Editing the K-drama Part 2 of 2 (Elements of K-Drama Style Series)

Editing the K-drama Part 2 of 2 (Elements of K-Drama Style Series)

I wrote in part 1 about video editing—how Korean TV tends to use relatively lengthy scenes and shots. This is one reason K-dramas sometimes recall Hollywood movies of the thirties and forties. (K-dramas also resemble Asian movies, but non-Asians like me are usually struck first by the resemblance to old Hollywood flicks.) But I felt … Read more

Editing the K-drama Part 1 of 2 (Elements of K-Drama Style Series)

Editing the K-drama Part 1 of 2 (Elements of K-Drama Style Series)

The first time I watched a K-drama, something just felt different. Besides obvious stuff like the language and culture, there is something else, a difference in the rhythm of the shows. A rhythm that draws us into the everyday lives of the characters and leaves us refreshed afterwards. This is partly because the K-drama style … Read more

In the Mood for Melodrama, Pt. 1 of 2: “Mask” Q1 Commentary

In the Mood for Melodrama, Pt. 1 of 2: “Mask” Q1 Commentary

I originally started watching Korean television for the charming romantic comedies. But gradually I’ve grown fascinated with the melodramas as well. It’s harder to explain their appeal—vicarious suffering shouldn’t be as entertaining as vicarious laughter. Why do I find them so interesting? The currently airing series Mask and High Society are great examples of how … Read more

May Drama Report: Ratings & Reactions

May Drama Report: Ratings & Reactions

It’s a sad fact that K-drama creators depend on unpredictable audience ratings and equally unpredictable production decisions. TvN brought it home for fans of Ex-Girlfriend Club this month when it shortened the romantic comedy due to low ratings. But even without reminders like this, I never forget that “audience engagement” has a big influence on the stories producers choose to tell. For … Read more

The Bit with Spoilers: “Secret” (a.k.a. “Secret Love”)

The Bit with Spoilers: “Secret” (a.k.a. “Secret Love”)

Note: This is part two of my post about Secret—the bit with spoilers. If you’re planning on watching the show, I recommend the main review post, which doesn’t contain spoilers.  If you want to tell a twisted story of despair and grief, you might do better to use film as your medium rather than television drama. K-dramas can … Read more

“Secret” (a.k.a. “Secret Love”) Series Review

“Secret” (a.k.a. “Secret Love”) Series Review

Note: It’s the truth. I haven’t entirely moved on from Kill Me, Heal Me. But that’s a good excuse to write about other dramas with Ji Sung, who definitely knows how to pick the odd, interesting projects. If you want to see Ji Sung playing a good guy, Secret (2013) isn’t your show. We first meet his character, … Read more