The daily life of an average working woman involves: a packed subway during the rush hours, a miserable old boss, juniors clawing their way up, mounting credit card debt, and a rusty and tired body... And above all, the worst is the endless housekeeping work that awaits her at home. But what if a handsome guy appears and takes care of all the housekeeping work for her? And not only that, what if he solves the problems in her complicated and confused life? In this drama, a male house helper does housekeeping works in different women's houses and tries to solve their issues.
(Source: KBS World)
Where to Watch Your House Helper
Cast & Credits
As part of the main story topics such as women's health, misogyny, overwork, rape, abuse, and gender roles are brought up and handled in a sensible manner though at times failing to push forward when the timing demanded so. The #metoo movement is hailed and discussed as an important movement for women, something unusual for a k-drama and a bold step to make as women's struggle in south Korea is heavily opposed by chauvinism and an excruciatingly patriarchal society.
Since this is a story that puts emphasis on women, the three leading women take the centre stage with each character facing particular issues related to their personality, workplace, and personal struggles. Ha Suk Jin, Lee Ji Hoon, and Jo Hee Bong undoubtedly play story relevant characters, but they're not steering the helm or the main driving force of why you should watch "Your House Helper."
The cast was well selected -- the actors matched well the characters they were assigned, and I have to praise whomever cared for all the small details, especially in the fashion department: they all look great, but never overdressed.
When it comes to the acting itself the first episodes are rough on Bona - as she's among the youngest in the cast - but she does improve with her character's development and I digress with anyone who argues she was not a good choice to play Im Da Yeong -- she captured well the demeanour of a young woman dealing with hardship and not knowing what to do next. Yoon Sang Ah's character initially has more on screen chemistry with Ha Suk Jin's, something which may cause some conflictive feelings as a viewer, but this quickly dissipates away as Lee Ji Hoon enters the scene and becomes more prominent. I am somewhat disappointed with the screen time Seo Eun Ah's character had but I should praise that her issues were handled in a respectful manner, although again constrained by the conservative mainframe of Korean society. Overall the male leading characters did a good job, it's good to see Ha Suk Jin play a more sensitive, less gruff heads on character -- really had to drag him out of the office to become a house cleaner.
"Your House Helper" has an upbeat soundtrack with its trademark tune whenever some house cleaning action begins while reserving more sombre tones when serious subjects or more dramatic moments are handled. There is nothing particularly outstanding about its music but it never feels repetitive and blends well with all scenes.
Does this 32 episodes long drama have re-watch value? Each episode is roughly 29-30 minutes long and easy to watch through. If you enjoy the overall story, you can expect yourself binge watching through several episodes and not noticing the time. The overall plot and side stories are always on the move, there is no mid story dragging/stalling, and since there are no particular villains you can expect a drama grounded in reality with a pinch of idyllic hope, sunshine, and a quirky golden retriever.
The plot is paced well, and it covers a range of social topics in a way that's sensitive and kindhearted. Maybe a little too kindhearted, to be honest, as one of my few critiques of the show is the way characters who harm (sexual assault, harassment, etc.) are redeemed far too quickly, to the point where the forgiveness they receive feels somewhat unearned. That's not to say that I don't like the message of abusers growing and holding themselves accountable for the harm they cause, and maybe someday being redeemed... I think that message is very much in line with the show's themes of growth and unlearning destructive habits. But those particular moments could have been built up better, definitely.
Otherwise, the plot was just like the show itself: soft and sweet, and gentle... slowly, steadily progressing.
Ha Seok Jin as the aloof but gentle Ji Woon was a breath of fresh air, and I was really happy to see him even getting to be a little goofy and fun compared to his usual tightlaced, arrogant characters (who I also love, to be fair). Bona's acting improved a lot over the course of the episodes, and now at the end I honestly can't imagine anyone else for the role of Da Yeong.
The supporting characters were all wonderful. My very favorite was Le Ji Hoon as the lawyer Jin Kuk: his antics while trying to win over Sang Ah were hilarious and wildly relatable for anyone who has ever had a hopeless crush on someone. It was so good to see this side of him, haha.
Also, the music I LOVED. It's upbeat and soothing at the same time, which appropriately makes it the perfect soundtrack when you're cleaning, or working to finish some other task.
Overall, this isn't the most exciting drama ever written, but it is soothing and appeals to the humanity in each viewer, quietly offering to inspire us along a path towards being happier and healthier.
(Bonus!: There's a big fluffy old dog who is wonderful, and Ha Seok Jin's cleaning tips at the ends of the episodes were A+++++)