Spring 2013 K-dramas: Taking a Second Look?

Let it be said that I am as perfectly capable of changing my mind as anyone out there. It’s a fallacy to assume that having an initial impression is making a judgment, all it involves is rendering a limited scope opinion with the facts available. I noticed that lately there have been so many dramas I’ve watched and dropped really fast. Some aren’t even that bad, either the first episodes didn’t hook me enough to continue, or were so choppy I checked out swiftly. Judging by the ratings all over K-dramaland, I sense a geneal ennui with the offerings across-the-board. Gone are the days with dramas pulling in 20 or 30 percent ratings head-to-head, and this year we’ve only had one bona fide ratings hit in My Daughter Seo Young. That’s an abominable track record to speak of. I can understand when dramas are bad and viewers bail, but I feel like the audience for K-dramas have been shrinking rather than growing compared to previous years and the dwindling cumulative ratings pool is proof. Right now I’m only watching Jang Ok Jung, Live in Love and another guilty pleasure drama that I’ll reveal in the body of the post, but there have been quite a lot of Spring 2013 dramas I was interested in only to drop fairly quickly. So my question is this – for those of you watching those dramas still, do you recommend jumping back in because it’s really picked up? Try to make cogent arguments because a thoughtfully rendered recommendation invariably may persuade me (and likely others) give it another look. If more people join in the fun, it just makes the experience merrier, or more people to share the pain with. Starting with When a Man Loves, let’s run down the list of Spring K-dramas that might be worth a second glance.

When a Man Loves. Is this man’s love interesting? Is the woman worth loving? Is their love mind blowing? Is the K-drama viewing world missing out on an epic ManLove story? Does this drama make you want to throw things? Is Song Seung Heon taking off his clothes enough? Brooding masterfully? Has Shin Se Kyung grown a chin? Learned to act, or at least learned to make a facial expression beyond placid cow-like countenance? Is Yeon Woo Jin adorable or a bad bad boy? Make your case now or forever hold your peace.

All About My Love. Has the OTT died down? Is the romance really romantic? Are the politics passably interesting? Does the dialogue have heart and wit? Tell us why this drama doesn’t deserve the truly craptastic ratings it’s been pulling in.

Nine: Nine Time Travels. Does the heroine’s bowl haircut ever not make you want to cringe every time she shows up on screen? Does the hero ever not look slightly constipated when he’s supposed to be angsting? Does the time travel violate the grandfather paradox? Is this drama like a cool episode of Star Trek TNG but in 20-episode K-drama form with lots of love and kisses thrown in?

The Best Lee Soon Shin. Is this drama even fun? Entertaining? A good way to spend two hours a weekend? Are the characters getting more interesting? Is there a purpose to the entire story that is slowly taking shape? Are IU and Jo Jung Seok adorable together, or are secondary leads and couples stealing their thunder?

Gu Family Book. Has the evil villain become more evil? Is that even possible? Has he raped more innocent maidens and slaughtered more good men? Why hasn’t the King of Heaven and the King of Hell joined forces to smite him down? Has Suzy learned to act in a sageuk? Is Lee Seung Gi (and knowing how much Koala loves him) worth watching this drama solely for him regardless of the lack of an intelligent plot? Does poor hair-challenged Gon have more use other than standing around making snarky remarks? is Gumiho Daddy back yet? Does his return herald a new dawn for this drama’s narrative that is worth checking out?

Koala’s Shameful Guilty Pleasure:

Let it be said that no one is above watching bad dramas and enjoying it. There is one other K-drama I am watching other than JOJ and that is I Summon You, Gold! Starring Han Ji Hye and Yeon Jung Hoon. I cannot for the life of me explain rationally why, other than its ridiculously addicting even with all the nonsense and makjang and family bickering. I fast forward through the boring parts and enjoy the entertaining parts and find myself with a nice diversion every weekend. There is so much glaring in this drama I fear eyeballs will pop up, but that is all part of the wink-wink fun. This drama knows its marinating in the makjang and has decided to do a synchronized swim in it, and for that its cheeky enough to enjoy.


Spring 2013 K-dramas: Taking a Second Look? — 149 Comments

  1. I think nine deserves a second look. It was a really fun drama and I enjoyed it a lot. One of my favorites this year for sure. I also thinks it works better if u marathoned it and since it recently just finished it would be a perfect time to watch it. I’m planning on rewatching soon.

      • agree! Nine is pretty good, i watched it and i still love it.. Lee Jin Wook is really good there.. a must watch 🙂

      • I guess I ‘third’ Zain’s suggestions 😉 Nine’s pretty good, the story is intense and most importantly UNPREDICTABLE. I still haven’t finished it got 4 episodes to go!!

        You’re The Best Lee Soon Shin is very predictable by the cast is doing a good job in portraying their characters, the couples (all 3 of them) are pretty cute each in its own way and they got a lot of chemistry between each other. This is sort of MY ‘guilty pleasure’ 😛

        other than the mentioned, I don’t know if you like mystery/detective, but Team Ten season two is airing and I find it AWESOME, and although I don’t usually watch sageuk but I’m enjoying Mandate of Heaven 😉

    • With no doubt the best show in 2013 so far and maybe even the best around for a long time. Great writing, suspenseful and well done.

      No idea at all, why the actress of MY gets so much hate. She is cute. There are other bad, and I mean really bad, female characters/actresses out there. *cough* When A Man Loves *cough*

      Icing on the cake is Lee Jin Wook’s kissing.

    • I haven’t watch Nine yet but definitely checking out soon. The reviews all said it was mind fuck and that the ending was great (although open to much interpretation). I read the recaps of the first episode and it was great! I was taken a back with the set-up. There’s more than the 9-times-limitations that raises the stakes up. I didn’t think this had a more serious tone compared to that of Queen In Hyun’s Man.

      • Nine Time Travels totally deserves not only second look but sitting in the first place of best drama I’ve watched in 2013 so far.

        Judging the heroine by the haircut is proven to be not wise cause the character is adorable and has great chemistry with the hero, I can’t get enough of their cute interaction. A bit sad is that she’s somehow underused in the drama, because this drama actually focus more on the main reason of the time travel itself.

        Ending is great too.

        N this is my first comment in this blog after months of following, for the sake of this K-drama gem.

    • Nine’s fabulous. It has its flaws of course – I think 16-18 tight episodes could have made it perfect – but it’s like few other K-dramas out there and totally unpredictable from the beginning till the end. It’s clever and solidly written – they planned this one out properly. Which is why it works, even if not everything is explained in the end.

      There’s only one hero in this one really, which is unlike most K-dramas as well. It’s one man’s story, with other storylines feeding in, but it’s about Sun-woo in the end.

    • yes. This one. Each episode was always unpredictable. The ending was also unique nothing like a regular Kdrama, although, I would have liked to have more clarity between the male and female leads at the end but still the ending did not disappoint. 🙂

    • i agree that nine is probably the best thing this spring – but the bar is not set very high.
      it is ok, but it is not brilliant. what bugs me most about it is all the wasted potential.
      the writer juggles complicated paradoxical situations in non-satisfying ways, when creating something captivating could be a lot more straightforward. it had so many great motives that were touched lighly – should you play god, is your own happiness more important than others, if you could life your life again what would you change – but none of these achieves any real depth and comes to a conclusion.

      alot of the dramas this spring are what i tend to refer to as “campy”. they revolve around a set of events, relationships and fixed locations, but fail to really move *somewhere*. the writing is not good, not very bad, mostly predictable. but what is missing most are any mindblowing, epic, memorable moments that define them. they lack a sense of identity and individuality.
      for instance, gu family book has just the right premise, a half-man half monster creature, that outright begs dealing with human nature, what makes one human and what it means. it had a debatably pretty good first 2 episodes, but then just sits around doing random things until we get to the ending.

      and now i realize i could maybe start my own blog instead of writing mile-long comments.

      • Nine was honestly amazingly mind-blowing. So glad it was on cable where it was appreciated.
        I personally thought the casting and acting was spot on, and the time travelling device very refreshing. Heh, I have nothing but praise for this drama.

    • Thank you, to everyone who commented on this post~

      Such a fantastic discussion and productive discussion was had. I’ll probably do this every quarter from now on.

      I’ll definitely give Nine another shot, jomo won AAML another chance with the comparison to City Hall, and for the love of all things Lee Seung Gi I think GFB is calling me back.

    • was never a fan of lee jin wook prior to this, but he was awesome in nine. agree with the above comments that it was a great drama, save for two issues i had with it:

      1. i would have preferred the heroine to play a bigger role or do something more productive than yknow, weeping all the time. she sure as heck showed spunk in wooing lee jin wook, but towards the end that spunk melted into a pool of helplessness and mostly useless fretting and flailing around.
      2. the villain’s (and at times LJW’s best friend’s) campy, campy acting. i’ve only seen that ajusshi play nice daddy roles before, and i really think he should stick with those. the way he glared…. good lord. did a lot of instinctive cringing everytime he appeared.

  2. The only one I’m watching right now is The Best Lee Soon Shin. It’s totally worth taking a second look. Heck, I never thought I’d be able to commit to a drama with this many episodes, but it only took the first couple to make me fall in love.

    First of all, Jo Jung Seok is amazing in this role. He’s plays such a perfect blend of a slightly arrogant cool guy with a side of dorky awkwardness, he really should be winning all kinds of awards for how amazingly talented of an actor he is. I would watch it for that alone. He and IU are adorkable together. IU is doing a good job too!

    The secondary stories aren’t bad either, loving her sisters (even the one that’s mean to her) and their love-lines as well. The baker guy is my favorite. I luff him. 🙂

    There are a few things that slow the show down a bit (birth secret, omg! and mean moms, being meanies) but the good totally outweigh the bad, imo. (Plus, you can kind of fast forward them a bit without missing too much…just saying.)

    There are some really great LOL moments, and some heart-wrenching scenes too. The only thing I look forward to in kdrama land right now is the weekend.

    • I think that was a good review on The Best Lee Soon Shin so far.

      IU and Jo Jung Seok are so adorable. They are both so dense to their growing attraction to each other. Their moments together are what I look forward to the show at most. The other sisters’ storylines are either more romantic-comedy (Yoo In Na’s) or too melo (Son Tae Young’s). IU’s is the one that balances both out.

      Why this show is great is because the sisters. When they veer too much to the birth secret, it gets irritating because mom is so stubborn. That was practically the content for the first few episodes. I think starting episode 16 onwards is where the exciting stuff really happens. The episodes before that merely creates the set-up. Weekend dramas are slower in pacing and much more predictable but Lee Soon Shin is endearing enough to make you smile end-to-end with it’s cuteness.

      • Yes I totally recommends you to take a second look on LSS. The drama is great. I never invested in a 50+ dramas coz I am afraid of getting bored in the middle run and think the time I just wasted but this one is an exception.
        CEO and Lee Soon Shin are adorkable, so cute together!
        I actually am getting tired of JOJ nowadays, imagine after I read the recaps for 11 and 12, although the subs are available, I did not bother watching it until now.
        But I had time watching LSS via live stream just now. Lol! I am totally addicted!

    • Oh yes, LSS is def worth a second look. All the three sisters’ story lines are interesting. I started watching this solely for Yoo In na bcoz QINHM was just so awesome, but found myself enjoying the show as a very easy watch when I have down time that requires no thinking. Breadman is adorable! I also fast forward some of the boring birth secret drag bcoz mom was getting too angry & shouty and moody for my liking lately.

    • I wasn’t planning on watching Lee Soon Shin (50 eps is just too much commitment) but now I find I’m looking forward to the weekend and for the next dose of JH awkwardness, breadman dorkiness, and Chan-woo swoonworthiness. And the general loveliness of the three sisters (plus Woo-jo).

      The trick with this one is to simply skip all scenes involving the mothers and focus on the above characters.

    • “You’re the Best, Lee Soon Shin” is totally worth a second look. I really enjoy it – especailly Jo Jung Seok. Adorkable and awesome 🙂

    • IU and JJS makes it a go for me. I’m so hooked that I am catching chinese subs because they come out earlier than english subs. And I can’t say I am literate in Chinese either (definitely know less than 1000 characters).

      but am hating the birth secret, which they’re dragging on forever. Just want them to out it pronto.

    • My weekend is definitely a blast with The Best of Lee Soon Shin. I’m with Serena regarding the length of the drama but I find that I am not minding it so much anymore. I usually get bored with the makjang but boy it is laced with the funnies weaved in with romance relationship of the siblings and family relationships that I can sit through the makjang. JJS, IU and the others are truly making their characters interesting. I’m quite surprised with IU’s acting, she should have done the role of Suzy, love her but she looked like a dear in headlights in GFB. I think IU would have done a better job if they had to cast an idol.

    • Yes. YTBLSS is a great show and I look forward to the weekends. JJS and IU are great in their roles and the sisters are awesome. Agreed with the part about the mean moms and birth secrets. Although, several secrets have been outed now. If you pick up now, you won’t miss much in terms of plot but you’ll miss the cute moments. And bread man is FTW!!

  3. I’m actually only watching GFB, so I can comment on that. Personally, I’m loving it. Its far from perfect, but the chemistry between LSG and Suzy is EPIC. They look amazing and there’s some seriously moving scenes that kick right in the gut – especially in the last few episodes. Suzy has finally adjusted I suppose. She isn’t great, but she’s easily ok. I love her in the bad-ass scenes, and I think she’s comfortable with her costars. Earlier I felt a lack of chemistry between LSG and her because they felt a little awkward. That’s not even questionable now… whatsoever.

    But what makes GFB so awesome is the characters. There’s an amazing female lead who has a good head on her shoulders. She has a heart – that feels love, jealousy, anger – but that heart also allows her to be selfless and giving. She is bad-ass and independent. A heroine on her own rights, irrelevant of whom she fell for. I love her!

    LSG is hitting it out of the park (…again) with his emotional breakdowns. The guy understands his characters so well, and really becomes them. I’m so emotionally invested in his journey. The drama has plot holes, but I can see past that because it’s addicting. But yea… give the last few episodes a try. If you don’t like them, then its prob not for you.

    P.s. Gumiho dad is back this coming week! =)

    • I second GFB. Yes there are some glaring problems with the story and the acting at times, but like Kelly said, the characters are what make the drama. The first few episodes were fun, but it was only in the last 3-4 episodes that I found myself fully invested…and episode 12 sealed the deal.

      By the way, does anyone else think LSG is totally smexy when he’s in gumiho form? *fans self*

      • I totally agree with you. Though LSG is not the typical handsome idol, he definitely has this aura than can sweep your feet away. I also like the progress of the story and the strong personality of the leading lady character despite obvious proof that shows Suzy’s lack of experience in acting.

    • I’m loving GFB too. Before I sort of forced myself to watch it because Seunggi (the parent’s story didn’t do anything for me at all), but I’m completely loving the story and OTP now. It has flaws, but somehow it’s really engaging. And yes, even Gon is more than just snarky comments now.

      Yes, he looks great as a gumiho. Those eyes!

    • I will agree that LSG is doing a great job, but I am finding this drama a horrible slog because the writing is so-so, the directing is sometimes laughable, and Suzy is another one of those idols-masquerading-as-actors. She has this placid, cow-eyed expression of mild surprise that she wears 90% of the time – it drives me nuts. Her part is written well, and she gets all the sympathy points in the book so everyone likes her, but it is the character that is epic, not Suzy. And I hate what they are doing to the secondary female, who can act and who actually did have some chemistry with LSG; literally character assassination.

  4. Suprised Mandate of Heaven hasn’t been included on your list, the show has got a hold of my heart – hook line and sinker.
    You’re the Best Lee Soon Shin is definitely worth checking out, I find myself skipping through most weekend dramas but every bit is gold in this show. IU and Jo Jung Seok unexpectedly have great chemistry, they are so sweet i can’t even LJKSDLKFJASDLFj and Breadman ASDJASLDJLAKEJLAIWELI
    – it definitely picks up as the relationships get more settled.

    • I was so surprised to see the lack of discussion about Mandate of Heaven, show definitely deserves more love. Rang is so adorable! My heart breaks a little whenever I see her cry.

      • KBS really stunted the interest for Mandate of Heaven with the whole subbing fiasco, so disappointed with the lack of response from the online community 🙁 the show is so good! I love how all the intensity is still undercut by some humour so my heart doesn’t feel like its always going to give out heh. Glad that dramabeans has taken on recapping it though 🙂

    • The subs for Mandate of Heaven came out much earlier this week. I think that’s proof how it’s gaining more recognition, even if it’s still quite muted.

      The characters are rich with depth. The political intrigue raises the stakes but there are still lighter moments worth checking out. At this point, it’s not something you’ll go crazy over. Although the exposition, cinematography and character motivations are solid enough to make you still want tune in.

    • i have been trying to watch that and have kept up so far, but it cant really convice me.
      one of the biggest issues is the directing, i think it shows that the pd doesnt have any experience with thrilling/action sageuk things. at some points it just strikes me as too “wannabe” dramatic without any real substance.

      you are right, some things are done well – subtle humor, some good characterization – but it still falls short of what could be done with it.

      im not sure if anyone else is also not too happy with lee dong wook’s acting. he is very good at some things, dark, melodramic sort of moments and psychologically messed up things (that mostly in his other roles); the action-ish stuff, suspense, fear not so much though.

      • Well I do find Lee Dong Wook overacting often in here, but kinda suits his character so it doesn’t bother me. He and rang are very easy to root for! Rang sure is the treasure of this show, but Jung-hwan is sure a surprise that I want to see more of, and Woo-young to have such an interesting and developed character was a delight! The rest of the characters did their job quit well 😉 I think there are more than wannabeism in this show

      • yup both lee dong wook and song ji hyo’s acting there are pretty… ehh, average, was kind of disappointed in both of them… the child actress does a much better job. i was surprised!

  5. The only ones I’m watching right now are You’re the Best, Lee Soo Shin and I Summon You, Gold…. I actually like Han Ji Hye on this one…. And IU is turning out to be a really good idol-actress, especially compared to most…. But I do fastforward on the boring parts on both dramas.

    I’m also watching 2 Japanese dramas, The Last Cinderella and Itazura na Kiss – Love in Tokyo…. The latter is surprisingly really good and well done even though it has been made so many times…. And the female lead is doing really great and less annoying than the other Kotokos and the male lead is great too as Irie…

    • I second the Itazura na Kiss- Love in Tokyo vote. Yes they’re retreading familiar ground, but the cast is very appealing, and there’s enough differences to make it fresh. This version of Kotoko might be my favorite, and the actor portraying Irie gives him a subtle depth and humanity that character has, imo, lacked.

    • Second the vote for Itazura na Kiss – Love in Tokyo. I adore Kotoko (I can totally understand how Naoki’s mom feels after she moves out!). Occasionally she’s too stalkerish, but she’s such a good person at the core (particularly obvious when you watch her scenes with Kin-chan).

    • Yea, I like Hna Ji Hye in Gold too! And omg, for some reason, I keep seeing Han Hyo Joo in Han Ji Hye!

      I Summon You, Gold is also my guilty pressure. It is the only one drama I am watching among the SEVERALS that is broadcasting, shows you how much of a slump I am in this drama.
      But gahhh, I LOVE MONG HYUN and HYUN TAE! I cannot wait for HYUN TAE to fall hard for Mong Hyun and suffer a little! He has been so mean to her. He deserves a bit of longing and jealousy.

      • Yes, me too, me too!! Enjoying ISYG, cannot wait for the youngest couple to fall in love. She’ll be so good for him. The oldest couple, too, are so cute together. I’m liking how she is bringing him out of his shell. She does an excellent job with the duality of her character – elegant socialite, rough and tumble tomboy. This show, makjong and all, hits all the right buttons for me!!

        My buttons are also being hit by YTBLSS (plucky heroine overcomes obstacles and gains success, self confidence AND lovable fella)and The Last Cinderella.

    • yes ITAZURA is just too fun to watch and I think its because the main actress playing kotoko is adorable and perfect for the role. The story is still the same, but there are subtle changes made that (i think) makes it better than the other versions. I’m still at episode 6 but who knows what happens afterwards..

  6. i think the best lee soon shin and gu family book deserve a 2nd look:).
    the best lee soon shin,although it is moving slow,but it is very warming..unlike when a man loves(only give me frustration,i didn’t enjoy it at all) and for gu,i think it keeps getting better.it gives me curiosity and i love the main leads chemistry,they are cute!and suzy’s acting keeps on improving esp in ep 11 and 12.
    and i agree tat “i summon you gold”is so addicting!

  7. Honestly….none of the drama above is on my list or I have dropped after few episodes. It is really sad, that light and fun drama like Queen of Workplace/God of workplace with OJH and KHS is overlooked and definitely Special Affair TEN season 2 on the cable is really worth to watch and has become my favorite throughout 2013 dramas thus far.

    • I haven’t tried Queen of Workplace. Mind giving more info? I haven’t found any recaps or reviews and I’ve been wondering if it’s any good.

      • I watch Q.of Workplace and have good laughs each time. Some predictable scenes but totally enjoying them nonetheless. It’s a relaxing watch which I haven’t come across for a long while. I’m not ashamed to say that Miss Kim is my super idol now, hahaha…
        Yes, I couldn’t find any recap online too, but I guess it’ll be also quite difficult to describe the hilarious scenes. You just have to watch it to see the comic. I recommend it!

  8. I think Nine is worth a second look. The story is better than all the dramas currently airing. And LJW is daebak.

  9. I highly, highly recommend Nine if you liked Queen In Hyun’s Man. The time travel plot is very well thought out and all the characters act intelligently and according to their own interest. The plot moves along very briskly and it’s really hard to predict what happens next, so it keeps you on your feet!

  10. I’m watching When a Man loves… 😀 Whether you want to give it another chance depends on what you want from drama. Want d good drama with three dimensional characters, tight script, smooth directing and excellent acting work? STAY AWAY FROM THIS DRAMA. WAML is bad, it really really BAD. It’s horrendous, actually. 😀 I don’t watch it because I love it but simply because I’m curious of how much awfulness can one drama contain. And even though I except nothing from this drama writer can STILL surprise me with even more stupid plot twists. And man are the actors bad, well, main leads mainly. SSK has basically two expressions and she floats through drama wearing one I would call a “pissy face”. Another one is “sad face”. And no, woman is NOT worthy of anybody’s love… she’s a horrible character, almost worst of them even though she hasn’t even killed anybody. I wish men in this drama would just kick her sorry ass to the next planet and start bromancing each other.

    In a way it’s also interesting to watch this drama because there’s some tragedy & conflict that I think IS genuinely intriguing and heart wrenching. It’s just that execution, writing & acting ruin it spectacularly.

    This is my assessment of this drama. 😀

    • I must be masochistic or I have really bad taste but I am also watching “When a Man Loves”. Otherwise, I am hanging in there for the next scene when SSH take off his shirt. Man, he looks good! Mi Do (SSK of no chin!!) is horrible both as an actress and in the role she plays. The second female lead (Chae Hung Ahn)is actually a much more competent actress is pretty hot looking and also has a clearly defined chin. Which gives her a tremendous edge over SSK. I actually don’t mind the bromancing between the guys in the drama and I am quite taken with the second male lead (Yeon Woo Jin). But he’s getting type cast playing love lorn second male leads (same in Arang and the Magistrade – which incidentally I absolutely adore – such an under rated series!). Anyway, can’t explain why I watch certain drama – even knowing that it’s pretty bad. As long as I am entertained and can temporarily escape from the stresses of work etc.

    • I confess to watching WAML too. I am fascinated by the writer’s stubborn determination to try to make us believe there is a woman on the planet who would not take a flying leap into gorgeous SSH’s manly arms. How long can this go on? I’ll see it through to the bitter end. SSK is the Korean version of Kristen Stewart………..one expression of boredom pasted on her face all the time.

    • did anyone notice that pictureframe – chains installation artwork in his apartment…
      its really good, i am considering trying something similar.
      thats the only thing thats really good about it (other than ssh’s shirtless looks), but it was worth checking out an episode for…

  11. Pretty much all of the dramas kinda have no point but I’m still just watching most of them because I have the time and I like finishing what I started. I watched about 11 episodes of When a man loves and I just couldn’t bring myself to watch anymore. I am still watching All about my love and there is talk about politics but I just like watching the cute and funny parts, there’s not much going on there. I haven’t seen Nine and I am also watching Lee Soon Shin. I liked the beginning because I just wanted to see her succeed and start acting but all of a sudden everyone was just being a poo head and it was annoying me. There isn’t much romance but right now you see them starting to feel emotions and stuff. Since its like a family show there are problems that everyone has but I just skip all of it. For Gu Family book the recent episode shows the father coming out but you don’t know what’s going to happen yet and I just want to punch the villain guy cause he’s annoying the crap out of me. Gon is still not doing much but I think he’s a nice little ornament to look at, lol. My drama critiquing isn’t that great but I’m just telling you that you aren’t really missing much unless you just want to watch them to keep your mind off other things

  12. Nine: The heroine’s nostrils made me cringe,
    but the cliff hangers had me hooked to the end. The cutie who played the hero’s younger self was also a bonus. Rest assured, the bowl cut grows out.

    • The bowl cut didn’t affect me that much, I think I’m more forgiving towards bowlcut than ahjumma perm..

      • Lol, me too. And I think the bowl served a purpose. Sun Woo didn’t fall for her for the looks, but for her genuine personality.

  13. I guess nine is the best of this batch. It gets better with twist and more things revealed. I don’t know where you stopped at but this is really one of the best drama so far in the first half of 2013 for me..

    It seems like QIHM is addictive to everyone but I was not fully invested in it. I think Nine is even better than QIHM, the twists kept me on the edge of my seat. It’s full of the unexpected, normally I can guess what will happen in dramas but this one really blows my mind. I love the bromance of the lead and his best friend SOOO much and it’s realistic how the screenwriter wrote about the effects of changing history, the writer is writing a pretty solid and clever script. The butterfly effect is pretty scary.

    I guess the writer is telling us to cherish now and look towards the future, stop looking back.

  14. Mmm…
    there’re only 2 dramas I’m watching and make me want more and more…
    1. Itazura Na Kiss Live in Tokyo. Reason? Kotoko, GANBATTE!!
    2. The Best Lee Sho Shin. Reason? Jo Jong Suk! He’s amazing!

  15. I’m also in love with “I summon you gold” I been avoiding it forever, but since the only other drama I’m still watching is “You’re the best Lee Soon Shin” & “Gu family Book” that leaves the rest of my week empty. So I marathon all the episodes of “ISUG” in one day. Yes, there’s a few holes in the plot… Like how do they not notice she sounded nothing like the other woman. Then there’s the middle brother, who I swear is just playing the same part he played in Rooftop prince. Every time he is on screen I expect to see the Joseon power rangers to come out & try to stop him. The side story I’m most invested on is the younger brother & his new bride. I keep wishing that the writters give him an attitude adjustment, they can’t keep him as ths whinny man/child throught the whole show right. But if they are I hope that his wife tells him to FO and leaves him. I understand she’s trying to b a good daughter, but how much crying can that tiny girl do. I seriously just want to slap him & give her a hug in every episode..

    • I am also watching ISYG. LOL, Mari…………the middle brother is being set up to be knocked down. The writing is trying to paint the new bride in a sympathetic manner, but she is becoming annoying. I’m waiting for something to happen that lights a fire under her butt and makes her go off on hubby and mother-in-law. I predict the original wife of son #1 will return unexpectedly. Drama and hilarity will ensue. (I hope.)

  16. You’re The Best Lee Soon Shin…..very predictable but the actors bring freshness to it….every love story is adorable and sweet….

    It’s really good and fast paced as well 🙂

    Jo Jung Suk has priceless expressions..

  17. I’m only watching Gu Family Book out of all the other ones you mentioned. The drama is going very well, I really love how the story is going. I’m not much good at judging how good a person can act but I don’t think that Suzy is acting that bad, there are some times I feel that her acting is a bit weird for a saguek but most of the times it feels natural. If Suzy’s acting doesn’t please you, watch it for LSG, he is absolutely amazing! 😀 And, WolRyung is coming back this week~ And a rumour, SeoHwa might also be coming back too. After watching the lastest episode, I feel that starting from this week onwards, is where the real action, story starts, because Kangchi has finally come clean about his true nature with the Park siblings, and we saw that Chungjo has rejected him, also with the parents reappearing again, I think the story will go very fast from now on. And there is also the mystery of who the four masters are.

  18. The only one im watching right now is “You’re the best Lee Soon Shin”. It’s predictable but heartwarming. I love all three love lines. IU and JJS are so kute together which was unexpected. There are definitely some boring moments but there is always a fast forward button =D. The storyline is picking up. I’ll say it’s a good way to spend two hrs a weekend.

  19. I do agree that the writer of GFB is bit off logic, but the chemistry between main lead in this drama is so good. Suzy is not half bad neither. I actually think she is showing her character very well, and of course other casts are doing great job as well.
    At first, me as well didn’t get what’s the point of this drama…but now the story is slowly moving to core direction and I’m start enjoying to see the balance of freshness and stateliness which young leads and veteran actors can show us in this drama.

    When a man loves is indeed bit stupid, but if you don’t expect too much then you can still enjoy.

  20. I really suppport for GFB’s second look..because me myself felt that for episode 7-8 it looks like it’s going to the bad direction,but then BAM!starting from ep.9 till the last episode aired (episode 12), I start to feel the excitement that I felt from episode 1 again..I even cannot wait for next week episode to the extent that I check the updates of this drama almost every minute (nowdays, I never do this because there’s no drama that can make me so excited anymore)..So,I hope my excitement will be worth and I do hope the story in GFB become more interesting in upcoming week. That’s my opinion..And for your love LSG,in GFB he can really make me cry with him.That’s an achievement becoz I rarely (not never) cry when I saw him act sad or cry.Well, that’s my opinion Koala..

  21. because of my immense love for SSH I would love to say that “when a man loves” is worth the watch but sadly it turned out not to be the case after the first 5 or 6 episodes, everything was fine at the beginning, not great, full of clichés but decent and entertaining to watch, even SSH’s acting was not bad ( no need to talk of shin se kyung that one is desperate) but after the sixth episode or so the drama has becomes so awfully boring and SSH acting become unbearably bad :(( I would suggest checking the first episodes for the numerous drool worthy shirtless scenes

    • I agree, Selma. But the thought of another SSH shirtless scene keeps me coming back for more. There are too many characters with fixation issues. Everyone is obsessed with someone.

  22. I think jdramas are more worth the watch this season because they have much more variety and originality, especially with Last cinderalla, Galileo’s second season and takizawa hideaki’s first drama in 4 years (mayonaka no panya san)

  23. Gu deserves a second look. I don’t know for other dramas because I haven’t tried watching them but I’m planning to (Nine and I Summon).
    Gu despite having the most evil among evil villain in kdramaland, I still love it. It still sticks to the core of “the true meaning of being human” and “the true meaning of family”. Though it has flaws, it’s still bearable because the acting are so good and though at first I ship, the chung jo-kang chi tandem, now, I like the other ship. Suzy is doing a good job and her character is consistent.
    This show has a heart that grips you to the core.
    And daddy-ho is back! Yey. And LSG is hot as the half gumiho.

  24. I’m glad you decided to write a post on this. In the beginning, I wasn’t looking forward to anything for the Spring season. I personally I do not think it’s not because of the fans are dwindling but rather we’ve become more judgmental. As we watch more dramas, we tend to use the gems as benchmarks to assess if a new drama is worth continuing or not. We look at the actor’s, PD’s and writer’s track record to see if we should avoid or not. There are times when the true potentiality of the drama only reveals itself gradually. Gone where the days where we’re hooked instantly. I think we’re searching for something better each time but only to have our expectations let down each time. Thus, tempering us to limit what we’re seeing.

  25. There doesn’t seem to be any love for All About My Love, so I’ll weigh in.

    It took the OTP a while to get going but once they did it’s been great and it is pretty romantic. There’s a secondary romance which is great and pretty amusing. Shin Ha-Kyun is great as usual, and he does cut his hair after a few episodes, which is a big thumbs up in my book. He’s also not afraid to act the fool. Seriously, if you haven’t watched him in a drama or film before, run, don’t walk. The man’s amazing. He’s really cute with Lee Min Jung here. The characters are all pretty well developed with some interesting back stories. Yes there is a birth secret, but hey, City Hall had one too.

    I’m even enjoying all the politics, and quite often I get pretty bored in dramas with the workplace story.

    For the last few months I’ve not been feeling the kdrama love, only watching two or three, whereas normally I watch nearly all of them. All About My Love is reminding me dramas can be fun.

    • Me, too!
      I forgot about this one. I have episodes to watch today. YAY!
      SHK is mesmerizing and I like LJM a lot.

      Koala – The show this reminds me of is City Hall, which took 4 episodes to all in love with, remember? I guess the ratings are super duper low, though. I bet they get cut short.

    • This is the only drama I’m actually watching right now. I haven’t been this dedicated to a drama for a long time. I’m not in it for the plot but for the awesome characters. I didn’t know how I would find SHK and LMJ together but thankfully they’re GREAT 😀

      • Ditto. Last time I was addicted to a show was QIHM. This one is just super cute and funny. I’m quite confused as to why this is not getting all the buzz and recognition they deserve?

  26. I am currently watching ‘when a man’s in love’ and ‘Mandate of heaven’. Lol there is not much to say about these two but atleast with’Mandate of Heaven’ the actors are great but with ‘when a man’s in love’ even the actors are horrible. However i will finish what i have started and please please please can we have something that will be interesting next time. I still have faith in Kdrama but if things dont change, i will be left with no option but drop the addiction. I hope it does not get to that point.

  27. The best lee soon shin! The progress has been rather slow. The conflict is going on a circle, but director has said to speed it up. And even if story is not really original, their chemistry is just goood.. Totally worth the 2 hours. The writing is simple but satisfying, the story and characterisation are real. Plusss, jo jung seok is so cute, he’s a dorky CEO.

  28. I’m going to be hones I started looking around for something else to sink my teeth into because of a certain TW-Drama… I only started to watch … When A Man Loves from Ep 10 @ Viki and is the 2nd drama where I have made my most comments either of frustration or anger but reading the synopsis I’m not likely to like the upcoming episodes and not planning on going back to watch what I have miss from previous episodes. The other one is… Nine. 9 Times Travel from ep 17 till now and I can’t wait for next week to see what’s going to happened. Loved the last ep.20 cuz it played a timed line from the OTP which I kind of like. And ALL this I have to give thanks to…
    “King Flower” cuz I’m not planning on watching the rest until I know the ending. :/

  29. You know I loved Nine. All edge of your seat, unnpredictable outcomes, and hot kissing aside, it felt assured for lack of a better word, and the entire cast was great. Notice I didn’t fangirl mention Lee Jin-wook…so I will…now…
    omghe’ssohot. There. Like they said, the bowl cut wasn’t a thing any more than it was in Vampire Prosecutor after it started.

    WAML LOVE IT. Watch this show without wearing brain glasses. Hide them in your drawer so they don’t judge you, either. Watching THT being beautiful is nice, but watching him actually act, and do well mostly, makes me a proud fanwoman. It is very much a yell-at-your-screen, LOL, snort-in-derision, wtf type of show. EVERYONE needs one of those. There really isn’t a dull moment, and the mute button works wonders if a certain mother comes on.

    Mandate of Heaven – great cast, the costumes are even more lush than JOJ, the little girl is amazing, and you get both Song Jong Ho(t) and Im Seul Ong in hanbok. LDW is fine here. There is none of that beautifying him. He’s messy and scruffy all the time.

    • Jomo your comments just made me LOL the whole time I read it. I agree about nine, WAHM-I watch to fill the gaps (needless to say I’m slowly watching it FF through some of the makjang) and without my brain glasses 🙂 Mandate I have yet to see. I just can’t sit through another saguek, maybe marathon it this summer when I have a bit of leeway.

  30. I haven’t watched all of the dramas you have mentioned above, and the ones I did watch I quickly dropped.

    I started watching Gu Family Book because of all the online buzz it’s getting, but unfortunately it bores me. The plot feels like something I have watched in Kdramaland a thousand times already, without any kind of interesting twists or memorable characters. I have a general fondness for Lee Seung Gi from his 1N2D days, but I don’t really love him as an actor. He was great with Ha Ji Won, playing a slowly maturing monarch, but I don’t really appreciate him playing goofy, juvenile characters. Kang Ji Hwan for example can pull such a character off and somehow still come across as a man you love watching on your screen and mooning over, while Lee Seung Gi (even though he’s my age) makes me think of one of my mischievous primary school kids I’d love to whack over the head for being such a doofus.
    Suzy isn’t all that great an actress either, and the story isn’t really entertaining or fascinating enough for me to keep watching. The only good thing about this show is Lee Joon who I’ve loved since “Flower boy Band”, but he doesn’t get nearly enough screen time or even a worthy part as a character in the plot.

    When A Man Loves had an interesting premise, but to be honest even watching 6 episodes I never got over the ick-factor when watching Song Seung Heon and Shin Se Kyung playing a couple. I don’t know why, but they totally turn me off. Maybe it’s her stiff face which doesn’t portray any kind of feeling at any given situation and she always seems so tense.
    I don’t know, but I couldn’t stand her character right from the start, because I couldn’t ever decide if she was playing a haughty, selfish kid or if she looked like one because she couldn’t act her way out of a paper bag.
    I actually think Song Seung Heon isn’t doing too bad here, but the story is frustrating to no end and since I don’t really like or support any of the characters in this drama, I’ll wait for the last episode to air and see how this mess ends.

    I’m really disappointed this year with the crop of kdramas. No wonder nearly my whole attention is turned towards Japan for something good to watch (Last Cinderella, Soratobu Kouhoushitsu, Itsuka Hi no Ataru Basho de).

    And until those dramas churn out new episodes, I’ll go rewatch Bu Bu Jing Xing and Summer’s Desire. 🙂

    I have high hopes though for the flower boy version of Cyrano Agency, so I really really hope I won’t get disappointed there as well. Dramagods, please do me this favor! 😛

    • I was kinda surprised to see that SSH is actually BETTER here than SSK. Well, I’ve never really watched any dramas with either of them but I’ve heard much more bad words about his acting than hers. But man is SSK BAD here. Almost painfully bad. Granted, writing and directing are not helping at all, but a good actor could still save something. SSK makes it even worse. Her character is despicable and partly it’s because of her “acting”. SSH may not be your best actor but at least he’s sympathetic.

      • I agree. I’ve heard people say before that she’s bad, but since I haven’t seen anything with her in it (I think…), I had no idea how bad she actually is…. I don’t get how people like her still get offers for acting jobs. It’s annoying, same with the idols (or is she an idol?).

      • I have a very soft spot for SSH since My Princess and I can forgive a lot of his acting because the camera loves him. Given the right inspiration in the form of an great leading lady – SSH rises to the occasion.

    • Hey,Latesleeper! I am feeling the same way I ended up re-watching Meteor Garden bwahahaha…for the umpteenth time… I was so fed up with When A Man Loves it really starts to bore me. I will wait for All the Best Lee to finish and check the ending before I sit down with it. Also, the Japanese Last Cinderella and Love Kiss in Tokyo (or something like that) keeps me company but, boy, they do show it like once a week. SO I decided to just wait it out too til it’s finish then I can marathon. Bu Bu Jing Xing is next on my re watch list if there is really nothing interesting. Summer’s Desire and Autumn Concerto I did a lot of times before, so I am giving it a looong break. JOJ is not bad, though. But again, I may have to wait it out too for the meantime. I have other things to do with my life 🙂 Darn, these eyebags are showing again… hehehe

      • JOJ is on my to-watch-list too, and because of my eternal love for Yoo Ah In (since Sungkyunkwan Scandal) I really hope this is as good a drama as I’ve heard people here say. I never watched Fashion King because of the bad reviews and I’ve been waiting to watch him in something new.

        Yeah, one episode per week is really mean…especially now that Last Cinderella is starting to get really interesting. But by now it’s too late for me to wait until they’ve finished airing to marathon the whole thing – I’m too addicted already. 😛

        Haha, I’m working on those eyebags too, but since I’m watching none of the kdramas that are airing at the moment, it really helps with my getting enough sleep. Guess, there’s a good side to everything, huh? 😉

  31. The only show I’m actually watching is You’re the Best Lee Soon Shin, I love all of the sisters story lines. I admit the mom in the show is crazy and pisses me off but the other characters are all great, especially the men :DD IU is actually fantastic and so is Jo Jung Suk.

    I’m reading recaps for Gu Family Book, debating whether or not to actual watch it because I just don’t particularly like Action/Sageuk dramas.

    I’m reading recaps for Mandate of Heaven as well, just haven’t had too much time to actually watch the show. I think I will marathon on the end. The daughter, Rang is ADORABLE. And I am so partial to Song Ji Hyo and Lee Dong Wok. The pace is fast, there’s actual storyline movement. Seulong of 2AM has impressed me so much…it’s like he’s not an idol singer haha. And the older brother from Answer Me 1997 is in it as a good guy (but he plays civil authority so he’s the bad guy for Won, the main character) and I realllllly like to hate him haha.

  32. I am watching everything, and i vote for WHEN A MAN LOVES AND LEE SOON SHIN. Those two dramas are driving me crazy for various things. Lee soon shin, I can tell what is going to happen because it is kdrama cliche but VERY GOOD CLICHE and you don’t roll your eyes seeing it over again, and BREAD MAN IS SO FUNNY. I MINED HIM FOR MYSELF-NO STEALING MRS KOALA. As for when a man loves, I am going crazy analyzing every statement trying to understand HTS and CH relationship. Their relationship is borderline crazy!!!

  33. Hi my 2 cents.
    My criterias- it has a plot. The cast can act. Preferably rom com and not idiotic. The directing is not clunky. The writing does not make me cringe. Plus it must pull me in and not treat the viewers as stupid idiots.

    1. All about my romance. It’s witty. Like the snide political scenarios. The hero is arrogant but in a sweet sort of way when he falls in love. In spite of himself. The 2nd leads are not evil. Irritating but not evil. It’s funny and makes me laugh.

    2. Lee Soon Shin. Normal family plot. But oh my giddy aunt, Jo Jung Seok just makes his character come alive. IU is actually a good enough actress that I forget she is a singer. The mother- I can actually happily slap her. The other 2 romances are kind of sweet. Not saccharine sweet but you can see the natural flow of things.

    So for a family drama with a fresh vibe. LSS. Hands down. Makes the episodes fly past. And did I mention how much I adore the dorky Joon Ho? I adore the dorky cute earnest little Joon Ho. The clueless hero 🙂

    I summon you, gold- I was planning to avoid this like the plague. Then I heard good things about it. Then even though it has the makjang elements somehow it doesn’t MAKE it wallow in makjang elements. Did you realize we still haven’t had any slapping? The lead girl was slapped in every freaking episode of May Queen I think. I was ready to wallop the male writer over the head with a thick script until he squeals.

    GFB- I’ve been following the recap. I just watched this week’s episode. *cringe,cringe * big time. Yeol Wool what’s her name- her sageuk speech was non existent. It did not even have the sageuk vibe for crying out loud. I was dying for this drama so totally bummed out it is a fizzer.

    So currently I am a really happy drama fan. Oh and did I mention A Hundred Years Inheritance? That show is idiotic but since we’re almost at the end- can’t stop. But man it’s not worth even repeating the episodes.

    For LSS, I swear I’ve rewatched some scenes in excess of 20 times. And I do NOT have that sort of personality to rewatch anything that many times.

    It only ever happens with the oldies and favourites like Family Honour, 9 In and 2 Outs, Secret Garden and MNIKSS. I don’t actually rewatch episodes or dramas that much. LSS is adorable- the Joon Ho scenes anyway. The baker guy in that drama is one of the most endearing male leads ever written. He has such unfortunate timing. And I can’t wait for his love line’s daughter to accept him. Currently she seems as if she wants to either kill him or kick him in dislike/ disgust every time she sees him.

    • Regarding ISYG and slapping! I noticed that, too!! I was so glad that evil rich mom can portray a cold, heartless woman WITHOUT resorting to hitting. She can belittle and humiliate with WORDS.

    • (1) All About My Romance – totally with you on your comments. Was going to avoid this because of Lee Min-jing, but Shin Ha-kyun breathes life as always, into his character. This rom-com makes me laugh, which is entertainment enough.

      (2) Jang Ok-jung – enjoying it so far. Just got on this 2 wks ago because I drifted away from …

      (3) When a Man Loves A Womann.
      SSH or not, there’s only so much bad acting I can take. And how idiotic can he be around her? Bad enough I don’t enjoy Shin Se-kyung, made worse with her role of 2-timing Seo Do-mi.
      And yes I am unfairly biased, but I couldn’t stand Yeon Woo-jin’s face, right from the start (he falls into the category of Ryu Shi-won and Kim Jeong-hoon, whose looks don’t gel with me too).

      (4) A Hundred Yr Inheritance – was pretty ok until it derailed and main male lead’s (Lee Jing-jin)character went into some weird transformation. At that point the drama lost me although it was only a 2? 4? episode character de-railment. But the character lost some of his credibility for me (non-judgemental, supportive, perceptive and sensitive).
      Still watching every wkend, but with far LESS enthusiasm than before … and chemistry between the leads aren’t as convincing.

  34. I watch I Summon You Gold! too. And I think it’s kinda good. Quirky in some sense, but so far so good. Like you, I skip the boring parts and head for the fun parts. Eugene’s 100 Years Inheritance started well, but now, I’m kinda lost of what’s it trying to portray. Jang Ok Jung started so good that I thought I’d die without a preview after each week for the first 10 eps. Then after, like you said, it became like your average makjang except that it’s an hour long and not 30 mins. Then there’s Mandate Of Heaven which is actually kinda fast-paced in its storyline. Nothing too awesome about the filming but the story does make sense and our leads are actually quick on their feets, for once! I’d probably look forward to watching Ugly Alert, just for the sake of Im Joo Hwan and Kang Sora. Since it’s a daily, I hope it’ll be good. The last daily I’ve ever watched was too much makjang into it that it didn’t quite make sense after awhile. And I’m probably looking forward to more sageuks this year. It feels like sageuks have been improving in terms of storyline. The modern counterparts seem to have lost its luster in terms of plot. Repetitive and boring at times.

  35. I’m watching Mandate of heaven and Lee Soon Shim. MOH has the ingredients for a pretty good sageuk, which in my dictionary, just needs to be engaging. LSS has a charming feel to it even if the storylines are cliches and nothing to shout about. JJS is adorable here with IU and I’ve loved him since What’s up. For me, he’s the biggest draw in the drama…and I FF through all the birth secrets stuff to skip the boring part.

    KDramas aside, I’m also watching Last Cinderella (jdrama) which began alright but sort of lost the fun factor when the younger guy warms up to our main old maid. Not sure why I’m losing interest but will stick around for Fujiki Naohito.

    My biggest guilty pleasure is actually c-drama Legend of Lu Zhen (Female prime minister). Chen Xiao and Zhao Liying has this epic chemistry that is at once sweet and fiery passion. Zhao’s Lu zhen and Chen’s Gao zhan owns my heart so bad that I’m in a pretty bad shape…I marathoned 33 episodes right up to like 6am in the morning because I just.could.not.stop. When they are together I squee at their adorable selfs…and when they fought, I still felt like they ought to be jumping each other’s skin. I went through the episodes thirsting for every little chance they could meet. The palace intrigue is much better done in c-dramas imho than in k-drama (what with the super obvious group meetings) and they keep things moving along just fine. Usually it’s a bitch fight in there because so many of the ladies fall in love with GaoZhan (not that I blame them :P) but that also means Luzhen bears the brunt of their jealousies. She’s a smart lass though and usually gets out of the mess just fine, though of course she had help, sometimes even from foes (others say the scheming is lacking is finesse compared to Zhen Huan Zhuan, which I didn’t watch, but I find them alright). I was never tempted to FF even though my dearies are not together on my screen, because when they do, it makes the wait all the more sweeter. And it helps that I actually like the other pairing as well. I read some spoilers and know my heart would break,but this is the most addictive drama I’ve seen of late and I know I would stay to the bitter end. I doubt it’s as exquisite as BBJX but like I said, I LOVE it.

  36. Adding to the list: I’m watching Ten 2. The first season was great and the second season continues that trend. It’s about a special police team formed to solve the type of crimes that only have a 10% closure rate and about using a Monster to catch Monsters.

    Asidw from that I am watching YTBLSS but I’m basically fast forwarding scene involving the Mom since her treatment of SooShin really annoys me. I am heavily focused on Yooshin and

    • Chanwoo because their arc has been interesting and is already set up for future conflicts on several fronts

      I also obsessing over EXO, Shinhwa, and CL/2NE1 comebacks and watching a few variety shows like Barefoot Frienda, 1N2D, Running Man, The Genius, Global WGM, and Incarnation

      Comment posted early by accident…I guess even a Note 2 isnt big enough to prevent my hand from slipping

  37. Watched all the dramas ,at least for some time!

    Nine -You HAVE TO watch! That`s all i`m gonna say!
    Lee Soon Shin- Typical family sitcom, IU is cute, boring.
    Gu Family Book- Predictable and all over the place! Lee Seunggi is adorable, but Suzy has like two facial expressions and goes on my nerves!
    When a Man loves-A part from horrendous acting from SSK , you can give it a chance!

  38. You should really watch Cruel Palace, it is really, really good. All the characters are very complex and the main lead is morally ambiguous (no more candy girls!). The writing, directing and acting is on point. It has dragged at all as the plot is tight. You should watch it.
    Ten 2 is really good and the best Korean crime drama I’ve seen. I think its better than both seasons of VP, Ghost, Sign, HIT, etc.

  39. I will watch any drama that has Seunggi in it but honestly I didn’t find myself getting hooked to GFB like to his other earlier dramas. However, the recent episodes changed that! The plot may not be intelligent but it does have lots of heart. Seunggi’s acting is also improving with every episode. For your love for LSG, you should check it out again. :p

    I also enjoyed You’re the Best Lee Shoon Shin. I find all the main characters endearing.

  40. I am watching GFB and love it simply because Lee Seung Gi is in it. He is one hot half- Gumiho ! I am also watching One hundred years inheritance, the plot got me hooked and I am really rooting for the main leads.I tried watching LSS but didn’t like the IU and JJS pairing at all. Stopped watching already. Will consider nine after these 2 dramas.

  41. So I’m only watching GFB and lee soon shin cuz they are recapped over at DB (very great actually , the recaps even makes it better ) I love them I find them good enough to watch I really don’t put so manny boundaries btw me and dramas Hhhaha but I guess u ms koala have watched the all till the last ep prodcasted or u r just so up to date to know such details ! U r priceless !

  42. Omg! I’m not the only one! I looooove watching I Summon You Gold! 🙂 It’s been really good so far. It’s gonna keep me occupied for the rest of the summer.
    I haven’t really watched the other ones. Just the Gu Family Book. Lee Seung Gi’s acting is good. Gon is okay. But Suzy, her acting still makes me cringe, so you’re better off reading recaps.
    Other dramas I haven’t checked out yet…

  43. I gave up on “When a man loves” after a couple of episodes & i’m glad I did cause that drama just seems all kind of stupid now -___-

    But yay! I feel like not enough people are watching “I summon you, gold!” since it’s a weekend drama but it’s actually pretty good. Probably the only kdrama i’m watching right now. It has the usual kdrama storylines & what not but it’s just so addicting lol. I found the drama when it had already aired 10 episodes and basically plowed through those in 2 days XD Like you said, there are some boring stuff, like the grandma storylines which I don’t care for either but the drama as a whole is pretty good.

  44. WAML totally pisses me off and SSK is a terrible actress, and her character isn’t helping much either. SSH is so gorgeous though. But something is making me continue watching this, it’s not exactly addiction, but more of how much worse can they make it.
    GFB-To think nobody can get stupider than SH, we have TaeSeo…that dude’s logic [inserts jackie chan meme] The writer does a fine job at some parts and an absolute no sense job at others and the director still inserts no sense metaphors. But leaving that aside, by episode 12 it’s totally addicting. About Suzy’s acting..I can totally see an improvement but all her costars are doing a fantastic job with their acting so she falls flat sometimes. But because her character is so likeable, it helps a lot. Poor Sungjoon and his mane of shame though..it went from bad to abyss of hell bad to a little better than abyss of hell. Poor Guy.

  45. Just started Nine from where I last left off at ep. 2 because of this post… and I am hooked by ep. 5 now 😮 I’m a huge fan of QIHM though.

    Other one I’m watching is LSS, on and off, for Yoo Shin and Chan Woo and Soon Shin and Jun Ho. Not really here for the mommy drama though it’s not bothering me too much yet.

  46. YOU’RE THE BEST LEE SOON SHIN is worth a second look. IU is surprisingly good in this one. For me her acting is just the right amount. She’s not overdoing it like the other idol turned actresses and she’s not boring. Her chemistry with Jo Jung Suk is also priceless. Though I hate the mom’s drama but the two leads are worth the watch. Her sister’s stories are also fun to watch. The supposed villain girl is also now being ignored by Mr. Shin… Just try it. At least try the OTP.

    • Agreed! try the OTP if nothing else.. And other than the dragging mommy and not-mommy bitchiness that’s going on now, the story is good!

  47. Hey Koala,
    Sad to say that I am really not watching any Kdrama :(, but in all honesty I wanted to check out LSS for Jo Jung Seok and Yoo In Na but still havent. Im not much for daily dramas, because I hate Melodramas–too much backstabbing, and just the whole convuluted plots takes the wind out of my sails. But I did check out when a man loves, and liked the first two eps–but the whole reluctant love thing is stupid and I hate that so I am waiting until the final ep so I can see how it ended. Chae Jung Ah is quite annoying in this one heheh, but her acting is legit. Ive been rewatching old dramas that I miss, but I think im definitely going to check out I summon you Gold. I love Han Ji Hye,though im not a fan of all her works.

  48. I would recommend All About My Romance deserves a second look. Actually, I’ve been raving and ranting at the angst and craziness that have been dished out to us viewers of A Hundred Years’ Inheritance. There have been some episodes where the hero has lost his marbles or a slight mental aberration and acted uncharacteristically and illogically but still we do carry on with this drama. While waiting for the weekends to come, I decided to try AAMR, and am I amazed to find the interactions between Shin Ha-kyun and Lee Min-jun wonderfully hilarious and ridiculous. I just love the actor’s odd-ball acting, after I realized he was the surgeon in one of those medical dramas. I love the music too, and SHK’s dancing to the Latin beat after he gets a favorable reply from the heroine. The political shenanigans are also entertaining and reflect situations in so many Asian nations that I can totally relate to them. But what attracts me to this comedy is the OTP bickers and makes up, and LMJ continues to make snide remarks, I’m happy to watch it till the end. Some people may be fond of the second and third leads, but I’m fixated on the first couple!

  49. Hi. I am also following I summon you gold. Have to say though that is basically because of Mong Hyun.

    I do watch a lot of dramas and I am used to ‘endure’ female characters being abused (I am looking at you Eugene)

    In Mong Hyun’s case,you would not expect her character to be that insightful and smart,especially when you take into consideration what is happening around her in that drama. No wonder her mothers in law are in shock every time they hear her talk!

    That husband of hers better start realizing soon that he probably ‘saved a country in a previous life’.

  50. you should def tune back into Gu family book – its getting intense and suzy’s acting isnt bad. Plus the music is epic!

  51. When a man loves, don’t deserve a second chance.

    Unless you want to swear at leading lady and second guy, and see SSH breaking cups with his hands! SO BADASS. LOL

    Plus, last episodes shocked me – never I saw this coming, the main girl falling and giving in for the second guy! They even make out on main guy’s room! So sexy/dirty hahahahahaha

    And last episode was so bad that it was EPIC. I saw this on another blog and can’t stop laughing: #WhenAWomanFly

  52. GFB- I don’t know how any LSG fan can not watch this drama, he is acting this part with sheer awesomeness. You can not help but to love and root for him. No matter what flaws the story line may have for some, the acting and heart of the show are a winner. Suzy can not act to save her life, and anyone that thinks she is improving is wrong, LSG and the rest of the cast are doing so well and have so much chemistry that she is coming off as passable at times. She is playing a great character but she is not doing the character any justice, I just rely on LSG to carry her scenes for me. Gon is still Gon, Pissy faced and jealous, with no personality unless looking for a reason to fight KC counts, LOL. Many things have now been established in the story, but it is now taking on some new twists and turns. I am going to keep hanging on. LSG LSG LSG

    • Hey, Gon is a little better in the last two episodes! I don’t give Suzy much credit because her character is basically perfect and completely one dimensional so she’s very easy to like. She doesn’t carry emotional scenes well (her crying vs. LSG, YYS or LYB’s crying there is no comparison). Though I still completely buy YW/KC now, especially after ep. 12. Probably because I want someone to be there for Kangchi and she’s written as the perfect person for him. But yeah, I don’t see how a LSG fan can skip this drama.

    • Totally agree. LSG is almost the only reason to watch this drama, although I also like the gibang owner (who played JIW’s mom in Return of Iljimae). Suzy is a poster child for all the things wrong with putting an idol in a lead role.

  53. I think you might like NINE a lot Koala, but I think you’ll hate the çast episode .. not because the end is bad but because you seem to dislike fanservice.

    but trust me, the fanservice was needed, after we waited so much…

  54. Okay, if what that mention? I thought you join all above drama.but you drop it and bad about it. I understand about your type. Sorry, i used to check all what your favorit drama. At first , rating viewer . I don’t belive but now i belive. Specialy, Nine is suprise, gu family book is excited. They ‘re my year. I don’t bad mention to another because i feel too. Really best strange plot and product. It so far all kdrama alway similar story .not change. Viewer no point about action alot but story. I only prefer Nine, Gfb for best spring. I think viewer only watch romance drama but they need stronge plot. Not suprise if rating viewer at korea with this drama so good. Viewer is not stupid and fan another drama.why you love your drama? Okay you give it with your feel, no1. Almost half drama year with similar story. They love romance story and only chemistry act and similar plot. I ‘m sorry. Thank!

  55. I caught on The Best Lee Soon Shin late and only started because I wanted to watch a weekend Kdrama. It’s a family drama and all sorts of predictable but it is quite cracktastic in the family drama way. JJS is cute in it snd IU’s acting is not bad.

    Gu Family Book has some gaping plot holes, too many setup and the directing and pacing can be tighter. But some of the comments above are right. How can a LSG fan not watch this drama? LSG is hitting all the right notes and his emotional scenes are perfectly nuanced. Just as he was fabulous as Lee Jae Ha in TK2H, he is so far, fantastic as Choi Kang Chi in GFB. Suzy is ok, I have to say she is watchable now that the show is halfway through. GFB is quite a crack in the way that the plot is unpredictable and of course, for LSG.

  56. Ms. K
    I watch I summon u gold too !! haha..it’s really not bad, right? 1crazynyt (if you remember her) the one who forced me to watch it. She likes the 3rd son’s story with her wifey.
    she said this drama just like modern saeguk drama, King with 3 concubines and the children are chasing King’s throne.

  57. As a rom-com fan I’m loving the interactions between the leads in ALL ABOUT MY ROMANCE. Each of the characters have a strong motivation and a steady growth,even if the first episode could’ve dissapointed a few, IMO -for their over use of comic-timing and exaggeration- the following episodes are truly a delight to watch.The dialogs are so witty and funny and most important angst is quite measure and reduce to, only when neccesary. The whole politic scenario, it works not just for background purposes it intertwines quite well with each storyline. Adds tension, drama and histerical scenes to the mix aswell. And finally the OTP chemistry is to die for, I’m talking LTM or QIHM chemistry… just to cute for words. This so deserves a second chance. 🙂

  58. You’re the Best Lee Soon Shin’s getting pretty good. It was kind of grating in the beginning with the Mom angst-woe is me attitude, Mi-ryung’s flip flop from from nice to total conniving bitch. The saving grace is the main couple, Bread Ahjussi, and the sisters. I also love I Summon You Gold. Some funny, funny stuff. I never laughed as much as I did with that drama.

    When a Man Loves is a total snooze fest. Shin Se Kyung’s character reminds me of her character from Fashion King… and that’s not a good thing. Too much un-needed sneaking around, cheating for my taste.

  59. I stopped watching GuFB and JOJ a couple of weeks ago. IDK if I want to resume watching. One drama I finished was Tamra, the Island. It took me ages to go past episode 2–only to marathon like crazy due to its awesomeness. I am definitely Team Park Kyu:) Marathoned What’s UP after that…figured out that I love Park Kyu rather than Im Joohwan.

    Anyway, I digress. I probably will watch JOJ again for YAI and the gorgeous costumes. Now that daddy Gumiho is coming back, I might watch GuFB again. Is there anything else better to watch this spring? Any j-drama recommendations? But I am looking forward to Heirs, Shark and Im Joohwan’s daily drama.

  60. You’re Best Lee Soon Shin! It is ADORABLE. And lest I sound like a total fan girl (which I have become!), I think it is pretty good in terms of story as well. The side couples and characters are also funny, so you won’t have to sit through crap to watch the main thing. Fair warning though, there are birth secrets and an evil ex.

    But JJS is so freaking adorkable (I did mention that, right?) and IU’s acting is actually better than I expected. I’m a little surprised that she can do the crying scenes believably. I will say it’s breezy with fun main lead.

    DON’T WATCH When a Man Loves. Save yourself the frustration. All the answers to your question is NO. I watched it together up to last week’s and almost had a fit! (I watched hoping it would get better. It didn’t.) I hated the female lead, so never got behind this incredible love the title is talking about. And in turn, got frustrated that the man loves that girl.

  61. I loveee GFB so much..the story is so cool ya know….i love suzy, i love seungi, i love papa gu, i love gon..i love everyone there except that crazy rapist old man…hahahaha…you should try to watch it…its funny, sad, sometime its make your adrenalin jumping.. I’m just cant wait tomorrow episode, gonna be daebak… Hope your enjoy you current drama to koala 🙂

  62. OMG, I am watching JOJ, Nine and I summon you gold too! I am not fan of sitcom, but becos I like Han Ji Hye and Yeon Jung Heon from prosecutor vampire…I am checking this one out too…the chemistry sparks between Han-Yeon

  63. Youre the best Lee Soon Shin is wonderful! It is my guilty pleasure. I can’t wait until weekend to watch it. I don’t agree with a earlier comment that it was predictable, we know the storyline but you can never say which road it will take to get there. It takes its time, its not rushed but still it is not snails pace. I usually think 50 eps is long but with YBLSS I am very excited. I love all the couples but IU and Jo Jung-suk are adorable. especially Jo Jung Suk’s character is hilarious.

  64. Nine was great. It hooked me from the beginning. I thought the storyline was interesting and fast paced. Hated to see it end. Loved LJW’s intensity.

    Also watching WAML. The first few episodes were pretty good. Now I feel I’m watching a train slowly derail. Not sure if it’s all the scheming and backstabbing or the lead actress or watching SSH trying to play this role. SSH isn’t doing a bad job, it’s the storyline I find so annoying.
    Damn. He is gorgeous and he wears a suit quite well. Of course, I too, am waiting for the next shirtless scene.

  65. I’d like to recommend GFB again =) though this is my bias talking here, of course. But Seung Gi is really awesome, I’d buy everything he shows in the show. Most important: look at his eyes. At first, I’m like others, asking how can he shift from Chung Jo to Yeo Wool. The answer is already in his eyes. If you don’t like the plot, it’s ok, I’m cringing in few part too, but Seung Gi’s scenes is a must 🙂

  66. NINE FTW!!!
    Good acting!
    Awesome plot!
    Unexpected twists!

    Definitely a must watch for every kdrama fan! Please don’t judge the bowl hair cut of the girl lead, it do serve a purpose! And it will eventually grow!LOL!

  67. highly recommend looking at itazura na kiss- love in tokyo
    perfect shoujo dorama 🙂
    almost, if not just as refreshing as rmpw

  68. my favourite currently is still TEN2, awesome like season 1 but i doubt it’s a mainstream kdrama. I’m pretty invested in YTBLSS coz the OTPs are too adorable so I highly recommend tis one but moms scene need to ff to prevent brain damage.

    Love Mandate of Heaven coz it’s balancing its story on the political, medical n romance really well with some good actors & supporting actress, i actually think tis drama is pretty good..well at least i don feel like head-deskin like the other dramas. I oni hope I can find time to start watchin GFB and Nine..sigh

  69. I stopped watching When a man loves a woman. Just…what’s up with the girl? It would be understandable to be a two timer if the guy is not SSH!
    I do love watching YTBLSS & GFB. Also watching JOJ, its ok-ok. 🙂
    I watched some parts of My Daughter, Soyeong b4 @ KBS World but cudnt continue coz our cable tv was cut. ^^ I’ll try to watch the full drama coz i’ve read its a runaway no. 1 drama on weekend.

  70. I think you would really enjoy Nine:Nine Times Travel.

    I’m not sure how far along you got before you dropped it but I was pretty surprised by the fact that they could make this drama into 20 episodes without getting slow or feeling stretched out. This drama came out really beautifully done and was actually smart rather than the so many dramas out there now that have unnecessary misunderstandings and overly-dramatic melodrama. This drama kept you on your toes and the crazy twists that happen are sometimes so unexpected you can’t help but keep watching to see what happens next. I’m not a fan of time-travel themes but the writer for this show did a really great job not messing things up and not leaving things unexplained by the end. The couple gets some lovey-dovey time in the first few and the last few episodes and they are so adorable together I was able to ignore her haircut (luckily she does wear it better in half the scenes but pulling it back or curling it).
    I have to confess I am a Lee Jin Wook fan but I haven’t enjoyed or have been able to watch any of his dramas so far so I watched this for him in the beginning hoping he finally made a drama I could watch. I’m glad I stuck with it.. I feel like if you want a smart drama that makes you laugh and cry and on your toes waiting to see what happens next then this is the drama to watch.

    SSH in When a Man Loves is a total woobie to a girl who doesn’t deserve his affections. I stopped watching it but am reading along with the recaps and more and more I hope he just goes back to being a gangster who can break a crystal glass with his hand…oh no wait he does that when he’s a boss of a multi-million dollar company too… either way we can never have enough shirtless SSH gifs 🙂

  71. Nine: Nine Times Travel is definitely the best k-drama I’ve watched this year. I helps that Lee Jin Wook is awesome! But, yeah, what’s with Jo Yoon Hee’s bowl haircut? She’s so pretty, why do K-dramas keep making the leading ladies look bad?

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