Kwon Hyuk Joon's grandfather, the head of the traditional Kwon family agrees to an arranged marriage between his grandson (Lee Dong Gun) and Yoon Jung Sook (Han Ji Hye) when Yoon Jung Sook is born. 18 years later, the two families lose contact because soon after the contract is signed, Jung Sook's family encounters financial issues and is forced to run away.
Meanwhile, Jung Sook has grown up to be a rebellious and strong-willed girl who just wants to live her life as she sees fit. With little aspirations, she is the direct foil of her achievement-bound counterpart, Hyuk Joon. When the two meet each other, they clash horribly; Jung Sook thinks her fiancee is nothing but boring, and Hyuk Joon believes Jung Sook to be nothing but an immature child. Despite all this they do marry. The rest of the series follows their life living together as a couple, and the obstacles they are faced with.
Cast & Credits
I watched this a long time ago when I was a little girl who knows nothing about K-dramas. My grandmother was watching it so I tagged along.
I still remember it clearly even though it was a long time, the story was interestig to watch an at that time since I haven't seen stories like this before.
*Learning about family and responsibility while trying to to hold into your loved one was a good theme to follow.
*The events were nicely made; you can find romance and some action moments (since the lead actor is a prosecutor) plus there were some moments were the drama took interesting turns.
*The romace wasn't excessive, it's the light type of romance: Not too deep, not too clumsy.
*The storyline felt pushed sometimes which made it lose its natural aspect.
*Some parts felt unnecessary while others felt missing.
*It could've been much better if the events were more exciting.
*The lead actress was clumsy and sometimes funny, I liked her perseverance and her great willpower to make her husband happy and all but I can't say that she's a great actress since you would feel like she's pushing herself to act: that was really annoying to watch.
*The lead actor was the mature type with a manly character plus he has to handel his little bride.
*The chemistry between leads was good but not great; it could have been much better if they pushed it a little.
*Supporting roles were somehow annoying but they didn't ruin the general concept.
4) The ending:
It was acceptable and likeable while being normal.
The ending: 7/10.
5) My impression (How did it affect me):
*It can be considered as an old drama since it was one of my first watched K-dramas so no hard judges over it.
*I was entertained while I watched it so no regrets plus I was sort of attracted by the drama at the time.
My impression: 8/10
*If you like old/young relationships then this is for you.
*If you like rom-coms then you may like this.
*If you like clumsy lead females then you may want to give this a try.
Sweet 18 is about an arranged marriage between an 18 year old sassy high school girl named Yoon Jung-Sook and a 28 year old Prosecutor named Kwan Hyuk-Joon. Fun fact: The two main leads actually dated in real life. Also this drama was Han Ji Hye's first leading role.
The drama begins with two traditional elder men in the early to mid 1980s and the two make a contract stating that their grandchildren will marry each other. When the contract is signed, the two old men start to laugh like they just planned something sinister which made me laugh along with them. Fast forward eighteen years later and then the story begins...
Lets start off with Jung-Sook. She's the type of girl that doesn't care about school, has no interest in college, and generally just likes to go clubbing and drinking with her friends (much to the dismay of her mother played by veteran actress Kim Hae Sook). One day her and her friends decide to skip school and end up being chased by one of the school guards. They end up separating and Jung-Sook runs into a man (Hyuk-Joon) who is wearing a hanbok. She falls to the ground and is about to make a rude comment but is instantly frozen in her spot. Hyuk-Joon stands there holding up a fan that is blocking the lower half of his face and Jung-Sook just stays on the ground... mesmerized by him and watches as he walks away. If you can't tell what just happened then I'll say that she just fell in love.
It sounds cheesy, and it is, but its a good kind of cheesy that makes you chuckle. Jung-Sook is relatively the same for the first couple of episodes and even though she can be sarcastic and naive at times there's just this charm about her that I can't really explain. She just grows on you and you end up liking her nonetheless. Even though she's only 18 years old and has no real experience with relationships, let alone marriage, you admire her for the fact that she is willing to try and make matters work. Her relationship with Hyuk-Joon's grandfather, who refuses to wear anything else but a hanbok, is cute as both scheme different ways to make Hyuk-Joon a proper husband.
Now we go to Hyuk-Joon. The man is all about work and no nonsense. He remembers the first time he encountered Jung-Sook. But, he remembers the event in a very different way. Instead of her being frozen and gazing upon him, he remembers her berating him and shooing him away. As they say, there are two sides to every story. Both of them have to have the truth in there... right? Right. Hyuk-Joon rebels against the marriage in the beginning stating that arranged marriages are outdated. But he loses out to Jung-Sook's persistence and does it to appease his grandfather's wishes. When the two get married, he's not the greatest husband in the world and makes up excuses to avoid going to bed with Jung-Sook.
Now you're probably saying "What kind of marriage is this?!". Well, here comes along grandpa to set matters straight. You really do have to love the grandfather in this drama. He's the one that knocks sense into those that are too stubborn to work matters through.
There is one thing that I have to say about Hyuk-Joon. Despite the fact that he wasn't fond of the idea of marriage, let alone with a rebel girl like Jung-Sook, he respects it. How? There's a part in the drama where his ex-girlfriend Moon Ga Young (played by Lee Da Hae) makes an appearance and becomes a supporting character for the rest of the drama. She's upset with the fact that he doesn't want to talk with her or hang out. And he tells her this (more or less) "I don't want to be seen with you without my wife. I don't want her to be hurt." From there on I respected him and enjoyed the events that lead up to him finally realizing that he truly does love Jung-Sook and that he was just being Mr.Stubborn.
There are parts of the drama that are over the top (specifically some fight scenes) and I'm sure some of you will roll your eyes at them but I found it all in good fun. I can't really say if there is anything that I disliked about the drama. I was entertained from beginning to end. Essentially the whole story is about two opposites who try and work out their differences within their marriage and see what it truly means to love and respect one another.
The supporting characters are fun to see and watch like Hyuk-Joon's older sister and his best friend Jongchan(who likes to poke fun at Hyuk-Joon's marriage but nevertheless respects it). You'll probably find his sister and ex-girlfriend annoying for a time though as they keep butting into the marriage.
The music is kinda crazy but catchy. I can hear the main theme playing in my head at the moment.
Overall, give the drama a chance and I'm sure you won't be disappointed. Hope you all enjoyed this long review!