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Premiere Watch: Haechi, Item, The Light in Your Eyes, The Fiery Priest

It’s only February but I’m already nearing the point where I will have more new dramas I want to watch than there are hours I’m awake. But I’m ready to take on the challenge of watching as many dramas as I possibly can. It’s a heavy burden, but I’ll manage somehow.

 

Haechi

Time slot: Monday & Tuesday
Broadcaster: SBS
Genre: Sageuk
Episode count: 48 episodes (two 35 minute episodes each day)

Reasons to watch: Fresh out of military service, Jung Il-woo returns to the small screen in Haechi, the first network drama to depict King Yeongjo’s youth. Jung Il-woo stars as a young King Yeongjo in the years before he ascended to the throne. Before he was king, he was known as Yi Geum and he wasn’t considered a strong contender for the throne. Though he was incredibly intelligent and gifted, his birth status as the child of the king and a lowly common woman meant that he was at a disadvantage. A lesser man may have just decided to take advantage of his princeling status and live a life of luxury, but Yi Geum finds the strength and resolve to lay a claim on the throne. He’s not alone though; along the way he will have help from his merry band of kickass friends played by Go Ara, Kwon Yul, and Park Hoon.

 

Item

Time slot: Monday & Tuesday
Broadcaster: MBC
Genre: Mystery, fantasy
Episode count: 32 episodes (two 35 minute episodes each day)

Reasons to watch: Another actor making a notable comeback this year is Joo Ji-hoon. 2019 is shaping up to be a big year for Joo as he’s making his return to dramas after a four-year absence during which he focused on his film career. In Item, Joo Ji-hoon stars as a prosecutor who teams up with Jin Se-young, a skilled criminal profiler, to unspool a tangled web of conspiracy and mystery that surrounds a powerful and supernatural item. The item in question may be behind a series of strange events, and the item could also be the reason that Joo’s beloved niece is in danger. He’ll risk everything to protect the people he loves and he won’t shy away from a fight if he can save his niece. Kim Kang-woo co-stars as Joo’s foil, a seemingly charming and humble business executive who’s actually sociopath.

 

The Light in Your Eyes

Time slot: Monday & Tuesday
Broadcaster: JTBC
Genre: Romance, fantasy
Episode count: 12 episodes

Reasons to watch: How are you spending the time you have? The Light in Your Eyes will be delving into issues of time with Han Ji-min and Kim Hye-ja sharing the role of a young woman named Kim Hye-ja who suddenly loses her time. Kim Hye-ja the character aspires to be a news announcer but when she suddenly ages into an old woman, it seems like her dreams might be over. But after she ages that she discovers she’s gained the ability to manipulate time–but not very well, which results in all sorts of hijinks and issues for her. Nam Joo-hyuk co-stars as Han Ji-min/Kim Hye-ja’s love interest. He once aspired to be a journalist but when the series starts, he’s whiling away the hours of his life. Sohn Ho-joon will provide the comic relief as the unemployed, prospect-less older brother of Han Ji-min/Kim Hye-ja.
 

The Fiery Priest

Time slot: Friday & Saturday
Broadcaster: SBS
Genre: Crime, mystery, comedy
Episode count: 40 episodes (two 35 minute episodes each day)

Reasons to watch: When I think “comedy” the next word out of my mouth isn’t usually murder. But SBS is taking an interesting spin on the recent dramaland priest trend with The Fiery Priest, with the drama being billed as an “extreme investigative comedy.” When an elderly priest is murdered, Kim Nam-gil’s character, a priest with major anger management issues, decides to tackle the case and find the murderer. Kim Sung-kyun is a violent crimes detective who ends up reluctantly joining Kim in searching for the culprit and while Kim Nam-gil runs hot, Kim Sung-kyun…is likely to just run away. He’s more Keystone cop than hard-bitten detective and their personalities go together like oil and water. Honey Lee rounds out the trio as a prosecutor who talks a big game and always believes she’s in the right. Go Joon joins the cast as a gangster-turned-good but it’s not yet clear if he’s a friend or foe to Kim Nam-gil.

 
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Oh my. I'm interested in all of them.

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Me too. Otokke.. 😭

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Can't wait for The Fiery Priest! Kim Nam Gil rarely disappoints and even when he dies he's still ridiculously entertaining!

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Lol I meant does...omg!

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That's a brilliant typo.

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I'd call it a freudian slip.

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The drama-watching heart remembers.

*salute*

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Lol However he could be the Sean Bean of kdrama :p

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You posted your Sean Bean comment on the 11th. Today is the 15th and I just now got it...

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Better late than never \o/

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From the Dramas premiering this week, the two dramas I'm interested in checking out, are:

Radiant/ The Smile In Your Eyes: This one looks like it will have that beautiful heartfelt quality that leaves a deep impression on the viewer… hopefully! So I am really looking forward to it.

The Fiery Priest: I'm tentatively interested. I know a show like this could go wrong/makjang/disappointing easily, but hopefully it won't. I hope that it will have a Christian moral at its heart… hopefully KNG won’t die in the end, because he seems to die in most of his dramas/movies hehe (kind-of like Sean Bean of the Western hemisphere of entertainment lol).

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@sweetsour I look forward to The Light In Your Eyes as well! I have a feeling it'll be like Go-Back Spouses, a touching heartfelt drama with comedic hijinks. Hopefully dramabeans will recap it :)

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I am going to check out THE LIGHT IN YOUR EYES/RADIANT because of Son Ho-joon's funny teasers.
My first exposure to him is COFFEE FRIENDS with his pal Yoo Yeon-seok.
Interestingly he comes across to me as the most reticent of the 4 main leads when dealing with the public in the cafe.
I recently started GBS which I am enjoying.

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Glad you're enjoying GBS! It took me by surprise how much I liked this drama :)
BTW Son Ho Joon was also in Three Meals A Day. After seeing him as the maknae to Chajumma, it's interesting now seeing him in Coffee Friends where you can tell he's very comfortable with Yoo Yeon Seok. I do agree that Ho-Joon's personality seem more introverted.

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;)

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My fingers are crossed for Fiery Priest too! It could really go either way...But let's trust KNG for now haha :D

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Please don't misunderstand, but what do you mean exactly by "Christian moral"? What kind of moral did you have in mind?

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Justice, compassion, redemption, forgiveness...? among many others. For example Pinocchio had a Christian moral, even if they didn't set out to have it, being that the truth will always prevail. In this drama however, the male lead is a priest, so I hope they treat Christianity with respect (even though I'm not Catholic).

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Aren't the things you mention a matter of just being a decent human being? They're not the exclusive domain of "Christian morals" Though I guess you say that because he's supposed to be a priest.
Even though he's a priest, it is after all Kim Nam gil so I'm expecting disrespect, especially since it's listed as a comedy. I'm assuming he'll be quite disrespectful of the rituals and rules.

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I can totally see that. Sly rascal who, when push comes to shove, is a good person.

Fiery Priest is written by the Chief Kim writer. Chief Kim was this guy who used to cook the books for shady people and later became a champion of justice at his company.

I'll bet the fiery priest will be unconventional,and in the end will be a better representative of what it means to be a good christian and the lesson will be how the spirit of the law overrules the letter of the law. Or something like that.

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I'm actually looking forward to Dazzling - mostly because no matter how many times I read the plot description, I still can't tell what the heck it's about! 😂

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No... why are you doing this, drama gods? I don’t have time to watch all of them! But I want to 😭😭😭

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Haechi is 24 epsiodes (1 hour)? A proper saeguk then! I'm in!

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Does anyone have more time for me to trade? They all seem interesting and I want to watch them all! :)

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Yes please. Or maybe I can find something similar to Hermione's necklace that helps her attend all her classes so I can watch aaalll the dramas in my list?? 😮😮

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I'm definitely checking out the light in your eyes for son ho joon and nam Joo hyuk.

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How are all three of the ones I want to watch airing on the same days?! Add that to Crowned Clown and the start of my weeks will be drama heaven.

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I just watched Ju Ji hoon in Item and the first thing I'll say is: he doesn't have red lipstick, yay!! After that, I'd say for a kdrama it seems a bit, shall I say, bizarro? I think there are a few noir film techniques, a lot of night shots, people's faces in half light, lots and lots of vertical lines, etc.
I'm interested in at least trying all of the rest as soon as subs are out.

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All 4 dramas are worth checking out but who has the time for all that plus the current?

Honey Lee is on a comedy roll. Two successful comedy films and a new comedy drama. This looks fun.

JTBC + daesang queen Kim Hye-ja + Ahn Nae-sang = me watching.

This sageuk geek wants to watch every sageuk that is being offered. I just noticed that Prince Yeonryung (Yeoning's half brother) is played by my fave sageuk child actor Noh Young-hak. He has just as many sageuks as Yeo Jin-goo but still stuck in supporting roles :(. The sageuk gods are so cruel.

I'll be cheering from the sideline for ITEM to do well. Varieties of different genres is good for dramaland.

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And yeonryung will die soon at that! (hey, history is a spoiler) My hopes are that haechi will really take off early in ratings and noh young hak will get more noticed to play big roles, lol.

From the first ep reviews, it looks like nam joo hyuk improved his acting, so I'll check that out when I get more time.

Item- I think I'll pass on this. dodgy CG + jin se yeon(nope, she has not improved, from all accounts) = nope. Uh, I'm still rooting for joo ji hoon, I guess?

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I'm hoping it'll take a while. Sukjong died first and I don't want to Kim Kap-soo to leave yet either.
Noh ( Yeonryung) will ascend the throne after so hopefully he'll be around for half of the show or more like JACKPOT.

My biggest gripe is Go Ara. I'm sorry but sageuk is not her forte. She just doesn't carry herself well in this era. Too aggressive with no air of grace whatsoever.
Maybe making her a Joseon officer would foil some of it.

Kwon is playing Park Mun-su who was Yeoning's right hand man. He was actually the one who put a stop to Lee In-jwa's rebellion but I'm not sure it'll be included in this drama.

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After watching the first ep., she's definitely the weakest link acting-wise(well...next to this cast, that's probably not hard to be the weakest actor), but yeah, her character is supposed to be a total tomboy and hallelujah, she's not written to be a dainty, faint-hearted crybaby here(*glares at hwarang writer pointedly*). It's definitely making her presence more palatable. At any rate, I honestly don't really find her worse than han hyo joo was in dong yi(visually i guess she suits sageuk better, but her speech and eh...I just find her awkward too). Anyways, I was too excited at finally having a politically oriented sageuk with historical figures.😂 Having fun recognizing minor cast members from past sageuks...

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I asked for a stuffy sageuk so I better watch all of it lol.
Agree about Han Hyo-joo. I don't find her appealing in sageuks either.

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Item it is

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You know, I always knew that Nam Joo Hyuk was tall, but not THAT tall!! Like seriously, he always looks average height in his movies and dramas but man, that picture!

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I thought the same thing!!! It doesn't help that the drama where I really watched him was Weighlifting Fairy and Lee Sung Kyung is pretty close to his height, but everyone here just looks so tiny compared to him! XD

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That's what I thought too!!!

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A couple of things:
1. THE LIGHT IN YOUR EYES will be available on Viki (US) under the title RADIANT (for some reason); and
2. OCN's Sat/Sun 7 episode drama TRAP with Lee Seo-jin and Sung Dong-il started last weekend.
You know what to expect from OCN and after watching episode 1 I think I can say you get it. Its a buckle your seat belts drama.

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I wasn't planning to watch Trap, but after reading your comment, I'll def will give it a try.

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Hi @cafe99 Cafe. Definitely give it a try. I watched episode 2 tonight and it is a gripping as episode 1.

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Super excited for The Fiery Priest, the cast is gold and totally dig the investigative angle. Also, hoping it will be recapped here, pretty please!
Also, Joo Ji-hoon's suit and how his shoelaces matched it o_o

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The Light in Your Eyes only has 12 episodes?!? T_____T

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Item checked! Fresh take from Ju Jihoon.. Kim Kangwoo so far we can see his strength when it comes to his enemies or his minions.. But when it's about the item he is somewhat vulnerable.. Jin Seyeon? No comment, I'll take her character as passerby. The other woman although just a glimpse look solid (crisp tone and not so much eye blinking like you know who)..

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Fiery Priest is the title that has me most excited.

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Will check out all of them except for THE FIERY PRIEST (since it's not available anywhere legally for me). Thankfully, it doesn't sound like a drama I'd like...

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Actually, it looks like it will be on Kocowa. But would only check it out if it had rave reviews.

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I'd love to watch haechi but 48 episodes is too much

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It is 48 half-hour episodes, two back to back episodes each day. It is the same as 24 normal one hour ones.

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Item sounds AWESOME

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I just watched Item episode 1 and Ju Ji hoon is just wonderful to look at. I'm just watching the show for him, like I did Kingdom. Some scenes are a bit over the top, but heck, it's Ju Ji hoon, so it's ok, but it didn't pull me in the way Memories of Alhambra did right from episode 1. When the rain started pelting, I got a chill, and held my breath, then remembered this is another show.

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Item - I've watched the first episode and found myself feeling tense and breathless repeatedly and even at the end. That was a very packed and fast-paced episode, and it's managed to give us all the setup and relationships for the next courses of action. I wonder if this show can keep up this pace. I'm thinking some lull moments will be great, to help us take stock before we move on to the next revelation. I'm hanging on for a wild ride!

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Is it scary?

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@bcampbell1662 Beverly

I didn't find it scary, but there are thrills, suspense and the supernatural. It could have been more gruesome but wasn't. More exciting than scary, I guess. 😉

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this is helpful--thanks!

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Of all these, I'll be watching Item. Episode 1 was good and the story is quite original, it was entertaining. And of course they have Joo Ji Hoon playing a hero and single father, who can resist that? :)

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Looking forward to The Light in Your Eyes because I really like Han Ji-min...plus Nam Joo-hyuk is nice added bonus. He is not a stellar actor but I think he could do a good job with a good actress giving him a hand.
Might check out Haechi as well although I am never sure when Go Ara is involved. Sometimes I love her and sometimes she gets on my nerves.

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So many dramas, so little time!
All of them look pretty interesting too. A varied bunch this week.

I will definitely add The Fiery Priest to my watch-list. Excited to see Kim Nam Gil and his crime-solving antics.

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Well, I definitely want to watch two out of this list of new dramas, but I got so distracted when I noticed how tall Nam Joo Hyuk is compared to everyone else in the "Light in your eyes." XD
It's like everyone else is around the same height and then there is him. XD

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I'm looking forward to Fiery Priest the most and I really hope Haechi does well. Jung Il Woo's so talented and I feel like his career has stalled for the last 7 or 8 years.

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It's interesting that Joo Ji-Hoon is in this Item show right now because last week Doona Bae instagrammed a picture of the script for Kingdom Season 2 and it looked like a table read. Then a couple days ago she filmed pulling up to some location in the countryside and I got the distinct impression it was Kingdom filming. Though, since it's not a direct broadcast they may be filming parts of it wildly out of order. I just hope they didn't have to recast the prince between seasons. If they do that or kill him off it'll gut the show for me.

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I wasn't that interested in any of these other than Fiery Priest, but now they all sound intriguing!

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