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The kdrama post of doom

I've been watching a lot of historical kdramas and recently I've had trouble finishing them. The main problem for me is the endless intrigues. Intrigues are interesting and all, but there's such a thing as too many of them. i was going to make a general post about the fun and woes of kdramas, but then it also came up with minion_master and I decided to go for an introductory post instead. I'll try to not make it too long.

Some of those dramas I watched as early as up to two years ago, some I'm still watching, they are all worth watching, but with some I just can't make myself to finish.


I watched 14 out of 14 episodes.
It was my first (I think) historical kdrama. The main character is a damo in a police department. Damo (written with the characters for tea and mother) is something like a female assistant. There's an officer in the department, whom she is very close to, he is also in love with her, but she doesn't feel the same way. They are trying to catch counterfeit money makers and Chae-Ok, the main character has several encounters with an important member of the gang. They start to respect (and love) each other, but that doesn't change the fact that their positions require them to be ready to kill each other. Has Chae-Ok crossdressing, martial arts with flying and a tragic plot.

Hwang Jin Yi

I watched 24 out of 24 episodes.
Hwang Jin Yi is an actual historical figure. She was a famous gisaeng (curtisan, dancer and musician, a bit like a geisha). Jin Yi becomes a ginsaeng and has particular talent for dance, music and poetry. She falls in love with a nobleman's son, but they are separated. He dies out of grief (seriously) and Jin Yi becomes bitter. later she falls in love again and has a brief chance at happiness. However they are separated and finally accept the fact that it's better this way, Jin Yi. Has a lot of dancing and rivalry between the curtisans for art and men's attentions. there is also a movie about her, which I haven't seen, but apparently has different plot.

Tae Wang Sa Shin Gi (The Legend)

I watched 24 out of 24 episodes.
This is an epic story about how the four guardians (you know the tiger of the west, dragon of the east etc) were brought to the earth and a prophesy was made that one day a king will be born, who will unite all of Joseon (Korea). And the boy is born with a special star in the sky, but there is a problem - more than one boys born on that day and two of them are of royal blood. Is an ancient prophesy really worth a civil war? Has intrigues, magic, loves not meant to be, family members on opposing sides. I really liked this one, the only problem being somewhat open-ended ending.

Hong Gil Dong

I watched 24 out of 24 episodes.
This one is fun. It doesn't take itself too seriously and is unapologetically anachronistic. Hong Gil Dong is a son of a minister and a servant girl. He's quite a good-for-nothing till he's accused of a crime he didn't commit and sentenced to death. He meets a gang of thieves and they start to play Robin Hood robbing from the rich and giving to the poor. With their own commission of course. It all gets political with a prince who is thought to be dead showing up and going for the throne. Despite the fun, it's a historical kdrama, it has it's share of tragic events. There's a love triangle between Hong Gil Dong, the prince and a rather simple girl with a secret in her past.

Dae Jang Geum (Jewel in the Palace)

I've watched 50 out of 70 episodes.
dayadhvam_triad recommended this one to me in April and I finally started to watch in July and loved it, but I'm still not finished. :( Partly because it is really long and partly because after about episode 30, the intrigues started to get a bit too much. Jang Geum is a palace girl in the kitchen. There's a lot of competing over who makes better dishes, but in the end power struggles are more important and if you're not careful, you end up dead. Jang Geum is sent away as a government slave and gets a new chance for life in palace after becoming a female doctor. Old enemies and even more intrigues are waiting her. The cooking and the relationships were interesting and it is a great series, but when the characters are in big trouble every few episodes it gets tiring in the end. At least for me, but I still plan to finish it one day.

Bichunmoo (The Dance in the Sky)

I watched 14 out of 14 episodes.
Jin Ha has a special martial arts book his father left him and the men, who killed his parents are after it. His best friends chooses to steal his girlfriend over their friendship. He reaches the ultimate level of martial arts, but the hate he feels has changed his gentle character. Years later the three meet again and the fight over the book and love comes to its tragic end.

Yi San

I've watched 23 out of 77 episodes
Yi San is the future king of Korea, but before that he has to survive the palace intrigues. The main characters are three people who share a childhood bond - Yi San, a boy, who will become his guard and a girl, who works as a damo in the painting department. Another really long one with killer intrigues, I haven't touched this one for a few months. Maybe it was because I already had my share of intrigues with Dae Jang Geum or maybe it's even worse in that regard, but the intrigues started to bother me much sooner with this one. I would like to know the story, but looking at the number of the episodes left is kind of scary.

The Painter of the Wind

I've watched 13out of 20 episodes.
Yoon Bok's father was killed and lives as an adopted son of another artist and is a very talented artist. The thing is, actually he is a she. She finds herself a teacher and they go through a lot of trials together caused by both her deviant paintings and the secret behind her father's murder. I will finish it sometime, it's only 7 episodes left, but why those intrigues again? By the way Yi San is the king in this one.

Choi Kang Chil Woo (Strongest Chil Woo)

This one I'm still watching, 16 out of 20 watched at the time of writing.
A rather unlikely trio of a police officer, historian and a former royal guard form a band of assassins to help those wronged by the powerful. Chil Woo even has this Zorro thing going with the mask and cape. At first it's all about the cases they take and Chil Woo's love for the girl he once lost, but in the end all connects to the crown prince's murder nine years ago and the events even earlier that lead to his parents death. Although it's mostly drama, there are also comedic moments like when to fighters freeze on a tree branch in the middle of a fight, because a little boy is passing by and then have trouble not falling. There's betrayal, undercover princes, old friends on the opposing sides and a possible attempt at revolt. I got quite a few sceneric screencaps out of it.

I really should go to bed now.


The links go just to the drama wiki entries. If you need download links I can find those as well, except for possibly Hwang Jin Yi, this one seems to have disappeared from jdramas. The fact that I finished writing this at 5AM might have something to do with tiredness. XP

Go try them. Dae Jang Geum and Yi San might be the most problematic ones. Long like whoa and intrigues all the way. The ones you picked are good ones to start with - not too long relatively speaking and all have more action than some others. I would like to recommend Legend as well.

I'm glad it was useful to someone. :)
I find jdramas rather useful resource for both finding out about Asian dramas and getting them. I don't know why it's called jdramas if it has a lot of kdramas and twdramas as well.

With Dae Jang Geum it was OMG ♥ at first, but now I just don't manage to watch a single episode of it and I have only 20 to go. And I want to know the story. Ugh!
Oh my gosh. You really have a lot of patient.

They really sounds like cool movies. I liked "Damo" and "The Painter of the Wind". The second one sounds very interesting. However to download and actually watch them, it's kind of hard, because of time and patient XD XD

Thanks for sharing them :D
I don't know about patience, some of them keep dragging after all. Go watch, if you have time. The main character from "The Painter of the Wind" actually existed although there's no evidence that he was a woman and some of the paintings from the series still exist. The wiki article about him and examples of his works. If I remember correctly, Damo was the shortest of the bunch if you don't have much time. If you need download links, let me know.

I can share, but I was not sure anyone is actually interested in this. :)
Ok, thank you! :D

Yeah, but you won't know if anyone is interesting if you don't post ;P