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.

Empress Ki (Korean Drama 2013)

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Drama Rating: 8/10

This drama is adapted from the life of Empress Ki, a woman who was neither from the Mongols or Han Chinese descent but instead came from a small kingdom in the Far East called Goryeo which is presently known as Korea. During the Yuan Dynasty, she held immense power and prestige that she’s known in East Asia and East Europe as a tyrant queen.

1wgQdfBefore she was an empress, she was known as Ki Seung Nyang. From childhood up to being a woman, she had lived a harsh life. However her previous experiences were nothing compared to the day she became a Gungnyeo – a woman from Goryeo who is offered as a palace woman or concubine for the Mongol Emperor. Despite being brought to another country as a slave against her will, she was able to survive through her wit and perseverance. Eventually, Ta Hwan also known as Toghon Temür the Mongol Emperor falls in love with her not knowing that she was engaged to a Goryeo Prince named Wang Yoo. Due to palace conflicts and her political ambitions, she had to chose between love and survival.

I have this habit of checking out drama’s because of the cast and this drama did not fail me. Ha Ji Won’s acting as per usual, was flawless. I did have high hopes about the script/story during the initial episodes up to the middle part, but the entire show left me with a bitter aftertaste kind of ending. Why did the writers have to put an open-endedQJXJWf ending for the viewers when they could have just wrapped it up simply with a simple choice? It could have ended nicely when she finally became an empress because it was, after all the ultimate goal. What disappointed me was that every 10 to 15 episode the plot line changes and the story shifts its focus on something else aside from the previous problem on hand. That was really annoying, because when they go back to the initial conflict, there were more loopholes into the story which could not be addressed but instead it will be piled up with more issues to cover up the initial problem. Basically it’s a merry-go-round of never ending dispute – which is the norm in politics, only this one was badly portrayed in a drama. If it was me, I would have stuck with the romantic plot line instead of the political side of the story.

Another thing I have to take note of… I could have loved both kings – Yuan and Goryeo alike but instead I fell in love with Taltal, Governor Bayan’s right hand and nephew. Sometimes I day dream that he and Seung Nyang would actually end up together instead of the power driven-infused kings. Their tandem by the end of the drama was more in place than her link with the kings. I did somehow root her to the Yuan King because they had so much onscreen chemistry but decided against it during the later episodes.

As for the OST, the music was timely and I couldn’t ask for a better sound track for it. The visuals in this drama was awesome by the way. I have already re-watched several scenes from random episodes just because I liked the cinematography and the kick-ass fight scenes and archery of our heroine. Over all I would recommend this to watchers who are into saguek and palace-warlord-politics conspiracy, but let me warn you! This drama may seem to have a romantic story line, yet it isn’t the main theme and it might even disappoint in the end.

PHOTOS ARE NOT MINE. CREDITS TO THE OWNER.