Finished “I’m Not a Robot”

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A charming romcom that really made me laugh out loud at times. Though the premise is ludicrous, the leads are so cute together and the supporting cast is adorable, too.
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#chae-soo-bin, #i-am-not-a-robot, #uhm-ki-joon, #yoo-seung-ho

End of (Itaewon) Class

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The word that comes to mind is… annoying.

By the end I was chafing for it to be over. Once again I am stunned that this achieved such stellar ratings! It’s probably my fault. I came away from this drama with the feeling that these were all one-dimensional comic book characters when they are INDEED comic book characters so I shouldn’t be complaining. Yet I did and I do.

SPOILERS
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#itaewon-class, #kim-da-mi, #kwon-nara, #park-seo-joon, #yoo-jae-myung

“Itaewon Class” — Ep. 1

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Omo. The end of Episode 1 is INTENSE!

I don’t even know which way I want it to go at this point!! 😱

#itaewon-class, #kim-da-mi, #kwon-nara, #park-seo-joon, #yoo-jae-myung

Finished “Story of Ming Lan”

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The 73 episodes were a surprisingly easy inhale.

Also Ming Lan is A BOSS!

That ass kicking I wanted? Got it.
The character focus I was expecting? Got it.
The clever, resourceful badass little girl in the beginning of the drama who wanted justice? GOT HER BACK!
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#feng-shao-feng, #story-of-ming-lan, #zhao-yi-ling

“Story of Ming Lan” — Up to Ep. 25

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This is totally a Chinese “Sense and Sensibility,” with some “Pride and Prejudice” and “Northanger Abbey” thrown in. LOL. Well, not really, but it has that same sort of feel!
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#feng-shao-feng, #story-of-ming-lan, #zhao-yi-ling

“Story of Ming Lan” — Up to Ep. 9

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May I just say how much I love this child?

This drama sure is taking its time getting started. Though the title is “Story of Ming Lan,” Ming Lan appears in maybe 10 percent of each episode, if that, and so far has no active role in any of the conflicts and crises around her.
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#feng-shao-feng, #story-of-ming-lan, #zhao-yi-ling

“Story of Ming Lan” — Ep. 1

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A promising start! Not sure what it is about or where we are going, but so far a lot of it is going right for me!
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#feng-shao-feng, #story-of-ming-lan, #zhao-yi-ling, #zhu-yi-long

Finally saw “Guardian”

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Honestly, during the time that I was on hiatus from dramas I kept hearing about this Cdrama all over the place. I always thought it would be a good one because the buzz around it seemed so high, people really seemed to love it. So when Robin recently mentioned that it was one of the dramas she had seen that had been shot at Shanghai Film Studios, I suddenly remembered that “oh yeah I should finally get around to watching that!”

How is it possible that this drama is so horribly bad???
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#bai-yu, #guardian, #supernatural, #zhu-yi-long

Chocolat..some thoughts

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Just finished this drama and on the whole I enjoyed it. It stars Yoon Kye-sang and  Ha Ji Won as the main couple. I have to also put a word for the secondary lead actor Jang Seung-jo who I really liked as well.

THe basic story is that these two characters met at different times in their lives and totally impacted each other and, in true kdrama fashion, realize that fate does have the upper hand at the end of the day.  After a few twists and turns, both find themselves working at a hospice where people live the end of their lives and the drama does a great job of showing each case in a very sensitive way. I won’t lie..it’s very sad to get fond of them knowing that they will soon be gone but I tried to focus on the positive and brightness they brought…as the heroine said: They are not here to die but rather to live the final days of their lives..emphasis on “live”. I loved the reminder that at the end of the day making a person happy can be as simple as making someone a special dish..it’s the little things.

I really loved the way there was so much healing in this drama..if not physically then emotionally ..and these people really need it. They carry alot of scars. Even more than the main couple I loved the up and down relationship between the two men (who were cousins taught to hate each other)..love how they slowly realize that what they’ve been taught to do is not what they want to do at the end of the day. Even her annoying brother was given character growth..lol..though there were a few that were left intact..and that’s life too..some people are beyond repair.

Some might consider it slow..maybe even depressing at times.. and I had a bit of quibble about the ending but overall I’m not sorry that I watched it. I felt a certain comfort in watching the heroine approach life and  realize the reason why and the beautiful scenes in Greece were the icing on the cake!!

Back to “The Longest Day In Chang’an”

I think that picking up once again on this drama may be the smartest decision I’ve made this year when it comes to choosing what to watch. Earlier, I felt conflicted about how it portrayed the various ethnic groups (wondering if this was an oblique justification of the current treatment of Uyghur peoples), but I wanted to take a closer look and evaluate those sentiments. As the story has unfolded it’s been less about the “foreign” group of the Wolven Pack and more about the corruption and betrayals and power struggles within the Tang court, from low ranking officials to the highest ministers and the Emperor, and about human nature and those things that drive us.

By the way, there are no spoilers in this post; it’s really more of an appreciation love letter!

Jackson Yee as Li Bi, head of the Peacekeepers Bureau

I’m now just over half-way though this continued viewing; I’d be further along but this is one of those productions that is just too full – overwhelming action, complicated decisions, dense visuals. Watching standard dramas versus watching this one is like eating a Hershey bar versus eating the richest Belgian truffle – you can’t take in more than a few bites. I find myself holding my breath with each episode; it’s become that good. Episode 16, in particular, is just stunning.

Lei Jiayin as Zhang Xiaojing, the death row former soldier with the 1-day reprieve

What makes each block of time (generally 3 episodes is my max before my brain combusts) so worthwhile is almost too time-consuming to explain, but it begins with the cast, especially Lei Jiayin as the unlikeliest of leading men. He’s rumpled, got a blocky build, sports his own scruffy hair and beard (lots of real hair in this drama, btw), but he’s so convincing as the bad-ass soldier with the courage of his convictions. He is called upon to do the impossible 3 times every hour, but he manages to convince me every time that he can do it.

Reyizha Alimjan as Tan Qi, servant to Li Bi

We also get a female character who is smart, resourceful, willing to take chances and do what needs to be done in Reyizha Alimjan’s Tan Qi. Yes, she’s technically a servant to Li Bi, but she’s there to help him in supervising and aiding Zhang Xiaojing and she works and thinks as hard as any man in the story – more than some!

Zhou Yiwei as Long Bo, mercenary and more

The various characters who are supposed to be working with the Peacekeepers Bureau (but aren’t) and those they’re trying to stop before they set the world afire are not just cartoon characters, which makes them worthy opponents deserving of screen time even if they add to the frustration. One of these who commands your attention every time he’s onscreen is Zhou Yiwei, who’s Long Bo is a mercenary and running the show for his employers (as of this moment in the plot). He reminds me so much of Lee Bum-soo with those eyes and the shape of his face; I’d love to see them go toe-to-toe in something someday.

Lu Fangsheng as Yao Runeng, Investigator

Most of all, the sheer scope and beauty of this drama is difficult to beat; I’m hard-pressed to thing of many other dramas that are this cinematic, this rich in visual and aural texture and scale. Each episode is like a 40-minute feature film, one that many in Hollywood and elsewhere would be proud to have on their resumes.

I’m not sure how long it will take me to finish at this rate, and I can only hope that each subsequent episode will be as satisfying as those that have preceded it. I’ll be back to let you know what the final verdict is, but for right now, this one is one of the ones to beat for best of the viewing year.

#jackson-yee, #lei-jiayin, #lu-fangsheng, #peng-guanying, #reyizha-alimjan, #song-yunhao, #the-longest-day-in-changan, #wang-herun, #xu-lu, #zhao-wei, #zhou-yiwei