Tag Archives: 2020

Review: 18 Again

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Don’t let this show’s silly, farcical trappings fool you; this one has so much heart that it simply never runs out of feels. Fatherly love, familial love, romantic love and even platonic love; they all get their day in the sun in this drama world, and the result is a deeply heartwarming watch that I never wanted to end. This show made my heart so, so full, and I happily drowned in all of the feels.

Our cast is very strong, but I do sincerely think that this would’ve been a different show without Lee Do Hyun. He delivers such a heartfelt performance, with such a distinct sense of gravitas, that I am completely blown away. The heart-eyes that I’ve grown for Lee Do Hyun are completely involuntary, and likely permanent. 😍

Unreservedly recommend.

Continue reading

Flash Review: Traces Of Love [Drama Special]

If you’re on the market for a quick spot of drama without more than a one-hour commitment, and if you enjoy the more realistic modern take on love and romance (vs. the popular Oppa-Candy kdrama tales that lean more urban legend), this little drama special could work for you.

Character vibe-wise, this also reminds me of 2018 Drama Special You Drive Me Crazy, so if you enjoyed that, I think there’s a good chance you’d like this one too.

PS: At MC‘s suggestion, I’ve also created a handy-dandy index of short drama things that I’ve reviewed, which you can check out here. This basically covers web dramas, drama specials, movies, and short dramas (which I’ve decided to define as dramas which are 10 episodes or less). I hope you guys find it useful! ❤️

Continue reading

Year In Review: 2020

What a surreal year 2020 has turned out to be, amiright?

It’s been the year of surprises and curveballs, and I think it’s safe to say that none of us has been unaffected by the events of 2020. As a small silver lining, with lockdowns taking place around the world, and Netflix promoting Asian dramas with unflagging enthusiasm, we’ve welcomed many new drama fans into our midst.

And, our dramas have not let us down. I mean, yes, there’ve been duds, but that’s true every year anyway, yes? 😉 I’m just happy that Dramaland has found a way to continue production while ensuring the safety of cast and crew, coz I know I’m not alone when I say that dramas have helped make 2020 better.

Now, let’s take stock of my drama year in 2020, before 2021 comes upon us!

Continue reading

Flash Review: Marry Me! [Japan]

If you’d like a quick spot of drama that’s warm, fuzzy and doesn’t require a big investment of drama hours, but still provides that sense of continuity that dramas offer, this charming little J-drama might just do the trick.

At just 10 episodes of less than 25 minutes each, this show is perfect for squeezing in an episode or two, when you have only a small pocket of time to spare, but still want to indulge in some drama feels.

Quite perfect for the festive season, yes?

Continue reading

Review: Someday Or One Day [Taiwan]

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Smartly written, deftly executed, and wonderfully acted, Someday Or One Day is a gem of a show that feels like it’s head and shoulders above its peers. Intricate and clever, yet full of emotional heft, Show is a rare creature that does an excellent and consistent job of engaging both the mind and the heart.

Our main cast is strong and unfailingly delivers well-rounded, faceted performances, but the stand-out for me is male lead Greg Hsu, who crept under my skin and stole my heart when I wasn’t looking.

Altogether fantastic, and well worth the watch.

Continue reading

Flash Review: A Jaunt [Drama Special]

As promised, I’ve been poking around a little more in short-form dramas, to bring you guys quick reviews on some of your drama options, when you don’t have a lot of time to spare.

Beyond web dramas, I’ve found myself gravitating towards drama specials for my quick drama fixes. The great thing about drama specials is that they tend to offer more emotional resonance and narrative heft than the average web drama, despite also have shorter running times than regular dramas. At least part of the reason, I think, is that web dramas tend to cast mostly rookie actors, while drama specials often boast a cast that’s made up of more experienced actors.

I ended up really liking this particular drama special, and I’d say if you have an hour and 4 minutes to spare, this one is well worth a look.

Continue reading

Guest Post: The School Nurse Files [An Alternative Lens]

I’m so pleased to announce this guest post today, you guys!

As promised, friend of the blog Dame Holly (also known around the interwebs as Lee Tennant), who has a seriously impressive affinity with metaphors, is back to share her thoughts and insights on the very quirky, very different The School Nurse Files. I LOVED reading her thoughts on this show; I now literally feel like I have brand new eyes with which to appreciate Show’s unique appeal. I hope you guys enjoy her post as much as I do!

You can find Dame Holly at her blog Invisible Pink Dragon, or at her Dramabeans fanwall.

PS: You might also like her previous guest post, where she shares insights on 2018’s Greasy Melo. You can check it out here.

~kfangurl

Continue reading

Review: Do You Like Brahms?

THE SHORT VERDICT:

A restrained, loving study of music, characters, and their relationships, Do You Like Brahms? boasts characters that are carefully and tenderly drawn, relationships that feel patiently and organically grown, and a narrative filled with music-related touches that demonstrate an understanding of and empathy for musicians.

Our cast is very solid all-around, with each actor bringing their character to life in a way that feels real and believable. I loved extra, our sweet, bashful, very well-matched OTP, played by Kim Min Jae and Park Eun Bin. Not only is their romance handled thoughtfully, their individual journeys as musicians and as people, are teased out carefully too.

A very enjoyable ride, particularly if you identify as an introvert &/or a musician.

Continue reading

Review: Record Of Youth

THE SHORT VERDICT:

The story feels kinda meandering, and Show’s tone vibes Scripted Hollywood Rom-com rather than earthy slice-of-life drama, which is a decidedly rather odd combination. Overall, everything in this show comes together in a way that feels a touch uneven, but if you love Park Bo Gum, Show is a solid way to get a nice dose of Bogummy, because this is basically all a showcase for him and him alone. Everything and everyone else just happens to be there as varying levels of set dressing.

With the right lens, Show is a pleasant enough watch, even though it never grabs me in the way that I want it to.

Continue reading

Flash Review: Love Is Sweet [China]

It’s been 5 years since I became inspired by Chinese epic Nirvana In Fire, to put more C-dramas on my drama plate, and I think I’m finally coming to terms with the fact that modern C-dramas require their own specific lens.

My current conclusion is that a lot – not all, but most – of the C-dramas with modern settings (vs. period dramas) aren’t actually designed to be taken seriously. At least, I find that this perspective helps me the most, when it comes to maximizing my enjoyment of a C-romcom.

And this particular C-romcom is.. more palatable than average, I think.

Continue reading