I had lots of end of the year stuff to work on for the blog in December, so I only completed one drama, but it was a good one. It was the romantic comedy Yumi’s Cells that I got in this month:
Yumi’s Cells is a very nice and cute drama. It focuses on our leading lady Yumi’s dating life and all of the issues that brings up. The story is told in a mostly light and humorous way that makes it easy to watch.
The unique thing about the drama is the depiction of Yumi’s brain cells. We see an animated world of the cells who live in a town in her brain. The depiction of many of the thought processes that happen was done in a clever way that felt very relatable.
I liked the main story and romance between Yumi and Woong a lot. While I didn’t love everything about the cells, they added an interesting layer to the story that was very unique. It’s a very nice series that manages to present a simple relationship story in an interesting way. (Yumi’s Cells Review)
So how was December for you?
Happy drama watching to everyone!
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“My KDramatic December 2021”
For this month, I watched shows that are hopeful and thought-provoking, that can change your perspectives and insights in life: changing our destiny, second chances, values in life, happiness.
1. Scripting Your Destiny (2021)
2. Hi Bye Mama (2020)
3. Touch Me If You Can (short web series) (2020)
4. Happiness (2021)
5. You Raise Me Up (2021)
6. Lost (Human Disqualification) (2021)
7. Jirisan (Mount Jiri) (2021) (dropped!)
1. Scripting Your Destiny
Scripting Your Destiny is a web series that revolves around a deity who’s responsible for human’s fate. He is assigned to write a romantic fate of a drama writer, but he began to fall in love with her instead while writing it. That sounds interesting, right? At first few episodes, I felt like it was just an okay watch. Along the way, it keeps getting better and much meatier than what I have initially expected. I like our lead cast, despite their underwhelming acting. I didn’t expect too much from it since it’s only a web series. However, with better directing and production cost, I believe it could have been better, acting-wise. But I honestly enjoyed this series overall. I would love to see more episodes, wishing it could be a regular show because it deserves to be a more elaborate and longer series.
Overall Rating: 8/10
2. Hi Bye Mama
Finally took the courage to watch this dramatic and heavy series. I found Hi Bye Mama to be emotionally strong, yes, but it wasn’t tearjerking for me. I can feel all the emotions of our characters, but strangely I wasn’t able to cry. Did I get stronger now because I don’t cry for my kdramas these days? Hah! 😂
Kim Tae Hee is natural as Cha Yu Ri, our longing ghost mother. I really like the rest of the characters too. One of the rare dramas that I liked almost all the characters, from the main down to the supporting ones. What I really liked the most about Hi Bye Mama is the every relationship in the series: mother-daughter, sister relationship, friendship, family relationship, married couple relationship. The drama effortlessly showed the importance of those relationships in a satisfying way. And I’d love to watch more dramas like this.
While yes I have personal preferences for some plots in the series, and took me a long whole month to finally finish it, Hi Bye Mama was still an enjoyable and heartwarming series. 😊
Overall Rating: 8/10
3. Touch Me If You Can (web series)
This is only a 6-episode short series, that lasts for about an hour, so I am hesitant to include it in the list, but here it is. 😀
A cute little series about a succubus who’s living for about 200 years by absorbing energies from humans. Due to COVID-19 pandemic, she faced the biggest crisis in her life. Funny and cute, it is a short series that’s for everyone to relate to because it’s set on the pandemic era. The male and female lead is cute. And while the overall story is not that strong, I think it’s still a cute and worthy of your one hour time.
Overall Rating: 6.5/10
Now, nobody knows exactly why the title is Happiness 😂. Han Hyo Joo’s character only talked about happiness three times I think in the whole series. I just really loved to see both Park Hyung Sik and Han Hyo Joo back in the Dramaland. Their chemistry is cute and they look romantically strong together. I always love my apocalyptic and survival series/movies (Missing Nine, Squid Game, Kingdom, Train to Busan, etc.). Happiness for me was also enjoyable despite my personal preferences issues. Interesting divert characters are there, but the series showed little developments in them. I would have loved to see some super tearjerking scenes between those characters in the middle of the mad person disease plague. The show was almost there in delivering such a masterpiece. However, for some reasons for me, it felt short and it felt like it paced too swiftly despite some draggy scenes. Was waiting for those strong antagonists to get infected and be seriously affected by the disease, but it did happen, but it lacked strong impact to me. Been waiting for some serious melodrama amidst the thrill for me to feel special connection with the characters, but it didn’t. It also has a lot of dislikeable characters. Although Yoon Sae Boom (Han Hyo Joo’s character) and Jung Yi Hyun (Park Hyung Sik) are good people, they were not entirely likeable characters, for me. For 12 episodes, I felt like the series still have many unresolved and unexplained issues.
Happiness, overall, felt short in delivering an elaborate and overarching story as a whole. It was thrilling and lots of stuffs happened and lots of potential characters to showcase. With better story flow, I guess, Happiness could be a masterpiece! It was still fun and worthwhile though, only that I have some personal preferences.
Overall Rating: 7.5/10
5. You Raise Me Up
Yoon Shi Yoon 😍. Of course noone is as suitable as Yoon Shi Yoon for the role of Do Yong Shik. The show is tagged as a romcom. But it’s leaning more serious than what it seems. The topic of this series tells a lot of stories. It may not be for everyone, but for people who are very sensitive despite his hopeful and cheerful aura, this show is thought-provoking and heartfelt. Do Yong Shik may seem caricature-y, but he’s a character everyone must be aware of his existence. The mental stress he developed due to the pressures in life is not easy. Because of his low self-esteem, he hasn’t secured a job yet for how many years. He kept on failing the civil service exam and been doing only part-times to support himself. On top of that, he also developed an erectile dysfunction, and that lessened his confidence and had made him have zero hope in life.
While I do like how the show progressed, only Do Yong Shik is truly worth-watching in this show. 😁 I didn’t care much for other characters, and I even didn’t care for the growing romance of Do Yong Shik and Lee Ru Da (Hani), altough I thought they look good together. And I like Hani, she has some Bae Suzy vibes in her.
I definitely loved that ending! It was realistic but still hopeful. 😊
I’d like everyone who has low self-esteem because of their inferior complexity and because of the pressures of the cruel world that they face, to see You Raise Me Up. It can definitely raise your head high up!
Overall Rating: 8/10
6. Lost (Human Disqualification)
Now congratulate me for finishing it in three long months 😂 despite not liking it, really.
My love for Ryu Jun Yeol has taken me over to watch the show. I’m not saying the series is bad. (I have read many great reviews saying this series is an understated masterpiece). It just so happened that this kind of show is not into my liking and my personal tastes. It kinda have some My Mister vibes in it. But My Mister was tearjerking, with very interesting compelling characters. While Lost is kind of lost its way to where it was going. Or better say, I was lost while watching it. I don’t exactly know where I want to go with the show, I don’t know which characters to root for, because everyone in the show seems uninteresting for me. I don’t exactly know what had happened in the show. Ow wait, what did happen for 16 long episodes? I can’t even seem to remember. Haha.
Have waited until ep. 12 or 13 for the show to realize they have to show us Jun Yeol’s beauty by cutting off that long hair. 😂 It kind of help me like the series a little bit. Hah!
However, I guess I can understand that for some, Lost is a great show! Despite its being quiet, it managed to tell a lot of stories, if you’d have a better internalizing ability or you’d wear a better lens to understand the poignance and sad vibes of the show. It’s more realistic and relatable than what it seems. It’s just that I’m not the kind of viewer to internalize this kind of show. I lean more on much fictional characters to relieve my stress from realistic toxic people from the Real World.
I hope you won’t base on this review if you want to consider watching it. A lot of other folks seem to like it much, for a reason.
Nevertheless, I still love my Ryu Jun Yeol, yah all! 😍
Overall Rating: 5.5/10
•Jirisan – dropped at episode 2. Not too sure if I can like this one. Its mystery is interesting but I am not interested. 😂 I had glimpses of our fantastic Jun Ji Hyun and thought she’s great though!
Favorite of the Month: Scripting Your Destiny, You Raise Me Up
So that was December 2021 for me.
How about you? Tell me about your K-Dramatic monthly experience. 😊
Wow! You got in a lot of dramas to wrap up the year! I’m glad you enjoyed Scripting Your Destiny a bit more than me. I too thought it had a nice story, and I particularly enjoyed the last few eps. It definitely could have been fleshed out nicely as a full length drama.
Hi Bye Mama and Happiness sound like good watches overall.
Too Bad about Lost and Jirisan.
Yay that you enjoyed You Raise Me Up! Yes, Yoon Shi Yoon is the heart of the drama and delivers a remarkable performance. While I enjoyed everyone else, no one held a candle to him. And yes, the ending was refreshingly nice 🙂
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My kdrama update for December 2021
The King’s Affection – I enjoyed many things about this drama, especially the premise (suspension of disbelief required) and Park Eun Bin’s acting. I thought that the show was not sure if it wanted to be a romantic comedy or a palace intrigue. It would have worked better as a pure palace politics drama with some romance thrown in. The ending was satisfying, even though some loose ends were not tied.
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Sounds like a decent watch overall. I’m glad you enjoyed it for the most part. It is on my watch list 🙂
I finished three dramas in December (well one of them just today but counting it as a December completion).
1. The King’s Affection – I thoroughly enjoyed this drama. The story was true from the beginning to the end and with a very satisfying ending. Park Eun Bin was fantastic as was the lovely OST. And most importantly for me, it was definitely enjoyable.
2. Happiness – this one was very different to the other two completed and I normally hate zombie shows. However, this was not a typical zombie show and it was very enjoyable.
3. The Red Sleeve – out of the three dramas I was most frustrated with this drama. I understand this is a very popular drama and I believe I’m in the minority. The drama was beautifully made and the actors were amazing and there were some episodes I did enjoy very much. However, overall, this was a very frustrating watch. I also hated the ending but again I believe I may be in the minority. I will just leave it as that to avoid spoilers. This was the drama I least enjoyed out of the three. However, this was also the drama I binged in a very short time. I think I have a love/hate situation with this drama. 🙂
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Well, 2 out of 3 is not too bad! 😊
I have heard fantastic things about The Red Sleeve. But hey, I understand. There are lots of really popular dramas that I don’t care for. Usually the more slice of life, realistic ones. The Red Sleeve looks right up alley though.
I’ve heard a bit more mixed reaction on The King’s Affection. Both are on my list though and both sound really interesting.
Happiness looks interesting but dark, so I’ll probably save it for a day in the distant future, lol 😂
The Red Sleeve is a very good drama. I can understand why people liked it. I just didn’t buy the main concept and didn’t like what some of the characters did and so I ended up getting frustrated with it instead of enjoying it. You are right though. Please do check both – enjoyment of a drama is based on personal choices anyway regardless of what others say. 🙂
Do check out Happiness as well. It is not dark. 🙂
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That is is! I always say, “We like what we like.” 🙂
Happiness isn’t dark? That’s a bit surprising. How do you make a disease ridden world with a new zombie like disease not dark? I’m so curious 😂😂
I know it sounds wrong to say a drama about a disease isn’t dark but something about this drama is not like the other zombie/disease dramas I have seen. I’m not sure how to explain it but it is a really good drama. I don’t like dark dramas either like you but I think you will like this one. Do check it out. 🙂
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Well, that’s good to know. I know it can be done. I watched and enjoyed Zombie Detective which leaned more comedic despite some darker subject matter woven in. I will put Happiness on the list then 🙂
The King’s Affection – wanted to drop after episode 6 but stuck with it and was happy from about episode 6 to 12 then felt like the remaining eps were just a slog to get through. I’m more into romance than palace intrigue so that’s when these period pieces lose me. Happy with the ending but would have preferred less. Also didn’t like that the “King” had so little agency throughout. Too much dependent on everyone else.
The Red Sleeve – my very first kdrama was Scarlet Heart followed by Empress Ki. I usually don’t like period pieces because I’m always comparing to those – which are IMO the best ever! – so I am always disappointed when they don’t measure up. HOWEVER, I have finally found another to add to the list – The Red Sleeve was amazing!! It’s my understanding that episode 17 was added after the success in the ratings so it might seem out of place but I read a bunch about the true story behind that couple and it made the series even more powerful for me. Lots more focus on the romance and less on the palace intrigue.
SPOILERS Episode 17 had me bawling buckets and I usually don’t like things that make me sad but I embraced the sad because it was their actual story. I find myself still tearing up when thinking about them. I also loved the theme of the “luxurious prison” as one of the characters said about the life of the women in the palace.
About Time – fairly generic story with a fantasy element that not only was never explained but really had no rules which was a bit frustrating, but if you just go with it, I found the drama overall fairly watchable. A bit meandering and slow towards the end – would have been better at 12 episodes rather than 16 – but not a bad watch.
Wok of Love – this has been on my watchlist for a while but with Lee Junho catching my attention in Red Sleeve, I figured I’d give it a watch and got Jang Hyuk thrown into the mix and all that fooooood!!! Such a yummy combo all round. Strong story and loved the romance and ensemble cast.
Be My Boyfriend and Pumpkin Time – these two are in the 10-15 episodes of 15-20 minutes each high school drama category. I don’t really know why I gravitate to those but they’re quick watch and usually cute, sweet, or are trying to tackle some kind of social issue – all of which interest me. Be My Boyfriend was pretty generic – HS girl asks HS boy to be her boyfriend to help her ex boyfriend understand that she’s serious when she says she wants to break up. Romance ensues. I’m a sucker for that kind of stuff. Pumpkin Time had an extremely odd premise (boy becomes a girl overnight due to a mistake – there’s a fantasy element I won’t get into to avoid spoilers) and I needed a few episodes to figure out if it was worth my time. It turned out to be much better than I expected. Definitely not the usual kdrama fare. Worthy watch. With the short episodes, I find that I can binge watch in a night or two and I like doing that especially when I’m watching some of these longer currently airing shows.
My Love Eun Dong – too melo and makjang for me. Has an old school feel if you like that sort of thing.
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I’m so glad you loved The Red Sleeve so much! Yes, your first historicals being Scarlet Heart and Empress Ki would definitely make most others pale in comparison. Those are 2 at the top of my list, and there just aren’t many quite like them.
It’s good you made it through The King’s Affection despite some issues. Same with About Time.
It’s great you checked out Wok of Love. That is an interesting drama! Stellar cast and very fun. I did suffer some with Jang Hyuk as the second lead, but his memorable character mostly made up for it.
The mini dramas sound like nice and easy watches.
Haha, so you didn’t end up making it through My Love Eun Dong. I really loved it, but like you said, it is old school and very melo. Definitely not for everyone 😂
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