Drama Casting & News
First stills from Song Seung-heon’s When a Man Loves
by | February 26, 2013 | 78 Comments

MBC’s next Wednesday-Thursday drama When a Man Loves has started shooting, and here’s our first look at the four leads doin’ their thing. We’ve got Song Seung-heon (Dr. Jin) as the revenge-getting two-timing gangster, Chae Jung-ahn (Queen of Reversals) as his wife, Shin Se-kyung (Fashion King) as the other woman, and Yeon Woo-jin (Arang and the Magistrate) playing his rival. Would it be wrong to watch this drama entirely for Yeon Woo-jin? *weighs pros and cons*

The melodrama from the director of Arang and the Magistrate and the writer of Equator Man stars Song Seung-heon as a world-weary gangster, but the drama itself is less about his gangsterhood and more about his many loves. It’s being called a romance melodrama, with a story that revolves around the four leads’ intertwining love lives, and how their courses can change entirely based on one moment of fevered passion. Based on the number of times they use the words “passion” and “fever” in the story descriptions, my expectations are going to an R-rated place. Too bad it’s not on cable?

The scenes in the stills below are from Shin Se-kyung and Yeon Woo-jin’s first day on set when their characters met for the first time, and then across town where Song Seung-heon and Chae Jung-ahn had their first scene as a cold and distant married couple. The four characters will start out in very different places, but eventually be sucked into a pretty complicated love square.

Song Seung-heon plays a gangster with a painful past, and Chae Jung-ahn is the ex-wife of his old mob boss, whom he marries after his death. Shin Se-kyung plays a hardworking young woman who comes from a poor family (Why does she always play the exact same character?) and Yeon Woo-jin is a confident young man who’s used to winning at everything, who starts out on good terms with the hero. The problem is when Song Seung-heon falls for Shin Se-kyung, which will create rifts between him and his wife (obviously) and his friend-turned-rival Yeon Woo-jin, who’s also in love with Shin Se-kyung. I’m gonna go ahead and call this show When a Man Loves a Woman Who’s Not His Wife, Bad Shit Happens.

When a Man Loves follows Level 7 Civil Servant and premieres in April on MBC.

Via My Daily


78 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. MsB

    Not my cup of tea. I’ll live through recaps and comments.

  2. Rashell

    Let me know if you decide watching for Yeon Woo Jin is enough since that’s the only reason I’d watch too. I love him, but everyone else is just meh. I do like the pd and writer though. This one’s a maybe.

    • 2.1 Mystisith

      If I wanted to watch this, it would be only for YWJ. The main couple is going to be awful on screen: One overacts and the other is a dead fish (in Fashion King, at least. Don’t know for the rest of her filmo…).
      Just no way I could even start this. Wake me up once it’s over, definitely.

      • 2.1.1 earthna

        She did great in Deep Rooted Tree. I don’t know what Fashion King did to her. TT

        • Saturtledaisy

          It’s the writers that made her interesting in Tree, she didn’t have to do much for her character to have a meaningful presence because the story did everything FOR her. She just had to /be/ there, most of the time.

          Fashion King didn’t HAVE a story, nor did it have any interesting/coherent characters.

        • Kiara

          Shin Se-kyung is great sageuks. I loved her as the teen Princess Chun Myung in QSD. She did a good job in TWDR, nothing outstanding but she held her own.

      • 2.1.2 bd

        Thought Chae Jung-ahn did a good job in “Coffee Prince” – so there’s that.

        I agree that Shin Se-kyung did a decent enough job in TWDR, but wasn’t great in her role as were many of the other actors in TWDR (also, playing a mute and a woman in the Joseon period tends to limit the portraying of range of emotions).

        Don’t understand the hubbub about Yeon Woo-jin; he was underwhelming in “Arang.”

  3. snow_white

    LOL @ ‘revenge-getting two-timing gangster’ 😀

    • 3.1 cheekbones

      and @ “When a Man Loves a Woman Who’s Not His Wife, Bad Shit Happens.” 😀

  4. meanrice

    Very strong maybe for me too. I do love some Yoon Woo-Jin.

  5. crazedlu

    *watching this drama entirely for yeon woojin*

  6. YY

    I feel in my bones this is going to be SSH’s breakout role. He’s going to bring melo acting to a whole new level.

    • 6.1 PaDami

      똥 level, probably! Not that Dr. Jin was hideous in itself, SSH just added the last nail in its coffin.

      • 6.1.1 June

        He was so bad in that drama. The freaked out, popping-out-of-their sockets eyes will last in my head for a lifetime. xD

      • 6.1.2 Soo Won

        loved that 똥 level u said! lol ;)))))
        whenever i hear the word i remember YB jeremy saying 돼지 똥 쓰나미… i ADORED that boy!

    • 6.2 bluemoon

      I feel that his character in this drama is probably going to be very similar to his East of Eden one.

      I really hope he improve on his acting this time around.

    • 6.3 jomo

      Why, YY, do I totally agree with YYou?

      I have a feeling that his East of Eden skills + Jin skills + My Princess tilt skills are going to make the amount of skills in WAMLAWWNHWBSH float him to the top of the heap.

      He will be the king of the melo heap soon, and we will adore him even more than ever.

      By the way, he is going to look stunning, sexy, and gorgeous, and it will be difficult to look away even if we want to.

      Mostly I am going to watch for YWJ.

  7. greeanne

    “When a Man Loves a Woman Who’s Not His Wife, Bad Shit Happens”
    i totally agreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!! made me chuckle out loud when i read this!

    • 7.1 h0ns niech

      Yuuuup…. LOL reading that new title…. Suuuuit so much till my belly get hurt… :))))

    • 7.2 ...

      it also tells us what the drama is actually about!

  8. Qua Trang

    It’s funny how everyone here considering watching this for YWJ only :))
    *Add myself in the list*

  9. hapacalgirl

    Don’t think I will be able to make time for this nor want to anyways. SSH is so pretty but so static and Shin Se Kyung is not bad but is very boring to watch. I like Chae Jung Ah and think she is an okay actress but to be honest I don’t know what happened but her face changed drastically after coffee prince and something about it distracts me (similarly to why I am not a big fan of Seo Woo, even though she is talented her face is so distracting and not in a good way). I like Yeon Woo-Jin but not enough to make time come out of thin air to watch his. Will probably check the recaps occasionally though to see how it ends up.

    • 9.1 Gabby

      LOL I don’t think Chae Jung Ah is nearly at the Seo Woo-level of plastic surgery scariness (she looks more natural in the script reading photos).

      I love “imperfections” (part of being human after all) so I’m always sad when I see people who’ve had obvious work done.

      • 9.1.1 Kiara

        Ikr, sad thing is most of them were already beautiful.

    • 9.2 bd

      Seo Woo definitely has a “freaky” face (almost to the level of Bom in 2NE1).

      Min Hyo-rin is getting up there too.

      I’ll reserve judgment on CJA since I haven’t seen her in anything recently.

    • 9.3 obivia

      CJA totally looks like Lee Jin now–I had to scroll back up to check that I had read the post correctly. She needs to stop fiddling w/ her pretty face!

  10. 10 Laurita

    “When a Man Loves a Woman Who’s Not His Wife, Bad Shit Happens”

    hahaha, that was so funny :))

    Ah, I doubt I will watch it… unless the second lead (not married) will get the girl. They surely must create a good reason for the viewers to root for the unfaithful husband Dr. Jin….

  11. 11 jang

    Recaps will do for me… plus, the comments.

  12. 12 ran

    when i read the female lead being ‘a hardworking young woman who comes from a poor family’ i call it quit. this whole thing has cliche all written over it.

    • 12.1 Pipit

      I call it a quit when I read about the unfaithful husband. Too bad because I want to see the beautiful SSH. Staring at his face is a treat in itself. Even looking at those photos of him above has brighten my morning. How could you be so beautiful? Sigh.

      • 12.1.1 jomo

        He is soooooooo beautiful, though, you may take a peek now and then.

        • Pipit

          Yep, will do. I even re-watch My Princess now just to drool then realize that even Kim Tae Hee is adorable there.

  13. 13 Li~~~

    I’m in it only for the pretty factor which is looking pretty high.

  14. 14 Katie


    I am obsessed with Yeon Woo-jin since Ojakyo Brothers so I’m excited. Plus SSH isn’t terrible to look at either 😀 Not sure about the women yet…gave up on Fashion King (I love Yuri but couldn’t get through it).

    • 14.1 Cupcake

      Love the 2 main male cast. Call me shallow but they’re too CUTE for words…:-)

    • 14.2 hanie

      Count your blessing for giving up Fashion Disaster…I mean, Fashion King… My head still hurts from watching that trainwreck….

  15. 15 Kiara

    Another unintentional comedy.

    Sigh @ Yeon Woo-jin. WAE this?.

  16. 16 rhia

    Ooooh. Yeon Woo-jin looks good with those glasses. I can just imagine him as The College Nerdy Hottie. (Totally my type.)

  17. 17 Sajen

    “Would it be wrong to watch this drama entirely for Yeon Woo-jin? *weighs pros and cons*

    Well I’m thinking of watching because despite the disaster that was Fashion King I think Shin Se Kyung is a very talented but still learning young actress and I also like Chae Jung-ahn so I’m gonna say no it’s not wrong at all.

  18. 18 Sunshine

    I’ll probably watch a couple of episodes just to see how ridiculous the storyline gets. Just reading about the premise of the drama made me laugh….it really sounds like it’s promoting adultery???!!! Plus I can’t stand the thought of YWJ NOT getting his girl yet again….

    • 18.1 Rashell

      I know! Can this boy please get a HEA for once drama gods!!

  19. 19 Miky

    Without offending the fans of the leads i’ll give this a try only because of Yeon Woo-jin♥(why can’t he be the lead or at least)or to have a Queen of Reversels story and he keeps the girl,that would be cool as plot wise…
    Why,kdrama world,why!!!!The leading girl=same old type,poor candy…. <_<

  20. 20 trotwood

    Do you think if we all write over and over, “Would it be wrong to watch this drama entirely for Yeon Woo-jin?” that the dramagods would make him the lead in a really good drama? Not a shared lead, but THE lead. Not the second lead where he needs to kill himself, but THE lead. Not a lead in a short drama special (which he was excellent in by the way) where he does not get the girl despite getting over a tormented past, but THE lead. The lead where he fights for himself alongside a strong and sassy girl, thinking he likes the pretty one female lead, but recognizing that he really wants and needs the regular, smart, strong (even in the last episodes-perhpas even rescuing him once) best friend type second female lead who should be the female lead girl.

    • 20.1 Gaeina Lee

      I second you, trotwood dearie…

      Dramagods, it’s a high time for YWJ to get the girl. Or if you refuse our notion, why not send him over to (this) noona instead? I’ll take a good care of him…. ^^

  21. 21 chiffoncake

    i’ll only watch coz of SSH!

    • 21.1 Pipit

      LOL. You would have my company if only I love the female leads which I don’t or the story line which I don’t either. But I’ll definitely watch it for SSH (though I do stay away from Dr.Jin because of so many bad reviews and I don’t like the girl and its story line either).

  22. 22 Gabby

    SSK, while more popular for her looks than her acting skills, is definitely more talented than, say, Kim Tae-hee or Han Ga-in, but still I never get engaged by her acting. She’s boring. And that ‘hardworking young woman who comes from a poor family’ character description makes me automatically check out mentally – it’s pretty much a guarantee that we won’t get a compelling, interesting female lead.

    And SSH…well, what else is there to say about him? Unfortunately, nothing about this show’s premise seems cracktastic in the vein of Dr. Jin, so there probably won’t be a so-bad-it’s-almost-good quality that would make watching it worthwhile, lol.

    • 22.1 bd

      Of the 3, the best acting performance I’ve seen has come from KTH (in “My Princess”).

      • 22.1.1 jomo

        I agree.
        With KTH, I feel she has an awareness of her weaknesses and strengths as an actress. She isn’t going to choose a role she cannot deliver on. I don’t know why, but I think her show with YAI will be good.

        HGI, omg, was sooooo bad in Moon.

  23. 23 mskololia

    So now Song Seung-heon’s playing a gangster? LOL!

    Gotta love him, but not his acting….

  24. 24 Hubba_Hubba

    I thought of Lee Kwang Soo when I saw Song Seung-heon’s pictures here. I guess its the facial hair lol

  25. 25 Gaeina Lee

    I’m in only for YWJ, that’s no doubt about it. But, ohh-ahh-ing a bit over SSH would not hurt as well.. Especially when watching him in his famous uniform.. *cough-cough*

  26. 26 OoOoOoki

    Been there, done that is a perfect description for this drama. Maybe I should just watch it for the LOLz….

  27. 27 LangitBiru

    Since I don’t have MBC on my TV maybe I will read the recaps if any. Anyway rooting for YWJ. Maybe it’s me but I noticed that SSH dramas after EOE, all from MBC no KBS/SBS. Hurm…

    Maknae oppa is the best.

  28. 28 bengbeng

    I was looking at the pictures of the casts and said to myself, I don’t like the casting except for Woojin and then I read your first paragraph…my sentiments exactly. I think Woojin is wasted here.

  29. 29 redfox

    so they get horny. so what

  30. 30 dongsaeng killer

    SSH oppa that hair, makeup and pornstache make you look like an ahjussi. do not want. if im here just for teh pretteh you need to actually look pretty. komawo oppa!

  31. 31 AUdrey

    he looks exactly like he was in East of Eden.
    So, if you just want melo, watch East of Eden instead.
    This man can does not change or improve.
    Why doesn’t he do another comedy, like My Princess?
    I can’t stand watching SSK play another poor girl character.
    And the plot just sounds all over the place, so I will be checking out recaps.

    • 31.1 AUdrey

      I meant “this man does not change or improve.”
      I don’t think SSH can change and break out of his usual melo dramatic roles, except when he did my Princess.
      And about recaps, we will be lucky if anyone is willing to recap this mess, maybe if anyone loves Yeon Woo Jin enough to do recaps.

  32. 32 Farhana

    I’ll be watching this for Yeon Woo-Jin! 🙂 he’s such a great actor and I can’t wait to see him as a lead actor one day. He can definitely hold his own when it comes to portraying raw emotion.

    I’m not particularly a Shin Se Kyung fan but that’s mainly due to the train wreck that was Fashion King. Hoping this’ll be a little better!

  33. 33 annnsow

    Omg but it’s Maknae Oppa!
    So it changes everything.. I wasn’t planning on watching it but now, hmmm…
    Lol, so the synopsis is all about Love and passion or whatever? Basically, we’ll have 3 kisses under the moon, I see.

  34. 34 Trina

    hrmm.. To watch it or not to watch it. I think I will read the recaps and the comments. By the way, you know it is funny it is like six degree separation as of the drama that is airing and will be airing. Jang Hyuk/Shin Se Kyung/Yoo Ah In/Kim Tae Hee/SSH . I think they are planning to do that in order of their drama.

    • 34.1 jomo

      I would like to see that circle close with an exceptionally controversial love line.

      • 34.1.1 Trina

        Yeah me too.. Make it happen Kdrama god!! Make it Happen!!!

  35. 35 Noelle

    GF’s title makes much more sense. Skipping this.

  36. 36 zsa

    I’ll refrain from commenting about the leads…but I do love the second lead…I’m glad he’s getting bigger projects…loved him in arang and ‘just friends’….

  37. 37 Ash

    “Shin Se-kyung plays a hardworking young woman who comes from a poor family (Why does she always play the exact same character?)”

    Heh. Maybe because that describes 90-95% of all drama heroines ever?

  38. 38 jomo

    I look at these stills of The Hand Towel all ganstered and black suited and porn stached and he’s using his ANGRY eyes and I wonder DOES ANYONE EVER TELL HIM HOW BAD HE IS? I mean, his friends?
    “Dude, what the hell? Take an acting lesson. Buy some more expressions.”
    I actually feel bad for him, or would, if he weren’t laughing all the way to the bank with CF contracts.

    • 38.1 Joy @ OSS

      He is sacrificing himself to make his fellow actors look good. A noble idiot indeed.

      • 38.1.1 Pipit

        That’s a new one. ‘SSH the noble idiot’. LOL!

    • 38.2 hanie

      [email protected] some more expressions.
      If he could buy expression I almost more than willing to donate my money towards that…. almost cause I remembered that he is freaking rich from his various CFs…
      SSH, invest some money on acting classes/coach pls. You’ve been in the industry for so long… My beer goggles is not working anymore.

  39. 39 Joy @ OSS

    Good to see that the swelling from Chae Jung-ahn’s surgery has gone down.

    Wow I sound terribly bitchy but ’tis true. *shrug*

  40. 40 Trina

    LOL Looking at SSH with pornstache. hahahha LOL again. I might watch this drama if he have the pornstache on the whole time so I can get a good laugh. But, then again, I do not want to hurt my jaw from laughing a lot when looking at Hand Towel with pornstache. hahahha LOL *looking at Hand Towel with pornstache* hahahahha LOL

  41. 41 Rita

    I bet that if there will be some who will watch this, it will only be because of YWJ! No interest on my part though to watch this and like the rest, I will just keep watch on the ratings which I am sure will be dismal to the PD. Give me dramas of the likes of JISung, SJKi, Joo Won, and others who are not only handsome men but acting talents beyond question.
    SSH’s acting ability? My lips are sealed.

  42. 42 hanie

    I would love to join you but then I remembered my Dr. Jin’s experience and that makes me shudder…. Never again I would subject myself to such cruelty.. On SSH, reading his interview seems like he is aware abt his limitation as an actor, which I think is good. But then, I confused on his choice of work. I know he maybe wants to challenge himself but you got to know how far you can go, really…

    SSK is okay-ish but I find her boring. Not to mention ‘a hardworking young woman who comes from a poor family’ is sooooo cliche is not even funny anymore. Most of the time I’ll just pass any drama with that kind of character nowdays. It keep my watch list shorter.

    Maknae oppa, lets meet up at your next drama/film ‘kay!

  43. 43 Lotus_Blossom

    My dislike of the leads outweighs my love for Yeo Woo-jin. Skipping this.

  44. 44 eva

    BORING… i am not trying this..
    SSK is the most overated actresss ever.. i thk she’ still had lot’s n lot’s of improvement before taking the lead roles….

    SSH i was hoping him to take more interesting drama~~~

  45. 45 La

    Chae Jung Ahn is what is drawing me into this drama. And yeah I agree with all the comments about her face. It’s obvious she’s done a lot of work to her face…actually after every drama she’s done, her face has “changed” in the next drama she picks up. I thought she looked her best in “Queen of Reversals” (her role was funny at times, too) but I agree that she needs to stop doing things to her face.

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