Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching
We’re back for another check-in on What We’re Watching! I’ve been enjoying the capsule updates, both as the watcher and the reader, and it seems you guys have as well. As we mentioned previously, we intend to have people cycle in and out of the weekly updates, so not everyone will necessarily write in every post, but we’ll make an effort to be semi-regular with it.
Currently recapping: Lucky Romance
Oh Hae-young Again: I’m a little nervous at how much I like this show, because I’m afraid that it might let me down. So far it hasn’t, and it keeps me 100 percent invested with each twist of the plot, although the more I get sucked into the central relationship, the more I find myself getting impatient whenever we linger on the side characters. They’re wonderfully acted, but I just don’t care about them in quite the same way. That said, the moment that stuck with we most this week belonged to Hoon, when he declared that the very act of living was embarrassing, and thus he wouldn’t live in fear of being embarrassed. Words to live by.
Beautiful Gong Shim: is is such a feel-good, happy-making drama. The plot is simple, but somehow the drama has found the magic trick: It’s everything you love about a cheery weekend drama, minus the boring extraneous family stuff you usually fast-forward. It’s a drama made up of only adorable cute moments, and a wonderful pick-me-up in moments of stress or frustration. It’s also the only drama in years I’ve actually been prompted to rewatch episodes of during the week. I love the characters, and I love the twee nickname fans have come up for the main couple: Namgoongminah. Duh! How did we not see it sooner?
Mirror of the Witch: Continues to be beautiful, mysterious, with nary a minute wasted. And the fact that I have three addiction-spurring dramas going on at the same time is not something I take for granted. It totally makes up for the dry spell of the first half of the year, doesn’t it?
Neighborhood Lawyer Jo Deul-ho: It was never a heart-pounding, addiction-fueling show, but it was consistent and upbeat and delivered victories when you wanted, and went out strongly. I can’t imagine having endured a four-episode extension, since the story suited its length, so I can’t be sorry it got denied, even if Beautiful Mind will have to scramble (even more) as a result of it.
Monster: Since I’m already behind on this show, I put this on hold for the week…
Dear My Friends: …so that I could check out some other shows on the list. This show is good, but man, I don’t know if I can watch it without wincing from how real and heart-bruising it is. I’m thrilled it’s doing well, but I feel like I’ll have to take this in bite-sized pieces, because it’s certainly not a mindless watch.
Currently recapping: Lucky Romance
Dear My Friends: I was so into hating Shin Gu halbae’s character on this show, but then they made him a stoic Korean dad who stands up for his kids and never takes credit for it his entire life, and then I was crying. Damnit.
Mirror of the Witch: This show is already good, but I think it’s going to get even better this weekend. I’m just constantly impressed with the way it builds on its mythology and sucks me in with believable angst, when its world is full of witchcraft and curses and shadowy monsters.
Entertainer: They’ve finally introduced a storyline I like in this show! Hyung’s last song is the first story arc that really gets to me in this drama, and though I wouldn’t recommend any new watcher to sit through 14 episodes to get there, it’s a nice reward for those of us still watching. That and the Yeon-soo/Min-joo ship, which is the only ship worth being on in this show.
Oh Hae-young Again: I finally had the chance to catch up on my backlog of Oh Hae-young Again episodes, which of course turned into consecutive late-night marathon sessions, because once you get on, there’s just no stopping that train. I know this is a simple thing, but I just love that the drama about a foley artist has great sound, and that it’s directed with such loving attention to detail.
Currently recapping: Jackpot
Mirror of the Witch: Whoever conceived of this show needs to stay working in dramaland forever. Yoon Shi-yoon is absolutely killing it in this role, and conveys barely suppressed heartbreak like nobody’s business. More please, and thank you.
Neighborhood Lawyer Jo Deul-ho: A satisfying, feel-good ending for a satisfying, feel-good show. It probably won’t be one of those dramas that stays with me forever, but it was fun while it lasted.
Flower in Prison: I was a little hesitant to start this one despite my love of all things sageuk, but was pleasantly surprised by the first couple episodes. It’s actually pretty interesting because we only ever see The Only Prison in Joseon used as a temporary holding place, so to see a drama delve into how the prison system itself might’ve worked is a new concept. I’m still far behind and have yet to see the leading pair though, so fingers crossed.
Currently recapping: Beautiful Gong Shim
Oh Hae-young Again: This drama gives me life every week. I’m bracing myself for when she finds out how he destroyed her wedding, but until then… Do-kyung and Hae-young foreverrr!!!
Dear My Friends: This drama makes me cry every week. Aunties are worn and torn by life, but they march on with hearts of steel. As if our aunties weren’t enough, Wan and even lousy Suk-gyun made me shed a tear.
1N2D: I’m behind on Mirror of the Witch, so this is how I get my weekly dose of Yoon Shi-yoon. With Season 3 going strong (two and a half years strong!) and now the addition of Yoon Shi-yoon (or as he’s known in 1N2D, Dong-gu — his real name), I wanted to check back in with the show. Not always the funniest, but when it delivers, I’m tearing up from laughter. I enjoy watching the jaded veterans try to adjust to newbie Dong-gu’s optimism. He’s still an innocent lil’ puppy, but he’s quickly catching onto the craftiness.
Jackpot: Oh Show, why aren’t you Warrior Baek Dong-soo? And why, for the love of brotherhood and puppies and the people of fictional Joseon, won’t you let Injwa die? It’s been twenty episodes already! Kill him, end the show, JOB DONE. Give yourself a holiday and a pat on the back. Or maybe we need to change your name to Yi Injwa Again.
Entertainer: The other half of my weekend-binge. You guys were right, episode 6 did get better. And with the exception of scenes involving otherwise sensible people gazing longingly at Hyeri/Hyeri responding with one of her three expressions (clueless, gormless or brainless), I’m loving it. It’s a cheerful, heartwarming, slice-of-lifey brom-com.
Noodle: Ohhh it’s all coming quite gloriously together, isn’t it? It’s been entertaining watching all the old schemers try to outmaneuver each other but it did kill the pace. I was worried by the slowness of episode 11, but now all the threads laid so far (and there were many) are being tightened in a very satisfying way. I need it to be next week already! But innocent little Tae-ha sacrificing himself to the dark side? Nooooo!
Tags: 1 show to rule them all, 1N2D, Beautiful Gong Shim, Dear My Friends, Entertainer, Jackpot, Master–God of Noodle, Mirror of the Witch, Monster, Neighborhood Lawyer Jo Deul-ho, Oh Hae-young Again, What We're Watching