Man’s Best Friend…

If there’s ever a time when I wish to be an inanimate object, I’d like to be that teddy bear. Heehee.

(In case you’re wondering, the person in the picture is Daniel Henney.)

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LDH News

LDH will be joining Lee Ji Hoon and Uhm Tae Woong on the catwalk in the Korean Rice Festival. She’s also having a fan autograph session on January 17th.

Special thanks to incarnadine @ soompi for the news.

Healthy and Beautiful Lee Da Hae in new CF not afraid of the COLD

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Lee Da Hae has been appointed as the sole spokesperson for a prominent Vitamin Store/Company for the year 2007. They decided to use her because of her healthy outlook and beautiful charming smiles. Besides, all of her recent CFs have done well in the market and have had lots of praises and good comments.

Lee Da Hae braved herself in the cold during the filming process and always kept her smiles thru out. Her bubbly and playful personality made everyone in the crew forget about the freezing cold and the filming was finished completed smoothly.

The CF shows Da Hae giving her good friends a bottle of Health Vitamins, as an appreciation of their concern and care.

Source: Sina Ent/ baidu

Special thanks to pinklily and yeohweping for the article and ripgal @ soompi for the translation.

I’m Annoyed

Stupid people annoy me.

Incompetent smart-asses annoy me. (In other words, people who don’t do their job well yet have the nerve to tell me what to do.)

Whiny people annoy me. It’s like, just do your job. You’re getting paid to do this; you’re working, not volunteering. Geez, is that too much to ask?!

People who make “mountains out of molehills” annoy me.

Rude people annoy me.

Rude people who are telling me to be nice when, in fact, it should be the other way around, annoy me.

Selfish people annoy me.

Immature and bratty people annoy me.

Superficial people annoy me. I know you don’t give a rat’s ass about me so stop asking about how I’m doing.

Arrogant people, those who act like they’re hot sh*t and that you should worship the ground they walk on, annoy me.

Difficult-to-please people annoy me. Okay, so it was our mistake for not getting the order right. However, we apologized and had it corrected for you. So please, get over it and stop complaining.

People with little or no sense of urgency annoy me.

In conclusion, people annoy me.

On top of that, my Mini Ipod suddenly stops working today. It doesn’t turn on and I can’t even recharge the battery. What sucks is that it’s going to be costly to have the battery replaced and it’s most likely that I’ll do that because I don’t have the luxury of purchasing another player. What sucks even more is that although I’ve had it for a few years now, I don’t even use it that often. Damn!

Thai Instability Likely to Delay Rain’s Tour

Singer Rain’s world tour in Thailand will likely be delayed due to unstable local conditions.

Rain’s performance was set for February third and fourth at Bangkok’s Impact Arena.

The world tour organizer StarM said Wednesday that safety is the first concern following a chain of organized bomb explosions earlier this month in Bangkok. It said it is discussing a postponement with the Thai organizing agency, possibly to June, but that it is yet undecided.

The New Years bombings in downtown Bangkok are thought to be either a military coup by supporters of former prime minister Thaksin Shinwatra to regain power or a move by incumbent coup forces who are disappointed at the transitional government’s rule.

Thai Defense Minister Boonrawd Somtas has even warned of more terrorism.

StarM says that though the tickets are mostly sold, the safety of the singer, staff and audience must be considered, adding that ticket holders will be offered the chance to watch the delayed performance or get a refund.

On board a Korean Air plane that has a huge picture of himself printed on its fuselage, Rain left Seoul Wednesday for his Hong Kong tour this weekend.
Source: KBS Global

doozy: Anyone know the latest news on this issue? Are they going to cancel the concert all together or delay it?

Some Other Things…

Those who are fans of Goong and Se7en and are looking forward to Goong SGoong S premieres on January 10th on MBC. WITH S2 will be providing the English fansubs for this drama.

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If you look to your right under “Currently Watching,” the list includes 101st Proposal, Please Come Back, Soon Ae and Spring Waltz. The question is: am I ever going to finish watching these three shows? At the moment, the answer seems to be “never.” 101st Proposal is getting repetitive and Spring Waltz is dreadful. I just hate dropping a drama and not finishing what I’ve started. But must I torture myself so? Even the gorgeous Daniel Henney isn’t enough motivation for me to keep going. And trust me, he’s beyond drool-worthy in here.

Please Come Back, Soon Ae is decent so that will probably be the first one I complete.

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I’m also watching The Snow Queen to support Hyun Bin. As a music video, it works beautifully. However, as a good, solid drama, the same cannot be said. Too cliche and too melodramatic. I was also very creeped out during the beginning of the drama because of the pairing of Hyun Bin and the actress who played the young Bo Ra. (Grown-up Bo Ra is played by Sung Yu Ri.) The actress they chose looked like she was twelve. Even if she did look like she was fourteen, which was the character’s age, pairing her with Hyun Bin, who looked like he’s 25, when he’s supposedly 18, is just… ew. Why can’t they find a younger looking actor to play the young Tae Wong (Hyun Bin’s character)? That would have been better.

Any good points? Yes.
1) Nice soundtrack
2) Hyun Bin’s hotness. He has really nice hair in here. His hair has the triple S quality: soft, shiny, and silky. Seriously, if Tae Wong/Deuk Gu can’t be a boxer or chauffer, he can always be a model for Pantene Shampoo & Conditioner.

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Watch Jumong if you haven’t already. I can’t wait until more English subtitles come out. It’s a great show!

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When will I finish writing the episode summaries/commentaries for Alone In Love? I don’t know. I have that “illness,” you know, the one that begins with an L and ends with Aziness. That’s right, you guessed it: laziness. But no one really reads them, right? Except for maybe one person besides myself.

Sweet 18

I finally finished Sweet 18, starring Lee Dong Gun and Han Ji Hye, yesterday. I was interested in the show because this is Lee Da Hae’s debut and she played a villain. But it took me forever to finish this drama. Why? Because initally, I was very annoyed with Han Ji Hye’s character, Jung Sook. Her immature ways and constant yelling were getting on my nerves. However, as the drama progressed, she became more mature and I guess, when you think about it, she got married when she had just graduated from high school and was only 18 so it was realistic that she was immature. Every now and then, the yelling still bothered me, though.

On storyline: Basically, it’s about two people who married each other because the nuptial was arranged previously by their grandfathers. Initially, it was a one-sided love on Jung Sook’s part. However, over time, they learned to live together, mutually care for and love each other. Overall, I like the storyline and the pace of the drama.

On Acting: HJH did good. LDG did okay. The actor who played Hyuk Joon’s grandfather was terrific.

Well, what about Lee Da Hae, you ask? Not bad. At one point during the drama, I hated her character so that must be saying something about her acting, right? At the beginning of the show, I remembered commenting in LDH’s soompi thread about how I irritated I was with her character Moon Ga Young and told myself that it’s her drama character, not her real-life personality. Moon Ga Young was very superficial and conniving when she was trying to steal Hyuk Joon away from Jung Sook. Eventually, however, Ga Young made me laugh because her villain was so funny and childish. She wasn’t outright evil.

LDH looked very mature in the show, probably due to her wardrobe and hairstyle. Her character was around 27 years old when, in fact, she was only 20 when Sweet 18 was filmed.

On chemistry: HJH and LDG had great chemistry together. They’re very compatible. Thus, it’s no surprise that thanks to this drama, they began dating in real-life.

Funny tibit: In Sweet 18, Jung Sook sported the famous “bun look.” You know, the one that can be seen on Song Hye Gyo’s character Han Ji Eun in Full House, LDH’s character in My Girl and Yoon Euh Hye’s character in Goong. It was funny when LDH’s Ga Young teased HJH’s Jung Sook about how hideous the bun looked when it’s only a few years later that she played a character that sported a similar style.

Lastly, I just want to say that Kwon Hyuk Joon (LDG) is my second ideal man. (The other one being Ben from TVB’s Survivor’s Law.) Hyuk Joon was so understanding and caring towards Jung Sook. He respected her and was faithful despite the tricks from Ga Young. He was also a very responsible and filial man. He is, what I would call, an ESOM: extinct species of men.

(It’s a funny coincidence how both of my ideal men are lawyers. So lawyers aren’t really scum of the earth but they’re actually righteous and responsible? Eh, who knows for sure… That phrase is most likely a gross generalization either way.)

Come to think of it, though, almost all Korean men in TV land are ESOMs. Seriously, why are they all so tall, good-looking, loving, caring, sensitive, etc.? Where can I find one?

Sweet or Sour?

Hershey’s.

Korean Vs. U.S. Television Shows

Devotees of U.S. soap operas are increasingly voting with their feet, watching them not only on cable or satellite TV channels but engaging in such illegal activities like posting episodes of popular dramas with Korean subtitles online just a few hours after they are broadcast in the U.S. Pundits say as their number explodes, the viewer ratings of Korean dramas are shrinking. More than 1.5 million such fans are estimated to be out there online, more than three times the number three years ago. The cable channel OCN posted two or three times higher viewer ratings than usual on its “CSI Days” in June and October, when it aired seasons of the U.S. crime drama CSI 24 hours.

Why do people love U.S. soaps so much? It is mainly because they offer something different from the familiar fare of domestically produced dramas. The Chosun Ilbo asked translators of subtitles of U.S. dramas to compare shows produced in the two countries.

What you can find only in U.S. [T.V. Shows]

Professions: Medical dramas in Korea are only about love between doctors and nurses, but that is not the case in the U.S. No matter what kind of professions they deal with, U.S. dramas depict their professional world realistically. Nip/Tuck, which features two plastic surgeons, as well as CSI, Grey’s Anatomy and ER take us by surprise with their detailed and realistic description of the professions they feature. By contrast, most dramas except historical and period dramas in Korea are centered around romance.

Suspense: Korean dramas are filled with secrets, but viewers either know or easily guess what they are. Watch just the first few episodes and you know who will end up with whom and who will kick the bucket. In American soaps, the twists and turns are genuinely surprising in many episodes and viewers can have fun discussing the riddles. Cases in point are Prison Break and Lost. That is why is many cannot tear themselves away once they start watching.

Seasons: U.S. dramas are made based on thorough preparation by producers right from the planning stage, so they can be shot and shown in several “seasons.” But in Korea, there’s not a big enough pool of actors and they act both in movies and dramas simultaneously, making it nearly impossible for dramas to last several seasons. In the U.S. stars usually have a home either in TV or the movies. If the Korean soap opera Damo (Female Detective) were produced in the U.S., it would have run over five seasons.

Episodes: U.S. dramas are centered around events but Korean dramas around relationships. That is why U.S. dramas have titles for each episode, which mostly tells a complete story for 60 minutes. In Korea, the relationships among characters unfold at a leisurely pace throughout the whole drama.

What only [Korean dramas] offer

Family: Korean dramas put much emphasis on relationships, especially on blood relationships. There are often three generations living under one roof in Korean dramas; that is rare in U.S. soaps. The main reason is cultural differences, but also because U.S. dramas focus more on what characters do rather how they live.

Writers: U.S. soap writers are not as powerful as their Korean counterparts. Usually, one drama season is produced by 10-20 writers together, and you can feel the difference in the language characters use; such differences come up even in a single season. For example, if you hear newly-coined words, it is because young writers wrote the lines. But emotional language has become a unique characteristic of Korean dramas, hard to find in U.S. dramas that focus on particular events. In many cases, U.S. shows even have different directors who attempt to put their stamp on the episode, and sometimes famous movie directors such as Quentin Tarantino in CSI and Tobe Hooper in Taken have a hand in producing them.

Stars: U.S. dramas do not cast famous stars when they start. The mega-hit sitcom Friends ran into trouble when the stars it made tried to command more money after its mid-point. But when it was first aired, all except Lisa Kudrow, who previously starred in one or two B-movies, were still unknown. Kim Yoon-jin who rose to stardom in Lost, now commands some W30 billion (US$1=W930) per season or W1.2 billion per episode but was paid less than W100 million per episode in the first season. By contrast, Korean soaps tend to depend on the power of celebrities.

Incurable Disease: U.S. dramas deal with incurable diseases but only as incidental in such medical dramas as House and Grey’s Anatomy. In Korean dramas, however, incurable diseases like cancer and leukemia and memory loss play a critical role in moving the drama along. U.S. dramas rely more on clockwork plots than affliction.
Source: english.chosun.com

doozy: I agree with the above points, especially the part about professions and the all-too-familiar incurable disease storylines.

Han Ye-seul Wins Over Detractors as Amnesiac Heiress

The character played by Han Ye-sul (24) in the MBC drama Couple of Fantasy is a kind of Korean Paris Hilton, and her catchphrase “Look at you…” is on everybody’s lips. An audacious heiress, Ana Jo becomes a comic character with disordered hair and cheap clothes after losing her memory due to an accident. Han’s popularity is soaring thanks to the attractive qualities she brings to the role of a haughty rich girl brought low.

“Aren’t they cute? I mean Netizens. They say I was such an unattractive character but suddenly became so charming. Those anti-fans… They suddenly became big fans,” Han laughs. Her clothes are unflattering, but they can’t hide her beautiful chiseled face. “I am a completely different person from Ana Jo. In fact, I think I’m lovely, delicate and rarely get angry.” Han says she never expected she would become this popular. “When I decided to play a character like Ana Jo, who is arrogant and haughty, I was ready for any criticism from viewers, but instead I’m getting very friendly responses and I was really surprised,” she says. “When I see how popular characters like Ana Jo are, I realize that Korea is changing fast. The public is becoming more open-minded. It’s cool. Such a mindset is important for us to develop, isn’t it?” She has a tendency to answer a question with another question.

Han made her debut in entertainment when she won a super model contest. She became a star thanks to the rude and bizarre role she played in another MBC drama, Non Stop, in 2004. Recently she spent a year off with her family in the U.S. “The reason why I had so many detractors was that I became a star so fast. Our citizens have a strong sense of justice.” Isn’t she afraid of spoiling her image by playing such a role? She is breaking down barriers step by step as Ana Jo. “I’ve been a star rather than an actress, and that’s no good. Stars have an inflated image and a short lifespan. I want to be more passionate about my job and build my career so that I can act for a long time.”

Complimented that her acting has greatly improved, she giggles and covers her mouth. “Really? It’s so nice to hear that. I think I’m very lucky.” She speaks English fluently and wants to enter the U.S. market too. Asked if she wants to follow in the footsteps of Kim Yun-jin, who is a star thanks to her part in the ABC hit series Lost,” she is quick to respond. “It’s so childish to say I want to do better than someone else.” Does she have a role model? “There are so many excellent actors and actresses out there…My job is acting, but I don’t like watching dramas or movies, so I can’t answer your question. It’s ironic, isn’t it?”
(englishnews@chosun.com )
Source: english.chosun.com

doozy: This is a relatively old article since it was published in October, around the airing time of Fantasy Couple. However, I’m posting here so fans of the drama, like myself, can learn more about Han Ye Seul.

I have seen the NGs of the drama and HYS seems to be very professional with her work, which is something that can be seen in her answers in the above article. Also, while watching the 2006 MBC Drama Awards, HYS’s looks reminded me alot of Kim Tae Hee, except with friendlier eyes.

Initially watching the drama without knowing who HYS is, I was impressed with her fluent English skills and her acting talent. Talent aside, she’s also one beautiful lady and quite young as well, as I recently learned that she’s only 24 years old.

I love her catchphrase in Fantasy Couple because it’s so fun to say with all the characteristic intonations of Ana Jo/Na Sang Shil. “Koraji ha goneun.” If you pass up this excellent drama, that is what I’ll be saying to you. Heehee.