25 May 2016


Dramaworld - Episodes 9 & 10 (The End of Days)

Posted by JoAnne on May 25, 2016
JoAnne: Well folks, we're down to the last set of episodes. Much as we'd like to, we can't make it all about Seth after all. Other people did things that we liked, dammit. Why start NOW, show?
kakashi: Not me. I didn't like it. Didn't like it at all. I hated it. And only because it got the tiniest little bit better than before doesn't mean it is good.
Shuk: Aw, it wasn't that bad. But then, I was drinking absinthe when I watched it the first time.
Cookie: Absinthe! I've never tried it. Did you see the green fairy? They shouldn't have started filming until episode 9. Coz that's when people started getting comfortable.
They got cute and it's pissing me off

Episode 9

What happens when a TV character bumps up against his reality? He freaks out a little bit. I think we can understand that.
How come nobody pushed his mother off the roof? 
Not enough depth. Pushing her is the equivalent of folding a piece of cardboard in half.
Hahahahaha. Plus it would have been very noisy.
I really wished that the Joon in the mirror had broken the fourth (eighth?) wall and talked to the Joon in the room, to make this coming to terms with fictional existence real.
And I was hoping he'd smash his head against the mirror. 
But what about The Mirror Image Rule? In the law of contracts, it's also referred to as an unequivocal and absolute acceptance requirement. It states that an offer must be accepted exactly with no modifications. The offeror is the master of one's own offer. So, in a drama can the offerer offer other than the offer?
*sits in corner muttering to self* if the offerer offers another the offer does the offer still offer the....
Ah, the angst of non-autonomy. Hurry up and get over it, Joon. But wait. Let's think about this. If he knows that he's a character then he's not a character in a story, he's a character in a story about a character in a story, so he still doesn't really know he's a character, which is why he's still existing, right? Is that how this works? But then doesn't that make Claire a character in a story about a character in a story, too? Except she doesn't know, which makes her a character in a story about a character in a story about a character in a story, I think. I'm starting to wonder if I'm real. 
I still don't get it. After drinking together one night (but not enough), these writers came up with a world that is populated by avatars that turn into different characters, but they all have the same face. What, then, does Claire have a crush on? Can't be a character, because he plays different ones every few months. Can't be an actor because he's just characters in a Kdrama. Is this a very deep philosophical trick question?
I just poured my absinthe over that sugar cube and let logic drift away...
Look, I came here to talk trash about Sean's unwrinkleable brow, not some deep existential stuff. Though...if Joon is a character in a story about a character is he a caricature of himself and is that why his forehead doesn't move? As a sort of physical manifestation of the shallowness of his existence? My head hurts.
But does your forehead move?
Upgraded Seth is looking sharp in his baby blue outfit, but I'm pretty certain we're going to have to mark him off as Slightly Delusional Seth pretty soon. He's absolutely deliriously happy at how things have turned out - he's got a restaurant, he's got his pretty sous chef that he loves...what could go wrong?
Did anybody else feel a tiny bit sorry for him?
Nope. He made his own sageuk. He can lie in it.
Yeah, not really. He pushes people off roofs.
What's with the face, Seo Yeon? Are you not as thrilled with life as Seth is right now? Is someone not feeling the love tonight? Or is someone just unaware of the undercurrents and completely confused? I wonder what Seth will do next.
I expected him to push her off the roof.
If at first you don't succeed, die die again.
I just loved how he was blissfully unaware of how horrible the food was. And where did it come from?!
That moment when your life is/lives are literally flashing in front of your eyes (for the record, our lovely bcook translated those other drama titles as "An Arrow Shot Through My Heart", "My Calculus Love", and "The Man Of The Stars"). And then you find out that the girl you like isn't supposed to like you back. Don't trust that, though, Joon. Because if you know you're a character, then you can't be that character, so it should be okay to break the rules that apply to that character, right? Claire is in a really cute dress and you two are kicking off hella sparks in this episode, so I say go for it.
I was surprised to see that she's probably not just 12, but a grown-up. Hormonally, at least.
Her outfits have been mostly cute since the funeral. The food looked yummy but I didn't get the frozen remark. I can only surmise that it was a meta-wink to RL production.
I just wish she hadn't lost half her head of hair in some weird college hazing ritual. Imagine her with a full head of that gorgeous hair. Adorable!
You know, Trot told me that that asymmetrical thing IS the fashion right now. And then, we watched Eurovision together and everyone was asymmetrical. I think I'll go asymmetrical too.
I hate the freckles. I hate the hair. Her voice is starting to grow on me, though. Do I need an intervention? Otherwise I entirely enjoyed the "Facilitator / Character Non-Involvement" conversation, especially the glances he sends her way, and the moment when she almost cracked up.
That was cute. Now if only they had shown this chemistry (the two actors getting comfortable with each other) oh....I dunno....in episode one?
Meanwhile, Semi Delusional Seth has segued into Wack Job Seth and he's holding Seo Yeon prisoner at the restaurant. Why are the guards from a sageuk, you ask? Well, my first thought was 'that's where the armies always are, in sageuks' but then I thought 'hey, what about all the gangsters in black suits? wouldn't they be more 'genre' appropriate?' and then I thought 'plus the suits would have been cheaper than period costumes, right?' and then I thought 'why the f*** is he always dipping into sageuks, anyway? Is there a reason for that? Are they going to unload some time travel thing, like he's a facilitator from days of yore?' And then I got mad because they're probably not going to explain shit.
[sends Jo a bottle of absinthe and a box of sugar cubes and a 'sinthe spoon]
I was just hoping for them to break into song, but no.... disappointment after disappointment.
Here's my theory (and we can go ahead and make it head canon cos hey...who's going to stop us) Seth's first facilitation was in Sageukland (much like Disneyworld, Dramaworld had lands, okay? Just accept it.) It's where he fell in love, and everybody knows the best plotting is done in a sageuk so of course that's where he goes for villians! They're his friends!
It shall be as you say. Henceforth, it is canon that Seth's first job was in a sageuk.
So be it. They can make up rules, we can make up rules!!

Episode 10

This is the face people have when they realize that quiet guy next door who was always fertilizing his lawn is doing it with the ashes of the people he killed. Yes, our two idiots have finally figured out that Seth is not playing nice.
Horrible thought: was it all those KDramas she watched that made her so incredibly stupid? 
*Gasp of horror* No! She's clearly a noob to KDrama coz she DOESN'T get suspicious fast enough.
I guess her supposed TIQ (Trope Intelligence Quotient) isn't as high as it should be. Or the writers TIQ, really.
I've given up any small hope I had that Seth could be redeemed or at least ride off into the sunset on a genre-inappropriate palanquin. He's showing his crazy to Seo Yeon, which opens up issues of why everything doesn't grind to a halt because everyone knows all about facilitators now, but Kakashi will probably just yell at me about not asking hard questions again.
Because he made up all the rules himself and there are no rules?
In Sageukland, he is the local yangban who taught the locals the Twerking For Rain dance. What can't he do?
Flower Boy! Yes! Give this puppy a drama! I love this kid. I'm glad he gets to be around for the end. Joon is in the car trying to earnestly explain about facilitators and being characters in dramas 'You're a second lead' style, and Claire just cuts to the chase: Seo Yeon is in trouble! True to form, Flower Boy is in.
There were moments in this drama when I wondered why they even bothered writing lines.
Go! Go! Flower Boy! Also random tip: singing to plants really does make them grow.
I believe that was a cut rose, though, wasn't it?
That rose isn't a plant. But, then again, that wasn't really singing, either.
Seo Yeon is soooo yawn. She is not into you, Sethie. Not even a little. I see your hand there, too. Are you going to try that weird manipulation puppet thing with the woman you say you love? 
He could have done more interesting things. Like ... sageuk torture? While singing? 
A song about the burrito roll!
They should have just had them go full karaoke mode and sing this entire episode. It wouldn't be any more ridiculous.
Cray-Cray Seth V2.0 is off the deep end. Like Marianas Trench deep end. And, unless she's into it, roping your squeeze to a chair while declaring your love is perhaps not the best course of action in romance. A little Google Fu would have told you that. If they have Google in Dramaworld.
I'm wondering what people got to see on TV, the ones who were watching Taste of Love. Do they see all these crazy shenanigans, too? What happens when the drama isn't airing? This question is far more interesting than the struggle in the restaurant, with the good guys pitted against Seth's Sageuk Army.
I wanted to say "well, you also never see anyone going to the toilet in KDrama", but then, I realized that's absolutely not true, and now I don't know what to say. Next?
Remember that in an American daytime drama, if you start Christmas as Day One of the a year, the number of drama-days to the next Christmas is about 90, about 1.75 drama-days per 5-episode week. So maybe the entire Seth/Clare f*kkup actually took the time of two car commercials, and a newsbite about the upcoming weather events, final episode be damned. 
What's with all the deepness? Is this what relief does to you Jo? Is this some form of survivors guilt? You made it through the show relatively (mentally) unscathed so now you have questions?

So...Seth? You're saying you'd rather not be a real boy? You want to give up being a person and become a character in a story? Is it just Seo Yeon in this role that you love? When the story ends, does this version of you two continue on in some sort of vacuum? Or do you expect to replace Joon as this actresses future partner in all dramas? Wait...is Joon his name, or his character name. I mean, is he Joon Park in everything?
Finally! You're asking the real questions!!
Absinthe, anyone?
Facilitator Disillusionment. That's what this is. He was a sad boy in real life, made his way to Dramaworld, and somehow it was still the same for him. That's because where you go, Seth, there you are. 
But he installed a Karaoke machine and made the other dude sing. That was pretty cool. I want Seth to be the King of Dramaworld. 
Maybe that's the true moral of the story...the only thing you can change is who you are on the inside. 

But this is still Dramaworld because look, crime doesn't pay. Seth is knocked out, and for the sake of Dramaworld's existence, Joon is determined to give Seo Yeon 'true love's kiss' and end the drama as it should be ended. Despite him knowing that he loves Claire. Well, HE loves Claire, but the character in Taste of Love loves Seo Yeon, so he's acting as his character, I guess. So then who is he, if he is not his character? See, this is why we drink.
Now I know! This is just like The Matrix! They're all somewhere in little prisons, where the God of KDrama feed off their souls.
I give up. Shuk can I have some Absinthe? 
[slides a bottle over, along with a shot glass and a copy of Edgar Allen Poe's poetry]
And then, of course, he can't do it, because he loves Claire. Who has never looked better, by the way, and they had crackling chemistry and cute moments through out this episode, which pleased me and pissed me off both. Why you gotta be so natural NOW, Sean Dulake? But anyway, back to the kiss - Taste of Love is apparently fucked, right, but Dramaworld could only be safe IF Joon kissed Claire because that's the real drama, right? So if he'd done what they agreed was right and kissed Seo Yeon, would Dramaworld have ended? I think so.
Finally! Now it all makes sense!
Hmm. I can think of two dramas where the second lead gets the girl: "How To Meet A Perfect Neighbor" and "Coffee House". (and Queen of Housewives) Plus, live shoot means that plot continuity gets crapped on pretty much daily. So switch-kissing shouldn't make a difference. Nor a lead swap. But let's just run with it for the sake of Dramaworld, shall we?
Claire turns around after her big moment, and discovers Flower Boy and Seo Yeon smooching away - yay! - and she's so happy for them she has to get in on the action. Does this make Flower Boy an automatic lead next time? Or is Seo Yeon now part of the ranks of 'secondary OTPs we actually prefer'? I found all the scenes that had a bound, unconscious Seth extremely hilarious. I could hear the director 'keep him in the shot! keep him in the shot!' in my head.
Yes, have you noticed too? Has Seth co-produced this? You know, like Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible, always putting his stupid face in close-ups?
Maybe they realized he was the best part of the cast for 9 episodes.
But wait, there's more! The drama resets, because true love's kiss ends the story. Seth and Claire struggle over the phone thingy that would send them back to Dramaworld. Seth wins. Does this mean a sequel?
I thought the yelling conversation over the closing theme was mildly funny. Well, maybe more slight amusing?
I wonder what the audience saw and how horrible the ratings for this show were. Do ratings go below zero sometimes?Seth wins but the phone doesn't work. Coz he broke the first rule of Dramaworld. Talk to the hand Seth coz the phone ain't working.
Just take it back to Apple. Or put it in a jar of rice or something.
Dad hasn't magically gotten better at acting in the 'few hours' that Claire has been gone. Oh, wait. He's not acting, this isn't Dramaworld. Right? Or is it just another set....hmmm....
And Seth, our favorite thing in this ... thing ... he just runs away screaming when he sees dad. Well.
Wait is Dad... different? Did he lose weight? Or was there an actor switch? 
He got all the eyebrow scenes Sean couldn't do.
It's just the look of desperation in his eyes.
Suddenly we see Joon racing down a street on Claire's screen, as she watches dramas while working. But what's this? He bursts into the restaurant! Dramaworld needs her! But then he's so shocked to be NOT in Dramaworld that he faints. The end.
Somebody should have pushed him off the roof. The end.
CPR kisseu! CPR kisseu! No? [sadface]


Seriously? That's the END? The only time you end a story with more questions than you started, it's because there's going to be a sequel. Is there going to be a sequel, Viki? Does Claire join Joon in Dramaworld to fight Seth another day? HOW DOES THAT EVEN WORK? A self-aware drama character? I could see a few actors pulling that off. Uhhh... none of them are in this drama. What are the rules? Does self-awareness spread like a zombie virus? Do people get to write their own endings? Can they dress themselves? (that might be good)
That there suddenly are script writers who can actually write a good story?
I think they were just trying to end on a similar note to how they started. It was an "eh" ending for me. I don't care why Dramaworld needs her. 
Viki should have had their fanbase submit a 1500-world outline of a show, then picked the best one. Would that have worked better? Or maybe a Crowdfund where the biggest donation person gets to write a scene and cameo in it? Wait, that was already tried.

How about explaining Facilitators a little bit more. And whether sageuk land was another world, or just a different section of Dramaworld, and how Seth got there, and why he was always dipping on sageuks, and how can Claire and Joon even work? I have too many questions to be happy with this drama. But in a way, doesn't it mean that the drama succeeded? Because I do want to know more. Dammit. You suck, Viki. (Not really, I love you.)
How about not producing any more dramas, Viki. It seems like a waste of your money and our time. Or if you do, please try and find someone who can actually write a good story.
It wasn't completely bad. That dubious pedestal still has "Blood" on it. But the storyline would have benefited from a bit more fleshing out and character development. It's hard to create a complete world in 117 minutes. Wait...[checks favorite movie list] Blade Runner Final Cut was 117 minutes too. Chincha? I change my mind about you, Show....
Viki,Viki...what you need is a facilitator of your own. (In RL we call them project managers) Somebody passionate about dramas and happy to spend your money on the best of the best because she wants you to succeed. *pats Viki's shoulder* It was a good-ish first try, maybe you'll even have good numbers but can you risk a second attempt with what you have now? Here's my number, call me.
In the meantime, let's all have one, shall we?

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