Moment at Eighteen (Korean Drama)

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Drama Rating: 9/10

Choi Jun Woo is a young man who transferred to another school due to a misunderstanding. During his first day of school, two students gave him different moment-at-eighteen-01.pngimpressions – first is Yu Soo Bin, a popular girl in school whom everyone likes due to her cute appearance and amicable personality. She called out to him to ask if he was alright because of an accident her mom might have caused. Second is Ma Hwi Young – Jun Woo’s class president who gave out a friendly vibe when they met but he saw right through his ruse because in reality, Hwi Young is a manipulative person who wants everyone to think that he’s kind and perfect. These two people got involved in Jun Woo’s life whether he liked it or not, plus there’s the meddling substitute teacher Mr. Oh Han Gyul who made it his life purpose to put Jun Woo under his wing to take care of.

As time pass by, Jun Woo starts to experience all kinds of things in his new school. If it was the old him, he would rather not be involved in anything and simply let the days pass by as he was busy enough to live day by day with his struggling single mother. However, transferring schools and meeting new people made his life more colorful. The people he met gave him the courage to face different life situations – despite it being hard and troublesome, he was able to go through with it and surpass obstacles with a smile on his face.

This drama was such a heart warming show. It also felt like I was watching the drama “Sassy Go Go” in a less funny and more melodramatic kind of way. I can’t help but compare because the dramas were both similar with the school setting and the fact that the kids had issues regarding grades, dating, puberty, sexuality, family, frenemies and the likes. Though this series has the same theme, the way the characters were able to portray their lives was something different than the usual trope. I was impressed not just with the story line but with the actors as well.

As for the characters who are worth mentioning – Joon Woo acted by Ong Seong Woo, is a kind soul. As a main character, I like that he wasn’t placed into the category of a too much of a nice guy that he’s already being a pushover. Well, he’s actually the opposite of that because he has great conviction and knows the good, the bad and what’s best for him despite knowing that it’s the hard way. Though he may be poor, he perseveres andMoment at Eighteen 03 never lets that fact get in the way for him to learn. I like how he pushed through with his choices. He was also firm with his relationship with Choi Soo Bin even though her mother was against their relationship. He tried to be the best boyfriend he could be while dealing with Soo Bin’s mother with respect. The way he cares for Soo Bin is so different from the regular teenage boys who usually follow their raging hormones. Choi Soo Bin, the female lead is a favorite character of mine as she’s acted by Kim Hyang Gi. She’s popularized by the movie “Along with the God’s”, as she acted out the cute grim reaper girl who has a great backstory to tell. Anyway, back to the main topic – it felt like she represents those small-cute-popular girls in high school who doesn’t even try to be popular but still is because of how she looks and how she acts. She’s the kind of girl everyone wants to be friends with or hate at the same time because she seems too perfect. Despite this kind of image though she’s incomplete inside because of a void made by her parents especially her mother. Meeting Jun Woo made her feel a lot better about herself even if not completely whole. Eventually along the way, she was able to breakout from her shell and face the things she’s been avoiding for a long time. Like her control freak mom, her parents broken relationship and what exactly she wants to do with her life. Soo Bin has a childhood best friend who has a huge one sided crush on her, Ma Hwi Young. This guy was depicted by Shin Seung Ho and he was great at his role. He’s the kind of guy I loved to hate and pity at the same time. His character was definitely troubled despite being rich. Due to the pressure of his parents and constant comparison to his genius brother he has developed a huge inferiority complex which pushed him to harm himself and the people around him. He has those urges to manipulate people and situations to make himself look favorable or to cause others to be cast out. Unfortunately for him, he targeted someone who had nothing to lose – Jun Woo, as he had already lost everything.

There are two adults in this drama that I loved and hold them dear in my heart. Actor moment-at-eighteen-06.jpgKang Ki Young is one of those artists who makes a drama seem brighter as he’s a complete scene stealer. In this series, he’s a temp teacher named Mr. Oh Han Gyul who wanted to imprint himself into his students and tries his best  to choose the righteous path despite being pressured by the parents.  I like his chemistry with Seong Woo since they have a great on screen chemistry as a teacher and a student. The other adult that I like is Yoon Song Hee, acted by Kim Sun Young. This actress is awesome in portraying any kind of character. She’s also steals the limelight from the main ones whenever she’s on screen. Her character as Soo Bin’s mother is someone whom I love to hate and want to hug at theMoment at Eighteen 11.jpg same time. As a mother myself, I could empathize with her own struggles to maintain her pride as a career woman and as a wife of a cheating husband. I understand why she’s pressuring her daughter to be the best because she’s wants her not depend on anyone but herself in the long run. But sometimes, this kind of mindset because too suffocating to the children that it backfires one way or another. In this series though, she just got lucky that Soo Bin is a very sweet and understanding child that she’s able to surpass the kind of behavior that her mother has.

Over all this was a great drama. The OST was unforgettable which I posted a sample song below for anyone who’d like to listen to it. Visual and cinematography was great that watching it was totally an eye candy. I felt like I didn’t waste my time on watching all sixteen episodes in one go. There were no dull moments because every scene was a significant watch that gave different kinds of life lessons. Even the lovey-dovey parts between the main leads were not irky or tiring to watch – since we’re dealing with puppy love here.  They simply looked like two teenagers who were treading into the unknown territory of first love. It was actually pure and unadulterated. I really liked it for the cute. *tiny little hearts emitting in the back ground*

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Moments by Christopher

PHOTOS ARE NOT MINE. CREDITS TO THE OWNER.

30 But 17 (Korean Drama 2018)

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Drama Rating: 9/10

This drama is about two teenagers who had to encounter unfortunate events in their lives that would forever scar them and give them a void in their hearts that only both of them can fill in.

At the age of 17, Woo Seo Ri is a talented violinist while Gong Woo Jin is a buddingStill17E01-00183-copy painter. In their own little worlds they live parallel lives watching each other from afar until one day, they are able to meet by pure coincidence. Unfortunately on that same day an accident occurs that robs years of Seo Ri’s life because she wakes up from a coma 13 years after. Woo Jin, on the other hand, seemed to be stuck in a loophole of guilt up to the age Still17E03-00056-copyof 30 due to a huge misunderstanding. Thinking that he had caused the death of his first love, he lived a life opposite of who he truly is – never getting involved in other people’s lives ever again. Fate brought them together once more not knowing who each other truly is. They started to live under one roof and slowly rediscover themselves through the help of each other and the people around them.

Intermission and crescendo.

These are the two words that got stuck in my mind while I watched this drama. I love the fact that they used these words to interpret an event and describe the character’s life, that’s how both words became very meaningful. I like how Seo Ri was able to think positively despite all the hurdles she faced with the mindset that her life was simply put on hold like an intermission during a concert and that her crescendo finally came to let her resume her life performance. Simply thinking about it sends tiny tingly feels all over Dramas-With-a-Side-of-Kimchi-2.w16-5me. Aside her character being a roller coaster ride with all the ups and downs, there’s one set back that I didn’t like about and that was her decision making. She changes her mind during critical times but given that she’s still in the state of being a 17 year old instead that of a 30 year old woman, she’s bound to make a lot of mistakes and learn from them. Shin Hye Sun as Seo Ri, was able to portray her character thoroughly and stay true to her supposedly age and experiences, as if everything simply happened yesterday after she got into an accident. Her emotional turmoil upon finding out devastating things and coming out from depression to move forward was another plus props for her. Seo Ri’s life may be far fetched from reality but she’s a character that I’ll keep dear in my heart. Her counter part Gong Woo Jin, the guy who has been cold, aloof and indignant to people is the total30but17_E1516_00019 opposite of Seo Ri. He’s a man who has been scarred for life and unable to let go that’s why his mental state was in total shambles forgetting that he had a lot of people caring for him. I’m just glad that the way Seo Ri and Woo Jin met again didn’t seem forced but it was as natural as they have met during the first time. The fact that Seo Ri became his healing person all throughout their time together was a plus. What I like about him is the way he changed from being a bubbly person to being anti-social then back again. When he was being a loner, he has these pair of head set which is his way to close off himself from people who are trying to approach him. He had different antics on how not to care about people because he thought that the more he care, the more others may get hurt and at the same time it would cause him yet another unbearable pain. So basically being with Seo Ri was a contradiction to his own belief because she was simply able to turn his life upside down. Woo Jin was able to open up because of her and slowly revert to the same person he was before. Kang Sejong nailed this character all throughout. I’m glad that his acting is consistent and that he’s getting better as time goes on as well. Other charactersStill17E30-00266-copy worth mentioning are the following: Jennifer – I like her not just because of her character but because of the actress who portrayed her. Ye Ji Won is a veteran actress who usually has a supporting role but she always always brings light to her character and co-stars. I realized that her role as Jennifer the house keeper, was very essential in the drama. She made everything into a full circle. It felt like she was the glue that held everyone together. The fact that she also cooks mountain of food for everyone, is a quirk that she has. It’s as if Still17E02-00627-copy.jpgshe lives to feed other people. Jennifer also loves to quote books since she had spent most of her time reading which will be showed in the drama as to why she does it and how she became who she was. Yoo Chan – the household teenager and the nephew of Woo Jin. When he was younger he adored Woo Jin with all his heart and vice versa. They looked so cute together during their younger years but now that both are older, he got taller than Woo Jin and is actually proud of it. Heh. The thing that makes Chan lovable is that he’s so energetic, understanding and supportive to the people around him. He may be clueless still-17-filming-location-episode-2-the-forest-garden-koreandramaland-b-1461x800or a klutz at times but once he understood the situation, he’s able to get to a meaningful conclusion for himself and the people he loves. Deok Gu and Hae Bum – These two are Chan’s best friends and teammates in the rowing team. They may be a bit of a throw in for the whole drama but they make things more bubbly. They also help out Chan a lot and makes his character more significant than it is. I like both of them because they seem to uplift the scene whenever I see them eating and joking inside the house or around Chan.

All in all I love this drama to bits and would probably re-watch it again soon. The main cast and supporting actors were great, I wouldn’t want anyone else to take on their roles. Cinematography wise it was alright, nothing much stunning to look at since most scenes are taken in doors or around the city and it wasn’t much artistic to look at. The OST gave me more of a classical vibe since that’s what Seo Ri was good at, but there’re some songs that did caught up to me specially during the funny moments.

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It’s kind of sad that I wasn’t able to follow through with this drama during it’s airtime because I read bad reviews about it and the summary I read somewhere didn’t sound appealing at all. Hopefully my version would make a lot of people more interested in it. Nonetheless, even though I missed the actual air date, I was able to binge watch it in 4 days. I was trying to finish it in 3 but since I’m a pregnant mom with a toddler to take care of, I only have a couple of hours to spare when the baby is asleep. It was actually hard to put it on hold and resume watching because each episode is chock-full of heartwarming details that I had a hard time restraining myself from watching. I’m recommending this to those who are into dramas with a lot of uplifting moments and to those who hasn’t exactly moved on from their teenage years.

PHOTOS ARE NOT MINE. CREDITS TO THE OWNER.