You Are My Spring (2021)

Drama: You Are My Spring (너는 나의 봄)
Network: tvN
Episodes: 16
Release Date: July 5 – August 24, 2021
Runtime: Monday & Tuesday 21:00
Country: South Korea


Main Cast
Kim Dong Wook – Ju Young Do
Seo Hyun Jin – Kang Da Jeong
Nam Gyuri – Ahn Ga Young
Park Yoon – Choi Jung Min/Chae Jun

I thought the title is deceiving. I was expecting a romcom but this was a healing drama about the leads with lots of traumatic experiences and a side of murder. But in the end I understood why.

After I finishing watching episode 1 I almost didn’t want to continue. The tone of the first episode was weird. It was partly mysterious with the recent murder and the flashback when Da Jeong as a young kid and her mother running away, then later Da Jeong is back in her hometown and the tone will shift to something light and romantic when the main leads had their first meet cute. I thought it was very odd and it sort of reminded me of Kim Dong Wook’s drama last year called Find Me In Your Memory. But a few weeks later, I decided to continue and actually liked the drama.

I loved the leads, both actors were perfectly casted. I laughed at the funny antics, swooned at the romantic scenes and cried at the heartbreaking moments. That rooftop scene when they broke up, that night they cosplayed, when Youngdo finally realized his first love, getting Dr Hallow and Blackfields from the machine, Youngdo in his embarrassingly slick hairstyle and outfit. I loved all of them! I wished the twins’ story was just a side plot and the story focused more on the romance and relationship between the leads, I would have rated this drama higher!

The whole murder storyline was boring and was out of place. Up the end I was still confused what really happened to Jeongmin and Ian Chase — who was who in the flashbacks in the orphanage, when they were 18 years old, and how they were able t continue to communicate all these years. I also didn’t really care for the homeless guy and his motivation for killing the twins. At some point I wanted to pause or go back to previous episodes to actually understand what happened but I couldn’t be bothered. Too bad. I like Yoon Park as Jeongmin because he was always smiling and happy vs Ian Chase who always looked troubled. But I hope he becomes happier.

I really like Kim Dong Wook. He may not be as handsome as the usual main leads like Lee Min Ho or Park Seo Jun but I find him really charming and fascinating to watch on-screen. His skin is flawless, his smile is infectious, and he just looks like a guy who is so steady and supportive that you know he would be there to protect you. And maybe that’s why he got this role. His voice is also soothing.

I also loved their group of friends and how we also got to know their story too. Except Cheoldo and the vet, i wished they explored their story more than Ian Chase one. Ji Seung Hyun was wasted here!! He was more like a side character with a one sided like for the best friend and the boxer. I wished there was more depth and growth to his character. Likewise, they always made Cheoldo looked like an annoying friend, I think he is a nice guy and deserve better treatment from his so-called friends. The boxer lady also had a potential to have a better story other than pining for the vet who doesn’t like her back.

I also loved Nam Gyuri’s portrayal of Ahn Gayoung. Her “HELLO” is so fun and catchy and her cute romance with Patrick. I thought they wouldn’t last but I’m glad they did because she really looked so happy with Patrick and Patrick looked absolutely in love with her despite the age gap and what others think. The Princess of Forever drama seem to almost look like a fun drama to watch, although the main lead didn’t look attractive enough to understand why the princess will like him (esp when the husband looked amazing).

This drama also has one of the better mother-daughter storylines where the mother was actually supportive and listened to her daughter vs the usual Kdrama mothers that screamed or whined that their daughter is unmarried, etc. The actress who plays the mom always play a mom and I find it weird because I know she is older (around 51 yo) but she is too young to have a older children (in the mid 30s) (though I think Seo Hyun Jin is playing a character much younger than her real age).

Rating: 8.25/10 (8.5 less 0.25 for the murder storyline)

Romantic Doctor Teacher Kim S1 (2017)

Drama: Romantic Doctor, Teacher Kim (낭만닥터 김사부)
Network: SBS
Episodes: 20 + 1 special episode
Release Date: November 7, 2016 – January 17, 2017
Runtime: Monday & Tuesday 22:00

This medical KDrama is about the everyday lives of the doctors and nurses in Doldam Hospital, which is led by the great Doctor Kim Sabu.

Main Cast
Han Suk Kyu – Kim Sabu / Bu Yong Ju
Yoo Yeon Suk – Kang Dong Ju
Seo Hyun Jin – Yoon Seo Jeong
Yang Se Jong – Do Il Beom
Jin Kyung – Oh Myung Sim
Im Won Hee – Jang Gi Tae
Kim Min Jae – Park Eun Tak
Byun Woo Min – Nam Do Il
Choi Jin Ho – Do Yun Wan
Jang Hyuk Jin – Song Hyun Chul
Seo Eun Su – Woo Yeon Hwa
Joo Hyun – Chairman Shin

Heard so many wonderful reviews about this show and season 2. I finally had the chance to catch this drama this year (it was in my bucket list for the longest time). Maybe I’m really not a fan of medical Kdramas (i only watch 1 medical drama a year) or I just kept comparing this to Grey’s Anatomy (i know i shouldn’t but that’s the only medical drama I avidly watched for most of its run until they killed off McDreamy), but I didn’t loved it as much as everyone did. I mean, I liked it, it just took a week or two for me to finish the 21 episodes (while simultaneously watching 3 other dramas), but this drama wasn’t a big WOW-i loved it so much-why did i only watch it now.

I think the main reason is I didn’t like the majority of the characters. Yes, even Kim Sabu. I loved Nurse Oh, Yoon Seo Jeong and Dr. Nam from episode 1 but the others? Kim Sabu and Kang Dong Ju I only started really liking them around ep 13. Do Il Beom? Ugh! Probably episode 17 or 18. He was too whiny. Jang Gi Tae was too dramatic and corny. Absolutely detested Dr. Song and President Do. Everyone else is just okay.

There were not a lot of dramatic or unusual cases in every episode. The whole squabble about who gets to do Chairman Shin’s surgery went 2 episodes too long. There were a lot of repetitive plot points. The young doctors do something wrong or they’re too whiny, Kim Sabu gets all grumpy and angry while teaching them, they learn a bit, then they do another mistake in the next episode. President Do comes and goes as he pleases to stop Kim Sabu, Kim Sabu finds a way to one up President Do and show his brilliance. Rinse and Repeat for 21 episodes. I only started to really enjoy the episodes and the cases from episode 15. And after Chairman Shin’s surgery storyline was over, we finally get to see a lot of scenes showing each of the doctors perform surgery, which I was waiting for.

I couldn’t understand the reason for the intense hatred of President Do against Kim Sabu. President Do was already VP at that time and wasn’t doing any surgeries. Kim Sabu was the star surgeon. How can they be rivals when they have different positions? Was Do scared that he’ll get overshadowed by Sabu? That Sabu will try to take his place? But Sabu never wanted his position in the first place. He is so popular and gets so many VIP clients to the hospital, shouldn’t Do be happy that he is raking in the profits without taking credit for himself? I get that they have different views about running a hospital, but I don’t think it merits ruining someone’s career. I think this was my second main issue why I couldn’t enjoy the intense scenes between the two. Plus, the final showdown in episode 20 during the celebratory party was LAME!!! They just kept talking back to each other without anything significant happening — until they had a fist fight! YES! Finally! Sometimes they just need to get physical and get all the anger and hurt out. And I like that after the fight, President Do came over and they had a good talk/truce.

So what did I like about the drama? I liked the growth that each doctor had during the course of the show. It took a long time though.
– Kang Dong Ju only had closure around episode 18 (or 19). I loved that he was grown so much from being a bratty top student to a real doctor. Plus his amazing stitching skills after practicing so many times got me clapping and cheering for him. He is a good student, he just needed a chance to be himself after getting rid of all his past hurt and prejudices.
– Do Il Beom, for the most part i didn’t like. He kept lying about his experience, he was arrogant and selfish. But i liked that Kim Sabu finally got through to him, and that he finally had the guts to confront his father (again too late, around episode 19 or 20) and be Do Il Beom, not President Do’s son. I still don’t like how he mistreats Yeon Hwa repeatedly. I get that he is trying to teach her, but shouting at her in front of everyone is not the right way.
– Yoon Seo Jung had some sort of closure, but not fully, which I’m sad. She got her dream of doing a collaborative surgery with Kim Sabu. She fell in love and finally got together with Kang Dong Ju. But how she got over her PTSD was not fully explored. She didn’t even talked about it with Kang Dong Ju. Even the coffee with the other nurse wasn’t satisfying. Is it just “let’s leave the dead guy” alone? He was a cheater but Seo Jeong never found out and it’s okay because she is over him?
– Kim Sabu, yes, he was a coward back then. He didn’t want to be a teacher, he just happened to be so good that students followed him. He was kind hearted but he was passive. He had a lot of regrets about what happened to his former student. And I loved that he finally embraced himself as a teacher to the young doctors. That he finally found the confidence to fight back and not run away like he did before. And i loved that he remained true to himself and will keep on staying at Doldam Hospital.

Life is about turning into different roads. Whether you want it or not, you have to face the reality which is placed in front of you. You can’t find the right answer every single time. But Teacher Kim always said this, “We need to keep asking questions about why we live and what we live for. The moment you give up on that, the romance in life ends.”

Kang Dong Ju narration, episode 20

I’m thinking if I should go straight to season 2 and break my 1 medical drama a year rule (haha!). But the April and May dramas are too overwhelming, so many good dramas are ongoing that I need to catch up very quickly!

Rating: 8/10

[throwback] Let’s Eat 2 (2015)


Drama: Let’s Eat 2 (식샤를 합시다 2)
Network: tvN
Episodes: 18
Release Date: April 6 – June 2, 2015
Runtime: Mondays & Tuesdays 23:00

Plot: Popular food blogger and insurance agent Koo Dae-Young moves to Sejong City and meets his new neighbors including Baek Su Ji, a childhood friend and freelance writer and Lee Sang U, a public officer whom Suji has a crush on.

Main Cast:
Yoon Doo Joon – Ku Dae Young
Seo Hyun Jin – Baek Su Ji
Kwon Yul – Lee Sang U

Review: I started watching this show right after Another Miss Oh and simultaneous with 20th Century Boy and Girl since I wanted to watch more Seo Hyun Jin. I did try to watch Let’s Eat 1 but I couldn’t make it past episode 2 because I didn’t like how cringy the lead girl in the 1st season was. I didn’t like the way she looked at the food, it didn’t feel like she was really hungry or ravenous for the food, she looked more like sexually deprived (i’m sorry for the term) and felt uncomfortable watching her.

On the other hand, I love watching Seo Hyun Jin gush over the food and how delicious it is. It made me so hungry watching all the food they eat which sometimes take more than 5 minutes per episode that I fast forwarded some of the food eating scenes.

In some ways sometimes Seo Hyun Jin’s acting is similar to Oh Hae Young, particularly on the overacting parts but she didn’t get as melodramatic as Oh Hae Young. I could totally relate to her character who is always watching her weight, counting calories, thinking of ways to lose the calories after eating good food. I also loved the slow burn between Suji and Dae Young from being bickering friends to lovers. one thing I noticed is that Suji is so passionate with food that she often argues with Dae young on the right way to eat the food. and most of the times, she gets her way. there were very few instances where they split the food so they can cook their own way and very rare that she admitted that Dae Young’s way of eating was good or even better than her sometimes. I found this annoying because it seemed like Dae Young always kept giving in while Suji keeps insisting she was right when Dae young seems to be more “worldly” or had experienced more food and eating in different places than her. After all, Dae Young came from Seoul while Suji mostly just stayed in Sejong city. thus, I found it funny that when Sang U treated her to a fancy dinner, she didn’t even know half of the time how to eat or what she was eating, considering that Sang U didn’t really seemed to eat much but knew good food when needed.

I could understand how Suji felt when she started dating Sang U. it’s like a dream when your long time crush finally notices you, but when reality sets in and you realize that you only liked his idea of him and not really him. that you end up spending more or doing more effort to please him and end up feeling more miserable and inadequate. from Sang U’s point of view, I know money is no object to him but he should have known or realized early on that she can’t afford to buy those expensive things. he should have either also compromised or let her rent or borrow stuff. I think had the two been on equal footing they could have matched well but probably be a boring couple. I like that in the end, Sang U was able to let go of his cautious personality and learned to be free with his words and gain more friends. Love his potty mouth and in the end where all the guys in the office where at his office where they spent the night drinking and playing games.

As for Hong In a, I normally love the actress, but she was so arrogant and mean in most scenes, even to the point of being horrible to Suji that I couldn’t even feel empathy for her when we find out her husband divorced her. I was surprised to see the show tackle cheating – not that they are justifying it, but just showing consequences to the actions. I also feel bad for Taek su – he seems to be neglected by his own family. we never even get to see the wife or daughter. I was actually hoping he also divorces and end up with In ah.

The grandma, at the start, was endearing, but later on she just kept nagging at Ju Seung and being too nosy that I started to dislike her. it’s not just about being concerned for your neighbors, it’s also about learning to respect the boundaries of being neighbors. just because you are a grandma doesn’t mean you can just barge in unannounced and rifle through the things of other people like Ju Seung’s ID or Hye-rim’s cosmetics and expect people to be okay with the complete disregard and invasion of privacy.

I like Hye-rim and how the show didn’t portray her as being mean just because she is pretty. On the other hand, she was super nice and took care of the grandma and was friends with all her neighbors. I didn’t really like her with Ju Seung, mostly because Ju Seung just looks too suspicious and so not her type. I hope Hye rim will also study part time aside from working so she can get a better job. Or become a popular beauty blogger.

I also liked how they inserted Dae young monologues about korean cuisine history and how they put some flavor on challenges of living no one to eat with, missing your family, living away from home, not having to cook for anyone etc and also subtly including some tips and tricks on doing things.

I also liked how they started eating Korean food then in the latter parts branched out to other food like Mexican. I was hoping Dae Young and Suji meets at the Mexican resto so I was a little sad they just missed each other. but that scene was beautifully shot. the end where Dae Young came back to Sejong and they kissed was sweet but I was hoping for more passionate romance from them. I wonder how they end up – will they take turns visiting each other and trying out more food? we will never know. coz they just announced Let’s Eat 3 and Dae Young has a new girl!!

Overall i loved the cast and the story, while there were a few flaws in thr characters it was okay because that’s life. We dont get to meet the perfect neighbors and even if we are faraway from our families, your neighbors can also be your family.

[throwback] Another Oh Hae Young [2016]

For the month of May, I chose Another Oh Hae Young as my throwback drama.


Drama: Another Miss Oh (또 오해영)
Network: tvN
Episodes: 18
Release Date: May 2 – June 28, 2016
Runtime: Mondays & Tuesdays 23:00

Plot The story follows two women with the same name of Oh Hae Young and a man gets entangled between the two Oh Hae Young.

Cast Eric Mun – Park Do Kyung
Seo Hyun Jin – Average Oh Hae Young
Jeon Hye Bin – Pretty Oh Hae Young

Review I really liked this drama. I didn’t even realized that I was in episode 16 until I was in episode 16 and almost at the end. At first I didn’t like the premise – that Do Kyung ruined someone’s life to get back at his ex-gf, and making a mistake and ruining another person’s life instead. How dumb is it that he and his lawyer friend didn’t even investigate if it’s the same Oh Hae Young before making the move. (Is Oh Hae Young such a unique name in Korea?). Secondly, I didn’t like the visions he was seeing – I didn’t realize the drama had some fantasy element. I actually didn’t even believe the explanations for the visions for the entire 18 episodes, I thought it was just a metaphor or hallucinations and a great drama tool to make the lead guy start living his life again.

I loved the chemistry between the two leads – Eric and Seo Hyun Jin – it was just sizzling everytime they are on screen. Eric is a good choice to star as Do Kyung, a silent brooding guy who is not very good at expressing his emotions. I am a long time fan of shinhwa and he’s normally the silent one in the group – even in his variety show 3MAD – he seems like the silent and patient type. I think in most cases he was able to deliver his character well, though sometimes he is wooden in acting and not able to fully portray the emotions. I did love that scene in the emergency room when Do Kyung finally burst and got angry at Hae Young that he tries very hard to hold back his feelings. And when they finally got together and we see the beautiful smiles and laughter from Eric. oh and that simple and heartfelt way Do Kyung said I love you to Hae Young.

As for Seo Hyun Jin – I love her!!! she’s my new favorite actress that I will look forward too! there were times she overacted a bit, but I think it’s part of Oh Hae Young’s personality – I felt like she made Oh Hae Young very relatable. at one point in a girl or a boy’s life, we have all felt inferior to someone, be it a sibling, a friend, a colleague and wished our lives were better than the current one. What I didn’t like was how awful the people were to her, just because she was not the pretty Oh Hae Young. I’m hoping it’s just an exaggeration for the drama and not how Koreans in real life bully the not so pretty ones. I like her relationship with her parents (esp the mom). Sometimes the mom is so strict and hard on her, that I can understand how frustrated Hae Young feels and I know the mom is that way because she loves and cares for Hae Young, but I wished the mom smiled a bit more, supported her more (not by hitting her or saying hurtful words but by actually empathizing with her and cheering her up).

The relationship between Do kyung and Hae Young started rocky – due to the circumstances, but I loved how it slowly blossomed from hate (or annoying each other) to being friends to lovers. I think both came into each other’s lives at the right time – Hae Young when she decided she will give it her all and Eric, who finally needed to move on. They also understood each other, their past, because both got dumped. While they seemed like they didn’t have much in common, the connection and chemistry was there. I love that they stood by each other and their feelings even when word got out in public what actually happened. I guess in real life, it’s a scandal but I think it was just fate, that they were meant to meet and be together.

The Pretty Oh Hae Young, I couldn’t quite understand her character sometimes. so she uses kindness and her smiling face to hide here insecurities and feelings. but there are times she can be quite mean-hearted and self-centered, like wishing she was Do kyung love that hurt the most. I think it’s because she was used to all the attention and getting what she wants. she must feel so tired trying to almost put up a face. I don’t think I even saw her real self in the 18 episodes. but it’s a good lesson to see – just because a person is pretty and smart doesn’t mean her life is perfect. they also have their own problems. likewise, all along Average Oh Hae Young was angry and jealous of pretty Oh Hae Young, which wasn’t really pretty Oh Hae Young’s fault though she also didn’t defend average OHY. but then turns out Pretty OHY envied Average OHY because she had people who actually cared for her (like the colleagues who may tease her nonstop but adores her) and a family who supports her. I wished that the drama had some time to finish her character’s story – not just moving on from Do Kyung or being friends with Hae Young. I wished they also tackled and had closure on her family – the phone call from her mom at the last episode wasn’t enough. and her maybe fixing her life and showing her true self to people.

Han Tae Jin – I think at the start when we were supposed to take his side – because of Do Kyung he had to go to jail. but slowly we see Han Tae Jin’s bad side. I wondered how long did Tae Jin and OHY went out and what OHY saw in him? He seemed like such a nice guy when they were together but when he got out from jail he suddenly made to seem like the bad guy and that he’s not a match to Do Kyung. I agree though, his explanation for breaking up with OHY so that she doesn’t wait for him or be a burden is bulls***. if you really love someone and each other, you don’t even have to think of that because it’s already a foregone conclusion that you will find a way to be together through thick or thin. I don’t feel bad for Han Tae Jin at all. he made the wrong decision that caused the relationship to fall and the fact that OHY was able to bounce back quickly and fall head over heels in love with Do kyung just shows maybe their love was just at that point and couldn’t go further/deeper. and right now what Han Tae Jin needs is to fix his life and his business.

Do Kyung’s mom – wow. evil. self-centered bitch. great actress btw. you know how much of a good man Do Kyung is when he lets the mom as she is. I don’t feel a single remorse over the mom, even when she confronted Chairman Jang about trying to harm Do kyung – about time she defended her own son and acted like a mother. I was hoping someone either Tae Jin or Do kyung takes down Chairman Jang – such as mofo -too bad he is still rich and arrogant.

Soo kyung and Jin Sang – a few episodes in and I already guessed that they will end up together. but how they ended up together — I didn’t really like. I was hoping they naturally fell in love – a womanizer falling in love with his noona would have been fun. but getting pregnant after a one night stand where the guy couldn’t even remember doing it, and resisting for so many episodes then suddenly deciding to get married even though he only respects her or feels nothing is just awful. too bad coz I really loved their fun interactions at the start and when they speak French to each other. even in the last episode, I don’t really know how Jin Sang feels – is he really starting to see her as a woman or he is still being forced to marry her? (in 2018, you don’t need to marry just because the girl is pregnant – saves time and hassle if you’ll end up divorcing)

Hoon and Anna – bah.. just skipped most of their scenes together. Anna is annoying, demands too much from Hoon and Hoon is too old for her.

I loved the scenes where Do kyung is working and recording sounds. I never knew a sound director does that. it was interesting to see how him doing the sounds and going on locations.

I don’t have much to say on the visions – though the last part where his vision of dying still came true but on a different setting was brilliant way to close that storyline. the side story about the singer was also intriguing. all throughout the episodes I wondered why we kept seeing the old guy seeing that haunting song then we find out later the connection to the story.

The ending is one of the most satisfying weddings I have ever watched. I was laughing and crying at the same time while watching them. it was just a finally they made it! kind of feeling. the dancing was also cute!

Overall, this one was a tightly written drama. Some may hate it or get bored but for others like me, it was a beautiful love story about two broken people who found their home with each other.