Beanie level: Loan shark with a heart of gold

Type: I’m going to find that kid and sort him out
Me: YAY!!!
Also me: Wait, I shouldn’t be cheering this. This is the wrong response, Type. No no. But also yes yes. Because if there’s one person Tar should be talking to it’s Type. Go Type! You violent, jealous baby.

2
0

Beangate

11
2

And yet there are so many good dramas in this world to watch

4
22

    Let’s talk about writers giving male characters things to stroke

    2
    1

    A few weeks ago I happened to come across Rainie Yang’s OST for this show and had a sudden urge to really really want to rewatch this! But I refrained myself. This was one of my favourites!

    Is this your first watch?

    1
    1

      I can’t believe somebody recognised this! At some point I must have bookmarked it on KA and saw it this morning and thought a whacked Taiwanese romcom was exactly what I needed.

      I can’t say I’m a huge fan of it so far but I am enjoying it and I guess that’s the most important thing. I just hope the male lead gets less creepy. I think they’re going for awkward and dorky but so far he gives off a bit of a creepster vibe.

      0
      1

        ahahah yes, I think they were going for the stereotypical “boy who loves anime/manga with social awkwardness” feel.

        Hope you enjoy it!

        3
        2

          On the one hand, this whole lake/house/kitchen sequence is terrible. But at the same time it caused me to laugh out loud. I’m a sucker for a certain type of gleefully bad in dramas and this is very gleeful.

          1
          0

          And I really shouldn’t be laughing so hard at her threatening him with sexual violence but he’s just so damn sexist that every time he freaks out about it I can’t stop laughing.

          1
          1

            hahaha then there’s more laughter to come lol

            1
            0

    Thank you for the nightmares 🤣

    3
    1

    OH NO ITS SHOW LUO WITH THE MUSHROOMHEAD.

    I did watch this when it came out and have no memory of it. Except for this haircut.

    2
    1

      I’m enjoying it a lot but the female lead is way way too good for this loser.

      2
      1

        actually, now that I think of it, his character reminds me of Louis in Shopping King Louis for some reason. Of course, Louis is way cuter and all but they seem to have something in common

        1
        1

    Hi My Sweetheart! On which episode are you?

    I watched it one or two years ago because of Rainie Yang and… You can feel it’s an old drama. It had silly OTT humour, usually my thing with 4th wall breaks, but it went to far imo. It has so many clichés and characters don’t make sense most of the time. When it came out, I’m sure people loved it for the humour and the female lead but it didn’t age well.

    1
    2

      The thing that didn’t work for me was the time jump when they were at Uni. Three years is a long time to be together but her mother apparently didn’t intervene, he never told her his real identity, and she never discussed what happened with her ex. Also he still had that stupid look. But that’s the dictates of the genre I guess.

      0
      0

      Wait… wait wait wait… I just got up to the part of the drama you’re talking about. I agree, unfortunately. I do like the female lead but the male lead is just too juvenile and too OTT. And why on Earth does the female lead never answer a question? I know they have 20+ episodes to fill but when asked outright it’s frustrating as hell she doesn’t just say.

      0
      1

        I didn’t like the female lead that much (but love Rainie Yang ♥️) because of the way she treated the guy. She doesn’t have to be violent towards him to look cool or strong.

        The time jump threw me off too but you need to keep in mind the plot doesn’t make sense most of the time. It’s really “just” for laugh and you will roll your eyes more and more with each episodes.

        0
        0

As requested, I have attached below my antibean calculation for this year. These are rough interim calculations before my final bean count and may be revised without notice.

9
7

Lee Tennant’s Posited Theory of Antibeans and the continued existence of our drama universe

For each basic particle of matter, there exists an antiparticle with the same mass, but the opposite electric charge. The negatively-charged electron, for example, has a positively charged antiparticle called the positron.

Thus, particle physics tells us that for each bean produced when we complete a drama an antibean must also be produced. This means that for each calendar year of drama watching, both beans and antibeans are produced.

However, when a particle and its antiparticle come together they annihilate each other, transforming their mass into energy.

The resulting explosion may, to some extent, explain mass internet meltdowns such as that following the end of Arthdal. The sheer volume of beans and antibeans produced resulted in an antimatter explosion that annihilated everything for miles around it.

The question then becomes: how does Dramaland exist at all without being transformed violently into energy from the production of beans and their associated antibeans?

The answer must be that the quality of a drama determines the number of antibeans created for each bean generated. Since each drama in each annual period produces one bean then the amount of antibeans produced must be a proportion of the bean produced.

For example, one could posit that a show like Encounter, where I enjoyed 8 episodes out of 16, would result in the production of one bean and one half of an antibean.

Thus any calculation of antibeans produced within an annual period would be a fraction of the beans produced.

Thus if b=20 then ab <=20.

Since, as we all know, there’s a subjective nature to the observed reality of quantum mechanics then that subjectivity must be reflected in the antibean calculation. That is, the nature of observing a drama produces both beans and antibeans but also impacts our subjective perception of the number of antibeans produced.

While any antibean calculation would merely be an estimate based on flawed observations, it is nonetheless one that can be justified mathematically. It is possible therefore for a drama such as Sky Castle or My Ahjussi to produce no antibeans but also for one such as Vagabond to produce both a bean and a full associated antibean. This means that Vagabond both exists and yet doesn’t exist at the same time. Which, frankly, explains a lot.

The theory of antibeans therefore states that antibeans are produced along with beans during the act of watching (and completely finishing) a drama. Since a bean is not produced until a drama is satisfactorily completed then it stands to reason that the proportionate production of antibeans also doesn’t occur.

1 completed drama = 1 bean = n antibeans

with the antibean production being related to the subjective perception of the drama by the observer.

Thus while it’s not possible to produce more than one bean per drama per calendar it is also not possible to produce more than one antibean.

This was the accepted theory of antibeans until this year when we observed that Bell’s Theorem appears to apply also to Dramaland. For the first time, we’ve observed that the act of not watching or not completing a drama can still produce antibeans even without the associated bean. This has only been observed in dramas judged collectively by observers to be egregiously awful – with the level of awful being unfortunately so-far undefined. This kind of ‘spooky action at a distance’ has meant that Dramaland’s collective awareness of the existence of a drama such as Melting Me Softly or Abyss is sufficient to generate antibeans (although the volume of ones produced under these circumstances is so far incalculable).
We can only conclude that Dramaland is quantum entangled and that any increase in the production of bad dramas could ultimately lead to the destruction of the universe itself.

However, for now, the state of the universe remains in balance with more beans than antibeans produced each year.

How may antibeans did you generate this year?

18
20

    I feel… enlightened!

    “This means that Vagabond both exists and yet doesn’t exist at the same time. Which, frankly, explains a lot.”
    Thank you for this bit of scientifically researched joy… 💕

    10
    0

    How many? For any deep cosmological question like this the answer must be 42.

    And the references to “quantum” leads to Ye Olde Uncertainty Principle, which is why we don’t know if a show is good until we open it and watch.

    9
    2

      However, antibeans and regular (drama)beans do not mutually annihilate in practice, regardless of theory. This is because the antis degenerate into cdramabeans.

      4
      0

      And Schrodinger’s Cat would also explain why until you open the box and watch the drama, beans may simultaneously exist and non-exist.

      2
      0

    I think i generate more of anti beans, even more anti c beans. I have never managed to finish a c drama.
    So i never generated a c bean.
    Although i have generated a lot of k beans.

    4
    0

    My inner nerd self is chuckling appreciatively at this well-explained theory, LT.

    3
    0

    For exact numbers i did a calculation: beans : 7 + 2 (older beans, for shows which did not air in 2019)
    Anti beans: atleast 25
    Although there are 5 more shows which has a radioactive decay into anti beans after their half life!

    C antibeans: 2
    C beans: 0

    This year was lot better in movies, i watched so extraordinary movies, which i feel the need to recommend:

    Han gong ju! (This should be watched at all cost, such an excellent movie and such an excellent camerawork, attention: you can hate the world afterwards, it is throughly upsetting)

    Parasite (i have nothing to say for this masterpiece)

    Extreme job (it is funny)

    The wailing (my fav horror movie ever)

    And now i think i am waiting for Kim Ji Young, born 1982.

    The year was even better with books. But that will be later in December.

    3
    1

      You can’t have more antibeans than beans, your universe has been destroyed!

      5
      1

        That is why i am on a Haitius, and degenerated into c drama: arsenal academy, and is taking a month off to build back my universe, don’t take Sunday off even. (*I heard it took seven days for some, but will take more for me, i am slow apparently).

        4
        0

    i’m waiting for year-end reviews so i can count how many beans i have, for i can never remember if the dramas i watched aired this year or three years ago.

    3
    0

    Comment was deleted

    0
    0

    I have 7 beans. But I would say that of those dramas that I completed and received beans for, only the stink of Her Private Life and Touch Your Heart resulted in antibeans.

    However, while I am just one episode away from finishing Memories of Alhambra, and thus have not produced a bean, the sheer irritation and disappointed at the devolution of character and plot both caused me to halt my viewing at this critical juncture and produced an angry antibean. So plus one more antibean for me.

    As I made it through about one half of Vagabond and “watched” the rest via recaps, comments, and the fan wall, this stinker has also produced another antibean.

    I had no investment in Abyss beyond approximately one hour of watch time, thus no bean or antibean.

    The awfulness that is Melty means that even an investment of approximately one and a half hours of watch time, could possibly result in a full pot of antibeans, but as this is only an hypothesis, and I don’t have a team of research assistants to count the beans in the pot, I will align with current operating procedures and only count one antibean.

    So, my count is:
    7 beans
    5 antibeans*

    *antibean count may increase by December 31 depending on upcoming viewing and mulling over the rottenness that was some dramas.

    (edited because apparently I can’t count to 5)

    7
    0

    I have completed 4 shows which means I have 4 beans.
    Boksoo and Sky Castle are wholesome positive dramas that generated no antibeans as they can only bring positivity and light into this world.

    Both Vagabond and Romance is a Bonus Book generated at least one antibean. But the negativity they brought along was so strong I can’t guarantee no other extra anti beans escaped into the dramabeans world.

    I did not finish Abyss, Arthdal, her Private Life or Touch Your Heart, but as they were dropped out of sheer frustration and/or boredom RIGHT before the penultimate episode, I believe they each warrant at least half an antibean if not a full antibean. So, that’s another 2 antibeans. At least.

    If I am to presume that the amount of beans and antibeans are balanced in that there are never more antibeans than beans, and given that I (nor my DB account) have not yet imploded, I count 4 beans and 4 antibeans.

    Elle Tea, what are YOUR numbers? After your entire theory, you have to at least share to set an example!!

    5
    1

    I started reading this comment and suddenly I was in every 3rd ep of every variation of itazura na kiss ever. Otherwise known as the interminablely long ep where ML tries to teach FL math and I pull my hair out screaming: why do dramas keep trying to make math happen?! It’s not happening, math!
    In other words, I enjoy db and you and other beanies and this post made my brain hurt and my eyes cross.
    I love smart people, even if I have no idea what you smart people are talking about.

    5
    1

      I will take the compliment even though I truly do suck at maths as well and my eyes roll back in my head as much as the next person. Also you’re a frickin genius so there’s that too.

      But to simplify it, if you complete a drama you get a bean and then a fraction of antibeans somewhere between 0 and 1.

      If you don’t finish a drama you don’t get a bean or any antibeans. Melting Me Softly is an exception since it’s level of awful is so great it breaks the laws of the universe.

      5
      0

    I hope you try to get DB to publish this in this month’s Theme if the Month. These dramas have obviously affected the very fabric of your existence, down to the particle level!!!

    3
    1

      LOL, thanks Ally. Unfortunately I don’t think this is in db’s new wheelhouse although I did consider turning it into a totm. I doubt they’d publish it.

      1
      0

    *snorts* Schrödinger’s Dramas.

    2
    0

Review: He\’s Coming To Me
(More Thai BL)
8/10

https://mydramalist.com/profile/ChinguMode/review/59511

2
2

    Oh! I’m glad you liked it (phew)! I still have the last episode to go, but it was nice that this show didn’t follow many of the tropes typically seen in a Thai BL.

    2
    0

    I will give this a chance, thanks for posting about it! I’m curious to see if guy from SOTUS is actually good.

    0
    0

After my Year of Dropping and with a strong determination to bring down my bean count, I will ending the year with *check notes*
22 beans…


This needs work.

7
17

    Get on my level, LT

    3
    1

    I gotta work on my beans.

    2
    1

    2018: 36 beans
    2019: 7 beans, but I might power through episode 16 of MoA for a bean

    3
    1

      No no no! You achieved what I said I was going to do!
      I also had 36 beans last year!

      Or are you stuck trying to wade your way through Sweet Sweet Bodyguard?

      2
      1

        I didn’t really watch anything all week except HIStory 3, which made me ragey. I shall return the SSB this week and maybe give that Psychopath Diary a shot.

        1
        1

          HIStory3
          *needs rage room*

          Despite my best intentions I am still apparently a sucker for watching things just because other people are watching them. Although because the year started off so strong with great dramas that started in 2018, I went into March with 15 beans already. So, really, finishing 7 kdramas since March isn’t that bad.

          2
          2

            I think quitting MoA with only one episode to gave me the freedom to just let drama goes when I stopped enjoying them, but I’ve also left unfinished many I was enjoying. So, I don’t know. I should maybe try to finish some.

            2
            0

            By all means, finish ones you were enjoying. But MoA is not worth it, even for the bean.

            0
            0

    I have 37 so far, and expect to get 5 more soon (Nokdu, Country, Pegasus, Leverage, Ghost).

    1
    1

      I feel better I guess? Although now I’m wondering if next year I should drop down into the teens or just embrace the crazy and watch EVERYTHING.

      0
      0

    I actually counted this yesterday – out of the 30 shows I watched at least one episode of, I got half way through 12, and finished a grand total of 6.

    Tell me your secrets.

    0
    1

    Meanwhile I completed 10 shows in total, 6 that aired in 2019, 4 in the past, and planning to complete 2 more from this year…
    So I’ll have about 8-10 beans (if i pick up some of the coming shows)!!!
    This is my lowest ever, even though I’m picky about completing dramas and drop them when they’re bad (usually)

    But I’ve never dropped as many dramas as I did this year!!!
    This was a rather terrible drama-year for me.

    1
    0

Yes, thank you
There it is
That’s a wrap

15
0

What the hell kind of Very Special Christmas Episode nonsense was that in the middle of the finale of Camellia?

6
5

    😂 I think I had “Cannn you feellll the loveeee tonighttt?” 🎶 in my head instead during those scene.

    3
    1

    Seemed like the editing suite ran out of time when they did the final two episodes.

    That’s the only way I can make any sense of those sudden Salvation Army shots.

    2
    0

Beans are the best.
Except for Discord beans.
They’re even better.

23
1
17
5

    I defend this gif on account of this movie basically being a kdrama

    3
    1

      Wait? The woman said it? Who in 2019 says Egads! when they are about to crash into someone?

      Also, I’m wondering when Netflix will send me a check for using my handle.

      4
      1

    I watched this earlier today and it was so awful it was great. I suggest this to everyone 🤣

    2
    1

      I enjoyed it too in all its cheesy glory, although I do wish they’d had better kisses. Regardless of how ordinary the script was, the acting was surprisingly good and Josh Whitehouse was delightful and surprisingly funny.

      2
      0

IN CASE I DIDN’T MENTION IT BEFORE THIS ITERATION OF HISTORY3 IS TERRIBLE. THIS WEEK\’S EPISODE WAS SO BAD, EVERYTHING IS AWFUL, THIS IS WHY WE CAN\’T HAVE NICE THINGS BECAUSE THEY EVENTUALLY RUIN IT, THEY CAN’T HELP THEMSELVES. I HATE EVERYTHING.
https://mydramalist.com/profile/ChinguMode/reviews/58635

9
11

    Nobody wants to help share my pain. Even @egads is asleep, stupid timezones.

    3
    2

      No! Not your partner-in-crime!

      3
      0

      It was 1:00 in the morning!

      Anyway, this is what I posted on your blog after I woke up:

      Everything about this latest installment in the HIStory series is not just disappointing, but also just plain problematic. In the first episode when Hao Ting has a make out session with his girlfriend in the school infirmary, my first thought was that this drama was going to give us an unapologetically bisexual character. I was looking forward to a, hopefully, interesting exploration of queerness, but no, that is not what we are getting. Instead, like you said, it’s the inexplicable “gay for you” that somehow seems to be a favorite trope that does an injustice to complexities of sexuality, queerness, and those who are not raging heterosexuals. It’s like it’s some romanticized notion of true love for this one specific, and idealized, human being, while still maintaining a destructive heteronormative identity.

      And the age inappropriate couple? Eww. Just no. By making the younger man (really a child both in age and level of maturity) the aggressor in the pursuit of romance and sex, the drama has also managed to reinforce the arguments of hordes of abusers throughout history: they wanted it.

      I want to rewrite this drama. Instead of an inexplicably “gay for you” bullying male lead forcing the very vulnerable Xi Gu into a relationship, how about a young man discovering his queerness, and a slower, more introspective, coming together between this two characters as they get to know each other and themselves. Additionally, let’s have an adult male who firmly maintains appropriate boundaries between himself and the teenager. Oh, and if the kid forces a violent kiss on him, calling the authorities is not out of line because that crap, no matter the age, is not okay.

      5
      2

        Oh, and we can’t forget the irresponsibility of unsafe sex as the cherry on top of the statutory rape scenario. Gahhh.

        2
        0

        Great comment, thank you. Glad you got some sleep, also timezones suck and I’m still not over how bad this episode was. Thank you for one of the rare comments on my blog and I replied to you too agreeing completely.

        1
        0

    I’m a little ambivalent on the HIStory series. Out of all of them I have really only liked HIStory 2: Boundary Crossing. Most are not very well written, acted or produced. I still need to finish HIStory 3: Trapped as I dropped it about half through. The OTP wasn’t too bad but the acting was not the greatest and the plot was kinda boring. I also couldn’t stand the secondary couple mostly because the police officer (forgot his character name) had the maturity and intelligence level of a 5 year old.

    But it’s sad this one seems even less well received than the others which is disappointing.

    1
    1

      *sigh* this is all true. I think HIStory has been so popular because Thai BL has been remaking the same show for five years and China has censored the gay out of their product.

      It really did seem to be improving and HIStory2 in particular was very much like old-school Taiwanese romcoms that happened to have two men in them. They were (are?) cheap web series and so the acting and production weren’t great. I still quite enjoyed HIStory3 Trapped despite the acting being awful (Chris Wu is really really bad) and the plotting being a train wreck (action is not a drama these people understand).

      However, with this instalment I have to admit that HIStory2 were the only two good stories they’ve produced (I did like Right or Wrong although I understand why others wouldn’t). But even Crossing the Line had a really bad stepbrother plotline wedged in it.

      Anyway, this one is awful. And I thought HIStory1 was awful but at the time didn’t have any expectations of them so it didn’t matter. This is disappointing.

      1
      1

        The HIStory series seem to all get high reviews and I think it’s because of the thirst for BL content that blinds people. The series seems to play up every BL trope out there which at times makes things cringy. I love BL dramas but I want a well done one. I wont give dramas a pass just because they happen to be BL.

        But thanks for the heads-up about HIStory 3

        1
        0

    Aw, this is disappointing. Hopefully the movie for Boundary Crossing will restore some faith.

    1
    1

Due to an odd little BL detour I now have reviews for TharnType
https://mydramalist.com/profile/ChinguMode/review/58911

and HIStory3: MODC
https://mydramalist.com/profile/ChinguMode/review/58635

7
16

    I was thinking about TharnType today. I’m still at ep 4 but I’m surprised you liked it so much. The first ep was quite amusing but then things develop so fast in their relationship that it felt crazy, so unbelievable. There are good moments like Tharn finding a way to get Type out of that prejudice scandal but the idea he would tell him about his past so easily is silly. Worse, that Tharn would not even then, reconsider his abusive behavior and that soon after this boy would freely offer sex, insanity ehehhe.

    0
    1

      Hmm… not sure that ‘like it’ is the right word. Since I put a lot of caveats around my opinion of it. I think that it has quite an intelligent script and very good acting but that they’ve tried to force it into a Thai BL mould in a way that doesn’t always work. My rating is giving it credit for what it’s trying to do. Also I think it gets better once it stops trying to service fans who just want to see hot guys get it on.

      0
      1

        It’s one of those shows I keep imagining how it should have been made, I keep filming a jdrama or kdrama remake in my imagination, fixing all the nonsense. I think calling this script intelligent is quite a big compliment. I do think it has better acting than most Thai BLs.

        0
        2

          Well I guess that depends on how you see stuff like the sex abuse and the sex thing. Type is gay. He’s attracted to Tharn and he is at least partially in love with him. He wanted to have sex with him and he’s in a process of finding excuses for his behaviour that doesn’t involve him being gay. So it’s not about him offering sex quickly, it’s about him finding a rationale in his head for going forward with something he wanted to do anyway.

          It’s like when Techno was telling him he should thank both him and Tharn for the bullying incident with dinner. Type wanted to spend time with Tharn but couldn’t admit it so he basically maneuvered Techno into making the plan for him. All of Type’s behaviour is about trying to deal with the cognitive dissonance of being gay while simultaneously dealing with his trauma by blaming gay people. I found the whole bullying incident to be really confronting since everyone was talking about his homophobia when the real issue was that he’s a rape victim. It’s to Tharn’s misfortune that he understands Type better than Type understands himself, since it leads him to tolerate behaviour that is basically intolerable. His “Type may be a bigoted asshole but he’s still a nice guy” speech was particularly revealing, as is his refusal to judge Type for his appalling and hypocritical statements on homosexuality.

          But then I’ve seen to episode 7 and it becomes increasingly clear that Type is one very confused, messed up little boy. On the one hand, Tharn deserves better and it shouldn’t be his responsibility to “fix” Type. On the other hand, Tharn is by far the best thing that ever happened to Type. But I can’t help feeling that in the real world this relationship would not last since Tharn is headed for severe emotional burnout. And that’s where I’ll probably get annoyed with the script as the show progresses.

          1
          2

            Yes, I thought Type was gay and in denial since first ep, one of the things this drama has done properly is at least we don’t have the gay only for you thing. Not that this can’t happen but not so fast as dramas make it.
            I think you were more forgiving of Tharn, he seems quite clever and sensitive so it was strange that he could be abusive towards Type and never have a second thought about it and even weirder that he would accept Type’s offer. Unless Tharn had a really mean side, I didn’t think he would ever accept Type’s idea. It’s not about Tharn being open to have sex first it’s understanding that Type, in real life, would never have been ready for it, not in that moment at least.

            1
            0

            I thought Tharn’s behaviour in the first few episodes was wildly out of character based on what we eventually learned about him. Which is why I’ve said it was fan servicing and twisting the script to meet the needs of the genre.

            I think we’re going to have different opinions on Tharn and Type choosing to have sex so will just put it down to mileage varying.

            1
            0

          As for Tharn’s sexual harassment of Type – pretty sure that after he found out about the abuse he has always asked for consent. I mean, he should have been asking for consent all along, but that’s a whole other problem. I don’t find it surprising that someone who’s been hurt as much as Tharn has would tend to approach a relationship sex first.

          1
          0

    I’ve never heard of TharnType. I’ve added it to my To-Watch list.

    Have you by chance seen Sotus The Series? It’s so far my favorite BL drama.

    0
    1

      I saw Sotus a while ago.

      I wanted to like it because it’s one of the few BLs that treats its female characters like people, doesn’t depict sexual assault as romantic and doesn’t turn everybody gay. But I couldn’t. I personally found the OTP shallow and the hazing boring. Also, I fundamentally disagree with hazing in principle so that was an issue as well.

      I also watched SOTUS S right after SOTUS. It wasn’t bad, per se. But watching two people who have supposedly been together for two years act like they’re still flirting was ridiculous.

      Having said that, it’s not necessarily an improvement to move forward to something like Together With Me or even the first few episodes of TharnType where you have dysfunctional relationships with loads of skinship that feel almost like soft porn. Hey I’m all for the skinship but it should serve a narrative purpose. The most recent HIStory3 is possibly the worst example I’ve seen.

      1
      2

        I haven’t seen Sotus S yet so can’t comment on that. But I personally found Sotus adorable and loved Arthit. And the actors did a good job.

        I also don’t agree with hazing but still liked the characters and romance so looked past that part of the drama.

        I’ve not seen Together With Me but it’s one of my sisters favs.

        1
        1

          I personally think that Korn and Knock have a terrible relationship. I haven’t seen the third series on them yet but I imagine it’s them both doing whatever they want, failing to communicate with each other, and then jumping each other’s bones every now and then. Say what you want about the original Lovesick and its problems, Phun and No had a fantastic relationship; it was respectful, considerate and they had great communication.

          Certainly in the original Sotus I didn’t have any problems with Arthrit and Kongpob’s relationship. I just felt it needed to be fleshed out a bit more.

          1
          0

        Have you seen He’s Coming To Me? I’m watching it currently and while it’s a bit slower paced and the whole “ghost” part probably doesn’t bode well for an ending, it does some things really well. It avoids the sexual assault/harassment trope, the female friend character isn’t hateful, and (so far) not all the boys in the story are gay. It also has a good scene with the ML coming out to his friends and mother.

        1
        2

          Oh! I saw the first ep and it looked good. Has the MC actor from Sotus in it. At the time I couldn’t find a good place to watch it. I’ll have to look for it again.

          0
          2

          Understandable @leetennant. I’m not quite sure whether or not I recommend it, but it’s a bit different at least from other Thai BLs that I’ve seen.

          0
          0

The Law of Genre “Are the scheming chaebols evil, cute or tortured?”
Thriller, Romcom, Melo.

13
1

Dame Maggie and Dame Judi would like once again to issue a warning regarding the drama Well Intended Love.
You should not watch it. In fact, it should not even exist.

18
14

    Like dramas with contract marriages? Think this is the drama for you?

    YOU ARE WRONG.
    STOP NOW.
    DO NOT PRESS PLAY.

    This is the strongest warning I can possibly give about a drama.

    At the beginning, this drama had a lot of things happening that were ridiculous – and by that I mean silly, overblown makjang. To be honest, for the first few episodes, I kept watching just to see how ridiculous the plot could get.
    Unfortunately, it’s not the overwhelming list of silly that is the problem here.

    List of silly:
    Amnesia
    Hypnosis
    Drugging
    Stalking
    Cancer scares
    Kidnapping.
    And more…

    The biggest problem with this drama is that it is a shocking apologia for domestic abuse of a particularly subtle and manipulative kind.

    Cut it whichever way you want: Xia Lin’s husband is almost sociopathic in his possessiveness. He controls her every move, manipulates her, gaslights her, tracks her, stalks her, lies to her, imprisons her. And worst of all, all of this is framed as evidence of his great epic love. It is not. This is not romantic, it is hugely disturbing and hugely wrong.

    This is the story of an abused woman who tried to escape her abuser but ends up falling back into the relationship anyway. It would actually work quite well as a warning against men who behave like this; using their wealth and power to control another person. Ling Yi Zhou is the most abusive male lead I’ve seen in a drama in a long time.

    The only acceptable resolution to this scenario would be Xia Lin being strong enough and brave enough to leave this toxic relationship behind and forge her own path in the world without Ling Yi Zhou. Anything else serves as a justification for horrible domestic abuse.

    Even after the huge TWIST I admit I kept watching because I wanted to see how the show would handle the revelation. But by the time he was microchipping her with diamonds to track her every move, I realised I was done.

    I am not just sorry I watched this – I’m upset that dramas like this exist.

    I wish I could give dramas a 0 because if I could, I would.

    https://mydramalist.com/profile/ChinguMode/review/47499

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      this sounds perfectly awful 😲 thanks for the warning!

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      I wish you would have written this a week ago as I spent a whole weekend watching the whole thing – and at the end thinking to myself “why did I just waste all those hours?”
      sigh.
      Everyone – listen to @leetennant – she is calling it as it is!

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        *sigh*
        Egads and I were entirely about this a few months ago. We honestly thought we had sufficiently warned everybody.

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          I wonder how I missed it? I read all your missives!
          The only thing I can think is that by the time it caught my eye on Netflix, I’d already forgotten everything.
          sigh, story of my life lately…

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    I read the review and WTF!!! And WTF is wrong with people who think it’s cute and romantic.

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    One part of me is saying “Spread the word! No one else should ever be subjected to this mess”. Another part is whispering “but I suffered. Can’t I just let other people suffer as I did then we can commiserate together?”

    Ok, let’s be nice. Do not watch this drama if you value your brain cells.

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      Yes, be nice. Never mind this was exactly what I did when I first started watching Melty and I was all like “watch this show!!” mostly because I wanted people to share my pain.

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    I watched this and even if it was nothing special I initially thought it was still entertaining. And then the ‘plot twist’ happened and it went into possessive, abusive, manipulation and stalker territory. Everything that was originally mildly entertaining or cute took a dark and creepy turn. I could not get behind the otp as everything about the relationship was built on abuse, lies and manipulation.

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    YES PLEASE SPREAD THE WORDS!!! That drama is completely twisted and morally wrong. I’m still disgusted every time I’m reminded of it.

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Woke up today to find that my piece on Camellia for the theme of the month was published. This was such a personal piece for me. I\’m so happy but also nervous about it being out there.

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History3: Make Our Days Count is basically a relationship post on the \”Am I The Asshole\” reddit.

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    Uh oh.

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    Answer: YTA

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    That bad?

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      Both OTPs are pretty bad. One seems deliberately so – a relationship between a highschool boy and an older man where the kid is definitely going to get hurt. But the main OTP is just awful seme-uke “gay for you” nonsense where one of them is just… an asshole.

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        Sounds exhausting. Are healthy queer relationships really too much to ask for?
        Thai dramas seem to have a similar problem where one of the guys is just straight up mean and awful to his partner and we’re somehow expected to root for the couple. Um. No.

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Sing it, sister

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Also the “plot” is advancing nicely…

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There\’s something so Shakespearean about Tales of Nokdu with the the gender bending, mistaken identities, misunderstandings and great comic timings.

It\’s very much like watching a play.

I only wish I could be sure it won\’t inevitably lose all this and descend into the usual sageuk nonsense of palace scheming, prophecies and female leads that get potted.

For now, I could watch 16 episodes of these two calling each other \”Mother\” and \”Daughter\” and kicking arse across Joseon.

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    Hmmm…Robin Hood like tales of derring do with NokDu and Dongju that merge into legend…they have the village, an interesting cast of characters, … yes, that would have been fun, too.

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    I think this is why I love it so much – I have always loved Shakespeare’s comedies the best (As You Like It and Much Ado are my faves), and I have a thing for anything that plays with gender tropes (not just cross-dressing, but also subversion of gender roles though language or action). I wrote about this before, but I think the way that Nok-du plays the Widow Kim is so important because he doesn’t play her as a fool, and he respects women, and the drama as a whole has generally treated women as competent and capable, which I really appreciate and which changes the overall tone of the storytelling.

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      Yes to all of this. I usually dislike sageuk for a number of reasons but the normalisation of so-called “traditional” gender roles is my big one. Female characters are allowed to be only as awesome as would justify the male lead’s interest in them and are then basically planted in soil and left to grow a pretty flower while everything happens around them. This show has so many female characters and all of them full-developed people.

      More than that, the usual ‘comic trio’ role assigned to three men was, in this, assigned to three women. That was probably the best decision out of all of them.

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        Yes! I agree re: potted plants. But I also have to say, I’m less invested in Dong-joo’s arc overall because to me this is drama is wholly Nok-du’s story (it’s literally the title). But I love that the way women are used and treated by the drama as a whole is different and it’s refreshing (I got into this on my wall a while back). So even if they’re not the focus, they’re also not relegated to pure decoration or plot points.

        And generally, I’d be bored by now, because when the female lead peters off, I lose interest, but this is wholly Nok-du’s story (it’s literally the title) so I’m most invested in him. I wouldn’t say Dong-joo’s a potted plant so much as she’s not the focus of the plot, and that’s OK, as long as she stays true to her character and keeps going for what she wants.

        I know some people have complained that Dong-joo becomes a bit of a damsel in distress, but the way I see it is that she gets into those situations because she is proactive about her fate and what she wants, even if it is a danger to her. I don’t think she’s purposefully reckless, but it’s more that she goes into situations ignorant of what she is truly involved in, and that is not necessarily her fault. I think if she and Nok-du were more comfortable talking about their plans to one another that they would work better as a team; but at the same time, they are keeping one another in the dark to prevent harm to other, which I can’t be entirely mad at.

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          Honestly, every time the plot tries to damsel her I tense up like anything. But I feel like she’s already decided her plan will kill her so she’s not cautious about her own safety because she sees herself as already dead. Admittedly I’ve only just finished episode 8.

          I nearly threw something at the Widows Village massacre where she was unconscious and got taken back to Yool-mu’s house because I was anticipating a while episode of her being held captive and him having to rescue her and then… she rescued herself! Yay!

          I too would prefer the story to be them working together to meet their mutual goals, since the show was strongest when they were kicking arse together in Hanyang. But since, as you say, we know that isn’t the story the show was ever going to tell then it’d be churlish to get annoyed at it. Still, I’m a little nervous about the second half because I find sageuk second halves are nearly all the damn same.

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            Yeah…I mean, I’m caught up and so far, I’m not super mad at anything (they like each other! They express it! They’re not super timid about it!).

            I don’t know if their goals are even the same, but I feel really invested in Nok-du making the decision to leave the life that others seem to want for him behind. In a lot of ways this show seems to be about him finding his autonomy, which again, is a really interesting play on gender tropes. He is completely disinterested in politics, but he won’t walk away without answers about who he is. I think there’s something admirable about the doggedness in which he seeks answers, but at the same time doesn’t let those truths change him.

            Moreover, we know how the history plays out, but I think the manipulation of men by other men is interesting because it is often ambitious queens/concubines who are portrayed as the manipulative and conniving ones in these dramas, though there are always some evil ministers too (at least, as far as I can tell? I’ve only managed to finish a handful of historical dramas).

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            That’s a really good point about the evil/conniving female characters and how this show has men pitted against men.

            it’s always frustrated me how misogynistic texts force women into certain boxes and then judge them for being in that box. In particular, the way in which these societies only give women the option to use soft power to gain some type of agency and then judge them harshly for using the only tool they’ve been given. There’s an inevitable nun/whore dichotomy (expressed often as maiden/witch) here, where our female lead is a straight-shooting virtuous maiden and her opposing antagonist is a manipulative witch. And yet our lead only “wins” because of the inherent justice of the universe and male intervention, not because of any of her own actions.

            It’s why, as much as I dislike sageuks, I dislike modern sageuks that use the corporation as a kingdom backdrop just as much.

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            Yes! I actually wrote a paper on the virgin/whore complex and how its applied to ophelia imagery in music in university.

            My favorite villains in dramas over the last few years have been the female ones who are unapologetic in their need for power. I think most women who are played as villains are made to have fallen into that role. But when you have a female who is unapologetically looking for power it’s a whole different character and one that seems initially to be based on male tropes. Two off the top of my head are director Han from Graceful Family (another drama that did well in subverting tropes and not letting the female lead lose her steam) and the Judge in Lawless Lawyer. I loved these women because they were ruthless and ambitious and while they became twisted on their way to the top, it was never because of their femaleness. It was never because they were women that they were driven to this. It was purely because they wanted power for it’s own sake and not as a justification for being ill treated or scorned. I want more villains like that. Strong female characters come in all shapes and forms and not all of them are good people or have good motivations. I wish we’d see more modern chaebol dramas where the women fight for their place and not get relegated to a bargaining chip. It’s good to have women with edges, because not all of us are soft and kind.

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            What I really loved about Graceful Family was the way in which it explored the tension between an older woman who was taught she is only allowed to have soft power and a younger woman who believes she has the right to the real power. That is, Han was busy exercising her traditional female role of “the neck” in the belief that was the only power available to her as a woman while Seok-hee didn’t see a reason she couldn’t have the throne. That didn’t just threaten Han’s power base, it threatened her entire ontology. It’s why Graceful Family was (unwittingly, I suspect) a much better drama than it was even trying to be.

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