If I have to describe this drama in one word, I'd say it's "nostalgic". It does seem like an obvious choice since it's a story about past life, but making a mere viewer like me constantly feel warm and comforted by the characters and the bond between them is not something other past life stories can easily do. This is the product of seamless writing, talented cast and their acting, mesmerizing music and phenomenal cinematography. This drama is at the very top of productions of its kind, it will stay there for a long time, and it has possibly exceeded the standard value of other genres as well.
The story, for me, sums up into a beautiful story about destiny and camaraderie that surpasses the boundary of time. Instead of being something completely new, it surely makes a lot of new choices in characteristics, settings and storyline.
You will experience this simple concept of love and friendship on two timelines: one is back in 1930s Kyungsung (Old Seoul) when Korea was under Japanese rule, and one is in present time Seoul. Although the present time is their main timeline and their past is shown as their recollection, both timelines have their own weight and are laid out equally well.
The main characters are this story's forte. In the present time, we have a bestselling writer who appears snobbish at first but opens up into a very thoughtful person, a ghostwriter who can look both like a caring gentleman and a lonely lost puppy at the same time, and lastly, a fan who is strong, caring and rather very respectful for someone entitled "number one fan". They really are a bunch of good qualities which you can't help but fall for.
These three characters are then tasked with a mission to find out what truly happened in their past lives that makes things the way they are in present time. As they recall past events together, they develop a strong bond just as how they did in the past – if not even stronger because now they also have a chance to learn things about each other they previously didn't know.
At the same time, their past timeline is where the political genre comes in. It's not heavy on politics at all, I can assure you. It rather weaves this setting into the main message very nicely because here our main characters share their passion in fighting against the Japanese for liberation. It's rather super romantic, I must say. "To protect the love I couldn't protect in my past life. To meet again in a liberated homeland and love freely." – This quote says it all.
Other than that, this story gives you a good laugh. Side characters are as three-dimensional as the main ones, and many of them will surely grow on you. Also, this could be because I'm Korean, but even their dialogues and choice of action are three-dimensional. Every word they speak, everything they do, has a good reference and reason behind it. The constant mention of supernatural beings is witty, and how they involve famous quotes, poems and authors really fits with the plot. I can't praise this drama's writer enough for her super well-done research. There's really no plot hole or boring/dragging moments.
And, oh, did I mention? The said writer is Jin Soo Wan, the amazing writer behind Moon Embracing the Sun and MDL users' all-time favorite Kill Me, Heal Me.
For the cast, I have seen almost every single one of them in their past works, and they still didn't remind me of their other characters at all, which is always important. They were so alive in their roles. I specifically want to praise our leading cast Yoo Ah In, Im Soo Jung and Go Gyung Pyo who had to take on two roles each for their separated present and past characters. They all nailed it. Additionally, Kwak Shi Yang who portrayed the antagonist deserves extreme compliments. The fact that he made me utterly hate his entire being proves that his acting was marvelous. That is an A+ for someone who's been in the industry for merely 3 years.
Another thing I fell in love with was the music. This drama's OSTs are gems – not only because we have golden voices like Baek Yerin and SG Wannabe but because the lyrics were written according to the storyline. The music cues are planned out so well that it's almost cunning. They appear at every right moment to add meaning to what we're seeing on screen, and often times they call for tears. In other words, they are not just background music but part of the storytelling itself. Don’t ever forget to read the meaning of those songs, and you’ll be in awe.
Likewise, the cinematography, the costumes, sets and their props are also impeccable. "Visually stunning" describes this entire production. This is one of those few dramas that you can pause at any moment and get a beautifully-composed still image. Present day Seoul and 1930s also have a clear line between them – both done beautifully from a lot of research. The color is graded in a cozy lukewarm tone and will make you feel like watching a beautiful independent movie on a big screen.
Romantic, evocative, delicate, sentimental, homely.
“Nostalgic” it is. Nostalgic really sums up everything.
Witnessing how this drama played out every week felt just like witnessing a piece of art. I never thought I'd have a chance to give straight 10s on a review, but this drama felt like an exception from the very beginning, and it never disappointed me until the end. If this isn't enough to make you decide to watch, I don't know what else will.
I don't think I'll be able to get over this drama in a very long time. This drama is my home.
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And in the end when you reach its final piece, you start to really appreciate every single item. Although each of them has their own shape and characteristics, you notice that special bond that connects every part, smoothly like a cogwheel. And when you put it back together afterwards, it matches perfectly again.
That's how I experienced Chicago Typewriter. I was sold from the first minute. The start was slow and the show takes its time to tell its story. But I never even once complained about the pace. I enjoyed every second of it. Why? Because I simply savored every interaction with the characters. It felt like they took me along on their journey.
The people in this drama - and yes, I call them people because they felt real to me, no matter how estranged they appeared sometimes - will grow on you, especially the female lead. She's one wonderful fangirl many of us can relate to. Being obsessed with her crush in a totally unharmful and charming way, you can't help yourself but root for her. And who wouldn't take the chance and meet his/her crush when an opportunity arises out of the blue? Even if that means to maybe get disappointed by that one person you dedicated your life to. Even if that means you maybe should decide about ending that long-lasting one-sided relationship. So, hands down for the first honorable mention in this cast: Im Soo Jung. An endearing actress who not only impersonates our everyday fangirl but also a devoted freedom fighter per se.
And who is the counterpart to every fan? Of course, the star. That ray of light we see whenever we feel down. Those people who have all the rumors floating around them. Charming on the outside and... either exactly the way we imagine them to be or shockingly different. Being a nationwide renowned bestseller author in the present (and a seemingly resigned writer in his past life), Han Se Ju is certainly one interesting figure. Reserved towards strangers, with a proud and confident demeanor, he might appear paranoid, rude and self-centered. But he learns to change his ways and views, and certainly grows with time. Yoo Ah In is one brilliant actor whose magnificent performance impressed me deeply.
Finally, the third to be in league and a must to be mentioned here. Go Gyeong Pyo. He plays the handsome and classy Yoo Jin Oh who stirs up the daily lives of our other two leads. His appearance triggers a chain of unforeseen events that will certainly change everyone's path. Without telling too much, Go Gyeong Pyo clearly nailed this role.
These three are telling a story about fateful friendship and love in desperate times, that will eventually engrave its signature into your heart. Their tale has "passion" written all over its face. Passionate love, passionate friendship and the passionate desire for your people's freedom. It's captivating in every point, once you let your guard down and allow yourself to be swallowed by its mysteries. Emotions are raw and daring, and an important pillar for its partakers. It's like fire, burning hot and dangerous. And the leads are doing a phenomenal job on conveying that driving emotion.
The mystery surrounding this drama may not be completely new, but still be a rare kind in its execution through neat hints that will be revealed step by step. Starting with visually beautiful scenes, the drama takes a constant pace with a fluent transition between the past and present story. This helps building up the layer-by-layer suspense which ultimately vents into a poignant finale. On a side note, you have of course your usual suspects as well, your lovely sidekicks who add some fun and comedy to the story. And you have that villain that you will hate with utter disgust.
And before I will conclude my review, let me tell you that once you got to listen to Chicago Typewriter's haunting soundtrack, you won't be able to turn back. It's like the icing on the cake and you'll be lost for good.
Don't hesitate to watch this mesmerizing gem. Let yourself be swayed, and take on this incredible journey with an exceptional love for details in every aspect. Even though you might not end up with a 10 like me, because you perhaps find some things only normal or average along the road, it's worth the watch nonetheless. In the end, I might sound a little biased but this one just hit all the right spots for me. It never let me or down or disappointed me.
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Suddenly you had your typical K-Drama over-dramatic melo shit everywhere. Everything became a thousand times more sappy, illogical and emotional in a try-hard way. The pacing became shit. Plot-holes tumbled in and things that should’ve been huge just ended up being anti-climactic. And before you know it, Chicago ends on a note so “MEH” that it’s a disservice to the once precious drama. For sure, most people are probably going to love Chicago’s ending episodes too but for me since this drama was all about being subtle but powerful the extra turns it took, did not slide.
Here are some aspects of the show and my take on it:
-Yoo Ah In’s BeWhy inspired shitty haircut:
We are all superficial people to some extent and Yoo Ah In’s egg shaped haircut is no doubt a fashion disaster but there are some actors who don’t need appearance to make things work because their talent is enough. And Yoo Ah In tops the list. He just gets how to handle me and he always manages to wring my emotions like a masterful puppeteer. So much so, that at this point I think that he’d be able to perfectly emote even if he had a giant garbage bag on his head. He is spectacular as always here, playing two roles with different personalities all at the same time and excelling at both. And just for those of you, who simply cannot get over the hair-do, the drama comes with a sexy as hell past version of Yoo Ah In, with great hair and a lot of badass. ;)
-Weak female lead:
I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again. If there is one person who can sell me a damsel in distress it’s Im Soo Jung. I remember her brilliance in MiSa about 7 years ago and I still find her really likeable. Unfortunately because of her doe eyed look and an eternal stupid expression, she is often typecast into the “dumb but kind” roles. But I feel like despite that she always manages to shine through with her inner strength and true, she does exactly that in the first ten episodes. But after that, the writers started to confine her in a box again. Too much crying. Too much need saving. Too much “woe-is-me” bullshit. That her personality just falls under. And it’s a shame too because she is supposed to me this “bad-ass sniper” with like a trillion qualities and so sadly this whole thing made me realize that while I do like Im Soo Jung, I hate damsels in distress more. And soon for me, Jeong Sol turned from being adorable to annoying real quick.
-Han Se Ju:
A lot of people think that HSJ is just one of those “bad boys” who are actually bad guys but that’s just not true. Sure, the writers tried to force the image on him with the whole “wrist grabbing, temper tantrum throwing, macho alpha asshole” bullshit but it still isn’t true. Because Han Se Ju is an actual sweetheart. A passionate, sensitive and thoughtful man who can act like a complete petty toddler at times but an admirably strong old soul at others. For me, he was a character close to my heart ‘cause I know I’ve myself thought so many of the things that he believes in, I have felt so many emotions that he goes through and that makes him so relatable to me. He’s a beautiful man inside-out, with all his lows and trust issues intact.
While Chicago has a brilliant soundtrack and the show makers did get the play timing right most of the times, there’s one weird ass instrumental that they unfortunately play in the most poignant scenes in the later episodes, effectively ruining the impact. Tragic.
By far, my favorite bromance, simply because of how natural and heartfelt it is. It stays strong from the first episode to the last and soon became the only reason I continued with the show.
The romance is good. The side characters are endearing. The kisses are enjoyable. The antagonist does a very good acting job. The past and present weave effortlessly and are interesting to follow. The cheeky and often hilariously cringey supernatural effects are a delight. While the ending episodes are mediocre at best, the first ten are so emotionally powerful that at the end I couldn’t help but give it an 8.5, still.
Do I recommend? Yes. Definitely. Because despite its flaws Chicago in its core is a beautiful story about friendship, loyalty and the inseparable bond between three people that transcends time. This is a show that you absolutely have to give a chance to. It doesn’t matter whether you like it or not, it’s worth at least a try. This isn't a drama you should judge by reading other people’s opinion, you simply have to experience it yourself.
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Every week I waited in front of my laptop, hoping the next episode to air a little earlier. Because I was in love with the story, the characters, the cast, the songs - oh the songs! - the cinematography and every thing that makes this drama so unique. So this will not be a fare review but something to do until my heart can cope with its farewell.
Lets start with the story.
Its amazing. It's a TvN drama, so I expected nothing less from the beginning. And the writer is Jin Soo Wan, author of 'Kill me heal me' thought I haven't tried that, but I have heard nothing but good things. I am going to watch that very soon - once I am over this one, off course.
When i first read the synopsis I thought it was cool. I like the idea of a drama about a writer and his fan and ghost writer. The whole supernatural thing didn't even came to my mind. Because I thought it will play a small part, or nothing - I was wrong.
I gave it a try. From the moment it started I knew it was going to be good. Because from the very first scene you are on the edge of your sit, mouth wide open and - if you were anything like me - in love.
The story is not only well written but thought out too. There are two stories happening in this drama. One in 1930 and the other in the 2017 which is our main line. And you want to know about both. Because everything that is happening with them - the character- now is part of what happen in 1930. That story that was never finished is tied with everything that is happening with them in the present. And so the tied with string of fate the story starts.
Everything the characters said, does, the little items - even the smallest of it - was for a reason. And I love this type of thought out stories. It makes me connect more. It makes me fall in love with it more.
The mystery in this drama is something that will wrap you around it. You can't get away. It's a true mystery because until the very end you don't know what happens or how. And that's how they holds you in front of your screen.
Its a writers/ readers drama. For people who likes to read, people who likes to write and people who just loves a good story. This drama is for them. Because there is references about many big writers and their works. 'Mystery' by Stephen King is one of them.
The romance and comedy will make your heart ache. And by the end of the first episode you won't be able to do anything but wait for the next.
It's very very well written and characters are well developed. And the whole production team did a hell of a job behind the camera to make it as great as possible.
The cinematography is beautiful. Specially Han Se Ju's house. Books are every where. I wanted to live there!
The cast was fabulous.
Yoo Ah In, Im Soo Jung and Go Kyung Pyo were perfect for the characters. They not only acted but they brought out the little thing that made those characters more...real. Because they felt real to me and I felt their pain.
Yoo Ah In is as good as his hair style in this drama. I think I have a crush on his 1930 laid back writer self. Who loved to party with his friends. And then the present version where he is even more cuter.
I want to thank that person who came up with his hair styles. Because of him/her we have the hottest hairstyle of 2017 in front of us. Thank You!
Im Soo Jung plays Jeon Seol, the fan who gets her wish to come true. She is the obsessive fangirl that we all are in the inside. And to see her dream come to true - as a fan - made me root for her. Its one fan to another. Her 1930 character is what made me drawn to her even more.
And then we have Go Kyung Pyo. Everything I say about him or his character will be considered less. His acting was phenomenal. Its the little things that he did made me love him even more. And those adorable moments with him and the dog. CUTE.
And applause for Kwak Shi Yang. Because he fooled us all. That is a hard thing to do, with that face.
The songs...oh the songs.
Every single song in this drama is beautiful. They are not only songs but stories told in the lyrics that makes your heart hurt. And every scene is perfected with that well timed OST playing in the background. They bring out the emotions that are shown in screen. You can't get over the songs.
In the end if i had to describe this show in one word, it will be unique. Different, beautiful and unique.
At first sight you might not fall in love like I did. But I will tell you to give this a try. I promise you that its a not a time wasted. Because the next thing you will know, its top in your favorite list. Like mine. So watch it!
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this drama had it all; the romance, comedy, friendship, bromance, sad moments, happy moments, and mistery. Everything was served in the most beautiful way. No less and no more than it should be, but everything was always on point, especially the way they slowly reveal the secret episode by episode. It was so well written. Also the cinematography, it was very good just like Goblin or Tomorrow With You.
All the characters are also amazing especially the main characters. Han Se Ju had the best character development tho, but Yoo Jin Oh was my favorite.
Don't ask about the acting, they were the best. Yoo Ah In's and Im Soo Jung's acting never failed to satisfy us. And for Go Kyung Pyo, I think he had his best performance in this drama. Especially in the 15th episode when he cried, it was so painful. The trio acting and chemistry stole my heart. And also the one who played as Baek Tae Min, he was also amazing. I hate Baek Tae Min character, but at some moment I pitied him too.
For the music, it was perfectly fit with all of the scenes in the drama. I love all of the soundtracks. Satellite and Be My Light were my favorites.
Overall this drama was amazing and brilliant. I enjoyed this drama so much. When I was watching this, it felt like I was on a journey. I can watch this drama over and over again and I will still be enjoying it.
DAMN, I LOVE THIS DRAMA SO MUCH!
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Chicago Typewriter is one of the best dramas I came across and I didn't regret a second of it.
Starting from the unique plot of the show, I mean who wouldn't love new ideas delivered in the perfect way? a drama about books, writers, country defenders and strong friendship bond? and Not to speak of that bromance, its just GOLD!!
The cast choice is just amazing and I don't only speak about the chemistry between the leads but every single cast that participated made this drama quite complete.
Aside from the plot and the actors, the cinematography, direction, sequence of events, and that OST all gather up to deliver a great show to the audience grabbing their attention along the way making this drama in my opinion a memorable one.
I would recommend this drama to anyone without a second thought that's how much i loved it and it left an impression on me.
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Yoo Ah In leads the cast as Han Se Joo, an arrogant, eccentric, and celebrated young writer, and he nails it. He's unrecognizable from who I saw in "Sungkyunkwan Scandal", but that just shows how much hair can make a difference in appearance... but more about hair later. Im Soo Jung plays obsessed Jeon Seol, who is another unique character in her own right. It took a while before I realized who she was, because I don't watch as many Korean movies, so I basically missed her whole career since "A Tale of Two Sisters" (one of my favorite movies), and "I'm Sorry, I Love You". It's nice to see her mature version, and I'm so glad to see her return to dramas for this one. The main trio is then completed by Go Kyung Pyo, who I don't really want to say too much about, so I will just say he continues to never disappoint. The chemistry between these 3 will stay with me for a long time. For romance fans, yes there is romantic chemistry, but it's their friendship that drives the show, and got me in the feels.
The supporting cast is also excellent. Many of the supporting characters help to lighten moments, or serve as comic relief, which they did well. Quite a few of the supporting cast members, like the main trio, also have to essentially play 2 characters, one in the past and one in present. I loved how well the cast played the roles in the past, and how they were similar to the present but distinctly different, making the past scenes as interesting as if I were watching a completely different show without it ever feeling disconnected. I also loved that all of the characters had some depth, even if it isn't always as obvious at first. The only characters I had any issue with, and the only reason I didn't give the cast a perfect 10, is because of Tae Min and his mom. I was underwhelmed by the mom as such a bitter villainess yet forgettable character. She wasn't necessarily bad, I just didn't find her very interesting. I also thought Kwak Shi Yang started to over act a little towards the end of the drama, which started to feel a little comical. He was excellent in his complicated dual roles, for the most part, but in some of the final moments his acting really bothered me.
A lot of what made this drama so haunting to me is it's connection to the past, which is set specifically during the Japanese occupation of Korea in the 1930's. There's a nostalgic feel, as well as a definite patriotic feeling, but without it being too sentimental or corny. It pays homage to the artists and revolutionaries of that time, and you don't have to have any historical knowledge to be touched by it. Also don't be worried that the scenes in the past will be too heady or heavy. Many of my favorite romantic, comedic, and action driven moments happened in the past. The past and present scenes work seamlessly together, and don't feel as forced as it can sometimes feel in other dramas.
You will notice that I don't really have anything really bad to say about this drama, so my criticism will be pretty petty, but I guess worth mentioning (at least for my own amusement). Like wanting to know who was the horrible barber in charge of Yoo Ah In's terrible uneven hair cut. The present day cut was awkward and just kept getting worse with each episode, but meanwhile his past hair was sexy as hell. See? Petty! lol. I also had a problem with Im Soo Jung trying to play so much younger than she is. Don't get me wrong, she looks great, but there's no way she looks younger than the two male leads, and her mom looked like she could be her noona. Petty? Perhaps, but I cant be the only person who thought that, right? lol.
Ok, back to the writing, which I can't praise enough. I just loved how well thought out it all was. It's also the kind of story that with a second viewing would reveal even more connected moments, so of course my rewatch score is a 10. If you start watching and don't get what's happening and why, just trust that it will all be explained, and that some of the most random moments are actually happening for a reason. I was admittedly confused, but instantly hooked, from beginning to end. The ending is also one of the most beautiful ones I've seen in a drama, and made me appreciate the whole story even more. It's also a serious tearjerker, making me cry for a full hour, without being completely sad, but definitely feeling emotional. Even the preview of the last episode made me tear up. That's the power of good storytelling. I'm sure one can find flaws if they wanted to, but there is really too much done right to focus on any of that. The episodes are also very long, but always felt like they went by quickly to me, which is dangerous when binge watching! You could lose a whole day with no problem.
The soundtrack is also perfect. I immediately wanted to listen to it after watching the last episode. The song "Writing our stories" in particular stands out, and will probably make me tear up every time I hear it.
Overall this drama often feels more like a film than a typical drama, and hits the bullseye on so many of the things that make us fall in love with dramas in the first place without losing it's originality, no matter what genre you prefer. I would definitely recommend it highly, especially for those who rarely leave their drama-genre comfort zones. This one has a little something for everyone. Do you love characters falling in love in spite of themselves? Check. Rom-com chemistry? Check. Or do you prefer Bromance? Check. Do you love rivalries and revenge? Check. Do you love mystery thrillers? Supernatural tales that blur reality? Emotional melodramas? LOL moments? Historical references that make you curious about the events and people that inspire them? Butt-kicking Action? Girls who defy the damsel in distress routine? Crime stories? Or just good story telling from start to finish? Well, "Chicago Typewriter" has checks straight down the list!
I'm so glad that people's posts about this show made me curious enough to check it out for myself. It's only fitting that I shout out the writer Jin Soo Wan, who wrote "Kill me, Heal me", a drama that I also rated a 10, and "Love in the Moonlight" which I may be ready to give a second viewing. I will definitely look forward to anything she writes in the future. If there was ever a drama that made me appreciate writers, down to the hilarious "Misery" references, the hilarious naming of Go Kyung Pyo's character "Yoo Jin Oh", or even the perfect title choice, it's definitely this one! And if you've ever thought about writing this will either inspire you to do just that, or scare you away from the profession completely!
Ok, enough praise! I guess I'm still on a high from watching this! Who knows, I may even start rewatching it again immediately. Yes, it's really is that good.
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Yoo Ah In, Im Soo Jung, and Go Kyung Po were all amazing in their dual roles, both past and present. I was captivated by them instantly and was sad to let them go as the credits faded away. You know the writers have crafted something great when you are reluctant to see the end. Yoo Ah In and Im Soo Jung had a sizzling chemistry together and enacted one of the best kissing scenes I've seen to date. (Toe curling would be an apt description!) Go Kyung Po was the master of the puppy eyed looks that twisted my heart in sadness for him. They all three wrung tears from me during the course of the show. The love, the comraderie, the longing, their happiness and sadness - I truly felt them all. The acting from everyone was impeccable. I'd also like to mention that Kwak Shi Yang, as the antagonist, did an especially good job as well. He was very convincing in his role and was able to somehow portray both innocence and evil in turn.
The OST was amazing. If you've read many of my reviews, you will notice that the music is often something peripheral to me. There have been rare exceptions, and this is absolutely one of them. The song Satellite, by Saltnpaper, is stunning and they used it so effectively in several scenes. In fact, all of the music almost seemed to be written specifically for these characters and this story. There have been many theme songs that were only moving to me during the story and not on their own, but Satellite is a great song even separate from the drama. (I've noticed that Saltnpaper is the performer of many drama songs that have caught my attention.) The music director did an outstanding job choosing effective mood-setting music.
Rewatch? That is a given. This story stole my heart and feels like a favorite book now that I want to go back and revisit from time to time.
You should absolutely give this show a chance and you will almost certainly fall in love with the characters and the story as I have. :)
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These whole 16 episodes did not seem like any drama. It was like an epic elegy which I finished reading with complete satisfaction. I was in a daze for the entire time. The background score and correct blend of beautiful OSTs along with the story gave me a feel of reading an ode. An ode can be classified into three segments: strophe, antistrophe and epode. If CT can be divided into these three segments: strophe (1-5 episodes) produced an excellent feeling; antistrophe (6-11 episodes) produced a neutral feeling and lastly epode (12-16 episodes) produced the most resonant experiences.
The story is nothing new. I remember once Daesung (a member of BigBang band) said in an interview that there’s nothing new under the sky in this era of globalization. We remake it, reproduce it or at best represent in a completely different way with our creativity. Each and every word this singer said is applicable for this exceptional drama. Although story is nothing new but the representation is entirely new. Both 1930 and 2017 scenarios are well construed for the viewers. Having the discernible feature, no confusion is created with the plot.
For instance, if we taste a piece of red velvet cheese cake it might happen that initially the delicate taste doesn’t hit immediately but once swallowed the heavenly taste lingers for long. So, my point is the whole story has an enigmatic texture leaving a palpable aura which may haunt for a longer period of time.
Many attributes of this drama is top-notch, especially acting by the trio ensemble: Yoon Ah In, Im Soo Jung and Go Kyung Po. Their portrayal of every emotion is mesmerizing, especially YAI, this man never seizes to amaze me. Day by day he keeps getting better and better. As a leader he was charismatic and as a modern day writer he was smart, dashing, talented and elegant. ISJ, this lady what can I say ‘bout her? Words fall short to describe her mighty acting skill. Thanks to the writer team who again wrote a valiant woman character. I think no one could live up to the expectation of Jeon Seol character like ISJ did. And GKP, I’m shocked, literally shocked by his power packed performances. He seemed like a cute, lost, adorable and innocent ghost like Casper and at the same time he managed to pull the passionate hot-blooded young rebel, an elegant chaebol of 30s and also a compassionate comrade. Again salute to the casting director who selected these young actors for such roles meticulously. I laughed and cried with the trio’s struggles, happiness and sadness. Kwak Shi Yang did a tremendous job as well as a villain. I pitied his modern antagonist character but had zero tolerance for his character portrayal as “chinilpa” (Korean for traitor). I abominate any traitors in general.
About the technicalities of the drama, cinematography was similar to Goblin which means its extremely wonderful giving a feel of watching cinema. Ambience was on point, based on the necessity of the scene and stories proper lighting and filter has been used. Direction is commendable otherwise CT wouldn't be loved by so many. None of the scenes seemed out of place or just appeared out of nowhere, all of them were well connected. So editing was also good.
On another note, I think CT has also brought out a message on increasing our interests in reading books also. Because of too many distractions in our daily lives, many people are destroying their habit of reading books. So it can be a small showcase to raise our enthusiasm towards reading real pages rather than reading mere virtual pages.
Among the many good points of this drama, I loved the warm friendship, dauntless comradeship and beguiling romanticism among the trio. The relief comedy displayed through the bromance of YAI and GKP is another most amazing thing.
In conclusion, it is an utter satisfaction that their past tragedy did not continue to follow them in the modern time. A small surprising revelation at the end episode was also quite interesting.
I want to keep on writing but it may create disruption as I might give you spoilers unknowingly. So go and watch it without any single doubt. You may not love it like us but you may not regret watching it.
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This drama has its own target audience and maybe they would be up for the popularity of the actors, it did highly market the actors for me, but aside that… something just felt missing. You know that feeling when you’re watching a drama and you can’t just get enough of it? I didn’t really feel it with this one, hence I got really disappointed because I was expecting so much from it.
Aside from my above rantings here are the following elements that are worth mentioning: actors, cinematography and OST.
Let’s start with the 3 lead roles:
Yoo Ah In as Han Se Joo, I felt like he was over the top for this particular character. He could have downgraded it a bit and at least acted as how most authors really lived. It felt like he was a top actor instead of an acclaimed writer who was supposed to be eccentric, in this drama he came across as a guy straight out of a magazine who lived in Beverly Hills. Don’t get me wrong, I love the actor himself but I’m not a fan of his Se Joo character. I do admit that he has a complex role since he had to have the weight of his past character and his present one, but still... it could have been better. However, even though that’s the case for his present character, I couldn’t say the same to his past one, Seo Hui Young because he really nailed that bad ass role. I love how charismatic he was as the writer during the 1930’s and being in a covert rebellion at the same time. He was witty and stuck with his own principles. That’s the kind of character I love rooting for, the lonely-brooding kind of guy who believes he can make a difference in the world despite sacrificing himself and everyone he cares about. Nuff said. Im Soo Jung the female lead who acted as Jeon Seol/ Ryu Su Hyeon, she was a sniper in the past with the alias “Anastasia”. I definitely like the fact that she’s a strong character, not just in the past but as well in the present. She can still pick up a gun and kick ass despite her traumatic visions. The fact that in the present, she’s also an avid fan and at least knows her limitations… its makes her more amusing. As for the last character Go Kyung Pyo as Yoo Jin Oh/Shin Yul is such a charismatic guy. He also has this cool relationship going on with Yoo Ah In’s character in which they have some sort of unspoken bond. The bromance was palpable I could certainly compare to the Goblin and Grim Reaper’s relationship the Goblin Drama. Aside that, another thing that I find interesting from his character is that during the past and the present he had that appealing aura in his stature all throughout the drama. I find him both cute and endearing at the same time. Oh, and kudos to his stylist too because he dressed up oh so damn well!
The cinematography for the drama is breathtaking. I think the fact that this was shot during the spring, it made everything look so colorful and vibrant. I just loved it. Even the indoor shoot of interior was wonderful, I love how the director was able to capture those lines of books, arches of windowsill and the nook and crannies of Han Se Joo’s house. It was really pretty to look at. Lastly there’s the OST. It was memorable and did pull my heart strings at the right moment particularly during those heart-racing-revealing-moments of the show. I like how the melody can stir emotions out of me.
Overall it was interesting enough to sit down and watch through but not really something I would go on to enjoy and binge watch with in one go. I may not re-watch this again but I would recommend it to the fans of the actors and those who like the type of story with twist and turns along the way.
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It's full of friendship,love,fighting for your country,freedom...Times past and times present.
Fighting for and also letting go..
Bonus is very good osts and bgm accompanies you all along. :)
I'll miss it.
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What a wonderfully shot drama with a winning cast and tight knit storyline.
Story: Every episode builds upon the last. I was never bored. The use of humor in this drama is also on point. Instead of the common "trolling" often employed by writers in dramas these days, the humor is unique and refreshing. The way the past life story is unraveled also fits very well with the character and story developments. In all, a very well executed drama.
Music: AMAZINGLY BEAUTIFUL OST. One of the songs is in English, which made it all the easier to relate to as a English-speaking viewer. A great choice of the songs used in this drama. Made the drama so beautiful and easy to be immersed in.
Acting: Yoo Ah In is in this. Need I say more? All 3 of the leads were able to infuse layered acting into this so that the characters embodied their roles perfectly, whether that was helplessness, confusion, paranoid, etc. The ending was perfect and poignant, and only because the leads' acting was able to pull it off. Some people criticized that the main lead was too insensitive and a jerk, but as you keep watching the drama reveals why he is that way, so have some patience.
I cannot say enough good things about this drama. While Legend of the Blue Seas (which is also about past and current reincarnated lives) is a romance story, Chicago Typewriter is instead a story about patriotism and friendship. The past life motif is strong this year (i.e., Goblin, Legend of the Blue Seas) but Chicago Typewriter has the best story.
This drama is so underrated, I honestly don't understand why this drama doesn't have as many viewers as the other two above. Don't be put off by the "literary-ness" which put me off initially but instead expect a very intriguing period drama x fantasy/supernatural aspects. The bromance is strong in this one. Instead of rooting for the love line, I rooted for the bromance all the way.
Definitely worth the watch! (and perhaps staying up late for!)
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