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…
Stove League: During the whole arc with the scouting managers last week, I thought I was being smart by assuming Manager Go is innocent because he’s played by perennial funny ajusshi Lee Joon-hyuk AND he’s on the show’s official posters. But I should’ve learned my lesson with the Im Dong-kyu debacle and not put faith in the promo materials. It did give me a funny thought: so even Park Eun-bin’s character isn’t safe from Manager Baek’s weekly firings..? I snuck a peek at the latest episode involving the foreign player and military service. I don’t know how to comment on this arc, to be honest, because it’s such a complicated issue that I know nothing about. Hopefully the show handles it well in the following episode. And maybe throw Baek a defeat at some point. Confident Namgoong Min is gorgeous, but I like my underdog shows to be more, y’know underdog-ish.
Psychopath Diary: Still trying to catch up to the latest episodes. But I’ve now belatedly found my favorite sidekick of 2019: Jang Chil-sung (the ajusshi from apartment 708). He’s so funny and surprisingly cowardly but loyal. I hope he stays that way even if it’s revealed that “Hyung-nim” Dong-shik is a total hogu. The new reluctant bromance also comes at the perfect time, because I don’t like that Il-woo has fallen out of love with his fake-psycho friend Dong-shik and is now planning to do something nasty to him. Hopefully, Dong-shik’s “Sebastian” comes through to protect him. And absolutely no dying for your hyung-nim, Chil-sung, please!
Currently recapping: Psychopath Diary, 9.9 Billion Won Woman
Crash Landing on You: I kicked into high gear and caught up on the first two weeks of this drama — I don’t want to be left in the Beanie dust this time! I was committed either way (the cast!), but the drama is so much better than I expected. I’m really enjoying the meta and quintessential K-drama-ness mixed with some interesting socio-political stuff. Oh, the essays I could write. But perhaps an ode to Hyun Bin in army drab would be better.
Crash Landing On You: I actually watched the first four episodes together with my family during our Christmas gathering this week. I wasn’t sure if everyone was going to enjoy it, but we ended up having a good time chuckling at the absurd plot points and the mishmash of genre tones. The cameos by Jung Kyung-ho and Park Sung-woong were a nice surprise as well. One thing the drama really benefits from, though, is having a strong cast of actors. Despite the familiar tropes and the campy portrayal of North Korean, I was won over by both Hyun Bin and Sohn Ye-jin’s performances. I really enjoyed the growing bond between Sohn Ye-jin and Hyun Bin’s troops as well, particularly the K-drama fan. And I found it hilarious when their meta conversations about Stairway to Heaven were misinterpreted by Oh Man-seok’s lackey who was listening in.
Chocolate: I really appreciate how this show handles death. It’s heartbreaking whenever a loved one is lost, but I think the drama does a good job of giving space for sadness while also celebrating the life that was lived and offering hope for those who live on afterwards. I really like the little things the writer adds to the story to emphasize those points as well. For instance, in today’s episode, Ji-yong’s mother was still working in the hospice’s kitchen with Ha Ji-won. It’s a nod to the lasting impact that her young son had on her life and it shows she is standing by her decision to live a better life. My favorite character, though, is Jang Seung-jo’s Lee Joon. He’s so deliciously complicated and flawed. I’m looking forward to the story developments now that he’s been placed at the hospice as well!
Currently recapping: Diary of a Prosecutor
Crash Landing on You: It seems like I might be in the minority here, but I’m still not feeling this one. I’d hoped it would be crazy in a campy-fun kind of way, but instead, it’s crazy in a we’re-ignoring-logic-’cause-we-can kind of way that is hard for me to look past. Although, there are some ridiculous moments that make me chuckle. The magic paraglider that can withstand tornadoes and safely deposit people without proper harnessing is a prime example. Overall, it seems the show is going for cute over substance, which isn’t my thing. I’ll probably be bowing out of this one, but I might check in now and again for the crazy.
Stove League: Still going strong. I like that no one issue gets dragged on forever. The internal shadiness was dealt with, and then we moved right along to a last-minute scramble for a new pitcher. Each episode adds new facets to the issues facing the Dreams but not in a way that feels overdramatic. Seung-soo is still somewhat opaque, but it doesn’t seem like he has ulterior motives regarding the team. I love that Jae-hee has become a Seung-soo fan and started following him around like an overeager puppy. At first, Se-young’s idealism annoyed me a bit, but this week’s episodes made me like and respect her more. I appreciate that she was willing to consider the fact she might be wrong, even when it put her in an uncomfortable position.
No Second Chances: How adorable was that “family” Christmas picture? They’re such a cute little not-yet family. I know Bak-ha is overwhelmed in life and obviously not in a headspace to be thinking of a romantic relationship so soon after her husband died, but Hae-jun is already a goner. Even as friends, I really like their relationship. I’m glad that Hae-jun is there for her without being pushy—he’s just steadily supportive. It’s easy to forget how traumatized Bak-ha is over her husband’s death since she’s good at compartmentalizing and moving forward, but then you get scenes like her panic over Hae-jun going on a business trip. He obviously means a lot to her, even if she doesn’t realize it yet. The thing I’m most worried about when she does start to realize it is the inevitable family hysterics that will take place when the chaebols find out. *Shudders*
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (December 21, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (December 14, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (December 7, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (November 30, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (November 23, 2019)
- Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (November 16, 2019)