Extraordinary You Korean Drama Review

Extraordinary You is a fantasy romantic comedy about high school students (Kim Hye Yoon and Rowoon) who learn they are characters in a comic and decide to attempt to go against the plot and change their fates.

Kim Hye Yoon plays Eun Dan Oh.Β  She is completely adorable as a sassy and energetic high school student with a lifelong heart condition. Her life seems normal enough until she one day learns she is actually a character in a comic. And to her dismay, she also learns she’s not the lead but just an extra!

Rowoon is originally a nameless extra in the comic, but he eventually takes on the name Ha Ru. He’s quiet and kind with some mystery surrounding his past. He teams up with Dan Oh to attempt to change the comic in an effort to better their future.

Then we have Lee Jae Wook as Baek Kyung. In the comic story, he is engaged to Dan Oh. He’s the bad boy type who strings Dan Oh along and is only with her because of pressure from his family.

Next are some of our other major players. The leading couple in the comic are Oh Nam Joo (Kim Young Dae) who is the classic jerk male lead that needs lots of softening up and Yeo Joo Da (Lee Na Eun) who is the classic female lead that is super kind but is constantly bullied and in need of rescuing.

Lee Do Hwa (Jung Gun Joo) is the perfect second lead in the comic that is as sweet as can be and is forced to always pine after Yeo Joo Da. Finally, there’s Jin Mi Chae (Lee Tae Ri) who is a cook at the school. He’s a man of mystery who seems to know a whole lot about the comic world and its inhabitants.

I have to say, I thoroughly enjoyed Extraordinary You! It was a bit of a surprise just how much too. Now I do I love stories that deal with meta things, and characters in a comic becoming self-aware fits the bill perfectly. But I really wasn’t sure what kind of story this would be or what tone it would have, and aside from Kim Hye Yoon, I wasn’t very familiar with most of the other main actors.

I was intrigued with the first few episodes, but it did take several for me to fully warm up to the show. But when I did, I completely warmed up to it and was all in!

Please note, I do talk about minor spoilers concerning characters who become self-aware and how the comic world works in this review.

Extraordinary You is a very easy watch. It is bright and fun with plenty of humor. The comic world is portrayed as a stereotypical romantic comedy, so that is ripe for all kinds of jokes to poke fun at the classic tropes we all know.

There’s the jerk male lead, the downtrodden female lead, the super sweet second male lead, mean girls, and the infamous A3 who are the most popular guys at school with all of the students swooning and cheering as they pass by. All of these tropes are played up to great fun.

When Dan Oh finally becomes self-aware, she goes through a lot of confusion and emotions. Not only does she find out she is a character and has no control over her own fate, but she’s not even the lead. She’s just an extra! She was then able to see how cringy the comic story and all of the parts being played were.

I loved delving into the rules of how the comic world operated. I thought it was really interesting how when a character became aware, they still had to follow the script set forth by the writer whether or not they wanted to. They were compelled to play out the scenes.

But when a scene ended, there was a space called the Shadow which took place in between the scenes. This is where the characters had freedom. And Dan Oh uses that freedom to try to change the story and her fate.

Dan Oh eventually takes notice of a mysterious student who keeps helping her. He turns out to be an extra who doesn’t even have a name and doesn’t speak. She is drawn to him and even gives him the name Ha Ru. The two begin their own adorable romance that very much goes against the real story.

I really loved Dan Oh and Ha Ru’s relationship. It was super sweet with plenty of heart as they struggled to beat the story and be together. But their actions have consequences as the comic world begins to change in unexpected ways. They have to face some major trials in their attempt to be together. Their love story was a great mix of cute fun and low-key angst.

Then there’s Baek Kyung, the man that Dan Oh is engaged to in the story. I had a lot of conflicted feelings towards this character. He really is a complete jerk in every way and was always so mean to Dan Oh. For most of the drama, I just couldn’t feel for him.

Deeper in, we do see him soften some, and I felt like the drama wanted me to feel for him, but it really was a bit too late for me. I tried to keep in mind that many of his actions were written by the comic writer, but he was still pretty jerky even as his real self in the Shadow, so it was always hard to connect with him despite learning some of his back story and struggles. He’s definitely an interesting character though.

 

I got a kick out of the main comic story which had a love triangle involving Oh Nam Joo, Yeo Joo Da, and Lee Do Hwa. Their story was filled with all of the classic tropes which was quite funny.

The second lead, Do Hwa, eventually becomes self-aware. It was both humorous and sad watching him try to win over the lovely Yeo Joo Da. He actually really liked her, but his set-up prevented him from having a chance with her.

There’s a nice little mystery running throughout the drama too. The mysterious man Mi Chae seemed to hold the key to what was happening. We learn little by little what was actually going on and why things were happening. It kept things very interesting with some great plot developments.

Extraordinary You also had a very serious side as characters are really put through the ringer. They deal with separation, helplessness, and life and death stakes. Learning the back story behind the characters and the comic was really fascinating.

SPOILERS BELOW

I loved that we got to go into the characters’ story in their previous comic which was set during historical times. It was like getting to see a past life story. The little bit we see had plenty of angst and really showed why the characters acted the way they did in the present, including why Ha Ru was so drawn to Dan Oh and wanting to protect her. I loved it!

END OF SPOILERS

Something to be aware of before going into this drama, as is common with many stories like this, is that not all of the questions are answered, and there are some plot holes. There are some finer details that are definitely not ironed out.

But I still thought the story was told well, and many of the themes presented in the drama were adequately addressed. We see characters become aware, try to change their fates, and accept their reality the best they can. I liked seeing the character progressions after they became aware. All of the characters who become self-aware eventually change for the better.

It’s a hard battle going up against an all powerful writer, but even when the characters had limitations, they made the best of them. Seeing their friendship, growth, independence, and determination was very inspiring. Dan Oh and Ha Ru in particular really fought for what they wanted in their lives, and no matter what they faced, they never gave up on each other.

Extraordinary You was enjoyable in every way. I loved the characters and the world that they inhabited. It was all kinds of fun with lots of heart. I had such a wonderful time watching it.

My Rating: 8/10

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About Kay

Greetings! I’m Kay, creator and author of Kdrama Kisses. Kdrama Kisses is dedicated to bringing you the latest in kdrama casting news, drama trailers, reviews, and more. Happy drama watching to everyone!
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26 Responses to Extraordinary You Korean Drama Review

  1. ImGian9 says:

    I am happy to see you enjoyed this drama.
    I loved waiting every week to watch it. I was interested in this drama because of Kim Hye Yoon (Sky Castle) and Lee Jae Wook (Search: WWW, another exciting drama of the year) these two actors are the surprise of this year, but who surprised me was Jung Gun Joo, I struggle to watch his scenes because his acting reminded me another actor I love to watch, after some weeks I realize who resembles him, Park Hyung Sik, his acting and features are the same of Park Hyung Sik in some of his series such as Strong Girl Do Bong-Soon, What Happens to my family? and The Heirs, I’m looking forward to watch his next project.
    Anyway, one of the intriguing thing that I loved was the figure of the Writer, I liked the fact that they always talk about this writer and they decided to not reveal his/her face.
    While watching this Drama I thought I was watching a drama with some aspect took from: W – Two Worlds , School Series and and Boys over Flowers.
    I enjoyed watching it and I am looking forward to watch the next projects of these young actors, especially Lee Jae Wook and Jung Gun Joo. I don’t know why but this is one of the few drama of this year that gives me so many emotions, I know the story is very simple, maybe trivial to someone, but I loved it.
    If I have to give a rate to this drama it will be 8.5/9 out of 10, for my standard of rating, I laughed, I was scared everytime that Black Hole appeared and I was sad when it ended.

    P.S.
    While MBC aired this drama during the past two months, KBS aired When The Camelia Bloom, unfortunatly I didn’t follow this drama each weeks but after reading that becomes the most watched minidrama of this Year, over 20% of rating for its last episode I had to watch it and I have to say that I regretted to have not follow it and watching it every weeks, but last week I watch it and it was a fantastic, sweet and sour, so simple and exciting drama, I recommend it.

    P.P.S
    I’m looking forward to read your list of Drama of the Year.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kay says:

      I’m glad you enjoyed this drama too! πŸ™‚ I too was very intrigued with the comic writer. Although it’s always fun to go in more depth with things like this, I also kind of liked that they left the writer a mystery. It was very different from a drama like W-Two Worlds, which had a similar concept, but it allowed the comic world and the real world to interact whereas this one kept the comic world completely separate. So I was happy enough with they handled everything πŸ™‚ The drama also made me feel a lot of emotions and I was sad for it to end.

      I loved all of the actors here too. Such a great group of young actors that will hopefully have promising futures. Kim Hye Yoon was a stand out and just so good. I hadn’t thought about Jung Gun Joo looking similar to Park Hyung Sik, but since you pointed it out, I really think he does! How fun πŸ™‚

      I still need to watch When the Camellia Blooms. I too am curious about it after having such high ratings. And those ratings are no joke these days. It’s a hard feat to accomplish numbers that high.

      I’m happy you’re looking forward to my Best Korean Dramas of the Year post. Hopefully, I will have it out early next week πŸ™‚

      Like

  2. D says:

    Wow – you gave pretty high ratings for this one. Added to my list. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kay says:

      I’m having a good streak, hehe πŸ™‚ It’s pretty fun overall. I liked it all the way through, but it gets a bit more angsty in the last third which some didn’t like. I thought the drama was quite refreshing though, and I enjoyed all of the fun meta concepts πŸ™‚

      Like

  3. raistlin0903 says:

    I really love the plot you are describing here. Even though it’s a comedy (lol, you know how I feel about comedies), I’m adding this one to my list. I love original stories, and this is certainly one of them.
    Completely unrelated: but I’m currently watching Kill It. Have you seen it (looked it up on your blog but could not find a review for it). All I can say is: it’s awesome. Certainly one of the best K-dramas I have seen all year, if not the best😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kay says:

      Yay! A comment from Raistlin! πŸ™‚ The plot was really fun and unique for this one. Even though it is a comedy, it was a bit different because of it’s meta elements and poking fun at tropes we all know. Plus, it gets more serious as it goes along as it delves more into the mystery surrounding the characters becoming self aware. A very good watch for sure πŸ™‚

      I haven’t seen Kill It yet, but it is on The List. That was one I was hoping to get in before the end of the year, but it will probably be early next year before I get to it. It looks fun and thrilling. Glad to hear you’re enjoying that one. Oh, and happy to see that you enjoyed Two Weeks too. I love that drama so much! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      • raistlin0903 says:

        Haha: yeah, I’m trying to get back into the commenting business lol: thank you😊
        It really sounds intriguing. I usually go for the darker shows as you know, but this plot sounds so cool, and your review was so convincing that I will be checking this one out for sure 😊
        Kill It is amazing. I’m not going to spoil it for you obviously, but the story is just so gripping and intense. It’s really got one of the best plots I have seen in any K-drama, and the vibe is so cool. I also am in love with the main actress. She is a K-pop singer what I’ve read up on, but wow she is very convincing in this role. I started on sunday with this one, and I will finish it tomorrow. (yes, I binged it in 3 days lol 😊). Definitely a high recommendation!
        As for Two Weeks…yes it was such a heartwarming drama. Really terrific acting, and you just could not help but fall in love with the young child. She was so cute and convincing 😊 Definitely understand why you like that one so much! πŸ˜€

        Liked by 1 person

        • Kay says:

          Well, it’s just always good to see you back both blogging and commenting πŸ™‚

          Extraordinary You could be a good show in between some of the darker ones since it’s lighter. I usually find that when I’m watching a genre I don’t gravitate towards to just make sure I’m in the right mood for it otherwise it won’t stand a chance no matter how good it is, lol

          Oooh, that does pique my interest even more for Kill It! Yes, both of the main actors are really talented and reason enough to tune in. Though it sounds like the plot and thrills are the real selling points πŸ™‚ Since it’s only 12 eps, I hope to work in fairly soon within the new year.

          Yep, Two Weeks was a great mixture of action and heart. All the actors were great, and I instantly fell for that little girl. She still remains one of the cutest child actors I have come across. Plus, she’s really good too. Definitely a wonderful drama all around πŸ™‚

          Liked by 1 person

          • raistlin0903 says:

            Lol, that is for sure. Certain shows just work better when you are in the mood for them. Seeing as it’s now nearing the Christmas time, I think it’s the perfect time to watch a lighter show for a change😊 I will definitely let you know what I think of this one.
            Yes, Kill It is a shorter show, but if you like it as much as me, I think you will definitely have trouble not bingewatching it lol: it’s really that good 😊
            You are so right! I was amazed at how well such a young child acted. The last time I saw that was in Train to Busan, because really the young child there was amazing as well 😊

            Liked by 1 person

            • Kay says:

              Please do. I’m curious to see if this one would for you or not πŸ™‚ Haha, yeah, 12 eps are perfect for binge watching. I hope I love Kill It too!

              Oh yes, the little girl in Train to Busan was also amazing. I come across so many talented kids in kdramas. They always impress me so much with how good they are at acting at such a young age πŸ™‚

              Liked by 1 person

              • raistlin0903 says:

                I’m going to let you in on a small secret already though the post isn’t out yet: Kill It, is going to end up in my personal top 3 all time favorite K-dramas. It is absolutely amazing. The story is so good, it’s like a mystery novel that has a surprise in every chapter. It’s so tense, and has such an incredible atmosphere, I simply can’t wait to hear your thoughts on this one😊
                As of Extraordinary You, I will start on it this Sunday (have to work on Saturday). I’m looking forward to it.
                So true: I often wonder how children that young can act in such an incredible way. I haven’t found out the answer yet 😊

                Liked by 1 person

  4. Kate says:

    Had the same impressions of this one that you did πŸ™‚ It was really enjoyable and the flaws didn’t take away from my enjoyment of it. I really appreciated that it tried to take all the tropes and make fun of them. I liked peaking behind the curtain in the form of the shadow. I wish there could have been more explanation of the writer but I’m used to not having all questions answered in these fantasy type dramas. Definitely a group of actors I’d like to see more of in the future!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kay says:

      It really was such a fun drama πŸ™‚ And I too absolutely loved all the poking fun at the classic drama tropes. Then getting to see how the characters felt and coped with things in the Shadow was really fascinating.

      Yeah, I think we’re definitely used to not getting all of our questions answered with dramas like this most of the time. I would have liked to have had a few more answers, but I also liked that the comic world was self-contained, and it really was just their story. I kept wondering if someone was ever going to go through that wormhole though, lol. I hope to see more of these actors in the future too πŸ™‚

      Like

  5. I haven’t been on your blog in a hot second! Uni got so hectic, but today I am officially on break so I thought it was time to start a new drama. I came here to find one and came across this article. Going to start it right now haha. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kay says:

      It’s good to see you back Sahara πŸ™‚ I can understand how busy things must be for you uni. I’m sure it’s nice to finally have a break. And what better way to start a break then with a new drama! hehe I really enjoyed this one, and I hope you do too πŸ™‚

      Like

  6. Glad to be back πŸ˜€ I’m so excited to catch up on dramas over break. The only ones I’ve seen recently are Vagabond and Melting Me Softly which were both awesome! I’ll definitely be checking out you what to watch lists from the last few months. I am so out of the loop haha. I’ll let you know what I think of this drama and others I watch this break!

    Liked by 1 person

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