my 2011 in dramas

There’s not much. I have no compunction of dropping a drama if 1) something annoys me 2) so it loses my interest.

Perhaps I have a short attention span. But then, life is too short to waste on stupid dramas.

So here are the dramas that managed to sustain my attention:

My Princess, South Korea

One reason I avoid K-dramas is because they’re so full of melodrama. But My Princess was a breeze I never missed an episode and was even reading dramabeans for the wonderfully fun and witty recaps. Of course the drama still had the tangled family ties, the convoluted love square but not so much of the angst. And I re-discovered Song Seung-heon and Kim Tae-hee. The story was so fun and they made such a lovely couple, I actually felt sorry that the drama was over soon.

Office Girls, Taiwan

Yes, I’m still watching it if only for Roy Qiu why you so hot. But I can’t wait for the office witch to get kicked out so we can all move on to more imortant matters like Qin Zi Qi’s identity and how this will affect his relationship with Shen Xing Ren. Still, it’s one of the better dramas to come out of Taiwan this year. I do understand the business sense of extending something that is doing better than expected, but I hope they don’t abuse the patience of the audience so much. And truly, I am looking forward to see how this ends, and I hope they don’t disappoint.

The dramas that I gave up on:

Drunken To Love You, Taiwan

It started off as very entertaining but somewhere along the way, I lost taste for it. Too bad because I watched 2/3 but never regretted dropping it. Didn’t even have the desire to find out how it ended.

Nankyoku Tairiku, Japan

I am a dog-lover and I can’t stand seeing dogs suffer. Not even Kimura Takuya can make me endure this drama. I was curious though about the ending and it wasn’t happy.

Ring Ring Bell, Taiwan

I thought an attractive onscreen couple could sustain me. But no. Though I’m glad coz it means my mind has not gone addled yet. There is no hope for this drama, don’t even care if it ends.

The one drama that I stopped watching for two episodes but cared enough to watch the ending:

In Time With You, Taiwan

Thanks tieuyeunu for reminding me. This drama is really worth watching, it’s something different from the usual melodrama or fluff that we see. It’s full of little nuggets of wisdom that makes us reflect on our own lives. I didn’t watch episodes 11 and 12 because I could not stand a certain character (the tattooed guy I won’t mention here because as it is, many people have been led to this blog searching for his name, something that I won’t encourage). But I did watch the ending and it was worth it. I won’t be surprised if this drama sweeps the Bell next year.

I am looking forward to new dramas in 2012. There’s really no hard and fast rule on what drama people will like, but generally it’s a combination of good cast and engaging script plus a fresh approach to telling the story. I hope to see more of that in the year of the water dragon because what is pop culture life without dramas?

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Copyright © 2011. theasianpopculturist. All rights reserved.

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11 thoughts on “my 2011 in dramas

      • Yes it’s hard to deal with ‘he who should not be named’ but since I liked this series and really have not seen a Taiwanese series since…Metro Garden, I was willing to sit through it.

        I liked Ariel Lin through this series, I thought she was great.

        I’m ashamed to say I go to your blog through Ariel Lin and have read all your pieces on her. I’ve since moved on to the rest of your blog. I’m afraid I don’t share your OTP but then I’m not shipping any OTP so its okay.

        Question, you mentioned you wouldn’t be surprise if In Time With You sweep the awards, which I also suspect it would, you wrote an article a while back now I guess, about how the Bell Tolls for one idol a year. You mentioned that this year it would be an actress wining.

        For now, I think Ariel Lin stands a pretty decent chance since she’s got a lot of praise for her role. Would you say she deserved it if she wins?

        I recall you saying you thought Joe Chen should have won instead of Ariel when she won in 2008.

        I’ve been trying to watch a couple of series that was out this year and some from previous years and really didn’t like anything in particular.

      • hello!

        when I said Joe Chen deserved the bell more in 2008 than Ariel, I was only comparing the roles they played. I really don’t think TKA was a good vehicle to be winning an acting award. but then I’m not a Bell juror.

        my saying “the bell tolls for an idol a year” is merely my POV. I could be wrong and for the sake of the GBA, I hope it ain’t true. there’s been much said about Wilber winning this year and I like the guy, but I didn’t watch any of the dramas in the running except for The Fierce Wife with James Wen. so saying that, I can’t say whether Wilber deserved it or not. but I don’t think James should have won it either, there was nothing special about his acting in TFW.

        but I can say that Rainie Yang was largely overlooked in 2009 when she was not nominated for ToGetHer and Miss No Good. I still think TGH is her best portrayal so far so just like what happens in the Oscars, they overlook you one year and compensate for it another year. because honestly, I wasn’t impressed with Hi My Sweetheart, which she won the Bell for. I feel it’s overrated.

        so do I think Ariel deserves to win the Bell next year? it depends on who are the other contenders. but I think she was good in ITWY, the role really suited her and that kind of role does not come very often for actors like her. but then that’s just my opinion and my opinion does not really matter in the larger scheme of things hahahaha

        in a year, maybe I only watch one or two dramas that I really stick to through the end. like I blogged before, I have no second thoughts of dropping a drama if something annoys me. and I don’t regret it either. I feel dramas should entertain me. if they don’t, at the very least they should enlighten me, like ITWY. and ideally, should educate. the three Es for me when it comes to my dramas 🙂

  1. I have a feeling that ITWY will not sweep or get a lot of love from the Golden Bell next year. Like what happened to The Fierce Wife this year. The drama was so popular that it seemed to be a turn off for the judges. The Golden Bell is way too unpredictable & it looks like it really depends on who’s judging. I love ITWY and I just hope it gets the award it deserves, most especially the Best Director award. I just feel that Director Winnie’s unique & artistic style of directing ITWY was simply awesome. He just did a marvelous job for ITWY. And the production quality of the drama is really amazing, the camerawork is just superb.

    As for Ariel, although I think she did great in ITWY, I don’t think she’ll win. It’s really unlikely that the judges will give it to someone who has won the award previously and she was once a spokesperson for the Golden Bell, I think it just lessens her chances. I’m not saying she should be the hands down choice, I just feel it will be highly difficult to win again. I think Chen Bolin has a better chance on winning. He was great as Li Da ren but I just hope he handles success & popularity much better than he is handling it now. Was reading a lot of his sentiments regarding how he lost his “freedom” because of the huge popularity of Li Da ren. And how fans & the press associate him so much with his character in ITWY. Well, he should have known that before he even ventured into idol dramas, especially taking on a role of an ideal character like Li Da ren, If he can’t take the heat, then he should just walk away from the “idol world”. I think he should learn a thing or two from idol actors like Mike He, Joe Cheng, the F4 guys, with regards to handling the pressure of fame and success. Just my opinion…. 🙂

      • I guess he’s just overwhelmed with the attention and popularity he’s currently experiencing. It’s like Chen Bolin is expected to be like Li Da ren. It’s a pity but it tends to be that way, especially when an idol drama is so successful. Being perceived to be an ideal guy can really put a lot of pressure. Even his smoking habits are now being reported by the paparazzi. Well, I guess that’s the price of success. He just needs to learn to embrace it and be cool with it. Enjoy it, because it certainly opened a lot more opportunities for him.

      • ah so. hmmm that’s interesting. maybe I can write a column or at the very least blog about it, his experience vis-a-vis with that of Ko Cheng-tung (the boy from You Are The Apple of My Eye). the price of success/fame indeed. likey likey! thanks for the lead!!!!

    • I agree on the Ariel thing, I mentioned before on AF that she is unlikely going to win since she’s already won. I think Ariel won in 2008 for both ISWAK and TKA as oppose to just TKA. Since the story spans from her teen years to mid-late 20’s.

      Joe Chen is having a series out this year, I suspect she would win because she was overlooked for FTLY. Unfortunately I did not like FTLY at all but would much like to see her in her new role, where she plays a stronger character. I’m liking Ariel Lin’s CYQ with less of the bitchiness.

      I’ve tried watching a few films this year, including The Fierce Wife but didn’t like it so much. Reminds me a bit of that Korean film when the husband cheats and ‘kills her’ then she comes back for revenge. With a new face of course. Since you know, plastic surgery is so great in Korea that it changes your whole face structure and height as well.

      Bolin’s Li Da Ren is the ultimate nice guy and Bolin plays him quite well, but there is nothing about the character or the acting that stands out. I’ve seen quite a few of his movies, including some Japanese ones, there was nothing here that I haven’t seen before.

      Bolin’s issue I’ve heard about as well. There was recently report about him and Gui Mei having a relationship and he was the third party and wanted her to break up with her boyfriend. Considering the two have been friends since Blue Gate Crossing, its only now he achieve fame that these news comes up.

      I understand why he finds it hard to deal with, but he’s been in the business for 10 years, he should be use to it. Choustar his management, and Ariel’s, wanted to push him into the lime light this year, he should have known this was coming.

      • I agree with Li Da Ren not any different from Chen Bo-lin’s performance in his other films. Come to think of it, he’s kind of stuck in linear characters. I saw him in person at the Golden Horse last November and I have to say his aura is not Da Ren Ge, more like Ding Li Wei but without the annoying cockiness. and I loved Blue Gate Crossing! I admire Peggy Chao, the one who produced that, who I have had the chance to interview twice. She has a knack for unique plots that turn into lovely little films… except for Vic Chou’s Love You 10,000 Years I guess.

  2. You should, it would be an interesting read. At first, I thought Bo-lin was okay with the fame but in an interview with Ariel, a reporter asked her what she thought of Bo-lin’s reaction that it seems he has lost his “freedom”. One thing’s for sure, as a viewer who loved ITWY, I can’t help but associate Chen Bo-lin with Li Da ren. But I also know that in reality, Bo-lin is really more like a Ding Li Wei, minus the cheating, I hope. I’ve read somewhere, Bo-lin mentioned that his personality is different from that of Li Da ren. Lol!!!! :)))

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