Friday, August 24, 2018

Wehaiyo Drive: Around the Corner

Hello Wehaiyo Drive readers,

I am back and just around the corner as I bring you my next edition of the Wehaiyo Drive. Last week, I had family over and partied a lot, so I could not get to the computer to write down my latest and greatest thoughts.

Anyway, I have a lot of opinions to share, so I cannot wait until I show you the last two week's of the Wehaiyo Drive. Next week's Wehaiyo Drive should be exciting as well.

This week's Dramas:

1) My ID is Gangnam Beauty (내 ID는 강남미인)

Watch it on: Dramafever 

There were basically three thoughts I had while watching My ID is Gangnam Beauty, episodes five and six.

#1) College student's Do Kyung Seok's (played by Cha Eun Woo) stare
This guy's stare is so intense. I am not sure how to react to his gaze. There are so many scenes of him being quiet and just staring (at Gangnam Beauty Kang Mirae played by Im Soo Hyang, no doubt).

#2) Social Issues
At first I thought this drama was very shallow in that we only see scenes of Kang Mirae and her plastic surgery aftermath, but the story is a lot deeper than that. It is about women trying to find confidence in themselves and they tackle the gender expectation issue in episodes five and six.

Second-year student Kim Tae-Hee (Lee Ye Rim) was teased by the male chemistry majors because they believe she is overweight. I know Asian countries have a different standard on what is considered thin, but most women in the drama around Kim Tae-Hee do not seem to believe she is considered overweight. To the men or, should I say, most men since there is a second-year student who has a crush on her, she has the image of a fat person who likes to snack, and people cannot see past her weight because every person snacks. In addition, her name, Kim Tae-Hee, reminds the men of the real life mega-superstar actress with the same name who is known to be one of the most beautiful actresses in Korea.

Another second-year tomboy student, Kwon Yoon-Byul (Bae Da-Bin) has boyish looks and tries to stand up for the women in the department whenever possible. The boys tease her that she is being harsh to them and they think of her as being moody all the time. I do not know much of Yoon-Byul's background, but it seems to me that she has the tomboyish look on purpose because she cannot stand the way the boys acts around women.

At first, freshman Class President Yoo Eun (Park Yoo-na) was jealous that the boys did not consider her as one of the prettiest girls in the class, but she learned to not care since being one of the class beauties could also mean being sexually harassed by the upperclassmen. She wanted to speak up for the ladies so many times, but she held back because she was only a freshman among the group and had little power to influence others or so she thought. Eventually, she could not take any gender bias or sexual harassment comments any longer and took a stand against her seniors. I really like her character because that is me in real life. I have to be pushed to the limit to finally confront a social problem. I am glad she eventually took a stand regardless of what the consequences may be.

#3) Kang Mirae's father averts his gazes
Ever since he found out his daughter had plastic surgery, Kang Mirae's father, Kang Tae-Sik (Woo Hyun) could not look his daughter in the eyes. Throughout the episodes, he can be seen talking, but never looking her way. I find that sad, but realistic. I think I would react the same way, at least for a while, if I found out somebody close to me had plastic surgery. It can be hard to emotionally accept somebody who has a different and permanent image even if they become prettier. I remember when my mother had a permanent eyeliner and eyebrows tattoo. I could not look her in the eyes for a long time because all I can imagine is how painful that must be for her.

2) Are You Human Too? (너도 인간이니)

Watch it on: Dramafever

As I promised from last week, I started watching Are You Human Too? in the last two weeks. I hope you all do not get too excited for my review because I already mentioned that I do not like non-human and human love stories. Therefore, it seems that I will only watch one episode at a time.

The most memorable scene has to be when actor Seo Kang Joon sees himself before the human him gets hit by a car. That really left an impact in my mind. It is fascinating to see the two Nam Shin characters look at each other.

I was not focusing on the plot too much, but I watched some entertaining scenes where the robot Nam Shin is practicing how to be the real Nam Shin in the simulation room. I wonder if I have an android version of me lurking around the corner. I would then have lots of time to blog while my android self can go to do other jobs (for money).

3) Your House Helper (당신의 하우스헬퍼)

Watch it on: Viki

Even though episodes are only thirty minutes long, I find myself watching only one episode at a time. Episode 2 is a continuation of House Helper Kim Ji Woon (Ha Seok Jin) and Intern Im Da Young's (Bona) seemingly unimportant life.

Ji Woon continues his house helping duties to clean up a family home, which allows the mother and father time to have dinner, actually converse, and spend time together. In a way, he is bringing happiness to other people's lives while covering up his own sorrows. We still do not know what happened to his past, but he is content living a quiet life and only responding to the call of others.

I feel bad for intern Im Da Young who clearly does not have a future at the advertising company she is working for, but she continues to work hard in hopes that her luck will change. If I were her, I would have done the same, except I would leave when it is time to leave. After all, the intern's role is to gain experience and hopefully land a job, but if the job part does not happen, at least the intern can retain the experience. I worked three intern jobs before I landed an unrelated job. Life is unexpected in many ways. Hopefully, there is a great job waiting for her around the corner.

This week's Music:

The last two weeks of music took me through twists and bends of emotions. I never know what song I would be interested in listening to at the moment.

1) Red Velvet (레드벨벳) - Power Up

Of course, Red Velvet is back! Besides all the fruit innuendos in many of their songs, I am impressed with how creative they are with each song. The "Ba-Banana-Ba-Ba-Banana" part got stuck in my head for the last two weeks. There is an interesting I-vi-V#-V chord progression (I forgot a lot of music theory from long ago, so I hope this is correct!) that I find very interesting and unconventional.

At first, I thought they were just singing "Ba Ba Ba," but they were actually singing the word, banana.

2) George (죠지) and Gang Haein (강혜인) - Something 

This is my favorite drama right now, so naturally, I am intrigued by the soothing song of "Something" from the My ID is Gangnam Beauty OST. It's also cool to watch Cha Eun Woo or even envision his stone cold expressions.

3) Kim Sung kyu (김성규) - Sorry (Shine live version) 

Sung kyu gave such a memorable performance in his 1st Solo Concert Live event that I could not ignore him for my Wehaiyo Drive. He really does have a beautiful singing style. I wish I could go to his concert! 

In this song, he is apologizing like crazy. I just feel like crying. What has he done to deserve this? My heart aches whenever he sings "hold me," "don't leave me," or "save me."

Sung kyu is in the army right now, but I cannot wait for him to come back with his amazing talent.

Next week, I want to review some old dramas and even a mini drama. I can't wait! 
It seems summer is almost coming to an end and it is getting colder. Let's bring out the light jackets and embrace the upcoming season.

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Saturday, August 11, 2018

Wehaiyo Drive: Quiet Realm

This week has been quiet for me as I barely had time to watch dramas or listen to music. Furthermore, there were not many dramas or songs that caught my eye. I suppose we all have uneventful weeks.

This week's Dramas:

1) My ID is Gangnam Beauty (내 ID는 강남미인)

Watch it on: Dramafever 

In episodes three and four of My ID is Gangnam Beauty, college student Do Kyung Seok (played by Cha Eun Woo) seems to be very observant of Gangnam beauty, Kang Mirae (Im Soo Hyang) and the other popular girl in their class, Hyun Soo-A (Jo Woo-ri).

When Kyung Seok frankly told Mirae about what he thinks about her grading other people's faces, Mirae, offended, was taken aback and told him to mind his own business. I was internally cheering because somebody had to say it, though I would not have been as blunt as Kyung Seok. However, Mirae soon realizes how superficial she is by rating the faces of other female classmates rather than judging them by their personalities and actions. I am glad that Mirae is maturing little by little.

Meanwhile, Kyung Seok is also seeing through Soo-A as she tries to harm Mirae's popularity at school by connecting plastic surgery with Mirae and purposely getting hurt by a fallen flask in science class. Kyung Seok wasted no time to expose Soo-A for having bad intentions. I like smart leading men. I find his personality more refreshing to watch than him being deceived by women until he realizes the truth at the end.

On another note, I am glad that bully Kim Chan Woo (Oh Hee Joon) was put in his place after his classmate, Yeon Woo Young, played by the handsome Kwak Dong Yeon, gave him an extremely strong warning that he would put his life on the line to ruin Chan Woo's career if Chan Woo does not shape up and stop bullying the underclassmen.

2) Love In Trouble (Suspicious Partner) (수상한 파트너)

Watch it on: Dramafever

I seem to be replaying the episodes 9-12 of Love In Trouble (Suspicious Partner) over and over again. Whenever I have nothing to do, I put this drama on and see what happens. I do like watching this drama and I think the characters are cute, but I am not in love with it.

I was excited about the potential bromance between No Ji Wook played by Ji Chang Wook and Ji Eun Hyuk played by Choi Tae Joon. It was them against 30 school teens in a fight at the park. I want their broken relationship that was torn over their friend and ex-girlfriend, Cha Yoo Jung (Nara), to mend. I like Eun Hyuk's character the best because he hides his pain so well that it is almost a skill.

3) Your House Helper (당신의 하우스헬퍼)

Watch it on: Viki

It's time to start a new drama! I have been waiting to watch Your House Helper simply because Ha Seok Jin is in it. He seems to have a recurring role as a man who is meticulous and clean like his role in Let's Drink (Drinking Solo).

After watching episode one, we are introduced to two main women who have interesting lives and messy homes: Im Da Young played by Bona, an advertising intern and Yoon Sang-A (played by Go Won-Hee), a jewelry designer.

I think their stories are interesting so far. Da Young is stuck as a helpless intern who works very hard, but is barely recognized by her superiors and Sang-A, who seems to be struggling in the jewelry design world and an absent boyfriend (On the picture frame, he looks like actor Kim Sun Ho?)

We also have other characters, which I am not too familiar with yet: Kang Hye-joo (Jeon Soo Jin) and Han So-Mi (Seo Eun Ah), a timid nail shop owner. Furthermore, the three women, So Mi, Da Young, and Sang-A are known as OnDol Three Musketeers, but have not seen each other in a long time.

I cannot wait to watch more episodes. Each episode is 30 minutes long and can be easily watched in one sitting.

This week's Music:

I have not really found too much to talk about in music. Here are some songs that are easy to listen to in my quiet realm.

1) Leon Lai (黎明) - Perhaps, Not Necessarily, But (或許, 未必 ,不過)

I have not introduced Hong Kong pop music, which is my other favorite type of music, on the Wehaiyo Drive before. I think I might have been channeling my grandmother when I thought of Leon Lai, one of the original, legendary, four heavenly kings of Hong Kong pop. My grandmother is a big fan of Leon and calls him her adopted son. I should translate this song one day on this blog.

This song is called "Perhaps, Not Necessarily, But" to describe loving one person. The singer thinks there is a possibility of having a million women who suit him in this world, but in the end, it is this one woman who is a part of his world.

2) Seo Kang  Joon - You Are My Love

This song is from the Are You Human Too soundtrack. I have not seen this drama yet, but it seems that I should watch it. I will warn Wehaiyo Driver readers that I am not a fan of watching humans in love with a non-human, which is probably why I delayed watching this drama. However, I will put this on my list for next week's Wehaiyo Drive.

The song is so relaxing to listen to since there seems to be a dull feel to it. Seo Kang Joon's voice blends into the music.

3) Julian Cheung (張智霖) - Wishing You (Zok Guan) Well (祝君好)

I am including another Hong Kong artist in here. I suppose I was randomly browsing and came across one of my favorite songs. Julian Cheng is another great singer. The song is a theme song to the Hong Kong drama, Return of the Cuckoo with my favorite Hong Kong actress, Charmaine Sheh. The title of the song does not actually mean, "Wishing You Well," but wishing Zok Guan, the main female character of the drama, well.

Listening to this song makes me want to watch the drama right now. I think I have never seen this drama, but the song was popular, so I loved listening to the song when I was younger.

What is most notable in the meloncholy lyrics is that the singer rather not hug and grow old with this woman he loves, but rather keep this woman in his heart. Even if they meet by accident, the singer thinks the other guy is better suited for the woman than the singer. The singer only hopes to stop from afar to wish the woman, Zok Guan, well.

I hope this week's post is not that lackluster. I continually strive to provide you better posts every week.

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Friday, August 3, 2018

Wehaiyo Drive: Beautiful Transformation

I am back this week with our Wehaiyo Drive.

I have not been given too much of a break lately, but I hope to continue finding new content for the second half of the summer. I think I need a nice vacation at this point, but with life going at such a fast pace, I might miss the latest dramas and songs in a blink of an eye.

This is why I must keep on blogging and thank you for your support! Let's bring in more views at the Wehaiyo Drives.

This week's Dramas:

1) What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim (김비서가 왜 그럴까)

Watch it on: Viki

The finale is here! I cannot believe I have seen the entire drama already, but I can tell already that there seems to be no more conflicts in the story. However, I felt rushed when the ending was so abrupt for our side characters.

Lee Young Joon (Park Seo Joon) and his beloved secretary, Kim Mi So (Park Min Young) get the ultimate happy ending by getting married, which to me, seems to be at warp speed. Poor Young Joon had to propose four times to get Mi So to accept his proposal. I think having a man who wants to get married throughout the drama is a rare sight. I have tried to plan my wedding in six months and even that was not enough time to get everything ready. However, Young Joon is a rich dude, so of course, everything is easier to implement. It is really nice to see this couple go from a strictly working relationship to a married couple.

As for our side couples and characters, I was a bit disappointed. I really thought there would be a more exciting story for them, but everything was rushed.

Lee Sung Yeon (Lee Tae Hwan), Young Joon's brother just quietly disappeared from the story. After he found out the truth, his character stood still and they gave him the direction to just travel the world alone. That seems to be such a sad ending for me, but at least he is healing.

I wanted to see more development with workaholic Go Gwi Nam (Hwang Chansung) and easygoing Kim Jia (Pyo Ye Jin)'s relationship. Go Gwi Nam initially rejected Jia's confession, but I find it hard to believe that he would just make a quick turnaround by suddenly letting go of his financial goals that he had all drama long just to date Jia, and that he perhaps asked Jia to date him at the wedding just to save money on his first date. He made me doubt his intentions. I am not convinced about Gwi Nam's transformation. Realistically, I think Jia may be in trouble as she would not be used to living the frugal life. However, I wish this couple lots of happiness. Can we possible get a spin-off drama of them?

Bong Sera (Hwang Bora) and her "hero," Yang Cheol (Kang Hong Suk) had a sudden, but happy ending when the entire office already knew that they were dating. They were not that discreet, but it was not obvious that everyone knew about their relationship in the drama. I think Hero Yang Cheol is so cute and I will never forget his karaoke scene, which shows his great vocal skills. I think actor Kang Hong Suk must have a theater background. This couple was cute and over exaggerated.

Lastly, I will miss Park Yoo Sik (Kang Ki Young) and his comedic antics. I want to see Kang Ki Young in more roles, please. His expressions throughout the drama are great and he is a great comic relief to Young Joon's serious character. I was a bit disappointed in the way he quickly made up with his ex-wife, but at least he gets a happy ending.

2) My ID is Gangnam Beauty (내 ID는 강남미인)

Watch it on: Dramafever 

Yay! I started a new drama based on a webtoon. When I saw the above five-minute preview video and I was interested, so I saw this drama shortly after Dramafever released episode one. After watching episodes one and two, I have conflicted thoughts as this concerns a subject about low self-esteem and plastic surgery.

I am used to watching power women and aspire to be a powerful woman, but watching Kang Mirae (Im Soo Hyang) go through numerous timid and weak scenes really turned me off. I understand that this could be a real life story, but I do not enjoy watching this type of character. Furthermore, because she thinks she is ugly and a guy in high school reject her confession, she moves ahead with plastic surgery, and shockingly with her mother's support. I do not know what happened in the past, but it seems that having her classmates and her crush reject her is not enough for me to think that she needs to get plastic surgery to resolve her problems. Another problem is that getting plastic surgery is an easy option in Korea and if a person has a shred of doubt about his or her appearance, plastic surgery  offices seem to be right around the corner. Still, I did not expect her mother to go along with it. I agree with her father's reaction after he found out that she has a new face.

It is clear that after surgery, Mirae attends college with a face full of make-up, adding to her insecurity. The make-up actually makes her look older than she is and even her classmates thought that she was an upperclassman. While I am intrigued about her character, I am also disappointed. Sadly, getting plastic surgery did not make a difference because it did nothing for her self-esteem. Even when she is praised, she doubts herself.

In a cliché story setup, our main, male lead, Do Kyung Seok (Cha Eun Woo), is a quiet and beautiful male who has a depressing family background for unknown reasons. I think we are conditioned to feel bad for our main couple, but it seems very unrefreshing.

My prediction is that with both leads having huge flaws, they will learn to love each other and themselves in this beautiful (inside and out) journey.

3) You're Beautiful (미남이시네요)

Watch it on: Dramafever

I honestly did not expect to watch an old drama, but since I did not really finish this one, I decided to start it again, episode one and two, just to pass the time while I am cleaning up at home. I can't believe Park Shin Hye was so much younger in this drama. Furthermore, she played a rare, meek, nun character, which not the type of character I am used to seeing actress Park Shin Hye play when she is known to play a rising, resilient character.

I thought that this scene in episode 2 was very funny. Go Mi Nyeo (played by Park Shin Hye) is trying to act and cross dress as her twin brother Go Mi Nam in order to secure his place in the band, A.N.JELL. As she was in leader Hwang Tae Kyung's (Jang Keun Suk's) forbidden bedroom, she accidentally bumps into his shelf and knocked down all his CDs and such, which activated the remote for the air conditioner, and subsequently, the music sheets started flying around next to a candle from a tray she brought into his room. Finally, Go Mi Nyeo, while still supporting the half-fallen shelf with her body, while in sweat, resorted to spitting into the candle from afar to try to put out the fire on the candle.

When Tae Kyung came out of the bathroom after showering Go Mi Nyeo's puke off his body from the night before, he was enraged to find out the mess Mi Nyeo made in his room. As he was interogating Mi Nyeo, an award statue from the top shelf fell on Mi Nyeo's head and knocked her unconscious. Just as Tae Kyung was checking whether Mi Nyeo is okay with the statue in his hand, the manager and their bandmates walk in on him and assumed the worst.

This week's Music:

This week is full of good, solo music!

1) Jeong Sewoon (정세운) - 20 SOMETHING (Prod. 멜로망스 정동환, 정세운)

Jeong Sewoon's mini album, "Another," is very pleasant. I am become a steady fan of his music. As a participant of Produce 101, Season 2, I was already interested in his work. I recommend listening to the entire album as it was very enjoyable.

Jeong Sewoon's main track, 20 Something, is a song that I felt I knew the meaning of without going to get the translated lyrics. In the chorus, he was asking himself, "What are you thinking? You're 20 something. 20 something (for God's sakes!)." I added the part in parenthesis just to emphasize the feeling.

There will probably be a time for young people to doubt themselves, but they will have to push on because they have their whole life ahead of them. I have already gone through my twenties and from experience, I was the kind of person who was always optimistic, taking various opportunities because I do not know where they will lead. I spent my twenties learning about me and the world like crazy, which is what I wanted to do before I started having children. I even got married in my twenties, which also made me wonder if that was the right thing to do in my twenties as opposed to later on in life. Because of my motivated attitude, I took every opportunities to try new things and experiences. Therefore, I do not regret much in life.

In Sewoon's lyrics, he tried to make everybody, regardless of their age, have the feeling of being in their twenties to overcome their obstacles and not overthink life. I agree. This song is very soothing and a good pick for people who need to recharge their batteries.

2) Chung Ha (청하)  - Love U 

I swear that I am not purposely listening to songs that are from Produce 101 artists. However, when I heard this song, I was immediately drawn to it and wondered the name of the artist. I did not pay attention to Chung Ha in the past because I did not feel that her music stood out, but this one definitely did. Chung Ha has a hit in her hands and she is now on my Wehaiyo Drive radar.

In the lyrics, she is singing about wanting to love someone (Love you) and then the following lyrics end with  이유 (the reason), which rhymes and is so catchy. She does not know the reason, but she wants to love that person.

I am all for it!

3) SEUNGRI - 셋 셀테니 (1, 2, 3!)

Big Bang's Seungri released a surprisingly great song "셋 셀테니 (1, 2, 3!)" (I'll count to three (1, 2, 3!)). Even more surprising is that his spell of a song has hooked me in and made me go to him for my Wehaiyo Drive. I have not liked a Seungri song since "White Love," and now I have another reason to listen to his songs.

The song is about one man's either wishful thinking or amazing confidence that when he counts to three, the women he has interest in will come to him. 

The music video is also very interesting because it was taken in one shot and I really get a Grease and 50s vibe from the video. Yes, Seungri was doing some wishful thinking by the end of the video. There are also bonus bloopers footage, which is also entertaining to watch.

If you do love this song, I also recommend the multilingual version of the song where Seungri goes into Korean, Japanese, Thai, American English, Russian, Spain Spanish, Chinese, French, Arabic, and German. From what I know about Seungri, he really loves learning foreign languages.

That's all I have for now and I will see you next week.