Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching
by DB Staff
So, what are we all watching this week?
What kept you reaching for more (or agonizing when there was no more), and what made you want to throw your remote through the screen? Time to weigh in…
Currently weecapping: Forest
Romantic Doctor Teacher Kim 2: Things are going a bit crazy after this show’s even-keeled start… but at this point I’m so invested in the characters that I’ll take whatever I’m given — bring it on, show. Knife slashes, stripping gangsters, pompous sexist doctors, malicious hospital takeovers, medical procedures and scenarios that I’m sure are more than far-fetched, and I have literally forgotten how many times Ahn Hyo-seop has hopped on top of someone to do chest compressions. Lucky thing we’ve got the gravitas of Han Seok-kyu to keep everything (and everyone) grounded. I might have a soft spot for grumpy Woo-jin and those sad eyes of his, but it’s Teacher Kim that keeps me coming back to this show week after week. In the romance department, I’m enjoying the little side crush of nurse Eun-tak + lollipop intern Ah-reum — it feels natural and cute, which is the opposite of Eun-jae + Woo-jin and his surprise smooch in the OR. It felt more like a Quick, it’s the end of Episode 8 and we need a kiss moment more than an actual progression of their relationship. But okay, show, if you say so.
Crash Landing on You: I’m still behind a week, even with the preemptions (how did I pull that off?) — but honestly, the news last week that Sohn Ye-jin went to the ER for “overwork” kind of kills the magic of this drama a tiny bit for me. Selfishly, it makes me have to think about the world behind the world of the drama, and I don’t willingly do that all the time (for shame). But even more than that, it also makes me mad that this is still happening regularly on drama sets, and that overworking a crew and cast is normal, tolerated, and even worse, possibly expected.
Touch: Why am I still here? Good question. The answer is Lee Tae-hwan as Do-jin, the idol man-child that’s crushing over Soo-yeon. It was hilarious/weird to see him losing his mind when she pats toner and moisturizer onto his face. Also, if anyone else is still watching this besides me, I’m curious if I’m the only one that’s noticed the weird sound effect they use when they’re doing skincare. No one’s skin anywhere, no matter how poor the condition, sounds like sandpaper when someone pats a cotton pad on it. It was nails-on-chalkboard bad. Maybe it’s a sign I should drop this drama while I still can.
XX: Out of sheer curiosity, I decided to check out the MBC web drama XX starring EXID’s Hani. That’s a lot of X’s. And you know what’s in the drama? More X’s, except they’re exes! (*Laughs to self*) Anyway, the first episode of this drama was pretty much cute boys, fancy drinks, and a rather typical conflict between our bartender heroine and her ex-bestie (Hwang Seung-un playing the same role she did in Time). I have a high tolerance for poor dramas, and even hokey dramas, but there’s something about XX that’s cold and kind of patched together. It’s high on style and even a little bit more edgy (comparatively) than we are used to seeing in primetime dramas with interesting camera angles, music drops, and quick-cut scenes — but it almost feels like the drama is making up in style what it doesn’t really have in story. And I came for the story. But that being said, I actually liked Hani’s refreshingly un-cute performance here, and her relationship with her co-worker was the most interesting part for me so far. I didn’t really like this drama, but I didn’t not like it either. Still deciding, which means more watching is required.
Currently recapping: Diary of a Prosecutor
Forest: After reading the ah-mazing descriptions of this show, I was so ready for this premiere. How could I pass up a show that somehow involves a businessman-turned-firefighter and a surgeon living amongst the trees in a mythical forest that heals sadness? I have to say, I’m disappointed that no one is living Tarzan and Jane style in the forest yet. We’ve got both characters near the forest, but that’s not what I was promised. I still don’t know what this forest’s deal is, but I’m hoping it’s magic. None of that healing powers of nature stuff, I want actual powers. Because so far, it’s not delivering enough on its bonkers premise. Except, maybe, that San-hyuk became a firefighter for business reasons. Who does that? Otherwise, we’ve got pretty scenery and fairly stock characters. San-hyuk is like every other cold rich dude with a past. As for Young-jae, can a surgeon be a Candy? Because she felt Candy-esque even though she isn’t working five jobs and living in poverty. Maybe it’s the overdramatic acting style that’s doing it. Regardless, now that our characters are in place, we’d better get some crazy forest cohabitation hijinks because that’s what I’m here for.
Itaewon Class: That was a solid premiere. Although the backstory had a bunch of familiar tropes, it was well done. The characters are interesting, and I already feel connected. Both Park Sae-ro-yi and Oh Soo-ah are likable, but I appreciate that they’re not perfect. Sae-ro-yi is kind and principled but has a temper and is quick to judge. Soo-ah is fair and tough but not likely to stick her neck out for others. Dad was the best, which of course means he had to go. Why is becoming an orphan the go-to tragic backstory? Can’t the hero have a grudge and a parent? And I’ve yet to meet a chaebol, but there’s no way they’re all the spawn of Satan. It’d be nice if the villain weren’t filthy rich, for a change. I don’t know about you, but I’ve met some pretty awful people who were solidly middle class.
Currently recapping: Black Dog
The Secret Life of My Secretary: There were many gems from 2019 that I didn’t get around to watching. This week, I finally binged The Secret Life of My Secretary and was hooked from start to finish! It definitely had its fair share of emotional moments, but was ultimately a light and breezy show to watch. Kim Young-kwang and Jin Ki-joo were great in their roles as the love-struck boss and his trusty secretary. Jin Ki-joo’s impersonation of the haughty Veronica Park is my favorite thing ever — I think I can still hear the iconic “I’m Veronica Pa~rk!” echoing faintly while I go about my everyday life. I honestly could have done without the whole secret association storyline, but watching our main and secondary couples interact was such a treat that in the grand scheme of things, I can’t complain. I’m so happy I picked it up!
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (January 25, 2020)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (January 18, 2020)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (January 11, 2020)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (January 4, 2020)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (December 28, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (December 21, 2019)