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Team Dramabeans: What we’re watching (August 26, 2023)

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…

 

missvictrix

Destined With You: I was a little iffy with this one — it was way more creepy fantasy-y than I was expecting — but by the end of Episode 2 I was won over. Jo Boa is just delightful here as the quintessential downtrodden K-drama heroine full of gumption, and I will never get tired of this archetype. As for the rest, I like the setup a lot, actually, and it feels like there’s a lot of space for a fun plot to unfold. (It’s hard to watch the current crappiness level of Hong-jo’s co-workers, though, since they are three actors I love so much, but methinks they’ll turn around.)

 

Dramaddictally

Destined With You: I like this drama way more than I thought I would. It’s a nice mix of creepy mystery and cute encounters. Plus, Rowoon: in suits, looking somber, getting semi-seduced by a bloodied hand. I still don’t totally get what’s going on but I like that about it. And whatever magic the lighting is working has everyone looking shiny and sparkly amidst the darkness. I can already tell I’m in this one for the long haul.

 
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COMPLETED
Not Others - Fell short of being great but I'm fond of it nevertheless. It's nice to see a drama about women that isn't just a collection of 'issues'.

ONGOING
My Dearest - Both sets of episodes have some epic scenes. Not just the fights but also the leads' interactions. Still recovering from Ep. 6 🔥.

The First Responders 2 - Replacing all the fire station stuff with the NFS was a bad idea. There is very little they can do to make their actions have the same sense of urgency. Maybe the bomb-in-the-body this week will improve things?

The Uncanny Counter S2 - Every episode is just the Counters getting brutally beaten. It's exhausting. So Mun losing his powers is interesting though.

My Lovely Liar - I was right about the noble idiocy 🙄. I found it frustrating that Sol-hee never questions her powers even though she often reads situations wrong. At least she came around at the end.

Moving - That was a lot of gore to take. Surprisingly sweet love story in the midst of it all. Looking forward to next week when the parents' worlds interact.

Behind Your Touch - I liked these two episodes a lot more than the first week now that our leads are working together. The drama and movie references are funny.

STARTED
My Lovely Boxer - The montage of Tae-young running with Yu-ri was my favourite part. I hope we get more of that vibe - part brutal truths, part humour.

Destined With You - I thought it was rather boring 😬. I was more excited by the cameos than the leads' stories. Giving it another week.

C-DRAMAS
Completed Lost You Forever S1. Stayed strong throughout and I'm glad it didn't end on a cliffhanger since the next season will take a while.

Also completed Trick or Love. Okay-ish romance but far too much family drama.

When I Fly Towards You (till Ep. 15) - Sweet so far.

Planning to try out some new ones now that my c-drama plate is clearing - You Are Desire, Fake It Till You Make It, The Legend of Zhuohua.

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I completely forgot First Responders 2 is a thing (is it still 'airing'?) till you mentioned it here! Glad you're liking When I Fly Towards you!

I watched till ep 10 of You Are Desire, and thought it had a strong start and then fizzled out a little bit - mainly because I'm not feeling the chemistry between the leads - so I've sort of placed it on hold at the moment. It feels like it's the cousin of a 'When I Fly Towards You' and 'Lighter & Princess' mashup in terms of vibes, and I do like the dynamic of the set up between ML and FL (both are very blunt and say it like it is, without being mean or rude though). Looking forward to hearing your thoughts when you get around to it!

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Oh if it fizzles out that early, should I bother trying it 😂? I'll share my thoughts in next week's WWW for sure! Interestingly WIFTY's Zhou Yiran is in two dramas I plan to try - seems his dramas got a release boost after WIFTY's success.

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He's honestly quite good in this too, I find he's quite good with infusing nuance into stoic characters through subtle expressions and actions, and although his character in this is a different type of reserved from his character in WIFTY, he's doing well to make the character seem more dimensional.

I'd say give the show a try defs because I'm not entirely sure if it actually fizzled out or if it was me finding it that way because other shows have used up my emotional energy tank. I feel like the bar is more reasonable when I'm not already invested in so many other shows already, if that makes sense? So this could be a case of, it's actually doing fine and I'm just expecting too much from it!

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Got it! I know that feeling. I felt that way about Destined With You actually. I was completing a whole host of this week's episodes before I watched it and compared to the range of emotions I felt watching Moving, for example, it just wasn't doing enough.

Also yes Zhou Yiran is good at managing the stoic but not expressionless vibe. So many young talents in dramaland!

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From what I gathered from MDL it’s focus is more on friends and their relationships rather than just romance. So people who expected a full blown romance seemed disappointed.

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@miso2019 yeah fair enough about Destined With You! Honestly even though I love MLL, it being so close in schedule to My Dearest makes it a task and a half to switch mental gear sometimes between the two. I imagine if I watched Destined With You on the heels of My Dearest, I may have a different opinion about my engagement with it somewhat!

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Ha I guess I should be thankful I have First Responders 2, Uncanny Counter 2, Behind Your Touch, and now My Lovely Boxer between those 2 shows 😭.

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Is First Responders 2 available for streaming in USA?

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I'm not in the US but I believe it's streaming there on Disney+ and Hulu

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Oddly, when I clicked on First Responders 2 on Hulu, only First Responders (season 1) came up. I'll keep checking.

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I think I may have seen a different Not Others than you. I saw the one where the whole thing was about “issues.” Can you please tell me where to find the one you saw…I really want to see that drama!! 🥰🤓

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🤣 I guess I meant a drama that's not like Thirty-Nine, which seemed to have a very limited and specific idea of what 30 and 40 year old women are like 🙄.

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I know you have high threshold for tolerance, but why are you still watching "Firsy Responders 2"?

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I'm a victim of the sunk cost fallacy 😔

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Too bad there are no "three piece suits" in that drama to recover even a small percentage of the loss😂

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Ah well Destined With You can pay the toll for that 😆.

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You are desire - seems like a typical school drama but I liked the female lead. She isn’t the typical sweet dumb ones we see in cdramas. I have seen the ML before but not sure how I feel about him being a ML. I might not continue but I think it’s worth checking out.

Sweet games - Noona romance. Nope. Dropped after 5 episodes.

Falling in love with a scientist - only saw one episode. I think this might be ok. It’s set in university. Will continue to see how it goes.

Fake it till you make it - the direction of this show is just wonderful. Love the leads, the dialogues and their flirty encounters. The show really captures the loneliness in a large city. And also makes some thoughtful remarks on pretentiousness and what is the right approach to finding a partner. It’s all done very well. But not an easy watch.

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I actually dropped both Sweet Games and Falling in Love With a Scientist midway through their respective first episodes 😅.

Will try the other two for sure now with FITYMI (too long to type!) being first.

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I’m liking “Legend of Zhuohua” so far. I didn’t recognize Zhou Yiran in it at first without bangs over his eyes. The story as a whole hits a lot of familiar historical beats but does it better than most similar dramas. Lead actors are veterans and it shows. Definitely recommend so far.

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That's what I heard about the leads doing a good job. It's what made me want to try it. Thanks for the confirmation!

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Behind Your Touch (ep 4): Same as my comment in the ep1-2 recap, there were scenes/premises that were a bit cringy, but I was able to overlook as there were far more good stuff that happened in the show. I find the jokes, parodies, and comedic scenes fresh, clever and creative. I am aware that it’s not a cerebral show and l’ve set my expectations low, probably why I am still sincerely enjoying the drama. You know, not forcing myself to continue watching it (for my love of Lee Min-ki haha…), but rather I am looking forward to new episodes every week for the fun and entertainment.

Uncanny Counter 2 (ep 6): I became less and less interested in this show. I was not hooked by the first 2 episodes (unlike in season 1), watched eps 3-6 in long interval, then I realized I’m about to put this on hold for now. The excitement was just not really there.

Beautiful Gong-shim (ep 8): I liked the light and cute interactions of the OTP but the dramatic plot (long lost grandson) felt dated to me I feel like I’m watching an early 2000 drama. 😅 I am also afraid there’s not much conflict between the OTP that the story could work on. Gong-shim leaving to work in Jeju for 2 years (for conflict in the story) felt out of the blue and meh for me. Still not dropping this drama, but I am no longer as fond of this as in the early episodes.

Just a nitpick: I thought the editing on the restaurant opening was off. One minute the ML and the 2ML were in the restaurant opening, then in the next scenes, separately, they were also dining in less fancy diners. IDK, the editing felt off to me.

Hi Bye, Mama! (ep 3): With 2 light dramas I am currently watching, I thought it’s a good time to add a melo. I expected this drama to be heart-tugging, but I did not expect to tear up only halfway thru episode 1. It is touching and I’m liking it so far.

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Hi Bye Mama was really great, so glad you are enjoying it.

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Thanks for your comment. I was reassured this will be good til the end.

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Hi Bye, Mama is a lovely watch, sad, funny and really shows the closeness in the family and friends.

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Cried in 1st episode? I hope you have the strength for the last episodes!

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Oh no!

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Beautiful Gong-Shim: The first episodes have a humour and a freshness that is completely lost in the second half of the story. I was really excited after seeing the first two episodes. Yes, I saw the whole thing ... it can be done, but it's a different drama towards the end.
Uncanny Counter: First and foremost, the villains lean towards a cliché of "sexy" and "perverted" that I don't think I have ever seen in a good film. I reminded me of "Class of 1984" which is a dumb revenge fantasy that includes the idea that the subcultures goth or glam are drug dealers etc. Really, that is a fantasy for people who feel really uncomfortable about unconventionality. In that way, I lose my engagement with the fight. I loved the first season, and the Counters themselves have a much more real and almost tangible presence, and that, mixed with super powers, is the best thing about this show. In short: I am disappointed about second season, too.

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Agree with you about GongShim. Haven’t seen Uncanny Counter yet, but the word “perverted” that keeps cropping up in subtitles, I don’t exactly know what they really mean because that word is seldom used in English any more except in expressions like “a perversion of justice” or something like that. I suppose a word like perverted only makes sense in a culture that still sticks closely to certain conservative sexual norms, unlike the US.

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Agree with you about Gong-shim.

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LIVE WATCHES
Destined with You
Will offer my labor for any glimpses of Rowoon’s perfectly groomed eyebrows and/or Jo Boa’s twerking. Aside: anyone having trouble not calling this “Destined for You???” No? Probably just me.

Moving
I’m watching this drama at this point despite the violence…and want to know more about why I am doing this. It’s written superbly, clearly, and visually stunning. The relationships seem to hinge on the gore, somehow…

My Lovely Liar
…is a delight. I’m so happy to watch the pretty go by. Others have deep and worthy thoughts about this drama, I do not. I am just floating on a sea of aesthetics.

FROM THE RESERVES
Run On
Started my fourth re-watch for Bong-seok Woo-shik. Stayed, as always and forever, for Ki Seon-gyeom.

My Mister
Completed. Adored. Will post something soon on Fan Wall. My daddy issues remain in full force, not soothed in the slightest. In the slightest.

ON DECK
This is an interesting one. It was going to be My Liberation Notes from the back catalog, but for a variety of reasons relating to my dropping the Butt Show, I don’t think I’ll be watching it for a good, long while at best. In terms of live-watches on deck, then, I think I’m waiting until much father farther into September. Sorry, did you say something about My Mister?

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"Will offer my labor for any glimpses of Rowoon’s perfectly groomed eyebrows and/or Jo Boa’s twerking" ➡️ ditto this 🫡

Love the Freudian 'slip' there! 😉

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Would you believe…that slip was real. I caught it upon editing and realized that I just needed to go with it 😂

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Nope, I say Destined for You all the time. I look forward to your thoughts on My Mister, great drama.

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So glad you loved My Ajusshi (I just can't call it My Mister for some reason that's probably related to translation)! I saw that you had started it at the top of the rant wall and I'm excited to read your thoughts!

Also, I'm liking your way of organizing this post. I've been trying out different things on mine lately but haven't landed anywhere I'm in love with. Might steal this format to try on for next week...

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Happy to call it either title. Frankly, My Mister/Ajusshi was on my radar far before I could read Hangul or understand (so far as I do even now) the importance of the term “Ajusshi” at all. So, that’s why I still think of it in English. (Yes, that’s how long it has taken me to muster the courage to watch this drama).

As for my system for organizing this post, steal away…

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I keep thinking it’s another alternate title for Fated to Love You.

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BUTT TOUCH (Ep. 3-4) Mixing in the classic k-drama plot device, the misguided assumption, Ye-bun teeters between truth and speculation as she slowly turns into the neighborhood amateur snoop. However, she is acting more and more as a naive teen than a professional vet. I mean how many days in a row can you skip work while running a struggling clinic? The writer wants to continue the all-weird stories: Ok-Hui’s boyfriend’s girlfriend reveal; Hyeon-Ok’s throwing herself at Jong-Muk (who knows she is a bad news, spendthrift Succubus). The only growth shown is MacShaman who has toned down his scam behavior to re-connect with his family. But the central theme is secrets and I think Det. jang-Yeol, Sun-Woo and Ui-Hwan have major ones to reveal.

I do like how Han Ji Min is acting as a child-like, naive, no-boundaries character even though the character herself is off-base and annoying at times. I also like that her power’s features are evolving by logic and not writer’s whim.

By the end of episode 4, Ye-bun is torn by secrets too close to home. However, we are also getting too repetitive story lines (the MeTuber, Jong-Muk’s failed love line, and Jan-Yeol sole quest to return to Seoul).

COLD BLOODED INTERN (Ep. 3-4) Ji-won’s management philosophy is to rely on human desperation to get things done her way. Manager Jae-Seob is rightfully worried that Intern Go will turn into an office tiger, but So-Jin gives her an assignment, she learns she has lost her basic skills to do a presentation and survey. It puts her in her place, an uncomfortable place since Choi is relying on her past brilliance to become a supervisor. So-Jin appears to be a clever corporate survivor who will not resign and lose her well-earned benefits. The game of office assassination is uncomfortable to Hae-Ra and the viewers. When Geum’s product test fails, it seems Ji Won will credit Hae-Ra with the victory even though it is her family stress that is making her performance go down.

Hae-Ra has a plan to save Geum and herself, she is too late. It is when her own child problems blow up is when Geum decides to stay at work - - - and Choi is upset that she did not quit. Hae-Ra’s compassion lost her managerial promotion as Choi wanted Geum off her team.

I think the main reason the show is not getting traction is that in the hostile work environment, it is women who are discriminating against other women. It is clear that Ji Won has no intention of giving Hae-ra a full time job or be part of her “dream team.” The show is all about manipulation, control and betrayal . . . hard topics to root for.

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CRICKET - World cup ODI schedule was changed one more time - yes - just 2 months before the event. What a management -
World cup is in India - Sept - Festival season starts - becomes more shinny and loud In Oct-Nov - and we have World cup in these months - Ofocurse matter of security will come and that's why adds more scheduling. Much of the matter is politics and who makes how much - Viewers aka audience and fans are not the their concern.

I have watched only 2015 and 2019 world cup properly and this time am not much enthusiastic.

As for world cup Stokes is back - I want to see Kane - Smith - Root - Kohli - Root bat one more time.

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JAPAN - busy as usual

The Best Teacher - Now the show is far more stable - 6/10 - Your typical high school teacher-student with a bit of drama.

18 and 40 - 6/10 - coasting along on familiar story with no struggle. Fukuhara does look good here.

MARIE - 6/10 such a nice concept - am excited but but but - so much drama - high school drama - silly attempt from writer. This show could have been the drama of late summer but It isn't.

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Japan - same office lady - single - wats to mingle stories - too many from 2020 onwards - pretty low quality stuff but do get viewers.

TURKISH - i dropped all shows - in 2022 summer we got 9 cancelled shows and i was expecting 5-6 this summer too. yes yes yes - Many already god cancelled - I really enjoy Turkish broadcasters - they take decisions - because of this cancel - one big thing is up this upcoming week -

2nd guy aka 2nd hero has won the heart of Heroine - Yes - Suprising even for a turkish drama but Heroine is marrying The hero who wasn't a hero but now is a hero as per trailer - I'm laughing an enjoying this with spicy popcorn - As usual The guy is the nice boy - better compared to hero - Most are happy that heroine chose him - Cancel show worked out so good for the 2nd guy aka the typical nice guy from Big Asian world.

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I talked about Emre Bey - His show this summer was cancelled too. Summer romance dramas - low ratings - means cancelled by 8-10 episodes.

KOREA - Touch You - 6/10 - After a while a kdrama getting 6 - good comedy - that's it. small town - semi-rural area can hv lot of its antics but Korean writers r so thin on story that the need another story or stories to fill the quote of episodes. Well, job is job - Cancel culture would do good here

Pretty girl - 4/10 1 slap n she will in hospital - kdrama writers like to mock every sport - earlier it was badminton n now is boxing. Typical copy-paste drama, more muh life bluh bluh - no creativity no substance, corny scenes - bad direction - too loud music too create emotions - Kyung ho and Lee Sang Yeob remain as young as ever - Idol can get some tips from both.

Parody comedy - 4/10 - This joke of a show is typical hero worship, forced hero sympathy wave, no substance, low quality romance. Romance is d cheap trick korean writers know gonna work - so they put it everywhere - romance is proper filler of kdrama world.

Vote or not - 4/10 - This foolish action u watch by not using any brain cells. Enjoy whatever they serve b/c nothing demands attention.

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2019 wc final was something to be remembered in a lifetime. As for this year, I'm not feeling world cup vibes rn, but I guess I'd watch when it starts.

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Current/recent:
Not Others: Damn, I wish I could unwatch the last 5 minutes. There was so much to like in this show and so much to make me roll my eyes and sigh, and ending on the latter soured the whole thing.
My Lovely Liar: It’s still lovely to look at (except Kim So-hyun’s casual wardrobe, what the heck?) and the plot progress is accelerating, but the pacing feels like it should have been a 12-episode series. The flashback first meeting between the FL and SML while mom does her scammy thing was fun and was the first mom scene I’ve enjoyed.
Moving: If the first two episodes had had the same overload of repetitive, blood-soaked violence as 10 and 11 did, I would have dropped this in a heartbeat. Let’s get back to the kids, and to a less gruesome display of superpowers.
My Dearest: Caught up after starting late. This is fine, I’m viewing it as cardiovascular exercise - because every episode makes my heart pound for 70 straight minutes.
Destined With You: Mildly promising start for the plot and FL. The Red Hand is the star so far - it’s certainly out-acting Rowoon (but also bringing out the best in him).
The Uncanny Counter 2: Ep. 7 was monotonous with a side of cringe. I can’t keep up with current shows and have not finished this week’s episodes. I guess that puts this show bottom of my priority list by default.
My Lovely Boxer: Just started; I’ll be watching closely for the realistic boxing matches LOL. I’m pretty tired of gangster subplots but at least there’s some baseball and Lee Sang-yub’s sad eyes to get me through that. I do want to know what is this mystery injectable drug dramas keep showing that is widely available, can be injected in a flash, and causes instant unconsciousness, because I have some tense meetings coming up next week and it would be great to neutralize some of the more obstreperous attendees right at the start.

Older shows:
Queen Inhyun’s Man: Quick rerun for a group watch. It’s even more fun than the first time now that I know I can FF most of the SML and all of the scenes with the shrill ‘best’ friend. The rest remains a clever, thrilling, and heartfelt delight.

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Totally on the same page about pace with MLL - I actually searched up how many eps it was again because we'd untangled major plot points by ep 8 already so it really felt like this was a 12 ep drama. Interested to see what they'll do to carry out the remaining 8 episodes!!

And YAY you're up to date with My Dearest - will we be seeing you in the recap threads then? Can't remember if you'd already commented in last weeks one considering the sheer number of buzz hahaha (and the amount of times the page failed to load for me because of the buzz).

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Rowoon does do his best work with the hand.

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The Red Hand is the star so far - it’s certainly out-acting Rowoon (but also bringing out the best in him).

I mean, I made gifs of those scenes, so I’ve watched them maybe 20 times each, looking for the best angles. His face acting is just fine. I like that he’s stiffly wooden in the other scenes. It’ll make the eventual reveal of his soft, sensitive, private interiority that much more satisfying.

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As far as Not Others, I wonder if the writer was going for an anti-trope thing.
They all appear to "grow", then regress and end up exactly where they started. There are male leads but the romance is low energy. With Eun Mi and Jin Hong it is mostly her demanding and him complying. With the other pair, I think there was a romance there, but all I remember is "Why make a fuss when you're not even good at it", or something like that.
Jae Won's professional situation was not resolved. I assume Jin Hee quit her job, what exactly will she do when she comes back?
The drama refused to tie any loose ends and I wonder if it was deliberate

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There's really not much tension when the ML just gives the FL whatever she wants, no questions asked, whenever she wants it. It was even more obvious in Trick or Love, a Tdrama I just finished: Both the ML and his best friend spent most of the drama doing whatever their girlfriends asked, pronto. I guess it could be satisfying, some sort of wish fulfillment, but it wasn't gripping drama to say the least. In the end, I was most happy that the besties got to end up related.

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Not Others
I loved the What's a Family theme and everything about that was so well done, including the wedding dilemma, Aunt and firm Jinhong. I had tears in my eyes when they showed the family register of Halmoni with Eunmi's and Jinhee's names on it (Eunmi was soooo lucky to have such a friend and her mom who took Eunmi and Jinhee into their house and adopted them).
And I may stand here alone, but I will defend Eunmi till the end. She is an interesting character... who doesn't stand bsh!ts... and has a good heart and is not afraid to help people in need (and there is a reason why she is liked by her colleagues and the ahjummas at work). True, I wouldn't like her to be my roommate 😅 but... I wouldn't mind living in the same building (and feeling safer there)... and to occasionally go out with her (minus a few bottles of soju 😁 as I still like my livers 🙂).

Liar
I was getting bored during episode 7, but episode 8 was good again. Syaon is still toxic and both moms are terrible... and I want Eunmi (from Not Others) to take Doha under her wing.

I'm keeping The Way You Shine for the next week to watch the angsty episodes together with the happy ones (we better get the happyend, Show!).
Planning to check Boxer and Destined and continue with Lost You Forever. And there is still the question whether to continue with Behind Your Touch .

Movies:
Barbie
I really liked the first half, it was funny and it wasn't afraid to make veiled jabs at patriarchy and woman's position there (that putting Barbie back into the box, with ready wires to tight her there!!), but then... then everything fizzled out, plot included. The actors were great though, especially Ryan Gosling as Ken.

Suzume
I probably had too high expectations, expecting another Miyazaki. But sadly the movie is too focused on the visuals instead of on the story. It's a shame, because the characters are interesting and it can be funny (some scenes with the chair... and the student with his convertible is great!). I don't regret watching the movie (and I'm happy our local cinema screened it), but I wish the doors were more meaningful, like.. some milestones on Heroine's journey of growing up (and coming to terms with Mom and Aunt).

Someday Or One Day
I was curious how they managed to translate the series into a movie with so much less time to have to tell the story. So... they completely abandoned the crime part (and that one character) which I somehow wish I knew in advance and thus had a more relaxing watch. 😅 There is also very little of Mo Junjie. On the other hand, there is more of Quansheng and his story, which was great, and also Yunru has her own story. The movie is not trying to copy the drama, nor it is a prequel or a sequel, it is more a spinoff of the original story, keeping the main theme and twists. I think it can stand alone without the drama (and I wonder how people who...

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...who haven't seen the drama see it). I myself missed the slower rhythm of the drama and the deeper emotional pull. Though maybe now that I know what to expect from the movie and can adjust my expectations, I can enjoy it more the second time. 🙂

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This is very interesting, because one of the aspects of the show which I thought completely unnecessary and forced, and wished the Korean remake would change, was the crime storyline and the subsequent result. I'm now curious.

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If the k-remake manages to take the good from both, the t-drama and the movie, then we have a great drama to come. But... seeing how they butchered In Time With You I'm quite worried.

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I found Barbie so interesting because it was such a fun riot to watch and I loved all the meta-talk and satire etc. but then on reflection a few days later I was struggling to piece the plot together fully because there was a lot going on without there being a solid narrative thread. There was a story but idk, it was here, there, everywhere and then nowhere in the end. Still, that's a style of narrative I suppose and it was undeniably FUN so can't say I had a bad time in the slightest.

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I don't regret watching Barbie, I had fun (and can discuss the movie with people around me, unlike kdramas 😁). But it could have been much better, deeper and compacter.

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The last few episodes of TWYS has been too angsty. I mean, I get it but I don’t want to watch it. Hopefully Xinxing makes peace with this and our couple get together.
Call me a capitalist, but the Yucheng group disqualified him because he failed the review. Why should they be completely blamed for him taking his life? I get it that some empathy and relationship management would have helped but blaming everything on the company seems wrong. Her father should take some responsibility for his own actions too.

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I suspected it would be angsty... and probably unnecessarily angsty. That's why I have not watched it yet. 😌
I need those happy episodes from next week to get through this week's angst. Btw, I'm expecting the wedding of Candy Mom with Uncle Gege!! 😊
Show, don't fail me!!!

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NOT OTHERS @dorotka. I’m with you about Eun-mi who’s a more real character than many perfect saint women in Kdramas. I like her a lot and don’t mind having a friend like her. And the family-themed drama is much more well done than many others. It is on my top list this year. It’s refreshing to have a story about real people than fantasies and serial killer (though there’s one in this too LOL).

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I want to watch Someday or One Day movie too, now that I have finished the drama. According to the plot I have read, I think it totally seems to be a sequel 🤔

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I really like Eun-mi too! Yeah, we definitely cannot live together, but I'd like her as a neighbor and coworker. It was weird and delightful to see a kdrama workplace to see the young coworkers want to hang out with an older colleague and in a positive context - to enjoy each other's company.

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Ongoing/Just Finished Dramas
My Lovely Liar: Sol-hee choosing to believe Do-ha was just perfect. I’m so excited to see more of them. And whenever this drama is ready to start Sha-on’s redemption arc, let me know. Right now she is hard at work digging her hole deeper.

Destined with You: I was hooked on this instantly, tbh. Shin-yu is such a jerk until he isn’t, and I can already see the delightful twisty connections forming between him and Hong-jo. This whole show promises to be epic and fated and dramatic, and what more could I ask for in a drama?

The Uncanny Counter 2: Now that I’m not following the weecaps, I’ve decided to save most of these episodes and watch them all at once when the whole season is out.

The Killing Vote: I keep trying to keep track of which characters I think might not be involved with/actually be Gaetal, but I keep losing track because everyone seems suspicious! We knew that Mu-chan was close with the professor from the first episode when he called him “hyung” but still wasn’t sure if he was a suspect until this week’s episode. I’m ruling almost no one out.

Not Others: Some good, some fine, some annoying, which is what this drama has been the whole time for me. I don’t think I’ll miss it, but I’m glad I watched it.

Older Dramas
Strong Woman Do Bong-soon: I’m trying to savor this because I love it, but also it’s really hard to resist watching even part of an episode if I have a few minutes. I love that Min-hyun is a different kind of chaebol than I’ve ever seen before, and wildly endearing (I promise I’m not always distracted by his eyebrows and jawline) in his weird manic reactions to everything. The way he can switch so quickly between being absolutely flippant and completely sincere is so effective at keeping me (and Bong-soon) off balance, but in the best way. The kidnapping part of it is dark for sure, but for me it’s balanced with much lighter fare the rest of the time, and I like that it raises the stakes for our main trio.

K-action Movie of the Week: Extreme Job This is one of the most successful Korean movies of all time and honestly? I get it. Ryu Seung-ryong is excellent as usual, and the whole thing is just a ton of fun. It’s such a star studded cast that every scene feels like welcoming another friend in on the joke, and the whole premise of the movie was just genius. A bunch of cops working undercover at a fried chicken place that suddenly becomes super successful? Come on, that’s fantastic. I also think it struck a good balance between being about the whole team of undercover cops and about our main guy. There is a really satisfying boss fight in the end (I’m not sure if that was an actual reference to Kingdom or if I just wanted it to be), but you also get to see the whole team in action, and it was a blast.

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I LOVE Extreme Job, it's one of my favorite K-movies - I'm so glad to hear you enjoyed it, too!!! That last free-for-all fight is such fun chaos.

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Extreme Job is a great fun!!
I enjoyed it a lot!

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Minhyun is the best part about SWDBS hands down - I also loved that he was so different to the usual CEO archetype!! He wore his heart on his sleeve, which was so endearing, and was funny, flippant, sincere and smart all at once as you said!!

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He’s also hot. Don’t forget that part. That poor man.

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My partner watched approximately 10 minutes of this show with me and said that he thought Gook-doo was more attractive. I told him I thought it was adorable how ridiculously incorrect he was about that.

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I could actually see that. They are very different “types” of men. PHS, like Im Si-wan, just have this ethereal quality to them. The other guys are actual guys who you might actually fall for in real life. So, it depends on your frame of mind… :)

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Hah! Show him HAPPINESS next and then ask again)))

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I know! I was trying to think what to say about that show that wasn't just about him! I am really enjoying so many of the other characters and circumstances and plot, but also I definitely watch most of his scenes twice hahaha!

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Extreme Job is a good comedy. I've watched it twice and still feel the humor. Are you up to for something heavier? Inside Men is about corruption but oh so good. I've watched it countless time. It's 2015 movie, though.

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It's already on my list! Thanks for the rec!

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Thanks for the reminder about the film EXTREME JOB (2019). One if those films I keep meaning to watch.
Availability for US viewers. Of all places I discovered EXTREME JOB available on Peacock (the NBC OTT streaming service). The only reason I maintain a Peacock subscription is for cycling races like the Tour de France but now I have something else to watch there. I will explore and see if there are any other hidden asian gems there.

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That's where I watched it. Fair warning: the timing of the subs leaves something to be desired.

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Oh, I don’t think I can watch an entire film where the subs are out of syc.
I have found that that can be a problem at times watching drama episodes on iQIYI. My experience is that using the rewind is fine but if I exit an episode unfinished when I return the subs are out of sync so I try not to accidentally exit an episode.

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It wasn't so much out of sync as just really fast. Sometimes they would flash on the screen really briefly, so it can be hard to keep up. It was only really distracting in a couple of places though. Didn't make it unwatchable for me.

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I really like Extreme Job. Its such a fun cop movie.

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Ongoing:
Destined With You: But seriously, what is the probability that this will have a happy ending? Oh well, I'm along for the ride! I like both leads, and I like them together. The ML is grumpy and bitter and a little weird, but who wouldn't be with a handsy curse like that? The FL is quirky and just doing her best, and I find her very relatable so far. She reminds me a bit of Leslie Knope - she's essentially working in a parks and rec department, yes? And now she and the ML both work at City Hall?? And I'm currently trying to decide if the people who usually play villains have been cast as villains here too, or if it's just a red herring. I'M SUSPICIOUS OF EVERYTHING.

(DROPPED) Behind Your Touch: I couldn't get behind the disparate plot elements in this one, and I'm not in the mood for creepy murdery stuff and sudden violence paired with "humor," so I'm waving goodbye in the rear-view mirror 👋 (But the Joohoney OST single is staying on repeat in my daily drive playlist!)

Moving: (through ep 5) So, while I dropped the Behind show because of the elements of violence, I'm still hanging on with Moving by muting, covering the screen, and using FF 😅 Why? Because like the best fantasy fiction, the world feels deep, real, and rich, and the main characters are complex and emotionally vivid. I'm slowing down my watch so I can keep track of Beanie comments and recaps so I know what/where/when to avoid the violence, and to find out who's still alive at the end of each ep. 😬

Older Dramas:
Once Upon A Small Town: I saw Seon-ha recommending this to another Beanie last week, which reminded me I hadn't seen it yet... what a sweet, peaceful, lovely, cozy drama!! It was just EXACTLY the vibe I was looking for. I love it!!! I'm watching it slowly when I have quiet time during lunch breaks at work.

Arang and the Magistrate: (through ep 11) (First off, yes, I know about the ending, but it's OK because I already know, AND the tone is consistent from the start). Wow, I love everything! This feels truly epic. The fantasy feels rich and interesting. Shin Min-ah is sparkling. The ML's love language seems to be arguing, yelling, and denial, but Lee Joon-Gi is dynamic and awesome. The action scenes are impressive and artistic (and so is Lee Joon-Gi!!!), and the instrumental OST is perfect. EVERYTHING IS BEAUTIFUL 😍

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So for Moving, keep your hand glued to the FF button for most of 10 and 11. Just warning you now, so you can be prepped.

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THANK YOU!! I definitely appreciate the heads-up @kafiyah-bello!!

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Glad you're enjoying Once Upon A Small Town! It's very cute and a Joy redemption arc for me post her gig in Tempted/The Great Seducer hahahah

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I've been tempted by Tempted because of Woo Do Hwan, but even for him, I don't think I can slog through that drama based on everything I've heard about it 😮‍💨

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I watched the first to episodes and found the temptation of Woo Do-hwan thouroghly satiated and enough to leave the rest of the show in peace.
He is awfully tempting, the rest is not.

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I've seen the show at least five times now, it's got a hold on me in the 'absolutely trash but I can't stop watching' category. Honestly the trio of Woo Dohwan, Kim Minjae and Moon Gayoung are defs the saving grace.

WDH needs to come out with a solid melo romance or rom-com ASAP to save me from the limbo of Tempted.

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😂 That's really funny! And I would LOVE for him to do a real romance drama!!

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SQUEEEEEE Once upon a Small Town SQUEEEEEEE

Peaches and animals and gossiping and childhood connections and and and….sigh.

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It's so sweet and peaceful... I literally feel my blood pressure dropping when I watch it. And can an OST be called cute? Because this one is, and the instrumentals have been a welcome backdrop to my work week 😊

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I know that it's sort of a weird thing to say, but I loved how little drama was in this drama! The people communicate with each other! I don't know how far along you are, so I won't say much, but one of the scenes that I remember most from that drama was just a conversation between the ML and his ex-girlfriend. It was so perfect!

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Funny that you've got such an impression of AATM, because I always felt like ML there got over his denial phase uncharacteristically fast for a sageuk hero. Granted it's been a while since my latest rewatch so I can't recall rn in which episode exactly he ups his courting game, but trust me, he will and HOW!

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Ohh I am looking forward to that!!! I think he's just hit the tipping point to being all-in with Arang, so I'm VERY excited for what comes next. This is just my second Lee Joon-Gi drama (Lawless Lawyer was my first with him), and he is SOOOOO cool and absolutely riveting anytime he's on-screen. So. Cool.

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Oh, you're in for a ride, this is a wild epic story full of crazy determinator characters)))

LJG is super cool indeed and his commanding onscreen presence is one of the things I love about him the most. Dude's a force of nature when he acts! Do you need a recommendation of what to watch next? Some of his shows were, unfortunately, way below his talent, but other are certified classics that I'm personally never ashamed to promote at any given opportunity because they are THAT good.

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@gikata Yes more Lee Joon-Gi recs please!!!! 😁 He's so good, and so riveting, I'm willing to watch shows that don't live up to his talent - I just want to watch him more. (*but hopefully recs for dramas that don't end in tragedy!*😅)

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Flower of Evil!
Is it a perfect drama? No! But he's very cool in it kkkk. And it was fun.
Moon Lovers if you ever do want to use a handkerchief, or a dozen.

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Ouch, that's a tricky criteria because his most famous works ARE tragic as hell, even though he's not as prone to dying on viewers as often as some other k-actors. I'm talking about THE KING AND THE CLOWN movie (100% BL tragedy), ILJIMAE (open-ish downer ending), MOON LOVERS SCARLET HEART RYO (time-travel tragedy) and FLOWER OF EVIL dramas (HE tho some were still unsatisfied with tropey resolution). All are great watch anyway, but since that's not your thing, you can only do FOE thenbut know you're gonna miss out epic things, his performances in TKATC and MLSHR are LEGENDARY.

Also absolutely recommend TWO WEEKS, this might be my all-time favorite show of his along with AATM. JOSEON GUNMAN is pretty good too, even if not as wow as those above. TIME BETWEEN DOG AND WOLF is another interesting thing - it's his first main lead drama role so he was still greenish there and had it very hard thanks to complicated plot, but if riveting is what you're seeking for, that has it in spades. Plot is uhm and rarely makes any sense, but EMOTIONS and action go hard. MY GIRL if you're into second male lead syndrome and oldie romcoms - he's a flirty baby with wild anime hair there, it's so cute and funny... until it's not, but when kdramas ever treated their romantic thirdwheels with any respect? Just drop it when it turns all tears and melo and you're good.

Do NOT recommend: CRIMINAL MINDS remake, AGAIN MY LIFE and SCHOLAR WHO WALKS THE NIGHT (it's a "so bad it's good" campy drama for many, but I feel like even he was underwhelmed by it and that's a no-no + I personally believe it's a sugarcoated bad ending and hate to admit that I disliked drama enough to not even feel hurt by the fact). And that Chinese movie of his, forgot all its many titles because I LOATHED it even regardless of tearjerker ending.

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I LOVE Two Weeks, I also liked Flower of Evil a lot too.

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@gikata and @midnight Thank you for the Lee Joon-Gi recs!!!! I've heard good things about Flower of Evil, but my threshold for dark is quite low... but I did watch and enjoy Psychopath Diary (but it was also a tough and uncomfortable watch for me). I'm going to give it another look. And I haven't heard much about Two Weeks, so I'm going to look into that, too! Oh how I wish he could just do a cool Sword Snow Stride style wuxia drama!!

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I still think my favorite performance of his was in the film The King and the Clown although it was one of his very first. It's an absolutely beautiful movie that showcases his amazing physical skills. He's also fun in Time Between Dog and Wolf, although the plot of that one gets messy in the second half.

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TWO WEEKS is terribly underrated both here on DB and in general, to this day I cannot comprehend why. It's gripping, crazily fast-paced, heartwarming (prepare for TEARS) and actually has a message I for once can get behind instead of rolling my eyes at. It can get pretty violent though, just as TBDAW and many other of his action shows - bloody fights are just the trademark there. You'll get used to it eventually, not that heavy of a price for solid action show. @midnight is 100% right - he's a god of wires, hardly anyone else in k-ent does this as elegantly as him.

Regarding wuxia - ILJIMAE, for all its camp and superhero flick affectionate parody meta, is pretty much Korean take on the genre. Oldie again, but VERY fun. When it's not soul-ripping angsty ofc...

P.S. You really need to muster up all your courage and watch THE KING AND THE CLOWN - he does circus acrobatics there himself too, it's just an unforgettable piece of cinema despite its very heavy nature. And he's out of this world gorgeous there, MILLIONS of SK men had to seriously reconsider their preferences after seeing him in that movie)))

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If this is only your second time watching him I feel the urge to mention that he is a skilled martial arts practitioner and never uses a stunt double. Or maybe you already knew that, but you understand that we have to show our pride!

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Thank you for mentioning that!!! I had thought I'd heard that somewhere, but wasn't sure if it were true or not. I absolutely LOVE that!!! He's not just good, he's artistic - every time there's an action scene, I'm 100% ENTHRALLED. He makes every movement beautiful. And I usually find wire-work kind of corny, but in Arang and the Magistrate it's just beautifully done. Suffice to say I'm now a huge fan!!!

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Arang and the Magistrate is one of the few k-dramas I've watched twice. I watched it when I was new to k-drama and then a few years later when I understood the history and culture better and also read an article (maybe here) on things I totally didn't understand. I don't think I fully appreciated that there was no royalty/fight for the crown stuff as well. Also, I love the ending.

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I can already tell that this is going to be going on my "watch again" list!!! It's SO COOL.

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Arang is up next for me, but now am filled with foreboding based on your first words. I’ll try it anyway and hope “epic” makes it worth it, whatever it is.

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What I can say so far, it's that it's truly worth it - just so well done in every regard. And I read about the ending a while back, and from what I remember - and I'm going to be vague here, but also maybe this is slightly spoilery - it's not going to be as bad as the end of HeartBeat, and end on a note that's more hopeful. I hope you enjoy it when you start it!!!!!

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AATM's ending is perfect both emotionally and logically - I know that some people had a problem with it anyway due to wanting a different solution/generally hating the tropes used, but there was really NO other way to get there without ruining whole drama's lore. Comparison with HEARTBEAT's nonsense of finale is a huge disservice to AATM, I strongly disagree with that)))

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Thanks for the clarification, @gikata! I was looking for a comparison for the outcome and couldn't think of something else similar (and recent), but I'm in agreement that (at 50% through) the internal logic of AATM has been seamless, and I'm relieved to hear that that's reflected in how the ending "feels" and in its plot logic.

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Uncanny Counter S2: 3.5 bean⌚ Almost a ⏱ -- that's "stop watch" -- almost the same as 💧 or 🩸.

Lovely Boxer: 5.0 Almost dropped it when they pulled the tired old "guy has to do bad things because his kid is sick" garbage. Has promise if they can avoid ruts like that from now on.

My Lovely Liar: 8.5 So many "Lovely" titles this week.

Behind Your Touch: 7.5 Should we re-title this one "Lovely Groper"? "My Lovely Pervert"?

Moving: 9.0 This week gave credibility to the outcome of his fight with Frank.

My Dearest: 8.0

Not Others: 6.5

Killing Vote: 6.0

Destined With You: 8.5 Jo Bo-a is nailing it and seems to be having a lot of fun.

Mask Girl: 💧🩸 Go Hyun-jung knocked my socks off years ago in shows like Sandglass, Great Queen Seondeok, Queen's Classroom... Y'all have watched those, right? In Classroom she could emote more with just an expressionless face than most actresses can emote, period. She's must-start (next best thing to must-watch) but if she really wants me to finish her shows she needs to go back to picking projects that I won't drop despite her presence. This time I set a personal record by dropping before she even showed up. :(

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Yes, Ms Go needs to pick shows that matches her talents.

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"Reflection of you" was great drama of hers.

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So many "Lovely" titles this week.

Behind Your Touch: 7.5 Should we re-title this one "Lovely Groper"? "My Lovely Pervert"?

LOL! 😂

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She was barely in Mask Girl if it makes you feel better for dropping it, lol.

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Lovely Boxer 1.5 rounds for me . Baseball hyung, the eye rolling Medical Debt Dilemma. Yer out of here !

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Current:

My Dearest: 💕 😭 🗡️ 🌸 🥰 😱 🩸😍 🎵 🌈 🔥 🏃‍♂️ 🤗 💕. That about sums it up. Not to devalue the other shows in any way, because I love them all in their own right genuinely, but this show has claimed such a large portion of my heart and brain that I’ve basically divided my schedule into ’My Dearest’ and Shows I Watch While Waiting for My Dearest’

My Lovely Liar: Central conflict has been dealt with in the best way possible imo. Main couple continues to deliver the sweetness and I’m happily cruising along on the SS DoSol .

Moving: Jo In-sung and Han Hyo-joo appear on screen ➡️ I make heart eyes. The end. Okay no, for real, I LOVE this show!! It’s got a bit of everything and I don’t want it to end!

Destined With You: Week 1 delivered, cautiously optimistic for week 2. I love Bo-ah and Rowoon, maybe not all of their dramas, but I like them so I’ll continue along come rain, hail or Truck of Plot Doom.

Peaktime: I’ve been OBSESSED with VANNER’s new album so I’m backtracking and watching Peaktime now to see their journey in the show!!

Finished/About to Start:

Juror 8 : finished Would You Like a Cup Of Coffee a bit before(it was fantastic!!) so mum and I have started watching K-movies. Found this one while traversing MDL and it was a delight! Funny and heartwarming in all the right ratios, with a great message at the end. Can’t go wrong with Park Hyung-sik. Next on our movie list is Samjin Company English Class or A Melody to Remember depending on which I can find first.

Trying really hard to move plans to see The Night Owl at the ‘Korean Film Festival in Australia’ event happening in a few weeks, but the line up for all four days are quite solid so I’ll definitely be seeing at least one other movie or possibly two: Someone You Loved and/or Nothing Serious. I’ve only been to a film festival ONCE - a French one a few years back - so I’m excited to not only see the movie/s but also for the experience of attending a film festival.

Also going to start Princess and The Werewolf this week, was going to watch last week but ended up having a bit of ‘life’ stuff on and not having enough time between other shows. Looking forward to starting though!

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I also really liked VANNER's new release, especially "Want U Back"!!!

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YAY another fan! And me too!! I watched the Performer MV on repeat one too many times and then ran to the full album - Want U Back is defs my favourite now (and I think this is the track that's written/composed by Hyungwon from Monsta X). Hoping the boys go up from here, I'd read a bit about the struggles they had to go through to try support an idol career as a former nugu group.

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And another fan here! I watched Peak Time as it was airing and rooted for Vanner to win early on; not only are they really talented and their music sound is good, but they had that good natured, humble "part-timer idol" story from the beginning...

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Yay another fan!! I'm very late to Peaktime but it makes it better watching knowing they'll win!

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Glad to hear you liked Juror 8! I recently found out about it too and added it to my list to help with the inevitable PHS withdrawals after I finish Strong Woman DBS.

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It'll be a good one for that, he's got puppy eyes throughout the whole thing!!

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Enjoy the film festival !

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Thank you! Hopefully I will :D

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Not Others (Series review) - Mood progression: C- / C+ / C- / C- / C- / C-
While I appreciate the writing of the complicated relationship between mom and daughter, I also lament about the potential the show lost with the dad and the stalker arcs, which kept it safely in mediocrity. I would’ve loved to see more meat for the police and clinic characters (what would I have given for more halmeoni trio). And Park Sung Hoon was so wasted.

My Lovely Liar (Episode 7-8) - Mood: D+
Yeah, I’m not buying the nice 2ML bait they threw out this week: I’m pretty sure Kang Min will become over-protective as he learns about Do Ha being a murder suspect. Maybe they might surprise me and Kang Min becomes the 2nd person to trust Do Ha unconditionally despite being a love rival: oh that would be quite nice! But yeah, the writing doesn’t inspire me at all.

Destined With You (Episode 1-2) - Mood: D+
So I’m thinking more about how beautiful the male lead is rather than relating to his character, and I can’t tell whether it’s a writing issue or a directing issue or an acting issue. Both 2nd leads don’t appear to have anything to do but be obstacles: it just screams trouble on the plot end. Supporting characters are a mess as well. And we already know they’re fated lovers…

The Killing Vote (Episode 3) - Mood: C-
There was some interesting writing this episode for the pair of sisters that makes me shake my head in disappointment, but I think I was more upset at the way they retconned last week’s cliffhanger and somehow got Moo Chan out of there without even a single scratch. The characterisation is also pretty lacklustre with all the opportunists, snakes and nosy plot devices.

Moving (Episode 10-11) - Mood: C-
Just like last week, the backstory’s cute and all but I’m getting bored without the kids around and it’s not very fun to realise that there’s still one more set of parents to cycle through before we return to the present timeline. The saying “The whole is greater than the sum of all its parts.” very much applies here: the lack of continuity from one week to another is significant.

The Uncanny Counter 2 (Episode 7-8) - Mood: D-
Using noble idiocy to foreshadow the cliffhanger: that’s one example of how not to raise the stakes in your story. I know the Do Hwi and Jae Youl arcs were just devices to get the plot moving, but I wish the narrative revolved around procedurals like them instead of evil spirits. They presented good motivational conflicts for the counters as relics from their pre-counter life.

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Didn't even think of that possibility with MLL but totally agree that it would be wonderful if they did subvert the usual plotline here in that way!!

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I also think Kang-min will turn into Do-sik Sunbae 2.0 - determined to protect the FL from the ML even though the FL doesn't need or want protection 🙄.

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Yup. I thought the same. He might even end up investigating ML. OTH I’d be interested in seeing how well the actor does outside of the sad puppy role.

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Destined With You is objectively not very good, but it's not the worst. And it surprised me, made me laugh (even if unintentionally) and the Beanies are a riot. So, onwards for now.

My Dearest Ah, what a great drama. That's all. Moving is too. Unfortunately, I ffw'd most of Ep 10/11 because of the violence. It was an interesting choice to nestle such a tender character and sweet love story amid that. My Lovely Liar just low key chugs along for me.

C-dramas: Thank you @mayhemf for the Fake It Till You Make It recco. Because, wowza! I have not seen such crackling adult chemistry in a long while! The work situations tho are beginning to feel a little problematic, or is it meant to be a reality check? Will wait and see.

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Bumping Fake It Till You Make It up my 'to-be-tried' list 👀

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Just a word of warning. The office/city life scenes are hard-hitting. I ffw’d some of it. But the relationship is fire.

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Thanks for the heads-up! I'll probably FF that stuff too.

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Oh, can you say you dropped a drama after watching it for less than five minutes? I first dropped My Lovely Boxer after it opened with the most unbelievable match. I thought of picking it up after reading the gushing recaps, but after following the sorry tale of the Spanish footballers, it's going to stay dropped. Enough with the "romantic" stories of middle-aged men and the young female athletes under them.

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The work situation is just too real that I can’t watch more than an episode. I have heard about how competitive and cut throat things are in China and this show just highlights it. The loneliness in big city is captured so well that it hurts.
I need to make a few gifs on foot flirting. The way that pantry scene was done in Ep 3 made me appreciate this director so much.

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Do you mean where they were making tea? I was just thinking of c-dramas’ penchant for using boiling water as a metaphor. 😀

If this was a kdrama, half the Beanies would have melted from the romance (fan wall fire!), the other half from the brutality that can be modern corporate life. But the awful context works so well to explain their relationship.

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Live watches

My lovely liar
I am enjoying this drama’s exploration of lying, intentionality and friendship. It makes me question whether I would maintain a friendship with someone I knew had killed someone whatever the explanation and would my prior relationship with them influence my decision. Would the context make the difference e.g. anyone who has been in the forces is a trained killer but every day civilians are killed when something goes wrong.

The date of marriage J drama
It is the age old tale of unnecessary confusion being experienced just because the leads won’t admit how they each feel about the other.

Cold blooded intern
I can hear the song ‘All by myself’, playing in the background but I am sticking with this one as it is not as toxic as it first appeared. I think this is a drama employing a trojan horse approach in the storytelling. In order to have a work place drama exposing the inequalities for women and the wider implications already being seen in the falling birth rate they have hidden it in plain sight. We are seeing more of the two women’s backstories which have led to the significant attitude changes to survival in the work place. The marriage is proving to be quite sweet and work place love lines are beginning to show up amongst the other team members.

Cinderellas of midsummer - J drama
Only 3 weeks to go for those of you holding out, and then you will be binge watching all ten episodes. Looking forward to hearing your reviews when you have seen it.

My happy marriage - Japanese anime
Still enjoying but the focus on the dark elements is increasing.

Older dramas

Plus nine boys
I am on the last couple of episodes of this one. Sad that K drama attitudes to divorced parents have not moved on since this was made in 2014. I have really enjoyed the fun and the romance whilst getting to know this family.

Dinner mate
On hold as Plus nine boys stole my watch time this week

Is love sustainable? - Japanese
Enjoying this look at relationships at different stages of life.

Webtoon corner
Death I couldn’t hold out and bought some tokens to get the bulk of this one read. It is very violent so it is unlikely I will be able to take the live action version but it is an interesting idea with some dark humour.

Secret Playlist
Two university students get to know each other as they work on a project together; one is an up and coming YouTube singer who hides her identity, the other is a member of an Idol group launching his first solo album who wants to collaborate with the mystery YouTuber.

Book corner
The phone box at the edge of the world by Laura Imai Messina (She is an Italian author living in Japan and married to a Japanese man)
The story follows the healing process of a woman who loses her mother and daughter in the Tsunami that took place in Japan in 2011. It is a very powerful story that balances the horror of the event, with the ordinariness of the daily efforts of the survivors to...

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keep living.

Greek lessons by Han Kang
The story of a man who is losing his sight and a woman who has stopped talking meet in a Greek language class he is teaching having returned to Korea. Key themes mother tongue, the role of motherhood and coping with loss.

What you are looking for is in the Library by Michiko Aoyama
The intertwined lives of local residents who find themselves after a visit to the community library at a key turning points in each of their lives. Identity and its relationship to employment.

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The way you’ve spun MLL has me seeing greater connections between that drama and episodes 10-11 of Moving where our “couple of the week” is also figuring out how to connect with someone else who has not only done terrible things, but was made to do those things by extrinsic circumstances. What’s the line between what we have done and what we do now?

And, perhaps more importantly, what’s the line between what we do and who we are???

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"And, perhaps more importantly, what’s the line between what we do and who we are???" ➡️ wow you guys are really bringing the existential questions forward and I LOVE IT! I had a similar-ish thought bubble pop up recently because of something that happened with a friend. They did something (that wasn't a crime) that I usually and totally disagree with vehemently on a moral basis. However, when it was someone pretty close to me who was doing it & claiming they had a lot of valid reasons to do so etc. it suddenly became much harder to be as absolute and rigid I'd been about the issue in the past. I still think it was the wrong thing to do but it's interesting how things like proximity and context can sometimes throw spanners into how you perceive and judge things, no matter how concrete you say your moral standings are. I guess SH went through a version of that when she was desperately wanting DH to lie to her or find a way to be with him regardless of what she (thought) she found out.

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Correction Webtoon is called Death’s game.

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I started DATE OF MARRIAGE and have meant to get back to it but life and too many other dramas intervened. I think that you have actually figured out what makes this drama different from other 'contract relationship' dramas: The existence of the marriage date. The ML has figured out how to deal with the fact that these two are having such a hard time expressing their feelings because even with their relative clumsiness they are going to end up married anyway. He has set a trap where they both get caught. It is possible that the FL could find someone else before that date but frankly it is unlikely.

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It’s the short one episode a week drop that makes it easier to put on the back burner as it can be left to build up without becoming overwhelming.

It’s a good point that he could easily become complacent because she already knows his intention, but currently she thinks she is a hinderance to him finding a woman that he truly loves. She does not have the sense of peace he wanted to give her in her time of distress.

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@reply1988 I want you to know that I’ve been singing “All by Myself” in my head today non-stop. Non…stop :)

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🫢 sorry as it turns out it was an unnecessary plant as I have now realised that there is another Beanie sailing the ship with me and better yet it’s the esteemed @welh640 😊

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