Monday, November 23, 2015

Drama Preview - Imaginary Cat

Handsome male Korean stars are undoubtedly among the favorite things of the Korean entertainment fandom. Cats rule the internet and everything else, which is a scientifically proven fact. Or well, it should be, because they do. MBC every1 brings the two together and there is little that can really go wrong with "Imaginary Cat".


Hyeon Jong-hyeon (Yoo Seung-ho) is a webtoon artist who lives with cat Bok-gil (Beetle). The two experience the world of cats and humans through each other's experiences and heal through their life together.

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

Monday, November 9, 2015

Drama First Look - Awl

Awl screen

The concept of realism is often a difficult one to define, but also something which the receiving audience of fiction has different ideas on from person to person. Korean drama is mostly homogeneous in its output and served audience and realism is sacrificed for the sake of idealistic solutions and easy to follow plots. Even so, series that tackle ugly realities for what they are exist. Some even do it wonderfully. So far, "Awl" manages both.

To address the elephant in the room, "Awl" is a work drama like "Incomplete Life", but has very little to do with it on any deeper level. Comparisons are made, naturally so, but the two dramas quickly diverge. "Incomplete Life" is about finding potential and courage in oneself, finding one's place and forming bonds, whereas "Awl" is more of a revenge story. Or rather, a story of justice and reclaiming the rights and dignity taken from people.

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

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Drama First Look - Bubblegum

Haeng Ah and Ri Hwan

After the rise of cable channel dramas in South Korean television output, the changes are visible. From the very foundations of how production works to the topics explored, everything is changing and it seems to be changing quite fast. Along with new concepts, different approaches emerge to familiar stories and genres. "Bubble Gum" plays out like a typical romantic comedy, but at the same time handles its characters and story very differently to most and so far much more intimately.

Most romantic dramas and dramas in general rely on events, misunderstandings and tangible outside obstacles to build their couples and plot. The inner world of the characters is rarely important past their emotions, and their behaviors serve as means to make things happen, rather than as material to explore. "Bubble Gum" instead looks into those self-made obstacles and opportunities of human beings, which keep us struggling to live and love and which move us.

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

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Important Blog News - Missing Images

So you may notice that all the images in my posts between 2008 and somewhere in spring 2013 are gone. I thought ImageShack had become bad enough, but they got worse. If you want the news about the technical issue without the story, go to the end of this post.

About two weeks ago, users received an email stating we have said two weeks to either upgrade our account to a paid subscription or then lose our ability to have images from our account linked to sites or blogs. In other words, arm-twisting, since most folks cannot simply go and replace every image within that timeframe. ImageShack was good once. But their quality has dropped, platform keeps changing and above all, their customer "service" is absolutely unacceptable.

I paid them once, long ago, because I did not have the time to deal with their problems. Not again. I am downloading all my images and I have saved every post in this blog as a file (so I can see what goes where). I will slowly start replacing all the images, so you can expect the posts to all look normal again within the next few months.

There is a slight uncertainty about some, since ImageShack lied yet again. They said we had up until the 31st of October, but they clearly want to rush their actions, so forget about accuracy. It is 10:41am as I write this and the images are already gone from my blog. So the posts in a few months in 2011 will have to be a bit of a guess game/url matching race. I will do those first.

I have been a user of this service since 2008. I tried their premium, was patient through crashes, missing images, time limit policies, mass data corruption due to attacks on their database and other such things. I tolerated their approach to customer (dis)satisfaction long enough. Nothing will make me happier than to delete my account and never deal with this place again. Whoever runs it has probably had a rough time, but their way of handling things will eventually bring the company down. I for one will not miss it, because it has not been up to standard for a very long time.

TL;DR: My images in posts between these years will be gone for a while and slowly reappear within the next few months. Thank you for your patience.

Drama Review - Yong Pal

'Makjang' is a term which describes the use of highly unrealistic, sensationalist elements in order to make a drama packed and attention-grabbing. Since this often means delivering cheap thrills and bad writing, it is a phrase frequently used in a derogatory manner. Whatever one's opinion on the value of 'makjang' dramas, 'Yong Pal' is a series which quickly becomes one very messy work in its writing. At the same time, it does what 'makjang' is about well.

Kim Tae-hyeon (Joo Won) is a brilliant doctor and surgeon who resorts to illegal field calls in order to pay for his sister's treatment. He eventually finds himself working at the VIP floor of his hospital, where a very special client is kept. The client, Han Yeo-jin (KIm Tae-hee) is a conglomerate heiress whose brother is keeping her comatose in order to control their company in her place. Yeo-jin reaches out to Tae-hyeon for help in her revenge.

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

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