2021 Year End Recap

Another year is about to end and I’m not ready. Mostly because I have so many ongoing dramas that I wanted to complete before end of the year.

Overall, I was slightly disappointed with the dramas that came out this year. There were so many big names and couples that I was looking forward to watch but most of the dramas were just average. There were a very few that stood out to me. Just a recap of all the dramas I’ve watched:

2021 KDramas I rated 9 to 9.5:
Penthouse S1 and S2 (SBS) – 9 and 9.5, respectively
Navillera (tvN) – 9
True Beauty (tvN) – 9
Racket Boys (SBS) – 9
Police University (KBS) – 9
One Ordinary Day (Coupang) – 9

2021 KDramas I rated between 8 to 8.75:
Jirisan (tvN) – 8.75
Monthly Magazine Home (jtbc) – 8.75
So I Married the Anti-Fan (Navercast) – 8.75
Happiness (tvN) – 8.5
Hometown Cha Cha Cha (tvN) – 8.5
Mouse (tvN) – 8.5
Vincenzo (tvN) – 8.5
Awaken (tvN) – 8.5
The Veil (MBC) – 8.5
Youth of May (KBS) – 8.5
Work Later, Drink Now S1 (TVing) – 8.5
Sell Your Haunted House (KBS) – 8.5
Move to Heaven (Netflix) – 8.5
You are My Spring (tvN) – 8.25
Hospital Playlist S2 (tvN) – 8
Penthouse S3 (SBS) – 8
Delayed Justice (SBS) – 8
Squid Game (Netflix) – 8
Nevertheless (jtbc) – 8
Scripting Your Destiny (TVing) – 8
Hellbound (Netflix) – 8

2021 KDramas I rated less than 8:
Homemade Love Story (KBS) – 7.5
Lovestruck in the City (Netflix) – 7
Lovers of the Red Sky (SBS) – 7
Sisyphus the Myth (jtbc) – 7
LUCA The Beginning (tvN) – 6
Love Alarm S2 (Netflix) – 6

2020 KDramas:
Once Again (KBS) – 8.5
Hot Stove League (SBS) – 9
Kairos (MBC) – 9

Older KDramas:
The Lady in Dignity (jtbc) – 8.5
The Tuna and the Dolphin (KBS) – 8
I Picked Up A Celebrity on the Street (Viki) – 8
Misty (jtbc) – 8.5
Romantic Teacher Kim S1 (SBS) – 8

CDramas:
Moonlight – 9
The Rational Life – 9

JDramas:
Pretty Proofreader – 9
This Guy Is the Biggest Mistake in My Life – 7

For my top rated dramas, most of them were big on bromance and family. On believing in yourself and reaching for your dreams. Penthouse was my favorite makjang drama this year and One Ordinary Day is my favorite thriller.

2020 also introduced me to new faces such as Ji Jin Hee and Cho Seung Woo (I never watched their dramas even though they are veterans), Lee Sang Yi, the whole squad of Racket Boys; guys that came back from military such as Park Hyung Sik, Jung Yong Hwa and Jung Jinyoung; those that I didn’t notice before that are now a fan such as Choi Tae Joon, and Kim Seon Ho; and old faves such as Cha Seung Won, Ju Ji Hoon, Jun Ji Hyun, Namgoong Min (he had 2 dramas this year!)

There were some dramas that didn’t meet my expectations such as Lovestruck in the City, Love Alarm 2, Hospital Playlist 2 and Sisyphus the Myth.

I dropped a lot of dramas this year – some after episode 1 because I didn’t like the vibe or the story such as Mr. Queen, Royal Inspector Joy, Mine, She Wouldn’t Know. I tried to watch but couldn’t get past episode 4 of Run On and My Roommate is a Gumiho (no matter how much people loved these drama, I couldn’t get into them at all) and Oh My Master – I really wanted to like this drama but I finally stopped at episode 8 and decided to cut my losses. I’m stuck at episode 8 of Devil Judge, I haven’t dropped this yet as I want to know how this one ends (but will probably fast forward a lot of the scenes to reach the end).

There were also some great dramas that I missed such as Beyond Evil and Taxi Driver. Not to worry – I’m going to watch them next year since I have a lot more time in 2022.

I have several ongoing dramas right now, such as Melancholia, Red Sleeve, One and Only (CDrama), and the seriously addicting but I hate the villains in the weekend drama Young Lady and Gentleman. I’m going to continue watching them and hopefully before winter dramas start in mid-Jan.

Goodbye 2021!

Work Later, Drink Now S1 (2021)

Profile:
Drama: Work Later, Drink Now (술꾼도시여자들)
Network: TVING
Episodes: 12
Release Date: October 22 – November 26, 2021
Runtime: Friday 16:00

Plot: The story about three friends who love to drink while they go through the joys and pains of life.

Main Cast:
Han Sun Hwa – Han Ji Yeon
Lee Sun Bin – Ahn So Hee
Jung Eun Ji – Kang Ji Goo
Choi Siwon – Kang Buk Gu

Review:
This web drama was a wonderful surprise! The first 3 episodes the girls were drinking so much, I felt drunk just watching them drink and drink and drink. Later on I got so used to them drinking I was numb, and even wanted to join their drinking binge. They drink not just because they love to drink, but it’s also their way of coping with all the pressures and pleasures in life.

Episode 1 captured the 3 characters’ personalities just through their drinking habits. And having Kim Ji Suk cameo was a poor guy who had a blind date with the three girls was perfectly hilarious. Jiyeon is the crazy fun (embarrassing) friend and Sohee is the friend who always have work. It took some time for me to warm up to Jigoo because she is serious and silent but she’s fierce and loyal and will be the first to protect you when needed.

I love (sometime envy) their friendship! They have gone through so much, from heartbreaks, death, work issues, illness and they are always there for each other, no matter what happens or where they are. I would love to always have my fave bar where I can just spend the whole night chilling with my fave people (and the owner lets you close his shop).

I thought the story will be light and fun but their stories just got deeper and serious after each episode. Ep 9-10 were the saddest.

Choi Siwon as Kang Bukgu -just like what Sohee said, I think his character is disgusting but he’s so soft, that you can’t help but like him eventually (he’s addicting and super hot when he finally shaved!). Now if only he stops being a jerk.

I’m looking forward to season 2 because I want to know more of their stories (past and future)! I hope we get more scenes with Mr. Nice paper – I think he’s a sweet addition to the crazy group, and will make Jigoo less sad and serious. I want Jiyeon to get well and find a nice guy (not just go flit from one guy to another – she deserves to be loved because she is so sweet and fun). And I want to see more fight/rawr/sweet moments between Bukgu and Sohee!

Rating: 8.5/10

Q4 Drama Watch List

October 2021
34. Police University
35. Penthouse Season 3
36. Hometown Cha Cha Cha
37. Lovers of the Red Sky

November 2021
38. Pretty Proofreader (JDrama)
39. One The Woman

December 2021
40. The Veil
41. Jirisan
42. Happiness
43. Hellbound
44. One Ordinary Day
45. Work Later, Drink Now
46. Move to Heaven

Movies/Documentary
24. The Closet
25. Accidental Detective 2: In Action
26. Hit and Run Squad
27. The Raincoat Killer
28. Juror 8
29. The Great Battle
30. Take Point

Variety Shows
3. Sixth Sense S2 ep 12

Dropped:
– Royal Inspector Joy – dropped at ep 1 (I didn’t enjoy the humor)

Ongoing
– Young Lady and Gentleman ep 28
– Devil Judge ep 8
– Red Sleeve ep 4
– We Don’t Bite ep 3
– Melancholia ep 4
– One and Only (CDrama) ep 4

Total dramas watched in Q4: 12

Total from Jan to Dec 2021: 46

One Ordinary Day (2021)

Profile:
Drama: One Ordinary Day (어느날)
Network: Coupang Play
Episodes: 8
Release Date: November 27, 2021

Plot: A college student wakes up and finds the girl he spent the night with is dead.

Main Cast:
Cha Seung Won – Shin Joong Han
Kim Soo Hyun – Kim Hyun Soo
Kim Hong Fa – Park Sang Beom
Kim Shin Rok – Ahn Tae Hee

Review:
I almost missed watching this drama because it wasn’t hyped by people, but I’m glad I did because this was a great drama! I loved the transformation of Hyunsoo from being a naive college student to a man forced to grow up fast in order to survive. Hyunsoo didn’t say much throughout the drama but you can feel his desperation and loneliness though his eyes and his tears (although sometimes the crying was OA).

I love Shin Joong Han. He really tried his best to defend Hyunsoo, it’s just that police and prosecution already made up their minds and it’s hard to investigate all the possible suspects alone In just a short time. Still he was able to do it. Better late than never. I wish he finds a magic solution that will cure his atopic dermatitis!

I hated the prosecutor and chief of police! I know they really thought they had the right person and I’m glad they still had a conscience and let Hyunsoo go. What I didn’t like was they made it seem like they were the one who investigated and found the killer and didn’t even apologize to Hyunsoo. One got promoted, the other got an honorary retirement. How about Hyunsoo and his family? How can they move on after this? How about Joong Han who was the only one who believed in Hyunsoo and sought justice? He is still stuck in the same 3rd rate position (although I’m sure he will continue fighting for justice).

Do Ji Tae was such a memorable character! He was so hot lol and was almost like a mentor to Hyunsoo. The ongoing fight with Dooshik was repetitive but was shocked with what happened in the end!! I almost thought that Hyunsoo might takeover from Do Ji Tae and be the new lion of northern prison.

I didn’t watch the BBC drama so I don’t know how closely they followed it and if the ending is the same. I don’t think he jumped, I think he spent the day thinking about his life and what to do now. Can he resume being a normal college student? Did Do Ji Tae’s death left a big impression on him? Will he follow Joong Han and become a lawyer defending innocent people like him? The possibilities are endless. Again he didn’t speak much so we don’t really know what he’s thinking. I’d like to believe he will come out of this a better stronger person and less naive.

I saw that BBC had two seasons. Hope there will be S2 with Kim Yoo Jung (though not sure if she is really ready to do something different than her usual sageuks)!

Rating: 9/10