Rating:
Average user rating 4.7
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A detailed look at the main characters of Bridal Mask

One of Bridal Mask’s (aka Gaksital) biggest selling points—for me, at least—is that it’s set in an interesting time period full of dramatic historical events that isn’t (1) done to death in drama after drama, and (2) features a rich tableau of conflict and character complexity. Oh, and (3) it’s rocking some snazzy fashions.

Take, for instance, lead actor Joo-won dressed in his daywear, which is to say, as the citizen Lee Kang-to and not his nameless masked crusader guise who becomes known as Bridal Mask. The word dapper comes to mind.

Furthermore, his character is built with fascinating layers and a reversal that I’m itching to watch unfold. The description describes Lee Kang-to, a police officer, thusly: “He’s never lost to anybody. He’s never acted out of consideration for others, or yielded to them. No, he doesn’t feel the need to.” His father, a high-ranking official active in the independence movement, died at the hands of bandits after crossing the Yalu River, after which he was left to fend for himself, hiding in the harsh terrain of the Gaema Plateau, fighting with beasts over a mere potato.

Still, Kang-to tamped down his own desires and endured because of his older brother, who would one day help re-establish their family name. But one day his brother suffers an injury and is turned into an imbecile—all thanks to that damn independence movement.

And so, Kang-to decided: “Forget Joseon, ruled by the king’s line—I’ll be loyal to the Imperial Japanese Empire, where the slave who used to dress the lord can become a ruler.” With no money, backing, or education, he hears that a man can die a martyr if only he has strong fighting skills, and throws himself into learning geomdo (kendo).

Once he earns that recognition for his skills, he becomes the capital’s top “cold city man,” the crown prince of the social world. “But he had no idea that with the appearance of that damned Bridal Mask, the sweet dream would shatter. Or the fate that awaits him…” And then the heroic turn begins.

Jin Sae-yeon plays Mok Dan, a member of a circus troupe with a bright personality. Whenever she starts to feel despair, she reminds herself that she’s the daughter of a leader in the independence army, a man born into the lowly slave caste who rose to become army general.

At the age of ten, she and her mother crossed the northern border in search of her father, only to have Mom die. And while Dan hovered between life and death, she was saved by the young man, our hero. Her life’s goals become twofold: Find her savior, and find her father.

It’s for that reason that she gives up an advantageous opportunity to leave for America and chooses instead to wander the entire country with a traveling theater troupe, learning the arts, keeping her ears open for any talk of those two men.

Park Ki-woong plays Kimura Shunji, a teacher living in the capital (Kyungsung, or old Seoul) with a gentle personality that belies a strong backbone. His father was a samurai and Shunji was raised learning how to swordfight, but he grew up to become the opposite of his father’s ways. When Dad told him that Joseon was a land of savages, he disagreed and gave up the sword, choosing to become a teacher there.

Shunji was born in Kyungsung and had a loving Korean nanny, and perhaps for that reason he has affection for the country. He falls for a Korean woman as well, our heroine… who loves Kang-to, his friend. And this love rivalry with Kang-to sparks a change in Shunji, which sounds like lots of angst is in store for his future.

Following the opposite trajectory is Chae Hong-joo (Han Chae-ah), a Korean woman who takes up a Japanese identity and reinvents herself as Ueno Rie.

Hong-joo/Rie is a strong woman with diverse sides—a singer, a gambling master, a spy who makes poisons and explosives—who’s skilled with artifice and lies.

She was born to an aristocratic family, but because her father refused to monetarily support the independence army, the general killed him. Her mother died from the shock and their servants burned the house down, overturning her life entirely. Hong-joo became an orphan and beggar, driven to survive to avenge her parents’ deaths, becoming a gisaeng at the age of nine.

The mere mention of Joseon’s independence army has her burning up in fury, which goes noticed early on by a Japanese man named Ueno Hideki, who adopts her as his daughter. Thus she undergoes army training and comes to Joseon to kill the man known as Bridal Mask who has been killing members of their secret organization Kishokai.

Fascinating stuff, no? Bridal Mask / Gaksital premieres on May 30. WHO’S EXCITED?

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park ki woong!!! you adorable man. i already sense the heartache in store for you.

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Honestly, it's not exactly my type of drama, but I do have a soft spot for Park Ki-woong and actually Joo-won too. It just sounds like so much angst!

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yeah,reading this post makes me think it's too complicated and a chore to watch, especially with poor subtitle. I just might not understand a thing, or even worse, misunderstand. But i would give it a go because of Joowon. If they manage to make all those angst come out beautifully on screen, then why not.

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and yes, the trailer below looks awesome.

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seriously, as i was scrolling down this post my face was all:

puzzled...

puzzled...

puzzled...

ack! Park Ki-woong is so adorable!!!!

and, i'm having second thoughts on Joo-won's hair. I think I'd rather watch him on 1n2d.

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hes sooo cute in the drama, i love that his looks really could pass for a japanese(this strokes my love for all things jap haha)

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Omg it's my first time posting and I am going to be first!!!! So cool! Joo Won looks so adorable! Can't wait for him to play the dapper kick ass hero!

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I'M EXCITED!!! Except by then I'll be back home, alternately battling and pleading with my finicky third-world internet to give me my drama fix. *sigh* Luckily I have Iljimae already downloaded, so that will have to satisfy my historical vigilante fighter appetite until I get back to the States.

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*correction: Return of Iljimae - Jung Ilwoo version, not the Lee Junki version

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Quick question: Where can you download Korean TV shows with subs?

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Mysoju.com...kimchidramas.net...dramacrazy.net are the usual places I watch dramas at :)

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if its not a direct rip from places like dramafever/or somehow viki, generally k tv shows, specifically dramas, with hardsubs are RARE, to the point of pretty much being nonexistent, youd only ever find variety shows hardsubbed by specific fangroups of a certain celebrity, generally for dramas people do torrents and then softsubs seperately cos its easier to make and cos it means you can just match the softsub to whichever version of the torrent youve downloaded (360p,720p etc), your best bet would be googling for the torrent you want, places like asiatorrents or d-addicts has em all these days, older dramas are a little more difficult to find, and then googling for the softsubs if theyre not already included in the torrent for the drama

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i am super excited.the two characters that i find interesting is lee kang to and choi hang joo.its see how it turns o

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its out.sorry i was in a hurry .hey that rhyms

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yes, this was the least interesting in my book till the teaser was released : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28bORI46-jQ&feature=player_embedded
and now with these character descriptions as well its shot to the top...more excited about this than any of the romantic dramas

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That looks awesome. For the lazy:

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Excitement increased by 200%.

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SWEET!!!!

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oh is it like zorro..i mean like the mask was passed from an orig one to joo won? innteresting

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Aw man, yet another drama to add to my list. This looks GOOD!

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Ok then...so I wanted to watch it at first but with this jaw-droppingly awesome trailer....I'm dying for it to get here.

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I'm in!

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*_*

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It was a done deal as soon as I saw the getaway horse, honestly. Can't get more badass than four legs.

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oh wow!!

i haven't seen shin hyun joon in ages. :)

so many dramas to look forwars to : )

Thanks javabeans

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OMG That looks so exciting. One of the few trailers that does not reveal much but get your interest. Baby faced Joo Won ,a fighter? Hopefully the Japanese will not protest about it. The reason this time period is not done to death is the sensitivity of the events that occurred then.

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shoot, i can totally watch this!!! yay! for this premiering while I'm off from school!!!!

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This looks like a movie teaser. /drools at the pretty

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ooppss... let me pick my jaw up from the floor.

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WOW ~ WOW ~ WOW ~ W-O-O-O-OW!! :D

This trailer of Bridal Mask look so freaking awesome! It gave me soooo goooooosebump, haha! (rubs on my arms) Ooo ~ Ooo!!

I am looking forward to this!!

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I was excited before I saw this teaser. Now I am stupid excited.

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that looks AMAZING!

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LOVE. IT.
ahhh this is so great... May 30th, come fasterrrr!

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Goodness the trailer looks very promising with some great acting there!

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Man, it reminds me somewhat of Batman Begins. Other than the obvious fact of it's about indep. in Korea, the main character is self-preservative character.

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btw does anyone find it funny how jang hyuk was considered for the role but in the end it was baby-faced joo won. i feel like it would've been a completely different drama.

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It would probably be a lot more serious with Jang Hyuk and therefore a bit of a drag? Also Park Ki Woong looks a lot younger than Jang Hyuk, I think, so it'd be weird to picture them as friends since I'm assuming they're supposed to be the same age.

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Wait, I'm confused. So Joo Won plays a guy who DOESN'T want independence from the Japanese? He goes undercover to KEEP the Japanese in power? That doesn't sound right.

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He doesn't support the independence movement because it killed his father and maimed his brother, UNTIL something happens and then he turns into Bridal Mask.

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Ok, that makes sense. Thank you JB!

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Makes you wonder what that "something" is.

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ohhh i was confused at first. Thanks :D

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lol the last picture!!! Joo Won! I'm so excited for this drama~

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I am so psyched! So happy it is summer, no more
grades suffering because of my Kdrama weakness. This is the Drama crack I have been looking for!

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YES! YES! YES! Bridal Mask is coming to DramaFever!! I guess I won't have to go through total drama withdrawal after the current, excellent dramas end next week!

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Viki is going to have it too, apparently! So hopefully subs will be very fast.

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The costumes. Love love love. I am SUPER excited for this drama.

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Definitely excited for this. I've never seen another K drama like this before ^^

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I am so excited for this drama although it covers a time period am not too thrilled about. It looks good though! 2012 seems like the year of good dramas such as God of War, History of a Salaryman, King 2 Hearts, SU:FBB, etc.

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I'm pretty sure I've said this in every Bridal Mask thread... I'm so excited!!

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Me too! I'm in the mood for something meaty with a good story. Also, Park ki-woong I'm sure is going to be awesome.

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After reading the post all I can say is WOW!
The background story, the character description, the actors, ALL makes me feel EXCITED!!

goes to check the trailer next!

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Really interesting story. I can't wait!

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I've been looking forward to this since I heard about it!:)

Seems like this is what would happen if City Hunter and Capitol Scandal had a baby. (I love babies :))

I've got 3 of the new dramas on my radar. And if you can believe it they are NOT airing on the same day! It's a drama miracle!

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City Hunter and Capitol Scandal had a baby
perfect description

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"City Hunter and Capitol Scandal had a baby.."

Hahahaha, that's very funny :D :D

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And remember JW was originally going to be in MEtS. Thank the stars he had to complete the extended OB.
He'll have a much better oppty to shine (through his MASK, of course!) Here.

AND wear much sexier clothes!

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you have know idea how gad I am that he couldn't end up playing Yang Myung in MTES..even if he was my only favorite character there....I'll take kickass JW over mopey JW any given day

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mmmmmmmmm

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This is definitely the drama I'm anticipating the most. Period action superhero drama, please please PLEASE be good!

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Park Ki-Woong never gets the girl does he?Tsk tsk...

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Too excited about this. This period is just so different, sensitive and interesting. The retro costumes rock too. Joo Won looks so badass in the trailer and...I can't wait!!!!

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I'm not a big fan of period dramas usually but it's set in this era, YEAH i'm on! I love the girl Jin Se Yun from My daughter is flower too even though the drama sucks lately. Joo Won is handsome in suit! I can't wait, the teaser looks promising.

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First time leaving a comment.but it is so true park ki wong never gets the girl hope he does a drama soon as te lead. Give a guy a break.

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So many dramas to watch currently ... :(
How will I manage when adding Bridal Mask to the pile?

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SO EXCITED. Probably most excited for this, then AGD (gotta watch that for the F44 haha)

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OMG I'm so excited but what drama has to finish for this to air?

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Equator man

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Omg, there's so many dramas I need to catch up on and now there's a whole new batch coming out soon. I'll NEVER have enough time. ㅜㅜ

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The Korean independence movement is such a sensitive topic, reading these complex story lines sounds so amazing and TENSE. I already feel heartbreak for Park Ki Woong and gahh. I am definitely going to watch this, but my heart hurts already!!!!

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This sounds interesting, definitely going to watch it

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Damn, now I'm so excited. But is it just me or Park Ki-woong always seem to play those characters that never get the girl and have a lot of angst? Oh well, I'll just wish for lots of bromance :)

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Im calling it now....the older brother for Joo Woon character will be the original Gakistal and because a mission goes wrong thats the reason he became an imbecile.

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I'm already in love with Chae Hong-joo. But May 30 premiere? Same night as I Do, I Do. What do I do???

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it's delayed to june, no?

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adore the clothes... adore the premise...

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So is Park Ki-woong's character a Japanese person who's against the Japanese rule and Joo-won's character is Korean who is for the Japanese rule? I'm a little confused...
Besides from that how cute is Joo-won, he is rocking that checked double-breasted suit and hat combo. And Park Ki-woong is looking as smiley as per usual and adorable with his slick hairstyle.

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Though only a few (actually there's only three of them) Japaneses were like Park Ki-woong's character. Sadly many Joseon people became anti-independence towards the end of the Japanese occupation. Some because their family and friends were beaten and tortured and even killed. Others supported the Japanese rule for their ambitions and wealth by betraying their own people. Most of them were police. The pro-Japaneses police tortured and killed fellow Koreans following the orders of the Japanese. The original manhwa is focused on the evil doings of thoes national traitors and the Japanese. I hope the writer won't change it much and KBS not to ban anything.

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most -> many

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I think I would rather read recaps for this.

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I was going to watch this, even just for Joo Won in suits. pretty.

now, the story is intriguing and solid. and it seems fresh, no time-travel related or Joseon prince.

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omgggggg....so...many....dramas.....to watch...

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omg Joo won why so adorable in the last picture?
But this has been on my radar ever since Jang Hyuk was considering it. The story sounds so kickass! It's like City Hunter and Iljimae met in the 1930's!

Looking forward to the period wear and vintage cars!!

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Everyone here is love!

The heroine sounds cool. Anyone here into anime or maybe seen Samurai Champloo? Her characterization reminds me of Fuu from that show in that she's searching for someone.

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I LOVE Samurai Champloo, it's probably my favorite anime ever! This connection makes me even more excited for Gaksital. :)

And you're right, I hadn't thought of that! Also like Fuu, she has a bright, persevering personality despite occasionally feeling tired/down. I hope this heroine is done well like Fuu was, because it's the kind of character that can be annoying if portrayed too simplistically.

SOOOOO EXCITED.

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I've been eagerly waiting for this drama since 2011, until I stumbled into queen in hyun's man ada fell in love with it. I've been expecting joo won as the main lead, but now I'm imagining ji hyun woo taking over his place. Gahhhhhhh. . I need to clear my head!!!

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Very excited for this one! I wonder if it's still mostly Joo-won doing the stunts as Bridal Mask, because the scenes from the trailer kick ass, and if that's him... WOW.

And now I'll have even more of a difficult time disassociating the real Joo-won in 1N2D from bad-ass Joo-won here (I haven't seen his cop movie with Tae-woong). But hey, no complaints! ;)

Also, yes, the suits!

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Love it.

Check out Joo Won's Cantata Coffee's CF with Uee here.

I still wonder how the full of aegyo Joo Won can portrary such a strong character on screen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=nqRhkL8bHQk

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mmhm boy! this is gonna be so freakin epic...i had no idea those few lines of character descriptions meant so much!
can't wait to see my love, Joowon <3 <3 <3 ~~~

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Wow, this reminds me of Capital Scandal minus the funny...

oh noes, I'm going to have a full relapse of kdrama addiction this year after a gradual recovery from it since last year! There are too many good series lately; too many to make a pass of it.

This is going to be on my watchlist!

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BTW, this will air after Equator Man right? I'm waiting for EM to finish @ KBSWorld (bec. they have a delayed airtime sched).

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Han Chae Ah??????
I love her in Hero (OCN) as keen police detective.
Can't wait to see her acting as femme fatale in Bridal Mask.
Wonder how gorgeous she will be

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am definitely IN!!! His Royal Hotness Jo Woon and Park Ki Woong did it for me and now the story made me excited beyond reason....whoaaaa I am turning into a hermit!!!!

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Noooo~!!!! Not against "I Do I Do"...DX

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oh yeah...same time slot and days with I do I do.... wahhhhhhhh

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@WeWe me too, I love HCA in Hero. She's awesome, love the fact that she kicks major a** and doesn't take any prisoners.

Dang there are so many good shows coming out.

I propose a new time schedule. Can we have 25/8 instead of 24/7 cuz I don't think there will be enough time to view all the goodies being offered.

Who's with me? Show of hands for a different time schedule.

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oh my freaking...

IT'S SUMMER. BRING IT ON.

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I was on board the moment joo won was cast, and then there was a stream of awesome stills, and then the trailer which I didnt understand a word showed some amazing camera work and visuals. And now a full cast/story description which sounds AWESOME...and this starts airing in two weeks!!!

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