The wait is over! The new Lee Seunggi/Shin Minah drama finally started airing and is on its third week now. I was so psyched last week because this is a drama that I had been anticipating so much and followed every news even remotely relating to it. But really, with all the casting mindfuck happening a few months ago, it’s hard to remain ignorant about this drama. The good news is that all the media attention created a buzz leading up to the premiere, but it also made for some high expectations. Another drama about to air, Playful Kiss, also undergoes similar situation, but while I am not placing much hope on that one, I was revved up for My Girlfriend is a Gumiho. And I was so glad (and also relieved) that the start was a strong as I had hoped for.
I was thinking of doing a full recap or review, but I think the drama has been discussed enough and to be honest, I don’t have a lot to add to the mix either. The drama is fun and entertaining but at this very early stage, we don’t have much on hand, in terms of statements or plot points, that can be a source of hefty arguments or discussions.
One qualm that I must voice however is that I hope the Hong Sisters keep the tandem like this. They have a tendency to lose steam after 4/5 of the drama, leaving painfully corny last episodes and quite often half assed endings. Actually, from all of Hong Sisters dramas I’ve watched (Hong Gil Dong being the sole one unfinished), I have never truly liked their endings. Chunhyang’s was pretty good, but My Girl’s, Fantasy Couple’s and You’re Beautiful’s endings, despite satisfying enough, left a lot to be desired. Most often, by episode 13 or 14 the drama would descend into doom and gloom. The main couple would be separated, usually by an external force, until some big declaration of love reuniting them in the last stretch of the final hour. I’m not sure if it’s pointless to even hope anymore at this point, but who knows? Improvements always come in progress.
That was one thing to hate about the Hong Sisters, but there are a lot to love. For one, I LOVE their male lead characters. It is one thing they do best and their male leads always end up being a highlight. Sometimes the female leads are equally strong like Anna of Fantasy Couple, or other times, they just totally pale in comparison a la Go Minyeo of You’re Beautiful. One way or another, you ALWAYS remember the male leads. Childish but charming Lee Mongryong, the cool and guillible Seol Gongchan, the loud and stingy Jang Chulsoo, and the prickly pig-hating Hwang Taekyung.
This far in the game, I’m glad to say that the level of playing field between Gu Miho and Cha Daewoong of My Girlfriend is a Gumiho is more equal. Hell, if I can be honest, Shin Minah is totally stealing the show with the unassuming portrayal of the 500 year old Gumiho. Lee Seunggi showed a lot of improvements from last year Brilliant Legacy. He’s still mired with overacting and underemoting, but nothing so unbearable to watch. He’s got expressive eyes, and he excels in scenes that shows his character’s disappointment and vulnerability. Lee Seunggi is cute as Daewoong, but Shin Minah is downright ADORABLE. I don’t really follow her career, but the general opinion on her is that she’s gorgeous but not a strong actress. So I was surprised at how much I like her Gumiho portrayal. She seems to really throw herself into her character. Not a good cryer from what I’ve seen so far, but great in everything else. With Hong Sister’s previous track records with female leads, I just think it’s fantastic that now they are paying more attention to their female leads.
Hopefully, not only this trend is continuing, but they will also start humanizing their secondary leads and actually breathe them some lives. The second females in Hong Sisters dramas usually go by the name Stuck-up Bitch and the second males usually Wimpy Prick. They just change face. One time it was Park Siyeon, now it’s Park Soojin. Then Jung Yonghwa, presently Noh Minwoo. But who knows, now that main lead Lee Seunggi is so deliciously wimpy, maybe Noh Minwoo will go back to Hong Sisters’ First Gen Secondary Male: Mastermind Eeeeviiil (remember Uhm Taewoong as the creepy ahjussi in Chunhyang?).
I have to admit tho that I am actually liking Noh Minwoo, which is a first. I don’t usually go for charming second leads and I thought Noh Minwoo was crapping all over Pasta. And true, his acting needs a lot of work, his line delivery is pretty painful to watch. But he’s got great chemistry with Shin Minah and I find myself enjoying their scenes immensely. Although it’s not possible, I think I wouldn’t mind if the Gumiho and the Slayer end up together. Ah, it’ll be kinda sad when the OTP’s getting closer and he’s getting all left out.
Anyways, I’m out to watch episode 6 now! May My Girlfriend is a Gumiho prove to be a solid romcom till the end.