FNC rock band CNBLUE are rumoured to make their much awaited Korean comeback this September. The boys were last seen together as a group in February 2014 with their mini album “Can’t Stop” and since then have participated in various solo activities. The new song is reported to be composed by leader Jung Yonghwa ,who also written and composed various other songs for the band across their Korean and Japanese albums, the comeback song is described as a rock song with a disco flavour. Continue reading →
It’s been a while since the last TTM recap and I’m terribly sorry about the long break – it took a lot longer than I’d expected to dig myself out of the mountain of papers-to-read. By now, I assume that most people have also heard the bad news: tvN has confirmed that the previously-announced Seasons 2 & 3 have been cancelled. (Apparently tvN thought it was a good idea to announce three seasons and then change their minds and slash two seasons out of the blue.) With that in mind, what was a story meant for three seasons had to be told in one – I do hope that the writer had an inkling of what was to come and wrapped it up satisfactorily.
SBS’s annual end-of-year music program the “SBS Gayo Daejun” was held on the 21st of December at the COEX in Seoul. The event was hosted by the specially formed group “Lucky Boys” which consisted of CNBlue’sJung Yonghwa, WINNER’sMino, B1A4’sBaro, 2PM’sNickhun and Infinite’sL the quintet were joined by Running Man’s Song Ji Hyo as co-host as well as ZE:A’sKwanghee who was the groups manager and M.I.B’sKangnam as their stylist. EXO were once again the biggest winners of the night taking home “Best Selfie” which was chosen based on the number of retweets of the selfie on the SBS Super5 Twitter account as well as “Best Male Group” and “Best Album” for Overdose. Continue reading →
This is absolutely late and I apologize – it appears that no amount of attempting to bend the space-time continuum could produce a scenario where this recap and my thesis could be written simultaneously. Ah, well. And for the same reason recaps for the upcoming episodes will most likely be delayed, but I will finish them. I promise!
Onto the episodes. Team Sohyeon may have won a small victory last time, but they don’t get to enjoy much of a reprieve, what with Mi Ryung muddying the romantic waters and Kim Ja Jeom a-plotting. More importantly, it’s finally our crown princess’ time to shine; I must say it’s a nice change to have two such complex and well-written female leads for a change. Thank you, Show.
Yesssss, finally! This is the episode that I’ve been waiting for – big reveals and action aplenty, but most importantly we finally get to see Dal Hyang play the game rather than being played. Previously he had always been the one who’d been dragged along for the ride, unsure of what he’s doing but caught up in something too big for him to disengage from. Now he finally gets to choose his next course of action – and it’s up to him to find out whether the result will be high risk and unrewarding, or high risk, but at least for a worthy cause. We also get an answer to the question of trust between prince and subordinate much faster than I’d expected, but perhaps that is something I should have expected instead. Thus far this drama has consistently surged ahead with plot and character developments so that the audience isn’t left to stew over their predictions; always ahead or on schedule, never late.
Our hero finally learns some bitter lessons (and equally bitter truths) in this episode – no, his luck doesn’t seem like it’ll take a turn for the better any time soon. He’s not the only one, though, because the prince is thrown his fair share of complications and finds harsh realities piled at his door. There are upsides to all this, however; we get a return of Dal Hyang’s mane of glory and some welcome bromance, about which I would never complain. Looks like I wept prematurely after the previous episode rather shook things up in that department.
Gah, Dal Hyang. I don’t know whether to admire his sheer guts in daring to challenge someone so far above him in status or strangle him for making a move that could only lead to more bad luck for him (and his luck has really been astoundingly bad so far). The tug-o-war between Dal Hyang’s loyalty towards prince or nation finally reaches its peak, but with so many secrets floating around the palace and the game of politics complicating everything, the denouement is anything but simple. Worse, both our intrepid hero and the prince come down with a bad case of jealousy, and with swords within easy reach, one can imagine where this goes. To describe the result as mere bad life choices would probably be the understatement of the year.
If you thought Dal Hyang’s journey to Hanyang and his first night in the big city was bad, you clearly haven’t seen what his first day on the job looks like yet. (Hint: It sucks.) Considering how quickly the situation with the Manchu envoys is falling apart on our good guys, it doesn’t look like Dal Hyang will be experiencing much joy at work any time soon, either. It’s a good thing he has the friendly Seung Po and Min Seo to look out for him, though any bromance with Sohyeon might have to wait a bit longer…
With all the main players in the story introduced and the background laid out in the first two episodes, Episode 3 brings our hero fully into the heart of the ground-shaking political events that are being set into motion – whereas he was previously an unwitting participant, an outsider who found himself caught up in something beyond his understanding, Dal Hyang is now (more or less) officially considered part of the team, for good or ill. More interestingly, the naïve country boy who’d lost his sole (rather simple) reason to join the military before has now been challenged to rediscover his purpose. Passing the exam was the easy part – the question now is what he should do hereon. Turn his back and return to his peaceful existence, or follow the prince and achieve something not just great, but worthwhile?
It’s love at first sight! Not to mention a genuinely pleasant surprise – all the expected elements are present, with swashbuckling action, stylistic flourish and comedy, bromance and a sprinkling of romance, but what I hadn’t expected was how well all these aspects were executed as a cohesive whole. The show is campy without veering into the realm of cheesy slapstick; its dramatic moments are as often played for laughs as it is meant to provide impact, but it’s never cringeworthy.
For those who might be worried about the “idol factor,” Jung Yong Hwa is a revelation here, conveying just the right amount of earnest naiveté and youthful exuberance to be endearing. I’m firmly behind his character’s story and can’t wait for more of the action.
(Also, apologies to those who were waiting for these recaps – real life chose the worst time possible to intrude, but I’ll do my best to catch up.)