Wednesday, November 26, 2014

My Secret Hotel

Episodes 16
Given Synopsis ( 
        The Secret Hotel is considered the most luxurious hotel and the most sought-after wedding destination in Korea. Nam Sang Hyo (Yoo In Na) is the manager of wedding planning at the hotel and rules over her domain down to the last detail to provide her clients with the most memorable dream weddings. But her perfectionistic work environment begins to unravel when her new wedding client his Gu Hae Young (Jin Lee Han), a famous architect who also happens to be her ex-husband. Things get even more complicated when a man falls to his death during Hae Young’s wedding, causing a major problem for managing director Jo Sung Gyeom (Nam Goong Min) and the hotel PR manager Yeo Eun Joo (Lee Young Eun). Could the murder be related to some secrets from Sung Gyeom’s past? And can Sang Hyo and Eun Joo help the hotel regain its polished reputation when they both compete for love and career advancement? “My Secret Hotel” is a 2014 South Korean drama series directed by Hong Jong Chan.

       If you're looking for a drama that shows a lot of relationship development and boyfriend/girlfriend moments, this probably isn't the one to go for. I feel like this focused way too much on the love triangle in terms of relationships. This drama actually dragged the love triangle till the very end. A full 16 episode drama of a ridiculous and childish love triangle. The only romantic scenes that I remember were all  from flashbacks of Nam Sang Hyo and Gu Hae Young's marriage in Vegas. I couldn't even appreciate the romantic scenes from the "dating" period that she had with Jo Sung Gyeom because she was playing with both the first male lead and the second lead's heart. This fickle and indecisive female lead was annoying to watch. Her behavior was not cute as she went back and forth between the men. She would also constantly make excuses as to why she's helping and heading toward Gu Hae Young. I did not appreciate this dragged out love triangle. The beginning of this drama was so intense and interesting. I feel like the drama did not meet the standards it set in the first few episodes as it went on. It felt a bit sloppy at times. 
         I like that the hotel had a lot of mystery. Murders were happening and every shady character looked like a potential suspect to me. It introduced a lot of the minor characters and also set this drama's mood and allowed everything to start rolling. Both male leads were likable and so it was hard to tell who she was going to exactly end up with. However, as soon as the interactions began to progress, it was quite obvious who she was going to end up with. I was a bit confused as to what they considered "marriage." In both marriages that Nam Sang Hyo had with Gu Hae Young, it appeared to only be a wedding ceremony and not a legalized in documentation. That was a bit confusing for me. 
         The characters were often very straightforward and I was grateful that they didn't make the female characters too scheming. Of course, I disliked the fickleness and indecisiveness of the female lead but she had her own mystery to solve about the separation she had with Gu Hae Young seven years ago. I liked that the male leads were rather open with what they were feeling and they often made the show very entertaining and a little more fast paced. I also liked that both male leads were getting frustrated and constantly were demanding her to look for her feelings and to find out who she truly liked.
       I also enjoyed the We Got Married cameo and the many references to her song Love Battery. It was amusing but it did throw off many viewers who didn't understand why this random girl just ran up to Jo Sung Gyeom and was just spazzing out about how he looked like her husband Nam Goong Min (the actor's real name). It was so funny and enjoyable to see their interaction.
       It was an interesting drama but it wasn't the best. A lot could have been changed, the relationship could have progressed a bit faster, and less focus could have been placed on the love triangle, and less time could have been focused on misunderstandings.

P.S. Yoo In Na's hair is amazing. I wish I had her hair. 

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Surplus Princess

10 episodes
Given Synopsis (
Can a woman do anything for the sake of love? Ha Ni (Jo Bo Ah) is a mermaid princess in the underwater empire but she longs for the human world when she sees and falls in love with a man. She transforms into a human and follows Hyun Myung (On Joo Wan) to live in a temporary house for people who are preparing for employment. The pragmatic Hyun Myung is trying to find a good-paying job to provide him with a comfortable life. But will he be distracted by Ha Ni, who has just 100 days to make Hyun Myung fall in love with her so that she can remain a human? “Surplus Princess,” also known as “The Mermaid,” is a 2014 South Korean drama series directed by Baek Seung Ryong.

     It was such a pity that this drama had to be cut short. It was so light-hearted and both male leads loved Ha Ni unconditionally. The minor characters were also extremely amusing and their love relationships were extremely cute. Ha Ni's best friend at the house they shared was extremely helpful in hiding the fact that Ha Ni is a mermaid and teaching her ways to snag the chef that Ha Ni believed she loved. Everything was going really well and I was getting extremely conflicted between the chef and Hyun Myung. I hated the antagonist (the other girl) who just constantly wore the look of jealousy on her face. However, the drama was cut short so we never got to see how she progressed with the chef or how she progressed with Hyun Myung. It was a quick and summarized version and the ending was really weird when she came shooting out of the sky like an asteroid. I wish it was longer so that I could have gotten the whole story because it was so fluffy and light to watch. Unfortunately, it was cut short and I appreciate the scenes that were not summarized or as confusing as it was toward the end.

Bride of the Century


Episodes: 16 
Choi Kang Ju is engaged to a girl named Yi Kyung. However, there is a curse that follows Choi Kang Ju's family in which the first bride of the family's first son is always.  Thus, Yi Kyung's family hatches a horrible plan to use Yi Kyung's doppleganger Doo Rim who is from a small southern island. Doo Rim plays the role of Yi Kyung and comes to actually fall in love with Choi Kang Ju (he also falls in love with her as well). As this conspiracy is revealed, so is the curse, and the story behind everything is taken care of. 

     I really enjoyed this drama. It got to the point quickly and the storyline progressed nicely. Everything was quite visually appealing. In this drama, you will find: dopplegangers, a touch of fantasy, a curse, a ghost, doubts about death, marriage substitutes, and a lot of schemes. It was really nice to see how the dopplegangers were opposites of one another. One was nice and quirky while the other was cold and sly. Doo Rim, the nice one, looks exactly like Yi Kyung. Yi Kyung is the daughter of a businesswoman who is to marry Kang Ju and obtain financial stability. Upon finding out about the curse of the Choi family, she refuses to be the bride that dies and asks Doo Rim to be her replacement for the wedding, allowing her to take the position of wife after Doo Rim's death. However, Doo Rim and Kang Ju fall in love with one another and start to disregard the curse to be together. This causes a lot of scheming on Yi Kyung's family's side. 
      The male second lead was a little bit weird to me. He was not related to Yi  Kyung but he was part of the family. He was raised with Yi Kyung and is considered to be her older brother. However, he falls in love with Doo Rim out of the blue and proposes without any character or relationship development. It was a little creepy because he basically likes a girl that is identical to his "sister." Thankfully, he didn't have too much of a role and wasn't very threatening. 
       The ghost-curse aspect wasn't as scary as I expected it to be. In the beginning, it was freaky. But as the drama progresses, I had doubts if it was real or if it was by coincidence. There were even parts that convinced me that no such ghost exists because it was a test of true love. However, in the end, they explain the ghost aspect and the grudge that was kept for so long. It also linked the characters to past lives and it was kind of cool. 
       I was quite impressed with Hongki's acting because there were a lot of scenes where he had to be serious and mean. He also had a lot of sad scenes and it was nice to see how well he did on that. He also did a great job in playing a more mature character than some of his previous roles. It was nice to see and he did a great job in convincing me that he was in love with this girl. It was a very cute drama and I enjoyed it. 

The Night Watchman

Episodes: 24 
Given Synopsis (
Being able to see ghosts and other supernatural spirits is a heavy responsibility. Prince Lee Rin (Jung Il Woo), like his father before him, discovers that he has the ability to see ghosts and other supernatural beings. Armed with his newfound abilities, Lee Rin becomes the leader of a group of night watchmen who patrol the streets from dusk to dawn to protect the people of the Chosun Dynasty against evil spirits. Moo Seok (Jung Yun Ho) is the best swordsman in the land who is the prince’s trusty bodyguard. But their loyalties will be tested when they both fall in love with the same woman – Do Ha (Go Sung Hee), the successor of the Ma Go tribe who seeks their help to protect the Baek Do mountain’s spirits. But Park Soo Ryun (Seo Ye Ji), the daughter of a court officer, will stop at nothing to marry Prince Lee Rin. “The Night Watchman,” also known as "Diary of a Night Watchman," is a 2014 South Korean historical drama series directed by Lee Joo Hwan.

      When  I started watching this,  I wondered if this was going to be something similar to Arang and the Magistrate. It really wasn't despite the fact that ghosts were involved and the main leads could see the ghosts. There were many times I didn't want to continue watching it but I sat through this whole thing mainly for the three ghost characters that followed the protagonist around. They were extremely trustworthy and caring. This drama definitely did not become a favorite of mine. It was watchable but there were too many factors that bothered me. The story dragged at times and I constantly had to sit through the antagonist's weird rituals as he tried to summon the dragon. I had to constantly watch the king struggle with his inner self (I think he might have been schizophrenic) and also watch his weak character buckle throughout the entire series. The acting was really bad for a lot of the scenes and I did not feel any chemistry between the protagonist and the girl. I did not think romance was necessary in this series and their relationship felt unnatural and awkward. 
        On the bright side, the OST was really cool. I really like the one that EDEN sang because it's so action-packed. The whole drama was very fantasy-like and their clothes were not exactly historical. Many parts of this drama reminded me of Harry Potter (music, the strange whispering scenes, and the demons that looked like dementors flying). I spent the majority of this drama enjoying the acting of the three minor characters that were ghosts. They added comedy and great acting to this drama. I was surprised that the little girl acted better than Do Ha (the girl lead). I admired Jung Il Woo's nose in a lot of the scenes as well. Other than the three ghosts that did a great job in acting, the emperor also did a great job in acting out his messed up character. All in all, it wasn't the perfect drama and I wished that the storyline and acting could have been better. This drama could have a lot of potential but it failed to do so.