Drama Rating: 9/10
The story revolves around the life of Sung Shi Won, a female high school student and a full time fan girl of a boyband called H.O.T. She is surrounded by five close friends and they share experiences of being an adolescent during the 90’s and eventually crossover to being adults.
The timeline would go back and forth between 1997, during their high school days and 2012, the present day in which they had a high school reunion dinner. A couple will announce that they’re getting married and clues will be given episode by episode.
This is one of the dramas that really got to me. 1997 was a year where I was on my hype on boy bands as well. The drama brought me back to the times where VHS was such a vital home gadget so as not to miss my favorite drama, cassette tapes were a fad and friendship were in full bloom. Reply 1997 was a drama which conveyed a part of my past and that’s why it probably hit me right on spot. It gave me such nostalgic feelings that I was left laughing and crying at the same time when the drama ended.
This drama… I love, for so many reasons.
The story line was very much unique from all the drama’s I have watched. It did have a full on Rom-Com taste in it (like all the usual Rom-Com Kdrama), but the funny… the funny never stops in every episode, even though I was already tearfully crying out because of a heart breaking scene or because of a heart warming moment; the comedy never stops. Cliches were still used but I should say the writers have done that in a very creative way. I like the fact that they have used a bunch of odd personalities and put them together in a kind of relationship that would bond them as friends for life, then add their family members into it… TADA! You get a really great story to tell. Since all of these characters are peculiar, even from a deep to shallow background of each person, I never got tired of watching each one’s side of the story. That’s how they make the fun come out.
For the main characters, I couldn’t really pick my favorite. Even though we have the “very main” characters within the story, I still couldn’t really put them as my favorite. Maybe I would put bias on Yoon Yoon Jae because of his good looks, but other than that I still equally loved every character. I also personally think that their accents were cute, it was real and was not irritating (since they are all from Busan it would eventually seem natural, right?). Then there were the consistencies in their characters which I am so happy for, because not even one actor deviated from their role. To pinpoint the specific characteristics of each cast, I liked: Shi-won’s boisterous attitude, Yoon Jae’s undying love and loyalty, Yoo Joong’s inconsistencies, Joon Hee’s secrets, Hak Chan’s annoyingness, Sung Jae’s eccentricity, Tae Woong’s indifference to money/fame and lastly Shi-won’s parents; her dad who bickers a lot and her mom who cooks a mountain of food for some apparent reason.
Music wise, it added impact on the drama but it wasn’t something that really got into my head for me to remember much.
This drama is re-watchable, very much… but a vital segment in the story makes this unappealing for a re-play and that is the mystery part. That actually perked my interest into finishing the drama in the first place – “the guess who and what happened to whom?” guessing game was one of the important thing in this drama. But once you are over that, this drama would not be as interesting as it was the first time. I re-watch this for the sole reason of feeling giddy over the love triangles and the petty arguments. Those scenes were still awesome even for the second time around.
Over all Reply 1997 made it to my Top 10 best Kdrama’s and I would definitely recommend this to everyone. But this drama would most suit those who had lived in the 90’s, got addicted in boy bands and lived life with loyal friends.