28 February 2014


Cunning Single Lady / Sly and Single Again - Episode 1 (A First Look and Briefcap)

Posted by Kakashi Sensei on February 28, 2014
Joo Sang-wook in a romcom! I'm DEAD! I am a huge fan of his, but have had quite some issues with some of his drama choices. I did watch Good Doctor (*shudders*), but without subs and lots of fastforwarding, almost threw up over Paradise Ranch (dropped immediately), got a melo-rash over Thorn Birds (dropped immediately), and fell asleep every time I tried Feast of the Gods (dropped immediately). Thank goodness for the TEN Series, but they are not everybody's cup of tea. Anyway, Joo Sang-wook in a romcom seems like a dream come true, so I decided to do a briefcap of the first episode of this. Anyway ... this drama is off to a great start! (and continues awesome, too) I sat there with a huge grin on my face for at least the first half. It's completely over the top in almost everything it does, but it works.
Episode 1

There is our "heroine" Na Ae-Ra (Lee Min-jung), the sly lady, and within the first 5 minutes, she decides to get married (instead of trying to suceed herself) and attaches herself artfully to about the first guy that becomes available. This is Cha Jung-Woo (Joo Sang-wook) who seems to have the time of his life portraying a super-nerd. He is kind, probably very smart, and a total dork. He is absolutely defenseless against this man-snatcher and whoops, they're married. It's a lovey-dovey, sugar-sweet, and incredibly silly relationship, in which he cuts her meat (oh my god) and they do arm-hearts in the morning when he leaves for work. She is totally happy, because all she ever wanted was to be a full-time housewife.
Quite important in all of this are Ae-ra's "friends" (among them the wonderful Hwang Bo-ra as Kang Min-Young!). One of them (Oh Bang-Soon) constantly shows off her riches: she scored big with her husband. The others fume with petty jealousy. Ae-ra manages to show off a bit as well, because she also managed to marry fairly well. But on the 100th Day marriage celebration he drops a bomb: he quit his job and wants to start a business.
And we're quickly nearing the divorce. Not much later, she has to work her ass off at part-time jobs because of their debts and they live in a small, dark place ... or she does. She changes all the passwords one day and doesn't let him come in anymore. That's 13 minutes in. He moves to the office temporarily ... she gets ill. Their gas gets connected. She cries. They get divorced at minute 15 and something.
3 years later, she has a perm (whyyyyy!), lives with Min-young and is humiliated quite thoroughly again by the still well-off Bang-soon. She is doing really poorly ... but her ex-husband hit the jackpot. I want THAT HOUSE! With this man in it! Of course, our poor heroine has to find out about him becoming a friggin chaebol through her frenemy, the RichBiatch. And our girl ... faints.
Rich women are after him (of course!), especially one - he gives her 10 minutes and then throws her out. I am in love already. And all the Infinite fangirls will drop dead because his secretary? It's L. He cannot act at all, but who cares! Anyway, we learn just how deeply she hurt him when she turned her back on him. It seems 16 episodes may be too short to fix this!
She feels totally cheated, of course, because she got zero point zero out of the divorce. She decides to be part of a TV show called "Cunning Single Lady" and it's a match making show for divorced people. It's hilarious. And oh so cheeeeesy. One man bites ... he's a dermatologist. Good-looking, kind ... a good catch, it seems!

At Jung-woo's company, trouble is brewing ... people around him get cold feet because he doesn't want to switch to a paid service (he owns the most successful social networking service. Hi there, Korean Zuckerberg!). There is one woman in particular who is quite fierce (Kim Kyu-ri as Kook Yeo-Jin) ... she is a business partner, but I'm sure she wouldn't mind business in some other departments either. She seems to be a spoilt brat with an awful father.
Our cunning single lady gets to go on a weekend with her dermatologist. Of course, things do not quite turn out as she thought they would ... he isn't interested in her at all, worse, already has a girlfriend, and he only brought and secured her for his rather middle-aged hyung - who is already married. He only went on the show to get more patients for his clinic - and he leaves her standing there, at the villa. She walks back in the rain, misses the bus, and to top it all off, he sees a rich and shining ex-husband on a public TV screen. We get it now, show! It's time they met again, I think.
Oh, and of course that's exactly what happens next. Ae-ra is causing some havoc while she is drunk and assaults some men that talked about her, the ex-wife of the famous CEO - but when she has to confirm that she in fact IS said wife in front of the police, she doesn't. This means: jail time! But her friend Min-young calls Jung-woo (he has kept his old phone? That's interesting...) and begs him to come and help her. But he says he has no relationship to her.
She is put in jail ... and then ... he comes through the door. *gulp* this man is just too sexy to be allowed to walk around like this.

I usually need more than one episode to know whether I like something or not, but I can say this: I like the premise of this show. Sure, as a feminist, I could be appalled ... the main lead is a woman who wanted nothing more in her life than to get married to a man who would care for her and pay for her. As soon as things got difficult, she left him - and now, she is getting punished for it. The question is how this drama will treat him and his character. I expect both of them will have to change until they can get together again. It's hard to say what his deal is - we haven't seen too much of his "new" self to be able to tell - but I am sure that the nerd-dork is still there. Well hidden underneath that perfect exterior.

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