It’s been almost exactly six months since the first two posts in this series were posted, and in that time I’ve finished another three dramas. That’s right, three. Yes, I’m slow! I’m planning on continuing on with this series, posting every time I’ve finished another four dramas, but since I’ve already talked about nine dramas, I’ll make it an even twelve and talk about the three I’ve finished now. Oh, and spoilers ahead, so tread carefully.
The Continuation of All Kdramas I’ve Watched (In the Order I Watched Them)
10. Prosecutor Princess
I feel a little bad for Prosecutor Princess. It’s a very good drama, and I most certainly enjoyed it, but I don’t remember it well at all. I watched it right in-between two dramas that I absolutely loved, and that, in different ways, left me kind of emotionally scarred. So Prosecutor Princess kind of got lost in all that, and for that, I’m sorry. Sorry, show, for constantly forgetting how awesome you actually were.
Thoughts About Characters and Actors
Ma Hye Ri (Kim So Yeon): Ma Hye Ri had one of the most satisfying character development arcs I’ve ever seen. Her change felt real, it wasn’t rushed and it brought her where she had to go, in all due time. She started out as a very vain girl, always blowing off work and spending absurd amounts of money on designer shoes. But humans are adaptive creatures, and Hye Ri learned to adapt to her life as a prosecutor, and, and this is what endears her the most to me, she always tried her best. She might not always have gotten it right, but she really did try to get it right. I don’t approve of her not dressing fabulously at work anymore, but as long as the rest of her is still fabulous, it’s all good.
Seo In Woo (Park Si Hoo): Questionable methods, but with a just cause. Somehow, even though In Woo more or less manipulated Hye Ri into liking him to get to her father, he’s still somehow super dreamy. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the power of Park Si Hoo. When he smiles, you forget about all the problematic and just let him take you on that wild ride. He may have started out manipulative and slightly creepy, but In Woo, just like Hye Ri, really goes through a nice character development. This drama isn’t long, but somehow it really managed to allow its characters to grow, without it feeling to rushed or hasty.
Yoon Se Joon (Han Jung Soo): I never really saw Se Joon as a proper second lead, as I never even considered that he would be the better choice for Hye Ri, even though he on paper definitely was. That doesn’t mean that I didn’t enjoy his character though. His determination and prosecuting skills were admirable, and his relationship with his daughter was super endearing. I enjoyed his extremely stoic nature, and loved seeing him loosen up more and more. His relationship with Jung Sun was perfection, those two were so meant to be.
Jin Jung Sun (Choi Song Hyun: I adore Jung Sun. Her strength, determination and fierce ambition is inspring, and her otherwise innocently sweet personality makes her even more endearing. This is the first time I’ve ever seen a drama were the second female lead is in competition with the leading lady over the second male lead’s affection, in stead of the lead’s. This is also the first time I’ve ever seen the second female lead actually win such a competition. I love Jung Sun on her own, but I love her even more together with Se Joon, they’re just so perfect for each other.
Jenny Ahn (Park Jung Ah): I love Jenny. She’s a hardcore and quite cutthroat woman, yet she is at the same time an insanely loyal friend. All she does in this drama she does to help In Woo. I might not always have agreed with what she did, but I know that her heart was always in the right place. At times, she was more committed to his schemas than he was, and isn’t that a true friend’s most ultimate job? I love that in the end it was she that made sure that In Woo and Hye Ri ended up together, because she knew that that was what In Woo wanted and needed, even though he wouldn’t say so himself. If I do decide to be a lawyer, I’ll look to Jenny Ahn for pointers.
Ma Sang Tae (Choi Jung Woo): For the majority of the drama Ma Sang Tae, Hye Ri’s father, is a huge ass. And he isn’t just a huge ass, he’s an abusive corrupt criminal of an ass. But just as basically every single major character in this drama, Ma Sang Tae changes. He learns that he can’t run his daughter’s life for her, he learns not to be such an abusive asshole to his wife, he apologizes and repents for his crimes and he becomes a baker. Sort of. That last part might not seem very crucial, but to me, it really was. The ending for Ma Sang Tae and his wife was the most lovingly satisfying to me.
Park Ae Ja (Yang Hee Kyung): Hye Ri’s mother, just like her husband, goes through a substantial change over the course of this drama. She was always kind of a pushover, living in fear of her husband, but as he fell down, she was the one who picked them both up. I loved that as he lost everything, they both gained something so much more important than all that money, some goddamn love for their weird marriage! Park Ae Ja was always sweet, and such a great mother to Hye Ri, and I was so glad seeing her in control of her life.
11. City Hunter
All I can say is wow. This is one of the best dramas I’ve ever seen, maybe even the best. It’s funny, it’s romantic, it’s sexy, it’s badass, it’s heart-wrenching and it’s all in all so damn kick-ass. It punched me in the gut over and over again, but I just kept coming back for more. It’s a hero origin story of the best kind, and a drama that everyone, and I mean EVERYONE must watch.
Thoughts About Characters and Actors
Lee Yoon Sung (Lee Min Ho): Let’s just talk about the ending for a short second: how did Yoon Sung survive? I mean, didn’t he get shot through the goddamn heart? No? Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad he lived, but how? Well well, I guess we’ll never know.
Lee Min Ho is the actor I’ve seen the absolute most of, with him being the male lead in three of the twelve dramas I’ve watched. But until this one, I wasn’t a huge fan. I liked him in both Boys Over Flowers and The Heirs, and I always thought he was good actor, but I never fell in love, like so many seemed to. But now that’s all changed. This drama is amazing, this character is amazing, and Lee Min Ho kills it. Every scene is perfectly acted, and he convinced me, heart and soul, that he really was Lee Yoon Sung. Oh, and side note: look at him playing an adult role! I’ve always found him way too mature-looking for his high school parts, so I was ecstatic seeing him play an actual adult, with a job and a house and everything. Lee Min Ho actually played older than he actually was, which is something I’ve never ever see him do.
Lee Yoon Sung was a truly great character, and one of my favorite male leads ever.
Kim Na Na (Park Min Young): While the love story between Yoon Sung and Na Na was never truly the main focus, and I’m glad it wasn’t, it was still a big part of the story. And I’m so glad that Na Na was more than enough woman for the awesomeness that is Yoon Sung. She may look cute and sweet, but this girl is a badass. Yes, he saves her life, but she saves him too. This is a mutual relationship, and I love it. There’s no damsel in distress here, and I’m oh so glad there isn’t. Na Na can hold her own, regardless of the situation, and she’s a great support for Yoon Sung.
Kim Young Joo (Lee Joon Hyuk): Young Joo is the Commissioner Gordon to Yoon Sung’s Batman, and they compliment each other perfectly. They’re both fierce defenders of justice, and they both need each other, because the other can do what they can’t. Yoon Sung can bend the rules and catch the bad guys, and Young Joo can punish them by the law, just the way they both want them punished. He’s fiercely idealistic and self-sacrificing, and therefore hard not to root for. Which is why his end killed me. That was so far from okay that I almost refused to even watch the finale. Like I could ever have stayed away. While Young Joo’s death killed me from an emotional standpoint, it impressed me immensely from a plot standpoint. He had to die to make Yoon Sung into the hero that they were both meant to be. I’m impressed that they truly went there, I didn’t believe they would dare.
Lee Jin Pyo (Kim Sang Joong): While I hated him for everything he put Yoon Sung through and could never accept his murderous tendencies, I never despised Jin Pyo. He was such a sad character, driven by a grief he mistook for righteous rage to an extreme which he couldn’t come back from. In a drama full of interesting characters, Jin Pyo was probably the one that fascinated me the most. And while I never agree with murder, I was clapping my hands and laughing manically when he slaughtered Chun Jae Man, it was just such a badass and satisfying moment.
But Jin Pyo’s end is the very best thing about him. In his final moments, he not only sacrifices his life for his son, but he takes the blame for everything they’ve both done, ridding Yoon Sung of any blame and ensuring that if he wants to, as he always had, Yoon Sung can have the normal life that Jin Pyo always kept from him.
Notice I referred to Yoon Sung as Jin Pyo’s son? That’s another thing I love about this drama. Even though Yoon Sung agrees to carry out this revenge for the sake of the man that Jin Pyo tells him is his father, and then finds out that someone else is his actual biological father, Jin Pyo is always Yoon Sung’s father. It doesn’t matter that they’re not bound by blood, they’re bound by something much stronger, unconditional love. And that is what Jin Pyo proves in his final moments, as he grasps his son’s bloody hand as he dies.
Bae Shik Joong (Kim Sang Ho): If Young Joo is the Gordon to Yoon Sung’s Batman, Shik Joong is the Alfred. Yoon Sung is in many ways a lost child, desperate for love and affection, and Shik Joong is the “mother” that’s always there to provide it for him. Had he died, I would have been devastated. His addiction to home shopping was funny, and a nice break from all the heaviness the rest of the drama heaped on us.
Jin Sae Hee (Hwang Sun Hee): This girl is so cool. She literally does not blink an eye when people come through her door unannounced with gun shot wounds. She’s a veterinarian, not a doctor, but she handles everything as well as she can and assures that they live. I was so happy when she and Young Joo decided to give it another shot, and that just made it even worse when he died almost immediately afterwards. Her crying at his funeral is still fixed in my mind.
Choi Da Hye (Goo Ha Ra): I’ve never liked Hara. I know I’ve talked about this before, so I won’t repeat myself too much, but the dislike I felt for her was childish and very far from at all being her fault. But that still made me skeptical going in to this drama. I wanted to think that she was a bad actress, and I wanted to find her annoying. But even though her character was quite annoying at times, and she is not an amazing actress, I just couldn’t dislike her. I hate to admit it, but Hara is charming as all hell. Da Hye was not a very fascinating character, but she made me smile almost every time she came on scree. Damn you, Hara.
Choi Eung Chan (Chun Ho Jin): Eung Chan was by far the most interesting out of the council of five, from the very first time he was introduced. He was the one who didn’t approve of the sweep mission when it was first ordered, and he was the one who felt a nagging guilt over it ever since. He was also a good man, which is a key difference from the other council members. He was far from perfect, but the bad things he did he did for the good of the people, not for his own personal gain. Revealing him as Yoon Sung’s biological father made sense from a story arc point of view, but I’m glad that it didn’t change much. Jin Pyo was always Yoon Sung’s father.
12. The Woman Who Still Wants to Marry
After City Hunter I needed something light, something that wouldn’t tear my heart out and stomp on it. So I chose a drama with a name that suggested ridiculousness and a plot that could only be great fun. And it was, it really was. I’m not sure if I’m blessed somehow, but I’ve never seen a drama I haven’t enjoyed. This is about the struggles of the working 30-something woman, and being a senior in high school, I don’t relate to these struggles more than on a superficial level. But I don’t need to. This drama is great fun, Kim Bum is drool-worthy as always and the strong friendships between these girls are so lovely that I’d probably watch a drama that only featured them, no men at all.
Thoughts About Characters and Actors
Lee Shin Young (Park Jin Hee): Shin Young is our leading lady, and I rooted for her the whole way through. I’ve never before watched a drama with a “noona romance” but if that makes my leading ladies more like Shin Young, I’m all for it. She’s an accomplished professional, independent and ambitious almost to a fault and not some wide-eyed little girl when it comes to dating. Shin Young is a strong woman, and most of the time, all she did made sense to me.
Jung Da Jung (Uhm Ji Won): Compared to Shin Young, a lot of what Da Jung did did not make sense to me. While I can relate to her wanting to be loved, her obsession with marriage is something very far from my sentiments about it. But I still adored her. I was smiling all the way up to my ears when she was getting married, filled with joy that Da Jung was finally getting what she wanted, with a man who was seemingly perfect for her. But life is not that easy, and I’m glad that Da Jung finally had to see that, even though I hated to see her go through that. Marriage is not a happy ending, it’s just the start of a whole new set of troubles.
Kim Bu Gi (Wang Bit Na): Bu Gi is the voice of reason to the other two girls, and the one I could always count on to kick ass, both literally and figuratively. Bu Gi had no problem being single and lived life happily exactly as she wanted it. She’s the kind of woman I want to be, and it’s too bad that they didn’t spend more time on her.
Ha Min Jae (Kim Bum): Kim Bum was one of the best things in Boys Over Flowers, but he’s way better here. With a baby face such as this, he is way more convincing as a noona killer than as a playboy oppa. His smile was amazing, and his sweet talking was impossible for both me and Shin Young to resist. His age did at some times pose a problem, when he was just too inexperienced too understand the problem at hand. But as Min Jae himself said. “This isn’t about age, it’s about love.” Shin Young and Min Jae may be ten years apart, but they’re meant to be nonetheless.
Na Ban Seok (Choi Cheol Ho): Ban Seok was adorably naive and seemingly the perfect guy for Da Jung, all up until they were actually married. Da Jung had seen marriage as the finish-line and sprinted there, but once she was there she was met with the realization that her new husband had a completely different idea of what an ideal life was. I was glad to see that Ban Seok seemingly decided to change his ways in the end, but as we weren’t shown anything of their married life after that, we can’t know for sure that he actually kept his word. Old habits and dreams die hard. I truly hope he did though, because he and Da Jung were sugary sweet together.
Yoon Sang Woo (Lee Pil Mo): Up until he met Sang Mi, I didn’t care for Sang Woo. He didn’t have much of a personality, and it felt like he was just in the mix as an obstacle for Shin Young and Min Jae to overcome. But once he met Sang Mi and realized he couldn’t be with Shin Young, he really grew on me. If we ignore the weird stalking when he took pictures of her, he really acted like a mature and patient boyfriend.
Choi Sang Mi (Park Ji Young): As Min Jae’s mother, I never liked Sang Mi. But as a woman, and a person of her own, I found her fascinating. She was so downtrodden, so broken and without any shred of confidence in herself when we first met her, but as she got divorced from her cheating husband that she’d never wanted to marry and took a chance on Sang Woo, we saw her grow into a much stronger woman. I did wish for her to just live fabulously with Bu Gi for a while, but I was still glad to see it work out between her and Sang Woo. I think the defining moment for her, as the new her, is when she sees Shin Young at Min Jae’s hospital bed. She doesn’t throw a fit or confront her, she leaves, letting them have their moment. I had gone back and forth on whether I liked her or not up until that point, but in that moment she won me over completely.
I really need to watch more dramas. But so many dramas, so little time! Have you seen any of these? If so, what did you think? Let me know!