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She’s So Lovable: Episode 1

Has it already been four years since we last saw Rain on the small screen? Time sure does fly. She’s So Lovable (also known as My Lovely Girl) aired this week on SBS, rounding out the Wednesday-Thursday lineup of three whole dramas from the biggest three broadcasters—just like the old days.

And just like the old days, there’s plenty you’ll find familiar in Lovable, from its hard-working Candy heroine, to the hero’s tragic backstory, and to the rags-to-riches tale that’s sure to come. It doesn’t quite feel as comfortable in its own skin as fellow comfort-food competitor Spring Days, but it does have one thing neither of its competitors have: Rain, The Gateway Drug. Add a faithful dog to the mix and you’re sure to get something right, even if this first outing isn’t one to knock our socks off. Maybe it’s one to gently pull them off our feet instead.

Ratings-wise, Spring Days led the pack with 9.5%, while Lovable netted 8.2%, leaving Iron Man in last place with 5.6%.

SONG OF THE DAY

Loco and Mamamoo – “이 노래 (This Song)” from the OST [ Download ]

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EPISODE 1 RECAP

Two lovers share a heated argument while winding down a mountainside road. This most recent tiff seems to be about her meeting his father, which usually ends badly—and today, she’s talking about ending things for good.

LEE HYUN WOOK (Rain), on the other hand, isn’t as ready as she is to let go. Since it’s been all over the promotional materials, it’s no spoiler to say he’s the CEO of a talent agency (think YG or SM), and that’s another point of contention between the two as girlfriend YOON SO-EUN accuses him of sleeping with a young starlet whose debut song they hear playing on the radio.

He refutes any such doings, and asks her what it will take for her to believe that she loves him. “Just ask me if I love you!” he yells. “Stop playing these games!”

But she wonders if he’s not sick of this issue constantly popping up between them, because she is. Hyun-wook pulls over and gets out of the car to cool his anger.

Just then, a passing car blows a tire and swerves before it crashes into another car. An oncoming truck plows into the pileup, is flipped onto its side, and careens toward Hyun-wook’s car… with So-eun still inside.

Hyun-wook sees what’s coming too late and runs to save her, but the force of the impact blows him backward. The moment he comes to, he pulls a bloodied So-eun from the wreckage.

She seems to know what’s coming and smiles as she strokes Hyun-wook’s cheek: “We… fought for nothing.” Her hand drops as she falls unconscious. Hyun-wook holds her close and cries. “I’m sorry! So-eun… I’m sorry.”

Three years later.

We meet our heroine with a heart of gold, YOON SE-NA (Krystal), and we know this because we see her feeding a stray kitten while musing that it’s a hard knock life out there, even for people.

A couple of loan sharks have managed to find her, and judging by the way she’s always packed and ready to leave at a moment’s notice for instances like these, this is not an uncommon occurrence.

Next up is SHIN HAE-YOON (Cha Ye-ryun), a no-nonsense talent manager who has assistants at her beck and call while she makes preparations for one of her groups to take the stage for a live music show.

But she’s stopped dead when someone calls her from Jeju Island to say that they just saw Hyun-wook.

Hyun-wook lives in a quaint country home with his own garden, and makes a salad from the vegetables to give to his neighbor, who’s harboring a crush on him.

He tells her he’s got someone else, and wonders if that woman is Hae-yoon when she walks through the door, looking pretty peeved.

“It’s been a while,” Hyun-wook says with a mirthless smile, which his neighbor takes as a cue to leave. Hae-yoon immediately starts hitting him with her purse as she calls him all sorts of names for not having called her in three years.

Afterward, Hae-yoon reverts to calling him “Oppa” as she talks about how hard it’s been to find him. But now that she has, she wants him to return to Seoul with her to make music again. Why is he wasting his talents here when he could be rolling in money?

“There are two things I’ve decided not to do: Music… and dating.” Hyun-wook replies in an even voice. Hae-yoon leans over and kisses him, before noting that if he can still kiss, then music and dating should come back to him. Hyun-wook isn’t quite as amused or optimistic.

Displaced again, Se-na sits with her only belongings—a bag and a guitar case—as she stares out at the Han River.

Then it’s back to Hyun-wook, who sighs about the strange day he’s had. To add to the strangeness, a very sudden storm knocks his power out.

But strangely enough, he hears a phone ringing inside his dark house… and opens a drawer where he’s kept his late girlfriend’s cell phone from the crash. Which, somehow, still holds a charge.

It’s Se-na calling, and she leaves a voicemail to tell her sister how she sees so many people around her, but is all alone. Tears spring to her eyes as she adds how nice it would be if they were there together.

“What should I do now?” she asks. “Where should I go now? I’m so scared… everything seems so bleak. Why did you do it? Why did you go and leave me behind?” Hyun-wook listens to this all after the fact, and only then does the phone die.

Se-na has no choice but to depend on the hospitality of her friend, JOO HONG, who knows all about her dire financial straits and part-time job skipping.

So since Se-na needs to keep hiding from the loan sharks always after her, she comes up with a plan: She’ll use Hong’s name instead of her own for a while. Hong readily agrees, like this is an easy and totally legal thing to do.

Hyun-wook takes So-eun’s cell phone to an electronics store, only for the clerk to claim that there’d be no way for him to receive a call when the phone is most definitely broken, and the number disconnected.

He confused when he returns to his car where his dog, Dalbongie, is waiting. Hyun-wook asks him if he should look for the girl who called anyway, and Dalbongie barks in the affirmative.

Se-na, now going by Joo Hong (that was easy) is working at a new part-time job serving poolside drinks at a fancy hotel. She displays her talent for playing music with half-full wine glasses by tapping them to the tune of “Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star” to calm down a crying child, and is tipped graciously for it.

Hyun-wook hires a private investigator to try and find Se-na, since he knows she left the voicemail. Other than knowing that she’s his late girlfriend’s little sister and that she plays music here and there, he doesn’t know much about her or where to find her.

He has to try explaining his reasons to his friend, then decides it’s easier not to explain the whole phantom-phone-call thing—he just knows Se-na is in a bad way.

But then the song that played when he was in the car with So-eun, the one he produced, suddenly plays over the bar speakers. Hyun-wook is instantly assaulted by traumatic memories of the accident and books it out of the bar, clutching his chest.

Se-na enjoys a poolside break after all the customers have gone and hums a little tune to herself. Dalbongie abandons Hyun-wook when he hears the tune, forcing his owner to give chase.

She greets Dalbongie when he arrives, cutely calling him formally like she would any other hotel guest since he’s wearing a bow tie for a collar. She has fun playing with him and singing to him, which is how Hyun-wook finds the two of them.

“It’s nice,” Hyun-wook says of her tune. “It’s a pity I couldn’t understand the lyrics.” Se-na claims she was singing to Dalbongie because he looked tired, which Hyun-wook explains as due to jet lag.

When she asks if he’s the dog’s owner, Hyun-wook almost laughs when he answers, “I’m his friend. Though I’m not sure what he considers me to be.” Aw.

Dalbongie gets a little excited when she repeats his name (after asking Hyun-wook for it) and jumps on her, sending Se-na off balance as she falls toward the pool…

…But Hyun-wook catches her just in time, and holds her close after such a near-miss. She’s much more caught off-guard than he is, and is barely able to speak when Hyun-wook jokes that Dalbongie must’ve done that because he’s fallen for her.

Hyun-wook takes a look at her name tag and calls her Joo Hong, and while Se-na almost tells him her real one, she decides to keep up appearances and sticks to the fake name by explaining that it’s “joohong” (scarlet) not “ppalgang” (red). Before he leaves, he cutely refers to her as “Miss Not Red, But Scarlet.”

The next day, Se-na and her fellow employees are briefed on the huge party that will be held at their hotel by the AnA talent agency. But Se-na (as Joo Hong) is pulled aside after the meeting since she’s been summoned to a very specific room.

Her fellow employee titters that it’s the “Handsome Dog Man’s” room, for reasons that should be self-explanatory. They’re all jealous when Se-na realizes she met the guest they’re talking about yesterday by the pool.

Se-na shows up to Hyun-wook’s lavish two-story villa, since he’s requested her services to look after Dalbongie while he’s at the party. She leaves right after when he gets a phone call, which is (of course) from the private investigators about their search for… well, her.

Another quick and jarring cut takes us to Hae-yoon, as she prepares the hotel for the upcoming party while Se-na learns she’s in a high position at AnA.

Once Hae-yoon sees Hyun-wook’s buddy SUNG-JIN at the hotel, she knows Hyun-wook must be there and knocks on his door, offended that he didn’t contact her first to let her know he was coming. She’s also offended that he didn’t come to Seoul because she asked him to—he must’ve come for a woman.

Hyun-wook just nods, like it’s no big deal. That’s when Se-na shows up for her shift with Dalbongie, and Hae-yoon shoots her a suspicious look before tipping her for her service.

Hae-yoon and Hyun-wook visit a familiar restaurant with a familiar ajumma, though she makes a slip-up when she asks where Hyun-wook’s usual girlfriend is—you know, the one he always used to bring with him. Yikes.

Rather than be sympathetic, Hae-yoon demands that they go somewhere else if this is where he used to take So-eun. “Isn’t it enough that you’ve been wandering around all this time? What’s so special about that woman anyway?”

Hyun-wook thinks she’s going overboard, but Hae-yoon continues that she’s known him for twelve years now—doesn’t that give her the right to be honest with him? He tags her back when the ajumma returns to the table, blaming herself for bringing up his past girlfriend when he’s here with a new one.

“You don’t have to be sorry,” he tells the ajumma, before turning his gaze to Hae-yoon pointedly. “She’s not my girlfriend.” Hae-yoon storms out, only to become further enraged when Hyun-wook doesn’t come after her.

After Dalbongie refuses to eat his dog food, Se-na placates him by sharing some of hers before she wonders aloud who the woman Hyun-wook went out with is to him.

But when she turns around for Dalbongie’s answer, she finds him lying on the floor. Hyun-wook arrives just then and loses his temper when he sees the scraps of sausage Se-na fed him. Um… is that dog being rushed off in an ambulance?

At the animal hospital, Hyun-wook receives some sobering news: While Dalbongie has been saved from choking to death, he also has cancer. (Yeeep.) The prognosis isn’t good, since Dalbongie is already on in years.

Hyun-wook dejectedly asks if this means he’s not supposed to do anything, which is pretty much what the doctor recommends. Dalbongie doesn’t have long, so all Hyun-wook can do is let him live out the last of his days in comfort.

He cries, not just because it’s his dog, but because it’s attached to memories of So-eun—they got him when he was just a puppy and playfully fought over who Dalbongie liked more.

Hyun-wook revisits the spot from his flashback with Dalbongie, much older now than he was then. Then he calls the PI again to check on their hunt for Se-na.

Se-na is there to greet Hyun-wook and Dalbongie when they return from the hospital, and while Hyun-wook isn’t in the mood for her apologies at first, he has a change of heart and invites her inside.

After laying down the law that she is not to feed Dalbongie anything off-menu again, Hyun-wook agrees to let her continue to take care of his dog exclusively.

Se-na is confused at first, since she assumed he’d be furious—something he doesn’t deny. He is mad, but since Dalbongie loves her so much, there’s not much he can do other than to give her EXACT instructions on what Dalbongie can and cannot eat.

So poor Se-na has to make multiple trips to the pet store to get food that meets Hyun-wook’s ridiculously high standards, when he could’ve just made this easier by browsing online and telling her which brand he’d prefer. She even tries cooking Dalbongie’s meals, only to be turned back to the kitchen every time when Hyun-wook isn’t satisfied.

Later that night, Se-na can’t help but think about how much running around Hyun-wook made her do, but forces herself to focus so she can finish a recording she’s making.

A quick cut to the hotel entrance shows a mob of screaming fans as members of the boy group Infinite Power/MHDR show up for the concert they’ll be playing there—and though Se-na is in eyesight of the hubbub, she looks more confused than anything.

Then poof! She’s back in Hyun-wook’s room, having to explain why the hotel is all aflutter because of MHDR’s arrival. Hyun-wook leaves her to babysit, while he meets with the private investigator who’s found Se-na and the friend she’s been staying with.

Hyun-wook goes to the real Joo Hong’s address, but can’t bring himself to knock on the door.

It’s quite the party when MHDR performs (I’m going to hold off introducing them until the show gives each member a proper one), but it’s one Se-na isn’t attending. She can see the concert and hear it from Hyun-wook’s window, though.

She takes Dalbongie for a walk after the concert is over, even though that’s only the beginning of the festivities and the work for the staff. Se-na asks one of her coworkers if she can trade places with her (uh oh) so she can serve all the big industry execs at the party a drink… and a copy of her recording.

SHI-WOO (Infinite’s L), one of the MHDR members, looks deflated when a girl he recognizes takes a drink from the leader of his group, KANG RAE-HUN (Hoya, also from Infinite) and continues to chum it up with him while watching another smaller performance.

Hyun-wook waits outside Joo Hong’s house until she shows up, but when he asks her if she knows Se-na, she claims she hasn’t seen her in a looong time. But he doesn’t get to press her any further when Hae-yoon calls, demanding they meet.

Meanwhile, the friend Se-na entrusted to walk Dalbongie loses the dog. Lordy, how many terrible things are going to happen to this dog in the span of one hour? Cancer isn’t dramatic enough already?

Hyun-wook arrives at the hotel and unknowingly walks into a meeting with his father, LEE JONG-HO, set up by Hae-yoon. They’re cold and bitter with each other, and end up at the same stalemate they’ve likely been in for years: Daddy Lee thinks it’s Hyun-wook’s choice to live with his back turned to his own father, while Hyun-wook claims the fault is all Daddy Lee’s.

Hae-yoon tries to patch the situation by telling Hyun-wook that his father is very ill (is it cancer again?), but they’re interrupted when the loudspeaker blares that a golden retriever has gone missing. Hyun-wook knows it’s Dalbongie and goes running.

Shi-woo keeps drinking every time he looks over to see Rae-hun with the girl he likes, and finally decides to just grab her by the wrist and take her outside.

Se-na ducks when she sees them, but peeks from behind her cover as Shi-woo tells the girl not to date Rae-hun, because he likes her. The girl is cruel enough to laugh at his confession and leaves him devastated.

He spots Se-na in hiding and calls her out, immediately suspecting her of being a sasaeng. While searching for the recording device he’s sure she must have, he finds her CD.

Shi-woo thinks he’s got her all figured out when she sheepishly admits she’s an aspiring composer, and grabs her by the wrist to drag her inside… all the way up to the stage, where he turns off the music. Dude, you’re not going to publicly embarrass her, are you?

Why yes, yes he is. He announces to everyone that she’s an aspiring composer and plugs her CD into the player, answering her meek protests with a, “Why? Didn’t you want them to listen to your music?”

He plays the CD, which starts with Se-na introducing herself and the song as being about a girl who falls in love at first sight. Everyone in the audience laughs, including Shi-woo, who’s being awfully cruel to a girl he’s never met.

Se-na presses the stop button, claiming she didn’t want her song to be heard this way, but Shi-woo eggs her on by asking if she’d planned on having someone listen the casting couch way.

She slaps him for that comment, and it’s well-deserved. She calls him a piece of garbage before leaving, but Shi-woo’s not willing to let it go and follows her out to yell at her about the mistake she just made—does she not know who he is?

Se-na whirls around on him and asks if being a celebrity makes him so special. Does it give him the right to treat people like this? Shi-woo further degrades her for just being a waitress, and for lurking around in the hopes she’d get discovered.

She doesn’t deny that, but adds that she wasn’t hanging around him on purpose. At least she sticks up for herself by asking him if he’s just mad because she saw him get rejected, which only makes him even angrier—luckily, his manager is there to drag him away.

Hyun-wook arrives a second after to accuse her of leaving Dalbongie in order to chase celebrities around. She has no idea the dog is lost and says she had her reasons, but Hyun-wook explodes: “While you were here following celebrities, my dog disappeared!”

She immediately offers to look for Dalbongie, to which Hyun-wook says that even if she finds him, he’ll make sure she gets fired. “To think, I entrusted Dalbongie to someone like you,” he mutters.

“‘Someone like me?’” Se-na repeats. “What kind of person is that? Are you saying someone like me is lower than a dog? You’re saying that’s how I am, right?”

Hyun-wook can’t even believe what he’s hearing—Dalbongie is his family whiel she’s just an employee. An employee with a duty to take care of his dog! “I’m not the one who lost the dog!” she fires back.

Yes, she admits to leaving him with someone else for just a moment. But she had something else she had to take care of. “Why are you doing this only to me? What did I do that was so wrong?” she asks, mystified. “Is it because of the sausage that got stuck in his throat? Is that my fault? Did I feed him something he shouldn’t eat? Why are you being like this to me? Why is everyone being like this only to me?!”

Her boss shows up to tell Hyun-wook that his dog has been found,before ushering Se-na over for a talking-to. Se-na admits she’s at fault, but defends herself against her boss belittling her meager education, even if it doesn’t change the fact that she’s fired.

The private investigator calls Hyun-wook just then to tell him that Se-na’s now working at the hotel he’s staying at under the name Joo Hong. Hyun-wook runs to the desk, but she’s already packed her things and left.

He sees her sitting dejectedly at a nearby bus stop and calls her from across the street. But when she picks up, Hyun-wook can’t bring himself to speak.

As his eyes fill with tears, Se-na finally catches his gaze.

 
COMMENTS

At least that’s out. I would’ve expected the identity game to last longer (anywhere from four to ten episodes by normal dramaland standards), so it’s good to see the show subvert at least that trope, even though the chances are pretty high that the identity scales will be tipped in Hyun-wook’s favor for a while—he’ll know who she is, but she won’t know who he is.

That whole not-knowing business does seem a bit strange if Hyun-wook and Se-na’s sister were dating long enough for a puppy to turn into a full-blown senior, unless Se-na’s sister had been estranged from the family for years on end. There’s got to be some reason why Hyun-wook would’ve never met her family, or her his, though I wonder if it’ll boil down to his chaebol daddy and their chaebol problems.

Though I’d heard nothing but praise about the writer/director team from Dr. Champ and Scent of a Woman, I was underwhelmed by both those aspects here. Yes, the shots themselves were very pretty, but the editing was like a horror show at times with way too many arbitrary quick cuts between scenes and characters that could’ve benefitted much more if the camera didn’t have the attention span of a gnat. It was almost as if they were afraid to linger too long on any one character while setting up the world around them, but it could very well be because there were a lot of characters and only so much time so devote to each of them. Maybe there’ll be more breathing room once the setup is over and done with and some of the separate character threads start to converge. I’d be willing to put at least that much faith in a team that comes so highly recommended. (Don’t make me regret it!)

As far as characters go, we got a much better sense of who Hyun-wook is than Se-na, who so far seems fairly typical of a Candy—but really, have we reached the point where dramas don’t even have to try anymore when it comes to explaining why their heroine is running from debtors? All I got from Se-na is that she’s kind, hard-working, has dreams, and isn’t afraid to stand up for herself when she has to. All are admirable traits, but there’s nothing so far that seems to break the mold. Or maybe that’s the point, and Hyun-wook will help her become something more.

That’s if he can help himself first, anyway. Going off the map for three years only to come back once he remembered his late girlfriend had a sister seemed a bit flimsy reasoning-wise, even if I don’t know what to make of the magical fate intervention that turned So-eun’s phone on just so Se-na could make that call. Hyun-wook’s got more heart than bite though, which already puts him on the more bearable side of the spectrum with plenty of room to grow.

But honestly, the character who caught my interest the most this hour, even with the little amount of time he had to play with, was Shi-woo. And the fact that maybe being an idol has led him to automatically believe the worst in others, which is already a far more interesting dynamic to explore than the hard-working girl who feeds stray kittens and dreams of becoming a composer.

 
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should give this a try..

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I can't bring myself to watch. Typical, boring tropes. It's Ok, That's Love has completely spoiled me....

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My past as a MyungStal shipper is creeping up on me again through this drama. LOL

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Thanks Head for the recap.
This was underwhelming. I like Rain don't know what he's doing here
I will watch more,well because, Rain

Off topic, will My Spring Days be recapped? I know it doesn't have Rain but it's delightful

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My spring day is like a nice spring breeze. It is a romantic comedy, a family drama rolled into one.

They may not recap t because it has no big stars in it, but I hunk this drama is going to be a hit with audiences.

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'because it has no big stars in it"?
respectfully, i'm sorry but i have never seen dramabeans not recapping anything because of its "stars", or lack of, alone.
cases in point: Shut up flower boy band (lee min ki just did a cameo), recapped. Poseidon, stopped recapping at ep 1.
it's mostly a matter of preference..and.. time really! just my 2 cents..with all due respect to you..and to dramabeans of course :)

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I turned back around to Spring Days the moment Krystal's character fell and caught by Rain's character. It's 16 minutes in…and…already? An old trope? Aghh…can't.

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nomad

totally agree. their egos arrived 15 minutes before they appeared on the screen.

i'm walking away from this one.

HeadsNo2: thanks for the recap and i'm sorry for bailing on this drama. yawn. yawn. faceplant!

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Bahahaa. Faceplant.
Honestly the teasers looked terrible. Especially coming at the end of It's Okay...
I don't know what it is but Krystal just doesn't grab me as leading lady material.
As to SD having no big stars my dearest Coolrepublica, have you met Girls' Generation.
Soo-freaking-Young!!!
Also the actors are just wonderfully understated and the actressess (so far) haven't annoyed the crap outta me!!
Also agree completely with Kim. It's Okay, That's Love has ruined KDrama heroines for me.
GHJ was already a PHENOMENAL actress but this script and show just blew everything up into another stratosphere!

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I actually was expecting to really really dislike this and to turn it off part way in. I didn't hate it. That's a plus. And hey, they already threw cancer into the first episode so that probably won't happen at the end with someone else which is a plus.

I'm still mostly holding my breath because nothing grabbed me...but nothing made me scream running away either. I'm just going to take this as a slow set up and see what episode 2 has to offer before making decisions. I do want to see if they have any depth to their look at the idol industry.

Also the phone call to her sisters phone after three years and having it still go through was...blargh. You couldn't come up with a better or more realistic catalyst to bringing the characters together?

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"You couldn't come up w a more realistic catalyst to bring the chars together?"
Evidently not. And that should be indicative of sth.

I agree w 4D and @nomad above.

There is nothing to watch mid-week, so I tuned in to this one. Rain is nice, the dog super. But then, dead gf, guilt-ridden guy, chaebol dad, estranged father-son, Candy--almost falling into pool, phantom phone call, Horrible editing....., they add up.

I just might turn to SD, out of desperation, mid-week empty slate, n good word of mouth.

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Yes, it uses all old tropes in dramaland that I laugh in cringe, why Rain why?
I might have to see few episodes more, but ep 1 is not great.

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I'm not a melo fan, but surprisingly SD is so funny for a melo (of course, I know things are going to be heavier as it goes on…but for now, it's nice!). It's so weird, after I was thoroughly enjoying myself for a stream of really enjoyable dramas, suddenly I'm testing one after another and dropping them left and right…*sigh*

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Er...I think a lot of people missed that that was the POINT.

The phone was turned off (no service) and out of power. The call didn't "go through" - not in the normal way.

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agree ,ep.2 things are kinda explained

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Well I thought that might also be the point after he went to the phone place and they said he couldn't have received a call. But honestly I don't find that any better. It still feels like a cop out. I didn't see episode two yet but some sort if fate or sisterly setup from beyond the grave...mmmm.

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Maybe it was the same phone model they had in Queen In-Hun's Man?

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If the thumbs up buttons were still here, I would have given your comment a thumbs up, lol

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Ep 2 is much better. At least it seems to be about musical ppl making music.
Unfortunatley ep 1 is so bad it is scary.

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where can i see esp 2??

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L's hair really isn't doing it for me, and the way he acted towards Se Na..I just..gah Cringe myungsoo cringeeee

Rain seems to have one expression, but at least Krystal doesn't seem too bad. I think the highlight for me would probably be Dalbongie, seeing animals make every scene more likable for me.

After finishing something like IOIL, this feels a bit lackluster... or it could be I'm still hung over it haha

Thank you Heads for the recap!

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The sequence of events leading up to the vehicle pileup and the after affects at the crash scene left me asking is this the same action/stunt crew team from Three Days?

Other than that...I liked it I really liked it. :)
Cute kitten and Dalbongie the Golden Retriever. :)
I hope the cute kitten shows up again.

Okay now that I have watched all 3 dramas:
She's So Lovable [aka Too Lovely Girl for Me]
Yes to Rain. :)
Yes to Krystal. :)

Iron Man [aka Blade Man]
Yes to Lee Dong Wook. :)
No to Shin Se-Kyung. :(

My Spring Days [aka The Spring Day of My Life]
Yes to Sooyoung. :)
No to Lee Jun-Hyuk's character Kang Dong-Wook loosing the person he loves twice to his older brother Kang Dong-Ha...his first love and now his fiancee Lee Bom-Yi. :(

Random Thoughts:
1) Perhaps Sooyoung and Shin Se-Kyung should have swapped out their lead roles.
2) Maybe Lee Dong Wook and Lee Da-Hae should have chosen Iron Man/Blade Man to reteam up for instead of Hotel King.
3) Sooyoung would have been good in She's So Lovable as well.
4) Sooyoung just has this aura or presence that radiates and is endearing on screen.

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She's So Lovable Update:
Just NO to the writing and Krystal :(

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This and the second episode are fun to watch, i still think that Iron man is still my favorite among the three. Weirdly enough the dry humor and secretary Ko has me glued on the screen, though LDW and most specially the girl needs to take acting lessons.

Going back to this drama, I just hope that this doesn't end up like Trot Lovers which got me interested from the first episode up to the part where it became a collage of cliche. It needs to focus on the music industry while the relationships develop on the side and not the other way around. As for L (visually) i still preferred him as a brunette like in Sly, but he sure has some acting chops.

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I think LDW is the best thing in IM and he is playing his character very well.. even SSK, shes making a good job there.
About this drama I prefer Rain in a comedic role , it suits him well. So im gonna stick with IM .

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I'm also hoping it doesn't devolve into the world of "Trot Lovers", especially after watching Ep 2. Came to my mind as well.

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Is L thanks, Heads! You always endure, for us, and I'm grateful even if ypu had to suffer while recapping over the last year lol.

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I watched this yesterday, and it was ok for me. And i guess i'll give it a try 'cause Lee Bona's effect still captivates my radar. hopefully the writer makes Kristal (SeNa) more lovable. lols

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I actually enjoyed the first epi. It's not perfect at all but it made me feel relaxed. I liked it enough to check out the next epi.

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I may be the only one but I kind of liked it. I am curious as to what Hyun Wook's plan was when he found Se Na. was it something like " Hi I'm the guy you sister was with when she died three years ago, I got a magical phone call from you that made me think you weren't doing well, so here I am." Was that his plan?

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I pretty much liked it, too. Apprehensive that it will stay this way, though. And I agree Sajen... what the heck is his plan??!

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Why was she yelling at him when clearly she was in the wrong? You had one job. Granted, the friend who lost the dog perhaps should have been fired, too. I got teary-eyed at Dalbongie's cancer diagnosis because it brought back memories of when my dogs died.

The whole time in the car, I was bracing myself for the impending car crash. Every time he took his eyes off the road to angrily turn off the radio or yell back at his girlfriend, I winced. Way too soon after Ladies' Code's EunBi and RiSae's deaths.

HaeRyung has worked with four Infinite boys already. And she can't act here just like she can't act in Hi School Love On. But she's not alone. L never can act.

Thanks for recapping, HeadsNo2!

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Yes! Her yelling...huh? what?? Finally arriving to the pity party of them all "Why is everyone being like this only to me?"

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Yeah!! I was so confused when she started yelling at him. I know she's frustrated, but it was her job, and she messed up. I was frustrated at how unwilling she was to take responsibility for her actions. It's not making her a very sympathetic character in my eyes..

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ep 1 was so so but things picked up in ep 2.. now i like this drama.. Krystal's acting is good though i still feel she is more suited with Infinite's L than Rain.. thanks for the recap. can't wait for ep 3. i wonder what Hyun wook's answer would be to Sena's question whether he likes her?

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Weirdly edited. But Rain makes it alllll better. It's an easy going drama so far that I rather watch than blade man. Shin shi kyung pretty much deterred me from watching any more beyond ep 2 even though the dark humor is hysterical! Krystal isn't too bad here at all! Please please don't be a let down like the other musical dramas aired this year!

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Hi Heads - Thanks for your lovely recap. This is my favorite among the 3 shows. It has a simple plot which I don't mind, so execution will be key. I feel that Rain, Krystal and L are all acting within their characters. Not all emotions need to be worn on the sleeves. I don't see constipated faces and over-acting which is good.

I will probably drop Spring Days eventually as it is cruel to see the second male lead lose his love to elder brother once again. Just an observation - Sooyoung smiles waaay too much for all her dramas.

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Unlike some here, I thought the first 4.5 mins were fantastic!

I am hoping that this doesn't fall into the 1st Two Episode Syndrome, where those 2 episodes are great...then, well, snooze or worse yet, please someone shoot me. Quite a few this year. The biggest offenders for me were "Angel Eyes" and "God's Gift - 14 Days". What disappointments.

Anyway, I am enjoying Rain.

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Oh! Forgot. I like the OST. There's a repeating piece that is very moving. Well, to me at least. :-)

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I've just watched the first two eps and really liked it too. :) There are quite a few places where I wanted to bang the table from cheesiness, but that's probably what the show is aiming for so I guess it's ok.

And the dog!!!

And the music, I so so so wanted to see show where the music would be an important aspect. From what I can see so far, we WILL hear more songs and that's awesome.

P.S. I'm not the Rain's fan (it was hard to watch him and his "hysterical" love in full house and overall, sorry girls, not really my taste...) so I fully expected not to like this drama. Well, I guess having low expectations really works. So far I'm enjoying it :).

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I guess Rain's trying to win back lost fans by doing Full House #2, only problem is that plot is so 10 years ago! Off to watch Blade Man- mua ha ha ;)

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Thanks, Heads, for the recap. From the plot setup in this episode, I don't think it bodes well for the drama to be subverting too many more tropes than the identity game you pointed out (and thank you, Show, for at least that).

I'm anticipating this drama will follow the well-trodden (exhausted?) paths of many Kdramas. Sigh. I guess I'm spoiled by the preponderance of fresher scripts in cable network shows, especially TvN--King of High School Savvy, Marriage, Not Dating were two I loved and that blew so many of these recurring themes out of the water. Even Gap Dong avoided some of those well-worn plot lines, although it wasn't without its faults. Great acting saved it for me.

Am sure I'll get some hate here from the fans, but for the life of me I can't understand why a star of Rain's stature selected this vehicle as his comeback. While he's not the caliber of actor as Jang Hyuk, Lee Bum So, etc., he's quite a competent actor known internationally with undeniable star power. You're right, Heads, definitely the Gateway Drug.

So here he is stuck in a script almost certain to be fairly routine...and surrounded by idols. So before anyone lobs tomatoes, I have NO problem watching idols in dramas--idols who can act, that is, and in the appropriate drama.

Answer Me 1997 and Reply 1994 are great examples--virtual unknowns who can actually act, and can shine in a project characterized by great scriptwriting, strong ensemble casting and superior editing/directing. What's weird here is I'm underwhelmed by most of the idols. Krystal was fine for me in The Heirs because the role wasn't the typical mean girlfriend, supporting lead, whatever. She was fine--not outstanding but did the job. I'm not as hopeful here as the setup is sooo familiar.

I was hoping for more from Hoya, but perhaps it's just the small amount of screen time in this episode Infinite member group mate L was a bit more interesting, but he of course has a bigger part and more acting experience.

But really, no one has blown my socks off. Blown them off, scrubbed them and hung them up to dry like Do-Hee and Baro in 1994, and Eun Ji and Seo In Guk in 1997. Everybody a complete newcomer except In-guk, with his one supporting part in Love Rain. These were GREAT performances, natural actors with a lot of potential for the future. And of course, they all benefited from the caliber of cable shows these days.

Obviously everyone starts somewhere, just as early idols I enjoy today started--Yoon Eun-Hye, Eugene, Sung Yu-Ri. But seriously, I think most of these idols would benefit from a number of roles in cable shows or shorter Web dramas BEFORE they land in high-profile dramas on the major networks. Especially one headlined by an actor like Rain.

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I am absolutely with you re: idols. I have no problem with them when they are good actors. Seo In-Guk is a perfect example. Endless acting chops.

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Yes, he's fabulous. I re-watch parts of '97 a lot, and still am amazed how he pulled of a lead role like that. Endless is right, I agree.

But I wouldn't call him an "idol"... and that's a good thing, imo, ha.

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LOL. You're right!

I'm just learning the Korean music side of it. When I see an actor I really like and want to learn more about, I've been amazed to find out they have these whole other careers. I'd purposely kept myself from listening to the music -- I didn't need yet another obsession. That ship has sailed.

I re-watch '97 too! A lot. That role and his performance are so moving.

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In fact right before I checked back and saw your reply, I had JUST re-watched two scenes: 1) when he is in front of her house asking her to tell him not to date the other girl; and 2) the water fountain kiss. They both kill me.

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Haha, a fellow addict. Those are great scenes.

I love when he tells her broadcast staff that the reason he came last minute to speak to the high school students is because she's his girlfriend..and when he's trying to go with her to her apartment and says “Why, do this oppa seems like a man now? Does your heart beat faster and faster every time you see me?” The look on his face and how he says it...priceless.

I don't know a lot about the music side of it either. Just got to know SIG's great music after 1997; love his R&B voice.

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Yes! Great scenes. What I love about SIG is how he absolutely nails this. Able to go from painful yearning, to mischievous, to cocky, to giddy, to utter despair -- often within the seconds. Seamlessly. SIG's expressions sucks me in and I am right there! I too am amazed at how he pulled this off.

Several scenes in King of High School just killed me. The one where he is sobbing in the rain on the field had me sobbing uncontrollably.

I love his R&B voice, too. I'll put it on as I'm working. Grooveshark has a LONG playlist of his songs. Spotify has only one -- the duet with Eun Ji from '97. Pandora has zero.

So, I'm a nutcase about Seo In-Guk. You probably have seen these, but in case not:

Mamma Mia: Episode 7 - Sons Over Flowers Special
http://kengsub.com/mamma-mia-ep-7

two clips from that:

Seo In Guk's learns secret of his birth
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rs8dQklDb5U

"Seo In Guk The Bed Wetter"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MoFxY4f54Q

Seo In Guk singing in high school (Pre-debut)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GVj551CIe3o

He comes in at 1:20 in this video. I think even then you could tell the kid's going to be a star.

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A list of appearances, links to videos.
http://seoingukie.tumblr.com/appearances

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He's some looker, though. Rain is.

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Ummm no thanks. I missed Rain in dramaland but the first episode put me off. Might tune in to Spring Days then.

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This is nice I think. The lead girl seems a little bland but I like Bi and his dog so it is something I can watch. Thanks for the recap.

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looking forward next episode ,

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I'm surprised quite many people love Spring Days and Blade Man instead. My prediction this one is the most watchable. I was wrong. It has all old tropes in dramaland. My friends already call it Heirs 2.

I still hope at least it will be watchable, not worn out with familiar tropes. Please, just please, let it be decent!

Heads, thanks for the recap!

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The new crop of wed-thu dramas in underwhelming, i'm left with only Surplus Princess to watch.

She's so lovable is just so predictable, two eps in and is already chock-full of kdrama tropes and the ones that annoy me the most: candy heroine, domineering hero, cancer, chaebols and bitchy female second lead. Like heads i found L the most interesting character in the drama and I don't even like him as an actor or a singer

Blade man is too silly, though I might try it again later if I hear that it improves

My spring days is nice enough if there weren't for those medical inconsistencies that annoy the hell out of me. After heart surgery you have to take medication 2-3 times a day for the rest of your life, you don't go around eating everything you like and most importantly you don't drink alcohol. it my seem silly but living with a family of doctors will do that to you

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The second episode was definitely a giant leap from the first one but I just don't see how the drama will work for 16 episodes! Tbh I like Krystal better with the why-so-blonde-Myungsoo than Rain. Having said that, I love Rain and I guess this drama meant 'only' for his comeback and so I will continue watching it for more of Rainism. The plot is so 10 years ago, it's distressing. Specially after watching It's okay, that's love, which had so much to offer and used all its actor to the full potential...maybe She's so lovable will also come up with a miraculous plot but as far as the first two episodes go..meh.
On the other hand Iron Man is something, ahahaha, the dead pan of the drama kills me, and of course we are all watching it for Secretary Ko, that man is a gem. LDW is really good with the dry humour, gets me rolling on the floor, but he needs to get his expression level a bit down. Really though, the scenes of HongBin and Ko are priceless.

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Thanks for the recap. But I find the story too old and cliched. Like you, headsno2, i find the screen presence of the idol more electric and i find myself fastforwarding to his scenes. Maybe the story suits a novel read.

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I find it fresh to watch Rain play a character like that, you know I'm so waiting for his cute side to come up!!!^_^
I can't say if it's good drama or a meh drama, I don't like Krystal combination with Rain, but that doesn't mean she is a bad actress!
Aaaah, and finally, I don't know why I couldn't stop thinking of Kim Tae hee while watching Rain with his girlfriend!!!:D

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L it's the worst actor i've seen in korea, the guy it's handsome but that it's all.

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Okay. In the first episode we get a fatal car crash AND cancer? And did anyone else notice the truck laying on its side in the last scene of the crash was noticeably smaller--like it shrunk after smacking into Rain's girlfriend?

I've decided I have to stop anticipating coming dramas. The ones I like the best are the ones that sneak up on me and grab my heart before I realize it.

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and then you could also mention the horrible filming and how they film half of their faces most of the time, or have their faces in the far right corner. rather than artistic it makes it annoying for the viewer.

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Rain looks younger than he did the last time he was out.

Time machine....

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I was not sure in the beginning, but the series is growing on me.

What I like is the understated role that Rain has brought to the table. No yelling, no screaming, no over-antics. He's the cool cat with the talent to spare, why strut when you can stand, and why stand when you can sit.

Plenty of characters to dislike, but Rain is not one of them.

Thank you HN2!

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I know there were a LOT of cliched K-drama tropes in this first episode but I found myself enjoying the first 2 episodes of She's So Lovable. When I told my husband about all the cliches in the first episode, he laughingly said I could play Bingo with this drama. Candy girl? Check. Chaebol-esque male character? Check. Idols playing idols? Check. Truck of Doom? Yup. Cancer? Bingo!

Still, there's something to be said about just watching the similar tropes played out, if it's well done enough I guess.

I thought Krystal was surprisingly capable in her role, and Rain felt believable to me. L who plays Shi Woo was believably a butthurt meanie. Dalbongie was probably the best actor out of them all though.

Maybe I just liked it because I love dogs :D

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Thank you for the recap!

This drama is full of K-drama clichés, one after another.
Plus the main female lead's acting skills are really questionable. I wish they found somebody else to play Yoon Se-Na . Rain doesn't
have to act though, he just such delight to look at:-)

I agree with others, My Spring days is much more interesting to watch!

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Yay~

L (the bias wrecker to whom I've been singing along to "Wrecking Ball"'s chorus)~!!!

Hoya~!!!

The dog~!!! DX

Park Yeong-gyu~!!! He was so much interesting when he was Lee In-im (major backer for U of Goryeo) in "Jeong Do-jeon"...

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I don't like the part where the lead actress is the dead gf's sister. Too close for comfort for a love story. I mean falling in love with your dead gf's sister is a no no for me.

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Yes, that's also what bothered me, and one of things I didn't like about Reply, 1997. Just, please, no.

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Then I take it you are not watching My Spring Days and totally skipped watching High School King of Savvy.

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Right on Mira. Not watching both.

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How about having feelings for your dead wife's younger sister? Watch Snowman with Gong Hyo Jin. Creeped me out.

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Rain is easy on the eyes. Krystal isn't a complete pushover and she is pretty.
The editing is a bit odd. I expect that in these dramas for some reason. I just chalk it up to the East/West difference and go with it.
The first episode had the fall/catch, the second had the wrist grab. Perhaps we will get piggybacking and vomiting in the next? I know it is cliche, but it is harmless fun.
I'm in.

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It's old school which makes me really really like it. I know I was anticipating SSL for Rain anyway, but there's just something fairy-taley about the way it's been shot that makes me feel wistful. I know it's probably not gonna be loved by DB readers and that's fine since I think their target market was local fans in China, Japan and idol fangirls anyway. I don't fall in those categories but I like it and much more so episode 2.

I really like the easy chemistry between Rain and Krystal. They look delightful together even if not explosive yet. I'm still adjusting to Rain's Hyun-wook though because I've seen him in much more challenging and defining roles than this. It's like it's too easy for him, or he's too good for this. But he felt a lot more organic in episode 2 which is good signs.

As for the story itself, I like the minor fantasy elements they added. It was promised in the initial press release but I like that it isn't emphasized with great intent. I mean really, it feels like it has a Disney stamp all over it as long as it keeps being so simple and warm. All it's lacking is a princess gown! It's weird to say, but sometimes dramaland tries to sell too many 'unique' stories that it's kinda nice to watch one that's unabashedly cliche and been-there-done-that. As long as it's executed well, I think it'll be my absolute guilty pleasure.

I'm also very excited if you're recapping this throughout H2N! I don't think there's a single Rain drama recapped in DB. I also curiously never finished a drama you covered. So, Rain or shine I'll be finishing this one =P

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Couldn't agree with you more.

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Agree with you also. This drama really surprised me. At first, I didn't want to watch this because I was skeptical of all the idols and Cha Ye Ryun bores me to death (in her previous dramas). But tried the first episode and was curious enough to watch the 2nd...and I can say that I will be tuning in from now on.
I think that Krystal and Rain have chemistry together, and hopefully Krystal will improve more in the upcoming episodes.
I still don't like Cha Ye Ryun, and agree with all the comments that L cannot act.
But they are the 2nd leads, so I don't really care.
Last but not least, love the cute dog :)

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Hmmmmm. I was sort of looking forward to this and, while the first episode wasn't bad, there were/are some things that bother me. For example, the age-gap between Krystal and Rain. If I'm being honest, I liked her intereactions (few though they were) with L's character Shi-woo much better. For one, they are closer in age, and therefore a more believable couple. And another thing is that, Rain's character, while well-acted and compelling, is really boring. Shi-woo is all fire and anger, and Hyun-wook is like a clam lake, deep, but undisturbed for the most part. There is a disturbance in his depths, but he keeps it well hidden most of the time. And maybe I just like the young hot-blooded type better.

Another thing that bothered me was the character of Hae-yoon. She was so full of herself and irritating, that I just disliked her straight-off. I really don't know how to feel about that, because age-wise she's perfect for Hyun-wook. But I can't only look at a character's age. Hae-yoon was insensitive to Hyun-wok's obvious pain regarding So-eun. She needs to take a step back and analyze the situation. How in love with So-eun was Hyun-wook to go off for three years because of her death? Is Hae-yoon even aware that So-eun is dead? Does she care? Or does she feel that the competition is gone, so she has a chance? Whatever the reason, Hae-yoon needs to reorganize her priorities, and stop interfering where she is clearly not wanted or needed. If she really wants to get the guy, being an witch and butting into his family affairs is so not the way to go.

The other thing that bothered me is Dalbongie the dog. That poor, poor animal. How much crap does it have to take for the sake of plot? Don't let it die! He's such a good, loyal dog!

This wasn't a perfect outing, the directing was jarring and confusing with all the sudden cuts to other scenes (I guess for tension) but it did leave me wanting more. If this is recapped, great, if not, that's fine too. I'll watch on my own.

Thanks for the recap, Heads!

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Why are you worried about the age gap when there has been no romance between them yet? Are you concerned about something that's yet to happen?

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i like Rain and i support him as a singer much than actor but i will watch this drama because of him nothing else
i like sooyeong drama too and i think it's more better than krystal drama ^^
thanks for the recap !!

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I disagree with the review. I thought this episode was fantastic. Perhaps L could have been better but Rain and Krystal were superb and the chemistry between Rain and his girlfriend was compelling.
The accident scene was top notch.

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I agree. The accident scene was top-notch! Those first 4 minutes were mesmerizing.

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Rain is as gorgeous as ever. I will watch this for Rain and skip the rest of the nonsense.

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I owe Krystal this one since she is the only reason I survived Heirs. And Rain is, of course, My Boyfriend. So I'm gonna try to stick this one out. I'm not watching anything else right now anyway. As much as I enjoy the recaps of Plus Nine Boys and Discover of Romance (and as Beautiful as Eric is), for some reason I can't get myself excited to actually watch them. So we'll see if She's So Lovable can fill my drama gap... unless it gets too melo... I don't do melo, even for My Boyfriend, Rain.

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It occurs to me that many viewers complaining about tropes aren't aware that every story ever told, like ever, always follows a specific formula and yes there are always tropes. They might be disguised in clever cloaks of what on the surface seems different and fresh, but at the end of the day it's still just a bunch of tropes. Whether it's the heroes journey, a coming of age story, a love triangle, a Mary Sue character - they are always combined to render the character and story arcs you see on TV. Take a look at tvtropes.com or any Wiki entry on Greek play structures and therein you will find the plot lines to every kdrama, ever. My point - that some dramas make great use of common tropes and some don't - but it's useless to complain that there are tropes when there are tropes in every drama. This particular drama, well it's a feel good love story with idols et al and it delivers what it says on the tin. To know this, watch and then expect something else is just silly. I like it because it's familiar and comfortable, much like the first love romance in Answer Me 1994 is described. Sometimes you want gorgeous, noir and lacy sleepwear, but sometimes you just want a pair of your old, tried and tested comfy 10 year old pajamas. My point is perhaps lost by now, tldr, I like it. Thanks heads for a recapping, I really hope you continue as I enjoy your writing ;)

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1997 even.

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Despite the cliches, although just smaller part,please hoya,be good!

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I spotted that long white cardigan Jang Hyuk wore in FTLY. That sweater looks so soft! Now Rain is wearing it too. It makes me want to cuddle with them even more.

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The oh-so-worn-out drama cliché's are really too much, but I muddled through to check out Kyrstal's first lead effort. Not bad at all, and definitely exceeding my expectations. Her performance in Heirs also got my attention as a surprisingly fresh second lead. During Heirs, I remember thinking...wow, this is her first real meaty role, and look at her go. There are several good idol-turned-actors, but I have often been disappointed by the performance, or cameos, of some of the highest profile idols (an older sister that shall remain un-named). Krystal is turning that pre conceived notion on it's head. Not great...but definitely worth a smile and a nod.

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