KDRAMAGUK : Korean Drama Soup

a landing site for quick, completely biased, and totally snarky korean drama reviews


Monday, January 25, 2010

He Who Can't Marry (2009)

He Who Can’t Marry
결혼 못하는 남자
(Jun – Aug 2009)

who’s in it
Ji JinHee (Dae Jang Geum)
Uhm JungHwa (singer)
Yoo AhIn (Strongest Chil Woo, Antique Bakery - film)
Kim SoEun (Boys Over Flowers)

what’s it about
An obsessive compulsive and neurotic, megalomaniac architect falls in love with a doctor who mourns the fact that she’s past her twenties and still single in a society that prefers couples (hey, it’s the plot of the drama, i’m not making social commentary here).  Lucky for the really rude and socially deficient butthead architect, he happens to look a lot like Ji JinHee and fills out a pair of tight trousers rather nicely, and therefore stands a fighting chance with the hot doc with major insecurity issues.


16 (but feels more like 24)


wildcard factor
Yoo AhIn and Kim SoEun’s major awesome cuteness

after the first episode
Really pretty pleased–there was so much potential! Shows that start the plot going by introducing unconventional leads are always attention grabbers for me. The main character was wonderfully obnoxious and different from the usual kdrama leading men archetypes, and attractive in a peculiar way, perhaps not unlike Gregory House’s prickly appeal in popular U.S. show House that featured a cranky pants doctor who was often socially obnoxious. Also, Uhm JungHwa didn’t make my stomach turn as the female lead and seemed an appropriate match for the crazy architect, so that was a plus.

gave up

snoozer moments
The entire second half of the drama.

The character JaeHee was way too self-involved to actually recognize in himself any emotion that needed to be dulled away by a late night liquor ahjumma. On the one hand, it was fun to watch him flit through the show, on the other, he really needed to show more emotion, which in turn would have given us more satisfaction while waiting for the inevitable emotional growth that would come.

what didn’t work
Unfortunately, the main romance—not for a lack of trying on Ji JinHee’s part, but he just couldn’t make me care about his clumsy attempts at courtship.

what did
Let me get my squeee out of the way: Kim SoEun and Yoo AhIn were freakin’ deakin’ adorkable; watch out for these two, they’re rising stars, I swear. I’m calling it now! Well, actually, I think other people have already called it…

what made me want to gouge my eyes out
There was some crying and shrilling from Uhm JungHwa...

what kept me going
Seriously, the cutest chihuahua ever starred in this drama and I don’t normally like chihuahuas.

Other factors:
predictability I kept hoping for a twist that had no intention of ever coming
engrish No
originality At times dull but I do give it credit for at least attempting to be different
eye-candy Everyone was very smartly presented
hair and fashion Stylish, Yoo AhIn and Ji JinHee especially worked it

is it worth trying to find?
If you have time to kill and a dvd player that’ll fast-forward reliably.

total enjoyment factor
Seems high? Truth is, I liked most of the characters…just not together…they need to be recycled into other dramas.

total disdain factor

why this review is completely biased
I like pretty people who dress fashionably and this had an abundance of them. Besides, I like Yang JungAh from her work on Gold Miss (and for her fangirl love for GD). She needed a bigger role in this one, she was another bright spot in here. She should have been the lead.

could a non-kdrama fan like this
Actually, they might. I think JaeHee in his infinite neurosis and rudeness could be amusing to watch for a casual viewer.

I didn’t hate it, but I definitely didn’t love it either.

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