Kim Shin is a Goblin who is cursed with immortality and uses his powers to help others. He lives together with a Grim Reaper who has amnesia and can't remember his past. To end his immortality, Shin must search for a human bride who can pull out the sword in his chest and return him to ashes. He meets Ji Eun Tak, a high school student who, despite her painful reality, remainsoptimistic and ends up falling in love with the Goblin. She works with Sunny, the owner of a small chicken restaurant, who is a bright and attractive girl, loved by all men. However, when she meets the Grim Reaper, she finds her world is beginning to change.
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Cast & Credits
This is the first time I've watched any of the main actors except Yoo In Na. I have now officially developed a Gong Yoo crush and understand why drama fans are enamored of him. Gong Yoo as Kim Shin/ Goblin was mesmerizing. I could listen to his voice for days. Every scene he was in was a treat. Every emotion that his character had was palpable, and his smiles could light up the sky.
And Kim Go Eun as Ji Eun Tak was super cute. She had a lot of detractors and the writer got a lot of flak for making her so young. But the character and her age were perfect for this story and how it unfolded.
Lee Dong Wook as the Grim Reaper had the perfect deadpan (heh) delivery. And he may be the best male "crier" I've seen yet.
The story will make you laugh and make you cry. Not only is the love story epic, but so is the bromance between Goblin and Reaper. I've found that I'm quite fond of this fantasy genre and this has been done so well. I have hardly any criticisms of this show at all because even the flaws faded into nothing noticeable for me. It's sweet, funny, romantic, sad, tragic, beautiful...
The music was perfect and perfectly lovely. I don't always pay much attention to the music, but this show utilized it so well and chose the perfect songs. So many people loved even the intro song that they made a special recording of it to make it a full length song (Round and Round, but may also be found under Never Far Away). Beautiful by Crush was the best song in my opinion, and I believe that it was the theme song for our main couple. And Stay With Me by Chanyeol and Punch was another favorite.
Rewatch value is high - if not everything, then there are many, many favorite scenes that I'll go back to and relive the feels. :)
I enjoyed watching this drama more times than not. It was relaxing to look at, with the great cinematography and breathtaking sceneries. Music was great and very fitting. The actors were more or less very fitting in their roles and felt natural. The chemistry between the male cast was flawless.
I guess my main and only issue here is the writing. There are two types of supernatural dramas: the one that explores human emotions through the supernatural; and the ones that use it to tell your usual story. I think Goblin was somewhere in between.
I still appreciate some points of the writing. What I dislike is the plot as a whole. I liked the overall idea but not the execution. I like the idea of supernatural and powerful beings, like ghosts, goblins, grim reapers and gods, are living normally among humans without being noticed. I liked the story of the little boy we meet early in the drama to see his fate and effect on the Goblin (and vice versa). I loved the heartfelt story of Eun Tak's ghost friend, and enjoyed the company of the group of Ahjuma ghosts.
What I greatly disliked is the way the main story arc was handled. At first it felt overly dramatic, but later it felt so underwhelming that it removes and intensity felt before. When it ended the way it did, I felt there was no point to the whole story. Essentially were back to point zero.
I think the writer has some original ideas, but no guts to go deeper. As a result interesting topics were touched lightly, but never went beyond, hence felt shallow. I wish more time was spend in exploring the world, getting more concrete information on how demons are created and how to deal with them. Instead you just follow the characters' daily life of not doing much, and supernatural elements were just used as a convenience.
When it comes to romance, I didn't care much about the age difference due to the supernatural part of it, but I just didn't enjoy it, I didn't feel it. I don't know when it happened. Also Goblin was beyond childish. He was too moody and unbearable at times. While I was more invested into the secondary couple, I still felt the same, as in a missing episode of them going out and truly falling in love with each other was missing. I didn't like the way both couples went.
The non-romance relationships were great. The bromance, there was more than plenty. It was perfect. The focus and the growing relationship felt authentic and real. I also loved the relationship between Grim Reaper and Eun Tak. I did enjoy Deok Hwa's presence, but man was he so underused!
Other things that bothered me but not necessarily cause any deduction to the rating is over the top product placement. At one point it looked like subway was about to save the world, one sandwich at a time. And the wardrobe of poor little female lead, I just wonder how she manages to fit all those clothes in such little luggages and how she can afford them. I love how they presented Quebec at first, but I got mad that they didn't try to be accurate as to how the city looked at this time of the year. Worst of all is the episode length. It was needlessly long.
I don't regret watching this drama. I still had a great time watching. Although the last three episodes felt too draggy and less enjoyable, but it still had some good moments. Well all moments with GR for me are great lol. Enjoy! And don't hate me too much for the rating :P