Saturday, December 10, 2016

The Fourth Annual Dramafever 2015 Awards Review


Hello, readers. I am back to do my yearly review of the Dramafever awards. This has now become my yearly event since I am not able to blog often. I feel apologetic for not blogging more often, but life duty calls. 

This year, Dramafever seemed to have put together an informal version of the awards with only one award, the Best Actress Award, presented to the winner at the Dramafever KCON red carpet in New York. 

Dramafever has posted a video to recap all the winners, but of course, I would love to comment on my picks as well. Once again, I would like to know how the nominees were picked because I'm not sure I would consider some of these contenders nominee-worthy.

DISCLAIMER: I will sometimes mention spoilers because I am evaluating the nominees as a whole. I mostly speak in general terms, but it can still be a spoiler.



Best Actress

Twenty Again, Choi Ji Woo
Producer, Gong Hyo Jin
Heard It Through The Grapevine, Go Ah Sung
Oh, My Venus, Shin Min Ah
Mask, Park Soo Ae
Oh My Ghostess, Park Bo Young




DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Oh My Ghostess, Park Bo Young 

As mentioned before, Park Bo Young won an award for best actress. I think she did a great job in trying to portray both Na Bong Sun and Shin Soon Ae. We can see her bright sides and also depressing sides. I am even a bit greedy to want co-star Kim Seul Gi to take over as the main lead, which I will talk more about in the Best Supporting Actress category.

Park Soo Ae also tried to play dual roles in Mask.  However, her rich role was short-lived and she ended up playing the poor Byun Ji Sook trying to be the rich Seo Eun Ha. If Seo Eun Ha lived a little bit longer, I would give Park Soo Ae more credit for the nomination.

I honestly did not see Heard It Through The Grapevine so I cannot comment on Go Ah Sung. Shin Min Ah was disappointing for not actually gaining weight for her role. She acted well and losing or gaining weight is not a requirement, but I feel as though to get nominated for an award, she should make the body effort as well. Gong Hyo Jin and Choi Ji Woo did well in their roles, but the characters did not stand out for me.

Best Actor

Healer, Ji Chang Wook
Kill Me, Heal Me, Ji Sung
Oh My Ghostess, Jo Jung Seok
Punch, Kim Rae Won
Oh, My Venus, So Ji Sub
Yong Pal, Joo Won




DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Kill Me, Heal Me, Ji Sung

There is no surprise Ji Sung won for Best Actor after naturally portraying seven personalities in a single drama. I think we need to all applaud him for a job well-done. I continually love the original Cha Do Yeon and bad boy Shin Se Gi the most. Ji Sung definitely leads the pack among all the nominees for Best Actor. I have not seen Punch, but that seems to be a great drama to watch as well. Sadly, the average story line for Yong Pal did not help Joo Won secure the win. Ji Chang Wook and So Ji Sub did a good job as well.

Best Movie

Love Forecast
Gangnam Blues
Tazza 2: The Hidden CardTwenty
The Technicians
Detective K: Secret of the Lost Island





DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Tazza 2: The Hidden Card

I am not sure about this nomination category as I found most of these films not worthy of being nominated. Love Forecast was a fun rom-com, but it was not that special. Gangnam Blues was a sad, unfortunate story. The Twenty story line had me scratching my head wondering what happened as it was a forgettable movie. I thought The Technicians would be a good action movie, but the story line fell flat and I love actions movies. Sadly, I did not see Detective K: Secret of the Lost Island, so I cannot comment about it. Tazza 2: The Hidden Card is the better film out of all the films I had watched and I liked how there was crazy back-stabbing in the story. The final showdown had my scratching my head, but in the end, it is better to not make sense of everything and watch it as it is: a cool, gambling movie.

Best Supporting Actor

Cheer Up!, Ji Soo
Singles Villa, Jiro Wang
Jeju Island Gatsby aka Warm And Cozy, Kim Sung Oh
Answer Me, 1998, Go Kyung Pyo
She Was Pretty, Choi Si Won
School 2015, Yook Sung Jae



DRAMAFEVER WINNER: She Was Pretty, Choi Si Won

I have read that people love Choi Si Won's goofy behavior in She Was Pretty, but that was a major turnoff for me as his character is too silly. I'm not sure how I can consider him boyfriend material, but during his serious, heart-breaking rejection scenes, I did feel truly bad for him. I feel like dating Choi Si Won's character would be the equivalent to dating Jim Carrey and that might be too much for me to handle.

My pick would be Yook Sung Jae in School 2015. I wish and thought that he would be the leading man since he tried so hard to woo Kim Soo Hyun's character, Eun Bi, only to get his heart broken and him being labeled as a friend to Eun Bi. I read that Yook Sung Jae fans everywhere including me are eagerly waiting for his comeback to the screen where he actually gets the girl. It was my first time watching Yook Sung Jae in the acting realm, but he gave me a great performance in this drama.

I would also like to mention Ji Soo from Cheer Up! He is definitely a star to watch out for, a rising star. I feel like he is the type of character who does not necessarily need to get the girl because I am satisfied by watching him act in general. I have also been keeping an eye out for Kim Sung Oh, but hopefully, he will have a project worthy enough to be nominated for an award. He is an excellent actor.

Best Supporting Actress

Wu Xin: The Monster Killer, Sabrina Chen
Healer, Kim Mi Kyung
Oh My Ghostess, Kim Seul Gi
Mask, Yoo In Young
Producer, IU
She Was Pretty, Go Joon Hee




DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Oh My Ghostess, Kim Seul Gi

Kim Seul Gi: well deserved! I did not understand why Kim Seul Gi was not the main lead for this drama. Her character's chemistry with Jo Jung Seok's character was very sexy to say the least. I also have to thank Park Bo Young for portraying the ghostess personality so well. One of Kim Seul Gi's final scenes where she turns her father back around to go back to the human realm choked me in tears and I think that would have been the award-worthy scene. I cannot wait to watch more Kim Seul Gi dramas.

I would also like to mention that Mask's Yoo In Young and She Was Pretty's Go Joon Hee were strong contenders for the award as well. Yoo In Young was a villain who somehow made me feel extremely sorry for her in the end. I think Yoo In Young gave her character multiple layers of emotions and if not for her circumstances, I'm sure her character would have been a good person, but still a very devoted wife. Go Joon Hee was a similar character in that she did something wrong, but her honest actions made up for it and I could not help but cheer her on all the way to her dream career and hopefully, happiness with a man as well. Unfortunately, she did not date Choi Si Won's character.

Lastly, I did not watch Wu Xin: The Monster Killer so I cannot comment on Sabrina Chen's performance.

Best SNS Drama

EXO Next Door (Not available on Dramafever any longer due to the licensing agreement terms)
Secret Message
To Be Continued
Never Die
Noble My Love
Dream Knight



DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Secret Message

I can't really comment too much on the winner as I have not seen some of these nominated dramas. I do, however, really loved To Be Continued, even though the story line did not make sense. There were more questions than there were answers. As a result of watching the drama, I am now a happy ASTRO fan. I did watch Noble My Love, but I found it to be an okay story. I want to see Kim Jae Kyung in more dramas as she is pretty and I thought she was a good actress. I started watching Dream Knight, but found it boring after two episodes. I will try to finish it to form a better opinion.

By the way, I wonder why 9 Seconds - Eternal Time was not nominated. I thought this drama was surprisingly good even with an ambiguous ending. A lot of drama happened mid-way, which is surprising for an SNS drama where the story line tends to become simplistic and condensed.

Best Chinese Language Drama

Wu Xin: The Monster Killer
Tiger Mom
Marry Me or Not
Murphy's Law of Love
Divorce Lawyers
When I See You Again




DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Murphy's Law of Love

I have only seen a few of these dramas, but I am paying attention to a lot of Taiwanese dramas these days. I am currently in the middle of watching Murphy's Law of Love and I think this is a great drama so far. Danson Tang, the leading man, has a lot of potential to become a great actor. I want to see him in more dramas! He has certain mannerisms that are exaggerated such as when he is accused of something, he blinks excessively, but I find that refreshing right now. The story is sweet and easy to follow along.

On the other hand, I must choose Marry Me or Not as the winner. This decision is not something I need to think twice about since I love this drama so much and this one of my favorite Taiwanese dramas of all time with a drama filled with romantic tension between the leads. It is all because I love the the Roy Chiu and Alice Ke pairing and I wish they dated in real life. They have numerous kissing scenes in the drama, which appeals more toward mature viewers. For those who watched the ever popular Office Girls starring the two leads, watching Marry Me or Not is recommended as well. Who cares if the story line became dull and hurried towards the end? I would watch it for the explosive chemistry between Roy Chiu and Alice Ke.

Lastly, When I See You Again, seems to be an awesome drama as well because Jasper Liu is so hot in the drama. They made him look so nerdy in high school, but super handsome as an adult. I have seen him in other dramas, but I think he is especially handsome in this drama. I have only seen half the drama so far. The drama can be comical and I believe the drama is worth watching if you can endure many episodes of Jasper's character misunderstanding what happened to him in high school and Mandy Wei's character being too scared to be in a relationship.

Best Kiss

Kill Me, Heal Me, Ji Sung and Park Seo Joon
Oh My Ghostess, Park Bo Young and Jo Jung Seok
Healer, Ji Chang Wook and Park Min Young
Oh, My Venus, So Ji Sub and Shin Min Ah
Sensory Couple, Park Yoo Chun and Shin Se Kyung
Answer Me, 1998, Hye Ri and Park Bo Gum




DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Answer Me, 1998, Hye Ri and Park Bo Gum

This is a category that I am always interested in as I am always looking for the best kisses in Dramaland. I personally did not find anything special regarding Hye Ri and Park Bo Gum's kiss scene in Answer Me, 1998, but I suppose this couple won based on the immense popularity of the drama. The other thought I had in my mind was that Park Bo Gum's character, Taek, smokes throughout the drama and I personally cannot handle watching kisses from a smoker.

My personal pick would be Sensory Couple's Park Yoo Chun and Shin Se Kyung. Now that Park Yoo Chun's image has gone downhill, I'm sure my feelings towards his kiss scenes will be forever tarnished, but I am basing my opinion on the acting, scene, mood, and the chemistry between the two kissers. I like how this kiss was very romantic and I feel like I can see twinkles all over the screen in a dream-like fashion. Shin Se Kyung's character was initially reluctant to lean in to kiss Yoo Chun, but Yoo Chun gentle pulls her back for a soft, slow, sweet, and dreamy kiss. This scene is memorable to me and deserves to be a winner.

The Kill Me, Heal Me kiss was hardly a contender and all the other kisses were okay in my mind.

Best Variety Show

Unpretty Rapstar: Season 2
A Song For You: Season 3
Infinity Challenge
2 Days 1 Night
Running Man
The Return of Superman




DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Running Man

Good, Lord. As long as I have been covering the Dramafever awards (for three years now), Running Man won every single time for best variety show. I can understand that because I do love the Running Man variety show because it gave me some of the most painful belly laughs while watching the show. I find the show really addicting to watch. From his acceptance speech, Kim Jong Kook should come back to New York, right?

I also love The Return of Superman (though I am still watching The Return of Superman: The First Year), which shows us cute kids with their celebrity parent or parents. Honestly, watching The Return of Superman really helped me through my emotional turmoil as a new parent. Unfortunately, I do not watch any other variety shows, so I cannot truly comment on this award. I did watch some of A Song For You: Season 3, but I quickly found it boring with not much variety happening.

Best Bromance

Orange Marmalade, Yeo Jin Goo and Lee Jong Hyun
Cheer Up!, Lee Won Geun and Ji Soo
She Was Pretty, Park Seo Joon and Choi Si Won
School 2015, Nam Joo Hyun and Yook Sung Jae
Running Man, Kim Jong Kook and Lee Kwang Soo
Oh, My Venus, Henry Lau and Sung Hoon



DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Running Man, Kim Jong Kook and Lee Kwang Soo 

Kim Jong Kook and Lee Kwang Soo should just win the Best Bromance award for life because they are life-long, bromance buddies. I am sure they will always be a winner as long as they are nominated.

Meanwhile, if we are going to talk about dramaland, I would vote for Oh, My Venus' Henry Lau and Sung Hoon. They are always on-beat with everything they do, always finishing each other's sentences, and easily taking in each other's thoughts. I'm sure Henry's character influenced Sung Hoon to accept girlfriend Jun Hye Sung (played by Jang Yi Jin). In the end, the two men motivated each other to great lengths.

I have not seen Orange Marmalade so I cannot comment on that. I would also consider Lee Won Geun and Ji Soo's bromance on Cheer Up! They might have won, but there were secrets in their relationship. Unlike Henry Lau and Sung Hoon's characters who knew each other's thoughts, Lee Won Geun's character did not know everything about Ji Soo's character. Ji Soo's character was so secretive and unpredictable that it would be hard for Lee Won Geun's character to keep an eye on his friend all the time. Lee Won Geun's character does know more than anybody else about the troubles with Ji Soo's character and his father, but apparently not enough since who knows when Ji Soo's character might lose his life. Lastly, the She Was Pretty and School 2015 couple did not have much of a bromance at all since they were mostly rivals in love.

Rising Star

Blood, Ahn Jae Hyun
Fool's Love, Choi Woo Shik
Because It's The First Time, Park So Dam
Cheer Up!, Chae Soo Bin
Answer Me, 1998, Hye Ri
Answer Me, 1998, Park Bo Gum



DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Answer Me, 1998, Park Bo Gum
Park Bo Gum's immense popularity cannot be ignored. Sadly, the only dramas I saw so far was Cheer Up! and Answer Me, 1998, so I cannot comment too much. All I can say is this award is probably well deserved.

Best Couple

Sensory Couple, Park Yoo Chun and Shin Se Kyung
Oh My Ghostess, Park Bo Young and Jo Jung Seok
Oh, My Venus, So Ji Sub and Shin Min Ah
Healer, Ji Chang Wook and Park Min Young
Murphy's Law of Love, Danson Tang and Le Jia Yang
Kill Me, Heal Me, Ji Sung and Hwang Jung Eum




DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Healer, Ji Chang Wook and Park Min Young

I am still in the middle of watching Healer, so I cannot comment on the winners yet. As for all the other nominees, I do not have a strong couple impression of each couple except for Murphy's Law of Love, which I am also in the middle of watching, where I see Danson Tang's character have an undeniable attraction to Le Jia Yang's character. I find their relationship irresistible to watch.

Best Korean Drama - Comedy


This award is a tough award to distinguish the winner. I suppose Kill Me, Heal Me is a good drama to win this category. I cannot help but also think about Sensory Couple and Park Yoo Chun. I think a guy who cannot feel and is a cop a hilarious premise for comedy.

Best Korean Drama - Melodrama


I have not seen these dramas fully except for Yong Pal and Mask. I did enjoy Mask a lot for all its pretzel-type plot lines, so I would probably pick Mask for the win.

Best Villain

Mask, Yeon Jung Hoon
Oh My Ghostess, Im Joo Hwan
Sensory Couple, Namgoong Min
Blood, Ji Jin Hee
Hyde, Jekyll, and I, Sung Joon
The Scholar Who Walks the Night, Lee Soo Hyuk





DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Sensory Couple, Namgoong Min

I have seen numerous reviews stating that Namgoong Min can portray a villain really well. He can definitely make a creepy smile. I am in the middle of the Sensory Couple drama where I begin to see his villain side. I do not doubt his acting chops.

Yeon Jung Hoon is also excellent in Mask. He is also another excellent actor who portrayed his role well. Im Joo Hwan had the quiet villain role, which gave me the creeps. Sung Joon also acted well into his psychiatric role in Hyde, Jekyll, and I. I almost wanted to watch him longer in the drama. This year is the first time I am introduced to Lee Soo Hyuk in The Scholoar Who Walks the Night. He has such a big, impressive, vampire, villain role. He did so well with it and was very much in character. I think this is his best role up-to-date despite moving on to other dramas after his rise in popularity. Lastly, I did not have a chance to see Ji Jin Hee in Blood.

Best Ensemble

Cheer Up!
Answer Me, 1998
Because It's The First Time
Oh My Ghostess
Oh, My Venus
Kill Me, Heal Me




DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Oh, My Venus

I can see why Oh, My Venus, would win since the cast was so much fun to watch and comedic. I genuinely cared about all the characters. They seem to throw great parties too.

I, however, loved the cast of Cheer Up! The relationships among the "Real King" and "Baek Ho" students are touching. To see how people learn to work together is very meaningful to me, which makes me choose this drama as my personal favorite.




DRAMAFEVER WINNER: BIGBANG: 'MADE' TOUR

I have seen Mnet Asian Music Awards and I Am. However, I do not see a clear winner here since I'm sure all shows would be a great chance to be a fan of all these artists.

Best Historical Drama

MaidsShine or Go Crazy
Wu Xin: The Monster Killer
The King's Face
The Scholar Who Walks the Night
Hwajung





DRAMAFEVER WINNER: The Scholar Who Walks the Night

I admit that I have not watched any of the nominated Historical dramas except for The Scholar Who Walks the Night. I was captivated by the story line, yet naturally scared of the vampire aspect. I still have not finished the drama, but I would recommended it for those who like the vampire aspect. It also has one of my favorite actresses in it: Kim So Eun. As I mentioned before, Lee Soo Hyuk makes a great ultimate Gwi vampire. Lee Joon Ki is also excellent in character with all the expressions he has to make for this role, especially when he tries to hold back his lust-for-blood expression.

Best K-Pop Act in a Drama

To Be Continued (ASTRO)Secret Message (T.O.P from Big Bang)
EXO Next Door
Cheer Up! (Jung Eun Ji of Apink)
Dream Knight (GOT7)
Because It's the First Time (Choi Min Ho from SHINee)





DRAMAFEVER WINNER: Dream Knight (GOT7)

I have watched To Be Continued, EXO Next Door, Cheer Up!, and a little bit of Dream Knight. Out of all those dramas, Cheer Up! was a personal winner for me for its meaningful story lines. I enjoy watching characters grow and learn from their experiences. The other dramas I watched seem to have a shallow story line, but no doubt, lots of eye candy. Jung Eun Ji plays her character well and I kind of wish she dated Lee Won Geun in real life. Jung Eun Ji's character, Kang Yeon Doo, also has the ability to positively affect those around her.

I also enjoyed To Be Continued and even became an instant fan of ASTRO. The story concept was good, but left me with so many questions and so little answers by the end of the story. I would enjoy this drama for the boys themselves.

I could not get interested in Dream Knight yet. I saw maybe two episodes, but the story was already cheesy. EXO Next Door did not have a great story line either, but what made it great was Chanyeol and Sehun's characters, which really stood out. Sehun had a small role, but he has great comedic ability, which surprises me as he is a first-time actor.

Best Womance

Oh My Ghostess, Park Bo Young and Kim Seul Gi
Cheer Up!, Jung Eun Ji and Chae Soo Bin
Twenty Again, Choi Ji Woo and Jung Soo Young
Oh, My Venus, Shin Min Ah and Yoo In Young
Love Cuisine, Allison Lin and Nita Lei
She Was Pretty, Hwang Jung Eum and Go Joon Hee





DRAMAFEVER WINNER: She Was Pretty, Hwang Jung Eum and Go Joon Hee

I am glad Dramafever is acknowledging women friendships. However, I do not consider frenemies to be nominated for this category, but I suppose if they make up in the end, it sort of counts. In my mind, I disqualified Cheer Up! friends Jung Eun Ji and Chae Soo Bin because Chae Soo Bin's character did so many evil things to Jung Eun Ji's character.

I like the Oh My Ghostess pair, Park Bo Young and Kim Seul Gi, but their friendship was unrealistic. Park Bo Young's character accepted their relationship so fast and she never questioned anything about Kim Seul Gi's character because of Park Bo Young's mild character. I have trouble believing Park Bo Young's character became bolder in the end.

The Oh, My Venus friends were only friends briefly in the beginning and at the end. They break up and make up too easily for my taste. Also, for Yoo In Young's character to hold her anger in for so many years must have created a lot of emotional damage for her to simply accept her friendship with Shin Min Ah again.

The Twenty Again pairing was okay, but the relationship was not anything special or memorable. I have not seen Love Cuisine so I cannot comment on it.

This leads me to our Winners, which I fully support: Hwang Jung Eum and Go Joon Hee in She Was Pretty. I actually thought the drama was not that great, but their friendship was worth mentioning in the drama. They are die-hard best friends and Go Joon Hee's remorseful character was so touching that she was willing to change her entire life because of it. I was very moved and jealous of their tight relationship. It would be great if all of us has a best friend like those two friends even in the event of a betrayal.

Friends, this leaves us at the conclusion of the Fourth Annual Dramafever 2015 Awards. I am very sorry that I wrote and eventually posted this late, but I'll say better late than never. See you at the next awards and I cannot wait!

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