This is me (back in Feb/March) trying to choose which Korean drama to watch next…
I’m getting tired of all the lame excuses for why the main couple won’t get on board the romance train. Oh, here we are! City Hunter is a suspense/action drama! The only thing to come between them must be explosions and danger and baddies who want to crush them! None of that “you can’t love me because I broke my wrist breaking your fall” nonsense. (True story. Happens in Heartstrings.) This should be an epic drama of no-nonsense action love!! AND LEE MIN HO!! SQUEEEE!
Then I watched it.
Then my heart was broken and I took a full two month BREAK from Korean dramas!! IT WAS THAT TRAUMATIC! And it wasn’t just the fact that the main fluff-bunnies did come up with absolutely terrible reasons not to be together, but
**SPOILERS**Something horrible happened in the second or third to last episode involving CHARACTER DEATH which is something I Really cannot handle well.**END SPOILERS**
Resuming the actual review part.
Synopsis: In retaliation of the Rangoon bombing, five high ranking South Koreans deploy twenty-one of their men to secretly eradicate several of the North’s commanders. The mission is a success, but the US vows to withdraw nuclear protection if the South strikes back. In an effort to conceal the operation and prevent an international crisis, the five officials have the twenty-one soldiers shot down by their own men. The one and only survivor returns to South Korea and kidnaps his fallen comrade’s son, raising him as a tool of revenge. His quest is to identify and kill the five traitors who condemned his comrades to their doom. But the boy he raised as an instrument of death has different ideas of how to bring the men to justice.
My Rating: R – Mostly for violence and “what the freak is happening right now!?” kind of situations. Also for having a totally Ridiculous ending that made me Raving mad. Really.
American Counterpart: The Bourne Films
Take note that I didn’t say “inferior” American counterpart, because I actually like the Bourne films better. Although they are very similar in the fact that they’re both crazy awesome for the action and spy thriller aspect, and then crush your heart when it comes to romance. City Hunter does have a happy-ending romance… sort of, I guess… but it’s overshadowed by another character’s non-happy ending. Anyway. Now that I’ve rambled on…
The cast and characters were phenomenal. Lee Min Ho is the City Hunter. I mean, I’ve never seen him in a role he didn’t own, but something about this one makes it seem like he was born for it. The complexities and conflicts of the president, the Blue House workers, and others made it a great collection of well rounded characters. At first. Stuff got crazy at the end and stopped making sense, but we won’t discuss that… yet.
Hilarity Per Episode: ♠
Not a drama for laughs. For a comedic romp, I’d suggest You’re Beautiful or Protect the Boss, but this drama is not made for giggles. I can’t give it zer0 hilarity points, because there were a few scenes I laughed or chuckled at. Considering how it broke my fangirl heart, I should knock it down, though…
Tear Drama: ♠♠♠♠
Not cool, drama. Not cool. Okay, actually for a while it was really cool. And there was a lot of good heart string tugging going on, and the tears were worth it because the sad stuff made it emotional. Then we got to the end and my world fell apart, and the tears were angry and that’s never a good thing.
Espionage. Danger. Triumph. The City Hunter soundtrack makes everything epic. I play it while washing dishes so I feel like I’m saving the world by sudsing. :P
Try it. Pick any mundane task and listen to these tracks while you’re doing it. It feels awesome.
-Organising clothes/writing documents, etc…
-Doing dishes/cleaning the bathroom…
-Making a snack….
Sleep Deprivation: ♠♠♠♠♠
Cliffhanger King. With so much going on; all the twists and turns of a spy’s life, you can imagine the cliffhanger episodes are worse than average. And by worse, I mean keep you up all hours of the night to get to the next resolution, regardless of how strenuous your work load was the day before. If I wrote this review before Episode… oh, let’s say 16 or so, (that’s a very rough guesstimate) I would have given it all 5’s.
This drama really had a lot of potential, and I think that’s what made it so dreadfully upsetting by the end. The plot twists started to feel contrived. The main couple were trying to protect each other by staying away from each other and then getting kidnapped and almost killed anyway. They both took the “noble sacrifice” stance more than once, and it got really frustrating really fast. It’s bad enough for one half of the couple doing it, but for both?? And geeze, girl! He’s a man! He’s supposed to do things like step in front of motorcycles and get shot for you!
There were still great scenes, fantastic acting and action, but once it started going downhill, it never recovered. They had a chance to redeem it right near the end, with resolving a certain couple’s issues and giving them a happy ending. But they destroyed it. Big time. Also, there was too much self-harm for the sake of manipulating another person. Such as, “you don’t want to see me hurt, so I’m going to stab my own hand to show you up and hope it makes you stop killing other people.” Yeeeaaaaahno.
Eye Candy: ♠♠♠♠♠
Lee Min Ho would have been enough… but then they go and add this guy as the prosecuting attorney trying to track down City Hunter because he doesn’t like the fact that this guy is acting above the law to bring lawless men down, and… be still my heart!
And, of course… Lee Min Ho is never hard on the eyes. Except a couple times in Boys Over Flowers. I totally feel Jan Di’s annoyance over the curly hair. :P
Like I said, it upset me so much that I took a break from dramas. It takes a special case to do that to me. What’s surprising (to me) is that everyone else on Dramalist seems to think it’s the best drama ever. I really don’t understand. Yeah, it was going great! But then it just… fell apart! I hold to my rule that if you’re going to put us through a lot of emotional turmoil and agony, you have to make up for it with incredible happiness. They never did that! It just got more and more depressing and I kept waiting for the happiness, and it was like, “Oh, yup. The end.” No marriage, babies, or even shopping for puppies! Come on, guys! You can do better than that!