KDRAMAGUK : Korean Drama Soup

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


Monday, August 19, 2013

Diary | Bright Bright Taeyang

First off, some Very Important People bizness: congrats to Big Bang on their 7th anniversary! Has it really been seven whole years the world has been blessed with Big Bang? And happy belated birthday to G-Dragon! Clap-Clap for Seungri’s comeback—boy’s apparently got something to say! Weeee. Since I mentioned 2/5 of the group, I’ll do the rest: movie star TOP, stay healthy and injury-free please, Daesung keep doing your silky sexy thang over there in Japan, and Taeyang, you continue making random dancing appearances on variety shows when 2NE1 promotes. You are a ray of sunshine, aptly named you are. Ok, End Dorkiness.

Next, because I simply lack the self-control to restrain my need to ogle and drool, after all, I am a fangirl caught in the throes of obsessive love right now. Here’s my babe Jung KyungHo in pictures a lot less murderous:
Click on images to enlarge.
Well, a lot less Seoul gangster murderous, but no less killer on a fangal’s eyes. Yes, I’m afraid this compulsion to adore KyungHo may go on for a while…but look at him! Can you blame me???

Dramas I will talk about and spoil after the  jump: Master’s Sun (until Ep 4). And some more thoughts on The Blade and the Petal (up to Ep6), and Who Are You (up to Ep6). And also, the craziest thing I saw this weekend: Kim WooBin fighting killer female robots.

주군의 태양
Master’s Sun
Yikes, that’s a pretty jumpy-making dead spirit. Can’t blame a girl for screaming through the corridors of her apartment complex in fear. That is less halmonie/grandmother and way more demon-ie.

The spirits that typically haunt Gong HyoJin, however, only look freaky and are not out to do her any real harm. They just want her to be their messenger. Unlike the other ghost drama currently airing, Who Are You, where the dead people shown are victims of violent crimes, we get a much more varied array of spirits in this one. Alongside the unfairly-dead victims, we also get the ones that can’t move on because they are nostalgic for the taste of coffee or want to dress in drag while haunting the local mall. This more light-hearted population of see-thru folk fit perfectly with the romcom vibe I hoped for in this one.

Gong HyoJin might have to do some soul searching on why she keeps getting attracted to extreme men in kdramas, but her pain is our gain. At least this time the man in question, So JiSub, isn’t cartoonishly manic (recall her man in Greatest Love). JiSub is a department store aristocrat, and by that I mean he plays a guy called 주군/Joo-goon, which translates to lord, and he is the prez of a department store called Kingdom. Get it? He is the master of his kingdom. Anyhow, obviously being as he’s rich and handsome, he’s a jerk, but he’s quite a funny one.
Sardonic and wily, he travels the funny way toward an insult. Sure, it seems like there isn’t much difference between his version of wily jerk and perhaps any other rich jerk, but on him, it does feel different. He’s kind of self-aware about his own behavior. You get the sense he knows he’s being an ass, kind of enjoys being the ass, but is ok with it because he knows he isn’t really an ass. Yes, damnit, So JiSub conveys all that, I’m not over-analyzing. =) And also his short haircut is doing all kinds of nice things for his cheekbones.

Eps 1-4: Our man So JiSub meets ghost whispering girl Gong HyoJin and he thinks she’s completely loony bins. Considering he first meets her wandering a night highway wearing a white gown getting soaked in rain and talking to invisible people, hard to criticize his conclusions. She also claims touching him makes her feel safe. He’s aghast, both by her grappling skinship of his bod and by her smelly hair.

Elsewhere and later, something very handsome in the shape of Seo InGuk moves into Gong HyoJin’s apartment complex. He seems suspiciously too smart and well-groomed and way too polite, but he’s so handsome, we all forgive him his shifty ways.
All he has to do is smile, and he does that smiling thing a lot, so this fangirl finally understands what all the fuss was about in Reply 1997. HyoJin’s character is also taken aback when she first meets him and goes a little nuts when she sees all the twinkle emanating from his eyes. I don’t know how she read my mind through the tv but she meows at him just as I am thinking feline sounds in my head. Mine was a predatory growl, hers...more like a crazy street cat meeeeowring pitifully at him like he’s canned tuna. And he accepts her awful effort at aegyo with a friendly smile. Obviously, he’s a good guy otherwise he might have smacked her, because her idea of aegyo really is that cringingly creepy.

In the course of four episodes, several unhappy lingering spirits get the help they need in resolving their death issues, which all turn out to be enjoyable plot errands, but the best part of this one is always when our very strange lead girl gets inappropriately physical with Lord JiSub, mostly because he just hates it. It’s a pretty physical and antagonistic pairing. As yet, the money disparity hasn’t come into play, it’s all personality. He’s a shuttered window and she’s sunlight trying to squeeze in. And these two have a long way to go. When she calls herself the sun, a play off her name, he retorts: “If you’re the sun, then I never want to see morning again!”
And I loved every single minute I had so far with this grouchy-grabby couple! FINALLY a romcom pairing I can get behind!!! The show forces the contact between the two very quickly, tossing the two leads into a situation that simply demands skinship, even before they can even stand each other. She wants to constantly touch him (and not because she finds him sexy) while he constantly tries to avoid it.
We get to know the superficial quirks of the people really well, but it is clear we have so much more to learn about them. That’s the depth part that I’m digging and loving. Amazingly, Sun has found the perfect balance between silly ghost stories, uplifting human heart moments, physical comedy, and flirt. And there is so much flirt! I have been so desperately missing the flirt in kdramas lately, the kind that makes you anticipate the next tease, so I’m glad this one is brimming with the goop. Probably it helps that I think the actors all match really well.

The most surprising part of this one is that So JiSub is rather hilarious. Mr. Serious has some major funny to share. And it isn’t a histrionic type of hilarious. He’s just kind of a riot to watch because he’s so appalled by HyoJin’s character. And for her part, she’s so shamelessly aggressive with him. One can kind of see his point of view, why he’s so scared and grossed out by this wild shaggy creature woman, that is, if we didn’t already know that poor HyoJin really does see ghosts.

The Blade and the Petal
Still watching it!!! Gah, why? Why? There is something strangely addicting about it. Actually, I know exactly what is so damn addicting about it: Choi MinSoo. He is mesmerizing. Scary. Eye-Murderous—as in he looks like he can murder with a glare. Even when all he’s doing is flicking an eyebrow, he’s completely frightening and riveting.
The fact that I want to see him destroy the world must be a testament to his magnetic presence. His charisma is a force to be reckoned with. He’s like Obi-Wan Kenobi or something. Or maybe Darth Vader. I still don’t really care all that much about the love story between the main couple Uhm TaeWoong and Kim OkBin, although their beauty cannot be denied, like everything else gorgeously captured in the show.
I find myself more engaged by the peripheral characters, such as On JooWan (above), who plays King Yeongnyu’s ambitious nephew BoJang. Historical record has already inscribed for us how all of this will go down—Choi MinSoo’s powerful General Yeon will indeed get his way and succeed in his coup d’etat and On JooWan will be placed on the throne once his uncle is ousted—but the story still grips with suspense.
I imagine a general who turned the pages of history by the sheer force of his brute will must have truly been a man of intense magnetism, as Choi is depicting, and I suppose stories about such conviction, right or wrong, cannot help but be fascinating. Besides, I dunno, maybe there is something inherently romantic about watching a drama that is detailing the fall of a nation, the beginning of the end of Goguryeo, most especially when so prettily done. A beauty bittersweet leaves a lasting impression in its wake.

Who Are You
Two ghost shows at once. Similar yet different. Well, this ghost show is getting to be a bit better watch as the drama dives a little more into the main story arc. I would really not go as far to say it is great, but definitely decent. Oh right, and Kim JaeWook has finally made his spectral appearance in Ep5. This must be a fab gig for him, fresh out of the military, he can dip his toes back into work without too much memorizing of those pesky things called dialogue. He doesn’t need to speak, just throw attacks of handsome at the two psychic women who are able to enjoy his drop dead gorgeous looks. Har-har.
Dead boyfriend giving side eye to new living boyfriend.
Is it against some kind of inter-spiritual law to crush on a dead person? Ewk, that sounds wrong. Anyway, I’m all caught up on this one and approve of its direction. I like that Ep 5 & 6 spent less time chasing irrelevant cold cases and more time with the main characters and the only cold case I care about, JaeWook’s. And now that we know that the bad guys might also be cops, even better. Therefore, I’m still watching this one, too. Which kind of annoys me, to be perfectly honest, because I was hoping I could just knuckle it off my watching list. I really needed to let something go.

OK, to sum up, I am completely loving Master’s Sun, and watching three other dramas because I’m hanging onto them for personal fangirl reasons. I may have to keep Good Doctor and Two Weeks on the backburner for a while. Unless these are Must-Watches?
Now for the robot thing. So a kpop fan told me to check this out, knowing my fondness for Kim WooBin, and it was the most laugh-out-loud thing I saw this weekend. So enjoy! Hahah. Seriously, have you seen it yet? I really don’t know who this idol group is, so I mean no offense. I also know nothing about the context of this MV...only that it was quite an eyeful of unexpected. It might be best to go into this one empty-headed anyway. It is insane. Kim WooBin, as always, looks pretty cool. But still, the video is INSANE. CAPS. Underlined. Bold. Ok, maybe the girls aren’t robots, who knows what’s going on? Maybe just the hands are robotic? *hold belly* I mean...THE HAND thing alone is worth a million miles of delighted laughter.



  1. Huh... that video was weird. I also feel it was severely lacking in enough Kim Woobin to satisfy me. Also, how totally strange that they blurred out the main girl's face at the end?

    I am still watching and enjoying both Who Are You and Master's Sun, but feel maybe I should also be checking out Heartless City considering all these rave reviews....

    1. LOL, isn't it the most ridiculous thing ever? I think her face was blown off!!! I don't know see the point in all the blur, makes things look so much more obscene!

      Oh you should definitely check out Heartless City!

  2. I really cant blame you for the jkh's pics coz ive already saved it on my phone as my background and screensaver... (har har) I adore him so much... cant get enough...


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