… has been deplorable but seems to be picking up a bit now. Of all the dramas I tried watching after You Came from the Stars, You’re All Surrounded was the only one I finished. And by finished, I mean I struggled through it because of my undying love for Lee Seung-gi.
Bride of the Century -Everyone’s crack drama post-YCftS. I found it charming but I sort of dropped it for some reason and I still haven’t felt the urge to pick it up again. The first eight episodes are pretty good, but I wished the oppa would stop acting creepily romantic towards his sister’s doppelganger.
Doctor Stranger -I think everyone who watched it knew that it started out good and pretty much sank right around the middle. The writing didn’t make sense, but the acting and directing managed to pull it through eight or ten episodes. However, there’s only so much acting and directing can do to deflect a rotten story. Kudos to Jin Se-yeon for surviving and better luck next time to Lee Jong-suk and the rest.
You’re All Surrounded - I did finish this one, but the only way you can call this good is if you compare it with Doctor Stranger. I was reeled in by the humorous advertising, which reminded me of Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Little did I expect that I would be stuck with 20 episodes a perpetually dour LSG and his band of inept cops. The writer wants to write a cop melodrama and a cop comedy and he/she fails in attempting to combine the two. It’s a shame because I was excited to see LSG and Cha Seung-won together.
High School King of Savvy - Seo In-gook was pretty to look at and I liked Lee Ha-na as well. It’s just that something didn’t click. Sorry, show.
Flower Grandpa Investigative Unit - The problem of this show is somewhat the inverse of YAS’s. I get that the show is a comedy, but the comedy is overdone. The quality of the comedy reminds me of Praybeyt Benjamin but with elderly actors. It’s a shame because these veterans can do more with a smarter, sharper script.
Joseon Gunman - Thus far the most disappointing. It’s a good drama by all accounts, but it could’ve been great. The technicals were all there. It’s a gorgeously shot drama populated with above-average actors, but the writing falls short. It follows the footsteps of The Princess’s Man but fails to capture the passion and pathos of the earlier drama. Sure TPM was populated with idealistic idiots who inevitably lost to the sensible villains, but I nonetheless got swept up in it. I guess it didn’t help that TPM had the Moon Chae-won’s fiery Se-ryeong while JG featured Nam Sang-mi as the anemic Soo-in. I dropped this around episode 15 because the production was rehashing the old “good people are stupid” trope they used in TPM. Problem was I wasn’t as invested.
The Three Musketeers - Now THIS is how you do adapt a swashbuckler: boisterous, bombastic, bold, and FUN. (I’m looking at you, BBC Musketeers). Lee Jin-wook is charismatic as the level-headed by somewhat shady Prince/Athos analogue while Jung Yong-hwa makes a surprisingly good (and adorable) D’Artagnan. But Princess Yoon-seo wins the a prize for being SOOOOOOOO adorable and not at all annoying. The last time I had this much fun watching a show was during the Sungkyunkwan Scandal days. I hope the show can sustain the energy even when it heads to dark places. I would also like to add that despite the setting change, this Korean drama is a pretty faithful adaptation both in plot and in spirit.