Dropped: At A Distance, Spring Is Green

I had good intentions of wanting to like this one, particularly since it was enthusiastically recommended to me by Carulhein. She mentioned that she really enjoyed this one, despite Show’s low ratings, and that gave me hope that I might like it too.

However, 1.5 episodes in, I’ve come to the conclusion that while Show may have its fans (and said fans really do love this show a lot), I just don’t think it’s for me, unfortunately.

Hopefully this Dropped post will help you to figure out whether this one could work for you.

GENERAL IMPRESSIONS FROM EPISODE 1

I have to confess that I felt rather ambivalent towards Show, even from episode 1. Here’s an overview of my thoughts, as I tried to make sense of episode 1, and my reactions to it.

Like I said earlier, Show has lots of fans who think that it’s pretty great, so I’m basically the odd duck in the corner who doesn’t geddit. You could very well love this one, even though I don’t.

1. The tone that Show’s gunning for

While Show is all bright poppy Spring palette and happy, breezy music, it does strike me that the idea behind Show’s title, is a little more sardonic than these cheerful trappings might indicate.

This “spring” is referring to the youth of our characters, and it isn’t all that long into our first episode, that our protagonist declares that this spring – this youth – is only green from a distance. Which meant that up close, it really isn’t all that pretty.

This does lend a touch of foreboding to our watch, but to be brutally honest, I’m not sure how dark we’re really talking, here.

My guess is that this is to show us as an audience that it’s really not at all easy to be a young person in society; that you really can’t enjoy your youth, because you’re too busy trying to carve a path for yourself, because you’re considered a failure otherwise.

I get the idea, but so far, this is not translating so well for me, in that, it’s not quite popping for me, somehow.

2. Kang Min Ah as So Bin

I like Kang Min Ah, but the roles that I’ve seen her in, have been ones where she’s allowed to be vibrant and cheerful, and so this character So Bin feels a little odd on her, to my eyes. I suppose it’s just a matter of my not being used to it, because I do think she’s doing a solid enough job.

I guess I’m also not super into the idea of a timid female lead who’s so uncertain of herself that she tries too hard to please others. It was perplexing to me, to see her allow her new roommate (Woo Da Vi) to take advantage of her, right from the first minute.

It’s almost like she’s sliding into position to give that roommate control over her, with the way she volunteers to help with said roommate’s luggage, when she actually didn’t have to. 🤦🏻‍♀️

I rationalize that this will give So Bin room to grow, but I have to confess that this extreme doormat / wallpaper tendency is not fun to watch.

3. Park Ji Hoon as Yeo Joon

As for our male lead Yeo Joon, I have to confess that I am hugely distracted by his blonde wavy hair. Whoever styled his hair must have been greatly inspired by golden retrievers, because that’s exactly what his hair reminds me of – a golden retriever.

And maybe that’s the whole idea, because he’s trying so hard to be liked by everyone, and golden retrievers are friendly, lovable dogs. However, I don’t think it works that way.

I mean, just because a golden retriever has the qualities that you desire, doesn’t mean that it’ll help you to look like one? 😂

I also have to confess that I don’t like Yeo Joon very much, so far. I don’t like it when he tries too hard to please others, but I also don’t like it when he’s being himself. He’s so cold and disdainful when he’s being himself. I guess he’s unlikable enough that I’d almost welcome his fake cheerful persona – key word being “almost.”

There’s just something quite fake about Yeo Joon’s presentation, from his weird hair, to his overly pouty lips, that just doesn’t appeal to me.

I imagine it must be exhausting to be him, with how hard he works to make everyone like him. He’s overly agreeable, overly generous, and overly friendly. And yet, behind it all, he’s sardonic and disdainful. Talk about a disconnect. 🤪

To be brutally honest, out of all our characters, I struggle the most with Yeo Joon, as a character. I don’t like him, and his hair distracts me – almost as much as his overly pouty lips, and his coral pink lipstick. 🙈

4. Bae In Hyuk as Soo Hyun

I think I like Soo Hyun the most, out of our 3 main characters.

He’s too serious, too unfriendly and too isolated as a general rule, but I like that he’s honest. What you see is what you get, and he’s not at all interested in pleasing anyone. I like that.

Also, he’s doing well in school, even though he spends all his time working part-time jobs because he needs the money. That’s impressive.

Most important of all, when he realizes that he’d really missed So Bin’s email, he doesn’t hesitate to apologize to her, and tell her that he’ll make it up to her, if and when the chance arises.

Overall, he strikes me as a very decent dude, and I like him enough, that I’d like to see him have at least a few friends, and be happy enough with life, to smile a little.

5. The implied OTP

There is an implied loveline between Yeo Joon and So Bin, with Show already serving up little touches of hyperawareness, and a meet-cute-awkward, like this one.

I have to say, my struggle to like Yeo Joon as a character, is messing with my ability to root for a loveline that involves him. And, the fact that I’m not quite on board with So Bin’s brand of timidity, just adds another layer of effort to this.

It.. shouldn’t be this hard to get on board with the main loveline in a drama, I think? 😅

6. The implied reluctant bromance

I do like me a good bromance, and there’s an implied reluctant bromance brewing between Yeo Joon and Soo Hyun.

Basically, Soo Hyun appears to see through Yeo Joon’s eager puppy act, and is not at all interested in playing along. And the more Soo Hyun wants nothing to do with him, the harder Yeo Joon works, to get through Soo Hyun’s stoic shell.

On paper, this sounds like just the sort of thing that I would take to, but unfortunately, the promise of this reluctant bromance isn’t quite doing it for me either. Again, this has to do with the fact that I just.. don’t like Yeo Joon.

Therefore, I’m just not very interested in his friendships or relationships. 😅

7. General execution

Execution-wise, I am not loving what I’ve seen of Show, so far.

Not only does a lot of it feel rather mechanical and formulaic, there’s a sense of exaggeration to the delivery of most characters that I don’t think is helpful.

In episode 1, I especially didn’t like So Bin’s childhood friend (Choi Jung Woo, above), who comes across as wayyy too in-yo-face and OTT to land as remotely natural or real.

SAYING GOODBYE

All that said, I did have good intentions about giving Show some time to grow on me. After all, some shows take a while to settle, and sometimes, a slow burn can turn into something really good, right?

I pressed play on episode 2 today, and I have to confess that I only got 30 minutes in, before deciding to pull the plug on this show.

Essentially, most of my issues from episode 1 still hold true. On top of that, the general sense of exaggeration that applies to the delivery of most characters, became starkly clear to me, in episode 2.

I don’t think I’m over school settings in my dramas, since I absolutely loved At Eighteen (a total gem, if you haven’t seen it), and I also managed to enjoy True Beauty as well.

I just think that this one specifically, is not for me. Like.. To my eyes, So Bin’s too shy and awkward, and Soo Hyun’s too stoic and serious, while Yeo Joon’s too.. everything, and they’re all coming together more as caricatures than actual characters, in my head.

I know that True Beauty was OTT too, but for reasons I can’t quite put my finger on right now, that worked for me and I’d felt entertained by it, and.. that’s not happening, with this show. 😅

I’d kinda wanted to like this, for Bae In Hyuk, but I’m gonna just be content with his outing in Kiss Goblin, which I found a much easier watch than what I saw of this show.

I’m sorry, Bae In Hyuk-sshi. I know I only gave this 1.5 episodes, but I feel like I’ve seen enough, to safely conclude that this one’s just not for me. 😝

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ginia
ginia
1 month ago

I actually started enjoying this drama at episode 8. And finished at episode 12.

Not a superfan of it but I can see where the appeal might come from to some fans who might relate to it emotionally at some level.

This story touches a lot of problems dealt by teenagers from abuse to bullying and financial troubles, being a family’s breadwinner even at a young age, to conflicts between friends and family members, and struggles within the school and all the politics within.

The reasons you mentioned why you disliked the main character and the others is actually what was intended to in the first place.

The main lead is supposed to be disliked by someone rationally sound in the head like So hyun did at the beginning of the story.

I do think commenting about the physical features as a turn off in reviewing a drama is raising something in me thou but I cant quite point it out, almost like, a shallow way to dislike a character or something?lol idk

I do think dropping it in its first episode does not do justice to the whole story and the actors, coz everybody played their roles as they should. Their weaknesses and generally being an unlikable character was mostly shown in the earlier episodes of the story, and is part of the whole teenage awkward phase that we typically see in teenagers or young adults that had issues growing up.

this story definitely tackled a lot of teenage woes and conflict/ resolution and growth and I think as an adult it interested me on how they eventually resolve/tried to give it solutions at the end with the help of their family members and friends.

I think this is a good watch especially for someone who might be going through the same thing and give them a bit of an inspiration on how to get out of a dark place, or rectifying mistakes that you made as a young adult, or just finding happiness out of simple things in life.

Last edited 1 month ago by ginia
Ali
Ali
9 months ago

I disagree with everything that you have said! But that’s just how you felt about the drama

Gabrielle Tiu
Gabrielle Tiu
9 months ago

Hi fangirl verdict.. It’s been a while since I visited this blog of yours, can you recommend a k-melodrama please thank you.

Antonio
9 months ago

Just this morning I couldn’t get past the 30 minute mark of this show and While You Were Sleeping.

Shahz
Shahz
9 months ago

I must say your dropped posts are making me feeling better! I dropped loads of dramas in the last few. I caught the first episode of this and felt that this was for perhaps a younger audience.

seankfletcher
seankfletcher
9 months ago
Reply to  kfangurl

I tend to steer well clear now re shows like this one. I’m not really sure why, but I tend to lose patience very quickly with their set up. Anyway, if I say too much more I will sound like a grumpy old man 😂 As I have commented before I drop 1 in 4 shows, but it is climbing quickly to 33%