There were a lot of new dramas that began its run recently. A lot. On Wednesday and Thursday nights are busy with me watching all the dramas for the main three Korean broadcasters. And just because You’re All Surrounded is ending soon doesn’t mean that those nights will get any easier because I’m eager to take a peek at Gong Hyo Jin’s upcoming drama. Hopefully, I’ll get to that drama in a post at a later date but Joseon Gunman and Fated to Love You both took me off guard when it first started but I am liking the direction they’re both taking.
If there was one drama I was looking forward to out of the new dramas, it was probably Joseon Gunman. Certainly the show’s cinematography is beautiful but I have to admit at being disappointed at the trite plot in the first four episodes. Boy loses father, boy is deemed to be dead and comes back to get avenge his father’s death. So I focused my attention on the props and wondered if the guns were factually accurate for the late 19th Century. Not that I know anything about guns but it just speaks to how I was a bit bored and focused my attention elsewhere.
However, I am pleased with the two episodes from this week. So basically Park Yoon Kang (Lee Jun Ki) is deemed to be dead but returns to Joseon posing as a Japanese business man, Hasegawa Hanjo. I never really found Lee Jun Ki attractive even though I have enjoyed his acting but holy crap when he shows up wearing the outfit below and twirling a gun, I think I might have cooed a bit. What an entrance.
It’s not too long before Jung Soo In (Nam Sang Mi) gets a glimpse of him and she’s convinced that it’s Park Yoon Kang. He denies it numerous times and several times with very harsh words. As the viewer, we can understand the reason why he needs to keep his identity secret but it’s kind of like the elephant in the room. Even the bad guy, Choi Won Shin (Yoo Oh Sung), has his suspicions about Hanjo.
However, I’m glad there doesn’t seem to be any signs of Soo In giving up that easily. She puts on gat, the Joseon hat, similar to the way he put it on her head in the first two episodes, as Soo In had to disguise herself as a boy in order to carry out a mission. When Soo In does the same to Yoon Kang, even his old friend sees them and runs over to greet him.
It takes a toll on Yoon Kang when Soo In approaches him about his long, lost sister. Since his father was deemed a traitor to the king after his death, the family was also considered one as well which caused her sister to be sold into slavery. Yoon Kang manages to contain his emotions, only breaking down in the privacy of his room.
What’s great about this back and forth, even though Soo In keeps to press and press Yoon Kang, is that despite his denials, she’s not a gullible, female character. In fact, it’s Yoon Kang who is a little gullible to believe that no one from his hometown would notice who he is.
In that way, the pace of the drama seems to be proceeding quite nicely. Looks like Soo In is in for a little bit of competition for Yoon Kang/Hanjo’s affections as Choi Won Shin’s daughter, Choi Hye Won’s (Jun Hye Bin), feelings for him starts to change after he saves her life.
Overall, Yoon Kang’s purpose is shadowed by the corrupt political upheaval. That plotline is currently taking a backseat at the moment but I don’t seem to mind as it is simmering there in the backseat and I’m sure it will become more important later. Historically, King Gojong’s weakness to deal with the changing times and the influence of foreign powers leads to the end of the Joseon era and the rise of Japanese imperialism in Korea so I’m curious to see how that plays out in the drama.
Did Jang Hyuk leave Real Men to grow his hair out and woo Jang Na Ra? I’m trying to think if I’ve ever seen Jang Hyuk in a comical role such as the one he’s playing in Fated to Love You but while there’s been comedic moments, I don’t think I seen full-on comedy from him. I actually didn’t know what to think when I saw the first two episodes as the comedy was waaay over-the-top. Though exaggerated, I didn’t find it as off-putting as Ji Hyun Woo’s “comedic” acting in Trot Lovers.
I had wanted to see the original Taiwanese drama but just never got around to it. So when this remake came along, I didn’t want to miss it. It’s a stale plot as there’s a gunshot wedding due to an unexpected pregnancy but it’s the wackiness of Lee Gun (Jang Hyuk) that really makes the show funny.
Though, I’m glad that the drama doesn’t shy away from the serious side of the issue either. They contemplate whether there will be resentment and whether that will be a good environment to raise a child. Korea tends to be really conservative when it comes to abortion. It’s even reflected in the way Korea thinks about age. You start counting a baby’s age when the woman conceives a child. In this modern age, I certainly don’t think a woman has to get married in order to raise a child but I also understand that four helping hands is better than two.
Gun tries to go along with Mi Young’s wishes but Mi Young is too scared to speak her mind. At the last minute, he stops the procedure and assures her that he’ll be there for her. But not before a hilarious action sequence where he’s racing to the procedure room. I’m pretty sure he did his own stunts here which makes the sequence all the more awesome.
As for Kim Mi Young, she is weak when it comes to saying no. She always wants to please people. Though she and Gun’s families do want the two to get married, it’s the townspeople that are really trying to force the marriage upon them. Gun’s family supported the town’s soap factory which helped their economy; if Mi Young were to marry in, she could help the town out. However, I love that her mom stands up for her as she doesn’t want the marriage if there are strings. She knows that Mi Young is a sweet girl that people love to take advantage of but doesn’t want her youngest daughter to live that way for the rest of her life.
Ultimately, it’s Gun and Mi Young who makes the decision.
After the wedding, Gun learns that he was drugged by the townspeople which leads to the one night stand. Though it’s not really Mi Young’s fault, I’m sure that will change the atmosphere between them. Can’t wait.