Beanie level: Chaebol’s poor doppelganger

Please enjoy this pic of Choi Ban-seok in checked trousers (and bonus apron) while waiting for episodes 11-12 of On the Verge of Insanity.

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Jo Bok-rae gets to the hearts of the matter.

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    I’m fascinated at another Beanie’s comment about the sexual appeal of the CEO he plays….which is quite true. But the best is (as observed by yet another Beanie) at how he’s able to project his character well beyond the limited lines he has. It shows the preparation of a diligent actor who chews the script so well long before a camera starts rolling on him.

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      I think it also helps that this show is so well written and directed. I don’t think brilliant actors like Jo Bok-rae, Kim Nam-hee and Cha Chung-hwa would shine so brilliantly in a poor or mediocre show.

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On the Verge of Insanity e9: this guy doesn’t care about any damn CEO, he’s just glad to get out of the green spandex.

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    I only discovered Kim Nam-Hee in Sweet Home whose serious and straight face role there is so impressive. He’s simply a delight in OTVOI. Will watch Ep 9-10 in one go tomorrow.

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On the Verge of Insanity ep9: If you think it’s just his shirts, you’ve underestimated Choi Ban-seok’s love of checks.

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    I’ve finally binged all 8 episodes over the weekend. Time well spent on a drama as real as you can get about workplace and corporate intrigue. MSR and JJY in top form as the leads but I’m so happy to see my favorite ajusshi veterans all there. Perhaps the biggest pleasant surprise is seeing the dr-docu young brother in Navillera playing the CEO here. Can’t wait to watch Ep 9 and 10.

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      I didn’t watch Navillera so this is the first time I’ve seen Jo Bok-rae, but damn he has made an impression on me even though his role is such a small one. And he is just one of this show’s many performers who are not well-known but really good in their roles, like the lecherous motor team leader, Ms Jung (the researcher who twisted the motor team leader’s arm) and Eo Hae-mi.

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        Ms Jung! I’m surprised to see her playing an affirmative worker here because she mostly plays the annoying second female lead in weekend dramas LOL. I had to look twice to confirm if it’s really her but she totally sinks in this character without a trace of her 2FL look. And I love Eo Hae-mi and hope she will be further empowered as the drama moves forward. Engineering is still by and large a male-centric industry, not to mention it’s in Korea, but we have interesting female characters here.

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          Yes I like the show’s depiction of women in Hanmyeong. It’s realistic that there are very few in R&D and more in the non-engineering departments like HR and Finance. It’s also pretty telling that Han Se-gwon’s team has no prominent female member, whereas Noh Byung-gook’s team has the very assertive Ms Jung. And even on the non-engineering side, Ja-young is the only female team leader, usually surrounded by men who have no qualms about intimidating her when they think she deserves it.

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          I’ve just looked up Ms Jung on Asianwiki, and realise I’ve seen her in the legal drama A New Leaf, where she plays – very convincingly – a woman who is falsely accused of killing her ex-boyfriend who had raped her. Gotta agree with you that she is totally different in Verge.

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On the Verge of Insanity ep7: looks like the lip balm moment was Jung Jae-young’s ad-lib. Poor Moon So-ri could barely keep a straight face.

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On the Verge of Insanity ep7: I love you, Choi Ban-seok.

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    Between this and his new shirt & lip balm moment, he made me laugh so much in this episode

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    I’m really mad that it’s not available in Viki in my region. Still debating if going to undesirable sites. I watched the whole of Undercover on those sites and realized I’m now Netflix-spoilt.

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    I started last night with episode one which leaves 7 to catch up.
    This is a drama for adults and I loved the outdoor lunch break scene in episode one of the four 50 something employees (all wonderful character actors) together looking at the young employees reminiscing that years ago ‘they’ owned the place.

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      That was my favourite scene in ep1! Btw I think the Ahn Nae-sang character is meant to be in his mid to late 50s, i.e. close to retirement, while the other three are supposed to be in their mid 40s. Though I gotta say Jung Jae-young looks every bit his actual age (51 I think) in the first few eps.

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@chungkingpineapples I love how Choi Ban-seok thought for a split second that he could just crouch in the middle of the front row.

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    LOL. This made my day!! He’s like “Let me be pose right next to the President…wait…on second thought…bad idea…I’ll hide in the back….run!” Ha!
    Thanks so much for sharing this, so glad someone made a gif out of this moment!

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On the Verge of Insanity ep5: I was starting to worry that Choi Ban-seok was a male Candy whose main purpose was to teach cold-hearted HR team leader Dang Ja-young a thing or two. But I should have had more faith in the writer who gave us so many interesting female characters in Witch’s Court. In some ways, Ja-young’s predicament is more realistic and complex than Ban-seok’s. Her job is to reduce the Changin permanent staff by 50%. She comes up with a perfectly reasonable proposal for that purpose. (In fact, I love how she made use of existing circumstances such as the promotion test and Han Se-gwon’s contempt for his fellow developers.) Hanmyeong’s president is all for it. Yet all she gets for her pains are a gang of furious men staring her down and the old paper slap. To be fair, the R&D department has every right to be angry. But why should she be humiliated before so many people just for doing her job? Men like Han Se-gwon and the lecherous ex-team leader have got away with so much more.

Moon So-ri really comes into her own in this episode, and so does the direction, sound and editing. In the final scene, you can feel the defiance, the suppressed panic and the way she is just barely holding herself together. You can even see how she has built up her defences over the years, precisely to deal with situations like these. I was going to focus on all the uplifting stuff in this episode – the joy of work when things go right, the pleasures of cooperation, the euphoria of coming up with good ideas and doing a good job. But it’s the downbeat ending that has stayed with me, and made me look at the rest of the episode in a different light.

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On the Verge of Insanity: no romance but lots of chemistry.

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On the Verge of Insanity ep5: Choi Ban-seok’s milkshake brings all the engineers to the yard.

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    “Choi Ban-seok’s milkshake brings all the engineers to the yard.”

    This is THE perfect caption. LOL! (Ban-seok makes being an engineer look badass!)

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It’s On the Verge of Insanity’s turn to get the Friends treatment.

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The sexual harassment incident was just one of several issues touched upon by ep3 of On the Verge of Insanity, but I thought the show did a very good job of showing the following:

1. It can happen to anyone, even a strong, fierce woman who “could have been a union leader”.

2. Well-meaning people who are ostensibly on your side might still fail to support you. Dang Ja-young, though sympathetic “as a woman”, is not sympathetic enough to question Team Leader Kang’s indispensability. More disturbingly, it had been at her own team leader’s behest that Seong-eun didn’t report Kang earlier. I really like the scene with Seong-eun, Ban-seok and Team Leader Noh, in which Ban-seok realises that Noh has known about Kang harassing Seong-eun all this time but advised her to keep quiet about it. Seong-eun is too upset to notice that Noh is more anxious about his cordless vacuum cleaner than about her, but Ban-seok knows, and seems torn between concern and shame for his hyung.

3. The harassment can take obvious forms (though even then the perpetrator might still claim that he was just trying to be friendly or something). But even in less obvious forms, like Kang’s ogling and dodgy comments, it is just wrong, and should be taken seriously.

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On the Verge of Insanity ep3: Jung Jae-young is NOT happy with HR’s way of dealing with sexual harassment.

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Jung Jae-young and Moon So-ri being rather adorable while promoting MBC’s On the Verge of Insanity.

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More proof of Ahn Nae-sang’s ubiquity.

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Sung Dong-il can’t resist baby Yeo Jin-goo either.

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Daebak Realty aka Sell Your Haunted House: I know the case-of-the-week format is not universally loved and in some cases might hold up the central story arc, but I must say I really like all Daebak’s cases so far. Not only are they really well written, they also diffuse the angst, and show Ji-ah at her fiercest and best – i.e. working hard instead of just moping. Ep9’s case, in particular, makes many interesting points about how women are viewed by men as well as by other women.

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    Gosh, she is such a stitch. I believe I promised to do something like eat a hat, or jump out of my skin with joy, if she won. So … I’ll be off doing that for a while 🎉🎉🎉

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    This was awesome! She’s hilarious!

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I\’ve forgiven Oh Master many things, but I can\’t forgive the writer for putting Joo-in through the romantic wringer not once but TWICE in two consecutive episodes, as if he thinks her sole function is to Stand By Her Man even when her man is emotionally abusing her. She is a brilliant top star who loves her profession, ffs. If he really loves her, Bi-soo should stop ping-ponging between nastiness and stupid “dates”, and just finish the damn scripts. The only good thing about ep10 is that Yoo-jin actually tries to make things better instead of taking advantage of the situation.

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I have trouble with these finger-heart things as well.

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