Monday, December 24, 2012

MUST SEE DRAMAS: 2012

Alice in Cheongdam-Dong
It gets better and real in every episode of this not-quite-fairy-tale. Park Shi Hoo aka Cha Seung Jo aka Jean Thierry Cha aka Secretary Kim is hilariously looney, knocking out every scene with stars, sugar and spice with the adorable Moon Geun Young. Our boy shows us what thumping heart means in this post tension scene.


Arang and the Magistrate
A masterpiece rendition of a Korean folklore, Arang. An intelligent plot, clever twists, a sassy girl and a complex magistrate makes this one of the most enjoyable drama. Nice spot here - Arang gives multiple dimensions to its cast.

Queen In-Hyun's Man
A fantasy sleeper hit, the protagonist is a thoughtful super-time-traveling man. Defying time, space and logic, Queen In-Hyun is a classic. In an era of Google and smart-phones, the library scene is a dinosaur but not to the leads here as they discovered the best and the worst of what history recorded and about to write.

 

Game of Thrones
The epic adaptation of George R.R Martin's book, Song of Ice and Fire series is dark and dramatic.
Like both in drama and book: Cersei, Tyrion, Jaime, Samwell, Davos, Sansa, Littlefinger
Like in drama but don't quite like in book: Arya, Joffrey
Don't quite like in drama but loved in book: Daenerys, Jon, Mellisandre


Faith
Another time-travel piece, Lee Min-Ho depicts General Choi Young, the military genius during the Goryeo period and Kim Hee Sun plays a fictional modern day doctor. No they didn't kiss, but this is a cutesy scene so this is why it ends up on the list.

The Moon that Embraces the Sun
The fantasy Joseon adaptation (from same novelist of Sungkyunkwan Scandal) bull-eyed the 40% rating, marking it as a national drama in the league of Dae-Jang-Geum. It also cements Kim Soo Hyun, in an earnest King role, as a serious lead, and shaman Han Ga-In who should have more roles like this...

The King of Dramas
To all die-hard fans of comedy, this is an extra-ordinary show for three reasons. First, good girl will triumph, bad guy needs a bad break to be good and diva boy can be funny. Jung Ryeo Won symbolizes a too-good-to-be-true idealistic scriptwriter, alternatively viewed as plain gullible. Kim Myung Min is a heartless producer who stumbles and redeems the day. And Choi Si Won, Super Junior K-Pop artist, ends up as an unlikely comedy star along with Park Shi Hoo.  

Zenkai Girl
Okay, it is a 2011 drama but the little breakout star, "Hinata" is simply too amazing and irresistible to miss out a spot. In a role reminiscent of Alice in Cheongdam-dong, Aragaki Yui's Wakaba is a much more interesting character than her previous outing in Code Blue.

Nice Guy
A melodrama, Park Shi Yeon is bewitching as a scheming and manipulative woman. Although it is not my favorite genre to begin with, Song Joong Ki shows off versatility and depth. Henceforth, it is worth watching. 

Alice in Cheongdam-Dong
I believe it is perfectly alright to be bias, so the final stealing scene has to be this lunatic moment between Cha Seung Jo and his best friend, Dr. Dong Wook. Hip-hopping and grooving to a Barbra Streisand number by Duck Sauce, Park Shi-hoo locks down the funniest scene of K-Drama year.