Sunday, February 7, 2016

Drama First Look - Signal

Crime shows are no longer something new in Korean drama, but they still largely follow a formulaic approach, such as any other genre. Placing style over substance is a common issue and especially some of the episodic dramas of the type seem repetitive. It is therefore fortunate that tvN's "Signal" not only seems to have a strong main plot, but that it is off to a great start with its two main features.

While the series is primarily a crime and mystery one, it is very encouraging that the added supernatural element of direct communication across time is more than a mere gimmick. The importance of changing the past and responsibility that comes with it are pretty clearly introduced as something which will be a main obstacle in the collaboration between Lee Jae-han (Jo Jin-woong) and Park Hae-yeong (Lee Je-hoon). If written well throughout, this will be a fresh and entertaining experience.

Full Article: [HanCinema's Drama First Look] "Signal".

Drama Review - Imaginary Cat

Love for animals is an important element of human nature. When considering the fan base of Korean drama, it is also safe to say many love cute young guys. A drama combining the two is a very people pleasing one and would have to really work hard in order to fail at it. "Imaginary Cat" has some fun ideas and a good premise, but the rest is up to a viewer's tolerance of bad decisions.

Hyeon Jong-hyeon (Yoo Seung-ho) is an aspiring webtoon artist who works part time at a book store to support himself until his debut. He is not only supporting himself but a cute cat named Bok-gil as well. The two have been together since a painful time in their lives. Jong-hyeon then meets Oh Na-woo (Jo Hye-jeong), a fellow cat loving person.

Full Article: [HanCinema's Drama Review] "Imaginary Cat".

Monday, January 25, 2016

Drama Review - Awl

Korean drama has come a long way and at a very swift pace. Some things have not changed, of course. The adherence to certain production habits, thematic approaches as well as the reluctance to leave a desired comfort zone are still there, but works always appear from time to time that are willing to do something different. "Awl" is a series which, true to its name, goes beyond expectations in a most impressive, bold and inspiring way.

Lee Soo-in (Ji Hyeon-woo) works as a section manager at a store by supermarket chain Fourmis. When the company reaches the need for dismissals, it chooses to use underhanded methods in order to force workers into quitting. Soo-in refuses to harass his group and instead chooses to lead them in a fight against the illegal and unfair treatment. He reaches out to Goo Go-sin (Ahn Nae-sang), a labor union attorney for help in the upcoming struggle.

Full Article: [HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl".

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Drama Preview - Signal

Regular viewers of tvN may have noticed that the station likes to keep its usual actors and creators close. Here to take this one step further is "Signal", the approach of which brings back memories of the station's "Gabdong - The Serial Killer". The drama will be the second tvN show based on the Hwaseong serial murders, but unlike its predecessor it comes with a supernatural twist.


Detectives from the current timeline are able to communicate with one from the 80s through a set of walkie-talkies. Together they try to solve a case in the present and change the events of the past.

Full Article: [HanCinema's Drama Preview] "Signal".

Drama First Look - Cheese in the Trap

"Cheese in the Trap" has been a very eagerly expected show. Being based on a popular webtoon followed by devoted fans who clearly care deeply about the drama adaptation means that the series has a lot to prove. While mostly promoted as a standard romantic comedy with perhaps a slightly sinister twist, "Cheese in the Trap" has some interesting and quite surprising aspects to it at this point.

This is a romance piece, but at the same time functions as a slice-of-life show, with the characters' studies, work and different relationships all in the foreground. The main difference to typical shows of its type is that it reexamines a lot of what we take for granted or perceive as romantic in such works from a more realistic angle. In doing so, it subverts a lot of elements and gives audiences a different perspective.

Full Article: [HanCinema's First Look] "Cheese in the Trap".

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