[throwback] Let’s Eat 2 (2015)

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Drama: Let’s Eat 2 (식샤를 합시다 2)
Network: tvN
Episodes: 18
Release Date: April 6 – June 2, 2015
Runtime: Mondays & Tuesdays 23:00

Plot: Popular food blogger and insurance agent Koo Dae-Young moves to Sejong City and meets his new neighbors including Baek Su Ji, a childhood friend and freelance writer and Lee Sang U, a public officer whom Suji has a crush on.

Main Cast:
Yoon Doo Joon – Ku Dae Young
Seo Hyun Jin – Baek Su Ji
Kwon Yul – Lee Sang U

Review: I started watching this show right after Another Miss Oh and simultaneous with 20th Century Boy and Girl since I wanted to watch more Seo Hyun Jin. I did try to watch Let’s Eat 1 but I couldn’t make it past episode 2 because I didn’t like how cringy the lead girl in the 1st season was. I didn’t like the way she looked at the food, it didn’t feel like she was really hungry or ravenous for the food, she looked more like sexually deprived (i’m sorry for the term) and felt uncomfortable watching her.

On the other hand, I love watching Seo Hyun Jin gush over the food and how delicious it is. It made me so hungry watching all the food they eat which sometimes take more than 5 minutes per episode that I fast forwarded some of the food eating scenes.

In some ways sometimes Seo Hyun Jin’s acting is similar to Oh Hae Young, particularly on the overacting parts but she didn’t get as melodramatic as Oh Hae Young. I could totally relate to her character who is always watching her weight, counting calories, thinking of ways to lose the calories after eating good food. I also loved the slow burn between Suji and Dae Young from being bickering friends to lovers. one thing I noticed is that Suji is so passionate with food that she often argues with Dae young on the right way to eat the food. and most of the times, she gets her way. there were very few instances where they split the food so they can cook their own way and very rare that she admitted that Dae Young’s way of eating was good or even better than her sometimes. I found this annoying because it seemed like Dae Young always kept giving in while Suji keeps insisting she was right when Dae young seems to be more “worldly” or had experienced more food and eating in different places than her. After all, Dae Young came from Seoul while Suji mostly just stayed in Sejong city. thus, I found it funny that when Sang U treated her to a fancy dinner, she didn’t even know half of the time how to eat or what she was eating, considering that Sang U didn’t really seemed to eat much but knew good food when needed.

I could understand how Suji felt when she started dating Sang U. it’s like a dream when your long time crush finally notices you, but when reality sets in and you realize that you only liked his idea of him and not really him. that you end up spending more or doing more effort to please him and end up feeling more miserable and inadequate. from Sang U’s point of view, I know money is no object to him but he should have known or realized early on that she can’t afford to buy those expensive things. he should have either also compromised or let her rent or borrow stuff. I think had the two been on equal footing they could have matched well but probably be a boring couple. I like that in the end, Sang U was able to let go of his cautious personality and learned to be free with his words and gain more friends. Love his potty mouth and in the end where all the guys in the office where at his office where they spent the night drinking and playing games.

As for Hong In a, I normally love the actress, but she was so arrogant and mean in most scenes, even to the point of being horrible to Suji that I couldn’t even feel empathy for her when we find out her husband divorced her. I was surprised to see the show tackle cheating – not that they are justifying it, but just showing consequences to the actions. I also feel bad for Taek su – he seems to be neglected by his own family. we never even get to see the wife or daughter. I was actually hoping he also divorces and end up with In ah.

The grandma, at the start, was endearing, but later on she just kept nagging at Ju Seung and being too nosy that I started to dislike her. it’s not just about being concerned for your neighbors, it’s also about learning to respect the boundaries of being neighbors. just because you are a grandma doesn’t mean you can just barge in unannounced and rifle through the things of other people like Ju Seung’s ID or Hye-rim’s cosmetics and expect people to be okay with the complete disregard and invasion of privacy.

I like Hye-rim and how the show didn’t portray her as being mean just because she is pretty. On the other hand, she was super nice and took care of the grandma and was friends with all her neighbors. I didn’t really like her with Ju Seung, mostly because Ju Seung just looks too suspicious and so not her type. I hope Hye rim will also study part time aside from working so she can get a better job. Or become a popular beauty blogger.

I also liked how they inserted Dae young monologues about korean cuisine history and how they put some flavor on challenges of living alone..like no one to eat with, missing your family, living away from home, not having to cook for anyone etc and also subtly including some tips and tricks on doing things.

I also liked how they started eating Korean food then in the latter parts branched out to other food like Mexican. I was hoping Dae Young and Suji meets at the Mexican resto so I was a little sad they just missed each other. but that scene was beautifully shot. the end where Dae Young came back to Sejong and they kissed was sweet but I was hoping for more passionate romance from them. I wonder how they end up – will they take turns visiting each other and trying out more food? we will never know. coz they just announced Let’s Eat 3 and Dae Young has a new girl!!

Overall i loved the cast and the story, while there were a few flaws in thr characters it was okay because that’s life. We dont get to meet the perfect neighbors and even if we are faraway from our families, your neighbors can also be your family.

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20th Century Boy & Girl (2017)

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Drama: 20th Century Boy and Girl (20세기 소년소녀)
Network: MBC
Episodes: 32
Release Date: October 9 – November 28, 2017
Runtime: Mondays & Tuesdays 22:00 (35 minutes each / 2 episodes per day)

Cast:
Han Ye Seul – Sa Jin Jin
Kim Ji Suk – Gong Ji Won
Ryu Hyun Kyung – Han A Reum
Lee Sang-hee as Jang Young-shim
Lee Sang-woo as Anthony / Lee Chul-min
Ahn Se-ha as Jung Woo-sung
Oh Sang-jin as Kang Kyung-suk

Plot: The heartwarming romantic comedy follows the story of friendship and love lives of three single ladies in their 30s who have never had real relationships.

Review:
Fresh from watching Another Miss Oh, I was kind of disappointed that Kim Ji Suk didn’t get the passionate romance for his character by the end of the show so when I saw this drama with Kim Ji Suk and Han Ye Seul as the leads, I immediately picked this up and boy am I glad I did!

The plot is very simple and nothing too glamorous or exciting that normally makes a Korean drama a big hit, but I loved how down to earth and real the friendships and family relationships were in this drama.

First off is the romance. I don’t think Sa Jin Jin’s “love triangle” with the 2 brothers were really that scandalous. Because one, they’re not blood brothers, two, it’s so obvious that Sa Jin Jin and Anthony didn’t have romantic feelings for each other. So in a way, the “love triangle” didn’t really go well. However, what went well and sold the story for me was seeing Sa Jin Jin meeting her long time crush and actually even get to be pretend couple for a few episodes! how cool is that? i’m sure every single kpop fan girl have imagined themselves in Sa Jin Jin’s shoes at one time or another. and for her dream to be realized was just a great thing to happen for her.

as for Ji won, it’s no contest at all. they are each other’s first loves and have known each other for a long time. I’m guessing the only reason they broke up was because of the dad finding out. this is something that surprised me. coz I thought he was always the nice dad and he seemed happy to see Ji won everyday. so i’m guessing, it’s either, he was still reeling when one of her daughters ran away to be with a guy that he is scared to losing her other daughter too at a young age. or as I interpreted his gestures in the current time when the news broke out that they were dating, I think he was just a bit jealous that dad is no longer #1 in his daughter’s heart. haha. it’s so sweet. I love the slow build up of their romance. they saw each other and they knew they are still attracted to each other. but instead of jumping right into a relationship, the show focused first on catching up on being friends until they couldn’t deny their feelings anymore. I actually screamed when Ji won presented Jin Jin with a proposal cake. didn’t expect it at all. he may not have gone down on one knee with a ring but it felt just as romantic and sincere.

and the end where Jin Jin proposed to him at a café. wow again, so random, in such a public place, with no fanfare yet the scene was so powerful I had tears in my eyes.

the next best thing about the show is the beautiful and long time friendship between the 3 girls and Ji won. their acting seemed so real and relatable – the things they talk about, having their special place, bonding and just having fun with each other’s company. I also liked the different perspectives they had on love, especially 3 of them being single women in their 30s. I especially liked A Reum. she is like such a cool lady and I guess most guys are either intimidated by her or shocked by her. I love that she ended up with Jung woo Sung – also another boy from their childhood. they seemed like two different individuals yet when put together ..just seemed so right. they were friends first and that slowly changed into liking and loving each other. I loved how they also changed not to force themselves to like each other but actually change because they want to support and be with each other. I was heartbroken and almost hated A reum when she broke up with the sweet Woo Sung but I am so happy that it was just a phase.. a wake up call for both of them to sort out their feelings. I know they were not each other’s ideal partner but they still got lucky to have each other.

I feel bad for Young shim, she was the studious girl among them yet she was the one who seemed sad (because of the family situation), she was the lawyer but she didn’t have a job (hello, what has she been doing for the past 8+ years??) and didn’t have money. she did end up with a cute lawyer guy, though I have to admit he is sooo weird. him drinking sips of soju and getting drunk and the 4 bongos’ reactions were just hilarious!!! their romance was a bit boring and less romantic compared to the two, but it was equally beautiful – to find someone just like you, who experienced the same things and who shares the same values as you. btw, young shim’s dad was so bad I can’t believe the mom and Young shim just took it all in stride.

As for Anthony, to be honest I don’t know if it’s the acting but most of the time I didn’t know what he was thinking or feeling. he had the same expressions all through out the show. but somehow I could understand his dilemma. he has been cruising for the past 20 years banking on his past boyband life that he has really made any effort to do more and at the same time, he is also being pulled down as being an idol. and I think it’s mostly his fault for not doing better that he should have been. I applaud the manager for staying with him even though he probably was so frustrating to handle. I think what he felt for Sa Jin Jin was more gratitude, that 20 years after being an idol, there were still people who are his real fans, and at the same time, I felt he was also ashamed or embarrassed that so many fans were counting on him and he hasn’t really lived up to the expectations. being with Sa Jin Jin on We Got Married was a big turning point in his life, because it made him really think of his career and decide what he wants to do. I love the cameo of Kim So Yeon, his real wife, as the director of his new movie. there have been rumors that the director was really mean and a perfectionist and when she did it to Anthony, I was wondering if she purposely did that to force Anthony to really act or she is just like that. either way, what’s was more important were 1) Anthony finally acted as if it’s his last project and he finally becomes a top star, and 2) turns out the director was actually the club president of the boyband that Anthony was in and she has been a long time fan. I guess the dream of meeting and marrying your kpop idol/crush came true for the director!!

Overall, this was the perfect show to watch while the weather is rainy and cool. it was very heartwarming like drinking hot chocolate while lying in bed on a rainy day.

oh and trivia – Kim Ji Suk, Han Ye Seul’s mom and the Bongo driver were all part of the cast of Another Oh Hae Young! I didn’t expect that at all!

and it was nice to see Kim Jung Hwa again after so many years. she was one of my fave actresses in the early 2000s esp her Taste Sweet Love drama.

I wished the epilogue showed Jiwon and Jinjin getting married with AReum and Youngshim as bridesmaid but the ending where the 4 met up, and Jiwon is the yellow bongo driver was just as epic!