Vingle is giving out 2 free tickets to Seunggi’s fanmeeting in Jakarta next Sunday, Nov 4.
Check it out!! http://www.vingle.net/posts/61516
Vingle is giving out 2 free tickets to Seunggi’s fanmeeting in Jakarta next Sunday, Nov 4.
Check it out!! http://www.vingle.net/posts/61516
You know, diving into this drama, I wasn’t thinking and expecting much. I just wanted to see Jung Ilwoo and I was interested in Lee Chungah and Lee Kiwoo. Watching the preview told me not to expect to be blown away because I was expecting a harmless little bubble gum candy of a romcom.
I did not expect to get addicted to Flower Boy or like it as much or actually think this drama is GOOD. Romantic comedies are tricky dramas. I watch a gajillion of them and they’re usually easy to watch. BUT, they’re also really easy to collapse upon the first blow of harsh wind. Meaning, the moment they get sucky, it’s really easy to judge them and leave. About 98% of Rom Com dramas start out zippy and strong and ends lumpy and weak. So, it’s really rare to find one that not only stays watchable, but actually stays good till the very last second.
Flower Boy Ramyun Shop managed to achieve the almost miracle, really. I remember watching the first 2 episodes and while I was largely entertained, I was actually unimpressed. It steadily got better and ended up being such a crack. Not content with that, the drama pushes up and ended up being one of my favourites this year.
We know romcom can be cheesy. It comes with territory, really. But I LOVE how Flower Boy has this innate ability to undercut the cheese with the perfect amount of wit and humour and at the right timing. Just a small little comment here, a facial expression there, can be enough to to season the drama just right. So, what would’ve been a total gag party ended up making you laugh unexpectedly.
I wasn’t sold on the half brother trope they used earlier, but I’m glad that while it became somewhat of a game changer, it never became a deal breaker and things didn’t start revolving around that one revelation. I still think that’s kind of a blunder, but I’m ever so glad they weren’t pushing that angle too much. Because in the end, it doesn’t matter if they’re brothers, it matters that they trust each other.
Gah, I will miss this drama so much!
Damn, this drama is friggin savoury and addictive. I think they put lots of MSG in it!! Heh.
10 Episodes in, I can say there are things that disappointed me, but there are a lot more things that ended up being pleasant surprises. But let’s start with the Meh.
I find the drama falling into the conventional romcom trap, in that it focuses WAY too much on it. It being the romance itself. I’m a firm believer that while a drama should rightly delves into a great romance story, it should NEVER be consumed by it. A lot of dramas start out solid on all fronts but ended up being possesed by the romance and forgot about everything else. Case in point: Sungkyunkwan Scandal. I feel like Flower Boy is giving me a warning light, it might head into that direction.
But I can’t begrudge the drama too much. The thing is that Flower Boy never really built a hype on itself about being something else. It never said it was going to be an underdog story, developing a Ramyun Shop into success. In fact, its promotional tag was something along the lines of “Hot Ramyun, Hot Love” so I guess the show has a right to exactly be consumed by its romance, just like its hero is being completely possesed by a newfound love/lust and the likes.
But I do wish to see more of the other things. How the Ramyun Shop is doing, how the Ramyun creations are cooked (I know it’s not Gourmet, but can’t we have some food porn???) But most of all, I’d like to see the other characters. Kanghyuk, who began with such a bang, is faltering because he’s becoming such a cardboard cutout of a character. We know none about his existence before the shop; we don’t even know how exactly he knew Eunbi’s dad. If this is such a secret, fine. But can we at least get to know him on a deeper level?
On the other hand, I’m having SO MUCH fun watching the show that I almost didn’t care about its shortcomings. It continues to be snappy, cute, and hilarious to boot. I said this before but I’m saying it again now and will definitely say it again in the future. The drama is packed with great people and great chemistry. There’s the chaebol dad who is perpetually clothed in his bathrobe and instead of intimidating his son, he is intimidated by him. There’s the nice kid with an unhealthy love for knitting. There’s the ‘other’ girl with a curious outlook on love and two/three timing. And then there’s this dude:
Crazy Chicken may not be the show’s hero, but he’s totally MY hero. He’s crazy adorkable and he’s so friggin cute with Eunbi, whom he treats like his own sister. Park Minwoo must (should) be getting a lot of attention for this role. He’s knocking it out!
Oh, then, there’s also the…..Sexy. With capital S.
All I can say is, damn Lee Chungah must’ve been a Korean war hero in her previous live. How can she possibly have this much luck??
Happier episodes, FTW!!!
This is what I’m saying about the writer’s prowess with pace. The change of tide came not a moment too soon. Another week spent in hazy gloom would have me drag my feet yet if Jaeun followed through too soon, the impact of Mama Hwang stealing her land deed would be diminished and as Jaeun mentioned, would be a total disrespect for her dad who’s still MIA.
I really like that the road to getting the farm back and forgiving the Hwang family is NOT merely about the land deed being stolen and the betrayal and so on. Jaeun needs to overcome that, first and foremost. But it’s also chock full with intricate family dynamic and Taehee’s long lost half family. This is incorporated into the farm plot and tied back neatly with Jaeun coming through for the family. The fact is that she loves Taehee and the family, she just can’t sit back and let them get hurt and it’s what finally allowed Jaeun to start forgiving them. She can put her victim status, second still, to the people she loves.
The beginning of forgiveness is also aptly illustrated, as the farm is not a done deal yet. Jaeun needs to come up with $50,000 of farm revenue in six months in order for Kim Jaeha to forfeit the purchase, no external help whatsoever. I dig this condition so much, because this gives a valid foundation for Jaeun to a)seek help from The Hwangs and thus forgiving them and b)cultivate herself as the true farm owner. This also gives a great time frame of the show’s future.
As the farm plot was settling down, Taebum and Sooyoung’s storyline is getting a spark of conflicts. Taebum’s ex girlfriend, Hyeryung is divorced, back to work, and the new writer for Taebum’s new show. In short, the bitch is IN! Writer is such a genius, really. To be honest, while I was gunning for Ryu Sooyoung and Choi Jungyoon at the beginning of the series, the teen episodes made me more invested in Jaeun/Taehee. But it’s to the writer’s credit and of course the actors’ chemistry, that Taebum/Sooyoung became just as compelling, and definitely better acted on top of it.
Also, I’m so rooting for Yeowool and Taepil. They may be 9-10 years apart, but they communicate well and they complete each other. I hate to say it, but Yeowool is a damsel in distress, in a sense. She may be in her 30s, but her mindset and naivete sets her way back. She needs to learn to stand up for herself and not be bossed around by her sister. Whereas dealing with Yeowool forces Taepil to mature up and gives him someone he can protect. Being the youngest brother, everyone did that to him. So now he has to learn to pay it forward.
I’m so in drama heaven right now. I don’t particularly follow a lot of dramas right now, but the two (this and Flower Boy Ramyun Shop) that I’m following at the moment are going so so SO well that I’m just over the fucking moon.
In these 10 episodes, all hell broke loose. And then some.
The inevitable happened when Jaeun found out that it was really Mom Hwang all along who hid the land deed and made her suffer through nights in sleeping bag living in a tent. All the awful treatments she received her way started coming back to her, and while she was furious, she was more heartbroken at the fact that she’s betrayed yet again by someone she loved. She ordered the Hwangs to sell the farm right away.
Entering the picture, was Kim Jaeha, who expressed interests in working with Taehee. He owns a movie company and hired Jaeun to adopt her animation . This is pure coincidence. But the guy had an ulterior motive in getting to know Taehee. As predicted by a lot of people, he turned out to be Taehee’s stepbrother, the son of the man Taehee’s mom married after she fled. To put us further on the edge of our seats, Kim Jaeha relayed a message that Taehee would no longer be able to reconcile with his mother as she had passed away recently.
Rounding up this merry go round of confusion and coincidences, Kim Jaeha purchased the Ojakgyo farm per his father’s instruction. And when the Hwang family found out who ended up buying their farm, the family Taehee’s mom left them for, Grandma went berserk.
In terms of plot progress, this is pretty much the main big conflict that we’re dealing right now. The other brothers have their minor storylines too. Taeshik and his newfound son are still at an impasse, especially since Yejin finally found out about Gooksoo. The good thing is that I think Taeshik and Gooksoo have started to get along better, with the help of the awesome, awesome Misook.
Whereas Taepil and Yeowool started getting closer. I’m not sure if theirs is intended for a romantic pathway, because it would be breaking SO MANY rules. They’re supposed to be at least 10 years apart and not only she’s an inlaw, but she’s the inlaw’s aunt, which means one generation above Taepil, which would just blow all social rules out of the water. It doesn’t help that they’ve got quite a crackling chemistry together.
Last, but not least, Taebum and Sooyoung. With the appearance of Sooyoung’s senior who became their new boss, Taebum was spurred on by the new alpha male competition, especially since the new boss was so not shy from professing his undying love for Sooyoung. Taebum was pushed to jealousy and forced to face his growing attraction for Sooyoung. Finally, after all this time, Taebum began to reciprocate Sooyoung’s feelings. And now, JUST when things had gotten good, his ex just had to make a friggin comeback, geez.
Ojakgyo Brothers is flowing really really nicely. It has a whole bunch of mini storylines between a set of characters. Each brother has their own issues to worry about, under which they generally stand. But then we get nice little moments of these characters interacting outside their specified frame. Like Taepil showing care and concern for Taehee, usually the brother he refuses to acknowledge. Taepil’s storyline is considerably less, but he’s given extra depth to round of his role in the drama. Plus, Yeon Woojin is a pretty capable actor and hopefully would graduate into leads soon.
I really like the fact that we’re more than halfway through and no sign of slowing down anytime soon. The writer picks great timing to introduce new people to the show to not only spice things up but also pick up the pace. With the long awaited arrival of Taebum’s ex girlfriend, Taebum and Sooyoung’s line will officially go into full swing. And now that Jaeun has made up her mind to NOT sell the farm to Kim Jaeha, we will reset the score and Taehee/Jaeun will have to rebuild their almost relationship.
Not only that, Jaeun and Mom Hwang can finally start fresh. Nothing will be forgotten, but their formed bond cannot be dimissed either. I miss this dynamic duo the most. Hopefully they will patch things up soon.
….with Crazy Chicken.
Seriously, how awesome is he?? Anyone who’s watching Flower Boy Ramyun Shop and NOT liking Kim Bawool aka Crazy Chicken must be, well, crazy. He’s the most adorable
puppy kid ever. He’s kind of a reminiscence of Matsumoto Jun in two different projects: Gokusen and You’re My Pet. Plus, the fact that Bawool has an actual chicken hair, just tickles me so much.
I like Bawool a lot because inherently he’s just a big ol’ softie. He was all tough on the onset, what with all the fighting, the school skipping, etc. But whenever he’s on screen, you just can’t help going all ‘Awwwww’. In these 6 episodes of Flower Boy Ramyun Shop that have aired, Bawool consistently ranks as my favourite character.
And the thing is, I actually like the way all these characters are written. There’s the Diva Chaebol Asshole who’s getting his ass served on a silver platter on account of his newfound rush of feelings for the Constipated Intern. The aforementioned Constipated Intern is a girl in the midst of finding herself, and accepting who she is. Also, girl has an enviable Shinhwa T-Shirt. Then there’s the Sleepy Sleeperson who’s the laziest 2nd lead, but also the most adorable one in the history of drama watching (mine, at least).
I’ve got the worst case of 2nd Lead Syndrome with Lee Kiwoo’s Kang Hyuk. And god knows, I never really have one of those. And to think that having one while my own Flower Boy Jung Ilwoo is playing the friggin 1st lead, is a testament to how giggle inducing Sleepy Sleeperson is. I hope he doesn’t continue to be perfect, but continues to be awesome nonetheless.
And in the middle of all this cuteness, Kim Bawool actually emerges as the winner. He’s got such a high likability factor that I think partly comes from the actor himself. I have no idea who Park Minwoo is, but I’m already anticipating his future roles.
So, how can he not be UP there in your books?? He’s such a cutie, this chicken.
My fangirl tendency for Hyunjoong is interesting. I LOVE to diss him. Not in the playful fangirly way like I diss Seunggi’s whackjob of a wardrobe, or Jung Ilwoo’s hair, or Shinhwa’s….behaviour. But Hyunjoong, sometimes I just love hating on him. Partly it’s because of his career choices that I don’t agree with, but I think it’s partly because he’s so unapologetic about them as well. Secretly, I appreciate that about him, but it also makes me, as a fan, easier to diss the hell out of him.
In all honesty, I don’t follow Hyunjoong as studiously as I used to. After Playful Kiss bombed so badly, I just fell off the loop for a bit. He took a few months break as well, only doing appearances here and there and worked on his first solo album since SS501 parted ways. Even when his solo album, Break Down, came out, I didn’t really get into it more than noting that he looked really and especially HOT for the comeback. I took a look at his MV and hated it so, whatever.
But when I saw his new look for the newest solo album, Lucky, I was floored. And I think this is the first time in a long time that I genuinely love his career move, and not ironically like I usually do.
I mean, look at THAT expression! And the suit! The necklace, the douche rings!!
With Lucky Guy, I just dig this concept so much. The MV is SOOOO campy and thus a lot of fun. I was watching it for the first time, and it just cracked me up. It’s got a entertaining story and looks great visually, but man, the dance routine and Hyunjoong’s outfits were fabulous, in every sense of the word. He’s got a collection of Vegas suits, red mismatched suit, fun stripes, animal prints, you name it.
Most of all though, I LOVE his attitude for this concept. No more brooding tough guy a la Break Down, here comes the flirty joker who loves to ‘shake it, shake it’. It’s almost like watching a trot performance, complete with a naughty wink on top.
It does help that Lucky Guy is actually a good song as well. It’s catchy and has such a different sound than anything Hyunjoong or SS501 had ever done in the past. The other songs in his Lucky album are nice as well. I would say “U” definitely borrows some melodies and beats from Bruno Mars, but this is the song I really want to see Hyunjoong live in. It’s cute and showcases his vocal well, without being too heavy. Smile is another one I like. It’s got you bobbing your head and tapping your finger.
Apparently Hyunjoong will have another album early next year and a drama on his list as well. His acting skills aside, I would actually like to see Hyunjoong play a sunnier character. His recent roles have been a)dull sunbae and b)unfeeling asshole. Why can’t he have a fun role for a change? He certainly pulled it off in Lucky Guy, who knows, he might actually do wonders with the right character. Here’s hoping!