about javabeans

I love Korean dramas and I write about ‘em. (And write about ‘em. And write about ‘em. You may have noticed that brevity is not my friend. I want to be ITS friend, but it shuns me regularly.)

I’ve been watching Korean dramas (on and off) as long as I can remember, for almost two decades. My first Korean drama was the 1992 hit Jealousy, and I’ve been hooked ever since. Man does that make me feel old.

I started this site because I couldn’t find a site providing meaty (or any) analysis for K-dramas, a longtime guilty pleasure of mine. I enjoy marveling at the pretty as much as anyone, but also wanted to express appreciation for quality that didn’t automatically dismiss something for being popular. Or, on the flipside of that same coin, to discuss something popular that went beyond surface discussion of the plot or hot cast. (Although, let’s be honest! Hot cast = a nice bonus.)

My underlying modus operandi: Just because it’s pop culture doesn’t mean discourse has to be shallow. I’d like to sustain a fun but hopefully substantive level of conversation, mixed with some irreverence. Because it’s not worth it if it’s no fun.

I occasionally tweet (@javabeans). And even less occasionally blog (elsewhere, that is). There’s also a Dramabeans Facebook that gets ignored a lot.

 

about girlfriday

I’m 50% writer, 50% couch potato. I lean left; politically, not footwise. I like to make snap judgments, then reconsider them to a pulp. I enjoy grammar, if only to break some more rules. I’m a tv junkie, a critic, a fan, but mostly importantly, I’m a writer who likes to procrastinate by watching k-dramas. The fact that I can do both now blows my mind.

I feel very strongly that people can have thoughtful discourse on just about any topic, and that art—mass, pop, high, pulp, whatever it may be—can and should be discussed intelligently for the thing it is.

Hence, I thought Dramabeans would be a good place to exercise my brain. Or was it exorcise? That would explain the confusion.

About the name: A Girl Friday could rule the world, if she really wanted to. You know her—the best friend smartypants, the plucky assistant who always knows exactly what the private eye/cop/secret agent/superhero needs? She’s cute and clever and sassy and loyal, and pretty much smarter than everyone in the room. I mean, could Jack Bauer have saved one day, let alone eight, without Chloe O’Brien?

My favorite Girl Fridays are of course ones that break the mold. Willow Rosenberg and Veronica Mars are the contemporary evolution of the classic character, and give us all hope that the geeky outcast can and will save the world.

Just think of me as Dramabeans’ girlfriday: the Miss Moneypenny to javabeans’ Bond.

I sometimes tweet things I shouldn’t. And ramble on in a blog.

Meet the rest of the Dramabeans staff.

 

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760 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. 101 Amyable

    I’m curious as to how you’ll rate Coffee Prince! 10/10?

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  2. 102 Gramps

    #100
    Javabeans will understand the comment perfectly, which is I suppose all that matters, but I’m stuck on one word here (and so is my largeish pile of dictionaries): 써야하다. Can anyone put me (and other strugglers with Korean) out of my misery about that that word means?

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  3. 103 jindarae

    i love the new logo, Hyun Bin is there…

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  4. 104 jindarae

    Gramps, in my research 써야하다 means “it does bitterly”, something like that…please correct me also javabeans…

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  5. 105 Gramps

    #104 – ““does bitterly”
    Yes, that’s what Mr Google tried to tell me, but (a) I can’t fit that sense into the actual sentence and (b) I am very sceptical about Mr Google (he of the rampant phantom Korean bedspreads). He is often fooled by XXX하다 type compound verbs/adjectives (which account for some 60% of verbs in common use), resorting to “it does XXX”, so he has a big problem there.

    My favorite recent Googlism is what he comes up with for a line in the chorus of 윤하 ‘s song “Fly”
    잔인한 세상 나 혼자지만 포기못해
    which with my unaided brain (again subject to correction) I take to mean something like
    Though I’m alone in this cruel world, I’m not giving up

    But now paste the Hangul for that line into Mr. Google’s Korean to English translator and be amazed at what he comes out with (I won’t repeat it here because of PG issues) Though at least in this case he doesn’t conjure up any of his usual bedspreads.

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  6. 106 javabeans

    For the curious, the comment in Korean is, “I ought to be writing this in English, but my English isn’t very good…”

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  7. 107 Bear

    Thanks for your blogs. They are well written, informative and certainly enjoyable to read. I hope that you will continue to keep us all “posted” through your writings. Keep up the great work and looking forward to reading your next blog.

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  8. 108 Amyable

    써야하는데 = ought to be writing

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  9. 109 Gramps

    “써야하는데 = ought to be writing”

    Dohhh!!! Nga pala!!! Thank you so much for this, Amyable. Incomprehension misery over (though replaced by severe bruising from self-administered kicks).
    쓰다 plus ㅓ/ㅏ 야 = hypothetical obligation via negative conditional particle (Martin 1992, p.492a), then the rest is plain sailing.
    But I was well and truly floored until you gave me a hand-up, and without even the excuse we learners have with some spoken forms of 쓰다 and 살다, where failing to distinguish ㅆ fromㅅ sometimes has us reading when we should be living.
    Now: does anyone know a oculist who does eyeglasses with built-in hindsight correction?

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  10. 110 Amyable

    Oculist? Is that what optometrists are called in UK? Oculist sounds a bit painful like an ocular cyst. Perhaps I can visit one when I’m in UK next week. What I don’t really understand with the comment in Korean is the first part, 신기하네요. What’s fascinating? The blog’s existence? The great following for Javabean’s blog? Also, if you are reading when you should be living, yikes, we have great problems here.

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  11. 111 Sammi510

    I just wanted to drop by and say, KAMSAHAMNIDA! Your blog rocks. And since you mentioned Soulmates… you were the main translator for WITH S2 for that drama right? One of my fav dramas of ALL TIME. Why more ppl haven’t seen it, I just don’t understand… Thanks again @_@

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  12. 112 Sam

    Came across your blog while searching for the song that Choi Han Gyul sang in the 17th episode of Coffee Prince. I must say that you have the most complete set of unofficial OST. And best of all, your reviews were so in-depth that i find myself re-watching the series to look out for the little details that i missed out. And, your summary were so lively that i could ‘see’ the images of the show as i read them. I really appreciate the effort you put in sharing your thoughts with everyone interested. Thank you.

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  13. 113 boshky

    you write some of the most brilliant summaries EVER!!!!!

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  14. 114 Tee

    Hi javabeans, I stumbled upon your site awhile back, but just recently started watching Coffee Prince and have really been enjoying your recaps. I’m a total spoiler-phobe, but I can’t resist reading your summaries for the next episode while i wait for the episodes to finish downloading. Since you’re in CP withdrawal, I think you should consider trying out “Alone in Love” if you haven’t watched it yet. And if you like “Green Rose,” you might enjoy “Resurrection.” UTW is simply amazing in it. And on a completely unrelated note, have you ever seen the American TV show, “Veronica Mars?” I think it’d be right up your alley. Alright, just wanted to sing your praises. Keep up the good work!

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  15. 115 Anonymous

    hiii, I really enjoy Coffee Prince and I would really like to upload the soundtracks to my computer but I dont quite understand how I’m suppose to do it. IF you would care to explain I’d be really happy =)
    Thanks!!!

    you can message me on my myspace or email me THANKS :D

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  16. 116 kiloutimuk

    Hi all!

    I am really excited. Keep up the great work. Good resources here.

    Bye

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  17. 117 javabeans

    Ahh, Veronica Mars, a show with which I am intimately familiar. Well, back in the first season when it was brilliant before it went down in the crapper. (Beaver as psycho mastermind? Yes-she-was-raped-no-she-wasn’t-no-wait-yes-she-was -and-by-two-randomly-different-people? In the same night? Coma baby? Fugitive 17-year-old father of said coma baby thwarting FBI agents to gain custody of a child he could have legally won custody of in court anyway? Shmopey Logan? Feminists perpetrating rapes to make some kind of feminist statement? Okay that last one is what I’ve been able to cobble together from not-watching the last, horrific season.)

    Anon #115, I’m not quite sure what problem you’re having. You can click the links which will take you to a download page. Download the files. Extract them using WinRar or another extracting program. Enjoy.

    Thanks again to everyone who dropped comments here! I’m glad you enjoy the site.

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  18. 118 Nale

    Wow. Your site is amazing!!!! I don’t really watch Korean drama this hard core, but I have to say…this site should totally be on your resume; it’s incridible how much effort you put into it and it looks so professional!
    Kudos to you!

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  19. 119 deehan

    hi dramabeans!!!

    im really impressed with your site!!! thats why im more curious how you made this site very good… thats why i always recommend your site to my friends for accurate drama synopsis and refreshing comments and soundtracks….

    i love your site a lot ‘coz aside that its easy to navigate it is really comprehensive..i wonder how you made everything so up to date and accurate with so many things to do with your life?

    well it’s none of my business right? anyhoo…just to say avid fan of your site….more power!! and i sure hope it gets better and better….

    just wondering if you got plans featuring 9 ends and 2 outs in here?

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  20. 120 patty

    hi javabeans…. i like your site and your comment and writings. seems like we have something in common of korean series. i do like romantic comedy better than melodrama , too. do you know surgeon bong dal hee ( lee yo won , kim min jun and lee beom soo ) it’s also one of my fave. have you seen it ?

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  21. 121 GiGi

    There is a song from soulmates that isn’t on the ost. It plays in the middle and the very last part in the last episode. I don’t know the name of the song or who sings it, but I really like it. I was wondering if anybody could help me figure out either the name of the artist or the name of the song.

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  22. 122 emyeutruyen

    GiGi, I was just requesting for that title, Soulmate, on cinflix.com. I’ve dled so many kdramas and kmovies, that I decided to try the rental thing, so my hubby can watch the dramas with me. I’m trying to get him “addicted” to “I’m Sorry, I Love You.” We just started it last night. Anyway, Gigi, the song (I just watched the last minute of Soulmate, and heard the song you were describing) is “Don’t Turn Away” by Peking Laundry.

    This is a great site. I agree with the comments about your writing style and ability to address your thoughts in such a witty yet informative way!!! Thank you for providing an ample amount of information and useful information such as downloading torrents…. I think this site would have been very useful a year ago when it took me site upon site to figure out how to download kdramas online.

    I’m still learning, but I have definitely encountered the same passion for kdramas as many of you.

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  23. 123 gail

    oh, new ordered look for your about page. love the linky dinks. and the korean language-related conversations in the comments section.

    (gramps, magaling ka na sa korean, ah)

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  24. 124 Gramps

    #123 gail
    sana…

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  25. 125 christy

    Hi Javabeans,
    I like that you organized your website with the new links. I thought maybe you could still keep the ratings you had of the dramas you’ve watched & reviewed. I usually go by that to decide what next to watch. Eventhough I read your blogs, I find the ratings helpful when I want to get into a new drama. Plus, most of the time I agree with your judgement. Just a thought.

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  26. 126 christy

    Just kidding. :) I found the drama ratings link underneath. Hee hee. Well, please do add more to your list. Thanks

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  27. 127 odelia

    heya. i been a regular visitor to your site and few of my korean friends have been recommending this drama series called tae wang sa shin gi (태왕사신기), starring BYJ. we know that BYJ is a great actor and it’ll be nice if you could do recap on this drama series
    http://www.taewangsashingi.com/
    the ratings been great so far so it’s an indication that this series is well received in korea.
    thank you

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  28. 128 s

    Hi, I hope you don’t mind me adding your site to my links section on my journal site. I really like what you share here.

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  29. 129 aireefairee

    Hiya Javabeans,
    Totally loving your blog! Brings a smile to my face most days – so thank you very much! Especially love the songs you post – it’s a great introduction to Korean music for me; in particular the indie stuff. Keep ‘em coming!

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  30. 130 Nonbirira

    I love your blog and your writing! Learn lots about things I don’t know much about (live in Japan and am relatively new to Korean dramas) and love your way with words. Bless you and your obession!

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  31. 131 Nonbirira

    Oops! TYPO! Obsession – not obession! (I hate typos too!)

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  32. 132 rocketfuel

    Stephen Colbert is funny but John Stewart is funnier than with his WTF face is priceless…if he had ran for president instead of Colbert, I’d vote for him.

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  33. 133 rocketfuel

    lol….wish I had edit.

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  34. 134 madeline

    Hi there.

    I’ve been a long time reader, but this is the first time I’m writing something on your page — which is awesome by the way. I’m writing because I’ve been inspired by this page to blog about my obsession with KPop and I would like to ask you, if it’s not too much trouble, how it is that you got to upload Music onto your site. As well, I noticed that you used Z share which is a site I am familiar with,…well… good enough to upload MP3s and obtain file names and URL links. The problem I’m having is basically with putting it all together to get music on my site. And I input [audio (html)] but all I get is that funky looking player on your page with the word “buffering” and no music so it makes me think that I need to download something or other. Could you please tell me what’s up? I’m incredibly slow when it comes to computers and other techy things. Thanks lots in advance.

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  35. 135 madeline

    By the way I’ve downloaded the audio-player plug-in by 1 Pixel Out and got a zip file which I saved on my desktop. So I just leave it there on my desktop and WordPress knows that I have downloaded it? Then why is it that when I input [audio (html)] in the code tab of my post I get nothing still o_O, LOL. Ah, I feel so pathetic-_-”

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  36. 136 d0a2

    thanks for blogging so often!! i lve ur site! im opened up to new korean dramas and entertainment b/c of u. n i’ve been watching –in soon is pretty, im TOTALLY HOOKED. im so addicted what to do. I just finished ep.7 and now it’s 10:30pm and i’m gonna go study for my finals. lol

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  37. 137 polynasian

    Geez, I feel really old if everyone here is like younger. Anyways you cant be that old? I really enjoy your site. Thanks and keep up the good work.

     (0)


  38. 138 M

    Hi, Javabeans. Thank you for this wonderful blog. It is one of the things I look forward to reading during weekends. I love some of the topics you address, particularly your recent one about child stars.

    I would like to comment on the issue that concerns me and that, perhaps, you could write about. Recently I watched drama ‘Phoenix’ and later found out that the leading actress, Lee Eun Joo, commited suicide due to depression. To my shock I just discovered that another popular actress, Jung Da-bin, also comited suicide. In 2003, Leslie Cheung, one of my favourite Hong Kong actors commited suicide. One of the best Japanese actors, Yosuke Kubozuka, tried to commit suicide. It is virtually unheard of Western actors trying to kill themselves so why is it happening so often in the East? I tried reading articles about this on the internet, but unfortunately most of them are in Korean/Japanese, which I don’t understand.

    I would be greatful if you could blog, or, if you think it is too sensitive for public viewing, email me, your findings or thoughts on this subject.

    M

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  39. 139 NYC

    The best part about your blog (although every part is wonderful) is the songs of the day. I don’t really mind your standard k-pop (nothing wrong with a little Big Bang or DBSK), but the majority of artists you feature fall on the trip-hop/indie/alternative side…which is much more to my liking. This is incredibly helpful as someone who does not live in Korean and is not up-to-speed on all things related to Korean music, you’ve directed me to some wonderful musicians.

    Thanks again!

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  40. 140 abarai

    Hey Javabeans!! Are you Korean?

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  41. 141 mamu

    i’ve just found this blog.
    nice…javabeans!
    do you mind if i post some contents here to our fan site?
    thanks in advance.

     (0)


  42. 142 gracek101

    dramabeans~ this is such an *excellent* site! thanks for a rich trove of information. would love to ask more questions, as i’m currently researching the topic of korean dramas. please email me if/when you have a moment….?

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  43. 143 garfield

    I love your blog site! It’s really informative! I like your blog about the best 2007 dramas. But can you also tell me the kdramas from 2006 and earlier years that you highly recommended to watch? you can send me an e-mail if you want. thanks a lot!

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  44. 144 Hosung, Ryu

    Hi, my name is Hosung, Ryu
    Today, I was very surprise when I see the this site.
    I think you have a lot of passion and knowledge about korean drama.
    anyway, I wonder where are you living now.
    My US friend guess you are living in US.
    Anyway, thank you for your concerning about korea. ^^

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  45. 145 Blake

    Dramabeans! I don’t think we fans can thank you enough for this amazing blog. It’s smart sassy and funny. I love your precise analyses of dramas and your music taste to death. Honestly, how do you have time to update your blog constantly? How do you find time to work?

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  46. 146 tearsfromheaven

    hey….i just found your website last last time and now i still want to know something from you…well, it’s about you, are you a Filipino? American? Korean? or what..??? i really want to know because each time i read articles in this blog, i’m more and more curios of you. hey, no offense meant! i’m a girl, ok? youre a girl, i’m a girl….but i don’t know your nationality…I’m a filipino..-more specifically—a filipina..please please please comment me saying your reply from my questions…..
    hey..where do you get infos and datas about kdrama? because i’m one of the addicts too…(*wink*) and also where can you get a nice coffee prince layout for Friendster? he-he-he…or just a coffee layout?
    thanks!

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  47. 147 Jas

    Hi Java

    1st of all I’m a Fiji Indian living in USA I just love watching the Korean Dramas on KBS WORLD with english subs lolz. I have been watching it even since I got hooked to it the last 4 yrs, just love the concept how the drama ends in just a short time doesn’t drags like usual Indian Dramas do for 1yr plus & more… besides that totally admire the cuteness,funny,emotional, hilarious Kdrama delivers along with its gr8 astonishing OST just love some of the songs in there.

    Thanks for this blog sometimes I come here to read the reviews of dramas which are not airing or have aired.

    thanks (komapsumnida) keep up the wonderful work U R Doing :)

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  48. 148 viviabc

    I am pleasure to meet u on line in ur home which is miracle to me.
    I need to spend more time readig ur wonderful blog.
    Thank u ! Thank u very much!
    good lucky! :)

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  49. 149 ANNIE797

    Java Bean,
    couple a day ago I saw Jun Ji Hoon and Eune Hye Yoon were doing a present award
    for 2007 Drama. can you translate to me what Joon Ji Hoon say something to
    Eune Hye Yoon. I could not understand Korean.

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  50. 150 apdolmla

    Hi there Java Beans! Just wanted to tell you that you truly are a LIFESAVER! Have been madly copying lyrics off songs played on Coffee Prince (and so not really watching it properly while watching it) so I could find out what songs they are afterward, until I googled and found your fabulous Coffee Prince Unofficial Soundtrack page. Truly made my day when I found it. Song names matched to episodes matched to scenes, complete with download links. I don’t know how you find the time to do all you do on this site, but it’s great, thanks a million, and keep up the fantastic work!

     (0)


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