Tag Archives: Park Seo Joon

Review: Itaewon Class

THE SHORT VERDICT:

An earnest, underdog story with lots of heart, Itaewon Class feels like a breath of fresh air, for a good part of its run. Even though the backstory hinges on the idea of revenge, this always feels more like a story of an underdog trying to make good, while collecting a found family along the way. In particular, I really appreciate the diversity that Itaewon Class embraces, in the course of peopling our drama world. I don’t think I’ve seen the same degree of diversity in another drama, to date.

Oddly, I feel like this drama is at once a Park Seo Joon vehicle, and yet, an ensemble drama, at the same time. Our protagonist Park Sae Ro Yi is the backbone of this story, and it’s his journey, his thoughts, his philosophy and his unflagging determination that drives this story forward. At the same time, it’s the ensemble of endearing characters around him that makes this drama world pop and come alive in such a heartwarming way. Altogether, an unusual dichotomy which I’m happy to embrace.

I felt the OTP loveline was rather too forced in Show’s final leg, and I also feel like Show’s focus shifts in the last stretch, such that Show loses some of its original charm, but I still enjoyed this one very well, overall.

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Flash Review: What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim? [Why Secretary Kim]

A phrase that’s sometimes said around the dramaverse – and maybe you’ve said something similar yourself, at some point – is, “I could literally just watch these two be cute for sixteen hours.”

Well. Except for a backstory involving childhood trauma (kidnapping trigger alert, coz some folks might be sensitive to that), this show pretty much gives us exactly that: Park Seo Joon and Park Min Young being cute together, pretty much all of the time, for 16 episodes.

Yep. It’s as fluffy and angst-lite as it sounds. So if you’re up for something that’s light on plot but heavy on cute, this just might be the show for you.

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Review: Fight My Way

THE SHORT VERDICT:

A show that manages to showcase friendship, romance, family, and reaching for your dreams, all in one cozy, ragtag package.

Despite bits of heightened drama, Show manages to feel organic and relatable pretty much all the way through. A thoroughly believable & sparky OTP, a solid supporting cast, and a breezy OST all come together to make this a warm, cracky, comfort-food sort of watch.

Homey and heady, at the same time, in the best way.

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Dropped: Hwarang

Ordinarily, I’d be the first to agree with the age-old saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover” – or, as the case may be, “Don’t judge a drama by its promos.”

After all, sometimes, the watch experience of a show really doesn’t jive with its promo material. Some shows have uninteresting promo material but turn out to be excellent watches (I mean, just think about the old-fashioned, ugly poster that belongs to the fantastic Healer), while other shows have amazing promos but turn out to be duds in the watching (Joseon Gunman comes to mind, among many others).

In this instance, though, I really should’ve paid (much more) heed to this show’s low-rent bad wigs and cheesy posters. On hindsight, I think they were trying to warn me that this show wouldn’t be worth spending hours of my life on, and – silly, foolish me – I didn’t listen. Which is how I ended up wasting 13 hours of my life trying to make the best of this show, before I realized that Show’s best really, really wasn’t doing it for me.

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Flash Review: Beauty Inside [Movie]

It’s funny how I sometimes stumble on a movie that I wouldn’t otherwise have checked out on my own, simply because it’s available on in-flight entertainment and I’m something of a captive audience with limited options to choose from.

Beauty Inside was the movie whose trailer appealed to me the most today, out of the k-trailers that I checked out while on the plane, and I hafta say, it turned out to be a more thought-provoking watch than I’d originally expected.

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Pure Pretty: Choi Si Won

If you read my recent review of She Was Pretty, and particularly if you’ve known me for a while, you’d probably have guessed that this Pure Pretty spotlight on Si Won was soon in the coming.

I mean, not only did he deliver the role with an impressive amount of nuance that felt raw and heartfelt, he made it all look so effortless. From the hammy & funny, to the glimpses of sorrow & poignance, he made it all feel natural, like it was a genuine extension of himself. He was the character, all the way through. And I was, quite literally, blown away.

On top of all of that acting awesome, he looked fantastic. Just, how could I not give him a piece of my heart? ❤

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Review: She Was Pretty

THE SHORT VERDICT:

A fun rom-com that, in-between the comedy and the laughs, manages to get under your skin in the best way, with its warmth.

Some of my favorite things about She Was Pretty are the heartfelt performances, the lovingly-drawn characters, and the relationships brimming with organic, sparky chemistry. On top of these, the breezy pace and the ear-wormy OST – not to mention the uplifting themes of self-worth and self-love – make this a satisfying, enjoyable watch indeed.

Not perfect by a long shot, but Show gets the important things so right, that it’s hard to be nit-picky.

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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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Flash Reviews & Dropped Section: YAY or NAY?

I’d like your opinion, you guys!

I’m toying with the idea of introducing 2 new sections to the blog, but I’m not sure if it’s something you guys would actually like. One is a section for mini quick-as-a-flash reviews, and the other is a dropped section, for shows that I’ve (you guessed it!) dropped.

Since this is a space that you guys have helped to build with your suggestions and opinions, I thought the natural thing to do would be to ask you guys what you think. 🙂

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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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