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Fox Bride Star: Episodes 1-2

SBS’s new drama, Fox Bride Star (alternatively titled Where Stars Land), is a beautiful surprise with its stunning cinematography, thoughtful and emotional musical score, and a story more surprising and mystical than anything I expected. An ordinary girl and an extraordinary man share an encounter that will change both their lives, though whether it’s for the better remains to be seen.

 
EPISODE 1: “The influence of westerlies”

A young woman’s voice informs us that her father told her that there’s no such thing as coincidence as everything happens for a reason. The young woman, HAN YEO-REUM (Chae Soo-bin) is woken by a call from her friend, warning her that she has five minutes if she wants to be on time to her new job.

That’s just the start of Yeo-reum’s unlucky day… she gets caught in a rain shower on her way to work, and when she ducks under an awning for shelter, she accidentally splashes a few drops of rain onto a man’s sleeve. He gives her an annoyed glare, but he doesn’t respond to her apology, so she turns away awkwardly.

And then something truly strange happens — the compass Yeo-reum wears around her neck suddenly swings around all by itself and sticks to the man’s arm. It won’t come off when she pulls on it, so the man calmly reaches over to remove the compass and hands it back to her. His taxi arrives and he leaves, and Yeo-reum thinks that he looks familiar.

Yeo-reum has worked at Incheon International Airport for the past year, and in flashback we see that she showed up late to her job interview, bleeding from a head wound she’d sustained in a car accident on her way in. She’d insisted on being interviewed before getting medical attention, but she’d passed out before she could even finish telling the interviewers that it was her dream to work there.

She’d gotten the job because they were impressed with her passion, but the reality is not so impressive — she’s being transferred to a new department. She’s late on her first day at her new position, and she slinks in to hear MANAGER GONG grumbling to his boss that Yeo-reum’s work history of the past year is full of complaints about her temper.

Yeo-reum finally gets a chance to announce herself and the fact that she’s transferring from Transportation Services to Passenger Services. Her boss’s boss, YANG SEO-KOON (Kim Ji-soo) mentions her “diverse talents” of kicking and grabbing people, swearing, and lateness. Yeo-reum promises to do better, and Seo-koon accepts her promise as a done deal.

Yeo-reum’s friend EUN-SEOB also works at the airport, and he informs his manager that due to strong westerly winds, a plane arrived over an hour ahead of time. It’s a problem because there are no gates available to let the passengers disembark.

Passenger Services gets a complaint about a fight breaking out between airline staff and passengers, so Seo-koon sends Yeo-reum to handle it. Yeo-reum can’t find her desk to put down her stuff, then almost goes out the wrong door, and she cringes as she finally leaves.

Across the room, the man Yeo-reum met on her way to work overhears the conversation. His name is LEE SOO-YEON (Lee Je-hoon), and he’s sent to help Yeo-reum. He irritates Manager Gong with his lack of verbal response, but he doesn’t seem concerned.

He finds Yeo-reum banging her head on the wall, ordering herself not to make another mistake. She steels herself and jogs out into the bustling terminal, and another flashback shows that her father (cameo by Choi Won-young) gave her the compass she wears because she often gets lost.

He’d told her that with the compass, it wouldn’t matter if she got lost, but she thinks, “No Dad, it does matter. The moment you get lost in the world, you fall behind. That’s why I’m desperately running today, so that I won’t get lost. No… it’s so that no one will find out that I’m lost.”

Yeo-reum finally finds the source of the problem — a passenger is beating a ticket kiosk with his suitcase, furious that an employee told him using the machine would be faster, interpreting it as her blowing him off. The guy isn’t interested in talking to Yeo-reum, and he demands to see the CEO as he kicks over the kiosks one at a time.

Soo-yeon just watches as Yeo-reum loses her temper and calls the passenger crazy. But she reins in her temper, remembering the first time she got in trouble for insulting a passenger, and tries to smile. That just makes the passenger angrier, so he grabs her by the shirtfront, yelling that she should be treating him like a king.

Instead of snapping that he should behave like a king if he wants to be treated like one, Yeo-reum asks him to let her go. The passenger doesn’t, so she slaps away his hand, and he raises a hand to strike her. But his arm is stopped in midair by Soo-yeon, who squeezes the man’s wrist and tells him that violence and vandalism are illegal.

He informs the passenger that he’ll have to pay for those broken kiosks, and that he’ll probably face criminal charges. Yeo-reum practically giggles at the look on the passenger’s face. After the passenger is taken away by security, Yeo-reum approaches Soo-yeon to remind him that they’ve met and to thank him for his help, assuming he’s another passenger. With a heavy sigh, Soo-yeon shows her his employee badge.

Yeo-reum gets yelled at by Manager Gong for “letting” the passenger destroy three ticket kiosks. He orders her to write up a thorough report by the end of the day, interpreting her explanations as talking back, then he huffs off. Yeo-reum offers to go clean up the mess, but Seo-koon asks how, when she doesn’t know where storage is. Yeo-reum apologizes, and Seo-koon says that reflexive apologies don’t solve anything.

She appoints Soo-yeon to be Yeo-reum’s mentor, and he asks, “Do I have to?” LOL. After the managers leave, Yeo-reum tells Soo-yeon not to worry about her and goes to move the safety barriers herself. She snaps her finger with one, and when Soo-yeon arrives and starts loading the barriers onto a dolly, she insists that he let her handle it.

But she nearly tips over when she picks up one barrier pole, and Soo-yeon easily catches her one-handed. He offers to call for help, but instead, Yeo-reum asks for information on how to get Manager Gong to be friendlier.

Soo-yeon rolls his eyes, then says he’ll tell her where to store the barriers. He suggests she write it down, but she snaps that she has a good memory, then goes cross-eyed at his complicated directions. Too proud to admit that she’s thoroughly lost, Yeo-reum wanders around the airport back hallways for so long that Manager Gong accuses her of slacking off when she finally returns.

On a break, she complains to Eun-seob that Soo-yeon probably got her lost on purpose, giving her friend the stink-eye when he laughs, “But you’re always lost!” Listing Soo-yeon’s education and qualifications, Eun-seob says that it’s unlikely Soo-yeon is threatened by Yeo-reum or is trying to put her in her place.

She takes offense to that too, so Eun-seob tells her that Soo-yeon is stuck up, always eating alone and never attending staff parties. There was a rumor he’s autistic, but it was proven wrong when he saved a little boy from being run over by a speeding luggage cart.

Soo-yeon had grabbed the cart with one hand, somehow lifting it clear over his head before slamming it back down. When he’d let go, the thick metal bars were bent right where his hand had been.

Yeo-reum thinks that Eun-seob is embellishing the story, but he says that’s why it’s a rumor. He tells her to be nice to Soo-yeon, since she’s actually Soo-yeon’s sunbae — he’s only worked at Incheon for a few months.

Soo-yeon runs across another disturbance in the terminal – this time it’s an elderly lady trying to get through without a ticket, crying piteously that she needs to find her son.

EPISODE 2 RECAP

Full of righteous indignation, Yeo-reum confronts Seo-koon about appointing Soo-yeon as her mentor, when technically she’s the sunbae. Seo-koon points out that Soo-yeon is Yeo-reum’s sunbae in the Passenger Services department, but Yeo-reum just accuses her of looking down on her because her previous team had her transferred.

Seo-koon keeps her cool, and tells Yeo-reum that if she wants to talk about pride, then she should do her work correctly, be on time, and stop making excuses. Ouch. She says that she doesn’t care about Yeo-reum’s past, she cares about competence, and orders her to stop talking about seniority.

Yeo-reum scurries away as fast as possible, back to where Eun-seob is waiting to gloat that he told her not to confront Seo-koon. He agrees with Yeo-reum that she’s lost Seo-koon’s favor, ha.

She gets a call from Soo-yeon on her walkie-talkie to come to the third floor, where a child was reported missing. She hesitates before answering, then decides that finding the child is the perfect way to end her disastrous day on a high note.

She locates Soo-yeon where he’s taking notes on the ajumma’s missing son. She’s frustrated when she finds out the “child” is in his thirties, but Soo-yeon says that the man forgot his schizophrenia medicaton. He tells Yeo-reum to wait with the ajumma while he talks to the security team, but Yeo-reum wants to go with him.

They bicker over who has seniority, the one who’s worked there longer or the one who’s the mentor. Yeo-reum accuses Soo-yeon of giving her all the unseen jobs and taking the shiny jobs for himself, and he actually smiles when she says they should work together and storms off with her heels clicking in indignation.

Down in Security, the guard’s wand goes off when he scans Soo-yeon’s right arm, and Yeo-reum notices that Soo-yeon shows the guard something in his wallet. He tells her to stay close for her own safety, and when she asks sarcastically if he’s worried about her, he says he’s just being a mentor. He adds that he doesn’t want to be in the spotlight because of her, and that he prefers to get by without being noticed.

Something prompts Yeo-reum to ask if they’ve met before their encounter this morning. Soo-yeon says he doesn’t remember and asks if she’s hitting on him, making her scoff and walk away, but the way he watches her go seems to suggest that he does know something.

When the airport employees learn that the missing “child” is a schizophrenic adult off his medication, they organize a serious effort to locate him. They have difficulty as his mother said he’s wearing a yellow shirt, but he has on a dark jacket over it, so security doesn’t notice him even when they’re looking right at him.

Meanwhile, Eun-seob referees a face-off between two airlines, the one whose plane landed early and one whose gate they want to borrow to allow the early passengers to disembark. Eun-seob calls Manager Park and puts him on speakerphone, but everything he suggests offends one side or the other, so he finally tells them to come to an agreement or he’ll make their disagreement public.

Soo-yeon and Yeo-reum carefully search the terminal for the missing man, but it’s not until Soo-yeon is checking the restrooms that Yeo-reum sees a man in a yellow shirt. She disobeys his order not to split up and chases the man, unaware that she’s following the wrong passenger.

The missing passenger is actually very near Eun-seob and his conflict, growing anxious and paranoid without his medication. Finally the airline with the gate relents, allowing the frustrated passengers to use their gate. The missing passenger notices that the plane at the gate isn’t his flight, so he asks someone why the planes changed.

The airport employee calmly explains that it’s just temporary, but the passenger’s paranoia takes over and he screams that they can’t do that. Yeo-reum’s pursuit of the wrong person has brought her near enough that she witnesses the altercation, and Seo-koon sees her, and the swiftly deteriorating passenger, on the security cameras.

Seo-koon notices that the passenger is wearing a yellow shirt under his jacket and calls everyone to the area. She sends Soo-yeon to find Yeo-reum when they realize she turned off her walkie-talkie, so he tries calling her on her cell, and she answers without speaking so that he can hear the passenger beating the airline employee with his bag.

Soo-yeon breaks into a run, as Yeo-reum confronts the dangerous passenger and tells him his mother is waiting for him. He accuses her of being a police officer here to arrest him and lock him up again, and he picks up a barrier pole and brandishes it at her. Despite her pleas to calm down, he screams and swings the pole…

Inches before it lands, Soo-yeon swoops out of nowhere, swings Yeo-reum out of the way, and holds up his arm to take the blow. It should break his arm, but instead the pole bends on impact. Looking up at him, Yeo-reum remembers why he looks familiar — on the day of her job interview a year ago, a car had flipped and hurtled through the air towards her, but Soo-yeon had pulled her to safety just like this.

Moving slowly, Soo-yeon lets go of Yeo-reum and holds out a bottle of medication to the passenger, saying softly that his mother is waiting for him. The passenger drops the warped pole and Soo-yeon kicks it out of sight as Seo-koon runs up, but Yeo-reum already got a good look at it.

She sits at an airport cafe, thinking about the strange things she’s seen Soo-yeon do, like pull her out of harm’s way much too fast, stop a weapon with his bare arm, and attract her compass like a magnet. She thinks about how her father said there’s no such thing as coincidence, and that everything happens for a reason.

As Soo-yeon takes the passenger back to his grateful mother, a man disembarks from the early plane. Although Soo-yeon seems stunned by the sight of him, he walks right past Soo-yeon without even looking at him. At the same time, security shows Seo-koon the video of Soo-yeon saving Yeo-reum, and how he stopped the metal pole with his arm.

Yeo-reum goes looking for the bent pole, but maintenance has already taken it to the trash. She runs into Soo-yeon and calls out to him when he tries to ignore her, saying again, “We’ve met before, haven’t we?” He just says accusingly that he told her not to go off alone and cause trouble, because he wants to live a quiet life.

He says he doesn’t remember her because they’ve never met, but something about his statement rings untrue. He walks away, and Yeo-reum thinks that they did meet that day, when he’d saved her from being crushed by the car flying towards her. He’d pulled her out of the way, but the car had nearly fallen on them both. Just like today, he’d put up one arm and held the car off them, as if it weighed no more than a feather.

Back at his desk, Soo-yeon notices blood on his cuff. He reaches for a tissue and a paper clip on his desk jumps up, sticking to his arm. Luckily, nobody notices, and he quickly removes it and goes back to work.

Watching the rain, Yeo-reum thinks, “It was you. I’m sure it was you.”

 
COMMENTS

I hadn’t heard much about Fox Bride Star before say, a week ago, so I purposely didn’t watch any trailers or read any information about the show, because sometimes it’s fun to go into a drama with a completely clean slate and no expectations or preconceived ideas. What I was expecting was a well-made drama about people working in the airport industry, and in many ways that’s exactly what the show seems to be. What I was not expecting was the mystical twist of a man who seems to have some pretty incredible secrets. By the time the premiere episode was only half over, I’d gone from being mildly curious about the show to wildly eager to see more, which is about the best you can ask from a new drama.

I love the concept of Yeo-reum and Soo-yeon both being lost in their lives and trying to hide that fact from those around them. Yeo-reum handles it by trying too hard and getting herself in trouble, and Soo-yeon handles it by not trying hard enough. I actually like Yeo-reum a lot already even though she’s a hot mess, because at least she knows it and doesn’t want to be that way, she just doesn’t know how to rein in her temper and to get her act together. I can relate to that personally from certain times in my life, and I know it’s possible to change, but it takes a lot of personal reflection and honest self-evaluation. Yeo-reum is in for a tough road, but she’s got the strength of personality to survive and thrive, and it’s going to be lots of fun to watch.

Whatever is going on with Soo-yeon is fascinating, because he doesn’t just seem reluctant to let anyone know he’s more than normal — he seems traumatized by something. He can’t help but rescue a damsel in distress, but on the whole he’s hiding himself and his abilities, if that’s what they are. In one episode we’ve seen him attract metal as if he’s magnetic, display superhuman strength, sustain injuries that should cripple him but barely even bother him, and move faster than any man should be capable of. He’s not indestructible — he did bleed after saving Yeo-reum this last time — but he’s certainly not normal. I actually wonder if what makes him unique is focused on his right arm, since everything he’s done, he’s done with that arm, and it even set off the security scanner. Whatever is going on, I can’t wait to see more.

I already love Seo-koon as a manager for Yeo-reum, because on the one hand, she’s giving Yeo-reum a chance to prove herself, but on the other hand, she doesn’t let Yeo-reum get away with any of her usual shenanigans. When Yeo-reum offers to do a job, Seo-koon makes her think about how she’ll accomplish it. When Yeo-reum apologizes, Seo-koon makes her think about why. And when Yeo-reum complains about something inconsequential like seniority, Seo-koon makes it clear that seniority means nothing if you’re not a competent employee. Bosses like that can be frustrating because they hold employees accountable for every choice and action, but Yeo-reum will actually learn a lot from her. And I already really like how Kim Ji-soo is tackling the character — I last saw her in Hwarang, and I felt that she was never entirely comfortable as the evil queen mother. But here she seems nicely settled into the character of Seo-koon, and I get the sense that she’s a deep pool with a lot going on under the surface. She’s another character I’m anticipating seeing more of.

I have to confess that I pretty much love everything Lee Je-hoon and Chae Soo-bin do, but never in a million years would I have paired them together in a drama. They’re both very good actors, but they just have such different energies. I see Lee Je-hoon as an actor with a lot of gravitas and subtle skill, while Chae Soo-bin (who I’ve adored since I first saw her in Sassy Go Go) is bright and breezy and generally plays characters who are very emotionally open. I like them both very much, but I wasn’t sure I’d like them together, so I’m very pleased to see how well this pairing actually works. Their characterizations play to their strengths and allow them to shine in what they do best, and you can tell that their chemistry will be off the charts once Soo-yeon and Yeo-reum stop fighting and start working together. I can’t wait to get there, but in the meantime, I plan to just sit back and enjoy the early sparks.

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As the unofficial Lee Je-hoon correspondent, here's my opinion:

1 - This ep didn't impress me even though on a LJH scale of 1 - 10 it was like a 7
2 - Chae Soo-bin's character is rubbing me the wrong way with her blaming others and making excuses, even though I love the actress
3 - aRM
4 - why's'sEHEHE AM AGNET??? MAGNETIC?????? WHAT????

This is a similar emotion I felt watching Tomorrow With You. Wild theories welcome! Here are mine:

He descends from a long line of aliens or something.
His arm was lost in a Thing (maybe car accident). The metal they used to stabilize it was a meteorite.
He's a monster.

Any other takers?

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He is an X-men. Mutant with Special powers

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I never thought to think mutant. It's certainly quite possible--not in the X-Men mutant sense, but the general mutant concept sense.

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At the moment, I'm on Team Injured His Arm In A Thing And Experimental Materials Were used To Patch Him Up.

His abilities do seem to be limited to just his right arm/hand. Very mysterious...

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ETA: Since his arm set off the metal detector...

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Logically speaking, they should extend to.more than his arm - for instance that arm is attached to a body that held itself on the ground when it a stopped a car hurtling towards it. The force of that impact would have travelled through the arm, into the body and to the ground. He should have been pushed back at the very least. But to stay on the spot indicates either :
1. A shock absorbing metal arm
2. Phenomenal strength in the rest of his body.

Tagging @cloggie since we deduced it's a shock absorbing, super strong, magnetic metal arm, together.

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*nods* yup - this is obviously what it is.

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I respect that logic.

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I am however reminded that K-Dramas sometimes tend to laugh logic in the face.

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"sometimes" ?

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The real him will become obvious at the end of EP4.

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Old TV show Six Million Dollar Man.
If you're not old enough to have seen it, check Wikipedia.

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Now I have terrible sound effects running through my head.

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Lol, yes! That show came to my mind immediately. And yes, I'm old enough to have seen it...

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I too dislike Chae Soobin character, she makes terrible choices and playing the victim. However we can see that she probably will have her turnaround and become a decent person. Until then, if i had co worker like that i will totally side-eye-ing her.

That's why i'm every single background character who gossip about the lead.

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I thought the magnetic thing was just stupid, they should have just left that silly trope out of the plot.

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I too went in with zero idea of what this show is about. And am liking it so far. I see a lot of potential.
And like you said I love a good female
Boss!!

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Here is my best guesses for what Lee Seo Yeon would be
1. Do min Joon long lost cousin
2. Runaway superhuman clone made by alien
3. 1000th years gumiho
4. Another robot clone as Namshin made by his secretly chaebol grandpa
5. He is literally star/meteroid who fall down from sky

Please free to add the list :)

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6. He is a goblin with sword hidden beneath his right arm

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😂

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I actually love that the woman manager told CSBs character off. Because she IS wrong, even if her intention is right. I hope to see character development in her character. Im curious to find out more out of the male lead.

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I saw a lot of negative netizen comments about Soo bin’s character but I hate that they are pointing fingers at the actress more than anything. It’s understandable because her character kind of comes off as unbearable but I can definitely see growth for her. I totally relate to her bad sense of direction and acting as if she knows when in reality don’t actually know anything because she doesn’t want to look stupid, since I went through that so in that sense I like the realness of her character. I only wished she’d stop being so defensive and let room for criticism or feedback instead of taking it the wrong way with the main lead or her boss. But the girl is trying so I have to hand it her for her passion and determination.

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I actually like the actress (I was fascinated by her face each time she was on screen), but from what I've seen so far, the character she is playing is unbearable.

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I enjoyed the first two episodes. This is my third Chae Soo-bin drama after STRONGEST DELIVERYMAN and I AM NOT A ROBOT. So far (only 2 episodes) her portrayal of Yeo-reum in FBS is somewhat similar to the characters she played in the other two. It is almost like she is being typecast. I checked and each of the dramas have different writers.

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<I can definitely see growth for her

I would like to see that, but I'm struggling because apparently she has worked at the airport for a whole year already and messed up majorly multiple times, yet still seems to think she's knows everything best. Her arrogance towards the "newbie" was particularly infuriating. She is seriously incompetent and unprofessional (turning off the walkie-talkie and ignoring the phone?), makes me wonder if she's plain stupid and why she wasn't fired in that year yet.

They could have written her "troublemaker" character differently – she really need not be so unbearable.

I'm also not too fond of these scenarios of utterly incompetent female + utterly perfect male (I'm sure he'll have some flaws later – probably emotional wounds – but he's still set up as the perfect/amazingly handsome/extremely capable prince-to-rescue-the-damsel).

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I agree on the set up of the male and female characters which kdramas always love to make one perfect and the other incompetent . I think it’s just her personality that makes her so brash and defensive because she doesn’t want to seem bad at her job and I think if she allows herself space to learn and accept that she can mistakes it could change the way she approaches situations again totally up to the writer to give her that.

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Well, I can't see him utterly perfect. Aloofness is seldom considered as a perfect and desirable trait in society. I know it from experience.

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They could have written her "troublemaker" character differently – she really need not be so unbearable.

Indeed!

I agree with pretty much everything you've said. Like you, I too am struggling with her character especially given how serious her job is and the situations she's gotten herself into. If this were a comedy, sure, have at it writers. But if you're chastising someone off for doing a poor job multiple times and putting other's at risk just for the attention, how hasn't she been fired yet!?

Yes, chances are high that she will turn around, but I don't think I can torture myself to see that journey.

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I agree with you. It’s really frustrating to see so much negativity when we have only watched a few episodes. I’m the kinda person who prefers to see the characters change and grow after they meet each other and face ups and downs while walking the path as the story is set. What’s so exciting about watching perfectly designed characters and knowing well, he/she is gonna be like this for more ??teen episodes?!
I’m looking forward to seeing growth in her character^__^

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If an actor can take credit of the good-written Character they played(with good assistance of director) then they should be ready to hold some criticism too. I'm not saying the actor is at fault. But your own mannerism to body language does affect the portrayal of an character. You just can't shrug it off.

I'm-trying-hard excuse doesn't fly far. She has does mistakes after mistake within a day of her joining the new department.
She hasn't competently handle any task given to her and grossly engaged in self-pity.

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Uh I think people are capable of telling the difference when a good script and director's efforts are the main or only thing getting a decent performance out of an otherwise bad actor. Look at Hyeri in Reply 1988 for that...

But when you have such a character as Yeo-reum who's written as so self-righteous and constantly messing up her work, I don't think even an actress like Bae Doona or Jeon Doyeon can make her likeable. Usually with weak/poor actresses the script goes overboard in the opposite direction to show them as likeable or relatable, here they don't do that.

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Her acting is stiff and that body language does not help. I would rather they write out her character entirely since she doesn't contribute to the story in a positive manner.

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Nah for once the blame is being laid on the writer too by knets, for making the character this way.

I agree that it's a character writing problem and not an actress problem though. Chae Soo Bin has been good in enough dramas that I give her the benefit of the doubt.

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Actually if you read all the articles the blame lies squarely on her acting not just the writing. Jang Nara played an almost identical character in Fated but she got so much praise for her acting despite the horribly written character. Chae Soo Bin is just not trying to play this role properly. Her acting is lazy in this role and it shows far too evidently.

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......I have read the articles, in Korean and translated. Most of the comments talk about the character being irritating and the writer doing a bad job.

And sorry but Jang Nara's character Kim Miyoung in Fated to Love You was nothing like this, she was a humble wallflower with a sweet personality who was constantly doing other people's work! That's like the polar opposite of Yeoreum lol.

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The fact that the actress makes Yeo-reum look so bad is precisely what makes her a good actress.

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If the writers can write Lee Je-hoon's character so that he seems mysterious, aloof, stoic, and capable, why couldn't they write Chae Soo-bin's character so that she can be bright, quirky, a trouble-magnet AND sensible at her job? Because frankly all I kept thinking was what a nightmare someone like that would be to work with. They not only do not do their job and blame everyone else for their shortcomings, they make more work for everyone else, since the slack (and ensuing extra mess) has to be picked up. And all the quirkiness in the world cannot make up for that. Ughhhh. Whyyyyyyy, drama gods, whyyyyyyy?

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We've seen that characters sooooo many times, though. In so many dramas. I like that she's struggling in life because it feels realistic, and gives her character room to grow and mature.

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Struggling is fine. Being a general nuisance to everyone (at your job) at your big age because of pride and not wanting to follow simple instructions isn't.

And while the character has been set-uo such that there room for growth, I truly feel it needn't have been so drastic.

But you are right that humans come in all forms, even unlikeable ones, and they deserve their glo-up stories too. Let's hope this story is a good one.

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Oh, you're not wrong! Sadly, people like that do exist - I work with one right now. Just total unwillingness to do the job right even when the rest of us tell him it makes more work for us. VERY frustrating. We're hoping the new ASM can whip him into shape...

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Fighting Lollypip!

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I worked with one of those once a long time ago. Very frustrating. Would only do the "glamour" jobs. Thankfully management saw through it and he was gone in 6 months.

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Exactly @lollypip. I don't understand how this has become a topic on feminism. For starters, people like me, who is lacking in what she does, who doesn't have perfect brain or working abilities, or doesn't always get appreciation from peers/ seniors, do relate to her, a lot. Also I like people who are not perfect. And this could sound strange lol, but I am always used to enjoy those novels which are written in the first person? Like in jane eyre, so in this way even here in this story, I can relate to chae soo bin's character since she is a bit of a fool, always acts before thinks and is one of the ordinary bunch. It kind of is, one way to pull me into a story. And although I am not so good at what I do, I am also passionate about my work. So even if I am lacking lol, you would see me defending my work. This also reminds me of what ladybird's director said, 'my passion for my work is greater than my talent.' This is the reason I don't mind Chae Soo Bin's character here. I like the fact that she's still passionate even if she doesn't have the topmost skills. To me that means more than having a physical superpower or something.

Also this reminds me of jang gu rae too, for some reason. We only got one jang gu rae in dramaland, but God he really pulled on the heartstrings. Why can't we like a story about underdogs? Why everyone has to be a superwoman or man? And if this writer 'has' written a story about a somewhat eccentric man who has a weird power, why that is such a bad idea?

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You've just written everything I thought, precisely.

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Please add if there's anything more you have in mind!

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This! My only complaint about this drama is her character! I can go with clumsy troublemaker but her being incompetent with victim-mentality and too prideful to learn from her mistakes definitely makes me slightly hate her. I do hope she improves because I like Chae Soo Bin even when she played the nasty bitch in Sassy Go Go. So its not the actress that I have a problem with, its the character.

I also do have some qualm as yours. Why make her incompetent with her work? Why cant they make her as someone good with her work but because of her curiousity she always ended up with troubles? Id rather see another Louis Lane than a weak girl waiting to be rescued everytime.

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I want to think that she isn't incompetent as much as she is just in the wrong job with the wrong skills. It is going to be interesting to see her character growth.
right now CSB seems to be type-cast, which is a shame but maybe in the future, her choice of scripts will help her grow as an actor.
Still, I like her spunkiness and her smile. We'll see, this show is hitting every kdrama trope there is, so I'm going to give it another couple of weeks to see if it rises above its own stereotypes.

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Well...I wish to see her doing her job properly, not distracted by things like "gaining favors" and "stick her nose into something that is not her business while forgetting things needed to be done", and so far thats what is being shown. Which is a downer because I want to like her because of Chae Soo Bin but my first impression on this character is so bad it is gonna take a while for me to warming up to her. One thing I am grateful is that her boss reminded her what is important in workplace, competency. Since she is a beginner I can overlook her mistakes, but when she used her 'I am your senior card' when he just wanna teach her, totally blow one's lid. I really hope her characterisation will improve because I want to watch this drama because it has an interesting setup.

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Agree with you 100000%

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I think her choice of scripts is quite awful because she literally picks the same character again again. When you play the same character three times continuously it's not just a problem of not getting good roles but also you're not even trying to be different versions of a similar character. She has the exact same mannerisms as her previous roles which what truly frusates me. I don't think she is ready for this kind of lead role just yet.

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She's just a bad actress who doesn't yet deserve to be a lead. She's done 4 dramas but shown no improvement. Clearly a drama role park shin hye turned down can't possibly be a good role.

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I'd like to defend her. In the second part of Rebel: Thief Who Stole the People she was far from being spunky and annoying. She played the role of the young wife mourning her husband, giving up life and seeking revenge for him excellently. She was very mature in it.

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Yeah people tend to develop amnesia about a young actress' actually good roles/performances if she's in a drama with bad writing, meanwhile actors never get written off like that unless they are like.....idk, Taecyeon.

I saw it happen with Gong Seung Yeon in Are You Human Too, and now seeing it with CSB. It's really disheartening.

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I really liked her in Rebel too. She's really good at portraying emotion, and that scene where she tries to bite the king was A grade.

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You just proved the argument about her not being good enough to be a lead which is exactly what knets are saying. They don't say she's bad but she can only do small roles not lead a whole drama convincingly. She's too mediocre for that.

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I thought she was very good in 'Sassy Go Go' and 'If we were a season'. I think it's a question of time before she picks more complex layered characters. She is only 24, so!!

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@teacakes @bernadett I thought CSB was phenomenal in all the dramas that I've seen her so far. (Sassy Go Go, If We Were A Season, and INAR) CSB played about three characters in INAR and did excellent in all those. She isn't a bad actress nor an incapable female lead. People are quite harsh even if we're just 4 episodes into the drama.

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"she is just in the wrong job with the wrong skills."
I agree with you on this. I think she has no patience to bow and scrape to the customers. It's not her motto that "The customer is always right." It seems to me that she has no self-knowledge and therefore no self-criticism. It's time for her to acquire it.

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I can't pinpoint what the problem with her character is. She was too quick to judge someone who she knew for only a day or 2. This person has demonstrated how a job is to be done, but she lets her pride get in her way from learning anything from him.
And she seems aware of her limitations, but don't see any action on her part to overcome it.
She has worked in the airport for a year and i wanted to see some knowledge she has gained during that time.
I don't know if its a character flaw or writing flaw. too early to judge. WIll wait for few more episodes.

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At this moment she is in fact incompetent- and would be incompetent in any job. A competent person asks for directions, asks for help and actually thinks about what needs to be done and how to do it because he or she understands that the bottom line is getting a job done, not scoring points. Our female lead is not lacking in intelligence but rather in attitude.

Fortunately, she now has Seo-koon as her manager. Seo-koon is going to keep teaching her, pushing her and refusing to take her s***. As far as Seo-koon is concerned her new employee is either going to become competent or die in the attempt. Because Seo-koon sees her potential even if Yeo-reum does not. Someday Yeo-reum will understand what Seo-koon did for her. It would not surprise me if we learn later that someone once did the same for Seo-koon. I like that fact that Chae Soo-bin is getting to play a character like this, which is very different from her character in her last drama.

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I was thinking the same thing. In real life she would have been fired even from a street cleaning job by now.

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Thank you for the recap @lollypip

I already anticipated this drama because it kinda hit all of my personal note to it and the premiere already living up to my expectation. I also got amazed by the drama production who managed to get the VIP pass to film this since it is a lot of job to do. Especially filming the ramp tower and ATC tower knowing its tight security.

I am surprised that Seo-koon is that Queen in Hwarang, because she looks much younger in here. But I admire her as a boss because she really drill her employees to bring up their potential in work.

Lee Je-hoon is practically a Do Min-joon who works in airport. No surprise. Chae Soo-bin's character is somewhat resembles me who just experiencing first job, so I can relate to it a lot. Haven't seen much Lee Dong-gun in here.

I love the sceneries in here, I know that being in airport is suck, I can feel the hot weather just by looking at this picture but somehow the sceneries are worth it.

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Loved the first episode! I get it if people might hate CSB’s character - victim mentality, full of excuses and all. I think she is playing a flawed character well. I know a lot if people like her. You know those people who thinks it’s everybody’s fault except themselves? but they do end up getting better once they change their mindset and take accountability. Her boss and Mr. Perfect but not really will be the right reigns for this wild horse.

Excited to see more stunning cinematography and more of the two leads’ interactions. I can already feel the sexual tension brewing.

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This pilot episode wasn't my favorite, but it was interesting and has potential. I'm really in it because I adore both Chae Soo Bin and Lee Joon, and they have good chemistry together. As for his arm, until someone says differently, I am assuming it is a metal forearm he had attached because he lost it in some traumatic kdrama doom like accident. That explains the added strength and lack of feeling. They just covered his hand with stem cell skin cells, so it looks like his other hand. That's my theory anyway.

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Oof I love that theory! He probably had accident that cause lose his right hand, then they replace it by bionic arms and using synthetic skin there

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I can't feel the chemistry for them. I'd want a better human being for him than a super annoying female lead.

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Based on this recap, this isn’t a show for me. Reading it got me so irritated with the female lead, can’t imagine having to watch it. Thanks for the recap!

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what I'm enjoying the most is the airport! :)

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Me too:)

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Same here!!

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I know what you mean. I love airports and watching people meet and say goodbye and travel through. So this show is fun for me in that aspect.

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I have been through Incheon a few times, and it is one of the most modern and advanced airports in the world, 2nd maybe only to Dubai. Sadly, they are not showing much of the real airport operations - mostly what we are seeing is fakey made up scenes where the gate keepers and such just whine. If Incheon was actually run like many of the characters portray it, it would be a total fail.

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This video gives a very good look at the actual airport. Those that have not been there probably don't realize just how big it is. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2pMzsy56H4

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anything from Lee Je-hoon I would watch it sooner or later, even if the story is weird or else.

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I liked the premier. Yeo-reum seems like an attention-seeking brat, but she's the kind of brat that I think will grow on me as I watch her grow. I love Soo-yeon and his mysterious vibe.
One thing that irks me in dramas is when someone is about to be hit they just stand there! Move, try to duck, or block the blow, don't just take a pipe to the head!!!

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Wasn’t this supposed to be a melo? I thought I’d read that somewhere. But then I saw the poster thumbnail on my drama site and was curious. Glad I did.

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I'm enjoying the show but I really don't like the whole damsel in distress trope, but it's only episode 1 and I hope it gets better because I was really excited for this drama.
ISo, Lee Je-hoon is a super hero mutant with magnetic arm. Is this the fantasy element we got to know about before the premier?
The leads are acting well.
That airport has the worst security. Two emergencies and they took forever to show up. Shouldn't they be patrolling or stationed throughout? Also what was with that psychotic break? He was just at the airport, most medicines are taken once or twice a day. So at the most he missed one dose, if he takes it twice a day. That scene was stupid. He wouldn't have reacted like that.
I am curious about to know how the title will connect to drama.
There is something about airports that makes them beautiful.

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I agree that scene was very dramatic. Most of the ep was clichèd and filled with tropes yet I'm still drawn to the airport setting I hope the show becomes not only better but also smarter.

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Yes the security makes me cringe. Airport security are supposed to be in every corner of the airport yet I rarely seen those.

That patient case also quite cringy. If he has schizophrenia, he needs to submit doctor's references to airlines staff and quarantine staffs before flying, and before flight he must be notified first during check-in whether he brings the medicine or not.

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Seriously. There are so many zillion real world problems in airports and then pick such cinematic ones.

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Luckily in Ep 3-4 the case is believable. I don't know why they must use destroying 3 self check-in machines and schizophrenia patient for the beginning

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Agreed. That was so much better.
The moment you start to damage property the airport security would have whisked you away. And it’s not really a job of customer service agent at that point.
I feel they are making our female lead look clumsy by putting her in unreasonable situations on day one and expect her to thrive. Let’s start with ‘lost baggage’ customer conplaints shall we??;))

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<And it’s not really a job of customer service agent at that point.

That's what I was thinking. It's also not their job to deal with a schizophrenic patient going off the rails –––– this is all for security to deal with!

And airports are never that empty, certainly not in the middle of the day (I wish!!! Then it would be easy to find a quiet spot. But it just doesn't happen).

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Hehe.. yeah the "security" scenes were a real joke. I was at Narita airport in Japan a while back and some lady went crazy because she could not find her bag. More than a dozen security people were on her in less than a minute.

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Right? When I went to Incheon Airport I was surprised that I barely found security until I am moving to immigration meanwhile in the arrival terminal the security are almost everywhere

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I think this must depend on the country you're in, I've never heard of those requirements.

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Well this doesn't applied to any case in my country either

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Most dramas are over dramatic in the first episodes to make a point. Am guessing things will tone down.
Once they establish the characters they should focus on the plot, hopefully.

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Finally. I like the pilot episode. Lee Je Hoon is no doubt made a nice first impression. Tho I am agree with the others that I hope we can see more character development in Han Yeo Reum. She is cute and has bright personality. Wanna see her passion working at the airport, and more.

Not many to say, I like the scenery too. And amazed by how they can film the drama in the hectic busy airport.

I am anticipating the next ep!

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I've never seen a drama set in the airport so I'm really enjoying the scenery and behind the scenes of the airport.

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"On the Way to the Airport" was partially set in the airport. And I love that serial as well, LoL. I love airport, and I love movies/serial set in the airport, LoL.

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Yes I know but I haven't seen that drama hence why this is my first drama set in the airport.

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That was a lovely drama!! I really liked it!!

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Yup me too... same with @ravennightstar I know the drama but didnt watch it.
Seemed like Fox Bride Star filmed their scene mostly at the airport?... I am curious. Lets see :)

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There was a Japanese one a few years ago, but it was honestly pretty bad. For much more detail on Incheon Airport just search YouTube for that name. One example https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ICQXN2URsTQ

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Cha Soo Bin is back!! I'm so happy!
This wasn't my favourite premiere but I do think it has a lot of potential to be better (and I'm really liking the fantasy element). I wish we focus less on the naggy boss though. It's her first day of work and he's already harrassing her. Granted it is her fault that she's late but that should've been his only complaint against her. Why prepare a list of complaints based on her previous department and not even give her the benefit of doubt? I hope she shows him that she's competent and organised!

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Sorry but your pro pic made my heart glow😍

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No need to be sorry! XD 😁
I'm glad it did! That's why I'm reluctant to change it lol. That pic has a special place in my heart. ♥

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😂
Awww^_^ haha, thank you for not changing it☺️
Bo Gum’s smile brightens my world🌞

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I watched the 1st two ep for LJH. In general, I stop watching dramas that make me feel hurt for the char esp the female lead, which was what I felt for CSB. Her character is annoying and loves to blame others for her mistakes. After finishing the 1st ep I knew the reason I disliked her char was b/c she reminds me so much of my days as an intern wherein I was so prone to making mistakes and getting reprimanded by my seniors, always trying to impress (but failing lol) Atleast I had the excuse of being a trainee then, but CSB is no longer a trainee, she ought to be capable of doing her job,no?

The second ep was even more frustrating goddddd

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That was exactly my feeling! It's not the first time I watched CSB character is a little bit annoying (the reason I dropped "Strongest Deliverymen"). But I'll be a little patience with this one as I love LJH and I love any film/serial set in the airport.

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Well, this was her first day in a new department, so I wouldn't expect her to know what she was doing at all. I was actually surprised that they didn't give her more (or any!) training.

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SO Far- I love it. Yes our female lead is annoying (really, really, annoying) but that just gives her room to grow. This looks like a lot of fun.

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I really liked Yeo-Reum. Like her, I have no sense of direction (at all!) and I would find my way through our office building by going round in circles but walking really quickly, so that I would still get to meetings on time. I once took a wrong turn at a building I'd never been in before and locked myself out of the fire escape. Not my finest moment. So yes, I related to her sense of rising panic after Soo-yeon's description of where the place was.

Also, she's got a compass and he's magnetic? Show, I can see what you're doing there. The needle is always going to point towards him, isn't it? Cute...

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I almost feel bad that I laughed at locking yourself out. Almost.

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I AM Han Yeo-reum. I'm not proud of it, but I am. I work part-time at a chip shop, and despite the fact I'm now the oldest and most experienced I'd the either minions, they're anyways clearing up after me. My boss properly puts me with certain employees under the impression that I work better with people who can take charge and boss me around. It's humiliating - if I was as bold as Yeo-reum is, I would speak up about the difference in treatment. I am Han Yeo-reum, with a filter.

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My tired eyes read "chip shop" as chick chop. Sigh.

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Yep. I massacre cute little chicks for a living 😂

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(Better not let our boy Chan hear that.)
Fighting!!! Hang in there!

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WHAT

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I can also relate. I also lack a sense of direction. I like to say that I’m directionally challenged and it also doesn’t help that I have terrible eye sight. Once my glasses are off and you throw me in a slightly uncomfortable situation, I wouldn’t quickly recognize a path that I take often. It’s happened so many times. It took me weeks to finally get used to the road from my uni to my new place. I was once nervous about something completely different when I was on a bus that I panicked because I thought I was lost and then got down at wrong stop. I spent minutes there trying to understand where I was till the next bus came and the bus driver explained the route to me. Turned out I knew exactly where I was because that’s a route I take almost everyday to uni (which I’d been taking for almost three years) and is two stops away from home 😅 - not my proudest moment.

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Don't go to Japan then. Shinjuku station has 202 different exits. People actually get lost there for hours.

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oh my! i thought i was the only one!
I am fantastic with road directions (I dont ever get lost while driving and i can orient myself pretty well), but am terrible in buildings and indoor spaces. I get lost going to restrooms in unfamiliar territories. I still follow 'exit' signs to find doors. I always take the same subway car and same stairs so I can get out to the right exit! I spend time familiarising myself in new buildings and taking mental notes (or even taking pictures of parking garages so i can find my car!).
The point is, we need to make an effort to overcome this limitation and not blame others for being good with directions ; ).

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Cloggie, I feel you about no sense of direction! I once got lost while in a laboratory building and got panic attack and had to call my friend (which was in that building too) to give me direction. And she's so awesome, she could imagine where I was when I told her few details about my whereabouts (more like while sobbing) and she said "then turn left, you'll see there's a stairs, there are two doors, etc." Urghh.

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I must admit I relate to her, too because she isn't able to be patient with customers and is slow. I'm like her in a more moderate version. I have a rather abrupt manner.

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I like it so far. However, as psychology student, I don't really like the way they portrayed schizophrenic guy with aggressive behavior.

It is interesting though as they shoot at Incheon Airport and even Terminal 2, as it must be challenging with so many passengers using the airport everyday.

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Schizophrenia often manifests in hallucinations, right? Was he hallucinating the police from some kind of trauma, maybe?

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still, portraying your one-off mentally ill person as unhinged in a country where treating your mental illness is taboo is... irresponsible

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Same here. I'm tired of the way most media portray schizophrenia, like some kind of ticking bomb. Hope things change soon.

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Mmmmm me likey! I sincerely liked the first two episodes. A hallmark of a good drama is when the current episode makes you curious about the next episode so you want to watch the next one to get your questions answered. Well “Where stars land” succeeds in this in spades. Just like the female protagonist, I’m curious about the back story of the male lead. So many interesting dramas to watch lately, where will I find the time? But I can chalk this drama up to one I’ll be following closely. It’s got an interesting, refreshing plot. Plus, as far as I know, there hasn’t been a romcom about working in an airport. It’s a refreshing change from hospitals and the legal profession, isn’t it?

PS -Plus the two leads have surprisingly mad chemistry. Could literally see the sparks fly between them, lol.

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Yeah there hasn't been any airport romance drama per se, so I am enjoying this one too. Also these whole workplace actions remind me a lot of jdramas. They tend to do workplace based dramas as well.

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Thanks @LollyPip
Since there are so many new shows these 2 weeks, I was reluctant to start yet another one, but somehow stumbled into trying this one. I was afraid that I'd get bored watching how an airport gets managed, and how it's staff have to walk, and walk, and run the lengths and breadths of such a vast workplace.

I must say that the first episode has started giving me a greater appreciation for the complexities and challenges of running an airport, a place that is the first 'face' of the country and that has to be in perfectly good order 24 hours a day.

I wonder if the real members of the public are in the show as unknown and unacknowledged extras. There were so many people constantly peppering different spaces. It's such a monumental task to ensure enough extras stationed everywhere, because scenes encompassed great lengths of halls and walkways.

All that aside, I was amused by the great divide between Yeo Reum and Soo Yeon. They were on totally different pages over the same situation, the same people and their past meeting. One wants to 'hide' and the other wants to be noticed (at least by the boss). Of course this makes their becoming friends and becoming close so exciting.

The other characters that I like are Yeo Reum's friend, Eun Seob and the lady boss, Seo Koon. They look like they'll be pillars of support for rash Yeo Reum and maybe even for dour Seo Yeon. They give sound advice and are willing to listen to Yeo Reum even when she's being unreasonable.

Seo Yeon is a little bit of a sad character to begin with. Trying not to stand out, being mostly alone and choosing friendlessness can't be fun. Immediately show has got me invested in his being brought round by Yeo Reum's ebullience.

Lee Dong Gun's character is a little intriguing. I liked him as the committed killer in Sketch. He's looking a bit too self-satisfied in just the few seconds' appearance here, but I hope he'll be a good foil to volatile or bland characters, if there are any. 😉

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*most experienced of the worker minions, they're ALWAYS
😑

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Did a lot of eye-rolling watching the ep because of CSB’s character but she can spin kick so I’m good.

Thank you for the recap, Lollypip! ^^

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I actually liked this. it established the main two and who they are. also liked the airport setting and how much going on to make it go around. I see complain about yeo reum and agree about her character flaws, but there also room for growth and I am looking forward to see her change and starting to listen to what other are telling her. also soo yeon have some growth to do. To me it is nice way to start a drama when character is not perfect and they need some changing to become better people. Also looking forward to gett to know the main character and how their past shaped them to become the people they are now.

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I actually like Yeo-reum a lot already even though she’s a hot mess because at least she knows it and doesn’t want to be that way, she just doesn’t know how to rein in her temper and to get her act together. I can relate to that personally from certain times in my life, and I know it’s possible to change, but it takes a lot of personal reflection and honest self-evaluation. Yeo-reum is in for a tough road, but she’s got the strength of personality to survive and thrive, and it’s going to be lots of fun to watch.

Ah Lollypip, always a pleasure reading your reviews.

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I like it so far.

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I actually liked the show, and although everyone else finds the female lead annoying I actually dont mind her, of course at times she seems entitled but it wasnt a total put off for me...Personally, I'm more annoyed by her male manager's character always nagging and complaining. I'm very curious about LJH's character and the mysterious man and also the female boss. It's also very interesting to see how the airport is ran.

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Any Fantasy (SF9 fandom) beanies watching for rowoon because he is killing it?

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I really liked how this show began. I wasn't expecting much and just turned it on to watch while working on some projects. I have to say that I wasn't expecting a fantastical element, but loved the way it was introduced. I watched the "rumor" scene about LJH's character stopping the speeding luggage cart and thought, "Wow, that really feels like a scene from and old Superman movie!" But I also liked the blooming friendship/understanding that we get to see in ep. 3-4. I'll be back for more...

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This was my most anticipated premiere for this week and, sadly, it ended up being kind of a downer. I love the setting, but I just done care for any of the characters yet. In fact, pretty much all but Chae Soo-bin's friend irritated me. But this is a 20 episode drama, so we have plenty of time for it to grab my heart. Love the idea of blending a slice of life drama with some fantasy (or sci-fi?) elements.

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