Rants and Weekly Raves #275 (RAWR)

Trotwood: I'm creeped out about being first in the first RAWR of the decade since the last time I was first, I erased everyone's work! Anyway, Happy New Year. What new things are people watching? I didn't watch anything new because I was busy reviewing notes for the end of decade wrap up and getting ready for upcoming trip. I'll be traveling over the next week, so my drama watching for the next two weeks is going to depend on how sleepy I am and how good my wifi is.
kakashi: My drama year is starting with zero seconds of anything watched. Hm.
Panda: I have not watched any kdrama since the last decade. I have however binged on 6 seasons of the Holiday Baking Show, 2 seasons of Spring Baking Show, the most recent season of the Great American Baking Show, and old Bollywood movies on Netflix namely- Amar Akbar and Anthony, Don, Chalte Chalte, and the Great Gambler. Phew. I already know I am going to jump back into dramas with a chinese drama though since there are a lot that I am curious about - Yanxi: Princess adventures, Ming Dynasty, and Joy of Life.P.S. I lie actually, I am re-watching Story of MingLan. On ep 35 at present.

KOREA

Woman of 9.9 Billion Won/9.9. Billion Won Woman

Wow. There are so many alliances and then re-alliances and the broken alliances and then renewed alliances that anyone trying to a relationship chart has probably given up by now. I like that the characters have so many layers. We ALL thought the guy in pic was romantically connected to Seo Yong, but the truth actually is much more interesting than that. Hee Ju is much scarier and more powerful than we ever dreamed and has he own revenge plan that apparently trumps everyone else’s though. I’m NOT PLEASED by Seo Yong’s new partner, but at least now she knows who has been spying on her. The only pure soul in this show is Tae Woo, but I’m not sure if anyone is going to survive this show.

Queen: Love and War/Selection: The War Between Women

I actually like the second version of the drama title better than the first because to me, despite the roles that the court ministers play in the whole succession plotting and planning as well as the young king's insistence on making up for not being able to protect his love in the past, the story is really about the battle between all of these women in the "selection process" to become the new queen. There has already been cheating but also some friendships have been made. Our heroine is going to need as many friends as she can get because the court intrigue is heating up, especially with the kidnapping. She needs to focus if she is going to figure out who killed her sister and recognize how much her sponsors are really using her and will abandon her as soon as they can. (subs were only available for ep 5 when I wrote this)

Want a Taste

I’m back in to watch couple of eps of this daily to see if I want to officially pick it up again. Like I feared, but knew had to happen in a 120-episode drama, our heroine Hae Jin goes ahead and married the feckless Jin Sang because of his steady pursuit of her, and her desire to be loved, but now I’m back it’s worse than I feared. She not only worked to help him into a top university and has become basically the family slave by taking on all the work in his dad’s restaurant but also by doing all the house chores at home. And of course he has an affair! The only good thing is their daughter, but I really want Hai Jin to run for the hills. The guy that she should have dated (the blind date she ended standing up) is suffering from both a failing marriage and a failing career and now works at restaurant to. There is  circle of infidelity going on and horrible parenting, bu then again, it’ a daily. But kids are super cute.

CHINA/TAIWAN

Some Day or One Day

Usually, subs start coming out for this show on Mondays, so I wait to watch episode that comes out on a Monday in the following week’s RAWR, often putting it off to watch on weekend when I have more and time and so that it’s still fresh. However, this week, I watched last week’s ep and watched this Monday’s ep even though subs were only at 80 % because so many things happen. I gasped, laughed, and cried on more than one occasion. How is any of this going to be resolved is anyone’s guess, but I am hoping that now that we also have Zi We also moving between the two world, although in different time frames that they will be able to not only prevent Yun Ru’s death, but also keep Jun Jie from being framed for it. I thought he might have died, but now we know that he’s just been in prison! We also get confirmation of what I had feared about the psychiatrist in the present and the serial killer from the past. Most are probably talking about the love story between Yu Xuan and Zi We that causes them to move between time, but I think Quang Sheng and Jun Jie’s friendship is equally compelling. I cried as much for them as for the other two.

JAPAN

La Grande Maison Tokyo

no new subs. ๐Ÿ˜–

G-Senjou no Anata Watanashi/You and I on the G-String/ You, Me, and Bach

This episode makes our characters face some more painful truths and gets them to think about the words they say to themselves and others. Yuki’s MiL complains about getting old when she sees the young people around her, and Yuki admonishes her thinking she is doing well, but then later has the same feeling when she sees the way Yaeko and Rihito bicker. Speaking of them, I’m starting to wonder if the show is ever going to get them to recognize what they feel about each other. Both are so caught up in their habits—Rihito in his crush on Kasumi and Yaeko in her life of rejection—that they can only consider tangentially that the person they need is right in front of them. I love how they are reluctant friends turned frenemies first, but I’m with Yuki here. Perhaps it’s because I’m more her age, but I know I’d feel lonely being with them and watching them unknowingly fall for each other, especially when I was with a husband who doesn’t understand why I’m not “over” him cheating. 

Follow Saretara Owari

I still think this is the best show I am watching, taut with suspense and making me trust no one in its tightly wound tangled know of relationships. It really makes you question what you know about people and the friendships you have—whether they are real or just out of habit. WE find out who ruined Junko’s wedding but this only leads us to know that Junko is paying the skeevy Yuki to look into things for her. He’s really the worst of the friends, which is ironic because on the surface he should be the most stable since he’s the only one married with child. The new target this week in Shindou, Sotoro’s roommate. His career is ruined by accusation of design threat right when he just got an award. I liked him, too, because he called them all out on how horrid the group was being.

THAILAND

Until We Meet Again

It was another beautifully filmed but very slowly paced episode. I think what is bothering me the most about the drama is that the DeanParm relationship, which should be the center of the show, really doesn’t seem to be at the center of this production. I also have seen the actor who plays Parm in lots of films and dramas, and he’s far from skittish, so it is a directorial choice to make him into a pre-Pinocchio Park Shin Hye kisser. It also would be nice to see ParmDean have more of the moments that they had on the sofa from last episode or the hug in the library in this. They seek each other out because they are the only people who fill the emptiness they have because of the past but not enough of any other reason why this version of themselves might like, even love each other in the present. WE know exactly why Korn loves In; In is his ball of sunshine to counter the rejection he gets from his father and the guilt he feel about his brothers while in the DeanParm timeline they have nothing keeping them apart besides that past trauma, but the show (unlike the novel) also doesn’t give us much of a reason for them to be together besides that trauma either. I’m still squeeing folks, but . . .