(SBS 2004; alternative titles: Memories of Bali, Something Happened in Bali)
First, a big Ni Hao shout-out to all my chingus in dramaland (and a warning that what you are about to read may contain snippets of a newly discovered language I hereby dub KorChinGlish – trademark pending). Second, a happy wave to Thundie for allowing me a return trip to her blog. And finally, I’m back with a follow-up attempt to entertain you, with a K-drama review which I hope answers the age-old question everyone has been dying to know.
What the heck happened in Bali?
Today’s a wonderful day because one of my favorite stars was discharged from the army. It makes me so happy to know he’s back!
I’ve been thinking about Chun Jung-myung all day and revisiting memories of his past roles. Which of those have I loved the most? One thing led to another and I thought, “Hey, let’s have a poll!” The last (and only) poll on the blog was so very long ago.
Here in random order (except for the first one because today is his day; welcome back!) are twenty actors and seven of their most recent or most prominent roles. Some of them I love ardently, some of them you love ardently. All of them are familiar names, I’m sure.
Madeleine (2003) was one of my first Korean movies and I had approached it with some wariness because of Jo In-sung. My first and lingering impressions of him were from Piano, which I had watched bits of, and all I remembered were his bland acting and unusually red lips. (In Madeleine his lips aren’t red but orange. Orange lips and yellow hair… You can’t get a sunnier combination than that!) But I liked Shin Mina in her debut drama Beautiful Days and was eager to watch her again.
Hee-jin (Shin Mina) and Ji-suk (Jo In-sung) are former classmates who bump into each other about seven years after graduating from high school. She is now a hairstylist while he is a quiet and bookish university student. The two friends hit it off immediately and she suggests a one-month romance. If they fall in love with each other during that one month, great. If they don’t, they will part ways gaily. Before the one month is up, however, they can’t break off with each other. The plan sounds childish but is exactly the sort of thing that bubbly live-in-the-moment Hee-jin will think up. Not one to disagree, Ji-suk plays along.
Love of South and North (a.k.a. Love Impossible) is so bad it’s actually funny. Doesn’t make sense, right? Yup, this 2003 movie makes no sense at all but I didn’t cringe, I didn’t use the fast-forward button… I watched it all the way to the end, duly puked, and swore never to watch anything else with Jo In-sung or Kim Sa-rang in it.*
Those were the days when I still had the patience of a toad waiting for its meal to zip by. Not anymore. If I were to rewatch Love of South and North today (using the subjunctive here on account of it never happening in this lifetime), I would likely last five minutes. At the most.