The Fangirl Verdict

Completely biased reviews and fangirling


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Are kdramas getting worse / “dumbed down”?

So recently, a couple of comments on the blog have combined to give me pause for thought.

And instead of just answering the latest question in the comments section, I thought it was interesting enough, and thought-provoking enough, to put it all in a new post, and see what you guys think.

Well ok, that, and the fact that as I chewed on my answer to the latest comment, I realized that there were just too many facets to the answer than I felt could fit reasonably into a simple comment.

Basically, the question is, have kdramas gotten worse / more “dumbed down” in recent years?

Let’s dive in together to take a look, shall we?

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Dropped: Ho Goo’s Love

…And another one on my drama plate bites the dust.

I’m not in a dropping mood or anything, I swears. I promise that there are dramas that I’ve finished and liked, even. I just haven’t finished writing the reviews (they’ll come, honest!).

I really wanted to like Ho Goo’s love, and even stuck with it for 10 whole episodes, hoping that it would hook me properly at some point. 10 episodes into Show’s total of 16, though, I realized that this show simply wasn’t working for me.

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Flash Review: The Reason I’m Getting Married [Drama Special]

I hafta admit that I was rather sad after watching Hong Jong Hyun’s and Yu Ra’s goodbye episode this week on We Got Married. *sniffle*

Partly coz they were just getting so cute together, before their virtual marriage came to an abrupt end. And also very much because I liked getting a fresh dose of Hong Jong Hyun on my screen every week.

Which is why I’m grateful to reader rock bottom, who recommended that I check out drama special, The Reason I’m Getting Married. I am so pleased that I took the time to check it out!

Not only did Show give me a nice dose of Hong Jong Hyun on my screen (so handsome!), it turned out to be a very solid drama short. One of the best I’ve seen yet; no lie.

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56 Comments

Year In Review: 2014

If there’s one thing that everyone seems to be able to agree on, it’s that time is flying. Like, seriously. Where has 2014 gone?

I can hardly believe that 2015 is almost here, promising/threatening gifts of dramas chock-full of vampires, multiple personalities, and other psychological disorders goodies.

Before 2014 makes her exit, though, I wanted to come out and give credit where it’s due. Coz as much as so many of my friends in dramaland have been talking about a meh drama year, I feel like I had a pretty good drama year, actually.

I know. How did that happen, right?

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More – and More! – Sunshine!

Wowza.

We received even more Sunshine love, you guys.

Admin A who hosts Top of the Kpops gifted us our 3rd nomination, while our dear friend Jaime, who hosts The Drama Noona gifted us our 4th.

On the one hand, we feel the lurve. We really, really do.

On the other hand, we can’t help but wonder if you guys just enjoy seeing us squirm as we try to answer your challenging questions, heh.

Whichever it is, we’ve got our game faces on, and are braving your questions with as much composure as we can muster.

Bring. It. On. Baby!

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23 Comments

Review: One Warm Word

THE SHORT VERDICT:

This is that rare breed of melodrama that doesn’t lay on the angst for the sake of angst, or pain for the sake of pain, but instead approaches its chosen premise with thoughtful sensitivity.

Populated with characters and relationships that are drawn and delivered with care and complexity, One Warm Word manages to ask many thought-provoking questions and raise several important themes, all while remaining a genuinely rich and engaging watch. There are some stretches which are angstier – and therefore harder to get through – but viewers who press through those times will be rewarded with a thought-provoking, ultimately warm watch.

Also, the show is a LOT prettier than the admittedly odd artistic sentiment expressed in its posters and OST covers. And I’m not even talking about the show’s very handsome men (yet).

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119 Comments

Discovering: Park Seo Joon

Everyone was right.

So many of you predicted that once I started watching Witch’s Romance, that I would start swooning over Park Seo Joon just like everyone else. Heh. Y’all are so right.

To be honest, before I started watching the show, when I saw all the photo spreads and stills of Park Seo Joon that came out along with Witch’s Romance, I had my doubts. In the stills, he looked rather.. well, ordinary to me. Nothing about those photos made me sit up and take serious notice, really.

Ha. Watch me eat my words now. Coz I’ve been lapping up Witch’s Romance, while happily nursing a brand new fangirl crush on Park Seo Joon (melt~).

Better late than never, right?

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39 Comments

Review: Let’s Eat

THE SHORT VERDICT:

A charming little drama that uses food (lots and lots of food) as the means to bind individuals together into a community.

Let’s Eat hums to a completely different rhythm than dramaland’s typical rom-coms, and possesses a sensibility that toes the line between slice-of-life and manhwa-esque. And in spite of some gaping flaws, it somehow works. Characters and relationships start to pop as we get deeper into the episodes, and by the time you reach the end, it’s likely that you won’t want to say good-bye.

And if you’ve ever wondered what it means to “eat deliciously,” which is the literal translation of 맛있게 먹고 (otherwise generally translated as “enjoy your meal”), you’d quickly find your answer – and your role models – in this show.

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