Thursday, April 24, 2014

Kdrama Review: I Hear Your Voice

I Hear Your Voice aka I Can Hear Your Voice / 너의 목소리가 들려


Lee Bo Young as Jang Hye Sung
Kim So Hyun as the young Hye Sung
Lee Jong Suk as Park Soo Ha
Goo Seung Hyun as the young Soo Ha
Yoon Sang Hyun as Cha Kwan Soo
Lee Da Hee as Seo Do Yeon
Jung Min Ah as the young Do Yeon
Jung Woong In as Min Joon Gook
Yoon Joo Sang as Shin Sang Duk
Choi Sung Joon as Choi Yoo Chang
Jung Dong Hwan as Seo Dae Suk
Kim Kwang Gyu as Kim Gong Sook
Kim Hae Sook as Eo Choon Shim
Kim Byung Ok as Hwang Dal Joong
Kim Ga Eun as Go Sung Bin
Park Doo Shik as Kim Choong Ki

Year: 2013
Episodes: 18
Network: SBS
Genre: Supernatural, Comedy, Mystery, Crime, Thriller


In a story spanning eleven years, murderer Min Joon Gook (Jung Woong In) relentlessly tries to harm Jang Hye Sung (Lee Bo Young) for testifying against him in court over the murder of Park Soo Ha’s (Lee Jong Suk’s) father. In turn, Soo Ha vows to protect Hye Sung for the rest of his life as he grows from an adolescent to a man. After Joon Gook is released from jail, he realizes that Hye Sung had become a public defense lawyer continues his revenge on her with Soo Ha blocking Joon Gook at every step. Meanwhile Jang Hye Sung struggles with the true meaning of being a public defense lawyer.

Reasons to watch it:

All the comedic moments alone are enough reason to watch this show. I even learned new Korean vocabulary like “Byung Byung” for the fart sound and the old fashioned way of saying, hello, “Hi-ru.” Of all the characters, Attorney Cha Kwan Woo (Yoon Sang Hyun) has the widest range of comedic emotions. I also enjoy every scene with Head Attorney Shin Sang Duk (Yoon Joo Sang).

Cameos are featured in almost every episode. Certainly, my favorite cameo has to be with Uhm Ki Joon, who plays the new, overachieving lawyer who replaces Attorney Cha in the story line. There are a lot of cameos, but my other favorites are cameos from Jun Soo Kyung as a dental post-it promoter, So Yi Hyun as Min Joon Gook’s lawyer for his first court case, Lee Byung Joon as the owner of a newspaper company, Ahn Moon Sook as an orphanage representative, Kim Min Jong reprising his Lawyer Choi Yoon character, Kang Nam (a member of the singing group, M.I.B. Honestly, I thought he looked familiar, but I found out later it was him) as a thief, and Jung Man Shik as a job interviewer.

The overall cast is worth it. I think the entire cast did an excellent job portraying their roles. I am especially impressed with Lee Jong Suk’s acting range, showing emotions such as happiness, goofiness, anger, impulsiveness, helplessness, amnesia “blank” self, panicked self, and Hulky Jong Suk. He wasn’t really able to show all that in dramas, Secret Garden and School 2013. The entire cast was perfectly in character. I am, in a way, sad to see such an awesome collaboration end.

Reasons not to watch it:

If you’re looking for a romantic love story, this drama will not fit the conventional love story line. I watched how Hye Sung slowly fell in love with Kwan Woo, but all of a sudden, her love for him disappeared like the wind. It is not immediately apparent that she has feelings for Soo Ha, but their love has always been implied throughout the show. I always thought Hye Sung treated Soo Ha like a brother so I had a hard time believing in their love relationship. In the end, the man who has Hye Sung’s heart is not important at all even though I was very focused on the love aspect of the show.

While our main heroine is worth cheering for, our main character, Hye Sung, isn’t exactly loveable. Hye Sung has her moments when she’s smug, dismissive, conceited, and childish. I’m so used to the main protagonist having loveable qualities that this type of heroine character is new for me. Sometimes, I wonder if she is worth all the affection from Soo Ha and Kwan Woo. All these negative qualities make Hye Sung look like an everyday, realistic character that may be worth the appreciation. Most of the times, we see her struggle through life with few stellar accomplishments. Her disappointing qualities might turn viewers off.

I found a few flaws with the story line, especially with the early court cases with the Min Joon Gook case and the Go Sung Bin (Kim Ga Eun) case. Then, there’s an inconsistent age gap between Hye Sung and Soo Ha, which I don’t bother pursuing since it’s not that important anyway.

Favorite Couple and Chemistry Factor:

My favorite couple is definitely Hye Sung and Kwan Woo. I love to watch how love progresses. The mini-steps Hye Sung took to realize that she has feelings for Kwan Woo was exciting for me. I didn’t need to know how Kwan Woo fell in love with Hye Sung, but I enjoyed their courtship very much. Even though Hye Sung was picky about Kwan Woo’s appearance, I think she loved who he was, with or without glasses. I wish I knew how their date would have went if there were no interruptions along the way. I would have loved to receive Kwan Woo’s box of chocolates. Kwan Woo would have swept me off my feet.

Favorite Scenes:

When Soo Ha was in denial about loving Hye Sung after he saw her morning-after look. Fueled by his teacher’s words, Soo Ha was so furious, he pounded the table and proclaimed that he did not like “her,” forcing the whole class to look at him along with Choong Ki, who was startled from his nap.

Hye Sung and Kwan Woo’s date scene, or what was the start of it, was cute. I loved how Hye Sung directed Kwan Woo’s look and then contemplated about showing a little more “skin” just before they were about to meet. Kwan Woo was also sweet to buy some chocolate in an ice bag.

It’s a painful scene, but I loved how conflicted Seo Do Yeon (Lee Da Hee) was while prosecuting her father in the courtroom. I also enjoyed Do Yeon’s sweet scenes with her father as they reconciled.

Least Favorite Scenes:

As I mentioned in my Dramafever review, some events simply didn’t make sense to me like Min Joong Gook spending 17 seconds to drag a pipe and his 26-second warning speech afterwards, all while police sirens were going off, indicating the police would arrive soon.

When Hye Sung went to look for Soo Ha rather than Kwan Woo in the rain as Kwan Woo stared at her from afar. That scene marks the major shift in Hye Sung’s love interest.

Min Joon Gook’s final demise was very pathetic. In the beginning of the drama, Min Joon Gook wouldn’t blink an eye to kill someone, but towards the end, he kept playing too many psychological games, allowing Soo Ha, Kwan Woo, and the police to locate him.

The Lesson:  Justice is always open to interpretation.

Theme songs:

Two songs stand out for me in this drama.
Every Single Day (에브리 싱글 데이) - 에코 (Echo) – The opening theme song

Why did you come now ( I hear your voice OST ) - Jung Yup – The romantic theme song between Jang Hye Sung and Park Soo Ha

Watch it on Dramafever for free!

Wehaiyo’s Dramafever Recommendations:

If you liked this drama, then consider watching these Korean dramas:

Good Doctor: Like Park Soo Ha, Park Shi On (Joo Won) is an autistic doctor with a savant syndrome. Not only that, he also possesses the power to view internal body organs in “3-D.” With the odds against him, Shi On must  endure hospital politics, angry mothers, and disrespect from his peers in order to continue his path to become a pediatric surgeon. Meanwhile, senior resident doctor, Cha Yoon Seo (Moon Chae Won) struggles with loving Professor Kim Do Han (Joo Sang Wook) and Shi On.

The Master’s Sun: I haven’t seen this drama yet, though it does fall somewhere in the lines of having supernatural power. Similar to how Park Soo Ha got his supernatural power, Gong Hyo Jin plays a woman who can see ghosts after a car accident. Together with a stingy and greedy CEO played by So Ji Sub, they solve ghost mysteries together.

Who Are You: I also have not seen this drama yet. Actress So Yi Hyun also plays a woman who is able to see spirits after a six-year-long coma. Together with a skeptical detective played by Ok Taecyeon, they try to help spirits rest in peace at the lost-and-found center.


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