Rants and Weekly Raves #218 (RAWR)

JoAnne: We may have a full house this week - isn't Saki back from riding ponies far from home?
kakashi: I love that there's so much enthusiasm in the KDrama community nowadays! Didn't that Alhambra-thing start too? (Whenever I hear Alhambra, I have to think of North & South. Guess why.) 
It did start, I've added below. I heard good things about it, too, so I'm excited to watch but I think it's not available in the US yet.
Trotwood: Don't expect much from me this week. It's Sunday morning, and I have yet to watch anything on that list below and I'm sick enough to have called in sick to my Korean lesson.
SakiVI: Wow, I think I'm finally over my various jetlags and viruses and fatigues. I woke up this morning with a headache, yet feeling the most normal I had for weeks.
Panda: Kdramas are popping! TList is loving Alhambra, Encounter and SkyCastle (dark horse which is pulling fantastic ratings atm). I am sure I sound like a broken record now but I am still not watching anything. This is work related though - I am super-slammed at work and then I just go veg at home. Sigh. 


Bad Papa (Finale)

A fairly neat wrap up for Ji Cheol's family and for Min Woo, too, and one that I understood and appreciated. I mean, we always knew he was going to die, right? It felt like everything he did was a preparation for goodbye, from beginning to end. On the one hand, that prepared me for what would have to be a very sad death. On the other, especially because it happens off screen, the impact felt a little blunted to me.

Bad Detective / Less than Evil (new)

How come nobody told me there's a new Shin Ha-kyun drama?! I feel betrayed!  
Oh. This is the Luther remake!! Okay, you did tell me about it. What, that's already airing? Damn, they were fast. 
It airs on MBC and that's why I have very low hopes. I mean its Luther! It's meant to be dark, it should have been on OCN. Or even JTBC.
I skipped through it, there's some gruesome stuff (hence rated 19). I will check it out, but I'm not yet sure I really want to watch.

Where Stars Land/Fox Bride

There are a lot of unanswered questions in this drama so I can't give it a full thumbs up. They raised so many good issues; self-esteem, the struggles of the handicapped in society, workplace issues, family issues, you name it - AND they gave us a glimpse of behind the scenes of a busy international airport.  Maybe it was too much?  In the end they just skimmed over a lot of things (or brought them up but then ignored them) so it wasn't fully satisfying even though there's a happy ending - two really, since our security couple seems to be making strides too.  And Kim Kyung Nam is now firmly cemented in my 'must watch' list.  Lots of others, too!  We've seen him in 3 wildly different roles back to back now, and I'm hoping he can make the move to lead soon.  I'm curious to see if he can carry a show - it certainly looks like it.  What do you think?

The Woodcutter and the Fairy 

Still my favorite show.  I love fairy tales told with humour and fun. 
Who is this? It's not from the drama.

Clean with Passion for Now (New) 

So far the thing I like best is the roomba.

Memories of Alhambra (New) 

Decided I'm going to skip since I'm watching a lot.
I think I have to wait for Netflix?I didn't check. People seem to like it, though.

When Time Stopped (Finale)

I wasn't happy with what I assumed would be the ending, along about episode 11. And the first half of episode 12 seemed badly timed, leaving fully half an episode for 'what comes after' which normally takes just a few minutes - but they definitely brought it all home in a good way, I was surprised. The story was a bit confusing, especially around the 'God's Consideration' bits, but the gist is that our leads have been cycling through lifetimes as human, empowered, reaper, human again for who knows how long. They're not on the same cycle, but they always meet up at some point and fall in love, with one sort of remembering parts but not the other, and they always have to be separated again, with one choosing to sacrifice themselves for the other. That one knows, at least, that another time will come, and the one left behind loses all memory of the one gone, so I think the pain must be bearable? I enjoyed the story and appreciated the lack of melodrama though I think it could have been told a little better.
Oh now I get it

Encounter/Boyfriend (New)

Thoroughly enjoyed the first two episodes.  Song Hye Ko's CEO is wearing a very thin camouflage of ice and reserve, while Bogummy's cheerful and gorgeous puppy is almost TOO sweet and excitable.  Everytime his excitement causes him to cross a boundary, he catches himself and pulls back - but she's right there to hold the door open and encourage him to continue.  This was true when she was the mystery woman a poor photographer met in Cuba, and it's still true when she turns out to be the newly hired PR guy's beautiful, rich boss.
I could enjoy WEEKS of that, quite frankly, because they are charming and beautiful and chemistry is flowing - but the end of episode 2 introduces the rest of the world to their budding friendship, in the form of paparazzi.  Next week we can expect the disapprobation of friends and families, coworkers and exes.  I'm there for all of it, wherever they're going.

The Last Empress 

This show is a little weird - disjointed, almost.  Maybe now that they're all in the palace it will level out but thus far it seems like two shows and they're not meshing well.
It's a stupid show, to be honest, but I'm kind of amused, and I want to see the villains crushed, so maybe it's doing its job in making me root for the good guys and hate the bad ones and kind of like the meh ones along the way. 
Kakashi is funny

Happy to Die

Show is still funny, but I didn't laugh as much as I did in any of the other episodes. It may be me because this is the first sequence where our boss doesn't die in each ep. It was more heart with him finally asking for help and the new team starting to be put together. It's clear that the budget consultant has reason to hate him, but it also appears that she is trying to take down company and I really like grandpa chairman, so I hope this doesn't happen. I also think that they are not going to go the Chief Kim route and go for romance, which kind of disappoints me as if men and women can't work together and be great friends without romance.

God's Quiz 5

Was only able to watch one ep of the pair from this week. Still good. The two teams are starting to work more together. I'm getting impatient though, which is a good thing. The show is making me anxious for them to meld together because the crazy guy who keeps dead body in his fridge along with his snacks is coming after our doctor for some reason and they are all going to need to be working together to fight the crazy (who I think may be involved in the secret secret from the past plot somehow).

Children of Nobody 

Too confusing for my tiny mind.
The editing must mimic how she feels, kind of out of step and dropped in the middle of things.

Room No. 9 (Finale - Late)

I liked Hae Yi's growth and the eventual warmth of her relationship with Hwa Sa.  I also really liked that Yoo Jin dumped Hae Yi when I realized she'd betrayed Hwa Sa, but then how they worked their way back to each other pleased me, too.  She showed him herself, warts and all, and he told her that love meant he would stand by her and help her repay her debts to those she'd hurt, and she did change her life to do just that.

What I didn't like was how Chu Young Bae was just walking around free during all the appeals when half the world knew he'd been impersonating a dead man and the other half knew he'd either killed, tried to kill, or paid to kill so many people.   As for him as a father - all his misery after the son's wreck was wanting his son not to suffer.  Even in the midst of his life crumbling around him because of his shady behavior, he was willing to do MORE. There didn't seem to ever be a minute when he had any inkling that his crazy murderous kid came about because of his own crazy murderous ways.  It was his fault, but he never even realized it or regretted it.  I know he ended up losing everything to Yoo Jin, his nephew (not his brother, as he'd said for years) but it doesn't seem like enough.

Top Star Yoo Baek 

So cute and funny and Kim Jiseok spends a lot time shirtless. 
No one could complain about THAT.

A Promise with the Gods (New)



Story of Yanxi Palace

Just noting that I'm dropping it after sticking diligently up to episode 45, but will write about it in the end of year summaries.

Rise of Phoenixes

 After 15 episodes, I think I know why this drama didn't strike a cord with everybody. It is... slow. So slow that watching it at night when you're very tired is an issue. Does that mean it's bad? Oh no. Far from it. Almost everybody is captivating to watch and I can't wait for the Crown Prince to get what he deserves ... but. I think the issue is this: maybe the biggest "flaw" is that the story seems too familiar in its basics. We've just seen too many court-dramas before and even though the characterization of the different princes is well done, I feel that knowing how things will turn out is somehow dampening this "I absolutely NEED to see the next episode" reflex we sometimes have.... which doesn't mean I didn't stay up until 2am to watch. But this knowing how things will turn out extend to the OTP as well. Their scenes are few and rather short. Too short. And as cute as the teasing and bickering is, and as much as we see that they like each other, the relationship also seems absolutely hopeless. It kind of hinders the investment into it. Why ship somebody if the ship is going to sink anyway?
*ships hard anyway*

Let's Shake It

This one was suggested by Feather for me and the little one to watch. A Winner!!!! It is SO FUNNY. Wonderful over-the-top humor with charming gimmicks. Completely love it - and I tell you, the story is good too! Potentially, I'm most amused by Captain Duo Miao Miao and I can't wait for his relationship with fierce General Xiao.
It has a season 2 with good reviews too! So lots of fun times ahead :)


Frankenstein's Love

I've watched 3 of the 8 episodes for this show and my heart is totally with the 'monster', poor thing.  He's as nice as can be and I think we're just going to watch his poor heart break over and over even though the girl who 'discovered' him and those she brings him into contact with are all decent people.  So far, JoAnne.  So far.

Still, even knowing the heartbreak to come, I can't turn away.  One of my TList said it was more Edward Scissorhands than Frankenstein and I have to agree with that, for sure.


On Netflix, and it was the first Jdorama that I've watched in a long time, and what the heck that it's a body-swapping show and a school show and I loved it despite normally hating both those types of shows?  Everyone watch it, it's that good.  And it's only 6 episodes, so it's really like a long movie.


New Amsterdam 

Max decides against chemo/radiation for his throat cancer, and opts for targeted therapy in a clinical trial.  Right before he's meant to start, a woman is rushed to NA, and she turns out to have received Max's sister's heart 20 years before. It is an incredibly touching and emotional episode - Max gets to hear about the life his sister's heart has lived; the woman gets to share that story with the brother of the girl who saved her. She needs a new heart, and gets it - and has Luna's heart cremated and given to Max, who takes it to the vacation spot of their youth. It's all very touching and beautiful and then fucking Max collapses unconscious on the dock with only his pregnant wife around for miles and miles and fucking miles and no cell phone reception.  They can't kill him, he's the lead of the show.  Right?
This is not Max, who is not exactly shabby, but look at that FACE who could complain?
In other news the doc who pops adderall is making lots of mistakes and her nurse is kind of DONE with covering for her, Dr Sharp and the prinicipal investigator for that clinical trial I mentioned might be starting a thing, which is cool, except the actor playing him was in a series on hiatus that I really liked, so I'm guessing that series isn't coming back (Reverie.)