Tag: Melodrama

Review: Love All Play

Posted November 29, 2022 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Love All Play

Starring: Park Joo Hyun, Chae Jong Hyeop, Park Ji Hyun, Kim Moo Joon, Seo Ji Hye, Jo Han Chul
Year Released: 2022
Number of Episodes: Drama, Melodrama, Romance, Sports
Country: South Korea
Director: Jo Woong
Screenwriter: Heo Sung Hye
Where I Watched It: HiTV
Who I Watched It For: Chae Jong Hyeop

A sports romance drama that depicts the passion and affection for badminton of a male and female protagonist who is a mixed doubles group with players from the badminton business team.

Park Tae Joon, who naturally wound up in the world of badminton because of his parents’ badminton equipment business. Although he had begun to see the sport as work, his passion for badminton is reignited due to a desire to impress a woman.

Park Tae Yang is a former aspiring Olympian who had to leave the badminton world for three years due to a bribing scandal.

This drama made its way onto my radar after I took an interest in Chae Jong Hyeop after watching and enjoying him in last year’s The Witch’s Diner. I haven’t been a fan of badminton before but I did really, really enjoyed last year’s Racket Boys so I was all in once I heard about this one.

The Story

This story follows our main female lead, Park Tae Yang. She was an Olympic hopeful that dropped out of the badminton world so suddenly, and though the world thinks she left because of a bribe scandal, I knew that wasn’t the case from the jump. She was carrying a lot of shit around but when she makes her way back to the badminton world, she has to start from the bottom again and this time around, she has to battle for every single inch.

She’s completely on her own but when she finally makes a friend, things get a lot messier than she was expecting..and she doesn’t even find out how messy until it’s way past the point of no return. When her past catches up with her, she has to see it through and deal with whatever comes next but it’s hard for her because she carries around so much guilt. This drama is all about her coming back into her own and atoning for the things that happened.

Main Male Lead

Our main male lead is Park Tae Joon and when we first meet him, he’s a really talented badminton player who, for whatever reason, doesn’t want to do more than he’s already doing. He’s got the talent to go even further but he doesn’t have the drive or the interest. When he meets Park Tae Yang, a badminton player that he’s been a fan of since he was a kid, she tries to get him to see the potential of everything he can be. Now, because he’s a man and likes Tae Yang as a woman, he’s okay with letting her pad his ego about his potential even if he has absolutely no plans to pursue them.

The stuff that he carried and held on to made my heart grow ten times every time he came on the screen because what a shitty position to be in. He loved his family but he also loved his and understood Tae Yang, more than anyone else understood her so to be stuck in the middle had to have been hard for him but I thought he carried the weight of everyone’s world on his shoulder extremely well. And he looked good while doing it.

Seeing him come into his own over the course of the show was great. I loved him just as much in this show as I did in the other show that I watched him in so I’m definitely becoming a huge fan of his. I adored his acting in this one and can’t wait to see him do some more stuff.

Main Female Lead

I loved Park Tae Yang. I thought she was a worthy female lead and I thought that Park Joo Hyun did a fantastic job of bringing her to life. She was strong and she was determined to take her life back and even though there were times when I got frustrated with the guilt she refused to put down for even a second, I still loved the hell out of her.

I didn’t think she deserved to carry that much guilt on her shoulders and the people that forced her to keep carrying that guilt pissed me off. She was such a great friend and she made a mistake, she never meant for anyone to get hurt and for everyone to have an opinion on her past, on her, seriously pissed me off. She already carried so much and for her to feel like she had to keep on carrying that guilt made me want to hug her close and protect her at all costs.

The Cast

The only people that I didn’t hate at one point or another in this show was Park Tae Yang and Park Tae Joon. Everyone else? I took turns hating the hell out of. The badminton team? Yeah, they came around in the end but in the beginning? Yeah, they could all suck a fat one. Tae Joon’s sister? Yeah, I wanted to punch her in the throat and push her down the hill. The coaches? They could catch these hands too and don’t even get me started on Tae Joon’s Mom. Ugh, what a bitch.

Now I stopped hating everyone when they stopped being little bitches to Tae Yang and I even rooted for the little side romances as well. The secondary romance was cringy though because home girl just couldn’t stop being weird but I’m glad that they ended up together. I liked the other romance too, the slow burn one of the teammates that got together after homie retired. They were cute and I really liked when they finally got together. 🙂

Final Thoughts

This was a great show, all in all. There’s a lot of angst but there’s a lot of humor, warmth, and sweetness to balance it all out. I thought the romance between Tae Joon and Tae Yang was such a sweet one and though it was messy because of her past and his family, I was satisfied with the way it all ended. I really enjoyed all of the main leads, all of the romances, and the ending made me content so I definitely recommend.

Final Rating

via GIPHY

4 out of 5

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Review: Why Her?

Posted November 17, 2022 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Why Her?

Starring: Seo Hyun Jin, Hwang In Yeob, Heo Joon Ho, Bae In Hyuk, Jo Young Jin, Kim Sun Hyuk
Year Released: 2022
Number of Episodes: 16
Genre: Law, Melodrama, Mystery, Romance
Country: South Korea
Director: Park Soo Jin
Screenwriter: Kim Ji Eun
Where I Watched It: Viki
Recommended By: N/A
Who I Watched It For: Hwang In Yeop

The youngest partner at one of the nation’s most prestigious law offices, Oh Soo Jae has already proven she has what it takes to be one of the country’s best lawyers. Driven by her self-righteous principles and a never-ending desire to win, Soo Jae is well on her way to becoming one of TK Law Firm’s top attorneys. But when one of her cases takes an unexpected turn, Soo Jae is forced to watch as all of her hard work comes crumbling down around her. Demoted at work, Soo Jae is forced to take on the role of adjunct professor at a local law school. Determined to win back her position within the firm, Soo Jae does her best to settle into her new role but the sting of demotion still lingers. Only after meeting Gong Chan, a university student whose path frequently crosses with Soo Jae, does that sting begin to lessen. Despite carrying the burdens of a painful past, Gong Chan’s warm heart remains strong, especially as his affection for Soo Jae grows.

Obviously smitten with Soo Jae, Gong Chan stays by her side, even as she struggles to find a way back into the firm’s good graces. Will her determination and Gong Chan’s support be enough to restore her position, or will the powers that be continue to push her down?

Hwang In Yeop is the main reason this drama was on my radar. I really enjoyed his character and his acting in True Beauty so when I saw that he was starring in a new drama, I put it on my watch list. I was excited to see him in a role where he was the main lead. This drama was plot heavy but I really enjoyed the character development between the two main leads. It’s not my favorite drama of the year or anything but I enjoyed it a great deal any way.

The Story

This story follows our main female lead, Oh Soo Jae, who is a lawyer at one of the top law firms in Korea. When we first meet Soo Jae, it’s obvious that she’s working on adding more accomplishments to her already impressive resume but it isn’t easy for her. She’s gone through so much in her life and she’s worked hard to get where she is but being where she is comes with a lot of shit. She’s at the very center of everything that this show has to offer. She’s surrounded by so much corruption and is trying her best for redemption and each episode presented case after case after case that made reaching for the things she wanted so much harder.

The bad guys needed to be brought down because they were some serious bad guys and Soo Jae proved with every passing episode that she was the one to bring them down. When a case she’s working on goes bad, she’s sent to work as a law professor and that is where she meets our male main lead, Gong Chan. Gong Chan is a victim of the bad guys and when things heat up between Soo Jae and Gong Chan, we find out that there’s a deeper connection where the two of them are concerned. Things really take off when they start working together at the school clinic. They have the same enemy and though Soo Jae thinks she needs to take them down on her own, I was glad that she had a team that was ready to have her back against them.

Main Male Lead

Hwang In Yeop won me over in True Beauty so I was excited to see him tackle another role, a main lead role at that. Gong Chan’s story was an interesting one and it was one of my favorite things about the beginning of this drama. I wanted to see how he tackled all the wrongs that were done to him but there were times when I thought the story moved his part of the story really slowly. I also thought the way that his story was told was stilted and weird.

There were times when I didn’t buy that Gong Chan was mad. I wished he was a lot more mad than he showed. I liked how steadfast he was in his love for Soo Jae and I loved that he was a good person, with a good heart no matter how different his life turned out (through no fault of his own). My heart hurt for the things that he went through and when he finally gets the justice for everything he went through, I was relieved for him. I just wished that a lot of the way that things were handled where he was concerned, was handled differently. I still love me some Hwang In Yeop though.

Main Female Lead

Soo Jae is the main character in this drama and I thought she handled her role really well. She was a bad ass in the courtroom and I liked that thought she came off cold and reserved, she was fair and she was caring in her own reserved way. She was always thinking one step ahead of everyone else and it wasn’t hard to see why she was at the top of her game. She worked really hard to get there and suffered even harder on her way to the top. She wasn’t always at the top and the way that she fought her way up there and continued to fight at every turn was exhausting for me to watch so I’d imagine it was even more exhausting for her.

Second Lead

This is the second show that I’ve watched this actor in and I liked this guy a lot more in this drama than I did in the other one (My Roommates a Gumiho). Growing up in the family that he did, it wasn’t hard to see why he wanted to break away from those toxic pieces of shit but even as much as I admired him for that, I still didn’t want him to end up with the girl. I liked that he tried his best to protect everyone around him but his bratty attitude toward the main male lead wasn’t a good look for him and the more he balked at their romance and their feelings for each other, the more I was good on him.

The Cast

There are a lot of familiar faces in this drama and because of that, I thought I’d enjoy it a lot more. My favorite characters were everyone from the school. The team of law students that helped Soo Jae with the cases from the clinic. I loved how they each had a different role on the team and I really enjoyed the way that they all worked together.

The antagonists did their jobs well because I hated their asses. All of them. The way that they used their powers for evil, not giving one damn who was hurt in the process and sending innocent people to prison for things that they, themselves did make me mad and I stayed mad for a lot of the show. I especially hate Choi Tae Gook and Choi Joo Wan. Ugh, just saying their names in my head makes me mad. Haha. Anyway, everyone played their roles well.

Final Thoughts

This drama starts off really strong. I was invested in what happened with both Oh Soo Jae and Gong Chan. I came to love their people and the team that they both worked on. Though I don’t normally enjoy the student/teacher relationship, the way that this relationship came about soothed that beast for me so I wasn’t too annoyed about it.

The overall story being told here was emotionally driven and I liked that. Lots of revenge and bad guys that needed taking down and who better to take them down but Oh Soo Jae? I can’t say that I completely loved the entire show since there were chunks of the show that dragged for me and the story writing itself left me wanting more. The ending was satisfying and I’m not at all mad that I watched it.

Final Rating

via GIPHY

3 out of 5

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Review: Our Blues

Posted October 27, 2022 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Our Blues

Starring: Lee Byung Hun, Shin Min Ah, Cha Seung Won, Lee Jung Eun, Uhm Jung Hwa, Han Ji Min, Kim Woo Bin, Kim Hye Ja, Go Doo Shim
Year Released: 2022
Number of Episodes: 20
Genre: Life, Drama, Melodrama, Romance
Country: South Korea
Where I Watched It: Netflix
Recommended By: Park Jimin
Who I Watched It For: Park Jimin

“Our Blues” takes on an omnibus-style drama, which tells the story of diverse characters that are somewhat interconnected, in one way or the other.

Lee Dong Suk, a guy born on the beautiful island of Jeju, sells goods from the mainland in his truck for a living. He meets Min Sun Ah, a girl with a mysterious past, who has come to Jeju to escape that life.

Park Jung Joon, a ship captain, falls in love with Lee Young Ok, a diver with a bright and bubbly personality.

Jung Eun Hee, a fish shop owner, reunites with her past lover Choi Han Soo. They cross paths in Jeju Island when he returns back, after realizing that city life is not for him.

I went into this drama because of Park Jimin. Jimin was singing one of the songs on the OST so to support my fellow Bulletproof Boyscout, I put this drama on my to watch list. I won’t lie. This show started off really slow. The first couple of stories dragged for me and I wasn’t sure that I’d continue because I had to hype myself up to watch the new episodes in the beginning but boy am I glad that I kept with it. With each passing week, I cried a little more and then when Jimin’s song with Ha Sung Woon finally makes its debut? I cried EVEN MORE. The song matched the couple’s story so well that I came to love the song even more as well.

There’s a lot of characters to follow in this show but I loved each and every story, every character, and just the entire town. Lee Young Ok’s character was hard to root for. She was so mysterious, so frustratingly hard to get to know that it turned me off but as her story starts to come to light more and more, I hated her less and less. While I didn’t completely understand the reasons she did the things that she did to and for her sister, in the end, I was glad that she found a home and I was glad that she could stop running from her life.

Each character in this show had a story to tell and we saw them all. Big stories, little stories, stories told through other stories, the way that the writers meshed them all together was pretty great. I can’t tell you which story was my favorite because it’s a tie between the pregnancy story and the granddaughter coming to stay with the grandmother. I cried the most in those two stories but each story was pretty great in their own right. All of the actors did a fantastic job of bringing their characters to life and I loved that each character shined in their own way and added to the village that I came to know and love in the end.

There’s a lot to love with this drama. Lots of great acting, a fantastic OST, and a lot of pretty eye candy to look at as well. The pacing is on the slower side but I thought it worked well with the kind of drama that this was. Everything comes at you but the overall feel of the drama is slow, steady, and oh so good. I really enjoyed this one and I think y’all will too.

Final Rating

4.5 out of 5

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Review: My Liberation Notes

Posted October 13, 2022 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

My Liberation Notes

Starring: Kim Ji Won, Lee Min Ki, Son Seok Koo, Lee El
Year Released: 2022
Number of Episodes: 16
Genre: Drama, Life, Melodrama, Romance
Country: South Korea
Where I Watched It: Netflix
Recommended By: N/A
Who I Watched It For: Kim Ji Won

Set in Sanpo Village where more people leave than remain, the three Yeom siblings, Chang Hee, Mi Jung, and Ki Jung, wish to escape from a life rife with uncertainty.

A mysterious man, Mr. Goo, moves into their neighborhood. He is a drunkard with the look of someone with many burdens and secrets. His cautious personality and preference for keeping to himself make him the subject of gossip. Mi Jung, the youngest and most timid Yeom sibling, decides to approach him.

I’m not sure why I wanted to watch this show, other than I’m a big fan of Kim Ji Won, but I’m so so glad that I did. The show moved at such a slow pace and while normally, I would have lost interest in the show, that wasn’t the case with this show at all. This story benefitted from the slow pacing. There were times when it moved a smidge too slow for my liking but after all was said and done, I could see why it was done that way. The show follows three siblings as they live their lives. They’re all unhappy and trying their best to stay afloat and you could see them all splintering bit by bit.

The oldest sister is unhappy with her dating life, with her home life, and she’s chasing happiness with every fiber of her being. She keeps striking out and the chinks in her armor are cracking but she keeps getting up every day, ready to tackle the next bullshit that comes her way. There were quite a few times when I wanted to smack some sense into her but the more you get to know her, the more that you feel for her because no matter how bad things got for her, she just kept getting back up to face things head on and I admired her for that. I enjoyed her storyline and thought her romance was the right kind of slow burn kind. It worked for me. I loved seeing her really come into her own and made me realize that you’re never too old learn and grow.

The brother was going through his own shit and seeing him trying to find his own happiness and watching him come to the realizations that he did over the course of this show was interesting. I really enjoyed his character and though there were times I wanted to strangle his ass too, I never hated him. I was rooting for him from beginning to end and seeing him struggle to live the kind of life he wanted, with his parents blessings and seeing him with his friends endeared him to me. I was definitely satisfied with the way that his story wrapped up.

The younger sister, that was my dawg. My spirit sister. I connected with her character the most and I rooted for her the loudest. She was struggling through her own issues, her own choices, and on the outside, she looked fine but on the inside, my girl was a hot mess. She was a giant ball of emotions and she got up every day and did her part in helping her family while trying to figure out her life. The romance that blossomed between her and the guy that worked for her dad was different from what I’m used to but it was seriously compelling. I loved that she was able to find peace and that she was able to give him some peace in return. Seeing him drink himself to death was hard but it made me very curious to know his story. To know why he was so hellbent on destroying himself.

Overall, this drama packed a serious punch. The slow storytelling worked at making me come to love each and every single character. It wasn’t easy to watch it, that’s for sure, but sticking with it totally paid off because I wanted each of these characters to find the peace they so desperately wanted and needed. There were times when I had to step away from the show but I knew that I would always come back and the peace I felt when it all wrapped up let me know that I really enjoyed this show. I definitely recommend this one if you’re looking for a solid story about family, about life, and about finding your peace.

Final Rating

via GIPHY

4.5 out of 5

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Eye Candy Friday: Yeon Mi Jung

Posted September 9, 2022 by Rowena in Features | 0 Comments

Eye Candy Friday is something that I’ve been doing since I first started my personal blog way back in 2003. That first personal blog is long gone but I’ve never really grown out of the eye candy phase. I’m always up for some eye candy. Whether it’s a character from a book (male or female, I don’t discriminate), a character from a movie or TV Show, if I loved them and want to gush about how much I loved them, you’ll find them here. Thanks for coming along for the ride.

This week, I’m featuring Yeom Mi Jung from My Liberation Notes. I just really liked her character and portrayal in this drama. She was a huge draw for me tuning in every week. The show itself was pretty heavy but I never missed an episode.

I’ve seen mention around Twitter that this show was really slow and while I agree that the story moved slowly, I thought the pacing felt right with the kind of story they were telling. I thought Kim Ji Won hit this character out of the park. She was my very favorite part of this show and I had a giant girl crush on her. Love her!

Watch My Liberation Notes

My Liberation Notes

My Drama List | Netflix
Starring: Kim Ji Won, Lee Min Ki, Son Seok Koo, Lee El, Lee Ki Woo, Chun Ho Jin
Year Released: 2022
Genre: Romance, Melodrama, Family

Set in Sanpo Village where more people leave than remain, the three Yeom siblings, Chang Hee, Mi Jung, and Ki Jung, wish to escape from a life rife with uncertainty.

A mysterious man, Mr. Goo, moves into their neighbourhood. He is a drunkard with the look of someone with many burdens and secrets. His cautious personality and preference for keeping to himself make him the subject of gossip. Mi Jung, the youngest and most timid Yeom sibling, decides to approach him.

Until next week…enjoy!

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