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Premiere Watch: My Ajusshi, Let’s Watch the Sunset

It’s melo week in dramaland, with two new romance melodramas premiering this week. Or maybe it’s more accurate to think of it as melodrama season, because between The Great Seducer, My Ajusshi, and Pretty Noona Who Buys Me Food, I have a feeling my drama slate will skew pretty dark for the next few months.

 

My Ajusshi

Time slot: Wednesday & Thursday
Broadcaster: tvN
Genre: Romance melodrama
Episode count: 16

Reasons to watch: This is the new series from PD Kim Won-seok of Signal and Misaeng and writer Park Hae-young of Oh Hae-young Again, so there’s no way my expectations aren’t sky high for their first collaboration. It’s described in very generic terms as a healing drama, about a man in his forties and a woman in her twenties, each struggling to survive in their own way.

Lee Seon-kyun plays one of three brothers from an ordinary family who is neither successful nor unsuccessful, and doesn’t seem too happy about anything in life. IU is a young woman who’s lived a much harsher life, whose days seem to be filled with tears, scars, and bruises. She’s extremely bristly towards others, probably as a protective measure; in the teasers she asks for Lee Seon-kyun to hate her so that she can hate him back, which must be how she prefers most relationships to go. This drama is definitely going for gritty realism, but I’m hoping it’ll be uplifting in the same way that Misaeng examined the harshness of ordinary life to remind us that we all share the same struggles.

 

Let’s Hold Hands and Watch the Sunset

Time slot: Wednesday & Thursday
Broadcaster: MBC
Genre: Romance melodrama
Episode count: 32 (half-hour episodes, 16 hours total)

Reasons to watch: This is one of those romance dramas where I don’t know which pairing I’m supposed to root for because some of them are married (probably the point). But this one is complicated by the heroine’s terminal illness, which is what propels her towards finding true happiness as she faces the end of her life. Han Hye-jin stars as a woman who gave up her dreams to become the perfect wife to her architect husband, played by Yoon Sang-hyun, but when she discovers that she doesn’t have much time left to live, she decides to start living for herself. The best/worst part is that her doctor is Kim Tae-hoon, so of course she’s going to fall in love with him, because have you seen Fantastic?

The series will be about recovering parts of yourself that you lost and the importance of family and love. It comes from the PD of Radiant Office and the writer of Cruel Palace: War of Flowers and Flames of Ambition, so I’m expecting high drama with this one. You know, in case terminal illness and extramarital affairs made you think otherwise.

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Thank you @girlfriday! Now I want to them out even though I'm normally not a huge fan of melodramas haha

Just a thought: is Spring usually melodrama season in dramaworld?

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Oh, the huge age diff between IU and Lee Seon Kyun is so glaring. I don't know why IU wants to play this melo characters when she lacks acting skills. What is she trying to prove, that she can hack it? I have no doubt about Ahjussi LSK doing his job coz he can play any roles quite well, he is just reliable but I don't know how it will work with a younger actress.
On the other hand, it's another my wife is terminally ill, what to do, what to do? Then the doctor again here is that guy Kim Tae Hoon. Isn't this just Fantastic just a lil bit more melodramatic. I enjoyed Fantastic, the cast was superb and they handled the issue really well and this the only time I liked KTH's character. I don't have a thing for him so I don't understand why the wife would fall for him but am sure he would be very sympathetic and all so.. and the husband would probably be indifferent that's why his wife would fall for another guy, ok, understood. But then I really have a soft spot for Yoon Sang Hyun so I hope he would turn out a great performance here. He always play the loser type guy or husband these days so I wish he could play something like a rogue with a heart of gold or something. Just to spice things up a bit.

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I'm of quite the opposite view as you re IU. I'm looking forward to My Ahjusshi, particularly because of the actors as well as the age gap. So long as none of the characters/actors are kids or teens, the age gap isn't a cause for concern on my radar. Lee Seon Kyun tends to have an amazing choice of dramas, and IU - though she looks like a kid sometimes due to make and styling - comes across as a mature and likable person on screen. And hey, for once I believe the age of the actors is around the age of the characters!

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LSK does pick dramas that are outside the trend, and while most were not ratings hit, they all had meaningful stories at the core. And I agree with you that IU, though she looks younger than her age, has this mature vibe that works for this role. I just read the character descriptions, and her character is 21 and the ajussi's age is 45. The characters' age gap is 8 years more than the actors'! So the choice in casting her is totally deliberate, they want someone who looks young, but mature at the same time. I am convinced their relationship stays platonic, very affectionate, but not romantic.

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Honestly, I did a double take at your name when I read you were actually ok with this age gap! Lol.

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Just to clarify because I hate being misunderstood:

This is exactly what I said during our discussion on Radio Romance as well @ally-le. It was Kim So Hyun's young age in comparison to Yoon Do Joon's, and not the age gap, that wasn't sitting right with me. She's 18 internationally?
Plus once the show handled it well, there wasn't much left to complain about - since she is legally an adult.

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I'm trying to tamp down my expectations for My Ahjussi despite the powerhouse production team behind it and the compelling teasers. I really hope it will be consistently good throughout. I love Lee Seon Kyun and so far, glimpses of IU's character have made me sit upright cos it's so different from what she's played before. I actually think it kinda suits her

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I have high expectations for My Ajusshi since it is a Kim Won Suk drama. I hope it goes well because I really enjoyed the previous drama on the same time slot which was Mother despite all the crying. Lee Jieun (IU) suited the dark undertones of the character. I will wait and see if the girl does well. But seriously all the physical beating she received from the previews was so difficult to watch:(

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The trailers with IU's character were REALLY bleak. So far she was able to pull it off acting wise, hence I thought it suited her. I'm hoping it wouldn't be just in the trailers.

I'm a big fan of the PD and the writer and the mentioned dramas they've done are in my top drama list. I'm really hoping that the 2 combined will make a stellar drama *tries-to-control-expectations-again..lol

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I’m a huge fan of IU as a musician but find her acting very hit-or-miss, with more misses than hits. My favorite performance of hers so far was in Producers.

I was pleasantly surprised by her in the teasers, though. You’re right that it’s very different from her usual role. I really think she will be able to pull it off, especially with the help of this director. I’m looking forward to it!

Is she really choosing to go by Lee Ji-eun for her acting projects now? If so, I will start referring to her as Lee Ji-eun out of respect. I can see why she did that if she wants to be seen as a more “serious” actress, as taking on a role like this would suggest.

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I'm a fan of her music too! ^^ Similarly, not so much as an actress, but she's making me take notice with this drama.

Maybe she's going the DO (from EXO) route by adopting her real name in acting, to separate from the musician persona. I think it makes sense and can work to change her image

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I guess..you will be surprise at her here... it's been a long time I'm waiting her to pick project this meaty. All she need is a good project which can show her skill. She has the skill... If she can pull of this quite well, Park Hae Young will yet again get another good performances by her leading lady.

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Aaaaaa girlfriday u make me laf." Its goona be high drama in case extra marital affairs and terminal sickness put me off" lol.ur witticisms r brilliant as always

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I should just dub this the Year of Melo
I'm excited that My Ahjussi is already here. I love Lee Seon-kyun, and between that and the team... I really really hope it's good.

I really wanna check out the other drama as well; but my plate is so full.
I also have yet to check out Live and Children of a Lesser God; AND I'm also looking forward to watch Pretty Noona Who Buys Me Food soon.
So many dramas, so little time.

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Tell me about it! I planned to watch those two dramas but no time TT_TT

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I'm actually not interested in either. Although I really like this new trend of older, veteran actors taking leads in dramaland. From the teasers of My ahjussi, it looks like it'll have a darker tone. Definitely not my type but good luck to both shows

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I know right? One with the huge age gap and the other with extra marital affair! Gah! I dont know even though I love LSG and think IU is quite accomplished.

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Do you still have the same reservation knowing there won't be any romance between the leads? It's a story of two people facing difficulties and finding healing through their friendship. Would that still bother you?

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You mean for friendship? Yeah i am down with that! But from what i have gathered it doesnt look like it will be based on friendship and friendship only.

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I am willing to bet money it will be friendship and nothing more. Please give it a chance and watch with the rest of us. :-)

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Okay :) Just for you, I will :)

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I am internally screaming when I saw that DB will be recapping My Ajusshi. Thank you so much. But GF, why do you think there is romance in this? I think production team has not said as much, or am I wrong? But I do see a very strong affection/attraction between the leads as shown in the teasers. Anyway, this would be a unique drama for sure, one that features no chaebol, genius, doctor, lawyer, owner of some supernatural power, but three middle-aged men, and a lead that many consider below average in looks. Yeah, this would be a great show for sure.

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Actually, I’m also not expecting any romance in My Ajusshi from the teasers and posters we’ve gotten (well, the ones I’ve seen). I could be wrong, though. It might just be wishful thinking on my part, because I would love a drama where the leads are in a platonic relationship. Friendship can be healing as well!

Either way, I’m looking forward to it. I’m kind of loving the more serious fare we’re getting this year. I don’t know why. A few months ago I was all about the rom-coms.

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Yeah, I'm wondering whether they changed the drama to have a romance too? Cos an earlier article mentioned that LSK's character will have a wife.

Unless it'll skirt towards estranged wife or adultery... 🤔

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Agree. it looks like they are trying to help each other. Whether there is a romance or not, it does not matter as long as the story is captivating and makes me rethink about life in general.

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"I would love a drama where the leads are in a platonic relationship. Friendship can be healing as well!"
Yes! I agree totally, totally, totally. I have been so happy with mother because it was all about motherly love, and men barely play roles in it. I was one of those satisfied with Soojin not pairing with the doctor, even though I liked the doctor. Maybe few years after, when she is stable, taking care of her daughter... having friends and living normally... Maybe, but not necessary. I loved it was all about becoming a mother, and for me it was the best drama I have seen in 6 years of watching dramas.
So here, if it's all platonic, I will be happy too.
The only romance I will ship in the next three months is between the pretty noona and his noona killer, because hello, it is Jung Hae in!!!
Anyway, greetings, Mindi 😀

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Just wondering if you meant Lee Sun Kyun or IU by “below available in looks”. I’m not attacking you or anything, I’m just curious 😀 Because in my eyes both LSK and IU are good looking people.

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I was talking about LSK. I have read so many comments from IU's fans lamenting why the male lead is so not good looking/ugly, why can't he be Gong Yoo or Jo In-sung, etc. Hahahaha... I am sure the director cast LSK precisely for his "average" looks. He is hot in my opinion, of course. 😀

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I'm sure he was cast because he is a talented actor.

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My taste in men probably changed with age. When I first watched Coffee Prince 10 years ago I only saw Gong Yoo. But when I rewatched CP few weeks ago I finally came to appreciate LSK (though my love for GY can’t be beaten ha 😅).

LSK is not typically hot or handsome but he’s insanely charismatic with such a distinctive voice. I’m so excited and pumped up for this drama! I actually think LSK and IU look fantastic together.

I don’t bother with fangirls’ comments, I learned that K-pop fangirls are the scariest.

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He purrs when he talks...a very sexy voice. And I personally find him very attractive 😍

I too am super excited!!

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I found him attractive in CP (but Gong Yoo's presence almost eclipses all the men here, almost), and think he gets better as he ages. Additionally, as @umbrellaman says, that voice....

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IU fans are mostly older males I believe. It's like your dad being extra critical of your partner.

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@umbrellaman @egads
What other LSK dramas would you recommend for me to watch? I only saw him in CP and This Week My Wif Is Having An Affair.

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@aisling You could try Pasta or Miss Korea (with another fab ahjussi Lee Sung-min). His film A Hard Day (on Netflix) was also very good - bonus, Park Bo-gum has a small role!

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Start with LSK's films if you don't want to commit to a drama. A Hard Day is a must. Petty Romance and All About My Wife to see his comedic side. Helpless for a darker fare, and King's Case Note if you want sageuk.

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I am in the oddball range. Leaving looks aside but even for voice ... hmmm. LSK aka termed "THE VOICE" back then by the Kdrama writing community does not do it for me in gorgeous VOICEs (his is the deep-throat can be 'boom' type) . Personal preference maybe, but there are way sexier Kvoices, and laughing.

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Second the recommendation for Miss Korea.

There is a 13 yr gap between LSK and Lee Yeon-Hee , (if that matters.)

The surprise treat though, is Lee Sung-min and Song Seon-Mi.

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Interested in watching My Ahjussi sometime. Looking forward to seeing Lee Seon Kyun in a new drama and also seeing IU tackle a different role than before. Now I feel like I should also watch Misaeng first...hmm.

So many dramas I want to watch….. >.<

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I do have high expectation for "My Ajusshi" even though that it might be a hit or miss with this writer.
I'm on a "Mother" high and I love the feeling of watching something so satisfying.
Don't let me down "My Ajusshi."

Jung Ha-yeon and the "Sunset." Watching.

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The writer is my biggest worry for My Ajusshi, too. I liked OHYA well enough but it definitely had its flaws.

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Oh no, what were OHYA flaws? i thought it was great from beginning to end. But I marathoned it so I probably missed a lot of intricate things people catch who watch live.

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Well... The pressure to rating and OTP popularity make the writers losing track in Oh Hae Young.. But she is already has a hit drama under her belt.... So...

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I think one terminal illness drama a year is enough for me and that slot is filled. Sorry, Let’s Hold Hands and Watch the Sunset.

I'm kind of interested in My Ajusshi but it doesn't look like it was licensed by either Viki or DF. Sigh.

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Really? That surprises me because you’d think the streaming sites would be clamoring to license the show knowing that IU fans will want to watch it. Hmmm.

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I didn't see it listed in the coming soon sections. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong. Since its TVN Netflix might have gotten the rights.

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Be of good cheer as Dramafever has the exclusive license, though this means Viki won't be carrying it, at least not in the US. :( Anyway, it's called My Mister there.

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Thank you so much!

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Oh thank god for DF because I was about to scream when I read that both sites didn't acquire My Ajusshi. Netflix is just too long to wait and usually will not release the episodes until the drama concluded. I would have preferred Viki because Dramafever really sucks at their subtitles sometimes. But at least DF will air the drama just like Signal where they had the exclusive rights back in 2016. Thanks for the info Maplesilver:) I know both of us have been anticipating for the release of My Ajusshi since last year.

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I really am disappointed that Viki is not able to get the license. What I really appreciate about Viki, apart from their excellent subs, is their effort in translating lyrics of the background songs. That adds another layer of depth. Also love their timed comments. Why can't DF have that feature, too? Those comments are an entertainment in a different way.

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I love that they do the song lyrics.

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I feel so excited when I read dramabeans will be recapping My Ahjussi. I have watched the highlight trailer and I really like it. As expected of Kim Won Suk PD .. I hope the drama will live up my expectation ^^

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Don’t want to ruin your excitement but I’m afraid it will be “recapped” in a form of Open Thread like Misty and Mother .

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It may sound slightly crazy, but it became my favourite type of recap. Enough information to know what happened and the good ol'comments. If you want more, you can watch it, but it keeps one interested. And the beanies have some platform for sharing the love.
Because I am human and humans are greedy, the only thing I can wish now is to have them not as long after the episodes as they are now because all the passion they may generate goes slowly slowly away like a smoke.

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Agree... It's my favourite think too.. The recap won't get published for too long, they only reveal the main point of the plot, and only has 1 article per week which make it more exciting IMO

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Basically,melodrama is my thing... Though there is alot of melodrama went wrong lol....but some of critically acclaimed drama in asian drama is melo genre. 2017 is so lacking good melo I'm just about to cry... 2018. Here is I'm coming!

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My Ajusshi looks so beautiful AND sad. But I already expected that from the promo stuff trickling in. It's Let's Hold Hands that surprised me. Is she really going to fall in love (and stay) with Kim Tae-hoon Doc? I'm tempted to watch just to see that once in a dramaland-lifetime event.

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Isn't IU switching to her real name, 'Lee Ji Eun', for for credits to her dramas now? Instead of using her stage name??

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Well, I was definitely planning on watching My Ajusshi for sure, and then saw who is in Let's Watch the Sunset... Although I don't necessarily like the plot idea, I might watch a few or read a bit about it. I mean, those three!!! I haven't seen her in something in a LONG time! Just might give it a try...

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No time for terminal illness drama sh*t anymore. 😐 Life has enough melo going on. 😂😅
I'm seriously pissed that Shall we kiss first is turning into a terminal illness cycle too. Whenever any drama tends to choose this track I automatically send them to my 'not feeling like finishing ever' bucket, smh. Seriously? I was having so much fun watching you show. :/

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So true. And the sunset stuff seems to use the same idea of older actors falling in love. Do the writers meet in the same coffee shop telling each other: "Hey, my next drama will be about terminal illness! And yours?" - "Oh, mine too! What a coincidence! That's such a nice set up."
"An completely underused trope! Let's make new trend!"

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well It's depend on the execution.... Tropes can be still feels fresh if your execution is different from the norm drama who take the same premise.

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Jung Ha-yeon doesn't write garbage so I don't know what he is going to do here.

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Wealthy son is also premiering this weekend! And I wonder why its name in the currently airing list here is written in black and not in blue like the others...

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Blue means a link, so there's at least one post or news article on this site about the show.

If it's black, it's probably never been covered here, so there's no article to link to.

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Thank you, I thought that maybe it got postponed...I'm happy it's not the case

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Why did you add the "pretty noona" in that list of the melodrama season, "skewing pretty dark for the next few months"??? I thought the pretty noona would be a rom-com. Am I missing the genre here? 🙄🙄🙄
Now from these two premieres this week, I would probably be interested in the Ahujsshi, because I kind of love healing dramas, for I need to heal myself. Thanks for the piece of news, @girlfriday!!! 😉

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I also wonder about Pretty Noona. Is it a rom-com or a healing drama or a melo? Or just a romance? Perhaps it could also be slice-of-life.

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I hope some rom com😂, or at least plain romance😍, but not a melo.... 🤕🙏🤕😕, please, show, no... 😝😒😅

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I really hope it has a nice realistic fantasy mix like OHYA had.

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Actually, I just wish every drama will have a realistic fantasy aspect to it like OHYA :-)

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Never watched OHYA, so I don't know. What was fantastic about it??? 🙋

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The premise is that the lead male actor sees a short distance into the future, and there is this woman in the future that he always sees. He starts to see it all of a sudden so he doesn't know what it means. The woman's name is Oh Hae-young and that is one of the most common names in Korea, so everyone has her name. In fact, the main male actor's first love's name is Oh Hae Young which causes a huge misunderstanding in the opening episode. The soundtrack is great and the story/cinematography really give you that whimsical feeling. I loved it.

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What's the full title for OHYA?

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It should be either "Oh Hae Young Again" or "Another Oh Hae Young" I think I have also seen it as "Another Ms. Oh". It's on Viki and Dramafever.

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@javinne I don't know if "pretty noona" will be a melo, various teaser doesn't indicate it will... But there is a chance they will surprise us. haha

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Pretty sure reports have just called Pretty Noona a “romance” without any sort of qualifiers. But I could be wrong!

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I'm sure the title Pretty Noona Who Buys Me Food is intentionally to mislead viewers but not in a negative way. Under the hand of different PD, this might be another romcom like Let's Eat, but this is Ahn Pan-seok, a critically acclaimed director. Probably it will be the combination of romance + slice of life + melodrama + lowkey romcom.

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Yes, actually I searched for it online, I think it was in a website about dramas, and apparently the original title is "something in the rain", which doesn't sound very rom-com(ly).
But whatever, bring it on jTBC!!
I don't ask perfection, but give me some nice characters and lots and lots of Jung Hae in time screen. 😍

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Definitely going to try My Ajusshi.
I keep checking Viki and Drama Fever for coming soon Pretty Noona but no luck. I'm wondering if it will be Netflix.

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Really viki is still yet to get the license. Omggg it's so frustating!

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Hmmmm, I’m not interested in Let’s Watch the Sunset. I don’t buy the story line. Having a terminal illness does not justify having an affair. Well, we don’t know how the story will develop so I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt but it’s just not my cup of tea.

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I think her husband started to have an affair first with Yoo In-young's character, she was his first love or colleague if I'm not mistaken. I don't follow all promotional materials but I'm guessing she will found out about her terminal illness and her husband's affair at the same time.

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Impatiently waiting for My Ahjusshi to start airing. Hopefully, just like what girlfriday said, this will be a gritty yet uplifting drama. Please don't disappoint me.

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My heart broke for IU's character from the trailers. I'm totally ready to get some spring crying in to clean my tear ducts. Also, I think Ji-Eun is gonna do really well in this drama because she was so good in her last drama as Cindy, who had similar dark vibes. I love her either way so here's to a great drama!

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Can't wait for My Ajusshi! I feel like the most recent highlight teaser indicates a tiny romantic aspect (I prefer without it though), but only with English subtitles I would be able to understand what's going on.

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I normally don't like melos but Just between Lovers has made me want to watch another well made melo.

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I feel like Autumn is coming too soon this year..... #preparingmyselfboxesoftissue. I'm a melodrama sucker for sure. :)

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I wasn't going to watch My Ajusshi, but now that you've mentioned Misaeng, I have the image in my head of Lee Seon-kyun calling IU 'our kid' and having that Misaeng-type mentor/mentee relationship with her, and I totally want to see that.

If that's not where it's going, I'll just drop it.

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I think they will end up helping each other. From IU's character description she becomes fiercely protective of him in the end, and I am sure he would do the same for her.

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I`m gonna watch My Ajusshi because of Lee Seon-kyun`s voice ^_^

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Welcome back to Han Hye-jin , hope it’s good. I’ll tune in for My Ajusshi, as I like both leads. I want at least one of these shows to be a hit, as the last episodes of Misty are here !

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I was anxiously awaiting the premiere of My Ahjusshi and I was very satisfied with the first chapter. Lee Seon-kyun is magnificent, as always, but IU totally surprised me because I know her for her cheesy roles and her performance here takes an impressive turn.

This will be an adult romance, so the choice of actors was the greatest success of the production. In addition, the range of colors and the dynamism of the camera give an incredible effect to the narrative. That's why the plot seems so dark, but extremely interesting.

I feel that the love relationships between the characters will not eclipse the deep nuance of realism that the drama has and I adore it. Like Misty, watching My Ahjusshi struck me because its protagonists are surrounded by an aura of despair, loneliness, rebellion and non-conformity to the circumstances of life.

Waiting for more.

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I just finished watching it myself and was taken aback by how bleak everything is. But like you, I also love that the characters are not typical drama heroes, but rather people living in real world. I love what you said about "non-conformity to the circumstances of life." Can't wait for the recap to be posted and see what everyone else thinks of the first episode.

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