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  • Last Online: Sep 27, 2015
  • Location: Australia
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zu_ai_grusz

Australia

zu_ai_grusz

Australia
God's Quiz Season 3
11 people found this review helpful
Oct 13, 2012
12 of 12 episodes seen
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 10
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 8.0
The cases were more ingenious here plus there’s less focus on autopsy procedure, whether that gives the series a better feel or not is probably debatable. I’ve always planned to watch this season but I’ve been reluctant to start it due to the unsatisfactory little shambles thrown from its last season. I’ve written a comment about it, though without a proper review, I don’t expect anyone would even sympathize with my ramblings.

I’m actually relieved the love story and romance was taken out this season to give it a more ominous tone instead. I personally find it effective and compared to the religious undertone that was wrapped around Season 2, for this one to dip its foot on thriller ground was more enjoyable to watch. The mystery surrounding Dr. Han Jin Woo’s illness, which forms the overarching storyline every season, was creatively orchestrated this time around. I’d say it’s 3-notches improved version of Season 1 (See, I’m notably skipping Season 2 here…)

Quite re-watchable because it’s a short series, and each episode stand as your mini mystery, detective story. Because of this format, you can easily park this on each episode. However, there is in fact an addicting factor that might just pull you in to marathon the series. Dr. Han’s mystery is only sprinkled in the tiniest drop in each episode and mostly at every end, so this cloaked mystery might compel you to unravel it quickly for your own peace of mind.

So, without further ado, I say this is indeed the best season so far, hopefully not the last. Everything's improved here: The actors and the act, the camera work, the lighting, the story, even a new antagonist to parallel Jung Ha Yoon (of the first 2 seasons). Of course, its not perfect, take for example some episodes that didn't get polished details, but those are minor and can easily be overlooked. I think that bringing in the veteran character actor Ahn Nae Sang had definitely clothed this drama in a better form. I'm all for a strong female character but somehow Detective Kang Kyeong Hee just didn't work as well for me especially in the last season. We get a cameo though and I feel that was good enough. Ryu Doek Hwan is given a new range in acting and he's shaping up well, I can imagine him turning out like Ahn Nae Sang when he's aged.

Spoilery alert 1: Anyone who's already watched Syndrome might find Dr. Han's mini-arc familiar ground.

Spoilery alert 2: When cases doesn't involve rare diseases, they tend to be less thrilling, well because they're already familiar plots.

Spoilery alert 3: There's an episode that I'm pretty sure was inspired by a neo-noir French film '13 Tzameti'.

Spoilery alert 4: It takes 10 episodes before you get an introduction to the new villain in this series but if I remember this is same format as in Season 1.

Pretty awesome finale, yeah, so go watch it now!

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Syndrome
6 people found this review helpful
Sep 23, 2012
20 of 20 episodes seen
Overall 8.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 6.0
Rewatch Value 4.0
This drama has got to be one of the best when it comes to the use of power plays as its theme. It also keeps in mind a smarter audience so that as much as one can deduce exactly what is happening, the characters never go the roundabout way in getting to the crux of the matter. Traps and attempts are easily unveiled and they make for quick intelligent actions and decisions. These I suppose are what makes it a little different from other drama format.

The only reason I couldn't fully enjoy this is probably Lee Hae Jo's character or maybe it was just Han Hye Jin I wasn't so satisified with since I couldn't really warm up to her acting.

Syndrome also presents two generations of doctors and their love stories where maybe not in a long while have I appreciated the older characters trajectory arc more.

Though I mentioned love stories, really don't expect romance, as central to this drama is a gritty power play that also strongly touches on medical ethics.

The music is vague in my memory but I seems to remember they've sometimes played a love song at inappropriate scenes.

I believe its quite good enough for a one-time watch, also I would hardly re-watch any medical drama.

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I Need Romance 2
13 people found this review helpful
Sep 8, 2012
16 of 16 episodes seen
Overall 6.0
Story 6.0
Acting/Cast 7.0
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 5.0
The back and forth comparison with this drama and its first version compelled me to record my own experience.

I'm jumping on the bandwagon for those who agreed the first one was better.

This one was trying to follow the same format and formula as the first one, injecting bits of mystery and melodrama in the storyline just to make it a little different but ended up incohesive and jarring.

Have a trio of girlfriends each with their own entirely unique personality, taste, and love lines - Check!

Present a broken long-term intimate relationship that had gone through an on-off even helter-skelter ride - Check!

Present a strong new love to rival the first - Check!

I think I will stop here before I ultimately enter spoiler territory.

But that gives you some of the format and formula I mentioned. The first problem I should mention is the transition. Okay, we've shown this and that, it's now the phase for realization and jealousy, so let's depict that in this episode. And BAM! Here's your jealousy rage... How about character development? I think that due to the new elements introduced in this series, it failed in managing to fit those smoothly in a 16 episodes format. While the characters are rushing through these emotional phases, I on the one hand am only just beginning to get into their involvement.

'Twas very tasking to keep in-synched with main characters' behavior, not until we reached the end with them.

There was very little I can appreciate in this drama. There was perhaps the music, the filler stories, the depiction of romance which were all at least at par with the first series. I would also agree with those who claimed that this had been casts with better male lead actors. These might all be enough for you to give this one a try or if you're just wanting to find your own comparison.

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Big
10 people found this review helpful
Jun 6, 2013
16 of 16 episodes seen
Overall 8.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 7.0
I am left pleasantly surprised with this drama that I was driven to write some review after not having done one for some time. I thought I’ve fully relegated this on the back burner, forgotten, and almost stricken-out from my unrecorded plan-to-watch-list. After all, how can one ignore such blatant outrages, rants, and negativity within reviews and comments for this drama’s page? I did exactly that, ignored the BIG “NOT RECOMMENDED” sign, because I was kinda bored and in a slump that I just kept on starting a few episodes here and there and still feeling restless.

I thought to myself, this drama is so negative, why don’t I try to see the “why” for myself, and find the answer. I was just curious as to how my own reactions will be. While watching every episode, I was always on the lookout and waiting for the “light bulb” moment of “Ah! This must be what they were ranting on about!”

Such things as “confusing”, “repetitive”, “dragging”, “failed characterization”, “lacks background stories”, “plot holes”, “terrible, rushed, unexplainable ending”, “horrible writing”, “waste of time”, etc…

I couldn’t find enough justification to agree on all these negative outputs. Instead I simply discovered a beautiful story, infused with serious moral issues (got touches of My Sister's Keeper and Biscuit Teacher), consistent characters that had me invested, development that is well paced, believable conflicts and angst, great sense of humor, facets of love from every minute angle (imagine everyone, including side characters is presented with their own take or slice of love).

In the end, I hardly had any breaks while watching until I finished all 16eps of it. I wasn’t left with any lingering questions either, every episode made sense to me. And the wrap-up and finale was all fine; the drama stuck to its whimsical nature, because it gave me the same feeling that it did in its very first episode, with the “first encounter” and the “body-switch”.

I wasn’t too bothered or concerned that the drama supposedly didn’t show “this” or “ that” because they were not really crucial to the point of the story. Sometimes, the conclusions were pretty much obvious because the words have already been said, and even the unsaid were also quite obvious from the characters behavior, so that to show them play out “returns”, “reunions”, “confessions”, or “confrontations” will end up being redundant.

I’m plenty happy with the cast; they surely breathed the right tone for the drama. The music played out well but I honestly can’t bring up anything memorable. I feel that I may even re-watch this in the future. Likely, I’ll be skipping a lot of Jang Ma Ri scenes ‘coz once is surely enough exposure. I can give this an overall rating of ‘9’ for a first-time watch, and then it falls to an average of ‘8’ after that.

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A Gentleman's Dignity
9 people found this review helpful
Aug 18, 2012
20 of 20 episodes seen
Overall 8.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 7.0
I decided to write a review for this because my overall impression slightly goes south from the majority.

Four episodes in and:
(1) I wasn't caring much for the characters,
(2) I feel like I could even drop this drama.

But of course I had to finish it, after all how could I just let go of such a wonderful ensemble cast. As for my weird reasoning, I fully realized why in the end.

This isn't the type of drama that I'd marathon, more like an enjoyable filler that I can watch at leisure pace. I feel like it's too lengthy for its kind of story. It could have been kept at 16-episodes, or alternatively, it could have explored and given more scenes to the four men who were truly awesome when they're together, but apart, each of their storyline provides not much impact, and it was only thanks to these great actors who brought it to life in a splendid fashion.

Besides the foursome buddies, the only couple with glowing chemistry is Yoon & Me Ahri. I attribute this to the underlying issues in their relationship which they had to overcome, and both actors came through for it. As to why I couldn't say the same for the main couple, it may be due to the overall direction and tone the drama took, which is just too much fluffiness. Should I even add, I couldn't connect much with the main couple and on the other hand, if Tae San & Yi Soo, who exudes more chemistry, had more developments then it might have improved my take on this drama.

I understand that the goal was to showcase the male buddy system, different male personalities, how a man react to different situations in their life and relationships. It's great for what it's worth and I had too may LOL moments to not be positive about it plus to top it off, it gives you perfect pitch music that compliments everything from upbeat, funny, romantic, soulful, or sentimental.

Because of these, I say it's worth re-watching just to recapture those laugh-out-loud moments. But, I'm not too thrilled of watching another 20-episodes of it again, so probably a lot will be skipped.

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I Do, I Do
6 people found this review helpful
Aug 27, 2012
16 of 16 episodes seen
Overall 8.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 7.0
This is a kind of drama that slowly grows on you. A quarter through and I had a compulsion or two to drop this but somehow there was also an insistent tugging to check out the next episode. This being a Kim Sun Ah drama, her unexpected charm and finesse on taking over a character had once more amazed me for I always start out being a little put off by her.

Surprisingly pleasant, but might be more appealing to a mature audience who can appreciate the subtleties. To say that both laughter and tears were fairly distributed is one way of qualifying it but for one thing, though this is obviously an older woman-younger man pairing, it did not get dragged into that old school territory. Additionally, you couldn't possibly feel guilty even if you switch camp between the main couple or secondary couple. That's how pleasant this is, both male leads were simply charming. And because the "falling in love" period was truly subtle and realistic, I was genuinely there with them when it happened.

Though the music was just your normal fare, the main theme was pretty nice, catchy and meaningful.


Yep, this one is good for re-watch on one of those rainy nights.

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Sep 3, 2012
30 of 30 episodes seen
Overall 7.0
Story 7.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 4.0
I've never been swayed by the popularity of this drama but I've finally picked this up feeling I'm wanting a melo-romance and I can tolerate some makjang. Thankfully, its not been overdosed in this drama. The story is steeped in family melodrama with common elements. It became slightly addicting halfway from episode 15 but not all the way through.

I'm glad they've kept the childhood story longer till 6 episodes as I've enjoyed the young Tak Goo. Yoon Shi Yoon & Joo Won being fresh actors here were evident but it's all pleasantly tolerable and they've even nailed some pretty heavy scenes. Joo Won, Eugene, & Jun Kwang Ryul benefited on good characterization, unluckily for Lee Young Ah who was under-utilized and her character was under-developed. I couldn't completely buy the characterization of the adult Tak Goo and several plot points weren't convincing which were obviously integrated to sell to an audience.

The music were mostly in the background, or at least nothing to rave about, so I'd say it wasn't much noticeable. Having experienced nothing spectacular or awe-inspiring, I don't see much worth in re-watching this.

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Jul 8, 2012
8 of 8 episodes seen
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 7.0
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 4.0
My first ever drama review… Why I chose this series? It just happened that way, as it’s also the first drama where I decided to try my hand at reviewing each episode as I finished watching. Therefore, this feels more like summarizing all my episodic reviews in a manner hopefully representing an overall general impression.

Yes, this falls under a psychological thriller genre and it impresses those points on several occasions. It is divided into two story arcs. The first half involve mysteries and conflicts, but they weren’t too complicated, at least for me when 90% of my guesses where spot-on before each revelation. I realized why they weren’t presented in a complicated manner when the story reaches the second arc of its narrative. The second part elaborates and drives the central theme of the drama. From thereon it presents a study in human psychology. What triggers can you push to let the little monster hibernating inside every person’s heart? How thin is the line bordering between trust and betrayal? How quickly can you switch to make life-altering decisions? When do you take the plunge into the point of no return? There was no lack of actions, small thrills, and adrenaline to boost the characters, and you as you follow their progress. Some may find the slow-paced after it concludes the first part to be a deterrent, and only the avid on this genre might maintain an interest to continue till the end. I was satisfied myself with the culmination and final showdown. I say it’s worth your time to give this one a chance.

The cast did enough justice to the characters, except when high-strung emotion is called for we get either an over-the-top or bland execution from some though I wouldn’t go into details. If you get curious, I might have elaborated a little on my episode reviews.

The musical score is definitely note-worthy and nicely intertwined with the beautiful cinematography. The colour, tone, vibe, and pacing were cohesive to deliver a satisfactory experience.

I don’t consider this re-watchable as is usual with this genre. You just absorb the experience in one sitting and conclude whether it had improved your analytical skills or broken any ideologies.

I debated whether to give this an overall of 8 or 9 as when I trudge back to my episode reviews, it averaged at 8.6, therefore I ended with a 9, as well I give it to the fact that it didn’t leave me with a negative feeling ^;^

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Aug 24, 2012
10 of 10 episodes seen
Overall 7.0
Story 7.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 4.0
This drama was pleasant on its little moments, but taken as a whole felt a little stuffy.

An overload of introspection doesn't seem to agree well with me especially with its kind of story.

I actually wasn't convinced of the how and why the main couple had fallen in love despite the fact that it was exactly what the drama was trying to do. For one thing, I didn't buy into their chemistry. I think Kubozuka was too charismatic and Takizawa paled next to him, it goes for both the actor and the character. Kubozuka had more chemistry with all three female characters which was just ironic.

I like ABBA, and their songs set the mood well and that in itself somehow improved my experience in watching this.

If I have to do my own introspection, I guess that the plotline already felt a little jaded at this time. Since I'm watching this more than a decade from its premiere? Yeah, most probably the case, though such doesn't always happen with an old drama for me.

If you like a kind of hopeful forbidden love, teenage angst of unrequited love, sweet & sour moments of self introspection, or maybe just to enjoy a very charming Kubozuka Yosuke, then you might want to give this drama a chance.

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Foolish Mom
5 people found this review helpful
Aug 22, 2012
20 of 20 episodes seen
Overall 7.0
Story 7.0
Acting/Cast 7.0
Music 6.0
Rewatch Value 3.0
This drama was a painful experience for me, and I'm not even talking about the most unwanted use of makjang elements strewn into it.

It's like the pain of being strapped down and then forced to watch. I might be overly dramatic with my metaphor, but in fact I have found myself with eyes closed during some episodes when I've reached the limit of my forbearance.

On a primary level, both writing and directing failed me. So what's with the writing? Well, for one, the interjection of comedy at most inappropriate times and I said it first hand, the most unwanted use of makjang elements. The side stories... well, undoubtedly they can be ignored. I'm sure the most nitpicky ones will be able to tell the evident flaws in the writing. My frustration actually got magnified; I can't believe the directing also augmented the writing. Can you imagine when a character is acting out a scene, anyone who are not focused on the camera's frame remain all stationary or poker faces, you know... like they're part of the background. People only move after the character(s) has finished reciting the lines. Extremely annoying.

The basic storyline is heartfelt in itself and had the potential of being a truly moving generational saga if only it was given better handling. Why I couldn't drop this and why I had to endure (refer to my metaphor) was exactly because of this storyline. Plus I had been wanting to watch this drama from the get-go so I couldn't fully make myself believe that I'm watching such a bad drama.

If this drama had any saving grace, I think it would have to be the acting from Ha Hee Ra, Ahn Seo Hyun, and Kim Hyun Joo. Though I must say, even Kim Hyun Joo sometimes suffered from the writing in a way that I feel cringy watching her character. I reckon Kim Jeong Hoon was under-utilized while Shin Hyun Joon is effective in dramatic moments he should forget attempts of comedy in the future.

Lastly, if you decide to carry on, be forewarned that this drama will demand at least a boxful of tissue.

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