OTP of the year

Wait, don’t roll your eyes yet. I know it’s premature to go out on a limb so soon, given that we are still in June and I’m woefully behind on not just the May dramas but most of the ones that came before.

But this post is not about how many One True Pairings I’ve seen in 2011 but about the one that’s wormed its way into my heart. The OTP that I love the most this year.

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Can You Hear My Heart?

Given the maelstrom that was May when six new dramas joined the fray and caused many a kdrama addict to flail in “so many dramas, so little time” despair, I need another crack drama like Shrek the Sheep (RIP) needs more wool on his shaggy seven-years-evading-the-shears self.

Yet in the last three days I’ve watched twenty episodes of an April drama. And become hopelessly addicted, egads. If the remaining yet-to-air ten episodes of Can You Hear My Heart? retain (or even surpass) the quality of the first twenty, then it will likely be my drama of the year.

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Smile: Episode 2

Act Two opens, and confirms what we had suspected earlier about Jilted Bride: The woman is a grandfather enslaver.

Observe how she bawls the moment she sees Grandpa running into the police station, his face clouded with concern, his eyes barely registering his own grandson. She knows exactly which buttons to push to turn him into putty in her hands, and why not? As The Chairman’s youngest grandchild and the center of her parents’ gilded universe, she has always been precious and precocious. Imagine Grandpa’s dismay, therefore, at the sight of her now, handcuffed and frowzled.

“Haraboji… HARABOJI!!”

Covering their ears at the caterwauling, the five lizards in the station choke on their unsalted flies and scramble for cover. Their appetite for dinner similarly ruined, the cops hurry to free Crazy Woman at Grandpa’s request. As they leave, she clinging triumphantly to the old man’s arm, he is racked with guilt. At his next cemetery visit, how will he explain to The Departed One the ignominy that had befallen Dearest Granddaughter?

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Smile: Episode 1

Let me tell you about the latest offering at the Theater of the Absurd.

A 70-year-old grandpa used to be the personal driver for a man whom he fondly calls “The Chairman.” Said chairman is dead and gone, but memories of his benevolence continue to drive (pun unintended) the behavior of his former employee. If not for the chairman’s generosity, what would the grandpa have become? A hobo? But because the chairman provided for the grandpa and his family, the grandpa has sworn permanent servitude upon himself. Just look at his thrall-like behavior around the chairman’s descendants.

The chairman’s son (let’s call him Chairman Junior) treats the driver with as much disdain as he would a faulty golf club, tossing him away one day for the flimsiest of reasons. Why Chairman Junior hates Mr. Chauffeur is unclear and may never be known. In the Theater of the Absurd, there’s no need to explain anything.

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