Tag Archives: Lee Byung Hun

Review: Squid Game

THE SHORT VERDICT:

A very compact, impactful little series, Squid Game is the show that you can’t help but check out, even if you’re typically not into the death game genre.

Show is very expensively and carefully produced, and is the kind of drama where, the more you dig, the more little gems you tend to find, in terms of hidden details and added layers of meaning. In my estimation, beyond Show’s shiny packaging, there are two key things that draw audiences in, namely, 1, the characters and their backstories, which are effective and engaging, and 2, the themes and ideas Show serves up, which tend to be deeply thought-provoking.

It lives up to the hype, in my opinion, and is worth a look, even if just to satisfy your curiosity.

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Dear kfangurl: Why do so many kdramas start strong but go downhill?

Linda writes:

After years of reading your reviews I decided to take the plunge and write for 2 reasons:

1. To tell you how much I enjoy your reviews and admire your work ethic. I’m a recently retired critical care nurse (an old white lady) and over the years have found so much joy in korean dramas and films. When I am contemplating what to watch next I turn to you. I’ve seen more dramas than I care to admit and I’ve read many varied reviews but you are the gold standard. On the rare occasion that I disagree with one of your reviews I am so shocked and sometimes delighted. I only wish I could become a Patron.

2. A question….Why so often in k dramas does the story/writing go downhill later in the drama. I’m noticing an increasing pattern with this. I’ve seen videos of table reads and it makes wonder…If they are indeed reading the entire script in that sitting do they not notice they are reading what I can only describe as foolishness? The most recent example of this was Bossam. I really loved this drama. I felt it was well written and reminded me of a good old-fashioned k drama but I feel like it eventually went off the rails. This may not be the best example but I’m sure you know what I’m trying to express. I wouldn’t send this as an Ask fangirl question at the risk of sounding whiny and stupid. Is there a logical explanation. Since I know little about the making of dramas I thought you may have insight.

Again, please know you bring fun and joy to this old lady and be proud of yourself.

If you ever need a place to stay in California, I have plenty of room and no weirdos!!

P.S. Loved your participation in the podcast!

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Flash Review: Keys To The Heart [Korean Movie]

I am on a roll, you guys. I had an inkling, from watching Show’s trailer, that today’s in-flight pick was going to pack a bit of a heart punch, but I had no idea just how much this movie would make me feel, once I hit play. By Show’s last stretch, I was gratefully serving up my heart on a plate, my emotions pulling in so many directions as I did so.

So. Good. <3

Also, I’m starting to suspect that it’s quite possible that any show featuring classical piano as a key theme will turn out to be a good one. I mean, first, Secret Love Affair, then Page Turner, and now this? I might have to make it a point to check out any show featuring classical piano, going forward, for reals.

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Flash Review: Noble, My Love

A lot of the time, I look for the full package when I’m choosing a drama to watch. Basically, a show that boasts an interesting story, is delivered by strong actors, and features an OTP that’s believable and shares great chemistry. If I get lovely music and gorgeous cinematography on top of that, all the better.

This.. is not one of those times.

After a physically and mentally exhausting several weeks, all I wanted – or could handle, really – was drama comfort snack food. Y’know, something light, easy, packaged in small bite-size servings, and that hits the right notes without requiring my brain to actually do any work.

Happily, Noble, My Love fit the bill nicely.

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Head Over Heels for: Kim Woo Bin

Many of you already know all about my fangirl love for Gong Yoo, and my pretty robust crush on Jang Hyuk. Those were the two big k-loves in my k-life for quite a nice long while, both of them occupying a sizable chunk of my fangirl heart and my fangirl mind.

And then one day – like a bolt out of the blue – Kim Woo Bin came and snuck up on me and now I’m officially head over heels in love with Woobie. ❤ I didn’t even see it coming, to be honest (sneaky Woobie).

So today I’m gonna tell y’all ALL about how I fell in love with Woobie.. Come squee, ogle & swoon with me!

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Review: Beautiful Days

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Old-school, classic kdrama of the romantic, melodramatic variety, circa 2001.

Although not quite as wildly popular as Winter Sonata or Autumn In My Heart, Beautiful Days is actually a pretty good watch when you’re in the mood for retro melo.

Yes, it’s angsty, but it’s not depressingly so.

Plus, our male lead is a very smoldery Lee Byung Hun oozing oodles of machismo. If you like your kdrama heroes of the manly man variety, you might want to check this out.

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What Makes Drama Crack Stay Fresh / Turn Stale?

DC1So today Stephanie posted on her blog Crazy for Kdrama a post titled Second-hand Crack. In it, she describes her experience re-watching Smile Dong Hae, and finding that it just wasn’t as cracktastic the second time around.

That really resonated with me, coz as some of you may know, I’ve been marathoning Beautiful Days for review, and that review’s been taking a while to actually get written.

The reason is pretty much the same as Stephanie’s experience with Smile Dong Hae. I’d loved Beautiful Days on my first watch, and had devoured it pretty quickly. Fast forward several years, and now that I’m watching it for the second time, I still find it pretty engaging, but it’s just not as cracktastic as I had first found it.

Which begs the question: What exactly makes drama crack stay fresh / turn stale?

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