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Fans of k-dramas... please help


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Posted on Jun 23, 2015 12:34:54 PM PDT
A few dramas that I was loosely following have recently finished airing:

Producers - The high rating of the final episode (probably one of the highest ratings of a drama this year) had to have been due to the drama's stars rather than the drama's storyline. While the drama started off trying to be innovative it did change directions becoming for the most part a standard rom/com complete with a dragged out love triangle. I guess the producers/writers also decided that the drama's main strength was Kim Soo Hyun (the second male lead) and seemed to focus primarily on his storyline (I did like his character) and one-sided crush - which was actually too bad as I would have preferred a secondary romance between him and Cindy (the character that had the best arc in the drama). I did enjoy the romance between Ye Ji Won (the paper czarina) and Kim Jong Kook, actually more so than the main romance. Overall, the drama wasn't bad but it could have better utilized its leads and perhaps tried to be more innovative on the rom/com front.

My Unfortunate Boyfriend - Didn't particularly care for any of the characters, including the two-timing h or the manipulative OM. And the H was just too childlike for any relationship.

Ex-Girlfriend's Club - Overall, this drama was a nice fluffy rom/com, without much in the way of angst. I did enjoy the antics of the ex-girlfriends but didn't find a lot of chemistry between the leads - they seemed more like good friends.

And after a couple of months of effort I finally finished watching Dong Yi. In comparison, I think it took me less than a week to finish Empress Ki. I guess that says it all about my viewing preferences (hot guy beats staid guy every time). While Dong Yi was very well written with an enjoyable story, unfortunately, I found the romance to be rather passionless (where is the obsessed, crazed Emperor when you need him).

Posted on Jun 21, 2015 8:17:36 PM PDT
luvnlife says:
1lady... to give you a preview where I was hooked on his possessive intent/stare... go to the last 3 minutes of episode 6. This is right after they first meet again. It is a different kind of possessiveness than Mask but our Hero is a real straight shooter when it comes to telling the h what he wants.

This scene got me hooked. Episode 1 & 2 are worth watching and then I skimmed through 3-5.

Posted on Jun 21, 2015 12:15:25 PM PDT
1ladydevil says:
luvnlife-Damn, My Love Eun Dong, sounds good. I can't resist a possessive H.

Posted on Jun 21, 2015 5:45:39 AM PDT
luvnlife says:
Yes, Mask episode 8 ended awesome. The H is so mistakenly mad at the h right now. Just when you thought things were on an upswing.

Hidden Identity... new Kim Bum drama started off very action packed. It reminds me of Cruel City. Hero goes into the underworld undercover. If the show can keep pace with the first two episodes it will be great.

My Love Eun Dong... I've been leisurely watching this. Present day H and h really don't meet until about episode 6 but when they do their chemistry just sizzles. H and h meet in their youth but are torn apart. They meet again as young adults and are madly in love. An accident pulls them apart for 10 years. h lost her memory and is married with a child to someone else. (Could be H's child from the looks of things.) H is a famous actor/model searching for the h. He finds h and learns of her new life but won't let her go. h is attracted to H and has flashbacks. H is very straightforward and possessive. Favorite line so far from H to h "Tonight... don't sleep with your husband."

Posted on Jun 19, 2015 12:41:30 AM PDT
Episode 8 of Mask was even better than the last. They really are setting things up with an ever widening circle of crazy for the villain to try to contain.

All of the investigating the hero did, tracking down the pen, questioning his assistant and then just coming right out and saying, 'I know we said we wouldn't talk about our pasts, but I need to know.' He is burning up with jealousy and suspicion and it is awesome!

Plus, that kiss in episode seven, wow! So romantic.

That guy from Ji Sook's past was so cheap, him showing up like the proverbial bad penny seemed like something the writers were throwing at us to drag out the other parts of the mystery, but they sure cleaned it up and fast.

Posted on Jun 18, 2015 7:42:59 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 18, 2015 9:56:34 AM PDT
I thought that High Society had some interesting plot twists this week. I did find it odd that Lee Sang Woo had such a minor role in this drama (it now makes sense that it was just an extended cameo) but I'm still expecting his character to make a brief reappearance at some point (because isn't it a k-drama rule that if you don't have a body, they aren't really dead). I continue to enjoy the secondary leads romance much more than the primary romance (but maybe that's because the H doesn't come across as really caring for the h but for her family connections). I was surprised that the h outed her identity this early in the drama. I wasn't expecting that to occur until closer to mid-way into the drama. ETA: Also, I'm finding the whole storyline relating to the h's family to be fairly boring/uninteresting - probable because other than Lee Sang Woo's character, all of the h's family members are rather nasty/unredeemable and really not worth wasting your time watching.

ETA: And speaking of being more invested in the secondary romance, I'm finding I'm having the same reaction as it relates to Warm & Cozy. I am enjoying the older brother/diving lady romance much more than the H/h's romance. Which is too bad as I do like both the lead actors in this drama and it's unfortunate that the storyline isn't a little more interesting. This drama isn't as bad as Big but does lack the usual Hong Sisters spark of fun. And the OW is by far the worst compared to their other dramas, but I think it's mostly the actress' fault (they really should have cast someone capable of acting). However, I do think the H reasoning for continuing to pursue the OW to be pretty lame - she's nasty like my mother so I'll continue liking her no matter how unpleasant she is. Was glad H finally decided to man up in episode 11 but it does look like any happiness will be very short lived as "second half of drama" angst is getting ready to hit.

Posted on Jun 18, 2015 12:33:04 AM PDT
If there wasn't another episode of Mask tomorrow I would just die of impatience.

Posted on Jun 17, 2015 7:42:53 PM PDT
luvnlife says:
Not sure how long it will take. It got to where it is now in 2 days but now it has been a week since it has moved. Hopefully soon.

Another good episode of Mask.... these writers are good. The ending scene really did it for me. Such great emotional acting. (Yes on viki but I too think the site was down for a bit earlier.)

Posted on Jun 17, 2015 2:42:22 PM PDT
Yay! I've been checking in waiting for it to be subbed at 100%. I've been looking forward to this show all week.

Posted on Jun 17, 2015 12:37:54 PM PDT
1ladydevil says:
I really want to watch the Silent Separation movie but not until it's subbed 100%. Any idea how long it will take for that?

Posted on Jun 17, 2015 10:40:12 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 17, 2015 12:04:52 PM PDT
Lovely D.M. says:
Viki had Mask didn't they? I think I watched it on viki last week. Eh, I just tried to access it now to make sure, but I couldn't. I think maybe they are having some technical issues. ETA: I just accessed viki, and they have Mask.

@Jennifer, yes I too think it is a bit strange that they sometimes change a drama's title just a week or two before it starts airing.

Posted on Jun 17, 2015 10:36:55 AM PDT
Me too. Does Viki have Mask first, anyone know?

Posted on Jun 17, 2015 4:18:56 AM PDT
luvnlife says:
Silent Separation - the movie... is posted on VK. Just search under "clips" under "Cruel Romance"... 60% subbed but I thought most of the important dialogue was subbed.

Looking forward to today's episode of Mask. :)

Posted on Jun 17, 2015 12:40:55 AM PDT
It's strange how late in the game the drama names change.

I am really only watching two shows now; Mask and the tw drama What is love.

Posted on Jun 16, 2015 11:16:51 PM PDT
Lovely D.M. says:
Yes Jennifer, "The Time I Love You" which is now being called "The Time We Were Not in Love" for some reason, is a remake of a TW-drama called "In Time with You". I haven't watched the TW-drama, but I'm hoping that this k-drama will be good.

Posted on Jun 16, 2015 9:42:46 PM PDT
I am so glad that I didn't keep up with School 2015, the ending sounds like a real letdown.

Oh My Ghostess looks adorable. I can't wait to watch it. Is The Time I love you a remake? It sounds a bit familiar to me.

Posted on Jun 16, 2015 3:26:23 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 16, 2015 3:30:34 PM PDT
Lovely D.M. says:
Adnana, you make some very good points about why this show turned out so disappointing on the romance front. The mystery aspect of it too was underwhelming. I guess we can be thankful that at least we had the interesting character of Taekwang, though he was wasted in this drama. I hope Sungjae will be the lead in another drama, that will be well written.

Reader123, I agree that rarely, if ever, does the h end up with the second male lead. This would be fine by me, if the writer made the male lead interesting and appealing, and actually can be a rival to the second male lead. The thing I dislike the most in a k-drama, if it has the love triangle trope (which is not a favorite trope of mine, but I can handle it as long as the H remains the most interesting/appealing), is that sometimes they just don't make the H interesting. So the viewer is left wondering why the h went with the H, as opposed to the second lead. I think that writers sometimes are stubborn, lazy, or just plain bad. However it is a treat when we get a good drama. I just wish we didn't have to go through the annoying ones, before finding that good one.

On another note, I too am looking forward to "Oh My Ghostess" as well, but because of its weird premise I'm hesitant. However "The Time I Love You" is the show I'm looking forward to the most. Right now, the only k-drama that I'm finding solidly interesting is "Mask", but since it's still not even halfway through, I hope that it doesn't fizzle out or become bad later on.

Posted on Jun 16, 2015 1:23:41 PM PDT
Unfortunately, it's still very much a rarity for the second male lead to end up with the h (I'm only aware of about 10 or so dramas where this occurs). I keep reading that the primary reason that Korean maintains its live shoot system is so that plotlines can be modified based on viewer feedback, but it seems viewer feedback rarely changes the end game (and sometimes it actually results in truly horrible endings like what happened with Marry Him If You Dare).

In addition to The Time I Loved You, I'm also looking forward to Oh My Ghostess. I did enjoy the first two episodes of High Society. But, so far, I'm actually liking the second leads somewhat more than the leads. I also continue to loosely follow several other dramas but am not finding any to be that unusual or addictive.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 16, 2015 1:08:48 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 17, 2015 4:39:50 AM PDT
Adnana says:
Lovely D.M. said:
"So School 2015 apparently ended on a disappointing note"
I couldn't agree more.

**SPOILERS about the romance
The romantic storyline was GROSSLY mishandled, plain and simple. I know that Yi An was the male lead and that he was somehow pre-determined by the writer to end up with Eun-bi. So he did--end up with Eun-bi, I mean. The problem was that, by the time it came down to Eun-bi making her final choice, her choosing Yi An didn't make sense anymore. AT ALL. Tae-kwang was the more interesting (and better-acted) character, so the audience responded enthusiastically to him. He brought on the ratings (let's be honest, I think the vast majority of us were watching the drama for him), so the writer expanded his storyline. He had all these meaningful interactions with Eun-bi, and he was so swoony and unfailingly devoted to Eun-bi that it just didn't make sense that she wasn't moved. Even a stone heart would have fluttered, that's how consistently amazing he was. Yi An, the way he was developed--and despite the writer's original intentions--just couldn't compare. Ever.
After watching the finale, I have zero respect for the writer of School 2015. It's like she decided the beginning and end of the drama from the very start and clung stubbornly to that plan even when it didn't make sense anymore, even though the entire in-between (the middle of the drama, basically the story proper) was hijacked by Tae Kwang. I think the writer sold out (on her initial premise for the drama) and gave in to public opinion by expanding and developing Tae Kwang's role, and kept us hoping by leaving the love triangle unsolved until the last freaking episode. So that we would keep watching. And then, when the final episode came, the writer probably went, yeah, scr*w the audience, I've kept them watching this long, I don't care anymore about what they want and why they stuck with the story so long, I'm going to end the drama the way I wanted to from the start.
So yeah, zero respect for the writer.

Posted on Jun 16, 2015 10:03:06 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 16, 2015 10:03:57 AM PDT
Lovely D.M. says:
So "School 2015" apparently ended on a disappointing note, I haven't watched the last two eps yet but I've read some of the comments. So the show is disappointing on the romance front. Anyways Taekwang was the main reason I continued to watch this show in its second half, when it started to drag. I also felt that all the reveals for the mysteries running in the show, were underwhelming. I think maybe because it was set in a high-school, the mysteries couldn't be more intense. However overall I fairly like this show, just because it had the really good character of Taekwang, and he was so well cast as well.

I watched the new teaser for "The Time I Loved You", and I am looking forward to this show, it looks promising. I'm also glad that we will get a H with a good hairstyle! Yay, it looks like he won't have the bowl haircut. He looks so good (he was the H in Nine). Then there's Ha Ji Won, who is one of my favorite actresses. So now the only thing left is for this show to be good plot-wise. Hopefully, it will live up to its potential.

Posted on Jun 12, 2015 9:24:12 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 12, 2015 9:25:31 AM PDT
Lovely D.M. says:
I too didn't know that there had been protests over the last ep of "Secret Garden", when it was a mild PG-13 tasteful bed scene with nothing explicit. I will also add "Queen Inhyun's Man" in that it had that passionate tip toe kiss in ep 11, and it definitely was clear that it was leading them to bedroom - so in this drama, the H/ h had sex too (Oh but this was a cable drama). I hope that in Mask we will get a tasteful bed scene.

Right now my priority show is Mask and School 2015, but all the shows that I'm following are "Warm and Cozy", "Mask", "School 2015", "When I See You Again" TW-drama, and I still have to watch the last ep of "Someone Like You".

Posted on Jun 12, 2015 8:08:54 AM PDT
Thanks for the detailed answer Adnana, so I guess we could eventually get a bed scene. I like that there hasn't been a kiss yet, when it happens it will be more meaningful.

Wow, I can't believe there were protests over a married couple!

So Mask is my addiction, what are you guys watching in between episodes?

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 12, 2015 12:10:54 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 12, 2015 10:22:01 AM PDT
Adnana says:
Jennifer said: "Aren't there Korean broadcast rules that would censure people sleeping together, 'specially hinting that they've had sex?"

K-dramas in the mid-to-late 2000s (eg. Coffee Prince, City Hall, Personal Taste etc.) were likelier to feature hot kisses and bed scenes than K-dramas today, but still, it depends on the project and the screenwriter/PD. There are no hard-and-fast rules re: in what episode there should be the first kiss, or how many kisses are allowed overall, or whether the H & h get any bed scene. There's certainly no official Korean censorship (far as I know) that would interfere with the broadcast of a subtle bed scene (see: Healer), just hypocritical public opinion (I'm sketchy on the details, but apparently the Association of Korean Housewives or sthg protested when "Secret Garden" had its racier wedding night scene--and the H & h were married!).
But Mask's writer did include a bed scene in his previous (and only) drama, Secret, so given the overall tone of Mask (i.e. adult), it's more likely than not that Mask will give up the goodies too, at some point sooner or later. The writer probably just wants to secure proper character development first and increase the chemistry between the leads so that by the time the physical action happens, it's more meaningful. Just my two cents.

ETA: All I've written above refers to K-dramas aired by the Big 3 i.e. public broadcasters (SBS, MBC, KBS2)--and not cable channels which are more likely to push the envelope when it comes to showing make-out sessions (see Can We Get Married, I Need Romance etc.).

Posted on Jun 11, 2015 10:56:57 PM PDT
The h's brother sure has risen to the challenge of supporting his family, he seemed kinda lazy and unmotivated before. I definitely think he suspects her, even after she offers him money to leave her alone. I love how cold and shut down Min Woo looked when the h said that the kid who showed up and called her noona was the man she loved. Competition!

Her brother is no slouch in the brains department when he lets the sil think he is obsessed with the h and can't let her go.

It was super cute when he carried her to bed also when he peeked when she was taking her wet clothes off. He is definitely interested in her, but he's cold as ice and it will take more than a few sweet moments to make him fall for her.

The bil is pushing for her to seduce him, do you guys really think it will go to that? Aren't there Korean broadcast rules that would censure people sleeping together, 'specially hinting that they've had sex? We are at the end of episode six and we still haven't had a kiss.

Posted on Jun 11, 2015 9:28:59 PM PDT
Lovely D.M. says:
Mask is getting better and better with every episode. Eps 5 and 6 were the best eps of this show, so far. I think the brother-in-law wants to take the company, so that means taking down the H, but I don't understand what role the h has to play in that. I really liked the scene when the H/h danced at the party, they have strong chemistry which I didn't expect, however I cringed when I looked at her shoes. She was wearing the type of shoes I wouldn't be able to walk in. I also really liked the scene when the H carried the sleeping h to the bed, it was so sweet. Also the scene when he took her to his mother's memorial. The H is surely falling for the h slowly, and I've started to like him with these two eps. Even though the h comes off as very demure, but I will say that her strength is subtle, in that she can endure all that has happened to her without breaking down. I feel bad for her brother though, but I think that he definitely suspects her of being his sister. I hope that he will at least know, so that the h will have some sort of support.
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Discussion in:  Romance forum
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Initial post:  Jan 14, 2012
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