Review – Secret
This is one of those old school melodramas that just punches you in the face repeatedly and you ask for more while weeping. Talk about some sad, twisted fates. I adored it. Soap opera galore! Stories about guilt are always fascinating – especially when you find an actor who can really pull it off. But guilt mixed with remorse mixed with sheer desperate drive to push forward despite it all? That’s the second male lead. His performance wore me out. He’s truly unlikable in every way, so of course I found him mesmerizing as a character study. I do love my wretches. Damn, he was damned.
Plot in a nutshell: After an unfortunate accident, a young woman takes the blame for a hit and run accident, even though it was her boyfriend who was responsible. Her boyfriend quickly, ruthlessly, abandons her to pursue his own career and ambitions while she rots away in prison with their child (oh yeah, you can have babies and keep them in Korean prisons, apparently!) At the same time, the lover of the woman who was killed in the hit and run goes on his own quest for vengeance against them both, further complicating their already complicated lives.
This drama is drowning yourself in a bucket of sorrow waiting for that one redeeming moment… and it does come, but geesh… you’ll be swallowing that gallon of tears and human suffering for a long, long time. You have to be in the mood for this kind of drama. It’s awesome… but it’s also uber melodrama. If you are in the mood for a classic melodrama – look no further. Melodramas can provide some of the most intense emotions you can ever imagine, but they can also drain you dry like a vampire. You have to be prepared going in.
I liked the main couple, and their romance was awesome and different… but I wouldn’t exactly call it a comfortable ride. Think of the worst things that could come between you and your lover – that is what these people have between them. It’s harsh. And it’s wonderful. IF YOU ARE IN THE MOOD. If you are… it’s like crack cocaine. If you’re not in the mood for melodrama, don’t even bother.
Overall Rating – 8/10. Being Responsible For Your Own Messed Up Life Is Ample Melodrama, Don’t Add Someone Else’s.
Review – Painter of the Wind
This is less of a review and more of me expressing my frustration over this drama. The costuming, the cinematography, the sets, the actors – all fantastic. The music was wonderful. It offered a nice twist on the cross-dressing girl trope. You had a lady disguised as a dude so she could perfect her artistic skills and study the craft under the masters. There’s some royal conspiracies and a lot of fuss about a portrait of the prince, all of which was rather underwhelming and generic “historical political” hoopla.
My problem is this: Our female lead didn’t come across as a girl pretending to be a guy, in the style of this tried and true K-Drama trope. She came off as a cute, artistic lesbian. Thus my exasperation with this show. Painter of the Wind should have embraced its obvious natural direction and gone gay. The entire show felt like an indie coming-of-age lesbian drama, but failed to fully embrace its already deliciously implied girl-girl romance and instead meandered around with an old man artist and attempted to go straight. Don’t they remember the lesson from art class… that if the straight line is long enough eventually it will curve? Come on!
Overall Rating – 2/10 For Not Coming Out of the Closet.
Overall Rating – 8/10 If You Ignore The Lesbians And Watch It Straight. This is probably the more fair rating – cause it really is a lovely drama and the subject of old school painters is very interesting and beautiful to explore. But… I just can’t. Cause this is my blog and my review and fair is for love and war. And this is war!
More bitching and moaning and some sexy photo stills and SPOILERS follow.
Review – Shining Inheritance
Overall Rating – 8/10
Shining Inheritance is one of those “classic” k-dramas that sticks firmly to its tropes, indulges in its stereotypes, and ultimately resembles lessons taught in Vacation Bible School. At the end of every episode, I half expected G.I. Joe to pop up with their moral tag line “Now you know. And knowing is half the battle!” Good people persevere despite obstacles. Bad people will eventually get their due comeuppance. You will fall in love G-Rated style and if your love life didn’t work out, you will bow out gracefully, without hard feelings or regret. Welcome to 28 hours of a feel-good romantic drama.