Early Access: Our Beloved Summer Episode 1

Hi everyone!

Thanks for enjoying my Patreon episode 1 notes on Happiness!

Today, I thought I’d share my episode 1 notes on Our Beloved Summer, because, well, I’m loving the show, along with everyone who’s following along on Patreon, and I was wondering if you’d like to join us? 🤗

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. I like this one, and right away, you guys. It’s likely because of a bunch of different things, but I am just feeling this one, and so easily too. It’s.. kinda surreal. If Show keeps this up, I think I’m going to be a very happy camper.

First thing I’d like to say, is that I am digging the dialogue. You know how I’ve mentioned that in several recent shows, I’ve felt that the dialogue is too snappy to feel plausibly real, and that then comes across as fake and try-hard to my ears?

This show manages to pitch its dialogue at a frequency where I feel it is snappy, and yet, still feels believable to my ears. That’s hard to achieve, because it’s so easy to go too hard, and come across as too snappy, or not go hard enough, and just.. not sound snappy.

Show’s hit the perfect balance, I feel, and I’m waiting with bated breath to see if Show can sustain this, because, as I’ve learned from attempting to watch other snappily written dramas, this is hard to do.

Another thing is, I am really liking the tone on which Show is pitching Ung and Yeon Su against each other. It’s bickery and sharp, but – so far anyway (fingers crossed!) – it doesn’t cross over to the overly aggressive sort of bickery that I find hard to watch.

Show isn’t doing anything spectacularly different, in the sense that I can identify bits and pieces of plot that I’ve seen some iteration of, somewhere else before. Like the bickery OTP. And the fact that their fortunes reverse, after a time skip, where the one who thought she’d be successful, ends up being less successful than the one whom everyone had assumed would be a failure. And also, the hidden celebrity thing, where Ung is a famous artist, but no one knows his true identity – not even his family (this really does give me Kill Me, Heal Me vibes, since I rewatched that fairly recently).

It’s not important that Show’s serving up narrative elements that feel familiar. What is important, is that Show manages to make it all land in a manner that feels.. fresh, like these pieces do fit naturally together like this, because they spark this way, and it’s mere coincidence, that other dramas have featured these elements before.

Part of Show’s sparkle comes from its cast, for sure, and I have to say, I am loving this cast, so far.

I really like Kim Da Mi and Choi Woo Sik in these roles. They seem tailor made for each of them, honestly. They both make Yeon Su and Ung feel like real people, even though, on paper, these characters look kinda like stereotypes. I’m sure that Kim Da Mi’s and Choi Woo Sik’s deliveries are helping to make both these characters pop.

Even though Yeon Su is kinda full of herself, particularly in high school, somehow, I don’t find her annoying, and I can’t pinpoint why. I can only guess that it has to do with Kim Da Mi’s delivery of the character. I just get the sense that Yeon Su’s not malicious, and although she is proud, it feels like a naive sort of proud – a folly of youth sort of thing. Plus, time skip later, she’s been taken down more than a few pegs, when she groans internally at how this isn’t the life that she’d envisioned.

And, even though Ung is portrayed as a bit of a hogu (Korean slang for fool), somehow, he doesn’t strike me as pathetic. I think part of the reason is Choi Woo Wik’s delivery, and the other part of it, I think, is the fact that Ung doesn’t think of himself as a loser.

It’s like.. everyone else judges him based on a certain social barometer, but he just doesn’t see himself existing in the same space, to be judged by that social barometer – if that makes sense. He’s in his own world, and happy in his own world. The real world seems to intrude on his world, almost like an inconvenient annoyance.

The whole opposites spark and then attract premise is a familiar one, and I have no objection whatsoever, to exploring this dynamic between Ung and Yeon Su. Plus, the way Show is approaching it, giving us fragments of context at a time, makes the watch feel more interesting, at least to me. I feel like each time Show gives me a fragment of context, it colors my perception of this drama world a little differently, and I find that interesting.

The way Show gives us that highlight reel of the documentary in which Yeon Su and Ung participate, where their chemistry becomes more synergistic over time, and viewers hanker for more seasons, kinda reminds me of Hospital Playlist, in a meta sort of way. I loved both seasons of Hospital Playlist, and especially loved the chemistry among the Main Five. And in that short snippet, I felt a similar sort of energy about their documentary, which immediately endears it to me.

Also, how interesting, that Show keeps that nugget – that Yeon Su and Ung had dated for 5 years after growing close – until the end of the episode, and then does a narrative-tilting sort of reveal. Or at least, it would be narrative-tilting, if you didn’t already read the premise in the synopsis of this show. 😁 Still, I like the way the information further colors in our drama world.

Aside from our leads, I’m loving other members of the cast as well.

I’m guessing that Lee Joon Hyuk’s doing more of a cameo than a proper role, but it was still a treat to recognize his voice, before getting a look at his face. Having just watched Stranger, his voice was fresh on my mind and easy to place.

And then there’s Kim Sung Cheol, whom I’ve grown fond of, especially after Do You Like Brahms, as well as his charming little drama special To.Jenny. I’m pleased to have him on my screen, and curious to know more about his relationship with Ung’s family. Why have Ung’s parents kinda-sorta adopted him as part of the family? Does he not have family of his own? Perhaps not, since in the flashback, he’d been the only kid without parents present.

Plus, there’s Park Jin Joo, whom I love! It looks like she’s going to be the token good friend of our female lead, but I’ll take what I can get, since I really enjoy Park Jin Joo, and want her on my screen as often as possible.

I’m also pleasantly surprised to see Roh Jeong Eui play NJ, Ung’s idol patron. I did enjoy her in 18 Again, and am not opposed to seeing how she does, in a different sort of role.

Also, Ji Ung’s PD friend is played by Jo Bok Rae, who was one of Park In Hwan’s sons in Navillera, whom I had a pretty big soft spot for. How fun, to have him on my screen in this, too!

What an enjoyable, sparkling hour of drama this turned out to be. I’m curious to know why Yeon Su’s showing up at Ung’s fancypants studio door. Has she figured out that he’s the elusive artist she’s looking for..? Whatever it is, all these shared memories and feelings are going to rear their inconvenient heads, aren’t they, now that they’re face to face again? Looks like it’s going to be fun times. 😁

*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!

You can find my Patreon page here, where episodes 2 through 6 notes are already available.  Just look for the tag “Our Beloved Summer” or click here.

Episode 7 notes will be out on Monday, 10 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!

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Eric Lancaster
Eric Lancaster
15 days ago

This show makes you laugh then, when you let your guard down, rips your heart out with the drama. I’m up to ep 10 and the quality has been strong so far. Just when it seems stuck in a rut, the writers through in some funny, then move the dramatic arc along. I hope they can keep this going until the end.

reaper
reaper
18 days ago

So I haven’t started this yet. I only saw snippets on YT and from what I saw their relationship seems awefully toxic? Or is it because they made the snippets to look like that?
Can somebody enlighten me?
If it is not the case I might try it even tho it has Kim Da-mi in it….

seankfletcher
seankfletcher(@seankfletcher)
18 days ago
Reply to  reaper

I would try to enlighten you, reaper, but I seemed to have lost my superpowers in that regard 😁 For the record, their relationship isn’t toxic, just “lost in translation.”

reaper
reaper
18 days ago
Reply to  seankfletcher

So it seems I was fooled by YT again…
Well I will trust you and at least put it on my list.
In case it turns out to be a toxic relationship I will visit you in your dreams :DD

seankfletcher
seankfletcher(@seankfletcher)
18 days ago
Reply to  reaper

At least my dreams will be interesting then 🤔 🤣😎💤

Dannii
Dannii
17 days ago
Reply to  reaper

I wouldn’t classify their relationship as toxic. Bickering, sometimes bitter, and very dysfunctional at times, yes, but not toxic. Even at their worst though, the show is so delightful.

reaper
reaper
17 days ago
Reply to  Dannii

Thanks for the info 😀

Trent
18 days ago

Yeah, I really love this show, and especially the ML and FL and how they play off each other. Choi Woo-sik and Kim Da-mi are so good in this.

And seriously, it’s really great to relive the episodes through KFG’s episode notes each time. Her breakdown and insights really enhance it.

seankfletcher
seankfletcher(@seankfletcher)
18 days ago

Ahhh, what’s not to like about this show! It is awesome so far, and the writing is so good, the acting delivers in spades and the director is hitting the right notes. It almost reminds me of those beloved summers of my own youth 😉