Beanie level: Errand boy

I binged Level Up and I like pretty much every character in this kooky little show except the second female lead who’s a f*cking psycho. Girlfriend needs to let go, she’s acting like a child.

7
9

    Spoiler request: Is it true there is little to no romance? *gasp* Do they become friendly colleagues?

    3
    3

      I’ve seen all 11 so far, and nope. It ends tomorrow.

      2
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      I bet it’s coming. But they are not forcing it. It’s is very gradual and starts with understanding each other.

      3
      1

      It definitely doesn’t focus on romance, though the male lead clearly does like the female lead. I actually really like that it isn’t a straight romance, though I wouldn’t be surprised of they push it a bit more in the last eps. But overall it’s mostly focused on the work and the male leads emotional development.

      3
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        This is cool. I would appreciate it if they leave it a bit open ended with a hint of romance.
        I really like how they got a bit close but still be professional at work.
        They both try to understand and respect each other.

        3
        2

          Same. Especially because the make lead was so emotionally constipated that it feels like it would be rushing things to have a full blown romance at this point. I also love that his emotional growth isn’t tied solely to the female lead, and it’s genuine change from within. I’m always a bit wary when it’s on the female character to make the male character a better person.

          2
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          Thank you both! I think I’ll give it a try. Understated romance + professional at work is something that I have been craving 😊

          2
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I am thoroughly intrigued by Let Me Hear Your Song. It reminds me a lot of I Remember You in regard to the mystery element and the way it’s woven into the story. I was also surprised at what a strong presence classical music is playing in not just the story but the soundtrack too. I love the use of classical pieces to underscore the emotions. It reminds me a lot of Nae-il’s Cantabile in that why, which makes sense since this is the same PD.

Also, I love the leads. Kim Sejeong is really endearing in this role and making the character more likable than I suspect she was on paper. I like seeing Yeon Woo-jin in this kind of role that has both dark and light elements and allows him to show his range. I also love that the whole thing is a little bonkers, but it’s not a mess – it seems to know when to switch moods and there are no breakneck changes in tone. I hope this writer knows where they’re going with the mystery and the PD can keep up the strong directional elements, because it has the makings of an interesting drama.

11
7

    I hadn’t realized that her memory loss was so recent and for a specific time. I think that makes it much more interesting. I was not expecting it to go so creepy at the end of the the first hour.

    Also, I don’t think I’ve seen ramen cooked like that in a store on a drama before.

    2
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    I wasn’t planning on checking this out but if you say it has the same vibes with IRY, I might watch the first few eps

    1
    1

      IRY is one of my favorite dramas and I was getting those vibes from the teasers so I’m glad the actual drama has them too. It feels the same in the sense that the leads are connected by mysterious circumstances and yet it still can be lighthearted and fun. I don’t think it has quite as heightened a sense of horror vibes as IRY, but it was only the first week, so that can change. I felt by the end of ep. 2(/4) that this show is not gonna pull its punches regarding the central mystery.

      1
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        It’s one of my faves too! I love that about IRY, there’s that mystery but it wasn’t just THAT. There’s romance but not really 😆 I’ll watch the first few eps when time allows

        1
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          IRY was such a unique drama in the way it played with genre and had such a solid story. It was also perfectly cast in every role – Seo In-guk and Park Bo-gum as the brothers was an amazing pairing and Choi Won-young never fails to impress, whether he’s a skeevy husband, a sweet dad, or a psychotic killer. And obviously Jang Nara did her thing and was wonderful and sassy and badass. I also loved all the dummies in the precinct. And I still can’t get over them killing the adoptive mother – that really made the story feel like there were real stakes. I kind of hope that this drama can go there too and get that dark where it needs to. It’s definitely going to have romance but it doesn’t feel like the main focus.

          1
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Damn. Jang Na-ra looks amazing here. I love her in a badass role.

18
6

    What drama is this?

    1
    1

      VIP, her new one with Lee Sang-yoon. I think it starts in October.

      4
      1

        Ooh! You’ve got me intrigued. Jang Nara taking on a badass role? About time.

        1
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          I feel like she has done a few badass roles already – Oh Sunny in Last Empress was a boss (though it took a few episodes) and her character in I Remember You is one of my personal faves. I even think her characters in One More Happy Ending and Go Back Couple were pretty badass since they both took no shit from anyone. I especially loved her character in One More Happy Ending because for all she looked materialistic and superficial she was really strong and was not afraid to speak her mind or stand up for her clients and friends.

          Jang Na-ra has a gift for making characters layered and strong and real which I love, and every performance of hers that I’ve seen seems to bring out an unexpected strength in her characters. She truly is one of the few actresses I’ll watch in almost anything because sometimes the performance seems cut and dry on paper but when she plays it, something new happens and its got a life of its own. I wasn’t sure about the premise of this drama but because of her I’ll likely at least check it out. (Though also a bit for Lee Sang-yoon and Lee Chung-ah.)

          3
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    She looks gorgeous and fierce !

    2
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    I saw the teaser! She looks amazingly fierce!!

    2
    0

Signs I have Go Go Squid! on the brain:
I just saw the word “Gun” in my notes and wondered for a moment what Han Shangyan had to do with my case.

24
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    awwww!! I love this GIF!
    he is gunning us down with that look!

    6
    1

      He has so much sass in him despite the cool aura he gives off. I may be a little smitten…OK, more than a little. But seriously, more smiles for this boy – he’s too cute when he’s all enchanted by our little Squid.

      9
      2

        He has too many of these diva looks! I was looking him up on twitter yesterday and I LOLed at the gifs I saw!😂

        5
        1

          Seriously. I found this GIF after like 1 minute of searching tumblr. When I have more time after work I will be going back for more.

          4
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        I loved how he sauntered and almost pranced when he walked down the hotel hallway after getting Squid set up in her hotel room.
        I had to replay that a few times…

        6
        2

          Same. Basically anytime he smiles warrants a rewind though. I’m not caught up (thanks for dropping a week early Veronica Mars) so now I’m relishing the cute while I wait for the angst to play out and then I’ll binge.

          6
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          Operation make girlfriend happy success! 😂

          5
          0

    Gun is solely God Gun now. He © it!

    7
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    He is so good at grumpy face I am surprised at how mobile his expressions are.
    Still in love with his cheeks.

    8
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      His expressions in general are great. I love how much more open he with his emotions when he’s with Xiao Mi and All, and with the K&K kids and how you see his body and expressions relax. He really nails the way this character is very closed off to those he isn’t comfortable with, which I love. Plus, his smiles are so cute. As are his sass faces. I just generally love his characterization.

      2
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    😂😂😂 You are not alone. The last thing I did before going to sleep last night and first thing I did when I woke up was refresh Viki. Hahaha

    6
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      Thankfully I’m a bit behind, so I’m not obsessively checking the subs. I have a lot going on this week and I’m behind on all my dramas so I’m spacing it out slowly – though I am catching up faster than I’d like. Plus I want to get through the breakup angst really fast so we’re back to the cute again.

      2
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Y’all are the best, thank you for always being there when I’m having a rough day.

18
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Bean friends, I’m having a really sh*tty morning.
(More in comments.)

1
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    My phone number was spoofed this morning and I’ve been getting calls non-stop (I’ve set my phone to ignore unknown numbers and made a voicemail message telling people that no, they did not miss a call from me and will work calls please call the main office) but it’s still a pain and my service provider can’t really do anything. The barrage of calls has stopped, but there were still about 150 calls between 9 and 11 this morning. I don’t want to change my number because my clients all have this number and some of them are already hard to get a hold of at the best of times.

    Any one have this happen to them? Any advice?

    I think the worst has stopped, but I’ve already had a fairly stressful few weeks and this is just one more thing I don’t want to deal with. I don’t know if it will start again tomorrow or later today, but I’m just so tired. I haven’t lost it yet, but I do feel like things have been particularly weird and frustrating lately and I get that that is life…but still. Life can suck sometimes. I’m extra stressed because of everything in the news on top of it. And I minimize my exposure to that when I feel particularly helpless but these days its almost impossible, especially when you work in my field. I can feel myself getting anxious or depressed over things and that makes me worry about backsliding from the good place I finally got to. Sometimes I just wish the world would slow down for a minute and let me catch up. I really want to just curl up on the couch and watch dramas and hide.

    Anyway, I just needed to vent a bit and get it out. Any good music/pics/stories would be much appreciated. Thanks for listening to my rambling.

    4
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      I’m sorry about this weirdness with your phone. I don’t have any helpful advice/tips, but just wanted to send you a virtual hug from around the world. Hope things look up soon, Snarky.

      2
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        Aw, thank you! I’m feeling a little better now that my phone has stopped buzzing endlessly. But still a bit on edge because of the whole fiasco. And annoyed because I am very careful with my personal information so this whole thing makes me feel like it’s all for naught. But my accounts etc. are safe – it’s literally just the phone number so I think I’m OK, though I am checking all my things to be sure.

        How’s your time off from work going? Is it monsoon time there? I hope things are going well for you. It was pouring all morning here, and the sun is finally out, but the heat index is suppose to be like 105F or something today which is…not fun. But my office is like Siberia so I’m in a sweater and freezing. I feel like I’m rambling now, so I’ll get back to work, but thank you again!

        2
        1

          Yes please, a check and double check just to be safe, sounds good.
          As for me, yes its monsoon. ^^ I’m still balancing work to be honest, but with a drastically reduced workload. I’ve been studying – not as consistently as I’d have liked but I have been studying. And I’ve started the application process with motivational essays and what not. Gosh. I’m a bit..nervous. I don’t know if it’ll go through like I want it to.

          1
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      Wow, that sucks. From what I’ve heard you might have to change your number after all, if the calls don’t stop. Maybe send out a mass email/text to your clients with your new information?

      Anyway, hope the rest of the week goes better for you, and hope the stuff in the news gets better for all of our sakes.

      3
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        Thank you. The insanity has slowed down now, so I’m hoping it’ll be over soon. I’d rather not change my number if I can avoid it because a lot of my clients don’t use email or aren’t easy to reach at the best of times. I’m feeling a but better now that things are calmed down but I can’t wait for the weekend.

        2
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      Omg this is my worst nightmare and the reason why I reject any calls from unknown numbers. As it is I hate talking on the phone.

      1
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        Same, but my clients and various other work calls can come from random numbers, so if it’s a number from my city I usually answer just to make sure I don’t miss something important.

        2
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      It happened to me too… calls from random numbers and ALL day. It was so bad that I kept my phone off, since I rarely use it anyway. Over time they stopped, but then people who call me once in a blue moon were all “why don’t you answer your phone?”.

      A new number and mass email sounds like the best option. Or maybe ask around at work?

      1
      1

        It seems to shave slowed down and my phone is muting all calls from unsaved numbers. I may go a step further and block those calls but for now it’s not really an option to get rid of my number. I left our office number on the voicemail message so I can get work calls. I’m hoping it’ll just die off after a while. That’s more or less what the service provider said should happen. If it gets unbearable I’ll consider a new number but I’d rather not if I can avoid it.

        2
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      Ah dear @snarkyjellyfish – so sorry it’s been a bad day for you! I haven’t had that happen, but I do keep my ringer off on my phone ALWAYS and when a call comes in that I don’t recognize the number I block it as soon as I can.
      GaH…. and the heat on top of it? It’s not so hot in Oregon, and I’m so glad. I’d post photos from my garden yesterday but I have yet to figure it out in the comments.
      Sending you LOTS of good vibes, virtual hugs and if I could – send you popsicles as they were the one thing that got me through plenty of hot muggy MN summers.
      We beanies are here for each other!

      2
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        I love Mumford – didn’t get a chance to listen earlier because I had an impromptu meeting with my boss. Listening now and it’s really fun. The calls have mostly stopped for now, so I’m feeling a lot better. But thank you for your post earlier, it made me feel a lot better to see all the happy things.

        1
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          Oh good. I have that mumford song on my itunes playlist and when i’m listening in the car with my earphones I’m sure if looked, they would think I was some kind of crazy head-banging ajumma. But I love that song.
          Was thinking of you on the way home and wondered if you have your boxing tonight.
          Unwanted phone calls are so annoying – but to get that many all at once would be horrid.

          2
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            I unfortunately don’t, but I actually feel OK. I handled the situation the best I could, and I’m sort of just going to let it go for now. Hoping it doesn’t happen again tomorrow or something but am mentally prepared if it does. I’m not getting 100 calls an hour now and my phone isn’t buzzing unless it’s a saved contact, so I’m saved the headache. Plus my impromptu meeting with my boss was interesting as he’s putting me on a case that will be a bit of a mission, but it looks like I’ll be getting extra bonuses for it. And it seems interesting. And crazy. I love the crazy ones.

            I listened to my favorite album from 8th grade on the drive back from work today and I apparently still know every word to every song, so at least I know my brain retains something. I love to listen to rap or something with a beat when I’m driving so I know I’ve gotten looks for rocking out in my car.

            2
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      i used to get calls constantly when i lived in the uk. because it never happened before, i thought it was like hi-tech spamming. nope! i get them ALL. THE. TIME.

      i see that they have managed to slow down! i don’t think this is a great idea for you since it seems like your work phone is your personal phone? but i always leave mine on do not disturb now. essentially it will go straight to voicemail sometimes but really you won’t be bothered by it. i think if it’s a known number that calls you and you are around your phone you will see it though.

      i love listening to music when things get difficult. dramas help too (but like happy ones usually, if you would like recs sure!) and my favorite shows of all time are arrested development and home movies and they ALWAYS put me in a brighter mood.

      i know it feels good to isolate yourself. well, not good, but a protective measure. but as i always try to remember, “one day at a time the sun is gonna shine.” one way or another we gotta dip back into the world. if you find yourself struggling you have DB, and the fanwall, and if you have friends you can rely on, tell them! and if it gets too bad and if you have insurance there’s nothing wrong with seeking help. it seems like you know you’re in a better place and you were not in the past; it’s good that you know.

      i’m sure you’re under an enormous amount of stress and pressure, but you will get through it.

      some songs that give me a boost
      me any my husband – mitski (the line “i steal a few breaths from the world for a minute) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TU_Dbxciei8
      ring off – beyonce
      https://youtu.be/c4cIBw_yFM4
      at the end of the song there’s this quote:
      if you’re going through it, just know it’s called “going THROUGH it” you’re not gonna stuck there, you’re not gonna die. you’re gonna survive

      they’re both about relationships but also yourself and i think they’re really optimistic even with sadness. hope you feel better soon.

      2
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        sorry this is so long, just wanted to suggest some things! tl;dr: you’re strong, you got it!

        2
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          Thanks! I’m doing better – I just get really worried about backsliding because it’s only been a bit over a year since I got help (meds) and I know that they’re not a magical cure, but it sure is nice to not become a ball of anxiety when something goes wrong. I got lucky, I’m feeling better now that I got it off my chest and ranted to a few people. Also, no dark thoughts, though I could feel them trying to get out. I think I’ll make it through OK now.

          I think it may stop soon, but I’m not holding my breath. I’m only getting a handful of calls an hour now, not the hundred in 90 minutes I did this morning. I’m guessing these are the ones who are checking their phone at lunch. I did set my phone to do not disturb, but with an exception for any numbers in my contact list. That’ll at least allow most of my client calls through. The rest go to voicemail where I have a message explaining that I didn’t call them and my office number if it’s a work thing.

          I love Mitski! “Your Best American Girl” is one of my faves (that whole album really). And Bey is a queen, so obviously I love it. Thank you for these. I did actually put on some Epik High after I got things sorted because they’re a bit of a touchstone for me these days. Praying that this all ends soon and I can go back to not being wary of my phone. It’s a cliche, but I really do rely on it for a lot these days.

          2
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      I’ve had a particularly chaotic year so far of weird stuff not of my making, but mine to deal with and solve. Yesterday I even had to talk about violations of due process twice and I’m not an attorney. The news certainly doesn’t help. Can we blame it on some planet in retrograde or too many angels starring in dramas instead of helping us earthlings out? I suggest you curl up this weekend and watch the makjang drama within a drama from Search WWW.

      2
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        So I just saw this comment and I laughed because Mercury is in retrograde right now, and Mercury in retrograde is basically astrology speak for “all the sh*t will hit the fan (and all your tech will break too)”, and I’ve decided to blame all my problems on that. But it’s over in a few days, so then I shall have to find a new cosmic event to blame my issues on.

        This year has been a good one for me in a lot of ways, but life has gotten more chaotic and hectic because I have been getting into the groove of my (not so) new job and remembering learning a lot on the fly. Due process violations are my life (literally – I’m a civil rights attorney) so I can only imagine that having to talk about them when you’re not a lawyer is harder. I totally get what you mean of weird stuff that you have to deal with even though you’re not the cause of it. It can be very draining. 2019 has been a very odd year. I’m convinced we’re living in the darkest timeline right now.

        1
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          I’m still saying things like “due process, appeal, reconsideration, reboot, the hdmi cable is in the wrong port and error code” so I’m going with your explanation too.

          1
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Bean friends, one of my worst nightmares just came true: my Lyft driver was one of my clients. It was so freaking awkward.

14
4

    OH wow – how was it? did they ignore you?

    2
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      So, we didn’t realize until we got to my mom’s house and it was so freaking awkward. He’s been bugging me a bit lately but like, I can’t help it if his case is moving slowly. I told him that was what the deal was in the beginning. But yeah. This’ll be a fun story for my boss tomorrow.

      The most annoying part of it all is that his case is gonna settle pretty quickly (thank you body cam footage) but we literally can’t do anything without medical records, which the hospital is taking it’s sweet time with. I even have my demand letter drafted and everything.

      2
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    When I was an investigator for a government agency, I met lots of people who weren’t thrilled to see me (huge understatement). I’ve run into a few of them since then and it is terrible!

    2
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      Oof, I’ve been there, kind of. I used to work for the city, and I once ran into my least favorite respondent of all time (literally, we referred to him as “snarky’s crazy man”) when I was out with my family and it was so awkward explaining to them. Because he seems perfectly normal – if a bit batty – at first, but then he get’s weirdly racist and starts playing dumb to the judge and I would literally dread the days I knew he was coming in. Five months I dealt with him. I will jump into a dumpster to avoid talking to him ever again.

      2
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This track is my jam right now.
The hook is just so d-mn catchy.

Oops, you’re not invited
Yeah, you’re not invited
Oops, you’re not invited…

5
1

My favorite underrated drama trope is the The Metaphorical Plant of Feelings. It needs to be deployed more. Maybe it should make a deal with Subway or Dyson to get more air time?

19
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WAIT. WHAT.

Hold on. I need a moment.

You’re telling me this could’ve been a show about vigilante Robin Hood secretaries siccing it to The Man, but instead you went with a chaebol with face blindness and fish CPR?

I’m so mad right now. Vigilante secretaries is so much better than whatever nonsense we’ve been watching for the last six weeks. I mean, the nonsense is cute and all, and it gave us our new queen, Veronica Paaaahrk. But still. You could have had vigilantes and no face blindness is all I’m saying.

Still.

Fish CPR. FISH CPR.

I just…I’m gonna need a minute here.

18
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    🤣🤣🤣 I’m still only on the 2/4 episode.

    2
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    Is Veronica Park a sufficient reason to watch this show? I’ve been avoiding it like crazy.

    4
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      So, this show is nonsense fluff – which is perfect for me right now as work is too busy for me to watch anything that requires brain power. I love Veronica Park, but I also like the leads – they have fantastic chemistry, and despite the ludacris set-up, it kind of works for me? I can see how/why a lot of people aren’t into this, but if you want a cute, fluff, nothing of a drama, this does the job nicely.

      I’ll put it this way: I don’t regret watching it, and we’re 13 episodes in. That’s often when I drop stupidity that started out well. I won’t be dropping this, it seems.

      9
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      It’s straight up ridiculously the premise is is ridiculous, the plot is ridiculous, the face blindness is ridiculous, the pretending to be Veronica Park is ridiculous, but damned if I don’t sit down twice a week and watch. I think if it was any different actors I would have dropped long ago, but they are so dang charming.

      9
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        I’m in no place to judge since I dropped Abyss but Netflix keeps telling me to watch it and for some reason I did. God it’s awful. At this rate, I’ll watch the whole damn thing.

        2
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        Also I’m still trying to finish Love Now and I’m up to episode 52 and this whole show should just be about her Aunt’s crush on his Dad. That plot line is hilarious. I want to write that show.

        2
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          I need you to finish because I’m looking forward to your reaction to the makjang of the last few episodes. Speaking of ridiculous.

          1
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            It’s going to take me a while I think. Unless I just keep it running without paying too much attention to each of the episodes.

            1
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      I’ve almost caught up and I really can’t decide. Part of the show’s charm!

      Many are liking the show for it’s INAR/Coffee Prince brand of angst, however, for me, it’s helping prove how wonderful those shows were at having the audience not only buy into the unbelievable set-ups, but making the female leads actions truly understandable. There’s just not enough narrative purpose in the deception in this show to have you going “this was all worth it” or have you feeling very sympathetic for the heroine’s choices. Him placing so much trust in her before the lies even start was already kind of a deal-breaker for me and dragging it all out for 12 eps made it worse.

      Despite all this, the character moments are SO frustratingly charming and I can’t stop watching either. So there’s that.

      4
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        It really hinges on the cast being so damn charming in their roles and all of them really leaning into the weird/crazy/cute. This is 100% a show I will watch, have fun watching, and then immediately forget. Which is fine. As long as it doesn’t make me rage at it I’m fine (looking at you Reach of Sincerity).

        5
        1

          I’m absolutely loving all the weird/crazy/cute, however the side effect is that I actually begin to care about it and the characters, even in all its ridiculousness. Because so much is bizarrely clicking in this show, I couldn’t help but dislike the level of discomfort I was put through just because the writer wouldn’t just let. it. end. Haha, tbh, I think I just needed to vent these frustrations, because I know I’m probably forgiving all thanks to the wonderful synergy between the leads. And, obviously, thanks to Veronica Park!

          5
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            I also just think about it this way: if they hadn’t dragged out the lie, then we’d probably get dragged down in boring office politics (because clearly this writer is unaware of the comedic goldmine they created with vigilante secretaries) and we’d all be bored with the show now. But instead we are all on tenterhooks waiting for today’s episode because we know happiness is around the corner for these goobers.

            2
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            @snarkyjellyfish I’m honestly thanking the drama gods that they chose prolonging the lie over office politics, because most writers just Can’t. Write. Office. Politics. To save. Their. Liiiiiiives.

            2
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        I think what would have immensely aided this drama is if they had given us more insight into the characters motivations Before the big reveal rather than after. They did the opposite and revealed motivations a little too late, and that ultimately hurt the story.

        2
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    Yup – fish CPR – what more do you want oh miss @SnarkyJellyfish! that made me laugh out loud!!!
    No telling what a writer will do – especially when it comes to fish either CPR or throwing yourself in front of a TOD.
    Still the cast and leads and Veronica Park somehow make it all worthwhile and I’m loving it.
    but NO to CPR on a $100,000 fish please.

    3
    1

      This show is 100% bonkers and I love it. I mean, it’s so weird that I can’t be mad at it. I think if the cast didn’t play these characters with such gusto it wouldn’t work. The directing is solid too. The only weakness is the writing, but played this way, it doesn’t even matter.

      Also, I nearly fell out of my chair laughing when Dae-gu’s mom died saving the fish from a ToD. Does this make me a bad person?

      7
      3

    The vigilante secretaries is a genius idea, and I do think they could have done a lot more with it (there’s a few things they could have done so much more with), but I can’t help myself. I love pretty much everything about this drama. It just works for me.

    3
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      I wonder if they meant to, but there was a scandal with one of the actors playing a secretary and they pulled her from the drama.

      4
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        It’s very likely. From what I understand, she played an important role in the vigilante secretary plotline, so I’m sure her exit messed a lot of things up.

        4
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      I’m 100% not criticizing this drama. I truly enjoy watching it every week. It’s a hoot. I love the characters, I think the actors are killing it; the leads have insane chemistry. I want to be Veronica Park. But part of my enjoyment of this drama is due to the sheer absurdity of how everything this drama does has to be so extra. It’s great. Like, I just want a drama about vigilante secretaries now.

      8
      3

        I would 100% watch vigilante secretaries which is what I kind of thought Jugglers was supposed to be, but then wasn’t. 🙁

        5
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          I know, I keep thinking this needed a little more of the gusto of Jugglers and less of the typical drama angst…but then I realized I could just rewatch Jugglers. Which I may do since I miss Choi Daniel’s beautiful cheekbones.

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            It’s interesting reading everyone’s feelings on this drama, because a lot of people were having trouble with the lie before it was revealed, and by proxy, felt like the story was too angsty, but I haven’t felt like this drama was angsty at all. The lie was definitely frustrating at times, but it’s otherwise been a pretty easy watch for me, like someone took the old, standard drama formula and modernized it in a fresh way that left behind a lot of the frustrating things and just focused on being fun and cute and romantic.

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        I think this drama works for me just because the leads are So good together, so easy with each other, so suited for one another, and aside from the lie going on a long time, there’s been zero conflict in their relationship. The writers have made it very easy to root them, and I have an ingrained need to want to like the writer’s OTP, so they have to be really bad for me to not want them together.

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          Agreed. I also rarely get second lead syndrome (if ever) – I can’t get on a ship that’s gonna sink. I prefer dramas like this where the second leads have their own loveline that is mostly separate (I never saw this as a love triangle). I do like that there is really only one thing causing angst and drama in the relationship, and when they get past that they really will be a strong team. Stronger team, I should say, since they were pretty strong to begin with.

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            Someone else on here described the love triangle as Gal Hee in a love triangle with herself, and I really liked that, cause it’s very true. She’s set up a situation where the other woman…is her. She’s literally competing with herself. Add to that layer another layer of her basically hating Herself for taking him away from Herself. It’s an idea I kind of wish the drama had explored more, because there’s so much complexity there to mine. That being said, I kind of like that this drama isn’t going too deep. It’s lighthearted fluff, and it’s okay with it.

            And I rarely get second lead syndrome either. More often than not, I find the second leads way too clingy and annoying. I just wanta shake them roughly and be like ‘This ain’t your story, boo!’

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            I’ve definitely said that about this drama – Gal Hee being in a love triangle with herself. But I think I was comparing it to a Bollywood movie, Rab Ne Bana di Jodi, where the male lead does the same thing – he disguises himself and accidentally causes his wife to fall in love with his altar ego. It’s one of my favorite movies because in the end we see that even though she’s swayed by the altar ego she realizes that the one she loves is the one who has been by her side the whole time. It’s lovely, and very similar to how Min-ik came to the same conclusion about Gal-hee, just slightly better executed and without face blindness. (It sounds insane if you haven’t seen the movie, but trust me, it works.)

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            I need to watch that then. I’ve seen a handful of Bollywood movies, and they’re always so fun and colorful and full of great music.

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        And I second the idea of a drama about vigilante secretaries. Preferably something with heightened comedy mixed with heightened action, something really fun but with a heartfelt message to back it up.

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          Have you seen Jugglers? I love that one, and it kind of is vigilante secretaries, and definitely heightened comedy. I it’s not quite as absurdist as I want here, but it does kind of fit the bill.

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            I haven’t. I was interested, but I read that people weren’t very happy with it. I think it’s on my to-watch list though.

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            I loved Jugglers because it found a way to work around tropes (noble idiocy, childhood trauma, etc) and make me care for the characters. Plus it had a wicked sense of humor. I loved the leads, the second leads were cute, and the office shenanigans were not too boring.

            I know some people had issues with the female lead in the beginning because she was so complacent being complicit in bad behavior, but, like, that was literally the entire point of her arc in the show? I don’t know. I find a lot of people judge female leads who act badly in early episodes and then write them off (the same happened with the female lead in Revenge Returns, and I LOVE her). I like arcs like that where character growth includes acknowledgement of ones past bad behavior. It also says a lot about how women are often forced to go along with bad behavior by acting passively and how actively standing against it can be much more compromising for them. But the stories all show that growth and self-actualization so I like it.

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          Wasn’t there a movie about this years ago with Dolly Parton? I can’t remember the name but I think they were secretaries out to get back at their boss.

          However that would be a great drama – I’d watch in a heartbeat.

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            9 to 5? That’s a Dolly Parton song/movie if I recall. I haven’t seen it but now I need to. Granted, I am starting to sense that I may go through a Dolly Parton phase soon – she keeps popping up and I keep wanting to do a deep dive into her work, I just need the time.

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Veronica Park is my hero.

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I FINALLY FIGURED OUT WHO SHE REMINDS ME OF

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Her Private Life;
Or, How Cheekbones Changed SnarkyJellyfish’s Life Forever

Her Private Life was a full circle moment in my drama watching journey. It’s probably my 150th (ish) K-drama (maybe my 200th drama overall) and as I was watching I remembered something about my early drama days. So Beanfriends, gather ‘round and let Snarky tell you a little story.

Once upon a time, there was a stressed out snarky little second year law student who couldn’t watch television shows she once loved because law school ruins things like that. (Also she may have overloaded her schedule that term.) But one fine fall weekend she miraculously had a lull in her work, as she’d actually caught up with her reading and assignments for once and she decided to watch something new.

This snarky little law student had majored in English Lit in her not-so-distant past. Her favorite Shakespeare play was the Bard’s gender-bending romp in the woods, As You Like It. She was fascinated by the role gender played in storytelling, and had loved gender-bent variations of well-worn tales. Thus, when Hulu kept suggesting this odd little Korean television show about a girl disguised as a boy in order to work in a coffee shop she never could quite click the “not interested” button. (Never mind that her legal training screamed “workplace discrimination” at this basic premise. This is why lawyers can’t have nice things.)

So, on this fine fall weekend she decided to hit play on the mysterious Coffee Prince. Sure, the costumes were a bit dated, and the premise was ludicrous, but was it really any sillier than Suits?

Beanfriends. The snarky little law student was enchanted.

Sure, there were many many things to snark at, and she did so gleefully. But, my dear Beanfriends, despite the snark she could not stop watching. She watched all weekend, thinking she could stop after one more episode. She sacrificed an hour (or possibly three) of precious sleep. She nearly missed class one afternoon because she could not stop watching. She went to bed and dreamed about these characters. She replayed the scenes in her head on the subway to class. And in class. And on her way home. Needless to say, she was hooked.

When it ended, six days and 16 episodes later, the snarky little law student knew something had fundamentally shifted in the way she would watch television. She didn’t yet know how it had shifted, but she knew change was afoot. She tried another drama, Boys Over Flowers but dropped it halfway through when she realized she was rooting for the female lead’s abductors to win.

But a few weeks later when the finals schedule posted our snarky law student realized that she would have almost two weeks before her first exam. That meant that, with a proper study schedule in place, she may be able to watch something new in her downtime. Another drama perhaps? She did see an intriguing one with the poodle-haired dude on the Netflix – something about a doctor time traveling? Whatever, she decided to give it a go. She watched it in that period before her first three exams. It kept her attention better than she expected. Plus, the poodle dude looked good with all the different hairstyles here.

Now. There was another week before her last final. That meant she could totally watch something else, right? Right. But what now? Now she started to do a bit of research.

And here, my lovely Beanfriends, is where my full-circle moment comes in.

When the snarky little law student had watched Coffee Prince she had been utterly smitten by the two leads and their romance. But she had fallen in love with the beautiful man who she dubbed “the hot waffle guy”.

I still remember clearly the first time I saw Kim Jae-wook on my screen. I leaned forward in my desk chair and said “Well, hel-lo there, you are very attractive”. I rewound the scene just to see him again in case he would disappear. Who was this beautiful man? That hair. The brooding. The shy little smile.

Those cheekbones.

(Some things never change.)

It was love at first sight. So, when I looked for my fourth drama, I remembered the hot waffle guy. That’s how I found Mary Stayed Out All Night. The end was a mess, but the leads were fantastic. And when it was over, I knew that dramas were now a part of my life for good.

I’ve often said that Jang Geun-suk was my first bias. I was wrong. Kim Jae-wook was. He was the reason I kept watching dramas. If it hadn’t been for him (and his beautiful beautiful cheekbones) I may have succumbed to watching a mediocre season of a show I wasn’t invested in. But because I wanted to see him again on my screen I kept watching. And watching. And it led me to Dramabeans and the best community on the internet.

I kept tabs on him over the years – loving him in Voice and The Guest. But a secret part of me knew I wanted to see him leading a romantic comedy. Those are my bread-and-butter when it comes to drama. So when Her Private Life announced him as the lead, I knew I had to watch. I’m so happy I did. I loved this drama. It reminded me of all the reasons I started watching drama to begin with. It was a story that examined different kinds of relationships, both social and personal. It was a silly but fun. It was populated by characters I loved. I thought about these characters in between episodes, wondering how the story would go.

But most importantly: it had my hot waffle guy with his shy little smiles and his expressive face (with the beautiful cheekbones).

So, thank you, Her Private Life, for reminding me why I’m here, and for reminding me how I stumbled into this beautiful community.

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    Woah! I didn’t realize that was the same actor. I too watched Coffee Prince in my earlier drama-watching days and loved it! I’m glad the actor has gotten more roles. Thanks for sharing!

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    Oh, Coffee Prince. One of my early watches too. I thought Kim Jae-wook was so beautiful and he still is. Though…..Gong Yoo is just….Gong Yoo, lol.
    I so want Kim Jae-wook to do another rom com, but maybe takes a bit longer to fall.

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      Oh, don’t get me wrong, I LOVE Gong Yoo. I loved that OTP too. I literally dreamed about the show as I was watching it. But I have a single weakness in this world, and it is cheekbones. (OK, maybe it was also the mysterious-bad-boy-with-a-heart-of-gold thing.)

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        The first time I ran across Hyun Bin I was so mesmerized by his cheekbones. Lol.

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          Epilogue to my post:
          I binged You’re Beautiful and Secret Garden after my last final until my mother summoned me back home to spend “quality time” with the family, instead of my very healthy post-exam drama binging while eating takeout life.

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    Comment was deleted

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    Now seems like a good time to plug the Friday Coffee Prince watch on Rabbit. Dont ask me how rabbit works or what time as I will only lead you astray…@egads.

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    Snarky, thanks for gathering us ’round and telling us your tale. His cheekbones are fabulous, but he slays with those amazingly expressive eyes.

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      Oh, do not get me started on his eyes. I had to stop screencapping certain scenes in HPL because he was so subtly expressive.

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    “I still remember clearly the first time I saw Kim Jae-wook on my screen. I leaned forward in my desk chair and said “Well, hel-lo there, you are very attractive” ”
    You are not the only one so welcome to the club dear!

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    I connected with this post on a personal level. Dal Ja’s Spring and Coffee Prince were my first dramas and Kim Jae-wook just happened to be in both of them. I have fond memories of myself trying to figure out why I loved these dramas so much and finding javabean’s posts. I don’t know why, but it made me happy to see another clearly intelligent person enjoying these seemingly ridiculous shows to such a degree, to the point of actually analyzing just what made them so wonderfully cracky and heartfelt.

    Considering he was a part of the dramas that kicked that off for me, I loved that his first leading role was in a rom-com that engaged me in all those same ways. Though it faltered at times, at its core, Her Private Life was always about taking the time to cherish the things you enjoy in life, whether that be your favorite idol or (in my case) your favorite drama. It definitely reminded me of why I love the community here on dramabeans so much and I’ll always value it for that.

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      I’m a literature person at my core. I analyze things despite myself. Stories are what keep me going, and dramas and television are just a different medium to convey stories. I’m pretty sure that law school tried to suck all my spirit out of me and dramas are the one thing that kept me tethered to earth and allowed me an escape that kept me sane. I think the fact that I had to read the subtitles meant that I needed to focus on the story and that actually allowed me time to get out of my work/study zone and relax.

      But I also think it’s OK (and even good) to embrace the shallow and superficial at times. I’ve learned not to be embarrassed by the things that bring me joy – whether it’s a complex story like SKY Castle or a totally fluffy one, like Her Private Life. Joy is joy, it shouldn’t matter where it comes from. I basically have chosen to ignore the flaws because they took so little away from the rest of the drama that I can’t be mad at them. Nothing is perfect. But that’s OK. As long as it made me happy I don’t care.

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        This captures my feelings exactly. It’s certainly not something that happens for every fluffy show out there, but now and then, one will come along that has me falling in love as the characters do. Rather than just pleasantly watching, I feel a part of their happiness. And I become attached to the characters, perhaps slightly more than I love the show overall, yes, but I still credit the drama for accomplishing that something special that I started watching for.

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Eid Mubarak to the Beanies celebrating! May you have wonderful day celebrating with friends and family.

And to all the lovely and amazing Bean Friends, I wish you health and happiness and all the good things.

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Not really sure what I’m trying to accomplish but I needed to get these ruminations out of my head:
Nothing about Arthdal Chronicles has grabbed me so far but the writing/directing team behind it is so good I\’m debating giving it a shot. I\’m also intrigued by its release schedule – breaking it up into three “seasons” of 6 episodes a piece seems to indicate that the scope of the story is bigger than I anticipated. And with this writing team I expect the arcs will be clear and strongly built. If it’s about the rise to power and the transformation of these characters in doing that I’m much more interested. Especially the depiction of females with political power. Ambitious women are some of the best characters when handled correctly.

But the teasers haven’t grabbed me and the posters are so so terrible. (It looks like Song Joong-ki was playing Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and accidentally wandered onto the Game of Thrones set and they just decided to go with it.)

I can’t decide to whether to wait for a verdict or just dive in and give it a shot. Because best case it’s genuinely awesome and the terrible posters and mediocre trailers were a fluke; worst case it’s terrible and I drop. But part of me feels like it could end up in the middle and be fine, but not worth the hype. I almost feel like that’s the actual worst case because at least with rom-coms I know what I’m getting into and am not disappointed by mediocrity. When the pedigree is good though, mediocrity just feels worse than a terrible show since, mediocrity, to me, indicates that they had all the ingredients for a good show but failed to put them together properly.

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    i’m in the same boat!!! i’m thinking i’m just gonna wait til all eps are out, and try to avoid reviews/opinions of others for now! i’m gonna keep the expectations at a minimum too! getting hyped up over this is unnecessary

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      I’m not a spoilerphobe, so that part of the waiting doesn’t bother me. I just find that if I don’t watch a show while it’s airing, I probably won’t watch it. So I have to be picky with what I do watch. I have so much less time these days so bingeing isn’t an option unless there’s nothing that grabs me. I’m guessing I’ll probably have to wait until after this weekend to give it a shot anyway, so either way I’ll have a verdict on the first week before I get a chance to watch.

      But also, if it’s another case of mini-movies (i.e. 90 minute episodes) from TvN I’m out. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

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    I am mostly in it for the Beanie snarks, which is double the fun when we live watch. So let’s do it Jelly!! Let’s watch it live.

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      See, but I don’t think this will be snarkworthy, and that’s what’s so annoying. Like, DoS I could snark at because it was dumb and had no plot. Last Empress was cracked out in the best way. Those are all dramas I snark about and will continue to snark about because they never really were meant to be works of art. They were popular (not a bad thing) and fun and no one really expected much from them except that they be widely appealing escapism (again, not a bad thing).

      But the pedigree we have here for Arthdal Chronicles is literally some of the best drama I’ve ever seen (Signal, My Ajusshi, Six Flying Dragons). I feel like at worst they turn out a mediocre drama which as I said, is worse than a snarkworthy terrible drama.

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    Same, but I’ll watch episode 1 because I haven’t caught the premiere of any drama since Bok Soo. And because I trust the writers and PD.
    Hopefully SJK will only wear a flower wreath in ep 1 (prehistoric flower boy?)

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      I realized I don’t even have the time to watch the premiere this weekend anyway, so I will get a verdict. But I’m still unsure. There’s a lot of other stuff I’m looking forward to as well (Perfume, WWW, Chief of Staff) so it may just be the show that I check out only if the reviews are really good.

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    I thought I was the only with similar opinion. Glad to know I was wrong . I’ve never been this reluctant to go through teasers before. The whole plot just went whew! Over my head. And then I got a silly Mowgli(!) Vibe from the posters. Just as you said the writers are too good to ignore but I’m getting a feeling it’ll be exactly those mini movies you’re fearing. And I ain’t wasting those long hours!

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      I literally cannot think of a single show where episodes of 80+ minutes has benefited from the extra time. Or made it through one of them (dropped: Goblin, Hwayugi, Answer Me 1994). If they’re genuinely good or only the first and last ones are 90 minutes I can do it. But 18 90-minute episodes is a lot. Every scene has to matter.

      But then I think that these writers and this director are good enough to keep me glued to the screen. So I’m torn. Goblin I dropped because I don’t like KES anyway, so it’s not surprising I lost interest. But in Signal, Misaeng, My Ajusshi I could watch for hours and not be bored because the director made every frame count. And while I have to finish Six Flying Dragons, the episodes went by fast and the writing was tight and purposeful, with well realized characters and a good grip on the history it presented.

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        Now now… When you name signal and my ahjussi! I wish the latter one was 90 minutes with more background stories like the Loan shark one, her grandma and what not. Anyways let’s see how “netizens” react. Really curious as the “netizens” been dying to see SJK on screen.

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          Exactly, this is why I’m torn. There’s just so many factors at play that could effect my decision to tune in. I’ll just have to see what the beanies say next week.

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    I say watch.

    Also, I loved My Ahjussi and am now curious as to what the director will bring to epic fantasy……I haven’t watched his other works.

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    SJK as Puck – perfect! I was trying to recall where I’d seen that look before – Puck is it. Now, how am I supposed to take his character seriously? Perhaps the show will be campy enough (intended or not) to make Puck in a GoT get up work?!?

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      Right? Like, if they can get me to forget how ridiculous the costuming is, then I’ll be impressed. But at the same time, some of my all time favorite shows, like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, are super campy but also incredibly thoughtful. So at least we know the two can exist simultaneously.

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    I’m afraid that breaking it into three parts is just so Netflix will be happy and have it fit their “season” format. Which means it just ends haphazardly after 6 episodes for no reason other than they can then say they have another season on the way.

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      But between the writing team actually being good, and the seasons being named in ways that appear to depict specific arcs, I’m not as worried about the breakdown. I’ve often found dramas have three “acts” anyway, and the usually are broken down into arcs of 6/6/4 (for a 16 ep drama). Like, I usually expect episode 6 to have a major reveal, then a breakthrough in episode 11/12 and then dealing with aftermath in the final episodes.

      I’m more intrigued by the “season” format because I think it could lead to tighter writing and better storytelling if they are constrained by 6 episode arcs. Giving writers limits is a good thing – otherwise you get bloated which is what drags the whole thing down. It also allows great writers to stretch muscles in storytelling that they may not use when given broader freedoms.

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    So, did you dive in? How is Puck doing?

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      Unfortunately I have not had a chance — end of Ramadan and work have made it impossible to really watch much of anything. Maybe this weekend, but there’s other stuff I’m more interested in checking out first, so I may wait for a few weeks to see what the overall reaction is.

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I love her.

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    veronica…park
    awesome~

    XD

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    She is one of those people you could easily dislike but you just cannot! She is amazeballs!

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      It really helps that Kim Jae-kyung is leaning into the insane tendencies but there’s just a hint of vulnerability under the surface which keeps her from being too over-the-top. Also, i think they give her the the right amount of screen time – more and she could be grating, less and she’d be a caricature.

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    Did anyone notice that all the fingers were broken except the middle one? I wonder who that was for?
    The details…

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Some Secret Life of My Secretary thoughts because it’s still not Her Private Life day yet, and Snarky’s sinuses are too stuffed to focus on work:
I’m like 90% convinced Min-ik knows that “Veronica Park” is really Gal-hee. Like, he has to…right? No? I mean, his defining characteristic when we first met him was that he could read people really well. Even though that largely had to do with his ability to read faces, we saw that he recognized Gal-hee even from a distance, which is why we’re supposed to believe that he recognizes her now. (Dude was totally crushing on her at that point, even if he didn’t know it.) If he doesn’t know, that would be really weird after Monday’s episodes, right? I went into the episode 50/50 as to whether he knew and tried to read it as he didn’t but then his actions just look kind of crazy, unless the director and Kim Young-kwang are making some really odd choices for the character.

I also love the idea of a female lead being in a love triangle with herself. It reminds me a bit of the Bollywood movie Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi which I love because it comes down not to just personality or attractiveness, but also seeing the other person’s actions towards the one they care about.

I mean, I’m pretty sure this drama will devolve into a mess of noble idiocy and stupid company politics and childhood trauma and I’ll regret being invested at all, but dear God these two are so adorable that I can’t help myself.

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    I’m torn too. Last week, I thought that he should have known, based on her mannerisms etc. But he asked himself, alone, how Veronica looked like. So I took it as if he indeed didn’t know. But the way he was teasing her yesterday makes me think that he knows. Ugh. I want him to know without telling her yet :p

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      So, I’m not 100% that he knew right away. I think he had a hunch before the umbrella thing, and he used that meeting to verify his hunch. I think he was 100% in the dark on the first date. I just kind of hope this leads to more teasing cuteness on his part because he’s kind of adorable around Gal-hee.

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    I’m constantly oscillating between “he knows” and “he doesn’t”… I hope he does know… otherwise some of his actions are a bit questionable… (though I’m not analysing that too much, just enjoying their chemistry 😆).

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    I certainly hope he knows it would make all of her current/ upcoming angst funny instead of painful, his so sad face when he realizes his right hand person betrayed him would kill me, he needs someone on his side so badly. That uncle makes me so mad always making those cuckoo references

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      I hope he knows because I really like his adorable teasing of Gal-hee. I think if he doesn’t know for sure, he definitely knows something is up.

      Don’t even get me started on the uncle. He’s such an ass, I can’t even. I want to slap his smug face every time it’s on my screen.

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    I mean surely he MUST know the voice??? Right? I haven’t caught up to the latest episodes as yet but imagine how refreshing it would be, specially in a trope filled drama as this, if he knew. Ah! It would be good.

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      I truly hope he knows!!!

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      I think Gal-hee pitches her voice a bit differently when playing “Veronica” and doesn’t just copy the real Veronica’s affected way of speaking? But she also slips up when she’s surprised which is why I feel like Min-ik didn’t figure it out right away. I feel like it would have taken him a bit of time to figure it out. I feel like it’s the mannerisms which will give Gal-hee away more than anything.

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    i’m sadly convinced he doesn’t know. When he DOES figure it out, it’ll be like an «oh wow how did i not know moment. it was so obvious» And there’ll be angst when he finds out (hopefully KYK will play angst as beautifully as YSH). But i personally want him to find out and play with her without her knowing. A girl can dream.

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      I too share the dream it would bypass so much pain. I already feel horrible everytime he has to tell that soulless viper of a “faux” mom that he loves her, he doesnt need any more alienation

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      Oh KYK can definitely play angst beautifully. We will not be disappointed there.

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    I want him to know… but they usually don’t know and this drama isn’t smart, it just has good leads lol.

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      If I remember correctly this writer plays with tropes a bit, but they didn’t seem to give into dramalands worst instincts in Divorce Lawyers in Love which was fluff but never really made me tear my hair out. I think there was one point where they were almost angsty and stupid but then decided that was dumb so they stopped? I just remember not being mad at the drama.

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        You have suddenly given me hope that it won’t pull a trope fest on me in the latter half!!
        I still don’t think it’s smart, because it’s done a lot of weird things already, but maybe it will turn out to be less stupid than I’m expecting it to be.
        (Then again if I expect it to be really stupid I don’t get burnt lol)

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          I feel, after yesterday’s episode, that there may be a bit of angst when he finds out but it won’t be hair-tearingly bad. I feel like if there is angst over betrayal it’ll be because of his shady BFF, and that is much more compelling to me because we rarely see male relationships that have that much trust and closeness in them. I remember in Divorce Lawyers there was a really compelling storyline about one of the clients, played by the always fabulous Lee El, that really kept me watching. It was good because it had you thinking one thing during the first half and then when it played out it was something else entirely. And it wasn’t stupid like Touch Your Heart, which I rage quit three episodes from the end because it was so unethical.

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    Totally unrelated and superficial question but how can someone look so good when he’s sleep? Is this what he really looks like when he falls asleep in his trailer on set or on the sofa at home? I have questions and I really would like answers. lol.

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This is legitimately one of my favorite moments from a drama ever.

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She’s kind of bonkers and I may love her.

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    Why does she kind of remind me of Jennifer Garner? Maybe its the hair…

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      I see what yo mean! I think it’s the lips and her face shape too. They’re kind of similar to Jennifer Garner’s.

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    I was afraid she would come across as annoyingly weird, but so far she is nothing but delightfully wacky.

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      Like, she is straight up batshit crazy, and I love that Kim Jae-kyung is just leaning into it. I love it when an actor just lets loose and let’s their character be completely off the wall.

      Also, I love that despite being bonkers she seems to actually be good at her job and people respect her work even if they think she’s nuts.

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    What show is this?

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    I loved the guy behind her LOL She’s the type of person I love but from afar… very far.

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      I’m am just loving this trend of secretaries holding purses in super extra ways for their bosses. The director’s secretary does it in Her Private Life too.

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Beanfriends, thank you all so much for your encouragement last week when I was feeling down. I feel confident today thanks to you. Channeling Hye-young unnie for extra luck.

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