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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…

 

SailorJumun

Snowdrop: Maybe it’s because I went into this drama ready to dismiss it, but it wasn’t that bad? Or at least not as bad as I thought it would be. I liked the nostalgic retro feel, and I even liked seeing the various characters, despite there being so many. But once it was confirmed that Jung Hae-in’s character is a North Korean spy… I felt conflicted, to say the least. I have no idea what they’re trying to do here, and I don’t know if a few more episodes will help rid of the uneasiness I’m feeling.

Bulgasal: Immortal Souls: Oof, lemme tell ya, it was a struggle getting through Episode 1. I was interested in the story and wanted to keep watching, but there was just so much exposition. I felt much better about it in Episode 2, and I actually think I would’ve preferred if the drama started at Episode 2, with the twin sisters, and just included Lee Jin-wook’s history as scattered flashbacks. Ah well, either way, I want to see how these characters collide, so I’ll be sticking with it.

Our Beloved Summer: Probably my favorite ongoing show at the moment. Very simple and funny romance, full of interesting, endearing characters. I love Woong and his uncontrollable pettiness, but it took me a while to warm up to Yeon-su. I’m glad that this week, we got to see more of her thoughts and feelings over her past breakup with Woong and over their present-day reunion. Now, if she could just relay those feelings to Woong…

Melancholia: I’m a few weeks behind on this show, and I’m trying really hard to jump back in since I started out loving it. But I’m so turned off by the school corruption and all the villains behind it. The school director, in particular, is so cartoonish, she might as well be petting a white cat and going “Mwahahaha!”

Happiness: I love that more dramas are being packaged in fewer episodes. 12 was a good number for Happiness, as it carried just enough zombie thrills and romance, without going overboard. The one thing I can’t stand about these zombie dramas/films, though, is the one or two asshole characters who end up screwing things up for the other characters. I mean, I get it, they have to be there for added drama, but they are SO ANNOYING. Thank god Park Hyung-shik and Han Hyo-joo were the awesome power couple they were, taking down zombies, as well as putting people in their place.

 

missvictrix

Currently weecapping: Our Beloved Summer, Bulgasal: Immortal Souls

Snowdrop: Sigh. I wanted so very much to get swept up by the drama — the setting and the story, I mean — not the political controversy. That part of things aside, I didn’t enjoy the first episode and could barely finish it (no comment on whether I really did). It felt contrived instead of real, it couldn’t quite pull me in, and although I know I’m supposed to give it more of a chance than a single episode, there’s really nothing calling be back except the pleasure of looking at Jung Hae-in. Which is a real draw. He’s a fave. But he doesn’t seem to be doing anything new here, so if I want to do some swooning, I’d rather watch One Spring Night again.

 

quirkycase

The Red Cuff Sleeve: I’m curious to see where we go now after the time jump. Although I didn’t expect everything with the head court lady to be finished so soon, I like that the conflicts aren’t being drawn out. There are always conflicts in a court, so I have no doubt new problems will arise soon enough to plague our couple.

Our Beloved Summer: Seeing Yeon-su flustered this time with Woong acting more mature was a nice reversal. I’m glad we’re starting to learn more about her and seeing her more vulnerable side. Yeon-su is great at hiding what she feels, whereas Woong wears his heart on his sleeve. I can see how he lowers her defenses and that frightens her.

Uncle: While I’m enjoying this heartwarming family tale, I don’t know that all the rich parent drama is necessary. Does every drama with school-aged children have to be about rich parents scheming for their children’s educations? I do like watching them aghast at Joon-hyuk’s brashness, though.

 

DaebakGrits

Currently weecapping: Moonshine

Our Beloved Summer: I was expecting the drawing competition to be a little more dramatic. Not an over the top battle, per se, but I assumed that there would be a clearer resolution. Maybe there will be more to that story arc next week. I’m still going back and forth over whether I want our lead couple to get back together or show growth and enter new relationships. The struggle is real, y’all, because either way I’m going to be sad for the pairings that could have been.

Let Me Be Your Knight: Wuh-oh! Yoon-hoo’s secret is out! It was a somewhat dramatic end to an otherwise fluffy episode. I’m feeling sorry for the second lead because we all know he isn’t going to get the girl, but I’m also worried about how he’s going to react now that he has figured out the truth.

Find Me If You Can: A part of me still wanted to know who the stalker of this webdrama was, so I binged the remaining episodes now that they are all released. Spoiler: the stalker is not one of the three guys, but someone out to punish one of them by “stalking” the woman he likes. Ugh, I know. This show started out amusing, but it got old quickly. The lead and the “evidence” she used to try and discover the truth were all over the place. Thankfully, it’s a webdrama, and I didn’t waste too many minutes of my life.

What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim: I know I’ve said it before, but I will say it again: I hate Young-joon’s brother. I have very little sympathy for him because, even if he had been the kidnapped brother, that doesn’t give him a free pass to act like he’s entitled to Mi-so. She can pick her own boyfriend, thank you very much! Now that Mi-so and Young-joo are dating, I really love that we see them struggle as they transition from a professional to a romantic relationship. Young-joo was hilariously pleased with himself for making his own copies and coffee.

 
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CRICKET - It was glamorous and fun year of Test cricket. T20 cricket has taken lot of space of ODI cricket but Test cricket which is claimed to be not as much popular has actually provided uch more fun and exciting cricket compared to T20.

At start we had Australia vs. India in Australia - very very very exciting test matches that showed the the real value and beauty of test cricket once again.
Surprise was England winning in Sri Lanka. One of the most powerful performance came from west indies winning against Bangladesh in bangladesh and a left hand new batsman scoring most of runs in 4th inning.
And then the biggest moment - World Test Championship - The 1st ever one - Won by Nea Zealand their long waited ICC world trophy. Awesome matches and performances.
Test cricket has gained more stream.
ICC trying hard to get cricket in Olympics - even lobbying with 3 million dollars.
And we had controversies in almost all main cricket boards. Not with kiwis - they are too nice.
India has its own coach-captain-selection as well as conflict of interests drama.
England has its racism.
Australia has its coach and an ex-captain
South africa has racism and quota
West Indies - Sri Lanka - corruption n players tussle. Almost all boards have corruption and political tussle troubles. And yet cricket survives and even thrives.

Mostly Female Cricket that is taking game ahead in countries where no one knows about it much. Overall, in 2021 Cricket had lot of upswings but at the same time due to lack of people management and mostly due to power and money - cricket is struggling in the main competitive countries.

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TOP 10 OF 2021 -

1 - Life's Punchline - 7.5 out of 10
1 - Life's Punchline - Macbeth at 23

2. - My Daughter Doesn't Have a Boyfriend - 7 out of 10
3 - Omameda Towako and her 3 ex-husbands - 7.5 out of 10
3 - Story of My Family - 7.5 out of 10

5. - There's a Reason for the Love to Dress Up - 7 out of 10
6 - Bank Over - The Weakest in history - 7 out of 10
7 - Law School - 6.5/10
8 - Kotoro Lives by Himself - 7 out of 10
9 - Haruka's Light - 6.5/10
10 - About The Crisis Here and my Liking - 7 out of 10
10 - Park Ha Seon - The Agent - 7 out of 10
10 - Happy Can - best couple - 6 out of 10

Female Police in a pod - 6.5/10
If You Like It - 6.5/10
Be My Family - 6.5/10
My Sister - 6.5/ 10

Househusband - 6/10
Reactionary Sisters - 6/10
Hospital Playlist season 2 - 6.5/10
Work Later, Drink Now - 6/10
Our Beloved Summer - 6 out of 10

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Be My Dream Family was definitely worth my time. Among others I liked that there were no villains and all protagonists were decent people.

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It was way better than that earlier daily but this list only have dramas that air at prime time. no dailies from any region are added. And i think this drama could have done better as 16 episodes drama than a long daily. Such dramas hardly get attention at primetime.

Welcome Mone from japan is light good watch too.

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Oh, then I apparently misunderstood your Be My Family title.
I liked the Korean Be My Dream Family even in its length. 🙂

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Wow, finally somebody else who's watched Life's Punchline. It's such a good show

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I just got episode , 5 to 10 with subs and plan to binge watch on my off day ... its a show unique to jdramas only ...

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Thanks for the list, will check out Life's Punchline. It's a slice of life, right?

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Yup - Slice of Life is always at the top in my views and feelings.

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TOP 10 of 2021 -

Sakuragi An - I Tried Haiku for the 1st time - 7 out of 10
Can't Write!!? - Screenwriter Yoshimaru Keisuke's Life - 6.5/10

The Female Psy - Chinese - 6.5/10
A River Runs Through It - 4.5/10
Hello Debate Opponent Season 2 - 4.5/10

There are few shows not mentioned because I didn't to have them in the same circle as other shows.
Also - ratings are objectively done - ranking system is different. That must have been clear from the way they are positioned.

And more so there are shows that could have been better than these shows, since, i didn't watch them i can't make a evaluate them so its quite possible that from those not watched media someone could have made a mark and even got some ranking.

Finding space for kdramas in the ranking was difficult and
Our Beloved Summer got added while i'm having very low opinion on the writing as well as writer.

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Our Beloved Summer This drama is a gem. “How have you been?” has never been so sad or heart fluttering. I so root for those two to work things out. I’m glad we are getting the POV of each of the main characters. I emphasize with Yeun-soo and Ji-woong much more now. Woong’s parents are awesome.

Uncle: This drama is also a gem. It has so much heart. Ji-hoo overcoming his stage fright to sing to his uncle will no doubt make my #2022Roundup. That kid breaks my heart. He’s been through so much and his book of song lyrics was troubling. I was glad to see the mom go to rehab. I like the little bar family. More people need to be watching this!

Bulgasal: Immortal Soul: The first two episodes were really good. The cinematography is impressive. I liked that they took their time with the backstory and world building. It gives it an epic feel.

The One and Only: This is a very weird drama. It feels like two separate dramas mashed together. I’m not sure it all works, but I do think the hospice side of the drama is very interesting. I don’t think the story needed a hitman with a heart of gold, a murder investigation, and a gambling ring after the dead guy’s phone.

The Silent Sea: Episodes 4/8: I’m underwhelmed. I thought the first two episodes were pretty slow, but the story did pick up in Episode 3. Every single character is underdeveloped. I can handwave bad science, but not that. I would have also liked for them to spend more time showing what life was like on Earth. Still, I don’t hate it. It reminds me of a Doctor Who episode.

Secret Royal Inspector and Joy: I don’t even remember what happened this week. I zoned out when the romance took center stage.

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I'm totally enjoying The One and Only (if only Viki had subs ready sooner, same with SRI & Joy)...it's quite different, but characters are relatable and definitely a different plot than I was expecting. Bad & Crazy was a bit strange first episode, but after 2nd I'm in.

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I had very little time for dramas this week (Xmas preparations, kids on holidays, family coming 😍)... I managed to watch the second episode of Bad and Crazy though... and I'm having fun 🙂 The murder/corruption story is meh and I'm not much interested in it... but I looooove comedic Lee Dong Wook... and his totally absurd situations with Helmet Guy (oil sliding? Really? 😆😆). I guess I'm in mood for this type of humor as I was even enjoying the red light speed line behind the bike! 😂

Anyway, I mainly came today to wish Merry Xmas to all who celebrate 🌲🌟 and great weekend to all! 😘
(Next time will be in the new year already! 😱 Where did the time go??)

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A Merry Christmas to you, too, from Alaska!

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NOW WE ARE BREAKING UP (Ep. 11) The leads have started to use the L word but their delivery is like the conflict of deciding between the house salad or the soup of the day. YE’s entire mindset is to make a few nice moments before ending the relationship before it gets sour. JK seems to hold onto her like an elementary school participation trophy for the worst kid on the team.

It is really hard to define what the writer is trying to convey. Korean culture has is own quirks. It is a couple culture; but the first school coupling is more about the person showing individual status, popularity and acceptance than love. Campus couples are more hanging out together to avoid the social awkwardness of young adulthood. First love and real dating is a supercharged hormonal amusement park ride until the infatuation wears off. The BF/GF “relationship” is an exclusive time to see if one is compatible for the long haul. Engagement is the commitment toward marriage and partner goals. YE and JK fit into none of those roles.

It was more symbolic that the movie they watched was pixelated to be meaningless as they had no sofa skinship in a basic romantic moment. The regretful husband’s touch towards his dying wife is more real. Director Hwang’s traditional courtship with the PR CEO is the proper slow burn to ignite future passion. The leads have no spark together.

ON AIR (2008) From what I read, this was a controversial show when it first aired on KTV. Rumors had the popular but bad actress/diva lead was based on a real actress who was allegedly aloof, demanding, mean, stubborn and possibly dating a director. Back then, the backstabbing agency deals and CF/PPL life blood for network stars would have jarred a naive public. But the story is really about the second lead, the star writer (Song Yoon Ah), who is pressured to have rating hit after hit or be doomed to failure as a divorced mother. She has her own diva issues but slowly allows others to help her become her best person.

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I love this post so much! I am not entirely sure how this show devolved into total absurdness. I had high hopes for it and I was a staunch defender against SHK "haters" but this show is just too ridiculous. Gah!

The entire plot does not make sense. Jae Guk's "feelings" do not make sense. How could he LOVE her already?? There was barely any genuine interaction or even A RELATIONSHIP between them before he started throwing the L word all over the place.

They are both grown adults (late 30s) and yet they act like children. So disappointing!

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COMPLETED
Chimera - The final confrontation between the Chairman and Chimera was so meh. Who thought it was a good idea to have all 3 leads offscreen for most of the finale? Didn't it feel like the finale was filmed piecemeal at different times?

Since it's holiday week, also managed to binge 4 J-dramas and 1 C-drama with Kieta Hatuskoi being the best.

ONGOING
Secret Royal Inspector & Joy - This is not as joyful as it used to be but the sisterhood is nice to see. Looks like there'll be some fun ghost shenanigans in the finale.

Our Beloved Summer - I un-paused and watched Eps. 4-6. I still don't love it like everyone else - Yeon-su's supremely unsurprising sad story didn't move me at all - but then there are moments when I just want to give these characters a hug.

Melancholia - Poor LDH looks like a kicked puppy half the time. I think they spent too much time on the big bad. She's not even particularly interesting - every scene she has with Ye-rin is the same scary-sweet tactic and it really doesn't work the 5th or so time.

Now We Are Breaking Up - Absolutely zero rationale for the last scene. What was the impetus? Visiting his brother's grave? He's done that half a dozen times already! Apparently this show is ending a week after Red Sleeve Cuff even though it has one episode less 😑.

Bad and Crazy - Watching LDW lose his mind in the first half of Ep. 3 was pretty funny but the ending was meh. They better not kill off the baby cop today.

The Red Sleeve Cuff - Still dehydrated from all the crying I did in Ep. 12. Looking forward to 3 episodes back-to-back.

STARTED
Moonshine - Humour didn't land for me - Hyeri's crazy-eyes schtick is not for me. But the rest was interesting enough and it's so good to see Yoo Seung Ho again (that voice!).

Decided not to watch Snowdrop with how politically problematic it is. Planning to watch The Silent Sea over the weekend.

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Heroine - no parents - what parents? - have typical ill grandma - is poor - have to pay debt of imaginary uncle - need to say anything anymore @lixie
Writers have to do everything and anything to create a breakup.(so superficial and fake) Only thing left for her is not sold her kidneys yet or done dozen litres of tears.

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But... I liked that Yeonsu is fully aware that the reason for the break up was her PRIDE and not her situation...

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I think writer is just creating excuses and that whole episode was full of that. Writer is very thin on characters and Yeon-Su is actually victim of writer's whims. we as audience can accept those points but then that love starts to look pretty weak.

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I also really liked that she's aware of it and admitted it.

But at the same time since her pride was the problem, doesn't the rest of the story feel redundant?

Her pride might have come between them even if she didn't hit the sick relative/deeply in debt/lost her house trope trifecta.

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Exactly and I think that was the point they wanted to say - that Yeonsu's sob story (I wasn't a fan of it either 🙄) was not the real reason (and should not excuse Yeonsu's decision... and hurt she caused). And that was a twist I didn't expect... and I liked it.

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There are thousands of people like her in real life even in worse situation and circumstances sometimes and the author gave her an enormous mental strength that is seen of people like any immigrant's parents set up to succeed for the future of their own kids. The portrayal of an artist who's scared to succeed and trying to avoid any embarrassment and disappointment in phlegmasia is very real as well. They're way different from normal people living their lives like is expected from them and that's why it's never enough to show to the world that even wild flowers are so beautiful not just those well bred and customised by florist.

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I think Hyeri is the best thing about Moonshine. I didn't see her usual "crazy-eyes schtick" but instead thought her eyes did a fine job showing her hesitation, questions, maturity, burdens very well. I can see that she is maturing as an actor.

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@miso2019: You and me both. I have cried watching the most recent eps in sorrow, anger and frustration. At a system that tortured people to extract confession and punishment. (Torture has continued to be used in many countries including developed ones such as the US and the UK so it is relevant in many ways to our current world.).
I am not sure if the RL Yi San murdered his own brother but how horrific that entire sub theme was in the show despite the fact that the brother had never been mentioned before and was poorly used just as a dramatic device to live and die offscreen so that Yi San could burnish his Royal credentials. Just yuck.

And many of you will not agree with me but so be it. The unwarranted verbal abuse of Deokima by Yi San and his intimidating language and conduct was so gendered and awful. Love is not nourished nor manifested by that behaviour. I don’t care who you are so please don’t tell me that it was a different time, she belonged to him, yada, yada. If I didn’t know how the story would pan out, I would wish her to never succumb to him even if she was attracted and devoted to him.

Junho’s acting was superb as always but YimSan’s characterisation and behaviour (based in the novel) was so odious at times as to make me feel turned off from his arc.

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🎄Merry Christmas!🎅

The makjang Real Life 2021 is nearing its end!🥳 I got more invested than I had initially anticipated, but at least I got to sneak in some other show’s episodes in between. As I plough on with these other current shows, I do wonder when I will finally be able to start a new one, and which one will get the honors.🤔

Bring It On Ghost💪👻(15/16): This show is mostly a relaxed watch for me, but the last quarter put me on the edge of my seat as the puzzle pieces were finally coming together. Episode 15 especially was nail-biting as we got our final showdown between our heroes and villain Hye-Sung. Kudos to Kwon Yul and the writing for making me fear for our good guys!👍🏻

Healer🕶️(4-6/20): *Ajumma voice* Helllooooo! Since I never pay 100% attention during group watches, I rewatch with the FF button and read recaps to make sure I have watched and understood everything afterwards. Healer certainly demands and deserves the extra focus, but it does take a lot of time to catch up!😄 The only highlight I do remember for now, is Moon-Ho buying our little news company. I cannot wait for all the reporter hijinks!☺️

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Healer is a classic for a reason. It keeps the adrenaline popped up and makes you cry for something that seems so simple as to have a meal with someone (I won't give spoilers).
Ajhumma is the best

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The One and Only (Episode 1-2) - Mood: B-
Ever since I watched Chocolate a few years back, I’ve been anticipating the next hospice drama as I thought it was a setting that’s rarely explored. While it was quite an interesting premiere week having all 4 leads be complicit in a murder together, I’m not sure about whether the plot will be able to juggle the hospice life against the homicide case: it won’t be an easy balancing act and chances are that the hospice community would remain underdeveloped. Side note: I chuckled upon seeing Baek Hyun Jin cameo as a jerk once again. He’s really good but the typecasting is sad!

Bad and Crazy (Episode 1-2) - Mood: C-
There’s no doubt I’m intrigued by the reverse Jekyll and Hyde setup (knowledgeable commenters have also pointed out the similarities between this and the movie Fight Club), which already has so many questions that need to be answered going forward, such as what led to the manifestation of a separate personality and what exactly triggers the switch. At the same time, the police corruption and political conspiracy is just way too uninspired a setting to get excited about: it has 100% predictability in the characterisation. Also, the show needs an epilepsy warning: the opener’s way too flashy!

Our Beloved Summer (Episode 5-6) - Mood: D+
Sadly, Ji Ung’s character took a cliche turn: he and NJ are also being set up as each other’s consolation prize.

Bulgasal: Immortal Souls (Episode 1-2) - Mood: C
The fantasy is fine but nothing great. I’ve got a hunch that both leads didn’t actually kill each other’s families.

School 2021 (Episode 9-10) - Mood: D+
We could have avoided this pathetic love triangle if Ki Joon stopped assuming and started communicating?

Let Me Be Your Knight (Episode 7) - Mood: D+
Plot movement is negligible this week except for the cliffhanger: not sure if Woo Yeon will find out the truth next week.

The Red Sleeve Cuff (Episode 11-12) - Mood: D+
I’m somewhat relieved that the politics appear to be resolved? But the tutor’s still around to cause a ruckus next week.

Moonshine (Episode 1-2) - Mood: D
Pathetic brother? Court politics? Poison conspiracy? Alcohol monopolist villain? Love triangle? How much must I yawn?

Chimera (Episode 15-16) - Mood progression: C- / D / D / D- / D+ / D / D / D
Eugene was severely under-utilised as a main character: the show really went nowhere with her arc.

Melancholia (Episode 13-14) - Mood: D-
It’s ending next week presumably to the tune of good triumphs over evil and maybe some rushed romance? It can’t be that predictable, right?

Now We Are Breaking Up (Episode 11) - Mood: D-
Do Hoon’s conversation with Chi Sook at his house was the only one I watched at normal speed.

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The 1st show can have that awesome slice of life - typical 1 episode 1 character plot but nope we need someone who loves blood - its very same as Temple Run - do we even need someone who's looking for some violent fun.

Bad is too bad and short on crazy. Lee dong wook looks so out of it that his bad acting starts to suit the role quite a bit or should say his heart is really enjoying this role.

Bummer is typical bummer - These character have no life other than to be typical low quality plot tools.

Bloody revenge is foolish - I'm after you - you are after me - what else. King's times to add some fantasy. that's it. Why run in circle for some romance.

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I would love to know your A+ dramas! Seriously!

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The only currently airing drama that I am enjoying is Moonshine. I enjoyed Hyeri's acting, the MLs confusion having to board with this family, and even the Prince and his traumatic memories. I like that it seems to be about down-on-their-luck noble families, and I hope it doesn't start centering too much on palace intrigue. I am looking forward to the next episodes, and I haven't been able to say that about any of the other new dramas.

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Bad and Crazy: 6.5 Day 1 & 3: Good concept, the scripts and/or direction botch the details. Except the little kid - she's good. If we eventually decide we don't like the show we can always decide that the title describes it? Day 3: their gimmick is already getting a bit stale.

Bulgasal: Immortal Souls: 7.5 The early part was quite disappointing but it got better once they got to 2006, which was good because the news Sat & Sun had me worried that I might have a Snowdrop-size hole in my weekend watch list.

Snowdrop: __ I planned to watch it. I really did. Or at least start it. But I just couldn't bring myself to do it. At least I still have my one-beer-per-episode-that-airs-before-it-gets-cancelled drinking game to keep me amused while I follow the news.

Chimera: 8.0 Finished strong. You could almost say it finished with a bang.

Secret Royal Inspector & Joy: 7.0

Moonshine: 6.0 A mobile bar? A bar on a cart that pops up here and there? A Mystic Mobile Pop-Up Bar :)

Silent Sea: 3.4 for ep 1.

Crime Puzzle: 7.5 (ep 9 & 10) Not a bad show overall. It had a LOT of flaws, but most of them were typical of the genre, and in between those it was fairly well executed. I can't take off too many points for a kdrama being kdrama-y. More in a reply.

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Things I didn't love in Crime Puzzle:

1: The reveals and betrayals and attempts to surprise us just add up to a bog-standard crime kdrama. When a crime show tries to stand out from other crime shows by adding "surprise" twists it just makes itself more typical and more predictable.
2: The female baddie shouted too much. That's too bad because she has been good as more mild supporting characters in the past, such as Miss Korea.
3: Ending was only so-so.
4: It seemed like they were setting up (or at least threatening) a second season. NOOOooo!!
5: The cult was hard to take seriously and I'm a bit tired of shows with cults as the baddies even if S.K. does seem to have some cults and sort-of culty religious groups that make themselves into attractive targets. Blame the pressures of Hell Joseon for driving people into them(?)

3a: The owner of the ship that sank killing 304 people in 2014
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yoo_Byung-eun

3b: The cult leader who had a president under her thumb
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment_of_Park_Geun-hye
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Choi_Soon-sil

3c: The group that helped Covid-19 get an early head start in S. Korea
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shincheonji_Church_of_Jesus
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/COVID-19_pandemic_in_South_Korea

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Battle of Changsha - so happy to find this on YouTube, and 1/3 of the way through, I'm really enjoying the complicated character, family and political dynamics (although I do kind of want to slap the entitled twins around about twice an episode).

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Just finished USE FOR MY TALENT (Chinese) - meh. It was fluffy but extended too long at 24 episodes. I felt the length towards the middle and the strain of the typical edited audio characteristic of Chinese dramas.

Started SNOWDROP and I’m enjoying the cinematography. I don’t particularly care for the politics (both the wives and the men side) and I was so grossed out by the drink-your-own-blood scene. Ugh. I’m a bit apprehensive about where the show will take us now that it’s confirmed Hae-in’s character is from the north.

Also started WORK LATER, DRINK NOW. After 2 episodes, I realize I shouldn’t watch this hungry. Lol. It would be nice to watch with a friend with our own soju and chicken in front of us.

Hate to admit it but I’m still not motivated enough to finish JIRISAN and continue SECRET ROYAL INSPECTOR & JOY. Hopefully in the next few days.

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USE FOR MY TALENT is a re-make of the K-drama CLEAN WITH PASSION FOR NOW. I started USE FOR MY TALENT but did not continue- the original (and shorter) version, which starred Kim Yoo-jung, seemed to be much better.

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Yes, the Korean version is better. It was also difficult watching the Chinese version when you have something to compare it to. 😅

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Jirisan was a good binge watch after Episode 5 for me, just stay clear of the spoilers. I still love Secret Royal Inspector and Joy as the conflict continues to escalate and for me the characters just became more interesting.

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RED SLEEVE: This week's episodes struck me as very sad. I wasn't expecting the time jump, but the two death scenes were powerful thanks to the incredible acting. Now that San is King, the main theme seems to have shifted to exploring the limits and dissatisfactions of the palace hierarchy directly through Deok-Im's story. To that end, the Head Court Lady's final words to the King, which focused on the tragedy of women living their lives vying for the attention and favor of one man, certainly weren't positive foreshadowing of Deok-Im's romantic future. I was surprised, though, that even three years later she and San apparently hadn't had a full, honest conversation about what they want from each other, or that they hadn't progressed beyond longing looks. They're clearly in love, but the drama is also showing that that likely isn't enough.

SCHOOL 2021: I'm behind on this. It's cute and easy to watch, but the limitations of some of the actors are starting to come more clearly into view, and the story--already pretty thin--is dragging for me.

OUR BELOVED SUMMER: This is a drama that just works on every level, and it goes to show that a romance doesn't need a complicated plot or even a fresh one. You just need to write two well developed lead characters, surround them with equally well developed supporting characters, give them good dialogue, cast strong actors with chemistry, and then trust the process.

MELANCHOLIA: As SailorJumun said, the main villain here is so cartoonish at this point that it's almost unbearable. In fact, most every character except for the leads barely registers as human. The two school director sisters vying for their father's affection are the worst, but the parents don't fare much better. As always, I wish this was better written. While I watch, I mostly think about ways the story could have been approached differently for this to be a worthwhile drama. For one, I wish ML's feelings had developed at the same time as the FL's--i.e. when they were adults, teaming up together to bring down the school's administration.

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Also watched BULGASAL and although I agree that the first episode was bloated with exposition, it was beautifully shot and atmospheric. I liked the second episode better, and will definitely give this one a couple of more episodes, but I'm not yet connecting with the characters.

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Oldie: DELICIOUS PROPOSAL. (Got it from the library). A very fun drama about dueling chefs and their families. I so enjoyed seeing the cast who are now big names in Kdramas, back when they were dewy-eyed twenty-somethings, like So Ji-seob (Oh My Venus) looking mighty fine, Ji Sung (Familiar Wife & Dr John) being sparkly instead of reserved, and Son Ye-jin elegant and polished even though inexperienced. The main male lead however, Jung Joon, although he was terrific, sort of disappeared after a few more dramas. Wonder what happened to him.
Waiting in Seattle for the big snow event of 2021. Merry Christmas, all....

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MoonShine: Tried and dropped. It was slightly amusing watching YSH be this uppity man, but it has a been there done that quality for me, so I am out.

Our Beloved Summer: Outshines everything right now. This is my favorite drama and I hope it continues that way. How can "how have you been" feel so damn right?

The One and Only: I was not expecting these characterizations and I love it. It is so random and sad, but upbeat.

School 2021: This drama is so cute. Our leads are adorable and it is nice and fluffy.

The Red Cuff Sleeve: So they are really going to drag this out. Deok Im's reasoning is solid and I can't fault her. The King is doing his best, but at the end of the day she loves herself the most, even if she loves him. We shall see how this pans out.

Now We Are Breaking Up: The romance and underlying issue with their relationship is both stupid and contrived. However, the reason I watch this is for the women's friendship, it is super sweet. I find her mother annoying, but I agree she needs to divorce that man and live in peace.

Snowdrop: I have no idea where they are going with this either. Jung Hae In is one of my faves, so I will continue to watch, but I'm not sure I understand what is actually happening with this drama.

Bulgasal: I don't know what is happening here either. I'm still watching though.

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Happiness (Ep11 & 12) - I went into this drama with no expectations (given all the typical zombie shows) but I ended up liking it mostly due to the 2 main leads. Sae-bom & Yi-hyun together are super cute (yes this is a repeated statement :P)

Jirisan (Ep14 to 16) - I sort of figured Hyun-jo's fate already so I'm not really surprise with the outcome. Overall I felt that Jirisan could be better if they can really shoot it more outdoor (covid restriction I know) or maybe have better CGIs cos some I really can't unsee :P. Performance wise I find that the main supporting characters outshined the main leads. Not sure if this is due to the way the characters are flesh out but Yi-gang & Hyun-jo are quite flat imo...

Inspector Koo (Ep 11 & 12) - 'Quirky' summed up the whole show for me. I think it's a bit underrated compared to other shows airing at the same time. Not over the top great but it's a fun watch actually :)

Chimera (Ep12 to 16) - Didn't know there could be so many Chimera's around hahaha...seriously I get the motive of the original Chimera but the copycat is a bit far fetched. I get it if it's Jung-yeop but Hyo-kyung? I somehow felt that the story is a bit lacking. Probably better if it's a 12 eps series....

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Our Beloved Summer I was a little bit disapointed by the backstory of the FL and the drawing show. But it was really nice to see the main characters finally showing their feelings.

Secret Royal Inspector and Joy I will finish it because there are only 2 more episodes, but neither the romance neither the investigation are interesting...

School 2021 I watch it only for the second leads and the love triangle is really useless.

The Red Sleeve Cuff The story is stagnating... At least, after 13 episodes, he finally asked her why!

Let Me Be Your Knight One more drama that could do without a love triangle...

Bad and Crazy I'm not sure to continue this one...

I need to try : Snowdrop, The One and Only, Bulgasal: Immortal Souls and the Silent Sea.

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Our Beloved Summer: This drama has got my heart and is my most looked-forward-to drama these days. The characters are hella endearing, even with their faults. Yeon-su and Ung still have feelings for each other, but how that would pan out as a long-term relationship is still up in the air.

Lee Joon Hyuk's character is a bit of a jerk, but holy moly is he sexy in this! And Woong's parents are just the best!

Royal Inspector and Joy (up to ep 13): Just my bit of joy for the week. I'm glad the drama continues to have group of 3. We've got the 3 guys, the 3 gals, and the band of illegitimate sons (3 guys) and each grouping is a support network. I like how we have a heavy dose of friendship in this drama. Actor for Tae-seo remind me of Shin Hye-sun! They could play siblings!

Finally on vacation, so hope to catch up on some of the new releases and maybe finish some of the ones I've left off.

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Yes, the actor playing Tae-seo really does resemble Shin Hye-sun- and he is doing a great job. If we are lucky perhaps someday we will get to see them in brother and sister roles. His acting is very convincing so it would be a great pairing.

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I hate to say it but Melancholia just isn't what I hoped it would be. The first half was okay. The main actors are great and have chemistry but mainly are wasted in the second half. The villains and bad people get the main screentime which is just a shame. It is more a school politics drama than romance. They should have balanced it better. Also it is pretty much vanilla imo (maybe because they are scared of complains?) At least j dramas are more daring and brave to show content that isn't for everyone or could be considered problematic. The only great kdrama exception was Secret Love Affair - what a show!

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The Silent Sea (Completed) - Okay I must have enjoyed this since I didn't really ffw or skip anything :P. Water is the main issue in this show. A grp of specialist are given the task to retrieved a sample from a space station on the moon. Mishaps ensues soon after which leads to the true revelation on what really happened to all the personnel in it a few years prior. This is quite a standard sci-fi drama imo as I don't really see any aspect of the story that stood out from the rest. It's nice seeing Bae Doona & Gong Yoo in it though :)

Bad & Crazy (Ep1 to 3) - By ep 2, viewers will know who the identity of 'crazy' is :P. I'm watching this out of curiosity. Quite a good start so let's see how the story goes.....

Bulgasal: Immortal Souls (Ep 1 & 2) - Wow, this is elaborately bloody and sort of complicated at the start. Why on earth does Hwal brought his wife and son to hunt for the bulgasal is beyond me. It's probably true that he kept on making bad decisions that leads to bad karma then....pity the bulgasal that took his soul though :P

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I think his wife that insist to tag along because she doesnt trust her husband to take care her blind child. I wish the romance is between Lee Jin-wook and Gong Seung-yeon, not Kwon Nara. Like he wants to fix his mistakes because he didnt treat her well. But does Bulgasal love his wife? Or he just married her because of his adopted father?

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I think the wife did mentioned that the marriage was arranged by her father aka his adopted father (sounds messy hahaha). I do felt that his adopted father truly loves him as a son and even knowing of what he has become, still tried to protect him until the end T-T

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Now I dont find the romance not that interesting anymore 😅. I will just stare at how hot Lee Jin wook as bulgasal. I always find this aloof and hell-may-care auras from Lee Jin wook off and on screen that makes his bulgasal more mysterious. ha ha ha

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I agree that the jerks in Happiness were annoying as f. but at the end somehow it was satisfying to watch them because the actors wereso good at being bad. But I would not want to play a character like that, I think it would be traumatizing. I hope they are all ok after having to live as such vile creatures. it can perhaps leave them with nightmares.

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Dali and Gamjatang Ep 11- 16 This drama is one of those "could have been" cases because it had one of the adorable pairings of 2021, but it was a chore to finish the drama mainly due to the boring real estate corruption plot. The drama had lead actors who fit the roles to a tee, had beautiful characterizations of FL and ML, humour that worked despite being silly and interesting premise of balance between classiness and pragmatism, but nope, since it is a kdrama it has to follow the current trend of mixing mystery with romance and ruin the experience for the viewers. The show had heart, like the time when ML consoled the FL after her lineage was revealed in the media or the time when ML was moved by the "coffin" art, but everything feels overshadowed by the unnecessary corruption angle and annoying side characters who were miraculously redeemed towards the end that the shift felt jarring rather than moving. It is the simple fact of "Too many cooks spoil the broth" that the dragged out "greediness" angle by the rich spoilt the entire second half of the show.

Uncle Ep 1-4 ❤ The bonding between the uncle and nephew is everything and there is nothing more to say because y'all need to watch it.

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I was not able to get to UNCLE this week but you are right- this is a good show and I will be catching up when I can.

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We loved DALI but you are right- this was one of those shows that was a missed opportunity. And it was while I watched it that I had this insight (or at least a hypothesis) about the K-drama trend that you have noted: Mixing mystery or suspense elements into the comedies may be an attempt to increase viewership by trying to attract a broader audience but in fact the result is likely the opposite.

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We have now watched the first four episodes of the new Sageuk THE KING OF TEARS, LEE BANG WON. This is the story of the end of Goryeo and the beginning of Joseon. It is tragic in tone, although we do get to see a hopeful side with the portrayal of the future King Se-jong The Great as a youngster in this tale- but it is a dark story on the whole. The acting is very good. It is one of those dramas that, once you start it you have to keep watching.

The new J-drama BEWITCHED BY MY SEXY BOYFRIEND continues to be one crazy comedy. But maybe not as insane as I originally thought: This week it struck me that, while the plot is much different the underlying themes echo those found in the Mozart opera COSI FAN TUTTE with two couples playing with sexual fire. It should not be forgotten that the opera was also a comedy- and that comedy can explore things more serious drama cannot. In any case I look forward to the remaining episodes.

The other J-drama that my wife and I are currently watching is A STORY TO READ WHEN YOU FIRST FALL IN LOVE. It is a charming comedy but my wife and I both find ourselves wondering how any woman could possibly be as totally clueless as our female lead.

RED SLEEVE is still our favorite show- and we are now entering the final stretch. In addition, my wife has been steadily working her way through the 2007 sageuk LEE SAN- WIND OF THE PALACE which has many of the same characters we find in RED SLEEVE CUFF- but covers much more of the life of King Jeongjo. She has about 10 more episodes to go- out of 77. Sageuks were once much longer in length.

SECRET ROYAL INSPECTOR AND JOY is still fun. We will be watching the penultimate episodes once episode 14 is fully subtitled, which should be today. But now we have a new Sageuk comedy: MOONSHINE. We have seen the first two episodes and so far it looks promising.

I am looking forward to the next episodes of the weekender YOUNG LADY AND GENTLEMAN. The amnesia story arc finally came to an abrupt end last week, its dramatic purpose having ended, leaving an awkward situation for our Gentleman and our Young Lady. But somehow the love story between out Gentleman’s half-sister and our Young Lady’s step-brother is back in play. Lots of future angst- I love it. The ratings for this show continue to climb with good reason.

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I always look forward to your review on the Gentleman and the Young Lady. Finally the amnesia is over. Can't wait for the young lady to be accepted by the children

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The previews from last week suggest that to some extent the kids will at least begin that acceptance this week.

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I've been waiting for your initial verdict on THE KING OF TEARS, LEE BANG WON. Glad it's enjoyable so far. I'm hoping to start it soon.

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Please note that the first ten minutes or so of the first episode are a bit confusing- It is not made clear that the scene takes place much later than the actual beginning of the story- but it does make it clear that among the things that Bang-won has to deal with- and has finally gotten sick of- is the incredible fear in which he is held by everyone else, perhaps even now including a fully grown Se-jong. Be prepared for some tough scenes.

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@oldawyer, FYI. A new historical/mystery/comedy cdrama has just begun on Viki US: DETECTIVE KONG. The setting is at the end of the Qing dynasty and early Republic. The original title is HOT BLOODED DETECTIVE:
https://mydramalist.com/38091-flower-detective
Episode one aired in China on Dec. 26 so it is available on Viki simultaneously.

There is a Korean movie from 2020 called HOT BLOODED DETECTIVE so I surmise that is why the title is different on Viki.

This year I watched 5 cdramas in the crime mystery genre:
ANCIENT DETECTIVE (2020), THE IMPERIAL CORONER (2021), CHONG MING WEI (2018), DOUBLE TAP (2021) and TRUTH (2021).

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Thank you so much for this. I really appreciate it.

We really enjoy a C-drama costume mystery: In fact, I recently borrowed three DVDs from our library so that we could watch 3 classic Detective Dee mysteries.

We absolutely loved THE IMPERIAL CORONER and also ANCIENT DETECTIVE. I would not hesitate to recommend THE IMPERIAL CORONER to anyone, even those who do not normally watch mysteries or even C-dramas.

We started CHONG MING WEI but got side-tracked somewhere- we may have to begin it again.

DETECTIVE KONG might be very interesting- it is set in a period of time when China was in tremendous upheaval- this makes it even more of an historical mystery than show set in olde times. We will have to check it out.

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I meant to say 'shows set in older times'.

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I am not sure if this can save Snowdrop, but I voice out anyway ...

Make sure those characters either the North Korean spy and those in the South Korean security officers more personal, and not representing the organization. But I am not sure if it works. Other then the problem of the screenwriting as well public perception, there are a lot more problems in the drama then the controversy.

And by the way, I enjoy Our Beloved Summer then many other dramas in this period, I even think The Red Sleeves a bit too old style, and can't go on after Episode 9 (That palace maid gang is a bit turn me off as well).

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By the way, re-watching Norwegian Occupied Season 1&2 on Netflix (so that I can go on to the un-watched Season 3). After all these years, the prophetic plots in the drama is still surprisingly relevant today.

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Rainless Love in a Godless Land - ah, what a great twist. Really love it when they thrown everything on its head.

Now, We Are Breaking Up - I'm up to ep 11 and hopefully the mothers are given a rest because it feels like everyone is cycling over the same argument. It would have been interesting to see more conversations about them tackling the situation together instead of them avoiding the issue, just saying I love you, or doing things that confuses the other partner/or leaves them guessing... but I don't think the writing is up to it. Its also gross how they keep making the significant weight loss seem like a positive thing. And how she was angry at her kid wasn't tackled well either.

Bulgasal - The first two episodes drew me in more than I thought. Its actually kind of nice to have something plot heavy.

Our Beloved Summer - I rather wanted to hit him for belittling her goal to be in a position so her grandmother never has to work again.

Let Me Be Your Knight - I still don't really know how sleeping outside of his room is really going to help. Things are coming together nicely. Starting to wonder what her sister would think about her con and maybe holding onto the theory her sister is a actually secret softy.

Win The Future - there is a lack of focus on the romance initially. It doesn't really sell an underdog narrative and the characters are unfortunately lacking which makes it hard to care much if they do win or lose, especially to put all this work in for those bosses.

Paint with Love - they really had me thinking the two were former lovers and not step-siblings. Phab warming up to Maze is nice but it would have been fun if they were still a bit antagonistic with each other.

Love with Benefits - the opposite of plot heavy. I saw someone post that this was actually a very cheap production of a zombie story... and I can't argue. Except the leads had better chemistry in the last ep than I was expecting.

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Curse all typos.

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I'm also watching Win the Future... I'm only continuing this because of Chen Kun, who is the only reason why I'm actually watching this... I've watched 5 eps so far and unless it gets much better soon, I'll drop it. Guess I'll have to wait longer for a good Chen Kun drama... sigh...

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I'm only up to ep 6 myself so I'm also hoping it will pick itself up.

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I'm watching too. No matter how bad it gets, Chen Kun.... 🔥 🔥 🔥

I like how he uses his posture as part of his character, but when it all boils down, I never get tired of looking at his face.

In this, his character is quietly clever and at the same time flawed. You could see that 2nd shut in coming from a mile off.

Tbh though I actually don't mind the "leaps" they make in reasoning and strategy because they are so smart. But I'm starting to be irritated by her constant hair flipping. I'm now waiting for subs for episodes 9-12. I may go elsewhere to get them.

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Rewatched:
Flower of Evil: I just love their acting and chemistry. I need another drama with Joon Ki and Chae Won (I don't count Criminal Minds).
Waikiki: I was thinking of rewatching Waiki or Pegasus and Waikiki won. I laughed a lot yesterday.

On Air:
The Red Sleeve (ep 10): Can San just get rid of Deok Rok already? He annoys me more than the actual villians of the show.
Uncle (ep 4): Our teacher deserves better. And our baby made me cry with the song. This show always makes me think "I want an uncle", but I actually have like 10 already lol.
Our Beloved Summer (ep 4): THAT FINALE. YEEEES!!!
Silent Sea (ep 1): To be honest I don't know where is this going at all. Trailers show more information than the first episode of this show.
Bad and Crazy (ep 3): I actually was hoping K appeared in that club, I can't believe he didn't appear even after that jerk showed YS the video and he remember what the girl said to him :(

Oldie:
No limit - 2009 (ep 1): I love Go A Ra and Sang Yoon so I'll keep watching even if I'm not into sports.

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Waikiki is a hoot!

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Yes it is- but PEGASUS MARKET is too.

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Our Beloved Summer I love this show. I knew it was about time we get to see Yeon Soo's point of view. Poor girl. She had such a tough life. I can understand where she is coming from and just feel so bad for her. I can't fully blame her for her past choices since it may have been all too much for her that she had to just shut down. But since she is older and wiser now I hope she has the courage to ask for help when she need it.

Bad and Crazy I watched the first two episodes and I have mixed feelings about it. Right off the bat, Helmet guy was suspicious since only Soo Yeol is the one that can see him. So its interesting that the show revealed SY's psychosis. I have yet to see ep3 and 4 to see if I will continue watching this.

Bulgasal Weirdly enough, I liked the world building in episode 1 even if there was too much going on. I felt for Sol more than either of the leads tbh. I didnt particularly like ep2 since I don't care for either of the twins or Hwal. I do want to know how Gong Seung Yoon and Lee Joon's characters fit into all these.

I put my sagueks on pause (Haechi, SRIAJ and TRS) and hopefully I can get to it soon.

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Yumi's cells: I decided to watch this after seeing so many beans for it in the annual bean count! And definitely this would have taken at least 3 of my beans! I loved it and I can't wait for season 2. The cells are hilarious (fashion cell was my favorite) and added a dimension to the viewing that was particularly interesting. I was actually happy about the ending, because though we all love happy endings, it feels quite nice to see that getting together is not always a good thing. Both Yumi and Woong need individual growth before getting together. I could not comprehend why Yumi's happiness was so tied to her being in a relationship! I thought that was quite sad and I wanted the drama to address this a bit more. This is not normal, it is not normal to be bored, lonely and unhappy when not in a relationship. And I also did not agree when Woong's priority shifted to be Yumi's. I think everyone's priority should be themselves. Anyway, I liked it and glad I watched it!

Red sleeve: still enjoying this, though the last two episodes I thought were a bit slow and uneven. But still enjoying this and patiently waiting for both episodes to be out!

Dropped: Now we are breaking up, the king's affection

On hold: Rainless love in a godless land (this show hits too close to home; I mean it is so real with the kawas leaving, the earth polluted, people disappearing left and right, I kept questionning and thinking this is our world right now, is this really the end of the World? Did the kawas already left? Lol, and then I get kinda scared and then... lol, anyways I had to take a break, but will pick it up again soon)

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Bored lonely and unhappy when not in a relationship at that age? Sounds about right to me.

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and also, nobody can decides what is normal 4 another person.
keeping tabs on other peoples feelings, thats not normal to me.
feelings are reactions to experiences, they aren´t things that just turn on by themselves.
and being unhappy is a reaction that says "Tried that, but I want something else, so it is not satisfying my longing. "
so when thirsty, drink water.

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"Keeping tabs on other people's feelings, that's not normal to me" says person that previously said that nobody can decide what's normal for another person 🙄🙄 (I may have agreed with you and could have blamed my psychology background, but naaaahhh). Also, no one is keeping tabs on other people's feelings. Happiness is not a feeling, it is a state. As a human being, it is an important task to learn to be happy alone, to enjoy one's company first before constantly seeking to fill a void inside by someone else. Putting one's happiness into another person, being a significant other, a friend, a cat, or whatever is too much of a burden for the other person and it is just a recipe for un-happiness. Happiness comes from within first. Bref! I understand not everyone is capable of understanding this though, it could be difficule to grasp.

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Lexyk, it is not abnormal to be unhappy when not in a relationship; some people are just that way. I wish psychology majors would not pathologize every human emotion and require everyone to fall in line with their perception of the ideal person.

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This is frustrating but ok @thimble; I will not argue even though this is absolutely not what I am talking about. Ideal person, what? Pathologize human emotion, where? I am so confused 😳. Anyways, I will just say this and stop this back and forth that's just not worth my time. I think ppl who watched Yumi will understand where I am coming from. Yes, depression exists, yes some ppl can be sad, hell ppl in relationships could be unhappy too, some situations can make ppl sad, yes. But again this is not what I am talking about. Self-realization, individual growth as an individual, cultivating self-love, I will even add cultivating other relationships (i.e. friendships) are determinant to one's own happiness; happiness as a state (not a feeling, not an emotion, let's be clear) cannot revolve around one individual, and yes I will maybe grant you that, and leave the normal/abnormal dichotomy and tell you that it is just not healthy!

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💯!

I will also say: I think if you are not at least content most of the time (not necessarily happy, but content) being around yourself, the only person guaranteed to be with you the rest of your life, that is something that you will probably want to address.

We all need human connections, of course, but I think those should be diversified and not too heavily invested on one person and one type of love. This goes for familial and platonic relationships as well IMO! Tying your self-worth too much to others is a recipe for disaster. Been there, done that!

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Exactly, 100% agree!

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I cant finish Yumi because it seems her life revolves around her dating relationship. It doesnt make sense to me if you dont trust in your partner and your relationship to begin with why even start it? Such a bother and tiresome. Ha ha ha But hey it is just me, I've never been in relationship. LOL. But perhaps some people can tolerate that? Any way what is normal and not normal? Maybe some people do need in relationship to be happy and maybe some people dont. And it is okay, what makes someone happy is different for each person. Me maybe not in contact with human being for some time, will give me time to regain energy to try to be happy again. Humans are tiresome sometimes. Lol

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I absolutely agree with you.

This fixation to be in a relationship, to dissect, introspect, obsess, fret over every little action / gesture of every potential ML - is not my type of drama. The cells are unique but I couldn’t get onboard with the premise. I could potentially enjoy this if I’m watching a high school drama where life revolves around crushes and everything is magnified but not 30-something. I admire dramas where the FLs have bigger goals in life - even if I enjoy moments of fluttering romance - but it cannot be all about that! Also no girl friends - almost all are bitchy or potential rivals - it just makes me sad how unhealthy Yumi’s cells was.

Nevertheless, the cells are refreshing and and the acting was solid. I also read Yumi made an individual choice in the end. Nothing against those who enjoyed, to each his own, just don’t expect every person to relate to Yumi’s cells.

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In honor of 'Our Beloved Summer' I went and finally watched the film "The Witch: Subversion". Were the people involved with making that film also involved with the series 'My Name'? It really felt like they both have the same fingerprints on them.

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watched 5 episodes of Silent Sea last night... might finish the last few tonight, but it's not exactly a good holiday watch...

i like Snowdrop -- don't know what the fuss is, but then i don't know the ACTUAL history this fictional story is supposedly deviating from... i like the nostalgic color palatte, but it makes the set look older than 1987, if you ask me. not complaining, i like the look and feel. love the "warden" type dorm mistress - she reminds me of the one in Roald Dahl's Matilda...

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The Koreans objecting to this drama on Mydramalist say it's bad because it's right-wing propaganda. So it's anti-Communist? Why is that an issue?

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@Lescudamur: and these Koreans are absolutely right. Because the military regime accused pro-democracy protesters of being North Korean spies and, it disappeared, arrested, tortured, imprisoned and extrajudicially executed many such dissenters. It is not difficult to find this history. Google is a useful tool!

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Last time I looked the last great anti-Communist right wingers were the Nazis but, okay, sure. If they're anti-communist it's a-okay.

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This is the first time in my drama-watching history when I decided NOT to watch a drama exactly because of all the *fuss* around it. As someone who comes from a country where used to be an oppressive regime, I can fully understand all the complaints Korean people have against the drama. So many people who were protesting against the then military regime (and so many who even didn't protest) were tortured and disappeared under false accusations (being a NK spy among them). The show doesn't seem to have respect for those people... and neither for the history of the democratic movement... (and those Jung Haein's responses??... I can't even...). There is just no excuse for trying to paint such a painful history in a different light (even if they use palette colours and perhaps a well written girls' dormitory).

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i have to apologize for my ignorance about the brew-haha. i watched the 5th episode, since they decided to air an extra episode to make the controversy "end" or clarify certain points -- and i still don't understand what the issues are, in fact, i'm totally confused about the politics in this story now...

my point being, it didn't help me better understand the trajectory of this story... but i DO acknowledge the fact that many protesters were tortured and/or killed during this tumultuous time in south korea's history.

i don't mean to make light of it by talking about the production's artistic qualities. i should read up on the time period.

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My take on this is that the victims and their families, who should've been the most affected, understandably so, raised their grievances. And some SJW on the bird app along with most other viewers got on-board the hate train and raised more ruckus-- or should I say *cough* monetization *cough* on their blogs and what have you. This almost seems like a dejavu from all the complaints people brought out against Goo Dong Mae -- Yoo Yeon Seok's Japanese-influenced character in Mr. Sunshine. Viewers were afraid of creating Japanese sympathizers because of the actor being so popular. My observation is that viewers nowadays are not as dumb as people think that they can't recognize truth and lies coming from some TV show.

Those who have judged and condemned the show (and the cast) without even watching it in its entire run, are judging a book from its cover or condemning someone based on the color of his skin. I can only pity you. Remember, life is an echo, you will get back what you have put out.

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@leetennant
@spazmo
- I recommend that you read the following post by a fellow beanie:

http://invisibledragon.home.blog/2021/12/19/snowdrop-and-revisionist-history/

And, the following are but an iota of the vast scholarly and other information which is available on this important issue.

https://jacobinmag.com/2020/06/south-korea-democracy-movement-protests-tear-gas/

https://web.yonsei.ac.kr/paulchang/website/Research/south%20koreas%20democracy%20movement.pdf

Also, please try and ignore deliberately obtuse and/or ignorant posts by some commenters here who in desperation are resorting to using RW terminology such as “SJW” to deflect from the rightful outrage at the historical revisionism of this show. Artists have every right to make the programs and films they wish but tgey do not have a right to be shielded from condemnation and the ramifications of their decisions when they decide to take part in historically revisionist shows and films.

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Happy Christmas to all who observe! New Year tidings to all, even though we have a few days till that point.

Bulgasal: started last week and I loved it! I understand there are some mixed reviews. I liked Lee Jin-wook in Sweet Home and was curious about the premise. Kwon Nara is a bit of an oddball but she grew on me in Itaewon Clas. Looking forward to the 3rd episode tonight!

Move to Heaven: I had heard so much about this series, but never watched it when it was on. Started this on a whim a couple of days ago...and oh am really enjoying it!

My Country and The Crowned Clown: I put these in the same category as historicals with a corruption and greed angle.

Next up is Beloved Summer.

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OUR BELOVED SUMMER
Absolutely loved the premiere week, still like the following episodes, but a bit over all the stone-faces and mysterious staring…nah but for real, it’s quite an introspective drama and I’m looking forward for them to be more serious with each now that the petty fighting seems to be over temporarily. But I do wonder how the plot is going to progress since the big project tying all the characters together seems to be finished…
BULGUSAL: IMMORTAL SOULS
cinematography is amazing, the wide shots of bleak snowy forests and mountains, all the blood… but that’s a bout it. The plot points progress very fast in the first episode but somehow the way it was shot made it drag on for so long. At one point I started playing it at 1.5x the speed lol. Like was said above, it’s a lot of abrupt and heavy-handed exposition that doesn’t explain much of the lore and thought behind the story. Like what on earth is a bulgasal? what’s the curse? if Hwal is cursed because of something he did in his past life then this isn’t actually the beginning of the whole story? And it took me forever to figure out what the twins meant in relation to the bulgasal. Reading the recaps apparently she was split apart into each twin, but whether it’s only her appearance that’s split or her actual soul, I have no idea just watching the drama.
WORK LATER DRINK NOW
Binge watched it over the weekend. Loved it!! Happy that there’s going to be a second season. All 3 of our protaganists are such solid characters and they all had great storylines. Kudos especially to Sunhwa! Been around since her Secret days and I think her acting as these bright, crazy characters is so much more impressive than her previous work playing colder, aloof characters.

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The Silent Sea: Binge watched this with my mum Christmas Eve and absolutely loved it. I can't really explain why I loved it so much other than my bias for sci-fi and the fact that I would take a bullet for Bae Doona.

It was a decent, interesting watch and it was one of those stories that when an episode came to an end you always had to watch juuuuust one more until before you know it you've finished the whole thing.

(I also can forgive bad fictional science because tbh I don't understand real science lol)

It also reminded me a little of the Alien franchise, more the vibe and less the story itself... the suspense and curiosity maybe?

Also I really enjoyed Lee Joon's performance in this! I've only ever seen him in Father is Strange before so it was nice to see him again and performing so well at that.

Gonna pick up Moonshine this week I think and pick Inspector Joy back up now that I finally have some free time again.

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THE RED SLEEVE CUFF (ep14): While I still love the show, Deok-im is starting to grate on my nerves. If she really wanted to escape San, she'd asked to be relocated to the queen dowager's palace. But no. She lingers, she looks at him with a ton of love in her eyes and then she rejects him again. Enough! This is why I'm so happy with the ending of ep 14, because now the emotional stand-still of xx episodes has come to an end.

THE ONE AND ONLY: First episode in, I surprisingly like this quite a bit. Especially the FL. I'm looking forward to her building a relationship with her roommates. But honestly, someone comb KKN's hair. Please?

This has been a slow drama week for me as the re-watch of RUN ON and Junho fancam have stolen some of my attention. Of course, really looking forward to today's episode of RAINLESS LOVE. Although it's somewhat frustrating to wait each week, I find myself savoring each of the episodes a lot more.

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Rainless Love - I'm at the point when Heroine got the God's blessings (with its consequences)... and it is such a good (and totally unexpected) twist! Though I'm also afraid that the next episode will be hard to watch...

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I see what you mean. The saviour vibe is strong and that usually doesn't end well.

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On RAINLESS LOVE I made the decision to wait and binge-watch once it was complete. For once my discipline has held firm and now we are close to that point. I did watch the first episode to make sure I would want to do this, but that means that I will be re-watching episode 1 as it has been some time. I am encouraged by what I have seen in the comments though, so I am looking forward to this one.

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Our Beloved Summer - Getting sweeter by every episode. This time, I wish I can hug Yeon Soo during her hard time. When I first judged her; why didn't she share about her hardship with Ung? They've been together for 5 years! I was later reminded that that's how a relationship grows. Looking at myself, I'm now happily married for 10+ years. But during our first 3-5 years, although the years were sweet, many times I can't find a way how to open up about my own insecurity to my husband who's already accepted me for everything I am. It's a feeling of afraid of losing our loved ones' trust and more... Eventually we need to try one tiny step at a time, things will get better. I really wish Yeon Soo & Ung will get back together and their relationship will grow stronger.

The Red Sleeve - Currently on episode 13. I love the bromance between uri Crown Prince & Royal Guard. But Dok Im's rejection has somehow made me think, does she really love the Crown Prince, or were all of her effort to protect the Crown Prince in previous episodes are just because she's a court maid; if the Crown Prince is harmed, she has to leave the palace. Is that it? Because I can't see her cried in hiding while learning about Queen Won Bin, or shed a tears frustrated with how this thing has to go... Despite these, I'm continuing to watch because everything else is beautiful in this drama. I love Queen Dowager subtleness, her alliance with Queen mother (haha), the scheme or Master Hong, and everything else is so beautifully portrayed.

Bad and Crazy : Glad I picked up the later half of episode 1, now my husband and I are addicted to this show! It's hilarious yet thrilling. But... can we keep K around even if they're able to save Hui Gyeom? His petty childish crazy behavior is entertaining, especially him swooning over Hui Gyeom.

Let Me Be Your Knight : When will they reveal the doctor's true identity?

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Watching a bunch of shows currently!

Bulgasal: Watched episode 3, and didn’t see that bit at the end coming. I don’t know how I didn’t, but it was strangely affecting.

Bad and Crazy: Our main duo are great, and it’s good to see at least some bad guys get some comeuppance but good LORD the corruption is off the charts. You couldn’t throw a rock out the window without hitting a corrupt officer in that police department.

The Silent Sea: 3 episodes in! The cast is bonkers in this one, so I knew I’d be checking it out. Also Netflix dramas have always been strong imo so I’m expecting great things. It’s not blowing my socks off, but it’s solidly done thus far at least. It’s light on the music and really lets the silence hang in moments of isolation.

School 2021: Wow, already 10 episodes in. I’m surprised at how much I’m still enjoying this one. Especially for a production that was so packed with delays and problems. This is the first time I’ve seen the FL in anything, but she’s making a good impression on me even if she’s playing a fairly standard character.

Snowdrop: Only seen the first episode so far. These episodes are LONG. I don’t mind the setup, but obviously the political intricacies are a bit lost on me not being korean or growing up in that turbulent time. It’s alright so far, and it’s got a lot of talented actors so I’ll be checking out at least a few more episodes.

Moonshine: Watched the first pair of episodes and again, I’m not blown away. It’s an okay start but I just feel like I’ve watched this show before (not with these exact details of course). Now I’m okay if a show has a fairly bog standard premise, as long as it’s done really well (lots of Shonen anime pull this off pretty well) but nothings gripping me. I’ve been a fan of other shows these leads have been in, so I’m cautiously optimistic it will improve.

Happy holidays all, hope everyone is closing out this garbage fire of a year with some family and/or friends. And if not that, then at least some good kdramas!

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To your point about the the third episode of Bulgasal...me neither! Now I am even more sucked into wanting to see episode 4.

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Our Beloved Summer: Last week made me go from "ah cute" to "awwwww let me hug you both and keep you safe and warm and close to my bosom"~ I love that the show thoughtfully reveals more details in increments, and that Yeonsoo was fully aware of her pride and insecurities, so despite her (unsurprising) backstory I couldn't help but feel bad for her and Woong. It also helps that Dami and Wooshik play off each other incredibly well.

Snowdrop: I've yet to finish episode 1. Not a fan of the blood drinking and rich wives hoo-ha, but for the rest, all I can say is that it's very pleasing to the eyes. The dorm 207 girls' dynamic is fun to watch. This is my first time watching Jung Shin-hye — she's killing it so far.

The Silent Sea: I think this one requires a better headspace. I already tried twice and fell asleep. (Excellent intro btw!)

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Merry Christmas everyone!

This week I just start with:
1) Crime Puzzle - just found this drama with English sub; 1st episode is so confusing with a cop turns into a killer, so i need 2nd ep (i bet i will bingwatch it till ep 10).

2) Uncle - watch it coz i cant get enough of Oh Jeong Se after Jirisan. Lee Sang Wo's character seems has a hidden motive; please drama we have enough the evil mommies, and now not the father too.

3) Bad and Crazy
LDW is having fun with his dopplegangger characters but what i'm craved here is WHJ's big smile whenever he appears out of nowhere.

4) Snowdrop
Read about the controversy but im still going to give it a try coz i like watching the students life in the university dorms. Which reminds me of my time in the female dorms in college.

5) Bulgasal
The 1st and 2nd ep are messy, and im still confused about the Bulgasal but since i love drama with myth creatures, will give 3rd ep a try.

6) Moonshine
Not a big fan of Yoo Seung ho but im sold on the chemistry between Kang Ro Seo and the rebellious Crown Prince.

Other than the above, I also watch Secret Royal Inspector and Joy, and School 2021.

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Red Sleeve Cuff </b) Enough with the angst already. Can we have two eps of happy to make up for it?
Beloved Summer is doing romcom right; no serial killers, real estate mysteries or corrupt chaebols. Isn't life complicated enough already?
Silent Sea Sigh, I really tried and maybe I just paused? Kurt Vonnegut wrote about how much he hated being labeled a science fiction writer. Most scifi, he said, are ..."stories that are weak on dialogue and motivation and characterization and common sense." Sadly, this might apply.
Rewatch of My Mister with hubby has been so rewarding. Greatness exists in kdramaland, it's what keeps pulling us back.
Lastly, having taught a course called Natural Disasters to theater and creative writing majors, I'm finding Don't Look Up to be very amusing - at least the first half hour when they are trying to get through to people who have no idea about the natural world.

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Don't Look Up is like the living nightmare we've been living in the US in the past few years under orange man.... it gave us indigestion, but it was VERY GOOD. just hard for us to watch...

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Understandable and I am watching in small doses. Marc Rylant as the app guru with zero EQ is golden.

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Mark Rylance!! I had to check the cast to make sure. He's so good in whatever he's in. Have you seen him as Cromwell?

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Yes! Physically he's the opposite of Cromwell but he made that role his own. I should apologize for misspelling his name.

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I'd hate to have to apologise for all my mistakes. I was so pleased to see him being mentioned here and in a US movie too.

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I have read the two books that WOLF HALL was based upon and I have to say that Marc Rylance captured the character of Thomas Cromwell perfectly. I have actually watched the show twice- it is really that good.

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A definitive Cromwell

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I think, In Dont Look Up, Leo just gets to express all the frustration he and all the sane americans built up during Trump era. It is like an anger room to channel it into acting

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E.X.A.C.T.L.Y.

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My Mister is golden. I wish I could get my significant other to watch

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Secret Inspector and Joy - I don't know why I still watch it, I almost drop it. I just miss the 'real saeguk', not just modern story with people wearing hanbok and that when Red Sleeve come to rescue

Red Sleeve - The angst, the heart wrenching is what I miss from Saeguk drama. It compete with Bossam this year.
Eps 15 left me drain that I barely breath for the entire episode. I still don't understand why Deok Im keeps rejecting the King even though the King himself multiple times showing his affection.
Is that only because she wants to be a free court lady? Or because her dad is Prince Sado bodyguard so she is basically like traitor daughter? I still don't get it. We only have 2 episodes left, please drama, give this couple some happiness will you??!! I really hope it won't end up like the history told because watching 15 episodes when they are not a happy couple already frustrating enough. I demand a redemption for their sad days!!

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Maybe the moral of the story will be like he learn to love her without feeling like he owns her, and she learns to love him without feeling she being possessed for the fact he is a king.
I like Deokim because when she chooses things is like she knows the consequences. She doesn't accept his proposal so when she knows he marries other girl, she doesn't act jealous or sad or regret because it is her choice, she owns it. And just continue doing her job, ha ha ha. You rock girl!
I mean if I know the one that has others, accepting him it is like betraying my whole being. It is not that I suddenly stop loving, but I know once I accept, I'll be greedy and selfish, definitely wont share. LOL. Acting happy when we are together will feel superficial and fake means I'm losing my self.
But anyway, people who dont know what loyalty is are losing their spark for me. Forget love, they are not interesting anymore. Hah.

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You could interpret her reasoning to mean that she knows she couldn't share him if she gave him her all. But she's expressing it to say, she will lose herself entirely if she becomes his concubine.

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Happiness: Completed the last 2 episodes of the drama . One of the best dramas of this year. A memorable one indeed. The thrill factor was amazing and kept me on edge in every episode. I love that the leads got a happy ending after such a disastrous days they had witnessed and experienced earlier. Yi Hyun is the best husband ever.

Bad and Crazy : This is show is eccentric on many levels and i am not complaining. Funny and hella crazy and the show is getting even more interesting.

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As to "What is wrong with secretary Kim", the big deal is that Young-joo is shown eventually to have been the most considerate, sentimental, person to both his brother and especially to Mi-So, since their childhood. He is not just about his shiny AURA!!!! :-) The Mi-So character has worked really hard, but she has also won the lottery with Young-joo. But the whole series is really funny on how this develops and the surprises, one of the best I have seen.

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