Alice in Wonder City (Taiwanese Drama 2012)

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Drama Rating: 7/10

He Ting Yu is a famous violinist who’s just returned from an overseas tour. Chen Hai Jie is a hardworking dreamer who came to the big city to become a world class violin player. Lan Die Fei is a charming girl who has a beautiful voice and an ear for pitch. Alice is a mysterious girl from Japan who wonders the streets searching for the secrets of her past.

The seeds of their dreams are planted in the city; they are all waiting to see if one day the seeds will grow to bear fruit.

Excerpted from: My Dramalist

I’m quite a sucker classical music and this drama made it into one of my drama’s “I must finish at once” list. Expect to have a lot of music all throughout the episodes.

The drama had a lovely premise but it went all wishy-washy somewhere in the middle, loop holes popped up here and there into the story line because they tried to make the conflicts seem more complicated and instead it had dead ends or unexplained troubles which were left unresolved. Although those were the things I disliked about this drama, there was also the perk of seeing my favorite character end up with the girl he likes. I’m not going to mention who it is because I wouldn’t want to spoil it to prospect viewers but for me that is much of a happy ending and a drama with happy endings – works well for me BIG TIME.

Alice in Wonder City 01As for the actors/characters, Aaron Yan has gone quite a long way and has matured from that role he had from “It Started With A Kiss”. There was a really huge difference from his acting way back up to this drama and boy has he turned into a good looking guy! I like how he handled the complicated character of Ting-Yu. The seemingly bi-polar attitude, happy at times then all of a sudden angry and rigid. But when his character comes in contact with CJ which is acted by Jie Kai, Tung-yu’s character seems to be more carefree and outspoken. Both actors had this awesome chemistry of being really good friends and they looked really comfortable on acting their characters.

Alice in Wonder City 09The female leads on the other hand – I felt that they were slightly over shadowed by the male lead character, like for Alice – I know that the story is supposed to revolve more around her but it seems that her character was not written with a stronger conviction of who she really is. She was initially a nice girl, then suddenly a bad girl then gradually into the drama, she became a Alice in Wonder City 05nice girl again then bad then nice again. It was sort of annoying that the writer didn’t stick with a proper character for her. There was no sense of continuity. I know it was an act within an act, but there was not proper flow. It was too irritating to watch. As for Die Fei, there was so much potential in her character but the singing thing was like cropped out of no where. It was annoying how her story had to go in circles along with Ting-Yu’s, that everything she did was because of Ting-Yu and not basically about herself. She had to find herself because of the help of someone else, it’s sort of sad. An awakening of a person’s worth should not come from other people but from within. One thing I liked about her though was her voice, I swear it was like watching “Love at the Dolphin Bay” all over again and hearing Angela Zhang sing for the first time. My ears where momentarily in heaven. I only wished the female’s characters had stronger back bones – like the older one named Lisa. I loved her character in so many ways. It was rich and full of story and she had purpose in the first place. The actress gave justice to her role as well.

I have already re-played my favorite scenes with all the cutey stuff and musical stuff, so for me this drama is basically re-watchable. Hopefully, the story line won’t be too disappointing – over all this series is not a waste of time because it stirred my heart and made me smile a lot.

PHOTOS ARE NOT MINE. CREDITS TO THE OWNER.
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That Winter, The Wind Blows (Korean Drama 2013)

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Drama Rating: 8/10

Oh Seo, who was abandoned by his mother as a child and was raised by Park Jin Sung’s family, is a notorious gambler in Cheongdam neighborhood. He is heartbroken and doesn’t care about anybody following the death of his first love. The WInter The Wind Blows 05One day, his friend, who has the same name, dies unexpectedly and Seo is thrown in prison. A year later, Seo meets lawyer Jang Sung, who came looking for the deceased Oh Seo, the heir of PL Group. Seo uses this opportunity to con the last remaining heir of the PL Group, Oh Young, to pay his debt when gangster Jo Moo Cheol gives him three months to pay or he dies. However, Seo starts falling in love with the blind Oh Young, while pretending to be her deceased brother who was separated from her after their parent’s divorce.

Excerpted from: My Dramalist

This drama series was adapted from the Japanese drama entitled Ai Nante Irane Yo, Natsu which was aired on 2002. It was one of the hit series in Japan back then and only ran for 10 episodes. But when they produced this in Korea, as per their entertainment tradition, they had to lengthen the story line and add more conflicts to make the whole drama seem more complicated. There was also a movie adaptation for this drama called – Love Me Not and was one of my favorite movies back in 2006. It was relatively short but it hit the right spot in my heart.

The WInter The Wind Blows 22I watched this drama adaptation for Song Hye Kyo, who will always be one of my top heroine in Korean dramas. It doesn’t matter what kind of role she would be acting on, for me, she always delivers the best character portrayal and this drama was no exception. Plus points for having my favorite actress coupled off with Jo In Sung, what else could I ask for? Jo In Sung’s character also took me to a different level because I kept asking myself while watching him on screen – how could a conman be so damn good looking?!? Setting his good looks aside though, his acting was seriously effective that every time he cries, starts to cry or even tries not cry… it tugs on my heart and I start crying along. (ThisThe WInter The Wind Blows 01 is how much this drama affected me.) The main couple’s chemistry and vibe all throughout the episodes was something I don’t see much in melodramas. Aside them, I don’t want to forget to mention that the supporting characters did make an impact in the over all feel of this drama. Without them the series would have been dull and focused on two people who are both lost in their own pitiful world without any support from other people. So yes, the supporting casts were vital in the story line making things more colorful for the main characters.

The WInter The Wind Blows 20Initially, prior to watching this, I already had an idea where this show was heading towards since I’ve already seen the movie. However I just wasn’t expecting that ending. That final episode sort of gave me ambivalent thoughts about this series. I was thinking if I should be giving it a 7 for the story line because it sort of deviated from the original or should I give it an 8 because at least it made me wrong on my predictions and didn’t let me have that bitter sweet after taste I usually have in melodramas. I finally decided on 8 because it left me in a lighter mood than I have expected. I couldn’t give it a 10, because the story was far from perfect or even a 9, since the length of the drama was too bothersome when it could have been finished in twelve episodes at least.

The main OST was very familiar, it feels like I have heard it’s music score similarly to the drama “Secret Garden” I’m just not up to researching if the artist and music coordinator are the same. Nonetheless, it was good music and gave me last song syndromes right The WInter The Wind Blows 18after every episode. Over all this drama was a good watch. The main characters were great, the story was twisted-sad-super-melodramatic, music was at its best and cinematography was breathtaking. The visuals were seriously beautiful and this is by far one of the best melodramas in 2013 that delivered such picturesque background scenes. Therefore, I’m highly recommending this drama for those who are looking for something melodramatic and yet an eye candy to watch through those heartbreaking moments.

PHOTOS ARE NOT MINE. CREDITS TO THE OWNER.

The Heirs (Korean Drama 2013)

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Drama Rating: 7/10

Kim Tan is the heir to Empire Group who has been sent to study abroad in the U.S. In reality it’s a form of exile, as his elder half-brother back home schemes to take over the family business. While in the States, Kim Tan meets Cha Eun Sang, who arrived from Korea in search of her older sister. He feels himself falling for her, never realizing that she’s the daughter of his family’s housekeeper. When his fiancée Rachel Yoo arrives to bring him back to Korea, his heart is torn between love and duty.

Excerpted from: My Dramalist

Sorry, I’m too lazy to make a summary myself as this is an old drama that I’m really not that fond of. However, on the other hand – I do like the fact that most of the actors in this drama are now big shots and are popular in their own name. Most of them are now lead actors in movies or dramas. Thanks to The Heirs, they’ve all shot up to stardom.

The Heirs 12.jpgOne thing that actually made me watch this drama was the glamour. It reminded me so much of Boys Before Flowers just without the theatrics of over acting good looking boys. Not that this show is short of good looking guys, its actually the contrary. There’s just the absence of humor because this drama has too much angst and is money driven that eventually it became too tiring to watch. Viewing this drama felt like my brain cells would deteriorate anytime because I don’t even have to think over about the situations… I could count my hair and I would still be able to follow on with the plot line and predict what’s going to happen.

The Heirs 01.jpgThe story was very typical. Rich boy falls in love with poor girl and vice versa. So what made this interesting to watch? Well honestly it’s not the story because that had me lost in the middle of the series. What actually made me continue on watching were the characters. I was very much invested in each of their character development that I couldn’t help but finish the drama because of them. Yes the male lead Kim Tan was a mopey teenager with so much daddy issues while our female lead did nothing but cry her eyes out on all the bad things that has ever happened to her. Yet, there I was… patiently waiting for their progress, thinking that maybe something drastic would happen in their lives and their characters would evolve on that awaited change but unfortunately – The Heirs failed me big time.

One thing that this drama did right for me though was casting Kim Woo-bin. It was my first time to see him in a drama and I fell in love with the bad boy image of his character that I had a hard time moving on from his role. I had a bad dose of second lead syndrome because of him.

Music wise, there was nothing note worthy but it did add to the onscreen chemistry, so I have nothing against it. I would recommend this drama for the Lee Min Ho and Kim Woo-bin fans out there. But over all… this isn’t going to be in my list of must watch drama of 2013.

PHOTOS ARE NOT MINE CREDITS TO THE OWNER.