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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763 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. 151 ivy

    hello, i am from the phil. i really love this site you made specially for your fave kdramas..

    it’s just this january 2008 that coffee prince is aired in our country and it’s rating continously goes up.. i finished watching it onlyn bt i stil watch it every night..i really love Cp. its the first time i felt like this..

    so i just want to ask you if where did you get the photos of coffee prince from each episodes? i believe there are still a lot u were’nt able to post and i am willing to compile it all..

    kindly email me pie4758@yahoo.com

    i tried going to mbc site, but i can’t enter because its korean.. so pls do help me..tnx a lot..

    it’s nice to know there’s someone like you javabeans..

  2. 152 tearsfromheaven

    oh i’m so so sad now…well, i mean you didn’t response to my questions..*( i know my questions are funny but you see i’m new to this website!) well, i just hope for another response (anything) that’s all i wanted…
    but hey, i like this site….
    you deserve to have a long big round applause…
    Javabeans…..
    ….(thanks for wonderful details) i’m an addict too..but i’m 12 years old turning 13 on may 6…so i’m so young to adore love stories..like kdramas..
    (*poof*)

  3. 153 del

    who does your banner? love it! love it! love it!
    where can i see it all? :-)

  4. 154 PAJ

    Do you happen to know or have the soft instrumental background music that is played in the last episode of Air City when Jisung leaves Dokyung to get back on the plane? Thanks for all that you do.

  5. 155 shalini

    could you possibly include more song for HGD Ost in your songindex?
    Yun or Yeon title. Much appreciated.

  6. 156 corie

    I am glad I came across your site. As a fellow Asian drama addict I need a reliable source of good taste/reviews/suggestions for good stuff out there! It’s like I’ve come across a light at the end of the drama withdrawal tunnel. Your opinions and taste is highly credible and valid without that immature fluff of simply praising a a drama because they have “hot” actors/actresses in them. I’m pretty annoyed of reading about all these “hyped” up Asian dramas and finally when I do watch them…I find myself unamused, annoyed and full of regret. Nonetheless, I admire the effort and dedication you put on your site with amazing, entertaining, and analytical summaries, the screen caps and samples of music! GENIUS! Nothing beats having lovely music paired up with a great read!

    Sorry for my little rant. I just wanted to give you major props and one major question. Are you/were you studying film? I studied film in college and it’s such a relief to find a blog that analyzes and critiques these dramas with the credibility they deserve. And best of all, I couldn’t say it any better than you in regards to our “addiction”: “Just because it’s pop culture doesn’t mean the discourse has to be trashy.” Amen to that! :)

  7. 157 Mirja

    I stumbled upon your blog by accident while looking up something on Hong Gil Dong. I really love your posts on the show. Started watching it because one of my friends appeared in it (the rich, women beating guy at the end of episode 17 and beginning of 18). He is fighting so hard to make his dream of becoming a big actor true and he is really gonna be happy when I show him that you got a head shot of him, hehe… Anyway, love your blog, and will visit a lot in the future ^^

  8. 158 zinaa

    Hi javabeans..

    i was wondering if there will be a second season for MBC SOULMATE…

    zinaa

  9. 159 Marisse

    HI javabeans!!

    my sister and i are really interested to know what software or program are u using to capture the photos that u placed together with the recaps on ur dramas??? really appreciate it if you share it with us…we really wanna make a collage of our favorite scenes from are favorite dramas too….thanx!!

  10. 160 javabeans

    Thanks for all the comments!

    Marisse, if you watch the files using BS Player or GOM, it’s really easy to take screencaps. Ivy, I make the screencaps myself, so I don’t get them from another source.

    Zinaa, sorry, looks like Soulmate won’t have another season.

    corie, thanks so much, that’s exactly the point I wanted to make with the site, that people appreciate in-depth and thoughtful discussion as much as they like the fun stuff and the pretty people. And yes, I do have some experience studying film.

    Luv and merriwether are the artistic geniuses who make all the gorgeous headers for this site. You can take a look at them all on this page.

    And I get my kdrama info and news from korean media — news, entertainment sites, etc.

  11. 161 Serom

    Hi Javabeans.

    I check out your site atleast once a day. It’s one of two sites I go to for my Korean info. But I didn’t notice until I started coming to your site that I hate how the other person writes. She really tries to make the news sound more dramatic, interesting, or hint something from a previous topic of hers [which she provides a link to]. Along with a whole lot of biased writing. I don’t want to rant about her writing style, but I really appreciate the way you write. You just share what you know and give a bit of an input.

    Also, I really like how you follow dramas by each episode, summarizing and giving your opinion. It really helps me understand parts that I didn’t catch or interpret things differently. I think I wouldn’t have liked Que Sera Sera at all if it wasn’t for your episode summaries. I skimmed through your posts for each episode that I previously finished to try to understand some parts and see what you thought of them. I’m glad you enjoyed it so much cause it seemed to have made you want to put more of your own thoughts into it at the end of your posts. Same goes for Soulmates and I have recently started watching Flowers for my Life since I’ve seen you write often that it’s become one of your favorites. It’s nice that you like the dramas that aren’t so typical because I usually don’t. Maybe it’s because I don’t know how to watch them haha. I can’t catch the hints or the meaning behind them so they just come off as weird and unusual to me. But when you point out things throughout the dramas, I begin to really love what I see.. Which I guess is also a bad thing for me when you review the more overrated and sugarcoated dramas. You’ve really butchered up one of my favorite dramas, Witch Amusement. But I still love your drama reviews and I hope you continue it for a long time. Take care!

    Serom

  12. 162 Gracie

    Hi! Hong Gil Dong is my first KMovie and very much addicted to it… and thank you so much for the written information you gave…. watching it in utube was GREAT but without subs (felt like missing a lot of things)… I manage to understand and cry throughout some part of the story, however, to have English sub would have made it better. However, going through your site, is really a blessing not only am I able to read in depths but also understand it better. I am hoping once the whole episode finish, you would be downloading most of the songs in this movie in MP3. Looking forward to more of your creativity…

  13. 163 Net-chan

    Hello ^^! Just wanted to leave a message because I love your site ^^! Lots of interesting thing! I was just looking for pictures of Hong Gil Dong then I ended up here haha! Hong Gil Dong is such an amazing drama! If you didn’t write that the broadcast of Hong Gil Dong was postponed, I would have search it everywhere haha! Thank you ^^! And keep up the good work :D! I’m not a korean speaker (nor do I understand it ) so the work you do in subbing dramas is great =)!!! We don’t have dramas in France (boo-hoo) but I think that if there were, it wouldn’t work haha! It’s a special thing from Korea, Japan, Taiwan and Hong-Kong! Hahaha! We do have soaps and TV series but they really suck è_é. Anyway, thank you for your articles about Hong Gil Dong! :D

  14. 164 rocketfuel

    Since you’ve been to Hotel cafe…just wondering what type of non-Korean music you’ve listened to…that’s not mainstream. That is the question…..and well….Starbucks or Coffee Bean?

  15. 165 SOORiMEE

    hi! i was wondering if you could write reviews for the new drama who are you? I understand the drama for the most part but i would love your input! thanx for all the hard work you put into this site! looks good!

  16. 166 Serom

    I was wondering if you saw Evasive Inquiry Agency because I don’t see a rating for it. I don’t believe it got too popular but I was told it was really good. I thought maybe you also watched it although it’s not a romance drama.

  17. 167 sadlynotkorean

    hey hey javabeans!!!
    im an indian but an addict to asian stuff!! some of my friends say im more asian than them… which i dont think is possible but i would just like to thank you for writng all these screen caps for us! me and my friends alwyas quote u when we talk about hong gil dong or who are you.
    upon ur recommnedation i watched soulmate.
    i had to say it was like reality with a lttle bit of fantasy but an awesome drama!
    my fav song is lasse lindh’s come on through. when ever i want to listen to that songs i just come to ur site!
    btw ur site so well managed!!
    and again i totally Have to thank you for doing this!!
    MUCHO MUCHO GrACIAS!!

  18. 168 freyadee

    Hey, I just wanna give a shout out from Ottawa, Canada!
    Although I’m an Indonesian I am soooo addicted to Kdramas that I also need some sort of passage-way that I can take so that I don’t go overboard and realize that I’m stuck in a ditch of old and very2 bad puddle of dramas.

    I gotta admit, living so far away here means I have to search for good ones online and even then i couldn’t get a good drama. Thanks for your site which i discovered a year ago and it helped me here.

    I just realize that most of the ones that you like, i love too. So your site helped a LOT
    I’m starting before and after plastic surgery and I’m waiting for the subbed On Air and the other new ones.

    Hope you can review at least one that would help me gain back my obsessive drama addiction. Here to support you.
    Cheers!

  19. 169 Tippy

    Hi!

    I check your site out every day and have found some real gems from the Korean music scene from your daily music posts. I have been a fan of Clazziquai for some time, but can’t get their music from iTunes and have found most sites that sell their discs to be in US dollars (I’m a Canadian)…wondering if you know of any Canadian sites where I might find some of the artists that you post (or even somewhere online for downloads…does not have to be free)? I am looking for a couple of specific songs “Lover Boy”, “Come to Me” and “Love Mode”…any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated!

    I am also a huge drama fan…thanks so much for taking the time to blog!

    감사합니다 !

    P.S. If you have not yet watched ’9 End 2 Outs’, you absolutely must do so…it’s my new favorite!

  20. 170 etalocohc

    Your blog is cool!

  21. 171 Angelina

    I adore your blog and been trying out how to make my personal one as good as yours…I have one favour to ask though…how can I put the audio files like the ones u did? I uploaded my mp3 to zshare but do not know how to get the widget..I am using blogger…can you guide me? Please reply via my email: angelfaith84@hotmail.com

    Thanks!!!! (going to start Who Are You sooN!)

  22. 172 stella

    hi just wanted to let you know what I really enjoy reading your website. you have a great sense of humuor and insight into korean drams that I can relate and understand. thanks for all your hard work and effort into making this site available to us. you are awesome.

  23. 173 icechocolate

    Hi, just wanna say, I enjoy your twitter. And reading that, makes me realize that rivals has been starting. But is it not good? Because I don’t find any file in youtube (I already found robbers-lee da hae the day after it broadcasted), and since you didn’t post anything except in your twitter, makes me wondering that if the show is worth watching or I just make a fast start.
    Because I have once didn’t believe of what you say about robbers, and stubbornly download the first 2 episode, then I grumble to my self -that I should believe you, like in dalja.
    So, is Rivals good show? Thanks a lot.

  24. 174 Jonathan

    Hi javabeans,

    Saw your blog recently and I must say you’re pretty diligent with your recaps. Nice work around here. =)

    Actually, the about.com here doesn’t say anything much about you; are you korean? or living in somewhere tropical..?

    Maybe I’m new around here so I don’t know(or perhaps you put your profile somewhere and I can’t find it), I do really want to know at least abit about the author of blog and perhaps you could give me a few tips of the korean language. =P

    Anyway just to intro I’m going to be 24, Singaporean.

    Hope to see your reply!

  25. 175 zhaoxi

    thank you!

  26. 176 ia

    hi.. I was obssessed with the kdrama que sera sera and wanted to check out your summaries AGAIN:) i was wondering where they all are..
    thank you very much

  27. 177 Serom

    Hi Javabeans..

    I was wondering if you’ve checked out the new drama “Why Did You Come To My House”. It may be worded differently in English. It stars Kim Ji Hoon from Flowers For My Life so I thought you may be interested in it and would atleast write something about it but you haven’t yet.

  28. 178 classic8iron

    Dear Drama Beans — I just discovered your site and just love it…….finally a site where there’s intelligent analysis of k-drama!!! Most other have one liners, but not to the extend you have. BTW, I just finished watching the Legend and am going through your write-up of the drama… very interesting. Komapsumnida!

  29. 179 mzpakipot

    hi javabeans! im stalking/following you on your twitter!! i’ve been visiting this blog for about a year now….great stuff u got here…thanks for all the hard work!! btw, great idea about putting someone’s number on a business site…i was just thinking bout that a while ago…thanks much! take care and keep up the good work! o_O julie aka mzpakipot

  30. 180 *dramas

    wow, great site javabeans! i was wondering though.. do you only watch korean dramas? what about taiwanese/chinese/japanese dramas?

  31. 181 melon

    I hope you don’t mind posting a little bit regarding goong. I know it’s really kind a old already. I just got the chance to watch it recently… Keep up the good work! I LOVE YOUR SITE!

  32. 182 coffeeaddict

    love your site, music, & reviews!

  33. 183 sharpie

    Hi JavaBeans,

    I just wanted to say how much I appreciate the fact that in a single blog, you have broad (and intelligent) discussions taking place, from Korean dramas to race issues in the U.S. I don’t remember how I accidently came across your blog, but it’s amazing. I’ve enjoyed your analysis and ratings of the few dramas I’ve watched. We must have similar sensibilities.

    Cheers!

  34. 184 :)

    :)

  35. 185 visie & nancy

    well we were just surfing n we came across ur site well we are die hard fans of korean dramas but usually we dont get much info abt these dramas cos we’re 4m India pls pls do kip giving us abt the latest dramas of korea n ya kip up the gud work!!!!!!!!!!!!KHUMA-O

  36. 186 atalanta_jbs

    I’ve been watching a lot of K dramas lately especially the one you recommend. After Dalja Spring which will be aired here in the Philippines (finally!!!), Chae Rim is now starring in the K-drama entitled formidable rivals. have you heard of it? I’d like to know your comments/insights on her latest show. Thanks

  37. 187 McJayJay

    i check your blog every day for recent kdrama news =)
    and i love it.
    im watching thank you right now and it is so interesting, you have got to check it and rate it. i would love to see what you think about it =)

  38. 188 Shinkai

    I’ve been meaning to post an encouraging aja aja-type post on here ~ so I guess I will now!

    I absolutely love kdramas. I never, ever liked anything remotely sentimental, gushy, etc, but then I got severely hooked on it. Who knows? Maybe I needed to be free from the pressure of what college I was attending, and then needed an escape from the mounting research papers and prelims ;)

    As it so happens, I’m an asian from a little known part ~ (ethnic-wise pashto/uzbek) ~ and … there’s a huge rift…. within our community (regionally, not ethnically) of hmm.. how to say, acceptable entertainment w/ acceptable standards of beauty… mainly by how light your skin is, and then by how big your eyes are. its funny, for a region like ours, which is so diverse, and is drawn upon by 4 primary groups ~ that of all things, we’re limited by this ~ and have such fear of “chinees” looking eyes. (nevermind that over half of us have them, thanks to 2 of the 4 primary groups being mongolian and turkish)

    anyway, its really really awesome to come here and read your ramblings/rantings/ reflections ^^ Although its disconcerning to find that there are still so few who can’t see beauty in people who don’t have fish eyes with light irises ~ its nice to know that we aren’t limited to our ethnic or regional groups :)

    (ah I ranted and rambled away myself!

    & my mom and my brother loves k-dramas too & we always check up on your site!)

  39. 189 Anna

    Hey Javabeans,

    I was wondering if you happened to watch the jdrama “Last Friends” yet. I don’t know what your preferences are but I think this drama is definitely worth watching. The ensemble cast is amazing. Thus far, I think the series is one of my favorite Jdramas of all time. The series is a couple episodes short of being completely subbed but if you’re interested, I will definitely return with my review of the overall series.

    I would love to read about your take on the series, because you’re reviews are very insightful, so please try it out! =]

  40. 190 drama_addict

    hi! i like your site… i even read your summaries of dramas that i don’t even watch… uhm, can i ask a favor? can you please do a romanized version of this tracklist? it’s the goong / palace official soundtrack… the ones i find on the net sounds weird… thanks in advance!

    01 . Perhaps Love(사랑인가요)-J & HowL
    02 . 당신은…나는 바보입니다.(Acoustic ver.)- Stay
    03 . 두 가지 말-정재욱& The One
    04 . Give me a little try-서현진
    05 . 난 널 사랑해 너만 사랑해Ⅱ-심태윤
    06 . Perhaps Love (사랑인가요) (Remix ver. 가재발)
    07 . 1993 광화 49년
    08 . 宮
    09 . 복장 불량!
    10 . 우주 정복 #1
    11 . Crystal Flower
    12 . A Dancing Teddy
    13 . 내가 선택한 길이야!
    14 . 닿지 못한 마음
    15 . 꽃잎이 내린다
    16 . 우주 정복 #2

  41. 191 Purely

    hello
    I love the way you write about what is happening in the world of kdramas, im an avid fan myself, however i love to watch taiwanese and japanese too… i was wondering if there is a site just like yours that gives the infomation abt their dramas…im curious cuz i love japanese dramas and want someones opinion on which ones to see….btw you are doing a great job with your witty quips..

  42. 192 m

    just wanted to say that i really love & appreciate your blog. I first came across it when i was looking for more info on coffee prince & really liked your recaps. i really enjoy the way you write & how you express yourself. my personal favorite so far, is the first-date dramas. so much fun! i find myself agreeing with a lot of your comments about the dramas & despite taking a hiatus from watching them, find myself quite interested in some of the new ones, thanks to your comments. thanx so much for all you’ve done so far & keep up the great work!

  43. 193 Grace

    hey i just recently got hooked up with your blog here. After reading your reviews of who are you I really want to watch it. Can I know where did u dl it? Thanks

  44. 194 Nikki

    This might be a nosy question but…I’m really confused, are you Korean?

  45. 195 Kate Lee

    Hello there!! I was so impressend for this website!! I gain many various information. I am a Korean! I always wanted to creat such this blog to introduce and share the good Korean enterratinment!! If you need any help of me, just tell me. I am willing to help you : ) I do speak Korean fluently. Anyway I will keep visiting here

  46. 196 Serom

    Hi Javabeans, I just have a question..

    Are some dramas made knowing that it won’t get much attention or be accepted well? Something like Que Sera Sera, Flowers For My Life, and Who Are You? I thought they were all amazing but weren’t exactly the typical drama thus maybe ignored a bit. I checked rating for them and none did so well [although I don't know how accurate they are, they seems right] I wondered if the producers, cast and everyone else knew that. And if so, wouldn’t that be such a great financial loss for them?

  47. 197 izumix3

    hey there javabeans please put the name of the dramas/actors of whoever you put on those banners on the top of these pages/ bcuz usually i see some actors or dramas that I’d like to watch thnx please do so.

  48. 198 Ariel

    Dear Javabeans
    I have been riveted since coming across your blog.
    THANK YOU for letting me relive the wonderful memories of Coffee Prince.
    And what clarity! What concise write-ups!

    SENDING LOTS OF LOVE AND GRATITUDE

    Ariel from Singapore

  49. 199 javabeans

    Thanks everyone for the comments and support! I’m glad you’re enjoying the site.

    To answer a few questions, you can see who’s in each banner on this page where each face is identified. I am Korean (ethnically; nationality American). As of right now, I only focus on kdramas because I don’t have a lot of experience with Taiwanese or jdramas.

    Serom, I think all dramas are made with the hope of being successes, but there are those that know they’re not going to be particular ratings hits. I’d say Mixed-up Investigative Agency falls into that category; the writer used her cachet from a former hit (Alone in Love) to do her pet project knowing it wouldn’t be a blockbuster. But I’m not sure if Que Sera Sera is one of them; high-profile initial casting plus a director coming off a national hit (Samsoon) equaled high expectations.

    I don’t know about image problems; I’m not having any on my end. Perhaps it’s a firewall or cache problem with the browser?

    Again, thanks everyone!

  50. 200 Artemis

    I just had to tell you, I am so happy I found this blog! By coincidence I started watching Korean dramas just this March (Hwang Jin-Yi) and through the funsubbing, I found your site (when searching for English articles about Hong Gil Dong). You really make wathcing a series so much more enjoyable – you truly are the “Television without Pity” of Kdramas!! Because of you, I have started watching “Delightful Girl” and I’ve ordered “My Girl”. I really trust your taste in kdramas! (Oh, and when I read that you loved Veronica Mars’s first season, well that was confirmation, right there – that is one of the best seasons of any series I’ve watched). :-)
    Keep up the good work – it is much appreciated!

    Artemis,
    Oslo, Norway

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