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 – Strong Woman Do Bong Soon
Strong Woman Do Bong Soon reminds me a lot of iZombie. It has a playful “comic book” style that knows how to have fun. Zap, Boom, Shabang! Those over the top, tongue-in-cheek comics where though good guys fought off villains, no one was injured beyond repair and good humor ruled over seriousness. Think… the bright friendly, child-saving Superman of the 1900’s… not the monotone angsty Superman of the 2000’s. Do Bong Soon is here to save the day, damn it! And you’re going to feel great about it.
<-This NOT That->
I adored this show! It had so much going for it… which I will be discussing with massive spoilers below… but above all else, it was romantic. So, so soooo romantic. Cute romantic. First love romantic. Original Superman romantic. You remember… the big-grin fly me over the city romance of a hunky guy smitten with a feisty girl.
Overall Rating – 10/10. Saved The Day.
Spoilers and Fangirling with Much Discussion Ahead!
Review – Hwarang
So, I knew going into this it was going to be cute guys and silliness and romance and hopefully a pretty decent plot. I expected to be won over with non-stop light amusement, an occasional tear, some excellent bromance, and cool costumes. I was not disappointed.
The writers of this show, thankfully, paid attention to the success & failures of other ensemble shows featuring a heavy cast of men and managed to not make the same mistakes. Instead, they repeated the tropes we love (estranged brothers coming together, best friends with loyalties tested, sons having to stand up to the tyrannies of their fathers, the injustices of the caste system, and so on) and made them shine. We got our favorite stereotypes (the flirty guy, the stern guy, the sincere guy, the girlish guy) and of course our main love triangle where the two dudes invariably end up besties. Honestly, there isn’t much to review. It was a good with just the right amount of drama to keep you interested but not enough to make you lose sleep. 20 hours flew by. It had synchronized dancing and “nightclubs” and political scheming and secret identities. The female characters were enjoyable and interesting, even the bitchy ones, and I actually can’t find anything major to complain about.
Everyone pretty much loved this show and I pretty much loved this show too. If you haven’t seen it yet – go ahead and pop it in your que. It’s not my favorite historical drama, but it’s definitely up there in the top ten.
Though all the men in this show were charming and you’ll end up adoring them all, I looooooved Go Ara. She was the best thing about You Are All Surrounded and she saved this show as well, if you ask me. The two male leads were excellent (and handsome), but it was her hysterical facial expressions, her playfulness, and her natural stage presence and comedy that brought the love triangle together and kept my interest.
Overall Rating – 8/10. Lots & Lots Of Handsome Young Men… In A Good Historical Drama (need we say more?).