[throwback] i need romance 2011

since February is the love month, i chose I Need Romance 2011 as my throwback drama of the month. i remember when this show came out i thought it was a good step forward from the usual Korean dramas that focused on the cute and PG 13 romance. Instead, the conversations about sex and relationships were frank and straightforward, with lots of sexy scenes (still PG 15 but more skin and kissing) and the stories were more relatable and close to reality.

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Drama: I Need Romance (로맨스가 필요해)
Network: tvN
Episodes: 16
Release Date: June 13 – August 2, 2011
Runtime: Mondays & Tuesdays 23:00

Plot
“I Need Romance” depicts the love lives of three 33-year-old single women.

Cast
Jo Yeo-jeong – Sunwoo In-young
Kim Jeong-hoon – Kim Sung-soo
Choi Yeo-jin – Park Seo-yeon
Choi Song-hyun – Kang Hyun-joo
Choi Jin-hyuk – Bae Sung-hyun

My thoughts of the drama:

First off, i love the the 3 best friends! i love that they hang out regularly, have awesome fashion style, can talk about career, sex, relationships frankly, have different boy experiences and support each other.

The main girl is In Young, who is bubbly and charming and in a 10 year relationship with Sung soo. The main conflict is that she caughts him cheating for the 2nd time and breaks up with him. Well, not really break up, but more like fight, get back, fight, break up, friends, get back, friends, fight.. well you get the picture. then In young gets into a relationship with her younger colleague, who turns out to the almost perfect – rich, handsome, sexy, sweet. I’ve read a lot of comments saying that they didn’t like the ending because In Young ended up with Sung soo instead of Sung Hyun, who was way better. Well, if this was the usual Korean drama, i would say, yes, she should have ended up with Sung hyun. But think about it.. in reality, most likely an average person would end up with Sung soo. it’s not about the cheating, but it’s more on the relationship itself. Let’s face it. People make mistakes. Couples make mistakes. and don’t be naive, i’m sure if you ask any long-standing couple, they will tell you that at one or two points in their relationship, one has cheated or has thought of cheating. Again i’m not condoning or accepting cheating. what’s interesting to me is how In Young and Sung soo worked out and decided to commit themselves fully to the relationship. Of course, not all relationships will get a second chance. there are some that will break because they’re are not meant to be or it’s not the right person or relationship for them. I thought Sung soo and In young, even though Sung soo is quite boring, actually works well together. They’ve known each other for a long time, they support each other even when they were broken. I thought the whole Sung Hyun thing was a distraction from the story, but also a good tool for In young and Sung soo to really examine their relationship, realize how much they really mean to each other and revive their fading romance. As for sung Hyun, i know he did do a lot of things for In young but he was asking her to move to the US, change her name and everything to fit in his life. and that made In Young reject his proposal. she is right, she should love herself more than the guy and maybe as one of the girls said, she loved him just until  there, not enough to move and heaven for him. Which is not bad, love isn’t always equal or the same in every relationship and with every girl/guy you meet. Likewise, for Sung Hyun, he realized that he also can not sacrifice some things – which also meant that he loved her almost that much too. So i would say, they did love each other even in that short time, but that was it. and always remember, just  because the girl or the guy is pretty/handsome/rich/successful etc does not automatically mean you should choose him/her. There should be a balance of friendship, commitment and compatibility too. Without these, the physical things will just fall apart and the relationship will not last.

As for Hyun ju, i feel bad for her with the ex. but knowing that her story is a virgin lady with not a lot of relationship experiences, i wished they gave her more guys to meet in the show. She ended up only have 1 guy and the conflict was more on how she can accept him, since he wasn’t rich, successful, educated like her. i still liked this couple despite their differences – in fact Hyun ju said to the girls, relationship and love is when you make an effort to learn and be interested in your partner’s interests. and i think that’s true. you dont have to love you guy or girl’s favorite show or book or music, but at least be interested enough to learn more about it, let him/her do it and embrace your differences. it makes your relationship better since both of you grow and learn new things about each other.

My favorite among the girls has to be Seo yeon. i love that she is quite cool in her relationships. she always gives out the best love advice and relationship tips. Of course, she also has bad personality when it comes to relationshps – she gets involved in married men and dates two guys at the same time and ends up hurting the other party. this is the main point that i hoped she learns to fix. between Alex and Joon, i actually rooted for Seo Yeon to be with Joon. Alex is too tame and too down to earth to handle the sexy and charming Seo Yeon. Meanwhile, i was disappointed that Joon and Seo Yeon did not end up together .In fact, if i was the 4th friend, i will kick Seo yeon for ruining her relationship with Joon. Joon is able to handle her moods, her abrasive behavior, accepts her for who she is, even when work gets in the way most of the time. I felt sad for Joon – seems like when Seo Yeon forgot they had a movie date, Joon looked really sad, and probably he realized that Seo Yeon is really like that, and will never settle down. I just hoped that they can still be friends. when Seo yeon tried calling Joon he ignored her and she smiled. i dont know what that meant but im imagining that they will end up together.

Overall, i liked the drama. there were some parts that felt like the story is going around in circles, esp with Sung soo and In Young’s “are they or aren’t they” but ultimately i enjoyed seeing them in a better relationship.

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Hwayugi eps. 6-8

Of i can name the pairing of Ogong and Seon mi, i would name them the Wishy washy couple. Im getting confused with their feelings.When one goes in, the other moves out.this happened in the 3 episodes.they both can’t admit that they like each other and i understand why but it’s getting a bit frustrating when every other scene is of them brooding.

The addition of a new guy didnt really help as he didnt have enough charisma and power to tore the wishy washy couple apart. Seonmi remembers Jonayhan but she didnt really like him she is just happy to hear a human actually likes her. I’m not sure where the storyline will go..is this jist a tool to force yhem to admit their feelings for each other or if it’s just a funny way to refetence okja.

Likewise i also didnt see the point of Devil king drinking Samjang’s blood. Im thinking it is just a great cliffhanger for the previous episode because they were able to fix it in the next one by Devil king drinking an antidote to neutralize her blood.

Im getting more curious with Zombie girl’s story. Turns out she was accidentally ran over by the politician i thought she did something bad has having an affair. Nonetheless i guess the monster group will be helping her later on avenge her death and bring down the guy (and maybe expose more corruption and evil things)?

The episodic ghost cases are just okay.it did introduce us to another character the jade prince or something who is an octopus that possessed Alice’s body. Bora was kind of hilarious trying to act like a guy. The mermaid story was also chilling.shows that even humans are bad to monsters.

Im not sure if there will be a love triangle between PK Alice and zombie girl. But im rooting for PK and Zombie girl.just dont know how coz Zombie is rotting everyday.

Overall the storyline is very slow. i still don’t know where everything will lead to. we keep hearing that samjang has to finish her mission (we dont know what and when) and we dont really know what happens after and when the Geaumgango disappears. For now i’m just enjoying the ride.

Hwayugi eps 3-5

This is a Hong sisters drama alright. Just like in Masters Sun, they came up with an absurd reason why the couple always has to be together and justify all the skinship. This time, Ogong got locked in a Geumganggo which is a bracelet where he becomes in love with Samjang and feels pain when Samjang feela pain. I find this less believable than Masters sun because it makes me feel uncomfortable that they are forced to like each other. And i cant believe that Samjang is actually falling for the sweet words when she knows it’s not real. Is it because she is so starved for affection that as soon as a guy stays with her or does things for her she already likes him. Tsk tsk. And how is it that she is already falling for him when they have only encountered each other a few times? I feel sad for the girl. On the other hand, i like how Lee Seung gi is delivering Ogong’s lines. Too funny to see him angry but spouting sweet cheesy words. Im sure he will end up really liking her in the end.

Another plot that does not make sense is Samjangs mission to rid the earth of bad people or else the world will collapse or go into war. Why her? She doesnt even have any power. I think it’s a ruse to keep Ogong occupied and make use of his power instead of causing trouble all the time. What is bad is Samjang getting pulled into schemes involuntarily.

As for Devil King, i like his character right now he is so funny and tries to keep the other guys in line. But ahh we find out the reason why he wants to be a diety so bad.. It’s to rescue his love from the cycle she is trapped in. I still dont understand how She was in the film when the film is not a real world.. And is she supposed to reincarnate over and over again.. Is it as the same person or different persons but gets killed everytime? I think this storyline needs to improve. Also im surprised by thr end of episode 5, ogong tricked Devil king to drink Samjangs blood now looks like he will also start liking Samjang. So now what happens to thr first love?? Nad why bring him as a love triangle for Ogong and Samjang? We obviously know that Samjang does not feel anything for Devil king so i dont think she will feel confused at all. Poor Devil king now he is also forced to like Samjang who i think doesnt really have any charming qualities for men to fight over for.

Im interested to see how Zombie Richies case will unravel. But first, another story that makes no sense. She was reported in the news as a trainee that is missing yet no one has figured out who she is or has even bothered checking for her. Right now she is jist there as part of the weird group. Im interested to find out how her death is connected to that political candidate, who happens to be connected to the korea foundation lady. Hmm.. Seems there is a bigger political story in the works.

I like the episodic cases.. Some are fillers like the motel ghost and the condo ghost while some serves as a way to move the story forward. I still didnt u derstand the red kimono kid story.. If she killed the korea foundation lady.. So who is she? She is a japanese ancestor who possessed the old lady and bent on restoring the japanese connections in modern day korea? And since Ogong burbed the film set, what happened to Devil King’s love.. Did she also perish in the fire or did she found a way to escape?

Too many questions and too many inconsistenices but at least the storylines are funny, the group is wacky. We have a secretary dog, piggie kpop star, the siblings, the mobilephone chairman, devil, Ogong, Samjang and Samjang’s secretary with a distracting setof brown eyes (contacts?). Im also starting to hear more funny quotes like Devil kings”you passed” and Ogong’s “i love you” that is standard in any Hong sisters drama.

Hwayugi eps. 1-2

I have to admit. I was hesitant to start watching this show – i don’t like Lee Seung Gi that much, i have never watched Oh Yeon Seo and i don’t like her mean looking face. I do love Cha Seung Won but lately his overacting comedic style is not as funny anymore. However, I was intrigued by the story, the trailer and I heard that the show is getting high ratings and..it’s a Hong Sisters drama. Thus, I stopped watching Black (which was getting boring and confusing) and started to watch this show. And I’m glad I did!

A_Korean_Odyssey_(Hwayugi)

Drama: A Korean Odyssey (화유기)
Network: tvN
Release Date: December 23, 2017 —
Runtime: Sat. & Sun. 21:00

Plot
Son O-Gong and Woo Hwi (Devil King) are in conflict with each other and they look for a true light in a dark world where evils exists everywhere. Both meet Jeon Seon Mi, who became a Samjang as punishment after releasing O-Gong from the Marble Mountains because of an errand that Woo Hwi asked of Seon Mi.

Cast
Lee Seung Gi – Son O-Gong
Cha Seung Won – Woo Hwi / Mawang
Oh Yeon Seo – Jeon Seon Mi

First impressions – episodes 1-2
I love that the show just went straight to the present story and didn’t dwell too much on the past. The history on how they met and a little of Seon Mi’s past was enough to understand what happened but not too much to waste tv time. The first episode I wasn’t too sure about the adult Seon Mi – i preferred the young Seon Mi who was brave and sweet. The adult Seon Mi always has a sour look on her face and her ugly ponytail isn’t helping. I’m surprised that her yellow umbrella is still working even after 25 years! That must be magic! I’m curious who made her Samjang and her knowing that she is a Samjang – I wonder how she will be able to harness her power (does she have one?) to fight the evil spirits. For now she seems to be really weak and she gets bitten a lot – I’m surprised with the amount of blood she has shed in two episodes why she does not collapse and does not have scars. Maybe her wound heals? I’m not sure. I hope they explain more about being a Samjang in the next few episodes.

I dont particularly like Son O-Gong. I can’t decide if he’s a jerk or a nice guy. or maybe he is just too full of himself and hasn’t made a person or spirit that can tame him. I’m also getting mixed signals on his character – he wants to eat Samjang/Seon Mi but he keeps helping her out. On the other hand, Seon Mi says he is angry at him but feels so touched and grateful everytime he helps her out – either she is infatuated at him or she really needs more friends.

I love Devil King for now more than O-gong. He has more control of his power, he seems to be more strategic. But i also dont know if he is the bad guy or not. He has to protect Seon Mi too (reason I still am not sure) but he seems to hate O-gong (i also dont know why). Is this supposed to be a love triangle between the 3 of them or is this more of a O-Gong vs Devil King for deity?

Another thing is the hierarchy – i dont know who is higher, who that guy in white is, and who the cellphone chairman is. of course it’s only episode 2 so im sure these will all be explained later on.

I still dont feel like this is a Hong Sisters show – the usual cheeky dialogues are references are not there. but their trademark catchphrase seems to be “You passed” (the one that is being uttered by Devil King. Also, what’s the point of the Superstar show – is it just a sideplot or is Devil King recruiting people for his main plan?

I love like the mini story arcs in every episode. the first episode featured the wooden puppets – dang, the bride puppet was hella scary. imagine if that was chasing me at home i would probably scream. second episode we have the bride stealing spirit – this was pretty interesting as they were able to go inside the picture to the realm. but how come Seon Mi went inside the picture but the other bride was just sick?

by end of episode 2, Seon Mi has kissed O-gong, O-gong got trapped in the picture and Seon Mi was able to help him by slashing her own palm, luring the evil spirits then calling out O-gong’s name, who was able to escape the picture. another big HOW.

I wonder what O-gong will do once he finds out it was Devil King who almost trapped him in the picture. Also, i’m curious what their relationship is. If they are enemies, why have they lived together for years and why does Devil King want O-gong out of the way?

Can’t wait for the next episodes!

 

Kahogo no Kahoko eps. 9-10 (end)

I have mixed feelings about the last two episodes.

First, is sadness because Baaba died. I believe she was the strength that tied thr whole family together. She was wise and cheerfuland i will so miss her. I feel that she deserved a better family though because her children keeps fighting, are jealous of each other and selfish. It was only when she died that they kind of acknowledge and remembered the old times when they were kids and enjoyed each others company.

I also feel sad for Jiiji. He seems so lost without Baaba. Throughout the series they portrayed him as this hot tempered funny Jiiji so it was nice to see another side of him.

I feel frustration for Tamaki and Mamoru. So we find out they were both weak people and got married to support each other. But things got hard and they bailed and got divorced. What?!? They could have just separated first without divorcing. Why did they rush it only to make up in the end? But i think the purpose of the whole break up was for them to realize and reset. They got married because they thought they needed each other. But now they realize that they cnat live each other and they are getting married again. This time with better intentions.

I didnt like how they resolved Ito’s storyline. Upto the last few scenese she was this big rebelling brat who didnt care for her family. Then she had that showdown with Kahoko preventing her from selling her cello and her parents dragging her off the van. A few scenese later she make this one big apology and everythings fine. I dont think so. She hurt a lot of people because she was hurting herself. But that did not excuse her behavior. She shouldnt have been given a free pass. In a way i actually liked that she was veering away from music. I thought it was just pressure for her but i guess she really loved it in the end.

Izumi didnt really change much. She was still sulky when things dont go her way. What i have come to appreciate is no matter how strict or mean she looks she only has best intentions and she will come and rescue everyone from disaster like a supermom. I loved how she handled Baaba’s passing and Kahoko’s near disastrous wedding. As for the dad, he is speaking up more and i hope he continous to be the sane one in the family.

Biggest dismay of thr show is Hajime and Kahoko’s wedding. I feel it didnt makr sense that they will go and get married so soon aftet they met, and so soon after Baaba’s death. It feels like they were rushing to be together whrn they have a whole lifetime to do it. And i disagree with what Hajimr said when he was trying to convince Kahoko to continue the wedding. He said something like it is the right time to get married so there will be joy in the family. That’s BS. If this was real life i will say Hajime is smooth talking Kahoko. So no, i object to the wedding and didnt feel family that it happened.

I felt happiness however that Kahoko finally found her true calling, which is to take care of other people as much as the love she has received from her fmaily over the years. Seems correct that The overprotected is now the one protecting. She seemed to like kids so its nice to see her interacting with them

I did feel that it was unfair for Baaba to pass on the burden of continuing to take care of family in Kahoko’s hands. She is too young and still too naive. Also surprising that Baaba didnt leave it to Izumi. I think its because Kahoko has more heart than her mom even though she still makes mistakes her earnestness makes up for it. And it was correct that Kahoko and Hajime moved to the big house to take care of Jiiji seeing that she became the new Baaba. So nice to see her doing the housework a year later. For a second i thought she would be pregnant lol.

Overall it was a happy ever after for everyone. I wouldnt say i was 100% satisfied with the ending but it was still a good way to end the show. Im looking forwardto see more of the lead actress shows in the future. I hope she plays a different character than Kahoko.