Tag: 4.0 Reviews

Review: Signal

Posted March 30, 2021 by Rowena in Reviews | 2 Comments

Signal

Starring: Lee Je Hoon, Kim Hye Soo, Jo Jin Woong
Year Released: 2016
Number of Episodes: 16
Genre: Contemporary, Crime, Drama, Suspense, Time Travel
Country: Korea
Where I Watched It: Netflix
Recommended By: Mood Browse

Fifteen years ago, a young girl was kidnapped on the way from school, and Park Hae Yeong, who was an elementary school student at that time, witnessed the crime. A few days later, the girl was found dead, and the police were not able to find the culprit. As time went by, Hae Yeong started distrusting the police.

Fifteen years later, Hae Yeong is now a police officer and criminal profiler. One day, he finds a walkie-talkie that allows him to get in contact with Detective Lee Jae Han who is in the past. Police officers Hae Yeong, Jae Han, and Cha So Hyun then set out on a journey to solve cold cases.
I found this drama while I was browsing through Netflix. I’ve seen the woman actress in this show around so I stopped to check the summary out. I was sold after reading the summary but I didn’t immediately start it. I’m a little annoyed with myself that I waited for a while to get to it but I’m glad that I watched it because from beginning to end, I was invested in all of it.

There were parts that were pretty slow in terms of engaging me (the viewer) but overall, this was a really interesting drama that did a good job of telling Park Hae Yeong’s life story.

Let’s break this show down, shall we?
Main Lead: Park Hae Yeong
Actor: Lee Je Hoon
Social Media: Website | Instagram

Park Hae Yeong is the victim of a wrongful arrest though he wasn’t the actual person that was arrested. His older brother was accused of rape and was let down by the entire local police department because of course, his older brother was innocent but because their family wasn’t as rich as the real culprit, Park Hae Yeong’s older brother paid for a crime that wasn’t his. Park Sun Woo (Hae Yeong’s older brother) was one of the good guys. He was a great older brother to Hae Yeong and he cared about his family, his friends, and his future. He was helping Hae Yeong bring his grades up and in the process of helping a girl study as well.

What happens to Sun Woo makes a huge impression on Hae Yeong and as Hae Yeong pieces his own investigation into his brother’s case when he’s older and a cold case profiler, things really heat up. He discovers a walkie-talkie that communicates with an officer from the past. A detective that could possibly help him find out what really happened to his brother. Maybe if they worked together, they can right some wrongs and get some things right. Hae Yeong’s story is a huge part of the show and I thought Lee Je Hoon’s portrayal of Park Hae Yeong was probably my favorite part of this show. Lee Je Hoon has some serious acting chops and I felt everything he felt throughout this entire show. Hae Yeong’s story is an emotional one and though I didn’t get the ending that I wanted for him, I was still satisfied and would LOVE a second season.

I really enjoyed the character growth from child to man for Park Hae Yeong. He had every reason to turn to gangs and a life of crime with his experience with cops and yet he grew into a man of the law with a clear conscience of what was right and wrong. Did he always get things right? Not at all. But he learned from every experience and used the experiences to be a better person.
Main Lead: Cha Soo Hyun
Actor: Kim Hye Soo

Cha Soo Hyun was the first female police officer in her department and though she seems aloof and completely reserved, she is fair and a good senior to Park Hae Yeong. Professionally, she tried to do what was right even when it was hard. Personally, there were times when I wanted to smack this woman upside her head. Did I understand where she was coming from when she would pop off in the middle of a case because Park Hae Yeong seemed to know an awful lot about the only man she’s ever loved that disappeared years ago? Of course! Did I want her to put her feelings away and get the bad guys before grilling Hae Yeong? YES!

Even with all of that madness, I still really liked her character and I thought Kim Hye Soo really did Cha Soo Hyun’s character justice. She acted her tail off and it’s really hard to do that when you’re playing an aloof and cold character that isn’t really any of that. I liked how smart she was and how loyal she was. She was good at a lot of things and seeing her as both a fresh rookie cop who was unsure of herself, her worth as a police officer, and then a strong and fiercely determined detective was fantastic. She played both parts well and I was rooting for her to find her man throughout the entire show.
Main Lead: Lee Jae Han
Actor: Jo Jin Woong

Holy cow did I like this guy. Lee Jae Han was such a compelling character that fought the good fight even when he had every cause not to believe the weirdo on the other line of the walkie-talkie. Seeing him fight against his very own bosses to bring justice to those wronged by the police force, the exact police force that is supposed to protect the victims made me love him to pieces.

His story was another emotional one because his personal life took a back seat to his professional one and it was hard on everyone around him. From his father to the woman he was starting to like and his friends, he missed out on a lot trying to right the wrongs that just kept right on coming to his front door. I wanted so much to see this guy in the end and we were left with a big ol’ question mark with everything but even without a solid ending with a solid wrap-up of all the things, I still really enjoyed learning about Lee Jae Han. My heart for him when he tried to get to Sun Woo before it was too late, freaking body falling apart but getting to Sun Woo was more important than his stab wound and that was just one of the many reasons that I loved this guy. He didn’t know how to give up and when he didn’t get things right, he was so remorseful that it hurt my heart and made me cheer for him and Hae Yeong even more. Gah, so good.
The Cast
There are a lot of familiar faces that make up the rest of the cast of Signal and I enjoyed seeing them all again. These two guys are probably my favorite familiar faces and the most memorable of the bunch, outside of the villains. I also really liked the guy that played Park Sung Woo. As I said, there are a lot of familiar faces and that’s probably my favorite thing about k-dramas. There are side characters that pop up in every single k-drama and it’s always a treat to see a cast with great chemistry. This wasn’t the kind of show that showcases strong friendships but we got a strong team that really comes together as the show progresses and I was here for Hae Yeong and Soo Hyun’s team.
The Story
So Signal is about a detective from 1989 and a cold case profiler in 2015 working together through a magical walkie-talkie to solve and prevent crimes from happening. Solving them in 2015 helps prevent them in 1989 and through trial and error, Lee Jae Han, the detective from 1989, and Park Hae Yeong, the cold case profiler from 2015 figure out what went wrong and how to fix them in their own times. The concept behind the show is was initially drew me to watching it and I’m glad that I did because the actors really brought this story to life. It totally made sense to me that there was a magical walkie-talkie helping a man from the 80’s help a man from 2015 solve crime and beat the bad guys.

I also thought that the cases that they worked on together were interesting. From the kidnapping case to the rape case, to every other case, each story really stood out and had me thinking about them long after I turned the final episode off. These characters really go through it personally and professionally and they had to overcome so much to get to that end. There were times where I had to walk away from the TV because what was happening was too much for me and my blood pressure but I will say that the villains played their roles really well in this one because I hated their asses so much.

Overall, there were moments when certain characters and cases made my blood boil but I’m glad that I stuck with this show because it was a solid suspense drama and the time through walkie-talkie business was one of the highlights of the show for me. I love the friendship that blossomed between Lee Jae Han and Park Hae Yeong. I thought the way that their friendship grew and grew with each case that they worked on was just so stinkin’ great.
The OST
Final Rating

4 out of 5

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Review: Revolutionary Love

Posted September 30, 2020 by Rowena in Reviews, TV Shows | 0 Comments

Revolutionary Love

Male Lead: Choi Siwon
Female Lead: Kang So Ra
Secondary Lead: Gong Myung
Also Starring: Lee Jae Yoon, Kim Ye Won, Kyeon Mi Ri,Kang Yeongseok, Seo Yi Ahn, Choi Jae Sung
Year Released: 2017
Number of Episodes: 16
Genre: Contemporary, Romance, Romantic Comedy
Country: Korea
Where I Watched It: Netflix
Recommended By: Choi Siwon
Who I Watched It For: Choi Siwon

Byun Hyuk (Choi Si-Won) is a son from a wealthy family who runs a large company. He lives a happy life without any specific goals. He is confident around women and he is also naive, with a warm heart. Byun Hyuk begins to live in a studio in a poor area. He hides his background.

Baek Joon (Kang So-Ra) lives in the same area. She works part-time jobs to make ends meet. Baek Joon graduated from a good university, but she was unable to land a job at a company and begin taking part-time jobs. She is positive and full of justice, but her life changes when Byun Hyuk appears.
I came across this show while browsing Netflix for a new show to watch. When I saw that Choi Siwon was the male lead in this one, and not the second lead, I started this one with a quickness. I really, really loved Choi Siwon in She was Pretty and was a little bummed that he didn’t get the girl (though he did go up against Park Seo Jun) but he gets the girl in this one and his character in this show was a freaking delight. He plays another rich boy who cracked me up in each and every episode.

He was kind of a crackhead, who got himself into troubling situations that his assistant had to get him out of. The situations were comical, really, but were always taken out of context and while he didn’t mean for things to be taken the way that they were, they always were and he always got in trouble for it. It’s a trip to me to see Korean grown adults still getting beat by their parents. It’s so different from Americans but reminds me of Samoans.

This show is a coming of age romantic comedy that follows three main characters. Byun Hyuk, Baek Joon, and Je Hoon. Baek Joon and Je Hoon go way back. They went to school together and now they live in the same apartment building. Baek Joon was a good student, she graduated from a good university but she hasn’t really applied herself to finding a steady paying job. Instead, she works at multiple part time jobs and she lives paycheck to paycheck. She’s content with the life that she’s living, even though her mother keeps bothering her for money that she doesn’t have. She’s become okay friends with Je Hoon, a guy that she once confessed her feelings too and was rejected by. They’re uneasy friends right now because while Baek Joon tries to be friends with Je Hoon, he’s hella mean to her and to the viewers, it’s completely obvious that he’s got it bad for her but she doesn’t see it…and the longer he goes without making his own confession to her, the higher the risk he runs of losing her completely. That becomes all too clear when his boss, rich boy Byun Hyuk, moves in with him after he gets kicked out of his parent’s house.

When Byun Hyuk meets Je Hoon, he’s immediately smitten with her but she’s much too busy for a relationship and she detests spoiled rich boys so of course, Byun Hyuk hides his background from her, hoping to win her over by getting to know her better and hopefully when she knows him better, she’ll understand him and want to be with him. The overall story moves pretty fast in this show and I appreciated that. We weren’t bogged down with a lot of information, and a lot of background stuff so I liked that. I liked that we were able to get to know the characters, get a feel for what their stories were, and where their lives were taking them. I loved the little family that they created for each other and the support system that they all became toward one another. Each character was going through different things and brought something different to the table that I was hooked from the jump.

There were some things that drove me a little batty, mostly had to do with Je Hoon’s character and how freaking slow and mean he was because he was so slow. My ship was set from the very beginning, even though there were brief moments sprinkled in to make me go soft for the second lead. Choi Siwon did a fantastic job with this character and I enjoyed both Kang So Ra and Gong Myung in this show too. I’m looking forward to watching more of their stuff. This drama was a fast watch with a fun bunch of characters and enough humor and romance to keep me interested and happy. I recommend.
Final Rating

4 out of 5

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Review: Be with You

Posted September 29, 2020 by Rowena in Movies, Reviews | 2 Comments

Be With You

Male Lead: So Ji Sub
Female Lead: Son Ye Jin
Also Starring: Park Seo Jun, Go Chang Suk, Lee Yoo Jin
Year Released: 2018
Genre: Contemporary, Fantasy, Romance, Family
Country: Korea
Where I Watched It: Viki
Watched It For: Park Seo Jun

On her deathbed, Soo Ah (Son Ye Jin) makes a promise to her husband, Woo Jin (So Ji Sub), and her son, Ji Ho (Kim Ji Hwan), that she will return to them a year after her passing. Wishing, rather than believing she would keep her word, Woo Jin and Ji Ho say their final farewells. With broken hearts, they do their best to pick up the pieces of their old life and try to move on.

A year later, the unbelievable happens. True to her word, Soo Ah returns home, the problem is, she has no recollection of her past life. With no idea of who she was or what Woo Jin and Ji Ho meant to her, Soo Ah does her best to find a place in their lives once again. Eventually settling into this new life, Soo Ah and her family experience happiness in ways they never dreamed would be possible again. But their happiness is short-lived.

Only able to stay with Woo Jin and Ji Ho for a short while, Soo Ah soon realizes that her time at home is quickly coming to an end. With hearts breaking all over again, Soo Ah must say goodbye to her family, only this time it’s forever.

Adapted from Takuji Ichikawa’s novel of the same name, “Be With You” is a 2018 romantic fantasy drama film directed by Lee Jang Hoon.
I’ve been meaning to check out something with So Ji Sub in it because my friend B Nice is a huge fan of his so when I came across this movie with you guessed it…Park Seo Jun, you know your girl had to watch it. This is another one of those movies where Park Seo Jun is in a very small part of the movie but it was still an enjoyable movie. It was sad and it was hopeful and in the end, it was warmed my heart to see how far both father and son have come.

So this movie is about a young boy and his father who are both grieving over the loss of their mother and wife. The boy, Ji Ho, misses his Mom a great deal but is hopeful that she will keep her deathbed promise to him about returning to him after a year has passed. His father, Woo Jin, doesn’t believe it and though he’s having trouble moving on, he’s doing the best that he can. When the year mark comes up, the unthinkable happens. Soo Ah, the mom, and wife that Ji Ho and Woo Jin have been missing shows up just as she promised, the story really picks up. A huge bulk of the story takes place during the time that Soo Ah returns to her family. She’s only there for a short period of time and part of that time is spent trying to catch up. When Soo Ah returns, she doesn’t remember Woo Jin or Ji Ho or her life with them so she does her best to get to know them again and rebuild what they had before.

This was a very emotional story and I connected with every single family member. They’re all trying their best to keep the memories alive and I really enjoyed seeing them bond as a family while Soo Ah was back. I loved the connection between Soo Ah and Ji Ho. I loved seeing how happy he was for her return, how hard he worked to make her return more comfortable for her, and I really, really loved seeing how happy he was when she showed up for his performance. The same for Woo Jin. I really loved seeing him fall in love with his wife all over again. I loved seeing the two of them get to know each other all over again and seeing their relationship told from his pov since she didn’t remember much of it was just great. There was enough romance in this movie to warm my romance-loving heart.

There was a lot going on in this movie and the emotions, the warmth, it all got to me. I really connected with this story and seeing Woo Jin and Ji Ho being able to move on with a heavy heart but hopeful for the future made me so happy that I watched this movie. It’s another good one and even though we only got to see Park Seo Jun, who played an older Ji Ho, for like five minutes, I was happy to see him when he finally enters the picture. Goodness, that guy is bomb. Anyway, if you’re in the mood to cry and want an enjoyable but emotional movie, this is the one for you. I definitely recommend it.

Final Rating

4 out of 5

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Review: The King, Eternal Monarch

Posted September 23, 2020 by Rowena in Reviews, TV Shows | 0 Comments

Male Lead: Lee Min Ho
Female Lead: Kim Go Eun
Also Starring: Woo Do Hwan, Jung Eun Chae, Kim Kyung Nam,Lee Jung Jin, Kim Yong Ji, Seo Jeong Yeon, Sojin, Kwon Yul, Jeong Hyun Joon, Kang Hong Seok, Park Won Sang, Park Hoon, Kim Wook, Choi Woo Sung
Year Released: 2020
Number of Episodes: 16
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, Crime Drama
Country: Korea
Where I Watched It: Netflix
Recommended By: Kim Go Eun, Woo Do Hwan
Who I Watched It For: Kim Go Eun, Woo Do Hwan

Lee Gon mourns the tragic death of his father. Lee Lim goes on the run – and finds escape when he comes across a door to a parallel universe.
I’m not even going to front. I didn’t watch this show because of Lee Min Ho. I wanted to watch this show because of Woo Do Hwan. This guy is really good looking so watching him in another show (My first show with him was My Country: The New Age) was a must on my to-do list. I also saw that my girl Kim Go Eun aka The Goblin Bride was in this one so it was definitely going to be watched and I’m glad that I gave it a go because this reminded me of Goblin so it was a lot of fun.

So this show is a fantasy romance that takes place in a world with parallel worlds and a young King who can travel between those worlds. Lee Gon, the King of the Empire of Korea, is mourning the tragic death of his father, searching for the person who saved him on the night of his father’s murder, and plotting revenge against his father’s killer. When Lee Gon meets Jung Tae Eul, a police detective from the Republic of Korea, they come together to try to catch the bad guy and take him down once and for all. It appears that the bad guy is squatting in Tae Eul’s world so Lee Gon goes back and forth between their worlds to try to find him. It takes some time for him to get Tae Eul to trust him enough to help him. He knew immediately who she was when he first meets her but she didn’t know who he was so there was a struggle at the beginning with him trying to get close to her.

There’s a lot going on in this show and I was invested in pretty much everything. Trying to puzzle through chasing the killer down, the romance brewing between Lee Gon and Tae Eul, the going back and forth between worlds, getting to know both people from both worlds and just, you know, everything. As much as I was invested in all of those things, my favorite part of the show were these guys…


Woo Do Hwan’s portrayal of both Jo Eun Soeb and Jo Young rocked my mother freaking socks. Both of them charmed the hell out of me and it’s been weeks and weeks since I’ve seen this show and I still can’t choose a favorite. I thought Woo Do Hwan’s portrayal of the two characters was fan-freaking-tastic and I loved the hell out of both of them. I swear everything else took a back seat once these guys showed up on scene. They totally stole the show from right under both Lee Min Ho and Kim Go Eun. As great as they were, what I looked forward to the most while watching this was seeing what shenanigans Eun Soeb was going to get into and seeing his younger siblings interact with Jo Young.

The romance between Lee Gon and Tae Eul was subtle and in the background but I enjoyed seeing them come together. They complimented each other well and when we finally get to this scene, I was all about it.


Overall, the show did a great job of sucking me in with the charming cast, keeping me interested in the storyline and making me a little swoony with the romance. You can’t really ask for more in a drama so I’m a happy camper with this one. This one was definitely a good one so I recommend.
Listen to the OST
Final Rating

4 out of 5

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Review: The Divine Fury

Posted July 28, 2020 by Rowena in Movies, Reviews | 0 Comments

The Divine Fury

Male Lead: Park Seo Jun
Female Lead: –
Secondary Lead: Ahn Sung Ki, Woo Do Hwan
Also Starring: Park Ji Hyun
Year Released: 2019
Genre: Supernatural, Drama
Country: Korea
Where I Watched It: Viki
Watched It For: Park Seo Jun, Woo Do Hwan

Losing both of his parents at a young age, Yong Hoo (Park Seo Joon), has spent his entire life resenting God for his unwillingness to save the people he loved most in this world. Growing up without faith or a family, Yong Hoo has dedicated himself to one thing, and one thing only: becoming the best MMA fighter in the world.

Twenty years later, Yong Hoo has become just that. After an intense fight in the States, Yong Hoo makes his way back home, using the long flight back to Korea as a chance to get some much-needed rest. But his sleep is anything but peaceful. Waking up from one hellish nightmare, Yong Hoo finds he now bears an unusual affliction: a stigmata. With wounds on his hands which only get worse as time passes and a never-ending string of horrific nightmares, Yong Hoo soon finds himself in a place of utter desperation. Not knowing what else to do, Yong Hoo seeks the advice of doctors and shamans, but to no avail. With very few options before him, Yong Hoo turns to the one place he has spent his entire life avoiding: the church.

Seeking the help of Father Ahn (Ahn Sung Ki), Yong Hoo quickly learns that his afflictions are not of the world. Suddenly forced to accept the fact that the world is full of unspeakable horrors, Yong Hoo has very few options before him. As evil begins to close in around them, Yong Hoo and Father Ahn team up to wage war against the demons who seek to destroy all that is good in the world.

A thrilling supernatural battle of good versus evil, “The Divine Fury” is a 2019 action horror film directed by Kim Joo Hwan.
This week kicks off Park Seo Jun week because both reviews that I have written for this week feature shows and movies that star my main boo thang. In this movie, Park Seo Jun plays an MMA fighter who has rejected God from his life ever since God didn’t save his parents when he was young. When he becomes cursed with a stigmata, nightmares plague him and after exhausting all of his choices trying to get help, he turns to the one place he didn’t think he’d ever return to…the Church.

So our main character, Yong Hoo spends the course of the movie trying to come to grips with everything going on and fixing it. While trying to help himself, he gets recruited into helping others, who are battling the same things he’s battling, who aren’t as strong as he is. He doesn’t believe in God and he’s got no faith in the Priest that he goes to for help in trying to get rid of the wounds on his hands from the stigmata but he’s out of options and it looks like exorcism is the only way to go. Seeing him struggle with his beliefs and then seeing him battle the need to do right by these people who so obviously needed his help made for an interesting movie. I’ve seen Park Seo Jun play in many different roles and he handles each of them really well and it wasn’t any different in this movie. He’s a great actor and he conveys Yong Hoo’s struggles in this movie in a way that had me invested in him from the very beginning.

Woo Do Hwan played his villainous character perfectly too. I wanted to knee him in the balls so many different times and I was happily rooting against him so it was a lot of fun hating him when I’m so used to loving him. There were times when he would do his little evil shit in this movie that I would cringe because..yuck but alls well that ends well, right? This movie ended the way that I was hoping it would so I’m a happy camper.

This movie isn’t the perfect horror movie or the perfect exorcism movie but it was great for the mood that I was in and there really isn’t much that Park Seo Jun can do that I’m not completely on board with. So this review comes to you with some bias because I love me some Seo Jun. 🙂 Still, it’s an enjoyable movie and I’m not at all mad that I watched it.
Final Rating


4 out of 5

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