Rants and Weekly Raves #244 (RAWR)

kakashi: Incredible! I watched something that's not Naruto.
Trotwood: Did you watch all of these shows or only the neandrathal one?
Panda: You know that feeling when you have 10 dramas to start, and yet find yourself rewatching The Wedding Date for whatever reason? Yup. P.S Dermot Mulroney - Hot. But speaking of dramas; I am interested in checking out kGOT, Aide with its 2 smexy leads and the Joseon drama with a bespectacled Thighs!! Hubba hubba.
JoAnne: Yeah, that Thighs picture circulating on TList last week? Stopped me dead in my tracks. Then again, he really never disappoints, does he. We do seem to have a lot of very lovely men (and women! whatever floats your boat!) to watch these days. It's Spring, after all, and the sap is rising....


Arthdal Chronicles (New) 

Holy moly, a genocide drama? I didn't read up on this one though I did notice the (anti-)hype on Twitter. Is it good Korea is doing something... well, different? It's kinda T&E Korea style and there's a confusing amount of babies. Plus... why do a good job with male makeup and make all the ladies SUPER moisturized and smooth-skinned? Episode 1 was about 50% too long. Episode 2 brought a lot of unnecessary brutality. I think I'm out. Not intrigued.

This guy here didn't last long and I was never very clear who he was other than an influential member of a tribe that got wiped out. Of one of the tribes that got wiped out. My jury is still out on this one. It was too dark (literally) in the first episode and HELLA dark (metaphorically) in the second. The styling issues are as numerous as the split ends on our boy Song Joong Ki's hair and Tagon's remarkably fresh-from-the-salon mane is distracting, though beautiful. (Especially young Tagon - wow, what a difference a wig makes on a pup! Fresh from a pretty cute turn as the idol in Her Private Love, our young rising star is a now a very hot, very brilliant, very murderous enfant terrible for some (sadly) brief moments in the first episode.  What he did with those birds?  Chilling!

Anyway, styling issues. I guess the costume designer chose Coachella Meets Clan of the Cave Bear for the theme, and it does not really work. I won't lie, I don't hate seeing lots of Jang Dong Gun skin, lots of Song Joong Ki skin...but at a certain point the tattoos and flower crowns and skull caps (LITERAL skull caps) is a bit much. We won't even mention the glow in the dark lips. The story could be good if they're done with the tribe slaughtering, but we'll see.  Oh and Kim Ok Bin, who I love?  She does not really work as Tagon's long-time lover.  Too cute, too bubbly-voiced for that man.

Special Labor Inspector Jo (Finale) 

Very satisfying ending!  All the little guys prevail!  All lovers are reunited!  All creepy rich despots are jailed!  Perfect puppy got to do some more kissing! And he can dance!  I absolutely can see a season 2 here:  Jo is back together with his wife, Pup's Detective Agency continues to unofficially support his investigations, and somebody's pregnant.  I vote for Pup's handful of a bride.

The Secret Life of My Secretary 

Okay, I'm convinced.  Dae Joo is covering up something but I'm not sure what - I think he thinks his noona is involved in something bad.  I 100% believe that he does not want to hurt Min Ik, but he does for sure want to be out from under his thumb, however loving.  I am having a hard time with that squirrelly driver, though.

As for Gal Hee's dilemma, I have sympathy for the girl.  She tried to smooth over a difficult situation (and have a nice meal) and wound up getting caught in a pretty tricky web.  We all know that in the end Chaebol with Trauma will end up with Plucky Secretary but for now, my heart aches for her. I know a lot of people think she's terrible for deceiving him and to them I say:  it's a comedy.  It requires deceit.  She's been trying to come clean and is perfectly willing to accept whatever he dishes out as a result, but it's hard to do scary things and we gotta have enough episodes to justify the advertising dollars.

My Fellow Citizens (Finale) 

Another solid ending, with almost everyone who needs to pay for their crimes doing so - even our sort-of hero, Jung Kook.  We watched him turn over a new leaf and let his real nature take over - someone who fights for the underdog and believes in justice and fairness, someone who genuinely loved his wife, regretted all his past misdeeds and was willing and ready to pay for them. 

There is no comparing Jung Kook and Park Hoo Ja, though the show pitted them against each other and often tried to make her seem as if her misbehavior and criminal behavior was on par with his.  I don't think it ever was.  She preyed on poor people who were desperate; Jung Kook scammed rich people who were greedy to become more rich.  She did not care about anything but her own wishes, and he very often took other people into consideration, right from the start.  Not to mention her willingness to use physical intimidation, even murder, to get her way!

I would have liked to have seen her returned to jail for a long time.  That's my one sore spot, that we're left with her sitting in a park, visibly sweaty (why?) wondering how it all went wrong.  Why it all went wrong?  How about you're a criminal?  An unrepentant, violent criminal?  Sure, she was funny to watch - but she's not likeable or particularly sympathetic apart from her need to rebel from her awful older sister. I wanted her in jail, and that didn't happen, and that's my one sore spot with this drama.  Everything else was resolved just as you'd want it to be, and I could maybe see a second season with a fully reformed Jung Kook running for (and winning) his assemblyman seat again.  As he pointed out, his skills as a conman are ideally suited for politics and government, and I have no problem with him using those skills for good!

The Wind Blows (New) 

From the description (man discovers he has early on-set Alzheimer's, divorces his wife 'for her own sake' and then six years later they meet again and realize they're still in love) this should be a straight up melo.  A questionable one, sure - early on-set is a particularly brutal, swift form of the disease, so six years in he should be mostly unable to function, if not dead - but when is a KDrama without implausibilities?

However, the opening episodes take a tone that isn't really that melodramatic.  It's even kind of funny.  Do Hoon and Soo Jin have reached a point in their marriage where nothing really works.  He is a selfish jerk, and she's lonely, aching for a baby, and frustrated with his asinine behavior.  When he has a vasectomy without discussing it with her, despite knowing how much she wants a baby and how they had always planned to have children - that's her final straw and she asks for a divorce, which he refuses to give. Cue her and a friend coming up with various ways to 'force him' - including her dressing up as other women to trick him.  Yeah.

It's a fault of the editing that the order of events is unclear to me.  Does he discover he has this awful disease right as she's asking him for a divorce, or did he know for a while and act like a jerk to keep her from having kids when he knew he wouldn't be around for long due to the disease?  If that's it, then why is he refusing to divorce her?  Why has he been such a selfish, irresponsible, thoughtless jerk for so long, if he loves her so much? Hopefully all will become clear in the coming weeks.

Her Private Life (Finale) 

Wish the childhood connection had NEVER happened. However, it didn't really dim my enjoyment cos the angst wasn't too drawn out. Absolutely loooooooooove out OTP. OMG, PMY didn't even look like she was acting the last couple of eps. She just looked like she was basking and glowing in Ryan Gold's love. And KJW, what can I say? You broke my bias list. Never liked skinny men, like I adore HuGe but it's not a Kokoro kind of love you know? KJW however, as skinny as he is, with his jawline (pants) makes all the parts tingle. Sooo damn fahn. Come back soon to dramaland! 

Ryan Gold was worth the years of waiting for Kim Jae Wook to be the leading man.  The surrounding plot was weak AF, even stupid - but that OTP made it all worth while.  Ryan and Deok Mi were Beyonce-level greatness, and all y'all other OTPs have got a LOT of work to do.

Save Me 2 

What is there even to say?  If you are fascinated by twisty turny stories of evil, evil conmen getting their comeuppance from a rag tag group of common folk, this is what you need to be watching.  Wonderful acting, great writing, skillful editing.  This is good stuff.

Angel's Last Mission: Love 


Absolute Boyfriend 

I feel terribly sad for Wang Joon, and yet:  how do you resist Young Goo?  She can't choose the robot in the end, though, right?  Not when there's an actual human that she loved, who loves her, whose one mistake, really, was being a noble idiot?  Well okay, plus 7 years of dating in secret.  But come on!  It's not like he invented that requirement!

Voice 3 

I doubt I will get through this week's episodes before RAWR comes out this week. UPDATE: I watched an episode and a half. I don't know if I will continue. It's just too dark. Literally and figuratively. Is it just me but are a lot of dramas just really dark? I mean I know we are supposed to be in the dark or at night, but if I can't see half of what is happening, I get frustrated. The show is still good, but I'm not really enjoying the corruption storyline with our team leader losing his mind, too. It's actually very well done. Almost too well done. I'm too angry and frustrated watching to find it enjoyable. I'll probably pick it up again in last two eps to see conclusion.

Just One Bite 2

I'm sad to say that this week was the show's finale.  I really like this group of friends--the friendship between the women, the friendship that develops between all the guys, as well as the friendship of the whole group. There is a great balance between couple time and friend time and everyone appreciates the loyalty in their partners to the different groups. We get three fully developed couples, including flashbacks and side characters, in episodes that are never longer than 15 minutes. The production quality is high as is the acting. All couples had complete story arcs. All in ten episodes--nine really because I'm not sure we really needed the storyline of ep 1 about the siblings. Really, there is no excuse for people to make bad, slow, dramas!! Writers should be forced to watch these shows and ask themselves if they really need episodes that are over an hour long.


HIStory 3: Trapped 

There was elation and then despair and then relief in a period of 2 days for HIStory3 fans, especially those in the United States. First there was news that Viki had obtained the rights to the series. Not surprising since the already have the other two seasons. We even talked about trying to get all the people watching on my twitter feed (which covers four continents) to try to do a marathon together. That was short lived because it seemed within hours, the fan site that had been showing it was shut down. The person came back an uploaded to new site, but then everyone could see that except for the fans in the United States. Fortunately, I now have access!! But I'm not taken this for granted.

The show content mirrored the emotional whiplash of the shenanigans going on with watching the show. We get very little progress with our secondary couple, but lots of movement with the OTP and the mystery surrounding what happened 4 years ago. I wasn't surprised at who Tang Yi's parents are, but I was surprised at the role the chief plays. I didn't see that coming at all. And what's with ep 16 only being 15 minutes long? My favorite scene was Tang Yi coming in to hear himself on those 15  voicemails that he left worriedly on Shao Fei's phone. His look of embarrassment and SF's look of love were wonderful.

Detective L

"Maze Murder" was another surprising gentle mystery. This is not a breathless "oh my goodness what is going to happen next" show. People die a lot here, too, but it doesn't have the same effect which is fine with me especially since the main death in this mystery made me more sad than any of the horrific deaths I've seen in a show like Voice3. I also enjoy a show that makes the mysteries worthy of the talents of the main detective. We also get more advancement of the overall mystery about the Captain. I'd like to know, too, why our Detective hates the psychiatrist guy so much. This mystery was at one of those fancy house parties, so more lovely costumes!


Theory of Love

This show is based on a novel of the same name, and people have been waiting to see it because the casting of the main pair seems to be spot on. Seriously, it's like the novel was really based on a fan fiction about these two actors, Gun Phunsawat (Third) and Off Adulkittiporn (Kai). They were first paired together in a show called Puppy Honey and have subsequently had their own variety show and own spin off. If this were a Filipino show, I'd call them a Love Team because they are a pair that fans want to see together in more than one show. I don't know what they call favorite actor pairings in Thailand. I'll wait for Caitlyn to tell me. The main plot is that Third is in a group of friends in college who are known as gangsters but only really because they date a lot of girls. Third does not, but that's because he's in love with Kai. In the novel, Third is snarky and fun and heartbreakingly sad. In this first episode, he is only sad, which is too bad. Still, I'm watching because Gun made me tear up at least three times here. They did keep the funny shower scene from the book though.


Kinou Nani Tabeti/What Did You Eat Yesterday?

I ended up making a Boston Cream Pie this week as a result of working on the recap for the next episode since Shiro bakes. I need to start trying to watch show while I'm at gym and have no access to my kitchen! We find out more this week about Shiro and Kenji's relationship through their reactions to another couple and when the roles are reversed. They are interesting because we seem to get information that would make them not be a fit and a perfect fit at the same time. The reaction shots in this episode are on point. I think I laughed more in this episode than any of the other ones so far.


Good Omens was every bit as good as the book, so go watch it, all of you who were on the fence because the book was so good!