Saturday, February 15, 2014

A Gentleman's Dignity

A Gentleman's Dignity

Are you into mid-40's Korean men with bad hang-ups? Me either BUT these mid-40's Korean men with bad hang-ups are hysterically awesome. It may not appear so at first, but eventually their elderly good looks will charm you into thinking they're handsome as well. This Kdrama has everything: foolishly prideful men, hopelessly strong and enduring women, lots of attitude and a hilariously witty script writer and, of course, Woo Bin, I mean what else could you ask for! *sigh* Woo Bin...(*pokes head out of the darkness* ok...will you just admit I'm right already woman *fades back into the darkness*) Never!!

This was a Kdrama I kept putting off, not because I didn't honestly want to see it but mostly because I kept finding something better--or so I thought. It was always high in my queue but never quite there until one night I said, fine...let's do this...and before I knew it, it was over. I flew through this this Kdrama like nobody's business and I pushed it on others to watch because it's that awesome.

The Kdrama tells the story of four high school best friends that can't seem to grow the hell up. Each of our starring male leads are successful, handsome, and for the most part, very likable...except they have their own personal issues. The four leading ladies are all attitude, spunkiness, funny and charming in their own ways. There is no "love at first sight" in this Kdrama and each person has to hilariously work out their kinks to make their relationship work and along the way bring the audience lots of laughs and tears--and everything in between.

Kim Do Jin & Seo Yi Soo
This is the leading lady and man and it's exactly what it looks like. Yi Soo is a high school teacher who is  no-nonsense in the classroom but when it comes to love, she's all shook up. She starts off having a mad crush for her friend Tae San and when her secret is almost revealed she latches onto the first person she can who can help protect that secret...none other than the snarky yet charming Do Jin. At first he's annoyed--aren't they always--but eventually he starts to realize he's got feelings for her--don't they always--but then the crayola hits the fans and suddenly the easy, loving, relationship they'd accidentally fallen into gets complicated...

Lee Jong Ruk & Park Min Sook
These two are by far my favorite. Love-Love-Love. They're the only couple that are already married and is the power-house for the men--I even go so far as to say it was a practical arrangement. This relationship has the most issues and is cause for some serious tears of frustration but overall, they're perfect for each other and keep each other on their toes. Jong Ruk starts off as a dou--umm...he's a cheater. Takes-ring-off-kind of cheater but lucky for the audience he has many other redeeming qualities. (For instance, look at his smile...) He's loyal, he's funny, and provides for nearly 25% of the show's hilarity. Min Sook, his powerful, sexy, stern wife always who struggles to keep him in check and has a heart of gold. It's hard to describe their relationship; she knows he's no good but can't seem to let him go and he realizes he's a dou--umm...cheater but just can't seem to make himself stop until finally...she decides she's had enough and she's ready to let him go. 

Im Tae San & Hong Se Ra
This relationship is probably the most turbulent one. I know, shocking that it's this one and not the married couple, right? Tae San is arrogant, he's abrasive, and completely clueless to the fact that other women exist besides Se Ra--unfortunately for Yi Soo. Se Ra is a play girl, she likes to dress sexily, she likes to be acknowledged by other men and do her own thing but has eyes only for Tae San. The only problem...both these two are stubborn as mules and are constantly battling for dominance. She wants things her way and he wants things his way and neither are willing to give an inch. This picture really does say it all...

Choi Yoon & Im Me Ari
Probably the saddest couple of them all. I immediately clicked with this couple and was rooting for them even before I was rooting for the main leads. Me Ari is Tae San's younger sister--and by younger I 15 years younger (give or take) and she is unabashedly head over heels IN LOVE with Yoon. Yoon on the other hand, has never treated her as anything other than the affection little sister she is. However, through her persistence, he starts to view her as someone other than his best friends little sister and more of...a potential woman. The only problem is getting her brother to agree to the relationship...and of course...getting over his own history. (Ahh..spoiler...right here...skip this if you hate spoilers....ok, you've been warned. Have a box of tissues next to you when you start episode 16...just...ah...a warning...cause it's excruciatingly sad...)

There are a few supporting characters are worth mention:

Kim Dong Hyub & Colin
Dong Hyub (Kim Woo Bin's character) is..well..a typical Woo Bin character. He's a bully and a troublemaker but he's got a mad-crush on his teacher (Yi Soo) and will literally do anything to protect her. He makes a pretty strong appearance in the beginning of the show when he beats up Do Jin & Yoon which ultimately causes Yi Soo to continually seek Do Jin out in the hope that they can reach a settlement versus going to court and seeking compensation. Colin (CNBlue's Jong Hyun) is a transfer student from Japan. We spend a good portion of the Kdrama trying to figure out his character and his role in all of these people's but it isn't revealed who is truly is until later...I'll just leave it at that. However, he does begin a strong friendship with Dong Hyub and their scenes are pretty much always funny.

This Kdrama is original from start to finish--despite the cliched lover's quarrels and male adversion to love; the story line makes complete sense and rarely leaves the audience needing to take creative leaps to justify the character's actions and/or plot twists. Even the beginning of the story is creatively fun...

The Leading Man and Lady randomly meet each other on the street--a couple of times actually--after a loose strand of yarn from her knitted dress gets attached to Do Jin's messenger bag and starts to slowly unravel her dress. Eventually Do Jin notices the stray strand and follows it back to it's source, Yi Soo's butt who--luckily--is wearing an underskirt and has no idea that she's been flashing all of Seoul. Do Jin, quick on his feet, makeshifts a table cloth to be a skirt and does it so convincingly well that...I kinda wanted one too...

This Kdrama starts off differently than others; at the beginning of each episode, we get to see a blast from the past of these four men's lives--usually doing something stupid but everyone once in awhile (ahem episode 16...ahem...) we get to see just how strong their friendship is and it makes you want friends exactly like these. They're always in sync even if they don't agree with each other and are always there for each other when need be.

Moreover, the point is this Kdrama is worth the watch. Watching the characters grow and progress and learn to compromise is truly an enjoyable experience. A Gentleman's Dignity displays many emotions and can quite literally have you crying one moment and laughing the next. The character's don't disappoint and will have you cheering them on almost immediately.

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