dynamics of the world of fashion, photography etc.
I’m also really loving a chinese series Marvelous Woman historical look at the weaving industry in China…I love the lead actress Jiang Qin Qin, she’s such a phenomenal actress. It’s beautifully shot.

JJ
JJ
15 days ago

YAY?! More time to add another drama in your schedule 😉