[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" 2017/07/08,
Time travel is by now a Korean drama staple which has been combined with many genres. Sadly for fans of this aspect, it mostly functions as a gimmick to spice up familiar stories. "Tunnel - Drama" does not break the mold in that regard, but the time bending crime series has a lot of good to offer,...More
[Orion's Drama News] Timeless Kitsch 2017/05/27,
Get your baggy jeans and hoop earrings ready, because "The Best Hit" is here to bring back everything we find embarrassing and sometimes secretly still love from the 90s. Today I take a look at this quirky upcoming title before sharing the usual collection of weekly news. I have also started two of my three new dramas for this exciting season,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 16 Final 2017/05/21,
All good things come to an end and new things begin, even if "Tunnel - Drama" likes to mix the "when" part of it up. Jin-woo is arrested and our characters get closure in the present. It is a time of regret, relief and redemption, but also a time of goodbyes as Gwang-ho decides to take one last run through the titular tunnel in hopes of reuniting with his family in his own time,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 15 2017/05/20,
The clock is ticking as Mok Jin-woo keeps Jae-i alive while he tries to get the location of his fountain pen out of her. The police team mobilizes every person they can get without making the investigation open. Unfortunately, a closed investigation does not help when the killer has a direct line to their office. The team must understand Jin-woo's past to find his location and time is running out,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 14 2017/05/14,
It is not easy discovering that your rugged resilience and athletic running can bend time, but that is exactly the unwanted ego trip our Gwang-ho receives in episode fourteen of "Tunnel - Drama". We have tearful reunions, awkward shifts in relationship dynamics and a killer who knows a bit too much for comfort. The team has to find evidence against him and guess where that evidence can be found,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 13 2017/05/14,
Gwang-ho has returned to his life, but there is a lot of work to be done in the past and present of "Tunnel - Drama". As our time traveling hero struggles to create a case against Mok Jin-woo at a time where technology is still underdeveloped, our team in the present start a search for their partner and look into the reason for his disappearance. Despite Gwang-ho's return, the present is not changing and we soon find out the why,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 12 2017/05/01,
Our two killers finally meet and Jeong Ho-yeong starts a new game upon his departure in episode twelve of "Tunnel - Drama". The police close in on Mok Jin-woo's identity as he also closes in on who Gwang-ho really is. Just as things are about to become solved, another impossible occurrence surfaces, leaving our hero with new obstacles for the next episode,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 11 2017/04/30,
Gwang-ho's realization of Jae-i's identity hits him like a ton of bricks, but time is of the essence even for time travelers, as Jeong Ho-yeong's arrest means that evidence needs to be found. As Jae-i assumed, the criminal's mother seems to be a key figure and so the importance of guardian and society influence is a concept which is present throughout the episode. Meanwhile, Mok Jin-woo is eying a new chess buddy,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 10 2017/04/24,
Our killers get increasingly frustrated in episode ten of "Tunnel - Drama", as the only person on the side of the law who can understand their signatures is Jae-i. Aside from delivering a timeline and recap of the murders, the episode also presents our killers with some surprises. After a conflict with Gwang-ho, Jae-i makes a bold and very dangerous decision about her involvement in the case,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 9 2017/04/23,
A frightening, yet not unanticipated twist is finally delivered in episode nine of "Tunnel - Drama" and it is about to cause many new concerns for our leads and new questions for us. The time has also come to learn more about Jeong Ho-yeong's past and the focus starts to shift toward finding out what drives him and what has caused the particular preferences that seem to govern his M.O,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 8 2017/04/16,
Grab a hanky and brace for a very personal, very emotional episode of "Tunnel - Drama". Seon-jae can no longer doubt Gwang-ho's identity and so our in-the-know duo becomes a trio. In the process of wrapping up a new case, Gwang-ho picks up on Yeon-sook's trail and finally gets to know her fate. Meanwhile, Jae-i notices the change of M.O in the serial killings just as Jeong Ho-yeong begins again, a decision which seems to be related to Seon-jae's contact with him,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 7 2017/04/15,
It is revelations galore in episode seven of "Tunnel - Drama" as the modern Gwang-ho's connection to our leads becomes clearer. Gwang-ho's identity is compromised as Seon-jae refuses to let go. Meanwhile, hidden parts of Jae-i's past are about to make their entrance, and it looks like Gwang-ho's protective behavior towards her is exactly what surely many of us will have guessed it to be by now,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 6 2017/04/10,
My wish to be given time for processing all of our information is granted, because episode six of "Tunnel - Drama" takes a break from exploring the persons involved in the standalone cases and instead uses its new crime to progress the main plot and tease at more possible killers. I see suspects everywhere, some of which are faces we know from the past and some of which might still be hidden,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 5 2017/04/09,
Isolation is the prominent theme in episode five of "Tunnel - Drama" and the series uses it to reveal its cards about some topics which have been teased. Seon-jae's identity is provided and we now see his issues clearly. While investigating a case cut off from the world, our characters have to deal with some of their own demons and approach the hidden culprit not only with evidence, but their own humanity in mind,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 4 2017/04/04,
We take a small break from the serial killings in "Tunnel - Drama" as Gwang-ho and the station group try to solve a series of break ins and a related murder. Seong-sik confronts Gwang-ho with his confession and that brings about a bigger need for caution on their part. Episode four also provides us with some much needed backstory for Jae-i and Seon-jae. The identity of the Gwang-ho born in 1988 is revealed and the serial killer resurfaces,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 3 2017/04/01,
It is starting to dawn on our protagonist that perhaps there is a reason behind his impossible situation. Episode three of "Tunnel - Drama" is all about ghosts from the past and Gwang-ho thinks that catching them will be his ticket back home. Seon-jae and Jae-i form a rapport as they try to find the killer while our hero is left to fend for himself. As he starts making the connection between the past murders and the current one, Seong-sik becomes suspicious,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 2 2017/03/27,
The time travel element is introduced in episode two of "Tunnel - Drama" and it comes with some unnerving albeit helpful manifestations for our stranded detective. Gwang-ho deals with the shock of his current situation while at the same time trying to fit in and keep up. We get a new main character who is shrouded in mystery, but familiar people and faces from the past are also complicating the mystery and Gwang-ho's confusion,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 1 2017/03/26, "Tunnel - Drama" wastes no time and throws our kind detective, Park Gwang-ho, right into the deep end. A series of murders take place in the otherwise peaceful area of Hwayang and while no one in the force can even fathom the possibility of a serial killer, our hero starts to pick up on the similarities as more and more women die at the hands of the elusive murderer no one can close in on,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Preview] "Tunnel - Drama" 2017/03/18,
Dramaland has been meticulously churning out time travel and crime dramas lately so "Tunnel - Drama" is nothing revolutionary. At the same time, the idea of a detective from the past dealing with modern society after being time-thrown into it might just give this one a little fresh edge.
Detective Park Gwang-ho (Choi Jin-hyuk) travels thirty years into the future while in pursuit of a serial killer. In the present, he will have to work with detective Kim Seon-jae (Yoon Hyun-min) and criminal psychologist Sin Jae-i (Lee Yoo-young) in order to reach his goal,...More
[Orion's Drama News] Hallyu Army Blues 2017/02/04,
The new drama season has begun and more are coming up, including office/terminal illness drama "Radiant Office", which is gathering quite the cast. In more general drama news, I briefly contemplate the issue of Hallyu stardom in relation to military service, as 2017 marks the departure of many stars and the need for quick replacements,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 21 - Final 2015/01/13,
The final episode changes genres somewhat, as almost the entirity of the runtime takes place in a courtroom. This shouldn't be that surprising, really, given that the characters are all prosecutors, but the shift is a somewhat odd one. Technically the trial is just a rehash of information that we already know. Even the final twist that helps the team take down the bad guys once and for all has been pretty obviously and clearly foreshadowed, though it's never actually stated outright until the final showdown,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 20 2015/01/12,
Almost all of the outstanding questions regarding the past case are clearly answered here, and the explanations we get aren't terribly reassuring. In short, most of the terrible mistakes that resulted in tragedy were in fact well-meaning ones. In fact, on multiple levels the question is raised whether from a legal perspective the crimes were actually even that serious. Not that many people actually made a premeditated effort to commit capital offenses,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 19 2015/01/06,
You have probably noticed throughout this drama that every so often Dong-chi and Kang Soo get into a big fight with a huge mob of men who appear to be gangsters, although they have somewhat more legitimacy than that. The loose end resolved this episode regards the existence of this large mob. They're not really brought to justice exactly- that much will likely be beyond the scope of "Pride and Prejudice". The main point of this segment is to emphasize that these back room deals are being dealt with in the immediate sense,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 18 2015/01/05,
Technically the story is in an epilogue phase right now. The main culprit has been apprehended. The lingering question is about the unaddressed coincidences. I appreciate that the characters in "Pride and Prejudice" aren't just taking a victory lap, even if that's obviously what Yeol-moo wants to do. The conspiracy to date has already been so outrageously complicated that it's hard to imagine the entire sequence of events could be unraveled so easily and so quickly,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 17 2014/12/23,
And just like that, it's over. There was, in fact, a very good reason why Hee-man spent most of the last episode off camera. While it's gratifying to know that the bad guys aren't the only ones who uses heavy misdirection to manipulate the situation into their favor, at the same time it's a little aggravating realizing that a lot of the confusion in the story lately was in fact the result of screenwriting tricks designed to prevent too much information from becoming too obvious too quickly,...More
[Spoiler] 'Pride and Prejudice' Choi Jin-hyuk and Baek Jin-hee apprehend chief prosecutor No Joo-hyun 2014/12/23, Source,
On the 17th episode of MBC drama, "Pride and Prejudice", which aired on December 23rd, Han Yeol-moo (Baek Jin-hee) was furious while she charged chief prosecutor, Lee Jong-gon (No Joo-hyun), of kidnapping.
Han Yeol-moo discovered the actual criminal who kidnapped her brother was Lee Jong-gon (No Joo-hyun). As Lee Jong-gon also sensed what Han Yeol-moo discovered, he tried to dissolve her team; Han Yeol-moo went to Lee Jong-gon and interrogated him. She said, "My brother died 15 years ago. Hanbyeol was only 6 years old then. He was kidnapped by mistake and murdered while you tried to cover the crime by creating the special prosecution team. Did you order the kidnapping and murder of my brother? Or did you only order the kidnapping, but things went south and you had to murder him too,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 16 2014/12/22,
It's back to mostly internal soul-searching here, as the team analyzes evidence they already have rather than finding anything new. Oddly enough, even though Hee-man has been a huge factor lately, as well as the entire emotional impetus behind the cliffhanger, he's barely even present in this episode at all. The threat at this point is less the single person who may or may not be the mastermind as it is the gaggle of gangsters molling about,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 15 2014/12/16,
The questions brought up last episode are mostly answered here. Events have clearly been orchestrated in such a way to set up an obvious scapegoat. Technically this revelation is the cliffhanger, but such is the nature of "Pride and Prejudice" that it's much easier to work out what the drama's doing by going backward rather than forward. We've finally confirmed one suspiciously friendly character as being a villain, although this person's overall angle remains entirely unclear,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 14 2014/12/15,
It's another confusing episode- confusing in a good way, I guess, since the modus operandi of "Pride and Prejudice" at this point is to keep us guessing. So, for that matter, do the villains. There are strong indications right from the beginning that they actually do want Dong-chi to succeed, to some limited unknown extent. Help ends up coming from a rather unexpected place right before the situation appears to turn suddenly and harshly lethal,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 13 2014/12/09,
The characters are entering a period of convergence. One villain is explicitly and surprisingly given a face when he has an unexpected encounter with Dong-chi while he's out investigating with Yeol-moo. It's odd to see how in many ways the bad guys are in fact enabling the investigation through their hurried attempts at trying to pull a last-minute cover-up. It makes the lead characters notice activitiy in areas they might not otherwise see,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 12 2014/12/08,
Note the way the characters talk to each other in this drama. It only got serious recently, and it was barely present at the beginning at all, but the only way I can really describe their tone is just hostile politeness. This reaches its most ridiculous point when, right after a huge massive streetfight, a character no one even recognizes shows up and starts speaking in the same measured tone. It's not even really sarcasm, just...a middle ground between open hostility and formality?,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 11 2014/12/02,
While I can understand why investigations into the case of Yeol-moo's brother are inconsistent, keeping track of theoretically ongoing investigations is a somewhat more complicated hassle. I like what "Pride and Prejudice" is doing on a thematic level. It's taking a simple case of sexual harassment and relating it to larger, systemic abuses of power rather than some ill-defined notion of patriarchy. All the same it's a little difficult to give that plot thread the full attention it deserves when the drama keeps zig-zagging around romance and parental issues,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 10 2014/12/01,
Enough clues have been put together in regards to the overall mystery that Yeol-moo and Dong-chi are able to make serious progress here. Oddly, they're only really putting together one clue that us viewers have already been aware of for some time. But it's clear from how emotional Yeol-moo gets that this is the difference between theory and practice for them. They might actually be able to find out what happened to her brother. They've been groping about in the dark for so long that it's a shock for them to actually hit something solid,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 9 2014/11/25,
Very little seems to actually be happening at this point in "Pride and Prejudice". I hope you liked the cliffhanger from last time because this episode just restates it. The situation has been thoroughly analyzed in pretty much every way imaginable. The main lingering unanswered questions are how and why, and without even a side investigation for anyone to focus their talents on, the lack of answers here is a bit annoying,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 8 2014/11/24,
This episode is a look at what the investigators do in their off-hours when work is obviously on their mind. For Yeol-moo and Dong-chi this is, unsurprisingly, to go over in minute detail all the information they have regarding what happened to Yeol-moo's brother. Other characters actually let loose a little, and surprisingly enough, it's the ones that are having fun who end up causing the mess that no one's sure what to deal with,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 7 2014/11/17,
I'm appreciating the odd home life of the investigators more and more lately. These characters have a very stressful job, not so much because they're dealing with criminals, but because they're constantly forced to stop and admit that there aren't really any more obvious clues at the moment. Coming from that circumstance, it's really nice to be able to come home and just do normal human interaction stuff for awhile. Talking to a kid, for example, is fun, even if I'm increasingly unsure that the kid should even be there,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 6 2014/11/11,
Last episode's accident takes on immediate focus here, and for a time "Pride and Prejudice" once again does a great job reminding us what the difference is between TV investigators and real one. I'm genuinely not sure I've ever consumed a piece of fiction where one of the good guys accidentally kills a criminal, and this is actually treated like a bad thing. Usually their buddies bend over backwards to say it wasn't their fault, and anybody so impertinent as to suggest the loss of human life is always tragic regardless of circumstance is branded as a naïve do-gooder,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 5 2014/11/10,
We open up with an exploration of Dong-chi's involvement with Yeol-moo's little brother's case. No information is hidden here for the sake of dramatic impact later on, even if the entire set-up to begin with was a fairly fantastic coincidence. Even though we know how the story's going to end, there's quite a bit of tension going on with young Dog-chi. On a basic level, this is the story of his greatest failure, even if at the time he was just a kid with no way to know how to handle this kind of crisis situation,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 4 2014/11/04,
For all the hoopla regarding the technical problems involved in pursuing the current case, the actual mystery resolves with relatively little real difficulties. The clue that ends up bringing everything together ends up being an observation regarding additional evidence that was implied to have existed by some of the CCTV footage, but which the characters haven't investigated because it's a bit of a lateral thinking puzzle. In all fairness given the sheer quantity of CCTV footage on display here it's understandable that no one thought of this sooner,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 3 2014/11/03,
The emphasis this episode is on office politics rather than an actual mystery. I suppose it was inevitable, really. Yeol-moo is still a greenhorn investigator, and what with all the general heroism of the first two episodes, she hasn't really had a chance yet to appreciate the fact that they can't save everyone. What's more, even mostly sympathetic characters can come off quite heartlessly when placed in a situation where they can either go home or follow-up on mostly useless clues,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 2 2014/10/28,
I really admire just how professional all the characters in "Pride and Prejudice" are. Yeol-moo and Dong-chi, rather than trying to keep their past relationship a secret for no good reason, are completely open about the situation. Yes, it's mildly embarrassing, but someone was going to figure it all out sooner or later. This also allows for other characters to have their personalities fleshed out by reacting to this unexpected situation. Typically, this too is done professionally. All around the investigative team is a class act,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 1 2014/10/27,
This drama quite literally wastes no time with introductions. It barely even offers any explanation as to the premise. Dong-chi (played by Choi Jin-hyuk) is an experienced criminal investigator. Yeol-moo (played by Baek Jin-hee) is a rookie criminal investigator who used to date him. OK, all the character relationships are cleared up? Then let's shut up about everyone's personal lives and get right to the mystery!,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 20 (final) 2014/09/08,
"Fated to Love You" has come to a heartwarming end. It was very neatly concluded. This finale's ending was the victim of a lack of material as it crawled along to the finish. Despite that, it was still satisfying to see Geon and Mi-young get their happy ending and live as a family with everyone who is important to them. The finale does not reflect the rest of the drama, which, in general, moved along at a decent clip. The episode was packed with sappy romantics and a reliving of the Macau incident that began the fated relationship,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 19 2014/09/06,
This episode was very slice-of-life in that it focused on a narrow scope. It dealt with two issues: Geon's illness and how it affected and continues to affect his family; and, Mi-young's mother inability to approve of their marriage. The simplicity of the plot made screen time for some very sweet interactions of our main couple with each other and with their loved ones. It could also be indicative of very little plot left to be had, but "Fated to Love You" is always at its best when it is adorable and winning. While having a parent oppose a marriage is nothing new to drama, having a mother as level-headed, open, and caring as Mi-young's mother is rare indeed,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 18 2014/09/02,
Misunderstandings work themselves out in this episode of "Fated to Love You". All that is left is raw emotion and the core issues that spawned the misunderstandings. It's time for everyone for everyone to come to terms with Geon's inherited disease and what that disease has done to his family. With a little help from her friends, Mi-young has learned of Geon's illness and why he pushed her away,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 17 2014/09/01,
This episode of "Fated to Love You" really proved how strongly written the two main characters are written. Despite mistakes that they make and misunderstandings that they have, they retain the traits that make them endearing. It is those traits that will bring the estranged lovebird back together. It is this couple, and their supportive families, that carry the show. They are its core and strength when the secondary plot lines fail. It is also the incredibly ability of Jang Hyuk and Jang Nara to emote that keep the show emotionally tethered to its audience,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 16 2014/08/24,
This episode was the last episode of Geon's charade as Kim Young-ja, the "woman" who bought Mi-young's painting and gave her emotional support. It is also the end of this stage in this stage of their relationship, the stage where they're forced to reckon with lingering emotions and the repercussions of splitting so suddenly. While the relationship between Mi-young and Geon is full of nuance and development, the other relationships stall in wait for the last phase of the drama. It is good that Geon's Young-ja charade ended as it was just about to reach the end of its useful life,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 15 2014/08/24,
Mi-young and Geon are dancing around each other now, trying to make heads or tails of their ill-defined relationship while everyone else watches and waits for the fated couple to work things out. Words are what trip the couple up along with their messy past. Both Mi-young and Geon are in denial about their feelings for each other,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 14 2014/08/24,
"Fated to Love You" is in the midst of re-establishing the relationship between Geon and Mi-young - that is to say, they really don't have a relationship anymore. It is also now that we see that not all is well with Mi-young, and that Geon cannot seem to let her go. The episode is inwardly turned as it explores the troubles of not only Mi-young and Geon, but of their families and Daniel. Se-ra is still conspicuously underdeveloped. The biggest revelation this episode is the fact that Mi-young has a decided aversion to all things related to Geon,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 13 2014/08/20,
"Fated to Love You" has come full circle since its beginning and is now continuing forward. The main couple has been molded by their experiences and they have come out stronger and a little wiser. Not only is there character development this episode, but the humor was brought back detracting from the gravity of the tragedies Mi-young and Geon have experienced. In the three years that have passed, Mi-young has become a famous artist, but still keeps her humble, kindly demeanor,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 12 2014/08/19,
"Fated to Love You" has taken a complete turn into darkness. The intensity of the turn was shocking, but very well executed. The episode could have been overworked and overly dramatic. Instead it was timed with finesse that maximized the major events as well as the smaller moments. The pacing and cinematography of the episode were its strengths,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 11 2014/08/16,
All the happiness in "Fated to Love You" wasn't fated to last any longer. Episode 11 was as heart-wrenching and intense as the Mi-young/Geon couple has been sweet for the past ten episodes. It was a difficult turning point based on the wearied plot trope of amnesia, but it was well-played. Geon loses his memory and spends the hour struggling to get it back and greatly hurting Mi-young in the process,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 10 2014/08/11,
Circumstances take a turn for the worst for the blissfully happy married couple. Although they are Happy Together, it is the world that refuses to leave them to their own devices. If it did, this wouldn't be quite as dramatic a drama. What is beautiful about this main coupling is the genuine affection between them,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 9 2014/08/11,
"Fated to Love You" is too cute for its own good. It feels like the calm before the storm. Geon has seemingly dealt with his past, choosing Mi-young and their baby. Mi-young is growing stronger as well, bringing the couple closer. The only negatives in the show now are Yong and his scheming mother, and that the build up to the adorable happenings is ridiculously formulaic. The show follows very predictable routes to get to the warm and fuzzy adorable scenes, but when they arrive, the moments are very rewarding,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 8 2014/08/08,
"Fated to Love You" is a modern day Cinderella with more depth and a prince who is dashing because of how well he treats his princess. He can't protect her from everything, but the protection and support he does give bolsters her and gives her strength to go out on her own. She in turn softens his heart and shows him what true kindness is, giving him the strength and will go protect her. There has been no doubt, for some episodes now, that Geon and Mi-young are attracted to each other and enjoy being together,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 7 2014/08/07,
"Fated to Love You" keeps up a lively pace into this seventh episode - it's also a lot of fun. Mi-young and Geon learn more about each other, learn that they like spending time with each other, and learn about the process of parenthood. They have a lovely partnership forming that will no doubt be trampled with with Se-ra comes back into the picture. While this episode began with a big misunderstanding, through humor and Geon's earnestness, not only do Mi-young and Geon grow closer, but Geon earns the respect of his in-laws,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 6 2014/08/04,
Family is key to "Fated to Love You". It is what brings the characters closer and makes this show hit so close to home for every viewer. Cohabitation hjinks have begun as well as burgeoning feelings on the part of the most reluctant character: Gun. He and Daniel warm to the kind-hearted Mi-young as she becomes more involved with becoming a mother. Gun has grown up in a broken family with dead parents, his father's mistress and son, and a very demanding extended family,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated To Love You" Episode 4 2014/07/28,
"Fated to Love You" has hit a sweet balance between laugh-out-loud humor and the very serious matter of having a child. It confines the humor to transitional scenes and gives the heavier moments room to expand and then settle. Last episode dealt with the immediate reactions to pregnancy while this episode focused on the aftermath - the decisions a man and a woman face when a baby is created as the result of irresponsible behavior,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 3 2014/07/27,
"Fated to Love You" gets cuter by the episode. What makes it so fun is the mix of the serious and the goofy ways the characters deal with problems. The Korean drama's take also is more concise than the original, shortening some of the drawn out sequences that Taiwanese dramas prefer. This gives the show a brisk pace that suits the startling discoveries made this episode. What adds to the urgency of the pace is that the fun Geon/Mi-young pairing is not only full of chemistry, but that they are on opposite sides of a political battle,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 2 2014/07/27,
From hijinx to understanding, "Fated to Love You has worked it's way across the emotional spectrum to bring the main couple into a commiserative friendship. Both of them have been hurt by love, and both of them find comfort in sharing that hurt. In order to make the couple sleep together, all sorts of things go wrong,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated To Love You" Episode 1 2014/07/25,
The first episode of "Fated to Love You" was fun, whimsical, and full of the zany Taiwanese drama style while still remaining true to Korean drama style. The characters were wacky, but endearing, and the plot moved quickly towards the event that sets of the main couple's journey. From the get-go, "Fated to Love You" bolted out of the gates, giving us some over-the-top humor with male lead Lee Geon (Jang Hyuk) that was a milder version of the drawn out scenarios that Taiwanese dramas favor,...More
Jung Woo-sung, "I watch out for female looks" 2014/07/07, Source, Jung Woo-sung mentioned his ideal type of woman.
He said, "Of course I want to get married. I was thinking around my mid 40's, but it's not like I can decide on what's exactly going to happen. Everyone feels lonely at some point. However, I don't think I am that lonely – I try not to be",...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Grandpas Over Flowers Investigation Team" Episode 6 2014/06/13,
If this drama's going to insist on making everything into a murder mystery, it at least manages to set the tone for the proceedings properly here by quickly introducing an element of silliness- a great deal of the invesigation revolves around a fortune teller. He's a pretty elaborately dressed one, too, and appears to have knowledge of events that should be impossible to know,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 21 Final 2014/04/05,
In the first episode of "Emergency Couple" a specific point was made of the fact that the emergency room is a terrible place for relationships, and the interns were distraught at what the experience was going to do to their social lives. I bring this up now to note that there was almost no evidence of this throughout the drama's run. The doctors have consistently had an inordinate amount of conveniently timed social meetings with each other, and this episode is no different.
The fundamentals are strong, as usual. In terms of the romantic comedy genre "Emergency Couple" continues to hit all the right notes, having moments that are cute and funny,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 20 2014/04/04,
The main conflict this episode is over the prospect of Jin-hee and Chang-min going to a movie. It's about as high stakes as it sounds, and the tension is oddly lacking for a penultimate episode. The movie is "Thread of Lies" by the way. It's difficult to guess how we're supposed to relate the story of that particular film to the proceedings here. I guess they're both about appreciating the things you love in life before they're gone forever?
It's as good a theme as any really, but none of the characters in "Emergency Couple" are in any immediate danger of leaving,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 19 2014/03/29,
This episode is devoted to Chang-min's hands. It's pretty much exactly as dirty as it sounds too. The humor in "Emergency Couple" can get crude sometimes, but it helps a lot that ithe drama's heart is in the right place, even if Chang-min is not very good at finding Jin-hee's. The same brand of cheesiness as usual, then. But now that I can empathize with the leads the general tone comes off a lot better
I do think Chang-min and Jin-hee have learned a little bit from their ordeals,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 18 2014/03/28,
The loveline between Jin-hee and Chang-min is getting to be a little corny. Sure, it's sweet at times, but the dialogue strains itself with all the cliches. An attentive viewer will note that the dynamic between these two has been completely reversed from what it was earlier. Now instead of Chang-min trying to persuade a skeptical Jin-hee, an enlivened Jin-hee is trying to convince Chang-min that they can start again.
I do like that the characters themselves acknowledge the breadth of the cliches at this point,...More
[Hancinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 17 2014/03/22,
The opening of this episode extends the basic morose sequence we had last time, as the fallout from Tae-seok's stay in the hospital is finalized, and the consequences come into effect. There isn't much more going on here than there was in the last episode. "Emergency Couple" is in the awkward place of trying to wring drama out of a character we don't actually know all that much about. The best that can be hoped for is interesting character interactions- but everyone acts about the way we'd expect them to at this point.
Much more interesting material abounds as the episode continues its discussions of the divorce themes,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 16 2014/03/21,
Almost the entirity of this episode is built around the drama of whether or not Chang-min's father is going to survive his stay at the hospital. The ability of this conflict to inspire any kind of real tension is greatly damaged by how long the action goes on- there are multiple false starts that end up inconclusive. Also I'd have a much easier time caring about this person if the drama actually explored his character in much detail. Oh Tae-seok is played by the always excellent Kang Shin-il but that's about all that's going on here,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 15 2014/03/15,
I'm pretty sure that real hospitals have policies against ex-patients making repeat visits for social purposes. Especially if those ex-patients are bearing gifts, or trying to make administrative requests. Obviously, "Emergency Couple" is not dealing with a real hospital, but this disconnect between life and drama shows really badly in episodes like this. It establishes all too clearly that the drama is creating conflict artificially, and the ensuing outbursts are just painful to watch. Also it makes the poor baby cry. And just when I'd been admiring how good an actor that baby is, too,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 14 2014/03/14,
The drama gets a much needed boost in the characterization department with the appearance of patients. No, not plot devices which exist solely to demonstrate the medical abilities of the main cast, which is all we've seen so far. Actual people. Specifically, a little boy who has self-worth issues thanks to a lack of parents, and a priest who's rather crabby about young people these days and the lack of respect they show to the institution of marriage.
The relevance of these scenes is indirect, obviously, and I doubt we're going to see either of these people ever again,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 13 2014/03/08,
...And now it would seem "Emergency Couple" has moved on to boilerplate romantic drama territory. There's not really much in the way of jokes anymore. The only particularly funny one this time around is a bit of simple wordplay. I actually really wanted to know more about that guy who was brought into the hospital. How many job-related accidents can a person in that profession have that necessitate going to the emergency room?
But no, the doctoring this time around is terribly casual, almost blase really,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 12 2014/03/07,
So I...guess this is just a romantic comedy now? That's about the only way I can interpret the events of this episode. Chang-min appears to have just about completely forgotten the events that led up to his divorce. Jin-hee seems to have some vague memory of what happened, and is certainly putting up more resistance to the idea. But no matter how I try to cut it, "Emergency Couple" is definitely trying to make a case that these two works together as a couple,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 11 2014/03/01,
Well, the drama's finally come up with something for Ji-hye to do- Ji-hye, the ex-girlfriend doctor of Cheon-soo, in case you've forgotten. Weird factoid for today- Choi Yeo-jin, the actress playing Ji-hye, is actually younger than Song Ji-hyo, who plays Jin-hee. I'm not sure whether this age difference is also intended to be reflected in the characters, but in any event, the fact that Ji-hye can only be in her mid-thirties at the most makes her new plot thread all the stranger.
Here's what we've know about Ji-hye up until now,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 10 2014/02/28,
Poor Jin-hee. It's never a particularly fun time when mooching relatives, having burned all their other bridges some way or another, force themselves on a household using "but think of the baby!" as an excuse. I like the frustration the early portion of this episode gives off. Of course Jin-hee's mad but she can't be that mad. It's not like her younger sister, younger sister's husband, and baby are awful people or anything. They're just messy idiots.
Not much is really done with that focus this time around though. For the most part the emphasis is on that simple expression- what do you care? Chang-min is suddenly taking every hypothetical romantic infraction against Jin-hee bizarrely personally,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 9 2014/02/22,
The main conflict this time is kind of dumb. However, it's dumb mainly because the original storytelling device itself is also dumb. Yes, "Emergency Couple" has finally forced its main characters to question the logic of their pretending to be strangers. Pretty good timing too. This kind of plotting goes down much easier on the edge of jokes than it would on the end of a serious dramatic conflict.
Case in point- the whole thing with the baby. It's hard to tell whether the baby is really dying as opposed to just crying,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 8 2014/02/21,
The drama appears to have finally settled on a consistent tone- light romantic comedy drama. The emphasis is now on how Jin-hee and Chang-min react to specific, clearly defined situations rather than their just generally overreacting to everything. "Emergency Couple" is now actively pushing the Jin-hee / Cheon-soo loveline, and the tonal shift is coming at the best possible time. The romance simply wouldn't be plausible if Jin-hee was acting the same way she did in previous episodes. Here the scenes, and the related flashbacks to scenes in previous episodes, come off as cute,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 7 2014/02/14,
Jin-hee has, as usual, gotten herself into a big unnecessary mess by overreacting. What makes the opening of this episode different, though, is that she actually faces meaningful consequences. Of course her sister makes a clean getaway. And of course the people who actually run the club have no interest in helping Jin-hee track her down. That's not even getting into the general embarassment factor. Yes, Jin-hee has good reason to be mad- that doesn't excuse her failure to act diplomatically though.
I'm not sure how but this mess of an event goes a long way to helping rehabilitate the characterization,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 6 2014/02/08,
We get more exposure of the supporting cast than usual here, and I find that as characters, the other interns tend to be a lot more tolerable than our two leads. They just have a much better sense of restraint. This episode one of them does a lot of talking with Chang-min's mom. And that's all it is, just talking. As horribly unreasonable and unlikable as Chang-min's mother has been throughout the drama, it's totally possible to get her to be cooperative just by being polite and non standoffish.
It's too bad Jin-hee is having such trouble with this restraint,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 5 2014/02/07,
I really hope "Emergency Couple" just up and ditches the whole Jin-hee and Chang-min are pretending to be complete strangers angle. The misunderstandings it creates among their co-workers are much worse than whatever benefits they think they're reaping by not having to acknowledge each other publically. And the downsides of this should be really obvious by now, given how much time they have to spend negotiating with each other in private over random trivialities.
What's most puzzling to me about this drama is how little time anyone spends actually doing their job,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 4 2014/02/01,
Cheon-soo (played by Lee Pil-mo) is the mean superior in this drama. His main shtick is being extremely unnecessarily harsh on the interns, or really anyone who needs it, in order to establish that it is really super important for everyone to take this job as seriously as possible. Lee Pil-mo does good work here, and there's nothing wrong with the character directly. The problem is that every other character in this drama is of such questionable competence that most of the time I find myself wondering why Cheon-soo never follows through on his threats,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 3 2014/01/31,
...And so we get right into the sexual tension. Honestly this storyline development is a fairly annoying one. Remember that until the last episode, none of these characters had ever met each other in a working environment before. And for the most part no one did much work in that second episode either. We're still very much in the early phase of the drama where people are still feeling each other out.
And the immediate conclusion we get about why Jin-hee works so hard to save Chang-min's life is that she likes him,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 2 2014/01/25,
The perspective shifts this time around from Chang-min to Jin-hee. Jin-hee has broken the cardinal rule of pretty much any social relationship ever- make a good first impression. In retrospect it probably would have been a better idea for her to show up late with a doctor's note rather than stumble out into the middle of the introduction still wearing her dirty clothes from last night. Not just Chang-min, but all of the other interns are icy toward Jin-hee, probably because they don't think she'll be around that long,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Emergency Couple" Episode 1 2014/01/24,
What most immediately jumps out about the lead characters in "Emergency Couple" is that they're not particularly likable. They're not unlikable, exactly, but from the very beginning there's a sort of seething resentment and aggression that's rather unsettling. Chang-min (played by Choi Jin-hyuk) is trying to push product. Jin-hee (played by Song Ji-hyo) is trying to avoid conflict. Neither character is particularly good at what they do. This leads to a spectacular breakdown where they inevitably vent their frustrations on the one person who they can most easily hurt- each other,...More
"The Heirs" Lee Min-ho's gluttony 2013/11/24, Source, Lee Min-ho awed people with his gluttony as Kim Tan from the SBS drama "The Heirs" who was trying to resolve all misunderstandings and conflicts.
On the thirteenth episode of "The Heirs" Kim Tan revealed to his fiancé Rachel Yoo (Kim Ji-won) and her family that he was the son of a concubine and was driven out of the house my his father Kim Nam-yoon (Jung Dong-hwan) without a penny. He went to his brother Kim Won's (Choi Jin-hyuk) house. He pretended to be bright and cheerful and started eating as he said, "I was hit by father. He didn't say anything when I packed but just chased me out without any money. Is it because I'm the son of a concubine? I feel pretty sad",...More
Ji Sung VS Kwon Sang-woo VS Lee Min-ho 2013/09/25, Source,
A new battle has begun between the three broadcasting companies now that Chuseok is over. Fierce new dramas take over Wednesday and Thursday nights with different genres.
The first drama to be mentioned is the KBs 2TV drama "Secrets".
"Secrets" was pre-sold to Japan, China, Vietnam, Cambodia and other Asian countries even before it was shown in Korea and it tells the story of a man who falls in love with the woman who kills his lover,...More
Choi Jin-hyuk reappears in "Gu Family Book" 2013/05/10, Source,
Actor Choi Jin-hyuk claimed that reappearing in the MBC drama "Gu Family Book" was 'pressuring'.
He said, "I think I have to become better since the first and second episodes were good". He's going to appear more often in the drama. He was going to appear again in the middle of the drama but it wasn't clear then. The great demand for his character also played a part in having effect,...More
Lee Sun-min, 37, a TV personality and the elder brother of popular singer-songwriter Tablo, is creating a stir on the Internet with his critic,...More
Korea drama fest kicks off today 2006/10/26, Source, The first Korea Drama Festival kicks off its four-day run today in the southern city of Jinju, South Gyeongsang Province, with a number of Korean TV stars attending the event.
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