My First First Love is a youth drama about people in their twenties coming of age. Changing relationships happen between a guy (Ji Soo) and a girl (Jung Chae Yeon) who are close friends as the guy’s best friend (Jung Jin Young) develops feelings for the girl.
Tae Oh (Ji Soo) is a popular, good-natured man who is well off with his own house. Then an unexpected series of events suddenly leads to three of his friends living with him! One of those includes his long-time friend Song Yi who he begins to develop feelings for.
Song Yi (Jung Chae Yeon) is a cheerful woman who has been struggling to get by after she ends up homeless. Her friend Tae Oh takes her in, but their relationship gets complicated as she takes a liking to his close friend Do Hyun.
Do Hyun (Jung Jin Young) is a friend of Tae Oh’s who is very sweet and a hard worker. He likes Song Yi but worries he’s not good enough for her.
Se Hyun (Hong Ji Yoon) is a college girl who Tae Oh takes interest in. She’s beautiful and popular, but Song Yi wonders if her motives towards Tae Oh are really pure.
Then we have the outgoing and humorous Hoon (Kang Tae Oh) who is a struggling actor with complicated family issues.
Finally, there’s sweet and naive Ga Rin (Choi Ri) who comes from a wealthy family and doesn’t quite understand how the real world works. We also get a cute little side romance between this duo.
I had to wait awhile to get in My First First Love since Netflix split it into two seasons even though it’s a standard 16 episode drama. I was glad to finally dive into the whole thing though.
This is a simple coming of age series that focuses on relationships. The key for me to like a drama like this is to really like the characters enough that I feel invested in their lives. Luckily, the drama sets up everything wonderfully as it introduces us to the characters, and we quickly learn their back stories and their relationship dynamics. I was already feeling for them in the first episode and was interested to see how all of the love lines and friendships played out.
I was in for a bit of a surprise though. As I got a few episodes into the series, certain things about it started to feel very familiar. I felt like I remembered these characters and their connections to each other. Finally, I realized it all seemed very similar to the 2015 drama Because It’s the First Time which starred Choi Minho and Park So Dam. That was a drama I enjoyed very much.
So I went to look it up, and it turned out that My First First Love was a remake of that drama! Same production company, and the writer of the original is one of the creators of this series. I had no idea!
Now it made since why all of the relationships were so familiar. While some of the background connections of the group were a bit different, the love lines, relationship dynamics, most of the character names, and the core plot were all the same!
So now I was basically watching the same drama just with different actors. There were some other differences between the shows though. Because It’s the First Time was only 8 episodes while My First First Love was 16.
That allowed My First First Love to be a little more fleshed out and to incorporate some additional story lines, but it was also a bit more laid back in its pacing which left it feeling a bit draggy in the second half.
In the end, I did like Because It’s the First Time more, but I still really enjoyed My First First Love. The characters are lovable, and it’s easy to get invested in their lives. I found Ji Soo’s portrayal of Tae Oh to be the most different from the other drama since he’s a pretty unique actor. So this was something I liked.
Most of the other characters were exactly like the ones in Because It’s the First Time. For instance, before I knew this was remake, I kept watching the character of Hoon and just really feeling like Lee Yi Kyung should be playing this role. I definitely liked Kang Tae Oh, but the character felt made for Lee Yi Kyung. Then I found out why since Lee Yi Kyung had played the character already! Too funny.
All of the relationship dynamics in this drama keep things really interesting. Tae Oh and Do Hyun are both such great guys that they each seem like a good match for Song Yi. Watching them struggle with their feelings and how it would affect their friendships was difficult. Be prepared for a pretty heavy love square in this one. The relationships are very mixed up.
There was also a lot of joy to be had as this group of friends celebrate life’s triumphs and support each other through life’s trials. They are a fun group that are enjoyable to watch.
I was excited to see Ji Soo in a lead role here, and he was playing a lovable type character which is what he does best. Now I just needed him to finally get the girl! Of course, now I wondered if this drama would play out exactly like the other one, particularly if the ending would be the same.
SPOILERS BELOW (from My First First Love & Because It’s the First Time)
If you’ve seen Because It’s the First Time, you’ll know that in that drama it ends sort of ambiguous with Tae Oh ultimately deciding to enlist in the military leaving things kind of in limbo with him and Song Yi.
But not so in My First First Love! This time everything gets out in the open with everything fully addressed. Then Tae Oh and Song Yi actually decide to be together, and we get quite a few happy moments with the couple. So that was a nice ending. And thank you! Ji Soo DID finally get the girl!
END OF SPOILERS
My First First Love is a drama that is very easy to watch with likable characters to root for, plenty of warmth, and lots of feels. It’s a pleasant and cozy series that offers a nice break from some of the heavier stuff.
My Rating: 7/10
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