originally written in Jan 2014
i have a habit of watching korean dramas a year or two after they are shown so i always have a delayed reaction. here are (i think) the list of kdramas i watched in 2013 (mostly released in 2012).
a gentleman’s dignity – 4 handsome guys plus kim haneul? yes. with great ost and beautiful costumes and scenery. check. the story was okay but nothing too wow so i didn’t get too emotionally invested with the characters.
arang and the magistrate – shin mina and lee junki… shin mina’s character was like a reboot for my gf is a gumiho where she is nice and sad and pretty. i love lee junki.. the mother looks so scary (talk about plastic surgery gone wrong) but effective as she gives me the chills! the story is quite dark from the usual kdrama fluff. the god part is kinda corny, and his hair looks so fake. but otherwise, really loved the whole show!
ghost – ahhh so ji sub. you know i used to not like this guy – i always preferred jo in sung and won bin over him. but i got the watch to watch him here and became an instant fan. i thought he acted well, though sometimes i hoped he channeled a little more happiness like daniel choi did. the story is very interesting.. i learned something about cyber crime and each episode had me really gripping my pillows tight and wanting to know what happens next (i blame this for me not sleeping well and going late to work for a few weeks.lol) argh eom ki joon is so smug and evil i wanted to smash his face everytime i see him! haha!
haeundae lovers – im not familiar with both leads but i heard good reviews about this show i watched it and im glad i did. the story is very simple and nothing special but i loved the chemistry and the relationship between the two characters. i also loved the girl’s whole family.
history of the salaryman – ahhh.. this cemented my love for jung ryu won.. i thought she smiled too much in my name is kim samsoon and she cried so hard in which start did you come from.. but this one. she was just so much fun!!! i love her beautiful smile.. i love how she would curse so much and i love how she cried when she felt hurt. im not a fan of lee bum soo but he was also terrific here.. but i like his character more during the first half than the last half. the shift to making the secretary the bad guy kind of ruined the last few parts of the show.. because instead of us watching how lee bum soon becomes successful, we just saw him trying to fight the evil secretary. still great great show!
someone made a compilation of Jung ryu won’s crazy foul mouth character (credits to the uploader)
tree with deep roots – wow. amazing drama!!! han sukkyu was soo into his character it’s scary at times when he got too enraged. the entire show was suspenseful and i also learned something about the korean language. wish song joong ki had a longer role.. he was also great portraying the young emperor. jang hyuk is his usual awesome self and happy to say shin se kyung was also great here.
the king of dramas – another jung ryu won show and she is equally fantastic! the lead guy is not that handsome that he’s a great actor and i got hooked. i loved how each episode gave us a hint on what happens when a korean drama is getting casted, filmed, ratings etc… choi si won is so funny here!!
reply 1997 – i loved this mostly for the references to old school kpop.. i recognized most of the songs in the show.. while i couldn’t fully relate to the hot / sechskies rivalry, i could still understand her feelings since i was already listening to kpop at the time. plus all the pop culture references i can relate to! i generally liked the story, esp between the guy and the girl.. but i thought the brother liking the girl was a bit weird but i guess it was needed to create a tension if eunji gets together with inguk in the end or not.
hundred year inheritance – my first time watching a 50 episode makjang drama. a lot of people hated this because of all the craziness during the last few episodes but i loved it! well i guess it’s because i was expecting a lot of crazies to happen and i was happy when the craziness just kept piling up one episode after another! haha! i’m only in episode 41 so i still have 9 more episodes to finish. to be honest, i dont watch the entire show, i basically skipped the parts about chunhee and chaewon’s dad at the start, the whole family competition, the side stories about chaewon’s 2 uncles’ family and her aunt’s relationship with the old guy.. i only thing i watched are chaewon and seyoon’s scenes but the evil mother in law. EMIL is so nasty that i actually love watching her scenes. she is scheming but she is so funny- im sure the actress had so much fun playing her. i didn’t like seyoon’s mom mostly because she judged chaewon through hearsay and stealing chunhee’s child was such a bitch move. she knows chunhee didn’t want her kid, why couldn’t she just asked to adopt the baby (but if she did then there wouldnt be any story haha). i think the best thing about this show is lee jungjin playing seyoon. he shined so much that eugene as chaewon just got overshadowed (or maybe because her character was mostly wimpy – i liked during the first few episodes when she thought hard to outsmart the EMIL but a little issue and she gets discouraged. and she cried a lot). and i wished there was more skinship between seyoon and chaewon.. they only had a few holdings hand/embracing scenes and some cute stolen kisses from seyoon. hello the characters are in their late 20s/early 30s.. no need to act cute.
here’s one of my favorite ost songs from called Living is not Living by Jo HyunAh (of Urban Zakapa)
overall, great year to watch korean dramas (well, 2012 was a great year.. now excited for 2014 so i can start watching the 2013 shows hahaha)