Might I spy with my little eye.. a drama that’s worth watching..?
I need help! I know my K-bloom isn’t totally off the rose but I feel as if it’s hanging on by only a couple of wilting petals. I’m not tired of Kdramas but I find I can’t easily decide what to watch these days. At this stage in the game, where my biases (actors that I watched in ANYthing they starred in next) are getting older so filling less leading roles, I find myself with less that I’m interested in watching unless the synopsis snags me with a unique subject matter or hobby or career/lifestyle that I’m interested in. So how do you (I’ve noticed you’ve become more selective) choose the shows that are worth your busy time?
For example, I see you reviewed My Unfamiliar Family. I haven’t read your review yet because 1) I never read reviews of shows I have no intention of watching and 2) I never read reviews beforehand of a show I intend to watch. So looking at the synopsis on AsianWiki for My Unfamiliar Family – sounds like a total snoozefest. And I learned to never rely on video teasers as they are totally random and can set me up for disappointment when a teaser is hilarious but the show turns out to be a drama and vice versa. So, how do you decide what’s up next to, not necessarily review, but to watch?
I like reading your witty and thoughtful musings on dramas and their fans. I would like to read your take on one of the most popular drama tropes, the anti-hero (or heroine). I admit that I am fascinated with conflicted characters because I think that inside each of them is hidden the possibility for redemption. And redemption and character growth are the bread and butter of good storytelling. So if and when you are able, please share your insights about what makes a good anti-hero and why do the drama fans like them.
Dear Kfangurl, Are supporting actors too funny to ever cast as leads? I keep waiting for my favorites – Park Jin Joo, Kim Seul Gi and my all time favorite, Kim Sung Oh to be part of an OTP or at least a single lead in their own dramas. I’ve seen all of them give snippets of really moving scenes so their acting talent is not in question. What gives?
And phl1rxd writes:
I would love to see an article on your favorite supporting actors|actresses. There are so many that pop up in our drama world all the time, and while they are not the leads, their work is great none-the-less.
Confession: this Dear kfangurl post wasn’t actually triggered by a Dear kfangurl question. It just made sense to group it with the other Dear kfangurl posts, coz that’s where the other lists on the blog live, heh.
BUT! This post was triggered by a conversation with my friend Jan on Twitter.
Basically, yesterday, Jan had remarked that she was looking for a Kim Ji Suk fix, and I’d suggested 20th Century Boy and Girl, in which he is the sweet, perfect boyfriend. Less than 24 hours later, Jan’s super happy with the drama suggestion, and her tweets are filled with happy spazz, and she’s also said that this was the rom-com she’d been looking for.
..Which got me thinking. With all the darker &/or heavier shows that Dramaland’s been serving up of late (like World of the Married, Graceful Friends, Flower of Evil and It’s Okay To Not Be Okay), as solid as these shows are, maybe some – or many? – of you guys might be looking for something lighter to make these dark pandemic days a little brighter.
Whenever I talk about kdramas with people who don’t watch them, they’re always like ‘why kdramas specifically?’ which I’ve never been able to answer that well, I’ve never really looked that deep into it, I just say that ‘I enjoy them more’.
So to phrase my question better, ‘What makes kdramas more appealing than western dramas?’ I don’t know if a lot of people can relate to this but ever since I got into kdramas, I honestly can’t watch anything else, I still watch some western shows but it’s not the same, I’m not as drawn in. I know that everyone has got their different reasons for why they prefer/enjoy kdramas but I would really like to hear your take on it, maybe I might able to understand more about why I do as well.
In the course of one of our chats scattered across the blog, where I was trying to think of dramas to recommend to Jesse, I’d suggested Romance Is A Bonus Book. He’d ultimately sounded quite happy with this suggestion and said that he would probably check it out soon, but, he’d also said this, about the first time he’d considered watching the show:
“I remember at the time that I came across the show in a search awhile back, I saw the word “success” (as in Cha Eun-ho is a successful author) and completely lost interest. I didn’t want to see successful characters! I wanted to see losers and average Joes, because that’s who I could relate to at the time. I wanted to see love interacting with unremarkable people so I could nod and say, “See, Jess – it happens. Just you wait…”
..And that made me realize that Dramaland’s been so focused on creating everygirls and everywomen to give the female viewers (traditionally a majority) someone to identify with, that it’s forgotten that our growing number of male viewers would also appreciate an everyman to identify with. So I set about coming up with a list of dramas featuring regular guys – instead of the usual chaebol prince, or requisite geeenius – as romantic leading men.
This post is thanks to MeriJ, who suggested the topic “K-Roms Your BF/Husband Might Be Willing To Watch With You.” I’ve also come across many drama fans who do sincerely wish that their significant others would share in their passion and watch dramas with them.
And since many of us are spending a lot more time at home these days because of the pandemic, and also because we recently had a great time helping Amethystwaves shortlist dramas to watch with her mom, I thought it’d be a good time to attempt to answer the question:
What are some dramas that the man in my life might be willing to watch with me?
I’ve been an active reader of yours since I got into K-Dramas, and I just have to say how helpful your reviews are to figure out whether a drama is worth my time or not. Your humor is very similar to mine, and I just love reading your in-depth explanations about what makes the dramas I love so squee-inducing. WITH THAT BEING SAID, we have a pressing problem at hand. I am a teenager, and because I am stuck at home with my parents and two brothers, we have been watching a lot of TV. My mom has expressed interest in watching a K-drama with me, and while I love her to death, I am not super inclined to have her watch me scream over a hot Korean man.
So, my question to you is: How can I enjoy a K-drama with my mom without it being weird? Also, what do you think are some good dramas to watch with the family?
I would love to watch one with her, and she’s not bad about watching kissing scenes and the like with us, but how can i do it without making it awkward? Anyways, sorry for unloading my familial insecurity onto you. Thank you for always being a reliable source for laughs, insight and good drama recommendations.
..Which I paraphrase to mean, OTPs that didn’t work for me / are not my favorite / are kinda blah. Coz worst is a strong word, heh.
Shout-out to Beez, for being the first to ask for this list!
Note: I fully expect that some of the OTPs that didn’t work for me, might be your actual favorite OTPs, and that’s perfectly fine, since this is all subjective anyway. But if you’d prefer to look away now, I won’t be offended, I promise. 😉