Beanie level: Rooftop room dweller

I took everyone’s advice and started Black Dog and at three episodes in, I love it. While it does suffer a bit over the TvN bloated episode syndrome, it is compelling enough to hold my interest for the hour+ episodes. I really love these characters and am rooting for all of them.

I think that Seo Ye-jin is (unsurprisingly) absolutely killing it. She infuses Ha-neul with an enthusiasm that doesn’t make her look silly, but rather portrays the characters sincerity in her work. It would be so easy to play this character as overzealous or a pushover, but her balance of those two things is perfect, making us watchers relate to her. We’ve all been the new kid at some point, and we all know how hard it is to fit in. Ha-neul’s idealism is so perfectly balanced with her bright personality and her pragmatic approach to her work, and you can see that her idealism isn’t borne solely from naivete. She may be green, but she’s adaptive and sharp but also sincere when it comes to dealing with people. It’s easy to see how she gained allies so quickly despite her rocky beginning. You can’t help but root for her. I love watching her because she knows that she has to work twice as hard to earn half the respect her peers have, and she does it without complaining or backing down.

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Bean friends, I need some advice.

Nothing\’s really been able to hold my attention lately drama-wise. I finally got around to watching Stove League and I really like it, though I\’m not sure I\’m fully invested in all the characters 5/10 episodes in, though the actors are doing a wonderful job.

I was wondering: is Black Dog an underdog story or is it more of a slice-of-life/school drama? I feel like it could be what I\’m looking for right now, but I\’m so all over the place that I kind of need some more input. I would consider trying Diary of a Prosecutor but the day job makes me averse to both legal dramas and prosecutors, so…

What I want is something where I can really root for the characters and get invested in the story. I tried Crash Landing on Yupu, and while I LOVE Son Ye-jin\’s character, the overall drama is pretty meh to me. I\’m debating Chocolate but I don\’t know if I have it in me to slog through a lot of tragedy right now. I mostly feel like I\’m just waiting for Itaewon Class to start, but I want something to enjoy until then.

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    Chocolate is a cry fest, so if you want to cry it’s perfect (the acting is top notch, the romance is painfully slow, the amount of tragedy is ridiculous). I just started Diary of a Prosecutor and recommend you watch the first twelve or so minutes. I’m pretty sure you’ll laugh.

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      unless you are a cynic then you just want to punch the writer

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    Did you watch My Fellow Citizens, My Strange Hero, or Inspector Jo? I finally got around to them and all three are great so far. Plus, all eps are around 30 min.

    Never Twice is a current one and is a weekender so a lot of eps, but they are only like 20 something minutes and the mom and baby at the heart of the story are wonderful.

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      I LOVED My Strange Hero, one of my favorite 2019 dramas. Never got to the other two because of time, but they’re on my list. Not sure I can do a weekender, but I’ve been debating giving Never Twice a shot.

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        I keep using this word for it, but Citizens is delightful. At least so far. It is fast paced, good editing, and fun use of the OST. Though Siwon is the MC, and doing great, it is the heroine and the big bad (can not get over how young she looks) who steal the show. Well, and his father and sister who are also conmen and cant get over that he married a cop.

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    I vote for Diary of a Prosecutor! I understand your aversion because of your day job but the show is more focused on the prosecutors’ lives rather than their cases. It’s not the usual ‘gung-ho!’ ‘Let’s get all the bad guys!’ ‘Good lawyer, fighting bad guys!’ that we’re always seeing. It’s a slice-of-life approach and it’s funny.
    It’s set in a slightly less than average city and the Prosecutors deal more with civil cases rather than criminal cases and when they do, it’s low-grade criminal cases. It’s a laugh! No pressure 😅😅

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      Hmm, if it’s civil I could give it a shot – I often work as a defense attorney, and civil rights is my main specialty, so prosecutors are basically my enemy and I have a lot of trouble garnering any sympathy for them. I adore both the leads and slice-of-life is my jam, so I may be able to do it without getting rage-y. I basically had an aneurysm before rage-quitting Touch Your Heart because it was so stupid I couldn’t deal.

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        I haven’t touched a legal drama since Touch Your Heart. I can’t. My braincells deserve better.

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          I think I wrote three rants on my wall before I was like “this is not worth it” and stopped watching. That, and I started Hulk-raging every time I saw Lee Dong-wook’s terrible, awful, no-good, should-have-his-law-license-revoked character, so it was impossible for me to watch.

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            I don’t even remember if I ended up finishing the drama. I think I’ve erased all my memories of this show and specifically of everything law related. I just remember rage. Then nothing. And then it was over.

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        💀💀💀 I can’t blame you. I, too, shy away from most medical dramas. I just can’t!

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          The last legal drama I liked was Lawless Lawyer which was just fun and not about prosecutors, so I liked it more. Also, it wasn’t really a legal drama to me, more of a revenge drama where the characters just happened to be lawyers who used the law creatively, which I’m all about. None of this righteous “I only represent the innocent” bullsh*t. I feel like being a doctor would be worse, because medical dramas are so much more over-the-top.

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        The heroine in I Can Hear Your voice is a defense attorney, but it also has the mind reading Noona slayer so it doesnt take itself too seriously.

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    Black Dog is a story of a temp teacher’s struggles in the cut-throat education industry in SK. Acting is top notch, so you’ll probably root for FL right away. However, this drama is serious business. A lot heavier than Diary of A Prosecutor, which I enjoy for the comedic moments and characters.

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      I think I’ll give both a shot and see what grabs me – DoP seems to have a lot of people enjoying it, and if it’s more slice-of-life and comedic I can probably handle it.

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    Chocolate is pretty depressing! The combination of YKS’ dimples and Jang Seung Jo’s gorgeous face is carrying the show for me. It’s like, can you get even sadder? I’m not particularly attached to any of the characters either. The tragedy seems rather contrived but from the latest episode, the romance is starting to pick up so yay that!

    Black Dog is more like a slow burn. I enjoy it! Well, I’ve been enjoying it more as of late but I’m not sure what exactly about it I’m enjoying. I think it’s both Slice-of-life and and an underdog school drama focusing solely on the teachers and their dynamics. If you want to see La Miran just crushing it, check it out. There’s a character that ignites some inside rage that makes you want to bitch slap him every time he talks. I could do without him but otherwise, it’s a slow burn good show.

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      I love Ra Mi-ran and Seo Hyun-jin so I was excited to see that they were doing something with a meaty story together. I just never started because I’m having so much trouble starting things these days. I think I’ll give it a shot, though.

      Still undecided on Chocolate, since I don’t know if I have it in me to deal with lots of tragedy, but you never know.

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    I recommend Diary of a Prosecutor, if only for Lee Sun-kyun’s beautiful voice. It’s a lot like Misaeng because it’s a character-focused drama set in a typical workplace. I already feel really connected with the cast just 6 episodes in. And on top of that, it’s also pretty funny with heartfelt moments sprinkled in.

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    Skip Chocolate, it’s a very uneven sloggy cryfest. Why am I watching? Who knows.

    Have you tried No Second Chances? It’s a family weekender, and the first few episodes may not draw you in initially, but it gets more fun, and the OTP is cute as a bug.

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    I can’t recommend Black Dog enough, especially because I feel like it hasn’t been getting enough love.

    I’d say it’s both underdog and slice-of-life. It’s a slow-burn workplace drama in which you follow Go Ha-neul, a green temp teacher at a private high school. She’s a soft-spoken adorable little baby teacher, but can definitely stand her ground when needed. But because she’s new, she makes mistakes, even if she’s a hard worker, because new jobs are hard on everyone. But that’s ok, because she has mama bear Ra Mi-ran to back her up when needed.

    It’s extremely easy to root for Ha-neul in her quest to acquire a permanent teaching position. There’s also so many (often understated) character moments that make you feel warm inside as she slowly becomes more comfortable with her colleagues.

    While it is a school setting, it focuses more on the teachers’ daily struggles rather than the the students’, which to me has been quite refreshing. That said, as it is a workplace drama, there is a lot of talk about conflicts that occur when teachers try to do administration (rather than taking you on a journey on how to teach the best classes), which to me has been really interesting but for someone who just wants to relax after a day of work dealing with similar issues might not be the right thing to watch.

    Anyway, I clearly have been loving this show a lot. In comparison, I’ve also been watching Stove League, which has been good, but I’ve also remained a little disconnected. There’s also Never Twice, which is a crazy, adorable ride, as weekenders should be, and has me willing to die for Kwak Dongyeon’s character Hae-joon and his soft spot for baby Yeol-mu. He’s a phenomenal actor (and Hae-joon is very different from Se-ho in Boksoo!).

    Anyway. To answer your question. BLACK DOG IS GREAT.

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      You make a good case, and I’m pretty sure I’ll be giving this a shot, because I love a good story like that. I don’t mind school politics, or even politics in general in dramas, but it has to be relevant and well-done, and not just stupid chaebol trying to keep his position/company politics that are boring and shoved in to the plot to give the characters something to do in the last four episodes.

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      Listen to Daisy Daisy is the smartest

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    If you want something easy on the eyes and the brain then I would suggest Never Twice. Its cute.

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    If you want an underdog story I’m liking Nagi’s Long Vacation. It’s a jdrama and it’s just 10 eps, really fast paced and I find the heroine adorable but it’s a realistic setting so no absurdity like in current kdramas.

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    I don’t have any recommendations, just here to say I also am a bit lost in the Kdrama landscape ~ I started Crash Landing a couple of days ago, and am committed to it now, regardless of feelings (I’ve got my mom, my sister, and my friend all texting me about it…).

    I personally cannot watch medical dramas, I have given up that genre due to my work. I admire you for still trying to watch your field in this one ~

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Happy New Year!

Here’s a print that I have and I thought I’d share it with you. It’s a new year’s wish for you all. May you all have a happy, healthy, joyful year to come.

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I decided to binge Kingdom tonight, and I wonder what it says about me that my preferred way of ringing in the new year/decade is to watch zombies in Joseon?

I do have cake and tea, so I\’m not entirely devoid of the festive spirit.

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Today I made something I’m really proud of, and I wanted to share it with you.

So, I’ve had a very socially busy few months, which for an introvert like me is hard because it means I get stressed out more easily. This finally came to a head this week and I found out I got shingles, lord knows how but probably the aforementioned stress helped it out, and now I’m on a delightful cocktail of medication and trying to be OK. I’m glad it’s almost Christmas and I can take a few days off to be alone and recharge. But, that is not my point here. Today I made a cake for my cousin’s baby shower, and I have never done anything like this before. (I mean, I’ve made cakes, just never tiered, ambitiously flavored ones like this.)

I usually nitpick at the flaws in my work, and I only see the mistakes. I have a hard time being proud of myself. It’s been years of learning to unlearn the habit of picking on myself and learning to see the good instead of the bad. I am my own worst enemy.

So today I just wanted to share the good with all of you. I made this cake, from scratch, without any idea what I was doing. I used flavors I wasn’t sure would work together (lavender, lemon, almond). I learned how to make different frostings and fillings. I came up with a solution when one off my fillings wasn’t working. And I think the whole thing turned out pretty damn well. So, I just wanted to say I’m proud of myself. And that actually feels pretty good.

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    Holy cow – that cake is gorgeous!!!! You have every reason to feel proud! Well done @snarkyjellyfish!

    Interesting to note that so many beanies here describe themselves as introverts. I too am one, but you wouldn’t know it if you saw me at work or at the store- I talk to everyone – but then go home to my peace and quiet.
    We are an introspective bunch aren’t we? But that is what allows us to put so much effort into something as beautiful and full of love as the cake you created.
    So take care of yourself (I hear shingles is awful) and soon you will be ready to join the world again.
    But not after binging on a few dramas right – to refill our souls and hearts – right?

    Sending you lots of hugs and love from this side of the continent….

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      Thank you!

      And I know what you mean – I mean, I can get up in court and talk to a judge or whatever, but I also really need my alone time.

      Re the shingles: I got lucky, I think I caught it before it got painful (but we’ll see) so I’ve mostly been OK, just really angry at my body for doing this to me when I’ve been trying so hard to take care of myself (exercise, balanced diet, decent sleep). I think I just have to accept that some things just happen and I can’t control everything.

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    It’s beautiful, be proud of your work!

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    Omo! That is a very pretty cake. I’m sure it tastes as good as it looks 😊.

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      Thank you! I hope so. I only got a taste of the almond lemon one, but I did taste test the lemon lavender last week and it was pretty good.

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    Beautiful. I love lemon. I’ve heard shingles is terribly painful, so hope you feel better soon.

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      Thank you! So, either I have a very high tolerance for pain (very likely) or I caught it early. I’m not in a lot of pain and it’s on my legs, so I can actually do pretty much everything – only wearing leggings and tights is off and those are my mainstays in winter…so that’s been a bit of a challenge. But trying to stay optimistic.

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    Stunning

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    That cake is lovely! Your cousin is very lucky.

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      Also, shingles is awful. My dad had (has?) it as well (his immune system has been suppressed, so that might be why) and it was quite painful for him. I hope you get better soon!

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        Thank you – I’ve actually been OK for the most part, no pain, more inconvenience (it’s on my leg) so I’m more annoyed than anything else.

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    It looks beautiful and I’m sure it tastes delicious!

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      Thank you! I did taste the top tier (almond-lemon cake) and it wasn’t bad, if I do say so myself.

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    W.o.w ! So pretty !

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    This is gorgeous. And yay for taking pride in our accomplishments – it’s a small yet very big thing.

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      Thank you. Yeah, it’s really hard for me to do that for some reason, but I really do feel good about how this turned out.

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    What an absolute tower of beauty! I hope the baby appreciates it for many years to come!!😆

    Hope the pain stays away for infinity @snarkyjellyfosh!

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    That’s one beautiful cake!

    Sorry about the shingles though and hope your’e surviving them without too much pain.

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    It looks amazing, you should be absolutely proud of it!!

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    That cake is stunning – truly beautiful work!

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    wahhh…. so pretty it is!! I wish I could have had a slice. Bet it tastes as awesome as it looks.

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    Looks fantastic! Good work!

    Also, hope you feel better soon!

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    That’s a really lovely cake @snarkyjellyfish

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    Wow! With and without the flowers, it looks gorgeous!

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      Thanks you! I can’t take full credit for the design idea – the whole endeavor began when my cousin sent a pic to me of a “semi-naked” cake with fresh flowers and asked if we could do something like that. I just got creative with flavors and took it from there.

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    Incredibly pretty @snarkyjellyfish! <3

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How does Son Seuk-gu manage to make this character both an utterly delightful weirdo and yet also a complete and total b*stard? I somehow both adore and loathe this character simultaneously.





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    Director-nim from Melo is my Nature? He was such a lovely weirdo in that one! What drama are these from?

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      Matrimonial Chaos. It’s excellent , definitely recommend, especially if you liked Melo is My Nature. It’s a very different subject matter but has the same vibe.

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        Yes pleasssssssse watch this was such an ignored gem from last year T____T

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    At one point, my hatred for him took over before calming down near the end. Have fun watching it 🙂

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      honestly I haven’t hated him that much so far – I think he’s a very broken man. And while that’s not an excuse for his behavior and it doesn’t mean he gets to hurt other people just because he’s hurt, it does explain him a lot. I loathe his choices and I loathe his attitude – but I also understand that this is his version of protecting himself. I’m four episodes from the end, and I really love all of these characters so much and want only the best for them. They’re all beautifully imperfect humans and they all are showing growth and understanding and developing empathy and I love it.

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        My dislike from him came from my lack of understanding in the middle of the drama. Then, when we got more background on him I started to see why he came to act like this. I think I was more on Lee El’s character side because she felt more familiar.

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    his character was so despicable but also so weird / clueless in a way , kinda got used to him by the end w/o hating him ^^’

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      Yeah – I don’t hate him, I just hate his choices. He’s a b*stard, but he’s also super interesting and complex, and I think the actor is bringing a lot to a character who could be totally horrible and making him feel grounded and real despite the character being a total weirdo.

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    That is actually why I dislike this actor unfortunately 🙈
    Matrimonial Chaos was my first time watching him and it made me so angry that he was able to make such a loathsome character lovable. I hated the character so much that I can’t like him at all. Maybe one day a particularly unweird and nice character can change my mind. I don’t know.

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    I loved him so much in Matrimonial Chaos! I’m still obsessed with the river crossing too. Can I please just go live in this drama?

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    I… couldn’t even hate him. *heart eyes*

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    He was great in this drama.

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I decided to try Matrimonial Chaos after you all suggested it, and I’m liking it a lot so far. It’s been a while since I’ve watched a good slice-of-life drama. These characters are beautifully complex and interesting, and I already like all of them. It was a really interesting choice to lead the story with the main couples flaws front and center but I look forward to their growth.

Also, I missed the memo that Wi Ha-joon was in this, which make me even happier that I chose this one. Thanks again bean friends for being your lovely helpful selves.

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Beanfriends, I’m down to one drama (Catch the Ghost) and it’s almost over, so for the first time in years I won’t have any dramas on my watch list. I may try Chocolate but it doesn’t feel like my cup of tea. This is a pared down list of dramas I haven’t gotten around to but I’m not sure where I want to start. I’m also not sure what I’m in the mood for – fluff is always good, but I kind of want something that’ll engross me in its world. Basically I’m overwhelmed.

Because y’all are the best, I thought I’d turn to you for any votes of what to watch/avoid on this list, or even other suggestions.

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    Save Me was good if only to see Woo Do Wan (is that how his name is spelled?) Taceyon not so much.
    Kingdom was good – except for the cliffhanger at the end. grr
    Tunnel was good.
    Those are the only ones I watched that I’d recommend. The rest either I didn’t watch or wouldn’t re-watch them.

    Have you tried watching The Untamed? That will totally take over your world. And it’s only 50 episodes.

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      I have debated The Untamed, but don’t have the time/energy to devote to it right now, so I’m saving it for later to do it the justice it seems to deserve.

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    I haven’t seen all of them but from the ones I have and the things I’ve heard it’s a pretty good list. The only one I didn’t like at all was While You Were Sleeping, which I thought was sloppy and poorly characterised. I hated the end of Tunnel and it did ruin it for me but others don’t feel the same way.

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    I vote for Kingdom, Matrimonial Chaos and Tunnel.

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    I vote Lookout, Kingdom, or Save Me.

    I Hear Your Voice is a hard pass. Save yourself the trouble.

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      wait, I made a mistake. For some reason when I read I Hear Your Voice, I was thinking of I Wanna Hear Your Song. I’ve never seen IHYV, so I have no opinion, but steer clear of I Wanna Hear Your Song.

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        Too late. I watched that, and while it was a trainwreck I’m not actually that mad at it? Like at least it amused me in the end because it was total nonsense.

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        Phew. I was about to do violence for you besmirching IHYV. That was a close call.

        🤣🔪

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        LOL I was going to go defensive when I read your comment about I Hear Your Voice 😅

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    Chief Kim – great ensemble cast, so fun, no central romance, weird underdog
    Matrimonial Chaos – Can I please go live in this drama? No caricatures or routine romances, strong women
    Lookout – addictive thriller with strong women and one so adorable romance (not a main part of the plot)
    The Package – Interesting ensemble cast, romance (but not necessarily centered on this)

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    Matrimonial Chaos!!!
    Just give a few episodes to warm up to the characters and then you are in for a ride.

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    This is a great list but my favorite here is This week my wife will have an affair. It’s an amazing show and wasn’t really mentioned by anyone in the comments so I hoped you won’t overlook it. It is also appropriate for your feelings rn, it’s engrossing while being fun.

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      I came to write about this one but then I saw you have written what I wanted to say:) It really is an amazing drama. I laughed, I got emotional, I learned..

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    This is a good list. I loved Save Me, Chief Kim, Lookout, Kingdom, Tunnel and I Hear Your Voice. All very different types of dramas.

    I haven’t seen all of them but out of the ones I’ve listed above, the only other one I’ve seen but didn’t find anything special was While You Were Sleeping.

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    Oh, pick The Package. Pick It! Pick It! It’s a lovely character driven drama with a lovely backdrop.

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      I’m like, 99% sure this is on my list because I remember you loving it so much.

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        Well…I mean. I DO Love it alot. And if that loves wants to influence you….I haven’t seen every drama on your list, I haven’t seen a majority of the dramas on your list so I can’t say that The Package is better than any of them. But, what I can say is exactly what I’ve said: its a lovely character driven drama. Every single character is likeable. Every single one of them. Even the ones that you think you hate in the beginning. Its a drama that allows characters to be people who grow and change and make mistakes. No one is perfect. When its over its not the drama that you’re going to analyze 50jillions times looking for—I dont know. Whatever it is that people who analyze dramas (…) are looking for. Its a drama that when its over, you sit back and you say to yourself, “I liked those people.”

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    My first choice would be I Hear Your Voice; it’s a Lee Jong Suk breakout drama after all. I didn’t find him more adorable in anything else since then. The drama is great with a chilling villain.

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    Oh you have a nice list!

    A feel good drama like Chief Kim would be great for this time of the year. Character driven dramas like Matrimonial Chaos (quirky characters), The Package (good ensemble cast, nice filming spots, Choi Woo Sik ♥️) and My Wife is Having an Affair This Week (favourite take on adultery so far) are nice too. Lookout has a really great vigilante team with a kickass female lead and my rediscovery of Kim Young Kwang. Save Me will make you rage because of all of the the cult’s actions, support Seo Ye Jin’s strong willed character and break your heart because of Woo Do Hwan’s character.

    Better wait for Kingdom’s season 2 to come out before starting season 1. Other dramas are nice (WYWS could have been better tho), so I don’t know what recommend to watch first.

    Personal recommendation: Pegasus Market, Leverage and VIP.

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      Pegasus and VIP are definitely on my radar, and I’m debating picking up VIP if people keep liking it since it seems to be getting some love on the wall after it’s opening week. Pegasus is being saved for when I really need a laugh – I have a few stressful events going on early next year, so I suspect I’ll need it.

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        Pegasus. Definitely start that one if you want some good laughter amidst some poignant scenes and messages.
        If you like Flashdance, Jesse Ventura (aka the Hulk), Twisted Sister, Goblin, and opera sung in cabbage fields and a group of marvelous dancers in tornado hats, this might be up your alley…

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        Pegasus should be savoured 🙂 VIP is female centered and Jang Nara is awesome 😍

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    Comment was deleted

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    Chief Kim
    Lookout

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    I recommend Tunnel and IHYV

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    I’m voting for I Hear Your Voice. I loved the heroine. She wasnt perfect, but she knew the power of confidence and a good hair flip. Also, I can see why JB and GF called Lee Jong suk the Noona killer…..or something like that. The characters have some actual growth. Though not a perfect drama I liked it alot.

    This is making me want to do a rewatch.

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      Full disclosure, it is the only one from your list I’ve actually watched.

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    Lookout for sure, and I still have a couple eps left to go from forever ago but I really liked IHYV. The only other one I’ve seen is WYWS which I would definitely say to skip 😅

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    I’m late, but I’ll throw in my two cents. I liked Chief Kim, Matrimonial Chaos, and Tunnel. I also liked While You Were Sleeping, but I’m probably in the minority on this one. I found I Hear Your Voice very frustrating. I thought The Package and My Wife is Having an Affair This Week okay, though they left no lasting impression on me and I wouldn’t watch either again.

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      I’m almost finished with Matrimonial Chaos (4/8 episodes left) and I absolutely love it. I’m annoyed I sat on this one for so long, but I’m glad I actually watched it. The cast is amazing and the story is just so raw and real.

      While You Were Sleeping seems to have a mixed reviews, and I Hear Your Voice too. I’ve been keeping a tally as to what people liked – out of curiosity, without spoilers, did you like the end of Tunnel/did it affect your overall impression of the show? I may try that next since I’m hoping to spend Christmas finally getting some alone time on my couch with some dramas (this isn’t depressing – I don’t celebrate and I’m kind of burned out).

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        I thought Matrimonial Chaos was great as well! I loved the ending; hopefully you will too!

        I didn’t love the ending of Tunnel, but it didn’t significantly change my opinion of that show.

        I get you about Christmas! I don’t celebrate either. My family isn’t Christian, nor did they celebrate the holiday culturally (as some non-Christians tend to do). For me, Christmas is just a break from school/work.

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I love that Jang Dong-yoon played this role with the dignity it deserved and was still able to make it humorous without being degrading. His efforts were well spent and I am grateful he gave us this character. Both Nokdu and Widow Kim will remain in my memory for a long time.

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@sicarius
Your kingdom has some formidable subjects indeed.

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Catch the Ghost is a lot more compelling than I thought it would be, and this week it completely won me over. Both episodes had a strong emotional core running through them, both dealing with the same topic – being a caregiver – while showcasing different parts of the experience. I think it’s really interesting how the drama is exploring the role of caregivers and the emotional toll that can take on people. What Yoo-ryung did to Yoo-jin was wrong – that is not up for debate – but there is no doubt that she immediately regretted her actions and it’s clear how it has weighed on her every moment since then. Catching the titular ghost isn’t just about catching a murderer, but also obviously refers to confronting and catching her own ghosts. I think that Ji-seok hasn’t gotten as far yet in his journey as a caregiver, but it was clear from his breakdown in the car that he is on the same path. And I think that by meeting Yoo-ryung at this moment in his life he can maybe take another road, where instead of becoming burned out he can learn to balance his own well-being while also being a good son. I also think that Yoo-ryung meeting him will help her to focus her emotional energy and use it more productively rather than simply jumping and following her heart without a clear plan. Also, the chemistry between these two is so good I can’t even. I mean, obviously both Moon Geun-young and Kim Sun-ho are always great, but they are both just fantastic in this.

The one weak spot for me in this drama is the character of Ma-ri, who is genuinely terrible when it comes to how she treats other women. Her character seems to have a lot of internalized misogyny, probably in part because of the way her personal and professional lives are intertwined, but the way she treated the rape victims, as if they were just witnesses and not victims was horrifying. No investigator worth their salt should ever treat a victim like that. Then the way she accused Yoo-ryung was awful. Whether or not she had more evidence for her accusation, it was uncalled for and wrong. She has seen how Yoo-ryung has struggled to find her sister and to accuse her is completely out of line. And I know that a part of this characterization is to contrast her rational way of solving cases to Yoo-ryung’s emotional ways, but that doesn’t make her any less distasteful. And I love Jung Yoo-jin, so I sincerely hope there is some kind of redemption or comeuppance for her.

All in all, I’m pleasantly surprised by how much I like this drama and I am really looking forward to its second half.

https://snarkyjellyfish.tumblr.com/post/189052371598/bananpeze-bonus

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    You said everything I feel about this show!
    This week’s episodes were a lot more heavy than what we’ve seen this far!

    Mari was way too harsh to Yoo Ryung, honestly she has no right to say such things seeing how desperate Yoo Ryung was when she ran to her begging her to find her sister. Ma-ri seems to emotionally detach herself from the victims she meets.. she sees them as only cases that needs to be solved and done with, another thing on her to-do list checked, no one is asking her to be personally involved with them but a little empathy will go a long way!

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    I have noticed this in some other shows too, rape victims being treated as witnesses instead of victims…

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    I got completely different feelings about his show, I thought it had great potential to show things you wrote about but it was ruined for me by how bad the writing is, the character of Mari is one of the examples, the writers paint everything in black and white and not even bother with nuances, not to mention tone deaf because who thought it was a good idea to use a rape case as a background for the beginning of romantic rivalry between to male leads. I think the writers are better at the slice of life moments or emotional anguish (those out of work scenes are really good) but lack sensitivity to weave it into crime stories.

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MFBTY is finally back!
(officially)

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    Did not know they where comeing back! So happy now😄

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      I feel like they’ve been hinting at it all year but I’m happy to see it’s official now.

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        I must have missed it then😅

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          It could also be wishful thinking on my part since I’ve been wanting them to have a comeback forever.

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            I have not been good at following them so I would have no diea until stumbling upon thier new mv lol. I’m a bad fan😅

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            Nah. I was just obsessed with WondaLand, so I’ve been obsessively waiting for official new music, though they have collaborated on things even if it’s not MFBTY per se. And all their solo tracks over the last year or two have been great but they’re SO GOOD when they’re together.

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            WondaLand was so good! I must have missed their collaborations though, it’s hard to keep up. I agree that they are so good together, my wish is to see them live

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I realized the other day that part of why I love Yong-sik in Camellia is that he reminds me of Go Dong-man, from Fight My Way, who may be my favorite male lead ever. I love the meathead puppy types because they are just so earnest and sweet with their feelings – I’m guessing the writer does too, since they wrote both dramas.

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I think the reason I enjoy Tale of Nokdu so much is its portrayal of women. They are strong, independent, capable of handling their own affairs, and everyone treats them as such. They aren\’t treated as if they\’re made of glass or less than. (Yes, the gisaengs are looked down on, but not because they are seen as weak by virtue of being women, but rather because of the profession they chose.) This confidence in the way women are treated by the story and the writer is a subtle thing, but it makes the whole tone feel refreshing. It\’s not seen as surprising that the women are so capable of running a society on their own without men. 

This is why I find Nokdu so interesting as a character. He doesn\’t treat having to dress as a woman as degrading in any way, nor does he ever treat the women as weaker or below him. Yes, he\’s awkward and nervous, and he plays a bit of a caricature of womanhood, but that is merely a means to keep his disguise going. Moreover, there is no overcompensation or irritating displays of manliness when he\’s alone or with Dong-joo. He\’s not embarrassed by his ability to learn the fan-dance in one go. He\’s not taken aback by women being assassins. He never looks down on the women, and while he\’s surprised by the way women socialize, he never seems to think that they aren\’t capable.

I think this works so well because of Jang Dong-yoon\’s portrayal of Nokdu. I noticed that even in the BTS videos Jang Dong-yoon doesn\’t seem overly self-conscious when he\’s dressed as a woman or try to make himself seem manlier to make up for his appearance. He\’s confident in his skin, just as Nokdu is, and that makes such a difference. 





(GIFs from setsmaker on Tumblr)

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    With a face like that, hell yeah, you can have allllllll the confidence.

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    I am jealous of his hair. 🤩 How could he look so good with his wet hair? Mine would look like a blob of drenched seaweed.

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    Well said. 👏👏

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      Thank you. I’ve been trying to parse out why this gender-bender feels so fresh since the genre isn’t new (though it’s rarer to have men dress as women) but I finally hit on it the other day and I just got the chance to write it out.

      Also, I may have needed an excuse to have these GIFs on my wall.

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    I’ve not started this (as I am a binge watcher not a live watcher) but that was very well said and makes me even more excited to see this drama.

    And those gifs do naughty things to me 😳🙈

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    Perfectly stated! I have said earlier that it’s portrayal of women is very refreshing from a saguek point of view. And he is also doing a damn good job!

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      Honestly, it’s portrayal of women is refreshing, period. I love that the focus is less on women as women and more on women as a community, if that makes sense? It focuses on what each can contribute and it never questions that, never tries to make the women appear to be “special” and “different” from other women just because of her skillset. Instead, it’s treated as an assumption that everyone has a skillset and uses it to the best of their ability, regardless of gender. The lack of commentary on gender norms makes you forget about gender norms after a time, if that makes sense?

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    *staples this to my forehead*

    YES TO ALL OF THIS

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      Also, I’ve loved JDY for a whiiile, but gosh dang, is he pretty

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        I think I’ve watched all his dramas except Mr. Sunshine. He has a very naturalistic way of acting and a lot of talent and I can’t wait to see where he goes now that he’s getting more lead roles. I think he has an eye for good projects and characters too, so I hope he keeps up the good choices.

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I’m so happy AKMU is back! Their sound has matured and I love it. I love that they keep growing and evolving their sound. Mad respect to Lee Chan-hyuk for keeping up the writing during his military service. You can hear the influence on his writing.

I’m especially obsessed with this track, “A Fish in Water”. It reminds me of a sea shanty or an English folk song. It also sounds a lot like my favorite singer Frank Turner’s songs “The Opening Act of Spring” and “St. Christopher is Coming Home” but slower and more pensive. Turner often describes his music as “English Folk Punk-Rock” and this fits right into that. It makes me want to move my feet but it also makes me feel like I’m sailing off to sea. And the way their voices blend and separate – that also reminds me of the sea. Lee Soo-hyun’s voice also reminds me a lot of american folk/bluegrass/country singers like Allison Krauss or Patty Griffin here. Every time I listen to this song I hear another influence, et somehow they have blended all these together and made it something uniquely their own – and that ability is a gift. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for these two incredibly talented young siblings.

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    There’re parts which remind me of this song Dirty Paws by Of Monsters and Men. Maybe all that traveling and collaborations while filming Begin Again influenced her a lot.

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      Yes! This too. I knew there was something else. I was dashing off thoughts at midnight before bed and I knew I was missing something. That song also has a very English folk feel to it.

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    This was introduced to me last week and it has been on repeat since then. My favorite song though, is Chantey.
    But all of them are beautiful!

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      I was just giving the album a quick listen before bed and I ended up repeating this track about 5-6 times. But thurs album is their strongest yet. It’s thematically strong yet each track stands completely on its own well. It’ll definitely be getting a lot of play this fall.

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BEAN FRIENDS.

I have made it to the mythical rooftop room. I had given up. I was starting to accept my place as an errand boy. But today I was able to climb to the top of the tallest tower one final time and I was granted the leave to rest my wary feet.

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Gong Hyo-jin has been my #1 fave since my early dramaland days. I have watched every single one of her new dramas since I started this crazy journey into dramaland. I have never been disappointed by her roles or her choices. And I’m happy to say it seems that this streak is going to stay that way.

She has a gift for making me root for even the most irritating-on-paper characters and brings them to life from the moment she steps on screen. I loved her in the first episode of When Camellia Blooms. She was able to show a quiet strength and self-assurance while also being a timid (but not weak) person. It’s a gift to be able to balance that, and it takes skill to sell it so well in a first episode. But I am here for her Dong-baek. I can’t wait to see what this drama brings.

(Also, Kang Ha-neul is adorable and I’m pretty sure I could gush over him too, but that’s a different post for another day.)

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    From the character description, her character in Camellia reminds me of her character in Thank You. She was a strong single mum in that too.

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      That’s one of her older ones I have yet to see, though I really do want to dig into some of her older dramas and see more of her movies. She has a really good eye for strong characters and good stories.

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    Just about to press play. I think both her and Jang Nara have this warmth and quiet strength that they bring to their characters. At least the dramas over seen them in.

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      Yes! I love Jang Nara as well. Both excellent actresses with a good eye for scripts. I’m keeping an eye on V.I.P. next month pretty much because she looks so badass in it. I’m a little worried it’ll be just chaebol scheming and politics, but I was also confused by whatever the descriptions of Last Empress were and that turned out to be an excellent, albeit completely bonkers, ride.

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    I really love her Dong-baek. I have high expectation for this drama, and it seems that it managed to surpass even that. I can’t wait to see the next eps.

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    she is a favorite of mine, ok so who thinks\hopes that the body is that of the klepto waitress( sorry waitress)

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I’m 21 episodes into Le Coup de Foudre and I’m sorry I didn’t watch sooner. This moment really broke my heart, but at the same time, I think this separation was good for them. It allowed Qiaoyi to really grow into herself and gain confidence and open up. I’m not sure she could have done that if she and Yan Mo stayed together.

This is one of the few stories where I really buy that they were falling in love at such a young age. They both bring out the best in one another in such gentle ways, through supporting and believing in one another. All the couples on this show are that way, actually, and I love it because it shows that the best way to love someone is to support them and push them to be their best selves. That’s such a strong foundation and because of that I really can understand why Yan Mo was so hurt by her rejection.

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    I watched the first 2 eps of Le Coup de Foudre and seemed like it could be good, but the skipping around to all different times and the odd interview type format was throwing me off and kinda annoying. Everyone says it’s great so I probably just need to stick with it.

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      I really like the skipping around personally – I like that we know the endgame of the story and then get to watch it develop. But if it did annoy you, stick with it, because it’s less used in the middle episodes. They mostly just use a scene or two from the present to highlight the story in the past that they’re showing.

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    Omg, I love this show so much!!! Especially the first episodes. They are so cute and so awkward, I love it. And yes my heart totally broke for these two during the separation and sometimes made me angry, but I loved them. The music is also amazing, I might end up posting some. Glad to hear another beanie decided to watch it! 😊

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I started Le Coup de Foudre and it’s so sweet and I love the relationships between the characters. It reminds me a lot of one of my all-time favorites, Answer Me 1997, in that respect.

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    I’m stalled partway through, but not because of the show. I just add to many dramas to my plate and then have a hard time finishing all of them.
    I love the sibling relationship here and Zhao Guanchao.

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      Yeah – I’m pretty sure that September is going to be adding at least three new dramas to my watch list, but I had some free time this weekend and it looks like Graceful Family isn’t playing next week, so I figured I could watch this in the meantime. It’s so easy and light and sweet, and I wish I’d watched it earlier.

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    The Zhao family is the sweetest family ever! This drama made me crush on Guanchao when he’s on Big Bro mode 😍

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Is anyone watching Graceful Family? I’m loving it – the female lead is 100% chaotic good and I adore her. I can’t wait to see where this story is going after the end of episode 4.

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    I want to start. Saw some clips on insta and looks fun!

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      I was intrigued by the clips I saw on viki’s youtube. So glad I checked it out. It’s the right balance of predictable drama (chaebols, murder, political machinations) and interesting characters who elevate the material. It’s also nice having the smart chaebol be a woman who takes charge for once. The women in general on this show are absolutely brilliantly written because even the ones that are total stereotypes (like the stepmom and the mistress) feel fully fleshed out and real. But the two female leads (Im Soo-hyang and Bae Jong-ok’s characters) are especially great since they have a lot of ambition and are intelligent and take charge easily. It’s actually really refreshing in a way.

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        A female Chaebol sounds great! thanks for writing about this show. Definitely watching this evening. Am losing interest in most current dramas and wanted something new to start. Started ‘The great Show’. This will the other one. Good thing Viki has completed the subs!

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    i was wondering about this! i may check it out now 🙂

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      Definitely recommend – it’s a predictable plot in many ways, but is made infinitely better by by the good writing, acting and direction.

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        oh awesome! i don’t mind predictability, if it’s enjoyable and skillfully done. thank you thank you!

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          I won’t lie, I turned it on fully expecting to only half pay attention but I was engrossed from the first episode. Im Soo-hyang has a gift for just disappearing into her characters and making them feel real from the get-go.

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    I’m watching and each episode has been brilliant.

    Im Soo-hang handles her role masterfully. I like the fact that it’s chaebol in-fighting for a change, with no real candy character (maybe the ML?). I’m also enjoying the various twists, e.g., the entire prison storyline. Then that awesome twist with Hal-abeoji at the end of episode four happened. I’m so looking forward to episode five tomorrow.

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      I’m wondering if we’re going to get a Yong Pal part deux/do-over – there the chaebol female lead becomes power hungry and turns into exactly what she wants to destroy. Granted, I dropped that drama three episodes from the end because it just became a hot mess and relegated freaking Joo Won to the sidelines. Kim Tae-hee was good, though. But I feel like this could go that way, or it could go the predictable way of her taking over and cleaning up her family’s mess. I’d honestly be happy either way just because this show is so good so far. I feel like the writer here has an endgame in mind, so hopefully the plotting stays tight and the story and characters keep on track and it pays out.

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    Actually, both the female lead and the head of TOP, are strong ALPHA females. If they were on the same side, …

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      For sure. I love all the female characters because it’s such a well rounded set of female characters and even when the character seems like a stereotype they still feel like a real person.

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    I’ve been wondering about this one. I keep on reading positive things about it.

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    I started it over the weekend and was pleasantly surprised. I hope the female lead stays a strong character. So far she’s pretty refreshing.

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    Thanks so much for the recommendation!! loving it.. Love the entire chaebol family and all the caricatures.. Just got to the part where she goes to jail. And totally loved the way she rubbed on prosecutor’s face and faced it bravely. Atleast there is someone who knows never to trust TOP’s word.
    The eldest son and youngest bonding over gansta talk was hilarious.
    Can’t wait for her to start fighting head on.

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      Yay! I’m glad you like it – I loved the jail storyline. I loved how badass she was after she got over the shock of her arrest. That prosecutor was an asshat and deserved getting kicked down a notch or three.

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