Category Archives: What I’m Watching

What I’m Watching: Mystic Pop-Up Bar

Back in the day, as in the Joseon period kind of day, Wol-joo (played by Hwang Jung-eum) was a shaman who could read the dreams of her clients and soothe whatever demons were hustling them. In the course of doing her shaman-things, she met a Prince, they fell in love and….

No, there was no happy ending for them.

Things went wrong… very, very wrong. The prince betrayed her. Her mother was killed. Their home was burnt. Worse, no one would help Wol-joo get justice. After all the drama, Wol-joo ended up committing suicide.

Usually ghosts go to heaven, but our dear Wol-joo did a few bad very bad, vengeful things before dying that made her get kicked back to earth so she could atone for them. It’s 2020 now and Wol-joo is still doing time on earth. To get out of here, she needs to resolve the grudges of 100,000 souls. To do that, she opens up a pop-up bar where people can come drink and talk about their problems, and she helps them solve those problems. Helping her out is her weary sidekick, Chief Gwi (played by Choi Won-young) who keeps her from messing up her tasks because of her nasty temper.

The real story begins when a cheerful kid called Kang-bae (played by Yook Sung-jae) accidentally walks into Wol-joo’s bar. Kang-bae isn’t like her usual clients. He’s a strange one who seems to be able to get people to confess their truths and worries to him just by one touch. That’s a skill Wol-joo could definitely use. And thus starts the partnership of the century.

I went into this because of Yook Sung-jae. I’m not really a fan of Hwang Jung-eum because in my opinion, she tends to overact. In every project she’s done (except Secret) she’s made me cringe and I only stayed for the male leads. But this time, it was different. She was standing-ovation amazing. Just the right balance of empathetic and tough. The relationship of the three leads was also amazing. They matched each other perfectly and their shenanigans made me laugh, gasp and cry. It was a great series. Unfortunately, it was only twelve episodes. They wrapped it up well but I wouldn’t have minded a few more episodes of this crazy trio.

FIND IT HERE: https://www.netflix.com/title/81264882

THE VERDICT: 8/10 because this trio made me both laugh and great. They were awesome. The minus two points is because they gave us only twelve episodes. We want MORE!

WHAT I’M WATCHING: Search WWW

Search WWW PosterAre you tired of damsels in distress and noble idiots? Are you looking for a drama where the woman is really the lead and not just an accessory for the hero? Do you want a drama where the romance is delicious but there’s other story threads that are just as interesting? Then I think you should check out Search WWW.

Search WWW is a breath of fresh air in a world filled with passive heroines who are cringely nice even when wronged. Though most sites credit Bae Ta-Mi as the lead character, the story isn’t just about her. Scarlet and Ga-Kyeong’s stories are just as important to the overall quality of the drama.

The three ladies who are leading this drama are all bosses and aggressively competitive. They take no bullshit. An eye for an eye is their motto. But even as the three make their mark in the technology world, they are all haunted by the same question. Are they sacrificing too much of their personal life for professional success?

If you haven’t watched the series yet, what are you doing with your life? This drama is epic. Each episode will take you on an emotional rollercoaster and leave you with a lingering adrenalin line. The realistic love stories of each woman will leave you satisfied and wishing you had what they had.

This one was really entertaining. Watch it!

 

FIND IT HERE: https://www.viki.com/tv/36618c-search-www?locale=en

 

THE VERDICT: 9/10 because the women were just everything. Minus one point because Ga-Kyeong didn’t get her happy ending.

 

Tell me what you think about it after you’re done. And if you’ve got a good K-Drama, C-drama or J-Drama that you think I should check out; let me know in the comment section.

What I’m Watching: Strangers From Hell

Strangers From Hell PosterAre you scared of the dark? Do you always think someone is watching you even when you’re alone? Have you ever thought that your neighbor could be a serial killer and thus avoid him? Well… this might not be the drama for you.

Strangers from Hell is scary. No, I’m serious. This sh*t is crazy. Don’t touch it with a stick if you’re an easily scared bunny. It will ruin your dreams and make you side eye all your neighbors.

That being said; I’m a scared bunny too and I’m still watching it. I regret nothing (lol). Just to be safe I watch it only during the daytime. Still, it’s just as scary.

The series is an adaptation from a webtoon of the same name. It tells the story of Jong woo, a twenty-something guys who moves to Seoul for a job and ends up staying at an ominous dormitory to save money. The building itself is creepy as hell, but it’s the residents we need to watch out for. Everyone is psychotic, and not in the ‘oh, that’s so cute’ way. People here are CRAZY. Shoot, they even have a murderer or two or three or… let me not ruin it for you. Through the series we get to see Jongwoo’s descent from your average guy to a tormented man who may or may not be crazy too.

Listen; this is NOT for the faint of heart. It is deliciously creepy, gruesome and rattling. If you’re into shows like Hannibal or Killing Eve, you’ll love it. If you’re into flowers and long walks on sunny days, just…… save yourself. I warned you.

FIND IT HERE: https://kissasian.la/strangers-from-hell/

THE VERDICT: 10/10 because it scared the Jesus out of me like it said it would.

Tell me what you think about it after you’re done. And if you’ve got a good K-Drama, C-drama or J-Drama that you think I should check out; let me know in the comment section.

9 K-Dramas To Watch If You’re A Newbie

So by now, you’ve probably figured out that I have a problem. I am an addict. Completely and irrevocably addicted to Asian dramas. I started out with just K-Drama but now I’m out here drooling because of the long-haired heros in Chinese martial-arts dramas. Meanwhile, my sister’s just giving me the side-eye and wondering whether she should tell someone.

Well, now that I’m an addict, I think it is my God-given duty to ruin the rest of you. If you’ve never tried a K-Drama, listen! Try out any of the ones below. I suspect you’ll be on this train with the rest of us soon 😁😁😁

***The dramas aren’t arranged in any particular order. I love all my babies equally.

1. COME & HUG ME

Come & Hug Me What would you do if your father was a serial killer? And what if he killed the parents of the first girl you ever loved?

The lead, Do-jin, is the child of a serial killer. He is also the one who reported his father and thus stopped the serial killings, but all everyone remembers is that he is the son of a serial-killer and they treat him like a disease. To make up for his father’s sins, he decides to be a cop. Meanwhile, he’s still pining over his first love, Jae-yi, whose parents were killed by his father. It’s kind of hard to get over her because as an actress she’s on TV almost every day. Their paths cross when a copy-cat serial killer appears and immediately targets Jae-yi. The copy-cat is copying Do-jin’s dad’s murders. Now, Do-jin has to stop him too all while being suspected of maybe being the copycat.

Yup! There’s a lot of complicated emotions and trauma involved in this one. It’s a true gem. If you’re looking for something with romance, melodrama, mystery and thriller all wrapped into one then you should watch this one.

2. MY I.D IS GANGNAM BEAUTY

My_ID_Is_Gangnam_Beauty-P1 South Korea has one of the highest rates of plastic surgery. You’d think that that would make them one of the most tolerant countries when it comes to people who’ve gone through plastic surgery. You’d be wrong.

Kang Mi-rae has always known that she was ugly, and even if she didn’t know everyone around her keeps telling her that she is. In high-school, she was the outcast, the girl boys thought was so ugly that her having a crush on you was an insult.

When she is about to go to college, she decides that she’s done with all that. She wants to feel what all the pretty people do. So she gets plastic surgery and changes her looks completely. Suddenly, everyone loves her. They’re calling her pretty now. But their ‘pretty’ also includes some snide words. They also call her a plastic-surgery monster. Basically, she was insulted when she was ugly, but they can’t accept her now that she’s pretty.

The whole drama is about Mi-rae learning to accept herself regardless of her looks, gaining some self-confidence and finding love along the way.

Trust me, you’ll like it.

3. FIGHT MY WAY

Fight_For_My_Way_Poster Best-friends to lovers….. hehe, my favorite trope.

Reality has a way of messing up dreams. Ae-ra and Dong-man are childhood friends who started out with big dreams but have now ended up as two people just trying to get food and the tables. Ae-ra wanted to be an announcer but now works in a mall. Dong-man was going to be the best-fighter of their age, but now kills pests for a living.

Certain events lead to both of them discovering that it’s not too late to go after what they want. But even as they pursue their dreams, feelings start to develop between them. Suddenly, someone who seemed like just a friend is….. well, appetizing.

4. STRONG-WOMAN DO BONG SOON

StrongWomanDoBong-soon_(Main_poster) Forget super-woman, we have a new super-heroine in the building. Her name is Do Bong Soon and you’re going to love her. Her powers weren’t caused my some medical accident. No, it’s just a thing that gets passed down the female line of her family. And it comes with rules.

The problem starts when she meets wealthy entrepreneur, Min-hyuk. At first she’s not about his corny pick-up lines because she’s still into her best-friend. But slowly, Min-hyuk starts to get under her skin. And soon, she’s breaking all the rules for him.

5. THE SMILE HAS LEFT YOUR EYES

250px-The_Smile_Has_Left_Your_Eyes_(TV_series) I am shocked this one had such low ratings in South Korea. Seriously, did they not see how amazing this drama was? I haven’t cried like this since Scarlet Heart Ryeo. It hurt me to see characters who loved each other so much but were so, so, so, so wrong for each other. All the characters were great in their roles. They will make you feel things. One minute you hate them, the next you’re rooting for them.

The hero (or should I say anti-hero) is Moo-young. No parent with their sanity intact would let their daughter near him. He is manipulative, seemingly a sociopath and will cheat on them right in front of their eyes with a smile and no apology. Jin-kang knows better than to fall for him. And yet, she does….

Prepare your tissues, folks. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.

6. JEALOUSY INCARNATE

Jealousy_Incarnate_Poster Gong Hyo-jin is one of my favorite Korean actresses so I watch everything she’s in. In my opinion, this and It’s Okay, That’s Love are her best works. Here she plays Na-ri, a weather girl, who’s had a crush on Hwa-shin for the longest time. Unfortunately, Hwa-shin is grumpy, arrogant and insufferable. He treats her like a bug.

That is until his friend, Jung-won, notices her.

If you’re thinking, that is so typical of men, you’re right 😁. You will enjoy seeing Hwa-shin suffer. That’s all I’ll say.

7. CHICAGO TYPEWRITER

Chicago_Typewriter_Poster History really isn’t my thing. If you’re going to make me learn about events that happened a long time ago, then you need to package it in a very, very interesting it way. That’s just what Chicago Typewriter does.

Most of the drama is set in present day South Korea however is inextricably with 1930s Korea during the Japanese Occupation. Our main characters are both reincarnated resistance fighters, only they don’t know it. Meeting each other forces out memories of a past they didn’t even know they had.

I promise, this is not going to be a boring history lesson. There’s love, passion, loyalty, mystery thriller that weaves between timelines. You’ll like it.

8. CHIEF KIM

Chief Kim Kim Sung-Ryong is an accountant, but not your typical accountant. He helps gangstars hide their ill-gotten gains and steals from them on the side. His dream is to live in Denmark as a tycoon. He decides that the only way to make this dream come true is to go for the big score. No more small-time gangsters. He’s going to embezzle from a big company then disappear.

Once he finds a fat target, he manages to get himself hired. Things get complicated when he realizes that he’s not the biggest thief in the building. Worse, those other thieves are extremely ruthless and will do anything including kill people to keep their ill-gotten gains.

Without meaning to, Kim ends up drawn into their dangerous game. This time he’s not the thief; he’s trying to stop them.

9. MOON-LOVERS: SCARLET HEART RYEO

Scarlet Heart Do you still have the tissues from before? Take them out again. You’ll need them.

This one starts out happy and lovey-dovey. We’ve got Wang So, the black-sheep of the royal family. He’s damaged and has a scar on his face to prove it. Next to him is the lovely Hae-soo, a girl who time-traveled from the present to the past because of a solar eclipse.

At first the two can’t stand each other. Hae-soo is in love with someone else and Wang So only wants to kill her so that she’ll keep quiet about his secrets. But of course that all changes, and they fall in love. And that’s where everything goes wrong.

Falling in love with a prince isn’t as great as the novels make it out to be, especially when the history books tell you that that prince will one day be a blood-thirsty King who kills all his brothers for power.

HONORABLE MENTIONS

Boys Over Flowers – Because this is the first k-drama I ever saw. If you call yourself an addict and still pretend that you have never seen this, you are a damn lie. Go to the corner, Pinocchio. We all openly sniggered at the recycled story-line and Lee Min-ho’s weird perm but secretly watched every single one of those 25 episodes.

What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim – Anything that Park Min-young (the main actress) stars in tends to be great, so of course this one is gold too. We’ve got a narcissistic hero with trust issues and an unhealthy dependence on his secretary. Then we’ve got the secretary who suddenly decides that she’s done with his nonsense. Drama galore!

Healer – This one has Park-Min-young too. Here she plays a tabloid reporter who unwittingly ends up tripping on one of the biggest stories of the century. However, the story makes her the target of an assassination. In comes, Jung-ho, an illegal night-courier with superb fighter skills. His initial assignment is to protect Young-shin (Park Min-Young’s character) but he slowly finds himself falling for her. Everyone I know loves this one. I bet you’ll like it too.

Mystery Queen – There is barely any romance in this one but I bet you’ll still love it. Dead bodies, an amateur detective who’s also a housewife and high-school dropout, a handsome cop, a cheating husband…. you see where this is going, right?

Her Private Life – Another Park Min-young piece. I’m not playing favorites, honest! She’s just so good that she made my list three times. In this one she plays an art curator who is also a stalker-fan of a popular musician. Her new boss discovers this and suddenly she seems so much more interesting. Can he convince her to replace her love for idols with love for him?

Search: WWW – I’m all about feminism wrapped up in a good story. The three ladies who lead this story are FIERCE. Every one of them is an expert in their field… forces to be reckoned with. The drama follows how they work together and against each other to defeat the evil forces around them. Oh….. and there’s lots of love too. But for once the men are the sub-characters.

What I’m Watching: Haechi

Haechi

Let me introduce you to my newest addiction – Haechi!

Even though this is loosely based on the life and times of King Yeongjo, you don’t need to be a history buff to appreciate this pseudo-historical korean drama. It’s got all the makings of an excellent historical thriller.

Hot, swashbuckling hero who is also royalty? Check!

Badass female detective who’s martial arts skills will make you register for tae kwon do classes? Check!

Sidekicks who are loyal af and more than just cardboard characters? Check!

A villain who is worth the game and won’t drop easily? Check!

Politics! Sword-play! Comedy! Haechi has it all. If you haven’t watched it, you should.

FIND IT HERE: https://www.viki.com/tv/36418c-haechi?locale=en

THE VERDICT: 9/10 just because it rock, rock, rocks.

Tell me what you think about it after you’re done. And if you’ve got a good K-Drama, C-drama or J-Drama that you think I should check out; let me know below.