Lost and found

I must have a thing for punishment. In the last few days, egged on by a harebrained idea that refuses to die, I’ve been pulling out one drama after another (old and also recent ones) and revisiting selected scenes that make me bawl my eyes out. As I tweeted yesterday, I will go blind at this rate.

But oh, never has crying felt so good!

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What makes a good drama?

In the last few days I have watched dramas so fine I don’t feel worthy, and dramas so farcical* they make a mockery of the whole genre.

*(In case you’re wondering, no, I’m not referring to Boys Over Flowers.)

Whether a drama is brilliant or a piece of crap, it affects me. I may feel elated or insulted; rarely do I feel nothing. The feelings may dissipate after a while, or they may hang around for a long time. For all the hours I spend on my kdramas—watching, thinking, and writing about them—I hope my brain is getting a beneficial workout. The day when I watch uncaring about quality is the day when it’s time to move on and look for a new obsession hobby.

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Best (and worst) of 2011’s first half

With June drawing to a close, it’s time for us to look back at the dramas that aired in the first half of this year.

What were your favorites? Which ones made you paw the walls? Whose acting caused you to weep, whether out of delight or despair? Which couple did you watch ad nauseam, till your eyes glazed over permanently?

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Andre recaps New Gisaeng Story

Not just one episode, mind you, but twenty in all, from Episode 25 to Episode 44.

I know, it’s a lot for a little lad like me to recap. But would you rather I do the job or get my brother to do it? If it’s the latter, then you’ll have to put up with Sa-ran screencaps galore because my brother is nothing if not smitten with his girl. But me? I give you what you see above. Because my brother sees me in the buff all the time (me in the buff, not him, sorry), I thought I’ll return the favor. But promise not to tell my dad, okay? He’s a prickly one.

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Wild and wonderful New Gisaeng Story

There once was a train named BAYOR (Board At Your Own Risk).

People stood on platforms or along the tracks just to watch BAYOR hurtling past, even taking bets as to where it would stop. You see, there was no telling which station might be the train’s next fancy; there was no telling anything at all. A couple could board the train and find at the end of the trip that they were no longer joined at the hip or heart; they could blink and in that instant gain or lose a child. A man could enter a restroom and emerge a completely different person, doing things that might cause his girlfriend to slap him once, twice, thrice.

Everything (crazy) was possible on Train BAYOR.

Likewise, everything is possible in New Gisaeng Story. Twenty-four episodes down, my jaw is now permanently fused to my feet. The drama has gone insane and I’ve gone loony along with it. Finally, my first crack drama of 2011.

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Of two minds about New Gisaeng Story

This drama is maddening. Just when I thought I’ve read it right, it proves me wrong. When I thought I wouldn’t last five episodes, it gives me a fifth episode that has me replaying a scene five times and counting. A couple I thought duller than a thesis on the medicinal properties of wood is now burning up the screen. A gisaeng house I didn’t care about has me wringing my hands now in worry because its fate hangs in the balance. I’m fast-forwarding scenes and re-watching others. I want to bail, because a sixth sense warns me that New Gisaeng Story (aka New Tales of Gisaeng, 2011) is going to make me pull my hair out and then some. But still I watch transfixed, one episode after another (finished Episode 14 yesterday), even though this seemingly drunk careening means I’ll soon be all caught up and chewing my nails waiting for new episodes to air.

I blame one person (and him alone) for my madness quandary.

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Just prattling

Twenty-six months ago, when I was ‘asked’ by WordPress to give my newly minted blog a name, I thought for several seconds and decided on “Of Pensive Prattles and Oxymorons.” The three resident lizards in my room rolled their eyes in collective derision and snorted so loudly I must have heard them because I lopped four words off the original and settled for a pithy name that still makes me self-conscious. Since young I’ve never enjoyed being under any sort of spotlight; naming my blog after my cyber moniker violates the very tenets of thundieness.

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