75

The fifth wheel in dramaland [Year in Review, Part 5]

My math must be off this year because somehow, choosing five dramas turned out to be an immeasurably more difficult task than previous years. If we’re going by numbers alone, there should’ve been less stress involved, but then it hit me: a truncated list meant I had to be selective with my choices. This would require decision-making, and over the years, I’ve learned that life’s decisions are best left up to robot overlords.

So in the weeks leading up to this review, the first four dramas came to me pretty easily. But the problem came with the fifth title — which title gets chosen? What gets left behind? Does leaving one series out mean that I love one drama over another? What is life, really? (As you can tell, this debate with myself quickly devolved into existential mutterings.)

It then occurred to me that one show would inevitably feel like the fifth wheel no matter which one it was. So allow me to take the fifth when it comes to naming said show so it can feel included with the others.

P.S. I still love you, dramaland.

SONG OF THE DAY

Kill Me, Heal Me OST – “환청 (Hallucination)” sung by Jang Jae-in [ Download ]

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

Punch

O Punch, if beauty be at all, it would be to describe you. Not many a drama with an impressive beginning can boast of a satisfying ending, and deliver such a killer blow.

The drama’s bread and butter was in the writing, not much of a surprise with Writer Park Kyung-soo’s impressive hit-making repertoire. Every exchange between characters held meaning, as if the words were carefully chosen with special care. Garnering interest in medical and legal jargon or political speak is no easy task, and yet Punch managed to hold my attention with apparent ease.

I can thank the beautiful combination of writing and acting on that front, with Kim Rae-won giving a stellar performance as the guy you love to hate: a man whose ambition knows no bounds until he’s told he has mere months to live. And instead of wallowing in the diagnosis of a brain tumor, his character Jung-hwan pushes the moral boundaries in the legal and political circles even further, using every ounce of his resolve to his benefit for as long as possible. When it comes to brain tumors, Dr. Jin this drama is not.

Jung-hwan is only one of an entire world of complicated characters—the scenes with the man he respects most, Tae-joon (Jo Jae-hyun), are a pure delight to watch. I also loved the strong female characters in this show, particularly Jung-hwan’s ex-wife Ha-kyung. Her no-nonsense attitude and strong sense of justice was a breath of fresh air, and she always seemed to remind him of what his heart truly held dear: his family.

Punch, you deserve all the praise and so much more. Now go and sock it to ’em.

 

Kill Me, Heal Me

Some shows you forget in days or weeks after the finale, and then there are shows for which you vividly remember where you were and how you felt while watching them. Kill Me, Heal Me fell into the latter category for me this year, leaving me with a deep impression I doubt will part anytime soon.

That isn’t to say the drama left a great first impression; in fact, it was quite the opposite—the first two episodes felt like a pile of jumbled pieces haphazardly put together. Everything that I feared about this “healing romance” genre seemed to come to life before my eyes like glaring warning signs that spelled out inevitable doom. It didn’t help that I kept thinking about the pre-production drama behind the drama, what with the show unable to secure a male lead and the outlandish idea that whoever it would be would need to pull off SEVEN distinct personalities. And if said man couldn’t pull off a convincing show, well that would be the end of it.

Those worries quickly dissipated near the end of the second episode as soon as Shin Se-gi appeared onscreen. His intense dramatic introduction was soon followed by other equally entertaining personalities, and before I knew it, I found myself sucked into the life of Cha Do-hyun, his struggle to piece together his broken memory, and the other personas who filled those gaps of time. I often found myself looking forward to who would pop up next and how our heroine Ri-jin would deal with the constant personality changes.

So you can say that my growing attachment to Do-hyun’s other personalities also made it difficult to choose who to root for, especially in the latter half. Sure I wanted Do-hyun to pinpoint his fears and the painful events that obstruct his memory, but then my heart also went to the others, like Se-gi’s theatrics or Perry’s love for alcohol or Yo-na’s sassy personality. Each of them left such a lasting impression that I still miss them to this day.

Which only reinforces the level of commitment Ji Sung gave to this drama. There’s no doubt that the actor went balls-out to portray distinct personas that both felt like individuals and an extension of their main personality. Furthermore, you could see the enjoyment plainly written on Ji Sung’s face throughout this series, which only adds to our own excitement as viewers. Then there’s the too-adorable-for-words sibling relationship between Ri-jin (Hwang Jung-eum) and Ri-on (Park Seo-joon). I loved everything about them, from their late-night chats to their bickering to their awesome Team Rocket routine. I know I speak not only for myself when I say that these twins seriously made me entertain what are clearly problematic thoughts, and was utterly relieved when the actors reunited in a different project later this year (She Was Pretty).

Stepping back, I can say that this drama wasn’t without its flaws—the writing itself calls for much patience. This is one complicated dramaverse, and there were times I wished the show handled the presentation of its backstory differently. Once the truth came to light, I sat there for a good ten minutes parsing the given clues then piecing them back together. In the end, my feelings for Kill Me, Heal Me remain unchanged, and I still listen to its OST today. And if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s to remember this: that January 7th will never feel like an ordinary day again.

 

Missing Noir M

Suspenseful, dark, and fearless, Missing Noir M firmly remains as one of the most memorable series of this year. Consisting of a genius ex-FBI agent, a gutsy veteran detective, and a clever female hacker, this is an elite team that seeks to solve the unsolvable. And after a disappointing showing in Golden Cross last year, I was practically giddy with excitement to see Kim Kang-woo in a gritty crime procedural on OCN.

Because procedural shows can often be hit or miss for me, I usually hone in on the writing and question whether a show is able to see the forest while also paying minute detail to the trees. And this is what set this series apart—from the get-go, Missing Noir M wasted no time in setting its narrative stage that it barely had time to introduce its players. I admit that there were times I thought that we could’ve used some more time to flesh out our highly intelligent team members, but those worries soon dissipated once I saw how their own stories played an integral part to some of these difficult-to-crack cases.

Which meant that each case held significance, acting as building blocks for a greater purpose. Since this is OCN, the series deals with mature content and often gruesome elements; however, I appreciated how the drama sought to push the envelope when constructing its toughest missing persons cases. Although some cases felt more carefully thought out than others, the goal was always the same: to challenge its characters and viewers’ notion of justice. Is Lady Justice truly blind and does she mete out justice swiftly?

No one pondered this question in this series as much as Kim’s character, Soo-hyun, did; his analytical brain often clashed with his partner’s “act first and think later” approach when solving their cases. His working relationship with Detective Oh (Park Hee-soon) was constantly in flux and put to the test more than once. But what makes Soo-hyun different is that he still holds his fellow team members in high respect and depends on them for their unique areas of expertise. And even though he may be brilliant, he is still susceptible to error.

Let me tell you that though each episode is a standout, this drama is not one to put on your binge-watching list. This is a show that requires your undivided attention and one that will leave you so emotionally drained that I recommend taking a breather between narrative arcs. Still, I wouldn’t let that deter you from watching what is an otherwise criminally perfect series.

 

Scholar Who Walks The Night

For a tale as linear as Scholar Who Walks the Night was, I still can’t wrap my head around why this drama was 20 episodes long. I initially tuned in for several reasons, the main one to see the vampiric beauty that is Lee Jun-ki in a hanbok again. Seriously, the man ages like fine wine—that is, if he ages at all. Other reasons included my ever-growing love for fusion sageuks, the supernatural genre, and some potentially campy television.

Because the mythology that surrounds this world isn’t that complicated, following the story was never much of an issue. Basically scholar becomes vampire and vows to bring down the evil undead that has secretly ruled the kingdom for centuries. There was no need to fear if you missed a plot point either, because it would be drilled into your brain over and over and over again. That’s likely where the drama suffered the most narrative strain, in an attempt to hang in there during the middle stretch until the story was ready to build up to its last sprint.

So while the writing was stuck in the spin cycle, the burden fell upon the actors to pick up the weight. On one hand, it’s a bit bizarre watching your characters battling the same conflict week to week as if it were the first time, but on the other hand, the cast’s commitment to their roles never wavered. It’s well known that Lee Jun-ki always gives his hundred and ten percent no matter the project—his character’s scenes with the centuries-old villain, Gwi (Lee Soo-hyuk), were perhaps the drama’s most electrifying moments. Both actors added a believability to the world in which Sung-yeol and Gwi resided that kept the show from tipping into outright campy territory.

In addition, the drama also brought a nice surprise in the form of Changmin, whose acting has significantly improved from his previous projects (yes, I tried watching Mimi out of love… for three minutes total). Maybe it was Prince Yoon’s adoration towards Yang-sun or his boldness when the occasion called for it, but his performance is the best kind of impression a guy can leave behind in the wake of his absence during military service.

To its credit Scholar never let up in its production value during its run, particularly in its CG effects. We can all name a drama or two (or more) where most of the budget was poured into the first two to four episodes while the rest took a significant dip. But for a story that deals with vampires, it was crucial for Scholar to keep up its mythical elements, which it did to the very end. So if you’re looking for a drama you can play in the background, this one’s it… though I won’t blame you if you want to give your full attention to twenty hours of a beautiful vampire scholar kicking some serious ass.

 

LAST

Of these five shows, JTBC’s LAST was the one I finished most recently. If you were to ask me why I would put off watching the finale for months, I’d tell you it was because if I did, that would truly mean that the drama was over. And I didn’t want it to be over because my dream casting of the year had finally come true in two acting powerhouses by the names of Yoon Kye-sang and Lee Beom-soo.

The premise alone pulled me in immediately: A successful businessman hits rock bottom and discovers a thriving underground economy within Seoul Station. The idea that a few thousand won taken from the streets could contribute to the billions of won that circulated like invisible money was endlessly fascinating, and the established hierarchy of bosses provided the newly inducted beggar with stages to clear before reaching the big boss on top.

Nothing quite captures a man’s downfall and desperation like seeing Jang Tae-ho fight with his last bit of pride over a piece of leftover pickled radish or devour a bowl of kimchi jjigae. Life never comes with a guarantee, and people don’t truly appreciate what they’ve had until they lose it. Although I never bought the initial romance that spurs his motivation, that stilted relationship was quickly replaced by his team of go-to guys, the pseudo family of Seoul Station.

But it’s Tae-ho’s relationship with his mentor Ajusshi that stands out in my memory. Ajusshi is the one who cuts the bullshit with Tae-ho, questioning his intentions for staying within the godforsaken place that is the Seoul Station network. Ajusshi’s fierce desire to protect the ones he loves most is a sight to behold—if he wanted to, he could take a guy down in one punch.

Speaking of K.O.s, the fight sequences in LAST are top-notch. Every punch and slice to the arm is a meaningful step in an artful dance—each individual is an expert in a different style (see: Mantis and Ajusshi) that is always captivating onscreen. If you want a peek, watch the final ten minutes of Episode 7, where the series pays homage to other notable fights from Old Boy and New World. Because these guys know how to throw one bloody hell of a party.

♥ ~ ♥ ~♥ ~ ♥ ~ ♥ ~ ♥ ~ ♥

Many, many thanks to javabeans and girlfriday for constantly feeding our drama addiction from year to year. Much love to HeadsNo2 because you always know what to say to cheer me up and bring so much laughter and light into my life.

And so much gratitude and love to all of you guys—may the holidays bring you oodles of joy and happiness.

 
RELATED POSTS

Tags: , , , , , , ,

75

Required fields are marked *

WAhhhh all my faves are here (except SWWN) I already said this but I really knew it Heads and Gummi is more have a same taste with me :D

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

All these reviews make me want to watch Last. I hope the ending doesn't hurt. There was a lot of screaming on tlist.

BTW, love how you and Heads leave these love notes to each other at the end of your yearly reviews. XD

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Great reviews, thank you!

Scholar was also very pretty backdrop for me, as I was working, with lifting my head to just watch LJK and Gwi.

Am making my way through Last - really fantastic and refreshing show.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

"this drama is not one to put on your binge-watching list"

I wish I was told this earlier, because I just finished my missing noir m binge & was sucker-punched & drained. brilliant show that deserves a nice high spot on my favorites shelf, but I need a good romcom or slice-of-life now...

0
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

+1000000 for "brilliant show that deserves a nice high spot"

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Punch and Last were 2 of the best dramas of 2015. Excellent review. Missing Noir M is on my list - I just have to find time to watch it.

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Last and Punch are still in my to-watch list.. I liked the premise but it definitely requires a different mindset to watch. I know I started Missing Noir M, but totally forgot about it because the subs were late, I guess it's time to finish that now.

Lastly, KMHM.. This drama had a very bad first impression. I don't even know why I continued (no, I know the reason: Ji Sung). I will also say that this drama had some issues with both writing and directing. But in the end, I loved the overall product so much that those didn't even matter. [I also still listen to the song above]

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Yes @An, same for me! In the end, all those imperfections at KMHM didn't matter at all.

That shows a drama can be a crack drama when you have great acting, wonderful cast chemistry and interesting characters (all 7 in 1 are really interesting and unique)! I, too, still listen to the OST and actually I still giggle whenever I see Yona GIF in twitter or IG or Weibo.

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thanks Gummi, for choosing to talk about KMHM coz its my No 1 in 2015!

I really like cable TV's dramas these days vs the big 3 stations because we get more realistic (eg., kissing, fightings etc all depicted more realistically..... hate it when they just put 2 mouths together, touching lips and call THAT a kiss! Gah!) scenes and really more unique stories.

Haven't check out Missing Noir M though and will do so as soon as I can coz the premise is something that I really like.... hopefully there are subs.....

Scholar Who Walks The Night was good in the beginning but later I lost interest, not sure why but the drama didn't/couldn't engage me as much.... and I'm not really a Lee Jun Ki fan too so.... Yes yes I know! I'm probably a minority here in DB coz many actors/actresses that DB recappers/readers love, I don't. Like Joo Won and Lee Jun Ki. Just a matter of taste I supposed but here it is!

I'm also someone who CAN'T and WON'T stick to a drama just because I love the actor/actress. The story has to come first and characters must touch me enough for me to care. So when I first started KMHM, I know about JiSung the actor of course but I couldn't stand HJE's screaming and the 1st two episodes really were not the best. The story has all the cliches and the camera jumped here there and everywhere. Luckily, I stuck to it because I was curious about the 7-personalities and how JiSung (or ANYONE) can ever portray them distinctly and well!

KMHM started to become interesting and tugged at my heart from episode 3, and it was a road of no return for me from then onwards. I became a huge JiSung fan like Odessa Jones, finding all his dramas and trying to watch most of them immediately after KMHM. I bought the Yona-tint (still using it) and visited some of the shooting locations when I was in Korea this year. I practically stalked all the blogs which recap and review KMHM like thetalkingcupboard and K Drama Today (Odessa Jones). I was obssessed with the world of Cha Do Hyun and his 6 personalities for a good half year. That is how "bad" this drama stuck to me. And I blame JiSung oppa for this!! lol

After watching JiSung do all 7 personalities in ONE drama and all 7 of them tugged at my heartstring for different reasons, I find all the other dramas in 2015 pale in comparison although many are still interesting like the underdog Sassy Go Go! I've been scared forever by JiSung's fabulous acting and the bar has raised A LOT for me when judging an actor's acting capabliities/skills. And I blame JiSung Oppa for this too! lol

Glad Gummi and DB chose to talk about KMHM. Love you guys at DB lots!

0
4
reply

Required fields are marked *

I second everything you said on KMHM. That drama sucked out my soul. I was a mess by ep 20, and January 7th, 10pm, studded leather jackets, and eyeliner have taken on entirely new meanings for now. Shin Segi <3

0
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

@Shalini

Oh yes oh yes how can I forget the eyeliner!! I also bought that at banila.co kekekeke

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

All these talks about Kill Me Heal Me make me want to rerun it soooo bad T^T I miss Yo-na and Se-gi the most. Oh and of course the cute twins ♥

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I had the same reaction to KMHM too with the first two episodes - I was put off by the screaming and somewhat overacting, and the weird chaebol set up.

But once Shin Se Gi appeared, something clicked and the show just gained a whole new momentum. Once I was on that train, I kept getting surprised and moved by the developments - yes, the writing wasn't the most sophisticated and direction wasn't the smoothest, but the essential story line of finding healing, especially as the past was revealed was really gripping.

The actors did a fantastic job of giving over to the characters. There's a scene later with the Hwang Jung-eum and Ji Sung, it was so intense, I cried buckets. I really didn't expect that to happen, not with the crazy set up of multiple personalities and what not.

After that, it did set me off on a train of watching the previous works of Ji Sung, Hwang Jung-eum and Park Seo Joon. Ahhh. so that is how it happens...as drama takes over your life....

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Ahh man that song brought me right back to where I was when I was watching Kill Me, Heal Me - you're so right about that drama leaving a strong impression. That and Punch were the most emotionally satisfying shows of the year for me, though Punch is objectively the superior show.

Happy holidays, friend, and thanks for all the amazing recaps and reviews you gave us this year! Enjoy watching all the things :)

(Also, LOVE the graphics. Did you do those?)

0
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

Happy holidays! All the dramas await! (Indeed -- with the help of the internet.)

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

That song...oh dear, THAT song! My so forgetful self still remembers Hallucination after almost a year. With Heads' post ( Last's OST ) and now yours, dear gummimochi, a question is raised (naturally): How about Best Song and Best OST categories for our awards, fellow beanies?? Is this year out of the question? Is it too late? Perhaps next year, right?? :-)

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thanks Gummi!

I'm waiting for Oh My Ghostess! Oh My Venus, Sassy Go Go, where are they?

Are saving the underdog jjang is for the very bite last?

I'm still want to watch Scholar Walk The Night, bcs the tittle itself sounds very sexy and unique, and its vampire sexy smouldering time with LJK and Lee Soo Hyuk tho..

So far, 2015 I haven't watch many shows. And I can't complete my beans count bcs only so little shows that I actually didn't drop in half se' or so.

I haven't watched :
Scholar Walk Night, Last, Shine or Go Crazy, Hyde Jekyl, Missing Noir, Grapevine, Bubblegum, Master of Trade, Smelly Girl, Hugo's Love, Orange Marmalade, I Remember You, Twenty Again, Answer 1988, Village Achiara, Ex-Gf Club, gosh..

That's a long list for me. I don't even know when I would touch neither of them..

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

I'll make this a little easier by winnowing a few, if you ever intend to go near that list of unwatched dramas:

WATCH: Missing Noir M, Grapevine, I Remember You, Answer Me 1988.

AVOID: Hyde Jekyll, Orange Marmalade, Shine or Go Crazy, Smelly Girl (ok, you can watch - but fast-forward all the cop procedural bits, they're too stupid to live) and Night Scholar (sorry oppa!)

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Wow, Punch being included in a review again! So happy to see this because there wasn't much buzz about it on db.

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

I know, I'm so glad to see this drama getting mentioned here at all!

It got great ratings in Korea so at least it had the domestic love, but dramas like Punch and Grapevine aren't the type to garner a lot of overseas buzz since they're not exactly typical fluffy/feelgood drama (Misaeng is one of the rare ones that actually got the love from both Korea and db despite being distinctly lacking in fluff)

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Last and Missing Noir M are both good thriller K-drama,..
they are not so much about love, but they are still good and worth to be watched,

What i love about LAST is when i thought is all about underdog fighting topdog using muscles, but the truth is not. the story is beautiful and surprising at the end.

But, Missing Noir is Better than Last (for me),..
I love the way kim kang woo potray dark side of a good detective,
he can be a devil, but sometimes he was a kind detective,..
he has so many secrets hidden, and his fellow knew it, but they are respect each other.
I like when one of the team member made mistake and they "teach" each other indirectly, but at the end, they still forgive each other,..
The cases also very good.
Multilayered and wellcrafted.
I do hope there will be Season 2 of Missing Noir M.
(for all thriller drama fans, Missing Noir M is a must to watch,.. it's not easy to digest, but it will make you have a mix feeling like you want to both evil and kind at the same time.)

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Regarding Punch...

"When it comes to brain tumors, Dr. Jin this drama is not."

Truer words have not been written.

Thanks gummimochi for your reviews, your recaps and all your work!

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Kill Me Heal Me deserved recognition. Ji Sung more than delivered. So glad the show was on your list. Great reviews, gummimochi!

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I disagree with you about Missing Noir M. It was a good show until it just ended. I'm all for open endings but it doesn't have an ending of any kind it just stops.

0
3
reply

Required fields are marked *

But it leaves us with hope that they can make a Season 2 from the ending of Season 1.....

One can only hope :-)

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

2016 will be a great year if Drama God make the Season 2 of Liar Game and Missing Noir M,..

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I agree. It was perfect right until the end. The terrible ending was all the worst because it had really been building up to that rare unicorn - a drama that is good from start to finish. As you say, they didn't even bother to wrap things up properly.

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I absolutely loved Missing Noir M. I did feel disappointed by the ending as I watched the series without knowing which episode was the last. As a result, after finishing the last episode, the show felt incomplete as the ending was way too open-ended. Up to that point though, it is my favourite suspense thriller type of drama! It didn't need the love lines and other jazz to be enjoyable and was just full of suspense by the story itself. It was smartly composed and really interesting. I'm hoping for a second season that would (hopefully) help resolve this ending!

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Hmm.... I was thinking about watching this... might put this on the list too.

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

with Scholar, the trouble is, when you have the scenes with Ninja Teacher or Lee Soo Hyuk, you become mesmerized in their convincing acting, but if you keep watching, you feel like you are on some muddy road, feet sinking in, uncomfortable. so I watched half of this drama randomly, whichever episode, I found the specific moments and tried to forget everything else, then afterwords when I watched the episodes in whole, I knew the good moment was coming.

I am glad you picked KMHM as well. It does linger with you, like a special experience.

0
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

yeah, I only stayed with SWWTN because of the cast. They all deserved better than this and I hope to god their next acting projects are better. But yeah, gummi is right - oppa and Lee Soo-hyuk's scenes really were fantastic.

Really, Lee Soo-hyuk in general was a revelation, who knew he had that in him?!

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

khmm, pogo - I knew, because of Valid Love. I am torn between wanting him to play King Lear or Othello, or to return as some average Joe like Carpenter Kim was, cause that felt the most natural (and did not try to present his elvish looks as something extraterrestrial, but treated it as normal).

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I have just seen KMHM and Scholar(sadly) from your list. Now off to watch Punch after you have so strongly recommended it. Missing Noir and Last will come later :)

Thanks a lot for the reviews Gummimochi and also for your RM reviews.
Happy belated Birthday (I sent my wishes on Twitter already) :D
and Happy Holidays :)

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I am just curious, "Missing Noir M" what is the "M" stand for?

Hehe

0
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

me too,.. ^_^

at the beginning and the end of episode he accept an email about the missing person he wanted to find, coult it be the initial name of that person?

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

watch the show.. it is revealed there.

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thanks gummimochi!! :D :D I am overjoyed to see two of my favourite shows this year on your list as well: Punch and Kill Me, Heal Me. The reasons you mentioned for loving them really resonate with me and bring back sweet sweet memories of the rollercoaster rides, they were.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thanks Gummi for your wonderful recaps.
I love all the shows above except SWWTN (no matter how much I love Junki, in the end I still dropped that show and only read recaps instead). And finally, finally someone talk about Missing Noir M. That was a really wonderful drama. It was well-written with an assured pace and full of incredible acting. And I definitely love all our leads, even Jo Boa's character was well developed. I thought it'll be almost impossible for other OCN shows to rival my love for Bad Guys, but Missing Noir M did exactly that and more.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Is nobody going to mention I Remember You in this year review??? Hics.. hics... Andwaaeee......

0
11
reply

Required fields are marked *

Yes I'm still waiting for that one review about my fave drama in 2015. *sigh*

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

So am I!! IRY lovers of the world unite :P

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Yes, that is what I am waiting for too! Sad because it didn't get that much buzz in Korea either...but definitely was in my top 5 for this year!

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I remember you deserves a separate post with a review on ALL characters!

Yes, please, I Remember You! Let´s talk about that trio with chill-inducing trialogues. I sometimes nearly fainted at the tension in the air and the veiled words

0
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

Now that IS an idea! 15+alpha to it :D
I am really hoping both Saya and Lollypip write abt it in their reviews, seeing as how they really loved it.

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

10000000000000000% AGREEEEEEEEEE

Dear Recappers,
I won't ask too much. Just a single post dedicated solely for IRY will do. And I will Remember not to ask for more..hheh..ok? *pinky deal

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

If you take a look at The Bean Count, the recappers who really enjoyed I Remember You are LollyPip, dramallama and Saya, so I’m hoping it’ll show up among their picks.

0
4
reply

Required fields are marked *

well, I want a LONG review, anyway.

what I would say, that I haven´s said yet? I think if there are keywords to IRY, then they are "concentration" - acting like you already crossed the line between game and reality, like the character took over in you completely; "cooperation" - responding to the other actor, magnifying the effect through your lense + grasping the general "feel", the athmosphere and syncing yourself with it; and "control" - it never once got shaken. The director had a grip, the writer knew where the story should go, the editor put the scenes together just right, the actors, despite being sucked into the game, still had perfect control over themselves and the scene. and "cue" right images, right music, at the right spot right on cue. gosh, THAT made it so spooky sometimes.

0
3
reply

Required fields are marked *

I want to add my wishes here. I want odes written for the acting from our 3 resident psychopaths/ sociopath. And Jang Nara. And the writer who gave us so many literary references that for once a korean show did not seem like it was questioning our intelligence. We as viewers were treated as mature, intelligent people and it was a treat to watch.

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Talking about music, the Dear Cloud's Remember still does me magic every time it is playing. Like right on the first tune of the piano, I am brought back to the I Remember You world, and makes me recall Min and Hyun right away.

Gossshh... I guess I just know what I would do when I'm back from work tonight. Rewatching IRY!

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Dear Cloud and the way they play it in IRY is tear inducing.

0

Your list matches my list. I loved Missing Noir M and Last so much that I built my schedule around them.
Excellent taste.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I was so happy to see someone mention Missing Noir M.
It's one of my favorite dramas this year, as I really like those darker OCN dramas.
I was literally jumping out of my seat, when I saw the next drama title :D Thanks so much for including it.
Missing Noir M got me hooked pretty early on and even if I have a clear sense of justice, it once brought my beliefs really to falter.
I'm not quite sure, what everyone loved about Last. Even though I watched it, it didn't leave such an lasting impression. I feeled like something was missing. But I have to give credit for the awesome fighting scence.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Nice to finally see The Scholar on a list. Maybe because I'm fairly new to kdramas it was one of my favourite shows (currently re-watching). It introduced me to LJK and I enjoyed the blend of supernatural and historical drama.

KMHM was another hit with me, once we left the US and the strange stilted dialogue. It's definitely the sort of show that stays with you.

Thanks to everyone at Dramabeans for all their work in recapping and keeping us up to date with drama news.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Ahn Yona and Shin Se Gi will always be on my top list of characters in kdrama... Kill Me Heal Me will be the drama i'm going to associate Jisung with now. He made that show come to life.

OCN had good dramas this year and that includes Missing Noir M and My Beautiful Bride... I still cant forget the ending of Missing Noir M... and hopefully there would be a season 2...

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I watched 3 out of 5 and love everything about them: Punch, Missing Noir M and Last. Thanks, Gummimochi for reviewing them.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Punch was really good. The flow and pacing of the story is impressive. The characters are really using "connections" in order to do what they want to do and to achieve what they want. At first, I thought it's just so-so, but I diligently watch the first episode to see if I will continue watching, then my curiosity and interest arises. As a result, I continued watching and I didn't regret watching it. There's no somehow waste of time despite of the 19 hours of watching (not continuously) because the story is good, solid and strong.

Kill Me Heal Me was good too. It leaves a strong impression to viewers. Ji-Sung's role in the drama is not easy - as he has to "take the other characters of one person". I think, it's my first time (if not, maybe it's a long time) I've watch a drama where in the story is all about that one.

Curious about the other dramas mentioned here: Scholar Who Walks The Night, Last, and Missing Noir M. I think, especially Last and Missing Noir M, will be a good one. Honestly, I've downloaded 1 or 2 episodes of it, but I can't watch because I'm overloaded or there are other dramas that I'm catching up and there are dramas that I need to finished after they have finished airing.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I have seen everything but punch. That is on my must watch list too. I have already just binged on 2 teeny boppers musical after watching youtube videos? ..now i need something heart wrenching. ?

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I get really happy every time "Punch" and "Last" are mentioned here =)

Happy holidays gummimochi!

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Gummi, agree on 4 but not SWWTN. It had good beginning but it became tedious and boring.

My #1 is KMHM. Great and my fav Kactor Ji Sung - I did not see him playing 7 roles but I saw all 7 as their own identities. That is how good Ji Sung is. Us overseas fans realize how great he is but not Korean community (except fans of Ji Sung). It breaks my heart that he did not win any awards ?. I hope #mbc gives him that damn Daesang so we fans can be happy for him and us. ?

0
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

Mine too.

Honestly, I mourn everyday that the man is yet to receive a decent award for pulling off those roles, and with such short notice too. Bummer!

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Looks like JiSung oppa will be attending MBC year end drama awards on 30 Dec. HOPEFULLY, this time he'll get his due (very very very over-due!!!) recognition via a daesang. NOT that he needs recognition because we all know how GREAT he is, but I hope more non-fans will know about KMHM and how wonderfully he made all 7 personalities seemed like REAL individuals to us viewers. I hope with the daesang, the world will want to start watching KMHM! Anh Yona jjang!!

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Hey Gunmi!

Thanks so much for touching on some of my favorite dramas this year (with the exception of Scholar Who Walks the Night) I loved each one:

Missing Noir M - who held the record for suspenseful procedural drama for 2015,

Last - deliciously gritty, dark and violent,

KMHM - will be forever cemented in my memory because of Ji Sungs's performance (I adore Shin Se Gi, Ahn Yo Na and Perry Park) and also in large part because of the plot twist at the end of the drama; and

Punch - the jjajangmyun scene will always remain unforgettable.

Happy Holidays Gunmi! Here's looking forward to what 2016 has to offer.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Last and Punch are on my watchlist but I'm currently marathon ing SFD and damn our connection is not cooperating Huhuhu

Missing Noir M is now added on the list! Thank you for the review Gummi! ;)

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

If you take a look at The Bean Count, the recappers who really enjoyed I Remember You are LollyPip, dramallama and Saya, so I'm hoping it'll show up among their picks.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I'm still waiting for I Remember you to be reviewed here? That show to my surprise made me appreciate n become a fan of SIG n PBG after wandering wat all d fuss was abt regarding d 2 of dem.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Punch: Couldn't stop watching, no matter how gut-wrenching. So fast paced.
KMHM: Loved Ji Sung, but have vowed not to watch any Hwang Jung Eum in any more comedic roles, she is so over the top that she grates on my nerves. And what is this with brothers lusting after their sisters (also in Bubblegum) just cuz they aren't blood related, they grew up as siblings.
Missing Noir M: Had trouble finding it to stream, but it's on Viki now so it's on my to-be-viewed list.
Scholar: Our family loved it...6 year old continued to rewatch eps 17 and 18 for the fight scenes.
Last: Loved that show. Mr. Ryoo was my favorite character, excellent part for Park Won Sang, he was excellent and really pulled me into the show.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Adal, glad that yr and my pref are similar. ?

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

:-)

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I only finished watching Scholar who walks the night for the eye candy. They didn't have enough plot for 20 episodes.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I Think am the only one who loves SWWTN currently watching it it's a great show for me

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Holy mackerel!! I just started to watch Punch based on your recommendation and I can't catch my breath. Stunning beginning.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Will Healer be on the next list, ppppleassseeee?!

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

thanks for your love for Scholar and Last -- i forgot how much i loved watching Scholar for the beautiful vampires!!

last was one of my fav's from last year - gritty but sooo good!

hmm, it was a good year for bromance.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thanks for mentioning Last. This, together with Awl, Beloved Eun Dong and Reply 1988 are my favorite series for 2015. Cable dramas these days are far more superior in terms of quality, and I am kinda looking forward to see more dramas from them, especially the ines produced by tvN and JTBC.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thanks Gummimochi for choosing these 5 dramas for your year end review.

Punch: Amazing, awesome, compelling, entertaining, fantastic, intense, suspenseful, and just an all around wonderful kdrama experience. No worries about sitting through bad acting. Only talented actors and actresses were cast. Clever writing, great character development beyond just the lead characters, a strong second lead female character, excellent narrative/storyline and depictions of human nature.

Kill Me, Heal Me: What an unlikely masterpiece that set the bar high — very high — with the perfect mixture of a compelling story, a jaw-dropping plot, and notable characters. Time and time again we witnessed seemingly little inconsequential moments and details that when all was said and done ended up delivering big and powerful payoffs. Our patience was rewarded.

Hindsight is 20/20 because who knew or guessed KMHM would end up being an excellent example of the right way to balance elements of comedy, mystery, melodrama, and tragedy throughout. Funny, exciting, emotionally weighty and sad; adept at vestiges of sowing, reaping, and garnering events that ultimately leave us with feelings of affection and a harvest of healing.

Missing Noir M Cases start out because of a missing person but that's not all to the story and where it would end. Watching the team investigate, dig deeper into things, and connect the dots, more often than not, would lead them to totally different and unexpected places. Nice to see Kim Kang-Woo again. Last saw him in Golden Cross. KKW in a suit…he looks handsome just like Song Seung-Heon did in the suits he wore for When A Man Loves.

Scholar Who Walks The Night: Let's start with the positives...Cali's Vampire Idol Who Walks the Night musings posted in the comments section of the SWWTN recaps here. Drama posters for SWWTN are stunning and beautifully illustrated. Lee Soo-Hyuk as Gwi, a truly awesome job. The writing was certainly flawed but at least the writers didn’t subject us to a dumb 2nd male lead. LJK & LJS rocking the guyliner.

Now the negative...This show had so much potential for telling a great story—potential that was just wasted because of the writers Jang Hyun-Joo and Ryu Yong-Jae (who co-wrote episode 11 onwards).

Last: An intense and action-packed story with wonderful acting by Yoon Kye-Sang, Park Won-Sang, Park Ye-Jin, Kim Hyung-Kyu. A peek down into the depths of poverty, homelessness, and being penniless not to mention the decisions one makes in order to keep surviving for another day and having to adjust to this as a new reality was worth it.

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Currently Airing

Prime-Time Shows This Week
Monday-Tuesday (June 1-2) Wednesday-Thursday (June 3-4) Weekend (June 5-7)