Roommate season 2 ep 16

Single, Clueless Men Bombarding Babies with Gigantic Stuffed Animals

roommate 2 16 6Sunny invited S.E.S.(Korea’s first girls’ idol group) member, Shoo to visit the Roommate household with her twin girls, Ra Hee and Ra Yul. Is that a good idea?  It was cute that the roommates set up a play area in the living room in anticipation of their guests’ arrival. But the household men (Se Ho, Joon-hyung, Jackson, and Ryohei) had no idea what they were in for. The girls, who are under two years old, cried with all the roommate season Shoo, twinscommotion and attention, and whatever the guys did only made them cry more. They crowded in, acting silly, wanting the babies to hug, kiss, acknowledge, and pay attention to them. Joon-hyung loudly  offered meaningless instruction like, “Jackson, your room smells strange. I think it’s best if you take them to one of the girls’ rooms.” And, “The guys need to leave the room. We’re leaving. Let’s wait out here,” as they all backed out of the room freaked out by the crying. I felt sorry for Shoo who whisked them into Nana’s room to settle down. Nana had the knack to calm the girls, and after a while, they ventured out to the family area.roommate 2 16 new 7  Slowly, after several male roommate baby entertainment failures, the girls warmed up to the gang. Exception: Ryohei. Uncle Ryohei is, apparently, a baby repellent. The girls only had to peek at him, even if they were happily playing, and they would burst into tears. I felt SO bad for him, he was a fish out of water, and was beside himself with disappointment and awkwardness. Se Ho kept shooing him away and ordered him to go upstairs. He was probably thinking of the scared girls, but Se Ho was a bit harsh towards Ryohei. Once, while he sat on the couch, Ryohei stared ahead and mouthed to Sunny (who was holding one of the girls), “Sunny. Help me out here.I’ll just accept her naturally.” (Motions this way with a nod, and pats his lap to indicate setting her on it without her catching on.) “Wah!!” Fail.

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Dance Party!

Nana, Sunny, and Gook Ju prepared some S.E.S. songs and dances. It seemed like old times with Joon-hyung there, shouting “Go, Shoo! Go, Shoo! Go!” and encouraging her to jump right in as the original, after all. They danced to Just a Feeling, I’m Your Girl, and Dreams Come True. Shoo was all in, a real dancing machine. The group had recently performed on Infinity Challenge, Saturday for Singers – a tribute to the 90s groups and songs. Here’s a blast from the past ~

When Ra Hee went down for a nap, I nearly cried at Rhohei’s desperation and desire to be liked, too, when he lay down on the floor next to her. He didn’t want to upset them, but he was clearly upset that he upset them. His silent sweetness was his way of spending time with the twins, too. He explained earlier that it was his sharp face, and even at family gatherings the children took a while to warm up to him. He did find common ground with Shoo, who lived in Japan, and they comfortably spoke Japanese for a few minutes.

Food Shopping for the Hungry Guest

roommate 2 16 new 6Shoo, slight as can be with twins who keep her moving 24/7, was starving. She, Jackson, and Nana set out for the market. Jackson, who crosses boundaries all the time and gets a pass for it – I’m not complaining – shielded Shoo from a brusque passerby as her self-proclaimed bodyguard. He told her to pick all the meat she wanted – he was buying. They loaded up the cart which came to 167,000 won. But Jackson’s card only produced the embarrassing insufficient funds message. He was shocked and asked to run it through again, but to no avail. Okay, that is approximately $154.00, and he truly seemed shocked. In the end, Shoo paid, and that seemed a shame. How do expenses work on this show, anyway? Jackson said he had no idea how much was in his account, but he had been paid last month and hadn’t spent much except for a few stops at convenience stores. This is hardly the first time I have wondered about how idols’ accounts work as it seems that no one ever knows how much they are paid, how they are paid, how much is in their account, and who controls it. And doesn’t the show pay for stuff like their food, and give them an account for grocery trips like this?roommate 2 16 new 1

Jackson showering the guests with attention~


Previews of Episodes That Never Aired on Roommate and Make Fans Sad

By now, I’m thinking, “Is this all we’re going to see for the entire episode? Really?” Then I got annoyed. I must be a glutton for low ratings Korean entertainment shows. Preview teaser disappointments have pushed me to the edge, and I wonder why they didn’t show Taecyeon making breakfast with the JYP boys, roommate 2 16 taecyeon Jackson on a date roommate 2 14 jackson and momwith his mom (no, I haven’t let go of this), or Jackson at the training gym with Ga-yeon – all filmed segments, obviously, as they’ve dangled them as previews but never have shown them. roomamte 2 15 2And they’re all stories I would like to see. Hey, I’d be happy with a segment of Min Woo watching paint dry instead of an entire single topic episode with way too much time showing a poor, rejected Ryohei. Next week’s preview is another Shoo and family episode, with Jackson and husband having a basketball competition. Not that interested.

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97 thoughts on “Roommate season 2 ep 16

  1. Exactly. I’m fed up with the let’s-stretch-this-out-into-two-episodes format. Seems like that’s the default now. Not digging it. I liked the three individual stories format they’d developed initially in Season 2. Like three complete chapters. (I remember you’d liked this, as well.) Or however it was done in Season 1. For the most part it seemed to take place closer to real-time then. Even if they did extend episodes, like their trips to Japan and Taiwan, it made sense. That took place over 3 days and 2 nights and there was a lot to cover.

    But two episodes for this one-day event? Screaming babies and the herd of clueless bull elephants? And poor sad Rhohei? I hope not. Maybe in this case we’ll get lucky and the preview won’t come to fruition.


    • Or non-event event. A visit from a guest, for crikey sakes.

      I felt bad for Jackson, trying to be all grown-up and chivalrous, then the humiliating insufficient funds message. And yes, the idol world sure seems strange. Mega-stars crammed into 1-room dormitories with their band mates, etc. And not just teenagers — adults even! Management companies seeming to control every move. Remember Kang-Joon saying his entire group wasn’t allowed to have cell phones and being worried he was going to get in trouble with his manager when Dong-Wook bought one for him? (I so related to them in the phone store trying to make heads or tails out of the different models and plans.)


    • Maybe inaccurate to say a “non-event event”. I mean, isn’t just about everything that occurs on Roommate a “non-event”? But this seems, well, maybe too non-event-ish to merit all this. I sure hope they get out of this slump.


    • Hi revlow,
      It was so boring, not that a segment with Shoo and twins wasn’t okay, but they could have EASILY made her visit into one of several stories. I did like the 3 or 4 mini-stories per episode. The one long episode I liked was when they delivered coal to the elderly in the shantytown, but there was so much going on that it made for a good show. Yeah, a real glutton for punishment, watching shows that aren’t picking up the pace. On the preview with Jackson and his mother (I know, I know, stop already), she was trying on hats and he was giving her all sorts of good son attention. They headed off to eat, hand in hand, and I thought it had so much potential. But this? I’m bored. And Ryohei just plain got beat up by too much air time for his rejections when it wasn’t even his fault. Pitiful. So many were missing, almost half – Young-ji, Dong-wook, Min Woo (is he still a part of the show?? – Kang Joon, Jong Ok. Did you watch Barefoot Friends? It was very much the same way, hit or miss, on target or wandering aimlessly, made sense or couldn’t figure out which way was up, fun stuff or bored to the gourd. Korean entertainment tv – it is what it is.


      • Yes, absolutely agree. I think there have been a few long episodes, like the coal delivery, that merited the extra time, and they made good use of it. But something has just been feeling very off lately. (God we’re up to Ep 16 of Season 2 already?) I’d be curious to know if there had been any changes in production staff. For example, in film editors?

        I noticed how badly edited it was a couple episodes ago when Jang Yae Won visited. Spliced in reaction shots that were so clearly taken out of order. Example:

        1) Shot of her seated on upstairs sofa.
        2) Shot of someone else saying something funny.
        2) Back to her reaction, laughing. But in THIS shot not only is she is clearly standing, she’s standing **behind** the sofa.
        3) Shot of someone else.
        4) Back to shot of her sitting on the sofa.

        Obviously these shows don’t happen in real-time, and I give allowances for necessary editing. But they’ve just gotten so sloppy lately. When it’s this bad it’s insulting to their audience. What do they take us for? Idiots? Well, yeah, we’re idiots, we’re happy Roommate idiots. But don’t assume we won’t notice bad production values, or will accept lousy story-telling.

        Hmm. Maybe I’m not entirely off in my theory of staff changes.

        In this they quash the rumors of a possible cancellation, but a SBS rep speculated on a possible reason for the rumors; “Another PD, who directed ‘Roommate’ with PD Park, is preparing for a pilot variety show so maybe that’s why these rumors came about.” Perhaps the loss of that co-PD is effecting the show?

        Also: — not entirely sure what they are saying about one-episode spin-off and casting.

        Nope, hadn’t heard of Barefoot Friends. But love your description of Korean entertainment TV.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ooops. Forgot to re-number the list as I added to it.

        1) Shot of her seated on upstairs sofa.
        2) Shot of someone else saying something funny.
        3) Back to her reaction, laughing. But in THIS shot not only is she is clearly standing, she’s standing **behind** the sofa.
        4) Shot of someone else.
        5) Back to shot of her sitting on the sofa.

        Speaking of sloppy editing!


      • No, it was just a description of a scene with shots that were clearly out of sequence. And I’d just duplicated it from the previous comment to correct my numbering. (Totally OCD unnecessary and confusing.)

        But looking at the episode now, maybe it wasn’t so obvious. I may screenshot later.


      • Well, that’s odd. The earlier comment was sitting in “approve” mode, not sure why or how that happened, so I just read it and now I get the list, etc. I can’t tell you how many times I watch a Korean entertainment show, and just shake my head amused and baffled at the concept and the editing for sure (a huge puzzlement in Barefoot Friends). Kids on the Block just ran off the cliff for me in concept, and although I like the 1N2D cast for season 3 (never watched the other seasons), it too can get squirrel-y when it comes to editing. Oh well, TV.


  2. Hey guys! Happy weekend! (well, mine’s arrived already, so I’m just going to make myself comfy on the couch and start on the popcorn…)

    Like you said, this was a baffling episode. In between the random stuffed dolls and dancing and eating and a whole lotta crying…as Peter said in While You Were Sleeping: “Is there a point to this?”

    Felt bad for Ryohei too – no doubt he doesn’t have a clue how to behave around babies, he doesn’t act silly like Seho, and he doesn’t have the natural exuberance of Jackson or Joon Hyung – but given some quiet time with them, they might have gotten used to him. But they always whisked the babies away the moment the crying started. It kinda reminds me of S1 when they singled out Min Woo as a “scapegoat” villain.

    I also felt bad for Jackson when his card got rejected – it was more sad than funny. However, I also personally felt the girls shouldn’t have accepted his offer to pay for everything in the first place, after talking about their salaries in the car. (Aside: how much publicity is that supermarket getting from this show?! Although I had to laugh when Shoo the Housewife gasped at how expensive the mushrooms were.)

    Shoo is amazing – only 27, with twin girls and a son? I felt a nervous wreck just watching the babies!

    As for the date with Jackson and his mum, and training with Gayeon…hmm, maybe they really are saving it up for a “special” episode?

    I missed the other Roommates too. Have heard rumours about a Season 3 with a completely new cast (except for 1 member), but I don’t know if there’s any substance to that!


    • Hi Thursdaynexxt~ I hadn’t heard the Roommate rumor of everyone gone but 1 – did they say who? Do you have a guess? I’m thinking Se Ho will stay because he knows how to get the most of an opportunity. I missed that Shoo is only 27, I think they talked about that in the car? She is only a couple years older than Nana, and how crazy it must be with 3 kids already, whoa! It seemed she missed the stage days, but they are good memories. Somehow she seems older especially among all those clueless men. On the food expenses, don’t you think they would have a Roommate account for purchases like food and outings? It really bothered me that Jackson didn’t have even 167000 won (although he seemed to think he did), and that the guest had to pay. Even if they reimburse her, it just looked bad. You’re right, that market will be a destination, now.


      • Shoo is 33. She only said she’s 27 to be funny, and because it’s that thing where you don’t ask older women their age. But what’s even funnier is that both Jackson and Nana seemed to believe that. The Korean public would know she’s in her 30s because otherwise, if she’s 27 now, she would have been 10 years old when S.E.S. came out in 1997.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks for the clarification, Cimi! I clearly wasn’t paying attention, and vaguely thought 3 kids at 27 was crazy, but do-able! Maths ain’t exactly my strong point!

        Yes, I’ve thought the same about the RM household accounts before, like when they had to take Cucumber to the emergency vet, and again when they redecorated their rooms at the start of S2. I remember Soo Hyun used to be the household treasurer, but no-one seems to be keeping tabs now. This show has more unsolved mysteries than a kdrama chaebol family!

        As for the sorry state of Jackson’s bank account, I remember watching “Cheongdamdong 111” about the FNC artists, and I think it was one of the AOA girls who was anticipating getting paid her share of royalties for writing part of a song – she’d promised her hoobaes a nice meal and everything … and then she checked her account and had gotten paid $1! Sometimes it looks like they’re living in the army or something – they’ve got no control over their lives!


      • Yeah, and I saw an interview with Jo Kwon (2 A.M. – I have a soft spot for him) and, with tears in his eyes, he told the story of the long trainee period and finally when he got his first deposit he looked at it with his mother and they both cried. It was a paltry amount, $700 or something, but they must have lived on dorm dust and boiled eggs at the Jjimjilbangs. I’ve also heart Woo Bin and In Guk, and even Jo In Sung tell stories of coming to Seoul and filling their stomachs with water when they felt hungry and slept at the Jjimjilbangs. A bit of an extension of what we’re talking about, the kdrama and kpop idol version of the starving artist, but it is always so very pitiful to hear about. I just want to gather up each and every one and feed them homemade meatballs and pasta to their heart’s content. Or better yet, grill them a steak.


      • they must have lived on dorm dust and boiled eggs — great phrase.

        Did either of you see Youth Over Flowers? Moving stories of when Yoo Yeon-seok and Son Ho-jun came to Seoul. True friendship which helped them endure the 10 yrs they gave themselves to make it. (They both did right at the 10 year mark.) Others who helped them survive — literally — along the way.


      • “Youth Over Flowers” is in the “Grandpas Over Flowers” and “Noonas Over Flowers” line — and if you’ve missed either of the latter you MUST watch them! These are the “let’s drop some unsuspecting celebrities in a foreign land” shows. Directed be the evil genius Na PD. The infamous “luggage boys” came out of this — the hysterical grumpy Lee Seo-jin in Grandpas, and the adorably helpless (at least initially) Lee Seung-gi in Noonas.

        YOF had 2 parts. The first 6 episodes was a group of middle-age celebrities in Peru. (Hey, they’re “youths” compared to septuagenarians and octogenarians.) Episodes 7-11 had three actors from Reply 1994, Yoo Yeon-seok, Son Ho-jun and Baro in Laos. When I say clueless, I mean truly clueless that they would be thrown on a plane in the middle of the night. It was truly sweet to see them helping each other as they learned to navigate the situation. Want to say more about their relationships, but will hold off in case you watch.

        No one appears to have subbed the the 1st part (really sort of season) of YOF with the middle-age guys, but episodes 7-11 with the Reply 1994 boys starts here:

        The opening setup is hysterical.

        It’s a bit difficult to navigate where the episodes are, if you need help let me know. Also same for Grandpas and Noonas. I hunted them down so let me know if you want.


      • Re Youth Over Flowers/Lads Over Blossoms (and fingers crossed that this reply appears in the right place this time) – YES!!! Highly recommended! If you’re a 1N2D fan or a Reply 1994 fan, it’s unmissable! (it’s like the best mashup of both … except without the bokbulbok game)

        Here’s some more links: (Lads Over Blossoms site) (recaps)

        It’s basically a Reply 1994 mini-reunion, but the bromance is just adorable.

        Every time I hear stories about celebrities when they used to share a couple of packets of ramyun between 9 members, or 5 members sleeping in one room, I have the same reaction – just wanna feed them lots and lots! There must be so many others in the same situation, it’s so sad. Or they get “exiled” to train in Japan, far away from their families … but I guess it comes in handy later for regional promotions!


      • Thanks Thursdaynexxt for the link! This is the site of the person/persons who did the subs. I was having a hard time finding Ep 7 at their site so I linked directly to the video at dailymotion, which is where things got a little wacko in my posts. So folks can either go to their site: or start at their Youth Over Flowersvideos at dailymotion. Same videos. It might be easier for one person to navigate these one way, for another person the other way.

        bromance is just adorable…. YES!


      • Thanks revlow and thursdanexxt for the YoF links. I think it was lucky that I watched 11 which was an interview and an overview of the Laos trip highlights. It was fun to watch, I never saw Yeon Seok so talkative, and Baro is such a cute maknae, and Ho Jun, too. The tubing cave trip through the cave looked kind of scary, but the favorite foods clips were fun. I did see the first 2 episoes with You He Yeol and Lee Juck, they’re such goofy 40-somethings.


      • I found Ho-jun’s growth during the trip really touching. By the end he seemed much more confident, less fearful. I could imagine him being more adventurous, willing to take some risks independently in the future. I think the epilogue showed this a bit.

        Where did you see the first 2 episodes with You He Yeol and Lee Juck? Was it subbed?


      • Now that I think about it, there was a site, inthekpop I thnk, that I used to go to all the time and watch a million shows that I’ve never seen subbed anywhere else, but I’m pretty sure it was a problematic site and ultimately it was messed up or my computer messed up (not sure technically, but it is not a safe site). I’m sure that’s where I saw it. Honestly, it had so many subbed k shows I’ve never ever seen anywhere else before or since. But I am much more careful about where I go to watch stuff these days. I think that site is blocked (??) or something. Not sure how all that works.


      • Yeah, unfortunately there’s a lot of danger in K-Land. Evildoers prey on us ’cause they know there are a lot of fervent fans who will do anything to find something. Whether it’s the site itself, or someone outside hacking into it, more bad, bad s**t can happen. I’ve been hit a few times myself — once even at the sturdy trustworthy standby Gooddrama. Someone highjacked them.

        I used to watch at dramabay, or listen to OSTs there, but I learned the hard way not to. I still will go there for info — they are really good about posting updates about when shows get rescheduled. And I like that I can find OST song names. But that’s it, I won’t click on anything.


    • Check out

      Still trying to wrap my brain around what this means, seems kind of nebulous. I don’t think the writing was very clear in these articles. Do you know of any others?

      I didn’t find anything specifically about 1 member remaining behind.


      • I can’t find the article about the all-new-cast-except-one now, but I think the article was before the show’s producers did their interview in early Jan 15, so it was probably just one of the “rumours” flying around.

        That said, I wish they’d listen to their fans’ suggestions and stop giving us the impression that they don’t know what they’re doing!


  3. Aww poor Ryohei. that could’ve been handled better. Maybe it’s just not the way I’m accustomed to child rearing but it’s weird to me how crying children are handled in dramaland, which this seems to reinforce, i.e. how they respond to crying. Little Bit (youngest sister) used to cry at people who wore glasses. I did the same thing when I was a baby. One of us would hold her and let them engage her that way. You sort of mediate, not have them keep away all together. Though sometimes young children have good intuition about shady people…but maybe it was just his facial hair?


    • Hello all. It’s your verbose contributor here. The 27 years old thing was a joke she was playing; she was giggling in the back seat to herself. Here’s what happens (after Jackson keeps insisting that Nana at 25 is in her late 20s, and Nana and Shoo keep correcting him that it’s mid-20.).

      Jackson tells Shoo he’s 20 and that he was born in 1994. Shoo gasps and says “Oh my, no way.”

      Jackson: “Is that surreal?”

      Shoo: “Yes.”

      [Cut to a shot of her in the the back with a typical Roommate thought bubble: “He’s 13 years younger than me.”]

      Nana: “Excuse me, but how old are you, Shoo?”

      Shoo: “I’m 27.”

      Jackson: “Now?”

      Nana: “Right now? Wow, she’s very young.”

      Shoo laughs, but holds it together: “What? I’m 27.”

      Jackson: “No way. You’re 27. Didn’t you say you were the same age as Se Ho?”

      Shoo: “No way. He’s way older than me.”

      Jackson to Nana: “Noona, you’re 25, right?”

      Nana: “I’m 25.”

      Jackson to Shoo: “You’re only two years older than she is? You were born in 87 then?”

      Shoo to Jackson: “You’re 22, right? Only five years difference between us.”

      (They still don’t catch on when she makes this blunder of him being 22.)

      Jackson: “Only five years difference. You were born in 1987 then?”

      Shoo: “Yes.”

      Jackson: “Seriously?”

      Shoo: “I just had kids early.”

      It was pretty impressive how she was able to maintain this throughout, even while suppressing laughter. My maths skills are horrible, but weren’t you all just singing her hit songs from the ’90s? And just **how** early did she have kids?


      • Not to say it isn’t plausible that she’d start having kids that young. By my calculations, with her 5-yr old son that would have put her at 22, if she were “27” now. But they’d all been discussing this earlier at the house. Hence, Jackson saying “Didn’t you say you were the same age as Se Ho?”. The duo were so easily roped into her prank despite what their guts were telling them.


      • Oh yea, that conversation went over my head, wasn’t following. I looked it up, and she was born in 1981, making her 34. Makes sense now. 🙂


      • If I’m working the dates right (and I never assume anything with my lousy math skills) according to wikipedia she would have been 15 when they were discovered and 16 when they debuted.

        However what I found even more shocking was when Shoo mentioned she’d known Sunny since she was in 3rd or 4th grade, when she’d signed as a trainee with the same company. Again going by wikipedia, Sunny would have been 9. No wonder she’s so burned out!


      • You know, I wonder if there are any “Jackie Coogan laws” in SK to protect kids from being exploited by their parents for financial gain. Not that that protects kids entirely from being ripped off by their parents for every cent they make, but at least it’s some 1st line of defense.


      • Found something on this, but holy crap doesn’t seem enough:

        New law went into effect July 29th. Doesn’t seem to address financials, but ““will forbid underage singers and actors from taking part in overnight performances and productions or from being coerced into sexualized portrayals … Minors will now have the right to sleep, learn, and refuse concepts/clothing that they feel is subjecting them to being sexualized. All of this is aimed at improving the working conditions for minors, in an industry that is well known for its lack of structure and regulations…. This new law will protect the rights of these underage idols by allowing them their basic rights to sleep and keep up with their studies, though in the case of long distance travels, some exceptions may be made.”

        But get a load of these stipulations:

        “Weekly working hours for children under 15 are not to exceed 35 hours, while those for minors over 15 (aged 15-18) are limited to 40 hours. Minors cannot work between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., unless their guardians give consent.”

        Huh? In other words, it’s still a f’ing full-time job for kids??


      • It’s unconscionable. It’s horrid enough in the US, but I believe the laws are better than this. And we all know how many tragic consequences there have been for child entertainers here.


      • And unlike the US they have that insane trainee system. Grueling and for what can be many, many years… that is if you eventually get to debut.

        I love S Korean entertainment, but there seems to be a very dark side. Guess it should come as no shock why the high suicide rate in the industry.


      • Sorry to get on my high horse here, but dang, guess I was wrong about child labor laws in the entertainment industry here. Varies by state, and some are utterly lacking up to the point where children employed in the entertainment industry are exempt from any child labor requirements.

        Some casting notices babies are now specifying preemies. So sad.

        At least the “Coogan Law” is federal, but enforcement is another thing.

        Pissed just thinking about this.


      • Also, don’t trainees in Korea leave their families and live in dorms at the agency (or where ever the group housing is located), whereas in the U.S., child stars usually live at home or travel with a parent and a tutor, or the family moves to be close to where the child’s work is. Not sure how all that works, but I think what I’ve described is the norm.


      • I think you’re right. Generally in the US kids are not shipped off. I think that happens more with kid athletes being sent afar to live with coaches.

        Spent the last couple hours fixing a known problem the new Mac operating system has with their Mail program, which of course Apple doesn’t acknowledge. Always their tactic. As infuriating as that was, it’s nothing when put into the perspective of this topic. Exploitation of kids? Can you see the virtual steam coming out of my ears??! Wanting to break a MacBook? Sort of a pleasant distracting. Well, actually it was good I was working on it remotely or it might have been thrown against the wall. 🙂


      • Hmmm, not sure where this will show up, but I wanted to say that I watched Jang Hyuk as a Goryeo man’s man in Shine or Go Crazy. Not sure about committing to a sageuk, but for JH I’ll give it a couple more episodes.


      • I don’t know if I’m going to stick with it either. If the spirit it’s shown so far keeps then I probably will. But with what seems to be coming I have a feeling that won’t be the case

        Been trying to figure out my problem with sageuks. I don’t seem to have the same problem with Korean films. I think because of the time constraints they have to keep the political intrigue tight, whereas in Kdramas they can wander as far and deep into the weed grass as they like. I enjoy American and British historical shows, but they seem to have fewer moving pieces. So? Unfocused storytelling? Too many players? Language barrier? Lack of knowledge? Wish I could get into sageuks, but I just may need to let that go.


      • For me, I’m not that interested in Korean biographical history. The Family Book Gu, Inspiring Generation, The Three Musketeers, and Faith were better because it was more about an era or legend, and not person (king).


      • I would like to like it. The little I know seems extremely interesting. But at least in Kdramas, as opposed to some movies, I think I’ll just have to throw in the towel when it comes to straight history. I too enjoy it when it’s used for a backdrop to something else. I liked Gu Family Book and The Three Musketeers. Haven’t seen the others. (Want my hours back from Joseon Gunman.)

        It’s kind of amazing that there is this whole industry built up on sageuks, and it seems at least one is on air at all times. I can’t think of another country like that. The Brits have their period pieces, which I generally like, but I don’t think it’s anything like this. I don’t have experience with TV from other Asian countries… maybe it’s not uncommon there or elsewhere?

        I’ve gained some knowledge of more recent history through movies. That’s fascinating, too. Three I can think of offhand: The President’s Barber, The Attorney, and YMCA Baseball Team. For some reason they all star Song Kang-Ho. I love him. Not the same director in any of these. I recommend all three.

        Off topic: I’m a fan of Danish cinema. If you ever want to see a great historical movie, see A Royal Affair.

        God I’m long-winded. 😦


      • About A Royal Affair I shouldn’t just say great historical movie. From IMDB

        “A young queen, who is married to an insane king, falls secretly in love with her physician – and together they start a revolution that changes a nation forever.”

        Moving story. Sumptuous production. Fantastic film on many levels.

        (I should stop now and return to the depressing task of looking for a job. Your blog is so much more fun.)


      • haha. My blog is more fun for me, too, than work. I don’t think I can allow myself to jump onto a Danish Drama. I accidentally started a Chinese drama the other day, it was mismarked as a kdrama, but I new after about 10 minutes that it wasn’t. So I just didn’t want to invest my already precious kdrama time for that. I have watched about 40 or so jdramas and I really like them, but i am more particular with them as well. Sometimes I have to remind myself there is life to attend to outside of kdramas.


      • I’ve held back from dramas other than Kdramas. After the talk of how Misaeng is like Jdramas I’m tempted. (40 Jdramas! Wow, I’m impressed. How long have you been at this?)

        I forgot about Danish TV. Some of the best stuff coming out of there in the last few years. “Bron/Broen” (adapted into “The Bridge” in America), “Forbrydelsen” (adapted into “The Killing” in America), and “Borgen”. There’s been talk in the last year of HBO doing a remake of Borgen, but I don’t know how in the hell they can do it. How do you translate the political intrigue of a multi-party system (in Borgen they depict 7, but in real life it appears there are 9) to our 2-party system?

        I haven’t been able to find the original Forbrydelsen. I’ve read it’s superior to our version The Killing. I’ve seen the other two series. Bron/Broen is far better than The Bridge. Borgen is just great. Bron/Broen is available subbed at dailymotion. Borgen shows up from time to time when a PBS station reruns it and has episodes online.

        Oh, wait!!! I just found Forbrydelsen at dailymotion. Finally! Goodie, goodie. 🙂


      • Been watching Jdramas only since last year (kdramas since spring 2012). They tend to be shorter, 11 episodes, more or less. They have a different feel, not necessarily better, but different and I like it. If you want just an easy story to watch, I recommend Summer Nude. It’s more ordinary, that is to say, there isn’t the Japanese whack off the wall what is this stuff going on (which is fun, too). Or Siakou no Rikon, with Eita – a top Japanese actor. One complaint about Jdramas is lack of consistency in subbing, but these are subbed. If you want a couple that are cult worthy and represent all that jdramas can be, I can pass on some tiles. However, our plates are pretty full with kdramas, and if I have a choice, I go there first.


      • Fantastic! Thank you. Yes, I am interested, glad to get some names. Someone recommended one to me last week, but I could tell within a few minutes it wasn’t for me. Where do you find the best subs?

        How you manage to work in that many with kdamas? Wow!


      • I’d just grabbed the 1st site that came up when I googled Nordic Noir. Just looked at it; there are better descriptions elsewhere. Anyway, it’s got it’s own feel in the whelm of crime fiction. Very spare and dark.


      • That’s realm, not whelm. I really should read what I write more closely. That and/or eat some food.

        Anyway, what I’ve seen and read in the genre is very cool stuff.


      • Yes, I like that it starts out and sets the mood. I can’t believe I watched the first 2 episodes of I’m Sorry I Love You. Again.So Ji-sub makes an awesome reggae Melbourne Korean hippie. (Moo-hyuk – kdrama fan art gallery .) One of these days I will redo the fan art gallery because as you can see I just copy and pasted each picture, but now I know I can actually make a link to each post. Eventually. You know how much get up and go juice that takes for me.


      • I hadn’t heard of I’m Sorry I Love You. Sounds very interesting. On the list it goes!

        I like So Ji-sub a lot. Have you seen any of his movies?

        I watched the 2nd episode of Summer Nude last night before the power went out. It came back on awhile later, but by that time I’d gone up to bed. It was a good thing it had gone out otherwise I might have been marathoning throughout the night and not caring about lack of sleep.


      • I’ve only seen him in kdramas. I like him a lot, too. It dawned on my that I’m Sorry I Love You feels like a movie. I am glad ou are liking Summer Nude although the power going out is a bummer. I talked with my friend who is watching School 2013. She is on episode 6 and loves her “inaugural drama” as she refers to it. We call Woo Bin the shark guy (he looks like one) and is going to send me questions that she has so far about the drama. Funny.


      • Oh, that’s interesting about it seeming like a movie. I keep hearing about School 2013; another on my list.

        I’ve seen him in three movies: Rough Cut (aka A Movie is a Movie), A Company Man, and Sophie’s Revenge. I’d say Rough Cut and A Company Man are must sees if you like So Ji-sub.

        Sophie’s Revenge is a rom-com. It’s a Chinese movie.

        Rough Cut was a huge box office and critical hit. Won lots of awards. Has a Roommate connection, too — Hong Soo-Hyun is in it. (In Ep 1 as they are driving to the grocery store for the first time Min-Woo tells her “I thought you were very pretty in that movie with So Ji-sub.” Mama Shin immediately chimes in “A Movie is a Movie.”)

        Looks like A Company Man was another box office hit. According to wikipedia : “The film achieved one million admissions 12 days after its release. It was sold to 55 countries including Japan, China, Indonesia, Thailand in Asia, as well as France, Switzerland, Austria, the Netherlands and Belgium in Europe.”

        He’s done 6 movies. One of them is Japanese, Gegege no Kitaro: Kitaro and the Millennium Curse.


      • Glad you liked it. I have others to recommend when you’re ready. 🙂 I watched almost all of Rough Cut last night, fell asleep. Will finish it tonight. I highly recommend I’m Sorry I Love You – just watch the first episode and I’m pretty sure you’ll be hooked. Caught up on Healer, too. It’s very very good, love the actors.


      • Made me want to be a beach bum and work in a boardwalk eatery, right? I loved the billboard and the festival fireworks scene. Also when he went to visit her at her restaurant. Oh, and the film guy too!


      • Oh, my god. That was so beach-y! The colors so light and airy, almost seemed like I could feel the breeze on my skin. I definitely wanted to live there. The film guy got me crying in a few scenes. So sweet.

        I’ll have to wait on I’m Sorry I Love You. Watched the 1st episode of Saikou no Rikon before I conked out. That had a movie feel to it too. I’m liking this 11 episode format. Also Summer Nude was only 46 mins per. When I first started watching Kdramas there seemed to be more 16 ep shows. Now they are all 20. Most of them could be a lot tighter.

        I’m afraid of the slippery slope of Jdrama. 😉


      • Slippery slope, yes. I think that’s how I watched as many as I have – just marathoned through since they are so good right down that slippery slope of a Jdrama mountain range. The quality is so good, and like you said, 11 episodes or so, means a tighter story and format. It’s a by-word-of-mouth thing; a couple of beanies suggested jdramas and I just tried them and liked them. But they will never replace kdramas, just a nice variation of a bigger theme.


      • As Mr. Monk (in one of my all-time favorite TV shows “Monk”) would say, “It’s a gift… and a curse.” Well, I think more curse, but I do enjoy it.


      • Monk was great. Lot of fun with a poignant backstory.

        I finished Saikou no Rikon last night. Really liked it. Somewhere in the middle it hit me that it’s Woody Allen-esque.

        Just now watched Sunday’s episode of What Happens with My Family. It really pisses me off what happens with the subs on this show. Sat’s is translated by Sat night or Sun. Then it just sits there, with Sun’s being subbed at a snail’s pace. I finally gave up today and watched at 99%, which I don’t normally like to do ’cause sometimes chunks are still missing. I think it was okay today. I’m noticing this problem more and more at viki. (Yeah, it’s volunteers, but frustrating nonetheless.)

        Seems like they’ve given up on The Family is Coming altogether. Ep 5 has been lingering around 15% for the last couple weeks and 6, 7, and 8 below that. Dramacool and myasiantv get their subs on this show from viki, so they’re no help.

        Started to watch Ep 3 of Hyde Jekyll, Me and took a break midway in. Not really feeling it with this, and I’m already up to my eyeballs in split personality/ childhood connection stories. Have you watched HJM? What did you think?


      • Oh, i love HMKM. Last night’s episode was the best (I think it was 7, so I won’t spoil it). I love all the actors in this. I have to overlook some of the weird handling of DID, at least it is in my opinion, but otherwise, it is very exciting and the emotions are up there with Healer. As for Jdramas, I was looking over my short list and I think the male lead in Summer Nude is the lead in Nobuta wo Produce. But I would recommend Yamato Nadeshiko Shichi Henge. It is wildly jdrama like no other genre, and not realistic stories like Summer Nude and Siakou no Rikon. I just watched Happy Together with Jihun and Jangwoo, Groo and others. It was funny. Off to get stuff done before tonight’s kdrama time.


      • Thanks for doing the maths for me, revlow! 🙂 I thought it was a joke at first, too, but then she was so serious and straight-faced! Plus, she did save 9 months by having twins, hehe.


      • Hard to say. It might be too heartbreaking for me. I have a hard enough time watching Kdramas with a trainee plot.

        Not Korean, but passing along a freebie. Amazon Prime has a discount for new membership today, $72 yr vs normal $99. Not worth it to me. However there is a freebie today only as well. You can watch their original show “Transparent”. Winner of two Golden Globes. FREE. I’m enjoying it. Ten 1/2 hr episodes. I think this link will take you to it


      • “An LA family with serious boundary issues have their past and future unravel when a dramatic admission causes everyone’s secrets to spill out.” Are you sure this isn’t a kdrama in disguise? haha


      • Not sure if you’d enjoy this, but No Mercy is a production collaboration competition elimination show MC’d by K. Will. It is 12 male trainees competing for a final group. Some have been trainees for years (one was a GOT7 trainee with Jackson etc., and was cut, so he is now hoping to make a new team). Dramacool has it subbed, and it is going on now, so there are @6 subbed with 7 next week 12 total episodes (it comes out on Fridays). It is exactly like Winner – YG’s competition elimination show last year, with the debut of Winner (the final group).


      • Winner? I quite like them, but didn’t know it was a comp-style debut.

        I’ve been following bits of Jackson’s reality show “Hitmaker” with Big Byung (love the crossovers with Young Ji!), and since watching the “KARA Project”, I’ve started watching “HARA On & Off” as well. Am obviously a sucker for these reality shows! Might check out the K.Will one, then – thanks Cimi!


      • Yep, Winner came out of a YG debut competition show last year. I watched the original 4 episode Hitmaker and the pretty cool MV that debuted. I’ll catch up with the new round of episodes because i want to see the crossover with Young Ji.


  4. Another (No So) Fun Fact About Korea…

    With the huge amounts of meat I see see consumed in every Kdrama (plus shows like Roommate and 1N2D), from time to time the question would come to mind “I wonder what the rate for colorectal cancer is?” Finally got off my ass to Google it. Korea had the highest rate of colorectal cancer in the world.

    All sorts of interesting epidemiological data from ongoing studies, including specifics of how meat is prepared. From one abstract: “A steep rise in colorectal cancer incidence was noted after 1970 in Japan and 1990 in Korea. The consumption of undercooked beef (e.g., shabu-shabu, Korean yukhoe and Japanese yukke) became very popular in both countries.” The theory is that this may lead to latent infections in the colorectal tract. Then “Preceding, concomitant or subsequent exposure to chemical carcinogens arising during cooking procedures should result in increased risk for colorectal cancer synergistic with these infections.” Double whammy.


  5. Actually I should have just cut and pasted this, from an interview:

    “Prof. zur Hausen predicts that a heat-resistant virus present in raw or undercooked beef may latently infect the intestine. The development of colorectal cancer could then result from a combination of the infection and long-term exposure to chemical carcinogens produced in red meat during the cooking process.”

    He’s a Noble Prize Winner in Medicine. Also mentioned air-drying of meat being prevalent. “If you are a biologist like myself, you should know that air-drying is the best method of conserving infectious agents for long periods of time.”

    Okay… enough from the science geek.


    • Yeah, raw or under cooked beef and so much grilled pork belly (like bacon, it looks like). Sort of related, sort of not: I read that some people from NK (defectors, the rare unfortunate citizen) were asked when the last time they had protein was and they all knew to the day and time they had eaten (an egg, a month ago for lunch or for an occasion). It was sad.


      • So sad about N. Koreans. I’m haunted by a “Nightline” back when it was Ted Koppel. They somehow managed to follow a North Korean family — who had at various points been tortured in the worst prisons — as they escaped, hid in bushes, could only eat grass, had to give up their youngest to an orphanage once they reached China because they didn’t have enough money to keep him, always in fear of being captured by Chinese authorities and sent back. I’ve always wanted to know what happened to them.

        PBS had a good Frontline this year called “The Secret State of North Korea”. It covered a lot, including what some former N. Koreans who made in out and now living in South Korea are doing to help. One was a guy regularly smuggling in DVDs and flash drives with TV and movies, to help break people’s brainwashed ideas of the outside. One scene was of two teenage girls secretly watching on a tiny laptop. They were narrating what they saw… “They are Korean people traveling… I guess to other countries? They look like they are having a good time. I would like to travel there someday.” They were watching Grandpas Over Flowers.


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