The Fangirl Verdict

Completely biased reviews and fangirling


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Flash Review: My ID is Gangnam Beauty

Not too long ago, lots of people on my Twitter feed were going gaga over Meteor Garden 2018, and so I dipped my toes in too, out of curiosity (yes, despite stating firmly that I had had my fill of the story via the J- and K-versions). I really liked the first episode, but found myself losing interest in the next few episodes, so much so that I ended up dropping out early, after just 4 episodes.

BUT! Plot twist!

I found similar tsundere-male-lead-campus-romance crack in My ID is Gangnam Beauty instead. This kinda-sorta gave me the addictive feels I once had over Boys Over Flowers many, many moons ago (ironically, I can’t bear to watch BOF now), but I liked this one better, and slurped up the first 10+ episodes back-to-back. Woah, indeed.

Yes, there are caveats, but they aren’t dissimilar to the ones you’d need to make for Meteor Garden 2018 too, so – fair play? 😉

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Review: My Mister [My Ahjussi]

THE SHORT VERDICT:

This show is like its titular protagonist; both start out quiet, gloomy and unassuming, but over the course of 16 episodes, both reveal themselves to be beautiful, moving heroes who show us the power of kindness, and the grace of humanity.

Assured writing, tender directing, and outstanding performances from the cast all come together to make My Mister an absorbing watch that feels organic, real and raw. The OST, which is delicate, thoughtful, and ethereal in turn, is meticulously crafted and applied, and effectively lifts the watch to another level.

Dark and beautiful. And at the same time, warm and beautiful. A must-see.

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Flash Review: My Husband Oh Jak Doo [My Husband, Mr. Oh]

Every so often, I like to pop a weekend drama on my drama plate, because the weekenders tend to lean simpler (though that’s not always the case), and those simpler dramas tend to make good drama nightcaps. Usually, they’re easy on the brain, aren’t so intense that they’d keep me up, but just interesting enough to make me want to keep on watching. The only downside is, most weekenders clock in at 50 episodes on average – a major deterrent if you’ve got limited drama hours to spend.

So when My Husband Oh Jak Doo showed up, I thought this fit the drama nightcap bill perfectly. Not only did it seem to fit the weekend drama simple sort of type, it also starred a pair of leads I liked individually, and it clocked in at only 24 episodes instead of 50. Pretty much a no-brainer win, yes?

..well, no, not really. This one ended up being better in concept than in execution, unfortunately, and I found myself dragging my feet to the finish line. Darn my completist streak for rearing its untimely head.

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Flash Review: Moonshine And Valentine [The Love Knot: His Excellency’s First Love] [China]

Remember about 2 months ago when I wrote about my misadventures with Chinese drama Across The Ocean To See You? I sat through all 44 episodes of that show, against my better judgment, and lived to regret it.

This.. is kinda another one of those times, my friends. Sigh. I watched all of Moonshine And Valentine, and now with 20/20 hindsight, I’m sorry to say that I don’t think it was a good decision after all. I mostly didn’t have a good time with this one either, unfortunately.

On the upside, this one was 25 episodes instead of 44..? 😛

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Flash Review: Mix [Mixed Doubles] [Japanese Movie]

Because today’s in-flight offerings leaned mostly dark, with most of the Korean movies that I hadn’t seen having to do with death, murder and such (eep), I found myself giving Japanese movie Mix (also known as Mixed Doubles) a whirl. I’m admittedly not much interested in table tennis, but I do have a fondness for Aragaki Yui after loving her in adorable J-drama We Married As A Job. Plus, an uplifting movie didn’t sound like a bad thing – even if the medium was a sport that I had little interest in.

Even though it did take me a while to get into this one, and even though our story ran a fairly predictable course, I must say that by the end, I did finish the movie with a smile on my face, and thoughts swirling in my head. I even pulled out my laptop to capture said thoughts, right here on the plane.

That’s.. not too bad, wouldn’cha say? 😉

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180 Comments

Review: Money Flower

THE SHORT VERDICT:

Now this is revenge melo done right.

Interesting characters brought to life by excellent actors; a compelling backstory; great pacing; assured handling; immersive, consuming music. All of these elements come together to make Money Flower an addictive, cracktastic journey, from start to finish. Show stays gripping through to its final stretch, and even resolves its revenge story in a satisfying manner. That’s impressive stuff all-around, which makes it easy to forgive Show its few flaws.

Also, Jang Hyuk is Prowling Panther levels of superb in this. Flail.

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Dropped: My Mr. Mermaid [China]

This is one of those times when a show isn’t bad per se, but just isn’t working for me personally.

In fact, with the glowing reactions and high scores that most viewers were giving this show on both Viki and MyDramaList, I had gone into this one with cheerful expectations of enjoying it as much as everyone else.

Alas, ’twas not to be. Just 7 episodes in, I find myself ready to drop this one.

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Flash Review: My Little Lover [Japan]

Thanks to my recent kdrama rut, I’ve been poking around more actively to explore new and different drama pastures, and I’m happy to report that my adventures have turned out some very positive viewing experiences.

I promise that I’ll be back soon with more kdrama reviews (I’m still watching ’em, just in fewer numbers), but in the meantime, here’s a quick little review on a quiet little charmer of a Jdrama that I probably would’ve never stumbled upon, if not for my kdrama rut.

(Silver linings to the rescue once again, heh.)

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Flash Review: My Tomorrow, Your Yesterday [Japanese Movie]

It looks like my in-flight entertainment adventures are becoming a bit of a series. (Does 2 posts in a row – written on 2 flights in a row – count as a series?)

Today, once again, I picked a movie on a whim (the food was a teensy bit better this flight than the last – emphasis on teensy), and liked it enough to write it a review right away while still in the air.

Ok, maybe that’s a bit of an understatement.

It’s more like I innocently signed up for what I thought would be a sweet, slice-of-life romance with a possible time-traveling twist, and ended up feeling like I was sucker-punched into serving up my heart to these characters on a plate. In a good way.

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Flash Review: Midnight Diner

When Real Life eats up my available drama hours, one of my go-to alternatives is the web drama. Most often, that translates into a fluffy, simplified version of some kind of rom-com. And that can work quite nicely, too. Noble, My Love and Go Ho’s Starry Night are two little web dramas that I found very enjoyable indeed.

Sometimes, though, I want something that isn’t a fluffy, simplified rom-com. Sometimes – especially if I’m feeling physically or mentally worn out – I want the warmth of a family drama, but without the commitment. This little show turned out to be quite the perfect fit for that.

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