HA. These are the kinds of cameos that I love — I Hear Your Voice alum Jung Woong-in (Endless Love) stopped by the set of Pinocchio to shoot a cameo appearance as none other than Min Joon-gook, his scary serial killer character who terrorized Lee Jong-seok and Lee Bo-young on I Hear Your Voice. The writer and director requested the special appearance, and Jung Woong-in happily agreed to reprise the role that arguably made him a household name (yunno, in a terrified, Please don’t kill me, OMG way).
One of SBS’s biggest weekday hits last year was the strange but crackling combination of supernatural, law, serial-killer, and noona-killer drama that was I Hear Your Voice, so it’s no surprise that the network is locking in a good thing early on. SBS announced that writer Park Hye-ryun and PD Jo Soo-won will be reuniting for a new drama in the coming year that’s already got a timeslot on their fall Wednesday-Thursday schedule. Well if you’re gonna get the band back together, count me in.
The one good thing about working one day a year and outsourcing most of your menial labor to elves is that it gives you plenty of time to watch dramas. This year I discovered that I had watched them all wrong before, because when you watch with an open mind, you can gain valuable life lessons about love, forgiveness, and the true meaning of Christmas. So I wrote down all of the nuggets of brain-gold that I mined from this year’s shows, which I’m sharing with you now.
Far be it from me to deny you all the wisdom dramaland has imparted upon me. Live and learn, my grasshoppers.
SONG OF THE DAY
J Rabbit – “We Need a Little Christmas” [ Download ]
Here are your winners for 2013! It was an interesting year in dramaland, with a wide array of genres to choose from all year long. It was also a year without one drama to sweep all categories and all hearts, but never fear, because that just means the love gets spread around. Thanks again to HeadsNo2 and gummimochi for joining the fun as we battled it out for our favorites this year, and as always, we have you guys to thank for being a part of the ride all year long. So thanks, beanies!
Without further ado, the big winners of Dramaland 2013. Drumroll please…
It’s that time of year, for Show to trade in all its good deeds and gold stars for a spot on Santa’s list. Have you been naughty, nice, or something in between? If there’s any constant in dramaland, it’s that you can never underestimate the sneak-attack of a naughty finale, or the surprise resilience of a drama that lingers in your heart long after the dust has settled. It’s why Santa makes his list at the end of the year, because there’s nothing like time (and a little eggnog) to bring things into focus. So here’s my list of this year’s dramas, for better or worse, till 2014 do we part.
Time to polish off those shining character breakthroughs and brush the gaping plot holes under the rug. Final inspection, coming on through!
Another year has flown by, and it’s time to look back, reminisce, and assess how 2013 treated us in dramaland. And in taking a trip down memory lane (sure it’s a short lane, but so’s the memory), it strikes me that 2013 was pretty good in churning out a steady diet of watchable dramas, but a little stingy on the standouts. Which is to say, there were many, many dramas I enjoyed (including some that were so flawed that there was no reason to have enjoyed them as much as I did), but few if any that I really loved.
In my very unscientific approach to judging a year in dramaland, I generally feel that if a year brings me at least one awesome drama that gets me in both the head and the heart, it’s been a satisfying year. By that criteria, I’ll have to say 2013 falls a bit short of drama excellence, because I missed having that mind-and-body absorption into a drama and its world. Yet there were enough solid offerings to keep me well entertained, so I can’t be too disappointed.
And yes, there were some stinkers too, but that’s what man invented liquor for. So grab a drink, raise your glass, and join me in looking back on the year that was. (If you don’t see your favorite drama in this review, there’s a good chance it’ll be covered in the upcoming reviews. We’ve done our best to cover as much as possible, we swears. We have the dark circles to prove it.)
SONG OF THE DAY
Suspicious Housekeeper OST – “First Love” sung by Kim So-hyun [ Download ]
Here are your Beanie Awards! It’s December, which means our monkeys are madly typing away in the backroom to prepare our annual Year End Review Extravaganza, which we’ll be kicking off soon. But before we do that, here’s your chance to vote for your favorites of the year and see how it stacked up for you.
Here, you can refresh your memories about what you voted for in years past:
We’ll be rolling out our Year End Reviews in the coming days and weeks, so keep an eye out. If you’re curious about past years’ reviews, here’s a Year In Review tag for your convenient browsing purposes.
Running time: 63:25
In which we:
If you’re anything like me, your ideal drama hero isn’t the cold chaebol with the icy exterior or even the perfect Daddy Long Legs caretaker. He’s the hotheaded ruffian on a motorcycle with a busted lip and a one-sided love for an unattainable noona. Why always a motorcycle? I don’t know. Blame Jung Woo-sung (Beat, 1997). And James Dean.
Perhaps you recently finished I Hear Your Voice and you’re waiting for the next Park Su-ha to come around the bend. Aren’t we all. I spent the better part of the year finally watching the family sitcom Unstoppable High Kick from beginning to end, at a whopping 167 episodes (on the upside, the episodes are super short at twenty minutes each). The thing that kept me going was my tried and true dramaland kryptonite: the noona romance.
Lately I’ve become ending-averse, not that I don’t want shows to end (heaven forbid), but because enough bad endings can make you develop finale-phobia, for fear that one bad hour could undo all the good that came before.
But I’m happy to report that I Hear Your Voice goes out as strong as it came in. It always had a story and a message to tell—though we may have taken two extra episodes to (ahem) pad out said story—the journey feels whole, and earned, and satisfying to the end.