Sunday, April 27, 2014

Drama First Look - Golden Cross

Here to offer copious amounts of male angst and conspiracies, a theme very popular this spring, is 'Golden Cross'. Written by Yoo Hyeon-mi, who has also done 'Bridal Mask' and directed by Hong Seok-goo, 'Golden Cross' goes for an intense and packed plot, not shying away from going very dark and being raw when it needs to. Making it a definite worthy addition to this spring theme, it could end up a great melodrama.

The first thing about this series that really stands out is how relentless it is with its villains. While many shows go for overly dramatic and often cartoonish antagonists, when it comes to conspiracies and powerful figures, less is more sometimes. The bad guys here are not raging caricatures, they are cold and monstrous. They look so far removed from normal decent human beings that their own wickedness does not even register as something outside of normal conduct. This means that their actions and the cruelty with which they manipulate situations and people are presented in a very direct manner. This makes things all the more bloodcurdling.

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

Drama Review - God's Gift

Lee Bo-yeong's previous SBS hit is undoubtedly a great series. In a medium mostly about surface treatments, a series that respects its plot and characters like "I Hear Your Voice" did is rare. When the actress was cast in "God's Gift - 14 Days" , a series about a mother's fight to save her daughter, many fans saw another brilliant series in the making. Sadly, this industry's risk aversion, adoration of the male element and flawed filming system turned what could have been a masterpiece in its medium into just another entertaining, but not top quality series.

When a little girl named Saet-byeol (Kim Yoo-bin-I) is kidnapped and later found drowned in a lake, her mother, Kim Soo-hyeon (Lee Bo-yeong) decides to take her own life. As she jumps into the same lake, a man named Gi Dong-chan (Jo Seung-woo) is also being thrown in it by a group of thugs. When they come out, they realize they have traveled 14 days into the past. Remembering a mysterious woman who spoke to her about this happening, Soo-hyeon finds Dong-chan and together they try to stop the events that lead to Saet-byeol's death, as well as discover how they are both connected to the big picture that starts forming.

Full Article: [HanCinema's Drama Review] "God's Gift - 14 Days".

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Drama Preview - A New Leaf

Amnesia is such a tricky thing in dramas. Much like a sworn enemy, it always pops up to ruin a work's credibility, lower its quality and save writers from their own inability to enrich their story. Also, it does not sit too well with many viewers. MBC's 'A New Leaf' takes a slightly different approach, making the recovery and reacquaintance with one's life after it its premise.


Kim Seok-joo (Kim Myeong-min) is a talented lawyer with a very cold outlook on life. He believes people cannot change easily and his views come into conflict with the beliefs of an optimistic woman who works with him, Lee Ji-yoon (Park Min-yeong). After losing his memory following an accident, he finds himself faced with the man he used to be and eventually goes up against his old firm.

Full Article: [HanCinema's Drama Preview] "A New Leaf".

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Drama Review - Cheo Yong

Having shown its love for a certain formula over and over again, there is little to be surprised about when it comes to OCN series and their form and trajectory. A leading man carrying a trauma and being a loner type, an ensemble of stock characters, a villain/obstacle and a lot of action and social commentary with moments of often awkward, forced humor in-between. 'Cheo Yong: The Paranormal Detective' follows that same formula and has more problems than other shows, but it also offers some freshness that ultimately becomes its strength.

The series follows the work of Yoon Cheo-yong (Oh Ji-ho), a detective who can see ghosts. Since an evil presence he fought with seven years ago went off a bridge and took his then partner with him, Cheo-yong has worked as a regular police officer, avoiding being a detective handling cases. However, he is drawn back to that when a case he decides to take on brings his path to that of Ha Seon-woo (Oh Ji-eun), a detective who seems to have a past with him. In the station where Seon-woo works at, Cheo-yong meets the ghost of a female student, Han Na-yeong (Hyosung), who has no memory of who she was before her death and is confined to the station by an invisible barrier. He then begins working as Seon-woo's partner and their team tackle different cases in each episode.

Full Article: [HanCinema's Drama Review] "Cheo Yong: The Paranormal Detective".

Drama Review - Inspiring Generation

When 'Inspiring Generation' started and the adult cast finally kicked in after its opening flashback, everything was looking wonderful. It looked like KBS had another potential 'Bridal Mask' in its hands; an epic story with epic battles. Good cast of both popular and seasoned actors, lovely visuals and sound, great choreography and interesting characters. It was doing great. Sadly, the Korean drama industry has a habit of destroying potential, which is what happened to this series.

Sin Jeong-tae (Kim Hyun-joong) had a hard time growing up. With an absent father and having to care for his ill sister, he had to work hard to survive. The series depicts his story as he becomes connected to various groups and gets caught in the middle of their confrontations, before having to face his own issues and take a stand in the events that take place around him.

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

Sunday, April 6, 2014

'Triangle' - Casting News Summary

Left to right: Baek Jin Hee, Shin Seung Hwan, Naya

So a lot (but not enough) has happened on the 'Triangle' [트라이앵글] front. Here is a summary of the developments. The first script reading took place on April 1st, so more news and images from that to come soon.

March 27th:

Park Hyo Joon (박효준) joins as Dong Cheol's (Jae Joong's) side. There is only one article on that though.

- Source: Edaily

Kim So Hyeon (김소현) is on board. She is playing the young Hwang Shin Hye (Oh Yeon Soo is the adult version). She meets Dong Soo (Lee Beom Soo) when she is still a teenager. It seems she might have a crush on him from way back then.

- Source: FnNews

No Young Hak (노영학) cast as the 19-year-old Dong Soo (Lee Beom Soo). This is a Sports Seoul exclusive, but given their information has been reliable before, I am inclined to find this accurate.

Source: Sports Seoul

April 1st:

Baek Jin Hee (백진희) seems confirmed. She will play Oh Jung Hee. An orphan of a miner family supporting her 4 siblings. She works as a casino dealer and has a bright personality despite her sad life. She will be in a love triangle with Dong Woo (Im Si Wan) and Dong Cheol (Kim Jae Joong).

Sources: Newsen and XportsNews

April 2nd:

Hong Seok Cheon (홍석천) or Tony Hong is cast. He plays Man Kang, a pitboss in a casino. He is the one that keeps the casino owner safe when Dong Cheol clashes with her. He is a violent and scary character.

Sources: Osen and a Triangle Facebook fan page

April 3rd:

Shin Seung Hwan (신승환) gets a role as Dong Cheol's (Kim Jae Joong) best friend.

Source: Newsen

A new actress called Naya (나야) will also take part in this as a chaebol casino owner's daughter who is love with Dong Woo (Im Si Wan). Naya (나야) was in 'IRIS2' as Yoo Gun's mother when she was young. She is listed as Na Yeon (나연) in Asianwiki.

Source: IpressM

Drama Preview - Golden Cross

After a series of rating failures and poor handling of their dramas' plots, KBS is having another go at things with 'Golden Cross'. With a typical melodrama plot and a cast of talented actors, the series does not sound like something fresh, but perhaps the road most traveled will be helpful in getting out of the slump they have gotten themselves into.


Kang Do-yoon (Kim Kang-woo) decides to take revenge upon a top economic society and the man who killed his sister and destroyed his family. In the process, he forms a bond with Seo I-re (Lee Si-yeong), a prosecutor who is also the daughter of the man he is after (Jeong Bo-seok).

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

Drama Preview - Gap Dong

This spring, tvN will be adding yet another more rare genre in its history which happens to be very popular this spring season. Following this suspense thriller trend, the channel gives us 'Gabdong - Memories of Murder', which is inspired by the real case of the Hwaseong serial killings on which Bong Joon-ho's movie 'Memories of Murder' is also based.


After the statute of limitations has expired for a series of murders Ha Moo-yeom's (Yoon Sang-hyeon) father was a suspect for and eventually took his own life due, the killer seems to resurface. Now Moo-yeom and other people closely related to the killer, Gap Dong, want to track him down for their own reasons.

Full Article: [HanCinema's Drama Preview] "Gabdong - Memories of Murder".

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