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…
Designated Survivor: 60 Days: Our biggest dramaland enemy aside (more on that later), this premiere did a good job of introducing the different factions and their opposing interests. It puts tension in each scene, even if it’s just a bunch of men in suits arguing over car imports. And though I was hopping mad that no one was listening to the nerdy president’s calculations, I can also understand (at least, based on history and experience) why his family, the force, the media, the citizens, and the seasoned politicians are all pulling him in different directions. I can’t even hate them. It’s like hating a cat for having claws. The only true baddie here is the 80-minute episode lengths. Where can I sign the petition against that?
Angel’s Last Mission: Love: I almost dropped this during the abduction+amnesia episode where they let Yeon-seo believe that she fainted so she… needs a dozen new bodyguards? *facepalm* Have any of these people met Yeon-seo? Does she sound like a girl who will stay at home just because you ask her nicely?! With dimples?! *calms down* But then the show always turns around and gives me the funny and all is forgiven. I’ll never get tired of Yeon-seo terrorizing Angel Hoo, and I can never get enough of Miss Jung and Yeon-seo declaring their unlove for each other. That scene starring Dan as the penniless charmer and Miss Jung as the offended mother-in-law was the GOAT.
Great Escape 2: I’ve circled back around to season 2! I started this week with the first challenge, the one about aliens in the school’s basement. Very cool and impressive props-wise. Also one of the most suspenseful endings so far. When you can hear the cameraman panicking “they won’t make it, they won’t make it,” it really drives home the new rule that players can “die” or be tagged out this season. I also got time *cough*3 hours*cough* to watch the second challenge, the one about red eye flu. Though the sets were impressive as always, it was a bad decision storywise to isolate Kim Jong-min and P.O because they couldn’t solve anything. LOL But I appreciate that the production team is trying to add some twists. Can’t wait to watch the prison episode!
Angel’s Last Mission: Love: Shin Hye-sun is still killing it here, and she and L are adorable together, but I just… can’t… bring myself to care anymore. Everything else about this drama is such a hot mess, and I’m even really angered by it. I’m just bored.
Search Query: WWW: This is the most subtly, cleverly meta drama I have ever watched and I LOVE IT. Whatever else I thought a show about women running search engines would be, I did not expect an understated but knife-sharp deconstruction of nearly every drama genre we know so well. There’s the more obvious parody with Ji-hwan’s makjang daily drama, but the role reversals here, with pretty much every role that’s usually given to man played by a woman and vice versa, are radical because they go completely unremarked upon. Instead we simply have a terrifying chaebol mother-in-law who has her fingers in the highest level of politics instead of one who simply throws water in Ga-kyung’s face; in Ga-kyung and Jin-woo, in fact, we have the likely actual result of a marriage of convenience ten years down the line, without the magical fate and happy endings of rom-com land. And yet even here, it is the husband who is quietly, yearningly in love with his powerful, coldly charismatic wife. (God their relationship is my favorite romance plotline in the drama—I am rooting so hard for them to just run away together and leave their toxic families to torment each other.) Then we have Ta-mi and her running commentary to Mo-gun not to wear such seductive clothing (ha!), and the way Hyun has taken Ji-hwan under her protection in the way of many a drama oppa with a young ingenue. How cute was Ji-hwan’s “How does it feel to control my life?” And his confession to Hyun in front of drunk Ta-mi was giddy-making. This weeks’s episodes were especially perfect, especially in their endings. 9 ended with Ga-kyung finally coming to her breaking point and declaring her intention for freedom, which was followed by freeze-frames of her smiling, rather than the usual recap of important moments in the episode. 10’s last few minutes gave us that touching conversation between Ta-mi and Ara (how amazing are all these mentor-mentee relationships between women and where have they been all my life?!), and that beautiful montage of the team ending their day; that mini-epilogue of Alex taking the selfie for Brian melted my heart. I love that the work relationships here are so fully realized, and don’t just serve as background for the rom-com elements. Our three leads are so heavily invested in their work lives, and the team dynamics are important to their emotional state. It shouldn’t be this revolutionary to see Ta-mi being in a funk when she thought Alex was leaving; when have we seen heroines depressed for any reason other than romantic woes, or maybe getting fired unfairly? Yet here we see these women dealing with the pressures of leadership, the responsibilities of being the one in the hot seat if anything goes wrong; the self-doubt and stress that comes from having your colleagues rely on you. So I’m here for it. And even though Mo-gun is still constantly giving me unhealthy-obsession vibes, dare I hope that even this is a deliberate choice by the drama and is leading up to a very smart commentary about toxic relationships? I have enough faith in this writer now to believe she won’t disappoint us.
One Spring Night: One week left and I’m not ready for it to end yet! I think Gi-seok’s father summed up the entire set of conflicts in this drama when he said, “Humans are selfish beings.” This whole story seems to be an exploration of what happens when people’s selfishness affects their decisions and the people around them — or, as often shown in this drama, the women around them. Speaking of the women in this drama, can I just say how much I love them?! Friends, sisters, mothers, all of them. Jae-in puts her spitfire self to work protecting both her sisters, Seo-in adds a wonderful parallel layer to the story, and that meeting of the mothers on the bench? So touching.
What Happened in Bali: Summer seems like a good time to watch some of the K-drama classics I’ve been sitting on for a while, and What Happened in Bali is up first! Anyone game to join? So Ji-sub, Jo In-sung, and Ha Ji-won in a love triangle of extreme dimensions. In Bali (I think). Fair warning: This drama is said to have one of the most tragic endings in dramaland, so we’ll have to see how that shakes out. We survived Hundred Million Stars From the Sky recently, though, so I think we’ve got this. (If you’ve already seen this classic, don’t spoil it, purty please!)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (June 29, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (June 22, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (June 15, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (June 8, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (June 1, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (May 25, 2019)