Archive | June, 2013

Monstar episodes 6-7

30 Jun

While watching the last few episodes of this drama we came to the realisation that this drama is the Korean version of the Disney TV movie Lemonade Mouth. There are so many parallels it’s unreal – misfit, damaged kids brought together through music while taking on the mean popular kids. 

Like Lemonade Mouth, we waited in anticipation for the ‘big performance’ where everyone is proven wrong and are pleasantly shocked by the band who everyone thought would be rubbish. However, we’ve got to say we were left rather disappointed by the end of episode 7 and the band’s big show piece.  For several weeks now, the drama had been building towards this one moment and frankly it was poor. Okay, the band hardly ever got through a whole practice without someone running off crying or having a tantrum but still… we hoped for so much more. These guys have talent and what we watched was half arsed and dull. It really did look/ sound like something you would see in a school assembly. 

Before you say anything, we’re aware that the drama and their performance wasn’t actually about the music but about them evolving and healing through teamwork blah, blah but couldn’t they have done that along with giving us a great musical number???

Aside from hating their performance, we’re loving almost everything else. At this point in the drama, we think we’ve jumped ships. Se Yi and Seol Chan are okay but it’s all about Seon Woo and Kim NaNa.

She’s a gangster’s daughter with a bad reputation and he’s the school’s golden child. We do love when dramas bring opposites together! Their duet in episode 7 was just fabulous viewing, so touching and lovely. He’s gently pushing her to be herself and not be ashamed of where she comes from and she’s blatantly just falling more and more in love with him as each episode passes and frankly we can’t blame her! heheh

Other random thoughts:

  • There has been no real progress on either bromance fronts, if anything the antagonism has become worse than ever. sigh*
  • Who else saw a hint of jealousy in Se Yi’s eyes when Seol Chan was fangirling over Kim Nana after he found out she could sing? One word – finally!

Buhahaha, our eyes burn!

25 Jun

What the feck is this photo all about. How can Jung Kyung Ho look so outrageously hideous in the photo above and look so hot in Cruel City??

Shudder*

Monstar: First impressions /episodes 1-5

24 Jun

This is what we’ve been waiting for all year.

Although we may not have watched anything for several months; we still kept tabs on what fandom were watching and blogging about. Come on, we couldn’t go cold turkey altogether, it would be too hard to cope!

Since we returned to dramas, we decided to check out Monstar and fell in love pretty much straight away. The story manages to encompass everything we love about dramas and was just the thing we wanted in our return to dramaland.

A story of a group of misfit kids taking on the popular kids at their own musical game is an old story told a million times in dramas but one we seem to return to time and time again. We can’t resist our underdogs fighting their way to the top. Plus when the characters are so lovable, can you really blame us?

The storyline may be simple but the tone and feel of the drama makes it so easy to get swept up and carried away in the drama. The characters are what transforms this drama from being just another school/ musical drama and makes it something special. They’re an odd group of characters that seem to blend well together despite the unlikelihood of them ever being grouped together.

We’ve got the arrogant superstar as the leading man who lacks social graces and often puts his foot in it – Seol Chan

Sure this character has been portrayed a million times before, we can list at least a dozen characters just like him but we still love him.  We concluded that his characterisation is more Jdrama that Kdrama. Jdrama romcom leading men are often more emotional, goofy and you get a deeper impression of their thoughts and feelings under the gruff exterior. Whereas Kdrama leading men can often come across as idiot bastards that need to suffer before they are redeemed and get their HEA.

We like how in this drama the audience is given an insight to his inner thoughts and feelings. Seol Chan may not voice his feelings for the leading lady but as viewers we know exactly what he really thinks. We are given the chance to see that he’s not just a heartless, thoughtless brat but does in fact care about things and people. We like how he’s a musical genius and is often driven by his instincts and feelings rather than rationality. He’s not shy to voice his thoughts even when he should maybe put a sock in it but that’s just another side of personality that we like.

Then we have the beautiful, considerate and tough leading lady — Se Yi

She’s just such a lovable character that it’s hard to believe that a viewer wouldn’t like her. She’s got this quietly strong persona while appearing incredibly delicate and sweet.

She comes across rather quirky in this drama as well. Frankly we’re not fans of the ‘quirky’ leading lady character as it’s usually overacted and becomes quite cliché. However, she’s such a well rounded character that her ‘quirkiness’ doesn’t overshadow the other sides to her character.

Our most favourite scene so far from the drama and from the leading lady is definitely the scene where she sings along with Kyu Dong when he’s forced to sing in class. It was quite a hard scene to watch. He’s just so helpless and sad as he sings and you’re watching it desperately wishing that someone would help him and then Se Yi starts singing. It’s just so unexpected that our eyes were glued to the screen. The scene was transformed from this desperate, pathetic moment into something powerful and hopeful. Her joining in changed the meaning of it all. It went from a bully’s punishment to something amazing to witness.

The love rival and possible bromance with Seol Chan is Seon Woo. Once again, the writer didn’t really deviate away from the norm when creating his character. He’s smart, handsome, popular and incredibly kind to the leading lady. He’s practically Ji Hoo sunbae from Boys before Flower.

We like how he’s witty and doesn’t allow Seol Chan or others to take advantage of him. Also he has the capability of winning the leading lady. For us that is a major must for any creditable love rival.

We really don’t care about his role as a love rival, for us it’s all about his potential bromance with Seol Chan. Their banter is hilarious and you know that they just want to make up and be best buds again. What made them stop being friends?? Why are there always misunderstandings in Kdramas?

Another scene we loved was the scene where they played the piano together. It was just such a sweet moment for the group. Their bromantic chemistry really shone through and made us smile.

The thing we like about this drama is that these characters may differ in circumstances but when they are together they draw strength from each other’s company.

Although the drama is mostly light and fluffy there are moments between the characters that are filled with pathos and a desperate sense of despair that are just wonderful to watch. The characters may be stereotypical to an extent but their feelings and issues are all very human. The feeling of betrayal, confusion and longing is all very apparent in this drama and is conveyed really well in these characters that we’ve grown so fond of. We understand them on a deeper level than we thought we would have when we started the drama. We’re thankful that the writer isn’t shoving the message down our throats that these kids are hurting but instead manages to get the balance just right.  

For us the musical battle is simply a backdrop and the real show is the small moments and conversations between the group as they all individually try and get through their own personal demons. Without fail each episode has managed to make us smile, cheer and hurt for these characters. As each episode passes, it just keeps getting better for us as viewers. We’re just gutted that it only has 12 episodes! 

This time we’re really back…no really it’s true

23 Jun

For the first time since we started this blog, we took a break and stopped watching dramas and blogging altogether. Literally for five months we watched nothing and trust us as drama fangirls of the worst kind it was hard, really, really hard. However, it was something we had to do. Exam season was in full swing, our brother’s wedding took on a life of its own and work had suddenly become really demanding. Thankfully everything has settled and we can return to our fangirl ways. Hurray!

We intend to jump right back in and blog on a regular basis and luckily for us we’ve found a couple of dramas that we’re really loving and can easily fangirl about for hours.

It’s good to be back.  

Cruel City – first impressions / episodes 1-2

22 Jun

This drama knocked our socks off.

We heard positive murmurs about it but certainly didn’t expect much of it. Then we tuned in and we were hooked. We loved how dark, intense and smart the drama was. We sat at the edge of our seats from start to finish and now we want more!

If you’ve ever stumbled across our blog before, you may have noticed that we often stick to the light and fluffy. We admit it, we love us some romance and a happily ever after, so we tend to avoid genres that involve crime squads and drug dealers that love to kill people with golf clubs. However we’re happy to make an exception on this occasion. Yes, we know that we will probably regret it and be crying our eyes out because we rooted for a character/ OTP that are doomed to die but we’re hooked. Sleep be damned.

Thank goodness we’ve got six episodes to work our way through. The idea of having to wait to tune in would drive us mad.

The plot is shown from two perspectives. First the crime squad that have been assembled to bring down a massively successful drugs ring headed up by a crazy lunatic called Scale (he’s the golf club welding killer). The second perspective is from Shi Hyun aka The Doctor’s Son, who is trying to overthrow Scale and become the big boss in charge.

Ultimately their target is the same but for two very different reasons.  The pace is fast with plenty of twists and turns along the way. We love how the writer has made these characters smart and not dumbed them down for the audience’s benefit. They know exactly what is going on and why things have happened. It’s such a pleasure to watch a drama where we’re not waiting in frustration for the characters to realise what the hell is going on. It makes it easy for us to respect them and eager to see what they do next.

For us the best thing about this drama is definitely Jung Kyung Ho:

What a pleasant surprise.

We have a thing for flawed characters that often lose out in dramas but our love (obsession) for this character is on another level. We tuned in knowing there was no chance for a happy ending for this character but still we couldn’t help but get attached. He is just such a fantastic character to follow. He’s bad, a killer and oh soooooo hot. Wow, who would have thought that the adorable Jung Kyung Ho from Smile, you could be this damn sexy??? Certainly not us.

We love how he gives off this dangerous, untouchable aura; add the sharp suits and the 1920s hair- we’ve got a winner. Despite appearing calm and cool, you can see the dark undertones of pain and fury in his facial expressions and actions. He is one man we wouldn’t want to mess with… Maybe just make out with. Hehehe.

We love how he’s smart and ruthless but at the same time you see glimpses of his humanity through his friendship with Soo and his ‘Aunt’. Maybe it was his horrible upbringing in the Whorehouse or the desperately sad look on his face but we just want to take care of him and hope he lives happily ever after. Damn it, we’re just asking for heartache with feelings like that!

There were two major scenes that made us sit up and take notice of his character. The first scene was one where he and Soo were walking down a street and were attacked by hundreds of gangsters. Soo was naturally fighting them off to clear the way but Shi Hyun just walked through the violence like it was a normal sunny afternoon through the park. All we kept thinking was what is he capable of that no one is daring to touch him? Why does he look so calm and collected despite the madness surrounding him? The way the drama slowly presented the different facets of his character was just genius. At the beginning we got cold, calculating and super smart and then we got this:

OMG – honestly we sat there slack jawed in amazement at the scene above. Deadly and smart is a lethal combination and one we could happily watch.

We can’t wait to see how his character develops throughout the drama and don’t get us started on how excited we are about his romance. Please let it be epic, tell us we’re going cry like giant babies when they end?? Surely there is no other way but a tragic ending – he’s a killer and a baddie. Do we care? No, we’ll take it any way we can – gimme, gimme now.

The other leading man – Lee Jae-yoon as Ji Hyung-min

Considering we’re strictly team Shi Hyun, this character isn’t doing too badly as our obsessive cop tasked to bring down the baddies for the police.

We like how his morals are flexible and he’s got this deep rooted hunger to bring down the baddies at any cost. Also he’s just as smart as Shi Hyun. He was always at the forefront of the action and was completely aware of what was happening. The idea that he’s just as smart as Shi Hyun and is just as driven to destroy Scale and co is fantastic. We just love the fact that we don’t know what’s going to happen or who’s going to win in this battle of wills.

We like how his character is more emotional than Shi Hyun. He’s already lost his brother to drugs and his girlfriend is always at risk by being a part of his team. He has a lot to lose and that makes him a risk. He’s more than capable of just completely losing the plot and killing a string of people in his need for justice and revenge. We just know it’s going to be great viewing watching this character walk the thin line both morally and ethically in this drama.

Other thoughts:

We’ve seen very little of Nam Gyi Ri’s leading lady character yet. This actress has her fair share of haters but frankly we don’t mind her too much.  Once you get past the plastic face, she’s alright. Also we actually really liked her in the terribly disappointing 49 Days.

When Soo was stabbed, who else gasped?? Seriously we thought he was a goner. We loved how Shi Hyun carried him out and took him to the hospital. Please drama, give us a good bromance if all else fails.

Who else is loving the musicality and cinematography in this drama? We remember watching City Hunter ages ago and loving its visuals and use of music. It truly looked amazing but we failed to connect with it on an emotional level. The characters just didn’t matter to us and as a result we couldn’t be bothered to tune in every week. We care about all of the characters in Cruel City and fingers crossed, we have a feeling it might be a keeper.

If you’re looking for something dark and exciting look no further!