First Impressions – Incarnation – The One Who Rules The Heart: Ep 1 – 4 – 화신 – 마음을 지배하는 자: 1회 – 4 회


It’s funny that the original title of this show was called Strong Heart 2 as it doesn’t bear any similarities to the format of Strong Heart.  This talk show is hosted by Shin Dong Yup, Kim Hee Sun and Yoon Jong Shin.

Each week a question or problem is acted out for everyone.  Taking answers previously provided by viewers, the guests guess the number one answer within age groups from people starting from 10 into their 50’s.

There’s an element to the show where it feels like I’m watching Family Feud because the producers survey the viewers.  The first episode was disorganized as they were trying to figure out the show’s format and pacing.

Lee Su Geun, Kim Jong Min, Eun Ji Won and Jun Hyun Moo (The Three Idiots plus its host) were the show’s first guests and it took a while to introduce them, to present the question/problem they were going to discuss and have them come with the answers that could be on the board.

Then the following week, we pick up where we’ve left off with these guests which I was okay with thinking they were going to Part 1 and Part 2 recordings with the same guests like they did on Strong Heart.  However, I realized that there wasn’t enough material with these guys so they cut to the 2nd week’s guests who are: Hong Suk Chun, Hwang Kwang Hee, Kang Hye Jung, Park Ji Young, Jung Man Shik.  Lacking much of a transition.  These same guests appear also in the 3rd episode.

If you would have asked me then if I would keep watching, my answer would have been no.  However, the show has grown on me since I could see that it’s been improving and settling in nicely.  Now, it appears like the show has finally found its pacing.  It’s just much more streamlined if they stick with the same guests from start to finish within one episode.

For this week, the show upped their rating from 15 to 19 as it covered more mature subjects from “instances when people find they could come off as being perverted” to “when can knowing a significant other’s past be detrimental to a relationship”.  To So Yi Hyun’s horror, she seemed to hit the nail on the head as she seemed to get most of the answers on the board.  Why?  As the only female guest on the show, it’s unladylike to be too knowledgeable in this subject matter.

I like the intimate setting of this show.  As the celebrity guests are talking about the topics, they often share personal, anecdotal stories to illustrate how they came to their answer.  Unlike Talk Club Actors, we get a new group of celebrities each week and new topics to talk about.

Clearly, the show is relatable as it is encouraging viewer participation.  However, I’m not sure how foreign audiences will find certain things relatable such as the topics on “pressures to always please your sunbaes”.  Sure, hierarchal relationships exist in other countries but there are differences to the degree of it in Asian countries.

I do wonder if they will run out of topics but so far I think the show is heading in the right direction.  All three hosts bring their own merit in guiding the topics.  Shin Dong Yup provide quippy one-liners, Kim Hee Sun provides the female perspective and Yoon Jong Shin grounds the two.  If the guests don’t seem to be getting the answers, the hosts provide hints on the number one answers to keep the flow going.  Looks like we’ll be seeing G-Dragon and Daesung soon as they film today for the show.  Should have given the perverted topic to them.  Damn, missed out on that one.



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