Hey, guys! It’s aberdeen_angus reporting from a kingdom far far away. I’m the new maknae, and I’ll be doing Prosecutor Princess recaps alongside kaedejun, whom you’ll remember from another recaps such as Iris. I’m very glad of writing here and thankful to javabeans, who allowed me to share my thoughts about this series. I’m also nervous, so, as we’ve already heard from our beloved dramas, “take good care of us!”
[Watch the series at DramaFever]
SONG OF THE DAY
Prosecutor Princess OST – “Fly High” by SHINee. Please, almighty Zeus, don’t let this song by SHINee become the “Almost paaaaradiiiiiseee” of this show. Pretty please, okay? [ Download ]
First things first, I’ll give a quick guideline to Prosecutor Princess’ leads (at least to those who have been important until now). It’s just to have a starting point, so when it ends, we can see if these characters have grown or if we’re too sleepy to find out.
Kim So-yeon as Ma Hye-ri: recently became a prosecutor, and we learn she is somewhat shallow and carefree in a bad, harmless way. I know it sounds like a big contradiction, but she isn’t bad herself, as in witch-bad. She doesn’t care for anything (not even herself), neither doing god or bad stuff. She just wants to have fun. What I love, at least for the first episodes, is that she doesn’t seem to be of those heroines which start being lovely, funny and tough, and in episode 6 until the very end they start crying like hell because of *the* love of their lives, who doesn’t care about them (coughcoughcoughgoongcoughcough). Sorry, I’m with a bad flu. She is smart (if not sly) and sweet and all she has to do is to earn some kind of perspective and experience in, well, actually having a life. I have high hopes for her development, and I expect it to be believable as well.
Park Shi-hoo as Seo In-woo: about him, we just know he’s rich and trendy, and that he has some mysterious purposes with Hye-ri. Which ones? No one has a clue. Well, his secretary might have, since she is obviously helping him, so if you are curious, you can send her some DVDs and clothing, and she’ll surely tell you (this trick always has good results). I’m not sure about his smile, it’s creepy.
Han Jung-soo as Yoon Se-joon: hard working prosecutor, he goes all snitchy-style with Hye-ri, when she starts her tutoring with him, so booo, Prosecutor Yoo, I don’t like you. Nevertheless, he watched her from the first moment in slo-mo, so I assume he is amused? Attracted? Curious? Having a strange déjà-vu? Or some weird “are you my slave” previous life vision? Dunno.
Choi Song-hyun as Jin Jung-sun: about her, in this episode, from nothing to absolutely nothing is said or hinted. She has to scold Hye-ri because of her careless behavior and fashion sense. She is totally right about it. I mean, YAY FOR FEMINISM, but your skirt is too short, Hye-ri. Also, she gives advice in a warm, cool way (until she gets on her nerves and the h-bomb explodes, I don’t blame her). She may or may be not in love with Prosecutor Yoon (she looks at him thoughtfully and with admiration, and we all understand what that means *wink wink*).
And now, the biggest star, the episode itself.
Episode 1 or How I never worried and always loved bizarre shoes
Okey, so we start in this prosecutor ceremony (Fly hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh! Fly hiiiiiiiiiigh!). It’s funny how they’re all serious and pompous, and then suddenly, BAM! Here comes Hye-ri, with her flamboyant high heels. I don’t think she’s out of place, I also hate dark colors, and she gives some joy to that (supposedly happy) moment.
But as soon as it ends, she says she won’t be able to attend to her after-ceremony because her mother is very ill, almost dying. Who could say no to those sincere, suffering, confucian tears? No one; and we’d all be misleaded by her apparent fragility. She’s playing a dirty trick to go to a ski resort. Badly done, Hye-ri, badly done indeed!
So, she goes shopping and then to the resort itself. Apparently, she is going to meet a friend there, so they can attend a Gioberni’s auction (featuring exclusive and expensive clothing items). By the way, she has the typical friend’s face: absolutely non expressive.
Meanwhile, Hye-ri’s dad is truly upset about all the “illness faking” thing, and talks to his wife rather harshly. Her collapse appears to be kinda false, all of the sudden she supposedly fell with her eyes rolling backwards, but now she is fine and talking like nothing had happened.
Hye-ri’s mum: Maybe… I’m anemic?
Mr. Ma: With that body… anemic?
He went to the hospital thinking that she was playing tetris with Saint Peter (or about to), and he had to arrange the funeral’s services. If that wasn’t the case, as it seemed, he shouldn’t be there, he should be with his prosecutor daughter. I hope he’s not being serious, and all this shouting is because he realizes his daughter is a shameless bitch, but doesn’t want to admit it (yeah, even if it’s violent emotion, this part was a low bow for me, and put me on guard with Mr. Ma). I love Hye ri’s mum, she is covering her daughter and bearing her husband’s reproaches stoically.
As Hye-ri arrives, also does Prosecutor Yoon. Why is Se-joon here? Well, it seems like a copycat named Kim Dong-suk will be attending the Gioberni’s auction (we learn that this brand was responsible for Grace Kelly’s wardrobe), and an accomplice who will record them, too, so they can make copies and sell them as the real thing. Prosecutor Yoon’s assistant is wondering why all women are crazy about this collection, and Se-joon tells him that that’s because “every woman wants to become a queen” (huh?). This last line is irrelevant (despite being inspired by true events – actually Grace Kelly married the Prince of Monaco and became a Princess), but for me it was also strange and unintentionally funny. I mean, Se-joon says those words with a stiff face, as if he was talking about inflation or the finantial crisis. He needs some hye-ring up!
Dong-suk was part of a band of scammers which made false watches and sold them as originals, and a bunch of celebrities were damaged (Ha! Ha!). This guy barely escaped (and now, with the recordings, he’ll probably restart all the celebrities-scamming process), so Prosecutor Yoon wants his revenge. And, oh yeah, justice. He went there without his supervisor’s (the guy in the third cap) authorization, this case is so important to him that he doesn’t care about bureaucracy. Plus 10 points for kick-assery and avoiding the rules.
Just some meters away, Hye-ri is skiing; she’s worked hard and now deserves a vacation. You’ll think this part is a filler, but hell no! Our beloved prosecutor is being followed by a mysterious person of undefined sex, gender or anything but shoe size. If you’ve seen enough spy movies, you’ve probably found out that when she arrived the resort, someone was watching while she unpacked her skis. And now… we can give him a nickname! (we all know it’s a him) Mr. Mysterious Boots? It’s lame, but graphic, so I’m keeping it. Okay, Mr. Mysterious Boots is a God-like figure, he is omnipotent and can see her wherever she is. Creepy? Not at all!
It’s showtime! And Hye-ri is robbed! This trip won’t be as smooth as she pretended it to be, now she doesn’t have her phone or money, and adding to this list of misfortunes, is the fact that the suite she had reserved is occupied by another person. Worst day ever, my princess! This other person is not just some random guy, but In-woo, the guy with the strange smile and possible love interest, so we’ll better keep our eye on him. It appears that her friend isn’t coming, she has pretty important clients (including a woman with the same scary smile as In-woo) and can’t leave. One thing is sure though, she didn’t cancel the reservation.
Hye-ri has two options, given that there are no hotels with available rooms: relocation to a motel, at which suggerence she answers with indignation and surprise an endearing “Mo-tel?!”; or sharing the suite with In-woo and his date (it’s Valentine’s day, you see). What the hell? She’s a lady, and goes away, changing her clothes in her car.
This is such a small world, that in a short moment, we’ll have the chance to take a lovely family photo of four relevant characters, with a fifth one arriving minutes later (he’ll have to be satisfied with his photo alongside his rival). By the way, the auction starts, and we have Se-joon, his assistant, Hye-ri, and copycat’s accomplice, together. They should put aside their differences and throw an awesome party, hot guys plus hot girls plus money must be equal to FUN TIMES. This doesn’t happen, boooring!
Hye-ri is sitting next to Accomplice with Camcorder Purse (I don’t care about the shoes, I want that handbag!), and borrows her phone to talk to mamma Ma, but she’s sleeping. She doesn’t mind the fact that she doesn’t have even a penny and starts her bid, she wants those shoes frantically.
Here is when In-woo appears again, and bids too. Hye-ri won’t lose her shoes to that perv-guy who wanted to do a threesome (as in “wanted to share the room”), so she offers 7 millon Won (~USD 6200) and wins. Six-fracking-thousand dollars for a pair of shoes? I’m gonna start doubting that this girl actually has a brain!
The little big detail is that she doesn’t have the money, and in a blink of an eye, the shoes are sold to another person: In-woo himself. But she will know this later, she gets distracted by the person she thinks is the thief of her cards and phone, and shouts at him, only to discover that he, who was confused for a criminal, is Prosecutor Yoon.
Aaaaaaaand here we have our meet-cute. Although it isn’t cute. At all. He takes a glimpse at her flower pendant and we have our slo-mo moment. Apparently that pendant will be important in the future development of the story, we mustn’t forget it! Prosecutor Yoon is deeply upset, but he can’t stop looking at her, until he remembers something… What was that? Oh, yeah! The copycat! He runs after this evil evil evil guy (really?), and loses him. Again. I’m sorry, Prosecutor, I’m going to take away 5 of those 10 points I’d given to you, for unfulfilling your goal because of a crazy chick.
Hye-ri now is devastated, without a room, money, friends or car (her wheels made a loud BAM noise, and the prospect of going home too). She can’t even call her acquaintances, all she knows are the speed dial numbers (stupid telephones, this is so true. I don’t even remember my dad’s number). Suddenly, an epiphany. She sees In-woo with the shoes! Her best idea is to go to his room and accept the invitation to share it; he agrees and goes away. Meanwhile, she tries the shoes and takes a bubble-shower.
When In-woo arrives, he finds Hye-ri drowning and helps her, but she assumes he’s a freaking sociopath and starts screaming (who wouldn’t?). The next day they agree to meet later on, so Hye-ri can pay all her expenses (she even borrows money from pervy man!). Oh, boy, this won’t be all, she wants something more: the shoes (i’m starting to hate them). His date didn’t come, they’re ownerless and pretty important, why doesn’t he sell them? He agrees (again) and she happily returns home with her object of desire, only to find out that she lost In-woo’s number and won’t be able to reach him. She doesn’t lose her sleep because of this discovery, though. Why does In-woo agree to all of her requests? Mistery!
To her father’s pleasure and mother’s (faked?) indifference, Hye-ri starts working as a Prosecutor (Fly hiiiiigh! Fly hiiiiigh! Is this drama sending a subliminal message with that song?), and she’s quite scandalously dressed, making all her sunbaes to go between mad and amused by her. Her attitude is obviously wrong, and the problem is that she isn’t aware of that, refusing to hear all the instructions from Jung-sun (I can’t help but loving her, when she adjusts her glasses, she’s adorable).
Destiny is unavoidable, you know, and her office is the VERY SAME as Prosecutor Yoon’s. She recognizes him instantly, but he pretends he didn’t and continues working normally, despite having the girl who accused and attacked him, forbidding him to catch the copycat, just there, in front of his desk.
The next day is the most awkward of all. Hye-ri hasn’t changed the length of her skirt, and also makes some intrusive questions about the relationship between Prosecutor Yoon and Jung-sun. They are arriving together, perhaps they’re… lovers? “Mind your own business, bitch”, says Jung-sun, and a cat fight ensues! Except that it doesn’t happen, and she just gets reprimanded because of her inappropriate clothing and make up. Bah!
And while we reach the ending of the episode, we also have the funniest part. As a welcoming event, all the sunbaes and Hye-ri go to have some drinks. Well, “some” is a manner of speaking, since Hye-ri is like a bottomless pit. Jung-sun is really worried, she is perceptive and can see the disaster coming. Sweet and feminine, it’s so clear this rude proto-woman is truly messed up, that she obviously can’t stand her.
And… We have a karaoke scene! This is hilarious and can’t be explained with words. She dances in such an outrageous way, that not even the guys seem to be pleased about this.
SO. FUNNY. And yet, so out of line.
Yes, that’s the princess, dressed up as a playboy-model-minnie mash up and twisting like a snake. This show should be renamed to “The secret lives of you civil servants”. Once again, I love Jung-sun and I wish her all the best; she can’t believe this is actually happening. Se-joon, on the other hand, looks at her in a rather confusing way, and I don’t know if it’s because he is indeed confused and reflexive or if he’s a lousy actor. We’ll have to wait and see.
As they leave this place they will surely want to forget about (and won’t be able to), we have another mysterious guy. Just stop it. Please. This one is Mr. Mysterious Overcoat. Could this be the same as Mr. Mysterious Boots and Mr. Mysterious Agreement?
They’re all the same and only Mr. Creepy Smile, In-woo. He goes to his oh-so-cool rooftop to think about how dreadful the girl he is stalking is, and which measures he should take after all what he’s witnessed (stop stalking her would be a good one). Were the auction, the shoes, the thief, and the debt part of some kind of mastermind plan? It’s not clear yet, but something is in the air, and not just love.
The next day, we can see Hye-ri’s relationship with her mother, and an odd dynamic develops. Hye-ri is trying to hide a bad hangover from the previous night, and is on the verge of throwing up when mamma Ma enters her room with a… tea? Some aspirins? Food? No. A scale (WTF!). She thinks her daughter has gained weight, but that’s not it, Hye-ri has lost 300 grams (could that be the weight of decency and good public image?).
In-woo decides to take active part in Hye-ri’s life (if Mahoma doesn’t go to the mountain…), and he ends up in Prosecutor Yoon’s office. YES. That’s a pretty popular office in the building, and Hye-ri thinks he’s there to ask for his money. Anxious and scared, she screams.
I will admit I had no intention of watching this drama at all. It seemed stupid and unoriginal. Well, perhaps it may not be original (nowadays, no rom-com is), but surely isn’t stupid.
This first episode isn’t perfect, and I gave it the benefit of the doubt because it’s an introduction. We come to know all the relevant characters, and we’re left with a lot of curiosity about their future. As for Hye-ri, I don’t hate her, in fact, I think she’s a strong woman and the main reason of the drama’s appeal. Kim So-yeon is just perfect, and I think that not any actress should have been successful in this role, probably making it unbearable and painful to watch. I want her to find the love she doesn’t know, I want her to grow up as a person and as a professional, she has the intelligence (her IQ is 168!) and the means, but she lacks common sense. I trust her two male companions will help her in this quest, making her realize how valuable is her position and how helpful she can be.
I’ve read that many people compare this to Legally Blonde, and I can say I disagree strongly. That girl (don’t remember her name) was indeed stupid (the first class she went with a small notebook, come on!), and her rehabilitation into a useful human being, for me, wasn’t believable. I haven’t seen the sequels, so I’m just talking about the first movie, I guess she was gorgeous and all, but I’m not buying it. Here, Hye-ri is a princess, yes, but I absolutely LOVE her careless moments and her faces, her charisma is evident and her slyness shows that she ain’t just another whiny pappa-girl.
Hye-ri isn’t dumb, she’s plainly clueless, and since she has no vocational feelings (for now), she just follows the rules, not giving importance to the social context. Usually she’s right, there are no laws against wearing mini skirts or make up and if a person committed a crime, well, he must pay for it as the law says, without minding his personal circumstances. That’s why she has to grow as a person and earn some moral and ethical principles.
I hope Hye-ri finds her place without forgetting her essence, and wish she gives importance to really important things without leaving her fashionable self, perhaps discovering the difference between work and personal life. Also, as she grows, I’m sure she’ll stop being so bubbly and cute, and that is something that won’t please me (I would be very glad of being wrong).
Regarding the male leads, Mr. Creepy Smile and Prosecutor Yoon, I’m not rooting for any of them. The drama just started and I want the competition to be objective and unbiased. Usually, I go for the loser, and that’s pretty obvious, since the writers always make them lovely, pure and sincere (there are exceptions, but I’ve never reached the hating level). On the other side, the first lead has a rough start, having another love interest, being rude and selfish. Here, I’m not so sure. I’m not even sure who is who, both guys seem to have personal agendas, so love with butterflies and cute bunnies is not the case of this drama.
Well, that was all, my friends. Thanks for taking your time to read this recap. Prosecutor Princess might not be the shining star of Wed-Thu dramas, but its worthy of the time invested watching. It hasn’t a widely known hot lead, male or female, it’s not pretentious (we won’t have to testify its painful efforts to keep its TOP quality drama rating) and it gives what it offers. If it’s awosome or it sucks, all depends on the writers, and I’m putting my complete faith in them, so puh-leeez, don’t deceive me!
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