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Reviews on Korean and Asian Dramas

October 2017 Korean Drama Reviews November 7, 2017

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The drama Save Me rounded off the september dramas. This drama was from the OCN network and I think one thing to remember then is that there dramas are not usually romantic and more story and mystery driven. I have noticed that there dramas are more mature and deal with strong issues. It stars TaecYeon and Seo Ye-Ji and Woo Do-Hwan as some of the main characters that are more well known. The story is basically about a Seo Ye-Ji as Im Sang-Mi whose family gets involved with a religious group without realizing that it is a cult. TaecYeon as Han Sang-Hwan and Woo Do-Hwan as Seok Dong Cheol want to try to save Sang-Mi and stop the cult.save 3

So first of all this drama made me feel very uncomfortable because what was first depicted seemed like any other religious function but more intense then most churches. Every time they showed their church rituals or practices it made me feel like it was mocking religion somewhat but you slowly understand why they are considered a cult. The drama seems to unravel the fanaticism of the cult very slowly because at first you think they aren’t that terrible. There is no evidence from what is shown on screen that they are doing something terrible, since it is freedom of religion. It shows dark undertones throughout and is shocking as they unravel all the mysteries. I would not watch this before bedtime since it was very intense and more of a thriller like feel of a drama. I also found myself becoming so frustrated with the drama with Sang-Mi and how she would try to run away without being that smart about it. Also with the police involvement, if that is how actually police act that would be horrible! especially about not getting involved in family struggles, that is horrible for the victims of abuse from families.

save2To be honest I am not that much of a fan of TaecYeon and I didn’t love him in the drama either, not sure if it his character or if it was his acting? So I am glad that they didn’t really have a love line because I don’t really get the chemistry coming from him. I did like Seo Ye-Ji and I thought she did an awesome job with her acting and found it really believable when it came to her struggles of dealing with a cult. I really became a fan of Woo Do-Hwan and I really found his character loveable and really loved when he was given screen time! I have to also compliment Cho Seong-Ha as Baek Jung-Ki who played the cult leader and he was amazing in his part and was really spooky. There is one scene that I skipped over where they visit a shaman on some kind and try to talk to the dead even though it is obviously a money making scheme I don’t care to watch that.

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I feel like the ending was a bit rushed and I wish they would have had more time to wrap up the show and showed the characters a bit more in the end. It just kinda felt like it left it a bit incomplete but overall this was a crazy, intense and a pretty great drama. It felt like it was a complete different genre of a drama! It felt like there was a lot of themes in this drama and I am not sure if I was able to catch onto all of them or they seemed to change through out the drama. I think the focus was on second chances, even though if you messed up there is a second chance for you. Even if you did something wrong but learned from that mistake it was okay, but if you don’t learn you will have to pay in the end. It showed that family and friendships are complicated and sometimes you have to rely on one and not the other and that it is okay to ask them for help. This drama has made me reflect and it will probably stick with me for a while. I have to say OCN has been making quality dramas this year, they are darker, more intense and somewhat disturbing. They seem to be pushing the boundaries but at the same time they are intriguing and they are being well done.save4

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The second drama that I finished is Deserving Of The Name/ Live Up To Your Name which ended on October 1st. This is a medical drama with a twist it focuses on an oriental Doctor Heo Im who was considered one of the greatest doctors from the Joseon time period. He is considered the best and people come from all over to see him but he can’t seem to rise in position because of his low status in society. Heo Im is then transported to modern day where he meets a heart surgeon Choi Yeon-Kyung how doesn’t believe in acupuncture and they end needing and learning from each other.

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I really enjoyed this drama, this is one of the best romantic comedies I have seen for a long time. It was so interesting and it kept me on my toes about what was going to happen. I really enjoyed Heo Im (Kim Nam-Gil) I have never seen him in a drama before but I thought he really carried the show and did an awesome job of being comedic and then serious and tsundere in the role. I really loved how he had a makeover! I think one of the best makeovers in a drama I have ever seen. Choi Yeon-Kyung (Kim A-Joong) who I have never seen in a drama before did a good job but I didn’t think she was my most favourite actress and for some reason I found that people’s faces were really shiny in this drama and especially hers which made her face look a little odd? not sure why?

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I really loved that they focused on acupuncture and I find it fascinating to learn more about it especially because in North America we don’t seem to accept anything like that. Not sure if what they showed was accurate and if it is possible to have those results from acupuncture but it gave me a different perspective on the practice. Again a drama also focuses on time travel which for some reason never gets boring and I thought that it gave a few twists that I wasn’t expecting either. I really enjoyed the story line and for a comedy there a few sad and tear jerking moments.

name1I think this drama has a bit of everything and makes it somehow fresh and interesting. The ending really takes you for a loop and keeps you guessing on how it is going to end and you really don’t know until the end. I really hope that they would make another season because it is so interesting and fun! I recommend this drama to everyone that loves a romantic comedy or time traveling or medical dramas because there seems to be a little of everything thrown into this drama which makes it a great one!

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The third drama that I have finished is Hospital Ship. I wasn’t expecting this drama to have 40 half an hour episodes, I thought it was going to be shorter. This drama starred Ha Ji-Won as the female lead and I watched her last drama “The Time We Were Not In Love” and found it to be disappointing so I was hoping for something better this time. I did not really care for her character she plays in this drama, she is a cold talented surgeon that has strong sense of right and wrong. She goes to work in a hospital ship that visits smaller communities and islands to give them medical treatment. It also stars Kang Min-Hyuk who is the drummer for CN Blue, he has been in other dramas but this felt like the first major role he has gotten.

ship1I did not really feel that attached to him as the main lead, his character was somewhat boring or lacklustre. I kinda felt like the whole nice guys finishes first this time and did not have the chemistry that makes you heart beat that I like to see in a drama. The story of the drama is that there is a Hospital Ship that travels to the islands to treat patients and there is a doctor, dentist and an acupunturist /oriental doctor along with some nurses that sail together and live together. Song Eun-Jae (Ha Ji-Won) joins the crew as she has had some trouble at her past job and is taking up the role of surgeon on the ship.

ship3What I did like about this drama is that it was a nice ensemble cast that added some warmness and humour to the drama. I wish they would have let us get to know more about them and if any were going to get together in the end. It was interesting when Kang Min Hyuk’s ex-girlfriend came aboard and made it tense although again we never saw a resolution to that situation either. There were some interesting situations like finding out about Eun-Jae’s Dad and brother. It had some interesting parts to the drama that it was sad it wasn’t written better.

ship2I think the problem with the drama was that the story line kinda jumped all over the place, especially toward the end. It felt like nothing was being resolved and they just kinda left a lot of thing open-ended. It just felt like it was thrown together without much thought and it just felt somewhat ridiculous with what they did to Eun-Jae I feel like if they were going to go with that route properly they should have allowed more time and explained what she would have to go through and how she could make it through and come back. I don’t want to spoil the ending at all but there was something off with it. I didn’t really get what they were trying to do with these drama, I feel like it was disappointing and was expecting more than what I got. Even though I do love medical dramas and there were definitely some interesting parts to the story as a whole it did not make me very happy.

There were some heart warming moments that did make me feel things but the romance was really boring. Even the love triangle could have made it more exciting but they even dropped the ball on that one. Maybe I am slightly jaded but this drama just did not do much for me. There was not much chemistry between the leads and I didn’t find it very believable. Also this drama just seemed to long if they were not even going to tie up the loose ends. I know that MBC is having a strike right now and that could be why the drama feels like it was rushed and it did not live up to it’s full potential.

Dramas I am Currently watching are:

  1. While You Were Sleeping- This has been a great drama so far, it is a fantasy drama where Suzy has dreams that become reality. I love fantasy dramas and it has been so interesting so far. It also stars Lee Jong Suk as a prosecutor who I have loved in his dramas!!

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2. Witch’s Court- This drama is also about prosecutors. The main female lead is hilarious in this drama and is so refreshing to watch!

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3. Revolutionary Love- This drama is more of the common type of dramas with a love triangle and a rich guy who is taught how to live a normal life by a poor girl. It kinda reminds me of Shopping King Louie at moments but does still have a different story line.

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4. Black- Again this is an OCN drama, so it is a thriller about a grim reaper and girl who can see the grim reapers and see the death before it happens. This is more of an intense drama again and I am somewhat uncomfortable with subject matter but at the same time it is really interesting. Although it can be confusing at times but I think it will be more understandable as the story progresses.

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