Welcome to the Island

Tamra Island, that is.

When Tamra the Island aired in 2009, I had no interest in watching it primarily because there wasn’t anyone in its cast that really drew my attention. Seo Woo was a relatively newbie then. Im Joo Hwan was known to me as the dude who was Hyun Bin’s ineffective romantic rival in The Snow Queen; oh yeah, and also Kim Bum’s bro in a blink-and-you’d-miss-him scene in Boys Over Flower. And there was Hwang Chan Bin (Pierre Deporte), the blond albino boy whom I knew nothing about. Even after reading the many critical praises that Tamra gained, I still had no plans to check it out. Especially after being introduced to Seo Woo through the hot mess that was Cinderella’s Sister and leaving with feelings of indifferent and mild annoyance of the actress. So why am I marathoning it now?

In addition to a good script and solid performances by the drama’s cast, its OST is another aspect that can either enhance or diminish my enjoyment and emotional connection with that drama. For me, the pattern usually goes as such: 1) watch drama, 2) ooh, what lovely music you have there, 3) download OST, and 4) listen to it repeatedly. Tamra, however, has the distinction of turning this pattern upside-down because I fell in love with its instrumental theme before watching even a minute of the show.

How did Tamra and I find each other?

A few months ago, I became obsessed with SKKS, which led me to Miss Tofu’s Scandalous blog, which eventually got me into reading fanfics, which was when I stumbled across “Your Tears”, the main theme from Tamra’s OST. And here I am.

I saw episode 1 yesterday and was thisclose to quitting the show because of its overuse of toilet humor, something I’m not a fan of. I pulled through the episode by constantly reminding myself that a drama with such a lovely score can’t be that bad, plot and acting-wise. So onward to episode 2, I went. I finished episode 2 today and enjoyed it much more than the pilot because there were moments that made me laugh instead of grossing me out and some very adorable interactions. Seo Woo’s voice still grates on my nerves, although to a lesser degree. Must be because her character is growing on me and I actually find Beo Jin endearing. Additionally, the plot now gets going with an element of mystery thrown in, which I like. The music is still awesome. And oh my… Tamra is so pretty to look at, totally drool-worthy. Members of Team Park Kyu can drool over Im Joo Hwan all they want while my eyes will feast on the gorgeous cinematography.

Observe:

Exhibit A

Exhibit B

Exhibit C

Here’s hoping that Tamra keeps getting better and better!

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6 thoughts on “Welcome to the Island

  1. Yay! You’re watching Tamra!! =D

    To be honest, Tamra was my introduction into fusion-sageuk, and I’m so glad it was. Yeah, the first part of the first episode is SO bad it’s hilarious, and Beo Jin can be an equally cringe-worthy heroine, but, surprisingly, toilet humour and appallingly bad English aside, the show starts to grow on you. Or, it certainly did on me anyways. (Like fungus? XD) I hope it does for you as well!!! Stick with it! It definitely gets better and better! (And WORD. The cinematography is AAAAAHMAZING.)

    (The extended 20 ep version is better than the original TV release though, so I would highly recommend that one, if you have both options in front of you. The powers-that-be cut the show from 20 to 16 eps, and it really shows in the finale. It’s not bad, by any means, but the extra 4 eps in the DVD release certainly improves it. =D)

  2. Im Joo Hwan is a great actor. He’s not only all about his face and his height. Hes acting in Tamra The island was awesome! I started watching his movies and drama ever since then. I heard he got a new movie and drama this year! Drama: Whats Up!, Movie: Life Is Beautiful.

    • Yup, Im Joo Hwan is great in Tamra! He totally won me over with his portrayal of Park Kyu. I hope What’s Up will get an airdate soon because I miss seeing him on the small screen.

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