Archive for September, 2011
One of the funniest moments I had in encounter with fangirldom was about Jang Geun-Suk’s clothes as Hwang Tae-Kyung in You’re Beautiful, when one of the Viki commenters complained, tongue-in-cheek, about his “slutty blouses”.
It was the first time I’d seen someone use that word for a male. Instantly hilarious. Esp. with up-tight Hwang Tae-Kyung, who did have a somewhat obscure fashion sense, rocketing between clerical collars when out and barely-there knits when at home.
It would not be the last time I came across this particular brand of collar-bone pimping fanservice, but since You’re Beautiful was I think my first K-Drama, it left an impression.
Of course, City Hunter pandered to us and the inevitable love of Lee Min Ho by giving him a similar taste going bare up there, even under his suit jackets. It could be the perfect blend between a Thai upbringing to heat-friendly clothes, and the metro persona he’s put on–I think the real Yoon-Sung would be bundling up a bit more in the cooler climate, if he had a choice…
Anyway, I went to look at a little Full House since it had been a while and I have a new appreciation of Rain lately, and it struck me.
Of course. Of course he was the first.
He was the first to rip his shirt on stage, on national television, and continues be quite shrewd about using his physique to get him attention.
So apparently the world of k-drama fangirls owes him a lot more than I ever knew…
This show is infested with cuties, I tell you.
And then the whole set up abounds with cuteness in general. OMG. When dad is crying over his mom not telling him about Ji-Heon’s phobia, and then about how it came about…
what more adorable dad is there? He’s short-tempered, but really compassionate. If he didn’t genuinely like No Eun-Seul and treat her well we wouldn’t know it so well, but those tears sell it. Also, at the core, his mourning of his older son comes into it, from my perspective, that’s why his tears have a kind of more desperate tone rather than disappointed one, after talking with Eun-Seul.
I love also that No Eun-Seul cries over her own inner turmoil. Not that she’s been told she can’t be with Ji-Heon–she’s not the type to take that lying down. But she doesn’t know if it’s worth it–she’s not being let nurse a crush and figure out whether she should go out with him, she’s being proposed marriage and a loss of her job if she makes a single encouraging move. It’s just too much pressure, and she’s *tired*.
And then there’s the fact that all the awkward scenes for the characters aren’t awkward for the viewers. It’s just amusing.
Awkward scenes tend to resonate too deeply with me for pleasure, but the nervous dad and wannabe boyfriend here–the bicker-twins of all stripes together in the elevator–the moms being found out in their plotting–they’re carried off with a lightness that makes it fun to be there.
I’ve created a Tumblr on the Suit-Distraction theme! While it’s awesome for having an automatic feed of my areas of interest, it also is kind of distracting me from the harder work of intelligently posting here…
Allow me to borrow a bit, and post about one of the fashion crushes I am not watching in anything right now, but still deserves a post.
photos courtesy ChinaNews on WordPress
Blue Lan or Lan Zheng Long
There are guys who can carry off the kind of non-traditional suits that aren’t altered for avant-garde look, a look that kind of makes itself, as long as the person is attractive.
In this case, the suit is made of a velvet material that could come off as either feminine or dated in some way (both looks valid) but Blue carries it off instead as a luxurious fashion choice.
This is a particular charisma, which can pull of white suits without looking bridal, and odd collars without looking clerical. Of course, he just has a face that makes you take him seriously, but I think it’s also a particular style. More edgy fashion looks don’t draw him out, though he can carry them off, but these kind of more subdued choices against the traditional only set him off.
There’s something to love about the dynamic these two have after 13 episodes, in Fugitive: Plan B.
They’re not comfortable enough with each other to be friends, and they’re not in a position to be lovers, but they connect about the important things. They’re brothers in arms. Comrades.
In a weird way, they’re on the same wavelength. She’s never lacked for money, and he’s never lacked attention. She’s been on the run from criminals and he’s on the run from the law…while catching criminals. She can fight her way out, while he never seems to get out without a fight.
Very complimentary styles, though they of course madden each other in completely different ways.
Rain’s character “Ji-Woo” is comfortingly predictable. He’ll look like a slacker until suddenly he gets struck by inspiration, and then spout off a cryptic metaphor before attacking the problem with everything he’s got. And go until it’s done. For Ji-Ni, I think his opportunism about money and girls is the kind of flaw that’s bearable. It’s pretty transparent.
On the other hand, Kai harbored an ability to betray her, buried very deep and apparently awoken only to protect her.
She’d rather have control than passion, though. For very good reason.
And why she freaks out when he seems to be changing his ground, or withholding information he thinks she won’t like.
He’s not the kind to actually hide things once they’re done, but he can’t articulate that difference.
I had noticed that it had been a relievingly long time since we saw insomniac-Ji-Ni, right before they’re fight over (literally) the gold, and it was so sad to see her go back to that, the moment he wasn’t present in her heart as a protection.
And yet…his dollar-store magic wand goes under her pillow while she tucks in with her bludgeon. There we see she hasn’t really put him on the list of Untrustworthys. She just has to live raw to stay alive.
While he has (predictably) bugged her, he also is unpredictably relenting about the insult, while firm about getting past their misunderstanding. Ah, this is where his value shines through. His lack of pride about some of the skeevier aspects of his interests also makes him able to do this.
JiNi has little left of dignity or stability, and inner pride is all she has, so he has to be contrastingly yielding. It’s great to have a guy in that role, while being the type of real guy that could be…
Thinking about it like this, it’s interesting to see how well their relationship DOES work. It backs up the way that I ship them, on a basic level–no, I don’t think we’ll see it happen during the show.
But as time goes by, and he remains cheerfully protective, she’s going to want more from him. And there will be other girls to make her aware of it, because Ji-Woo is shameless.
As for him, she pulls the serious self out of Ji-Woo. He has a bit of a learning curve when she rebuffs him, but later on there is enough of a connection whenever he reads an opening. She’s just too quick and stoic. I don’t think he’s in passionate love with her, but I think he’s the kind to build up that kind of feeling once he’s committed. But she’s a woman who can really know him, looking past the flirt and also past the professional.
Their insecurities are obvious to each other, and so are their strengths.