There are so many secrets and mysteries in My Secret Hotel to thicken the plot but I’m in no rush to have the drama show hand on any of them. The central romance with its bickering tension and totally open longing for each other is more than enough to carry this drama along on a great pace. I’ve seen my fair share of a fantastic episode 1 that tanked swiftly by episode 2, which makes me let out a sigh of relief that MSH built on its fantastic first episode to barrel full steam ahead with another packed hour of entertainment. One important element I love about this drama is the mood, tiny bits of macabre and mystery abound like shifty people and unclear threats, but there is a light in the darkness that transitions nicely between the disparate elements. It’s both dreamy and moody with a dollop of both blended nicely together. One necessary reveal was the unsurprising news that Hae Young and Sang Hyo likely broke up due to a misunderstanding (or deliberate third party sabotage) that wasn’t tackled head on leaving both with massive regrets and bottled up simmering feelings for each other. Watching them glare with anger or longing at each other hits all my squee buttons.
There is a tiny hitch about this drama that is worth mentioning – the screenwriter Kim Ye Ri wrote the first four episodes of My Secret Hotel before passing sadly away due to cancer and in her place a second screenwriter Kim Do Hyun was brought in to finish the rest of the script. Kim Ye Ri only had two works to her name – the nobody watched hot mess Heading to the Ground with Yunho and Go Ara and the many people watched addicting but qualitatively incoherent Lie to Me. LTM is one of my fave dramas and Kim Ye Ri was actually removed midway through that drama’s low-rated run to be replaced by another writer. But most viewers fell in love with LTM for the first eight episodes which she penned and I can see the same LTM chemistry exploding mood exhibited here in MSH. Saying a rest in peace for writer Kim is first and foremost on my mind, as well as a hope that the second writer can do her drama justice and finish it with as much flair as the first two episodes were written by writer Kim. While MSH has the real life sad story behind the scenes, so far the actual drama is everything I wanted and more from the quirky premise. Continue reading