The Fangirl Verdict

Completely biased reviews and fangirling


143 Comments

Dear kfangurl: What are some dramas with excellent OTPs?

Reka writes:

Dear kfangurl,

thank you very much for your answer to my previous question, the one about strong and nuanced women 😀 I already started watching “The Story of Minglan’ and I am loving it so much! (Btw it’s also one of my first C-dramas, so thank you for the new experience!)

This time too, I have a similar question about couples. I love romance and I’ll never have enough of it, but many times it seems to me that the characters end up together just because it’s a “plot requirement” and because we expect them to get together. So there may be no chemistry at all, or plot holes about their coming together, things can feel clichéd and may lack of depth.

I read your review of “Crash landing on you” and since you appreciated the OTP, I went to watch the show and yes! The OTP was marvellous! They were very believable and engaging. Thus I ask for your advice once again xD

Can you recommend me some dramas with believable couples and good chemistry?

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228 Comments

Review: Crash Landing On You

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Show really is everything that many of us have come to love in kdrama. It’s gorgeous to look at, our actors are pretty darn capable all-around, our characters are mostly endearing, there’s amped-up, epic romance to be had between an OTP that shares solid, sparky chemistry, and, well, Hyun Bin is appealing in this, to a rather staggering degree. Flail. As a bonus, Show possesses a cheeky sense of humor around drama tropes, even as it revels in them. In addition, the glimpse into North Korean life feels fresh and novel as well, and is a major highlight.

On the downside, there’s a bit of drag in the mid-to-late episodes, which is compounded by rather heavy-handed narrative angst, and Show’s long episodes. That can feel a bit or a lot hard-going, depending on your appetite for angst.

Overall, though, Show does a great job bringing the feels, and is well worth the watch.

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68 Comments

Dear kfangurl: Which dramas have strong, interesting female characters?

Reka writes:

Dear kfangurl,
I love you blog! Your reviews are very interesting!
I started watching kdramas last year, and haven’t stopped since xD
I was wondering, can you recommend me any kdramas with good, compelling, interesting female characters? Because I find this aspect kind of lacking D:

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68 Comments

Dear kfangurl: What makes a kdrama addictively re-watchable?

Healer: so cracky, for so many reasons.

shorterthanparkboyoung writes:

Dear kfangurl, what makes a kdrama addicting enough that I want to rewatch at least 10 times?
I’m kinda in the middle of a tough transition period at the moment and I found myself going back to rewatching all my favourite dramas – Healer, My Love From Another Star, Because This Is My First Life, Fight For My Way and Suspicious Partner, but with the FF button when it came to the “evil chaebol” or “bad guy” bits. But when I decided to try a drama that I hadn’t watched but was on my list, I kept dropping them half way. What is it in the above dramas, which I believe you loved as well after reading your reviews (which were amazing btw), or any general drama that makes me come back to these again and again?

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76 Comments

Flash Review: In Time With You [Taiwan]

Sometimes an oldie really is a goodie, my friends.

In Time With You had been recommended to me by several of you, and I’d dutifully put it on my list with the best of intentions, but as you might have guessed, I kept putting off actually checking it out, because there was always something newer and shinier to watch.

So what was the catalyst that finally drew me into watching this 2011 modern classic?

Well. My interest was first kindled not too ago, when my friend DDee started spazzing about this show on Twitter, as she embarked on her personal first watch of it. That made me bump this show up my list by a lot, in my head. But THEN, she finished the show, and promptly announced on Twitter that this show had officially unseated Coffee Prince from the #1 drama spot in her heart. Woah. That’s a BIG statement, coz DDee loves Coffee Prince, and so do I. I just couldn’t not watch it now, could I?

And now that I’ve finished my watch, let me just say, THANK YOU, dear DDee.. this truly was a gem of a drama. If not for your wholehearted, enthusiastic spazzing, I might’ve never gotten around to checking this out, and that would’ve been such a pity. ❤

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70 Comments

Review: Coffee Prince

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Fun, breezy, and so heartfelt, that it’s still considered a classic in Dramaland today.

There are lot of things to love about this show: a drama world that feels real and lived-in; leads with crackling, warm chemistry whether they’re bickering, stealing wistful glances at each other, or getting up-close-and-personal touchy-feely; an excellent ensemble cast that all feel like they belong in their characters’ skins; a well-executed OST. On the downside, some folks find the humor a little gross, so fair warning, I guess? I personally don’t enjoy gross humor, but I didn’t find the humor in this much of a deterrent, to be honest.

The ending can feel a little underwhelming in spots, but overall, this one is well worth a long-term spot in your drama-loving heart.

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14 Comments

Review: Heart To Heart

THE SHORT VERDICT:

An understated, quiet little drama that started as a slow burn for me, but eventually got under my skin.

The writing’s a little patchy in spots, but the immersive, indie-flavored atmosphere, together with well-delivered characters, more than make up for weaknesses in the writing. Leads Choi Kang Hee and Chun Jung Myung both turn in excellent performances, and second leads Lee Jae Yoon and Ahn So Hee are nothing to sniff at either.

A warm and ultimately enjoyable watch.

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41 Comments

Dropped: I Miss You

To be honest, I didn’t expect to write about I Miss You. After all, the drama’s been over for a while, and it’s been literally months since I dropped it.

But my dear friend Michele requested this post, and since I basically bailed on her when we’d agreed to watch this drama together, I feel like I owe it to her, y’know?

Now, I like to think of myself as a pretty decent friend. And I honestly *pinky swear!* thought that since we’d be watching this together, that my commitment to her, combined with her encouragement, would be enough to keep me on this boat through to the very end.

Uh. That so didn’t happen.

After 14 episodes, I just could not bring myself to watch another hour of this drama, and I bailed, leaving poor Michele to soldier on without me (I’m still sorry, Michele! And, I still won’t watch this show! 😛 ).

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20 Comments

Pocketful of Sunshine!

Good mornin’, Sunshine!

You might’ve seen the Sunshine Award making its rounds in the k-blogosphere lately. Well, today it’s my turn to join the sunshiny fun!

But first of all, let’s get some context. (You guys know how much I love my context!)

I did a bit of poking around, and found that the Sunshine Award is given to bloggers who “positively and creatively inspire others in the blogosphere.”

D’aw~ That’s so nice, isn’t it?

Thanks to Snow of The Drama Corner for nominating me as a positive inspiration!

Now, let’s get down to business, shall we?

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42 Comments

Pure Pretty: A Gong Yoo Birthday Tribute

It’s Gong Yoo’s birthday today, everyone!! And man, do I have the perfect present for him!

But first, some context.

Today’s post is actually inspired by resident sweetheart on the blog Evez. Yesterday, over in our Gong Yoo Squee Fest group on Facebook, Evez came up with the idea that we could each prepare a little something to post in the group today, in honor of Gong Yoo’s birthday. I thought it was a great idea and did a quick bit of photo-editing to prepare my little something to share with the group (I’ll tell you about that later).

And then, just an hour or so later, in another Facebook conversation, Evez happened to mention that she felt my posts have come a long way since I first started the blog, meaning, they’re now more robust than the shorter posts I used to do. (Aw. ❤ Didn’t I say Evez is a sweetheart?)

Well, that comment really got me thinking.

To be honest, I’d always felt a bit bad coz my k-love post for Gong Yoo is shorter and skimpier than my more recent k-love posts. And it’s not even coz I love him less, or think he’s any less awesome. I just posted about him first, simply coz he was my favorite. What injustice is this, right, that one of my favorites would end up with the skimpiest post? It just didn’t feel right. And it’s been niggling at me for quite a while now.

So then my brain put two and two together (or in this case, one and one, heh), and I hit on the idea of doing a proper, full-on post for Gong Yoo, in honor of his birthday. Wheee~!

Are you ready for your present, Gong Yoo-sshi? Coz I’m ready to make it allll up to ya.

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