Taiwanese drama In Time with You is one of my favorite dramas of all time – I watched it in a glorious summer haze two months ago when I was in the middle of a mild depression, and watching this in between and around bouts of baking and cooking was therapeutic. It’s a story of best friends falling in love, and a rare story in that it’s both slice-of-life with a close attention to the daily details of how people live, and also fast-paced and incredibly romantic. Chen You Qing (Ariel Lin) is a highly driven and capable retail manager of a high-end shoe company. She’s been with the company for years and handles her taxing job with mostly calm aplomb, committing long hours to it with a smile. Lin Da Ren (Bolin Chen) is her long-time best friend, the kind whom she casually picks up the phone and calls any hour of the day and who drops by her house for her mother’s cooking. Da Ren is a manager at an international airline, equally successful in his own right.
Tag Archives: Twdrama
1)Coffee Prince (Kdrama). This is one of the most famous kisses in drama-land, and for good reason. Our hero FINALLY conquers his panic, fear, confusion and repression, grabs the paint-spattered Eun-Chan in the deserted coffeeshop, and kisses her with long-simmering heat and passion. Perfect setting, great buildup, long-held kiss – good stuff.
Continuing the series as we count backward, see the previous post Favorite Asian Dramas #9-12
6)Devil Beside You (Taiwanese)
I know some people who love the other Mike He/Rainie Yang drama Why Why Love a good deal more, but for me this was the first drama I saw them in and one of my first Taiwanese dramas ever, and while it could be argued that WWL has a more consistent plot, DBY has my heart. It was love at first fight when Qi Yue(Rainie Yang), after gathering all her courage to hand a letter of confession to her long-time crush Yuan Yi(Kingone Wang), hands it by accident instead to bad boy Jiang Meng(Mike He), the school troublemaker known as “the Devil”. The exchange sparks the Devil’s interest and he begins pursuing her, to her horror, which becomes even greater when she realizes that he’s the son of the man her mother’s going to marry and that they’ll be living in the same house from then on…
It took me a long time to warm up to Joe Cheng, mainly because he’s never starred in a drama I genuinely loved. However, catching bits and pieces of It Started with a Kiss and a few other dramas, I gradually concluded that he was a good actor (and attractive) so have been more willing to try dramas starring him. Recently I checked out his two latest dramas.
Love Actually. This 2012 drama starring Joe Cheng and Lee Da Hae (whose voice is dubbed) is sweet but unexceptional. It has a fairly standard drama plot: down-on-her-luck woman who is raising her shiftless brother’s child is mistaken for the daughter-in-law of a wealthy family and is taken into their home, while lying about her true identity. It’s all fairly Mrs. Winterbourne, and had quite a bit of potential for romantic and plot drama, but alas it’s written as very paint-by-numbers. Every event is predictable from a mile a way, and all the small factors – lead chemistry, dialogue, small interactional nuances – that can illuminate and elevate a standard plot aren’t present. The Joe Cheng/Lee Da Hae romance definitely has some sweet moments (all of which can be watched in Youtube compilations) but there’s relatively little tension to it and Cheng and Da Hae have good but not crackling chemistry. At 34 episodes, this is cute but forgettable.
I impulsively started watching recent Taiwanese drama Fall in Love with Me last week, and was swept away by it. This drama is fast-paced, romantic, and completely charming.
Back when I was having a love affair with Asian dramas, I thought this song was the most wistful I’d ever heard. (I was a teenager, y’all). But I still have a fondness for it. The melody is evocative of loss somehow.
Here are are my thoughts so far through episode 10.
Rainie Yang is clearly the Taiwanese version of Mandy Moore(at least, the Mandy Moore of a Walk-to-Remember age) – the adorable, multi-talented young star who presents herself as(and may even be for a little while yet) the pure, dreamy, almost-too-cute for words type. Like Mandy, she can both sing and act, and after a career which initially struggled, broke out in a huge romance hit in which she played a spunky yet pure young adult who falls for and reforms a bad boy – in her case the drama Devil Beside You with Mike He(who is quite as good-looking as Landon Carter, if anyone was wondering).
She’s also like Mandy in that her voice is on par with her acting skills and her music career got lauched off songs she wrote based on Devil Beside You(remember Mandy’s “Cry” and “Only Hope” from a Walk to Remember?) Rainie’s versions were “Ai Mei”(Ambiguous) and “Li Xiang Qing Ren”(Ideal Lover). In both cases, audiences took one look at this fresh, new, beautiful, and refreshingly innocent face, and the sweet voice singing love songs that accompanied it, and fell madly in love.
Nothing much changes the world over really…