So.. I’m not into dystopian stories per se (especially after having been massively underwhelmed by the likes of Sisyphus: The Myth 👀), which makes me think that I’m not part of Show’s target audience.
But, I do have a fondness for Kim Woo Bin, and Show’s promotional materials have been allll about Kim Woo Bin, which makes me think that maybe I’m part of Show’s target audience after all, heh.
I’ll say that that promotional tactic worked, because it got me to watch the show, and here I am, writing this review, having finished it.
That said, I do think lens adjustments are important for this one, which I’ll talk about in a bit.
Also, I do think that your mileage is likely to vary, depending on how well those lens adjustments work for you, and how much of a connoisseur you are, of dystopian fare (I am far from being one, for comparison 😅).
Ok, so I know this is a controversial drop, because by and large, drama fans seem to love this show. Which is why I’d like to state upfront, that my decision to drop this one, has nothing to do with Show’s quality, per se.
In fact, I can see why lots of people would enjoy this one. I, however, only managed to watch one episode of this one, before eventually making the decision to call it quits.
It’s just.. not for me, personally. This is absolutely a case of, “It’s not you, Show. It’s me.” 😅
Instead, this one is a thoughtful and sensitive portrayal of personal journey; the ups and downs of life, the struggle to follow your heart, the mistakes you make and their consequences, as well as the growth that you gain, from those mistakes.
Some minor plotlines didn’t work as well for me, but by and large, I really appreciated the way Show fleshed out its characters. Seo Kang Joon and Esom are excellent as our leads, and made their characters feel like real, living, breathing people.
As a bonus, the music is really quite lovely in this, and makes the watch that much more immersive.
The experience of watching this show is similar to what I imagine it would be like, to be on an exceptional winning streak in your favorite computer game: you are in disbelief as you clear round after round, trouncing the system in ways that you didn’t think possible.
You start to wonder if you will – gasp! – actually be able to pull off a perfect game – a feat that is only rumored to be possible. You make it to the final rounds – OMG am I almost there?! – ..only for the system to beat you in the end, after all. *sadface*
And then you console yourself that, yes, you didn’t make it all the way through this time, but you still did really well – and maybe, just maybe, you’ll make it next time.
Sigh. That’s how I feel about this show, you guys. There was so much to love in this one, and it felt so surprisingly fresh in so many ways, that I thought we might actually have a thoroughly amazing drama on our hands.
Alas, Show wobbled a fair bit in its final episodes, to my eyes. I’m disappointed about that, but just like in the analogy of the computer game, I’m consoling myself that being awesome for 14 episodes is still head and shoulders above most other dramas. Right?
Starkly beautiful yet disturbingly dark, White Christmas explores the issue of nature vs. nurture in relation to the human condition.
How much of one’s fruit is a result of qualities inherent in one’s seed, and how much of it is due to how and with what you water that seed? Throughout its 8 episodes, this psychological thriller relentlessly asks the question, “Are monsters born or made?”
Depending on your preferred answer to that question, your mileage may vary with this one.