Drama Recaps
Best Love: Episode 1
by | May 4, 2011 | 208 Comments

So fun! You didn’t think I’d miss this one, right? It’s the Hong sisters. I’m 6 for 6.

Best Love is maybe not their zaniest, funniest drama, but it makes up for that with a hilariously tongue-in-cheek look into their own industry. Write what you know, right? And if they’re going to skewer the entertainment biz this delightfully, this oughtta be a treat.

It takes a little while to hit its groove — it’s amusing at first, but I didn’t find it immediately addicting. But when the pace finally kicks in, you feel that tug of excitement that gets you in the gut. Woot woot.

SONG OF THE DAY

Best Love OST – “Real Love Song” by K.Will [ Download ]

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EPISODE 1 RECAP

Oh, man, this brings back memories. Right away we start off with comedy gold: Old-school girl group, modeled obviously after the sweet, innocent images of the FinKL girls back in the day. The group name is Kukbo Sonyeo — or should we just call them KBSN? — which means “girls who are national treasures.”

They’ve got the youthful innocence, the schoolgirl outfits, and the cute images still associated with the top girl groups today, but which was much more prominent about a decade ago when idols were less overtly sexualized, and more idealized as good girls. KBSN is so popular that they win Number 1 on the live music programs, and are household names.

And then, ten years later…

The industry’s a bit different now — B-boys and tartlets dominate the pop scene — and KBSN’s former leader is now a has-been who’s trying to remain in the game despite her declining status. This is GU AE-JUNG (Gong Hyo-jin), who is making the usual television and promotional rounds to keep her profile afloat.

Ae-jung is presented as an “original idol,” akin to a Eugene or a Sung Yuri in the real world, and pitted against a present-day idol in a series of games. She loses each one.

Next is a Running Man-like challenge: If she can eat a whole bowl of jajangmyun while on a roller coaster, she gets to come back on the show. Oh, my stomach lurches for you in a sympathy-heave. Maybe she needs some tips from Kim Jong-min.

What’s hilarious about this is that you know that’s actually Gong Hyo-jin…on a roller coaster…eating jajangmyun. It’s so absurd, and that’s why it’s funny.

Understandably enough, Ae-jung doesn’t feel so great after failing to complete the eating task. Her brother-manager Ae-hwan offers to cancel her schedule for the day, but she wants to power through. When she moves to buy herself a soda from the convenience store, Ae-hwan reminds her that she’s a star, so she corrects herself — he can get it for her. It’s cute that she doesn’t have star airs, so he has to remind her to maintain appearances.

Elsewhere, super top Hallyu star DOKKO JIN (Cha Seung-won) sits in a darkened theater at a screening of his newest action flick, Fighter, feeling pretty damn pleased with himself while the theatergoers ooh and ahh. Between Jin, his manager, and the director, it’s a surfeit of smug “Atta boy”s.

But that only lasts about fifteen seconds. Soon, the audience tires of the endless fight reel, stretching boredly in their seats. His manager falls asleep.

Jin remains in his seat when he’s called up to take his bow, glaring at the director for ruining the movie. He mimes punching him in the face, which the host plays off as a tie-in to the movie…but Jin is mindful of his public image enough to resume his gracious exterior and bask in the fan love. (Aw, I love this setup already, with the leads being total opposites. Ae-jung is a misunderstood sweetie, while Jin’s a pompous prick beloved by the public.)

Ha! Afterward, Jin sits in his car, watching Kim Nam-gil in all his bloody sageuk glory (Queen Seon-deok). He’s dissatisfied because it looks cool, and he’d passed it up to do Fighter. He’s pleased, therefore, when his manager assures him that the drama tanked, netting less than 5% viewership ratings (har, meta joke — Seon-deok was a runaway hit). It even dragged down its lead actor with it.

Jin’s sniffs at the prospect of doing a drama next, because he’s set on making his Hollywood entry with famed director Peter Jackson Jason (har). That makes manager JAE-SEOK look nervous, but Jin’s arrogance is a force to be reckoned with. (I love that the Hongs are poking fun that actors’ tendencies to overhype their Hollywood potential. Hee!)

Jin’s van pulls into the gas station, next to Ae-jung’s car. Noting the sleek van, she wonders if a celebrity is inside, and when a few passers-by recognize her, she can’t help but pose next to it, like a star.

From inside, Jin sees the weirdo leaning against his car, and pokes her through the window with a rolled-up poster. Not bothering to show his face, he rudely talks down to her and treats her like a servant, handing her trash to throw away. Ae-jung tries at first to be civil, greeting him as one celebrity to another, but soon grows upset at his high-handedness.

Hilariously, the thing he takes most issue with is when she says incredulously, “Just look at this ajusshi!” She tries to look inside the car to find out who he is, fighting to slide his window open, which leads to a slap-happy round of childishness. It’s great.

Finally he grabs her arm, twists it…and autographs it. He tells her to find out who he is if she wants to know so badly.

Then it’s on to a PR opportunity with top star KANG SE-RI (Yoo Inna), Ae-jung’s former groupmate from KBSN, also Jin’s former real girlfriend and current contract girlfriend. What that means is, they broke up a year ago, but have been maintaining appearances for their image’s sake.

This date is really a photo op to quiet more rumors of their breakup, and they pose for the cameras and act the part of a loving couple. Their agreement is to remain publicly together until his Hollywood debut, at which point they can state that they drifted apart due to their busy schedules.

Se-ri would prefer to carry on the ruse for a bit longer, but Jin isn’t interested, telling her there’s no use in dragging it out.

At a nearby table, another couple is out on a date: This is YOON PIL-JOO, on a blind date. (Yoon Kye-sang!! Why are you so cuuuute?? He just brings a smile to my face — I would have squealed out loud, but I’m on a plane and I’m forced to contain my glee.) Pil-joo is an Oriental medicine doctor who’s rather focused on his work, to the exclusion, sometimes, of social grace.

For instance: His dinner date recognizes Se-ri, but he just says modestly that he doesn’t keep up with the entertainment biz. (Oh boy, is he about to get his world flipped turned upside down or what?) His date sighs at how pretty Se-ri is, to which he answers in a strictly clinical sense that her killer heels are bad for her figure — she’ll end up with an uneven butt. HA.

But his detailed, uh, examination of potential health problems offends his dinner date. It’s flipping hysterical how he explains the properties of a lopsided buttock with a completely straight face, unaware of how his words are getting misinterpreted.

Omg. This is the Best. Thing. EVER:

At home, Ae-jung’s nephew asks Grandpa why his celebrity auntie doesn’t do CFs like the oh-so-cool Dokko Jin. Gramps explains that it’s not that she doesn’t, but that she can’t due to her negative image.

(Omigod. Is Grandpa wearing a Hyun Bin tracksuit? Er, a Kim Joo-won one, I should say?)

Of course, the nephew doesn’t understand the nuances of that, so when Ae-jung comes home, he asks plainly, “Aunt, how come you aren’t liked much and can’t do CFs like that?”

They live a modest life, downsized from the luxury Ae-jung had provided when her career was doing great. It’s a combination of her career stalling, as well as Ae-hwan’s and father’s careless use of their funds, that have led them to this state.

Contrast that to Jin’s state-of-the art bachelor pad, outfitted with top-shelf products. He has all of life’s luxuries, fancy furnishings, and so on. He also wears a top-of-the-line monitor to check his heart rate.

It’s hilarious how Jin lives like he’s shooting a CF at all times. This is a guy who totally buys into his own hype — he certainly spends enough time googling himself. Today he’s disgruntled over the negative fan reviews of his “boring, tiresome” movie.

The answer to this setback? His Peter Jason movie, Ninja Assault. (Lol! Ninja Assassin much? I LOVE THIS DRAMA.)

Ae-jung shows up to the radio station for a guest appearance, where she sees a young idol group and greets them. They barely even spare her a glance, and she gently advises them to keep a positive attitude toward their sunbaes.

(This is an issue entertainers have commented on before, and it’s considered poor etiquette for the hoobae — industry junior — to put on airs or refuse to greet a sunbae. Even if the hoobae is the much bigger star. That just doesn’t fly in an elders-first, Confucian-values-steeped Korea.)

Now we get a glimpse of the reason for Ae-jung’s status as persona non grata, which involves the opinion that she broke up the band. (More meta: Though the public never knows the full story, fans often blame the first member to go off and do other projects when a group breaks up. It’s not so much an issue these days, since all idols are spreading themselves thin trying to get as much exposure as possible — like their idol status is only a temporary springboard to an acting career anyway — but back in the day it was a bigger deal, like when Yoon Eun-hye left Baby VOX to do Goong. Even more meta: I wonder if Yoon Kye-sang has any opinions on this, because he always seemed to me to be the odd one out in G.O.D, when he veered off to pursue acting.)

Today’s schedule is pretty sparse, but Ae-jung has a good attitude about it, saying she’ll do her lone assignment perfectly. Aw, I love her already. Why do you hate her, fictional Korea? What’s wrong with you?? She’s so positive and awesome!

She’s proud of her one statement piece, an expensive designer scarf on loan, since radio appearances are visually important these days. Which is when she bumps into Jin…wearing the same scarf. HAHAHAHA.

Not realizing that he’s the gas station jackass, she’s starstruck and asks tentatively for a handshake. He walks away without acknowledging her. I love how Ae-jung’s pleased that they’ve got matching fashion senses, while he dissatisfactorily covers his up, and flings it off once in the green room and throws it back at his stylist.

On the other hand, Ae-jung has dropped hers…in the toilet. She worries that she’ll be held responsible for its cost, since she’s not a big enough star that they’d let her off the hook. On the other hand, if someone of Jin’s stature were to confess to a similar mistake…

Light bulb moment!

Team Bro & Sis skulk outside Jin’s green room, and she swaps the scarves. She feels a pang of guilt, but assures herself that since Jin is so famous, the mistake will be easily forgiven. But she doesn’t have enough time to escape safely, as Jin returns to the room unexpectedly.

Ae-jung has seconds to hide herself while her brother stalls him, and therefore witnesses Jin dropping his fan-friendly facade and dipping into his usual sneering tone. He admits that he fakes being nice, but doesn’t want to talk about his movie injury in his guest appearance, although his manager Jae-seok thinks that’d be great for stirring sympathy.

Jae-seok hedges again when Jin asks about his audition status with Peter Jason, but finally admits that Jin lost out. And Jin’s reaction is absolutely precious: It’s a mix of bluster, ego, and hurt: “I really got rejected by Peter Jason? W-why? And a-a-after I sent him that expensive wine?” Apparently his lack of English fluency cost him the job to another Asian actor — a Chinese star who’s also American. (Is this the Kwon Sang-woo/Green Hornet story? Have I mentioned I love the Hong sisters?)

Let’s just say that the big-time star does not take rejection well. He fumes, and imagines that people mock him for failing after bragging about his big Hollywood break. He pictures the gossip printed on paper towels, which fly at him as though attacking his hubris.

Ae-jung feels sympathetic for Jin’s bad news, and takes back her soiled scarf…except that she’s caught by Jin, coming out of the bathroom. She comes up with an excuse about being a fan and hurriedly tries to leave. But Jin can’t turn down a request for an autgraph — his Achilles heel has been pinpointed! — and offers one anyway.

Problem is, he signs on the scarf without waiting for her say-so — her very expensive, loaner scarf — and that freaks her out. She wails about the expense, so Jin shoves his pristine scarf her way, saying that he’s not about to wear it now. Not after a nobody like her has been seen in it.

They’re about to end this unsavory transaction when Jin’s gruff speech pattern triggers Ae-jung’s memory, bringing to mind the rude bastard from the gas station. She compares the autograph he wrote on her hand to the one on her scarf, and confronts him about it.

She wants an apology, and he has no problem delivering one, all polite words and demeanor. Not that he means it, of course. But his immediate compliance takes the wind out of her sails, and she accepts his apology.

Only, now that he’s sufficiently appeased her, he wants his scarf back. And she’s reluctant to give it up, and clings to it. So Jin drags her close, warning that refusing to let her go will land her in some “danger,” speaking with a weirdly slurry tone that makes him sound like a 100-year-old drunk grandpa. He whirls the scarf out of her grip with some fast maneuvering and wrests it free.

Jin walks off with the scarf, literally kicking his heels in glee. So. Immature.

On to the radio broadcast, and who should be hosting it but Horan — who cheekily cuts to a song she should be intimately familiar with: Ibadi’s “Chococat.” Heh.

During the break, Ae-jung looks at her ruined scarf and pouts, which Horan notices. And when they go back on the air, Horan asks about the signature, which she’s recognized as Jin’s. How are they acquainted? For appearance’s sake, Ae-jung invents a story about getting the autograph for an unni who loves him. But Horan senses more of a story and comments that they seem close, and asks what he’s like.

Ae-jung answers that he’s not quite like the image he projects, and calls him rude, imperious, and demanding. “In short, he’s a rude jackass.” Immediately, she imagines the words of offended netizens appearing on the nearby computer screen, which form a clever visual metaphor by arranging themselves in the shape of a gun, and shooting word-bullets back at her. Unsurprisingly, this is a figment of her imagination, warning her to stay on track.

So Ae-jung says confidingly that Jin recently ruptured an eardrum filming his last movie (the story his manager had wanted to circulate), but that because Jin was (supposedly) afraid his fans would worry, he kept it a secret. Hence: “He’s someone who can’t be honest that way.”

Everyone falls even more in love with Jin at this disclosure, and captions onscreen show us that “Dokko Jin injury” now shoots to the top of the search engine hits.

And so does Gu Ae-jung. Her brother exults after the show ends, because Jin’s fans are all praising her now. Furthermore, he was with the PD of (real-life) variety show World Changing Quiz (SeBaKwi) during her broadcast, and managed to score her an appearance on it tomorrow.

Except for the fact that it’s contingent on her including Jin. Gulp.

Se-ri meets with producers in planning Season 3 of a popular variety show, Couple Making, which is sort of like a cross between We Got Married and The Bachelor. With the first two seasons being successes with their perfect bachelors — a lawyer, a fund manager — they need to match that with their Season 3 pick. But who could be that perfect mix of looks, background, education, and status?

I WONDER. Cue Pil-joo, who’s visited by his mother at his Oriental medicine hospital. She’s a doting mom, but has more ambitious designs for his future than he does. He’s the kind of down-to-earth doctor who likes making house calls, but she wants him to live up to his status as well-regarded hospital director. She therefore refuses to consider his desire to leave the hospital for a less prestigious career path.

Jin decides that the best way to save face from losing the Hollywood debut is to put out the story that he quit the movie, instead of lost it. (“You can’t fire me, I quit!”) Now what they need is to get a new hot project lined up for him, quick, so people will believe that he took it over Ninja Assault.

His manager suggests he blame it on his injury, since Ae-jung already put out the story. Jin has no idea who Ae-jung is until he’s shown her photo, but insists she’s nothing to him — hardly the “close sunbae-hoobae relationship” everyone’s assuming. He hasn’t even heard of Kukbo Sonyeo, even though Se-ri was in it. Talk about a self-absorbed boyfriend, eh?

Jae-seok explains KBSN’s story: The foursome were popular back in 2001, with Ae-jung being the most popular and Se-ri being the maknae (youngest). But at the height of their fame, they broke up amidst lots of ugly rumors — in-group fighting, exclusion, bad blood. Ae-jung went solo afterward but crashed, and had a scandal linking her romantically to an actor — who was engaged. There was a drunk fighting scandal as well, and her reputation is still stained by those memories today.

But if Jin didn’t tell Ae-jung about his injury, how did she know? He remembers her lurking near his dressing area, and wonders with dread if she also heard about the Peter Jason movie.

Currently, Ae-jung is juggling two problems, which she discusses with former KBSN teammate Jenny (Lee Hee-jin, former Baby VOX member — get it?). The first problem is manageable, as Jenny promises to sell the ruined scarf online. But the second is worse — how to get Jin to agree to being her SeBaKwi partner, or to escape being called a liar if she can’t?

Just then he calls (wanting to know how much she overheard), giving her the opportunity to appeal to him. She tries to soften him up before making her request, but he flatly denies it — she’s so far beneath his level that just asking him to be her phone-a-friend on the variety show is shameless. She replies that she’s desperate, which he should understand if he sent Peter Jason that fancy wine as a bribe.

She admits that she overheard him in the dressing room, which infuriates him — but what can he do? She’s got him by the balls. He threatens to sue her if she spills the story, and she agrees that she couldn’t do that: “How could I tell people that you got passed over for the other actor, that you sent Peter Jason wine as a bribe, and that you got rejected?” Hee.

She advises him to just fess up before he looks more a fool later, but he turns those words back on her, asking if the gossip about her being sponsored by a yakuza are true. “Why don’t you tell the truth before you look more foolish later? Ohh right — you already look plenty foolish now! HA HA HA!”

That old gossip scrapes old wounds, and she bursts out that she yes, the story’s true. She’s clearly lying, but warns him that if he messes with her, her connections will put him in his place. With that, she leaves angrily and sticks him with the bill.

At home, Jin looks up Ae-jung and KBSN, reading post-scandal articles about her losing her fans’ trust. As he thinks of his mean question and registers that he hurt her feelings, his watch suddenly acts up — his heart rate is increasing. Puzzled, he wonders why. Hee. Gee, I wonder!

Time for the SeBaKwi shoot. Ae-jung tries to offer up Jenny as her phone-a-friend buddy instead, but the PD isn’t having it, and Ae-jung can’t admit she lied. So she works up the nerve to call him one last time, and pleads for his generosity.

Ae-jung tells Jin that she’s hoping to appeal to his sense of sympathy for their similar plights: “The way I feel right now about being ditched by you for this quiz is how you feel about being ditched by Peter Jason for the Hollywood movie. I hope that you understand my desperation.”

And maybe he does see the similarity, because that rejection is the one thing constantly on his mind right now, the thing he can’t get over, the thing he keeps wondering if he ought to try begging the director for. So while he tosses the phone aside in dismissal, he doesn’t dismiss her entirely from his mind.

The show begins filming, and Ae-jung waits nervously while the hosts hype up her planned contact — Jin’s the biggest star they’ll ever have had on the show. She sits in anxious fear while they put the call through, hoping this won’t end badly.

All the while, Jin keeps eyeing his phone, waiting for it to ring. When it finally does, he jumps — but lets it keep ringing. And ringing. And ringing. It’s awkward, and everyone in the studio wonders why he’s not answering.

Elsewhere in the broadcast station, in a planning session for the Couple Matching show, Se-ri catches cameras showing the taping, then heads to the studio to see for herself. She’s curious and a little jealous that her old frenemy supposedly is chummy with her ex, and the longer the phone keeps ringing, the more smug she gets.

The silence grows in the studio as everyone waits, and Se-ri smirks as the hosts declare this a failure…and then, Jin’s voice booms through the speakers: “Hello?”

Ae-jung’s totally shocked, but the studio suddenly livens up with excitement. The hosts prod Ae-jung to proceed with the quiz, since time is ticking: She has 90 seconds to describe objects, and he has to guess them.

Starting cautiously at first, Jin actually gets pretty into the competitive spirit, pumping his fists when he guesses correctly, all wound up with tension. Jin not only matches every one of her clues, he gets so worked up that his bewildered managers look at him in wonder.

The last word is “grapes,” and Ae-jung fumbles for a clue with ten seconds on the clock. Finally, she lands on: “Bribe!” Everyone else is puzzled, but she adds, “The thing you gave Peter Jason!”

Jin’s so caught up in the game that he doesn’t even register the implications, and guesses excitedly, “Ah, wine!” Ae-jung prods him to say what it’s made of, and he declares, “Grapes!”

He’s so thrilled that shouts happily and does a victory chant, pleased to hear that he’s the first guest to have guessed every term correctly.

Only…the hosts then ask what that last question was about, and it’s only now that they realize what the heck they’ve just done. Oopsie!

 
COMMENTS

So cute! It started off a bit laid-back, but the more we got into it, the more the pace amped up until I was squealing in the end. I’m always amazed at how much plot the Hong sisters can cram into an hour, and it’s no different here. I love that about them; they keep things moving, and keep you on your toes.

I’m excited for Best Love in that it’s probably the Hongs’ best drama in terms of talented actors. That’s not a slight on the others, because they’ve had some damn appealing leads before, but here’s a case where all four main leads are not only funny, charismatic, and good-looking, but strong actors. Plus, I’m starting to really believe that all good actors really need to take on a strong rom-com role at least once — you can be a fantastic actor, but even in a light fluffball drama, it can open up your image and range in a way that you don’t get from doing strictly solid “actorly” projects. That can be as valuable as acting creds.

For example, woo Cha Seung-won! I know he’s not a total stranger to comedy, but I haven’t seen him doing it and he certainly has pursued a different path in recent years — Athena, City Hall, Eye For an Eye. Cold, hard, badass dudes. And yet here, he’s like an insecure Narcissus, and it’s fabulous. He does affect this weird drawl that I can’t decide yet if I like or abhor — it’s drunk grandpa, seriously — but either way, it’s interesting. I love that he’s going for the unlikable guy, rather than holding back and trying to still be likable. We’ll have plenty of time to fall for him later.

And Yoon Kye-sang! Sigh…I think this one’s gonna hurt, guys. I think this is the Hong sisters drama that may finally get me on the second lead’s side. Or, barring that, at least produce a credible love triangle. (I don’t see Se-ri putting up much of a fight, even though I think Yoo Inna is great.) But that in itself is a thing to rejoice. He is adorable, and like Cha Seung-won, he takes a familiar character type (haughty on Cha’s end, the familiar nice guy on his own) and tweaks it a little, adding that hilarious comic bent of being a nerd about his work.

Gong Hyo-jin is, as usual, lively and winning and charming. I love that her Ae-jung isn’t actually a bitch, although initially I thought that could have been fun too. Instead, she’s the sweet girl with the misfortune to be dogged by her bad image for years. Just the fact that she maintains a sunny attitude despite her down-in-the-dumps career makes me feel for her and admire her pluck. She has a luminous quality that brings a geniune spirit to her characters, and that shines through here as well. Love. Her.

I have a good feeling about this one! *crosses fingers* *hopes I didn’t just jinx things for us all* *hides from mob if things take a turn*

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208 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. AW

    YEEEESSS OOOOOHHH YEAH

     (0)


    • 1.1 AW

      so excited/dreading May,
      I swear it’ll be the death of me

      3+ dramas that I want to watch & follow

      we like 8 more hours in a day
      … or else it’s just going to be total suicide

      OTTOKE!?!

       (0)


      • 1.1.1 Alvina

        I know!!!! I have exams this week and I’m sitting here reading this.

        just. cant. help. it :/

         (0)


        • 1.1.1.1 Beng

          Me, i don’t think i’m gonna earn my payslip this May coz i’ll probably watch and read recaps even during office hours (^-^)

           (0)


          • 1.1.1.1.1 ahjummabunny

            Yep, that’s how I’ll be living too.

             (0)


          • 1.1.1.1.2 Rina

            I’m reading recaps at work too (I have minimize the window so that my coworkers don’t look over my shoulder :) I haven’t quite mastered a way to sneak watching episodes at work.

             (0)


          • 1.1.1.1.3 scorpia469

            haha lol
            reading it right now at work

             (0)


        • 1.1.1.2 Nancii

          me too!! gosh i have exams that will determine my life and out comes another great hong sisters drama!

          NOOO!

          please tell me there’s actually 48hrs in a day !!

           (0)


          • 1.1.1.2.1 yakno

            what exams? …ap… … took psychology & environmental science few days… think im going collapse soon lol…tomorrow euro..then biology.. & omg …eng and statistics same day…. -___- finally ending it with human geography.. then i won’t have to sleep 3-5 hours & 8 cred head start in college…aw…
            do wish they were 49 days in a day… yeah…that be awesome…

             (0)


          • 1.1.1.2.2 yakno

            what exams? …ap… … took psychology & environmental science few days… think im going collapse soon lol…tomorrow euro..then biology.. & omg …eng and statistics same day…. -___- finally ending it with human geography.. then i won’t have to sleep 3-5 hours & 8 cred head start in college…aw.
            do wish they were 49 days in a day… yeah…that be awesome…

             (0)


        • 1.1.1.3 Yasmin

          lol, me too!! But i decided to read the recaps of the dramas that i want to watch and then after i finish my exams i can watch them properly!! that way i dont have to feel like killing myself everytime there is a cliffhanger and also by the time i finish my exams most of the series will be half way so the subs will have come out and i will watch in my own time!! Yay!!

          Can’t wait for city hunter LEE MIN HO!! lie to me, you’ve fallen for me, best love and romance town!! wow, and there are sooo many more to choose from as well!! May madness and mayhem indeed!! LOL

           (0)


    • 1.2 bubblyigum

      Do you know where i could watch it with english subtitles? :-s

       (0)


  2. Qd

    Yay!

     (0)


    • 2.1 So3

      I got the shower scene prediction correctly!! LOL

       (0)


      • 2.1.1 swui

        LOL…even the Hong sisters can’t resist writing in a shower scene like every other kdrama…or is that scene supposed to be a meta as well…

        Nice bod. Almost all korean actors have fab choco abs yeah…btw, is his bathroom an open air bathroom….I see no doors or shields…!

         (0)


        • 2.1.1.1 Qd

          For a 40 year old guy, he looks d*mn good! Did you see that six pack? I had to fan myself watching that!

          THANK YOU FOR THE FAN SERVICE! ENCORE? lol

          Yeah I didnt notice there wasnt any doors or shields… whole new meaning to if you have it, flaunt it eh?
          Wonder when Dokko Jin would invite me in? An autograph might do the trick? or if I introduce myself as Peter Jason’s (lol typing that- like typo error but not!) niece ? lol

           (0)


      • 2.1.2 Qd

        You sure did So3 !!! CSW is soooo fine and such a laugh! I love that he playing this super Diva! lol Is there such word for a guy? lol

        Wah! Wah! I refresh this page like forever and still came in 2nd! aih! Didnt have time to reply after squeezing in every free minute to read the recap! Gawd~ I nearly hid myself in the toilet just to read the recap on my mobile!!! lol … Tommorrow will probably not be so early for recaps as I am having dark circles like a panda @@ and its only the 2nd episode just aired like 4 hours ago! I need to take care of myself to see this drama through :P

        Thanks JB!!! Totally loving your recaps ! As I tried to piece some things together but you made it so much more understandable and enjoyable. I love how you described the words coming out when Dokko Jun was reading fan comments and how he perceived it and the napkin scene! lol Especially the cultural references & all the meta , Im very grateful for your insight! It made me laugh so much harder! Love & appreciate it so much more!

        Now the ratings… what is that? I hope its just because its the first episode because if its because it has more matured actors doesnt mean its not a good drama. In fact just watching the first epi I was hooked! I loved it! It thrilled me , informed me, excited me, moved me, bonded me to the characters already and thats really saying alot for the 1st epi! I really hope its the former , not the latter!

        Im loving the chemistry between GHY & CSW! Im loving the references, Im loving how zippy its going and I hope continue to go. Im loving how much I want GHY to be triumphant already so early in the game…already invested in her as we commenters like to say… and as for the second leads Im very curious where it would go for straight laced Dr in the cruel, image conscious & artificial world of Show business. As for the CSW… Dokko Jin ah!!!! lol I am abit biased with this as I simply love CSW! His voice is like that. I personally like his voice…very man! *blush* Personal feelings aside he was born to play this. In fact I admire him for taking on this role as I suspect it to be close to comfort for him the subject matter that he has to play out to audiences. It will be interesting with his heart pacemaker, his relationship with Ae Jung and his contract relationship. I am already intrigued!

        Cannot wait for next epi recaps!!! Kamsahamida JB!

         (0)


  3. ReD Globe

    Yeah I waiting for this =)

     (0)


  4. S2

    KANG-AHHH~

     (0)


    • 4.1 Ah joo ma

      Oy.. wrong place! lol…Couple more minute perhaps. :)

       (0)


      • 4.1.1 MJP

        I think that anyplace is good to say…

        KANG-AH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        KKKKAAAAAANNNNNGGGGGG-AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        See, it goes beautifully anywhere!

         (0)


        • 4.1.1.1 Qd

          This is so funny!!!! I was getting confused for a minute there! LOL

           (0)


    • 4.2 Eva

      Love this, haha

       (0)


    • 4.3 YY

      Kang-ahhhhhh

       (0)


      • 4.3.1 yumyum

        kang ahh..hehehhe… i want kang ahhh

         (0)


  5. danna

    yay!!!…btw JB there appears to be somehting wrong with one of the caps…it says the image has been deleted by photobucket

     (0)


  6. kiotzo

    I’ve been waiting for this all day, now i can sleep peacefully :)

    Love

     (0)


  7. misstery28

    wow! you’re recapping this? thank you for the hardwork, jb! i look forward to the surprises in store for us this may~

     (0)


  8. Ah joo ma

    I would wait for this one. Don’t have the urge to watch at the moment. Hopefully after reading your recaps and I’ll go for it. :)

     (0)


  9. Christy

    Woohoo! Thank you for the recap.

    The first episode made my day! Gong Hyo Jin never fails to deliver. What a funny, funny gal!

     (0)


  10. 10 Anne

    Hooray…!!!!!! Crosses my fingers too… :)

     (0)


  11. 11 mandak

    yes!! finally, after keep refreshing this site..hahaha

     (0)


  12. 12 ohemgee

    yay!!!!!!!

    now i can go to sleep dreaming of CSW and YKS!

     (0)


  13. 13 jessie

    How about the ratings for the pilot episode? I know that sometimes good dramas are not always depend on how high their ratings. I just wanna know how many percent did all my favorite actors get for this drama???
    This is definitely going to be my most favorite drama of the season!! YEAAAAAHHH!!!

     (0)


  14. 14 melonhead

    yay, thanks so much! but….what about 49 days????? don’t deprive us of Scheduler and KANG-AAHHH!!

     (0)


  15. 15 stars4u

    I haven’t watched yet! 24 hours is just so short on some days…

     (0)


  16. 16 Ashley

    This drama had me at the slap fight. I’m in.

     (0)


  17. 17 thatguy

    Lee Hee Jin was a former member of Baby Vox not FinKL.

     (0)


  18. 18 myweithisway

    awwwww, sounds so fun!

     (0)


  19. 19 peachys2sleep

    Wasn’t Lee Hee Jin in Baby VOX and not Finkl?

     (0)


  20. 20 Smile

    Javabeans~ you wrote that lee heejin was from finkl but shes actually a baby vox member :) just thought id point it out~ i love ur recaps!

     (0)


    • 20.1 park713

      i think she means that KBSN is a parody of fin.k.l and jenny is the leejin in the group.

      ps does anybody know if cha seungwon’s rachel tattoo is real?

       (0)


      • 20.1.1 elle loves kdrama

        He had the same tatoo in Athena (in his 30 seconds bed scene with Lee Ji Ah)

         (0)


      • 20.1.2 Kim

        The tattoo is of his daughter so it is very real. I wonder if the Hong sisters will work in a story for the tattoo since it is significantly large.

         (0)


    • 20.2 ruthie

      yes… and the one thats on FINKL is Lee Jin.

       (0)


  21. 21 blue1004

    Lee Hee Jin was a former Baby Vox member, no?

     (0)


    • 21.1 blue1004

      Oops, haha, it seems like many others pointed it out already. That’s what I get for not refreshing before commenting!

       (0)


  22. 22 stupidity

    Actually, Lee Hee Jin was from baby vox.

     (0)


  23. 23 xylophonic

    You are on a plane? You did this recap for us ON A PLANE? Wowowow. You are awesome.

    Best premiere I have seen in such a long time. Right off the bat, it’s funny, fast-paced, and has some heavier beats to offset all the craziness. Hong sisters; I salute you– heck, I bow down!!

    Have never watched CSW in anything, so I was pleasantly surprised by his acting. (Though the way he speaks kind of threw me off; is he always like that? Kind of slurring/really languid? Apparently not, but it bothers me.) I love his antics! And I love his character. The last quiz show scene, HOW AWESOME WAS THAT. GHJ is cute. And their chemistry was off the charts.

    I think the one thing that really makes this drama different from the other HS dramas is actually the two main leads. Other couples, like Chun-hyang/Mong-ryong, Dae-woong/Miho, they really were more the cute type, and that’s mostly where their charm came from (and much of the show’s charm). I’ll admit it, sometimes I hoped for something a little more than the cute-first-puppy-love that was always going on. Yes, it was cute. But sometimes that was all it was!!

    The real potential with this show, as I see it, is that the main couple won’t just be cute, they’ll be like, more than that! I think that is the main advantage to the older couple is that we’ll see a lot more of the raw, sexual tension stuff. Emotionally deeper. Not that I’m saying the other dramas weren’t deep (I’m mostly leaving HGD out of these comparisons) but you cannot deny that most of the couples were predominantly ‘adorable’, ‘cute’, etc. I’m looking forward to seeing something different with these two.

    Hopefully they do something good with Yoo Inna; hoping that she doesn’t get relegated to hated female second lead (yeah, and also, why is it that it’s mostly the females who are hated? Why not the men? Why do they always have to be the nurturing, caring type that breaks our hearts when they don’t get the girl? Can’t we have an awesome second female who breaks our hearts when she doesn’t get the guy?), she has way more potential than that. Never seen Yoon Kye-sang in anything, though he’s definitely made a favorable (if not fervent) impression on me. His storyline with Ae-jung seems fairly predictable though.

    Oh yeah– you left out the gratuitous CSW shower scene! Not even a screencap? ;) Woohooo.

    All in all, that was excellent. Thank youu for recapping! I wish you both luck in managing these crazy next couple of months! Hwaiting!!

     (0)


    • 23.1 Laica

      I totally agree with you about the difference between this lead couple and earlier ones. The cute is all well and good, but I feel like it takes us to a certain point and then stops. It’s like in YB, where even though the actors had amazing chemistry, their characters’ chemistry hit a wall once the “I like you”/”I like you too” hurdle was jumped. And we got these frozen, uncomfortable looking kisses and way too much cutesy moon-star stuff. I find HS dramas usually fall flat for me in the last quarter for this very reason, there’s less comedy than the first 3/4, and yet the serious stuff is a little lukewarm.

      Cha Seung-win can definitely bring the tortured-sexy, and Gong Hyo-jin is wonderful at emotional scenes, so I’m also looking forward to this couple upping the ante in comparison to earlier Hong sisters dramas. As long as the writing gives them a chance, they won’t fail to deliver.

      So excited!

       (0)


  24. 24 Alvina

    omg yes!!!! Kye-sang is BACK baby, and looks super cute too.

    I saw the first episode and loved it.
    It was like walking down memory lane.

    Now I have like 10 tabs open with old school kpop loading on each one. Thank you drama for making me happy/sad/mixed up inside and it’s only the FIRST episode :/

    ~~~~

    Also, that “out” at the end is easy to get out of if she can do some clever lying. Just Saying. Variety shows do it all the time lol

     (0)


  25. 25 travelcraze

    first to comment? I was waiting for 49days recap actually.

     (0)


  26. 26 konachan

    Oh thank you so much javabeans !

    I agree with you that it’s a bit slow at first, but somehow I wonder it’s the director’s intention to tone down the otherwise rather explicit commentaries on the showbiz. Hong sisters are pretty daring this time, I have to say I enjoy all the meta-analysis of the entertainment industry.

    I am a loyal fan of Gong Hyo Jin and I am so surprised that this time she still is able to handle this role in a very subtle and balanced manner. Cha has a different acting style from her, but they complement each other well.

    The rating isn’t too high now but it’s too early to tell since other dramas (Thorn Bird and 49 days) are reaching the end. I just hope that Hong sisters can keep their pace and their comical parody since this is what Best love unique!

     (0)


  27. 27 Sherlyn

    i guess she meant lee jin from finkl…
    kekekek
    anyway,
    this recap is really a surprise to me…
    i’ve been refreshing to get 49 days…
    hope the recap for 49 days will be up soon…
    girlfriday….
    u there???

     (0)


  28. 28 L

    Oh man I’m falling in love with the second lead already T_T

     (0)


    • 28.1 Gladys

      Who wouldn’t fall in love with Yoon Kye Sang? His first appearance at the restaurant reminds me of his role in Who Are You? which is a sinfully under-rated drama of all time! That drama really captivated me and made me swoon over him. It was love at first sight over him for me!

       (0)


      • 28.1.1 YY

        Yes I love him too. Loved Who Are You. It made me cry so much. Strange….how come he’s not the lead here? I thought he’s always the lead.

         (0)


    • 28.2 Laica

      I was in love with him before the drama even started. I usually don’t get stricken by Second Lead Syndrome, but I think this might be the drama for me.

       (0)


  29. 29 asianromance

    Thank you for the recap, javabeans!!!!! I haven’t gotten around to watching it yet, but it was great knowing what happened in this episode!! I really like how the Hong Sisters went with older leads this time since the last 2 dramas feel a bit more on the early 20s side.

     (0)


  30. 30 Dee

    yesssssssssssssss definitely on watch list. thanks for the recap b^.^d

     (0)


  31. 31 hpn88

    The meta/poking fun at the industry in the show is out of control and so funny. Love it so far!
    I hope the next ep has more Yoon Kye Sang (and I totally thought about the whole YKS/G.o.d thing when they talked about bands breaking up thing too.)

     (0)


    • 31.1 Alvina

      I know. This is me being shameless but I hope they have some sort of throwback with YKS.

      I know he wants to distance himself from his hip-hop days but, oh what I would give to see him jog in the rain in a tracksuit, set to the tune of Love&Memory LOL

       (0)


  32. 32 qwerty

    AWWWYEAH! i’ve been waiting foreverrrr to watch this drama! it seems really funny. i’m watching this one for sureeee thanks for the recap!!

     (0)


  33. 33 Takoyaki

    Nice K-entertainment culture reference from Hong sisters.
    Yoo Inna playing a top star haha, this drama is excellent.
    The story of “busy schedule”, so true among actors couples
    “Girls who are national treasures”, joining right now their fan cafe!
    I wonder who are the two last members of KBSN.
    About Hyun Bin’s tracksuit, I saw on the web people were selling it around $30 haha

     (0)


  34. 34 mari

    this was fun! the rollercoaster thing reminds me of taiwanese game show with the same challenge or holding an egg between chopsticks without letting it drop heheheh this way amusing i hope it keeps going. thanks for the recap!

     (0)


  35. 35 whoopeeyoo

    JB, I love you and your recap! So funny! And is it telling how deep am I in this fandom that I get all the meta? Haha! Thanks for the AWESOME recap! <3

     (0)


  36. 36 Bluefyre

    Gah! I am SO loving this!! Brilliant! Hong Sisters never fail! :D

    Thanks so much for an awesome ep recap!

    Can’t wait until subs are out too! Weeee…

     (0)


  37. 37 yeni

    Kyesang oppa!!

     (0)


  38. 38 DC

    Yoo Inna = Yoon Eunhye

    Same setting, outfits, sunglasses and scenes from MFL.

    But this was expected because it was announced earlier that characters would remind people of Finkl & Yoon Eunhye.

     (0)


  39. 39 deaan

    I was waiting 4 49 days recap but suddenly I found this!!! Oh well,its quiet interesting anyway,coz its hong sister’s drama!soo am gonna read this!

     (0)


  40. 40 tari

    “At home, Jin looks up Ae-jung and KBSN…his watch suddenly acts up — his heart rate is increasing. Puzzled, he wonders why. Hee. Gee, I wonder!”

    He was listening to the same song that the surgeon played during his open heart surgery.

    I’m loving every bit of it, including Cha Seung-won’s wet chest with or without the scar from the surgery :)

     (0)


    • 40.1 james

      yeah, i was wondering why JB didn’t include that bit in the recap, it gives this whole new dimension to their relationship. and right off the bat, it tells you that Jin’s someone who went through a life/death situation, and maybe not as laid back and shallow as he seems to be. :)

       (0)


    • 40.2 Kim

      The song was playing during his heart surgery so I’m guessing his body has conditioned a response to their song.

       (0)


      • 40.2.1 Qd

        Ive been wondering about this too. Because it was right from the beginning… did JB miss it? hmm….

         (0)


  41. 41 Kuging-RN

    nice!! btw, where can i watch the ep 1 with english subs??help pls..i cant seem to find it in dramacrazynet..thanks a lot!

     (0)


    • 41.1 Jonesy

      Wondering here too, checked out the usuals. Love the Hong sisters!! Thanks for the recap Javabeans!

       (0)


  42. 42 greentea

    HAHA oh the pelvic thrusts when CSW gets his fruits right! Best. Thing. EVER

     (0)


    • 42.1 Laica

      I know I was rolling! Their chemistry in that scene was awesome.

       (0)


      • 42.1.1 swui

        I was like squealing too during their quiz session…dunno why I was so caught up that I wanted them to answer correctly too…as though I was watching a real show…and then I realized they’ve spilled the beans I also went OH-UH!!!!!!!!

         (0)


  43. 43 BOGCHI

    can’t wait to see it!!

     (0)


  44. 44 anais

    Although I can’t remember precisely which drama/movie, Cha Seung Won uses this delivery elsewhere. It’s such a weird combo of languid and stiff, but sufficiently effective in conveying his imperiousness.

     (0)


    • 44.1 xylophonic

      I’m going to be honest, I don’t much like it and hope it like, goes away? xD He kind of sounds like a lech at some parts…

       (0)


  45. 45 Usi

    I did not wanted to watch that show since I absolutely detest Gong Hyo-jin but it sounds so funny, that I want try at least. Maybe she is better in this show.

     (0)


  46. 46 lemeera

    SOUNDS SO FUNNNNN!

     (0)


  47. 47 Vicky

    This looks cute, I like the cast, it looks promising. Thanks for the recap!

     (0)


  48. 48 rickytheroyalhighness

    Eep… EXCITED!

     (0)


  49. 49 Laica

    Yay thank you!

    I don’t know if anyone else cares, but I love that Ae-jung’s brother and father actually resemble her, which is so not often the case. Which makes sense, as actors are not chosen solely for their appearance (one hopes). Still. how cute is it that they all have the same nose?

    I love Gong Hyo-jin in this – as JB said: Love. Her.

    Cha Seung-won is awesome, but I’m missing Jo Gook just a tiny bit when I look at him. Maybe it’s his almost identical hairstyle and facial scruff? It’s going to take a bit to get used to Dokko Jin. He’s doing a great job though. I loved him clicking his heels in victory.

    I was totally caught up in the excitement of the quiz by the end. Practically on the edge of my seat. And that slip was SO bad, and SO good… I’m definitely glad we get the next episode tomorrow!

     (0)


    • 49.1 swui

      yes…a huge OH-UH moment….

      SO sad I have to go off tmr …a plane to catch …I’m going to have to miss 3 epis at least…sigh

       (0)


    • 49.2 Laica

      More on Ae-jung’s character:

      I know it’s only been one episode and you can’t judge based on that, but if she stays how she is now, I’m really going to love her.

      I don’t know if this is a post-Samsoon thing, but I find a lot of heroines in recent trendies hard to like because the writers make them shallow, petty and crass in order to make them seem down to earth, which is NOT the same thing. Samsoon could be all of those things at times, but it wasn’t who she was, and her amazing character has yet to be replicated by anyone. (Although I have to admit, her toilet humour was a bit too gross for me at times.) Samsoon was a little rough around the edges, but she was also a kickass, smart, charming, capable woman who stood up for herself and had a strong moral compass.

      What I like about Ae-jung is what Javabeans said about her, handling the crap life has dealt to her with cheerfulness and maturity, but also what she is not. She’s not overly cutesy. She’s not violent and rude, under cover of being “spirited”. She has a sense of what to say when – she doesn’t spill stuff about Jin even when it would be satisfying to do so, unlike many immature heroines I have seen who act in unrealistic and petty ways.

      And what I like most? She doesn’t coerce and/or threaten the male lead into helping her, she appeals to his empathy, and resigns herself to the consequences if he doesn’t come through! Can you believe it? A decent female lead for once. I won’t lie, I enjoyed My Girl too, but I’m really getting tired of leads who do unethical things and blame it on “circumstances”.

      (That said, will I be watching Lie to Me? Oh HELL yeah.)

      :)

       (0)


      • 49.2.1 Casie J.

        Totally agree with you here! I’m surprised by how much I loved the first episode. And Ae-jung is just really sweet and I was taken aback by how much I didn’t think she was this cookie-cutter good girl. It’s fresh and I love it!

         (0)


        • 49.2.1.1 Qd

          Agree! As I have commented already! I’m already invested in Ae Jung. I can relate to the ‘has been’ syndrome…… popular before, pretty before, young before… and all goes downhill … yet she seems to have a good heart and act with a good heart as well… I also agree with you with the maturity bit… although I enjoy young love, young relationships, I still yearn for more complex, more matured, deep characters and I feel Ae Jung has layers we have not peel away yet and makes her who she is today and I want to be there on her journey and as always… personally, I hope for a happy ever after? one can always hope right? ;)

           (0)


  50. 50 yonheet

    I wonder if dokko jin was the heart surgery patient in the beginning of the episode while the kukbo sonyeo song was playing? so then it’s FATE?!?! wheee!

    thanks for the recap java.

     (0)


    • 50.1 Laica

      Yup that was him. That’s why he wears a heart rate monitor on his wrist. You can also see the surgery scar later when he’s wearing a low-cut shirt.

       (0)


      • 50.1.1 typicrobots

        I also think that’s why his heart rate jumped when he heard KBSN’s song. The doctor had that song on while Jin was under and his eyes were fluttering like he was registering it in some subconscious way, and then later when he’s researching her his heart starts to beat faster when he plays the song, even though he doesn’t recognize it.

         (0)


    • 50.2 Ju Ina-sshi

      They will probably make it FATE.
      Ah this is really to easy. But at least they gave Dokki Jin a grave side. He went through a lot of ‘heartship’ ….I’m not good at that I know…

       (0)


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