Jive Monkey Playlist: 6/9/17

Gummy’s long-awaited studio album is finally out.  I don’t think I have any other reason for featuring her in today’s post other than I just believe in her talents as an artist.  They don’t call her a diva for nothing with her powerful vocals and confident disposition.

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[Review] Spy – 스파이

A FAMILY SHAKEN, NOT STIRRED

Park Hye Rim (Bae Jong Ok) is a former North Korean spy turned stayed-at-home mom.  Unbeknownst to her, her son Kim Sun Woo (Kim Jae Joong) is an agent at the National Intelligence Service.  When Hwang Ki Chul (Yoo Oh Sung), an old comrade from the North comes to town, he turns Hye Rim’s life upside down.

Spy is very much a drama that is in possession of the spy story handbook.  The writers seemed to know what works for the story and were fully in control of the plot.  On the downside, it made the plot very predictable and even if it misfired, it wouldn’t have been nice if they had attempted to throw a surprising curve ball.  However, I’m not going to penalize a drama for not being innovative if it works for the structure overall.  The drama is based on the Israeli drama, The Gordin Cell, but rewritten with the current North-South Korea conflict in mind.

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[Review] Triangle – 트라이앵글

A TROUBLING TRIFECTA

Three brothers lose their parents and become separated. Twenty years later, the two younger brothers have new names and they barely remember their birth family. Jang Dong Soo (Lee Bum Soo) is the oldest of the brothers. He’s a hot-tempered cop that wants to seek justice for the death of his father and hopes to be reunited with his younger brothers again. Jang Dong Chul, who goes by Heo Young Dal (Kim Jae Joong), is the middle brother, who grows up on the streets after failing to protect the youngest at the orphanage. Jang Dong Woo, who goes by Yoon Yang Ha (Im Shi Wan), is adopted by a rich family and although he comes off as an apathetic playboy, he’s afflicted with self-esteem issues.

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Just Bananas About: Week of 6/20/14

Spring comes to an end and now we’re headed for another hot, hot summer. With all the dramas I’m watching these days, the thing that they all seem to have in common is the big reveal. The big reveal can consist of a plot element that the viewer is aware of but the characters have yet to be clued in. Some dramas hold out doing the big reveal until the last moment possible which I always hated because it’s a clear sign that the drama doesn’t have the layers it needs to complete the episodes. Recently, I’ve mentioned those reveals in some of the dramas I’ve been watching but we’ve reached the verge of another big reveal in Triangle.

Triangle hasn’t proven itself to be a perfect drama. The directing at times can be incredibly terrible focusing more on soapy reaction rather than a logical progression of emotions. However, I do think that idol actors like Kim Jae Joong and Im Shi Wan are proving that they are learning ways to improve their acting.

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Just Bananas About: Week of 5/9/14

Korea has now returned to regularly scheduled programming and there are some new dramas on that schedule. Here are some thoughts on the ones that I’m watching.

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[Review] Jackal is Coming – 자칼이 온다

A CONVOLUTED PLOT DR. EVIL WOULD DIE FOR

A hit is mysteriously put out on top Hallyu star, Choi Hyun (Kim Jae Joong).  As Choi Hyun arrives at Seong Ju’s Paradise Hotel for a rendezvous with Angela (Kim Sung Ryung), the rich wife of a CEO, first-time assassin, Bong Min Jung (Song Ji Hyo), arrives first.  However, the cops are staking out in the room next door to catch the assassin known only as the “Jackal” who recently left a note announcing he’d be there for his next kill.

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Jive Monkey Playlist: 1/25/13

The depths of winter has finally reached me.  It’s been so mild but with the chill this week it just makes me want to snuggle in bed and listen to some smooth ballads.  Shin Jae and Kim Jae Joong both have ballad tracks which I’m featuring today but they are also very different in style and sound.

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