My 2011 officially ends at the end of November, that’s why I’m going to have this year-end report. *giggles (just kidding)
It’s just that since I’ll be very busy come Christmas season (I was deprived of Christmas and New Year’s eve in the past 5 years), I decided to write my thoughts about how I enjoyed staying at KDramaLand this year.
I’ll just pick my BEST 10 Korean Dramas this year.
As to what my deciding points are?
The drama while it was airing should:
- Made me ditch a work day because I got disarmed by its adoring vibe, I have to watch it online to satisfy my addiction.
- Held me sleepless and zombie-like at work because my mind dwelt at what’s going to happen in the story and how prince-like and endearing the main lead actor was. *blush
- Stimulated my emotions and rejuvenated the love nerves in my body big time.
P.S I don’t care about the minor lapses in the technical aspect as long as I enjoyed watching it. I let the producers and directors do their job as the creators, and I let myself do my job as a kdrama addict and blogger.
So without further adieu, here are my best choices for the KDramas aired this year. ^_^
♥ Dream High (Jan-Feb 2011) – Fresh, full of music, and with a lot of youthful vibes.. It is the kind of watch you want after a suicidal traffic day. The interesting characters were able to build up their personages in a manner that made their character striking and adorable. The music was soothing, and I firmly believe that it’s gorgeous, and even better than Glee. (and not because I’m Asian)
Set in a music school, pristine preppies will work hard in proving their potentials and skills as it intertwines with their personal issues, rivalries, friendship and romance.
♥ My Princess (Jan-Feb 2011) – The popularity of Kim Tae Hee and Song Seung Heon hasn’t reached me yet. I don’t know if they will get to the point of it, but they haven’t occupied a space in my heart yet. But I liked the outcome when they starred in one of the opening spectacles of this year. It may not have given me the “my-girl-ish” kind of fondness, but there are really moments that I was able to painfully and delightfully relate to the characters.
The long lost princess of Korea will embark on re-claiming the honor of her royal family in the modern times, but it will not be easy owing to her need to prove her worth as a princess to her country which she herself is clueless as to how to pull it off and the evident rivals determined to stop the Monarchy’s re-emergence. She has to rely between the devil and the deep blue sea to achieve what was expected of her.
This drama has been Kim Tae Hee’s way of saying sorry to me after I saw her movie Grand Prix. (Pardon me, I’m having a Princess moment here… *giggles) Also, this is my favorite Seong Heon oppa’s performance to date.
Sassy couple fights, well rendered sweet hero display, and the mischievous yet vulnerable princess… These are some of the reasons why this love tale was pleasing and captivating.
♥ The Greatest Love aka Best Love – I was infatuated and in the dreamy land the whole duration of its airing. How can this kimchi delight got so interesting and love affirming each episode was a question only the Hong sisters I guess can answer. It was an early birthday present as Dokko Jin and Pil-joo made my heart so confused on whose side would I belong. Every story arc crawled in my system vigorously resuscitated my dying love veins.
Ae Jung tried to stay afloat in the show business, and in a twist of fate she encountered the top-star, overbearing but you-can’t-help-but-fall-in-love-with Dokko Jin. Ae Jung could have been cousins with Rapunzel as equally gentle, traditional doctor Pil-joo joined the love boat. The bragging of the lead men of what they can do to make her happy and her own fight to build up the reputation that was mistakenly tainted brought me to romantic oblivion.
Captivating, clever and undeniably charming. ^_^ Cha Seung Won, how do you age and yet you still manage to be oozingly hot?
♥ Baby-faced Beauty (May-July 2011) – Coming from a TV hiatus, Jang Nara proved her worth in this TV interlude. The persona she portrayed was engaging, full of hope and heart-warming. The villain vibes balanced the typical “bully-the-damsel-in-distress” owing to the fact that they paved the way to bring out the eventual transformation of the primary character from being meek and forbearing to being confident and reasonably defiant.
Staged in the Fashion Design Industry the female protagonist will try to win back the dream she forced herself to forget because she has to raise money for her family when she was younger. Blessed with a youthful look, she assumed her little sister’s identity to work as a fashion designer. Her acquiescent attitude and her brimming talent will lead her to retrieve her lost yearning but she has to bear and overcome jealousy, personal confidence issues, and a budding romance in the work place.
♥ City Hunter (May-July 2011) – It was perfectly directed, crisply written and impeccably conceived. Every episode was not a bore and every cliff-hangers will really give you the sadistic anticipating feel. yes, Lee Min Ho is growing Zeus-like in each drama he has been, more so in here. Park Min Young finally made my official favorite KdramaLady leads in her vivacious portrayal here.
The main male lead was trained since young to be strong and mighty in preparation of his upcoming superhero-ish act in the future. Jump forward to the future he plots on revealing corrupt government officials who also damaged his father’s life.
If you are looking for a solid and gripping story, here’s for your taste. If your boyfriend is too manly, here’s something you can share with him that will not make him complain.
♥ You’ve Fallen For Me aka Heartstrings (June-Aug 2011) – Lee Shin and his boy-next-door-rockstar-god-self. (I could not ask for more. *giggles)
It was a quintessential young romance at its best and simultaneously cupid’s favorite love tale personified.
It is a classic hate-that-I-love-you television spectacle that will swept the audience off their feet due to its invigorating romantic spirit.
Campus heartthrob Lee Shin crossed path with traditional music student. It started as a one-sided love on the girl’s part, but eventually he realized her worth. It will remind you of the lazy afternoons with your first love and the feel of not wanting to end the day when you had your first young love.
Vibrant and full of exuberance, I’m sure you’ll not get tired of watching it as much as you can.
♥ Scent of A Woman – (July-Sept 2011) – It is my favorite Korean drama to date. It swept me off my feet without even trying and not just because Dong Wook oppa was really nice, sweet and hot there. It’s just that the drama was a total package. It was simple, classic, comforting and with lots of emotions. It was an epitome of a perfect love story. It was not just that of a man and a woman in their unrequited love, but a person’s realization of how powerful love is. It was love for your mother, for your friend, for yourself and for this life.
A dying woman deprived herself of the many wonderful things to try in her life. She then sets to experience all the things she’s missing on the remaining days of it, but when she fell in love, she will bargain with time as she realized a reason for her to live.
If you won’t fall for this story, I really think Mars needs moms. Just kidding. It’s undeniably love and life-affirming. ^_^
♥ Myung-wol the Spy (Jul-Sept 2011) – The endearing eye-candy Kang-woo and the equally loveable and charming Myung-wol were the source of a few weeks of bliss and cheerfulness for me. I had a little issue when the closure was nearing, but granted that Eric has been recently my September month boyfriend, I’ll let it pass. I will just etch the happy and flirty moments with them.
This dandy show was oozing with cute couple bickerings. The premise of having the heroine protecting the leading man was a relief on the usual vulnerable leading ladies needing a chaebol-in-the-shining-armor to rescue them.
A North Korean spy, Myungwol, infiltrated South Korea in her goal to seduce Hallyu supahstar Kang-Woo. Her persistence will pay off but her true intention will make or break an impossible love affair.
♥ The Princess’ Man (July-Oct 2011) – I’m perpetually in spat with my attention problems, that’s why I don’t watch much of period dramas, but Park Shi Hoo haunted me sweetly in my dreams, and when I’m awake so it came to pass that I camped in our living room and focused myself in watching this sageuk production. Good thing that they started rom-com because it got my system glued conditioned to stay, because if not considering how heavy the plot and how I detested the villain of the story, I would have been banished by Shi-hoo while I was watching the remaining episodes.
The setting was in the reign of Crown Prince Su-yang. It was Romeo and Juliet with a vile father in between. This is full of drama but not in a tear-jerker kind of way. It was a love that the heavens won’t allow, but the ardor of the lovers sufficed to permit their forbidden passion.
P.S My brother liked this drama, he stayed with it for almost 20 hours, at some point I dozed off, but he remained fervently loyal. For this drama to catch my brother’s taste, it must be something, just saying.
♥ Flower Boy Ramyun Shop (Oct-Dec 2011) – There were two things that happened so sweetly to my KDramaLand stay this year… Scent of a Woman and my newest favorite which now shares the top spot for my highly-recommended Kdramas – Flower Boy Ramyun Shop…
The light, feel-good and fast-paced vibe sent me wanting for more, and ended up being satisfied as each episode ends. Without trying that much the characters grew on me and Cha Chi Soo tied with Dokko Jin this year for my favorite male leads. One of the best for 2011, it swept me off my feet the way Prince Charming could have never done it to me. Charming and full of romantic bliss plus a Second Lead as an extra perk, you’re a descendant of Lord Voldemort if you fail to appreciate it.
Rich kid Cha Chi Soo struggled in the realization of the emotions he was feeling opposite a lady he never thought he would harbor feelings for. Set in a ramyun shop, the lively characters and the witty plot will surely win your preference and heart. *giggles
P.S Having gained a lot of mementos from watching these fascinating dramas this year, I prepared this list to appreciate and take notice of what it has been in the KDramaHaven in the past almost 365 days.
(Also I’m still in the process of watching Vampire Prosecutor, A Thousand Day Promise, Tree With Deep Roots, Man of Honor and The Musical. Should I find any interesting there, I’ll just update this as soon as I can)
Best Male Second Leads
– Lee Ki Woo as Choi Kang Hyuk (Flower-boy Ramyun Shop)
– Yoon Kye Sang as Yoon Pil Joo (The Greatest Love)
Best Female Second Lead
– Kim Min Seo as Kang Yoon Seo (Baby-faced Beauty)
Best Male Performance
– Park Shi Hoo as Kim Seung Yoo (The Princess’ Man)
Best Female Performance
– Kim Sun Ah as Lee Yeon Jae (Scent of a Woman)
– Cha Seung Won as Dokko Jin (The Greatest Love)
Best Scene-stealer Characters
– Kim Sang Ho as Bae Man Deok (City Hunter)
– Im Se Mi as Cha Bo Woon (You’ve Fallen for me)
Best Kick-ass Character
– Lee Min Ho as Lee Yoon Sung (City Hunter)
Best Feel-good character
– Kim Tae Hee as Lee Seol (My Princess)
Best Inspiring Character
– Jang Na Ra as Lee So Young (Baby-faced Beauty)
– Jung Yong Hwa as Lee Shin (You’ve Fallen For Me)
– Kang Min Hyuk as Yeo Joon Hee (You’ve Fallen For Me)
Best Love-you-Hate-you character
– Kim Sang Joong as Lee Jin Pyo (City Hunter)
Best Lead Man Kisser
– Jung Il Woo as Cha Chi Soo (Flower Boy Ramyun Shop)
Best you-can’t help-but-drool-character
– Lee Dong Wook as Kang Ji Wook (Scent of a Woman)
Best I-want-to-see-you-in-my-dream character
– Hero Jaejoong as Cha Moo Won (Protect the Boss)
– Eric as Kang-woo (Myungwol the Spy)
Best Chaebol Prince Character
– Song Seung Hun as Park Hae Young (My Princess)
– Jung Il Woo as Cha Chi Soo (Flower Boy Ramyun Shop)
– Kim Na Na and Lee Yoon Sung (City Hunter)
– Cha Chi Soo and Yang Eun Bi (Flower Boy Ramyun Shop)
– Lee Yeon Jae and Kang Ji Woon (Scent of a Woman)
– Lee Yoon Sung and Bae Man Deok “ajussi” (City Hunter)
– Kim Young Chul as Prince Suyang (The Princess’ Man)
Best Ensemble Cast
– Flower Boy Ramyun Shop
Best Fight Scenes
– The Princess’ Man and City Hunter
– The Greatest Love
– The Princess Man
– City Hunter
– The Greatest Love and Flower Boy Ramyun Shop
– The Princess’ Man and City Hunter
Best Chocolatey Sweet Drama
– The Greatest Love and Flower Boy Ramyun Shop
Best Tears and Bliss Drama
– Scent of a Woman
Best Jaw-dropping moment
– The ending scene of City Hunter
Best I’m-running-out-of-tissue scene
– Chae Eun Suk’s crying scene after his patient died (Scent of a Woman)
– Choi Kang Hyuk letting go of Eun-bi scene (Flower Boy Ramyun Shop)
Best Cotton-candy darling scenes
– Kang Ji Wook fulfilling Yeon-jae’s bucket list
– Piljoo and Dokko Jin’s shoes auction battle
– Lee Shin and Kyu-won’s relationship coming out scenes
Best Love Declaration Scene
– Yang Eun Bi’s love declaration to Cha Chi Soo
– Kang Ji Wook’s declaration of love to Yeon-jae
Best See How Much I Love you scene
– Lee Se Ryung taking the arrow hit for Seung-yoo (The Princess Man)
– Yoon-sung giving blood to Kim Nana after she took the bullet for him (City Hunter)
– Se Ryung and Seung Yoo surrounded by the temple lights kiss
– Chi Soo snatching Eun-bi from a date with Kang-hyuk and giving her the kiss of jealousy