My new TV obsession.
(Haha I totally lied about writing here more often when I resolved to do so almost a year ago. Oh well whatever. Yes, that’s my new Mother’s Day resolution.)
I know Meteor Garden is kind of stuck in limbo (and thus, so is Hana yori dango, which was what I originally planned to do before I foolishly decided to start at the first HYD incarnation), but I did start on the next episode. However, screencaps! SCREENCAPS! They made Cinderella’s Sister show too pretty. On the other hand, the continuity errors are quite charming and endearing, so much so that I almost feel bad for pointing it out. Almost.
All you need to know is that this show is addictive and AWESOME. And not just because it’s a Korean drama (you know those people who say those things.) I honestly can’t get into too many K-dramas because of their reused, overused tropes. Although this drama uses those methods, the awesomeness of the rest of the show trumps it. Take that, super-long shots of things I don’t want to see beyond a couple of seconds, girls crying gushing rivulets that can carve stone, and people having nosebleeds that obviously mean THEY ARE GOING TO DIE.
I’ve been watching each episode repeatedly to get my fix. (Since subtitle release is slower than the episode airings.) I signed up for Soompi despite refusing to for the longest time for the better part of the decade of the 2000s, in order to get the latest updates, analyses, etc., on the show. I ship the main couple HARD (and you can’t convince me otherwise, COME ON). The last time something similar to this happened was for Veronica Mars. I recorded VM off the TV and watched it over and over; I joined a bunch of LJs and just lurked around like a bottom-feeding fish; and Logan and Veronica — no matter how unlikely their chances appeared to be time and time again — I was just shipping like a mad longshoreman. Even though Rob Thomas (and KB) seemed to hate Logan because he’s not Duncan, the fact that Veronica still had “that look” for Logan (in the series finale) in spite of her just telling him moments before that he was out of her life for good, gives me hope for Eun-jo and Ki-hoon no matter how dire their straits are. Oh, but I’m getting ahead of myself…
Despite having only seeing Moon Geun-young as a teenager in the K-drama Autumn in My Heart (ugggggggggggh *shudders* the first Korean drama I saw that forever tainted Korean dramas to me) and in the movie A Tale of Two Sisters, she left quite an impression on me. Moreover, she’s pretty kinda really famous so that easily ensured that she would always be in my Asian entertainment consciousness. I’d always wanted to see her in something else, but for various reasons, I never got a chance to. So when I heard about her new project, I was intrigued. A story where Cinderella’s stepsister is the main character, played by MGY… sold!
While I planned on watching it, I was fully waiting for when it’d be on Dramafever or something… or at least when the whole drama came out. Hmmm didn’t quite turn out that way. My er, uh, “source” had the softsubs for the first episode within a week of airing. Well, let me check the first episode, I thought.
Oh dear, my future self said.
Just to see if it’s worth it, I thought.
What happened, happened, my future self said.
When I finished the first episode, I watched it again. And again. Then I couldn’t take it anymore and downloaded the rest of the available raws. I had no idea what was going on. (Well, I did have some idea, as my eyes are in working order, but seeing as the only Korean words I know cannot be strung together properly to make a sentence, it can only take me so far.)
The perfect setting for running away from the hirsute alcoholic who is also fond of physically abusing his partner.
“Run away, run away, run away if you wanna survive”
“And I ran, I ran so far away / I just ran, I ran all night and day / I had to get away”
“I run for hope / I run to feel / I run for the truth / For all that is real / I run for your mother, your sister, your wife / I run for you and me, my friend / I run for life”
Okay I’m stopping; I could do this all day, but I only have twenty hours
Sometimes desperation calls for leaping over a hobo. Actually he seems like a bum. Hobo up and get a job, bum!
Forget baseball, Jung-woo should pursue some track & field event. Look at him leaping atop the hairy man so the girls can have their getaway
We’ve been laughing (I can only extract humor), and the show has kind of had a light touch so far on these somewhat heavy themes, but this once again brings home what an awful man that hairy ahjussi is. (He left huge bruises on the mother, Kang-sook, claiming she should not be near him when drunk; and he was about to swing a bat at her until her daughter, Eun-jo, came in.)
They make it to the train, but Hairy Fella sends some goons after them because his ring is gone (that’s what Kang-sook is looking at opening up the Sarlacc pit), but what kind of fella is he who has such authority over a bunch of goons? The goons catch up with them at the next station. Eun-jo spotted them while her mom was asleep and slips past her way too easily and quickly for it to be a first-time thing… but she eventually changes her mind and naturally some kind of hilarity ensues.
Darling you gotta let me know, should I stay or should I go?
Also, I love Eun-jo’s style, now and later. (What you didn’t know there’d be a time skip? You obviously have not seen enough Korean dramas to know this would happen, i.e., any one.) Her sweater’s full of holes, but she’s rockin’ it. As an adult, she has an effortless casual look that is not too casual (it looks like she just threw it on, but they’re good workclothes also). Very nice stylin’, wardrobe department.
A chase through the train leads them to a car full of stupid teenage students having fun by shaking balloons and doing things with flour, apparently. Well, to be fair, the flour didn’t get anywhere until AFTER it went through a dark tunnel. So… I still don’t get it. Were they frying something with the flour? Why am I assuming the white powder is flour? Here are the things that are a white powder besides flour that a teenager might bring with them onto a train:
- Baby powder
- Baking powder
- Foot powder
- High-definition powder
- Powdered sugar
Kang-sook and her daughter hide in the bathrooms. Eun-jo, however, meets a person in hers: Goo Hyo-sun. EJ clamps her hand over HS’s mouth as she begins to scream. Symbolic transfer of locations, perhaps? You know, through protein strings in the hand and stuff.
Seo Woo got quite a bit of flak for the way she acted as the teenaged Hyo Sun, and I can see where it’s coming from. “She’s too cutesy,” “she seems mentally challenged,” I’ve heard. To me, it kind of feels like she’s overcompensating for the fact that she’s got nearly ten years over her character, but the producers say that SW has acted exactly as according to their plan, so it’s most likely a plot point. HS’s mother died when she was about seven, and it’s like she never really grew up mentally. Furthermore, she’s the princess of the household — all she has to do is act cute and beg a bit and she gets what she wants. I do feel like SW’s laying it on a bit thick, though, but aside from her uber-annoying, cloying cuteness, I think Seo Woo really captures the spirit of a young girl well. And a girl who can do a million different faces one after another, most of which can crack me up, can’t be that bad. (I am tired of people citing one of the reason SW sucks is because she got a bunch of plastic surgery. Well, okay, so what? Honestly I think plastic surgery is totally unnecessary unless you are missing a jaw bone or something extreme, but she didn’t get surgery on her acting abilities and her face still functions fine in expressing her emotions, so can you stfd and stfu already? And ha, like she is the only person ever in the history of acting to ever get plastic surgery.)
Oh, God, Chun Jung-myung. HOW DOES A MAN LIKE HIM EXIST ON EARTH. He’s thirty (or will be, according to Western age), but he’s playing a college-aged kid here, and then all of a sudden his character has aged eight years AND IT’S ALL VERY BELIEVABLE. WHY AM I TYPING IN CAPS. AND HE JUST GOT OUT OF HIS MILITARY SERVICE IN REAL LIFE I THINK MY HORMONES ARE GETTING VERY ATTUNED TO THIS SITUATION.
Logical self: Uhhhhhhhhhhhh what situation is there, even if there is one, this man lives on the other side of the world.
Irrational self: SHUTUP LET ME HAVE THIS BRIEF MOMENT IN GEOLOGIC TIME DON’T YOU THINK I KNOW IT CAN NEVER BE
Logical self: Wait a minute that’s reasoning and logic, but… you’re irrational I’M LOGICAL WTF
Irrational self: SELF-DESTRUCT
Logical self: END OF DAYS
Irrational self: DOES NOT COMPUTE
Logical self: WHAT IS YOUR MAJOR MALFUNCTION
Some days must have passed because now Hyo-sun has cut school to ask Ki-hoon oppa (who works in her father’s winery and is doing deliveries) where the “ring” could be. Nice implication that the ring was given to HS to hide, rather than explicitly shown (it sounds like it’d be a corny scene). I like implications so much that it has long ago crept into my manner of speech and writing and I always end up having to explain myself. (Well in speech mostly; in writing I always self-edit. A LOT.) This is actually a very terrible habit and I must stop it. I should only do this kind of implicit talk when I’m trying to catch a mate while wiggling my eyebrows. Anyway, this scene sets up their characters well (HS is kind of spazzy but childish, thinks the world of Ki-hoon; KH is kind, treats her like a kid sister, drives a truck.)
Lol Seo Woo… I just can’t hate Hyo-sun (much). I can’t believe I’m going to quote Beyonce, but all the haters to the left, to the left.
This part is amusing because Ki-hoon is listing all the things she’s “lost” and then found, and one of the items that he mentions is a T-shirt with Kangta’s face on it. After Chun Jung-myung, Kangta became the second celebrity to be awarded as an “elite soldier,” causing Kangta to joke that he was in a rivalry with CJM.
She will believe him if he says the moon is square… if he tells her salt is sweet and sugar is salty, she will spit out candy and drink salt water… kind of eloquent for a teenager.
Kang-sook, seemingly dressed as tacky as possible, visits Hyo-sun at school in an attempt to get the ring back. Eun-jo’s staying with the hairy ahjussi because, according to her mother, it makes it seems less likely that they are going to run away. (Even though they will be once the ring is returned.) At first KS is terse with HS, complaining about the distance to her home and not-so-gently suggesting a taxi (even though they seem to be in a very wooded area). Once she overhears that HS’s father is a cruel taskmaster since his wife had died many years ago, KS perks up and immediately changes her tune.
For you see, he had gone drunk with power and began smashing all the wine batches because they were, according to him, shit. He made everyone get on their knees while he cracked open all their hard work, even kicking HS’s uncle — his dead wife’s brother. So the two ahjummas (well I guess only one is an ahjumma and the other’s a halmeoni since I heard the latter term used somewhere during this drama) of the household went to find Hyo-sun in order to placate her father, although I don’t know how they snuck out during his tyrannical rule. Kang-sook can only follow lamely, the retrieval of the ring the only reason she’s putting up with this.
Lol he doesn’t even make contact with him… AND he kicked him TWICE for good measure lol (It looks as if it was supposed to be just once, but they filmed it twice to get different camera angles, so they just put all the kicking in there.)
Huhoh whut? Oh… what was I going to say… Why so much KH in Dae-sung’s introductory scene; well ever since the delivery scene, someone has been taking pictures of CJM and it’s no different here either. Oh, but who? AND IT’S NOT ME OKAY HOW COULD I EVEN GET ALL FIVE NECESSARY DROPS OF GHB INTO HIS BREAKFAST BIBIMBAP IN ORDER TO KNOCK HIM OUT COLD SO I COU
JUST LOOK AT HIM. WHAT IS WRONG, MISTER?? OR SHOULD I ASK WHAT ISN’T WRONG? Even that guy that doesn’t look worried looks more worried than you.
Haha Kang-sook looks like she’s about to puke after witnessing Hyo-sun’s cutesy attempts to win her father over. More than just acting cute, however, she did bring up the very good point that half of these workers are her friends’ parents. And, it worked! See, her “cuteness” does work, maybe not on you, but on her father. OTOH, he probably relents so she’d stop doing those things. Ironically, Seo Woo hated this aspect of her character lulz.
Hyo-sun brings a now kinder Kang-sook to her large abode, and KS is very impressed. You can almost see the gears turning in her head. While searching her room HS remembers where she kept the ring, but a sudden cry breaks her thoughts. KS tried helping the ahjummas in their chores, and according to one of them she leapt into the pathway of tossed fish water. Methinks she did it purposely to gain some kind of sympathy, as the two ahjummas keep questioning who she is. (To their credit, KS never responds and only smiles a bit, mysteriously. At least say something. I AM THE LIZARD QUEEN is pretty crazy, but it’s a response.) So Hyo-sun, who was looking at her mother’s personal belongings just moments ago (she said to herself she hadn’t looked in that box for a long time, so the ring couldn’t possibly be in there, but she checked anyway), now finds herself giving Kang-sook her mother’s clothing to wear so her fish-corpse smelling clothes can dry. I hope they scrub it down, too.
Seeing her mother’s clothes being worn again, Hyo-sun cries, but she’s unsure why. Kang-sook comforts her and HS craves this motherly affection. (What about those two ahjummas though, they seem rather close. Maybe clothes really do make the man. Or dead-mother replacement.) HS directs her to pat her head again and we see KS look a bit confused, surprised even. “Er… oh well… will this get my ring back?!!?!?” But I think she continually refines more and more her scheme the longer she stays…
Hyo-sun claims the bag housing the ring had been loaned, so Kang-sook speaks personally to Dae-sung to see if she could stay and work at his house while waiting for its return. In reality HS had asked her uncle (the one who got kicked twice) to hide that bag in order to force KS to stay with her. And so, with HS unknowingly fertilizing KS’s scheme seeds, Kang-sook uses her womanly wiles (and his dead wife’s clothing no doubt) to worm her way in.
Even a HBIC has a weakness. And it totally looks like he’s about to get a magical tent. In his pants.
Meanwhile Eun-jo has to tolerate living with the hairy ahjussi, who has gotten drunk again. He thinks her mother has abandoned her, but she refuses to believe that. He stumbles into her room and although he passes out right in front of her, she freaks out, screaming for Jung-woo. JW, bless him, drags him away, while complaining that he is too heavy. I really think they are implying that this sort of thing had happened before (with another man), in a much-less-happier ending.
Hyo-sun, otoh, is very very happy. She got a splinter in her finger! WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE Lol @ her goofy faces. Srsly, I need Seo Woo to be in more comedies.
In a huge coincidence, Ki-hoon, HS’s uncle (wth is his name I still don’t know and it’s way past the halfway point of the drama run now), and Dae-sung are all witnessing this event at the same time. That high level of improbability forces a wormhole to appear and sucks all of our characters into a parallel universe, where everything is just slightly off-kilter. Fire hydrants are yellow, people call soda “pop,” and taxicabs are green. Or maybe they just went into the next town. Seriously, the uncle is not happy, Ki-hoon seems to long for his own dead mother, and Dae-sung just stands there in a very peculiar fashion.
Because it’s STOP! HAMMER TIME
While Hyo-sun seeks any way for Kang-sook to act like a mother to her, Kang-sook seeks any way to get as close to Dae-sung as possible. Hmmm these two are quite manipulative, aren’t they? Ironic, much? (Remember it’s called Cinderella’s Sister, not I Love My Stepdaughter.) In one instance she asks DS something about buying ingredients for HS’s lunch, and he offers to take her on his bicycle. She finds this the perfect time to kick the wheel every now and then so that when she holds onto him she can press her bosom to his back. You know until they both tumble off the bike and roll down into a ditch or something.
The next scene, Hyo-sun cries. Oh no, are they dead???? No, the uncle has returned the ring to Kang-sook, who now has no other reason to stay. I didn’t notice this before, but apparently he claims that she knew HS was hiding it all along. Hmmm interesting. Maybe it was just the uncle being bitchy. In any case, KS is at the bus stop, while Ki-hoon tries to convince Dae-sung to go after KS because Hyo-sun hasn’t been so happy since her mother died. I didn’t notice this line before either… so how long HAS Ki-hoon been there?? Was he being presumptuous? “I am assuming the way Hyo-sun is acting now with a surrogate mother was exactly like this with her biological mother! Rawr!” (It just seems to make sense that he roared.)
Kang-sook, that crazy confident ol’ bitch, is fully expecting Dae-sung to come to her; she’s not waiting for the bus at the bus stop, but him!! Herderder… He finally makes his way there and tries to stop her from leaving, because Hyo-sun is upset.
“Well… my daughter may be upset.”
“Bring her here!” +10
“Is it just for Hyo-sun that I should stay?”
BEYONCE ACHIEVEMENT UNLOCKED: HE LIKES IT SO HE’S GONNA PUT A RING ON IT
MAXIMUM POINTS SCORED. MOOCHING-OFF-NEW-MAN PROCESS COMPLETED. GAME OVER.
Back at Hairy Ahjussi’s place (I wonder if it’s rent-free), Eun-jo is busy making kimchi, probably to pass the time. Once again, WHERE IS THE MONEY COMING FROM? Jung-woo notes he and Eun-jo are the same, because both their mothers abandoned them with the Yeti. With a slight upturned corner of her mouth, Eun-jo finally realizes she can run away, guilt-free. She packs her bags, but Jung-woo tries to stop her, sort of. He’s still too scared of her death glare. She tells the drunken and unconscious Sasquatch that she made enough food to last them for two months, so she has no debt to him. If he wants the ring back, he’ll have to take it up with her mother. And she leaves.
But her mother’s new boyfriend has sent two of his workers to pick up Eun-jo, the uncle and Ki-hoon.
And we finally, finally, get to the crux of why I started this in the first place: the aching, arduous, agonizing, ardent ardor between these two. So much is implied and written on their faces that I go into implication overload. But I’m going too far ahead again…
The uncle (who knows how long ago) launched into one of his rants about his feelings doing this as the brother of Dae-sung’s dead wife, whilst driving. Ki-hoon notices how anxious Eun-jo looks so he tries to impart some words to calm her down. She blurts out that she was to go to the bathroom. The uncle creepily stands outside peering through the door and wonders if she wants to “expel all her insides,” LOL. A woman comes out, notices him, looks up at the sign as if to make sure she came out the right restroom, then continues. If the mere sight of a man standing outside the ladies’ bathroom makes her question her gender, maybe she/he should do a bit of soul-searching.
Eun-jo is doing what she does best: she is running away. She refuses to follow her mother’s lead in accepting a man to take care of her. After all, how long will this one last? How will this man treat her? Both of them? However…
Omg… this scene… is probably my most favorite scene in the history of my watching television. (You know, until the next one comes along.) The music, the directing, the cinematography… guhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh~
Although out of context and parsed by still frames, the chase scene becomes quite rapist-y. (I mean check out this still captured by the on-set photographer, which is even rape-ier than anything that ended up on air. [But then, look at how much fun they are having here!!])
I really like how their legs are nearly matching step-by-step when he gets closer (the first of many parallels for them it now, in retrospect, seems)
Although I don’t know what’s up with this windmill move
(Joking aside, actual rapes [even in fiction] are not funny, okay? Even if it’s a douchebag getting a plastic Easter egg stuffed up his bum. BTW, fuck you, RT. [Yeah I am still bitter over the direction Veronica Mars ended up in. Whatever.])
Ki-hoon has only managed to grab her pencil, which only serves to unfurl her long, wild mane of hair. Loose hair usually signifies beauty (you know, when that nerdy girl finally turns into Rachael Leigh Cook) and vulnerability, but I think (especially moreso than the former) it also denotes her “wild” status — untrusting of anyone, immediate verbal barbs and death stares, wanting to be free — this Eun-jo is still very rough around the edges. Did Ki-hoon note all of this in this one prolonged glance that literally took his breath away? Whatever he does realize here (and if he doesn’t here, he does eventually), it was enough to stop him.
On a superficial note, this scene is the most gorgeous I have ever seen Moon Geun-young… she’s not unattractive, but she wouldn’t be what you would consider a “sex symbol” or a “bombshell,” either. After all, I don’t imagine looking like a sex kitten would earn you the title of “Nation’s Younger Sister”; she has a sweet, girl-next-door face. But here I suddenly realized she’s all grown up. The long hair extensions definitely help. Haha maybe this is what made Ki-hoon stop in his tracks.
In retrospect, this chase scene is actually quite fraught with sexual imagery:
01) The chasing is foreplay.
02) Her hair is let down, that means SRS BSNS
03) She begins the uphill climb, he follows.
04) Brief interlude running through the forested hill.
05) He catches up to her; some hair pulling and biting is involved (and some grunting and screaming).
06) Final chasing.
07) He bodyslams her.
08) Both out of breath, he lies down next to her.
Maybe I’m being pervy but… did it really have to end up in a forest on a hill? That’s just inviting sexual metaphors, yo! Or maybe I’m underestimating the amount of hills in South Korea. Then it’s just probability! But then again, heh look at these caps:
BUT how did Ki-hoon even know to chase after Eun-jo? OMG HE IS A RAPIST. Nah I’m just joking he’s all right. Kang-sook apparently knows her daughter very well and warned him that she would not go with them so easily, so he was well-prepared. Except maybe the hill-climbing part, did you see his face? It was like, “Oh jfc come on this is just plain rude.”
As if knowing from experience, KH asks Eun-jo where she will go when she has run away? And does she know the kind of difficulties that she will need to embrace simply because she’s a minor? So wait until you are of age before you run away okay? Lol, that’s not running away, that’s just moving out. But she takes in his words because, as she says, it feels as if she’s been put under a spell and she could believe him even if he said the moon were square.
I’m still not sure why she and Hyo-sun used the same terms, unless it’s some kind of foreshadowing of the love triangle, that they both regard him in the same romantic manner. Or is that reading too much into it? I am getting ahead of myself here, but I honestly think the two girls are two halves of a whole. One is the brains and the other the heart, and only together can the company flourish. This is why it would have made more sense for her to say that she would believe him even if he said the sun were square — something different, yet complementary to what Hyo-sun said. But that’s me. And maybe that’s a well-known adage in Korean. But the fact that these two girls are the opposite sides of a coin, means to me that Ki-hoon cannot love both of them with the same kind of love — with both of them he can achieve familial and romantic love, but that can’t happen with only one of them, because in most situations you do not love a family member with the underpinnings of desire, and if you desire somebody you don’t want to treat them as if they were your parent, sibling, or child. (Forget about those distant cousins in Shelbyville for a moment.) Both scenarios are really, really awkward. It’s like the one where Rachel dated Yeti the Danny and she finds out his relationship with his sister is… not very sibling-like. So yeah somehow this paragraph devolved into me trying to convince myself that the endgame has to be Ki-hoon and Eun-jo. IF IT IS ITALICIZED IT MUST BE TRUE AND I DON’T MEAN ANCIENT ITALIAN PEOPLES BEFORE THE ROMAN EMPIRE.
Though Eun-jo follows them back, she immediately gets into a shouting match with her mom. There is so much going on here one after another. They are yelling aloud their frustrations, but it doesn’t sound hokey (well then again I don’t know Korean so maybe it is), it’s totally natural and you get a sense of their past through this argument.
EJ wants to know why can’t they just figure out a way to survive together, without depending on a man, because who knows when they will get kicked out again? Kang-sook asks, who does her daughter think she’s doing it for? But EJ thinks it’s only for her mother’s own selfish reasons, and threatens to “bite her tongue till [she] bleeds to death” unless she listens. KS pulls her away into the woods so she can smack her around in secret and reiterates that she’s only doing this for Eun-jo. EJ retorts, well if she was doing it for her, why did she abandon her? KS is totally shocked; she may be many things — manipulative, sly, a liar, a rodeo clown, a lumberjack, a longshoreman — but abandoning her daughter is not one of those things; not even the shame of being a single mother made her think otherwise. Then, why did she leave her at that horrible Hairy Ahjussi’s place? KS immediately picks up on her meaning and asks if he did something weird. What do you mean “weird”? Like, was he juggling three bowling pins whilst on a unicycle while spinning plates? That’s pretty strange. But no, he didn’t do anything “strange,” although EJ was afraid he would. Because if the plates fall and break, that’s money wasted! KS says, unconvincingly, that she knew Jang (yeah that’s his name I think it’s the first time I wrote it) wasn’t as bad as that other guy in that other place (you know, besides getting drunk and beating women), so she could leave her there. It’s like saying, “Hey, why don’t I punch you five times instead of seven, because it’s two punches less.” Anyway, I get the strong feeling that that other guy in that other place DID do something weird to Eun-jo, which is why she reacted so strongly to Hairy Man falling flat drunk in front of her. :(
EJ, like me, doesn’t really believe her line of reasoning; she thinks her mom doesn’t care about what happens to her anyway, so why did she bring her here? She turns to go, but Kang-sook asks, has she ever before been so absolute and certain about a man? This place is it — it’s got everything, including stability, and KS can finally send EJ to a normal school. Eun-jo is intrigued; she will stay under one condition: if they do have to leave this place, her mom will have to let her go, no matter what. “Yeah, okay, whatever,” she seems to say, just glad that her daughter is staying. “So, just how horrible is this dude anyway?” Eun-jo asks. Aw, he’s just a sweet old bear who wears parachute pants, Eun-jo! That doesn’t make him a bad man.
Next, all three are sitting in awkward silence, drinking tea. Won’t you share some wisdom? Kang-sook asks Dae-sung. He says about a million different things before settling on, he wants to do good by her, so he will promise whatever she wants. EJ says curtly that she doesn’t believe in promises, and to just let her attend school. Hyo-sun comes home and upon seeing a new person who she thinks would dote upon her (ha, Hyo-sun, ha!), screams and says, “Unni! Annyong!”
Moon Geun-young has been slowly trying to shed that “Nation’s Younger Sister” image, but with her seemingly ageless face, how can she? That’s why I think she chose such a rough role — not necessarily rough to portray (though I imagine it is), but a prickly, no-nonsense girl with a dark past, who is plagued by the sins of her mother. Furthermore, though she’s the main character, she can be extremely antagonistic towards others. So even with MGY’s “sweet” face playing this character, your perception of her changes with her character portrayal. This was especially apparent when I saw the cast on the Korean show, Happy Together, after I had seen a few episodes of CS already. I was a bit surprised at how much MGY’s face differed from what I was now accustomed to — she wasn’t mean or abrasive, she was herself. Which definitely goes to show that while people can have “good” or “bad” looks, personality can color someone’s appearance also, for better or for worse. Rather than trying to look bad (like so many Hollywood women do to win that naked Oscar), she is bad, and that is currently why the gentle face of the Nation’s Younger Sister hides beneath the wicked face of Cinderella’s Sister. (Also Moon Geun-young probably has great control over her facial muscles.)
This drama is a bit unpredictable so far… usually it’s the man that is a gloomy gus, and a cheerful girl er, cheers him up. BOR-RING. Eun Jo is anything but cheerful or helpful, giving it a unique twist. Well, a unique Korean drama twist. It’s not a new concept, but it’s definitely fresh among K-dramas, I think. Then again, the number of K-dramas I’ve watched can all be clutched in my two beautiful and ironic fists. Prove me wrong, universe!