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Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching

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…

stroopwafel

Jirisan: I want to love Jirisan, but the show hasn’t made it easy so far. Between the weird pacing and the lackluster plot, it’s only been my love for Joo Ji-hoon the cast that’s kept me watching week after week. With six episodes left to go, things are finally started to get interesting (and extra creepy). I could be a pessimist and talk about all the minutes spent dawdling on panoramic shots of Jirisan, but I’m going to take a glass half full approach for now. After all, not every drama can be perfect and six hours is enough time to give me a conclusion that’s satisfying.

 

DaebakGrits

Currently recapping: Inspector Koo

The King’s Affection: Probably my favorite currently airing drama at the moment. This week’s episodes were rough to watch, as Evil Grandpapa succeeded in making our Lady Prince the king and his puppet. I feel sorry for the new young queen who is infatuated with our Lady King, but I worry how she will react if she finds out the king is a woman. Will she be an ally or will her heartbreak lead to her making a mistake and telling the wrong people the truth? But she may not get the chance to reveal our Lady King’s secret, now that Grandpapa’s right hand man has figured out the truth. Not sure if he will tell his master or keep it to himself since he is the one who made a massive mistake in the past. Eep!

The Red Sleeve Cuff: After some Beanies assured me that this drama will likely have a happy-ish ending, I kept going with this one. The story and romance are addictive so far, and this is one of my most anticipated dramas to watch each week. The Sageuks are killing it right now!

Let Me Be Your Knight: The plot feels like it’s moving far too slowly for a 12-episode drama only airing one episode a week. Then again, the premise is fairly simple…if you ignore all the potential consequences of the leading lady pretending to be a doctor. Going to try and stick with it, though. This is my guilty pleasure trope-filled drama.

Mr. Sunshine: This drama definitely delivered the “sad ending” it kept promising me, and I literally cried the whole way through the last episode. Given the historical context, it makes sense for so many of the characters to die fighting for their cause, but that didn’t stop my friend and I from daydreaming about a completely unnecessary sequel in which all the characters have been reborn and find a happier ending in the present. As much as it hurt, I’m glad I toughed it out and gave this series a rewatch. Amazing actors, gorgeous cinematography, and all the historical costumes were some serious eye candy. Highly recommend, but definitely need to watch with tissues and comfort food.

What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim: After completing Mr. Sunshine, my friend requested a light and fluffy romance, and I was happy to oblige and rewatch What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim. Enough time has passed since I first saw this drama that some scenes remain a surprise. Also, I’m hypnotized by Mi-so’s long ponytail. Why is her hair so gorgeous!?

 
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I'm surprisingly loving School 2021 (the dreamer's intro made me laugh 😄 ). My only tiny regret is that the rebel student really is a student and not a teacher. I was ready for a smexy leather dressed motorbike teacher... constantly being misplaced as a student 😁
The ending of episode 2 did shock me 😳

Breaking Now - this show is sometimes confusing me with its logic (like the kiss in episode 3). I'm still watching for the pretty... and the Moms.

Still watching and loving Rain God (though I'm a bit behind).

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Inspector Koo: Santa, why did you have to go all creepy stalker.

Happiness: No electricity and Oh Joo-hyung putting the drug in water bottles. What could go wrong?

Work Later, Drink Now: Despite my dislike of the excessive drinking, I picked this back up. I do like the characters and their friendship. I just finished Episode 7 and the scene where So-hee cussed out the Chairman is definitely one of my favorites and Ji-goo’s story was very sad.

The King’s Affection: This is the rare drama that is more compelling to me in the second half than the first. I feel bad for the Queen. I’m pretty sure Dam-yi will come full circle with Ji-woon using his medical skills to fake her death, but the Queen will never get to marry again or have a family.

Secret Royal Inspector and Joy: I’m still waiting for subs for Episode 6 but Episode 5 was fun.

Melancholia: I hate these school uniforms. The pants don’t look good on anybody.

Reflection of You: As shameless as Hee-joo is, I find her the most realistic character in this drama. I’m ready for her and the rest of the awful characters to go up in flames.

Young Lady and Gentleman: One good thing about the amnesia arc is the ML wearing casual clothes rather than suits or those grandpa cardigans. It makes him look younger.

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Melancholia.... how set-like is that school? It's very odd how comical it looks! :/

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Busy drama-watching week!

ONGOING
Jirisan - There are too many mysteries in the show. It keeps me invested but it also makes for an even more jumpy storyline - as if 2 timelines and 2 POVs weren't enough. I do think my suspicions about the ranger/historian are going to be vindicated though.

Inspector Koo - This week was the very definition of "that escalated quickly". And something felt off with the pacing of K's breakdown post the aunt's death. At least Santa and Gyeong-su are still breathing 😓.

Chimera - The copycat criminal has made this marginally more interesting. I bet Detective Cha is going to turn out to be Chairman Seo Hyun Tae's son.

The King's Affection - PEB depicted the sheer exhaustion of the position in which she finds herself very well. But it's a little funny that evil granddad keeps leaving the people most dangerous to him alive.

Secret Royal Inspector & Joy - Hope nothing bad happens to Bo-ri 2.0.

Melancholia - Mathematical genius or not, gifting someone a secretly-taken photo of them is creepy. Don't be like Seung-yoo kids 😠. And while I can understand wanting to protect LDH from all the hurt in the world, I thought Yun-su's choices were pretty questionable too. She should have distanced herself a lot earlier. This is not to discount the concerted conspiracy but she did make it easy for the evil people. At least we are in the present timeline now.

The Red Sleeve Cuff - Tutor dude is getting creepier by the week - unsurprising given his historical equivalent. The conversations between San-Deok-im and San-Yeongjo are just riveting. Last 10 minutes of yesterday's episode were so good.

Now We Are Breaking Up - Is this what they call hate-watching? Why are these two obsessed with each other again? I'm not sure we've been given a reason for them to even LIKE each other. Forget having an over-arching plot, the show doesn't seem to have an episodic story to tell either. The scene towards the end where they just stare at each other - I think every episode has ended on a similar scene 😭.

C-DRAMAS
Still no time…

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Re Chimera: That didn't all occur to me that he might be the Chairman's son.

NWABU: You are spot on in your assessment, idk why I watch it either.

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NWABU is like a slow-moving catastrophe that you can't stop watching. The music? Horrible, old-school, trite. The writing? Every single cliche, ever. The acting? No chemistry, no warmth. I happen to be watching WWW: Search at the same time with my daughters, and I am stunned at the difference in quality, like night and day.

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Oh, all that staring! 😄
I like the quotes at the beginning though...

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I like the quotes too! And I really like the fonts they use to write them lol

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CRICKET - Pat cummins is the new captain. after a while a fast pace bowler is becoming captain. Its rare. yes yes yes. The one that can easily beat any plastic face in physical features. and those eyes.

Sexting is gong for some more spicy news this weekend. That's what you want from more drama, more action.

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JAPAN -

Super Rich - 7/20 - Heroine. heroine can have relationships and what not but making story around romance is stupid. Let's see how writer deal with it but i think heroine became too shiny and overtook all the story(whatever it is now) and forced writer to create space for others. Or writer is really doing copy-paste. It has potential and it does have that Japanese heroine that make things work but writer has no clue what to do so playing cliches.

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KOREA - busy with work and a 2 hour 20 minute + per episode drama so watched only

Happiness - 6/10 - Episode 07 is the most foolish episode of the drama. Writer is left with no options now. In this kind of situations the most interesting thing to come out is the characters and so far i don't think any side characters has done anything that is interesting except our spectacle guy who's decided to be the best villain of kdramas in 2021.

Hero-heroine are going smooth. Mr. Eun is better character but has very much less to do.

Lee Do Hyun's new drama and this kind of roles are for him.

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Don't Let Go of my Hand - 2 hours 19 minute plus episodes.

As said last week - heroine has cried so many times so much that you start to think Actress is going through some Eyes related issues or what.
. Frustration, more frustration. Drama is romantic but you hardly see proper romantic scenes. I don't care about romance but atleast there should be some logic there.

Everyone is after the heroine - Hero saw such a nice rise and i can say right now he's beating many Asian heros.

Writer is just stretching 1 plot for 25 episodes. Its the main plot but still you can't keep it up the way you are doing it.

All those tears are so foolish - and writer seems like takes pleasure in making Heroine cry.

Grandmother still doing the best job.

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The King’s Affection: Well, you were going to get caught. That was silly of them to kiss in the open. Even if they assumed no one would be there, the palace has eyes, especially for the King. As for Ji Woon’s father, the way he pieced that together is impressive. From a pinprick to realizing you killed the wrong twin. Now the question is, will he own up to his failure or do his best to try to keep the King’s secret. Sir, comeuppance is a dirty business.

Secret Royal Inspector and Joy: This drama is just silly fun. The converging of everything into one giant conspiracy is super tropey, but the characters are fun enough that I can ignore it.

School 2021: I liked it. The ending of episode 2 was surprising. Also, just very sad. Poor children.

Reflection of You: We are nearly done with this terribly exhausting drama. The brother-in-law’s fall is a little late in the game, but whatever, 2 episodes and I can rest. Woo Jae’s memory coming back and him not apologizing to Hae won is not surprising. He never seemed to like her. She should have just ignored the family and lived her life with him, memory less. As for Hyeon Sung being Ho Su’s father, I am happy for him because he seems to love his kid, however I am sad he is related to his grandmother. Awful woman. Also, the fact that Hae won kidnapped a whole child and people are still talking to her is beyond me. I would have killed her and gone to jail if that was my child. I guess her comeuppance is still not being liked by Woo Jae. SMH, this show,

The Red Sleeve Cuff: I just like this drama. It seems I am fully headed for heartbreak, but our OTP have such great chemistry it is a joy to watch. Even behind a door with Deok Im reading and the prince reciting. OOOF, be still my heart. They are fantastic together. As for Deok Ro, he is frightening. I haven’t the faintest idea what is wrong with him, whether he is a psychopath or insanely loyal, all I know is he is not the healthiest.

Now we are breaking Up: This drama is mostly dumb and silly. However, I still enjoy it. JKY has the most beautiful velvety voice, so when he told Young Eun to love him, I was rooting for them. I’m not sure why she was crying, but I still kind of get it. That voice, just yummm.

Happiness: The entire sequence of events that led to Sae Bom giving blood was stupid. Why not just ask her? Also, why couldn’t they figure out that is what he wanted? He dropped enough hints and it wasn’t rocket science. That annoyed me.

One Ordinary day: A beanie said some years ago that when Kim Soo Hyun cries, she cries, and that is true for me as well. He is great in this. This is a marked departure from network fare and this drama also seems to be following the original pretty similarly. So, I look forward to the rest of it.

Chimera: I wonder when they will find out they are brothers? Also, Jae Hwan’s crush on Eugene is adorable. I can’t tell if she likes him back though, even though she seems too.

Inspector Koo: So, K...

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Where are you able to watch One Ordinary Day?

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The amount of overhearing (or not when the plot dictates), accidentally seeing (or being hidden behind a thin tree) and general coincidences was painful in TKA, particularly this week! Park Eun Bin is doing an awesome job but I can’t help rolling my eyes

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You are not wrong, lol, too much coincidence, but I is a kdrama rule.😅

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Happiness (Episode 5-6) - Mood: C+
It’s hard to ascertain if both Penthouse Guy and Andrew have hidden motivations but they appear to be written as foils to one another which makes it more likely than not that something nefarious is up with one of them. The show does fine any time we’re seeing progress outside the apartments: Tae Seok is easily the most interesting character. Where it falls short in is the self-serving trope seen in many of the residents: it would’ve been more fascinating to watch how those in the safe zone try to resist the tricks of the infected in a display of their self-preservation instinct. Not the stupid phone!

Idol: The Coup (Episode 5-6) - Mood: C
If the palpable tension between the CEO and Ji Han (that’s what I think the writing had intended but whether the acting shows that is another story) had come from a difference in professional opinion, there was still a chance of saving both their characterisations but with this manufactured family makjang I don’t think I’ll hope for much. What a disappointing end to the first half of the show: the introduction of Bbiyong as a straight villain just cheapens the entire plot. And Mars could’ve been a successful duo instead of a boyband without much changing: a reflection of poor writing and planning.

Inspector Koo (Episode 7-8) - Mood: C-
Ko Dam’s arc was decent but I remain unoptimistic about whether the show can develop all side characters with the time left.

Let Me Be Your Knight (Episode 3) - Mood: D+
Negative points for the repetitive cliffhanger and the daddy trauma trope!

School 2021 (Episode 1-2) - Mood: D+
Imagine the potential if the drama was based on a suicide note whodunit! But instead we’ll most likely get love square, friend death trauma and antagonistic school administration nonsense.

Reflection of You (Episode 13-14) - Mood: D+
I’m surprised that Hui Ju was involved in a murder that wasn’t teased at the start but honestly at this point I don’t know whether I like the overblown melodrama or not.

Melancholia (Episode 5-6) - Mood: D
We’re finally seeing adult Lee Do Hyun! But there’s still some ground to cover in 2017 before the time skip?

The Red Sleeve Cuff (Episode 3-4) - Mood: D
Will the drama reveal who Deok Im’s brother is as quickly as they resolved the Crown Prince “tutor” identity?

Chimera (Episode 7-8) - Mood: D-
This copycat arc feels particularly draggy when it’s most likely a diversion. Also we’ve got lame parentage makjang?

The King's Affection (Episode 13-14) - Mood: D-
Stupidity #1: Shopping while on the run. Stupidity #2: Speaking so loudly that conversations are overheard. Stupidity #3: Kissing in an open space.

Now We Are Breaking Up (Episode 3-4) - Mood: D-
Did Jae Guk knowingly sought and made out with his brother’s girlfriend because of his lame “I loved her first” excuse?

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Secret Royal Inspector and Joy. Drama is silly and I’m watching just with one eye, but it’s so fun. I don’t particularly find any chemistry between Taec and HyeJoon (probably because this is her first “adult” character and I see the gap difference even if in real life they are only 8 years apart). Viki is really slow with subs on this one. And yes, I love Taec!

Would you want a cup of coffee?. I love all cameos in this drama, I love all the little stories we get and I love watching Go Bi growing up and learning about life.

Reflection of you. This drama is good. It is really good. Writing, directing, acting, production, cinematography and music is superb. It is, believe me. But I just can’t like the drama because there is not a single character I don’t hate. I suppose this what the drama is looking for. All characters are so layered, they are full of lights and shadows, but mainly they are really dislikable, and unlike My Ahjussi (another drama in which I didn’t like almost no character) I can see no redemption coming. Everyone is trash but above them all WooJae is just this terrible person who breaks his promise again and again. He told Haewoon that he would apologize to her the moment he remembered but… what happened? He has remembered and being back to his past self he just doesn’t care about her, he’s learned nothing and he continues to be the self centered person that left HaeWon without a single explanation. I wish HaeWon could have her redemption, I thought she might have when she realized the story about the girl who put her heart in bottle could be about her, but I think it’s too late for her. Anyway, only two epodes left of this so very exhausting drama.

Dr. Brain. It’s only a six episode drama and it’s already too long. Why do I feel episode 4 was a filler? This could have better been a movie, sincerely. Now we are back at square one and evil doctor is back in the game.

Red Sleeve. Deok Im is growing on Prince although I’m not so sure it’s also the other way round, and I love how the drama shows this. Both Junho and Seeyoung and nailing their roles: Deok Im is still cheeky although more centered, and San… our poor San struggling to balance his fate an what he wants. The scene in episode 5 where the King enters San’s room and menaces him crying he can’t be like his father was so heartbreaking… only in last episode we saw the King’s love and concern for his grandson and now we see his rage. Learning that San has lived his life always weary of how the King would react on what he says or what he does must have been a terrible burden. I also like Deok Ro’s character a lot. I know he’s supposed to be shady, but let’s face it: we’re in 18th century Joseon, if you want to become a king as San does, he needs someone by his side like Deok Ro who would never hesitate to do what’s needed. I really love everything about this drama, and above all, I’m loving Junho’s acting!!

Jirisan. I don’t...

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Red Sleeve: I think the King is bipolar and it seems his son was too, but the prince escaped that. However since the king is the king there is nothing to be done, so they assume Prince has the same disease, which makes sense. I totally agree Junho is so so good in this.

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The Prince's father and the old king's son was Crown Prince Sado, whose story is probably one of the most (if not THE most) painful and sad stories from Joseon dynasty - he most likely did suffer from some mental illness

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Or he was just a homicidal psychopath...

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Oh I didn't know that. I assumed this was just fully made up and not connected to real people.

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Shit no. Not even just connected. This is based on a true story. Deok Im was real, so was her love story with San. History is a major spoiler for this show haha.

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@sicarius, well damn, lol, thanks for letting me know. I was legitimately assuming utter nonsense. Haha, that is a little embarrassing.

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😅 hey, not a problem.

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The king doesn't seem bipolar. Any cornerned parent or grandparent would act the same way, especially in a place full of power where their lives can be put to death in an instance with one wrong footing.

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Yeongjo is a veteran at dealing with his political enemies. He is the longest-reigning king in Joseon for a reason, a total of 52 years on the throne.
He is training his little tiger, San, to become a dragon.

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I would agree if he didn't smack him around consistently since he was a child. The sudden anger and then calm is not behavior from a concerned grandparent.

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"There is no great genius without some touch of madness."
Aristotle

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Haewon won't get a happily ever after. She is too far gone. What is infurating here is that Woo Jae is truly a deranged monster and the girl wasted her life on someone like him. Hui Ju is better at the realistic game of survival. My money is on grandma getting rid of Hui Ju after Hui Ju covers up for Lisa killing Woo Jae by accident. Hyeon Sung will kill Haewon in rage. So, all 3 characters involved in this mess will either die or end up in jail. I can see why Hyeon Sung love Hui Ju though....apart from her infidelity, she has stuck by him, cares for him, his children and even for his sister. So, its weird by I see why that made him want her more after he figured out she had cheated on him and almost left him. But I am loving this free fall that Hui Ju is experiencing. I truly no longer understand Haewon. Its time she walked away, her works done.

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You're exactly right with hong guk young (deok ro). His personal greed for power got to be too much in the end but like you said, his decisiveness and ambition was key in jeongjo's success.

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Should we geek out on Deok-ro or wait for the show to reveal it all? LOL

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Ha, I could go on about him. Not sure how other people feel about history spoilers lol. I have to say, since this much the drama has already revealed, it is/was super messed up for Hong deok ro to push his actual kid sister (emphasis on the kid) into the palace as a concubine. Even for the joseon era, I'm hardcore judging everyone that ok'ed that...
Considering han sang jin did such a fantastic job back in yi san and that drama plays in my head constantly, I'm quite impressed with Kang Hoon. Besides the production length it's a different portrayal in many ways but also a good one.

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I'm getting impatient, hahaha. I want to post more on my wall but don't want to spoil it for others.

I love Han Sang-jin's Deok-ro from beginning to end. I even bawled my eyes out during their last scene together, huhu.

I like how RED SLEEVE uses the historical figures' birth names, and the novel also gives them a bit of mystery.

This show needs more than 16 episodes unless they are planning on time skipping a lot.

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@kiara Yeah, there's gonna be a lot of timeskipping if they're wrapping it up in 16 episodes... (or they can end it right after deok im gets pregnant with crown prince munhyo and save me some grief, just saying)

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I didn't know this was only 16 episodes till today, and I wish it were at least 20. If any sageuk should be this year, this should. 😭😭

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@sparks121

I may accept it if Deok-ro sees it as an opportunity to save his sister from Second State Councillor Hong.

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Red sleeve (2-5): Loving it esp the interactions between the leads. The whole library scene was hilarious. The plot is thickening fast based on the preview. The stone throwing sequence was fun. I was tempted to try it out myself when I am frustrated. Cant express how gooan actor Jun ho. That scene with the king in ep 5 was so well enacted.

Let me be your knight (3): The story is so predictable. I already thought the ML might have family trauma and it was daddy issues here. The secret girlfriend part reminded me of Chani and his relation in " imitation". I hope secret comes out soon.

Royal secret inspector & Joy (5): The episode was fun. The subs in viki are really slow. It's been already 5 days and the subtitles are still at 45% for ep 6.

King's affection (13-14): Intense episodes. And I wonder for the growth of Ha kyung once she get to know the truth. It's still an irony that JW took the risk of kissing Hwi in an open space. Anyway the show is back on pace and the tension is building up. Waiting for the next episodes !!!!

Idol: The coup (5-6): Never throught I will enjoy a petty KSY this much !!! I hope they show more this side in future episodes. Jenna is really determined and while I loved the extend she can go for the producer, the whole Troy part irked me a little. Why didnot she apologized to him any time before? Why only when she need something ? That was a bit unfair. I wonder what's the backstory with Troy and Elle.

School 2021 (1-2): Gave a lot of true beauty vibes. I enjoyed the premiere episodes.
Young Woo's long legs are too distracting.😂

Reflection of you (13-14): WJ turned out to be much worst than HJ. I expected him to atleast apologize to Hw for what he did but all he gave was an insincere apology and say let's breakup?? Wtf?? Seriously so shameless. HW seems more to be an observer now in the game she started while HJ,WJ and the husband arrow just enacting. I hope HJ and WJ get their dues in the next week.

Shadow beauty (1-3): Its 20 min and shot and good so far.

Also watching Jirisan (8-10), inspector koo (7-8) and happiness (5-6).
Also planning to watch the new episodes of melancholia and chimera for weekend.

OLDER
Ashes of Love (39-60): Finished it finally. The series is beautiful with its acting and direction and also the OST was good. But that's it. The story is seriously bad. They could have ended this in like 40 episodes but instead it got dragged. I was suppose to root for the leads but after a while their love story was too boring to watch. I felt that the weakest part of this show was the leads esp XF mainly because his character doent get any growth or backstory. The side characters have a fleshy story than him. And what divine/pure love are they even talking about? They made love when she was engaged to RY when they weren't aware of his manipulations, still went on with it without being guilty. It was so disturbing. I loved both Luo Yunxi and Chen yuqi. And even...

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I loved both Luo Yunxi and Chen yuqi. And even Wang Yifei. Dengue lun was fine but like I said his character was dull for most of the series. I dont know how good is Yang Zi in other dramas but I didnot like her acting here. The character and the portrayal was too much tolerate. I skipped a lot of her scenes when I couldn't take it anymore and I dont think I will be ever able to watch any her other dramas.

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The typos again !!!
Deng Lun *

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Same for me: I was so annoyed by Jin-mi, that I can't watch Yang Zi in any other drama!

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Too funny. As popular as Ashes of Love is, it took me several attempts to finally barrel through it because I couldn't tolerate Jin-mi in the first half of the drama. I had to shelve Ode To Joy as well because Yang Zi's character in the drama was unbearable. And I really wanted to watch for Liu Tao of Nirvana In Fire fame, but I couldn't take it. Praying for The Oath of Love if it finally comes out.

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Liu Tao is my favorite. I love her in historical dramas, but I couldn't finish "The Advisors Alliance" for some reason.
I still have "Poetry of the Song Dynasty" on my watch list.

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I found Ashes of Love so-so. It made me a die-hard fan of Luo Yunxi though. His portrayal of Night made me love him in the drama while he's just pathetic and manipulative in the novel.

If you're interested, there is a beautiful translation of the novel on the blogg "One Second Spring". I assure you the novel is something else than the drama, as you noted the drama was dragged on for far too long. The problem with the character of Jin Mi is that the drama never really showed us her reasoning, so she instead came off as an air head.

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Thanks for the suggestion. I will make sure to check it out.

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I´m only intensely watching Happiness.

In other news though: estonian classic Spring by Oskar Luts was just translated into korean by professor Jinseok Seo from Hanguk University Foreign Studies Institute (we are friends on Facebook and he will talk over Zoom about poetry in January on Tallinn Central Library webpage).
The Kings´ Affection is a bit messy now, kinda playing a gamble and I want to wait for it to cool down, honestly I just want to watch our OTP cuddle silently 5 hours.
everyone has some mission and I feel their agendas stealing leverage from each other, like there is no BIG agenda. The minister, the grandpa, the jerk, commander Yoon, bodyguard, queen, granny. they all have some detatched little world and it dissolves the essence of the drama.

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NOW WE ARE BREAKING UP (Ep. 3-4): I think the lines about the pain of being “ghosted” rang true and sincere. But to lead her into a decade of self-loathing about herself seemed off. Jae-Koo’s delay in admitting that Yoon Soo-Wan was his brother was creepy, as well as his continuing showing up every time Young Eun is in trouble. She is a troubleshooter by trade for gosh sakes. The industry insider stories are as thin as a Victoria Secret lingerie set. The chemistry is off because of the acting: JKY is wooden and SHK is cold.

SHK did turn on the tear faucet for a moment. Episode 4’s climax did not melt the frozen acting. The idea that she was really meant for him, but he did not have the courage to meet her in the first place? The fate trope is stretched very thin here. It is not really a trope but a perceived property right. Likewise, the end of a two month relationship cripples Young Eun for 10 years?

DALI (Ep 1-16): This was a start-stop, slow-go to the finish. To me, the story seemed like a school bus fish tailing on an icy road. It started as comedy, then turned into a rom-com, then a political corruption series and then a trope filled, weak ending. I can see why people liked the main couple, but the how and why of their story was bothersome. The backbone of the story was a theme I really dislike: the rich chaebol using his power and money to force the weak or unlucky woman to fall in love with him. Tae-in used his power to try to get back something he lost, Da-Li. He triggered the events toward the gallery bankruptcy for a land deal with a little honey on the side as he continually promised to solve her issues. But Moo-Hak also used the loan as his leverage to push his way into her life under the guise of being a creditor but in reality a stealth suitor. The plot was full of misinformation about inheritance, taxes and how private businesses are run.


This is another one of those shows that could have been much better. If it would have stayed in the art world of creative, quirky personality conflicts instead of a tired corruption mystery wrapped in tired romance plot then it could have been really interesting and unique.

Film:
VOLCANO HIGH (2001): Before MTV drove itself off a cliff with reality TV shows, it had a brief transition period from music videos to corporate programming with cutting edge animation series and cult movies. VOLCANO HIGH was one of those oddities. It still stands today as a rare Korean marital arts movie. MTV dubbed it with a rapper English voice over cast. In retrospect, the Korean cast was pretty stellar: Jang Hyuk, Shin Min-A (her first movie role), Kim Soo-Ro, Kwon Sang-Woo, Gong Hyo-Jin (her first named character role), Heo Jun-Ho, and several well known character actors. It was only shown once on US TV, so it has been a white whale search to see it again. I found a used copy of it on-line and watched it. It is more typical marital arts than I remembered (basic thin plot, little character...

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development, long but predictable action sequences) with its special effects above par for the era. It is one of those things that your memories of something are better than going back a decade later to rewind them.

Variety:
HOUSE ON WHEELS 3: Surprisingly, the delightful Oh Na Ra returns with movie co-star Seung Ryong. I like when they talk about show biz and kid about his cheat day diet. I also like when they do activities like glass bottom boating on a quarry lake. The food spread this time looked great, too.

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Bonus points for *the industry insider stories are as thin as a Victoria Secret lingerie set* 👏👏👏 for making my morning

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Currently Watching-
The King's Affection: We have a Joseon Man who came out as Pan. My queer heart spazzed a lot, and died a little.

The Red Sleeve: Still pretending Junho's face is JCW's. FL is too candy, like others have pointed out.

Mystic Pop-Up Bar: Reached midway. Seungjae is being heavily foreshadowed as the Reincarnated Prince, so I'mma say it's a red-herring, and the other dude will be the one!

Cup of Coffee: How beautiful was that vending machine episode? T_T

Melancholia: Leads & story's not cutting it for me, despite being a LDH fan! The math-nerd but non-mathematician in me finds the math fascinating; watching alone for that! ^^

Chugakusei Nikki: Since Melancholia was 'too safe', I had to turn to a j-dorama. The ML acts his socks off, and it blows my mind, CN was his debut project at 18! :O

Man in Love: T-movie remakes again! :P Tiffany's no longer a pretty Second FL, but can actually act? Roy Chiu is basically So Ji Sub's role (& look) from the k-movie Always, but a portrayal with more depth! Might have shed a tear or two! :')

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The Vending Machine episode IN WOULD YOU LIKE A CUP OF COFFEEE? may be my favorite so far. But al the episodes are good.

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Red Cuff of the Sleeve Ep 5 The palace politics is really intriguing and not tiring. The Head Court Lady's reason for committing potential treason came across as a surprise because it is valid. Also, the way the Crown Prince's mother subtly warned The Crown Prince and Deok Im of any blooming romance was interesting. Everything is so far good about this drama, from The King's daughter lighting a fire between The King and The Crown Prince to the undeniable attraction and chemistry which I could feel between The Crown Prince's and Deok Im even when they were on the opposite sides of the closed door!!

Reflection of You Ep 13-14 Another compelling watch, althought I feel the writer dramatically changed Hae Won's brilliance to a foolish girl blinded by love. Till ep 13, nothing indicated Hae Won was expecting an apology from Woo Jae, but suddenly she is more angered by his lack of sincerity. Din't she realize through all the years of misery that he never had the tiniest bit of feelings for her? This show is really good at making you pity a character for few seconds only to be hating them with more vigor. As addressed in the drama, all the characters have a disease with "addiction" that ruins them and others. Suicidal Lisa in the making is completely Hae won's fault.

Happiness Ep 7 What was that nonsense? If they were running out of plot, they should have reduced the episode count instead of having a needless tranquil induced abduction which needed a heroic resuce🤦‍♀️ However, Park Hyun Shik is killing it. His character Yi-Hyun is getting more lovable each episode.

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Can you just let me know why Lisa's suicidal thoughts Hae Won's fault? Is it HW's fault that Lisa has seen her Mom on multiple occasion cheating? Did she orchestrate that? The amount of free pass that HJ and Wj get here is just outstanding. You get 1 sentence writing WJ's fault, and a paragraph for HW's. Just wow......

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Hae Won approached Lisa with the intention of getting closer to Hui Ju and ruining her. She observed the unhealthy friendship between Lisa and Ju Yeong, and instead of being a teacher and advising them, she used everything to manipulate JY into triggering Lisa which caused a rift in their friendship. Lisa is a brat and rude girl, but she is still a kid who is capable of becoming a decent human with proper guidance. In Ep. 4 we see Lisa picking a diary from the fireplace, which leads her to questioning her dad about a flower (We do not know who told her about the diary or she picked it out from the fireplace out of curiosity). Till that point in the series, she isn't aware about her mom's past affair. We then see HW invite Lisa to the exhibition where she behaves rudely with WJ (Again why? Unless someone told her about WJ). Later HW tells her that WJ was in love with someone. So, HW has been continously planting ideas in Lisa's head which leads to the incident where she witnessed her mom kiss WJ in the present. Infact, everything that happened from the time HW hit Lisa was a well executed plan by HW, barring few variables like the abusive BIL of Hui Ju ending in coma or WJ's refusal to apologise to HW. All the incidents, from Lisa's fallout with JY, an online hate post about Lisa's skills to realizing her mom had/has an extra martial affair, has made her suicidal. So unless the drama tells me, Lisa was suicidal even before HW's entry or she was suspicious of her mom's affair without HW's instigation, I stand by my statement.

Also, if you have been reading my earlier comments on this drama, you would know that I wanted all of them to go down in a big flame and never said one was better than the other.

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All that you've mentioned (approaching Lisa, slapping her, etc) were from the first part of the story, where even in Lisa's words she has "made peace" with Mimi already. Heck, HW has now in the second part become a bystander. Here in the second part is where Lisa became aware of her Mom's affair coz she saw them (gallery, wedding and hospital), which triggers her childhood memories of her time in Ireland and seeing her Mom's affair. That has no direct correlation with HW, even the indirect is flimsy at best. As for JY, the scenes of HW with JY are centered on her looking at the welfare of JY by telling her to prioritise herself, which is true. She should not let other people step on her.
So yeah, I am calling you out on underhandedly giving HJ and WJ a pass. It just seems that people being harder on HW's toxic behaviour than Woo Jae & Hee Joo's?

"It's actually quite scary than a lot of people voluntarily lower their integrity & ethical standard for the one who caused traumas than for the victim toxic behaviour resultant of several betrayals."

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All that you've mentioned (approaching Lisa, slapping her, etc) were from the first part of the story, where even in Lisa's words she has "made peace" with Mimi already.

I mentioned those things as they are not isolated events, but sequential scenes that contributed to the present state of Lisa. When Lisa bribed JY to do her work then as a teacher HW should have discussed with both or with Lisa's parent about the issue, but she used it to tell JY to stop being a doormat. HW is a great observer, so she very well knows that any change in JY's attitude would make obsessed Lisa to lose her mind. Thus far, she has been using every single person to her advantage and every move of her is calculated which HJ mentions at the end of Ep.1.

Heck, HW has now in the second part become a bystander.

Just because HW isn't currently using Lisa to rile up HJ, should the repercussions of her past manipulations not happen? Infact, HW only wanted to use Lisa as a stepping stone for her revenge, but the ripple effect of her actions is the online hate post. The scapegoat all along here has been JY in her plans.

Here in the second part is where Lisa became aware of her Mom's affair coz she saw them (gallery, wedding and hospital), which triggers her childhood memories of her time in Ireland and seeing her Mom's affair. That has no direct correlation with HW, even the indirect is flimsy at best.

I already mentioned, HW was the one who invited Lisa to the gallery and before the wedding she tells Lisa that WJ was in love with another woman. Are these not manipulations? HW has been kindling the memory which Lisa would have forgotten otherwise. You have agreed that all these events have triggered her childhood memory and that exactly is what HW wanted to achieve.

So yeah, I am calling you out on underhandedly giving HJ and WJ a pass. It just seems that people being harder on HW's toxic behaviour than Woo Jae & Hee Joo's?

I am not giving leeway to both HJ and WJ, but rather explaining that HW's interference has been playing a major role in Lisa's mind, so you should stop repeating "free pass".

"It's actually quite scary than a lot of people voluntarily lower their integrity & ethical standard for the one who caused traumas than for the victim toxic behaviour resultant of several betrayals."

No amount of misery is an excuse to cause sufferings to others. Physical or mental, willingly harming others is a violence. You can't just name it as victim mentality.

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RED SLEEVE CUFF: This is my current favorite. Although I'm also loving King's Affection, this one is more addictive and the wait between episodes feels longer. The leads are at the point where they're just starting to maybe recognize that what they're feeling is attraction and not just irritation, and their chemistry is making that discovery very addictive. The dialogue and direction are very strong in this one, too--even scenes I feel I've seen hundreds of times in saeguks before (like the one where the CP has to quickly figure out how to appease his petty, angry aunt and protect the FL at the same time) keep my attention all the way through.

HAPPINESS: These past two episodes were scarier and darker than previous ones and that's not a complaint; the story can really only go down that path without completely betraying the premise. But the tension is so ramped up something needs to give. Looks like that might happen next with FL's supposed immunity taking center stage.

MELANCHOLIA: I'm so ready for this to shift focus to the present day. The second hand embarrassment of watching a deeply troubled boy's crush implode, coupled with the frustration of seeing horrible adults with no redeeming qualities play endless power games was too much for me. The set-up was necessary, of course, yet very hard to watch. But the previews looked promising, so I'll give this one another week.

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Also watching JANG OK JUNG from 2013 and really liking it.

Started SECRET ROYAL INSPECTOR but couldn't quite get into it. The humor and plot seemed very predictable, but I'll probably re-visit at some point.

Watched the first episode of HELLBOUND with the family (SQUID GAME was the first time we watched a drama together and both my husband and son loved that one so we started HELLBOUND) and it has definitely pulled us in so far. The CGI isn't great, and I wasn't sure how the cult elements would play, but Yoo Ah-in is effectively understated and mesmerizing, and it's so nice to see Kim Hyun-Joo, too. Will definitely continue.

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I agree with your assessment of Red Sleeve Cuff 💯%! While I’m also enjoying The King’s Affection, ep 5 of Red Sleeve sealed the deal for me.

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Jirisan: 5.5 If our ghostly male lead can move sticks around, can't he use one to scratch a helpful message in the dirt in front of a camera?

Happiness: 7.0 Getting tiresome. What's the Mad Person Disease equivalent of "covidiot"? And really didn't need to a show about a disease spreading all over + lockdowns + people not responding well right after hearing about that scary new Omicron variant :(

Red Sleeve Cuff: 6.0 Thru day 4. Likely drop.

Bite Sisters: 7.0

Inspector Koo: 9.0

Work Later, Drink Now: 6.5

Chimera: 6.9

Secret Royal Inspector & Joy: 7.5

King's Affection: 6.9 The inevitable succession and palace politicking didn't suck quite as much as I expected.

School 2021: __ I lasted almost 7 minutes.

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Now, We Are Breaking Up - haven't seen this weeks episodes yet, last week had me desiring the ML care more about the FL's state then whether they were dating or not. The trailer made me a bit sad that the FL had to really ask her boss/friend whether she could be allowed to win.

IDOL: The Coup - Love this. The conflict chemistry between CEO and Jenna is great. I can't see them as love interests (yet) tho. Wishing Kim Min-kyu gets better at emoting.

Inspector Koo - Was not expecting to find myself liking Gyeong-su and wanting a restraining order against Santa.

Let Me Be Your Knight - Was liking everything else, so they could have done something else than the choking scene.

Paint with Love - off to a good start. Can't say no to grumpy x grumpy.

Rainless Love in a Godless Land - up to Ep 4 and really enjoying it.

Fragrance of the First Flower - the 10 minutes episodes is hard because not much gets covered and then you need to wait a week.

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JIRISAN - things are picking up now that we’ve passed the halfway mark. Will watch episodes 11 and 12 tomorrow.

BEYOND EVIL - just finished episode 14! Two more episodes to go and I can’t wait to see

SECRET ROYAL INSPECTOR & JOY - it’s definitely not the best show ever but I’m just watching it for the fun and crazy antics. I wish I could just binge it all the way to the end.

RAINLESS LOVE IN A GODLESS LAND - haven’t had the chance to continue this since I’m bingeing BEYOND EVIL but will get back to it soon.

I realize I’m not super cut out for balancing different shows lol. I still prefer waiting for the show to end then bingeing them.

I can probably follow one or two and have a third show for bingeing.

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Introvertbean, I am so with you on following one show at a time. Glad to know I'm not the only one.

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High five! Yay! I can say I tried. 😂

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I also prefer limiting my airing dramas to one or two with one drama to binge in between their air dates. More than that and I start to get a bit overwhelmed.
Also, I've been burned far too many times in the past by getting stuck on a train wreck of a drama simply because I was watching it live. I became really picky about which airing drama I pick up. I much prefer binging it later after having seen the overall reviews/reactions.

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I totally get that feeling. I also prefer my emotions carrying over right into the next episodes as I watch and not being all over the place because I’m watching different genres with different levels of thrill or melo or laughs. My mind is also stressed as it is. Lol.

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Binge-watching is a realistic strategy- and may save you from some bad shows or rather shows that started well but ended badly- like Do Do Sol Sol La La Sol.

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eeeeeek good example 🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️

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That’s true! We only have so much time in a day to watch — gotta save it for the good ones.

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The King's Affection I like how the story is still consistent after 14 episodes. Hwi finally said she wanted Ji-Woon to stay with her. They have 6 episodes to find a way now.

Idol: The Coup Jenna and the CEO are the only ones interesting.

Secret Royal Inspector and Joy There are some funny moments. But KHY and Taecyeon have more siblings vibes than lover chemistry...

School 2021 The story between the ML and the SML reminded me a lot School 2013... Without the acting...

The Red Sleeve Cuff I'm not yet convinced by LSY in this role... The tutor is scary, I'm happy she saw his real face. The King has new glasses!

Happiness Why didn't they force people to stay in their appartement and just shoot on the ones who don't respect the rules... Clearly, they're all stupid and will cause their own death...

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The Red Sleeve
One thing I like about Joonho is that he's generous with his tears. He doesn't squeeze them out, they just flow out naturally. He doesn't hold back with his acting that sometimes it's hard to believe he's an idol.
The scene between San, Deok Im and the king during the confinement is intense, heartbreaking and beautiful.
Can we end the drama at the happy times and leave the rest to our imagination?
I'm not a fan of sageuk, but this one is just too good.

2D1N
How they manage to keep double digit rating is beyond me.
Been watching the show more than 10yrs and it's amazing how they survive the scandals in its each season and massive changes in TV industry.
The last 2 episodes are very entertaining. When Jongmin played Tteokbokki game, I just died 😂😂
I love how the other members keep Jongmin in the center of entertaining moments.

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2D1N- They must have some loyal viewers! I agree, Jongmin has been shining this season. I hope he gets the Daesang this year.

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RED SLEEVE CUFF is my favourite at the moment. Story, dialogue, cinematography and most of all the acting of both leads, but not only of these two, is impressive. The scene between the king and locked down crown prince was so good, as was the reading of poetry through the door.

THE KINGS AFFECTION is better now than at the start. I do feel the frustration and tiredness of Dam-yi in her terrible situation.

INSPECTOR KOO is crazy, but I still enjoy it, to a large part because of K, she is deranged, but also vulnerable and Kim Hye-Jun is great in this difficult part. The other INSPECTOR JOY is crazy, too, but in a fun, silly way. A good watch.

It was so obvious that the wedding in MELANCHOLIA would not go ahead. I dislike the power games in the school so much, it is over done (parents and pupils, too). I fear that even after the 4 year time gap we will revisit this terrible school. The mathematical confession must be one of the best drama confessions ever, and the matching rejection, too. Highlight of this week's episodes.

Still in for HAPPINESS and even for JIRISAN. It must be the title music, once I hear it, I am drawn in, despite so many flaws.

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So agree with your comments on Red Sleeve and Melancholia. Regarding the latter, I, too, hope that even though we'll be back in the school after the gap it won't be a repetition of the same machinations. It's very tiresome. I didn't watch Sky Castle for this reason.

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Yes, I tried watching Sky castle and could not stand it. Any drama that compares itself to this Sky Castle is straight away on my not watching list.

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*The mathematical confession must be one of the best drama confessions ever, and the matching rejection, too* YES

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Wanted to see Han Ji Min in something, so I watched her and Hyun Bin in HYDE, JECKYL, ME. What a mess they made of multiple personality disorder, as if that needed more of a mess in the first place.. And you know, I'm starting to think Hyun Bin and I may be over. Sorry, Bin. Next, wanting something lighter, I watched SHE WAS PRETTY with Hwang Jung-eum and Park Seo Jun. There were many genuinely funny scenes, but a lot of it was ruined for me by HJE jumping around manically and shreiking like a chimpanzie on meth, that older style of goodhearted airhead that I think may have at last gone out of style in Kdramaland. At least, I hope so.

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Try Kill Me, Heal Me instead. A better multiple personality disorder drama... with better Hwang Jungeum 😉

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I don't remember multiple personality disorder being handled much better in Kill Me Heal Me. Some of it was pretty cringe inducing...

But I believe you're right; it is still the better drama between the two.

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No, it wasn't, but it was worth for Jisung and all his personalities. And the story did pull me in and I think it was actually well built.

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I now see my comment is not clear... the -wasn't- was referring to handling the personality disorder correctly... (we got again a kdrama psychiatrist).

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Agree totally. She screams too much the first two or three episodes, but by the end of the show you could be in love with her, just like I was.

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Gah, I’ve haven’t been able to watch her since Hyde Jekyll. Plus that whole drama was such a hot mess. But no way I’d give up Hyun Bin 😍

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Han Jimin was great in Dazzling... and then in One Spring Night. I also liked her in the little I saw from Familiar Wife. (One day I will get back to it!)

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I will second the One Spring Night recommendation.

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I didn’t realized how many things I’ve watched in the past 2 weeks until I came to make this post.

For airing dramas, I’m only following Happiness and The Red Sleeve.
The plot of Happiness(/i> is starting to show its weaknesses by relying a bit too much on characters’ stupidity to move itself forward. Episode 7 was, in my opinion, the weakest episode so far but Hyun and Saebom still give me life. I love them so much; I am willing to overlook the flaws.
I’m liking
The Red Sleeve more and more each episode. Junho is fantastic as the crown prince and Lee Seyoung is growing on me. Can someone look at me the way San looks at Deokim? He's in denial but he's got it bad.

I watched an old classic Taiwanese drama last week: Autumn’s Concerto. Unfortunately most of it has not aged well at all. However, I finished it for two reasons: it has one of my biggest guilty pleasure trope (a guy reconnecting with a child he didn’t know he had) and a cute kid.

My friend, who watched every drama I recommended him, told me to watch Mad For Each Other. So I did. I liked how the drama dealt with certain themes and issues but I didn’t love it as much as he did. The ending was a bit too rushed. I must say that Lee Suhyun is one of the most beautiful people I have ever seen. I wonder if she’ll really give acting a go now and we will be seeing her in another drama in the near future.
The dog was also cute.

I am currently watching The Good Detective. It's a typical crime drama but it does seem like a well-written one. I still have 10 episode to go so we will see. So far, I appreciate how the drama portrays police incompetence believably. Many dramas cannot differentiate between incompetence and stupidity.

Outside of dramaland, I have watched two new Netflix shows: Arcane and Cowboy Bebop. Both are adaptations of popular media. I have never played Leagues of Legends but I still enjoyed Arcane, especially its animation style. The characters were also compelling.
Cowboy Bebop is an anime that I really like so I was excited and wary to watch the live action Hollywood adaptation. Overall, I was really pleased with it; definitely one of the best anime live action adaptation that I have seen (yes I know the bar is pretty low). They absolutely nailed the casting for the main characters. However, the villain storyline dragged a lot. What made the villain effective in the anime is that we only ever got brief flashes of his backstory. The adaptation unnecessarily tried to fill in the blanks. Looking forward to season 2 nonetheless.

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Your point about the villian being over-exposed in the Netflix live action version of COWBOY BEBOP is very well taken. Part of what made the original anime so great (some would say it is the greatest anime of all time) was that those brief glimpses into the villian's backstory made that character far more enigmatic. According to what I have read the decision to expand the villian's backstory grew out of the need for longer episodes- in other words a need for filler. While this does not make the show unwatchable nor does it do violence to the original story as such it does result in a diminution of the artistic effect of the original- which is really as much a work of art as it is anything else. I do think that people can enjoy the live action version and I hope that they will. But I would also encourage anyone who has not seen it (assumng that they exist) to watch the original anime as well.

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Arcane is fantastic! I don't game but I've been hearing such great reviews of the show that we streamed it during Thanksgiving, and the show lived up to the hype! The animation (swooning at the Art Deco and Art Noveau architecture) and attention to detail is amazing!

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I hope you like Good Detective. It was a standout for me.

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Can you rec some good dramas?

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You've probably seen these, but the recent standouts for me have been
Move to Heaven
D.P.
Beyond Evil
You are My Spring (truly healing drama)
Lost (if you can take a slow burn)
Into the Ring (funny and a perfectly beautiful relationship)
Nothing different to what's been recommended here on db. I like dramas that have a mystery at the heart and ones that put their finger into the dark places of everyday life and end up being life affirming, like Move to Heaven, which tops my list. My touchstone for everything is My Ajussi. I also find dramas that have a high yearning quotient irresistible, hence Lost. But for a laugh, this year I devoured The Boy Next Door, a mini drama.

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I really don't like live adaptations of anime because the American producers have no cultural context or desire to follow story canon. Ghost in the Shell is a good example of a terrible mess.

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The Red Sleeve Cuff
Not marathoning this show was a huge mistake. As much as I like waiting for it patiently each week in anticipation, I want more after each episode.
On the Verge of Insanity
Thanks to regional restrictions I couldn't watch it when it aired. It recently became available for free in my region so I'm on it. CBS is such a great main character and the show is much lighter than I thought. Otoh HSK is such a jerk. He's exactly the kind of toxic people at office that you don't want to kill but you wish you never cross paths with them.
The Kings Affection
Let her be happy!!! Will you show??
Bite Sisters
They had more story to tell and this could become a good full length drama but underutilized in a web drama format.
Hellbound
Netflix releasing all episodes at once does the trick. I'm less likely to find faults in a show that I binge watch, give it a thought and I start noticing the loopholes. Nonetheless I still enjoyed watching it.

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I wanted more from Bite Sisters...

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Yeah same and they even had room for more. They could develop their back stories individually. I was more interested in that than the vampires helping other people. And more of 1900s timeline, the ML was very charming there.

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Waiting for more episodes of Red Sleeve, sigh!

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RED SLEEVE CUFF is our favorite show now- a sageuk done right. My wife is also enjoying THE KING’S AFFECTION and JIRISAN. This week was the penultimate episodes of THE KING’S AFFECTION and I really wonder what the final episodes will bring.

My only complaint about ROYAL INSPECTOR AND JOY is that the subtitles on Viki are slow on this drama. But the story itself is progressing nicely. It may not be the equal of RED SLEEVE but it is really fun even if some of the humor is a little flat at times.

I am trying to space out my viewing of each new episode of WOULD YOU LIKE A CUP OF COFFEE? because it is such a special show. Each episode is really a seperate story from the last so there is no need to watch as soon as possible- and this is a really good thing. You can savor each one.

The amnesia trope remains one of my least favorite but at least that story arc is being used in a dramatically useful way in the weekend family drama YOUNG LADY AND GENTLEMAN. Given that age differences are a significant question in this show - not only for our lead characters but for one of our secondary romancess as well (the woman is seven years older than the man)- the fact that our titular Gentleman thinks that he is still 22- and cannot remember the death of his father, his beloved but deceased wife or his three children creates a unique shift in perspective.

Having finished the J-drama rom-com AN INCURABLE CASE OF LOVE which I enjoyed with my wife I have now gone through five episodes of FROM FIVE TO NINE which is based upon a Manga. It is reasonably entertaining but not quite as good.

We are now nearing the end of the C-drama GO INTO LOVE. It has been a good story and we enjoyed it but as far as a story centered around the game of Go I think that HIKARU NO GO is better.

I am glad that DaebakGrits watched the Sageuk MR. SUNSHINE- probably one of the greatest of all time and the only one where the ML is actually an American (though born Korean). It is set one of the worst and saddest periods of Korean history- the final years of Joseon. I remember how moved my wife was when watching it- it really is a world-class drama. It was smart to follow that with WHAT’S WRONG WITH SECRETARY KIM? Which is one of the greatest K-drama romcoms. Part of why this show was so good was the way in which it subverted some standard tropes: For instance, our FL is definitely no Candy but rather a superbly competent professional. In addition, our chaebol family does not initially reject our poor FL but quite the opposite- they do everything they can to encourage a marriage viewing her as the ideal match for their son. I think that this willingness to subvert some common tropes is part of what made this show so good.

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Actually, the King's affection has 20 episodes, not 16.

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Oh Oh- that sounds like a lot of angst. But my wife will probably be pleased.

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😄😄

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I’m watching FROM FIVE TO NINE as well and have found it more and more engaging as it goes along.

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It is definitely one of the better weekenders. It is not perfect but definitely the best since ONCE AGAIN.

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Please note that the above comment was posted in the wrong location- it obviously refers not to FROM FIVE TO NINE (which I am also watching- and is pretty good- many J-dramas do not appeal to me at all) but rather to YOUNG LADY AND GENTLEMAN. Sorry for the confusion.

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@oldawyer Ok! Your quick review of WWWSK convinced me! I'm going to watch it...who knows, maybe this is the drama that changes my perception of Park Min-young.

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Even after watching her in WWWSK there were people who said that Park Min-young could not act or could only play one character. Then she did I'LL COME TO YOU WHEN THE WEATHER IS NICE and now no one says that any more. She may not be quite as great as Shin Hye-sun or Kim Yoo-jung- who are luminous- but she is actually a good actress.

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Red Sleeve: Not that I wasn't impressed with Junho in the prior episodes, but ep 5 really sold me 200% on his sageuk acting. Every scene is just art. Happy to see the ratings climb each week.
Also remembered Taejong Lee Bangwon is airing next week. Hopefully people won't have sageuk fatigue as they overlap on Saturdays and we could definitely use more serious historicals...

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Oh heavens, I already have to stop and relocate my thoughts each time while reading comments about Red Sleeve and Kings Affection: wait, where am I? And Inspector and Joy adds to the mess in my mind.

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It is called Sageuk Overload.

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For reals 🤯!

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No, Sageuk Heaven

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Ratings are decent for all the sageuks this year.
I'm rooting hard for RED SLEEVE because we need more traditional sageuks from MBC. It used to be their bread and butter.

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@kiara I agree. And I think what I really like about mbc (unlike the ahjusshi sageuk purists lol) is the seamless incorporation of humor and lighthearted characters/moments without turning the whole affair into a rom-com. It's an admittedly more appealing watch than kbs1's at times, depending on one's mood.

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Omg I thought it was just me! 😆 🤣 😂 I get confused watching TKA and Inspector.

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Deeeeefinitely not just you! 😁

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Ugh I know everyone is after ratings but there are SO many dramas on Saturdays now. It kind of defeats the purpose, I think.

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Agree. It's stupid that every new dramas are jam packed into the weekend slots while the weekday slots, especially Wed-Thurs, are more empty than ever.

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Go Back Couple – Completed episode 12. I so enjoyed this introspective gem. Funny enough, I have a bucket list of resolutions that I end up not checking when the phase is over and I make a new one and the cycle repeated itself, again. With a comedic timing so great and such a delight, it weaves the very serious moments seriously whenever it gets to be serious, and it stays serious till that phase is past. Of all the introspective k-series I’ve downed, this is one that I would most likely watch all the episodes over again ‘cause it is just too much. Looking at the couple I’m reminded of what would be my fate. Oh my God! the OST in episode 4 was wow! And Kim Mi Kyung is such a wonderful momma. I can’t get enough of her character. The goodbye scene with her mom was so emotional and tear-jerking, it opened my tear floodgates for minutes, it was painfully beautiful.

Reflection of You - So I caught up to episode 4 of this series and I’m confused. Who’s the villain, no who the bad guy and who is the good? What exact story is played on the screen. This drama does a good job of not making it clear me whom to root for cause they’ve both crossed lines. I hope An HyunSung stays good till the end; and can someone hit the husband of his sister into a coma, at least let her catch a break. All the forms of abuse she’s receiving – emotional, psychological, verbal and physical – it is just not fair. It felt good that those junior doctors appreciated her on a very high level, a level he can never attain, a level he’s jealous of. Despite Lisa’s backstory, she needs some real discipline. Why exactly was she envious of Ju-young when she won’t even sit down to have a conversation with her mother?

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Go Back Couple is a gem (and I cried so much when Jang Nara went back and saw her mom...)

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I prepared myself for the tears the moment i began watching, and so many scenes brought me close to tears, which never dropped down. The goodbye scene... It brought me to tears for minutes despite knowing what was in store.

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I rewatched Go Back Couple recently and I enjoy it more the 2nd time around. The scenes with Jang Nara and her parents, especially her mom, are just tear inducing. Made me realize I should hug my mom more often.

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Do... I can't anymore... and the Mom's scenes hit hard in GBC...

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You know, Go back couple is so, so but soooo good, simply because of those mother and daughter scenes!!! Personally, I could say, it didn't touch me, because the truth is, I had a very horrible and unlovable mother who hated her children, but even a person with parental traumas like me cried ugly with Jang Nara and Kim Mi kyung in GBC! 😖
What an amazing acting skills!!!
It was really special.

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Hui Joo have taken care of the brother in law. The drama itself is really good although the subject is not for everyone.

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That's a huge relief.

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FYI Kim Mi-kyung recently appeared in episode 9 of WOULD YOU LIKE A CUP OF COFFEE and as usual was wonderful.

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Secret Royal Inspector and Joy (up to ep 5): I'm liking how the team has expanded to include the two orphan group leaders so we've got 3 guys and 3 gals. The moment the ladies realized they had the ledger and immediately moved to get off the ship to tell the inspector was awesome. I guess the weirdly hot bad guy Tae-soo is poised to join the good guys by the end of the drama. Fun drama so far.

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"... but that didn’t stop my friend and I from daydreaming about a completely unnecessary sequel in which all the characters have been reborn and find a happier ending in the present." @DaebakGrits, you might enjoy _Chicago Typewriter_. 🙂

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@daebakgrits I recently rewatched Mr Sunshine as well and found it even better than I remembered. It’s just so darn beautiful and the performances are beyond great. A great OST. And all my tears 😭

I’ve always felt that Secretary Kim never got the love it deserved on DB, so I am glad you liked it. That ponytail is a character in itself and always reminded me of Barbie. I’d get distracted wondering how they kept it that way, it must have been extensions, right? And maybe a curling iron between each take 👱🏼‍♀️

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Yes, SECRETARY KIM is really good. I have noticed that whenever there is an internet add for Viki it features WHAT'S WRONG WITH SECRATARY KIM? That should tell people something.

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Oh is that right? Cool!

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Huh I thought WWWSK got a lot of love on DB when it aired? Even now I remember reading the comments on the recaps, which were probably second only to Healer in terms of excitement.

Though I do see people on Reddit and elsewhere dismiss it as 'fluff' which is a very surface reading of probably one of the best kdrama rom-coms.

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I also thought WWWSK got lots of love here, though I also think there was some disappointment with the second half with the focus on the male lead and his brother and the trauma backstory? WWWSK was really one of those rom-coms that nailed the rom-com crackyness which has been harder to find in recent years.

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I too remember it being mostly the second half where some disappointment was expressed- but that was understandable in light of what went on before. Still it really is a good romcom and I definitely recommend it to anyone, even those who usually watch other things.

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Plot twist: I just realised we have been put to sleep with Sae Bom being immune but it is actually prob grandma. She has not gotten ill. She doesn´t exhibit thirst either. Sae Bom red herring?
and why in the heck would pastors´ cross work. perhaps it is not that. perhaps he is an alien. Or perhaps all the zombies are atheists.

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I’m not watching anything currently airing but did just finish DALI & GAMJATANG - ultimately I liked it but I just wish it could have been a bit more ….something. Maybe it just needed more Moo Hak and Won Tak shenanigans.

Otherwise, I’ve been watching MY ID IS GANGNAM BEAUTY with my sister (it’s simultaneously a fun watch and Cha Eun Woo is the most wooden I have ever seen him - I get he’s meant to be cool and aloof but it is not working) , FROM FIVE TO NINE (Japanese drama - started out with weird priest stalking but has become really charming, really looking forward to how they resolve things) and Netflix variety show NEW WORLD. I’m liking it better than Busted so far, the idea is quite high concept but the execution is fun.

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DALI was a good show that could have been a great one.

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I watched Five to Nine a couple of years ago. It was....something, lol. His waterfall showers and locking her in the cell. But I did end up watching all of and found it fun for the most part. Also two of the most beautiful leads I've seen. They are both ridiculously beautiful.

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The waterfall cracks me up every time 😄

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Especially when you realize that this is our ML inflicting punishment on himself. And yes, the two leads are ridiculously beautiful.

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Oh wow. Thanks for suggesting From Five to Nine. Love finding light-hearted gems like this from beanie's suggestions.

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Dinner Mate: Almost done with it. Of course when everything seems better the men are going to go play in the street.
I definitely get the mixed reviews on this one. The leads are great with a nice chemistry and I wish they'd spent more focused time on them. They could of trimmed this show down a lot by focusing on the relationship and the premise of going out to dinner with each other. For a romance it's a great premise. The second leads are.....something. Our second female lead is out of her depth acting wise, but it amuses me that the writer just made their reasoning be obsession and selfishness with no sugar coating.

Koi Desu: Yankee-kun to Hakujou Garu: This is so good up to what I've watched. The one I'd look forward to the most if it was easier to watch. I'm watching it on a site that hasn't uploaded subbed eps for the last two and though it sucks because I'm enjoying it, I'm also glad that someone is probably protecting their work. But the eps I've watched have been a delight with a likable and fun heroine and an overgrown puppy of a hero.

Kieta Hatsukoi : a sweet highschool romance. The romance is very slow moving and slight but im just enjoying this group of kids and their friendships. I did like the beginning eps a little more which were slightly more restrained in the acting, but overall a good watch and coming to Viki.

Then I've ended up watching two marriage of convenience dramas.

We Married for a Job: I believe this is the one I kept seeing mentioned when Because This is our First Life came out, though they are very different. I am really liking the FL and the actress who is playing her. The ML is nice too and it amuses me that he is so unassuming, but the group he works with are so interested in him and his life. Though sometimes I wish they'd tell some of the people around them to mind their own business. I've just gotten to where they agree to hug on Tuesdays and their hugs are very cute.

Konin Todoke ni Han wo Oshita dake desu ga : I didn't like how the ML pushed her into the agreement and I think the FL has fallen for him too quickly, but otherwise I'm enjoying it. The last ep was a little painful because the FL has fallen for him and he is not their yet, but I dont mind a slower burn and a little angst.

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By weird coincidence I was just thinking how I missed Shin Ye-eun since I last saw her in the series 'More Than friends', then I clicked on the KBS anthology special on Viki and to my great surprise the first episode starred Shin Ye-eun!

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Just finished watching Chestnut man a danish serial on Netflix. And started with The Alienist. Not watching any K-Drama as of now.

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I'm in Sageuk Heaven. The King's Affection and Red Sleeve are both heating up. Both male leads are a visual delight, but I'm actually enjoying both FLs so much. Their characters have so much agency. On top of that the cinematography is exquisite.

I am also relishing the politics of Red Sleeve. For fictionalized history, I'm getting an insight into post-Sado trauma and why this time period still resonates. What would it have really been like for the historical King Jeongjo growing up in the shadow of his father, with such a terrifying grandfather? I love Lee Deok-hwa's King Yeongjo. He is irascible, sitting on the throne and getting his courtiers to agree that he did not confine his grandson and only took his books away so he would not lose himself in scholarship. Brilliantly accomplished. And it must have been a hard act to follow when you think that Song Kang-ho had already made the role his.

I'm also enjoying the romp that is Royal Inspector. It's shot like an old time black and white movie with a weird almost Western OST. Jun-ho, Rowoon, and TaecYeon are doing so well, and Jun-ho is everything. That bath scene...

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While Song Kang Ho is obviously brilliant, no one overshadows Lee Deok Hwa in a historical; at best they are just on par.

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I just realized that those 3 Saeguk are having Idol as Male Lead and great actress as Female Lead. But I still can't believe Junho is an Idol, he is so good with his role in Red Sleeve.

I thought Park Bo Geum will be forever my favourite Crown Prince but maaannn .. who can resist Crown Prince Junho!

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I was busy as hell this week so I’m behind on almost everything except the sageuks, because all three are bloody amazing.

Happiness: Behind on this, but I swear I’m gonna catch up soon.

Inspector Koo: Santa NOOOOOOO!! Please be better. I want to like him so bad but he’s so shady.

Just Between Lovers: Rewatch is going strong. And yes, I am watching this instead of catching up with ongoing stuff because Junho ❤️.

The King’s Affection: God, I feel so bad for the new Queen. Hwi’s story still has somewhat of a chance to end happily, but there’s no way the Queen’s can be anything but tragic. She’s bound to be alone no matter what. On the other hand, I still love our OTP, but man was it stupid for them to kiss out in open. Even though it’s about time evil dad figured out the truth.

Red Sleeve Cuff: Holy shit, the show is actually exceeding my expectations so far. How is this even possible. Every aspect of the show is just riveting and intriguing in the best way imaginable. The scene where Yi San was behind the screen and Deok-im was reading to him….oh be still my heart. And then the altercation between the King and Yi San. The actors, especially Junho and Lee Deok-hwa, are SO GOOD. I could wax poetic about the show all day, but I suppose I have to leave space for other shows.

Secret Royal Inspector and Joy: If the last show is riveting, then this show is pure, unadulterated fun. It’s silly and absolutely ridiculous, but I have a blast watching every moment. Evil Bead Boy is still very hot and very evil, but I’m hoping for a nice redemption arc. In conclusion, 2PM is ruling dramaland and I am totally here for it.

Would You Like a Cup of Coffee?: I’m behind and worse off for it.

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I’m behind on like ten different things, but I’m still planning on starting Hellbound because it’s getting mostly positive reviews and I’m not skipping out on a Yoo Ah-in performance. Same goes for One Ordinary Day because of Kim Soo-hyun and Cha Seung-won. I also want to give School 2021 a shot but I’ll see if that’s possible. I’m also still watching the Taiwanese drama Rainless Love in a Godless Land, but am behind on it like with most things. It was still very good up until the last episode I saw.

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Red Sleeve: YES the scenes you mentioned were *chef's kiss*. Is there a way we can sneak a few baeksangs for this drama amidst all the netflix success this year?? Lee Deok Hwa's take on yeongjo just became instantly iconic for me, and Junho somehow manages to take his already-great acting to a whole other stratosphere. Dude is good-good, like one of the best in his age range. He's long been past good-for-an-idol and I was never particularly into 2pm as a group.

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There’s no way we don’t see a few Baeksang nominations at least for Red Sleeve Cuff, if not wins. Lee Deok-hwa is definitely owning his take on Yeongjo, which is all the more impressive given that the previous face for Yeongjo is the Song Kang-ho. And Junho, what is there even left to say? I honestly don’t have words left for how good he is. Give both of them all the awards. And we’re only at episode 6.

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Definitely shifting my blame now for the awful ruler: master of the mask to the other writer tbh

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