“For CLOY, I would have pegged scenes stolen by second leads Seo Ji-hye and Kim Jung-hyun, but then it occurred to me that that might be a category unto itself – second leads that outshine the main leads. A discussion with the good and bad examples of second leads – ones we love and then ones that we hate – would be fun.”
..And I thought, why not?
So here I am, with a list of my favorite and least favorite second leads. I hope you guys enjoy. ❤️
If you didn’t already know, we’ve got a special series to kick off the new year! Guests posts, by patrons on Patreon, sharing their personal drama stories, mostly around the topic of “How did you get into dramas?” and “What does your first drama mean to you?” – with flexibility to go off on personal tangents, of course. 😁 Feel free to share your stories too, in the comments!
This guest series is MC‘s brainchild (thanks MC! 😘). You can check out the earlier posts in this series as follows: MC, Sean, Shahz & JJ. After today’s post, there will be four more guest posts by mystery guest writers, whose identities will be revealed when their various posts go live. Woot! 🥳
Today’s post is brought to you by Martina, whom, as you might remember from her year-end post, is a psychologist by training. I find that, because of Martina’s professional background, her perception and unpacking of characters and their trajectories tend to be extra interesting. Thanks for sharing your insights with us, Martina!
This month, we’re going to be treated to another series of guest posts, by mystery writers from the Patreon community. Woot! (Thank you so much, you guys. I love that you all are so up for this! ❤️)
This guest series is MC‘s brainchild, and is, essentially, a sharing of stories from the community, mostly around the topic of “How did you get into dramas?” and “What does your first drama mean to you?” – with flexibility to go off on personal tangents, of course. 😁 Feel free to share your stories too, in the comments!
We will be enjoying a total of 9 guest posts over the next few weeks (yay!!); I really hope you all enjoy.
I’m especially grateful to MC for thinking of this, and volunteering to write this post, because she’s got so much on her personal plate, with her job, and her baby too. Thank you so much, MC, for making time for this, for us!! LOVE YA. 😘😘
In response, j3ffc basically wanted to know which classic dramas I think drama fans should check out (which would demonstrate the shift in gaze over the years), and Trent heartily seconded the idea and expanded on it:
“The question I’ve been thinking about is along the lines of how do you think kdramas have evolved over the last couple decades? Do you see discernible or important trends in that time?
(Broadly considered: thematically, in treatment of tropes, genre or sub-genre expansion (or contraction), production values, stylistic changes, acting and\or casting type trends: it’s all fair game).
You touched on a bit of this in this Vogue interview, but I’d be very interested in a broader look, and I just don’t have the range of experience to even attempt a synthesis. You do, though. 😁”
So today I thought I’d talk about kdramas which I would consider iconic, over the years, and how kdramas have been evolving, in broad strokes.
Technically, someone did ask the questions – what makes it different than usual, is that that someone was representing VOGUE India, and it was for a collab of sorts, where I answered a bunch of questions over email, for a VOGUE India article!
Hasina Khatib (@thejoblessjourno on Instagram), who writes for VOGUE India, reached out to me a couple of weeks ago, and asked if I’d be interested to participate in an article that she was writing for VOGUE India. I said yes, and you can check out the article, where she quotes me selectively, here!
At the same time, there was a lot that I said, that didn’t make it into the final article, so with Hasina’s permission, I’m sharing the actual interview questions and answers here with you guys – because my gut tells me that this is just the sort of topic that you guys would enjoy digging into.
The only difference is that I’ve added screenshots and linked my reviews where relevant, to make this more reader-friendly. I hope you all enjoy! ❤️
My observations have been (and this may be a generalisation based on the 80 or so K-dramas I have watched) that most male second leads are presented in a way that engenders sympathy. So, by the time the series have ended we are actually rooting for them to find love!! I know that there are exceptions but they are a rare breed in drama land.
In contrast, most female second leads are presented in a more negative light – possibly a throwover to the ‘vamps’ of earlier times!
I know going into the reasons for such portrayals needs a lot of study of human society and the status of women and have probably been the subject of a lot of research! But my question is simple – Are there any dramas that present the second female leads in a positive light?
Hope you are well and staying safe! Your blogs continue to be my first port of call before I pick a new drama to watch so thank you!
I’m so, SO excited to announce this guest post, everyone! 😀
Today, our very own Jesse is taking the stage (page?), and he’ll be shedding light on some of the nuts and bolts of the workings of our beloved dramas.
This post was born of a comment that Jesse had written in response to Beez, breaking down some of the practical variables that contribute to (or detract from) the chemistry that we see on our screens.
I loved what he wrote, and asked if he’d be willing to expand that into a post for us, and he graciously said yes!
Granted, Jesse’s exposure has been in the US film industry and not in Korea, but from what I understand, the processes that he describes are also practiced in Korea, if not down to the minutiae, then in large part.
I personally found his post illuminating and very educational, so I hope you’ll enjoy it too!
..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. 😉
A dark horse of a show that took a tiny bit of getting used to, but eventually surprised me by sneaking under my skin to grab my heart in a big way.
Search: WWW truly is a rarity in Dramaland.
First of all, it’s women-centric and puts the spotlight on the relationships among our main female characters, which in itself is a big plus.
But even more surprising than that, is that while each of our 3 main ladies has her own loveline with a perfectly matched love interest, those romance arcs never take centerstage in our narrative, even at their most melty.
Instead, the romances are positioned as just one aspect of our women’s very full lives. Seriously, how refreshing and cool is that?
Thoughtfully written, solidly directed, and brimming with consummate performances by the cast, this is one drama that I won’t be forgetting anytime soon.