Can’t help but think of the classic “Three Men and a Baby” movie (omaigad it premiered in 1987 ) which depicts the adventures of three single men as they try to adapt their lives to pseudo-fatherhood with the arrival of the love child of one of them.
For the KDrama version, it’s the opposite instead: Jang Ha-Ri (Jang Na-Ra) is a 39-year-old single woman who is very aware of her biological clock. Ironically, she works at a parenting magazine company, “The Baby.” Being a workaholic, she has not taken any pleasure in dating for the past 10 years and has pretty much given up on finding love or getting married.
But her desire to be a mother became an all-encompassing goal especially after finding out that her health condition may rob her of that possibility. Knowing the deadline given to her before undergoing an irreversible surgery, Ha Ri amps up her focus on becoming a mom – STAT.
Yarobun, if you’re like me, you’re probably experiencing an in-between-dramas lull. Nothing quite like that WOTM typhoon that pretty much sucked us all in its path. So, what better moment to finally catch up on a few new ones that have premiered during the crazy last quarter run of WOTM 😉
With zero expectations, I started off with Mystic Pop-Up Bar and almost 5 minutes into the “Modern” era segment, I realised it was Hwang Jung Eum’s post-baby project. And it took me another good 3 minutes eye-balling her because she looked somewhat… different. She looks FANTASTIC being a new Mum and all (don’t get me wrong), but is it her make-up or something that makes the Hhmmm? bell go off in my brain?
Anyhoo, this drama is about 500-year old Wol Joo (Hwang Jung Eum) who has to appease 100,000 souls in order to leave this world and find her own peace. Why? Please watch episode 1 for the back story 🙂
It is not in the pursuit of happiness that we find fulfillment, it is in the happiness of pursuit.
We all have personal journeys we live through, and whichever route we make along the way, it was meant for us to experience. Every single step of it.
The different rooms of denial, confusion, renewal, and contentment are housed within ourselves – and we will go through them at different intervals in our lives. That’s probably one of the reasons why we simply shouldn’t compare our lives with others. We live within our own timing and our growth is linked to how often we move within those rooms. Or how long we decide to remain in any of them.
My reflection at the end of this amazing adaptation of BBC’s “Dr. Foster” is that we determine our own happiness and we should not impose our definition of it onto others, no matter how precious they may be in our life.
I was evidently rooting for Dr. Kim to be part of Sun Woo’s future happiness. Although he is not in the conventional position of a spouse, but for Sun Woo to know that he will be there for her no matter what, is an acknowledgement of her definition of happiness. And perhaps of his too.
However, kudos to the ensemble of actors and entire production crew for putting forth a thought-provoking, heart-wrenching, and sugarless coating of the natural evolution of human relationships.
Yarobun. We have entered the final lap of this sublime makjangtour de force.
Gone are the days of deep breathing challenges while watching an episode of Kdrama. The feeling of tightness in our chest when we can see injustice unfolding before our eyes. Our hands itching to swing in full-force towards those deserving annoyances… how I shall miss these moments!
Behold, the Swag Kween of KDrama Universe of the Moment:
Episode 13 opens with a slow-mo montage of Sun Woo’s conflicted feelings while in Tae Oh’s persistent embrace.
Was it just a familiar habit?
Or was it an act of reconciliation that was aroused by pity?
Was it an apology for condemning and hurting each other?
Was it an act of regret for past decisions?
Was it a submission to impulsive desire due to loneliness?
The formidable Dr. Jin Sun Woo had gone through multiple life-changing moments since the discovery of a single red-hair strand in the purple scarf. Ever since then, decisions made mostly with her child’s welfare in mind. As parents, it is in our nature to protect the family when chaos looms.
Energy and tremendous effort has been invested in fortifying emotional walls, and mental preparation is also a requirement for those who are stepping into their new phase in life.
However, Joon Yeong may have missed out on learning how to survive the mental and emotional catharsis as he witnessed the demise of his parents’ relationship. Or perhaps he had chosen his own coping mechanism by unbecoming the person he used to be? After all, he was not the cause of their breakdown.
Yarobun, I’m confident that KDrama aficionados such as your lovely selves must have come across many, many squee moments (usually between lead actors). And you’d hug your pillow tightly, grinning impishly at the scene which you had probably replayed more than five times.
In WOTM, especially with the batshit-crazy speed of how the plot unfolded and refolded, we were introduced to this rather stoic man who crossed paths with Sun Woo as she entered the elevator to meet Je Hyuk in a hotel room.
His aura of calmness and civility went well with his profession as a Psychiatrist and when he saw Sun Woo walk into the hospital the next day, you could tell the thoughts that synapsed through his steady gaze on her: * I saw you last night * you’re a doctor here * I’m drawn to you
My first introduction to Lee Min Ho was from his breakout “eternal” role of Gu Jun Pyo of Boys Over Flowers. Yes, yarobun, it was such a big hit back then that it was just impossible to avoid.
Till today, I remember that smug, rather narcissistic curly-haired rich boy who lived in a Crazy Rich Asian environment, and always had his entourage of equally crazy rich friends whenever there was a need to make a Beyonce-esque entrance… cue Almost Paradise.
Acting-wise, he could’ve been better, but the role of Gu Jun Pyo catapulted Lee Min Ho to the crest of KWave phenomenon a decade ago. Hence the forever “blue chip” status as one of South Korea’s bankable actors.
After his military discharge, many looked forward to his return to the entertainment industry. Enter Kim Eun Sook, KDrama Sorceress who has penned multiple epic dramas. One being my forever fave: City Hall 🙂
So, with the mind-blowing collaboration between Lee Min Ho and Kim Eun Sook, the world anticipated another powerful rumbling from South Korea in the form of “The King: Eternal Monarch”.
It simply had to be a lethal combination of commercial success.