Rants and Weekly Raves #56 (RAWR)

kakashi: Me all week: "is it Friday yet, is it Friday yet, where is my Lee Sang-yoon!"
JoAnne: I like this a lot and he's adorable but my reaction isn't quite as strong as yours...
Well, I have nothing else to watch! (Apart from old stuff) My life is so boring. And anyway, it's only 30% drama and 70% love. 90%. 100% I love you, Lee Sang-yoon!

She Was Pretty

Keep an open mind Kakashi, keep an open mind! This could be good, you never know! Despite the premise! Despite the hated actress! *watches* ......................... people are going to say I'm overly negative again, right? (so many on Twitter liked it!!!) But this ... nope, not for me. Unless they start bringing in interesting topics on top of "he is now hot, she is no longer", which really is NOT interesting. Too much annoying fluff for me, sorry. I'm out!
becca: Not even touching this one. Nope nope nope nope nope. Not even for you, Park Seo-joon.
I realize that saying 'She's mostly not at all annoying in this' is hardly strong praise, but the truth is, this is kind of a fun show, two episodes in. The life long friendship between the girls is sweet and they're great together; Siwon is funny, of course, and will probably turn out to be the rich son working icognito; there are a handful of well-received character actors in supporting roles; and Park Seo Joon is both nice AND kind of an ass, but I think that's the role he's taken on in this job, since they have no idea the magazine is about to be shut down. In the second episode he starts bumping into things, so it seems like his cool image is probably a cover, too. 
And yes, HJE is mostly not loud. In the second episode, there's a period of frenzy, it's true. But I think it's not going to last past that episode, so I'm willing to give episode three a chance. More than willing. It's fluff, of course. But it's my only fluff right now, and looking at what I've got on my radar that I think I will actually watch and not just check out - probably my only fluff for a while to come.
I don't want to fluff but I want to add - for the record - that it's not because of her that I didn't like it. Indeed, her character is endearing
She is, actually. But this is sitcom material and you're not in a sitcom mood these days.
I've never in my life been in a sitcom mood

Twenty Again

Still enjoy this immensely (yes, I watch it raw and was even tempted to find a streaming site to watch "live", which I have never done before). In episode 7, Cha Hyun-Suk is back to being a real dick, but oh boy, if No-Ra listened closely, she would realize where that is coming from. "Go back to your precious house, go back to your husband! I don't want to see you anymore!" Hyun-Suk is hurting and damn jealous. He is in love with this woman, always was, but he thinks he cannot have her (and frankly, it has never even crossed her mind that this man might be more than a high school friend). And because he's an emotional boy, he wants to get over his hurt by lashing out. Good thing, she is now hitting back."You were always insecure and petty" and then telling him she never liked him anyway and he quasi forced her to do all those nice things. Damn, that hurts. Haha, they're both like really immature kids.
I cheered at the end of episode 7. Yay, No Ra! You stand up for yourself!
And then, episode 8 comes along and changes the power dynamic for good. We can expect episode 9ff. to bring a load of pain for Hyun-Suk. Poor baby ... There are two highly emotional scenes in this episode: The Thank-You scene (he looks absolutely devastated after it ... from his perspective, I guess it was like her breaking up with him, right? But serves him right for telling her he did everything out of pity:) and then, the final scene - when he sees her dance for the first time. He either realizes what those feelings he has mean (before this very scene, he was mainly confused) ... or he is in fact falling in love with her properly for the first time. This is no high school love anymore. Shit just got real. And the poor man thinks he is in love with a married woman ... one extremely devoted to her dick husband at that. By the way, I fell a bit in love with her on that stage too.
She's charming, for sure.


Just watched the ending a few minutes ago. I needed time after losing Number Two, frankly. Well, the last two episodes didn't help much with that! It felt pretty bad to lose the Creepy Puppy, too - we never knew a damn thing about him and he was not a good guy, but he worshipped his Number One, and he was so heartbroken there at the end that it got to me in a big way.

Losing Number One wasn't an emotional issue for me at all, even when they flashed his sad life before our eyes as he was dying. At every turn, he chose the monster path. He was consumed with revenge, consumed with 'winning' at all costs. He even lost sight of his love for his brother; it ceased to matter to him in his final days, because all he wanted was to kill Tae Ho. That's why I think I could care about the henchman, but not his boss. Puppy's final thoughts were for someone else. Boss's thoughts were for himself.

Jang Tae Ho was always a real guy - not all good, not all bad. He went back and forth for a while, but it was easy to see that at his core, he isn't evil. Swayed by money, a bit jaded - but in the end, someone you could count on. I liked that his 'success' at the end was more that he just held on, not that he bested Kwak Heung Sam in that final duel. That would have felt false, considering that Number Two couldn't beat Heung Sam and died for it. Nope. Crazy like that has to be stopped by a bullet, so I liked that it was acknowledged.

All in all, a very good drama. The story is not so unfamiliar, but the setting was, and the characters had just enough freshness to them not to feel like stereotypes even though of course, they are. Probably one of my Top Five ever - certainly one of my Top Five for the year

We Got Married (Kwak Si Yang & Kim So Yeon) 

I thought someone was watching it. I will see clips, probably, since I like them both - but I haven't gone looking yet.


Okay, this is a definite NO. I don't feel like watching another set of another clearly fake doctors frantically running around. And Kim Young-Kwang? WHY?! He really has a long way to go when it comes to acting. A LONG way.
Aww, I was looking forward to this one. Is it really that bad? :(
Try it, becca and don't listen to Grumpy Sensei. I didn't like it at all, but that does not mean it's not good :
I can't find it streaming anywhere.
Which also means it's not being subbed (yet?). I watched it raw

Other Stuff

I continued with Angel Eyes ... sort of, cause it got really hard all of a sudden. What a boooooooooring story once they're together. What a beautiful man! I also started mixing in some Liar Games. Just to appreciate the difference in hair style (and bulk). He lost quite a bit of weight - or I guess muscles? - in between My Daughter Seo-Yeong and Liar Games. I like him bulkier. Plus, it's not the last word that I'll ever say about this, but I think it's a crime to hide his beautiful forehead and those lovely crinkles he can make when he's sad or angry. That's why I hope Cha Hyun-Suk will get a haircut soon. 
Gahhhhhhhhhhhhh he's so DAMN CUTE.
Almost done with Jerry work. Done with Jerry story. Not the best acted always, and if you weren't interested in the business maneuvers probably lots of it was boring - but I enjoyed that, and I was happy to watch Jerry get his girl and win his dad's respect and beat the sorriest saddest bitch of a second lead over. Plus, I learned that Ron Ng exists. I'd like to see more of him, for sure.
Marathoning the last half of Oh My Ghost this weekend! Only six more episodes! They're so cute! It's going to break my heart when Soon-ae leaves. [UPDATE] I finished! I cried. Well done, Show.
oups, it's another Lee Sang-yoon picture.  
And cute is replaced by mmmmmmmmm yes
Watched the double episode (=pilot) of The Bastard Executioner ... oups. Another clear NO from me, even though there's a sheep with my name in it. It's a wannabe Game of Thrones but is so not. How can a show go so entirely utterly fully wrong?
Holy freaking balls of crap! WOW, was this bad. Intro: bad. Sets: bad (they spray-painted the ground green! But the little hobbit houses were cute on the outside); Costume/makeup: bad (the Baroness has freaky weird pupils and WAY too much blush; their idea of dirt is messy hair and uniformly rotted teeth for the peasants) directorial 'vision': bad (lots of bare asses doing things, like sex and shitting, a man married to a sheep that he thinks is fooling around on him); Acting: bad (there's one guy who just STANDS there and he's bad at it.) This is a no, a big fat no no no oh GOD NO MAKE IT STOP. The sad part is, the last 20 minutes of the second half of the pilot actually got to an interesting place. One that, if it were a book, I would keep reading. Sadly, this is a TV show. A very bad TV show, one that I will not be continuing. Still, if you want to shorten your life by two hours, go ahead and watch the pilot. You will, at the very least, get some laughs out of it.
You know what I thought? That I was watching a mock-episode. That somebody had, very quickly, made a parody pilot and put it up. I'm still not sure that's not what happened.
It was truly mind-bogglingly bad. I was reminded, in parts, of the show we no longer mention which never finished production.
sadly, not Lee Sang-yoon

Nabi: I spent the past week struggling to finish the last two episodes of The King 2 Hearts (brought to you by Dunkin' Donuts). (Yup, never could get myself to keep watching after 4 episodes or so) I was really hoping it would do for Ha Ji-Won what Nine did for Lee Jin-Wook a few weeks ago, namely, replace the trauma of The Time I Endured a Terrible Drama with much better memories of an actor I otherwise love. Sadly, it turns out that the only thing I hate seeing Ha Ji-Won portray more than dense, self-absorbed Oh Ha-Na is Kim Hang-Ah in coquettish ingenue mode. I think it boils down to Hang-Ah having an awesome, kick-ass, Special-Forces-trainer side to her personality that made the contrast particularly grating whenever she shifted into the North Korean version of a Valley Girl, but whatever it was, now I may have to re-watch Secret Garden just to wash its putrid residue out of my brain.
It didn't help that Lee Seung-Gi, who has never made me swoon but at least never made me hate him before, portrayed a particularly unattractive hero in K2H. The whole bad-boy-reformed-by-love trope couldn't be more common in dramaland -- or in the trashy romance novels I read for so many years -- so I'm clearly not opposed to it in principle. But sometimes it really loses me, and K2H was the worst instance of that I can think of since Flower Boy Ramyun Shop (which was so bad I actually dropped it as soon as I could no longer pretend that the Pillar might still get the girl). Now I'm re-watching Gaksital to try to put my finger on why, when Lee Kang-To actually shot his ladylove it hooked me on KDramas almost immediately, but when Lee Jae-Ha fired on Kim Hang-Ah with a blank I came close to giving up on them entirely.
The only things that kept me going were that Jae-Ha and Hang-Ah both became significantly more palatable in the second half of the drama; I loved seeing the Lioness from Ex-Girlfriend Club again, even if her fiery character in K2H did experience a disappointing deflation after only a couple episodes of awesomeness (disappointing because she was so much more fun to watch the other way, not because it didn't make sense for her character); and Jo Jung-Suk. Uri Cheppu-nim from Oh My Ghostess was criminally underused in the first half of K2H, but really made the most of what he was given in the second half -- until the penultimate episode when the writers kicked him to the curb. And yes, I'm certain this was exactly why it was so hard for me to slog through to the end after that. 
Jo Jung-Suk graciously provides a little rain-soaked brooding to prove that this drama wasn't a complete waste of my time.

Looking forward to...

All the stuff from last week that hasn't aired yet, plus I forgot to mention American Horror Story - Hotel will be starting up soon.
Doctor Whooooooooooooooooooo
... the next episode of Twenty Again!
Oh, and by the way .... thanks for not asking, but eventually, I'll recap the three remaining episodes of Let's Eat With Friends. And yes, I've given up on seeing Kim Ji-hoon in a proper drama anytime soon.