Monthly Magazine House (2021)

Profile:
Drama: Monthly Magazine Home (월간 집)
Network: JTBC
Episodes: 16
Release Date: June 16 – August 5, 2021
Runtime: Wed. & Thu. 21:00

Plot: A guy with a house falls in love with a girl who dreams of a home.

Main Cast:
Kim Ji Suk – Yoo Ja Sung
Jung Somin – Na Young Won
Jung Gun Joo – Shin Gyeom
Kim Won Hae – Choi Go
Chae Jung Ahn – Yeo Ui Joo
Ahn Chang Hwan – Nam Sang Soon

Review:
Watch this if you like the classic romcoms kind of Kdramas. For newbies, you might get annoyed with how Jasung treats Young Won.

I think without a great cast, this could have been really bad. Yoo Jasung is an a$$hat at the start but somehow I couldn’t get angry at him because how could I when he is played by Kim Jisuk who has effortlessly hilarious and handsome. I like Jasung. He wasn’t being a jerk because he is a jerk. It’s just that he had a bad childhood and decided to focus all his energy into making money. So much that he has forgotten to live. I wouldn’t mind having a generous friend like Jasung hihi.

Somin’s character is a more upbeat version of BIMFL character. She is wonderful and charming. When Young won, who maybe poor but also still very warm, came into his life, he couldn’t help but thaw his ice cold heart. After all, what’s the use of having too much money when you can’t share your life with someone? I believe Jasung was drawn by Young won because like her, he understands how it is to be poor and not to have a home. And he was also impressed how much Young won was trying hard save up to have her own house. So much that he started helping her in his own little ways. Soon, he was spreading his goodwill to everyone in his team.

I knew that when he falls for Youngwon it will be hard. HAHA. I love Kim Ji Suk’s expressions like he was always so stunned by Young Won’s beauty and how everything she does is like so amazing. And everytime she gives him a compliment, his frown turns into a big humongous grin that makes him want to dance to Bboom Bboom. And I love that he never nagged her or looked down on her just because she didn’t have money or expected her to grovel at his feet because he is rich.

Jasung who was so obsessed with money never had a chance to date or have a relationship. Just like how he deals with money, he was determined to succeed in being the best boyfriend to Young Won. Of course being a newbie, he made a lot of mistakes, and I like that he was quick to say sorry or learn how to be better.

Of course, like everyday Kdrama, after getting together and being cute, there will be this defining moment where the couple argues and break up. In this case, Jasung broke up with Young Won for Shin Gyeom, the second lead. For me, Shin Gyeom was cute but boring. He was no match to Jasung’s charisma and energy. And he never had a chance with Young Won because she never liked him other than as a friend. So I feel like his character was a waster or was just there to have some sort of conflict. When Jasung found out that Gyeom likes Young Won too, he decided to break up with Young Won because of his loyalty for Gyeom. Some said it was a noble idiot move, but for me, it was more than that. Jasung have known Gyeom for years. It’s bros before hoes. And it’s his first time to be in love and didn’t know how to handle it. Maybe he should have talked to Young Won about it. Gave Young Won an opportunity to decide what to do since she is part of the relationship. Jasung could also have confronted Gyeom about it and talked about it like a man. Or maybe they didn’t have to break up, just lie low and not rub his relationship in Gyeom’s face. After all, love’s fair in love and war.

When Jasung finally realized what a fool he was and begged Young Won to take him back, i love that Young Won didn’t easily bend and made him worked hard for it. You go girl! He can’t just dump her ruthlessly and think he can come back as if nothing happened. She eventually learned that again, Jasung wasn’t being an ass and realized that all this time he has been there for her and cheered for her even if it’s hard for him to sometimes express how he feels.

As for the Wolganjib team, everyone was funny esp the second couple Sang Soon and Ui Joo. I also liked their story from being a bickering colleagues with different lifestyles to falling in love. Opposites do attract! Of course my fave Kim Won Hae was both annoying at times when he’s trying to be a “good” boss but I love him more as a better friend and confidante to Jasung, Ui Joo and Sang Soon.

I love all the houses that got featured in every episode and all the tidbits about home and money saving. My favorite was the beach house in episode 8 because I also dreamed of retired in a beach front property.

The OST is so nice, especially Imagine and Here I Am. Yup I just bought my own copy! Will do an unboxing video once it arrives.

Now to the worst thing that almost ruined the show. I hate when the writer thinks he/she needs to make an explosive or out of the box twist to end the show. I watched Drinking Solo and the ending was a disappointment, but this was worse than that. Up until episode 15 the drama was so nice and happy. I thought they were going to get their happy ever after. I even liked the twist with the connection between Young Won’s father and Jasung’s past. I thought, hey, that’s so perfect! The writer even found a way to close their childhood traumas and bring the story into a full circle!

But dang what the F happened?!? Young Won got so guilty and disappeared for 3(?) years. Okayyyy maybe we needed the time jump where Young Won works for someone else and not under her boyfriend’s company and where she can heal. Maybe when they meet again they will be “equal” and they will find love again. Their eventual meetup was so nice, at the same place where they had a day trip together, with the crowds blurring and centering on the couple. I remember the exact same scene in Drinking Solo when the couple was also eating at a restaurant and saw each other from the other table. Exact same thing. They could have ended MMH like this and I would have been satisfied. But no, we see Young Won showing Jasung her own big house that she built on her own in just 3 years. Like where did she get the money to buy a land and construct a big house? Where did she even go for 3 years? Turns out she was just working in another magazine. What??? Then how come Jasung never found her? She never even went overseas. And the biggest question of all.. are they getting back together? To me, it felt like they ended up being exes turned good friends. Or worse, like Jasung was just a mentor/big brother to Young Won. Awww.. I’m not happy with the ending but overall, I still loved this drama.

Rating: 8.75/10

The Tuna and The Dolphin (2018)

Profile
TV Movie: The Tuna and the Dolphin (참치와 돌고래)
Network: KBS2
Episodes: 1
Release Date: September 28, 2018
Runtime: Friday 22:00

Main Cast
Park Yoon – Han Yura
Park Gyu Young – Kang Hyun Ho
Jung Gun Joo – Jo Woo Jin

Plot / Review
Cute special drama about a girl who begins swimming lessons at a sports center. She develops a crush at a cute guy she named as Dolphin while she keeps bickering with the swimming instructor who calls her Tuna. She makes friends with her classmates who decided to help her win over her crush. But love moves in unexpected ways because guess who she ended up with? 🥰

This was so cute. The two guys were both nice and liked her, but the girl chose the guy that she has more things in common with and the one that she was more comfortable with. Now can we have a part two where the other guy gets his own happy ending?

Rating: 8/10

Oh My Baby (2020)

Profile
Drama: Oh My Baby (오 마이 베이비)
Network: tvN
Episodes: 16
Release Date: May 13 – July 2, 2020
Runtime: Wed. & Thu. 22:50

Plot
Jang Hari is a 39-year old single woman who wants to get married and have a baby. Unfortunately, she has not dated in 10 years and the doctor told her she has endometriosis and needs to get surgery. Running out of time with no prospects, she is thinking of ways to have a baby without getting married. Suddenly 3 potential men come into her life. Who will she choose to love and marry? Will she decide to have a baby or not? Can she have it all?

Main Cast
Jang Nara – Jang Hari
Go Joon – Han Yi Sang
Park Byung Eun – Yoon Jae Young
Jung Gun Joo – Choi Kang Ee Ddeum

Review
It’s been a long time since i’ve watched a Jang Nara drama. Mostly because when i tried her more recent dramas, i find it cringey that they are trying so hard to make her look cute and young when she is not. Yes, she is baby faced and looks young for her age, but not enough to pass for a 20s lady. But once i saw the promo, I got so excited. I mean, look at the 3 main leads – Go Joon (who i super loved in The Fiery Priest), Park Byung Eun (who I liked in Because This is My First Life) and Jung Gun Joo (who was super adorable in Extraordinary You). So it was a no-brainer that I will watch this drama.

And it was such a good decision because this drama was a little gem! The first 2 episodes were a bit weird – it wobbled between comedy and drama and the transition from one side to the other was a bit jarring. But it slowly balanced itself in the next couple of episodes.

On the surface, I can see myself in Hari. I’m just like her, single, almost 40, not married. the difference is I’m not desperate to have a kid and knock on wood i dont have a reproductive issue. However, I have friends in similar situations so I can totally understand her issue. The only thing I didn’t like was that her dream was to be a “mother”. That she will only be happy if she was a “mom”. I thought that was not a good reason to be a mother and to live a life. I think first and foremost, you need to be happy by yourself to be able to be happy for your family. That the possibility to just get pregnant and raise a child as a single parent (without the getting married or having to deal with the father/husband) is something me and my single friends have also discussed in the last few years. So i can really relate to her. That’s why I was interested to see how this drama will unfold. I already have an idea how this will go – she will end up realizing that she doesn’t need to be happy to be a mom and she will be pregnant by the end of the drama. (Of course, i was right haha!)

And i know that because that’s the same thing me and my friends have realized in the last few years. It’s great to be married and have a child, but it’s also great to be single and living a happy life. That having a kid on our own is a bit selfish – it may fulfill your dream to be a mom and not to be lonely when you’re older, but the child may suffer from unintentional hardships and hurt because the child doesn’t have a regular family and might get bullied for it. Thinking about that, i realized that having a child is really a gift and a very big decision to make because it will impact not only your life but the child’s.

I applaud Hari for remaining true to herself during the course of the drama. That she didn’t give up on her principles and she learned to be happy – with her family, her partner, her colleagues and her friends beside her.

As for the 3 baby daddies – while i was rooting for Go Joon, i didnt expect that the show will single him out so early in the drama. I thought there will be a big love triangle between Yisang, Hari and Jaeyoung, and i will have a hard time choosing which guy Hari should end up with — the hot single photographer or the childhood friend divorced guy with a kid. Good thing the show made it clear that Yisang is the end game and i loved it!

Yisang is like one of the best kdrama boyfriends this year. What’s not to like? He’s handsome, sweet, sensitive, good at his job and sexy! The only problem – he has reproductive issues too, just like Hari! OMO OMO! This was the storyline i totally didn’t expect but loved because it brought a whole new issue to the story. Would you choose love or baby? Would you still choose to love and marry someone even when you know there’s a high chance you wont have a child together? For someone like Hari who dreams of having a child, that is one tough decision to make!

There’s no right or wrong answer here. It really depends on the person on what the person values more. Just need to be sure of your decision and stick with it. You dont choose love then start blaming your partner when you can’t have children. Likewise, you dont choose a child and neglect him/her.

I also felt bad for Yisang. He just wants to be with his girlfriend and have a family of his own, but his girlfriend left him! and now Hari almost left him too! I guess that’s what made him so gunshy of relationships and have crushed his dreams of ever having his own family to love. I was super happy that Yisang and Hari were both able to talk through and overcome the hardships as one. They are right. There will always be ups and downs in any relationship. And what’s important is that they are working and solving it together.

While i loved how the story between Yisang and Hari was developed and resolved, i thought Jae Young’s character and story was such a lost opportunity! I mean, Park Byung Eun is such an amazing actor and he can totally give Yisang a run for his money. We also saw his character growth, from being so down after his divorce and being a single dad, why can’t they just make him as sweet as he was from the start? Did he really have to be such an a$$ to Hari and Yisang? i disliked it every time he tried to come between the couple. C’mon, if you want to win Hari’s heart, you do so at your own merit, not at the expense of your rival. And he didn’t have the right (at all) to interfere. He is a family friend, not a family. I mean, even Hari’s mom let Hari decide on her own, so why make Jae Young’s character so bad? Ugh! Too bad really!

I loved his story line of moving forward and growing to be a better dad to his daughter, and to making peace with the ex-wife. I just think his loveline with Hari could have been handled better – and it shouldn’t have been the focus of his story. He can continue to be the nice silent supporter/friend of Hari while realizing that his bad decisions have cost him his chance to be with Hari and he can never have it back. (on a side note, i still dont think he really loved Hari – i think he loved the idea of it – instant mom and friend. i mean he was such a jerk to her when he fell in love with his ex-wife, that i dont think he really loved her. maybe a crush, maybe a what-could-have-been).

On the other hand, the young guy, i think from the very start he was not a contender. I dont know if he was just brought to the story because of the other alternative – have yourself a younger guy who is the “king of sp*rm” and have a kid. We know it definitely wouldn’t work and it is so-not Hari’s personality to do it. but still he gave us plenty of laughs. His story arc is a bit different – although he started as clueless guy (i mean if a younger guy kept calling me auntie in the office, i would probably do the same thing that Hari did to him!), he ended up becoming mature as he learns how to work in the office and dealing with clients and coworkers. I honestly didn’t like the story between him and the selfish girl. I thought he deserved a way better girl than her and i’m glad they didn’t end up as a couple. Likewise, the selfish girl also learned a lot during the drama which was nice.

I honestly didn’t care much about the The Baby closing down as a storyline, mostly because i can’t really relate as I’m not a mom, but i thought the storyline was very real – I’ve seen local publishing houses stopping the print releases and going digital. and it impacts a lot of people. but while one opportunity closes, there will also be plenty of new opportunities that will open up. As long as we keep our heads up and think of what we want and like to do, then anything can happen. I loved that Hari opened her new company (Oh My Baby) although it’s not very clear what it supposed to be. (It is like her own webzine?) It still stayed true to her character since she loves kids so much and knows so much about them. She was able to give her best friend work and give Jae Young a site to continue reaching out to potential patients/clients.

Lastly, what i loved about this drama is that it not just focused on Hari’s story about a single woman wanting to have a family. We see so many other characters that are relatable — Her former boss who had to quit her job because she is struggling on working while taking care of her child, while her best friend wants to go back to working after taking care of her twins but is not having luck because she was out of the job market for years, taking care of her kids. We see a couple struggling to have a child, but we also see a childless couple happy without having any kids but being pressured by family members to have one.

I also realized that it’s not just the females who have it hard. Yisang is single but wants to have a family. Jae Young is a divorced single dad trying to work and manage his daughter at the same time. We see Yisang’s best friend working on various jobs to provide for his family and we see Ee Ddeum’s boss trying to create a loving relationship with his teenager by getting into the kpop groups that his daughter loves. These are all so well written and makes me realize that everyone has their own problems. We all have different issues in life and we should all try to understand and accept each other without judgements.

Overall, i loved this drama so much. The OST was beautiful and the cinematic visuals were stunning! I recommend to anyone because i think everyone can relate to at least one of the characters.

Rating: 9.5/10