Rec of the Week: Final Stretch pt. 2

So this is the second part to dramas you should watch, forgot to watch or didn’t know were airing. It’s the end of the year therefore, there are tons of others things we all should be doing but I also find that the end of the year comes with drama slumps and dramas you hate you missed. The dramas below  have been airing for awhile so there are plenty of episodes to marathon… and what drama isn’t better in marathon?

Ring Ring Bell (Love Ring Twice)

Airs Sunday nights on  CTS

If you’re looking for sugary sweet and wholesom(ish) fun, try this drama on for size. As the title suggests two people get a second chance at love 7 years after their first meeting. The drama begins in Taiwan during a virus breakout and two people are trapped together in an elevator. They instantly become friendly but in trying to escape the female (Janine Yang) is exposed to the virus and quarantined for months. During this time, a young photographer (Peter Ho) visits her daily and they spark a friendship. Once she’s released they both try to confess their feelings but due to miscommunication don’t get the chance and part amicably. Fast-forward close to a decade later and they are in very different places in life, one , a divorcee, the other a single mother. Now back in each other’s lives, will love spark again? Has too much time passed? Are they too different? Are they ready to try again?

Honestly, this drama gives me that Christmas feeling. There’s something warm and cozy and magical about it, eventhough it’s riddle with extreme dramatics and silly and at times thoughtless, plot lines. In the end, I know it will end as rich and gooey as it began and for that, I’m willing to stick around.

Tree With Deep Roots

Airs Weds-Thurs nights on SBS

Starring Jang Hyuk, TWDR is based on Lee Jeong-myeong’s novel “Deep-rooted Tree” that highlights the series of murders during the reign of King Sejong in the 7 days leading up to  the announcement of the Korean script. Main character Kang Chae Yun investigates but finds himself tangled in the conspiracy and thwarted by the secret group behind the chaos.

Like every sageuk I’ve seen, there’s something mesmerizing about re-imagining history. Whether a story is historically accurate isn’t always my issue. it’s more if the characters seem real and plausible. This drama does that for me. I won’t even begin to say that I’m a Korean history novice because it’s far less sophisticated than that but I’m also pretty sure, that’s not the goal of this story. Jang Hyuk, Song Joong-ki and Han Suk Kyu, hooked me from episode one and I truly still can’t get enough. I won’t say that this drama lives up to the promotional hype but for a sageuk simpleton like myself, I’m mighty satisfied.

Boku to Star no 99 Nichi

Airs Sunday nights Fuji TV

I want to say that this is Kim Taehee‘s year but actually she’s only done two dramas. She began the year with her best drama to date (My Princess) and ends the year just as cuddly and cute. Star99 tells the story of a Korean actress and her Japanese bodyguard (Nishijima Hidetoshi) and that’s pretty much it. Each episode is truly just about her life in Japan and his role guarding her and they eventually fall in love. Though that sounds mundane, Star99 has found its way into my heart because it’s so darn precious. It’s not too over-the-top but rather low-key, sweet and honest. I won’t say the characters feel real, but they certainly are genuine and earnest. 2PM’s Taecyeon also stars as the long-lost brother of Taehee’s character.

Mitsu no Aji (A Taste of Honey)

Airs Thurs Fuji TV

Usually, I add dramas in my lists that I’m actually watching and like, but this is an exception. Kanno Miho and Eikura Nana lead this warped drama that I can’t believe I can’t put down. The vibe is suspenseful and mysterious, as a young girl falls in love with (almost) uncle (ARATA) on a rainy day and later meets opposition by his fiancé and future wife. However, each episode is a spiral into insanity from the entire main cast and sends me into fits of gumiho eyes and Hulk convulsions. Mizobata Junpei has to be the most adorable thing about this drama, though, as he plays the love sick colleague to Nana’s Naoko. Have you ever watched a drama just to see how it ends (or how crazy it can get)? I seriously can’t stand this drama or it’s English subtitle but somehow I can’t stop watching. Therefore, perhaps someone can tell me why… (Stumbled across this and got a chuckle.)

Brain

Airs Mons-Tues on KBS2

Sometimes what makes a drama shine is that one character that keeps you tuning in every week; a character that you want to see through to the end regardless of the outcome… For Brain, that character just so happens to be the main character, Dr. Lee Kang Hoon (Shin Ha Kyun). There isn’t really anything else special about this drama beyond Dr. Hoon, but once you see him, you can’t turn your eyes away. In terms of caliber,  Brain truly is The White Tower-lite and if you are looking for that drama, I’d just say re-watch it because you will be let down. However, if you want to see some great protagonist development do tune in. (For a much more in-depth viewer review click here.)

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2 thoughts on “Rec of the Week: Final Stretch pt. 2”

  1. I’m having the same feelings about Mitsu no Aji. The story is frustrating to watch but you just can’t take your eyes of it, like a bad trainwreck. I’m pretty much addicted (watched 8 episodes in one sitting last night, even though I had work early today) and I’m even desperately downloading episode 9 RAW just to see what happens next >_>

    Mizobata Junpei is a cutie, I agree. I’m sad that his character is also spiraling down into insanity though, because I ship Norisugi/Naoko 😦

    1. Lala! I’m so glad there is someone else out there that understands my plight!
      I started it the week it aired and I just picked it back up (consistently) but I am still just on episode 6. And I can’t believe this news that Junpei is now drinking the crazy juice too! I did notice he was getting a little possessive, but I was hoping it was just him trying to be manly and make future decisions. This show will definitely go on my worst list this year but by golly I have to finish it! Personally, I don’t “ship” anyone because they all seem undeserving of real substantial love. Naoko is always pretending to be innocent, yet causing more trouble, they (the writers) trampled all over Aya and made her clingy, needy and criminally insane and Masato has no backbone to deal with either! When the show first began and I thought Naoko would grow some sense, I wanted she and Norisugi together, but now, even 8 years later, I’m still steamed about the way she acted and it seems still feels about Masato.
      Everyone needs to focus on their jobs and step away from the punch bowl. Oh and please leave Junpei out of it! Lol.

      Anyway, thanks for commenting. Hopefully we will make it through this drama with our brains still intact 😉

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