Like many people, my introduction to Asian dramas was with 2004 Korean drama classic Full House. The one, the only, the fairly low-budget, unadorned romantic comedy that has the visual appeal of a documentary and the addicting quality of peanut butter M&Ms, caramel corn and pistachios rolled into one; the drama that started the entire drama and Hallyu movement. I marathoned the whole thing in a few days, and have never looked back since as far as watching Asian television shows. I have a huge amount of affection for it, particularly certain scenes like the “meet-cute-hey-I’ll-throw-up-on-you” on the plane scene and the learning-to-ride-a-bike scene. Having said that, it’s hopelessly dated both thematically and especially in production value, so I was interested to try the recent Thai remake of the drama. Here is my very brief reaction toward episode one.
1. My face when I realize they’re using the same theme song as in the kdrama (how did they get the rights??):
2. The second scene is floor to ceiling abs. You may think I’m joking. The Rain character stands still and flexes his abs to music as if he’s trying to play airguitar with them. I should be turned off but I’m just cackling. Upon further research, it turns out he’s just practicing for his real-life music video, where he gets his shirt ripped off by some girls in a club and proceeds to writhe (presumably to the beat of his own abs). Also, his real life name is D.Angelo. I dub thee Ab Angel. I will say this for Asian pop culture: it objectifies men nearly as often as women and sometimes much more so.
3. I would have honestly thought that Rain would be the one who’d be hard to replace, but as it turns out any hot actor with a smidgeon of arrogance and charisma can do it; it’s Song Hye Kyo I’m missing. She brought such immeasurable appeal to her ditzy, badly-dressed writer. But: D.Angelo is very nearly as impossibly good-looking as Rain. Where do they find these people? A genetic lab?
4. One episode in and the kdrama is so, so much better so far. Just much more sharply-paced with better music, and it really owned its over-the-top nature, while this one is trying to be both quirky-cute and maintain a slightly serious romantic tone and just, don’t try guys. Own the camp. The K-version did.
5. The kdrama is much funnier.
6. The male lead in this is a nice guy. WHY IS HE A NICE GUY? I feel betrayed.
8. Episode two. Bored. Can’t take it. Bye bye lakorns!
Well that was much shorter-lived than I expected. I’ve seen really cute clips of this from Youtube, but apparently it and I just weren’t meant to be. It played scene-by-scene exactly like the drama, only with flatter performances and less comedic glee. To all of you who enjoyed it, kudos. Those who want to watch it, I recommend the Youtube version because the Viki version has low-quality video.
Me, I’m going to stick with these two. *squishes*
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