Early Access: Happiness Episode 1

Hi everyone!

I thought I’d share my actual Patreon episode 1 notes on Happiness with you all, 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! ❤️

Episode notes:

E1. Considering how I wasn’t even planning to check out this one, I am stunned to announce that I AM LOVING THIS SHOW!! 🤩🤩

I never would’ve imagined myself saying this about this show, since it was promoted as being about zombies, but I am loving just about everything about it. On that note, I do think that the promotional material doesn’t do the show justice, or at least, it doesn’t bring out the stuff that I personally like best, so far.

On the more neutral side of things, I like that Show is fast-paced and feels tight. It never feels like our story is cycling in place for any reason at all; it always feels like our narrative has something to say, and somewhere to be, and it needs to get things done, chop chop, tick tock, c’mon now, follow along coz we got no time to waste. Love that.

I also love that this doesn’t feel formulaic at all, or at least, it doesn’t feel formulaic so far. Maybe it’s because I haven’t seen all that many zombie shows; I don’t detect any sense of tropeyness about it, and I like that a lot too.

In fact, I find it refreshing, that our story is set in a post-covid world, where the world’s gotten past COVID-19, and is starting to move on with normal life. That beat, where the radio DJ reminded people to appreciate being able to see other people’s smiles, and breathe without having to wear a mask, felt pretty poignant to me, because, right now, that reality feels rather far away, from where I’m sitting.

Plus, there’s also the thing, where Show raises the question of whether the medication and vaccines that we’ve embraced as part of our global covid strategy, might bring about unexpected side effects and problems later.

The line, where Lieutenant Colonel Han says, “Just because it was fine yesterday… doesn’t mean it’ll be fine today,” feels particularly relevant to our reality. It feels like a cautioning of sorts, even as we approve various medications and vaccines for emergency use.

I don’t think that this is Show’s main message (although I could be wrong), but I do think it’s an interesting question to raise and consider.

All that said, though, I have to admit that the main things that are hooking me, in this show, are our leads. Their personalities and their relationship – with things being set up such that romantic possibilities can be explored, is doing it for me.

I want to shout it from the rooftops: I LOVE Han Hyo Joo in this. I love Sae Bom’s personality, so much. I love that she’s such a go-getter, who’s basically hardly ever fazed by anything; I love that she thinks quickly and acts just as quickly; I love that she’s so unafraid of anything. Best of all, she manages to be endearing and likable, even while she’s bulldozing people over with her “do first, consider the consequences later” sort of attitude.

I feel like I’ve seen characters be “take charge” before, but most of the time, they’re portrayed as annoying and inconsiderate, because they tend to step on people’s toes, as they get things done.

YET, even though Sae Bom’s definitely crushed a few toes in her time (how about the way that training suit had to be modified, because she’d stabbed a colleague in the chest, in her effort to “save” him? 😂), she feels pretty harmless, to me.

What I mean is, there is no malice about her. She might step on people’s toes sometimes (ok, maybe more than sometimes), but she’s really not out to hurt anyone. She literally just is that task focused, and is passionate about getting things done, and getting them done well, and quickly too.

She’s badass, in what feels like an almost accidental way, like it’s a side effect of where her priorities lie, and I just instinctively love her.

I also love Park Hyung Sik in this. Yi Hyun’s just got this offhanded way about him, that amuses me. Like, he’s not a stickler for protocol, but casually just manages to be really good at what he does, anyway.

I found it quite amusing, that he seems to be better at investigative work, than the police officer (Lee Joon Hyuk, again! 😁) who’d promised to make him a good police officer, from that time in high school when Yi Hyun had inadvertently triggered a suicide alarm, by lounging on the roof.

I am already super into the relationship between Sae Bom and Yi Hyun, even though we’re only just on the cusp of the marriage contract thing.

I love the idea that they’ve been good friends all these years, even after Sae Bom had declined to date Yi Hyun, after she’d pushed him off the roof and into that cushion. I love the detail, that when she doesn’t have her phone with her, she can dial Yi Hyun’s number from memory.

I also love the fact that Yi Hyun would go out of his way to save her, when he perceives that she might be in trouble. (And he manages to get through the tight security so effortlessly too! Smooth. 🤩)

I get the feeling that even though Yi Hyun had told Sae Bom that he’d been joking about wanting to date her, he probably does have real feelings for her. He’s just put them aside, since she’s expressed so plainly, that she has no interest in dating him.

But the way he responds to her – like the way he sits bolt upright in bed, when he hears her voice on the other end of the line – makes me feel that he probably does already like her, and has quite possibly liked her all these 12 years.

In my estimation, these two would make a great pair, not only in fighting zombies, but also, as a couple. I love that they’re both good at their jobs, and that they’re both quick-thinking and flexible around rules.

I love that they already have a synergy and rhythm between them, as good friends. I feel like this would stand them in good stead, as they start their zombie investigation.

Plus, I dig their chemistry. I have a huge soft spot for the contract marriage trope, and it feels like such a treat, that these two awesome leads, are going to have to navigate a contract marriage situation, on top of everything else.

I’d had no idea how this concept, of a zombie-contract marriage mashup, was going to work. But Show is bringing it, and I found myself grinning like a happy goof, not even 30 minutes into this opening episode. I want more of this show, and soon – is how much of a good time I’m having. 🤩😁

*This show is being covered on the Foundation (US$1) Tier on Patreon*

To view episode 1 notes in Patreon, along with everyone’s comments, you can go here!

You can find my Patreon page here, where episode 2, 3 and 4 notes are already available.  Just look for the tag “Happiness” or click here.

Episode 5 notes will be out on Wednesday, 5 January 2022! 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 January, which you can find here!


You can check out this show on iQIYI here.


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1 year ago

I happen to love stories that have a bit of the sci-fi/supernatural/ugliness of human nature elements in it so watching a show like Happiness that has the right blend of bad ass female lead, cute reliable male lead, zombies, horrid humans and not too many episodes is a breath of fresh air.
I just love Sae Bom, she is a no nonsense, no frills kind of girl that gets things done. I’d say she’s my favourite female lead so far. I love Yi Hyun, the male lead that treats his girl as an equal while waiting for her to realize her feelings towards him. I love hating on the rest of the characters who turned horrible faced with a desperate situation. I also like the fact that this story is fast-paced, doesn’t linger on cheesy romance and unnecessary filler side-situations and ended before the usual 16 episodes. One of my 2021 favourites.

I’m still wondering why the title is Happiness.

1 year ago

For those who haven’t joined in re the Happiness watch, you should and the notes by KFG on Patreon are excellent 😊😊😊 Mind you, reaper didn’t succumb to my previous pleas to reconsider watching Happiness 😂🤣😂

1 year ago
Reply to  seankfletcher

You are powerful but not even you can make a bad show into a good one ^^

1 year ago

I might give this a go. Thank you. Something similar happened with me with “Zombie Detective”. I didnt want to watch it because .. well … zombies. But then I was hooked and binge watched it in no time. Hihi. It was so much fun.

1 year ago

I just finished binge watching this last week and it has become one of my favorite shows (even surpassing squid game). I think Han Hyo Joo is fantastic in the show, and the writing is sharp and creative. I’m so excited to follow along with you through your watching the show!

1 year ago

Dropped this after episode 1.
Ah what should I say….
Both leads are psychotic. One is a masochist and the other one a sadist (school rooftop scene). Can’t seem to like either of them.
Intended funny is not funny at all.
Fls’ talks with guy in glasses are just too draggy.

FL felt useless. “Yells at cop1 to stop the bleeding of cop2. While she just stands there and does nothing. Not even securing the room”

And the worst thing… the most generic zombies I have seen so far. They could have tried something new or at least a little different especially with that topic.

Overall very disappointing.