Posts Tagged drama

Takes Maturity to Play Immature Right

Lawks, this show is so cute.

SO CHILDISH

it’s great.

The hero keeps trying to be That Chaebol Leading Man:

But he’s NOT. When he get’s a shower scene, we watch him spazzing over “How much did she see?” Literal flailing.

…When he was in his cartoony boxers and a T-shirt. Embarrassing but really, not that disastrous. He’s notĀ  mature, not because he’s willfully self-absorbed, because his life has been so limited. You know a girl has never seen him in his PJs before. And he hadn’t chosen her to be the one…

This is something superior with a mature actor. Ji Sung, who plays Cha Ji Heon, is 34, has done his military service. He reportedly dropped 30lbs. before filming, which gives him a boyish look. His ability to look completely uncool, unconscious of the camera, is one I haven’t really seen in younger thespians.

And he manages, that way, to be completely adorable.

Though I actually am more drawn to him in his “mid-thirties” glory:

courtesy hancinema.com

…he looks like he could carry the groceries, but would put his foot down at carrying a purse. But also pay for dinner, right?

This kiddo? Not so much.

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PROTECT THE BOSS HAS SUBS

I will go knit sleeves on my sweet-loli-kodona sweater while I watch it

but first:

I did already see enough to screencap some truly awe-inspiring sets we’ll be spending time with…

it's perfect that they've decided he's the one chaebol to live at home. Esp. since he's so hen-pecked

I love how much space there is. This is a theme–in fact, this house Chaebollie resides in kind of reminds me of the Taiwanese drama concepts of rich-people-houses, which tends to involve lofted ceilings (the ultimate waste of space and antithesis to most Asian housing, not to be rude) and useless objects d’art.

this grand dame is someone's granny at least once every year, but I don't mind, because she is awesome.

The living trees are something I saw a bit of in Lie To Me, being used well, but here they’re on a completely different scale. I love the “eco-grandeur” of even the office. I don’t know what this company does, but it believes in SCALE

this is like a Belle's Library room, except without the books to make it friendly. What is this room for?

what IS that on that museum-wall? action figures? That would make sense and also, be hilarious.

The whole company building feels a bit more like a modern-architecture-showpiece museum than any kind of industry center. Which is really kind of neat.

Also, I think some of the set pieces are also from City Hunter, which makes me feel a bit at home…

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Blast from the Past: Playful Kiss

I was rewatching a bit of Playful Kiss, partly to review Hyun-Joong’s acting, and was reminded of how enchanting the first episode was.

The BFFs and their weird little phrases…the school that feels like an actual school, just a particularly clean and nicely landscaped one…the uniforms…

If you’ve ever picked one of the many manga featuring an elite school, or a school with some form of elite class, you’ll probably see some wish-fulfillment uniforms. Not even joking, that’s really one of the criteria Japanese girls thought about in choosing a high school…and I kind of understand now.

The Japanese middle school I attend for some time had very mundane, but at least not ugly, uniforms. Navy blazer with no sartorial embellishment, red clip-on ties, a houdstooth check skirt with a pattern so small it had no personality.

If you haven’t worn such a set of clothing for months on end, can you understand how beautiful these ones are?

Cute little cap sleeves, piping on the sleeves to contrast, a tailored vest, and the cutest elements of the sailor skirt, without being too flat.

Ribbon ties for the girls, btw, are definitely one of the cuteness factor Pros.

‘course, this won’t keep anyone from trashing them to look a little more independent…

…how hilarious is it that the placement chart is *everywhere* at this school? It’s so true-to-life. It is VERY hilarious.

Asian schooling, FTW!

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Mr. President, We Have A Problem, Sir

You can tell you’re caught up in a show, when at the big Birth Secret reveal…

you think, “Yeah, he looks WAY more like him!”

Haha. Okay, so my actual thought was, “Right, that mom and that dad make more sense when it comes to creating a Lee Min Ho, though he’s a little tall for both of them.”

Still, they did a good job casting, right?

Something interesting I hadn’t thought of before: the fact that this father also makes more sense in the City Hunter that grew up than Jin-Pyo’s brother’s actual son probably would have. I did kind of wonder, what if this kid had been completely unadept at all this stuff? What if he’d grown up like the actual second-best dresser at the Blue House?

what if he didn't even have this guy's head for technology?!

But Jin-Pyo and the president are actual more similar to each other than any of the other men (except Yoon-Sung and Young-Joo, but in that generation). A man who can make hard decisions. A man whose emotions are actually quite vulnerable, but also support his moral code.

They haven’t gotten soft just because they’re in charge, behind the frontlines, either.

I mean, look at how hot this guy’s hands are…

Jin-Pyo and Yoon-Sung are both *way* too vain to ever wear a hat like that with complete unconcern for anything but comfort, but it’s actually quite cute. (Yoon-Sung *is* Jin-Pyo’s son by nurture…)

Anyway, it’s cool to think that Yoon-Sung could grow up like this–someone with regrets, sure, but able to live as a human despite it, not a one-dimensional passion for money, power, or…revenge.

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Daddy-Drama: the wrists of a killer

I admired the Arch-City Hunter for his good looks and steely manner from the moment we go to see him in his guerrilla-chick gun vest and cargo pants in the second half of the first episode. When he made the switch to Steve Lee style, in his palatial new house. as he got ready to send his son off to Yale, it seemed so drastic a switch I was wondering what was going on.

Yet, he never lost that kind of debonair edge of the man ready to jump for a gun. It was kind of intriguing…

 

handsome devil.

It wasn’t until the first real scene of danger to him that I realized there was something about him (a little obvious in the screencap above because I was wanting to capture it, once I noticed) that kept that past visually present.

Right there, with his (no doubt very nice) watch, are those surfer-style bracelets. What are their functions? Who knows. He hands the bullet over to Yoon-Sung, maybe they’re some sort of memento. He’s definitely the nostalgic type. (In an ironically twisted way? Heh.)

Or maybe, there for in case he has no gun anymore and needs to hang someone. With Jin Pyo, who knows? He sleeps sitting up, hand on a firearm.

 

There’s something inscrutably hot about this guy. And I’m going to make this clear: every time he does something cruel I was disappointed in him. It’s mostly the actor, you know? I think it’s *awesome* they got a hot actor, who can pull off layering leather bracelets, to play the Bad Dad.

The Prez also had hot arms, but we’ll have to get to that some other day…

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City Hunter OTP: not what you’d think it is

One of the things about City Hunter that I’m surprised to actually support is that while the love-line between Na-Na and Yoon-Sung took the fore in a mini-arc, once it was kind of settled, the actual mission came again to the front. Na-Na was still a major player, because she was set up as a character involved with the whole package, not just his solace in a nasty storm…

Doesn't the navy-with-red seem kind of child-like, more a little boy's suit, so he looks even MORE vulnerable here?

though very good at that, too.

The focus of the drama was all about relationshipS, a network of them, where no connection came without a couple of knots with others. Even though the action was hot, it was the pieces of this network falling together that was the primary suspense.

And so, what was the best love-line? All shades of love are involved in this drama…

..these guys are so cute with their buddy-connection...

appropriate since the denouement conflict is over choosing between the love of loyalty, blood, and altruism, too.

So then, we haveĀ  Jin-Pyo, who made him who he is, and who is his harshest enemy. His mom, who he has the sweetest, bitterest reunion with. Young-Ju, with whom he has a rivalry that pushes both of them to excellence…and the funniest dominance games.

But who brings out the best in him? The human flaws and virtues?

So this is the prettiest pairing, yes.

Not Na-Na, actually. She heightens his conflict as City Hunter, and throws him into the hyper-reality of romantic love. No, this honor goes to everyone’s favorite ajumma…

Shik-Joong Ajussi!

I mean, look at these guys.

they get the brightest backdrops, even!

They have the sweetest exchanges, in terms of every-day back and forth in a friendship. The credit-cards arguments?

BEST THING SINCE COCOA

Sweet nothings? More like gossip-swapping...

They’re the kind of besties that usually you only see in US chick-flicks. Lee Min Ho’s other best pairing notwithstanding…

courtesy DramaBeans.com

It’s so cute, because while Yoon-Sung still feels the emotional lack of a mother, and all the ugly pressure of a swarm of fathers, Ajussi is the one who makes sure he’s living well, who gives him someone to take care of (who’s not a burden emotionally, but a real motivator to stay alive) and also a buddy who can help with whatever he’s up to.

Na-Na can keep up with the action, but Shik-Joong can be talked into doing the grunt work…

How cute is it that he’s the opposite of Yoon-Sung’s suave, plausible con man, and yet, he ALWAYS succeeds, too?

Aw. I will miss you.

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City Hunter – using the HD screen for good and eeeevil

This is a show set firmly in the 2kteens.

In a way, it must be horrible for actors to have to be on-target facially to such a high definition. Lee Min Ho does not have to cry over this, though.

I mentioned toward the beginning of the series that costumers know they have a good thing when he’s under their hands. I notice, in my screen caps, that there’s a lot of black, of course … and also hues of baby blue. It’s kind of in metro fashion these years, but it’s also definitely a good color on him.

Since there is almost no softness to his figure and features, the gentle colors don’t take away any masculinity.

EVEN if you put him in lace-texture blouses, too.

(I noted how they didn’t cop out on his sick-pallor makeup for several episodes after he got shot, and then again after being gassed. In looking back over the recaps I’m reminded how awesome that little detail is.)

Something else I’m seeing even more clearly from my screencaps is the introduction of warm, pinkish tones when NaNa is on the scene. I noted at the time the strong, but romantic light in this scene:

It’s true to the very high-intensity light of the rest of the show, but softened by the contrast of red phone and bright blouse, and a small diffuse effect.

But it’s not just in warm moments that this is true, actually.

Even if it’s Lee Yoon-Sung wearing maroon in the shot, can you deny it?

It’s a color that looks well against the sky and steel blues of most of the rest of the show, yet has a very distinctly different vibe.

You may also note (in upcoming photos, and previous ones) nature colors of wood and greens are the others to temper the black and glass-clear tech of this show’s 2011. Sky blue is noticeable in lightening the mood, because it has more green and yellow notes in it than the powdery or clear colors elsewhere.

So hot it BURNS.

 

…of course I’m talking about that jacket, what else?

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