I’m between semesters at college, so I’ve been dramathoning like a good little fangirl. Coffee Do Me a Favor caught my eye, and I had high hopes that this drama would overcome all the fat to skinny tropes we are used to. You know, the ones where the frumpy stupid fat girl loses a lot of weight and becomes beautiful and smart. Let me just say, I want those hours I spent watching this drama back.
I watched this drama, so you don’t have to. I started it with all good feelings and happiness. I mean, after all, it sounds like a drama about body positivity, and I really loved that Kim Min Young was playing our female lead. She’s cute and quirky, and I could totally see how they could play up her beautiful eyes and dimples, as well as her body since she has actual curves. Add in Highlight’s Yong Jun Hyung as our male lead, and I was totally onboard. After all, they were in Monstar together, so I was sure they would have some chemistry.
Caution: Spoilers Ahead!
Lee Seul Bi (Kim Min Young) is a webtoon artist who is cute and a little chubby. She works as an assistant to Im Hyun Woo (Yong Jun Hyung) who is a famous webtoon writer she has had a secret crush on for years. One day, Seul Bi drinks a magical cup of coffee, and as she walks out of the cafe, she has a new body. Naming her new slim and beautiful self Oh Go Woon after their newest character, she discovers life is different when you are skinny and beautiful. The problem is, she’s still Lee Seul Bi on the inside, and she’s starting to feel conflicted about which one is the real her, Go Woon or Seul Bi?
Lee Seul Bi is bright and bubbly and a little chubby. She is a talented artist and has the ability to put everyone at ease. Seul Bi was a character we could all like; she was smart and talented and super cute. Seul Bi is that girl everyone likes, but also that girl that everyone tries to advise her on how she could “improve” herself.
Oh Go Woon is the inner skinny girl of Lee Seul Bi. She’s tall, thin, and gorgeous. Combined with the inner beauty of Lee Seul Bi, this girl is pretty perfect in society’s eyes.
Im Hyun Woo is your classic clueless main lead. He’s got a treasure right under his nose, and we can tell he likes her, but he doesn’t know yet. He takes her for granted, so he doesn’t really see her full potential. His character doesn’t really grow. He falls for Go Woon for all the reasons he likes Seul Bi except Go Woon is in a prettier package.
Everyone else, I liked the secondary cast and felt like they helped to keep me watching. We have Seul Bi’s roommate who is way too cutesy. The grumpy and hungry team leader who is in love with Hyun Woo and constantly criticizes Seul Bi. Hyun Woo’s best friend who is an aspiring actor who moonlights as a server at everyone’s favorite hangout (he’s also in love with the team leader). Hyun Woo has two junior assistants who are handsome and complete opposites; one is outgoing and obnoxious, the other is quiet, barely saying a word. The God of Coffee rounds out our little community; he’s the barista of the magical coffee shop who turns Seul Bi into Go Woon.
What I liked:
When Seul Bi turns into Go Woon, we don’t hate her. She doesn’t become another person inside; she just becomes a really pretty version of herself. I liked how the actresses resembled each other enough that I could see Go Woon as Seul Bi. I really felt like if the plot had been stronger and they had chosen to reveal the real Seul Bi sooner, I would have really liked this drama. The actresses did the best they could with the material, and I felt like they must have worked very hard together on their roles to make us feel like Seul Bi and Go Woon were one person.
I also felt like the whole coffee trick to change into a new person worked. She drank the coffee, walked out the door and was a whole new person. As long as her caffeine level was up, she stayed Go Woon. They even were smart and gave her a coffee watch, so she knew what her level was. This main plot wasn’t really that bad and I wish the writing been stronger on other parts. This could have been a really interesting show if they had used less of the “skinny” Go Woon and more of Seul Bi.
What I didn’t like:
They kept Seul Bi as Go Woon way too long. I heard that the drama was cut from 16 to 12 episodes, so there probably wasn’t enough time to flesh the whole story out. That said, I still think Go Woon hung around too long. She should have faded away once she was discovered, but no, they trotted her out for one last day. This took away valuable time they could have actually given Seul Bi and Hyun Woo. The ending was so rushed that it’s hard to imagine these two ever became more than friends.
They styled Kim Min Young horribly. She’s not a 00, but she’s not fat. She’s got curves that would have dressed up beautifully. Instead, they put her in 90s inspired floral fashion, sack dresses, oversized tees, and sweats which did her zero favors. I was so happy to see they at least dressed her decently at the end. The gold dress with the ruffles was cute, but the blue striped dress was very flattering. I also want to complain about poor Ye Na’s clothes. For the most part, they dressed her beautifully, but her outfit in Episode 11 was not only all one color, but the same color as her skin. She needed more contrast; it made her look washed out and bland.
Should you watch it?
A heartfelt no! The premise would have worked if the writing had been stronger and maybe if they had had the whole 16 episodes. The biggest problem I had with this show was it never developed. I kept watching, hoping that Seul Bi would emerge and our plucky chubby heroine would take over the world. That never happened. Instead, they kept making the skinny version have more and more of the storyline. So much so that even the ending made us feel sorry that Go Woon was going away and we were left with Seul Bi.
Did you watch this drama? What did you think about it? Tell us in the comments below.
Mad this drama wasn’t the drama crack I’d hoped it would be,
Dramas With a Side of Kimchi