Thursday, May 23, 2013

Extremely Short & Extremely Random




My normal schedule of posting a new review every Thursday has been upset by a series of busy weekends and a foolish, long-regretted belief that I could power through a 58 episode show in a few weeks. (Ha!) Being stuck mid-drama leaves me without anything to post about, so I’ve been filling in with movie reviews lately. It’s just not the same, though: I really do prefer dramas for their extended running time and meatier storytelling. In light of this problem, I give you some random notes in place of your regularly scheduled programming.

• I’m still slowly working my way through Ojakgyo Brothers. This drama may be super long, but it hasn’t lost my attention—almost all of its leads have compelling storylines, and their plots are moving quickly enough to keep everything interesting while still allowing the characters time to breathe. (I could live without Dad, I must admit. The guy who plays him seems to have confused “acting” with “exaggerated blinking,” and the script isn’t helping matters. The show has no idea what to do with him, so he’s just bitching at the female lead for not helping his wife on the farm...even though he’s also not helping his wife on the farm, in spite of having no job of his own.)

• I watched the first few episodes of Coffee Prince with an old friend last week. The thing that shocked her the most? How often the guys were shirtless. I told her that CP is amateur hour when it comes to beefcake, and I’m hoping we have a new convert. On the other hand, by episode 12 she’s demanding that I fast forward through all the second lead parts...so maybe not. In honor of this possibly momentous occasion, I give you the above image. (No need for thanks.) I think this is Gong Yoo at his most handsome—nowadays he’s so skinny and muscular it makes him look kind of drawn.

• I haven’t watched many dramas as they were airing, and the jury is out on how much I like doing so. It’s great when I fall in love with the show, ala Flower Boy Next Door, but Jang Ok Jung is really killing me: The plot isn’t particularly interesting and the characters aren’t compelling enough to keep me coming back. Every time a new episode appears on Drama Fever’s main page, my first response is something along the lines of “Ugh. I actually have to watch that now.” If I were marathoning the show, I think the momentum would be enough to keep me relatively happy, but seeing it in dribs and drabs gives me enough time between episodes to realize just how meh everything about it is. I’m thinking of jumping ship, at least until Jang Ok Jung finishes airing. The ending has a lot of potential—I suspect it will be tragic, like the actual historical events it’s ever-so-slightly related to—and I’m interested to see how the writers maneuver their characters to where the big finale needs them to be.

• I’ve been reading blogs forever, but I only just discovered the existence of sites like Bloglovin and Feedly. (I’m well aware that this makes me something of an idiot—it’s like living somewhere for a decade before you figure out where your mailbox is.) Both sites make it incredibly easy to keep track of posts at blogs you like, turning the whole of the Internet into a Tumblr-esque dashboard. Check out my profile page for the list of Blogs that I follow on Bloglovin, or start following Outside Seoul here.

• I usually watch dramas through my Google TV, which is truly the drama lover’s best friend: it has a full browser, so you can go pretty much anywhere on the Internet right on your TV. What it doesn’t have is the ability to play videos on the websites of most networks, so you can’t watch some things that are available on regular computers. That’s annoying, but the Apple TV set-top box I got for Christmas solved the problem completely. Now I can stream from my MacBook directly to the TV and watch everything from downloaded dramas to current episodes of The Vampire Diaries, the one American TV show I’m keeping up with even in the depths of my Kdrama obsession. Technology is truly my boyfriend.

• I finally broke down and joined Twitter. I like it for the people who use it, but as a service it’s not my favorite. After the deliciously madcap world of Tumblr, it feels like some kind of sensory deprivation pit. Where are the pictures of Kdrama abs? The naughty gifsets from random Asian movies I’ve never heard of? The giant, footnoted rants about Eurovision and the song snippets that have been reblogged 150 thousand times? Not on Twitter, that’s for sure.

11 comments:

  1. "Technology is truly my boyfriend." Hahahahha, yes. :)

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    1. Only better, right? Boyfriends tend to be loud and dirty and smelly, and in my experience rarely do exactly what you want them to do. Technology? None of the above.

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    2. Plus, with a man around, how can you have free rule of the television to marathon your favorite drama and emote during all the best/worst moments? I think the living room lamps would understand as much as a dude.

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  2. Maybe I should figure out how to actually tweet. As of now I just stalk people :P

    I love my Apple TV. Especially in conjunction to my iPad Dramafever ap, so I can sit comfortably on the couch, watch my drama on the big screen and still browse the internet during critically boring moments of JoJ.

    Shame on your friend for wanting to fast-forward through the other part of Coffee Prince! Does she not adore Lee Sun Gyun and his fabulously sexy voice? (Had Gong Yoo not been in that drama, I'd probably be head over heals in love with the other guy). I'm in the process of making a new convert. An ahjumma friend of my husband, and as of now she already likes Kpop despite being married and having 2 tweenage kids. I think Kdrama will be right up her alley. Can't wait. Yesssss.

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    Replies
    1. Apple TV is sure nicer than the Roku I used to have, which was so clunky in every way. With Google TV, I just use the browser to watch from Dramafever.com instead of bothering with the app—I like that I have access to everything that way, including the reviews.

      And you would be a spectacular tweeter, I have no doubt. Join the dark side! (As I said, though, Tumblr is better for content, but you can't beat the people on Twitter.)

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  3. I totally hear you on the dad in "Ojakgyo Brothers." He's the character I hated the most by the end.

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    Replies
    1. Uh-oh.... "hated most"? That doesn't sound promising. So far, he and Soo Young's parents are the only ones I really don't like. (And, in fact, often fast forward through. Step being creepy and controlling or it's the ice floe for you, old folks!)

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  4. I just found out about K-Town Cowboys on You Tube. I'm going to be up all night....

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