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A Touch of Green
1 people found this review helpful
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44 minutes ago
44 minutes ago
  • Overall 9.5
  • Story 10
  • Acting/Cast 9.0
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 8.5
A Touch of Green is consistently heartbreaking, heavy in its themes, yet amazingly gripping, painfully realistic and most importantly, so very human. A shining gem in the age of stagnating Taiwanese dramas, this terribly underrated show is 100% recommended for its superb subtleties in writing, excellent character developments and fantastic acting amongst other things.

Strong female characters in a feminist drama, three-dimensional yet flawed characters, a touch of romance and sheer quality read more in writing+dialogue intertwined with great acting - what's there not to love?

PLOT: It is hard to summarise this show into a seemingly exciting synopsis without sounding like every other historical drama. In fact, it’s because there are SO MANY THINGS happening that you are just pulled along with each episode without much time to think about what just happened. And things don’t necessarily happen in clear cut arcs either, unlike more simplistic drama plots. What are cliches even?

However, a more important reason for this is the sheer heavy nature of the show. The first third of the drama is still fairly easy to watch quickly given its relatively more lighthearted nature. The show even arguably has its fair share of unexpected comedy to balance the heartache.

But soon, you will realise the drama is gonna take you to discover new lows. Just when you think that things cannot get worse, the drama proves you wrong time and again. It seems nearly impossible not to cry at all throughout the entirety of the show.

Hence a word of warning for all those (planning on) watching this, this drama definitely requires mental preparation. However!! This should never act as deterrent for you from watching the show! The story and characters are all so good there was no way my friend and I were planning to drop this.

CHARACTERS: In this highly character-driven plot, the characters are the backbone, flesh and the shining glory of this drama in many essences.

Again, it is hard to describe the main characters succinctly because it would do them no justice at all to create a stereotype for them to fit in. All of them are so complex and unique that the show definitely acts to shatter typecasting of the actors themselves.

In a nutshell attempt, Zhu Qing is independent and takes no BS from anyone yet beholds an unspoken innocence. Guo Zhen is also not just a charismatic and defiant pilot, but also harbours darkness in his heart only leaked through his sarcastic jabs and comments.
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A great source of enjoyment from this show was simply watching the character development of all of the characters, especially across the more obvious “arcs” across time. It was also brilliantly portrayed and written how the characters kept their quirks and personality in some way or form across time. Yet all of them also grew and changed because of their respective painful experiences into new roles that the audience would never have thought to expect from the characters.

Human nature is so strongly presented in this show to our delight~. None of the characters are stereotypically “good” or “bad”. Most significantly, the wives and their seemingly demure nature is contrasted with the sacrifices and moral dilemmas that they are willing to go through for their husbands.

The relationship between the main characters are also constantly changing with new events. While they are friends and love each other, they fight, they leave snide remarks, they seek forgiveness and even betray each other.

Sometimes the characters even do seemingly inexplicable and irrational things, yet that is exactly what makes the show so human and complex. Even minor new characters are constantly introduced with almost none of them disappearing insignificantly.

STORYTELLING: Another part about this show I enjoyed very much was the narration/dialogue and many subtleties delivered in the filming direction.

Using the voice of Mo Ting, Xiao Zhou’s daughter and various objects in the show, many beautiful metaphors are delivered – the fake math equation 5×1=3 (????), time being a drug with unknown side effects; a dove; plane 513; and the pilot’s bomber jacket next to Shi Niang’s qipao being kept.

There is simply so much depth being included into every scene whether with dialogue or not that not a single scene should be missed.

OST: The main reason that I came to know of this drama was through Hebe Tien’s OST MV for this show titled ???? (As it is) roughly translated as “Numbed” or “Jaded”. This theme song alone epitomises much of the show’s heartbreak and complexity in its lyrics and appropos dramatism.

Clearly, the MV was enticing enough to reel me in to desperately find sources for it just to find out what this interesting-looking story was about.

REWATCH VALUE: There's probably so much more subtlety to appreciate from the script through rewatching, especially with the level of depth and complexity in the writing of characters. Hence, there should be a lot to still enjoy in the sheer quality of this drama, as long as you're prepared for the whirlwind of emotional drama to ensue.

CONS: If there is any thing to complain about this show, it’s that it can be hard to understand. The show uses specific and historically related references, so it’s somewhat easy to get lost and not catch why certain things are happening to the characters. Simultaneously, the characters themselves often use roundabout sarcastic jabs and often don’t mean what they say. So once you lose the context, it’s hard to understand what they really intended to mean.

However, the main problem for more international audiences with watching this show is the complete lack of English subtitle versions for this show (at this moment), not to mention the already few sources online for the original raws. (Though it remains to be seen how this level of complex subtleties can ever dream to be translated with equivalent poise.)

So if you CAN understand Chinese, PLEASE do give this show a try, because this show is really THAT good. And there is no way I cannot do enough justice to this epitome of an underrated drama which swept accolades at the 2016 Golden Bell Awards, other than you being able to simply watch it and see it for yourself.
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Ishitachi no Renai Jijo
1 people found this review helpful
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2 hours ago
2 hours ago
  • Overall 9.0
  • Story 9.0
  • Acting/Cast 9.5
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 7.0
Don't let the title of the drama fool you - I thought it was going to be just another tawdry Grey's Anatomy-esque romantic-melodrama-with-hospital-backdrop and the first two episodes kind of leave you with that impression. In the beginning, it feels like they're trying a little bit too hard to be sexy and scandalous, but that soon takes a backseat as the real plots begin to unravel.

I ended up falling love with read more every main and supporting character, and becoming invested in every subplot running throughout the show. Every storyline is strong without convoluting the overarching story or making it clunky. The interwoven relationships in this story take precedence but the eventual main conflict is career-based with a dash of social commentary; the fact that their work also takes part of the centre focus is exactly what made it more than just a romantic melodrama.

Most of all, the conclusions that are drawn in the end are both realistic and satisfying, which is normally such a hard balance to strike. Every character, even the main antagonist, is done justly without oversimplifying the end of their respective arcs.

Ishitachi no Renai Jijou is by no means a flawless drama - it has its own tendencies to fall into the regular Japanese drama tropes at times - but overall it's clever, modern, presents us with complex characters and a refreshing outlook on love and work without being too preachy.
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Rebel: Thief Who Stole the People
0 people found this review helpful
by Rule
Other reviews by this user
3 hours ago
3 hours ago
  • Overall 9.0
  • Story 9.0
  • Acting/Cast 9.0
  • Music 9.0
  • Rewatch Value 9.0
Griped me from the first episode. Thrilling, intriguing, exciting and enjoyable.
The acting is superb, especially of the evil king, he did the best job, I've seen him in many plays but this one is defiantly his best work
The rest did a wonderful job too. All characters portrayed their work so good that you loved the good and hated the evil ones with a vengeance.
saw and then re saw with read more my husband again and enjoyed both times equally.
Sageuk lovers don't miss on this one.
Overall: highly recommended.Enjoy!
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Tunnel
5 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
4 hours ago
4 hours ago
  • Overall 7.5
  • Story 7.0
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 6.0
  • Rewatch Value 5.0
While most people claimed they lost interest in the second half of the series, I found the first half very plain and the second half better – which led me to give it a 7.5/10 overall when it could've been as low as a 5/10 up until episode 7.

Now, don't get me wrong. Each episode from 1 to 7 wasn't bad; they just didn't add up into a good 7-hour experience read more for me. They were good one-by-one. If you have seen American series (police or crime series in particular), you'll know how they start an episode with one case and ends it within that episode, and nothing from that episode will affect the next episode at all. As soon as our main detective Park Kwang Ho arrives in 2016, Tunnel plays that card.

For character introduction purposes, not touching on the main plot for a short while is totally okay. However, the length of 7 episodes of doing that is painfully long – 44% in and there's still no progress whatsoever. That point kept bugging me all the way. Apart from that, the main characters are good at their job, so the one-case-one-episode is averagely fun on its own.

I believe that the story picks up around episode 8. From then on until episode 12, the pace of the drama suddenly changes in a good way. These are the most exciting and suspenseful 4 episodes in my opinion. There is a surprising amount of improvements from character development to story revelations. The last phase of the drama, episode 13-16, cools down a lot, but it still keeps playing with the main story. For me, it was fine. By the end of the series, I was more satisfied than I thought when I went through the first half.

--

It's still too bad that after all those satisfying second half, I still don't see the point of making this a time-traveling drama. Of course, the "tunnel" and the "time-traveling" play a part in this story. I just think that they could've made use of this theme much more – or drop that idea completely.

This story could totally survive as a normal crime drama because the main criminal isn't so boring. The main character who time-travels lacks a lot of "old-school" qualities. By this I mean that he could've possessed really traditional yet useful methods that help with the modern crime-solving process, or rather appear really outdated/countrified that he looks funny. Instead, he adapts to the modern world so well. It feels almost as if the writers are using this "time-traveling" just to call for attention.

At the same time, Tunnel cannot escape a lot of clichés in making their characters and criminals, and even situations – but that's okay. It's still entertaining. The cast and their acting really save the entire show. They're extremely great in every given situation, although again, you'll have to get to the second half of the show to see so. I rated their acting a 10/10 although some small side characters are so-so because they don't have much impact anyway.

Music doesn't boost the show at all, in my opinion. The background music and sound effect cues aren't awkward however, so it deserved around a 6/10. This is the genre that doesn't need emotional OSTs to play at breaking moments anyway. I still wish I ended it with one or two songs to keep listening to. I ended up with none.

--

Final thoughts: I wouldn't suggest my friends to watch this for the time-traveling elements. I would suggest them to watch simply because it's a good crime drama with good acting. I liked it – don't get me wrong after I point out all those cons. Those things bugged me all the time but only slightly, and I didn't regret watching this show. If you've read up until this point, I'm sure you can now let go of those expected plot holes and enjoy it as it is. Also, I barely rewatch dramas, and a crime drama can be either too predictable or too gruesome to rewatch, so I gave that part a low score.
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Tunnel
1 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
16 hours ago
16 hours ago
  • Overall 8.5
  • Story 8.5
  • Acting/Cast 9.5
  • Music 9.0
  • Rewatch Value 6.0
Tunnel got a lot of comparisons to Signal in the beginning and I can see it a little bit. I don't think it was quite as good as Signal, but I still enjoyed it a lot and looked forward to it every week. The story was engaging and the characters were written well. I enjoyed the dynamics of the 3 main characters and how they interacted with each other. As with all read more time travel shows, there are a few plot holes, but nothing major enough to detract from the show.

Choi Jin Hyuk did a wonderful job as Park Kwang Ho. He put a lot of emotion into his performance and really twisted my heart for him and how badly he wanted to catch the killer and get home to his wife, Yeon Sook. Yoon Hyun Min also played Seon Jae well, and his progress as a character was interesting to watch. Same for Lee Yoo Young as Shin Jae Yi. She started out almost robotic, but it was a quirk of her character and not due to bad writing. When her shell finally cracks open, she is a sympathetic character.
I have nothing but praise for all the cast - excellent work!

The music was good, nothing stand out, but enjoyable all the same.

This one isn't really suitable for re-watch as the suspense is gone after you've seen it once.

I would definitely recommend it to fans of the shows genres.
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Pinocchio
2 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
19 hours ago
19 hours ago
  • Overall 9.5
  • Story 9.5
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 9.5
Yes, yes and YES! This drama just knocked it out of the park on every damn level. This ranks up there with shows like Healer and one of my faves. Firstly, the entire cast was just amazing, Park Shin Hye and Lee Jong Suk were perfect, their romance sweet without being too angsty, but mainly they hit all the right notes from start to finish. There were no draggy moments in the read more show, the pace kept me interested, even in the slower, more poignant moments, I didn't feel like screen time was being wasted. What I loved about what this show did was how the story broke my heart right at the start, and then, bit by bit, put it all back together. Some parts were hard to watch, especially at the start, but the payoff is so wonderful, that it was all worth it. I loved how fleshed out everyone was, not just the main characters. Even our so-called baddies were real people with motive and doubts and guilt (except for one, but sometimes people are just sociopaths). I adored the family dynamics with dad and granddad, and because of the convoluted ties between all of them, the relationship between the leads wasn't just going to be a given, and they realized and respected that without making it into an angst-fest - how refreshing! And then there were the other families, the teams of reporters, their camaraderie and bickering, the central 4 (who I dubbed the scoobie gang) and their seniors - I loved them all. So, while the show put a big grin on my face in the end, I'm so sad to leave these characters, and really, can we please have a sit com just dealing with the antics of newbie reporters to console us?
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Arang and the Magistrate
1 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
19 hours ago
19 hours ago
  • Overall 7.5
  • Story 7.0
  • Acting/Cast 8.0
  • Music 7.0
  • Rewatch Value 6.5
So this had all the elements that should have made me absolutely love it: An historical fantasy staring Shin Min Ah and the lovely Lee Joon Gi, who have a sweet chemistry. But there were things that in the end just fell kinda flat. Maybe it was the over the top villain who's every wide-eyed 'look at me I'm eeeevil' scene grated to the point I wanted to stab something. Maybe it read more was the resolution of Arang's plot that felt very patched together and all deus ex machina (and maybe that was the point but it still doesn't feel earned to me). Still, what really did entertain me, besides Lee Joon Gi's smolder, was the side characters, particularly Dol Sue and his hilarious interactions with Bang Wool, and of course the back and forth between the Jade and Hades (by the way, wasn't Jade extremely pretty? Those eyes...).
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Oh My Venus
1 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
20 hours ago
20 hours ago
  • Overall 7.5
  • Story 6.5
  • Acting/Cast 9.0
  • Music 6.5
  • Rewatch Value 7.0
So it's confirmed that I have a So Ji Sub bias, and I loved him in this rom com. I also liked the chemistry he had with Shin Min Ah. The story itself was a bit heavy handed in its themes. I can appreciate the struggle to lose weight, and I liked that they kept the focus on being healthy, rather than being attractive, for the most part, but some of the read more anvils still fell sort of flat. Now, what I would really love to see is a rom com where the actress is truly overweight, healthy, happy in her own skin, and our leading man still finds her attractive... anyone have a rec for me?
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Kleun Cheewit
0 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
20 hours ago
20 hours ago
  • Overall 9.5
  • Story 9.5
  • Acting/Cast 9.5
  • Music 9.0
  • Rewatch Value 9.5
This was my second lakom, My first one was the Parent story, I decided to watch that one before watching this. I love the actors, how they pass the emotions to the us audience.

The Chemistry between the two leads, Mark Prin & Yaya wooww amazing. It was not like they were acting but they were living it. As I said above the actors were really great at passing the emotions to read more us. I loved how they fall in love and how their love developed.

To be honest I was always biased at Thai dramas, I thought they'd be like Indian dramas but not at all, I generally watch Korean, Chinese, and Taiwanese dramas so this was new for me although it was my 2nd.

First thing you notice on Thai dramas is the makeup, while it is really natural on K-C-TW dramas, the make on Thai dramas is like watching American - Brazilian daily soap operas.

Now I'm a great fan of Yaya and Mark Prin!!

We shouldn't forget about Jee's gay manager P'Suki, he's one of the most colourful characters in the drama. :D

The plot is very very similar to The Secret Korean Drama Ji Sung was leading. He ( Satit) was trying to take revenge on the woman ( Jee) who caused his fiance's death and eventually fell in love with her.

As I understood lakoms are famous for the rape. There's no rape in this drama I mean he did not force her to sleep with him, he only use the words and she go over him and with all the mixed emotions they have been having for each other it caused a blast and they spend the night together.

She falls pregnant but hides it from him, he learns it much later, he asks her to marry, she refuses, and she goes hides somewhere, he asks to her friends, they don't share it with him, her mother gives him a box she made pottery which was posted to her mother, in a way her mother told him indirectly, he finds her and does his best until she forgives him, those scenes were really cute.

It's not also the main couple which makes this drama lovely, it's the 2nd and 3rd leads story makes it also great.


Here are the additional couples


Piak: a insecure desperate housewife now producer of her father's company where her husband works as a director, she constantly suspects that her husband is sleeping with his female Jee.

Her cousin she calls him brother is Satit.( the main guy)

Chaiyan is the best friend of Jee, he's married to Piak

Dao: Jee's best friend with Jee and is in love with Jate

Jate: confused and playing both he thinks he loves Jee but actually he's in love with Dao

P'iak : Jee's gay manager

It has definately a rewatch value and I hope K-C-TW will make one too :D

There's Le Jun Kai a Chinese drama full of misunderstandings and cruelty but the finale is not as sweet as this one.
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Oh My Venus
1 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
21 hours ago
21 hours ago
  • Overall 10
  • Story 10
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 10
This is one I binge watched throughout. Its so good, the OTP's chemistry was amazing and they were pretty adult about it. I loved So Ji Sub in this (even though he looked like a hobo half the time which is not surprising for a trainer) and Kang Joo Eun was pretty even in her fat suit. The comedic moments in this was spot on I definitely laughed out loud several times read more whilst watching this. I loved all the characters in this specially puppy like 'kids'.
The story itself was quite straightforward and I loved the overall message of living a healthy life. It inspired me to take up jogging. Nothing really stood out in terms of OST but the cinematography and editing made the show flow quite well.
Definitely worth a rewatch. Don't hesitate.
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Eternal Love
4 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
23 hours ago
23 hours ago
  • Overall 10
  • Story 10
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 10
  • Rewatch Value 10
I remember as a young girl watching Chinese historical dramas and thinking how ridiculous it all was, the over acting, the improbable flying martial arts, the bad wigs and costumes, I don't know specifically which they were but that was a general impression I got when my aunt would put it on the TV on weekends. So with that bias I tended to avoid Historical drama as a rule and Chinese Melodrama read more as I also remember thinking they never ever get a happy ending. Someone always dies. The only Asian output I consistently watched was Anime/Manga. And as an Asian living in the West I never got the appeal of pretty Asian boys/men (My taste ran more towards the cerebral Benedict Cumberbatch and the divine Tom Hardy), hence I surprised myself with this new obsession.

But that all changed when I came across this drama. I know this with certainty...this has the potential to be a successful crossover, Netflix get on that please! If there was ever a content you have to hammer out of China, this is it, right here.

This drama...Kdrama fans don't be intimidated by the 58 episode length, honestly by the time you watch the last episode you will think that its too short and will wonder how you're going to fill your time now?

Story: The synopsis on this does not do it justice and despite all the controversies regarding the original Author and the allegations and law suits with regards to plagiarism this does not detract from how creatively the script writer and director did an amazing job on translating this ethereal story into something amazing on screen. The world building alone was masterfully done.
This fantasy revolves around the story of Bai Qian, an Immortal Fox Goddess/Queen and her trials and tribulations in the framework of the Mortal and Immortal realm. The drama can be split in 3 arcs. First we see her as a young fox princess maturing and getting tangled up in a Holy war and her feelings for 2 different men on 2 different sides. Then her Mortal trial and getting tangled up and falling for Ye Hua and her suffering because of it. Lastly balancing it all out is her journey as a fully grown High God and falling in love with Ye Hua as an equal. So this is a story of her growth and those around her.
But this is also a story of enduring, sometimes obsessive, and faithful love from the whole cast of characters. It will fill you with hope and heartache and you definitely will not want it to end (and the fact that everyone is pretty much immortal does give one hope that there is more to this story).

Production values of this drama is quite high, although there are sometimes bad CGI you end up overlooking it as they are only set dressing for this amazing story. Costumes were amazing and well thought out and the way the it shot and edited was top notch, even the comedic bits felt organic and well timed.

Acting/Cast: Perfectly cast and acted. Massive kudos to everyone involved in this as every single character shone and shone brilliantly, even the most reviled characters. Acting was never ever an issue and whoever made the final call on casting must be praised. Yang Mi and Yu Alan (Fourth Bro) even look like Fox deities (its the long facial structure I think) Yang Mi was a marvel playing 3 different and distinct versions of the same person. She made Bai Qian a character that you can fall for. Unlike in some dramas I care not to name you can see why 3 different and distinctly marvelous men can fall for her. Her chemistry with Mark Zhao (Ye Hua) is sizzling. Off the charts. Enough that I wish they were dating IRL (but alas, both married to other people). There's enough kissing in this drama for one to be annoyed with other drama for their lack.
Speaking of Ye Hua, I'm sure i'm not the only one who fell for him too. I cannot praise Mark Zhao enough. The way he conveyed his emotions, the control he had with his body language and his passionate performance really sold Ye Hua as the ideal man. Ye Hua's growth was full of subtleties and you can't help but love him at the end. The cold Ye Hua, body language cold and controlled and imposing, the quietly suffering Ye Hua with his stoic facial expressions and expressive twitches, the caring Ye Hua with his subtle fond looks and mildly exasperated smiles and playful but strict attitude, the passionately in love Ye Hua who's eyes can melt steel and convey more with his face and eyes than a 1000 page poem could. Kudos to Mark as well for playing Mo Yuan so differently and so well I didn't recognise that he was the one playing both until I read the other reviews. I'm definitely looking forward to more of his work. I also have to mention the child actor playing A Li, definitely a stand out. He brought such flavour and playfulness to an otherwise fraught reunion and subsequently stole the show with every scene he was in.
The whole cast of characters was great, Dong Hua was definitely a favorite (with his perpetually condescending/amused/inquisitive facial expression and that amazing hair!) and even though Feng Jiu got annoying sometimes it was not due to Dilraba's acting but due to the circumstances and script. I definitely teared up at the end of their Mortal Love trial and am consoling myself by reading the Pillow Book. I also fell for the lovely pair Zhe Yan and his Zhen Zhen with their old married coupleness.

Music: Amazing OST, from the most wistful fantasy instrumentals to the Epic drums and the main romantic theme songs. I fell in love with it all and ended up humming the opening tune at work (if I knew mandarin I'd be singing it too).

Rewatch Value: YES, A THOUSAND TIME YES! I cannot recommend this enough and even though I just finished it a week ago I'm planning on rewatching this with my sister who is also a Drama fan though she's pretty exclusive on the KDrama. This raised the bar for all other dramas for me and even though I already am a fan of CDramas (I loved Boss & Me and Love O2O) this really cemented my love for them. I'm really looking forward to more from Mainland after this.

Overall: Perfect. Perfect story, perfect cast of characters and perfectly put together. Dare I say, it's flawless. What I liked was that not only was the Main Male lead swoon worthy, but that the Female lead was someone so awe inspiring as well. She was definitely not just a helpless Damsel in Distress constantly tumbling along needing to be rescued, she was strong and opinionated and for a Fox Queen pretty well rounded as a character. She was strong and smart and though naive sometimes, her empathy really shone through. Such a breath of fresh air from all the other female leads I've seen so far. Also I have to say there's something so appealing about a crying Ye Hua. As much as I like him smiling his fond sly smiles he was so heartbreakingly good when he cried. And he definitely made the fight scenes which usually look silly to me, look awe inspiring instead. Ye Hua is H.O.T. specially when he's staying put and asking Qian Qian to come to him and not doing the patented wrist grab that all Asian Drama think is the height of romance (although there is one pretty memorable scene but he was at the height of insecurity and not in his right mind).
Overall this is the highlight of my year so far (well...until the next season of Game of Thrones comes out anyway) and will always have a place in my heart. I have a feeling this is one I will watch over and over.
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Whisper
0 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
23 hours ago
23 hours ago
  • Overall 7.5
  • Story 7.0
  • Acting/Cast 9.0
  • Music 6.0
  • Rewatch Value 4.0
A drama which generates mixed feelings. But the feeling of "so near, yet so far" dominates them all. It had a bit of various genres, but not enough of any. A story with the backdrop of a law firm, but the law is overshadowed by politics. There isn't enough intuitive crime detection to call it a crime/investigation drama. Just some sprinkle of romance here and there, so can't be called a romantic read more one either.

Yet another saga of how power corrupts people who in turn corrupt others as well. An honest judge is forced to convict an innocent man. The convicted man's daughter who is a cop, decides to set things right. Things start off badly between the protagonists, but they gradually come to understand each other and work together. It starts off with a lot of promise, but it gradually turns out to be a tug-of-war. Expected things happen, but the audience are kept waiting in the tussle between (good and evil?)

The actors have done a decent job, but the major expressions in the drama are poker face and smirk, and not all of them seem natural. A bit more of joy would've been nice.

Rewatch value is kinda low for me. The last two episodes kinda killed it all.

It's definitely worth a one time watch, start with no expectations and you might be in for a surprise!
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Tunnel
1 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
1 day ago
1 day ago
  • Overall 9.0
  • Story 8.0
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 7.0
I am not sure what made me decide to watch Tunnel, when so far all the dramas I have seen were of the heavily romantic verity. But something about it attracted my attention, so much so that it has also become the first show I watched on-going instead of marathoning as I have done so far.

Whatever it was, I thank my lucky stars that I choose this show to introduce me read more to the thriller side of dramaland, because it's one I now plan to explore.

At its core, this show is about people. Wonderful people; Angry people; Broken people; Hotheaded people; Closed people; Straightforward people. People who come together and find in each other a place to heal and to mend. A place to find closure.

And this, THIS, is what makes Tunnel a fantastic show. Not the mystery. Not the time travel element. Not the case-of-the-week format of the first half of the show. No, it's the people. It's these characters and the fantastic relationships that form between them. It's the way they navigate and evolve in the situation they have been thrust into. It's the way they start the show one way, and you love them, but then they end the show in a different way and you love them more than you could have imagined. It's the little things; the little looks, the little touches, the little hesitations, the little steps forward. It's the way they find this incredible balance between them.

I have to give such a huge, huge applause to the actors for portraying these characters so brilliantly, for making me feel every single thing alongside them, and for the writers for writing such nuanced characters. And for the casting director for choosing the right people; I can't imagine enough else as these characters.

There are a lot of good things about this drama, like the side characters who are equally amazing as the main trio and help make this show one to remember. I could talk about the mystery, and how it's never supposed to be a mystery to us the audience, and yet it still keeps us in suspense. I could talk about the killer, and how I think the writers wrote him perfectly because of what he turns out to be at the end. I could talk about how much I love the way the old and the new interact. I could talk about how it left me tense every episode, and how I bit my nails as I was watching. I could talk about a lot of things.

But really, I think I have said enough.

If you love character driven shows with a lot of heart and just a smidge of romance to make you all fuzzy inside, do yourselves a favor and pick this one up!
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The Boy Next Door
0 people found this review helpful
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1 day ago
1 day ago
  • Overall 8.5
  • Story 8.0
  • Acting/Cast 9.0
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 5.0
Now I did have some doubts about watching it, however I must say that this short webdrama was quite funny and awkward at some moments. Yes, sometimes those awkward moments became a bit repetitive, though to a certain level it was not annoying. An season of 15 episodes was just about right with some good acting. I especially loved Jang Hee Ryung in her role between both boys.

So I would highly read more recommend you all to watch it, however to re-watch is probably not a good thing as most of the jokes are known well in advance.
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Empress Ki
2 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
1 day ago
1 day ago
  • Overall 10
  • Story 9.5
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 9.0
  • Rewatch Value 10
I'm kinda in shock over how good this drama turned out to be considering how long I've been avoiding watching it. I knew the ratings were high, but because there were 51 episodes (which is enough to scare me away) it lived forever on my planning to watch cue. My advice is to not let episode-count-a-phobia stop you from watching this AMAZING drama. The impressive cast and the intriguing story make every read more episode worth watching, and before I knew it I was finished. By the end I even found myself oddly craving more, because I'd grown so attached to the world of "Empress Ki".

First, this is definitely one of the best cast ensembles I have ever seen in drama. I admit that I didn't check the cast list at all before watching, so there were so many pleasant surprises as far as actors I've loved in other dramas. Ha Ji Won is one of my favorites ("Secret Garden" being my actual favorite drama of all time). She's the ultimate sweet but [email protected] leading lady, and this character is perfect for even her. The story follows her journey from gender-bending youth to Empress (not a spoiler, so don't worry). She goes through such a range in this story that I was impressed with her from beginning to end. She is matched with Joo Jin Mo, who charmed me in the mediocre drama "Woman with a Suitcase", and super impressive Ji Chang Wook from "Healer" (another favorite of mine). I think each of their performances, and the chemistry between these three characters, were flawless. Jin Mo is perfectly cast as charming and heroic. Chang Wook's character is so emotionally complicated that his performance was one of my favorites of all, and so different than his acting in "Healer". This is the kind of dramatic love story that takes you on an emotional rollercoaster... Flirtation, Mistrust, Passion, Betrayal, Obsession, Loyalty... and they made me believe every moment of it. What I love about all of the characters is that they were so developed, with flaws and vulnerabilities, that it all felt real, even when the plot got outrageous.

I get overwhelmed when I think of everyone in the cast who deserves to be mentioned for giving such excellent performances, but I will only mention a few. Jung Woong is so good at playing complicated villains, like the one I loved so much in "I Hear Your Voice". Sometimes he gave me chills he's so good in this. Jun Gook Hwan is also an impressive villain, the kind you sometimes secretly root for just so you can keep watching them be evil. His sons were hotties, but Kim Jung Hyun deserves a special shout out for being the Duracell Bunny of evil... (he kept going and going and going). Baek Jin Hee was so slapable she was perfect. The Empress Dowager frustrated me the most because she was so good at being duplicitous. Kim Ji Han, with his sexy Alan Richman-esque voice, was also a standout for me. But honestly, I could just run down the entire cast list and praise everyone, from the servants, to the soldiers, to the royals. I love the bromances between the heroes, the catty smirks between the ladies, the nail biting fight scenes between almost everyone, even the kids... This is a cast with not only no weak links, but so many memorable performances.

As far as the story, it is really hard to keep a drama with so many long episodes interesting, but this drama absolutely does. This is a shakespearean level saeguk, with so many twists it's impossible to see them all coming. I also loved that the the drama starts near the end point, so you see where everything will lead first and then are glued to the screen watching how everything will finally get to that point. It also covers a lot of genres. There's romance, and action, and of course revenge, with even a few supernatural moments. There are also comedic moments, but know that this drama is definitely more tragedy than comedy, and often times frustrating and depressing (in an entertaining way) the further along the story gets. I also like that after being less enthusiastic about some of the middle episodes, the pace starts to pick up again near the end so much that I literally could not stop watching.

My critiques of this drama are very few. One is that the circumstances are so unbelievable at times that I almost wanted to laugh inappropriately, but the actors always made the story work no matter how crazy the plot got. Another issue for me was that I was bored by certain parts of the story, towards the middle, although they added to the character development, and made sense to the story as a whole, I was just personally less interested in some of the political rivalries and wars (especially in Wang Yoo's storyline). There are also tropes you find in a lot of dramas, but the storytelling is so engaging that it never feels cliché.

As for the ending, I thought it was simple and perfect. The last 2 episodes pack so much in that it was a little overwhelming, but I felt like there were no loose ends at all, and the very last moment kinda ends with a haunting question... at least that's how I interpreted it, which made the whole story complete.

Would I watch this again? DEFINITELY! It's now tied for my favorite Saeguk with "The Princess' Man". I'd probably take my time with a rewatch, and enjoy the performances, instead of rushing to finish in order to know what happens.

Overall, The characters will haunt me for a while. Every villain was sympathetic, and every hero/heroine pissed me off, which made the power struggles so much more compelling. I love stories like these that make me actually curious about the real people that inspired them. I know very little about the actual history, so I can't reference what is real vs what was made up. I can only assume that there's only a small amount of this story that's based actual events. However, like every good makjang drama, the more unrealistic the better.

I definitely recommend this one as a must watch! I was addicted by episode one. It's certainly not a lighthearted drama, so arm yourself with enough tissues, and be ready to curse at the screen, and clutch at your broken heart. Trust the ratings and reviews on this one, it really is THAT good. If you're a big fan of anyone in the cast, you don't want to miss them in this. 51+ hours later I don't think you will regret it.

Wow, This drama may have finally cured my episode-count-a-phobia!
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