Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching
by DB Staff
So, what are we all watching this week?
What kept you reaching for more (or agonizing when there was no more), and what made you want to throw your remote through the screen? Time to weigh in…
The Dude in Me: I mainly sat down to watch this because I wanted to prep myself for the premiere of When the Devil Calls Your Name with some Park Sung-woong movies. Unfortunately there was far less Park Sung-woong than I wanted. But that is where my criticism of this movie ends. Making up for the dire lack of Park Sung-woong was lots of Jinyoung. Up till now, the only time I’d seen Jinyoung act was in Miss Granny as a supporting character. I didn’t know what to expect, but he was incredible here as a high schooler who switched bodies with Park Sung-woong–he nailed all these little ajusshi/Park Sung-woong characteristics. Without giving too much away, he sold the character’s growth and made it feel organic and true. Any plot that involves a body switch lives or dies by its execution and this one was pitch perfect. The Dude in Me leaned into the absurdity but grounded itself with its plot points about family and second chances.
Currently recapping: Rookie Historian Gu Hae-ryung
When the Devil Calls Your Name: The premiere was packed with a lot of stuff, no thanks to tvN’s 80-minute format. But Devil did some magic and turned its intro episodes into a fun ride. That’s partly thanks to the main cast who can all deftly switch from comedy to crime to chaos in a single scene. Ha Rip’s and Mo Tae-kang’s interactions are the best! I love that Ha Rip is a weak human. He wants to do the right thing but easily folds under fear and temptation. Meanwhile, the Devil is bored and petty enough to be unpredictable, giving our hero a fighting chance, but not enough for us viewers to relax. So there are a lot of moments where you’re sitting there laughing at Ha Rip forming a cross out of teaspoons or licking a talisman to stick it on Tae-kang’s forehead, while simultaneously worrying if that’s what will set the Devil off and earn Ha Rip an express ticket to hell. I can’t wait to see more of them. Even the Devil admits to being highly amused! So maybe Ha Rip will survive this after all. Maybe.
A Moment at Eighteen: Hnnnngh so much cute this week. And tragedy, but we’ll get to that later. First, let me enjoy the completely “anonymous” partner-picking shenanigans, crumpled uniform talk, and that thrill of receiving messages and overthinking your reply or why you didn’t get one. (I swear, read/unread markers are one of the evilest communication inventions of the 21st century.) I just wanna hug all these poor babies who are trying to figure out life and love and friendship. And that includes their well-meaning but weak ex-assistant-homeroom teacher. Now to the sad parts… What I really like about Joon-woo as a character is he isn’t actually dumb or weak as outsiders assume. He’s had a difficult life and knows that good and evil come in different forms, so he isn’t taken in by Hwi-young’s fakey fakerson act. Joon-woo just chooses not to engage because some fights aren’t worth it. But that world weariness also allows him to see through a lot of bullshit. Despite the tragedy that befell sweet Jung-hoo’s life, I felt vindicated in that last few moments when Joon-woo heard who paid for the bullying and immediately connected the dots. He understood that the kids who assaulted them aren’t the real problem. He understood that Ki-tae isn’t the real problem. It’s Hwi-young and his obsession with unleashing all his frustrations and pent up malice on Joon-woo that led them to this. And boy, did Joon-woo let him have it. That snakey little forker couldn’t even defend himself because he knows it’s true. I’d wish hell on Hwi-young, but I’m afraid he’s already living in one with his mother. Unlike Joon-woo who copes by trying to live quietly and knowing when to hold back or let go, Hwi-young and his mother resort to spreading their misery around to feel better. I don’t want Hwi-young to get away with what he did, but I do want that kid and his mother to get out of that household fast and maybe start living a life where they don’t have to step on innocent people for stress relief.
Designated Survivor: 60 Days: Terrible, terrible week. First, my Secretary ship sailed–with a funny third party to boot–only to sink in a span of two episodes. Second, I’m mad at Park Moo-jin for crossing the line of nobility and into complete idiot territory. Does he really think the media painting his son as conceived through an affair is better than just telling the truth that he’s the stepfather but he loves him like his own son? I’ve praised the show’s writing before in pushing President Park to make hard decisions, but this week’s “scandal” was stupid. Go sit in a corner, Moo-jin. Preferably one with blast-proof walls. Meanwhile, I’ll be here, spying on Team Tailor and eyeing every well-suited guy in this show. For uhm… national security.
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (July 27, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (July 20, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (July 13, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (July 6 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (June 29, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (June 22, 2019)