Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching
by DB Staff
So, what are we all watching this week?
What kept you reaching for more (or agonizing when there was no more), and what made you want to throw your remote through the screen? Time to weigh in…
Currently recapping: Hwayugi
I’m Not a Robot: To be honest I’m not very excited about the offerings at the moment, but I am glad to have this show around in this cycle, which makes me happy when Wednesday rolls around and there’s a new episode to watch, and then makes me sad on Thursdays when I have another week to wait again. The scheming corporate plotline is a bit eye-rolly (but thankfully only told in brief bursts), but the emotions are played so sincerely that I’m all in with the characters, from our leads down to their bumbling posse.
Longing Heart: Things are getting more interesting, and on the lighthearted beat I really enjoy how annoyed Future Shin-woo and Past Shin-woo get with each other. Plotwise I like the complication of the first love falling for the wrong Shin-woo, and how it’s exactly what he wanted and what he came back for, but directed toward the wrong version of himself. And while Future Shin-woo is mostly exasperated and comical, it’s hard not to feel for poor pining High School Shin-woo, who has no idea his main rival is himself (or that he’s trying to help him!).
Black Knight: This show does occasionally have the bizarre WTF gem that keeps me laughing, but it’s also getting increasingly dull, plotwise, and the more I watch, the more it threatens to chip away at my long-abiding love of Kim Rae-won. (He’s so smarmy here! Stoppit!) Shall I continue, or cut my losses? The see-saw continues to totter.
Currently recapping: Hwayugi
I’m Not a Robot: It was really hard to watch Yoo Seung-ho’s heart get ripped out repeatedly, because he just always makes me believe the emotions are real. It was worth going through all that pain (and more pain) to earn back the relationships the right way, though now I’m wondering what we’re going to fill the next two hours with. I hope not corporate takeovers, because zzzz.
Two Cops: What I learned about myself from watching this show: I have an inexplicable loyalty to Jo Jung-seok that overrides the common sense side of my brain. This show did nothing that surprised me and the romance was predictably uninspired, but at least I got a really cute bromance out of it. That’s something, right? I mean, not enough compared to how many hours I gave… but I’m not going down that road.
Jugglers: I don’t know that this show needed double separations and all that angst, especially since the office politics are so childish. But I liked Lee Won-geun’s storyline this week. He did some much-needed growing up, and his friendship with Daniel Choi is getting cuter by the day. Whoever thought to make them wear matching tracksuits at home deserves a cookie.
Currently recapping: Jugglers, Two Cops
Father Is Strange: I’m pretty late to this one, but practically everyone I know has been talking about it, so I decided to check it out. It took about half an episode to hook me completely, and now I’m around ten episodes in and just in love with this family. They’re so loving and quirky, and even when they’re angry with each other you can feel how much they truly love each other. I can’t wait for poor Joong-hee to become a part of that family, and finally receive the love he so desperately wants (and hoo boy, is Lee Joon bringing it for this one).
Solomon’s Perjury: I’ve been putting this one off for a while because I know it’s going to be a tough watch. But the recent In Defense Of post made me decide to start watching, and I was surprised how quickly I got pulled into these kids’ lives (confession—a coworker caught me crying while watching it on my lunch break!). I was right, some of the issues portrayed are difficult to watch, but I love these kids and their commitment to doing the right thing.
Hwayugi: It was a Hong sisters drama that got me addicted to Korean dramas years ago, and I’ve seen nearly all of them since then. I’ve been waiting four years for one that gives me that “OMG this is the most fun I’ve had in ever” feeling again. Hwayugi is delivering that feeling big-time for me—it’s been so long since I had a good belly laugh at such iconic clever dramaland in-jokes, tongue-in-cheek meta references, and just plain silly humor. Not to mention that the show is nearly perfectly cast, because I can’t imagine anyone else playing Oh-gong, Mawang, or even PK. The Hong sisters are back and so far, better than ever!
I’m Not a Robot: I don’t know what it is about Yoo Seung-ho, but he has a way of ripping out my heart and stomping it to bits that no other actor can match (maybe it’s those deep, expressive eyes?). And I’ve liked Chae Soo-bin ever since I first saw her in Sassy Go Go. The chemistry between the two of them is fantastic when it comes to their offbeat not-really-romance, and even though I’m behind on this show too, I can see that when the actual feelings get involved, together they’re going to break my heart completely.
Hwayugi: After an unfortunate first week, this show has picked up momentum with its cheeky characters and story. This writing feels like the Hong sisters on their better days, and I’m really amused by the execution of these over-the-top characters with literal god complexes. Lee Seung-gi fluidly plays the likable asshole character and his irritable love for Sun-mi makes me chuckle. He loves her but he’s sooo mad about it, and I’m looking forward to how these enraging fake feelings change into real emotions. On the contrary, Sun-mi’s character seems dull in comparison to the rest of the cast, so I hope her mission to save the world pushes her to become the epic character that the show claims she is.
Smart Prison Living: I’m a few weeks behind, but I’m sure I’ll be binging these last couple episodes in no time because of how much this show has grown on me. The prison roommates’ loyalty for each other is precious, and I love the contrast of these inmates’ heinous crimes and their unexpected actions in prison. Most of them despise each other (except for teddy bear Min-chul), so it warms my heart that they look past their disagreements to protect their precious baseball star from all the real baddies of prison life. The running joke that Jun-ho is Je-hyuk’s die-hard fan never fails to crack me up, and even though almost everyone seems privy to their actual friendship by now, I love that they try to keep up the facade. The bromance between Je-hyuk and Jun-ho is definitely my favorite thing, but it’s really the whole cast—the inmates, guards, and the loved ones—that makes this something special.
Just Between Lovers: (Up to Episode 5) I finally met the boy behind Kang-doo’s hallucinations and of course Moon-soo also has guilty feelings about him, because why not? This show is just a lasagna of tragedy layered over tragedy with a sprinkling of cute and a huge dollop of creamy tragedy sauce on top. The irony being, Kang-doo seems more well-adjusted to life than the other survivors and bereaved, despite being the one in the most shitty situation (physically and financially speaking.)
Smart Prison Living: (Up to Episode 11) Captain Na has been missing this week! I can’t help but appreciate the tension he brings to our prison. In all fairness to him, he seems like the only guy in this universe that got the memo that this is a show with hardened criminals and harsh jail routines. Everyone else is acting like it’s Buam-dong Revenge Club: Prison Brothers Edition. Toothbrush-stabber came in this week to add a bit of conflict, but I’m not that worried about Je-hyuk anymore. I hope the show will dive more into Jun-ho’s story instead, because last week’s drunk confession made me so invested in his character.
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (January 12, 2018)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (January 5, 2018)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (December 30, 2017)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (December 23, 2017)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (December 16, 2017)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (December 9, 2017)