Beanie level: Chaebol’s poor doppelganger

Current state of the downloads folder:

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The thing about The Tale of Nokdu is that it’s not reinventing the kdrama wheel, but it does put a fresh spin on now-hoary fusion sageuk tropes. It’s also really good at making its characters feel like people and not just trope placeholders – whether that’s Nokdu and Dong-joo, or supporting characters like the Queen.

Also, execution is everything. This is supposed to be a romance, and they cast leads who could actually pull off the more charged moments of Nokdu and Dong-joo’s relationship (that scene where he reveals himself to her at the end of episode 3? Is positively electric.)

Anyway I close out with a pic of Nokdu being cute on the swing:

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I think this moment was when I realised this drama has fully sunk me:

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Literally everything about The Tale of Nokdu 😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍

I love it all – the OTP (that chemistry!), hyung and 2nd lead’s heel face turn, even the politics feels human.

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Re: Arthdal Chronicles, does anyone else feel the similarities between these two?

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    (Pic 2 is Rey and Kylo Ren from Star Wars ep VII-IX)

    I can certainly see it in the fact that both male leads are warped and amoral sociopaths drawn to women chosen by the gods/the Force to wield enormous power and authority, and said women feel bad about them and hope to reform them or at least restrain their worst impulses.

    Also in what I call the Wrongness Chemistry ie no sane person would think these two getting together is a good idea, and any romantic feelings are certainly not mutual, but they have off-the-charts chemistry anyway.

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    Haven’t watch Arthdal Chronicles but this does look problematic. On another note, I was reading your theme of the month post about Chae Soo-bin’s character in Sassy Go High. It’s really well-written. Are you by chance a professional writer?

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      (sorry for the late reply)

      I didn’t think about it as ‘problematic’ given that neither relationship between the characters in question, is a romance – the women in both cases are aware they’re dealing with dangerous murderers who might feel some attachment to them, but aren’t to be trusted and may well kill them if they put a step wrong.

      Thank you for your comments about my theme of the month post. I’m not a professional writer of any kind, though!

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So..anyone else as furious about the (non) ending of Arthdal Chronicles as I am?

Because DAMN YOU NETFLIX for trying to make kdramas fit the American \’seasons\’ format. That\’s not how kdramas work!

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    And yes, I know the show was flawed and in need of an editor, but it was the most interesting kdrama I’ve watched all year (antiheroes, nation-building, and conflicts between church/religious orders and state? Plus supernatural elements?) It could have been great, but I’m still furious at being cheated of any kind of resolution given that Netflix/tvn basically filmed half a drama, passed it off as a whole one, and the production is now making noises indicating that there’s not likely to be a season 2 to actually, you know, finish the damn story.

    (And even if it had been a smash hit – what are the odds that they’d have been able to get the cast together again?!)

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      “Netflix/tvn basically filmed half a drama, passed it off as a whole one”

      This. I also feel cheated. They mentioned the possibility of multiple seasons early on but never confirmed it, acting as if it was only one season. For instance, here’s an article where they say “look forward to Tagon’s change as we reach the climax of the series”: https://www.soompi.com/article/1352530wpp/main-quartet-of-arthdal-chronicles-gathers-for-important-meeting-that-will-bring-big-changes

      The meta is that they behaved as deviously as all the greedy lying characters in Arthdal.

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        Part of the reason why I like kdramas and jdramas so much is that the stories are a closed loop within a single season – none of this cliffhangering and dragging on for years.

        It’s not as if kdrama second seasons can’t work – look at Let’s Eat 2 or Age of Youth 2. But those dramas had a crucial difference, which was that the initial seasons were complete stories in themselves! I’m rather resentful that Netflix is trying to force kdramas into the seasons system, and doing it in the laziest way possible ie either chop a story in half or (as in Arthdal’s case) film only half of the intended story!

        It’s doubly a shame because, despite being riddled with production issues, Arthdal Chronicles had the potential to be great and despite my complaints, it kept me hooked and invested in the characters all the way to the end. It’s maddening to see it go like this. 😡😤😝

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    You: “That’s not how kdramas work!”

    Netflix: “It is now!”

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      @lordcobol I feel so cheated though 🙃

      It’s got to be the first time in kdrama history that a drama has literally ended halfway through its story. I appreciated the unpredictability of the plot (rare in a kdrama) but I wasn’t expecting it to literally have no resolution at all!

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    DAMN CAPITALISM!

    But on the other hand, more Saya!

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      No more Saya (aka Arthdal’s Kylo Ren) though 😭

      Not if they haven’t shot any more darned episodes after no. 18 @#*%^*@#ing Netflix and their seasons @#$^%*!

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    I tagged you in a potential riot post. I’ve already lodged my complaint with Netflix. The riot is actually about whether it’s worth a bean in the year end count (of course it is).

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      Honestly, I have a good case for it being worth THREE beans (one for each part/season?)

      I mean, if Kingdom’s 6 eps are a bean, then AC part 1-3 should each get one too!

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        Hear, hear! I come down on the side of thinking that the pain of watching all of Arthdal + (Pain of) Open Ending make it worth well more than one Bean 😠

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      @ndlessjoie did you lodge a complaint with Netflix?

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Just finished Arthdal Chronicles ep14!

I was SO ready for this show to return 😍 Shabara, Eunseom\’s frenemy Ipsaeng is a hoot..but why are fanwall character limits now lower than even twitter?

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Just finished Stranger Things 3 and I AM GUTTED, this show just cut my heart out and broke it into tiny little pieces.

No spoilers but this is me rn:

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    I binge-watched the whole thing yesterday and the final episode also broke my heart. From Billy’s death on, I was a wreck.

    How did you feel about the whole season, overall? I was kind of just ‘meh’ about it…

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      SPOILERS FOR STRANGER THINGS S3 AHEAD

      I felt just a little sad for Billy, mainly because Max was sad (I haven’t forgotten the racist a-hole he was in S2 even when he wasn’t a Mindflayer host), and honestly he was SUCH a foul person that I didn’t 100 percent get why Max was that sad about him, they never seemed to have a good relationship as stepsiblings and S2 clearly implies he was abusive to her – she threatened his goolies with the nail bat ffs!

      Overall, I really liked Season 3, and I love its character development and the independent storylines each set of characters got, and the acting was brilliant as always but the end completely gutted me – I’d always hoped Joyce would be truly a mother figure to El someday, not like this 😭. And just when I was starting to feel happy about Winona Ryder getting more to do this season….

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      Still spoilers

      I’m wondering how S4 is going to go ahead with the Party broken up and El gone though, those kids and their chemistry are the best part of the show – and I’ll really miss it.

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      I really disliked that most of the characters were separated. What really made this show shine for me was the friendship, and it just really didn’t click until the last half or so.

      For me, this had to be the weakest season. It might just be me, but it felt like this season was way more violent. And maybe even took itself too seriously with the whole Russian plot. I preferred it when the conflict was contained to Hawkins itself and the government lab.

      I just really wanted more of the fun banter. I think the writers just packed in too much plot for me. (Which is funny, because people mostly want plot.)

      Also, I’m still hoping Jim is alive, since the Russians were heard saying there was an American prisoner at the end. And to make the next season work, I’m sure everyone will conveniently end up back together in Hawkins.

      As for Billy, it wasn’t so much that I was sad he died. I was struck more between how he was as a child, before the abuse by his dad changed him (as well as mom leaving), to what he was in S2.

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        I thought it was a good thing to have some change in their group dynamics, some of it the natural result of growing up (Mike and Lucas moving on from D&D and clashing with Will as a result, El and Max becoming friends), and some as accident (Dustin getting separated with Steve – a huge improvement over last season’s terrible ‘Eleven runs away to the city’ episode, in terms of having one character do something on their own for a lot of the season, because Dustin and Steve actually have great chemistry as characters). I also liked Nancy’s arc this season, it is sadly relatable in terms of being a young woman constantly put down by chauvinist ‘jokers’ in a male-dominated workplace. Even Karen Wheeler’s mini-arc was very nicely handled – it felt true to what we know of her from S1 and 2 (I’ve been joking for ages that Mike’s dad is useless and his mother just wants her kids to talk to her but obviously they aren’t telling her their big secret).

        I can’t say I understand the whole ‘Russians want the Demogorgon’ plot reasoning but I felt the gate was almost like the Sunnydale hellmouth from Buffy – I guess if the US government knows about it and wanted it open, another might move in once they go away?

        I had a brief flare of hope at the mention of the American prisoner at the end too, but I’m not holding my breath there. I do wonder what’s going to get the kids all back together again now, if Joyce has left Hawkins.

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          I do understand the kids are, well, not kids anymore. But I still couldn’t help but feel bad for Will or that the relationship drama was so, so boring. Now Steve and Dustin make a great duo. And I really actually liked Robin and hope she’ll have a role in the next season. The way Nancy’s bosses treated her was awful and so blatant. I’m glad the writers had this arc, as well.

          The whole Russian thing just confused me. Was their purpose in opening the gate even explained? But maybe this is just a hint of what’s to come next season.

          I’m only holding out hope for Hopper to be alive just because it makes zero sense to kill him off. I think at some point there’s only so much a person can take. El has had a pretty awful childhood. And how much loss and horror can a person handle before it’s just too much? I thought S3 was pretty dark and maybe it’ll be even more so in the future.

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            After rewatching the first few eps, I actually thought the conflict between Will and the others was quite well written, and was supposed to make us feel bad – they’re moving on to other interests and relationships that take them out of their little unit of 4, and that’s a normal part of growing up even though they still care for each other. They’re out of sync for possibly the first time in their lives due to non-Upside Down reasons, and it really sucks because it makes sense that after what he’s been through, Will would want things to be the way they always were but Mike, Lucas and Dustin are discovering normal teenager things. With a weaker cast that didn’t have the kind of chemistry they do, it wouldn’t have felt genuine, but it does.

            I did like the new development of Max and El becoming friends though (and also found Mike and El’s relationship ‘breakup on training wheels’ hilarious) but I thought the show kicked into gear in a big way once the kids were together, and especially once Jonathan and Nancy joined them.

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            The thing I love most about this show is how it gives a sense of nostalgia. Of being a kids and still seeing magic in the world. I guess I’m just worried that once they’re shown growing up, it’ll be just like any old boring story.

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    Me too, me too. Want to form a support club? I have chocolate and tissues to contribute..

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So is this a good place to admit that I, the longtime ‘no patience with kpop idols’ drama fan, fell down the BTS rabbit hole last year?

And now my saved pics folder looks like this OTL

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    Lol. Kpop and dogs. Looks good to me!

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      😂 that was fanart of one of the members’ dogs. And RJ/RK the alpaca siblings from BT21.

      The funny thing is, I don’t really care much for kpop outside of them and IU (and I’m kind of biased there because I liked her as an actress first).

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    From this, I’m going to guess your bias is either Hobi, Yoongs or Yeontan? 🤔

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      Guilty as charged 😉 (all three can fight each other for the ‘who do I love most right now’ spot)

      But really, I like them all. They’re so charming 💜

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    Welcome to BTS World!

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      Thank you! It’s been a v nice place to hang out!

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        Glad you’re having a great time! If you need anything or questions, would be happy to help 😆

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          Thank you!

          It’s weird because I’ve known who they were since like…2014? And actively felt sorry for a lot of the silly criticism they caught in 2015 (all that ‘plagiarism’ nonsense, my profession deals in that stuff and I eyerolled so hard at the claims) but it took until last year to realise I full-on stanned. (I identified the immediate trigger – it was that Danger dance practice video with them dressed up as sageuk doryongnims 😂). Which was catnip to a longtime drama fan, and I am nothing if not predictable!

          Thank you for reading my long gushy comment btw <3

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    I had to cave and buy iCloud storage for the same reason lol

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      lol I may or may not be contemplating getting a new phone so I have more storage (in my defence, mine is 3 years old). I feel you!

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    hahahah yessss!!! I went to their concert recently in Chicago and I think I fell even more in love with them!

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      you were at Soldier Field?! That was two freezing nights, I heard they didn’t even let off the water cannons because it was so cold.

      I went to their Singapore and Bangkok concerts and those were the opposite – absolutely sweltering (the water cannons were very welcome, ha).

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        It really was, plus it was raining really heavily that weekend and they even had to cancel Jungkook flying for Euphoria. It was insane! Totally worth it, but if was anyone other than BTS I would have have peaced out lol.
        That sounds amazing, I welcome the heat more than the cold 😀

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