Feb 062020
 

tell me what you saw kdramaSummary: A lady constable from the countryside, Cha Soo Young, tries to join RIU using her special ability to memorize what she sees in detail, as her passport to get a job as a detective. She starts working with the lady head of RIU after her ability was being noticed. She is then introduced to a famous profiler, Oh Hyun Jae and gets her skills tested.

Trailer: Tell Me What You Saw

Genre: Thriller, Crime
Episodes: 16
Stars: Jang Hyuk as Oh Hyun Jae
Choi Soo Young as Cha Soo Young
Jin Seo Yeon as Hwang Hwa Young
Jang Hyun Sung as Choi Hyung Pil
Ryu Seung Soo as Yang Man Soo



Likes: It’s quite a dark drama but it was sooo good I was hooked till the end! Why? Let’s dissect this…

The crime, detective genre. I’m a huge fan of this type of drama especially if it’s done well. And this one is worth watching. It will leave you on a dark, scary mood but if you’re a fan, it’s satisfying.

The small crime cases surrounding the main one. I like those related and independent stories that had their own puzzles to solve. They’re like mini bonuses, it kept the excitement going.

The main story and the main villain. Although it took a while to get to that part and to get to him, the last episodes were quite thrillling and definitely worth the wait. It was good to see how everything unraveled, how questions got their answers.

The links. I like how most of the things were interconnected, not all, but most of them. Our main cast’s past stories were all pointing to the main villain which justified the desire to catch the GUY.

The heinous killings. Although most sensitive parts were censored but most scenes were detailed, almost realistic.

The atmosphere. Quite consistent with this throughout the drama. Dark and scary moods.

The brilliant cast. What could I say? Everyone did so well!

For once, I’m a huge fan of Jang Hyuk. I watched most of his dramas. He was just so cool and deep in this one. Loved the hair, the scar, the martial arts skills, the outfit and the way he talked. He was his very character, Oh Hyun Jae, the profiler.

Choi Soo Young, I’m quite impressed with her. I’ve watched one of her dramas before and I knew she was good but I think her portrayal of Cha Soo Young, the detective, was her best performance yet. It’s refreshing to see a former kpop idol (of girl band, Girls’ Generation) does a detective character! Impressed!

Jin Seo Yeon has a beautiful face but she turned it into a fierce one fitting her detective character Hwang Hwa Young. Lots of fighting and dark experiences for this fierce lady in this drama. I don’t know but I have this feeling that she felt more for Oh Hyun Jae here than just mere friendship.

Special mention to the main villain of this drama, he was quite good! All the time I was thinking of someone else. Well done!



The road to finale. Well, it was bloody. I was getting ready to lose more people from the good side but glad they left the best ones for me.

The finale. The suspense was on in full, it was nerve-racking. Lots of fighting and more blood. It was the final showdown! I like how it ended and I even still got an epilogue.

Dislikes: I found the connection of the main villain and his close friends to be a bit overboard. Could you actually really manipulate other people to kill others then kill themselves? Hm…

The kdrama lover in me was hopelessly waiting for a bit of romance but my dream got shuttered haha. Oh well, there was a little hint at the end or is it just what I wanted to believe?

My Rating: 8 stars! (10 as highest)

Nov 282019
 

my country kdramaSummary: Set during the Goryeo Kingdom, two good friends separate as enemies and both become warriors trying to protect their country. Seo Hwi, who was the son of a former general, who was then accused of treason, has to serve Prince Jeongan in order to take his revenge against his friend’s father but then realizes that the cause of his own father’s death is Prince Jeongan himself.

Trailer: My Country

Genre: Period, Romance
Episodes: 16
Stars: Yang Se Jong as Seo Hwi
Woo Do Hwan as Nam Sun Ho
Kim Sul Hyun as Han Hee Jae
Jang Hyuk as Lee Bang Won (Taejong of Joseon)
Kim Young Chul as Lee Sung Gye
Ahn Nae Sang as Nam Jun



Likes: This drama delivered a very good first impression. The sets, cinematography, costumes, soundtrack and of course the brilliant cast! It was sooo good to see two of my favourites, Yang Se Jong and Woo Do Hwan  in a sageuk drama dressed in traditional Goryeo era costumes. Speaking the old language also added to their charismatic roles.

Love the fight scenes! So many of them but my favourites were always the duel between the bestfriends Seo Hwi and Nam Sun Ho. At least when Prince Jeongan (Jang Hyuk) didn’t draw his sword!

Cast worth talking about…

Yang Se Jong as Seo Hwi – it was refreshing to see Yang Se Jong in a sageuk role and it was understandable why he was picked to portray Seo Hwi. Yang Se Jong’s good boy face suits Seo Hwi well. He was perfect for that loyal servant and a very good friend role.

Woo Do Hwan as Nam Sun Ho – this guy has the perfect noble look. Loved his long, straight hair and his very handsome face. Also looked great in a warrior costume. Despite his status, Woo Do Hwan as Nam Sun ho was a sensitive soul and a very loyal friend.

Jang Hyuk as Lee Bang Won or Prince Jeongan – Although I loved both actors above but I think Jang Hyuk stole the show! He just dominated everything! He was every inch looking like a prince, a proud and ambitious one, who was also excellent in fighting and politics! I couldn’t help, I was fangirling! I loved how he would go around with his fan, waving it around. His long hair was so perfect for his so handsome face! And of course, the acting was as usual brilliant! It’s Jang Hyuk, y’all!

One of my favourite scenes of this drama is the confrontation between the King and Prince Jeongan. I thought the exchange of words was worse than any arrow or sword. And before it ended, the King shot an arrow through Prince Jeongan’s kept hair which all hang down, of course all in a princely fashion.

The chemistry here was between the male actors. We’ve got undeniable chemistry between the two bestfriends, Seo Hwi and Nam Sun Ho, then Seo Hwi and Prince Jeongan, then Nam Sun Ho and his loyal henchman, then Seo Hwi and his three good friends. They were inseparable!

I love the comical relief, the love story between Seo Hwi’s friends, Park Moon Bok and a beautiful gisaeng. These two were quite funny.



The ending as I expected ended between the undying love of two good friends. How sweet. And since it was a love triangle, the third party ended up in tears.

Dislikes: I wasn’t warming up to Kim Sul Hyun at all. Poor chemistry between her and Yang Se Jong.

The storyline was all over the place. There was a point when I would say there was no point in fighting anymore. Everyone was just lost, the characters were lost, they don’t know what they were fighting for.

This is the first sageuk I ever watched when characters don’t die after getting stabbed TROUGH with a sword a couple of times. Ahm, was I watching fantasy or what?

My Rating: 7.5 stars! (10 as highest)

Jun 142018
 

wok-of-love kdramaSummary: Seo Poong is a chef of a popular Chinese restaurant but got fired and ends up working in a small restaurant owned by a gangster boss, Chil Sung. He then meets Sae Woo, who used to be rich but is now desperately looking for a job and ends up in his newly open restaurant. Together, they work hard to get new customers and compete with the big Chinese restaurant across the street.

Trailer: Wok Of Love

Genre: Romance, Comedy
Episodes: 40 (35 minutes/episode)
Stars: Jang Hyuk as Doo Chil Sung
Jung Ryeo Won as Dan Sae Woo
Lee Joon Ho as Seo Poong




Likes: 3 top reasons why I really like this drama… The food, the cast and the bromance!

Let’s dissect each one of them…

The Food. This drama will make you wanna visit a Chinese restaurant soon and eat Jajangmyeon! Honestly, I only tried the instant one but seeing how delicious it was in the show, I’m considering getting one from a restaurant. Jajangmyeon, for all of you who don’t know, is a Korean Chinese noodle dish topped with a thick sauce made of chunjang, diced pork and vegetables. Although, the black noodle was the most popular, there were also several dishes like the sweet and sour pork, wonton noodle soup, almond tofu, jjampong, dim sum which were deliciously featured in the drama and surely will make one’s tummy growl so loud. I love the way they put so much emphasis in the cooking and the food: ingredients, techniques, presentation. Not only it will make one eat but also will make someone love cooking especially with a wok. I personally love cooking with wok. Quick heat and it definitely helps me make good food. However, it is hard work. I understand why Lee Joon Ho, the chef Seo Poong in the drama, really learned how to cook with wok before filming the show. Which is, I think, necessary. This is my second drama after Temperature of Love, which is focused a lot in cooking and I just love the importance they gave to making good food. So if you love food and you value the process of making them, this drama is definitely a must-watch!

The Cast. Everyone was good but will have to focus on my top 3…

Jang Hyuk as Chil Sung the gangster boss. It’s good to see him in a less serious role than his previous one. Chil Sung is like a good gangster and loan shark (which is an oxymoron,) a big brother to all, not so lucky with women and that includes his own mother, but one focused and reliable guy that you too would want to be under his wing. He’s tough and cool!

Lee Joon Ho as Seo Poong the chef. I’m impressed with Joon’s Ho’s talent in acting considering his background as an idol. And I’m more impressed on his determination to do good in his role here as a chef by learning how to actually cook with real world chefs. His effort had definitely paid off as he was totally looking like a pro chef in the drama. Aside from that he also successfully established a good chemistry with his leading lady.

Jung Ryeo Won as Dan Sae Woo the rich daughter who aspires to be a chef as well. She was more believable as the rich daughter but as a chef who works with heavy woks, she was too thin to lift a wok. That’s just the looks anyway, her acting skills compensate for everything. She’s a good actress. Very natural. And most importantly she had a good chemistry with Joon Ho.



The Bromance and Camaraderie. Watching the drama, made me want to be part of the whole family. The bromance between Chil Sung and the gang members was something to envy. I see loyalty and friendship and it was great! I love the bonding moments of the boys, those hot spring moments and the singing in the car.

The bromance between Chil Sung and Seo Poong is also admirable. Seo Poong became like the baby brother of Chil Sung even though he got the girl that Chil Sung likes. Till the end, they supported each other and that what brothers are for really.

The camaraderie in the small restaurant then later in the big hotel restaurant was also a highlight of the entire show. First the atmosphere was always stressy, lots of shouting and scolding but in the end, everyone learned from each other and stayed friends. Hm, I don’t know how much of that is in reality.

Small Things That Made Big Impacts. That wall writing in Hangeul which translates to “Was that Life? Well then, once more!” And of course the fortune cookie message!

Dislikes: The ending was obviously shortened.

Lots of Subway commercial for something trying to put focus on the greatness of Chinese food.

I thought the horse had more later episode roles. They forgot about it until the end.

My Rating: 8 stars! (10 as highest) View More »

Dec 302017
 

money flower kdramaSummary: Kang Pil Joo, the most capable lawyer of one of the biggest and most powerful and influential Chong-ah group has been waiting for that crucial moment to take over the company. But he’s got competitions! Lots of them, all very powerful and influential. Since he’s very determined, he is willing to do everything including giving up the woman he loves.

Trailer: Money Flower

Genre: Romance, Political
Episodes: 24
Stars: Jang Hyuk as Kang Pil Joo
Park Se Young as Na Mo Hyun
Jang Seung Jo as Jang Boo Chun
Han So Hee as Yoo Seo Won



Likes: How can I resist a wonderful drama with Jang Hyuk but putting my man aside, Money Flower is one exemplary drama about people who are driven by greed. People who think they can control everything with money. We’ve got here a fantastic story with equally fantastic cast. The outcome is simply breathtaking, heart-pounding, heartbreaking, full of surprises and emotions. This is one top-notch drama in pulling threads. Whoever has the most money can control more. Interesting as well as entertaining!

Why breathtaking? Look out for those scenes like the one at the bird sanctuary where Kang Pil Joo was observing the girl he loves but was ready to give her away. The Jung Mal Ran scene as she was entering the room to meet the father of her future daughter-in-law. The revelation and bowing scene by Kang Pil Joo to the honorary chairmain finally revealing himself as the eldest grandchild. This drama is full of these breathtaking moments so brace yourself!

Why heart-pounding? Ah yes it did to mine, a lot! Heart-pounding moments are those moments which are… almost. Yes, almost. Almost-stabbed, almost-strangulated, almost-poisoned, almost-died! But we also have almost-kissed, almost-runaway with him, almost-happy ever after?

Why heartbreaking? Ugh, yes the heartbreaks! Lots of ’em too! Our top leads suffered a lot from this. Kang Pil Jo, basically, since he was little as he lost everyone around him. Na Mo Hyun, what a heartbreak when you’re given away by the man you love!!!

Why full of surprises and emotions? There’s no doubt for these. We’ve got incredible cliffhangers, crazy revelations (equates to “I’m your father Luke!”), turning of events and characters… crazy rollercoaster ride but fun!

Okay, now to our cast. This is also one top-notched cast. I love Jang Hyuk to begin with. I love his sad facial expression throughout the drama. He’s so handsome even when he’s sad. Park Se Hyung, is a wonderful actress. She did well in her character. But 3 actors caught my attention…

Jang Seung Jo as Jang Boo Chun – I was surprised to see how great this young actor was. Very natural! He switches from each emotion to another with ease. Naturally talented!



Lee Mi Sook as Jung Mal Ran – This lady is not just beautiful but a brilliant actress as well. In her character as Jung Mal Ran, she portrayed a classy, rich, controlling woman whose mere ambition is for her son to take over the family’s business. She was excellently ruthless!

Lee Soon Jae as Jang Gook Hwan – This veteran actor is no veteran for nothing! He was awesome as the honorary chairman of Chong-ah, the founder, the father of them all! Even at his age, he was wise, powerful, influential and very ruthless.

Additional icing to the cake…

  • I love the bitching between Boo Cheon and Yeo Cheon.
  • The bromance between Kang Pil Joo and Boo Cheon.
  • The OST is worth checking out!
  • The Jang House is worth checking out too! It’s called Gyeongwonjae Ambassador Incheon – it’s a hotel!
  • Jung Mal Ran’s classy outfits! She wore them all well.

The ending? I love how it ended! I was prepared and I think it was reasonable.

Dislikes: Nothing worth mentioning.

My Rating: 8.5 stars! (10 as highest)

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Oct 082015
 

the merchant gaekju 2015 kdramaSummary: Cheon Bong Sam, a son of a former merchant started from scratch after his father died. He honed his business skills when he started to work at a stable. From there with personal and business trials that never left his side, he worked his way to the top as one of the most influential businessmen during his time.

Genre: Romance, Period
Episodes: 41
Stars: Jang Hyuk as Cheon Bong Sam
Yoo Oh Sung as Gil So Gae
Kim Min Jung as Mae Wol
Han Chae Ah as Jo So Sa




Likes: World of merchants Joseon style! That for sure was a new sub genre for me.  It’s interesting to see how they do business and trade during that time. Tough world to survive but already there was ambition, passion, determination, ethics even tradition from these hard-working pioneers.

I love the costumes and the realistic setting. From the hats, sandals, clothing of the peddlers to the traditional hanboks of the wealthier merchants. The markets looked convincingly real and the stable looked appropriately right with the tough guys living at the place.

Though it’s heavily focused on business, it’s got its fair share of love and tragedy. The love of our merchant for the most beautiful woman in their world and how that happiness was taken from him. This side story was essential in keeping the interest in the whole business thing :).

Formidable characters and the actors who took the roles. Definitely an impressive performance by everyone. Let’s start with…

Jang Hyuk as Cheon Bong Sam– if the great merchant was really handsome then JH was a great choice. A wise character with an excellent business skills. Tough stable guy but became softhearted for the lady he loved. A great leader like his father who always protected his flock. It sounds too good to be true, right? Let’s just say he didn’t get or acquired everything but he always ended up victorious.

Lee Duk Hwa as Shin Suk Joo – LDH is a great actor and portraying the smart and powerful Shin Suk Joo is an addition to his very attractive resume. I love how his character who started at the top dropped vertically after he met his lady love curse.

Yoo Oh Sung as Gil So Gae – he was annoying from the very beginning and he stayed like that until his very end.

Kim Min Jung as Mae Wol – her love for Cheon Bong Sam was deadly. She’s gonna be remembered as the ex-peddler, ex-pristess who almost got what she wanted but didn’t.

Lee Dal Hyung as Choi Dol – I’m giving him the best actor award for his topnotch performance as Bong Sam’s close friend who was quite slow for his age but the most loyal and was willing to sacrifice himself for his friend. It was heartbreaking to let him go.

I love all the dramatic character-ending in this drama. The ending of Shin Suk Joo with the setting sun. The terrifying death of Jo So, Bong sam’s wife. The sad but heroic ending of Choi Dol. The fate of Gil So Gae which was like his father’s. All tragic but makes me remember them more!

All Bong Sam’s speeches in this drama were very touching. He could easily start a rebellion at that time through his powerful speeches but in the end, his being a great speaker was used to teach his young followers how to be a great merchant themselves.




Dislikes: Too long for this kind of theme.

Sometimes women were so perfectly made up, it doesn’t look like Joseon era.

My Rating: 8 stars! (10 as highest)

Mar 032015
 

shine or go crazy kdramaSummary: Prince Wang So known as the cursed prince was destined to be the successor to the 1st king’s throne but only if he would get married to a princess that would serve as his light and guide to be a true leader. Without knowing, he married a former princess who has that fate but right away separated from her without even seeing her face. After a few years, their paths had crossed again and began to fall in love.

Genre: Period, Romance
Episodes: 24
Stars: Jang Hyuk as Wang So
Oh Yeon Seo as Shin Yool
Lee Ha Nui as Hwang Bo Yeo Won
Im Ju Hwan as Wang Wook




Likes: I always love a historic setting and seeing Jang Hyuk in prince costumes makes me always swoon. SWOON! Love sageuk and love Jang Hyuk!

The story got me hooked from the very beginning. Characters were well introduced – who’s the good guy – what are his potentials, who are the baddies – what bad things are they capabale of doing… made me interested in each one of them right away. Well done!

Too many pretty faces in this drama. Not that I’m complaining, in fact, that made me always look forward to another episode.

As mentioned in my pre-review, the chemistry between Wang So and Shin Yool was overwhelming. 2 great looking leads who very well complemented each other.

That interesting showcase of powerplay seen in most sageuk drama is once again in this one and I just loved it! How can they all be beautifully sneaky?

Excellent sword-fighting scenes! But when it comes to fight, my favorite is the princes’ tournament. This is where the
ladies are hooked (right?).

The characters, let’s dissect the top ones…

Prince Wang So – very well portrayed by Jang Hyuk who I think lost weight to exactly look like a poor swordsman then later, an old king (barely recognized him but he was still sexy). I love how Wang So fell in love, changing from a very focused leader to a child-like personality and I love how he would stare at his lady love. To top it all, he was funny, strong and brave!

Shin Yool – I always wonder how this delicate and beautiful being survived in that era. Yes delicate, beautiful, smart and very wise. She was just too lovable. No wonder why princes and generals were smitten by this beauty.

Prince Wang Wook – Oh dear, though he was competing against Wang So, he was definitely a top contender. Towering, good-looking, can fight but seems gentle and every inch a prince, a proud prince [swoon]. I love the music that’s being played everytime Wang Wook is in the scene, it’s light with a tinge of sadness.

Princess Yeo Won – I like the lady. She wasn’t the typical evil other princess but a beautiful, politically motivated, smart and powerful person. She was definitely giving it a fight to be on top. No nonsense. Just no love life for her, it was the price she was willing to pay.

Everyone else did a great job. Special mention to Wang Sik Ryum (the evil uncle), the brother king, Seo Won (sad for his tragic ending though) and to my favorite, Shin Yool’s brother who was funny though always causing trouble.




Dislikes: I don’t really like the ending. No matter how I think of it, it was a sad one. Realistically, Wang Wook would choose to be king (like how it was shown) and sacrifice his love and ended up as an old king who always longed for his lady love (as shown how he kept those memorabilias in his secret room). But what I don’t like most is to confuse viewers with a “there might be a happy ending” scene. I just don’t understand the very last scene. Was that a “what if” or he really lived as a king and went to see her from time to time??? For me, it’s either a Titanic ending or not, nothing in between.

I was disappointed how that battle ended up. They were talking about an army so big but couldn’t show that much. As what Shrek says, “You and what army?” Sorry but I expected an epic battle scene.

They could have been more creative with the title. It just doesn’t sound sageuk.

My Rating: 8 stars! (10 as highest)

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Feb 122015
 

fated to love you kdramaSummary: Lee Gun, a chaebol who manages his family’s company wanted desperately to propose in Macau to his girlfriend but by fate he met Kim Mi Young, a shy secretary in a law firm back in Korea who was also in Macau for a trip. Mi Young got pregnant with Lee Gun’s child after one night of spending together. Lee Gun, after knowing that had to take Mi Young as his wife.

Genre: Romantic Comedy
Episodes: 20
Stars: Jang Hyuk as Lee Gun
Jang Na Ra as Kim Mi Young
Wang Ji Won as Nam Se Ra
Choi Jin Hyuk as Daniel




Likes: I’m sure I’ve seen it before but this kind of story is something I would always watch over and over
again. Reminds me a lot of BOF. They’re the candies of dramas. Addictive, fun, teasing makes you swoon on the (male) leads and has a big production giving our girl that cinderella effect. Tis the reason why I watch kdrama, that one day I would be enjoying another entertaining show like this one.

Very, very attractive leads! Let’s start with…

Jang Hyuk – totally handsome and sexy! Yet another crush of mine :). Have you seen his nose? Perfectly crafted to match his sexy face haha! Actor aside, I love Lee Gun too. The way he laughs, cries and looks at his very shy wife. Wahh! I wanna have him! You saw how sexy he was when he was trying to be the endorser of his own shampoo, so hot! And that long hair, I wish he never had a haircut!

Jang Na Ra – pretty face that exudes innocence just perfect for her role as Mi Young. I love how Mi Young would adjust her eyeglasses while flickering her eyes. So natural.

Wang Ji Won – though her beauty is a bit too edgy for a ballerina, still a pretty face. I thought her role would turn
evil but she remained defeated.

Choi Jin Hyuk – tall, handsome and successful. Just the perfect rival for the almost perfect Lee Gun. Glad they picked someone who’s equally desirable :).

Lots of teasing moments which always ended up as cliffhangers. Always makes me watch the next one and the next…

Lots of funny moments! Prenatal class was top! Prenatal teacher who appears as different characters throughout the drama was a great comical relief.

Love the cameos of Clara and that another guy (probably famous sportsman) as the endorsers of shampoo.

Happy ending for everyone!




Dislikes: I found it a bit too trying hard to show that the two had a happy end. Could have done it without the kids.
It was somehow stiff in the end.

Jang Hyuk with short hair, not much my type. He still looks handsome with short hairdo but his long hair was an important feat. I mean just imagine Gu Jun Pyo without his long, curly locks.

My Rating: 9 stars! (10 as highest)

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