This review may contain spoilersI had no idea what to expect going into it. And the little things I did expect were completely shut down. I don’t know if I’m just not yet used to the format/style of Taiwanese dramas, but it felt weird to me.
But I liked it. I'm so torn about what to rate it, I keep going back and forth between 7.5 and 8. It's like a 7.8
There’s just something about it that kept me watching.
I started watching when there were already eleven episodes out. I kept telling myself, “This is a good place to stop. I’ll do something else, I’ll go to sleep, and I’ll finish tomorrow” and then I’d finish the episode and hit the next button and the process would continue until I was caught up with the lives.
Here’s the thing: you have to watch this drama with an open mind. I’m sorry, but I could not take the plot seriously. It was pretty predictable, and, I know this is a korean term, but it was a makjang drama. I don’t know how else to describe it. It was so weird and cheesy and over-dramatic, but I found it funny and enjoyable. If you go into the drama expecting some serious movie-like mob drama, you will be disappointed.
It was so freaking cheesy. Like every possible cliche happened within the first episode. The entire drama was like this, but it didn’t bother me because I thought it was hilarious. I know some people get annoyed with cliches though, so I’m letting everyone know now.
Also, part of the reason I couldn’t take it seriously from the beginning was because everything happened so fast. Like a whole episode’s worth (or two) of plot set-up happened within the first like ten minutes? It moved really fast and it was really extreme. But don’t stop watching because of this.
Also there were some little details with the plot that bugged me. For example: not putting someone into dry clothes when they have hypothermia, a person who just had surgery walking around without crutches. The birth. But whatever, I’m a nit-picky person.
One thing that made me really happy was that Megan actually looked like a guy. The stylists did a really good job. It was the first time I’ve seen a gender-bender drama where the girl convincingly looked like a guy. Also, she blew me away with her acting. She did a really good job at acting like she grew up living like a boy. Her posture and the way she walked were so convincing.
The romance was so enjoyable, they had fantastic chemistry together. And they had so many amazing kisses! Like a ton of them! Passionate ones! The main lead was nice from the start, and was a genuinely good and caring guy. I am now a fan of Baron Chen.
There are some issues I had with the drama, I won't go too deep into them because most of them contain spoilers. Basically I docked points from the rating because of some issues I had with the plot and some of the acting. I thought the cast had great chemistry together, but the things that should have been taken seriously, I couldn't take seriously. However, overall I enjoyed it, which is saying something coming from a person who doesn’t really like gender-benders.
What really made me happy about this drama was that there was never any homophobia. “As long as two people genuinely love each other, does it matter who the partner is?” Like damn, the messages in this drama were so good, I’m kind of wishing they were actually gay to make a stronger point. The message still came across strong, and not just through our leads, but through the other couples too.
This was a fun drama, and despite the issues I had, I’m glad I watched it.
*I cut the review short because of spoilers. Read the rest of my review on my tumblr: kfan-obsessions.*
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Arthdal Chronicles Part 1: The Children of Prophecy
18 people found this review helpful
My rating here will be for this portion of the drama only. At this point, the drama started out pretty strong, got kinda muddled in the middle, but seems to be picking up again.
I wish it was better organized. I said this in the comments, but the writers, directors, editors - they all tried to do too much. A high fantasy drama is innovative enough in the Korean drama scene, but splitting it into multiple "seasons" did more harm than good. The pacing is all over the place, they established different story-lines faster than others so we had to wait while they caught up. And most importantly, there needed to be way better world building. This is a completely imagined setting with its own groups of people, religion, beliefs, society, hierarchy, government, etc. and the director or some editor or whoever thought occasionally adding captions to explain original vocabulary was enough. It's not. Some of our very important characters are missing important screen time and story development time because of the weird pacing, but it seems that this will be rectified soon in future episodes so I'm not to hung up on that point. This drama would have benefited so much from being longer; the world that they have created is fascinating and it should be fleshed out way more than it was.
The acting is phenomenal and the characters are really interesting. Like I said, I just wish it was better organized.
All in all, it's a good watch. It's not god-tier iconic, but I do recommend it - especially to people who are looking to watch something different.
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And it was one of the best decisions I’ve made.
It starts tugging at your heart within the first five minutes of episode one. I was hooked. It had a really nice, strong start, and it just kept getting stronger.
The whole drama was like a movie.
The feelings it gave. I was on the edge of my seat in literally every episode, and every episode messes with your emotions. Seriously, this drama likes to give you pain.
It’s kind of episodic. Police dramas usually are because of all the different cases being investigated. I don’t have a problem with it because I find cases interesting, but I know some people have a problem when dramas are episodic. Please don’t let it turn you off, it’s necessary to the story. The different cases are all so important to building the main plot.
Honestly, the whole drama is just genius. The story itself, how everything connected, and how well plotted the cases were (really the entire drama was well plotted out) just blew me away. Oh my God there was so much attention to detail. And the characters were all so smart, it was a relief to not be screaming at the characters for missing the blatantly obvious. The writing was fantastic There were times I actually got chills. For those who know what I’m talking about: the ending of episode 9. Chills.
What made it even better was that it wasn’t all serious and shocking and heartbreaking, but there was a lot of comedy too.
The acting was amazing. I know some people had a problem with Lee Je Hoon, but I thought he was fine. The cast portrayed their expressions and emotions really well. I was really impressed with Kim Hye Soo for being able to switch from the timid Cha Soo Hyun in the past to the strong Cha Soo Hyun in the present.
I also need to take a moment to applaud the stylists for doing a good job of making Lee Je Hoon look like a high schooler.
Overall, I am just so impressed with the drama. The cinematography, the writing, the acting, everything was just incredible. I was really attached to the characters and the story. The feeling I got when the story started to come full circle, I can’t even describe it. I am in awe.
And God I hate open endings but this one was just so well put-together and beautiful, I can’t dislike it.
They’re totally leading up to a season two. There has to be a season two.
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I had been wanting to watch this drama for so long because the plot really interested me. I love the forced living situations. But it wasn’t on my netflix and for the longest time nobody was uploading it. I ended up building up a lot of personal hype and was very excited when the streaming websites started uploading it.
I liked it at first. It had a lot of the classic cliches. Although it wasn’t a very unique story, it had a really cute vibe.
But then it started to drag. They overused the same conflict and it just got annoying. I started getting agitated with everyone and everything.
At first I thought that Uehara wasn’t like bullying her, he was very closed off and guarded. But the more I watched the more I realized I was wrong. 90% of the time he was cold and distant and rude and it got worse after they started dating. Not to mention the actor wasn’t that good so Uehara was expressionless throughout the drama.
I didn’t like Daichi. At all. Part of the reason was because he looks like my friend’s asshole ex and the feelings were transferring over, but then he started disregarding all of Nao’s feelings and was incredibly hypocritical about the living together situation and ugh everything about him bugged the crap out of me.
In these dramas, I always have a problem with the lack of trust. She always second guessed Uehara, like she never believed in his feelings from the beginning.
Nao was so frivolous about Uehara and he got really cold towards her. They had terrible communication. This was always one of the biggest problems I have with the ItaKiss stories.
The writers kept repeating the lack of trust and terrible communication causing issues between Nao and Uehara and it got so tiring. It was the same thing over and over again, and Nao got so whiny and annoying and obsessive. It wasn't a healthy relationship.
Like for a long time it was so cute, and when the two of them did have moments together they were really sweet. Like I thought the ending was really cute. But overall, the characters were annoying and the acting wasn’t great. Issei was the best part of the drama, give me Kentaro in a lead please.
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It's your typical high school romance shoujo manga live-action. You probably know the kind. If you like these movies, you like them. If you don't, you don't. I'm not going to delve into the plot; the synopsis does a good job.
I really did not like the directing. The characters would have these long conversations, especially at the end with the most important conversation in the entire movie, and the camera would be super zoomed out for the entire thing and you couldn't read their expressions. And with a character like Kyoya's, you need to do a lot of reading because he doesn't express his thoughts in words. Really bad decision on the director's part..
I am a huge fan of Yamazaki Kento, but I don't think he was right for this role. I wasn't totally convinced of his jerk-ness.
The story also seemed a bit rushed, particularly the beginning, but that's pretty typical with live action adaptions. It's hard to fit multiple volumes into two hours. I just wish we got a bit more in the middle to show more of the character development. Again, a fault of the director.
There's not much to say. Except for the directing, I personally didn't have any other problems with the movie. It was a cute and lighthearted watch. If you want to just kick back and take a break from your stressful dramas, Wolf Girl and Black Prince is a nice choice.
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This review may contain spoilersIt’s been so long since this drama ended so this review is going to be scattered, but my GOD did I love this drama.
I wasn’t even going to watch this drama. I had it on my list, but the initial response to it was so negative, I took it off. But then I saw this one gifset of the male lead stroking the girl’s face while lying in a bed and I felt so much tension just from those gifs, I was immediately taken.
And honestly, Hwarang was so dry I was like dying of thirst and when I saw that gifset just drenched in chemistry I was sold.
I could see where the negative reviews came from. The editing was very jumpy - jumping back and forth to the various different things going on but, like, I couldn’t tell what was going on.
The transitions were really weird. The writers were awkward with introducing the characters. And then the drama started out with a woman jumping off of a building, and it takes you forever to find out who she was. JUST FYI that scene took place three years before the rest of the drama. They should have put “Three Years Later” at the bottom of the screen, no clue why they didn’t.
They could have used a bit more depth in setting up the characters. Whereas most dramas take two to three episodes to set up the plot, this drama just dived right in. Pretty much “everything” was set up in episode one. And I say that in quotation marks because of the episode 5 situation (explained below).
BUT once everything started to make sense, I was really intrigued. They had a really good story, it was just a rocky start. Get past the rocky start!
Much of the controversy was surrounding the female lead Park Hye Soo’s acting. I can’t argue with it. She wasn’t awful, but it seemed like it was her first lead role. She seemed like the type that can act well in minor roles, but something felt off with her line delivery... it felt almost forced. I think part of it was the weird script, because it got better after episode 4. Obviously it didn’t bother me enough to stop watching the drama, I stopped noticing it much the later I got into the drama. I guess the experience did well for her.
For those of you who don’t know or don’t remember when the news broke, the drama skipped a week to rewrite the script. This happened after episode 4. If you are watching and you’re not really feeling it, my advice is to wait and watch episodes 5 and 6 because that’s where a lot of things are fixed, everything gets explained, and the plot picks up.
NOTE: From what I gathered when watching, the writers changed the central conflict. There are a few continuity errors, but it’s understandable considering they film these dramas while they’re airing.
It was really quirky. The bright colors, the tone, the dialogue. It reminded me a bit of the extra-ness of jdramas. It had that lighthearted, fun feeling like Sassy Go Go, Surplus Princess, Marriage Not Dating (from what I’ve heard), Cinderella and Four Knights, Shopping King Louis, etc.
However, the deeper you get into the show, the more things appear to be not what they seem. So while “everything” is explained in episode 5, aside from the personal conflicts and episodic conflicts, there was this mystery brewing. A sort of underlying sketchyness that kept growing until the end.
I absolutely adored this drama. From the comedy (which was golden btw) to the use of irony to the characters to the romance. It is up on my list of top dramas for 2017.
The comedy: there was a lot of witty dialogue and utilization of each of the characters’ little quirks. The actors did amazing, a lot of it was expressions and motions tied in with dialogue that wouldn’t have been nearly as entertaining if the actors delivered it badly.
Yeon Woo Jin did such an amazing job as Eun Hwan Gi. He made this character come to life in such a raw and realistic way, I am truly impressed. I’m looking forward to seeing him in his next drama. I, someone with a social anxiety disorder, relate to Eun Hwan Gi so much it’s frightening. But that’s what made me love the drama even more. It made me feel a deeper connection to any kdrama character I have ever felt, and his thought process was so much like mine (always overthinking things) it made me root for him that much more.
I felt so much for him seeing him make the efforts because I know from personal experience how hard it was for him. He was unable to do the mean thing despite it being the right thing because it was mean. He was so not the typical male kdrama lead, and he broke a lot of gender stereotypes. Plus he was freaking adorable. He had all these charms; his drunk habit for one lol, + he was caring, he watched over everyone, and when he did succeed in conquering his fear step by step as a viewer it fills you with so much warmth.
He’s just such a wonderful person and it brings you unbelievable joy as a viewer to see the rest of the characters slowly realize this too.
ALSO HE WAS LIKE HEALER’S BONG SOO ALIAS EXCEPT IN REAL PERSON FORM AND I LOVED IT.
And then when we finally got to see his frustration. Social anxiety is not this cute introvert nerd, it’s a pain in the ass and I am so glad/proud/thankful that the writers showed this side of it.
I want to take a second to mention the symbolism. I adored the symbolism behind his hood and what it meant for him to take it off/put it on. It was just one more key to understanding the character + it made you feel all the things when he was comfortable enough to take it off.
Chae Ro Woon... It was hard to judge her change because it was so sudden, but I thought her change was for the better. Yet there were still some things that annoyed me. A lot of time the writers used her inappropriate(?) behavior to move the plot along, but there were still instances I thought she was way over the line. However in my opinion, a lot of the hate towards her was out of line because her main goal was revenge and it seemed like people kept forgetting that. Especially later on, I thought Chae Ro Woon was just absolutely amazing. She was so understanding of Hwan Gi, even though it took her some time (which is realistic), and she was accepting of him. She didn’t push him too hard to change, she gave him space, and did what she could to make him comfortable. I loved it.
I was also a little disappointed with what the writers did with Hyo Sung’s character, specifically the way she treated Hwan Gi, but I’m going to attribute that to the story change and that if the writers could they would go back and take out that one scene from episode 2(?) to make her character understandable.
I’m not going to mention how I feel about Kang Woo Il, or Eun Yi Soo for that matter, because everything surrounding them is a spoiler. They’re complicated, especially Yi Soo. While I may not have been fond of them, I understood them. Especially Yi Soo. Which is what I believe is the most important when it comes to a character.
I LOVED YOO HEE. I don’t know if either of you have seen the Taiwanese drama Refresh Man, but it was another office romance and there was this older woman who saw the main character’s feelings for the girl and tried to set them up. I loved it. And the same thing pretty much happened here. It was hilarious.
Yeon Jung, usually I hate characters like her, but she was so amazing. She was annoying as a love interest but necessary as a friend, and I am actually glad a character like her was in the drama.
The romance. The sexual tension between Eun Hwan Gi and Chae Ro Woon was tangible. I loved how he slowly opened up to her, and it was symbolic in his hood and the way his voice became louder the more comfortable he became. Spoiler: they kiss a shit ton of times. I loved every second.
The drama did a lot of things I didn’t expect. There were really straightforward conversations (the how-far-have-you-gone one), admissions of wrongful actions, actual apologies from multiple characters (all the characters that needed to imo) that I didn’t expect to happen, girls telling people off and breaking every drama stereotype.
A little thing I really liked was how, you know when dramas are like “we’ve wrapped up the plot but still have two episodes” so they create a conflict which is usually super random and off topic? This one tied back to the original roots of the plot and it fit so well with the theme of the whole drama. There was a huge presence of family in the drama, both Ro Woon’s and Hwan Gi’s, and I was very appreciative of how they wrapped up.
And, hun, while I stumbled over the time jump in the last episode, that ending was FANTASTIC. I don’t need to say anything else. Just that it was so damn satisfying.
Someone get me an Eun Hwan Gi please and thank you.
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At the time of starting this drama, I was about 11 episodes into Fall In Love With Me. I had started that drama months ago but I just couldn’t do it anymore, and the only thing keeping it on my “on-hold” list and off my “dropped” list was Aaron Yan. I was really enjoying filwm for like 1/3 of it, but soon he became my only reason for watching. I had been wanting to watch another one of his dramas, a good one, and this one got great reviews and was actually recommended to me.
So basically I watched this for Aaron Yan.
Also, Bromance had me really in the mood for a cutesy Taiwanese drama.
To be honest, I didn’t like the way it started. There was something about it, I don’t know if it was rushed or forced or whatever, it was just weird to me. Plus I didn’t really like Puff’s acting/character at first. But I don’t like to judge dramas based on the first episode, plus people talk so highly about it, so I kept watching. It was a rough start, but trust me it gets better.
Note: Puff’s character Liang Liang is loud. I don’t know how else to describe it. Loud and exaggerated. You just have to get used to it. I got used to it eventually, it only really bugged me in the first episode. She’s naive and innocent like a child, but she’s really sweet.
I actually really loved Liang Liang’s character development. She went from only worrying about everyone else and being so passive to taking control of what she wants. When she finally stood up for herself and Qi Yi, I was cheering.
I don’t have much to say about the plot. It was one of the rude guys becomes nice and changes because of the girl that came into their life kind of dramas with the addition of a forced living situation (if you can call it forced). I really like them, I know some people are sick of the trope. I thought this one was nicely done. I liked watching Qi Yi slowly fall for Liang Liang, their relationship was so sweet. Sometimes he was a complete idiot, but we’re not going to talk about that right now. The important thing was that if you also enjoy these kind of stories, you need to give this one a shot
Also, I liked the additional family aspect. The relationship that both of them had with their families was really sweet to watch, especially when they started to blend together.
I really didn’t like the second female lead/antagonist. Not enough to stop watching, but she bugged the crap out of me. The woman legit belonged in a mental institution I do not understand why they never called the police on her.
But what I thought was the golden aspect of the drama was the romance. They were really cute together. So cute. I really needed cute. I loved the way Qi Yi looked at her. And they kissed a lot and the kisses were really nice. Aaron Yan films really nice kiss scenes. Seriously guys if anything watch it for the kisses. And I absolutely loved the ending. The ending balanced out like every annoying thing that happened earlier in the drama.
Even now, a couple of weeks after finishing the drama, I'm still thinking about their sweetness and the sweetness of the story.
Overall, it was a fun watch. I’m glad I didn’t pass it up.
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