KDRAMAGUK : Korean Drama Soup

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


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Sons of Sol Pharmacy (2009)

Sons of Sol Pharmacy
솔약국집 아들들
(Apr – Oct 2009)

who’s in it
Son HyunJoo (Tazza, First Wives Club)
Lee PilMo (Woman Who Still Wants to Marry)
Han SangJin (Yi San, White Tower)
Ji ChangWook (Hero)
Yoo HaNa (First Wives Club)
Yoo Sun (Lobbyist, Sweet Spy)

what’s it about
Four handsome brothers, from oldest to youngest—

JinPung (played by Son HyunJoo) — a wholesome almost-40 pharmacist still carrying a torch for his high school sweetheart; she returns one day sporting/supporting an extended family and a secret.

DaePung (Lee PilMo) — childish pediatrician who spends his days womanizing but takes an instant shine to the new female neighbor, a cynical lawyer NOT charmed by him.

SunPung (Han SangJin) — vegetarian television news journalist who is an avid everything-rights activist who reluctantly finds himself drawn to a bubbly actress who also happens to be the daughter of his boss.

MiPung (Ji ChangWook) — the sensitive maknae (youngest) who prefers sewing with ahjummas instead of studying, to his mother’s disgust. He finds himself caring for his friend’s infant daughter when the single father gets called up for his mandatory military service.

The mother of these four perfect[ly nutty] sons wants to marry them off pronto. Not only is she sick and tired of feeding and coddling six baby boys (the tally including her husband and father-in-law) but wants some women in the house to help her with the chores. She is most especially peeved with her eldest who is getting ripe in the age without any suitable prospects. What’s wrong with her sons…why can’t they get themselves hitched???

A family drama, it carries a ginormous cast and spends lots and lots of time with all of them but these four men are the central focus. I will go ahead and give a brief intro for the ladies, however, as they are key figures, too. In order below are the matches for the men already listed above:

SooJin (played by Park SunYoung) — a successful corporate lawyer, she protects the softness within by putting up a tough façade but realizes it might be worth coming out of her hard tortoise shell when she meets the sweet pharmacist.

BokShil (Yoo Sun) — doormat-like nurse at DaePung’s pediatric clinic who, like everyone else, has her own secret to hide. Oh, yeah, she’s also madly in love with DaePung who has treated her like crap the entire time she’s worked for him. He’s more a DooDooPung to her.

EunJi (Yoo HaNa) — a perky but kind-hearted actress who has been raised like a treasured princess by her surrogate parents, but when her past comes back, she realizes she’d been living in a bubble.

SooHee (Kang EunBi) — when she comes back for her infant daughter who has now been placed in the care of the youngest son in the Song family, the irresponsible young mother ends up living with them in order to get her life back on track.

Oh, the long, long, long convoluted road this drama will traverse until we get to the end where the predestined couples will get together...

54 episodes


wildcard factor
A weekend family drama with lots of characters, some infinitely more lovable than others.

after the first episode
Fun. I especially enjoyed the vegetarian tv journalist who was so dorky but cuddly, like a manly teddy bear. His match, the equally dorky and cuddly actress, was the kind of character that made you smile.

The brothers together were also a kick in the pants to watch…four grown men who regress into four little boys when together. Pretty funny.

gave up
In my defense, I watched quite a many episodes (probably in the twenties) before letting this one go. It was airing on KBS and it just kept collecting on my DVR…and eventually, I didn’t have much interest in catching up. I’ll say that it was a pretty decent family show. There was a little bit of everything in here, including four separate love stories, all different. I personally found myself invested in only one and when the focus shifted and stayed on my least favorite couple, the chihuahua-ish doctor and his nurse, I decided that there were too many other dramas to watch to continue with this haul.

Which leads me to the biggest problem I had with Pharmacy: Song DaePung. I know that actor Lee PilMo enjoyed great success in this role and fans of the show loved him, but I found his character to be the most annoying thing on earth. Every time he came on screen whining and complaining, I wanted to punch him in the snout. Seriously. While Pharmacy was airing, I caught him in an interview on one of those entertainment shows and I thought, “Oh, he’s handsome and likable in real life. He must be a fantastic actor because he is soooo insanely annoying as Song DaePung.” I started to call him DooDooPung in my head. The show was good and while I do recommend it to kdrama lovers, especially those who like these types of family affairs, I could not finish it. A part of me wishes I had, but the majority of me is happy to have moved on with my life.

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