Wednesday, February 29, 2012

[drama review] shut up flower boy band ep. 1

I normally wouldn't do single episode reviews for TV shows, but I just watched the first episode of 닥치고 꽃미남 밴드 (Shut Up Flower Boy Band) and thought I'd jot some thoughts down about it. Because it's been  ages since I watched a Korean drama (lie. I finished White Christmas two months ago) and because it seems promising and I'll probably keep on watching it. And I feel like this is a good habit to develop.

So yes, I won't get into the summary or anything because that's really boring. I normally don't watch a lot of dramas, but I have heard a lot of good things about this drama. On top of that, the cast is beautiful, and the music is directed by the guys of Loveholics, so it seemed quite promising. And the first episode didn't completely let me down! There are some good things, some things that could definitely be improved, but all-in-all, a fun ride.

First of all: acting. A huge reason why I started watching this was because of Lee Hyun Jae, who is the drummer for the band Mate, and a total babe. Seriously. He is so beautiful. He deserves a solo shot in this post because he is so gorgeous. I was initially very skeptic of his acting chops - could he actually do it? We saw a bit of it in the Mate movie Play - but he wasn't all that good in it. So I really expected him to be a bit cringe-worthy, but alas! He actually doesn't have a big of a role, and he is totally bearable. You go, Hyun Jae, you go.
As for the general cast (and the main band 안구정화), it's definitely Lee Min Ki who pulls everything together. He is so perfectly cast and extremely charming. His character is funny, charming, cute, and a bit pathetic - basically you start rooting for him right away. It's a shame that it's only a cameo because Lee Min Ki totally makes the drama a whole lot better. Sung Joon, the other male lead, is also a lot of fun. His character has a lot of potential and seems promising, although at times his lines seem a bit too staged. But Sung Joon has definitely gotten a lot better since I last saw him in White Christmas, which is good to see. The other band members are all quite interesting and just from the first episode you can really see their characters. I am loving the chemistry between Kim Min Seok's character and Yoo Min Kyu's character. They are super adorable and seem comfortable enough with their roles. L though, despite all the hype and pre-existing popularity from Infinite activities, is the black hole so far. He is extremely stiff, almost all of his lines seem forced, and his expressions are at times over the top. I'm hoping that he gets better though, because he is also quite nice to look at. The whole band, I say, the whole band!

As for the supporting cast and the love interest (who could forget!), I remain unimpressed. Jo Boa, the main love interest, is the epitome of "extremely pretty actresses who can't really act". Everything she seems to do is so self-conscious, so forced, so gimmicky, it was really disappointing. Although it's not surprising that Lee Min Ki's character falls for her at first sight because she is a doll. As for her acting, I'd have to watch her more.
The rival character, played by Jung Ui Chul, also seems a bit shaky. Not so much because of Jung Ui Chul's acting, but because of the writing for the character, which is so cliched and trite.

Speaking of writing. I know I shouldn't expect much quality from Korean dramas, but I couldn't help it, not after watching White Christmas. But yes, don't expect an amazing script from this one, it's your generic Korean drama writing. Which isn't a completely bad thing, but not a really good thing either. The editing was also mediocre; most of the time it was a bit too much, when simple cuts could have been better. The camerawork wasn't also great, it was too all over the place when simple slo-mo or simple panning could have done the job perfectly. No need for fancy camera works, guys, when you don't know how to do it. I'll blame the low budget though. If this was picked up by a major broadcast channel, I'm sure it could have been that perfect drama I'm Beautiful (or any other "band" dramas that were on major broadcast channels) tried to be but failed.
There were a couple of scenes that really got me though. One being the image above, when Im Soo Ah (Jo Boa's character) falls into Kwon Ji Hyuk's (Sung Joon) arms instead of Joo Byung Hee's (Lee Min Ki). Some great, heart-wrenching foreshadowing for those who are aware of what's to happen, I'm sure. And any scenes with the whole band were pretty awesome. They really work well together.

I think it will be sad to see Lee Min Ki go because he does dominate the screen and makes everything a whole lot better, but I have a lot of hope for this drama. The initial premise is already interesting enough to keep me watching, and I love how raw and precious the main band is. They just seem so real - driving in a beat-up laundry van, making ramyun in a small, dim rooftop room ... I can already foresee some golden moments of them in this drama. It's probably not going to be perfect, especially technically, but I'm excited to see more, for sure.

No comments:

Post a Comment