Mid-Point Review of Queen In Hyuns Man: This Drama Just Might Be Perfection

Not all dramas are created equal, but some dramas are more equal than others. Got that? Don’t make me slap you upside the head with a big stick of Orwellian allegory. Heh, just having a bit of fun because I’m in a cheeky mood. As I’ve been swept up into a fervent appreciation and affection for The King 2 Hearts, naturally desire to watch other dramas decrease. It doesn’t hurt that I find most of the other currently airing dramas middling-to-dreadful, so I don’t feel like I’m missing out by being an one-drama kinda Koala. But I have been covertly hoarding a drama to start once TK2H got close to wrapping up, because it was a drama I was fascinated by when the previews were released and has only gotten rave reviews from the general drama watching population since it premiered.

I finally caved this week and marathoned Queen In Hyun’s Man, and by golly sweet molly is this one fantastic drama. Exquisitely presented, intelligently written, and lovingly nurtured, even half-way through QIHM looks on track to be a keeper and winner. Ji Hyun Woo, who I’ve always liked since I watched him in Invincible Lee Pyung Kyung, hits one out of the park as Kim Boong Do, time traveler and sensible yangban extraordinaire. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to crown him as one of the best male drama leads ever written. This drama rises and falls on his trials and travels, but the unexpected and wholly grounded love story between him and modern actress Choi Hee Jin brings the heart flutters needed to cook up an unforgettable love story in the making. 

The drama expertly balances the modern and Joseon era stories, both of which are engaging and entertaining. QIHM works as a cohesive fantasy story because it takes its time to develop the characters as opposed to cooking up one quippy interlude followed by another to generate plot. I’m not a fan of screenwriter Song Jae Jung’s last drama Coffee House (okay, I hated it, even more so because it was so full of itself), but she’s completely tossed out her penchant to be quirky with the realization that sincerity is what sells characters and gives a story its heart. The dialogue in QIHM isn’t peppered by one-liners and shocking revelations, its simply people conversing in the normal course of what they are doing. It feels honest, allowing the fantasy elements of the story to take center stage.

The story revolves around Joseon scholar Kim Boong Do. I keep seeing his name miswritten here and there as Bong Do, and normally that’s a minor mistake, but here it makes a huge difference. “Boong” is a very very old-fashioned character in a person’s name, and in the drama Boong Do is constantly being subtly mocked by the modern characters around Hee Jin when they hear his name. It’s like meeting a modern man with an old-fashion Colonial-era name. Calling him Bong Do just doesn’t have that extra added “he’s a country bumpkin” kind of association with Boong Do, though in Joseon times his name is perfectly appropriate and respectable for a yangban.

Living during the reign of King Sukjong, Boong Do is a supporter of cast-aside Queen In Hyun, a combination of being on the side of moral right and because his entire family was killed when the Queen was deposed. In the beginning of the drama, he discovers a plot to murder the Queen and he heads to protect her. Before he leaves, he’s given a talisman by a gisaeng Yoon Wol, who was formerly the maid of his dead wife. She’s gotten it from the temple and says it will protect Boong Do. When Boong Do goes to save Queen In Hyun from the assassination attempt, he’s placed in mortal jeopardy when the assassin gets the upper hand on him. Just as Boong Do is about to get a sword through the chest……vroom, he zaps 300 years into the future and lands on the set of a drama about the life of Queen In Hyun.

What makes QIHM so compelling and well-plotted is that the modern and Joseon-era storylines progress in tandem and both are so interesting. Boong Do might be the most logical and practical hero I’ve watched in god knows how long, calmly and sensibly approaching even the most baffling of impossibilities – time travel. When he lands in modern Seoul, the first person he meets is Hee Jin, and thereby starting their intertwined fates. In short order, Boong Do bones up on the history books and reads about what happens to Queen In Hyun. Then he figures out how he managed to time travel and how to use the talisman to go back and forth through time. Hee Jin also quickly believes his story about being a Joseon scholar due to his understated and hilarious fish-out-of-water reactions. She finds herself helping him time and again because he asks so nicely, and she’d be deaf and blind not to notice what a stellar guy dropped into her lap from the sky.

Watching the drama, I’m struck by how enchanting it is. The cinematography is to-die-for and the OST is magnificent. This drama comes across as beautiful, inside and out. It’s not glitz for the sake of covering up a lousy story, nor is it a good story buried underneath shoddy directing. It doesn’t aim beyond this finite world of a time-traveling Joseon scholar who falls in love with a modern actress, but that is more than enough story to fill the four-corners of this narrative. All the secondary characters serve a narrative purpose, but are not painted to be caricatures aside from distinct personality flourishes. I especially love Hee Jin’s manager and her ex-boyfriend Hallyu star Han Dong Min.

But let’s not lie and say we’re watching this drama for anything other than the OTP of Boong Do and Hee Jin. What they have is something special. A connection borne of something impossible, but a romance growing from something real. Set aside Boong Do and Hee Jin being from different eras, and what remains is a completely understated yet oh so sweet and tender story of two people falling in love. He’s polite and capable, she’s kind and sparkling. He’s amused and appreciative of her, she’s intrigued and attracted to him.

Despite all signs pointing to “No, do not fall in love when time traveling, nothing good will come of it”, they gradually fall in love in non-angtsy ways. She likes him and she tells him. He absorbs it and accepts it, willing to take a chance on a romance that shouldn’t have happened. I love how functional they are, walking the path of two people falling in love like it’s normal, filled with positive possibilities, and comes equipped with all the heart pumping moments where a look or a smile can just light up the heart. They don’t fight against their feelings, they acknowledge the attraction and try move forward with it.

I’ve watched half of this drama, finishing episode 8 and then sitting back with a satisfied sigh. It’s so rewarding to be captivated by a story, to connect with characters onscreen, to be invested in the outcome of a drama. What’s even better is that I have complete faith in the screenwriter to build on her story and then bring it to a compelling conclusion. The acting has been solid across-the-board, with the two leads evidencing copious amounts of chemistry with each other and really bringing their characters to life. This is the most attractive I’ve ever seen Ji Hyun Woo onscreen, and Yoo In Na fairly radiates sunshine and sass.

What more is there to say about QIHM? This drama is DAEBAK, flushing that other time-travel atrocity Rooftop Prince down the drain where it ought to reside, in the bowels of forgotten dramas that suck. I can’t say the time travel logic in QIHM’s is airtight, but at least it’s integral to the story and the screenwriter doesn’t just use it as a convenient plot device. Boong Do needs to time travel to save his life, and in doing so he’s discovered that he can use it to accomplish his purpose to right the wrong perpetrated on Queen In Hyun and avenge his family’s death. And within eight episodes, he does just that. My hero. *swoon*

Then the drama takes an unexpected turn and drops the time travel bit on its head. At the end of episode 8, we’re left with a big “what if” moment and a possible redux of everything that has happened since the OTP met. What’s marvelous is how the drama has sucked me in by then, so I’m flailing around dying to know what’s to come and wondering how it all ties together. Boong Do, ever the man of careful thought and rational analysis, wonders early on why he met Hee Jin when he time traveled. It’s a question I’m sure will be answered, but has greater ramification than a plot device to make them fall in love.

QIHM’s creates realistic interactions despite its fantastical premise, and that is the hallmark of a great fantasy-based story. The fantasy element is a plot trigger, but what drives the story forward are the well-written characters and their fates. Beyond caring about the OTP getting together, I care about Boong Do’s future in the Joseon era just like I care about Hee Jin’s reinvigorated acting career. We have two main leads that are decent and good people, with nary a hang up or neuroses. They are refreshingly down to earth and watching them interact actually turns me into a blushing school girl smiling widely from cheek-to-cheek. With eight more episodes to go, I’m treating QIHM like the rarest of treasures – a drama that just might be fantastic from start to finish.

* Note – Haha, no, I didn’t forget the apostrophe in “Hyun’s” above in the post title. I’m not that terrible at grammar. I left it off on purpose since an apostrophe in the title disables the comment tracking function, which folks appear to love.


Mid-Point Review of Queen In Hyuns Man: This Drama Just Might Be Perfection — 116 Comments

  1. I knew it! I knew you’d love it if you watched it! (I have yet to see anyone dislike it). It’s so smart and funny and shippy and perfect and I am so glad you are finally on-board.


    Also, I decided BD is my dream man – so smart and good and kind and…and…and…

    Such a great contrast with the ither time-travelling drama, RP, which doesn’t work for me at all.

    • I was hoarding, Mousie! I wasn’t fighting against the tidal wave of love for this drama, I just wanted to watch when I could give it my full attention without being distracted by TK2H madness. When the first trailer came out 2 months ago, I was already a goner. The one where they are department store mannequins? <33333 And the actual drama is all that gorgeousness, and then some.

      For me, Kim Boong Do is like the anti-Kim Joo Won. He's almost too perfect, but then you realize he's educated as a yanban and is just that smart and decent. Oh my heart, be still. Ji Hyun Woo is so smoking hot here in either Joseon garb or modern attire I have to watch his scenes while hiding under a blanket. Leering is not becoming.

      Rooftop Prince is written by a pair of monkeys. And pretty dumb ones at that. The villains aren't even smart enough to earn a role in The Three Stooges, bad guys edition.

      • I know, I was hooked from the first trailer.

        I’ve always liked JHW but he’s always picked out the most abysmal dramas (1000 Kisses was…I have no words). It’s great to see him in a truly good drama. And he has such a lovely, natural chemistry with Yoo Inna.

        I love BD’s reactions to the modern world – he is clearly often at a loss (and occasionally, subtly frightened – you could tell it before the plane took off) but he is also incredibly smart and together and it is so good to see a time-traveller who figures things out and is not cartoonishly bug-eyed.

        I don’t know if you ever watched The Princess’ Man, but he reminds me a bit of Park Shi Ho’s character in that before all the murder and revenge drove him a bit off the wall – a self-posessed intellectual with a ready sense of humor and breeding down to the edge of his fingertips. One of the reasons sageuks are my favorite genre is because their heroes are so rarely petulant men-children or selfish icicles with EQ of 10. And this drama gives me the best of both worlds -it brings a sageuk hero back into the modern world.

        Btw, I just finished K2H 18 and OMG shivers! Though they’ve been hanging out with whoever made Lobbyist and IRIS, by the amount of torture scenes lately.

      • omomomomo~ haha!!! re: “Rooftop Prince is written by a pair of monkeys.”

        oh.so .funny. (thank you) ~ (◕‿-)✌

    • RTP and QIHM both have same base storyline.. time traveler theme. Both dramas has their own charm. i love both dramas. i just wanna be fair 🙂
      Hyun Woo vs Yoo Chun .. pffftt .. even thinking for 100 years, i still can’t decide who is the winner. 😛

  2. I love this show beyond reason. So sweet, genuine, engaging… and a relationship that feels healthy, natural, and so full of chemistry it burns through my screen.

    Just about perfect.

  3. I was about to say I KNEW IT! Then dangermousie above me already wrote it! Darn… 🙂

    But, I KNEW IT! You wouldn’t let this good of a drama go under your drama radar. There’s just no way you would miss this. 🙂 I was also so caught up with the K2H fever that I disregarded this drama for the first 8 episodes. Reeling in anticipation and wait for Ep17 for K2H, I marathoned QIM in a day “just for fun” until ep8, and what do we expect? PURE LOVE. Banging my head for missing this in its first run. :\

    After K2H ends this week, I have my new drama crack. 🙂

    • This year’s been awesome thus far. We had SUFBB, Fermentation Family, TK2H, & now QIHM. And, the next set of dramas are looking pretty good as well.

  4. I’m so glad that you finally made a post regarding this drama. I love it. Go watch episode 9 and 10 now, it is ammmazzzzing.

    I really like how the OTP do not bicker unlike most other dramas. I like some bicker but it is refreshing to have two leads fall in love without all that crazy misunderstanding and mini fights that encompass them. Also in most other dramas Dong Min would normally be the main lead, and that Boong Do would be the kind (from beginning to end) second lead. I’m glad they switched it up. I’m glad the writer wrote Dong Min character in a way that you wouldn’t mind too much if Boong Do had to stay in his era and Dong Min end up with the main lead because he is made more lovable in episode 9 and 10.

    • Also, I think that all the remake of what happened in 2012 when the talisman broke is exactly how it’d have happened in a drama with DM as the main character, if BD never appeared in HJ’s life. And that is even more amazing! It’s not only “let’s make a new reality for HJ now”. How this whole “the possessive, demanding and bickering man shouldn’t always get the girl” thing is subtly emphasised (these two words should not be one after another in a sentence, but it just makes sense here) in this drama it’s just too lovely for words:)

  5. Yeayyyy…..I knew you’d love the QIHM.
    My only wish is to live streaming all tvN dramas lol. This station keeps producing well-done drama back-to-back.

  6. I have been totally w a i t i n g for you to opine on this one.
    My heart has no room for any other show.
    I currently am living breathing eating sleeping dreaming BD <3 HJ.

    It will be my favorite show ever no matter what happens after 10.

    HIs freaking smile. His laugh. Her openness. Her pout.
    I can’t stand how superior it is. I can stand how superior it is.
    I weep at the perfection of it.

    Can’t wait to hear what you think at the end, too.

    • Ikr? Glad you got the Boong Do fever too Koala. It has been a looooong time since someone raised my body temperature above the normal range. Thank goodness for cold showers.
      Ji Hyun Woo gives a delicious peformance here and I hardly say that about any actor out there. He’s like chocolate and he can melt it too. He’s got all the right moves and his timing is always perfect.
      I’ll read anything with Ji Hyun Woo’s name on it. Hope to see more QIHM on Koalas Playground.

      Boong Do <333333333333333333333333333333333333333.

  7. I have read elsewhere that this is the first work JHW has chosen to do himself… Thats probably because he says he fell in love with the script. Naturally, if someone loves something that much, their heart will show in their work. He should definitely choose more of his roles himself!! Lol great review!

  8. I read so many rave reviews about this drama, mostly about the cinematography and the swoon-worthy AND smart hero that, but I just couldn’t bring myself to watch it because I’m annoyed by Yoo In Na’s high-pitched voice. I don’t know, I have nothing against the actress (in fact I loved her character in Secret Garden), but I just hate her voice… Am I the only one feeling this way? I feel like I’m missing out on some great drama just because of a shallow reason…

    • You are missing out then… At first I thought the same, that her voice could be annoying.

      But I watched some press conference videos and it’s her way of talking plus her voice.

      It isn’t annoying. I now love love her and find her sooo naturally adorable/cute.

      Her voice just gets annoying if she does aegyo, and it isn’t always so I think you need to watch and you’ll get over it soon

    • nynaeve, I didnt think Yoo Inna was good enough to be a lead yet but she proved me wrong here. I’m a crazy Boong Do fan-girl and I couldnt bring myself to hate her and she totally won me over with her performance here. She has an amazing chemistry with Ji Hyun Woo and I’m telling you, if I was her real life boyfriend I would pack my bags and leave without a note hahaha.
      So give it a try, you wont regret it.

  9. hi Ockoala!can i share this review in the QIHM’s page in facebook? i know they would love to read your review…thank you!

  10. I haven’t wached it. Just read recaps and I’m in love. I think everyone loves Boongdo because he’s such a gentleman. Perhaps a regular in his time but definitely a gentleman in our society. Us girls are used to the cocky arrogant men we see everyday in our lives and in our dramas.
    If I could, i would marry a man from his time 😛

    I think the one bad thing about korean dramas is that when they create a love story, its usually bickering and it turns into interest and boom , love. Its cute but it always leads me to think about how its so unrealistic. Thats why I like this drama because even though the time traveling is not real, their relationship is. Its how people today form relationships.

    • I think Kim Boong Do was one of a kind in his era. A top scholar, a kickass warrior, a nobleman’s son plus tall, dark and handsome. Have you seen his shoulders when he was injured? ROAR.
      My point is, he wasnt just a regular in is time. He was the guy women wants to marry and have his babies, just like me today lol.

  11. HEhhhaaa…This is why I posted teaser preview for you to check it!
    I know you are busy…I’m glad you loved it!

  12. AHHHHHHHHHHH!!! ms. koala’s watching this too!!! made my day~ I’m so glad that you didn’t miss this gem =3 I’ll be happy to hear more about your thoughts haha =D

  13. This show IS perfection. I have not been this obsessed with a drama in ages, but this gem made me drop all the others I was sort of watching. Stalking Soompi and other blogs for spoilers, insights and subs. I love everything about it! ♥♥♥

  14. This show is pure LOVE. Seriously I already want it on DVD. I’m a sucker for a well written romance with awesome leads. Yoo In-Na and Ji Hyun-Woo are knocking it out of the park.

    I need episodes 9 and 10 NOW!

  15. So happy you’re on board with this one! (I guessed you might like it too but wasn’t sure) Lets all hope that uber intelligent, calm, sweet male leads is the new “smexy” for 2012. Hyun Woo has been making me squeal behind my hands when he smiles since before the-drama-that-shall-not-be-named. And Yoo In Na is perfect in her first leading role.
    I’m a total goner with this one.

    • I posted a link to your review at the Soompi thread, hope you don’t mind? I also quoted your comment about hiding underneath a blanket? (if that’s okay) If not, let me know and I’ll remove it. (I should have asked first)

  16. thanks much for this koala.

    happen to also, marathon the same last week and got me hooked and then came watching 9th and 10th episode raw. and the story is just getting interesting that i look forward to it after king 2 hearts. though it gets loaded a bit late..seems like cable drama is something to look forward to. second to INR for me, love love love the acting and the story. like i don’t mind the time traveling and all, so perfectly woven that to and fro scene does not cause dizziness.

    i hope you could recap this one too. many thanks again!!! 🙂

  17. I’m saving up this drama for next week when my heart will be ready to love another drama whole-heartedly! I did watch the first episode since everyone’s been painting rhapsodies about this one and enjoyed it a lot.

  18. I love this drama too…the lead is the best one ever. The fact that his intelligence didn’t just vanish because he time traveled is just the start.

  19. FINALLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    you got the queen in hyun’s man drama fever like us (follower since beginning)..
    dramabean got it recently

    this drama is perfect!!!!!!
    zero flaw
    awesome love story
    just PERFECT….PERFECT…what love story should be told

    • I’m watching since beginning too, subs are little late..but I understand…people didn’t have faith in this drama, and subers are really busy (thank you). Now I’m enjoying 😉

  20. I adooooore this drama. I can’t express how deeply I love it.

    I’m a really picky viewer. I’ve watched SO many dramas that recently nothing seemed to please me. I like “King 2 Hearts”, but don’t LOVE it. It takes a lot to make me love a drama, let alone be obsessed about it.

    And I’m totally obsessed with “Queen In Hyun’s Man”. Even though real life is super busy, I can’t help but rewatch episodes and search everywhere for previews/spoilers/information about it and watch RAW episodes as soon as they’re available.

  21. This little giant of a drama blew me away at first watch. LOVE.

    He is sought out in his era as she is sought out in hers. How will this all work out for our OTP?

    Get on board this train and find out….

  22. I see Mousie has cleared the path for the rest of us to flail about and admit our adoration of Boong Do and the OPT. They are just adorable. And Han Dong Min is a riot!

    I look at it this way. I enjoy K2H mostly for JJS (our adorable soldier bot) and am amazed that it’s holding itself together. But QIHM – it hasn’t even stepped one little note or word wrong.

  23. I really do enjoy Rooftop Prince (I admit last 2 episodes are little bit off but I all is forgiven because the show has really entertained me so far) but I´m also in love with this new show. It´s a different story (more mature I would say and its editing is much better than in RP) and it gives me totally different feeling as well.

  24. QIM = 1000 WIN

    I’m pretty sure I’ve never loved a drama hero the way I love Boong-do (minus his name – I admit to being a shallow modern girl, but it’s okay, I’ll still take him anyway). Seriously, he’s exactly the kind of guy I would die to meet in real life and have fall in love with me. I’ve fangirled over a lot of drama leads (and Shi-kyung~~~~!) but I think Boong-do is really the first one I’d actually want to yank out of the drama to be my OTP. But Hee-jin’s so nice and so cute I guess I can let her keep him. ^_^

  25. Hehe… I know you will love this drama.. For me, so far it is the best drama of the year!!! The writing is exceptional, at least we have a normal couple. You know, no more Cinderella and the rich guy…. Less angst about different class, or birth secret… A great treat from Kdramaland 🙂 The storyline is so captivated that now, I totally dropped Rooftop prince:)

  26. I see that u have found the next crack. I was wondering if your were going to recap this! It’s definitely about time because I have been waiting to read about your reaction… Hehehe.

  27. Haha, I was wondering when you are going to write about QIHM! It’s so wonderful, isn’t it?

    And finally, finally, here is a K-drama hero I can fall head over heels in love with and date in real life. None of that egotistical chaebols with an EQ of a 5 year-old. Instead we get a scholar who’s mature, kind, and gentle, with great fighting skills to boot! Kissing inside a library after-hours has never looked so hot! <3

  28. Hi koala, actually i’m same with u. i watching this coz TK2H too gloomy lately and i have to fix my heart. So, when someone @ Soompi suggest this drama i grap it. And, i’m in love. Kim Boong Do smokin hot here. U’re in love wit him from the very1 time. Hee jin is too lovely bubbly but not so stupid and naive like usually in KDramaland. And their interaction makes u ship them. OMG, a ton of chemistry.
    I really glad and happy that u made this review, coz i love u’r writing. ^^

  29. <333333 I'm glad you have started watching QIHM!!! I have to say since I started watching it my mind is just occupied with how perfect this drama is (and of coz the perfect man Kim Boong Do and the great chemistry between the OTP)

    I have never watched any previous dramas written by this writer but because she has created this gem I'm going to follow her future works. I think the last time I'm this addicted was when City Hall was out. This drama is looking good to become the top three of my fav k-dramas and I'm dreading all the withdrawal symptoms that I will have…

    Ep 10's cliffhanger is one of the sweetest ones I've ever seen and it proves that when you throw in something that looks SO GOOD audience will just be dying to watch the next episode – we don't actually need any near-death moments or angsty ones to keep the audience glued to a drama, and oh my how well is QIHM doing to prove it's right.

  30. I absolutely love this drama!!! I didnt understand but I watches raws since this aerie is behind in subs. I guess, my only disadvantage is that I have limited Korean understanding, so the Joseon parts are totally lost on me but I know the story is interesting.

    As much I love my cold hearted bastard leads who turn into the best-guy-EVER, Boong Do is just so different that it is refreshing. And he is smart!! Intelligence does not equal arrogance, thanks drama!! And the lead is nice NOT stupid. But sometimes she is just so vulnerable because of her straightforwardness.. In the recent episodes, I even felt bad for Dong Min.. a funny and entertaining character most of the time. Another thing I noticed is that this drama has quite a lot of kisses! Haha

  31. “But do you have a reason to come here any more.”

    “My lover is here. Isn’t that a reason? Didn’t I say I would try my best to be your lover?”


    Thanks for creating a space to discuss this drama.

    Loving it.

  32. I’m also enjoying this drama… The main OTP are just too cute with one another , especially when they tease each other…. And I also love the cinematography. It doesn’t seem like its a drama but a movie.

  33. And by the way, total unsung hero here is Kim Jin Woo.
    Not only did the writers deliver a second lead who is NOT a jerk, just a guy with bad timing, but somehow have us convinced HJ shouldn’t be in love with him. Why? He is adorable in every scene, in King-wear, formal ware, sweats, whatever they dress him in.
    His pitch-perfect playing of Han Dong Min is the only reason more of us are not swooning like crazy over him. He is just a tad “too,” but really only a smidgen. That nuance is tough to play well, but he is doing it. Can’t wait for his next well written part! He seems like a movie star to me.

  34. yaaaaay, finally koala!!! what took you so long to notice this drama?! looking forward to more of your juicy recaps of boong do and hee jin’s love story! 😉

  35. .. This drama is Daebak! So amazing! Like this one more than i like rooftop prince!.. Ms. Koala u wont regret ff ths one!..

  36. QIHM is enchanting and addictive. BD’s smile is mesmerizing.
    HJ’s laugh and squinty eyes are endearing and DM’s temper
    tantrums are hilarious.

  37. I also love rooftop prince cause it entertains me. However I have been following recaps of qihm and am definitely intrigued. I am trying to hold out and marathon the entire series. I might make it since there are a lot of other dramas distracting me.

    Everyone says the lead is the best… I am sure I will feel the same once I watch it. 🙂

  38. yehey! I’m so happy when I saw this on your site! I also saw it a little bit late due to TK2H but I’m glad that I discovered it too. I wasn’t attracted at the main casts at first but they changed my mind in a heartbeat. Sometimes I wonder if the OTP are really dating in real life because they just great chemistry on scree. I hope you don’t mind Capt Ockoala if I’ll be in your crewship again. 😀

  39. All I can say is Awwwww!!!

    There is no need for words.

    The show explains itself.


  40. Koala, your review is perfection.
    “With eight more episodes to go, I’m treating QIHM like the rarest of treasures – a drama that just might be fantastic from start to finish.”
    Even if it won’t be fantastic till finish, im definitely in for the otp till the end.

    How beautiful was that opening scene…. No words, all the words they wanted to say was just on their faces. Add the beautiful set in front of Gwanghwamun, contrasting Joseon and 2012. This drama is gorgeous.
    Script, directing, cast, couple…. i can find no flaw. Even if there is a flaw, its subtle.
    @Eva i’ve been becoming more wary about shipping couples with awesome chemistry these days, but……………… i can’t. i can’t prevent myself this time.
    Their chemistry is exploding, too good to be true.

    I started watching when QIHM was at episode 4 (and I could somehow tell that RTP’s story is going down the whirlpool of no return) and I couldn’t take my eyes off the screen.

    I watched episode 1 prepared to just skip all sageuk part, cuz you know, when modern and sageuk clash together, there’s always one side that is lacking and that’s usually the sageuk part which either don’t make sense or just doesn’t have enough stake raised for us to care, bleh. But QIHM proved me otherwise, it was really the sageuk part of the story in that episode that got me so invested in the story. And I love how QIHM is able to switch between the 2 eras, without making the audience feeling disconnect with either side of the story. The blend between sageuk and modern was almost perfect, never once had I though that the scene skipping was awkward, like “huh, now we are going back to sageuk again?”, the scenes just connected themselves.

    I think I found my drama crack of 2012!! *Unless a better drama comes along (Vampire Prosecutor 2 perhaps?)* I mean, how often do we hope that our male lead gets killed by the villain so eagerly? I was practically screaming “KILL HIM, KILL HIM, I NEED MY OTP SCENE” when his attackers appear XD Oh, did I mention that I love the OTP??

    Lastly, to be honest, when I first saw Ji Hyun Woo, he didn’t really occur to me as the first lead material, but by episode 2, AHHHHHHH, I’ll just wave and scream at the screen when he appears XD How wrong was I, Ji Hyun Woo is Boong Do and Boong Do can only be Ji Hyun Woo *waves*

  42. Yahoooo!..so ms.Koala are you going to do recaps on QIHM?
    I’m loving this drama too..

    As for rooftop prince, if it was not for YooChun then i wouldn’t have watched it..hehehehe…
    That drama is just way too superficial with the after one punch/fall you die etc. and the villains there are just so…*speechless*..
    Just my two cents 😉

  43. Hehe, right on koala!!! I love QIHM’s too. The storyline, characters, and music are carefully thought and written for. I was never a fan of JHW but there was always something interesting about him that catches my attention although idk what that is and his singing has always captivated me ever since over the rainbow and I despise that drama lmao. I was trying to watch his other dramas however I can never bring myself to finish it. Recently, I just finished his movie, “Mr. Idol” and began liking him more. JHW totally won me over in QIHM. His character is so likeable and he played it so perfectly that you can’t help but fall for him too.

  44. lovin’ the boong do header…welcome aboard the QIHM ship ockoala! looking forwards for more QIHM in your page 😀

    i seldom post and comments and time to delurk!

    i learned my lesson well in moonsun–no matter how supportive you are for your bias, if not for the story you are not going to appreciate it totally.

    my initial intention to follow QHIM is mainly because of JHW. never watched the teasers , press con vids and all. i went directly to the first RAW episode during its premiere and there. my sanity had a 180 degree turn.

    i wish i can meet the writer someday. she is damn brilliant. a kim boong do equivalent.
    and oh, this drama surpassed my addiction and fangirling and kdrama junkie habits. it made me talk toooo much LOL

  46. This drama came out of left field. It is the only drama I am up to date with, and I LOVE IT! It’s been so long since I really enjoyed a drama this thoroughly. Then again, I have also missed out on watching a lot of dramas that people have raved about (for instance: The Princess’s Man).

    Anyways, Kim Boong Do reminds me of Park Kyu from Tamra the Island. Both male leads had character traits of traditional secondary leads as well as those of leads. Basically, they were both (almost) perfection. Park Kyu is my favorite male lead ever, but Kim Boong Do is getting very close lol Also, I have always adored Yoo In Na. I find her naturally charming, and I am so glad she is in this drama. Her character, Hee Jin allows YIN to show her natural charm and sass. JHW and YIN also have sizzling chemistry, and I love how their relationship has progressed. The progression is so natural and real. Another plus is Han Dong Min. He cracks me up, and has become a more viable option in the recent episodes. BUT I am still BD+HJ<3 100%

    I want a time-traveling hero of my very own… but then again, the angst and heartbreak might be too much…

    I cannot wait for next week 🙂

  47. I love this drama. I love this drama so much. Just finished episode 10. Will probably be flailing all weekend and beyond. *___* Boong Do = Perfect Man is Perfect.

    He’s like a cross between Park Kyu in Tamra and whatshisname played by Park Shi Hoo in The Princess’s Man, minus the Batman voice.

    • Alright! Now I’m convinced I’m gonna have to watch this drama. Most dramas become dragging once it hits the middle mark, but from the rave reviews I’ve read so far, this one’s turning out to be awesome sauce.

      Btw, good news peeps! WithS2 has just announced that they will be subbing Queen In Hyun’s Man. Squeeee…

    • LOL I know you’ll love Ep 9 and 10!!! If only we can find our Kim Boong Do… I think the most fantasy-like feature of this drama may not even be time-travelling at all but what a perfect man KBD is LOL

      • I agree with you So3! We should have more leading man who are nice and intelligent yet cheeky on the side.. Wow.. Kim Boong Do is PERFECT!

    • Kim Boong Do <3 I agree that he is the most fantasy-like element of this drama. Why must you raise my standards for men? SIGH.

      The Princess's Man has always been on my must-watch-eventually list, but now it's the drama that I will be watching (…after I catch up with the sitcom I started yesterday). I may do a Tamra the Island re-watch soon too…So many things to do, so little time.

    • Boong Do really is perfect… and still grounded. I don’t know if it’s possible to love this drama more.

      On with the flailing…

    • Yes! So happy to see you joining the club!
      It is so good to find a romantic drama that captures your heart and remind you that falling in love can be so simple, isn’t it?

  48. I was one of those who scoffed… Queen In Hyun’s man? What a =.= title…… I didn’t start watching until ep 3 after following dramabean’s recaps ( bless them!)…. And I have been chasing this series ever since. Brilliant acting, SUPER romantic without all the annoying push-pull tactics…. See, people just slowly falling in love is lovely to watch too! Wonderfully shot, every screen grab is quite lovely hehehe I only feel the constant cutting of the cameras of the characters whilst talking a wee bit strange, but I suppose it lets us see all side of our dear Boong do…. so… no grudges there lol Go watch all of you who have yet to give this a chance…. You won’t regret it! hehehehe

    • If it wasnt for Dramabean’s recaps I would have missed this great show. I promise myself I wouldnt watch it till RTP is over but by eps 4 I just couldnt help it. So far this has been the best of 2012 for me not because I’m crazy in love with our OTP but the quality of this show is surprisingly satisfying for a drama with fantasy elements.

  49. Thanks for the review Ms. K!
    I was also one of the cynics that scoffed at this drama being another of those “saguek fusion wannabes”. But I also finally caved due to the constant outpouring of love that everyone had for QIHM. Not to mention my curiousity was also piqued after reading the post that dangermousie wrote on the gorgeous opening sequence of QIHM (yes I am that shallow). I figured that if the producers could spend time to come up with something that pretty, the drama itself should be as awesome. Well, it’s safe to say that I’m really glad that I followed my gut and is now left wanting MORE. TvN has been doing a great job churning out crack-worthy drama after drama (Flower boy ramyun, SUFBB and the Marriage plot…). I have dutifully caught every single one of their dramas but none with as much fervour as QIMH. I am pleased to announce that I have been turned into a rabid fan with QIMH and have not looked back since.

  50. OMO!! Talk about great minds think alike.. I just finished marathon-ing 10 episodes of QIHM and I’m falling in love! Kim Boong Do really is just perfect..
    Out of all those time-traveling dramas, this is by far the winner.

  51. I have to agree. This is one of the best dramas I have ever seen. And Kim Boong-do being one of the awesome-est male leads.

    I can’t wait for episodes 9 through 16.

  52. hmmm….haven’t seen this show yet…..but I was thinking that they had ripped off Rooftop Prince’s idea. I love Rooftop Prince (Micky Yoochun – can’t get enough)….and seriously want those villians in RP to disappear. But I will watch Queen in Hyuns Man when my Kdrama series channel offers it, if nothing else than to compare it to RP 🙂

    • I also watch RTP too, but QIHM is not a rip off of RTP just because RTP came out first. You should say that they ripped it off from Bu Bu Jing Xin sounds more right. They both just have the concept of time travelling, but their storyline are completely different from each other.

  53. Rooftop prince has a different premise. QIHM and RP are both time-traveling dramas but QIHM is written MUCH better than RP. If you read the recaps from dramabeans, you would understand why.

    On another note, I just watched ep 9 and I couldn’t stop laughing when Dong Min says “Man of her dreams, Kim Boong Do?!” and I said with my hands in the air “YES!!!!”

  54. Wow, so many good comments on this drama. Will start on it when TK2H , the best drama for me ever, ends. RTP? Love Han Ji Min but not the others, so will give it a miss.

  55. I like Rooftop Prince and I also like QIHM. I know a lot of people don’t like RTP but that’s okay cuz I like it for my own reasons and I don’t care that the plot is so messed up…but I am willing to admit that QIHM has a much more solid plot, better acting, and is prettier to look at. In fact, I am totally hooked on this drama to. So I’m glad that you’ve decided to watch it and that you like it…such an under-appreciated drama!! I really hope it makes it to Dramafever someday!

    I can’t wait for episode 9-10 and to find out what happens. The previews look like it’s gonna be a bit of a painful ride for our OTP but I’m sure that the drama will deliver as it has for its first half. Anyway, thanks for your review! You put all of my feeling about this drama into perfect words!!

  56. Okay. Can I just say I LOVE this drama! I started it last week & I am TOTALLY sucked in. But I was reading on soompi and they were saying that the original historical information given in the drama was false! and then when Boong do goes and changes things – then it is what really happened in history! I mean can we please just pause and say WOW the drama writers are CRAZY good! To even think about that – super cool. All i have for this drama is love!

    • Kim Boong Do does not exist in history. The reinstatement of Queen In-hyun is real though but it has nothing to do with him. The writers are awesome. I’ll be on the look out for their next project from here on.

  57. I read the plot summary for this drama weeks ago before it aired and though it was a story done already BUT there was always something that intrigued me abt it. So I kept it in the back of my head and went on to watch K2H and then gave Love Rain a go (managed to slog through the snooze that was the early eps and almost gave until it picked up in ep 5 or 6).

    So last Thursday night after watching K2H’s latest, I was looking for something to watch around midnight and saw that 8 eps have been subbed for this series and decided to give it a try. I thought I could watch 1 episode and go to bed…

    Yeah that was where the craziness started because I then proceeded to marathon 8 subbed episodes then couldn’t restrain myself and watched ep 10 raw and since I just couldn’t leave it, looked for a recap somewhere to tell me WTH happened in ep 9 that so changed things! How the heck did she get back together with her jerk of an ex??!!

    sigh…yeah …so now I’m in severe withdrawal and cannot wait till Wed as the previews look so good!!!!

    Love the chemistry between the 2 leads and agree with others that I really appreciate the lack of sniping but instead the gentle teasing that these 2 do. And those looks they give each other both when the other is turned away and when they’re staring at each other…sigh…

    I don’t hide under the covers but I do kinda bow my head and look beneath my lashes while squealing and squeezing (or pulling apart) a throw pillow (all alone in the middle of the night) because I just couldn’t help it. (esp that scene in the car after he gave it to her)

    I also love how BD says something like he’s not that smart, just adaptable, to explain how he’s able to cope so well. And really he had it perfectly right because that’s what he did so well, took his time to assess his situation and then observed and then acted. Definitely satisfied my inner geek LOL! I love how he analyzes things but is not cold and how he is very courtly and dignified but not arrogant. I don’t think he ever made HJ feel stupid or belittled her like a lot of Kdrama male leads.

    And I love how she definitely learned her lesson and wasn’t going to take her ex back and didn’t want him to help her in her career at all. Early on during her audition she was asked why she had not done as much and she said she wanted to study acting more and hone her craft (if I remember right) and that made me like her character.

    Take away how extraordinary BD is (maybe for modern day, maybe they have a dozen like him in the past though I doubt it), they are just both “normal” people falling in love in the regular way but caught in extraordinary circumstances.

    On a side note, can you imagine how much harder it would be for BD to contact her if there are no more phone booths around??!
    I like phone booths – mini privacy areas, like sanctuary in a crowded street and I hope they don’t go the way of the dodo bird.

  58. hahaha welcome to the club madam K…I also delayed watching this drama then decided to marathon it when there were 5 episodes subbed…and boy, I simply got drawn to the drama… I just love it to pieces now that I watch it even without subs then rewatch it then the subs come out… thank u for loving this drama as much as we do…. i love this post so much…. 🙂 🙂 🙂

  59. and everybody love this drama!
    many people compare it to RP but from the early episode of RP I can tell that drama is suck..the prince didn’t prove anything that he’s from Joseon era and the girl believe him! such a naive girl –”

    and this drama is not a copycat because need months to produce a drama, especially well-written drama like this..

    I’m so in love with this drama: the storyline, its so detail..the characters, and of course the chemistry that is hard to see in Kdramas lately 🙂

    for the first time I love Ji Hyeon U & Yu In Na, because I never find them attractive and I hate Yu In Na in The Greatest Love, but she proves me that QIHM worth to watch.. I’m shipping this cute couple! hehehe

    …at first i dont have any intention to watch this coz it has the same plot w/ RTP (an ok drama for me) yesterday i finally watch it and the rest is history….
    KBD+CHJ= off the charts chemistry
    … i already watched 12 episodes twice and still i cant get enough : )

  61. i love love love QIHM, but you know what i absolutely hate about this drama? I just want to say how annoying the editors are for cutting the scenes AFTER they have put in the BGMs. Ugh, im so stressed out about the fact that i can hear gaps during OTP moments. why drama editor why!!!?! *drops on knees*

    ok rant done. hehe.

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