Summary: Doona is a kpop idol who is forced to take a break. She lives in a boarding house occupying the ground floor. There she meets an engineering student, Lee Won Jun. The two become close and eventually fall in love with each other. However, their opposite situations force them apart.
Ongoing drama. Still watching.
Preview: This continues the story of Lee Jang Hyun, an interpreter during the Qing invasion of Joseon being reunited with his lady love, Yoo Gil Chae, who gets dragged all the way to Qing and becomes a prisoner. Upon knowing, Lee Jang Hyun rescues her, but things get complicated when Qing’s princess Gak Hwa, who likes Lee Jang Hyun, becomes unhappy about the whole situation.
Genre: Period, Romance, Melodrama
Stars: Nam Goong Min as Lee Jang Hyun
Ahn Eun Jin as Yoo Gil Chae
Lee Hak Joo as Nam Yeon Joon
Lee Da In as Kyung Eun Ae
Kim Yoon Woo as Ryang Eum
Lee Chung Ah as Gak Hwa
Summary: Han Jun Hee still grieves the death of her boyfriend who died a year ago. One day, she receives a cassette recorder from a mysterious sender, which allows her to time travel back to 1998. There she meets Nam Si Hyeon who resembles her dead boyfriend.
Genre: Fantasy Romance, Time-travel, Mystery, Melodrama
Stars: Ahn Hyo Seop as Koo Yeon Jun / Nam Si Hyeon
Jeon Yeo Bin as Han Jun Hee / Kwon Min Ju
Kang Hoon as Jung In Gyu
Likes: Such a good combination of melodrama and time-travel. I love time-travel, but oftentimes endings of this genre don’t always have that good closure. Not this one though. I know it feels very melodramatic in the beginning, but somehow in a good way. Keep watching until the end, and everything will make sense.
Beautiful love story. He fell in love with someone who traveled from the future and lived in a borrowed body. This is someone who fell in love with her personality. Well, that is something unusual. It goes beyond appearance and beyond time. I love the fact the he drew her in the past with her bubbly personality in mind. She might have been living in someone else’s body, but he was thinking of her as a different person already back then.
Overlapping timeline. Keep a good eye on the years. It can be confusing, but in the end it all makes sense. I just love how intricate the timeline was. The going back and forth time in an attempt to find a solution to the root problem. It was just fascinating!
The mysterious cassette recorder. I like the way they time-travel here. It’s through music and without surprise I get to like that song already. The cassette tape was a present from the shy Kwon Min Ju that made Nam Si Hyeon travel to the future and meet Han Ju Hee. Han Ju Hee got hold of the recorder with the tape in it and travelled to the past and in the end saved Kwon Min Ju. Yes, so it all went back to Kwon Min Ju.
The love triangle in the past. This is the hardest when a girl likes a guy who doesn’t like her back however his bestfriend likes her, but the girl is not interested in the bestfriend. Lots of unrequitted love here, but the friendship is strong though, so let’s stick to it.
We all want our own In Gyu. In reality, we would love to have someone who would sacrifice for us, who would be there for us always, who would accept us for being who we are, who would love us no matter what. In Gyu, the bestfriend, was such a likable character and I think Kang Hoon, kudos to him, really did him justice here
Brilliant top leads.
Ahn Hyo Seop as Koo Yeon Jun / Nam Si Hyeon – He was such a natural as the young Nam Si Hyeon. The older one got really gloomy understandably from all the sad pasts. As Koo Yeon Jun, he was somewhere in the middle, calm and loving. Overall, Ahn Hyo Seop did such a great job with his roles.
Jeon Yeo Bin as Han Jun Hee / Kwon Min Ju – She did amazing! She was able to show a big difference between the two characters. You couldn’t even tell it’s the same person. She got really into a big drama as Kwon Min Ju, lot’s of tears there, such a moving scene.
Favourite Quotes. “I have to die to fall in love again.”
“Whenever your heart calls for me, I will go to you.
Awesome cameo. Such a surprise to see Ro Woon (I’m watching his drama, Destined with You) as the love interest of the real Koo Yeon Jun, just before Nam Si Hyeon took over his body. When the two held hands, I was like, Oh my gosh 😲!
The Ending. As mentioned above, I love how it ended., how they closed that crazy time-travel cycle. And of course I love it that there was even an epilogue at the very end, and our two main characters meet again anew, unkowing of their past but the connection was still evident 😊❤️.
Summary: Set in the Joseon era during the Qing invasion, a love story between Lee Jang Hyun, a wandering businessman and Yoo Gil Chae, a daughter of a nobleman, blossoms. However because the whole country goes through a difficult time, the two gets separated. Yoo Gil Chae receives the news that Lee Jang Hyun died, so eventually she gets engaged to someone else.
Genre: Period, Romance, Melodrama
Stars: Nam Goong Min as Lee Jang Hyun
Ahn Eun Jin as Yoo Gil Chae
Lee Hak Joo as Nam Yeon Joon
Lee Da In as Kyung Eun Ae
Kim Yoon Woo as Ryang Eum
Likes: What I love most about this drama is that even though it was set during a struggling Joseon period, when it was invaded by the Qing armies, and most scenes were filmed in winter times, it’s able to convey the most important theme, and that’s the love of Jang Hyun to his Lady Gil Chae. It was always the center of it all, it defied everything including war, politics, dirty business, torture and survival on those very hostile times.
The love story. I like the playful and colourful background of how it all started. Gil Chae, one of the most beautiful noble ladies in the village, was adored by the gentlemen around her except for that one person who she wanted the most. However, he was already set to marry her best friend. That of course didn’t stop Gil Chae from trying to seduce the guy. Hence, that earned her the title fox lady, meaning like a fox, she would try hard to get the guy that he wanted. Then came Jang Hyun, a noble, businessman who had been traveling around. Jang Hyun was also good with women, but when he set his eyes on lady Gil Chae, he was captivated by her beauty and personality. But Gil Chae had only eyes on her bestfriend’s betrothed, that made it more challenging for Jang Hyun to capture her heart.
I love how this drama put so much importance to the courtship of those long-gone eras. There were lots of emphasis on strong emotions and bonds. It was slow courtship but very beautiful. You can feel the sincerity, loyalty, love and desire with simply just how they look at each other. It made me fall in love several times. It’s like reading a romance novel. Everything is described beautifully and you feel every emotion.
A powerful backdrop. The invasion of Qing, which puts Joseon into disarray, that even the Crown Prince had to leave the palace and travel to Qing to basically serve as a hostage, so Joseon could be under Qing’s control, is a very interesting and powerful backdop. Although the main topic is the romance between Gil Chae and Jang Hyun, the country’s story of politics and war under Qing’s control was very well elaborated. That actually made Jang Hyun’s character, a more interesting one, because as the story progressed into the war, he then became someone who was in the front line. A very important character who had helped the Crown Prince became more confident politically in dealing with the controlling Qing.
The sets. I love the small village where Gil Chae originally hailed. Before the invasion, the village was a representation of peace, unity and slow progress. Everyone seemed happy and contented. Very unaware of hostility and unaware of how to protect themselves. The people had to flee the village which was really a sad scene. A beautiful place where you grew up and thought would stay there until you get old. It was sad and the feeling was just so relatable.
When people had to seek refuge at the island because they thought it was the safest place, but then turned out to be not. Such a beautiful island, but when the invaders arrived it felt like a trap. Everyone was trapped there.
All the sets in this drama made me feel like I was dragged into it. It felt very real. You can feel the spring breeze when everyone was out for a picnic. You can feel the cold when they walk on the snow. You can feel the fear during the fights. You can feel the hunger when there was no enough food on the table. You can feel the desperation to survive. And above all, you can feel the desire and longing of someone, who had been separated from his beloved.
Our amazing top leads. Hands down for all the brilliant acting.
Nam Goong Min as Lee Jang Hyun – Nam Goong Min is one of my favourite kdrama actors. He’s always to fall in love with. As Jang Hyun, I would take any pairs of floral shoes he would offer 😊. I just love the character. Not so good boy, not so bad boy either. Very smart guy, well-dressed and the way he adored Lady Gil Chae, the way he would look at her, was to die for! A good sword fighter! Who doesn’t want a man who can fight when there are invaders roaming around. He knew he was reliable but not enough to the one he loved.
Ahn Eun Jin as Yoo Gil Chae – First time to see her in a drama and I would say I’m impressed. She did so well as Yoo Gil Chae. Young, conceited, outspoken, no filter-kind of lady, but then at those difficult, challenging times, she came out the strongest and bravest. I love that scene when she became a midwife because no one else could do it even her servant. She was the total survival lady. Would do anything to put food on the table.
The kiss! It was just a peck on the lips but my gosh it made me sooo giddy! Beautifully done with a romantic field with sunset setting. Such a memorable moment! And then Jang Hyun said to Lady Gil Chae, “I do not understand myself either, why is it that when I look at you my silly heart makes such a big fuss.”
Sad OST. This song makes me sad and that’s how the story of love between Jang Hyun and Gil Chae unfolded, nevertheless it’s such a heartwarming song, With My Heart! Complete OST brings you back to that time!
The Ending. I completely understand Lady Gil Chae’s last moment’s decision to choose her family over Jang Hyun. I would have done the same thing as well. It’s sad, but I’m not losing hope for this two though.
The good news is we’re getting a second season and I can’t wait any further. I like the teaser. Jang Hyun seemed to have found another love interest. Let’s see how that would unfold in season 2.
Summary: Eun Gye Hoon is a respectable chef who used to share his emotion with his twin sister. That connection ended when the sister went missing and believed to have died. Eun Gye Hoon meets a girl called No Da Hyun whose feelings and emotions he could also feel just like his sister.
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, Melodrama, Food, Psychological, Mystery, Serial Killer
Stars: Yeo Jin Goo as Eun Gye Hoon
Moon Ga Young as No Da Hyun
Likes: It’s an interesting combination of fantasy, romance, food and mystery drama. I like the storytelling, it uniquely blends all this genre together.
Fantasy. I guess feeling someone’s emotions fall into this category. Eun Gye Hoon feeling Noh Da Hyun’s emotions always left that surprised reaction on his face. It must have been a truly daunting experience feeling someone’s fear and anxiety. However, I like the connection and the true reason why they had that link.
Romance. I find these two cute. The chemistry wasn’t that strong but they just look great together. It’s was nice to see that although the characters were ill fated, the attraction was strong enough to stay and protect each other until the end.
Food. I thought I won’t see that restaurant open at all! Anyway, all the testing menu and food Eun Gye Hoon prepared for Noh Da Hyun, especially when she could not sleep, were all mouth-watering! We all wish to have a partner who can cook, don’t we?
Mystery. It was nerve-racking as everyone was a potential suspect. But love how it came out. The real culprit was really that someone you least expected. The title of the episode was called “An Ordinary Evil”, revealing the killer’s identity.
Episode Titles. And yeah since we’re just at it, all episode titles were very well-thought of and truly represents the happenings of every episode. Link, The Connection; Lies; Confession; Cheesy, But Destiny; The Child Returns; Fluttering; Poke; The Children of Jiwhadong, Don’t Turn Around; The Red Gate; The Witness, The Premonition; Mom’s Secret; An Ordinary Evil; The Link and Eat, Love, Kill.
Scary and Funny. I like how they managed to make this show scary and at the same time funny. The fact that there’s someone stalking you and the killer of long time ago is still out there, that’s pretty scary. But we’ve got scenes like the mom and the grandma carrying tools around ready to hit someone when their daughter / granddaughter is in danger. Scenes like Eun Gye Hoon’s friend coming inside the restaurant on inconvenient situations. Or both scary and funny like Lee Jin Geun being put in the fridge, then able to escape only to be hit by a taxi. He survived after that and still able to blackmail the taxi driver.
The Top Leads.
Yeo Jin Goo as Eun Gye Hoon – I love Yeo Jin Goo! I’ve watched this guy grow up in kdramas. He is consistently a brilliant actor. As Eun Gye Hoon, I could feel his pain, guilt and loneliness. His face was painted like that. Then he fell in love, and love was there trying hard to thrive in the midst of pain, guilt and loneliness. Seeing the different emotions pouring out of him, even not his own, was brilliant. This guy can cry, even without trying hard. He’s so natural!
Moon Ga Young as No Da Hyun – such a pretty face! I don’t doubt her talent in acting, she’s quite good too. Her tears were just flowing naturally all the time. Not much effort there. I just don’t feel a strong chemistry between her and Yeo Jin Goo.
Ending. I love how all story lines had reached a decent closure. I especially like the happy endings. There were also background stories which shed light to a lot of things like the story of Noh Da Hyun’s grandma. As for our lead characters, it just shows that not all grim pasts can darken the path to happiness and love.
Dislikes: I really don’t understand why Noh Da Hyun kept on walking on dark alleys at night, even after being stalked. That just didn’t make sense!
Chemistry wasn’t that strong.
Summary: Na Hee Do aspires to be a fencing champion. She has to transfer to a different high school to get more training. At 18, she meets Baek Yi Jin, 22, a hard-working guy who does a lot of part-time jobs. They become friends, then lovers, then see what happens when they turn twenty five and twenty one.
Genre: Romance, Melodrama, Coming of Age
Stars: Kim Tae Ri as Na Hee Do
Nam Joo Hyuk as Baek Yi Jin
Bona as Koo Yoo Rim
Choi Hyun Wook as Moon Ji Woong
Likes: This is one of those kdramas that was just so well done. Such a wonderful story of love, friendship, support and relationship and all that comes with them, happiness, sadness, struggles, challenges, successes, failures and all.
The age. It’s so relatable because I was about Na Hee Do’s age during the turn of the century. All those stuff like comics, school uniform, school ground, friends hanging out a lot, eating, drinking, laughing, just simply having fun like you don’t have to worry about the future, my gosh, they all brought back memories of happy and carefree times. Then, there comes the crush, falling in love, having the first kiss, then comes the lapse in communication, then the breakup. So, we thought, oh well, that’s life. Then, we move on. This was also the time when we like to wear t-shirts a lot. That was our go-to outfit, even to the beach! I just love the beach outing in this drama. It was so like my time. It’s funny, because I always thought I grew up in that dull age 🤔. I come to think of it, and thanks to this drama too, it was not dull at all. It was fun, full of energy, challenging but we don’t break our head over things like we do now 😉. Really thanks to this, I get to look back to the past with a smile and pride and say hey, I grew up in that glorious age!
The characters. I was so impressed by the characters, they’re all very well-thought of.
Na Hee Do – I love her tenacity. She just didn’t give up being a fencer. She worked hard until she was level with her idol, isn’t that impressive! She was this fun, simple, a bit boyish, comics-fanatic, happiness comes from stickers kind of girl. She wasn’t the prettiest but exuded beauty and aura when she was fencing (this is why it’s easy to fall for varsity players ). She was also cute and funny, especially after her several confession attempts. My favourite was when she approached Baek Yi Jin thinking he was her online chat Injeolmi and said, “I have to have you.” 😊 Who wouldn’t fall for her, she was just too cute and likeable. And we’ve all got to thank Kim Tae Ri for bringing Na Hee Do to life. She did an amazing job! Such a great actress!
Baek Yi Jin – the amount of insults, embarrassments and treatment with contempt that this guy had to endure was no joke. I could feel his pain. And because of that pain, he wanted to make a difference for himself. If everyone works hard, he had to work even harder because he was just college dropout. Any career path would have been hard for him, but he worked harder to climb that ladder and I think he deserved where he was at the end. Well, at least the career side of things. I love Baek Yi Jin’s part in Na Hee Do’s life, bittersweet, maybe like Brad Pitt to Jennifer Aniston or Gwyneth Paltrow 😉. The way he would look at her with those puppy eyes, omo, omo, I melt! Credit to our handsome Nam Joo Hyuk for being our Baek Yi Jin. Well done!
Koo Yoo Rim – she was Na Hee Do’s happy ending and I just love the fact that they remained the best of friends after all those things. Koo Yoo Rim’s determination was very admirable. Her pain, struggles and sufferings because of poverty is something that a lot of us could relate to. I love her for loving her parents and sacrificing a lot for them. First time to see this idol Bo Na act and she is a very promising star. Watch out for her.
The Relationships. They always come as complicated. But hm, maybe not all. Some started simple then got complicated, others, the other way around, and sometimes it’s just smooth like butter!
Na Hee Do and Baek Yi Jin – I love how these two started. From strangers to acquaintances, then friends, then lovers, then wutt? Support from the distance? Okay, I’ll just accept that. The story on how they got closer as friends supporting each other on their lowest moments, then fell in love but started drifting apart, it broke my heart big time 😢! It’s so complicated. I just wish they both could have love, happiness and success all at once. But I guess that’s too much to ask.
Na Hee Do and her mum – I think Na Hee Do’s relationship with her mum had contributed to her break up with Baek Yi Jin. Her mum worked hard for her career missing out a lot on Na Hee Do growing up. Na Hee Do just doesn’t want another absentee loved one in her life. But I’m glad, in the end, these two ladies were able to fix things up.
Na Hee Do and Koo Yoo Rim – I love their connection. It truly rooted from when they were still young. It might have been an insecurity thing from Koo Yoo Rim’s side when she lost against Na Hee Do when they were just starting, but definitely that was the connection. She started to dream to be the rival of Na Hee Do. Koo Yoo Rim made it to the top, and that made Na Hee Do dream too, and that someday she’ll be competing against Koo Yoo Rim. It took them a while to be friends but they got there eventually, and what an amazing friendship they have! It was such a nerve-racking scene when they were competing for the gold medal in Madrid, and the embrace at the end made me tear up! Such an emotional scene!
Koo Yoo Rim and Moon Ji Woong – I admire these two for being strong for each other. Both young and in love but going through hardships together. I love that Ji Woong didn’t give up on Koo Yoo Rim, even when the latter tried to break up with him. Their goal was clear (especially from Ji Woong’s side), that they’ll be together no matter what. At the proposal, Ji Woong said, “It doesn’t matter where I come from. What matters is where I will go.”
Na Hee Do, Koo Yoo Rim, Baek Yi Jin, Moon Ji Woong and Ji Seung Wan – the bond between these friends was so strong and very admirable. I love how they hang out together – eat, drink, get drunk, talk, play games. It so brings back a lot of memories for me. I suddenly miss my childhood friends!
Collection of Quotes:
” Injeolmi, I have to have you.” – Na Hee Doo to Baek Yi Jin, mistaking him as her chat friend Injeomi 😍
“In the real world, you make an apology for the sake of everyone’s peace. It’s nothing personal. Society doesn’t care at all about an individual finding peace.” Sunbae giving Baek Yi Jin advice 👍
“”Wherever you are, I will make sure my support reaches you. I will go and reach you.” – Na Hee Do to Baek Yi Jin ❤️
“My support is not reaching him anymore.” – Na Hee Do to herself 😢
“We’re lovers only during the good times, and a burden to each other in the bad times.” Na Hee Do to Baek Yi Jin during the breakup 😢
“It doesn’t matter where I come from. What matters is where I will go.” – Moon Ji Woong proposing to Koo Yoo Rim 🥰
Handsome cameos. Choi Tae Joon (Park Shin Hye’s husband) as Na Hee Do’s ex-boyfriend came us a lovely surprise, especially that Baek Yi Jin was getting jealous of him. Kang Hoon (Red Sleeve) too, surprised us all when he appeared as Baek Yi Jin’s grown up younger brother, Baek Yi Hyun.
Unforgettable OST. I love all the songs that came with the drama. They match the 90’s mood, although they now leave a sting in my heart every time I listen to them. Here’s Twenty Five Twenty One OST!
Ending. I like the part where everyone finds their own closure. Na Hee Do, all grown-up, going back to the place where the most pain had happened. Baek Yi Jin, while retrieving his password after 20 years, reveals his answer to the question, Who’s your first love? In the end, I think it’s not how we grieve on the breakup but how we move on after it. Just like our Na Hee Do and Baek Yi Jin.
Dislikes: I’m still grieving though on the breakup! 😢😢😢
Summary: Ha Young Eun is a hard-working team lead of a leading fashion company. She’s responsible for a lot of stuff including guiding his boss’ daughter to properly do her job. She meets again professional, fashion photographer, Yoon Jae Kook, who she had a one-night-stand in Paris.
Genre: Romance, Noona Romance, Melodrama
Stars: Song Hye Kyo as Ha Young Eun
Jang Ki Yong as Yoon Jae Kook
Choi Hee Seo as Hwang Chi Sook
Kim Joo Hun as Suk Do Hoon
Sehun as Hwang Chi Hyung
Likes: Beautiful leads, no doubt, but chemistry is another story.
Song Hye Kyo as Ha Young Eun – you can see that she’s gotten older but still very beautiful. She is definitely a talent but the role made her look like she’s not having fun in life, too serious. I wish to see her again in a more light-hearted drama, maybe a romantic comedy. Nevertheless, she looked stunning in different outfits, especially the floral dress.
Jang Ki Yong as Yoon Jae Kook – still very handsome. After My Roommate is a Gumiho, I was looking forward to this drama. His role here didn’t make much impact like the Gumiho but still glad to see this beauty in another light. Tall and handsome, he complemented Hye Kyo’s perfect look.
Fashionable Outfits. Love all Song Hye Kyo’s outfits! She looked good in them and they looked good on her. Her floral dress was just so pretty! Perfect for the date although she looked so stiff in that scene 😉. Also love Jang Ki Yong’s relaxed outfit. This guy looks good on everything I guess. Pretty much everyone in the show looked fashionable.
Awesome Quotes. Love how each episode starts with quotes from famous personalities. And my favourite was by Gertrude Stein, “Whoever said money can’t buy happiness, simply didn’t know where to go shopping.” 😂
SONO. How meaningful is the name for Ha Young Eun’s clothing line was and to think it was originally suggested by a stranger who turned out to be the love of her life.
Bold Reply. When Ha Young Eun was asked by Jae Guk’s mum if they can have a talk and Young Eun replied, ” If you’re So Wan’s mum then I don’t have a reason to meet you, but if you’re Jae Guk’s mum, yes, I will meet you.” Very bold of her and kind of like it if I was in Young Eun’s shoes but not if I were the mum 🤔.
Supporting Love Teams. I was glad they had other love teams to switch my attention to. The Hwang Chi-sook and Seok Do-hoon’s love team was a bit cringy but these two were just so cute.
Friendship Goal. The strong bond between the three ladies was simply admirable. It makes me miss my best friends more.
Dislikes: The story was just blah. Lots of cliches. And what I was disappointed most was the lack of justification for the main lead’s greatest love for each other. Also, the lack of chemistry was very evident. Sorry, but I was totally bored. Struggled to finish the whole drama.
The ending was, how would I describe it, very lazily done. It was like, what, that was it?!
Summary: Sung Duk Im is a court lady serving the crown prince of Joseon. Without knowing the real appearance of the prince, she’s been actually talking to him a handful of times while disguised as his teacher. The prince falls in love with Sung Duk Im and she later becomes his royal concubine.
Genre: Period, Romance, Kings & Princes, Books, Melodrama
Stars: Lee Joon Ho as Lee San, later King Jeongjo
Lee Se Young as Sung Duk Im, later Royal Noble Consort Ui
Kang Hoon as Hong Duk Ro / Hong Kook Young
Likes: What made this show so successful is the focus on the romance between Lee San and Duk Im, from the beginning till the very end. All the other stuff, like Lee San’s struggle to get to the throne or his reign and Duk Im’s palace life were secondary (but still very-well covered) to that beautiful romance between these two characters. Well, no doubt this grabbed Kdramastowatch Best Romance award for 2021!
Best Romantic Scenes. Countless in this show but recalling the time when Lee San wasn’t allowed to get out of his chamber and Duk Im came to read the Book of Odes to him from the outside. That was one of the first strong connections, I think. Hm, how about the bath scene? That was crazy hot! And I always found it romantic when these two are bickering, which one time ended up with the first kiss! How about the first night? I won’t even go there 🤭.
Book of Odes Passage. “The north wind is cold, the falling snow is voluminous. If you love me, and are affectionate, with the one I love and who likes me, I’ll hold your hand and part with you.
The north wind is chilly, the falling snow is thick. If you are affectionate and love me, I’ll hold your hand and go back with you.”
Lots of good drama. The story is so rich that although we have the love story of Lee San and Duk Im as the main focus, we’ve got so many others to pay attention to. Like the relationship between Lee San and his grandfather King. I would call it tough love. The ties between Lee San and the Queen (later Queen Dowager), I would call that strong support. The relationship between the chief court lady and the grandfather King, I would call that resentment. The bond between Lee San and Hong Duk Ro, I would call that broken friendship. Then we’ve got the strong friendship and bond between Duk Im and her friends. She even told the king later, you’ve got everything, the country and your subjects, I’ve only got my friends. All these, made this show such an awesome drama! One can easily relate to each situation. And as viewers, we also felt the pain and the happiness.
Cinematography. This is my second for best cinematography. Just so many beautiful scenes and I just love how the camera would move around capturing every nice angles.
Costumes. The details they put on costume is commendable! Although the King’s robes and the Queens wardrobes were always grand and impressive, I love how they managed to give attention to the court ladies uniforms. The court ladies were vital in the story, so there was obviously a need to identify the ranking. Song Duk Im’s court lady uniform which was kept by her friend was later treasured by the king at the very end.
Favourite Quote: “Were you captivated by me or I was captivated by you?”
“Are we really talking about orange?” – Lee San to Duk Im
Top leads with the strongest chemistry.
Lee Joon Ho as Lee San, later King Jeongjo – my gosh I’m so in love with Joon Ho now 🤭! This idol already impressed me in Wok in Love. He is such a fine actor. He slayed the role of Lee San, later King Jeongjo! He was great as King, almost like Lee Duk Hwa’s performance but he was most adorable as someone who was so in love with a court lady. The longing in his looks. The facial expression when he gets angry at her (well for basically ignoring him). And yes the drama he had to endure at the very end. Well done Joo Ho!
Lee Se Young as Sung Duk Im, later Royal Noble Consort Ui – she looked very thin in the beginning that when she smiled, she didn’t look good at all. But when her character developed, she was getting more and more beautiful. I’ve seen a lot of her past dramas and I would say she always delivers. I love Sung Duk Im’s strong and resisting character, it suits Lee Se Young well. And my gosh this lady’s chemistry with Joon Ho was just top, hands down. Wish they would do another drama again.
Ending. I must admit I was taken aback. I didn’t do any research prior. I won’t say it’s completely sad because in the end they were reunited.
Summary: Sa Hye Jun has been working as a model for 7 years but what he really wants is to become an actor. He is always compared to his close friend, Won Hae Hyo, who is also a model and comes from a rich family. Through their work, Sa Hye Jun and Won Hae Hyo get acquainted with a professional makeup artist, Han Jung Ha, who is a huge fan of Sa Hye Jun.
Genre: Melodrama, Family, Romance, Coming of Age
Stars: Park Bo Gum as Sa Hye Joon
Park So Dam as Han Jung Ha
Byun Woo Suk as Won Hae Hyo
Likes: Such a heart-warming story about life and experiences. This one’s especially focused on family, love and ambition and how everyone achieved their success going through failures. I like how realistic the family settings are. The bickering, favoritism, how open family members are when it comes to criticizing each other, the tension, the awkwardness of Sa Hye Jun’s family was too realistic, I could even relate to them. Same with the rich family of Won Hye Hyo, how the mom managed and controlled her kids, the cold atmosphere when everyone is at the table, how empty that big house was and how actually lonely these rich people are. And not to forget the life of Han Jung Ha who came from a broken family.
Love the characters and their convictions. I’ll focus on the main three although I would say this is one of the most character-rich dramas I’ve ever watched.
Sa Hye Jun’s perseverance to become a successful actor was truly inspiring. He worked so hard to achieve his dreams despite the criticisms he had received. He had the ambition so big that would crash obstacles which come his way. And although he reached the top, he remained a humble guy. That all made this character so beautiful. I’m not a huge fan of Park Bo Gum but I know he can act and I’ve got to give it to him, he did so well as Sa Hye Jun. And added bonus, he can speak English so well! I’m impressed!
Han Jung Ha’s calm and focused personality was her charm. She was so likeable, drawing our two main male leads to her which was very understandable. She had the courage to shift career paths despite the risk but since it was following what she loved most, she tried to pursue it. Such an admirable and beautiful character too. Park So Dam (the actress) is cute but not overly pretty which is good for the character.
Won Hae Hyo exuded coolness and elegance all the time. Definitely a rich kid just by the look of him. He trotted the runway like a pro and his face could launch a thousand me, lol! I know I’m biased. I have a big crush on Byun Woo Suk since Flower Crew: Joseon Marriage Agency. But his character here, though rich and handsome, was quite pitiful. I feel for him when he was losing his self-esteem, poor Hae Hyo :(.
Love the bromance between the three friends Sa Hye Jun, Won Hae Hyo and Jinu. Made me missed my childhood friends!
Chemistry between Park Bo Gum and Park So Dam wasn’t bad at all. I definitely love that kiss, it was full of affection. The two definitely nailed that moment.
Tear-jerker beautiful moment: Grandpa’s speech!
The featured library: Starfield Library would be on my top spots to visit in Seoul! Looked awesome!
It is a hip drama (design-wise and the focus on social media and acting industry). It’s about the lives of young people these days, their experiences and struggles. But what I like most about it was consistency to its theme, it was such a heart-warming show all though out.
And speaking of hip, the OST is too. Check out Record of Youth OST.
The list of awesome cameos in this drama is long! But my favorite was Park Seo Joon. He really looked like a close friend of Park Bo Gum here. They were so natural on screen. Seo Hyun Jin and Lee Sung Kyung as leading ladies of Sa Hye Jun in two separate dramas inside this drama also caught my attention.
I love how everyone followed the path that was best for them. Even if that means being drafted to the army :), at least for our two male leads. It goes to show that time fixes things. And since I’m a sucker for epilogues, two years later was a big bonus!
Dislikes: The Krispy Creme Donut ad was just too much. I could deal with the BMW and the Subway but the donut was too aggressive.
Summary: Cha Ji Won is a competent detective who is married to Baek Hee Sung, a metal craftsman who hides a dark secret. They have been living together peacefully with an adorable daughter. Cha Ji Won is clueless what kind of person her husband truly is but after a couple of incidents that involved him, she is slowly able to put the puzzle pieces together.
Genre: Melodrama, Thriller, Crime, Detective, Serial Killer
Stars: Lee Joon Ki as Do Hyun Soo / Baek Hee Jung
Moon Chae Won as Cha Ji Won
Jang Hee Jin as Do Hae Soo
Seo Hyun Woo as Kim Moo Jin
Likes: So many reasons for me to like this drama. Let me point them out one by one…
Love the story and how it was told. It was full of mystery since the first episode. It kind of started in the middle and from there went backwards to shed lights to characters and events. Like it all started with our main character tied down and drowning in the pool and a lady detective came rushing to rescue him. She seemed related to him. I was immediately hooked, questions running in my head… Why is he drowning? Why is she saving him? How are they related? And so on and so forth. All the answers to my questions were slowly answered in the next 15 episodes. I was patiently waiting for those 2 episodes a week and it was always worth the wait. Indeed, a great show!
Detective-crime-romance genre. I’m already in with a detective genre. It goes hand in hand with crime but romance is a bonus! This is after all a korean drama. Somehow, it’s hard to separate romance from everything but I like it always when there’s a tinge of romance in everything. This drama ticks all three favourites for me and it was a satisfying show.
The Beautiful and Brilliant Cast. Everyone was impressive from the police force, the gangsters, the child actor, the foster parents, even the serial-killing victim but three were my most beautiful and favourites…
Lee Joon Ki as Do Hyun Soo / Baek Hee Sung – I’m always distracted by his beautiful face but he wasn’t all beauty here, he did so well as the ideal husband and father, Baek Hee Sung then later changing back to the calculating fugitive Do Hyun Soo. I admire the awkwardness, the tension, the fear, the drama, the chemistry between him and and Moon Chae Won.
Moon Chae Won as Cha Ji Won – Another beautiful being in this drama. Sometimes too beautiful as a detective, always sporting a perfect hairstyle. But Moon Chae Won as I’ve always known is not just a pretty face. This lass can act! She nailed her character Cha Ji Won here. And that chemistry between her and Lee Joon Ki was just top.
Kim Ji Hoon as Baek Hee Sung – He looked better in long hair! Even with his dark character here, there was no denying, he was so handsome! Kim Ji Hoon pretty nailed his character Baek Hee Sung. The way he talked and bit his nails and tied his hair, every inch a creepy person but remained so handsome. He was just brilliant!
The supporting love team (almost) and comic relief. It’s part melodrama with some serial-killing case that needed solving but I thought adding a character which would be a comic relief made the show not so intensely depressing. In this case it was Kim Moo Jin. He was funny and his love interest on Dae Hae Soo was just too cute.
The plot twists. Impressive! From finding out who the real accomplice was and the lost of memory at the end, it was all very entertaining.
Cliffhangers! Love those cliffhangers, they were all awesome and they always end with this song Flower of Evil Cliffhanger Song.
Flower of Evil OST. Super love the OST, it’s awesome! They bring back memories of the drama.
That heart-breaking “I see dead people” moment. I cried watching this scene, it was just so heart-breaking when Do Hyun Soo couldn’t tell the difference if he’s seeing his wife really alive or he’s seeing her because she’s already dead. Wahhhh!!!
The kissing scenes. They were daebak! Thanks to the awesome chemistry between our leads.
That tear-jerking final episode! Very emotional but I sooo love it! And it gave and explanation as to why Do Hyun Soo named his workshop, The Place where the Morning Star Rests. Love the story behind it.