In case you missed it, we have yet another guest post series to enjoy, this month!
Unlike our previous guest post series, this one was kind of an accident, almost. I have Ele to thank for this one, because it was her innocent question about something, that made me casually talk about the off-the-top-of-my-head, hypothetical possibility of a guest post series on love, in the month of February, in honor of Valentine’s Day.
So many folks on Patreon responded enthusiastically to this idea, that I felt that it would be remiss of me, not to actually make it happen, come February.
And so, here we are. This month, we will enjoy a total of nine guest posts from patrons on Patreon, on the topic of love stories. The brief is pretty flexible, in that, each writer is free to go deep, or go wide, on anything around the topic of love stories in Dramaland.
Today’s post is brought to you by JJ, whom you probably know by now, is a ball of chaotic positive energy, and how has a particular penchant for rainbows, unicorns and puppies. Today, JJ shows us a slightly (just slightly!) more serious side, as she talks about a show that’s very close to her heart. Thank you for sharing, JJ!
I hope you guys enjoy!
Many, many, many thanks to KFG for this Love Series Post for February. 🥰
How awesome is KFG for giving us her stage once again??! Say it with me sooooo Awesome! 🤩🤩🤩 Isn’t this like three months in a row now that she has let us put our words on her blog? So super fun. 🥳 Say it with me soooooo Super Fun! 🥳🥳🥳 I think they have been awesome, and it’s been so much fun reading everyones different takes on Love in Kdramaland. 🥰
KFG – Thank you again for allowing me to put my words on your beautiful blog. I have had so much fun participating in these series wth everyone. As always, though, you make this whole blogging shindig look super easy, and now we all know differently. Well, at least I do. 🥰 감사합니다.
P.S. – Oh! Ops! Memory Cell is on a super long break today after being completely exhausted after the past three months of tireless work. So I would be remiss if I did not send a huge and special-shout out to Reaper for his assistance on this post 🥰. Thanks, Reaper!!!
OMO! Here I am again!
Wow, how did this happen? Did I say Yes again? Someone needs to have a chat with my Writer Cell!!!! Oh wait, did I hear a groan from the Audience? Is that someone who doesn’t love The King: Eternal Monarch (TKEM), wondering if I will talk about TKEM again and profess my love for TKEM? (Yes, Sean, I am talking to you 😤)
Well, everyone is in luck because THIS time, I am doing something different.
GASP! Change? Who likes Change? Oh! Do I even like change? Do you like Change? I mean we all love when new Kdramas drop and that’s change, right? But, THIS Change? Can everyone handle this Change that I am about to do? Can “I” handle this change I am about ready to do…..gulp.
Drum roll, please…..
Here we go folks…..
Is everyone ready for “Serious JJ”?
GASP! Yes, I said Serious JJ. GULP! GULP! Am I ready for Serious JJ??
Well, if you are NOT ready for Serious JJ, then go back and ready my Very Fun and Light Post from last month that talks ALL about The King: Eternal Monarch (Sean 😤) while listening to the ENTIRE OST for TKEM (Sean 😤)
All 1 hour and 52mins just for you Sean! 😝
If you are ready for Serious JJ, let’s continue please……
Oh! And, the inspiration for the tide change is, of course, because of Shahz. 😊 Hi Bestie!!! 🥰
Shahz’s post last month was so beautiful and vulnerable; she moved me so much. Make sure you go read her post, please. 🥰🥰 🥰
Shahz and I both took a mini hiatus from the Drama Exchange on Patreon right after Shahz completed a show I suggested to her to watch. Now, let me tell you folks, Shahz (and Reaper, maybe Sean, too, but he is in the penalty box at the moment 😝) will drop a show in a heartbeat.
I mean a heartbeat! I cannot tell you how many shows I have suggested to Shahz and either she already tried them long before and dropped them, OR she peeks at it for me (cuz that’s how awesome she is), and then says, “Not for Me” and drops them. 😂
It’s so funny to me because I hang onto Shows until the bitter end (yes, Something in the Rain, I am talking about you 😤). Reaper teasingly asked if I enjoyed Suffering. 🤔😂 I emphatically said “No”, I just keep hoping that the Show will magically get better AND I cannot stand not knowing an ending, even if I have to FF all the way to the end, missing everything in between. 😬
The other reason I hang on, is so many people put their time and effort into these shows, so I can stay til the closing credits, right? Of course, you have all the actors, but what about the writers, the director, the crew, the support staff; did I mention the crew who we never see? How many of them poured everything into these shows for us only to bail on them! 🤭🥰
Look at me totally digressing. 🤭
Can you tell it’s nerves as we get closer to Serious JJ??? 🥴
Back to Shahz! 🥰
Soooooo, I suggested to Shahz to watch a show called Just Between Lovers (just so you know, y’all, I found Lee Junho “first” last year, waaaaay before Red Shirtless Craze on Patreon. Well, ok KFG found him first because she wrote a review about Just Between Lovers, but details. Whatever. 😝), and I had so much trepidation if Shahz would like this little gem.
Ok, I was completely freaking out if Just Between Lovers would work for my Serial Dropper Bestie. 😬😬😬
We have a track record here and I am batting 0 for 1,000 (total hyperbole more like 10, but what is a few zeroes amongst friends? 🧐) with show recommendations to Shahz. 😭
And GUESS WHAT FOLKS??!?!?
Shahz LOVED It! Flat out loved it and……She Loved It. 🥰 Now I am 1 for 1,000. Whew! Just another 1,000 until I find another Show for Shahz. 😳
On the Drama Exchange on Patreon, I said to Shahz that I wanted to share some more thoughts on Just Between Lovers and why I love the show so much, and I promised I would share them. And then, we went into Mini Hiatus. Nice trick, right? Way to get out of that one 😂
So, Shahz, this post is for you my Bestie! 🥰 Well, that’s of course if you don’t drop it half way through or sooner. 😂😂😂 In that case, it’s for everyone else. 🤗
Ok, Folks, ready for Serious JJ? Ready? Here we go!
Hey Shahz –
I told you I wanted to share more thoughts on Just Between Lovers and why I love this Show so much, then we both went on hiatus. 😂😂😂😂😂
I have been putting this all together in my head ever since then, and I have to tell you, putting down how I felt into words has been a tough task for me, as the show nestled down deep in my heart, and.. pulling up all those emotions and reasons, do I really want to open those boxes? 🤭
Let me start at the beginning (as a complete stalling tactic of course) of how I found Just Between Lovers. 🥰
I had been watching lots of Kdramas at breakneck speed (I don’t think I have another gear when it comes to Kdramas, 😂) and when a couple of shows ruined me with their tragic endings, I decided to search “kdrama happy endings” and found lots of other people have done this same search. Sweet! I am NOT alone in wanting Unicorns, Puppies and Rainbows, whew! (Now, lots of people might drop off when I add Dragons to the list, but that’s besides the point. 😇 )
I found an interesting title called Just Between Lovers or did I find the Show under the title Rain or Shine? Yes, yes, yes, I know. It’s the same translated title, but I think I found it as Rain or Shine, then got confused with the Just Between Lovers title, which, by the way, I think is a much better title. ARGH! Memory Cell on unscheduled Break AGAIN! Writer Cell is NOT happy, but we will work with it, since Memory Cell has been off on a special project.
Moving quickly along here from Digression Lane, I looked up Just Between Lovers and read the description, and my first reaction was, honestly, I was a little appalled. Ok, I was pretty appalled.
It’s not my favorite thing to watch shows built around actual tragic events. Usually, they are done in a way to highlight and use the tragedy for pure entertainment purposes. Some shows and movies get it right, such as the movie The Impossible. Amazing move if you have not seen it yet. Tough, tough, tough movie though.
For some reason though, I wanted to see how a Kdrama dealt with this subject. So, I looked up again if Just Between Lovers had a happy ending, or I would be so out, for so, so, so many reasons.
And what did I find??? Of course, KFG’s Fan Girl Verdict on JBL. And that’s my KFG origin story. 🤩 Well, that’s the one I remember and works well here, dontcha think? 🤗😂😇
[Serious Serious Serious SPOILER ALERT]
*If you know me from my other posts or from Patreon, you know what type of ending I prefer. So, if you have not seen the show, Stop Here and I hope you enjoyed my introduction and stalling techniques and pick back up at the closing, please!!!
Ops, sorry Shahz, this is for you and I digressed and started talking to the audience. It’s just you and me here, right? 🤭🤔🧐😂
So, Shahz, I started the Show and guess what sucked me right in? Your guess would be music, right?
Well, this time the Show did a complete cold open; no music and no opening credits. So here is an example of the exception I mentioned that sometimes happens to me where music does not play a role. The absence of music for me, was even more engaging, and I am so glad they made this choice to have no opening credits with music. It lends itself to the seriousness of the matter the show wanted to share, I think.
Luckily though, they did introduce music, and as usual, the music pulled me in and never let me go.
I swear the first eight episodes just felt as if I was in one long episode. I could not find a place to take a break. I have now seen this Show four times and this happens. Each. And. Every. Time. I think I will peek at the show, and next thing I know, I have watched eight episodes in a row. 😬
Here is my favorite track from the Show and the singer Elaine has been featured on several different OST such as Search WWW and My Holo Love and many more. Make sure to check out her music here please, if you are not familiar with her already 🥰
Elaine – https://www.youtube.com/c/jedoesall
Now for my favorite track off the Just Between Lovers OST 🥰
Elaine – Just Between Lovers Title (그냥 사랑하는 사이) Just Between Lovers/Rain Or Shine OST Special Track 🥰 🥰 🥰 🥰 🥰 🥰
Same Song As Above, but with scenes from the show. Total Spoilers. Total.
*Thanks, Reaper for finding this one for me. 🥰
[Making Film] 그냥 사랑하는 사이(Just Between Lovers) OST Part.6 준호(JUNHO) – 어떤 말이 필요하니
Special Alert – Martina & KFG: this is for you both. 🥰 p.s. You are welcome. 🤩
Full Song with Major Spoilers 🥰 I mean Major Major Major Spoilers
[Official MV] 그냥 사랑하는 사이(Just Between Lovers) OST Part.6 준호(JUNHO) – 어떤 말이 필요하니
[Full Album] Just Between Lovers OST / Rain or Shine OST / 그냥 사랑하는 사이 OST (OST & Bgm)
OK, enough stalling.
Well. Actually, I can do lots more, but sometimes you gotta know your audience 😇
Here is why I love Just Between Lovers so much, Shahz. I think it’s a beautiful story on Grief, Love, Healing, and Continuing on with Life even though your life has been forever changed.
How often do we really talk about grief and healing? Maybe some do this better than others? Maybe some cultures do this better than others?
Sure, we talk about Love and have lots of rom-coms and melodramas about love. But how many are really about Grief, and what it takes to move through Grief and heal?
They might be out there in the Kdramaland, but this was my first exposure to a Kdrama dealing with a story specifically around Grief and Tragedy, and not just for pure entertainment purposes or emotional manipulation.
Grieving is so personal and private, and so different for each individual person and yet, to really move through grief and heal, and take that next step forward in life after a loss – Do we not each have family and/or friends who help us, or guide us to be brave enough to find our footing to get back into Life?
With a simple word or long conversation, or a quiet meal, or multiple conversations and multiples meals, or a walk in the park, or, or, or, or.. So many simple ways for those around us to help us during our difficult times, if we let them.
And here we have a Show that tackles head on Grief & Loss in its many forms.
Parents losing a child, a mother losing her child, a father losing his child, a young man losing his father, a young man losing his childhood dream, a young man losing his grandmother, a young woman shouldering so much guilt for losing her sister, a man losing his father to suicide.
A man losing his girlfriend because she just could not stand by his side during his grief, a woman losing the man she loves because she chose family over him, a mother losing herself in alcohol, a father turning inwards to grieve alone, and a young woman keeping it all in quietly, as she tries to pick up the pieces, as her family goes from four to three, and slowly falls apart as they all change, understandably, after the tragedy.
And while the show deals with many forms of Grief, the show also delves into Love and the many forms of Love.
Parents love for a child; a mother’s love for a child; a father’s love for a child; a child’s love for their parents; a man’s unrequited love for a woman; new love forming; found brothers’ love for one another; a mother taking in another child when she has one; a grandmother loving a child as if he was her own; love of family.
Friends lovingly standing by their friends during the aftermath of a tragedy; a sister’s love for her brother; a woman who had given up on love believing in love again; a man giving up what he really loves to do, for love of his family.
Note to Audience – Wow, this really turned into a heavy post didn’t it? Well, I just love this show so much and thought they did such a great job tackling such a heavy topic, I wanted to give as much love to this show as possible. So hang in there, everyone, we will get to the end…eventually. 🥰
And Shahz, here is the thing with Just Between Lovers. I never felt emotionally manipulated by the Show, which really surprised me.
I thought that would happen, with the Show built around the aftermath of a mall collapse. The flashbacks all seemed appropriate, and fit the narrative of our two main leads and the story the show wanted to tell.
Nothing felt gratuitous in those flashbacks, and since we know they survive, maybe the show was easier to watch? And their emotional journeys felt real. All the blows life dealt them after the tragedy, felt real, too.
When I initially watched the show, I’d tried to look it up, to see if this show was based on a real-life event, and could not find anything. After Uyen mentioned that fact in her recent post, I finally found the information here. Thanks, Uyen. 🥰
What I especially loved is that the Show not only focused on the journey of our main cast after the tragedy, the Show also included the loved ones left behind, of those that were lost in the mall collapse.
The Show included our FL and ML talking to the loved ones left behind in the aftermath, as they set out to rebuild a new memorial. I thought the Show did that so deftly and with such thoughtfulness and grace, as if these were real people.
My favorite scene is when our two leads go to the final surviving family member, who is the mother of the teenaged boyfriend of our teenaged FL, who was lost in the collapse, played by Jo Kyung Sook.
I thought the Show did a brilliant job putting that whole sequence together, when our FL pulls out her teenage boyfriend’s cell phone, and then we cannot hear their conversation anymore as the music plays over them.
The emotion in that scene was so intense. I just kept thinking, this is so very special and I am glad I am not hearing the words. I just wanted to hug them all in that moment.
Amazing job by these three actors in that scene Won Jin A, Lee Jun Ho, and Jo Kyung Sook.
Both our leads have several scenes where they display some intense emotions as they move through their journey of grief and healing.
Both do an exquisite job, that each one feels so real and raw to me.
One special scene that consistently stays with me is when Lee Junho screams, “Isn’t this too much?”
How often do we see that questioning and anger in movies or shows? We generally see, in shows and movies, people portrayed as bravely and quietly dealing with all the blows that life deals them.
I love that he just in that moment yells out, “Isn’t this too much?,” as he collapses to the ground. Another fine raw moment from this Show.
Ok, I think it’s best to know..
..when to wrap things up since we have an audience this time, instead of being in our little happy bubble over on Patreon.
Thanks Bestie, for watching Just Between Lovers ‘til the end, instead of dropping it in a heartbeat and finding another Show. Maybe in six months, I’ll find another Show that sticks for you. 😬😝😂😇 🥰
✨ ✨ ✨ Sending you the Galaxy ✨ ✨ ✨