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

New Year Blues (2021)

Profile:
Movie: New Year Blues (새해전야)
Release Date: February 10, 2021
Runtime: 114 min.
Distributor: Acemaker Movie Works
Country: South Korea

This is a story of 4 different couples a week before New Year. The movie is quite long, clocking in at almost 2 hours. Halfway I was started to get a little bored because the story kept switching between the 4 couples. I think 4 was too much. This would have been better if there were only 3 couples that we needed to focus on.

My fave couple was Kim Kang Woo and Yoo Inna (or maybe I’m just biased towards Kangwoo 😊). I like the gruff bodyguard and sweet female couple.

My fave story/ending was Lee Dong Hwi and Chen Du Ling plus Yum Hye Ran as the sister. I also cried when Dong Hwi’s character was confessing to his fiance. and laughed when he came out of the drum.

The most romantic setting is Lee Yeon Hee and Yoo Yeon Seok in Argentina although their story seems out of place. (Sidenote: why does Yeonhee keeps going abroad when she gets heartbroken lol) and the funny cameo of Choi Siwon.

The one I was confused because I didn’t know why they were fighting in the first place was Yoo Teo and Choi Soo Young’s characters. They seemed to be okay, I think it was more on guilt from the guy’s side.

Overall it was a nice holiday film.

Rating: 8.5/10

My Fellow Citizens (2019)

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Profile Drama: My Fellow Citizens (국민 여러분)
Network: KBS2
Episodes: 36
Release Date: April 1 – May 28, 2019
Runtime: Mon & Tue 22:00
Plot
A con artist, who unknowingly married a detective specializing in intellectual crimes, was blackmailed by the daughter of a gang boss that he previously scammed to run for a national assembly position. Can he win the election before the citizens (and his wife) find out the truth?

Main Cast
Choi Siwon – Yang Jung Gook
Lee Yoo Young – Kim Mi Young
Kim Min Jung – Park Hoo Ja
Kim Ui Seong – Kim Joo Myung

Review
This drama got me hooked from the first episode! It was crucial to see the two main leads meet and fall in love and get married, because this will set off the series of events that happens throughout the drama. Even for just half of the first episode, I could already feel their love for each other, and their chemistry and I was as shocked as Jung Gook when they were in the car and he finally found out that the girl he married was a cop! It was both horrifying and hilarious! Without the strong foundation of the two leads, I think this drama would have flopped because we wouldn’t be rooting for them to stay together.

The second great thing about this show is the cat and mouse game between Jung Gook and Hoo Ja. Kim Min Jung is such a great actress! She was both terrifying to cross with and so funny at the same time. I was laughing when she was scolding her driver, “You can kill people but you can’t make a u-turn? U-TURN!!!” Hahaha! She was scheming and manipulative and uses her power, money and people’s greed to turn things into her favor.

Unfortunately she meets Jung Gook – he may be a suave con artist, but we later find out that he actually has a lot of integrity once he put his heart and effort in the right place, and he is hella street smart. I love that they tried to outsmart each other (with Jung Gook mostly winning). Just like what Mi Young told Jung Gook, she knows he is smart and his brains move fast, that he has thought of all the possible ideas before making actual moves. The only downside of the back and forth fight between Hoo Ja and Jung Gook is that it went on for too long. I think it should have stopped by episode 12 or 13 and the third act should have focused more on Jung Gook’s fight against the rest of the corrupt politicians.

When Jung Gook found out he married a cop, he deliberately put a big wall over Mi Young, and that caused a strain in their marriage. Mi Young was sad and confused by what happened. I can imagine. You were so in love with each other then as soon as you got married, your husband pulled away from you. Jung Gook was always conflicted because he loves Mi Young and does not want to hurt her, yet he knows he can’t let her know who he is. Add the complication of Hoo Ja trying to ruin his and Mi Young’s life, he had to do all he can to protect her, or at least not harm her when the truth finally comes out. I could feel Jung Gook’s dilemma. How do you tell your wife, who is already angry at you, more truths and lies that will further ruin your marriage? Although I’m sad they didn’t have more romantic moments esp during the last few episodes, I still loved the slow change in their relationship, as they grow closer and realize that they still love each other, through thick and thin, and they will weather the storm together.

The third thing I love about this drama is the whole election season and politics! It feels so realistic. I realized, every single country’s government is the same. There will always be corruption, honest and greedy politicians, big corporations and wealthy people trying to influence the government through money. and in the end, it is always the average citizens who has to suffer. I think it two ways. The shameless politicians who try to sweet talk into voting for them but totally changes once they get elected. And the average citizens who as much as they want to vote for the person they like, are lied into voting for these greedy people. It’s too difficult to discern who is better than the other, or who would make a difference in their lives. All we average folks can do is just hope that the government do at least what is expected for them to do and not take too much money from the pot. It’s sad right?

I think majority of the episodes focused on the campaign season, which i loved although i read that others found it boring. I thought it was so interesting watching the episodes from the early campaign where they were almost at the bottom of the polls, to slowly gaining ground, until Jung Gook finally won the elections. Parallel to that, we also saw Jung Gook slowly mature as he started learning about the people and reflecting on what he has done. There were a lot of dirty politics along the way and he had his trustworthy campaign manager and team to help him.

The minute i saw Kim Ui Seong i thought, yup, he’s definitely the bad guy – i mean he has played the bad characters – W, Train to Busan, Mr Sunshine, MoTA – so i shudder every time i see him on screen. Surprisingly, he was fantastic in this show as a good guy! Turns out he used to be just like Jung Gook, young, optimistic and honest politician who really wanted to do a good guy for the people. But over the years, he just got dismayed at the politics until he got bitten by the system and started engaging in the same dirty tactics he used to hate. Seeing Jung Gook reminded him of his younger self and that pushed him to help Jung Gook win over Hoo Ja and against the corrupt system. I loved what he said to Jung Gook during the last few episodes.
KJM: “You’ve changed a lot since I first met you.”
YJG: I guess my position changed me.
KJM: Your position changed you? That’s gibberish. I think you found the right position.

I agree. Jung Gook actually had a good heart, except he grew up coming from a con artist family so that’s all he knew what to do. But given the right things, he actually shined. And I think a major selling point of Jung Gook is the role was played by Choi Siwon, who looks super handsome as the charming and slick con artist but sincere and sweet husband and politician. Half of the time, I think is this still Jung Gook, or is this already Siwon? I think that’s why a lot of people thought and is thinking that Siwon will eventually run for the National Assembly, because he just looked so good at it. Heck, if he ever run for office, people will probably vote for him!

Overall, I loved this drama. It had a great balance of comedy (Jung Gook’s sister is a riot!!), action (Mi Young’s team trying to catch Hoo Ja), suspense (the fight between Hoo Ja’s sisters), drama (all the politics talk and elections and getting the law repealed) and HEART (the commentary about government, working for the people, integrity and honesty). oh and a little romance.

Leaving her Yang Jung Gook’s message: “Don’t abandon the people for your personal gains. That is the least you should do for the people.”

Rating: 8/10

She Was Pretty (2015)

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Profile
Drama: She Was Pretty (그녀는 예뻤다)
Network: MBC
Episodes: 16
Release Date: September 16 – November 11, 2015
Runtime: Wednesday & Thursdays 21:55
Plot
Two childhood sweethearts meet again after 15 years. Sung Jun who used to be fat and unpopular, is now hot, handsome editor of a fashion magazine while Hye Jin who used to be pretty and popular is now ugly and jobless. She persuades her pretty best friend Hari to pretend to be her in front of Sung Jun so as not to disappoint him, but Hye Jin ends up taking an intern job at Most, where Sung Jun is working. Can Sung Jun figure out who is the real Hye Jin and will they end up falling in love?
Main Cast
Hwang Jung Eum – Kim Hye Jin
Park Seo Jun – Ji Sung Jun
Choi Siwon – Kim Shin Hyuk
Koh Joon Hee – Min Hari
Review
Because i just finished watching Revolutionary Love and attended Park Seo Jun’s fun meet that I decided to watch this drama. For the very first time in my 18 years of watching kdramas, I was torn between the main male lead and the male second lead. In fact, if my mind wasn’t hard wired to choose the main lead Sung Jun, i would have chosen Shin Hyun hands down. Sung Jun’s not bad — he is actually sweet and caring, but what really put me off was his really bad attitude at the start of the show. Seems like every time he feels pressure, he turns into a little monster and no matter how much nicer he treated Hye Jin when he fell in love with her, i will never forget how he made her feel so small and so humiliated in front of everyone when he thought she was just a loser. Seriously. How he treats his staff shows how much he treats people. I know, i should cut him a slack because everyone makes a mistake etc and he eventually apologized to her but Hye Jin should have told him off that he can’t treat people like that.Secondly, aside from that time when they were kids, i still dont know what they liked about each other as adults. I feel like it’s the nostalgia, more that anything that is keeping them connected and feeling in love. but it is a powerful feeling and i dont mind them ending up together.

Now Shin Hyuk, no matter how much a good catch he is and how much he also liked Hye Jin, i understand why he didn’t get the girl. he friendzoned himself, almost made fun of her and manipulated her, was always cracking jokes that when he finally is serious about her, Hye Jin didn’t believe him. and Hye Jin is really so stuck on Sung Jun, Shin Hyuk never had a chance except as a friend and older brother. I felt so bad for him — that time when he came running / rather driver in a motorcycle and got into an accident, and Sung Jin beat him to Hye Jin and he was limping all week without Hye Jin knowing what happened. and all those times he had to send her to Sung Jun while his heart his breaking.. and those 2 scenes that made me cry. One, when they had their date and he finally send goodbye to her and he was silently crying while driving back home, and when he met her one last time and hugged her. Aww.. i wish I can fly to wherever he went to in Europe and hug him back.

I love the friendship between Hye Jin and Hari. I didn’t feel angry at Hari – i could understand her, just like how Hye Jin understood her very well. She is starving for love and affection so you can’t blame her for liking Sung Jun because he was the only one who made her feel special even though it was really for Hye Jin. I actually thought that hari and Shin Hyuk were a fun pair — too bad they didn’t become a couple. I guess Shin Hyuk’s love for Hye Jin wouldn’t have been effective if he ended up with hari. and Shin Hyuk as Ten really seems like a loner and a private person.

Finally Hye Jin — i was delaying watching this because Hye Jin looked too “ugly” to watch. but as I watch her with her frizzy hair and red face and slowly changing to the sophisticated “Most” look, I realized how much i missed her old self. She was much more charming and real with her frizzy hair. Sometimes the actress was overacting a bit with her expressions but I eventually liked her and maybe that’s why guys like Sung Jun and Shin Hyuk are falling all over for her.

i recommended this drama to two of my friends and they loved it too!