Remake of "The Mentalist" on its way 2017/09/02, Source, "The Mentalist". It sure is strange writing that in relation to a Korean drama, but I felt the same about "Criminal Minds". This is such a staple of the psychological crime drama that I'm not surprised to see it taken on by the Korean market. I expect more like it in the future. But for now, who will be our Simon Baker,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" 2014/08/09,
There are a lot of reasons why some dramas just go wrong. They range from lacking material or creators to schedule issues to extensions and really remind us how difficult the current system is to create in. To create something good and have it remain good. It is also often impossible for outsiders to know exactly what went wrong aside from seeing the bad result of it. Sadly, 'Triangle - Drama' has been plagued with many issues, lacking material being what ultimately makes it all fall apart,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 26 Final 2014/07/29,
The drama's last interesting storyline question is resolved almost immediately. So, now that Yang-ha has been taken care of, how does "Triangle - Drama" spend its last hour? Not doing a whole lot I'm afraid. Bok-tae hides in a hole for awhile as the other characters try to figure out where he is. And I really do mean awhile- every possible trick is extended to stretch out this search, including a subplot about a minion Bok-tae has apparently been abusing this whole time?,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 25 2014/07/28,
The stage is set for the final engagement in the last episode, and it occurs to me, I'm not sure there ever was a plan. Ever since getting out of prison Dong-soo and Yeong-dal have mostly just been running counter-attacks instead of actually pitching their own operation. I'm not sure we ever actually even got to the part that made it clear why it was necessary for Dong-soo to learn casino stuff. It's just more Bok-tae. Hard to imagine he used to seem like a credible threat,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 24 2014/07/22,
It's fortunate that the goons working for the good guys are more competent than the ones working for the bad guys. Honestly it's pretty ridiculous- it took an entire episode of bloviating for them to manage one incompetent assassination attempt. By contrast, Yeong-dal's team is immediately on the case for an effective retaliation that pretty much nips most of the gang-related conflict in the drama right in the bud,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 23 2014/07/21,
I think I've finally figured out what Sin-hye is bringing to the team. She delivers all the messages. No, seriously, I paid close attention to see if Sin-hye ever actually does anything aside from just sit at a table, talking to one person, then to appear again later sitting at another table (or the same table) talking to a different person about what she just talked about to the last person in the line,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 22 2014/07/15,
I hope you liked Yeong-dal's ambivalence about his new brotherly bonds last episode, because this time it's pretty much the exact same thing all over again with Yang-ha. I do appreciate that the script itself admits it's hard to know what to call these guys anymore. I've been sticking with their new names since those are the ones that are used most of the time, but at the same time, their being brothers is pretty much the whole point of the drama,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 21 2014/07/14,
After some vagaries Dong-soo makes clear to Yeong-dal that Yang-ha is the last brother, and from this point Yeong-dal spends most of the episode sulking. This is pretty understandable, given that they've spent most of the drama being horribly antagonistic to each other. Although I did find it curious that the scene where Yang-ha sent Yeong-dal to jail wasn't included. Personally I'd think that was the most humiliating put down in the relationship, not the one where the little brother mocks Yeong-dal's English,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 20 2014/07/08,
And once again, gambling makes up the dramatic stakes on which the hopes of our characters are hinged. Given the narrative set-up this was probably inevitable. The bad guys were going to have to take on some sort of counter-move in order for there to be any kind of dramatic tension. At the same time, though, when the outcome is quite literally determined at random, it's difficult to take any kind of reassurance in the ability of the heroes to save the day,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 19 2014/07/07,
Yeong-dal gets to work on organizing some quality schemes here. It's the kind of gangster style corporate warfare I can really get behind- it's sneaky, and taking advantage of various character's personalities. But most significantly, it's not a direct attack against any of the antagonists. They're clearly tense and waiting for team Dong-soo and Yeong-dal to pull something. However, the immediate offensive objectives are vague, so for the most part everyone's caught off guard,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 18 2014/07/01,
The bad guys really need to have a meeting about the terrible quality of their plans. First an assassination attempt, and now a kidnapping? Really? All of this just to counter Dong-soo and Yeong-dal's plan? It bears repeating here- we barely even have any idea what their plan actually is. These are desperate actions taken by men afraid they're about to lose everything. It's absolutely nonsensical for the story to go this direction when hardly anything has even happened yet,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 17 2014/06/30,
And now this is a revenge drama. Granted, we always knew that Dong-soo had a specific grudge against Bok-tae, but for the most part Dong-soo has been pretty good about having that just be one bullet point on the giant list of terrible things Bok-tae does on a daily basis. This opening of this episode clearly demonstrates, though, that it's what Bok-tae did to Dong-soo's family that really makes him a bad man. The other criminal enterprise stuff not so much. Dong-soo only just recovered from an assassination attempt and that on its own was apparently not a good reason for revenge,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 16 2014/06/24,
Plenty of time is spent at the hospital this episode, as characters agonize over whether or not Dong-soo is going to make it. Thankfully that question is resolved at the end, so hopefully we don't have to endure any more of these extremely sad regretful lengths of the soundtrack which establish how awful the whole situation is. I'm upset that Dong-soo was stabbed less because I care about the character and more because these scenes are so obnoxiously overwrought,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 15 2014/06/23,
Well, huh, apparently the incompetent out-of-nowhere assassination attempt really was as stupid an idea as it looked. I had expected the drama to just gloss over the details of the assassination so we could pine over Dong-soo for awhile. And for a fair amount of time that's exactly what "Triangle - Drama" does. We get a full flashback of all the big story events between Dong-soo and Yeong-dal and oh, it's all so terribly terribly sad,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 14 2014/06/17,
Yeong-dal's melodramatic memory recovery session is actually pretty effective, all things considered. Presented at the beginning here without context, all I see is a crushed child who's lost his entire family. Then we get back to the rest of the drama and I'm left remembering that even though the unknown relationship between the three brothers is the entire hook of "Triangle - Drama", it doesn't seem to actually have anything to do with the revenge / romance plot currently in session,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 13 2014/06/16,
As determined as "Triangle - Drama" was to skip past the prison stuff, in this episode it falls right back to the same slow pacing we'd seen up until this point. There's not even any gambling. Mostly it's just meetings where the bad guys discuss how suspicious it is that Dong-soo is obviously up to something, or where the good guys discuss the plan in just vague enough terms that we'll still be surprised whenever it finally gets around to happening,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 12 2014/06/10,
This episode marks a shift to a radical new direction for this drama. Specifically, a more generic one. Dong-soo and Yeong-dal now have to work together, unambiguously in the cause of justice, to take down Yang-ha and Bok-tae. You might be thinking that this will be somewhat difficult, what with Yeong-dal being in prison and Dong-soo with his hands tied in a similar fashion. Well, the drama helpfully skips a whole year just so we can get right back to this plot thread,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 11 2014/06/09,
There's a nice contrast here between the physical appearance of the prison and Yeong-dal's attitude. So far as we can see, it's a relatively pleasant place. Outside people are playing soccer, and inside they're playing Go. Then Yeong-dal shows up and starts a fight for no reason. The man is deadset on living out his gangster fantasy wherever possible, and quickly learns that while prisoners aren't as vicious as they are in the movies, they still have very little patience for rude aggressiveness,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 10 2014/06/03,
The best laid plans are all toppled down thanks to unforeseen circumstances. Well they're not really unforeseen circumstances. We know who all these characters are, we know they all have their own agenda, and we know that they like to keep secrets from one another because why not? But they don't know that about each other. So when an opportunity comes up for one to betray the other to help another, inevitably most of the cast gets blindsided,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 9 2014/06/02,
There's a fair amount of irony this time- let's start out in the romantic department. Yeong-dal makes some fairly standard loverly inroads on Jeong-hee. He's got himself a little money, so he treats her to a nice night, all that stuff. And all this time I kept wondering about Yang-ha. That guy's made of money. So why is it that Yeong-dal's pretensions at a high class life come off more impressively than Yang-ha's being the real thing?
Well, the drama doesn't go into a lot of detail in that department, which I appreciate honestly,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 8 2014/05/27,
The gambling scenes in this drama are a bit inexplicable without the context of the rules. For the poker game that makes up the opening, what you need to know is that one character has about an 87% chance of winning, and the losing character either needs a straight, a flush, or four-of-a-kind in order to beat his rival. As far as baccarat goes forget it. Even if I knew how that game works there's no way I could explain it succintly in a single sentence.
The essential thing to understand about these games is that they're played according to rules, and that outside of cheating, there's no such thing as perfect play,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 7 2014/05/26,
Until this episode I don't think I fully appreciated how many characters there really are running around here and how surprisingly interconnected everyone is. This isn't really a recap episode, but it's an excellent one to watch if you want to get a hold of how they're all related to each other. Nearly all of them have some sort of direct personal or business relationship with at least two other characters directly and clearly defined.
It's an interesting conceit taken in concert with the drama's core concept- these three men are brothers, but they don't know it,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 6 2014/05/20,
Last episode Yeong-dal's crazy scheme exploded right in his face. This episode, undeterred, he continues to come up with more terrible ideas. Yeong-dal really does not have the slightest clue. The guy genuinely believes he's at the center of this story where destiny is going to be made. The shame of it all is that Yeong-dal's got decent enough charisma. There's so many good things he could be doing with that. But Yeong-dal chooses to to buttress his pride and act like a gangster instead.
Unreasonable pride is the main calling card of "Triangle - Drama", and it's only accentuated by the fact that none of our three leads even have anything to be proud about,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 5 2014/05/19,
Yeong-dal's plan predictably ends in disaster. Well, actually, not really. Compared to what gangsters normally do to people who try to steal from them, I'm surprised Yeong-dal got off as lightly as he did. In typical form, though, the mancompletely fails to appreciate how incredibly lucky he is that things did not go much, much worse, and spends most of the rest of the episode sulking in his injured pride.
The funniest part about Yeong-dal is that he often makes right decisions but for really dumb reasons,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 4 2014/05/13,
Taken out of context from the rest of the drama, the first scene here actually looks pretty mainstream. You've got the rough guy from the wrong side of the tracks running from gangsters, holding his love interest by the hand, then there's an epic fight scene and a rather fuzzy intermittent period where we're left wondering, what exactly happened to Yeong-dal? It's a question that lingers over the rest of the episode.
From the few snippets we do get of the guy, the impression is pretty clear that he's not doing well,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 3 2014/05/12,
Somehow this drama still doesn't have a plot. I was sure after the last cliffhanger we'd get some sort of conflict or tension, but after an extended brutal opening it's pretty much right back to business as usual. The three brothers continue to persist in their apparently purposeless lives. Even events that seem like they should be important, such as Yeong-deol running into Yang-ha, lack any kind of real urgency.
Again, it's pretty obvious that this is all part of the point. These are characters who make bad decisions mostly because it takes a really long time for the consequences to actually set in,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 2 2014/05/06,
The ambience takes an odd turn this episode. It's actually almost kind of optimistic. Granted, there's only so far mood can take us when events are this bleak. Yeong-dal (played by Kim Jae-joong) very nearly gets killed, and survives his brush with death entirely thanks a supporting word from one of his superiors. He has, naturally, learned pretty much nothing from this experience.
What makes Yeong-dal a bit strange here is that he's not particularly arrogant,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 1 2014/05/05,
This drama is quite sleazy. That shouldn't be too surprising, given how much sex, gambling, and anger issues factor in to the plot- but it's really all in the presentation. Directors Choi Jeong-gyoo and Yoo Cheol-yong portray a world of basically pathetic people who are only barely scraping by on their emotional and physical needs. Choi Jeong-gyoo also directed last year's "Two Weeks", and the tone here is quite similar. Whatever minor successes and failures our lead characters achieve here, they're all largely emblematic of purposeless lives,...More
Historicals take over the later year 2011/07/18, Source,
The drama market in the start of the year was a depression. According to AGB Nielsen Media Research on the 26th, the only dramas that rated over 20% were KBS 1TV "Smile, Dong-hae", SBS "Secret Garden" and KBS 2TV "Believe in Love".
However, great masterpieces have been prepared for the later half of the year. Every broadcasting company has a historical and they are aiming for a counterattack. Return of star producers and writers also upgrade the anticipation.,...More
The economy looks gloomy, and a dark cloud is casting a shadow over the local drama industry. But producers and networks alike are striving to keep up with demands from viewers, with support in and out of the country.
Local television network SBS will offer a n,...More
Fifty-seven writers wrote a statement titled, "KBS, Rescue "Drama City"." They said, "There is no justification for the extermination of the one-act drama. As a public s,...More
Yedang, Reborn Into A Comprehensive Content Company 2007/09/07, Source, Active both in its advance into the film business and the expansion of its media business this year, Yedang Entertainment (CEO: Yang, Hee-Jong) is seeking to widen its scope to include the performing events and drama industry.
Yedang announced that Lobbyist, an SBS' special drama scheduled to be,...More
Korea's 30 Most Influential Pop Culture Figures Released 2006/12/28, Source, CJ Entertainment Vice Chairwoman Lee Mi-kyeong has been cited as the most influential figure in Korean popular culture, according to the results of the Herald Business Daily's survey of the country's top 30 pop icons released on Thursday.
The business daily said that the survey was conducted on a,...More
China has been expressing concerns over an array of Korean TV networks' production of big-budget historical dramas set in the Koguryo Kingdom (37 B.C. - A.D. 668) _ one of three Kingdoms of ancient Korea.
The Chinese government has denied access to shoot some of,...More
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