Mittwoch, 7. Januar 2015

The Musical

더 뮤지컬 (The Musical) is a Korean drama that aired from September 2nd to December 23rd 2011 on SBS.

Story: Go Eun-bi wants to become a musical singer. Musicals are her life, she dreams about musicals at night. One night she's singing in a park and gets the advice that she shouldn't think about becoming a musical actress without talent. Willing to prove the person that he was wrong she decides to take a break from her medical studies and participate in numerous auditions but fails all of them. Two weeks before she has to return to med school she's desperate and participates in an audition for a male musical actor dressed up as a man but she's discovered and thrown out. Following she meets a woman in the restroom claiming to be a musical instructor. Eun-bi once again decides to leave school, for a year this time, and she strongly believes that she can make her dream come true.

Cast: At first we have Koo Hye-sun as Go Eun-bi. Personally I love Koo Hye-sun's characters, all of them are such strong females. A princess who knows how to defend herself and acts the way she really is. I can't wait to watch more dramas with her. Choi Daniel participates in the drama as the composer Hong Jae-Yi and somehow one just has to like his character in this drama. Another important male character is Yoo Jin played by Park Ki-woong, another actor I really like and respect.
Other important actresses included in the main cast are Ok Joo-hyun as Bae Kang-hee, Ki Eun-se as Seo Ra-kyung and Park Kyeong-rim as Sa Bok-ja.

Soundtrack: The soundtrack goes well with the whole 'Musical' topic. Makes sense, doesn't it? There's one duet I really love by Koo Hye-sun and Park Ki-woong, I think it's in episode 10 but don't remember cleary. However, this duet was nearly perfect and I would've loved a studio version of this but couldn't find anything - sadly. However, I think the whole soundtrack is nice but can be pretty annoying if you're not a huge fan of musical songs.

My rating is 6/10 which would be like a good average but not because the story is bad or someone did a poor job. No, I just feel like it was somehow boring from time to time. I didn't skip any scenes, that's not like me, but some things were just unnecessary in my personal opinion.

Running Gu

런닝, 구 (Running Gu), also known as Running or Racing Heart is a Korean drama special consisting of 4 episodes that aired from June 10th to June 17th 2010 on MBC.

Story: This special tells the story of Goo Dae-gu, a young man, who gave up running because of traumatic events in the past. Because of his old friend Heo Ji-man he discovers his passion for running, friendship and love.

Cast: For such a short drama many people are included in the cast. Baek Sung-hyun acts the male lead role as Goo Dae-gu. Yoo Yun-suk accepted the role as Heo Ji-man, and Park Min-young starred as the female lead Moon Haeng-joo. The main cast consists of those three and like you might be able to guess - it's good material for a triangle, right?
Others in this drama are for example Jung Kyu-soo, Go Yoon-hoo, Shin Hyun-tak and Jun In-taek.
About the acting of the cast I have to say that I really got into the story because of everyone doing a great job though I think it's hard to say how people would behave in such a situation. It seemed real.

Soundtrack: This might be only because I don't pay attention to the music that much when watching short dramas. Maybe it's because I've watched this about one and a half years ago but I don't remember anything. Like, there's really nothing about the soundtrack I can tell you. In general I think it was good but not really memorable. Which doesn't mean it was terrible or incredibly good.

As for a rating.. Well, I gave a 6/10 but to be honest I don't remember why exactly. Maybe because of  many repetitions, maybe because a little too much drama for me. But let's say that's just me and doesn't need to be like that for everyone. If you like one of the actors - watch this, it's good and even if you don't like it that much it's only like 4 hours so you wouldn't waste a lot of time.

Dienstag, 6. Januar 2015

White Christmas

화이트 크리스마스 (White Christmas) is a Korean drama special consisting of 8 episodes that aired in 2011 from January 30th to March 20th on KBS2 and let me tell you one thing - every review I've seen so far said that this one is one of the best Korean dramas the writers had ever watched. And I fully agree with them! But let's start this slowly.

Story: Soo-sin is a private school in the mountains of Gangwando. The area is isolated, all students and the staff stay in dormitories and there is a good reason: The students can't do anything but study so the top 0.1% attend Soo-sin.
Usually everyone's leaving for Christmas because the eight day holiday is the only holiday they have all year. Park Moo-yul decides to stay because of a hateful letter he received a few days ago. In the end, seven students and a teacher remain in school.

Cast: This drama is actually one of the first dramas that helped some actors gain attention. First would be Sung Joon as Choi Ji-hoon, followed by Baek Sung-hyun as Park Moo-yul, Hong Jong-hyun as Lee Jae-kyu and Kim Woo-bin as Kang Mi-reu. This was one of the dramas that actually helped some of them to get into the spotlight and it was also the drama that made me a huge fan of Hong Jong-hyun while my respect for Baek Sung-hyun grew as well.
Other included in the cast are Kim Sang-kyung as Kim Yo-han, Kim Young-kwang as Jo Young-jae, Lee Soo-hyuk as Yoon-soo, Kwak Jung-wook as Yang Kang-mo, Esom as Yoon Eun-sung and Jung Suk-won as Yoon Jong-il. Because it's set in an isolated school those are all characters that appear.

Soundtrack: I.. I do not remember the soundtrack.. I know there was music played, yes, but I don't remember a thing. Why? Because it all just fit together too well, the music highlighted the story but didn't try to get into the spotlight so I just noticed the smooth flow.

Another straight 10/10 drama. Probably the only one I've watched about three times now. The story is perfect, the cast is perfect, the setting is perfect and I just love this. And like I mentioned in the introduction, almost all people I've talked to loved this drama as much as I do. Watch it, it's only about 8 hours (sadly) so you can't go wrong if you like some psychological thrillers.


아이리스2 (IRIS 2) also known as IRIS II: New Generation is the second season of IRIS, like the name actually says, and aired from February 13th to April 18th 2013 on KBS2.

Story:The story starts three years after the end of the first season and the death of Kim Hyun-joon. The story tries to reveal what happened in the past while the new agents of the NSS also have to deal with IRIS and the attacks this organization plans. Nothing more to be said about it. If you've watched the first season you'll understand that this is enough to fill the 20 episodes.

Cast: Almost the complete cast changed. The male lead role Jung Yoo-gun was taken by Jang Hyuk. The female lead, Ji Soo-yun, was played by Lee Da-hee. Oh Yun-soo was included in the cast as Choi Min. One of the very few actors also active in the first season is Kim Young-chul as Baek San. And Mr. Black or Yoo Jung-hoon finally has a face more commonly known as Kim Gab-soo. Im Soo-hyang is one of the more important female members of IRIS as Kim Yun-hwa.
There's another person who appeared in the first season: Kim So-yeon has a cameo in episode 20 as Kim Sun-hwa.
As for the reason why this might be a good option for K-Pop fans: There's Yoon Doo-joon of BEAST/B2ST as Seo Hyun-woo included in the main cast. Yoon Shi-hyuk was acted by Lee Joon of MBLAQ (I hated this character deeply after some time). And there's Kim Hyeong-kon of A-JAX as Song Young-min, a rookie agent (and an adorable agent). Last but not least, belonging to the North Korea Party is Park Se-joon of SPEED as Ri Hyuk-soo.
The acting was great after all, I loved this drama to death (and finished it in about three days) and I think that's mainly because all of those people and also the rest of the cast did an amazing job.

Soundtrack: The soundtrack is one of the best soundtracks I've ever listened to. I enjoyed the instrumentals that actually fit the atmosphere almost too well. But there are more treasures.
At first there's Davichi's "모르시나요 (Don't You Know)". I love Davichi's vocals a lot, both of them are great vocalists. My personal favorite track is "Black Paradise" by BEAST (B2ST), it's one of my favorite songs by BEAST and I love this song a lot. It works fine with the drama but is not a typical soundtrack song after all.
And there's one song they reused - originally it was sung by Baek Ji-young, the remake was performed by So Hyang and it's called "잊지말아요 (Don't Forget)". Since this song was basically the most played song in the first season I wasn't really happy about a remake version but they didn't overuse it and So Hyang's vocals are impressive.

Rating this isn't difficult, for me it's a 10/10 and there's no need to discuss the reasons. The soundtrack is amazing, the cast flawless, the acting really good and the story still really interesting and less focused on the love story which makes this season so much better in my opinion. And I do need to mention Baek Sung-hyun. Thanks to this drama I became a huge fan of his though he's not even included in the main cast.
As a K-Pop fan there's one thing that was really too much for me. Hyeong-kon is one of my first bias' ever, I can fangirl way too hard because of him. Also, Doo-joon is my bias in BEAST and I like and respect him a lot. And then there's Park Se-joon who managed to ruin my whole ranking already a long time ago. That's enough to give me a heart attack, alright? Thanks to Lee Joon I've felt my heart breaking from time to time in this drama and got really mad at his character but it's not his fault and I actually like Lee Joon a lot as well.

So, yeah, my ranking is biased - but how is it possible to dislike those cuties?

The Strongest K-Pop Survival

K-POP 최강 서바이벌 (The Strongest K-Pop Survival / The Ultimate Audition) is known under fairly many titles. The drama originally aired from March 19th to May 1st 2012.

As far as I've heard it was originally planned as a drama with 16 episodes. However, the aired version has 14 episodes.

Story: Ji Seung-yeon wants to become a hip-hop legend and some events seem to make this possible. The only obstacle - she has to dress up as a guy and has to live with the other guys as well. The "M2 Juniors" meet the group M2 while they're being trained by Sunny Entertainment and Seung-yeon happens to meet Kang Woo-hyun who hides a rude and selfish personality behind musical talents and a charming smile.

Cast: The main cast consist of Go Eun-ah as Ji Seung-yeon, Kwak Yong-hwan as Kim Ji-woo, Seung-yeon's best friend, and Park Yoo-hwan as Kang Woo-hyun. While I didn't know any of the actors before Park Yoo-hwan looked somehow familiar. Searching for some info about him I've read that he's Park Yoo-chun's younger brother (and somehow only called Yoo-chun's brother often by English online magazines (AKP *cough*)).
There are also many idols included in the cast or not that typical idols but still singers - there's Song Min-ho more commonly known as Mino of Winner. Back then he was a member of B.o.M, a pretty nice ballad group that disbanded around 2013 if I remember right. Why I'm saying this? Because fellow B.o.M member Maeng Se-chang joined him. Also soloist ALi acted in the drama as vocal teacher Park. And Kevin Kim of ZE:A was another idol included in the cast.

Soundtrack: Regarding the cast including quite a lot of vocalists I think everyone can guess that the soundtrack wasn't completely bad. I admit I don't remember any song clearly though but I remember that I did like the songs M2 Junior performed in the drama.

To me this was a 9/10 after all but there could be multiple reasons like simply me being into music dramas. Also the friendship between the members of M2 Junior becomes pretty strong in the end. Though I am not a huge fan of genderbend I really liked this one.
Oh, well, and yeah, I do have a thing for Park Yoo-hwan and Jin Hyuk..
If you like music OR want to see Mino shirtless - watch this. After all it's fun and cute and pretty good.