After many thoughts, I finally had the guts to watch She Was Pretty, an MBC Korean Drama. I thought I would not loved it, but unexpectedly I do loved the casts, the characters, the OSTs, the love lines and the story. For the reasons why I love this drama will be stated below.
I admit that I was curious why in most opinions, the fans favored Siwon (the other guy) more than him. However, when I started watching this drama, he got me at his first scene. He was suave the way he carries his character even at first touch. Yes, he may not be as great as Lee Dong Wook or other great KDrama actors we mostly know, but there was just something in him which made me love how he played his role. I can see pure emotions every time he does his scene and it has a heart. I love it every time Seo Joon lets Sung joon throws his tantrums towards the female lead. I find it hot. I also like it that Seo Joon can turn his mean character – well, not really, into a cute little puppy when he does childish things with Hwang Jung eum when they finally reunited. Currently, he entered in my list as one of the actors I look forward.
This is my third drama of this actress after Secret and Endless Love. I admit, I was not fond of her melodramas. In here, during the first few episodes, I kind of find her portrayal of the character overacting and annoying. However, as the story moves forward, I can see why she had that “annoying character” in the first few episodes. Her performance as Hye Jin transformed as how her character did. This time, she made the right emotions while doing her cheerful side and showed right emotions when she has down scenes. No offense or whatever but, I can see that this actress does better in romcom dramas than in melodramas. At least, her character in this drama is unforgettable to me.
Here is a confession. This singer-actor is the main reason why I was so hesitant to watch this drama. First, I don’t find him attractive at all and second, I am afraid that my expectations of his portrayal of a second male lead would fail. But then, after watching this drama, I ate my own words. He nailed the character and I got severe Second Lead Syndrome especially as this drama reached the near finale episode. Unlike Seo Joon’s character, Siwon made me love his character bit by bit, that is as I saw the maturity of Shin hyuk’s feelings towards the female lead as well as his thoughts in life. Weird, but I find the Shin hyuk with beard handsome that without. I love his voice when he speaks. So manly and true and that was the reason why find his “I LIKE YOUs” sweeter than “I love you”. I love the way he attacks skinships towards the female lead. He made it so simple yet so genuine and I find those sexy…or maybe because it is Siwon.
This drama made me include her as one of my favorite second female lead actresses along with Wang Ji Hye and Yoo In Young. Her chic actions are natural, and I love it. I love the way she carries the elegance of her character. There are times which I hated her character but mostly, I can see why she became like that. I like that aside from showing her chic side, she was able to deliver the other sides of her character: when she lied, as a cheerful hotelier, a daughter in pain and a very loving best friend.
I have not seen Kill Me Heal Me when I saw this drama, but goddamn the chemistry of the lead stars Park Seo Joon and Hwang Jung eum was overflowing. I know that for some reasons KMHM became one elements, however I just find them so natural while doing their scenes especially the romantic scenes. For some reasons, I actually find Seo joon perfect for Hwang Jung eum than with Ji sung onscreen.
My favorite parts of this couple were their office romance especially when he throws tantrums to her, when they secretly show smiles towards each other and their characters’ true romance when Sung Joon discovered the real Hye jin.
As for with Siwon and Jung eum, at first, I was not hit by Second Lead Syndrome but as the story goes on, I enjoyed their every scene. I can see chemistry between them too. Thanks to Siwon’s voice. I love it every time Shin hyuk calls Hye jin Jackson (from Michael Jackson, due to her fashion sense). I love it whenever he teases her, so cute. I love how he expresses his love for her and I like how natural she responds to those, looks like she rejected it, but she actually appreciates it.
My favorite scenes of this couple were when he calls her Jackson, when he would follow her bus, whenever he says he likes her and whenever he hugs her.
If you would ask me whom I shipped in the story without minding the plot, I say that these two guys deserve to have her, any of them. Each of them shares chemistry and each of them had their own positive and negative traits as a man.
First love separated in the past then reunited in the present – yes, this one of KDrama clichés and I too are fan of some of these. However, among the dramas I saw, I have seen She Was Pretty as having the perfect element of “reuniting first love (RFL) ” stories. As quoted by Han Hyo Joo in Spring Waltz (a drama with the same plot), “Love is like hide and seek. You may not be able to see each other through the eyes, but you can through the heart.” I know that this line was the plot of the other drama, but as I see through the story of She Was Pretty, I found the line more perfect with it.
While some RFL stories progress due to discovering of secrets, hatred and revelations, She Was Pretty’s plot progresses through déjà vu incidents between the two main characters. Yes, Ma ri pretended to be Hye jin, but with or without the revelation, Sung joon’s heart recognized the real Hye Jin (even before Mari revealed the truth).
Another thing, I like how Sung joon started out as a mean boss to Hye jin. It is not that he is mean, but it is because of the pressure allotted to him to make The Most (drama company) successful under his leadership as the Deputy Editor in Chief. However, I like how they showed that despite his being a mean boss, he actually shows real concern towards her. This depicts that even before he knew the truth, he already fell for her (by fate) but tries to fight back those feelings because of the Hye jin, the best friend he knows (Ma ri).
Here, I can see that there are no villains, except for their emotions towards the situation around them. The story progresses step by step until they reached their happy forever. If you can see, it started with Hye jin asking Mari to pretend as herself in front of Sungjoon, then Sungjoon and Hyejin became colleagues in the company. He tries to hate her and throws tantrums to her but bit by bit he is slowly being captivated by her charm which was similar to the girl he knew in the past.
That time, while he was slowly falling for Hye jin as the other person, he is also starting to feel that there is something wrong in Mari being the Hye jin he knew. Then the secret was revealed.
As both were enjoying their status, Shin hyuk intensifies his position as the other guy in Hye jin’s life. Though Shinhyuk fights hard to gain Hye jin’s affection, she and Sung joon never lets go of one another.
The main couple became each other’s support that even after one year, their love for each other became as strong as ever. With that, they see a vision of their beautiful self as someone who fulfills their dreams and being together in each other’s arms. There is no complication; rather, their story is a process.
This is one of the drama’s secret ingredient, the soundtrack. I love it, from the instrumentals to the vocals. The use of Close To You (by The Carpenters) was a perfect song to define first loves. The vocal songs, whenever they play in every scene, struck my heart. It was not just a song to beautify the scene even more, instead it became their additional dialogue. Among the tracks, my favorites are Siwon’s Only You and You Don’t Know Me by Soyou and Brother Su.
I love Siwon’s Only You. I guess that’s the reason why I loved his character even more. What’s good is that, because he was the one who sang the song of his character, Shin hyuk, he was able to deliver the right emotions of the song. The lyrics were just like the longer version of his millions of “I like you” to Hye Jin.
As for Don’t You Know Me, this song serves as the perfect theme for the OTP. Its lyrics defined how their hearts came to recognize each other, but their eyes cannot, because of the first thought that someone else is the first love.
I may not say that this one is perfect but it is the drama worth to be treasured by every fan who have seen it.