KDrama Classic Spotlight: My Girl

The sweetheart that made me cross Han River and indulge myself to the yellow dramas is this Lee Dong Wook drama, and it was also where I first fell  in love with him.  *blush  Lee Da Hae justifying her perky role plus you-can’t-help-but-feel-giddy over romantic scenes, this is a drama that should be watch by Korean addict newbies as a rite of passage for true kdrama fans.  lol

“My Girl” was part of the drama selections that I watched when I had my first heartbreak and it brought me back to living, even now it is a sure cure if you are feeling a bit sullen.  *chuckles “My Girl” is your prototype Korean rom-com in the sense that it targets the viewers’ emotions through the placement of sweet scenes and heart-wrenching i-have-to-forget-you crying frames.

Geol Chan, a son from a rich family took in a con-woman to pretend as his long lost cousin to appease his sick grandfather.  He was prepared to deal with the repercussions of the lie, but was caught off guard when he started falling in love with her.

The strong second leads supported well the romantic development by playing well the annoying ex-girlfriend, and the how-could-you-not-love-him second lead man.

“My Girl” had a consistently addictive run and nicely done closure credit to the adorable heroine and her chemistry with the workaholic chaebol lead man.  I think this is where I first saw that lead-man-following-drunk-lead-girl scene which became a guaranteed signature scene on rom-coms.

All throughout the plot, the characters were upbeat and the story was engrossing even when the love conflict was tangled with equally challenging second leads.  My Girl was a very patient drama when it comes to fulfilling the love promise of the story, and that’s why it was even more special.

 

 

dear Goblin, saranghae.

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1.  Hello  breathtaking cinematography!
2.  Gong Yoo oppa in long mane and warrior clothing is hot.
3.  Thank kdramagod we don’t linger much on the backstory.
4.  That is a fiery red scarf.
5.  If the Grim Reaper with kissable lips will escort me to after life, I will gladly oblige.
6.  The gutsy heroine had me at that cheery love declaration.
7.  Autumn in Canada is pretty.
8.  Cohabitation with two hot guys with supernatural powers is such an intoxicating kdrama plot.
9.  Goblin and Grim Reaper struggling with smartphone is epic.
10.  Goblin ruminating on the pros and cons of loving his bride is hilariously cute.
11.  I’ve got to give it to Lee Dong Wook for bringing out the Grim Reaper’s adorable character.
12.  Goblin and Grim Reaper is the best bromance ever.
13.  Seriously, that villain is creepy.
14.  All the pieces are laid out, it breaks my heart on the ill-fated love of Wang Yeo and the Queen.
15.  *sob This Wang Yeo – Kim Shin reveal drained my tears.
16.  Hail to the second leads and to that emotional kiss-me-forget-me scene.
17.  Wow!  Just wow!  That Episode 13 is like a full movie in acting and plot scale magnitude.
18.  True love rules!  Yay for Eun Tak summoning Goblin back from limbo.
19.  Just as how I love the pain, forgiveness and reconciliation between Goblin and Grim Reaper, I was sad to see Reaper voyage to his next life.
20.  How many times are you going to make me cry?  Why did she have to die?
21.  Dear Goblin, it’s me Abby.  I’m here for you, I still have three lives in case your bride will take time to reincarnate.
22.  I wish Sunny and Grim Reaper’s future lives linger more, but it’s the drama’s last episode.
23.  I think any girl wishes now to have a summoning power to the man they love.
24.  Oh there you are Ji Eun Tak, yes Maam, you are the one and only Goblin’s bride.
25.  Goodbye Goblin!  *saranghae

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Arguably the best korean drama that aired for 2016, “Goblin” affirmed my kdrama fan girl spirit with its addictive pace, perceptive characters, detailed back story and the exciting race to its closure.  I was at constant awe at how the yarning of the folklore and supernatural mise en scene fit so perfectly placed in the modern setting.  The cast portraying a whole new chimeric world that I want to be a part of moved through the story seamlessly alternating a wistful and lively performance that burrowed straight to my kdramaaddict heart. *chuckles

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Cursed to immortality, a Goryeo warrior captain lived for 9 centuries waiting for his bride that will vanquish the jinx laid by a deity.  He finally meets his bride who has the ability to see ghost and has been aware of her status through the metaphysical grapevine gossips she heard through the years.  Goblin fell in love with her in the process and she is all willing to wield the sword stuck on his chest not knowing that by doing so, it will make him vanish.  Their romance bloomed fully, but they had to face the villain responsible for Goblin’s immortal fate.  Goblin used the stuck sword to finally kill the ghost fiend and was transported to a limbo clear of his initial curse, but trapped and had to journey for years to be with his bride again.  10 years later, Eun Tak who has always been bothered by missing pieces she felt in her heart but lost in her memories, summoned Goblin back to her world through her honest and painful longing.  Goblin worked on winning her back and her memories of him were retrieved and they finally tied the knot.  Just as they had a taste of the love they so bravely fought, Eun Tak who has lived a borrowed life faced death when she sacrificed herself to save a bus loaded with school children.  Years after, Eun Tak was reincarnated on her second life and sought the man she vowed she will only love for the rest of their lifetimes.

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The summary does not justify all that happened in the story as the cast were intricately connected through their past and present lives.  What made Goblin such a novelty for a love story with transcendental element is how it neatly blended the mystical notes and sensible realities to propel the narrative without losing focus and as simply told as it can be.  The drama made me yearn a romantic interlude with men like Goblin or Grim Reaper.  I was on a long moony phase struck with the impact of the characters who fervidly brought life to their sketched personas.

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 Goblin marked all the bullet points of a lingering story eventhough the metaphysical milieu was very tricky. Although set on a melancholic tone, the dynamics of the cast and the lively humor cushioned the viewers so well given its inevitable tragic scenario ending.  At times there are moments when it was languid, but it was necessary for the built up of the character connections to make the climactic conflict confrontation solid and stunning.

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Breathtaking – Goblin has always been beautifully done from its cinematography, storyline and character portrayals.  The writer did a lot of impossible tweaks and conceived an intricate realm and made sure that she will succeed on the labyrinth she has set for her story.  With actors embracing their roles so well, the exquisite tale of a man searching for the woman to end his immortality curse established a memory that kdramaland followers will still love in the future.

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There are a lot of things to rave about “Goblin”, but I feel like Gong Yoo and Lee Dong Wook’s stellar chemistry in their very own bromantic world was what kept me in love with this drama as a whole.  Sure the love lines for the main and second leads were notable, but the supernatural boys swept me off my feet with how they kept up with human induced emotional conflicts that their powers can’t resolve.  Kim Go Eun and Yoo In Na were both amazing in their roles and a great support to the main character’s chronicle.  The heartrending love rides these foursome sojourned yielded a memorable impact due to the efficient layering of the reincarnation plot.

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Goblin explored the boundless creativity of Korean culture through writer Kim Eun Sook’s sweet story manipulation.  See for yourself why this drama raised a cult following.

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The love that was there all along (Bubblegum Kdrama Review)

 

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I think out of all friendship-turned-romance dramas this year, Ri Hwan and Haeng Ah’s story in Bubblegum is perfect for 30-ish working people who struggled and are struggling to keep up on the sad truth that dealing with a broken heart and learning to accept a new love have different approaches as you age along.   It was such an enamoring narrative that drew strength from the free spirited and natural on screen connection of the lead couple.

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Brought by their parents’ friendship, Haeng Ah and Ri Hwan grew up to be childhood best friends who always rely to one another. Haeng Ah’s mother died early as Ri Hwan grew up not knowing who his father was. His mother, a former daughter of a rich household left her family to raise her son alone, and with the help of Haeng Ah’s father who ran a restaurant she has managed to finish her residency in the hospital by leaving him in Haeng Ah’s father’s care. Unfortunately Haeng Ah’s father passed away early too and so she was taken to stay with a distant aunt. Her uncle came to rescue and asked Ri Hwan’s mother to let her stay in their house while he provides financial support for her. Haeng Ah was taken in but has always been careful in the presence of Ri Hwan’s mother who has mixed treatment towards her because she reminded her of her father whom she used to love.  

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Working as a Radio PD, Haeng Ah got involved in a cold relationship to a Senior/high-ranking officer in the radio station. Though she has loved the man deeply, she got tired of not being able to hit his priorities. When Ri Hwan learned about her new love misfortune, he did everything in his power to help her moved on, and in the process realized that his brotherly love has progressed to a romantic one. Haeng Ah who has learned early that she cannot date Ri Hwan because his mother will not agree to it mustered the right reasons and denied Ri Hwan’s love declaration but soon enough faltered and accepted the love that should have been hers all along. Ri Hwan who was set up to date a chaebol family daughter politely declined the one sided love and also chose to be with the love he had not realized to be there all along. When Ri Hwan’s mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, the couple battled the odds and was initially defeated when Ri Hwan was left with no choice but to give up on Haeng Ah thinking of a future she will have with him if his mother’s disease will be passed on to him. Persistent Haeng Ah refused to be despondent and dauntlessly worked on making Ri Hwan realized that he has nowhere else to go but in her arms. In the end, they both chose to be happy and got back together while taking care and building memories with Ri Hwan’s sick mother.

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It is sadly evident that the conflicts raised in the story were not tied up neatly. It was like probably hoping that Lee Dong Wook princey face can fade away the misses of the drama. It came very strong with how the characters communicated intrepidly and genuinely but fell short because of the wayward movement of the story.  It was a case where the beautiful characters were not justified by a well written fiction.

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Although it got derailed on the closing episodes and the mom-doesn’t-want-us-to-be-together was misplaced and later on forgotten, I have enjoyed the heartfelt confrontations, the peaceful conversations and the life and love realizations. It was a consoling chronicle until the mom-got-Alzheimer’s plot, and less that annoying cliché, it would have been a perfect melodrama as a whole.  It did end up warm and happy for the love birds but the writing was not polished. It was ardent but somehow all over the place. If not for the unfeigned portrayals of the lead couple, I would have given up on it. But because it had me hooked on fast to cheer for the literal written on the stars love for Haeng Ah and Ri Hwan and the blossoming of the romance from the friendship tested through time, I sent them off with a smile on my face. Bubblegum is not a solid offering but it will keep you calm and comforted. -jediprincess ♥♥♥

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