Review – The Heirs
Well, I broke down and finally watched The Heirs. It was much better than I expected, but also a lot of what I thought it would be. Lee Min-Ho was rather charming as the aloof rich guy who turned into a puppy with love. Park Shin-He did what she does best – look adorable at all times, cry a lot, and seem vaguely lost. Kim Woo-Bin ruled as the school bully who finds his soft spot… by tormenting his first crush. And the rest of the large cast was entertaining, interesting, and engaging as the plot lines moved around from episode to episode… from America (how bizarre was that? Don’t break the 4th wall!) to elite private schools, and from the bedrooms to the board rooms.
It’s easy for me to be disengaged with these “super rich” dramas. I find myself with a growing lack of sympathy of their problems, but this show managed to keep my emotions in check by doing a very good job of humanizing these rich kids and forcing me to care about them. Quite a few of the side plots were very unique, including the awkward and funny friendship between the mistress and the mute housemaid. It was fun to see Park Hyung-Sik before he’d capped his teeth and really matured into the full-blown handsome A-List actor he is today. Tons of huge stars and exceptionally fine acting prowess saved what probably should have been a mediocre show and propelled it into a highly satisfying soap opera about young love between the economic classes.
I confess, I really liked it.
Overall Rating – 8/10 – Cinderella Hangs Out with The 1%.
Review – Angel Eyes
A perfect, classic romantic melodrama! I say classic in that it got everything right – the pacing, the tropes, the love triangles, the side characters, the mysteries, the music (was stellar, great soundtrack), and the sigh inducing love story. Just… Achingly romantic story of first love… overcoming an obscene amount of obstacles – just thrown at them one by one. Oh, the drama! Oh, the tears! Oh, the ridiculous joyously fun circles of coincidence and fate and connections. God, I love melodramas. It’s my favorite genre, so when I find a great melodrama it’s like a gift addressed to me. Romantic melodramas are my favorite of course, because then you have the painful separations, the smoldering, the aching between two people as they are yanked apart over and over. Sigh. I ate that mess up. Plus this drama balanced out all the sadness with lots of light hearted moments, comedy, exciting work stories, side stories, and more. It was so well rounded! I adored it!
This drama had two attractive leads: Lee Sang Yoon was mesmerizing as the die hard for love… it was impossible not to fall head over heels in love with this guy… and Gu Hye Sun was adorable, plucky, and proved she could also bring it to the melodrama table with some outstanding emotional performances. I also loved the teen versions of these two, whose story took place in the first two episodes. Kang Ha-Neul and Nam Ji-Hyun were sooo cute together.
Overall Rating – 10/10. Organ Donors Are Confidential For A Reason.
More About Angel Eyes and Why It Is Amazing (with spoilers spoilers)
Review – Incomplete Life (Misaeng)
Work. It’s something most of us have to deal with about 50% of our waking lives, if not more. So much of your identity is tied to what your job is. What kind of life you lead is largely determined by your career, let’s face it. Whether you are a cop, a priest, a lawyer, a chemist, a construction worker, a teacher or a salaryman – your job wraps around you like an extra skin. It shapes your view of the world, the environment you grow accustomed to, the people you are in contact with, and the paycheck you learn to live on.
This is a show about work. It’s a character study, focusing on a few key players and exploring the nature of their personalities, their backgrounds, their current lives, and their struggles and successes as they navigate their careers. It’s fascinating, well written, engaging and just really good. It’s a show that makes you think. It doesn’t hand you all the answers. You’re expected to be smart enough to figure it out or patient enough to wait it out. And the pay off is worth it. It’s an odd mix of realism and subtle optimism, which makes you reflect deeply but offers you hope. I highly recommend it.
Overall Rating – 10/10. You Are What You Do, Not What You Think.
More Musings About Work and the Characters and SPOILERS…