Emperor of the Sea: Episode 2

Two episodes in and I know I don’t want to marathon this drama in a hurry. I want to savor it slowly, like one drinking in the view from a mountain peak.

The cinematography blows me away. From the arid plains in Episode 1 to the verdant hills in Episode 2, I lose count of the number of times I’ve paused in mid-watch to sigh, “Show, you are breathtakingly beautiful.” Yet at no time do I feel that the beauty is there merely for display and for me to gawk at. The camera never lingers longer than necessary; the backdrops never distract.

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Emperor of the Sea: Episode 1

Why an older drama like Emperor of the Sea? Isn’t that a 2004 production?

Guilt, first of all. That three-volume set sitting on the shelf and looking all forlorn whenever I walk past. How many years has it sat there?

And giddy anticipation. Because ever since I found this when I was looking for a suitable image for the Titans on our screen page, I’ve been antsy. Can’t wait to watch him!

So did he make an appearance in Episode 1?

He did. Even the lizards in my room squealed when he appeared. But you should see the lizards’ reaction and mine when Brad Pitt’s two lady loves, one current and one former, popped up on the screen.

C’mon, be serious.

I kid you not. At first I thought I was seeing things, but when they appeared one after another and then stood side by side (ready to scalp each other), every doubt dissolved and I about fell off my chair. Angelina Jolie and Jennifer Aniston. In a sageuk!

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Accidental Couple

Episode 1 of Accidental Couple (aka Just Looking aka That Fool, 2009) was surreal. Never had I been so simultaneously awed and repulsed. Here was acting at its finest and here was acting so excruciatingly awful I wanted to throw a shoe at the screen.

Imagine the very best tenor in the world giving the standout performance of his life. He opens his mouth to sing and your jaw drops; it will remain on the floor for the entirety of the concert. Then it’s the turn of the accompanying “choir” and your hair stands as you listen to what sounds like seagulls and sea lions cackling and barking at each other. You call that singing?

But behold a miracle midway in the performance.

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