Just Bananas About: Week of 1/23/15

It’s been an unexpectedly dramatic week on television. There are two programs I’ve been monitoring and so far they’ve exceeded my expectations.

There’s a trend of mental cases these on K-Dramas these days due to the success of It’s Okay, It’s Love. One such drama is Heart to Heart starring Chun Jung Myung and Choi Kang Hee. Cha Hong Do (Choi Kang Hee) has a social anxiety disorder which leads to severe blushing on her face. She’s unable to have face-to-face relationship with anyone while Ko Yi Suk (Chun Jung Myung) is a sociable but yet an egotistical psychiatrist. His ego serves as a defense mechanism for a past tragedy he’s unable to overcome. He realizes that he’s able to relax and treat other people when she’s around and she needs him to help her get over her social anxiety disorder.

The 4th episode starts with an interesting time jump which I’ll explain later. However, we basically pick up where we leave off from Episode 3 with Hong Do greeting her crush, Detective Jang Doo Soo (Lee Jae Yoon), at Yi Suk’s behest to help her with her disorder. Nervous, she can’t even get the words out at first. Then, she blurts out a confession and she’s mortified.

She commiserates over drinks with Yi Suk which leads to her getting drunk and ending up sleeping at his place.  A very typical plotline for romcoms.

After her day job, she returns home to find Detective Jang waiting for her outside her home. Except that she’s dressed as an elderly lady. She puts on this costume so she’s able to go out and work without being embarrassed about her condition but she’s never told anyone about it. Detective Jang understands and frankly, he’s been really sweet and understanding of her condition all along. Unfortunately, he tells her that he has a fiancée and is about to get married so he’s not able to accept Hong Do’s confession.

Yi Suk’s been dealing with his own problems at home, especially the reappearance of his dad and the anniversary of his brother’s death. He invites Hong Do over for drinks because he’s lonely and Hong Do has just seen Detective Jang with another woman and she’s completely heartbroken.

Yi Suk is surprised when she shows up all wet and she asks for some dry clothes to warm up in.

After getting cleaned up, he gets to really see her face.  Her face is typically hidden behind a mop of hair.  One thing leads to another and before you know it, they’re kissing and they move into the bedroom.

The beginning of the episode was pretty tender so the way this last scene is edited here does have a slightly different feel.

I’m actually pretty surprised that the drama jumped leaps and bounds but I’m not against it. I am concerned that the drama will have nowhere to go with the character development and K-Dramas don’t typically have a good track record of providing a good ebb and flow after jumping 10 steps ahead.

But I’m keeping an open mind about it and I really hope that we’re in for a good ride because I’m loving Choi Kang Hee’s chemistry with Chun Jung Myung. It’s witty and quirky and yet they ground it with some deep backstories. Fingers crossed.

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As you know I’ve been really into Our Neighborhood Variety Sport’s Tennis edition. The group has been competing in the national tournaments and it was very touch and go in the beginning. However, I really do think that all 3 episodes are worth watching. The drama is so intense and I have to admit that there were several times, when I was watching the episodes in public, I was about to shout out loud. It’s kind of as if I were watching the show at a sports bar.

Basically in this last episode, the Ye Che Neung team played their last match against the Jeollado team. They lost two sets and needed to win three sets in a row in order to advance.

Lee Jae Hoon and Yang Sang Guk have shown that they have really great teamwork. Yang Sang Guk started as a beginner and he’s really come far in the sport as all he did was focus on practicing because he didn’t have anything else going on in his life besides this and probably Gag Concert. I never found Yang Sang Guk attractive but I have to admit that I’ve swooned a couple of times while watching him play.

Kang Ho Dong and Shin Hyun Joon have been having a difficult day. They’re usually pretty good even if they’ve never won a match in a competition but Kang Ho Dong has been making a lot of stupid mistakes. It’s probably a mix of nervousness and the fact that he’s been sick and not 100%.

If you want to know how nerve-wracking this set is, all you have to do is look at Jung Hyung Don and Lee Kyu Hyuk.

In this last match, the duo finally pulls through for the win. It brings tears to everyone including the Sportscaster Yoo Jin Sun, who comes down from his podium to congratulate them.

Last up, there’s Actor Sung Hyuk and Announcer/Sportscaster Lee Gwang Yong.  I would probably say that out of all the teams, they’re probably the duo I would put in last place.  They haven’t been playing consistently and have not only lost all their matches but even lost some matches with a big point margin.  Their first ever was with the Gyeonggido team from last week’s episode but I have to admit being nervous that it all lay in their hands.

However, something finally clicked for this pair in this competition.  They really step up to the plate when the Ye Che Neung teams needs them the most.  Still, even after the win, Sung Hyuk can only see the mistakes he’s made.  I guess he’s a glass half empty type of guy.

This takes the Ye Che Neung team into the finals at Inchon and while they eventually get 4th place, it’s been a truly amazing ride. Certainly, they’ve risen the ranks and come far as underdogs.

Next up, it’s Jok Gu or Foot Volleyball. If you’ve seen 1 Night 2 Days or Real Men, you’ve probably seen this sport. In the U.S., I’ve only seen this sport being played by Koreans and Hispanics so it’s definitely a different change of pace for competitive sports.

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