Wednesday, February 3, 2016

New K-drama Alert: One More Happy Ending, Madame Antoine, and Signal



Am I the only one who feels like I'm suddenly drowning in new drama options? Holy smokes! There I was, minding my own business with my new BFF Cheese in the Trap, and suddenly BAM! Four new dramas premiered within one week!

Realistically, there's no way I'm watching more than two dramas at once with maaaaaaybe a third one on the backburner for days when I'm bored, but I did my best to give at least 3/4 shows a fair shot. (Sorry, Neighborhood Hero. Better luck next time!) Writing about that many shows at once is overwhelming, so I'm limiting myself to 3-sentence first impressions—and not James Joyce Ulysses style sentences, either. Let's get to it.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

When Ratings Trump Narrative: Answer Me 1988/Reply 1988 Korean Drama Review

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I have composed this review in my head approximately 11,454,697,239 times, and it still feels like a mammoth undertaking. Maybe it's because Answer Me 1988 was 20 episodes that each ranged from an hour and a half to two hours each. There's so much content to cover that I don't really feel like I can talk about all of it This is why I don't watch long dramas, people!

So, instead of being a responsible blogger and talking about each and every aspect of this show, I'm going to do what I want, which is to rush through the majority of the show so that I can get on my soapbox and vent my very intense feelings about how this series ended. At least I'm giving fair warning, right?

Sunday, November 29, 2015

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: The Problem with Makeover K-dramas


When I heard the premise for Oh My Venus, I just about reached through my computer and strangled everyone involved with the production. On the one hand, it's Shin Min Ah and So Ji Sub! On the other hand, it's a makeover drama, which may just be my absolute least favorite type of K-drama on the entire planet.

Coming on the heels of another makeover K-drama  (She Was Pretty) and following a similar "sad-fat-girl-turns-skinny" formula of last year's Birth of a Beauty (and casting poor Jung Gyu Woon to play basically the exact same role he played in the earlier drama), Oh My Venus made me especially wary.

In the end, though, Shin Min Ah and So Ji Sub won out, and I found myself watching the series. It's been an interesting experience thus far, with alternating scenes of things I hate and things I really appreciate.

Since K-dramaland seems so intent on making these types of shows over and over again, I want to have a conversation about why they're so troubling to begin with and what (if anything) makes them work.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

New Drama Alert: Answer Me 1988/ Reply 1988



There's a new installation in the nostalgia-filled Answer Me series on the block! In spite of my hesitations about yet another trip back in time to guess the husband, it's shaping up to be a comfortable little drama that stands on its own merits.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

She Was Pretty Korean Drama Review, Or, A Tribute to Siwon's Face



From what I can tell, a lot of people really, really loved She Was Pretty, making it one of the most popular dramas of the entire year.

Fair warning: I was not one of those people. If you adored the drama and would rather not hear negative things about it, stop reading now.

You have been warned. Now let us proceed.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Cheer Up/ Sassy Go Go Korean Drama Review

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When Cheer Up! (aka Sassy Go Go) began, I was already prepared to give my heart to it, as long as it was the sweet, lighthearted school series it promised to be.

Well, it wasn't exactly what I expected from the trailers, but what I can say is that this series was an incredibly pleasant surprise, and it completely won over my heart even more than I anticipated.

Just how much do I love it? Enough to overcome my recent blogging laziness to gush over it the same day it ended. Now that's true love.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Twenty Again Korean drama review


Long ago, I blogged about why I love K-drama beginnings and get bored when most shows reach the halfway point. Back then, I started developing the terrible habit of watching until the last 2-3 episodes and then never finishing a drama. 

Over time, that habit has gotten increasingly worse. I used to agonize over dropping anything after the first 2-4 episodes, but now I have a massive pile of shows I dropped by episodes 8-10, and I really have no intention of going back. Life's too short to waste watching boring dramas (sorry, Yongpal).

My mid-drama boredom is such a regular part of my drama-watching experience at this point that I sometimes catch myself bracing for the slump episodes. Every once in a while, though, there's a show that somehow manages to avoid the mid-series slump, and, even more rarely, there are shows that just get better and better as the series progresses.

Twenty Again is one of the latter shows. It started with promise, but there were a lot of things about the first few episodes that could have gone horribly, horribly awry. Fortunately, they didn't, and we ended up with a (mostly) satisfying series.

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