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To Watch:
DramaFever

Cast:
Ji Chang Wook as Kim Je Ha
Choi Seung Hoon (최승훈) as child Kim Je Ha
Song Yoon Ah as Choi Yoo Jin
Im Yoon Ah as Go Anna
Lee Yoo Joo (이유주) as child Go Anna
Jo Sung Ha as Jang Se Joon
Kim Gab Soo as Park Kwan Soo
Lee Jung Jin as Choi Sung Won
Shin Dong Mi as Kim Dong Mi

Genre:
Action, Political, Revenge

Plot:
The presidential election is just around the corner and politician Jang Se Joon and his wife Choi Yoo Jin are gunning for the candidacy. Little do we know that Choi Yoo Jin is holding Jang Se Joon’s daughter as a hostage to control her husband.

Kim Je Ha is a soldier abandoned by his country and a mercenary for hire overseas, but due to political conspiracy, is forced to live on the run. He tries to live his life simply but an incident with Jang Se Joon and Park Kwan Soo tosses Je Ha back into a life of danger and revenge.

What will happen when Jang Se Joon’s daughter Go Anna returns to Korea? Will Anna discover the truth behind her real mother’s death? Will Je Ha find his revenge or will he will he choose to protect Anna?

Review:
Recently there has really been a down trend of Korean dramas capturing my interest, but I saw K2 get released on DramaFever and instantly loved it. Okay, I’ll be honest, actually I saw that Im Yoon Ah was casted to play a role and I just had to watch it. I was a huge fan of her in Prime Minister & I and was intrigued and a bit excited by the action/melodramatic premise of the show. I’ve heard great things about Ji Chang Wook lately but I never quite could finish watching his shows: Tornado Girl, Baek Dong Soo, and Smile Dong Hae.

In the end however, it was Song Yoon Ah’s performance as the cruel and calculating Choi Yoo Jin that really captured my attention. Song Yoon Ah played her part perfectly and by the end of the drama we come to see that she is only human, driven to extreme circumstances to protect what she believed most important. The sheer amount of emotion she conveyed in every scene was absolutely amazing. A slight change in her eyes, a subtle curve or tremble in the mouth, these all came together seamlessly. This is not to degrade the performance of the other cast members. Ji Chang Wook, Jo Sung Ha, and also Im Yoon Ah also complemented each other brilliantly. Mad props for Kim Gab Soo who plays the conniving assemblyman. He was by far one of the best politicians I have ever seen in a Korean Drama. His antics always made me chuckle but the best part about it is that it’s not meant to be comedic but rather a more unique and fresh way of portraying his corrupt and two-faced nature.

I couldn’t quite see the character that Im Yoon Ah was supposed to be. Her child hood trauma seemed to play into the story often but I couldn’t quite see it reflected in her character and her behavior. She didn’t seem as socially awkward as someone would have been had they undergone the same experiences she did, but she did play a consistent character at least in the sense of how she wanted to portray Anna. I felt like she was very naive for someone who had been controlled all her life, especially when Choi Yoo Jin’s brother Choi Sung Won tried to use her. By the way all the Choi Yoo Jin and Choi Sung Won scenes were brilliant as well. They made such a great pair of bickering siblings. All their words had deeper meanings and every conversation was like a battle of wits.

The music, action scenes, and overall progress of the drama were well put together, and if you are a fan of any of the cast members, this drama is definitely a sure win. There were indeed many places where I did not enjoy but that was mostly the story development in the final episode, which I explain later but read it only if you don’t mind the spoiler. The drama as a whole keeps you in suspense, and at a certain point, I can’t remember exactly when, but I started to root for Choi Yoo Jin. She became a character we could all relate to in some aspect, and even though she was ruthless she had her reasons.

I think if you just watch the drama for it’s action and superb acting you will enjoy the show immensely, but the overall story had some inconsistencies and annoyances that wanted to make me bang my head on a table.

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Spoilers Stop Reading Here & Skip to the Rating
Probably my greatest gripes about this drama is how the show ended and also how Kim Je Ha’s character fell in love with Anna so quickly. Kim Je Ha has sort of a bodyguard complex. He is a protector of the innocent and the weak and has a compassionate heart toward those who are kind to him, but I couldn’t fully believe that he could fall in love with a woman just by watching her in security cameras.

The last episode of the drama almost made it seem like they were trying to create an epic finish but instead failed epically to deliver a believable ending. Just to be clear I will list them out.

1. Why didn’t they just drag out the bomb and dropped it into the elevator?
2. They could have rolled Choi Yoo Jin out of Cloud9 easily.
3. Why didn’t Je Ha bring backup into the underground basement at JSS.
4. Why did Se Joon and the Yoo Jin’s secretary come into Cloud9 without weapons?

So many things just didn’t make sense. I understand the writer has more experience and probably had a reason for doing everything but this is how I would have ended the drama.

1. Drag the bomb into the elevator and drop it down to explode harmlessly underground.
2. Choi Yoo Jin survives and becomes a real mother to Anna, who forgives her.
3. Se Joon becomes president and becomes a wise leader and treats Yoo Jin better.
4. Bring down the JB group.

I didn’t think that Yoo Jin had to die. I think the drama had set her up in a position near the end to redeem herself, and Se Joon too.

Rating:
Episodes 1-15: 4.7/5.0
Episode 16: 2.0/5.0

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First off I’d like to thank any people who comment a lot or just check out what I write about the dramas I’ve seen. I usually flip over to JavaBeans once in awhile to see what’s going on in the kdrama world. This time I managed to read the year in reviews by the 3 avid drama fans. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions. I myself do not watch dramas to nit pick everything that happens or pay attention too much to critique the scripts or directorship of any drama. I usually rate my dramas on my own enjoyment and then pick out the details of each that I remember most. I really try not to be judgmental since I know that every production is always compilation of the hard work and effort of both the production crews and the actors and actresses.

The major dramas that they talked about were:
Iljimae
Beethoven Virus
On Air
Robbers
Gourmet
Stars Lover
Hong Gil Dong
Tazza
Strongest Chil Woo
Love & Marriage
Three Dads One Mom
Who Are You
When Night Comes
World’s Within
General Hospital 2
Happiness
Kingdom of the Winds
Spotlight
My Sweet Seoul
Fight
Painter of the Wind
Scales of Providence
My Woman
Before and After Plastic Surgery
Bichunmoo
Single Dad In Love
Powerful Opponents
You Are My Destiny
Women in the Sun
Lawyers of the Great Republic
East of Eden

Let me roughly go down the list.

The first on the list is Iljimae. My first impression of this drama was that something was off. It did not give me the feel of an authentic Saguek like Damo or Hwang Jini. I didn’t bother to keep watching after the first few episodes. This is not to say it was a bad drama. I understand that it did incredibly well in the ratings but it just wasn’t for me. My mom bought the DVDs maybe I’ll finish it sometime.

Beethoven Virus really got me excited that it would be like Nodame Cantable but I was sadly disappointed. I was expecting to follow a nice drama with Lee Ji Ah but the story just killed me. I had hoped they’d make Lee Ji Ah into some great musician but I didn’t like what she turned out to be. I really loved her in her first drama Saguek but I just couldn’t watch her in this one. It’s alright though I will still watch your next drama Lee Ji Ah!!!

On Air is a very interesting drama and I started watching about the first six episodes. Song Yoon Ah from Hotelier and My Older Sister is one of the most talented and beautiful actresses that I have ever seen. The acting core in the drama way surpassed my expectations. Perhaps this is also why the ratings were so high. I was so impressed with the overall production and casting chemistry. One tick. I didn’t really like how the plot was progressing so I stopped watching it for the time being. I may probably (90% chance) go back to watch this just to see how great the acting gets later on.

Robbers was similarly dropped by myself. I love Lee Da Hae and her acting is superb. She has her touching moments. I can’t really say I enjoyed the drama and plotline. I kind of skimmed through the last 10 episodes simply because I had them downloaded already. I think I have watched so many dramas that one of my most weighted enjoyment factors is acting and plot. (music comes in third!)

Gourmet was a nice drama as well. Solid cast and iffy plot. The story has been done before in different cultures so it is nothing new to me. I just love Nam Sang Mi so I had to check out the drama. Sadly the subs have not been quickly released so I have not really paid attention to the rest of this drama. If it is completed I will definitely finish it, if only to see Nam Sang Mi.

Stars Lover I consider a drama suited for more mature audiences. I find Choi Ji Woo a little too old for my enjoyment but I did decide to see how it goes. Nothing much to say about this yet.

I did enjoy Hong Gil Dong no matter how un authentic or wack it appeared to be. I admit I watched the drama for Sung Yuri and the plot was pretty interesting. It was just the overall feel of the production did not give me a perfect feeling. People say that Yuri’s acting improved and I have to agree. Anyhow, I don’t really have much to say about this other than the fact that I actually enjoyed most of it and watched the whole thing.

Tazza is waiting for me. Will get to it when I have time.

Strongest Chil Woo was dropped even before I finished watching the first episode. I started watching it and just found it kind of weird. I wanted to try watching it for Hye Sun from Pure 19 but I just couldn’t keep watching it.

Love & Marriage was decent but something just didn’t click for me. I watched probably the first 8-9 episodes and then skimmed through the ending. Maybe it’s because I haven’t been married yet or even plan to in the near future so it just wasn’t for me.

Three Dads and One Mom with Eugene was a fun ride. I loved her in this drama as well as all of the supporting cast. I finished the drama and felt that it was pretty enjoyable. A lot of critics said it was a failure but I’d like to differ. No matter how many faults people find about it I think that overall it is still an enjoyable drama. It is well mixed with touching moments as well as comedic moments.

Who Are You has been on my hard drive all this time but I haven’t had the courage to start it since I think I might have an adverse reaction to seeing a young man suddenly turn into her father somewhere during an important moment. Since so many people enjoyed this drama I may take a look at ep1.

I started When Night Comes and then stopped. I guess that’s all I need to say. You can just watch ep1 on your own and tell me your thoughts haha.

World’s Within was just not my type of drama. I hear that things get better after ep5 or 6 but I haven’t had the time to watch the rest since there are many more dramas out there that I need to finish.

I was looking forward so much to General Hospital 2 but after the first episode I felt disappointed. Kim Jung Eun, well, I really can’t stand the character that she plays. It was pretty humorous though so if comedy suits you you might find this drama entertaining.

Happiness started out well and I thought I finally found a drama that I could follow through. Alas, after the first five or six episodes, I didn’t feel like I could finish it. Just too long. This made me think about watching Golden Bride. I loved the first twenty or thirty episodes but as it dragged on, I started getting annoyed. Long dramas (that aren’t Sagueks or Wu Xia) tend to do that to me.

I’m just waiting on Kingdom of the Winds to finish airing and subbed and I will start. Really looking to another great Saguek with Jumong.

Spotlight is surely an interesting drama. When watching the first seven episodes I really felt the rush and that there was always action going on. I just felt maybe if they added a little more romance or what not it would have been better. Anyhow, I must find time to finish this great drama. I don’t understand how the ratings were so low. It must have been the other competing dramas at the time. Son Yeh Jin is an amazing actress and I find it sad that people did not pick this drama up. There are rumors that the last few episodes slightly differ from teh previous episodes but I think Son Yeh Jin makes up for this.

Nothing on My Sweet Seoul as I decided to not even watch the first episode.

I started watching Fight just streaming online and I think its a really great drama. I will finish this sometime I hope.

Painter of the Wind absolutely blew me away. The music, acting, and feeling of the drama just washed over me like honey water. Everything was beautifully done. Enough said this is a must watch.

I’m looking forward to watching Scales of Providence if ever the subs finish. I have high hopes for this, but also because Jun Hye Bin is in it.

My Woman seemed to be a pretty solid drama. Although I didn’t know if it was accurate, the summary said the main female lead would betray her old lover. I’m sorry but I can’t really deal with evil leads. It’s just my own quirk but I’m sure it was a great drama. The cast seemed solid but it just seemed too evil for my liking. I could foresee a lot of evil and sadness!

Nothing to say about Before and After Plastic Surgery.

I have to say I have a strong connection to Bichunmoo. It’s really not as bad as people make it seem. Since I worked on the subs, I was able to view the drama in its complete and abridged form. I loved Park Ji Yoon as Sul Ri. I was really excited to work on the project and I ended up loving the drama and waiting for each new episode. My only dislike was the character playing the other male lead. A lot of viewers complained about the dubbing but since I watched the drama in both Chinese and Korean, I have to say it doesn’t detract too much. Although it can’t compare with Wu Xia from China, it does try and it does do a good job capturing many of the scenes.

Single Dad in Love, no thanks.

Powerful Opponents was another rare drama that I found the will to finish. Although I did skim a little, I felt that people had concerns that the actors acted a lot like children? Well it is a drama and there is definitely room to exaggerate. It’s what makes dramas dramas and not reality TV. I don’t think that it was outrageously overdone. I think the drama started out really well but somewhere along the way I felt disappointed. I still did finish since I wanted to see who Chae Rim would end up with. Lucky I did follow through because the ending was kinda cool.

You Are My Destiny continues to enchant me although the story is getting a bit dragged out and annoying. Im Yoon Ah does a wonderful job and Hose seriously needs to grow a spine. Su Bin is pure evil but she is still human. Anyways for a daily drama it is really nice. I have yet to watch the remaining episodes but I probably will finish it sometime, if only to stick around for a happy ending.

I’m quite sure that Women in the Sun was a great drama but once again as I said before, it makes me squirmy to deal with evil leads. Abandoning a sister? I might watch it for the acting and plotline but it’d probably make me uncomfortable. It kind of reminds me of Fashion 70’s where I fell in love with the evil lead Min Jung instead of Ye Won.

I’m surprised I even finished Lawyers of the Great Republic of Korea. I started watching it because I saw Lee Soo Kyung. It was probably a mistake because I hated both male leads and I simply hated the plot, but darn it Lee Soo Kyung is just so beautiful that I stuck around.

As for my finishing drama, I’d really like to stick up for East of Eden. As you might already have guessed I’ve been watching East of Eden in the last three days and I’ve been hooked. No skimming and no frowns. I love this drama. Lee Dong Chul is just cool and Lee Yeon Hee and Lee Da Hae are just amazing. There are complaints about the acting, which I could possibly agree to, but the drama is just awesome. The story keeps me tuned, (although I can guess everything that will happen) I still think it’s a solid drama and I will definitely watch it to the end. The sacrifices of Dong Chul and his loyalty is just beyond this world. Don’t be swayed by the critics who say they hate East of Eden. It is definitely a drama worth starting, and if you like it, finishing.

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