Saturday, January 22, 2022

Kdrama Mini Reviews: September - December

I figured since I did a quick mini-review wrap up of the books I read through the end of 2021, I'd do the same for the kdramas. Let's get caught up and start "fresh" in 2022! (Already behind, but whatever...)

Hometown Cha Cha Cha ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

Likely my favorite drama of the year. So cute and fun and sweet. Starring the adorable Kim Seonho whose character in this one is practically perfect. He plays a dude who is beloved in this small seaside village. When our girl comes from the big city to set up a dentist office, she ruffles the feathers of many and he helps smooth things over. He is intrigued by her, but seems be holding back. This a great small town feel good drama. It reminds me a lot of Gilmore Girls... the town feel anyway... and the fun banter.  Click here for the trailer. (This one is on Netflix.)

Squid Game ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ 

Of course we had to get on the bandwagon and see what everyone was talking about. Strange that the "regular" world was freaking out over a KDRAMA! Is this real life??? But I am sad this is the one that caught the world's attention. It's a rough one my friends. VERY rough. But very intriguing and so much to discuss and think about. The ending had me angry, because of course, they left it hanging and there will be a season two. (Not the norm for kdramas.) 

It's about a group of people who are so desperate in their real lives for money that they agree to play a set of kid games to win millions of  dollars (aka. billions of won.) It's a battle to the death and it's very ruthless and gut wrenching. 

The only actor people I knew in this from before was the cop dude (love him!) and the lady who plays the main character's mom (she's in EVERYTHING, no joke) and of course Gong Yoo, the one that plays the slapping game in the beginning to entice our guy to play the games. He might be the most famous Korean actor out there at the moment. But it's been fun to see these other actors get noticed from this show. The old guy just won a big time award. 

Curious if any of you non-kdrama people watched this one. Let me know what you thought! 

Link to the trailer here. This one is on Netlfix.

Nevertheless, ❤ ❤

Lots of people were talking about this one and I was curious. Plus I felt drawn by the actor Kang Song. But this is NOT a feel good drama! So much  manipulation and miscommunication and just... shallowness of all characters. Kang Song's character seems sweet up front but is really just a player and he made me crazy. Our girl doesn't seem to have a clue and just is... stupid. LOL. It was like watching a train wreck, this one. And there's a sweet sweet second lead who is so perfect, but OF COURSE the second lead NEVER GETS THE GIRL! Here's the trailer and it is also on Netflix.

Lovers of the Red Sky ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

Oh my word, what a beautiful drama this one was! It's a historical fantasy where our dude has been cursed and sometimes turns into the terrible god of death. He is blind (both the dude and the god) and wants his eyes back (from our girl.) When he is not possessed by the monster, he is a lovely sweet, quiet shy astronomer working at the palace. And our girl has come to live there as the resident artist. When they meet up again, they realize they are childhood sweethearts. But he is confused because back then it was HER that was blind, and not him. 

And thus begins a beautiful love story, with the backdrop of this curse and the fact that she is the solution to breaking it, even if it will be her death to do so. 

So good guys. SO GOOD! Beautiful all the way around. Music. Story. Acting. Cinematography. Everything. Here's a trailer for this one. It's on Viki.

Dali and Cocky Prince ❤ ❤ ❤

I watched this one simply to see Kim Minjae in a fun romcom. The last one he was in his character was so sober and aloof. But this one... totally the opposite and I LOVE LOVED LOVED seeing him in this kind of role. So funny. He's a lowborn dude who has made his way in the world by sheer grit, while she has inherited it all through her families art gallery. When the art gallery goes bankrupt, she ends up owing him money. And he is very snotty (cocky, yes?) about it, but then, he realizes there is much more to her and to the story than he ever imagined. And here's the trailer for this one. It's on Viki.

Wild Idol ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

While not considered a kdrama, I'm listing it here anyway because I watched it on my kdrama streaming thing and because it was on Korean TV so... it works for me. 

This was an idol reality survival show where 45 guys competed to be in a kpop band. They quickly narrowed it down to 16 guys and then we proceeded to fall in love with all them as we watched them compete in several missions. Some physical, some musical, some visual... all while "out in the wild."  They were all amazing and so talented. The final episode was live on a stage and it was awesome to see how well they all cleaned up. They were narrowed down to 7 guys who now make up a band called T.A.N who will be debuting soon. So excited for them. Most of them had been in other groups that were struggling, and so they are desperate for their big break. Seriously though, if you love music competition shows, try this one for something really fun and different. I can't find a trailer, but here's the music video all 45 did before they started to be eliminated. This one is on Viki.

Happiness ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

My draw to this one was again, the actor, Park Hyungsik, who has just come back from his military service. Love him in everything he's done so far, so I figured this one would be no exception. He plays a cop who ends up in a marriage of convenience with his long time friend... they had to get married in order to qualify for the housing she wanted so bad. In the meantime, a virus has broken out and this virus causes people to go crazy and bite other people. Yes... zombies.  Once they get settled in their new apartment... the virus breaks out there and they are put on a lockdown. So the story is basically them dealing with this and dealing with the crazy people who live in the building. It's fantastic. Not a lot of romance in this one, though they do have moments...but it's more a character driven, people study. With a side of zombies. Really good. Here's the trailer. It's on Viki.

Lots of great shows this past year! My addiction continues! Can't wait to see what this next year brings! I am so behind and trying catch up on them all, plus keep up with the new ones. It's pretty impossible, but fun to try!

While we are on the subject of kdramas, maybe you'd be interested in the compilation I did of all my favorite OSTs (songs from kdramas) from the year. You might recognize some of these ones being featured! (But some of the ones featured I haven't even seen yet!! AH!)


  1. Great list, Suey. I've seen all of these but Dali and Cocky Prince and pretty much agree with you. I loved Lovers of the Red Sky and felt the same about Nevertheless, the biggest letdown of the year for me.

    1. These are just the dramas I've recently watched. Stay tuned for my top ten of the year! If I can actually pick a top ten...

  2. I was worried you'd given up again. I hope you keep going. :)

    I'll have to listen to the music when it's not 4am. I haven't watched The Squid Game. I don't watch a lot of tv. I'm watching a few tv shows every now and then when I need to just chill, but I can only commit to one or two and tv's usually something I do with Corey.

    1. I only watch one drama at a time and usually only one episode a day when I walk on the treadmill... or at night for a bit before sleeping. Thus I go through them very very slowly compared to most fans. I watch about 20 a year, and many people can do 20 a month. Let me know if you do listen to the songs and what you think. :)

    2. Wow! 20 per month! That's a lot!

      I listened to the songs. I really liked #15, #13 (which isn't really KPop), #11, #10, #8, #5, and #1. That was a good compilation. :)

    3. Awesome! 15 is the one that is done by real idols, but they are the also the actors in the drama playing a pretend band. (Even though this pretend band has an album now and everything.) They are all so amazingly talented. About #13 not being kpop...many people find that any songs from dramas aren't considered kpop. It's an ongoing debate! They are OSTs and kind of their own category I guess. La Poem is what many call popera... there's a lot of groups in that category. They are all really awesome. My #1 song is by a guy that's new-to-me and I will be for sure paying more attention to him this year. :)

  3. Do all historical dramas involve childhood sweethearts?

    I am going to watch Hometown Cha Cha Cha eventually.

    I don't think I can handle Squid Game.

    1. Many historicals do, (actually many dramas in general do) but not all. My favorite one called Faith, does not... because she is from the future. Scarlet Heart, the most popular historical of all, she is also from the future! LOL! Another favorite, The Crowned Clown... does not either. And the girl isn't from the future either.



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