Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching
by DB Staff
So, what are we all watching this week?
What kept you reaching for more (or agonizing when there was no more), and what made you want to throw your remote through the screen? Time to weigh in…
Pretty Noona Who Buys Me Food: This show has both too much realism and too much fantasy at the same time. I find Sohn Ye-jin’s everyday life to be so suffocating (between this and My Ajusshi, I’m beginning to have a full-fledged existential crisis), but then Jung Hae-in’s starry-eyed love for her is pure fantasy. I knew this noona-killer would be lethal. I mean, I already loved Jung Hae-in when he wasn’t running around trying to be swoony on purpose, but now he’s just trying to kill me.
My Ajusshi: You know a drama is spare with the emotions when two characters share three words and you find it meaningful. I just connected with IU’s character this week when she was sitting outside replaying the recording of Ajusshi calling her a good person over and over again, like it was her lifeline. The surprise is that she might end up being the one to save him and not the other way around, and I like that thought, very much.
Mystery Queen 2: The cases continue to be lackluster, but Lee Da-hee has finally become an active antagonist and the central mystery finally seems to be advancing, so I’m hoping for something there. For now, the saga of homeless Kwon Sang-woo and his ongoing roommate shenanigans is the best part.
The Great Seducer: I’m confused—is the bet over already? Because what is the point of the great seduction without the ambiguous motives? Somebody bring back the ambiguous motives, stat!
You Who Forgot Poetry: The casting of Lee Yubi in the lead role is what attracted me to this drama. The first two episodes felt chaotic as the eccentric characters were introduced, but once Lee Jun-hyuk arrived, it settled into a nice rhythm. The social hierarchy in a hospital is turned upside down when Lee Jun-hyuk arrives on the scene as a hotshot therapist who finds himself surrounded by petty, gossiping colleagues. The one bright light is Lee Yubi, a dedicated therapist who uses her love of poetry to inspire and comfort her patients. One poem is featured in each episode and suddenly I’m interested in Korean poetry.
That Man Oh-soo: I’m really enjoying Kim So-eun as the clumsy romantic interest in That Man Oh-soo. At first, I preferred her with second lead Kang Tae-oh, but Lee Jong-hyun has won me over as the man who seems to intuitively understand her. I’m disappointed that his ability to see emotions hasn’t been featured more prominently, but I’m sure that will change as his own feelings deepen for Kim So-eun. I’m just enjoying that this drama is an easy watch with little stress, like a relaxing cup of coffee.
Switch: This drama is really fast-paced and the story changes directions often, but so far it hasn’t been a confusing one to follow. I’d forgotten about Jang Geun-seok’s impish smile, which serves him really well in Switch. What will get confusing is if Han Ye-ri will continue to carry a romantic torch for Jang Geun-seok as her sunbae prosecutor, or his lookalike con artist.
My Husband Oh Jak-doo: Of all the dramas that I’m currently watching, this is the one that I’m impatient to see. I didn’t realize at first that My Husband Oh Jak-doo is 24 episodes long, which would have discouraged me from even considering it. I’m happy that I stumbled upon it because this drama has masterfully used the chemistry between UEE and Kim Kang-woo to steadily dial up the romantic tension with each episode. Add to that the country grannies, who get plenty of scenes thanks to the extra episodes, and I find that I’m delighted with the whole package.
Pretty Noona Who Buys Me Food: SWOON. I adore Jung Hae-in and Sohn Ye-jin together. They have such an easy, natural chemistry to them that I don’t even question their pretty seamless transition from friend’s younger brother-older sister’s bestie to that flirty, pre-dating stage. And I really like their individual characters as well, especially the heroine, who seems like a bit of a doormat at first, but knows how to dole out some delightfully petty revenges. I tend to find this PD’s work vaguely stifling in terms of the overall mood and tone, and Pretty Noona has all the hallmarks of his past shows, from the casual workplace sexism to the strained relationship between the heroine and her parents. But the leads and their developing romance is a huge bright spot in the drama, and I’m looking forward to watching them fall in love with each other. And I’ll be there swooning every step of the way.
You Who Forgot Poetry: I caught the first two episodes and I’m not entirely sure what to make of this show. On the one hand, I adore the concept of weaving poetry into the narrative, and the show has the aesthetic part of that down pat. But, I can feel the execution falling just short of what I want this show to be, and it veers off into the slapstick a little too often. Also, not a fan of Jang Dong-yoon’s literal man-child character, and I thought Lee Yubi’s heroine just a tad too pathetic, but I’m hoping Lee Jun-hyuk will be this show’s saving grace.
Infinite Challenge: Wow, it really feels like the end of an era. Infinite Challenge first started right around when I began watching Korean variety shows, so even though I didn’t follow it religiously week by week, it was always sort of there in the background. MBC is labeling this as the end of just the first (13-year-long) season, but there’s no Infinite Challenge without this cast and PD. I have to admit, I got a little choked up at the end along with the members, especially when they wrapped up the show with their iconic chant.