MBC Drama Awards 2015 (and JISUNG, Hwang Jungeum and Park Seojoon!)

Heaven know why but I”m more nervous than Jisung as to the outcome of tonight’s drama awards. Having been snubbed for the grand prize at the Baeksangs, I’m praying this’ll be the night he is properly honoured for his talents. I did download the complete ceremony but MBC’s being slow with updating the clips so some videos are missing 🙂 In the meantime I’ll post translations of all the speeches.
The hosts for the night Shin Dongyup and actress Lee Sungkyung (who did an opening song and dance for the ceremony) did start off by telling winners to try and make their speeches as brief as possible due to this being a live broadcast and not wanting to run over time, which I thought was a pretty poor move to make that chances are that you’ll forget someone if you speed through things but there you go! Continue reading “MBC Drama Awards 2015 (and JISUNG, Hwang Jungeum and Park Seojoon!)”


Pinocchio Ep 14 Review (and when history starts to repeat itself)

Thankfully everyone’s back to normal for this episode, well except Yoo Rae who’s now head over heels for Ha Myung. Bonds reform, and others break while other fabulous (weary) four go up against their biggest enemy yet, who has a posse of her own. I like where this show is going, I really truly do, but the method it’s using to go that way leaves me a little baffled. This isn’t a show like Healer where this just move at an incredibly fast pace while remaining highly realistic and rather logical. From the hints being dropped around in the previous episode, it was pretty obvious that Bum Joo’s mother was going to be our big baddie, but I wasn’t expecting our reporters to figure out so soon, and so…coincidentally? I honestly don’t know how to put it. How on earth does finding her mother’s earring on in the Chairwoman’s office have any shady implication as to the nature of her and IH’s mother’s relationship? To be honest, I don’t really understand how that jump was made. Her mother was as reticent as always with the information, and being friends with Bum Joo’s mother surely doesn’t mean that the latter should automatically not be trusted. But let’s think this through and try to see why InHa’s spider sense started tingling. Why would someone who called Cha Ok over to her place (for some reason or the other) not call back to mention that she’d left her cellphone behind? For some reason, she didn’t want Cha Ok to return to her house, or to be seen near her. Well that’s fine, Bum Joo’s mother, Park Ro Sa, could have a lackey/manager return the phone to Cha Ok instead. So why didn’t she? Continue reading “Pinocchio Ep 14 Review (and when history starts to repeat itself)”


Pinocchio Episode 13 (and what on earth is with everyone?)

Thankfully Pinocchio sets a less somber tone for this episode, than the weep fest (me that is) for the past two episodes. While I simultaneously love and hate about these characters is that they’re own their own, figuring things out. Sure sometimes MSC and YGN’s Cap will step in with some choice words of advice, but most of the time, they’re stuck in their own heads trying to make choices that no one should have to.

And Dal Po certainly has quite a quite a few to make. Either he gets his revenge in painting Cha Ok as the devil and makes hyung proud while breaking In Ha’s heart (and most likely his own) or he takes the high road and releases nothing but the truth which results in his only chance to pin down Cha Ok vanishing. Truth as usual, is central to the conflict. To tell or not to tell. Honestly my heart sank when DP yelled at In Ha to keep her mouth shut. Honestly, the girl’s been through enough with their man she loves suddenly turning into the very creature he’s trying to bring down. And the fact that she just stood there and too it, not even knowing what to say, understanding what he’s going through but not knowing how to comfort him, is heartbreaking. This is Choi In Ha we’re talking about, who’s normally feisty as hell. I wanted her to go up there and kick some sense into DP, yet she chose to follow him (making me tear my hair out).
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Why In Ha? Why? I suppose that sense of guilt she feels continues to overpower her common sense. Yet, for the life of me I find it so difficult to understand why she must feel guilty, her mother’s sins ARE NOT her own. I understand why DP would find it difficult to fight Cha Ok while being concerned about In Ha’s welfare, but seriously, separation’s not going to solve the problem. I mean just look at the issues it created in this episode alone. DP and IH should be showing a united front, instead they’re all over the place unsure of what to do and when to do it, and now Yoo Rae’s fallen for Dal Po, which is going to drive me even more insane, seeing that all these characters appear to have gone mad. Continue reading “Pinocchio Episode 13 (and what on earth is with everyone?)”


Pinocchio Ep 10 Review (and why Choi In Ha is *insert megatastic awesome adjective*)

This episode was engrossing, absorbing, and characterized with Pinocchio’s usual poignancy. We focus on DP and In Ha, the latter in particular, which I’m actually rather happy about seeing how nuanced and complementary these two are. In the interest of the amount of memory WordPress says I have left, I’m going to tamp down firmly on my urge to fill this review with as many screencaps as physically possible and focus more on picking apart the episode…and fangirling because honestly? Choi In Ha is perfect.

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Can we start with how perfect that apology was? I expected tears, recriminations (why did you lie to meeeee? À la Doctor Stranger), a notice of breakup, and instead I get this perfect. In Ha doesn’t need to apologize, she’s done nothing wrong and DP certainly hasn’t thought so either. But the very fact that she does, that she’s so utterly heartbroken at the realization of just how much he’s endured, just how much she’s dismissed as nothing, as him being irrational, over the 13 years of their acquaintance is just so…Choi In Ha. It’s that overwhelming empathy, understanding and love she has for him (which just gives me NDJ feels really) that bowls DP over. Gotta love how the apology went on for two hours though! Oh In Ha, you perfect creature, you don’t have to be sorry (as DP keeps saying!).
DP honestly seemed relieved at the reaction, that he’d finally be able to tell someone everything he’s been keeping hidden for the past 13 years. Well, excluding that bit about JM that is, though it’s enough that In Ha knows that something’s up, and he didn’t lie to her about it, rather he offered to tell her the complete truth (Thank you, show for not manufacturing a misunderstanding that way!).

Continue reading “Pinocchio Ep 10 Review (and why Choi In Ha is *insert megatastic awesome adjective*)”


Pinocchio Episode 9 Review (and run, run, run from hyung!)

Wowee Pinocchio! You’ve outdone yourself again. Now that the relationship drama is finally behind us, we begin to focus more and more on hyung, who is honestly the central part of this episode. There’s less action than there is interaction, and honestly I’m perfectly fine with that, seeing how awesome these characters are.

It’s an enormous relief to see DP finally confide in someone regarding his suspicions about his brother. I was honestly worried that the poor guy was going to crumble emotionally at this rate. He’s honestly been through so much, that I’m surprised he can get up every morning what with the crushing weight of all that worry and fear. And who better to confide in than someone involved in the issue, who’s both level-headed and rational, aka YGN’s Cap! Is it just me or did Cap seem ever so slightly miffed at the start of their conversation (you really wanted that hug, eh?) until DP’s words hurriedly brought him down to earth.
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I love that DP was absolutely direct with him.
(Talk about a sharp-shooter)
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and that Cap didn’t try to pry or find out more but gave some very good advice without judging and jumping down DP’s throat. It’s an interesting dynamic in that I feel like DP seems to gain people who care about him no matter where he goes. His relationship with Cap is almost on hyung-dongsaeng level and will definitely be cemented there once we get some of those hugs. Though, those appear to be a long way coming what with KJM on the loose. Continue reading “Pinocchio Episode 9 Review (and run, run, run from hyung!)”


Pinocchio Episode 8 Review (and the moment we’ve all been waiting for)

After having marathoned episodes 6 to 8, I find myself almost wishing that I’d waited until next week. Episode 8 is killer, stuffed to the brim with emotional payoff and mental overload for poor CDP. I like that CDP’s no fool, his observations of the case of Moon Duk Soo’s death still stand regardless of whether it’s his brother or not.  It’s interesting to see that he begins straight off by suspecting his brother and trying to protect him from arrest rather than believing in his innocence and searching for someone else who could be responsible.
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DP has built a great deal of anger over his father’s death as well and we’ve seen it released in brief spurts throughout the show, at the end of the quiz show in his teens, at the final round of the YGN hiring process, as well as the gloomy funk he’s presently fallen into. But what made DP different and led him towards a different path was his adopted family, who genuinely loved and cared for him and made up for that loss in his life. There were two families that CIH’s mother broke: her own and DP’s. As such, it’s pretty interesting to see how one makes up for the other this way in DP’s life. The pain and yearning in DP’s eyes as they sat in that café was tangible. Lee Jong Suk really as a way of making you feel for him. It was the same in Doctor Stranger. Despite the utter mess than drama was, I just couldn’t stop watching poor Park Hoon being thrown from the fat into the fire. You really feel DP’s pain here as he yearns to reveal his identity, but holds back due to the awareness that their paths have already diverged. It’s far too late now.
Hence why, DP’s quiet agreement that the two of them are very much alike, is tinged with both sorrow, and camaraderie.
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Continue reading “Pinocchio Episode 8 Review (and the moment we’ve all been waiting for)”


Pinocchio Episode 5 Review (and a sudden, painful twist)

Pinocchio continues to surprise, delight and shock. I was certainly not expecting a reversal fo this magnitude to appear so quickly in the game.
CDP finds out rather quickly that his brother, Ki Jae Myung (KJM), is still alive. I thought they’d drag that out for a few more episodes, so that came as quite sudden. Poor CDP is hit with that stunning revelation on top of his father’s death and is honestly a mess.  His hiring doesn’t exactly leave him elated either. He’s more numb than anything at this point and boy is that understandable.
The juxtaposition of KJM feeling more alone than ever, with the confirmation of his father’s death and CDP’s renewed hope is rather painful to see especially considering how alone both have felt for years. KJM has hit rock bottom, but CDP’s just begun his way up.
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It feels like he’s using that as an excuse to feel less guilty about essentially breaking the vow he made with In Ha, so I’m not really buying it for now. I get that his lashing out at In Ha, who essentially symbolizes the whole reason his father was turned into a pariah, was instinctive, in the same way he did when he was a child but I do wish there was more remorse shown in his part for destroying her chance. Not that he secret wouldn’t have been outed at some point, I mean you can only hide that you’re a Pinocchio for so long, but seeing CDP shifting the responsibility of his vow aside like that is a little disappointing. More juxtaposition in terms of CDP’s spiffy suit-up for his job as a YGN reporter, while CIH puts on her comfy duds hiccupping all the way, which honestly feels a little saddening seeing how hard she’s worked for this and how easily CDP lands the job. Doesn’t help that when her dad rubs things in either, though it’s clear that he doesn’t mean to be petty.vlcsnap-2014-12-04-18h51m10s216 vlcsnap-2014-12-04-18h51m12s234 vlcsnap-2014-12-04-18h51m14s1 Grandpa continues to be the most consistent character in the story providing comic relief at just the right moments and telling off his stupid son. Age hasn’t dulled his senses as he picks up on a tiff of some sorts between CDP and CIH quite easily. vlcsnap-2014-12-04-18h51m42s29 vlcsnap-2014-12-04-18h52m02s227 The awkwardness between the two is palpable and honestly, CDP is to blame. The fact that he encourages the awkwardness by even telling CIH that her mother was right is extremely unfair to the poor girl.
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I get it, I really do. What her mother did was unfair and awful, but to take it out on her is just as bad. Why should she give up on her dream simply because you need to get over your hatred? Hatred of her mother should not extend to her daughter, just as hatred of a profession should not extend to the people in said profession who likely have their own goals and dreams and reasons for choosing that job. CDP knows why CIH wants to become a reporter, and certainly knows her inside out, having loved her for so long. Plus he’s certainly not stupid enough to paint everyone by the same brush, so I couldn’t help but wonder just what was going on in his mind. It doesn’t help that we don’t get to see as enough of it as we should. But CDP definitely seems to fear the damage that CIH could cause with her words, however well-meaning. He also fears that in the cut-throat world of news reporting may change CIH’s sweet nature. But the fault lies more with his attachment to the past, and the baggage he’s been able to ignore but never forget or overcome for all these years. Add to that, the fact that his brother is alive, and he’s torn between his duty towards his new family and his old one. Seeing that CIH’s mother is even indirectly part of his new one,  for the time being his old family appears to take precedence. It’s a manner of thinking I’m hoping CDP grows out of.

Gosh do I love CIH. She even manages to make moping fun. The bitterness and hope reflected in her eyes during her meeting with her asshole mother really got to me, as did the way she clearly deflated upon hearing that her mother had no regrets.vlcsnap-2014-12-04-19h26m15s23 vlcsnap-2014-12-04-19h26m11s232 vlcsnap-2014-12-04-19h26m13s6 She doesn’t blame CDP either, continuing to like in despite all the harsh things he says and the honestly mixed signals that he gives off at times (though that’s more a reflection of CDP’s mental conflict).The way she doesn’t bother hiding anything and just straight up confesses to CDP with unabashed frankness is not only super refreshing but, in this context, pretty saddening, as CDP has a while to go before he can begin to accept those feelings. The conflict here isn’t familial pressure of any of the usual Kdrama obstacles, but entirely in CDP’s mind. And I can’t wait for him to get over that hurdle seeing just how much he truly cares for CIH as well. vlcsnap-2014-12-04-18h54m55s159 vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h28m16s42 vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h28m47s93 vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h27m39s178 vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h27m44s230 vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h28m12s251
This show is rife with coincidences though, like the return of that cake, which I don’t mind if only for the reason that PSH really showed off the various ways one can eat it.
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Now that was pretty fun.
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And major aww! at the three packets of medicine! Seeing how loved CDP is by his adopted family, really makes me wonder why he feels so conflicted about them versus his biological family. Yes CIH’s mother is awful, but one rotten apple doesn’t spoil a tree? Jeez, even Dad is warming up to you CDP, now is not the time to act so distant.
Thankfully, the medicine works more mentally than physically, and the display of familial affection, allows CDP to revert back to normal for the most part, which serves to give us this scene, with so much win, I honestly can’t even.   vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h42m19s23vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h42m52s94 vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h42m57s145 vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h44m37s109 vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h44m42s159 vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h44m45s197vlcsnap-2014-11-26-21h44m51s7

That. was. beautiful.

Onto YYR, who may not be a Pinocchio but is certainly as transparent as one. She seems utterly incapable of controlling her expressions, which is definitely just as much a no-no for a reporter as is being a Pinocchio.
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Not that love-triangles are any better. I’m still not sure what of make of SBJ, who alternatingly comes of as sweet and creepy.vlcsnap-2014-12-04-18h57m45s75
His mom is definitely a character though! I loved Kim Hae Sook in IHVY (Best mom ever!) and love her just as much in this quirkier role. I’ll just have to keep an open mind with regards to SJB and seen where things go. Hopefully no male posturing. Please show? Please?

But wowee at KJH’s dark trajectory! I was not expecting a twist like that. I truly expected the show’s main antagonist to be CIH’s mother, and the evil manager and his two cronies, not poor CDP’s brother.
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I can’t fault KJH for taking revenge, and honestly were this a different kind of show (say Strongest Chil Woo) I’d full support his decision. However, faced with a character who has chosen to shoulder his pain with aplomb rather than become the very people he hates, KJH comes off looking the worse. Looks like the choice between his biological family and his present one is coming up fast for CDP. And I honestly pity the moment when he finds out just who his brother has become. This show is definitely by the writer of IHYV and that pure goodness and faith that characterizes her characters really shines through here, despite the obstacles they face, you can be sure that they’ll make the right choices, even if it takes a few wrong ones to get there. Should be interesting seen just how much they’ll grow.
And now, I’ll be off to marathon the next three episodes!


First thoughts on Pinocchio

Managing to pull myself away from Liar Game’s engrossing beauty, I decided to explore Pinocchio’s urban fantasy world. It was almost a preparation of sorts for Liar Game’s inevitable finale next week and my way of adjustment to a post-Liar Game dramaverse. I rarely fall hard for dramas, most fall into realms I’ve categorized as: overrated, sudden death by plot (*coughcoughTrotLovers*), or contrived. And I’m glad to say that Pinocchio is (as of yet) none of those. This year in dramas has been a pleasant surprise, from the beautiful Miss Korea that brought me back into K-dramas to the magnificent Liar Game that cemented my stay.


Pinocchio’s first episodes brings up the same sense of injustice that characterized the start of I Hear Your Voice (which was by the same screenwriter) and I’m looking forward to seeing how our lead’s fateful connection plays out, seeing that this isn’t IHYV where one saved the other, but where pieces of Choi Inha (CIH) are a painful reminder of the injustice Choi DalPo (formerly Ki HaMyung) endured. The characters pop straight into your screen, with LJS building off his younger counterpart seamlessly, and PSH turning a surprisingly less bland performance than I’d have thought. Her naivete is a bit grating at the moment (unlike NDJ which just makes me want to give her a hug) but as it’s explained away as part of her small-town upbringing and the Pinocchio syndrome that will characterize this drama, I’m looking forward to watching her mature.



Continue reading “First thoughts on Pinocchio”