K-love: Two of a kind

If the Korean dramas were any more Bollywood, they’d be draped in chiffon sarees and mouthing complex Hindi locutions.

I watched a mildly funny and exceedingly rummy drama called Full House some time back. A 2004 show starring Rain (Lee Yong Jae) of the Ninja Assassin fame(?) and a very pretty Song Hye Kyo. The story of the drama is simple and, as previously stated, rummy but I was still gripped enough to watch an episode a day. The leading cast are twenty-somethings, silly, and confused.

Song Hye Kyo is an extremely sweet, unbelievably optimistic but more than slightly dim, almost broke orphan girl who owns a gorgeous villa by the ocean. The story opens with Song Hye Kyo being forcibly sent to a vacation in Shanghai by her two childhood friends, who are about to have a baby and need money. Therefore, they send her away and sell her house to a popular movie star, Rain. Song Hye Kyo returns to find the star living in her house but refuses to report her friends when she figures out that the girl is pregnant, although we never see a bump on her throughout the drama that spans across several months. The kindhearted Song Hye Kyo ends up working as a maid in her own house, where the cleanliness-freak Rain lounges around all day ordering her to cook, clean, and wash.

Innocently Dense, Still Sweet

Four Angles of the Romantic Square

Of course, there is another guy and another girl in the true Kdrama style to complete the four angles of what we call the romantic square, essential for every Kdrama. One thing leads to another, Rain and Song Hye Kyo find themselves faking a marriage. Now begins the endless waiting-for-the-other-person-without-letting-them –know, which continues until the penultimate episode, after which things begin to fall in place and make way for real wedding and a happily-ever-after-ending.

Now we talk about another Korean drama that I am currently watching; a popular 2008 show called The Last Scandal of My Life, which sadly was the last assignment of the leading actress Choi Jin Sil’s life (she committed suicide soon after the show ended, while a sequel was being considered.) The drama costars Jung Joon Ho, and the two actors play 39-years old classmates who dated in high school of six months. Choi Jin Sil is now married, mother of a teenaged-girl, who is an obsessive fan of Jung Joon Ho, a leading star who fakes his age to be seven years younger and uses a false name. Choi looks adorable in her messy curls and huge specs, which vanish after the first few episodes, much to my disappointment.

The Last Show of Her Life

Top Stars Often Fall for Empathetic Nannies

Choi Jin Sil’s husband is in continuously in debt due to his poor business sense and marries a rich old lady to escape prison, while Choi Jin Sil struggles to save enough money for him. After the first few episodes and a few funny encounters, she ends up working as a maid in Jung Joon Ho’s house, where he lounges around all day ordering her to cook elaborate meals. The old romance is slowly rekindled and deep dark secrets are revealed. The other two angles of the romantic square are Jung Joon Ho’s elder brother, who is also his agent and an actress who appears to be interested in both the brothers’ lives.

Another coincidental commonality between the two shows is that the lead actors are also a singers. Just a push clean fact. (:

Although both dramas have the same basic plot, there is hardly anything similar in the conflicts in every episode.  I can understand they have been created for two different sets of audience as well. However, there are always some fans like me who will watch anything as long as it looks cute and speaks Korean.


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