Drama Recaps
A New Leaf: Episode 1
by | May 3, 2014 | 66 Comments

Oh, I love me some Kim Myung-min. Our new Wednesday-Thursday drama, A New Leaf, gives us some legal workplace action and a surprisingly comic clash of two characters. It’s a pretty straight-forward episode, as most of the episode consists of introductions and building of the characters, but the potential – for hijinks, disputes, and romance – is definitely there. I’m looking forward to our leads’ attempts at separating workplace and personal life because in dramaland, we know that such separation doesn’t exist.

 
EPISODE 1 RECAP

It’s a rainy day, and a crowd of elderly laborers have assembled to demand worker’s compensation from the Yamada Steel Company. Some are holding funeral pictures of those who have died while working here.

The reporter describes the situation outside the courthouse, saying that the defendants lost in the first trial, and the second court proceeding awaits. On that note, a car rolls in: our lawyers have arrived.

In court, our lawyer – KIM SEOK-JU (Kim Myung-min) – speaks first, defending the Yamada Steel Company with the claim that they did not used forced labor.

The opposing lawyer stands and gives us more background on the case. During wartime in 1945, the workers were put into dangerous mining conditions with meager amounts of food. When released from Japan, they were not properly paid, so they are seeking worker’s compensation now.

Lawyer Kim stands up with another defense, stating that during wartime, Yamada was only following orders of the country and cannot be expected to provide any compensation. He backs up his statement with solid examples of Japanese law, upsetting the spectators but getting a nod of approval from his clients.

Cut to the law firm’s CEO, CHA YEONG-WOO (Kim Sang-joong), who is being interviewed for his firm’s excellent tax record and reputation. He talks with pride about the firm’s long history and expertise in foreign relations.

Back in court, Kim Seok-ju makes his closing statement, but an outraged former laborer interrupts him, demanding justice for his few elderly surviving laborers. But Seok-ju doesn’t blink an eye and wins the case for his Japanese clients.

After the trial, Seok-ju’s client thanks him, and he replies, “We can’t stop a litigation; instead, we can win.” Yup, he’s our cold-hearted courtroom shark.

At the firm, Seok-ju enters an elevator full of associates. He gets an update on another case and quizzes the younglings on the possible reasons for the company’s price reduction in the transaction.

Two of the associates suggest viable options, but the third simply states the obvious – that the transaction cannot occur without a price agreement. At that, Seok-ju basically tells him that an associate doesn’t get paid stacks of money to waste a partner’s time.

As they exit the elevator, Seok-ju tells his assistant to send the third associate to a different team. He’s not the first associate to fail, and the assistant gives him a fair warning: you don’t get into the elevator with Lawyer Kim Seok-ju if you’re not confident and ready with answers.

Walking through the office, Seok-ju wastes no time and orders his trailing associates to investigate every part of the opposing company’s finances. The associates start going through piles of papers, but their manpower is obviously lacking.

They can’t neglect the other cases to focus on this one case, but luckily, new interns are coming in tomorrow to bump up the efficiency. Any guesses on the interns?

In his office, CEO Cha Yeong-woo is on the phone with one of his chaebol clients, refusing to represent him in his sexual assault case. But this client brings in the big bucks, so he eventually complies.

The team leader in the office warns our CEO to step down from the case – if they can’t prove his innocence, they’re better off abandoning the case. But Cha Yeong-woo thinks differently.

He says that innocence doesn’t mean “not guilty”; it means that the guilt wasn’t proven. He begins to analyze the opposing lawyer team and notes that the case is proceeding abnormally fast.

Now for our heroine, LEE JI-YOON (Park Min-young), who finds her seat at a wedding. She wonders why she was put on the groom’s guest side but figures out soon enough when she meets the man sitting next to her.

Ji-yoon’s friend placed her there so she can hit it up with JEON JI-WON (Jin Yi-han), and she swoons at his attractiveness. Don’t we all? Then he proceeds to quote some romantic words from the book she’s holding called Love Potion. More swoon.

They introduce themselves, and Ji-won notices Ji-yoon’s other books, guessing she’s in law school. Ji-yoon’s about to get her flirt on but gets a call, prompting her to leave reluctantly, still in admiration.

As Ji-yoon and her friend run excitedly to the bride’s room, we see Seok-ju at the wedding on the phone with the chaebol’s son, who’s the one involved in the sexual assault case. He needs Seok-ju to be his lawyer because the other side isn’t looking to settle with money.

After the call, Seok-ju makes eye contact with the bride (played by Lee Ju-yeon), who starts to freak out and kicks everyone out of the room. Worried, Ji-yoon offers her a painkiller and then the bride sends her by the door as a look-out.

The relationship is unclear, but the bride, Mi-ri, says she can’t go on with the wedding with him there and asks Ji-yoon to get him out by any means necessary.

After a quick look of regret, she heads over to Seok-ju’s table. Ji-yoon offers him a glass of wine and tries to make friendly small talk, but he refuses and gets up to leave.

Then in the most obvious way possible, she spills the wine on his pants and grabs him to scrub it off. Watching from a distance, the bride puts her painkiller in one of the wine glasses and asks the waiter to send it over to Ji-yoon.

Thinking it’s for her, Ji-yoon drinks the wine in one shot and continues to grab onto Seok-ju, who looks thoroughly uncomfortable and confused. The effects of the drink kick in, and she walks out of the hall with him – grabbing, falling, and stumbling. It’s pretty hilarious.

Back at the law office, Yeong-woo is getting briefed on the opposing prosecutor Lee Sun-hee in their new sexual assault case. Apparently, she and the detective were quick to act on this case, making Yeong-woo and his team a step behind.

Looks like Ji-yoon has made it home, and a thank-you text along with a honeymoon picture from Mi-ri wakes her up. Then she hears someone in her kitchen and cautiously walks out to find Seok-ju fixing himself a drink.

She demands to know why he’s in her home, and he casually tells her that he assumed that he was invited over. She begins to reject his claim, but the memories of the wedding flood over her.

The wine, the grabbing, and the stumbling, but it gets worse. She gets a taxi and drags him into the car with her. Realizing all of this, Ji-yoon begins to explain her actions, but Seok-ju seems to have it figured out already.

The bride froze when she saw him, so she obviously sent someone to escort him out of the wedding. He wondered why Ji-yoon was the one to “seduce” him out, given her figure, but now he knows why. She’s desperate, and it worked.

Ji-yoon takes offense to this and is under the impression that something did happen. She lists off laws regarding sexual assault, but Seok-ju seems very nonchalant about the whole situation, even acquiescing to her request for his contact information.

After he leaves, Ji-yoon goes to check the surveillance cameras for any evidence, determined to use it to sue. But there’s only more footage of her hanging all over him and dragging him inside. Meanwhile, Seok-ju is back at the firm at the break of dawn, being his workaholic self.

The next morning, Ji-yoon, bright-eyed and ready to go, arrives at none other than the Cha Yeong-woo Law Firm as an intern. As a welcoming gesture, the top-of-the-class interns are given a problem set due later that night.

Seok-ju is out to meet his older cousin and updates her on Mi-ri. He tells her that he went to the wedding himself to check that Mi-ri is married and officially done cheating with her husband.

She seems assured but still asks him if she should trust her husband again. Seok-ju says that the decision is up to her, but he’s pessimistic about it – people don’t change easily.

When she asks about his father in the hospital, Seok-ju remains silent, and she scolds him for not visiting him. As he leaves to get back to work, she reminds him of his mother’s memorial ceremony.

CEO Yeong-woo is dealing with another case, this time about a Minister of Justice candidate whose faulty tax reports have been disclosed. He’s released a public apology, but he’s going to need the firm’s help.

Seok-ju continues to work on his case and summons all the interns for the extra hands needed to look through the company’s records. He passes by Ji-yoon, but neither notice each other.

Yeong-woo has got his hands full with the sexual assault case. Based on the aggressiveness of the prosecution, he deduces that they must have the upper hand with some solid evidence.

He gets a call from the chaebol client Park Ki-chul, who asks him to bring along the Minister of Justice candidate Kang Eun-chan for dinner. At their meeting, Ki-chul hands him a suspicious envelope, possibly evidence to kill two birds with one stone.

Back at the firm, Ji-yoon is coming back from the bathroom when she recognizes a voice – Seok-ju’s. He’s giving the interns incentive, saying that whoever finds the critical detail they need will be placed on his team.

Ji-yoon is shocked and falls to the ground to pick up her pouch. She faces the other way to hide her face and tells the intern manager and Seok-ju that she’ll do her best.

Scared for her future, Ji-yoon texts Mi-ri to ask about Seok-ju. Mi-ri says that he’s a meticulous and ruthless bastard who’s the best to have on your side but the worst to have as an enemy. Sounds about right. She looks worried, but given the prestige of the firm, Ji-yoon decides to stick it out.

At the clients’ dinner, we see that the envelope contained pictures of the opposing Minister of Justice candidate with a young boy – presumably his illegitimate child.

Ki-chul offers to send these pictures to the press, which will cover up Kang Eun-chan’s tax scandal and give him the Minister of Justice position. In return, Eun-chan will pull some strings to release Ki-chul’s son.

Ki-chul then requests to have Seok-ju as their lawyer on the case. Yeong-woo suggests other lawyers who are specialized in criminal cases, but Ki-chul’s son wants Seok-ju, and he plans to continue spoiling his son by giving him what he wants.

Ji-yoon is still working after hours, reading through a case about a poor married couple requesting help for a better contract for their convenience store. When she gets on the elevator to leave, she hears Seok-ju and quickly pushes the button to close the door. The door closes just in time, and she breathes a sigh of relief.

Ji-yoon goes to the convenience store named in the case and talks to the manager about the unfair contract, which forces him and his wife to open 24 hours. He gets a nose bleed, showing how tired he is, and she promises to look into a solution.

The next morning, Seok-ju looks through an intern’s findings with approval, saying that the intern found a critical point for their case in the records. He tells the manager to call this intern to his office.

That intern is Ji-yoon, and when she gets the call, she looks mortified just at the thought of the confrontation. So she stalls as long as possible, trying to avoid it.

Seok-ju can’t wait much longer for Ji-yoon and heads over to a client meeting. He’s interrupted by Yeong-woo, who calls him to his office to assign him the sexual assault case. Seok-ju says he doesn’t have the experience for criminal cases, but Yeong-woo says that he needs to follow the client’s requests. He’s pressed for time, but he’ll be given an experienced team and the necessary evidence.

At the meeting for the convenience store case, Seok-ju briefs his clients on the recent findings and calls Ji-yoon on speaker phone for a more detailed explanation of the franchise contracts. He asks her to explain the contract in English, and she does so quite well with both her accent and content.

Having gotten the point across, he stops her, but Ji-yoon still has something to tell Seok-ju. She doesn’t realize she’s on speaker and tells him that she needs to return his watch – the watch he left at her house the dawn after the wedding.

Seok-ju realizes who he’s talking to and quickly hangs up the call. His team and associates around him are suppressing laughs and giving him strange looks, and they end the meeting there. He storms out to find the intern he called, and Ji-yoon hesitantly reveals herself.

They talk but seem to be stuck at a misunderstanding. Seok-ju has nothing to apologize for, but Ji-yoon is still under the impression that the one-night stand happened. She’d prefer if he didn’t pay attention to her and adds that standing out because of her meticulous work isn’t her fault.

Seok-ju says he doesn’t have time to listen to her self-praise and asks for his watch. But she didn’t bring it, making him even more frustrated. He tells her to get him his expensive watch and get out of his sight.

He starts to leave but turns back around to tell Ji-yoon that she’ll be working on his team starting today. Separating personal issues and workplace issues, he’s going to keep his word. She’s on the team.

Seok-ju is onto the next order business: the sexual assault case. He sits down with Ki-chul’s son to discuss the details and prepare for court. Based on his descriptions, it’s pretty clear that he assaulted his ex-girlfriend and didn’t get her consent.

The ex is an actress he sponsored for years, and after breaking up again for the millionth time, she clearly refused to sleep with him. When she tried to run away, he broke the phone and slapped her. I think it would be fair to call him an entitled scumbag.

Watching the news, Yeong-woo finds out that his firm is under scrutiny for Kang Eun-chan’s Ministry of Justice position and calls Seok-ju to his office. Knowing the complications and misunderstandings looming for the firm, he plans on outing Eun-chan and asks Seok-ju to continue with the case, factoring out aid from the Minister.

Yeong-woo then calls Eun-chan into his office and tells him that while the client is important, the firm can’t go under because of one client. For the sake of the firm, he simply asks Eun-chan to resign his position.

Seok-ju gathers his team and orders them to find any and all evidence – surveillance footage, the actress’s financial records, phone records, hospital records – to use against her. He knows his opposing prosecutor Lee Sun-hee likes the smell of blood, so he’s going to give it to her.

Yeong-woo watches the meeting by the door and predicts a dirty fight ahead. He wishes Seok-ju luck and walks out the door.

 
COMMENTS

Oh man, I can see the conflict already. I was pleasantly surprised by the contrast of our two leads, and it makes me even more excited for their interactions. Kim Myung-min does deadpan so well, and Park Min-young is definitely up there with her facial expressions. Her face can say so many things at one time, and it’s quite fun to watch. That being said, this drama isn’t overtly comic in any way. We definitely get a lot more legal action than I had anticipated, making the storylines more intertwined with the complexities of law. I was surprised at the topics that were covered in the cases – the Japanese occupation, sexual assault – both of which are quite controversial and sensitive topics. But they are as important as they are controversial, and I hope we’ll be able to see more of these important topics come up. I foresee lots of legal terminology and proceedings coming our way. But I can deal with that, as long as we get some great courtroom scenes and moral conflicts concerning justice.

Based on our first encounters with our characters, I can only firmly say that our CEO Cha Yeong-woo has a high tolerance for corruption. His only catch is his self-interest, which we saw through his decision to sacrifice his client for the sake of his own firm. He seems to have no problem doing anything, as long as it doesn’t negatively impact his empire. Bad Daddy instincts are back, but this time in the form of Big Law Firm CEO. Seok-ju seems quite similar to him, but I don’t think we’ve seen enough of his own morality to judge that just yet. He’s the best at what he does, and all that matters is that he wins. He’s mechanical and quite heartless, and I’m interested to see his transformation when he goes through his amnesia phase.

And Ji-yoon. I like her! At least so far. I was scared she would be that rebellious intern who wears her heart on her sleeve but acts too mindlessly to make an actual impact. You know, the typical frustrating dramaland heroine. But she actually has the smarts to support her altruistic tendencies, making her a much more effective character. I’m glad her actions have more relevance to the overall case because I’ve seen too many heroines travel into some ridiculous side stories that are distracting and frankly, a waste of time.

Overall, I think the first episode was a bit underwhelming, but I’m hoping for some more action and deeper conflicts as we move forward because we do have a great set of actors in for the ride. It would be great to see more character development because we’ve got to know enough about our characters for that amnesia element to make its intended impact. And I would always welcome more interactions with our leads because they were quite pleasant and funny to watch together. But I criticize because I know there’s more potential. Just give me more, show. I know you’ve got it in you.

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66 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. Yasmin

    Thanks for the recap! I was quite worried about the show, but it looks better than i expected and it will hopefully get even better. Come on, show!

  2. Perevell

    Kim Myung Min and Kim Sang Joong in the same room: Charisma overloaddddddd.

    I can’t decide whose voice demands more of my attention when they speak to each other. *drools*

    Yes. I drool over voices.

    • 2.1 DayDreamer

      Oh, Kim-Myung-min’s voice is so sultry. Rawr.

    • 2.2 Kiara

      Those two are my OTP. I’m not ashame to say that I’m crushing on both of them.

  3. windsun33

    I was afraid that Ji-yoon would end up as yet another Candy Idiot-In-Training, but so far I am pleasantly surprised. So far better than I expected, so will keep watching it.

    The amnesia trope is a bit overdone, but in this case it might actually work.

    • 3.1 Chandler

      Although the amnesia trope is overdone, I think that it’s acceptable and actually very enjoyable when it’s actually a part of the premise of the drama (i.e. Arang and the Magistrate, Couple or Trouble, 18 vs. 29, Bad Family etc.) so I don’t mind. It’s when amnesia is inserted into a drama randomly in order to forcibly cause the leads to separate that’s way too overdone. In this case, the amnesia is going to allow for character growth and hopefully some romance instead of just being used as a roadblock. It should be good :)

  4. DayDreamer

    Yippee! I’m glad there’s recaps for this show.

    To be honest, with all the legal jargon flying around and over my head, I would not have been interested in this show. What keeps me grounded to it is Kim Myung-min and Kim Sang-joong. Oh, these awesome ajhusshis. They create a force of their own that makes ordinary scenes charged with emotion. Love it.

    Park Min-young, on the other hand, made me cringe. It’s bad enough that the writer made her the kind of character who accuses others on baseless assumptions (one of my biggest pet peeves) but the actress herself went overboard in emoting. As I mentioned elsewhere, she was like a chicken running around with her head cut off. Yeesh.

    • 4.1 birdie

      PMY has to stop overacting or choose a character where she can channel her emotions subtly . Maybe stop picking the same type of bright cheerful character because she seems to act the same.

      Picking the right role to show off one’s range can make a big difference.

    • 4.2 anais

      Ji Yoon – Such an embarrassment. An intern like her would have been shown the door so fast. One of the key requirements of a legal counsel is discretion. If she can’t be discreet about her own life, hardly inspires confidence. An intern who privileges “looking for her purse” over greeting the partner for the first time? An intern who can’t figure out a more appropriate way to acknowledge her own drunken misstep like an adult but instead hides like a scared little kid behind a wall? You’ve got to be kidding me. Also, what is with her suits? Does she want to be taken seriously or ogled as a sexually available intern?

      Park Min Young – So overacts. Her acting cutesy is so jarring next to Kim Myung Min who has thoroughly embodied his character. She’s “acting” and he’s actually being. She’s a lot better when she’s being fierce. Her portrayal doesn’t help sell her character’s credibility.

      • 4.2.1 MySelf

        Oh pleeease….you showing too much jealousy here!!don’t you understand???that’s her character!!bright,kind&cute :-P .
        And you know what?her role is to balance the seriousness in ANL!!
        Can’t you see??Kim myung min n Kim sang joong is full of serious face all the time.if Min young had that attitude too,i don’t think i can watch ANL..it will be like STRESS!! :| .huh TQ!

        • 4.2.1.1 Lord Byron

          That maybe, but is it too much to ask her to at least look and sound the part, like someone attending law school (even a second-tier) and interning with a top mega law firm of the nation? Instead, she sounds barely educated beyond high school and looks without an ounce of intelligence or social sense in her. Myung Min called it when he said she was not even pretty.

          Miscasting begins with the producer, not the actress, but still … (Of course, it also takes the actress accepting the part.)

          From all the PR we heard before the drama launched, I don’t believe that her role is to balance “seriousness,” as you claim. It is to balance his immorality (professional as well as personal) with her morality. Hence the title, A New Leaf. So we can be forgiven for expecting someone with transformative power, whatever kind it may be. But it looks as if she is the one who needs a lot of turning over a new leaf, by growing up as well as upgrading her entire self (demeanor, taste, goal in like other than meeting a man, etc.). But that would make her just another Candy!

          • 4.2.1.1.1 MySelf

            Thats her character and the PD and writer-nim wants her to be that way!You haven’t watch ANL yet don’t you??
            Bcoz i don’t think you understand the story here and you don’t even know the storyline?.Lee ji yoon is so damn good and intelligent intern too!she did a good job explaining her research to Kmm’s foreigners client in english,.she’s good,Ksj said so,thats why he wants her to be on his team!
            And you know what?i like her the way she is now.PERFECT!! :-D .Love Kmm and Pmy chemistry here.. :-) LOVE LOVE LOVE <3

          • 4.2.1.1.2 mimi

            Why do I get the strong feeling that the point of some of these posts is to bash the actress through the character? If the female character is the typical virgin never-been-kissed type, you say she is unrealistic. If the female character is someone who can get a crush on a good-looking guy she meets in a party (like I suppose most of us do), you say she is a bimbo whose sole purpose in life is to hook him. Seriously? And what is with that patronising comment where you say LJY is without an ounce of intelligence? Granted it is far fetched to expect most kdrama heroines to have different sides to them, at least they show Lee Ji Yoon as capable enough to find out the clause they were looking for all on her own. She is also not the “wear her heart on her sleeve” kind and as we see in episode 2 with the actress, is pragmatic enough to try to do the best thing she can do under the circumstances instead of being too idealistic and throwing away her job. She is not sitting there and ogling the guys as you imply. I don’t think english speaking skills are an indication of anybody’s intelligence, but as a character who can explain a legal clause intelligently enough in a foreign language, she is definitely not “barely educated” as you imply. Have you really watched the drama?

            I don’t think you have read any of the promotional material where it is pretty clear that MY has been added to bring youthful vibrancy to an otherwise heavy drama. Even KMM said that after doing the heavy court room scenes, he finds it enjoyable to do the romcom scenes with MY. That shows the actors and the team know those scenes are there for a reason. While this drama will certainly handle some heavy stuff including controversial cases,it is not going to be all dark and depressing and they are also going to have some fun along the way as we saw with KMM’s comic scenes in episode 3 preview. From the reaction on the k-sites where the comic scenes were much talked about and discussed, I think the change in tone was seen in its context.

            Please show me a young kdrama female character in a current drama who has all the qualifications you mention. Even today, there was an article about how barring EK, female characters have very little to do in the currently airing kdramas and how it is a worrying trend. I did not have any expectation that LJY would be at least this fleshed out or integral to the plot in a male-centric drama with seasoned actors. The fact that she is not a cardboard character is itself a surprise to me. One can be idealistic and hope for wonderfully written female characters, but along with that, one also needs to be pragmatic enough to realise that a sea change won’t happen in one day. I strongly believe that female characters need to be written better in kdramas, but I also believe that when one notices something different in the characterisation, it needs to be pointed out and appreciated. So far, LJY as a character has promise. Of course, until the…

          • 4.2.1.1.3 mimi

            Of course, until the drama ends, one can only pray that she retains at least half of the backbone she has in the early episodes. But so far, so good and I will take that.

          • 4.2.1.1.4 windsun33

            I agree with Mimi on this. Yes, she IS over the top cheerful and socially inept – that is how she is supposed to be in this drama.

            While I did find the “hiding like a kid” scenes a bit overacted, it is part of her characters image.

        • 4.2.1.2 anais

          Jeaousy, my ass. If you only knew… I’m really sorry that you must be so limited yourself that you can only imagine jealousy to be the sole root of critique.

          Also, you need to learn to read. I separated out my criticism of the character from her delivery. There is a difference between “bright and cute” and “cutesy.” PMY’s delivery has fallen way on the side of “cutesy.” I can think of a million other ways a better actress might have delivered that scene where she attempts to hide from (I almost wrote Anthony, LOL) Seok Ju. She doesn’t carry herself like a top law-firm intern. Anyone who is either a top law-firm intern or lawyer or knows someone who is knows what I mean. PMY’s character would have been shown the door. Lastly, her role is not solely to balance the seriousness of the two lawyers. Her job is to bring alive a credible character. Don’t reduce female characters to mere foils. They deserve to be more than that, and a good actress would be able to deliver on that.

      • 4.2.2 windsun33

        “..hides like a scared little kid behind a wall?..”

        Hehe.. that trope is so over-used in k-dramas that I have kind of given up on NOT seeing it. Kind of like the fact that EVERYONE in k-dramas stands around in random places talking out loud to themselves (I guess Koreans – especially girls – cannot just think without loudly voicing it).

        • 4.2.2.1 anais

          Teehee… Sometimes I catch myself thinking out loud. My favorite is when I do it at the checkout counter of a grocery store. I must seem like a crazy lady. HEH.

          Must be a Korean thing. Ha!

  5. Hugepuffball

    I don’t know if I’ll watch this but just looking at Kim Myung-Min’s face makes me tempted

    • 5.1 mebezig

      So far, so good! I am enjoying this show most, among others that are broadcasting. I think I’ll prioritize this drama during Wednesdays and Thursdays. First time to watch KMM huh. Good actor. What are some of his other (good) dramas?

      • 5.1.1 Haneul

        I can never recommend Beethoven Virus enough. It’s an excellent drama and my favourite out of all KMM’s roles. Romance is present and not in a sappy way. It’s not the focus of the drama anyway. It’s all about human condition and extremely touching relationships (a rebellious teenager with an Alzheimer stricken grandpa will make you shed tears) between different people who have the love of music in common. Also that was when Jang Geun Suk was an actually good and promising actor before he went the You are Beautiful road and started going downhill

        • 5.1.1.1 zsa

          exactly…after that it was all about the manliner and the weird hairdo….I cry for Jang Geun Suk….

  6. Aly

    OoOow, it’s our handsome lady-killer jin yi han!! i’m tempted to give it another go just for him but not so sure. i tried watching it for around five mins (now i know that’s hardly any time at all) but i was actually feeling my eyes close. i don’t know if it gets better but i can normally get a feel pretty quickly and this one didn’t do it for me. nor do i really have that kind of patience.

    i’ll keep a look out for your recaps in case it does improve :)

  7. Ivy

    love love this already XD i feel so excited to have this drama
    although it’s bad since i have my college exams…. oh well ya know it’s kim myung min <3
    he's totally my favourite ajusshi

  8. AnOpinion

    This drama is the only one I’m catching up on now. Gave up on Hotel King and Angel Eyes.

    • 8.1 Lucy

      Really why??? Their great!!

    • 8.2 windsun33

      I dropped Hotel King at about ep2.5, but still watching Angel Eyes.. for now. So far this one is looking better than I expected, and better than most else running right now.

  9. Mrs.Jang Guem Suk

    I’m in all kind of love with this show and oooooo I’m not going to spoil episode 2 but PMY is all kind of awesome idk y y’all don’t like her smh …. To each there own …definitely a good show to watch

    • 9.1 nana

      lol I like her character too, and ep 2 was great.

  10. 10 kanz

    Thank you for the recap!!
    While everyone watch Gapdong or Angel Eyes, I choose this show because Kim Myung Min and Jin Yi Han. Those mighty voices!!
    I’m pleasantly surprised with Park Min Young. At least, she’s not annoying and can be funny. The drunk scene is so funny!! Haha
    Although it has serious scene and I can’t understand the plot and the law thing because it’s flying so fast, but there is balanced comedy. Love this drama so far.

  11. 11 Joss

    So I’m new commenting here but I’ve been reading you guys for almost 2 years :D
    I never really felt confident about my words (I’m Spanish native speaker) but now I want to interact with other kdrama lovers too :3
    I’m already super in love with this drama .. Kim Myung Min all the way .. His voice is a killer *__*
    And Park Min Young is so fluffy and lovable as always !
    Looking forward to upcoming episodes to see how their relationship will evolve ^^

  12. 12 nana

    Ohh I’m glad this show is being recapped! I was going to skip it but in the end I decided to give it a try, and I’m glad I did because I’m already in love with it. (hope I didn’t jinx it lol)

    The story, the tone and the actors are great and I love Ji Yoon. I find the contrast between her and Seok Ju funny. I too was worried about getting another plucky Candy who keeps messing up but she feels real enough to me. I like her reaction to the faux one night stand too, so different from the standard Candy’s. I’m happy to see KMM in a drama I can like too, I didn’t really dig how OTT King of Dramas was so I couldn’t finish it. Excited for next week’s episodes.

    • 12.1 MySelf

      Same here :-).totally agree with you <3

    • 12.2 windsun33

      I think what hooked me on this show is the fact that (so far) Ji-yoon is not your typical Candy. Perhaps socially inept, but far from stupid, and far from passive.

  13. 13 Chanchan

    Kim Myung Min , Kim Sang Joong and Jin Yi Han !! this drama is an eargasm !!

    I think with his just 2min apparence i developped a second lead syndrome ( i don’t normally do that ) Jin Yi Han ♥

    ( Seriously Empress Ki messed up my routine , i develepped my first second lead syndrom even a “third” lead and i even shipped ‎Ha Ji Won with someone who isn’t younger than her)

  14. 14 Mohammed

    The first two eps of this drama is very promising, its the first time i have seen Kim Myung Min in a drama and he is really good here. I can feel, understand the hero of the story despite he is so cold, has depressing lack of personal life. You can see so much for the reasons he is like this by the acting, the writing for the hero.

    The legal part is actually pretty good, its a very stylish show. Law firm part reminds of Harvey Spector and a fav show of mine in Suits. Not as boring as they do it in other korean dramas.

    • 14.1 Trixie

      I thought of Suits too and Harvey. Always watch for little chinks in his armor. This should be fun here too. Looks like a possibility anyway. Looking forward to tuning in next week.

  15. 15 Hanjanman

    I haven’t posted for quite a while but I just want to say thank you for taking A New Leaf on.

    I would watch anything of Kim Myung Min. However, because of the title, I was a little worried that this drama was going to be a full on melo and Kim Myung Min doing method(acting). I was pleasantly surprised that it isn’t and now looks forward to his transformation and what other shenanigans Park Min Young’s character would be up to.

    Loved your recap Dramallama and looking forward to the rest of your recaps on this show.

  16. 16 Linh

    watched this by accident hahaha and i like it! it has potential and gives me the feeling of “i want to see more!”

  17. 17 kellie

    A KMM fan but in the minority here. I think the show’s as flat as a pancake. I got a general impression of blah. The whole thing has an odd, disembodied feel about it, like a meal that’s not quite cooked. The KMM character in the first 2 episodes is so close to his previous cold, relentless roles he could’ve phoned it in. Don’t know what to say about Park Min-young except that she seems like a munchkin lost in a museum.

    A day earlier I happened to catch the first 2 episodes of Kang Ji-hwan’s new one, Big Man, & guess what? For entertainment value & energy & interest, it’s the one I’ll be looking forward to next week. No one could be more surprised than I am.

    • 17.1 NH

      Agree! Show is boring, doesnt feel complete n together. Characters r all old cliche ones.
      But i cant do big man neither. All current shows r such boredom.

      • 17.1.1 Ashley

        I recommended you watch golden cross,it’s not boring and their plot story very different.I love so much that drama.

    • 17.2 windsun33

      While I “sort of” agree with your description of what happened in the first two episodes, I totally disagree with your take on it.

      He is portrayed as maxed out cold and heartless to set the tone for how he “used to be”.

  18. 18 traintoseoul

    I am sooooo glad this is being recapped, yet to watch but it looks good already 😊

  19. 19 Katie

    Anthonyyyyyyy. He looks so young and clean shaven. Recap sounds good! I will give this drama a shot I have nothing else to watch right now.

  20. 20 leftinsorae

    bless you for recapping this show! thanks a lot!

    I love Park Minyoung, but sometimes i want something more from her and first episode on this show left me a bit bland because i see the same approach to her character choices again and again. I love me some loveable and fluffy Minyoung which i think she’s just playing her real self lol but i want a different genre all together. Anyhoooow with that being said, im not saying she’s not tolerable because if you pass that phase you’d somehow just enjoy the drama as a whole.

    CHEMISTRY. geezus! I think im going crazy but i think on screen they have sexual tension. LMAO. Im digging it, i love that their characters are ‘too’ aware of each other and it’s one step up for me as a fan of Minyoung because I want these two to make out on my tv screen. Hence i wish i can change the course of this drama but then in my head it will have dirt in the gutter.lol

    KMM CHARISMATIC ACTOR hands down. He’s simply amazing and he looks hot here compared to his King Of Drama days because i wasnt loving his hairstyle there.Though portrayal wise he is nonetheless great!

  21. 21 sorae

    bless you for recapping this show! thanks a lot!

    I love Park Minyoung, but sometimes i want something more from her and first episode on this show left me a bit bland because i see the same approach to her character choices again and again. I love me some loveable and fluffy Minyoung which i think she’s just playing her real self lol but i want a different genre all together. Anyhoooow with that being said, im not saying she’s not tolerable because if you pass that phase you’d somehow just enjoy the drama as a whole.

  22. 22 Quiet Thought

    Amazing, given the high intellectual content of the legal cases being discuss, that this story does the dumb drama schtick. At any point in the drama in this episode or the next one, if Seok-ju had said to Ji Yoon: “I DID NOT HAVE SEX WITH YOU” her entire story line could have been dropped. She talks about it constantly but, in complete contradiction to everything we know about his character, he will not, will not, WILL NOT say the words.

    “Nothing happened.”

    “You were unconscious, drooling, and a stranger and I don’t carry condoms around on family business.”

    “I’m don’t have the hormones or the disposition for a one night stand.”

    “Do I look or act like the sort of person who would have sex with a sloppy, passed out drunk?”

    “Are you so ignorant of basic personal hygiene that you cannot tell if you had sexual intercourse last night?”

    “Is there a wet spot on the bed?”

    Sorry, can I say that sort of thing here? The Admins can delete this, can’t they?

    • 22.1 KDaddict

      He did say to her: “Nothing happened”, either in this ep or the next. But she, of course, didn’t hear him.
      Agree w you that she should be able to tell tho.

    • 22.2 MySelf

      Hello…….why are focusing on that particular scene ONLY??that is not the MAIN plot!is not like she wants him to take responsibility for what happen or,or… chasing him all over the place!!on the contrary,she’s tried to avoid him.and i adv.you should watch ep.2 so that you won’t stuck with your own narrow minded.PEACE. :-o

      • 22.2.1 Quiet Thought

        Watched Episode 2 first, actually. PMY does much better as a lawyer in both eps, though her drunk act in Ep 1 was fabulous.

    • 22.3 mimi

      Yup. The misunderstanding could have been cleared right there. This is a kdrama romcom trope which has its problems, but this is a kdrama. However, I don’t think she went after him again and again with that one night thing. She thought they had a one-night stand, felt they were both to blame and thought they should forget about it and just focus on their work. Once she heard the rumour about it, she cleared it up with him and that was the end to it. For me, the good thing was that they did not go too prude with the age gap thing.

    • 22.4 windsun33

      I LOL’d at this and the other possible quotes: “..“Are you so ignorant of basic personal hygiene that you cannot tell if you had sexual intercourse last night?”..”

      Not just for this drama, but because that trope is SO often used in k-dramas, and you have to wonder just how clueless k-drama girls can get. I think I have seen that “what happened” or “did anything happen” trope in at least 20 different dramas.

      Somewhere I am sure there is a big book of standard k-drama tropes. Maybe someday when I get ambitious and have a few hours I will make a list.

  23. 23 Suzi Q

    Love Kim Myung Min in Beethoven’s Virus and King of Drama ( I’ll always remember him as What Would Anthony Do?) He always does a wonderful job in his portrayals of flawed men. He looks like he lost some more weight and appears really slim.

    I’m happy Jin Yi Han is in this drama. Both Kim and Jin have a wonderful masculine voice quality when they speak and I love to listen to them. I ship Jin with Park Min Young. She isn’t very comedic and comes off as an irritating and idiotic lawyer’s intern. I don’t see any romantic charisma between Kim and Park because Kim is old enough to be her dad.

  24. 24 MySelf

    I love ANL so much.!!Love park min young at first.watch her drama Skks and City hunter,they were Great!.never knew kim myung min is a great actor.i’m a fan NOW!!

  25. 25 mimi

    Thank you for the recap. I thought the first episode was about setting up the major characters including a possible loveline and hint at the conflicts in store. What I have liked about the drama representation of the legal firm is that at least many cases are happening simultaneously and there is a lot of back and forth before they take on a case, especially a potentially controversial one. Things become much more intense in episode 2, so whatever comic we got out of this episode is some calm before the storm. The two cases require sensitive handling since they are both so important, but I think they have tried to do it well.

    I liked how they have integrated the serious stuff with the comic stuff. I really enjoyed the wedding scene and the house scene. It was hilarious and KMM-PMY have intense chemistry. Seok Joo may be the cold-hearted lawyer in the courtroom, but when a drunken girl drags you by the arm and acts totally weird, there is not much you can do. :) Their poles apart characters are nicely balancing each other out. He is a fair man though. He did not judge her for what happened/did not happen between them. She may be dangerous when drugged, but as an intern, she knows her stuff and tries to make a difference in her own way without wearing her heart on the sleeve. I hope she remains that way! I also liked how she has desires appropriate for her age and can appreciate a hot guy when she sees him.

    As a Park Min Young fan, I was pleasantly surprised by her comic acting. Even drunk and drugged, her will to take Seok Joo out of the hall by hook or crook overcame all norms of propriety, unfortunately in front of the very man she wanted to impress. She has improved a lot as an actress and though the character is supposed to be bright and idealistic, it is not a cardboard character so far.

  26. 26 whitewire

    I know I’m in the minority here. But…
    KIM SEOK-JOO ♥ LEE JI-YOON pleaaaase!

    Dang, such chemistry, I can’t deny this!

    • 26.1 leftinsorae

      dont worry you’re not the only one! hahaha

  27. 27 redfox

    thank goodness Bad Daddy is alive again.

    gonna watch after I finish planting beans.

  28. 28 AndOne

    Thank you recapper! This drama is doing a good job tackling heavy issues. The added romcom element gives the viewers comedic relief to the otherwise uber heavy plot. I think PMY is doing great balancing KMM’s seriousness and yeah, holy chemistry! They are burning the screen!~

    Can’t wait to see how things develop after Ji Won joins the firm and Jeong Seon, Seok Joo’s fiance appears.

    • 28.1 Mohammed

      Seok Joo fiance? Wow i knew there was something soft, normal hidden beside the cold,hard facade of him before the memory loss. I wonder how he was when he was in love with someone.

      Actually i hope we get to know why he became so cold, hiding his emotions so much. I felt bad for him when his boss told him he is too special, talented to be happy like normal people.

      I hope they dont just make the memory loss version of him just a better,happier person and forget who the flawed but more real version was.

  29. 29 Kaybee

    Thanks to your recap that I saw this drama. I loved it so far. Actually I read the comments before watching the drama and I didn’t find PMY over acted. In fact I LOVED her here! She was funny when needed but didn’t over do it and was strong, idealistic, smart, beautiful…etc when required. Also I love her dialogue delivery. She is a good actress.

    I am a fan of KMM and he is awesome as always. People who are complaining that he is playing his usual cold and serious roles should wait for further episodes because after amnesia, he surely will turn tables and have a lighter character. In the preview, his dressing and mannerism are shown changed and kind of goofy. It will be fun to watch him. Ep 1 and 2 was fast showed what a cold character he was and how he compromises with morals to win but we are going to have a more “human” lawyer in him later and PMY falling for his new avatar.

    I liked how PMY was let down in him and it mattered to him to explain to her his position. He is already warming up to her. I think he fell for her the moment he saw her because there was few seconds of eye twitch when he saw her and that moment was sweet. Also he may have a role in actually getting her selected (may be not but his boss has noticed his favoritism) and also how he got her into his team (to keep an eye on her). Okay, she is diligent and smart and deserved it but like many are pointing it out that she is too naive and idealistic to make it through PMY’s office. I do believe a cold and calculative man indeed fell for her charm from day one.

    The age difference doesn’t matter. I LOVE LOVE the chemistry. He is looking handsome and she is looking pretty. the story is good and the acting is good. My Wednesday and Thursdays are going to be spent well.

  30. 30 windsun33

    ** Possible ep2 Spoiler **

    This is kind of an off the wall prediction, but somehow I have this idea that the “new” reformed mean lawyer and his intern sidekick will take on the case of the rape victim murdering her attacker, and uncover a bunch of ugly things.

  31. 31 romanticinlove

    Park Min Young & Kim Myung Min wow I like you much :)

  32. 32 katy

    I love this drama very much ,
    KHM is always good ,
    PMY is pretty , less cosmetic , not too skinny and the most important is she does not act cute , acts as
    smart law student , she does have brain !

    I really hate actress who acts cute , annoying way .

  33. 33 D'andra

    The episode was good for a start I guess. I like the style of this drama, not much of the typical romantic korean drama. I think I know what will happen but hopefully there are some good twists and turns. ughh it’s already getting my nerves in a bunch with that entitled sicko and I can;t wait to see more. It’s really a sensitive situation to deal with because so much of these high powered men use their and get away with it. Thus it’s infuriating to watch but I can’t wait to see the progression. PMY will def not stand for that shit and by the preview she will voice her opinions. I like that. Strongish females leades, and hopefully it will continue!

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