Okay, amidst the tough wait for new episodes, I resumed watching The Woman Who Still Wants to Marry...yet I'm left slightly disappointed. Frankly speaking, I just feel disconnected with the lead characters and their approach to love and relationships. It may be an issue of cultural upbringing or it could simply be the fact that I'm at a different stage of my life compared to the ladies of the show, and whilst that doesn't usually impede on my viewing of a drama, their age does play a significant role in this drama so to speak. As shallow as it sounds, so far I'm only attracted to Kim Bum's character because he's such a cutie and he's such a womanizer.

Shin Young... I connect with her the most, yet she still boggles me for some reason. I'm prideful as well, however, I don't get why she lets her pride get in the way of confronting Min Jae when she hears about the bet... so they can sort out their damn misunderstanding. It seems like everyone in K-drama has issues with confronting others, just so these misunderstandings can conveniently boil into something bigger and more dramatic. However, it makes these dramas so much more tiring to watch because it's just frustrating to know that they're holding back on their feelings over some itty bitty pride issue they have. Another thing I can't understand is why she would get back together with her ex and just 'settle for reality' when she herself knows that there is no spark between them. It's just... strange. Why wouldn't you want to explore your options with a younger guy who makes your heart race instead of settling with an ex who you barely have feelings for? Yes, it's the safe choice, but she's spent her whole life sacrificing for her career and taking risks.. you'd think she would apply that same mentality to her love life. But no, her love life is always on the back burner because career comes first. It'd make more sense to me if she decided to stay single instead of going back to Sang Woo.. hmm.

Da Jung annoys me. She's the type of friend I would loathe. She seems rather self-absorbed and just instigates all the time. There is so much jealousy between her and Shin Young which appears typical of so many K-drama friendships. Considering they've known each other for so long, why can't they care for each other a tad more than being bothered about who has it better or who gets the better guy etc. Also, I don't really care about her romance with the doctor because... it was so ... sudden to me.

Min Jae's mum has also met Sang Woo and hearts are set aflutter. Meh. I can't seem to care about her either, and it's so weird seeing her all gushy when prior to that she was playing the role of the overbearing mother. Gah...

I get that this drama is exploring many different relationships and trying to reflect the love lives of those women in their 30s.. but I just can't seem to connect with it.


There’s something so painful about the last few episodes of BBJX. Just as we bask in the happiness of the main couple, with the emperor trying to coax Ruo Xi to forgive him and make peace. We get cute glances, an emperor who claims he doesn’t know how to cajole women and the cuteness overload from the trio that resulted from the emperor’s sore arm. Alas, there’s always a calm before the storm and well, happiness doesn’t last long in the paradise aptly named the Forbidden City. Ruo Xi’s mirage has been shattered and reality sets in when she finds out the truth about Li De Quan and the role the emperor had in his death. Like she remarks, the heart of an emperor is infinitely unfathomable… there is never complete disclosure no matter how much close you are to an emperor. His destiny is beyond any other human, in that, most people simply dream about happiness and love, but an emperors’ dream is to rule and keep ruling. 

Before we know it, we are reintroduced to the king’s … crueller side when he sentences Yu Tan to death by cooking her. And Ruo Xi finds about it and witnesses it herself, gagging in disgust. She faints and awakes with the emperor beside her and she screams at him in hatred. My heart just breaks because… I don’t know how I feel about it all. Let’s be frank, no one would want to be Ruo Xi right now because her world is basically shattered. The fact that he sentenced Yu Tan to death in such a cruel way is unforgivable, because he himself knew how close they were. Yet, we knew that Yu Tan was not so … innocent. But seriously, when someone essentially murders someone close to you, I don’t think any motive if justifiable when there are so many other means to the same end. It’s just cruel and my heart breaks that the drama had to take this turn. It’s realistic and understandable but it’s heart-wrenching nonetheless. If I were Ruo Xi, I would be so tormented because despite her love for the emperor and vice versa, she is reminded that love cannot conquer all. Love cannot change the fact that she is who she is and he is still the emperor. In this moment, my only solace is the unchanging friendship between the 13th brother and Ruo Xi.

I feel so sad watching Ruo Xi wanting to push everyone around her away, because she’s scared they’d get hurt. The pain and isolation she must be feeling. It’s like when the emperor reminds her that he’ll always be her 4th prince… yet he’s also the emperor. I’m really impressed though, at how tight the writing is and how everything ties in together so well with hints being dropped so meticulously. Except, Ruo Xi is really bearing the brunt of all the pain isn’t she? Nothing is going smoothly for her and even the supposedly pleasant news of her pregnancy is marred with the revelation of her role in all the palace schemes and all the things that have unfolded. Gosh, I feel for her when she miscarriages amidst all the stress and the fact that she can’t have any children in the future. I feel like so much has happened, and everything has truly reached a point of no return… therefore, the ending is near. My heart hurts for everything that’s happened and I don’t know… I just don’t feel happy with the way things have turned out not that my feelings can change anything haha. I think this is where I can see how Ruo Xi’s character fleshes out, because I can sense her modern viewpoint through my very own sentiments. The fact that I probably feel just as betrayed as she does, just highlights the fact that she’s an embodiment of what us modern women would feel in her shoes. Unlike, the 8th prince’s wife who understands the scheming and the mechanisms of being part of the royal family, who accepts all wrongdoing and cruelty because that’s the way things are and the way things have and will continue to be. Ruo Xi doesn’t understand this because her morals derive from our time and in our time, murder is the greatest sin. Back then, killing people in the name of loyalty or revenge was understandable.

The love stories in the drama are definitely a major plot driver, but in many ways, characteristic of that time period I’m assuming, everything is much more subtle and understated. There aren’t many grand gestures of love or romance, but their feelings drive their actions and I think this is why we can feel that their love is so painstaking and real. I personally feel that Nicky Wu was able to bring out the best of Liu Shi Shi because I think it’s rather obvious that she’s not the strongest of actresses, but every scene with the emperor she came alive. You could understand how affected she is and how much the reality has crushed her. I know that many people want her and the emperor to have many more romantic moments, but I think I preferred their interactions and their intimacy compared to the fleeting romance that she had with the 8th prince. Theirs felt more real and more heartfelt. Oh with the pain that the emperor must’ve felt when the 14th asked him to bestow Ruo Xi to him. This drama makes me sigh and I can’t even… I want to say I’m annoyed at how everything has to be so tragic, but how can I say that when the drama has delivered something so amazingly logical and well thought out? That if even one thing were to have been different, the whole darn drama would possibly fall apart and it would become one of those dramas that had potential but let one slip of logic ruin it? Everything just makes sense here, but by following the course of logic, everyone’s lives have to fall apart because that is the cruel reality of life in the Forbidden City.

When the emperor lets go off Ruo Xi and watches her horse carriage leave the Forbidden City, and he’s crying… I just want to console and transport him to modern time so her can continue his love with Ruo Xi. When she hugged the 8th prince, oh how my heart longed for her and the emperor to have that final chance too. Her farewell with the 13th prince and his daughter kills me because they’ve got this amazingly understated friendship that every girl craves. That said, I still enjoy the marriage between the 14th prince and Ruo Xi because he’s cute and he is not forceful with his love for Ruo Xi, and he treats her so courteously, especially in her final days. I’m probably repeating myself for the hundredth time, but this drama delivers heartbreak after heartbreak and it’s so damn frustrating. It’s so depressing that she wants to see the emperor in her final days, yet he can’t say no because he loves her and wants her to live out her final days in happiness. His heart is probably breaking, but he still complies and by trying to maintain their reputations, he ends up causing more harm as the emperor doesn’t want to read any correspondence from the 14th prince. Thus, Ruo Xi and the emperor are unable to meet one last time, and Ruo Xi believes that the emperor doesn’t want to see her because he doesn’t love her anymore and doesn’t forgive her. She’s dying guys, WHY CAN’T YOU SPARE HER SOME HEARTBREAK?! Gosh, I’m bordering on anger at the tragedy that plagues this drama. It kills me that when he asks her what if they met in another life, and she just says she wants to forget everyone. WHY? Unrequited love is always so depressing and so is death. Man, I so feel for Lin Geng Xin and despite being excited for his next drama, Drama Go Go Go, the fact that he’s second lead has me apprehensive. Let the guy get the girl for once. He’s too hot for this shit. Gosh I love everyone in this drama, and it drives me crazy. After her death, the emperor has a mental breakdown and Nicky’s performance here is once again, amazing. He seriously is a wonderful onscreen crier. And I hate how they must remind me of how beautiful their love was, how deep it was and how much they loved each other. IT KILLS ME. I hate how he only gets to read this after her death and I just wished they had that last meeting. It’s way too cruel for our main couple that separation is all they’re left with. STOP CRYING, NICKY, YOU’RE MAKING ME CRY TOO, F MY LIFE. I HATE THIS DRAMA. I HATE HOW IT KILLS MY HEART. THIS SUCKS. SO MUCH HEARTBREAK GOSH. Why is it that even after Ruo Xi’s death, they can’t be in peace? Why can’t they just agree to free her ashes together? Why must they continue to torment each other. I just want this drama to deliver a tiny ounce of happiness but it just keeps getting me down. I think cremating Ruo Xi makes it even more depressing because there is something for the emperor to physically hold onto, to cling onto. That is, until he finally releases her ashes as much as he doesn’t want to, but it was her final wish and he complies.

Knowing the impending doom, I had emotionally checked out during the final few episodes to numb the pain, yet still I swept away with the sad desperation that was the ending of this drama. The fact that no one had a happy ending and everyone was left so broken kills me inside. God damn it, why do I choose to invest in dramas instead of something that can’t hurt me as much as these characters and their stories do? The 13th prince remains forever the most admirable person in this drama, with his wisdom and the fact that he just understands and is amazing. I think I’m in love with this man. In an alternate universe, I wish Ruo Xi would have just fallen for him instead and been happy with him instead of being embroiled in the calamity that ruined everyone’s lives.

 I really think after I’m done with this drama, I need a light-hearted watch (possibly Answer Me 1997) and that I need to stay away from ancient palace dramas for a while. All this scheming has my head and heart in shreds. That being said, I’m pretty excited for the modern sequel to BBJX because I’m expecting an epic love story minus the inhumane capital punishments and ruthless scheming between brothers. I’m not saying there won’t be any scheming but there’s that comfort that regardless of how much scheming goes on, their lives won’t be the wager. I literally got shudders when the emperor realises that Ruo Xi was not from their era. It only makes me crave the second part of their beautiful love story even more. MAN, SO MUCH TEARS, SO MUCH HEARTBREAK. WHY NO HAPPY ENDING? WHY?! As great as this drama may be, I don’t know when I will ever be ready for a rewatch, knowing how much heartbreak I would be in. Honestly, I would love to recommend this drama for everyone, but big beware: it is heartbreaking, and that’s an understatement.


Without any shame, I’d be the first to admit that I’m watching this purely for Lin Geng Xin fresh out of my newfound adoration of him in Bu Bu Jing Xin. Apart from him, the cast doesn’t really appeal to me. I’d always seen Ruby as more of an ancient/period actress and Jiro has never appealed to me, especially post-plastic surgery. However, with my completion of the first episode, I can see myself warming to the series.

There is still a very distinct Taiwanese Idol drama flavour to the series, and that’s expected, though I’ve thought myself to have outgrown those. However, with our lady protagonist well into her 30s, we hopefully won’t be getting any teenybopper high school romances because I can’t stand how Taiwanese dramas portray those (I much prefer how Japanese dramas approach them, and hopefully, how School 2013 will tackle them). Ruby stars as Ming Ming, a scriptwriter who is unlucky and slightly inexperienced in love. Jiro takes the male lead role, a fallen idol that ends up being a street vendor before being whisked back into stardom thanks to Ming Ming’s recommendation. She is emotionally attached to him because during a tough break up, she turned to HE (his idol group) and their music for consolation. They run into each other a couple of times prior to becoming properly acquainted, and this sends Ming Ming all over the place with her fantasies. Despite her experiences, she still optimistically (or naively?) believes that one day a Prince Charming will whisk her off her feet.

Now, enter the breath of fresh air – Lin Geng Xin as the second male lead Shao Tian (sigh!) who has known Ming Ming since young because he’s the son of her writing teacher. The reason why he’s a breath of fresh air to me is because he’s already carved out a bit of a character already – he’s OCD, he’s snarky and he has no qualms with “accidentally” kissing guys. There isn’t much background on him so far, except that he seems to take care of Ming Ming and is probably going to end up being one of those second leads that make you feel extremely torn over. Already kind of hoping this series will break out of the mould and let him get the girl already because I love the jabs he and Ming Ming take at each other. The second lead actress rounding out the love square is Maggie Wu. This is the first drama I’ve watched her in and she’s quite pretty, though rather stiff at times. Her first official appearance (as Pei Ni, not the lead actress of Ming Ming’s drama) sees her confronting Ming Ming over the plausibility of the script of the first episode. Her remarks are rather reasonable, but it makes me question why she signed on to the drama when she already has so many problems with it. Don’t they have synopsis and scripts written well before embarking on drama productions at the very least? It just seems like they’re trying to establish that she’s an actress who is strict with her craft and strives towards perfection.

The episode leaves us with Ming Ming’s encounter with one of her jerk ex-boyfriends who used the “I don’t believe in marriage” card to get out of his relationship with her. The twist is (can you call it a twist when you can see it coming though?) that she meets him when he’s preparing for his wedding… to someone else. She’s gutted and Shao Tian watches in the background. Or does he? We see someone punching or slapping the ex-boyfriend, but don’t find out who yet.


Whilst retrospect usually means I’m able to deconstruct different elements of the drama I found unappealing, the feeling when watching the drama is usually different. In other words, this is one of those feel-good and light-hearted dramas and is an easy watch. Ming Ming is somewhat typical, yet to her favour, she remains likeable. Jiro and his mother are rather comical yet genuine. Lin Geng Xin is natural in his role and moves the story along. So far, Maggie Wu is just pretty, but it’s the first episode so I don’t expect her to be stealing the spotlight yet anyway.

I adore the interactions between Ming Ming and Shao Tian because they are so comfortable with each other, their shared history and their understanding of each other means they are much more natural. Conversely, the interactions between Ming Ming and Eason are a bit grating to me. There’s something off about the transition between the dramatic romantic tension between their almost kisses to the “reality” and it’s a bit off-putting so far. I guess it’s commendable that they’re being upfront with the romance and Ming Ming’s crush, but that usually means there will be leaking faucets towards the end of the drama.

I have heard good things about the drama, but I have increasingly found it difficult to buy the romances that Taiwanese dramas sell viewers. It seems a bit unrealistic and contrived once you’ve actually dated. However, since I want something fun to watch and this seems headed on that path, I’ll stick with it. Besides, I enjoy it and am probably not as disappointed as I’m coming across. Going completely off-topic, I feel it’s a pity that Jiro got plastic surgery, not because I’m strictly opposed to plastic surgery but because it’s so obvious and didn’t turn out that great. It’s so obvious whenever he wears sunglasses because once you cover up his eyes; he’s barely recognisable as Jiro. It looks a tad unnatural, but I guess I’ll just have to get used to it because he’s obviously not going to get surgery to appease my insignificant complaints.


Since my last post regarding School 2013, I’ve gotten up to episode 9. Yet, I’m still in love with this drama… if not more than I was then. I don’t know how it does it, but this drama remains refreshingly different. What amazes me is that whilst it is still a drama, it doesn’t feel like a drama (or K-drama, really) because the conflicts are much more realistic and practically handled than well, a lot of other dramas.

 Episode 9 has become one of my favourite episodes to date because there is just so much bromance. It makes me squeal like crazy and giddy like no other. Sadly though, in dramaland there cannot be too much happiness, so there is trouble on the teacher’s front. Horrible I know, because I adore Se Chan and In Jae together – which means I abhor the parents and the principal (probably, a bit more annoyance at the parents who not leaving the school to operate).  On that issue, it really frustrates me and boggles my mind because it is so farfetched compared to my schooling experiences. I would obviously be annoyed if a couple of domineering parents were running around, making decisions that the administration are meant to make, when it will affect the whole student body or cohort. Grr.

Yes, believe it, Heung Soo is SMILING! WITH TEETH! 

There has been a whole lot of revelation regarding Heung Soo and Nam Soon’s shared history and it’s so exciting. We now know that Nam Soon was the cause of Heung Soo’s leg injury because he was scared of being left behind, and that just reveals so much about Nam Soon’s personality and fears. The scene where Nam Soon was going to drop out and give up on Heung Soo brought tears to my eyes. I just sit there and scream at them through the screen, for them to kiss and make up already. Like seriously, you know you want to! Anyways, thanks to Jung Ho’s irritating attempt to ruin things for Nam Soon and Heung Soo, ironically, it brings them together through fighting together as one again – albeit, very briefly. However, that’s definitely enough to get on my heartstrings and make me soooo pumped for their reunion… and it’s epicness. More awesomeness unfolds as they are paired with Se Chan to carry out school service for having too many absences which results in all sorts of cuteness.

Our lost little lamb on his way back to the herd. And he's a cutie too. 

Another thing I’m grateful for is that the writers of this show has truly developed characters which are relatable; to the extent where everyone is fleshed out, or at the very least, has a purpose or personality. In the recent episode, In Jae advises Ji Hoon (one of Jung Ho’s sidekicks) to think for himself and understand that having strength and bullying others cannot solve problems when you enter the real world. Teacher Jo chips in and hints that between a gangster and police officer, he should aim for the police officer because his palm readings indicate so. This gives Ji Hoon some inspiration to find a path for himself, and he ends up wanting to enrol into vocational school. In Jae is so delighted (my heart melts for her!) yet she has to let him down (and herself) when she tells him that his absences render his hopes to basically nil. He is so distraught, and it’s etched on his face, with the realisation that his change of heart came too late. He laments that he thought if he was willing to change, to start putting in the effort, there would be a glimpse of hope and he can achieve anything. Thus, In Jae pleads with him to hold onto that determination for a little longer while she seeks other options for him to strive towards his goal. Jung Ho (the bully) overhears the conversation and is furious at Ji Hoon for … having a dream. It’s sad, yet it’s realistic… when someone doesn’t have a dream themselves, it seems almost natural for them to want their friends to be dragged along with them because once they reach their dream, they’re afraid of being abandoned. In the same way that Nam Soon didn’t want to be left behind by Heung Soo. The very root of their insecurities is their own lack of motivation, of not having that passion that drives them and their attachment to the idea of just bumming with their friends forever and being content with that. However, Ji Hoon is determined to change for the better and confronts Jung Ho, which ends up with a beating. Things escalate and Jung Ho grabs a piece of wood, but before hitting Ji Hoon with it, Ji Hoon taunts him: asking if Jung Ho wanted to cripple him like Nam Soon had done to Heung Soo. He falters but we know that he won’t relent because he’s a bit of a stubborn mule.

At least the setting was pretty...

In Jae, Se Chan and the principal are in trouble because the parents meddle way too much, without realising how annoying they are. Yes, let’s toss around the words “for the kids” when really it’s all because they want to feel in control. Basically, because the teaching styles of In Jae and Se Chan clash and the principal made the kids choose, forcing them to cut class, the parents have some ‘dirt’ to blackmail the principal with. Of course, they choose Se Chan because they’re controlling parents hence they probably don’t want someone else teaching their kids about ethics and morals anyways. Honestly, this part frustrates me because the teachers seriously need to step it up. They’re inconsistency is only confusing the kids and isn’t productive. I understand that In Jae wants a class where everyone is and can engage in. However, they should combine their wits and teach the RELEVANT MATERIAL in an ENGAGING manner aka group activities. I don’t understand why she has to teach them poems if they aren’t relevant to the college exam at all; in the same line of thought, if there is any hope in the education system in Korea, the college entrance material would have something that they can learn from as people. They really should just learn to collaborate and compromise.

That being said, I’d rather that conflict than say… some makjang fest. And gallons of tears.