Top 5ish – Gong Hyo-Jin Love Interests in Dramaland (Update: Vote for Your Favorite!)

With this weeks premier of her latest show, It’s Okay That’s Love, I realized that this will be my 6th (!) Gong Hyo Jin drama.  Which means I have spent more hours watching GHJ than either Lee Min Ho or Lee Seung Gi, though she still doesn’t top my apparent love affair with Ahn Suk-Hwan (UGH. 7 dramas!).

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Why are you and your mustache twirling ways in every drama ever?!?

Truth is, whenever I choose a drama, my criteria is based on critical reaction and premise rather than the actors in question, which is why it’s rather amazing the streak GHJ has going on.  To the best of my knowledge, her past six dramas have pretty much been critical or ratings successes (usually both), with zero “forgotten dramas”.  She’s also worked with some of the dramaland’s best, and though I will be focussing on her male co-stars this time around, the creative talent should make anyone jealous considering she’s worked with Lee Kyung Hee (twice), the Hong Sister’s (twice), and now also reuniting with Noh Hee Kyung.  Sounds like your typical bitchy diva who you’d never want to work with. (JK, she’s obviously amazing)

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Warning: nothing but nonsense from here on out!

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Top 5 – Alternative Pairings/Couples in Dramaland

When watching Pasta,(no major spoilers here)  my 2nd favorite relationship outside the main couples epicenter of cuteness, was the blossoming friendship of Gong Hyo-Jin and Choi Jae-Hwan’s characters.  They were lowest on the literal and metaphorical food chain (basically kitchen grunts), and often helped each other out when in dire straits.

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I then realized that outside of a OTP (and let’s face it, sometimes in spite of) it’s these types of relationships that are my favorite part of any show.  Not to deviate from K-Dramas but Mad Men has perhaps the greatest male-female platonic relationship of all-time, but watching I realize how rare that is in any storytelling medium.  So that was the basis for this top 5, but I’m making it a little bit more interpretive.  Basically any sort kind of special connection between two characters that is not easily definable (mom daughter for example), a one true pairing, or a 2nd leads thang is fair game. Hopefully that works…

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Good to know! and without further ado, here is number 5!

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Video

Greatest. Mashup. Everrrrr. (and the new game inspired by it!)

That was fan-freaking-hilariously-delicious! this mash up uses her love interests Chep! and Dokko Jin from Pasta and Greatest Love respectively, and without giving anything away things take a bromantic turn in the ladder half of the vid.

So now I just  really want to combine all her TV love interests in some sort of epic movie or reality show death match. Imagine… the Coffee Prince lads with the Something Happened in Bali boys, add a Dokko Jin, and just a pinch of Thank You‘s Jang Hyuk for good measure and you’ve got…. Well dunno exactly but it sure sounds like a smexy good time! In fact…

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My Not So Serious Review – Pasta (2010)

So I just finished, and I’m normally not one for this kinda of thing but I decided to give it a go, and I’m happy to report it turned out okay.   I was nervous, mostly on what others would think but…. between Betty’s guidance (she’s strict, yet fair) and the easy accessibility of that sly fox Bertolli everything worked out!

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Though I’m much more handy with these noodles then the edible kind.

Oh yeah, that drama was pretty good to, probably better than my attempt to recreate La Sefra’s stomach rumbling creations…

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Creativity and pasta, the main ingredients to fine Italian dining, so this would get a pass from the chef right? Answer – Yes Chep!

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Drama and television viewing habits (narcissism edition!)

Here is a rundown of some of my viewing habits/bias which is probably for my own sake but might give insight into some of my ranking.  In all likelihood its the narcissist in me who needs to be seen.

  1. Characters >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Plot – It’s why Mad Men is my favorite show even with episode descriptions like “A computer comes to the agency while Peggy receives a flower delivery.” Or why I find dramas with mixed receptions like Flower Boy Next Door or Pasta intriguing long after others have deemed them “boring”.  As long as the characters are interesting and well rounded, I will never require any long standing mysteries,  parents or second leads used as plot devices,  or makjang elements to shake things up.
  2. That said, though I prefer my characters to be realistic and 3 dimensional, I don’t really have a similar issue with sci-fi or gimmick elements that become plot devices instead of being thoroughly integrated into the story.  For instance, some of Secret Garden’s complaints (similarly You Who Came from the Stars) dealt with how the body switching/sci-fi element was wishy washy, and never fully explained. I liked that it was used further character development, provided ample comic fodder, and was used enough to add tension and stakes, but not so much as to get annoying or for the audience to lost track of the whose who.  Basically it all comes back to characters. (for an English example, I much prefer the Russell T. Davies era of Doctor Who, compared to the Moffat reign, as one featured a delightful cast of recurring players, while the ladder had a series of convoluted plots.)
  3. Did someone say comic fodder?  One thing thats is necessary in my TV and can make a average plotted show into complete chamazingness territory is a funny bone embedded into the shows DNA.  The King of Dramas and History of the Salaryman are two of my favorite dramas, and I can easily say both shows had several flaws, missteps, and plot holes.  The single characteristic that kept me throughly entertained was that both were “mother father” hilarious. I recall History did an especially good job of adding humor throughout an episode, no matter how sad or dark things became for our heros (See a Weekend at Bernie’s elevator ride). Breaking Bad‘s pitch black comedic sensibilities were the only things that kept me going during the darkest hours of that depressing show.
  4. Can’t be too long – self explanatory but I’ve never watched a drama longer than 28 episodes. So many dramas, so little time.
  5. Other kinds of dramas I’m not crazily into – the revenge and/or serial killer thriller, ANY medical show (E.R. did  me in when I was 12), the traditional sageuk (though I still need to watch one..), and your standard melo.
  6. Things I totes adore! – slice of life dramas(Coffee PrinceFriday Night Lights) genre hybrid hodepodge (think I Can Hear Your Voice or Chuck), sci-fi or supernatural premises, subverting gender dynamics, biracial characters (mixed baby I am), bromances, shows not set in Seoul, NYC or LA, and of course romantic intrigue!
  7. Interestingly enough, when I choose a drama, its not based on the actors but heavily weighs on the plot description, trailers, and other people’s opinion.  This definitely varies from movies where even if Matt Damon is rocking a fat suit, I’d still buy that ticket.  Guess its really the instance of having a dynamic actor make a 2 hour film watchable vs. suffering through 20 hours of So Ji Sub trying to convince the audience (and himself) that his love for Ha Ji Won is worth it (I wish I never wanted to know What Happened in Bali).  That said, if a drama has two actors I like, it has a much better shot at me watching it even if the description seems average (por exemplo -the two Gongs in Biscuit Teacher and Star Candy).
  8. Now disregard everything I just wrote.  I mean all rules are made to be broken right?  none of these are rules but “It’s more like guidelines anyway.” Another of my favorite shows is Nine Times Travels as it’s possibly the most tightly plotted (and best use of time travel) show in recent memory.  Basically, where is the fun in getting everything you want?

Any show that does right by its acting, writing and directing will be good, and with that surely controversial statement those are  my 8 simple rule for dating  viewing biases,  yay lists!