You know what’s really hard to do? Marathon a series whose episodes are regularly 90 minutes long. SERIOUSLY, Y’ALL. That takes commitment! Fortunately for you all, I am a committed sort of person. Or maybe I just need to BE committed . . . .
After having so much fun with Answer Me 1997, I couldn’t wait to give Answer Me 1988 a spin. I am very glad I did! The pace is less frenetic, which allowed for a complete development of all the relationships between the five families sharing the block and a deep appreciation from me for those relationships. By the end of the series, I felt like I knew them as well as if I had lived there. Well, maybe not there, but close by. 😀
Answer Me 1988 has another “who is the husband?” mystery, but I found myself less concerned about solving it. I knew exactly who was right for Duk Seon and watched the developing romances without concern. I would have been rather upset had it turned out any other way.
The relationship between the ahjummas was impressive — I loved how they could be friends without trying to change each other. They were so supportive! And in the first episode, when the kids were trotting around, taking the various side dishes to be shared with the other families? I loved it. I lovedlovedLOVED how they all shared with each other all the time, and how the families with more just helped the others with less without being asked. It was those little touches that added such depth to this drama.
But, of course, the focus was the gang of five. They had wonderful, complicated characters and realistic relationships with their families that didn’t immediately devolve into the “I hate you” parent-adolescent relationship that I often see in American television. They learned and grew together.
I adored how they took care of Taekie, genius baduk player who couldn’t use chopsticks or tie his shoes properly, and how adorable he was with them, especially when he was sleepy but just happy to be with his friends. Jung Hwan was the fantastic strong but silent type who struggled with expressing his feelings, but when he smiled, my heart melted. Dong Ryong cracked me up — he was the clown, but a wise clown who really just wanted his parents to pay attention to him. When he finally got to eat with his mom on his birthday, I may or may not have teared up. *stuffs the tissues away in the cushion* And Sun Woo the filial son? Can I please have two of him — one for each of my daughters? His little sister, Jin Joo, was COMPLETELY adorable. I loved how she had Taek’s dad wrapped around her little finger.
I’m glad I got to watch Answer Me 1988. I don’t think I could watch the entire series again, but I would definitely rewatch the episode where Duk Seon chaperones Taek while he was at a competition in China, and that 19th episode. For you who have already watched it, you know what I’m talking about. Plus, older Duk Seon is adorable with her husband. I wish there had been more of the older set, but I’m glad Duk Seon was our focus character. She was herself — combative with her sister, yet caring towards everyone she loved — and wasn’t screechy or hard to watch. Hyeri really did an excellent job.
And last, but NOT least, I am very glad to say that there were a couple of kisses in this series that landed in my Top Ten Cinematic Kisses of All Time. Yep. They were THAT epic. *swoony sigh* *goes to watch them again* Yeah, much love. 😀
(Gentle Viewer Alert: There were just a few swears, and the worst one was bleeped, of course. That was it. Really.)
Until next time, be well and get some sleep, my kdrama friends.
Karie the Maknae
Dramas with a Side of Kimchi
P.S. Watch for another poll on Dramas with a Side of Kimchi Twitter/The Crazy Ahjummas Facebook page! I have a few dramas I’m torn between starting and I turn to you, dear readers, to help me out! It doesn’t help that now I’m a huge Park Bo Gum fan (could he BE any more adorable???), which has re-ordered my priorities a bit.