My fat suit is fatter than yours

The name’s Karl. Karl Go. Male lead character in Get Karl! Oh Soo-jung. What do you mean, you’ve never heard of my drama? Fine, I’ll concede that quality-wise we rank way down the pecking order in that year of sterling offerings, but I’ll have you know my drama boasts something that none of the other 2007 dramas can lay claim to.

A fat suit.

Sure, I looked like Barney the Purple Dinosaur in my fat suit, but is that my fault? Damned budget cuts eating into my prosthetic makeup and causing me to look like someone dunked my head into a tub of violet-red paint. Still, I was king of the kdrama fat suit and reigned without a rival for four heady years.

And then Romance Town (2011) came along. HE came along. Waaahhh!!!

Do you sense my anguish? Do you understand now why I’m crying a river of tears? The guy’s got more natural color in his cheeks! And more jowls, too. I look like a friggin’ rubber alien next to him!

But his hair. Bwahaha, which bowl did the hairstylist use? The largest one in the kitchen, I bet. Bowl over head, snip snip. That be 20,000 won, thank you.

Also, which actor looked happier donning the fat suit? The result may be far less than desirous in my case, but at least Oh Ji-ho bore it all like a man. Jung Gyeo-woon? Like someone pinched his prized jar of candy. And frankly, that fat suit is obscene. Thankfully we didn’t have enough money to tack on those fake flat boobs. Ewww.

So I may have lost out, albeit just barely, in the most natural-looking fat-suit department, but did you see me eight years later? When I returned from America, not as the obese and heartbroken (more on the latter later) Go Man-soo but as Korea’s most successful golfer, Karl Go?

Eight years. Eight torturous years to shed the weight and emerge the stuff of dreams. Hearken to the screams that reverberated around the airport when I landed. Did anyone applaud when Kang Gun-woo returned to Seoul after three years, also from the States? And just three years to lose all that weight? Easy come, easy go. Bet you he’s going to regain it and more, just you wait.

What do you mean, I’m being peevish because I’m jealous? Me jealous because Gun-woo’s more dashing than me? Says who? Some starry-eyed blogger with a soft spot for Jung Gyeo-woon? Pay no heed to her vapid prattling.

So hell no, I’m absolutely not jealous of Gun-woo. Because suffering maketh the man, I’m more of a man than he is. After all, he didn’t get dumped like I got dumped, by the most beautiful and most mercenary woman in the world.

All right. I admit it still hurts. Getting jilted at the altar. Just because I failed the third stage of the bar exam, the first person in the history of Korea to fail the third stage of the goddamned bar exam.

I loved Oh Soo-jung so much. I hated law but pursued it, for her sake. Because she had said, way back in high school, that she would only marry a man who passed the bar exam. So I toiled, doggedly, giving her my heart and promising her the moon and stars.

If I could do it all over again, I would not have fallen for someone shallow and materialistic. Perchance then I would have met someone like No Soon-geum and fallen for her instead? Gun-woo, you lucky bastard.

Compared to what I went through, what sacrifices did Gun-woo have to make, and what heartbreak did he have to suffer? Granted he cried before he boarded his plane for New York, but it wasn’t because of a sweet girl that his tears flowed but because he was bidding farewell to the housekeeper who was both mother and grandmother to him. Did he even remember the girl with whom he shared snacks and space, when he was half-drunk and incoherent in his car? The girl who became penniless on his account, not that it was his fault, to be fair. The girl whose face was one-tenth of his.

Me? I remember everything. Every kiss between Soo-jung and me, even the forced ones that took me by surprise. Initiated by her, because she can be desperate that way.

Why did I choose to return after eight years? To have the last laugh. To pay Soo-jung back in kind. Because she made a fool of me at our wedding.

Incidentally, if you look at Uhm Jung-hwa, you wouldn’t think her capable of playing a laughing stock in a drama, but she’s a natural. In fact, some mean netizens go as far as to suggest that she’s the one carrying the show and that her male counterpart is like a wooden newbie next to her impeccable comic timing. Hmph!

On the other hand, Sung Yu-ri’s comic timing isn’t too shabby, I suppose, and I’m not saying that just because we aren’t fat-suit rivals. Her Soon-geum is the heart of Romance Town (what kind of cheesy name is that, Show?), endearing herself to the audience in so many ways and deservedly, too. She’s also really pretty, isn’t she? Wait, did I just praise my competitor’s girl?

Well, I’m nothing but magnanimous. Let’s heap the praise on Soon-geum then, this girl whose mom (and also grandma) was a maid and who was adamant that Soon-geum never walk in her footsteps. But with her mother dead and gone, and with circumstances commingling to bring her to an estate of stately homes, and thus to a housekeeping job that would pay more than enough to alleviate her monetary woes, our spunky girl seized the day and decided to make hay while the sun shone.

Wait, did I just use “our”? Wretched fat suits causing me to forget which show I’m supposed to be championing. Did I also just string two clichés side by side? Drat.

Of course Romance Town can’t hold a candle to the gem that is Get Karl! Oh Soo-jung. Not just because my fat suit is fatter, but because the crème de la crème of kdrama veterans plays Soo-jung’s father. The sweetest, gentlest, most guileless father. Compare him to Soon-geum’s incorrigible gambler of a dad.

One image makes you squeal, the other makes you shriek. I thus don’t get why more people aren’t watching my show and are instead raving about Romance Town. One blogger whose name I’m not going to bother mentioning couldn’t stop posting one gush-filled tweet after another on Twitter, even changing her blog header mid-watch. Seriously, there’s no accounting for taste, drama or otherwise, these days. So my show’s not as clever or charmingly quirky, eh? And not half as original or refreshing? But what’s so refreshing about a drama that revolves around a bunch of pompous quacks and their maids? So what the imposing interiors and manicured lawns, if everything’s just for show and there are seemingly devious forces lurking beneath the carefully cultivated facades?

What do you mean, it’s exactly all those reasons that are enthralling viewers?

Fine. Bet you can’t top this cameo then. A blink-and-miss cameo notwithstanding, you do recognize that face, don’t you? And I’m not going to tell you in which episode, too, so that you’re forced to watch all of my drama just to catch a glimpse of him, ha!

Who’s the one in the corner cackling in delight at Kim Young-ok’s cameo in Romance Town? Quiet!!

Just so people know, especially the ones whining about Oh Ji-ho’s lack of acting chops, Get Karl’s cast is not to be sniffed at. Ta da, presenting everyone’s favorite potty-mouthed slave hunter in Chuno!

Wait a sec, did you just whisper, “What’s a slave hunter when the sweetest King Jeongjo ever is part of the veteran cast in Romance Town?” Playing a loan shark this time but still sweet as honey, he is. Sparring not with words but wads of cash, all the while sporting a kindly grin and a most becoming bandage. With a lolly, to boot.

I can’t beat that, no. Not in Joseon and definitely not now.

Okay, this calls for fresh tactics. Specifically of the juvenile kind.

Cute kid in Get Karl? Check!

Cuter-than-cute kids in Romance Town? Check, check, check…

This is not going as I planned. Mom!

And forget trying to compete in the second-male-lead department, too. Not when the one in my drama is all kinds of slimy. Not to mention being a swindler. But then again, I’m the one using him to get back at Soo-jung. Asking him to toy with her heart before dumping her at the altar. Tit for tat. I know the pretext is nauseating for some folks and may explain why my drama was dropped after five episodes by one blogger, not that you can trust her taste in dramas. Still, don’t you judge me. I may be Korea’s most gifted golfer, but my heart’s as fragile as yours.

Kim Min-joon’s Kim Young-hee’s heart, on the other hand… I don’t know. The guy’s a loafer and “subsists” (bwahaha, don’t you just love my sense of irony?) on proceeds from offloading his late granddad’s sought-after paintings. A total bad hat, if you ask me. He makes you laugh? Then I have nothing to say. Your sense of humor is warped, like the entire premise of Romance Town. Hahaha. That’s in your face, by the way.

Yes, I know, I’m sounding increasingly testy. You would be as well, if you were in my shoes. No, it’s not an inferiority complex. I came first, remember? Prior to the weight loss, I had better hair, too. The kind you want to run your fingers through. Can you imagine running your fingers through Gun-woo’s rounder-than-the-moon wig? That’s right, a wig! Mine’s all real!

My drama’s all kinds of win. You want laughs, we have it. Try keeping a straight face when Soo-jung’s dad blew apart the manhole covering the sewer pipes. Laughed till I tore a seam in my fat suit. What do you mean, I wasn’t in that scene? I laughed vicariously, okay?

And if you want gallantry, we have it, too. Never mind that it’s of the deceitful kind; gallantry is still gallantry. So what if Gun-woo was all chivalrous toward Soon-geum after he returned from New York? She broke her heel and he let her use his shoe as a footrest. Even hopped with her, just so she wouldn’t look silly hopping all alone. Their chemistry so sizzling and so very sweet. No, I didn’t say that, you did.

I don’t know what I’m saying anymore.

Fine, Romance Town wins. Go and watch your Episode 4. Go cup your chin in your palms and swoon at Jung Gyeo-woon. Go stare at the three hundred screen captures that you took of the first three episodes.

Just don’t forget this. My fat suit’s bigger than Gun-woo’s.

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27 thoughts on “My fat suit is fatter than yours

  1. oh.my. song joong ki was in that?
    ah i love get karl to be honest. it’s flawed, but it’s also in my hard disk.
    i loved soo jung appa and karl’s manager the most. him and his enunciation gets me everytime 🙂

    • After I published the post, I thought about it some more and realized perhaps “cameo” isn’t the right word for Song Joong-ki’s appearance. I don’t think he was as well-known then, was he? More like an extra. His role’s that of a reporter. Was on screen for barely a minute, I think.

  2. Brilliant as always , Thundie ! but I don’t care for either of these two dramas . Besides NTOG , I enjoy watching Baby-faced beauty , absolutely hilarious for me , and Manny which is like a lollypop .

  3. ahahahhaahahah! Thundie, you’re such a crazy dork. 😉

    I can’t believe you watched that much of Get Karl. I also can’t believe that Song Joong Ki had a cameo in it. Whut. Now I’m tempted… okay, not really given the general consensus of its crappiness.

  4. This was a wonderful read. I did not watch Karl, but I’m loving RoTa atm. : )

    Thanks for making me laugh.

  5. Haha! Hilarious!
    Still, Kim So-yeon PWNs both the above. It’s the fingers, bwahahaha!

    PS. Omona. How skinny does Kim Gab-soo look in that snap? Is it just the camera angle?

    Also, Song Joong-ki and Kim Yeong-ok side by side? I want these two to play grandma-grandson in a show, stat. — Something like Smile, where they can wear co-ordinated tracksuits. ❤

  6. Either the technology or their expertise has improved because I always thought that Karl looked like he had the mumps. Whereas, GW looks a bit more plausible, except for that Dutch Boy haircut.

    I love your wit. Thanks

    P.S. I can definitely do without Soon Geum’s father.
    P.P.S. It cracked me up when YH, at the cemetery, told Soon Geum to “Be Strong, Soon Geum”, as if punning the “Be Strong, Geum Soon” drama.

  7. Bahahahahahahaa I haven’t even seen Get Karl and I’m only one episode into Romance Town but your post still cracked me up, thundie. Love it! ^^

  8. Haha awesome! I was wondering if you were watching this.

    I haven’t see Get Karl (not a fan of OJH’s acting) but I love JKW in a fat suit. OK, I love him anywhere, in anything.

    I’m on episode 3 and not enjoying it as much as 1 and 2 somehow. I dunno what it is… I’ll keep watching for JKW though, although I miss his sweetness in the earlier episodes.

    • Hi Laica, I thought parts of Episodes 3-4 rather flat and didn’t enjoy these two episodes as much as the first two. Maybe I was just tired and not concentrating as well. Or perhaps I was just bummed that the fireworks between our leads got snuffed out so quickly when he threw her out of the house. But the end of Episode 4 was all win, with the two guys roughhousing on the grass and a certain someone scooping a startled Soon-geum up in his arms, right in front of our prickly Gun-woo. Can’t wait for Ep 5!

      • Ooh, you’ve inspired me to keep watching! I thought maybe it was me too, because I loved 1 and 2 so much and I just wasn’t feeling 3… lots of crazy stuff going on for me in real life, so maybe I just can’t focus on dramas right now. But I trust your taste so I will pick it up again once things calm down. 😀

  9. Oh my God, Thundie, too funny!!! Awesome posts, as always. I haven’t seen Get Karl! Oh Soo Jung, but yeah, the guy looks a bit like a rubber alien. What’s with the exclamation point right in the middle of the title? Makes it a little awkward to read. But maybe I just don’t get the significance because I haven’t seen it yet

    I took a break a bit of a break from kdrama watching and when I checked back there’s so many good ones to airing. I picked Romance Town because of Sung Yuri, I loved her in Hong Gil Dong. And I think Jung Gyeo-Woon is better looking than the male leads in other dramas :). Yes, I am shallow. Super shallow 😀

    It was also quite a pleasant surprise to see our SKKS King and Left State Minister(?). Nice to see them in 21st century outfit 🙂

    • Hi lei!

      I’m guessing the exclamation mark in the title is there to emphasize the urgency of the hunt, with Karl being the prized catch. Soo-jung dumps Karl (who wasn’t called Karl then) in Ep 1 and then spends the subsequent episodes trying to win him back.

      I LOVE seeing our SKKS king and war minister (I think) on Romance Town. 😆

  10. Pingback: Lovomètre des romances de mai | minalapinou

  11. I think that Oh Ji Ho is way cuter than the other guy in Romance town. Romance town is a good drama though :)!

  12. LOL—this was a fantastic post 🙂 Song Joong-ki looks so young in that picture!
    I’m in awe of the the super-manipulative and generally mean JKW in La Dolce Vita that I am so tempted now to start Romance Town.

  13. LOL!
    I watched Get Karl and actually really enjoyed it!
    It didn’t get good rating back then I think…but I never cared about the rating anyway..
    Seeing JKW in fat suit also reminded me so much of Karl….and u just hit me with this!!!
    I actually really looking forward to the next episode of Romance Town the most among the May-hem dramas i watch at the moment 🙂

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