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Unclouded

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  1. On 8/26/2023 at 10:51 PM, sweetroad said:

    Even if DH was reflecting on himself and how he contributed to their marriage breakdown, he didn't ever share that with YH, or apologize to her. Nor did he even tell her clearly he never wanted to move out of Hugye. Through his silence, he always left her guessing and assuming things. That would be tough to deal with.

     

    Had a related thought that just came to mind. When I first watched this, I felt much more uncomfortable watching DH and YH being so cold to each other at home than I did seeing YH have an affair. Obviously adultery is bad, but seeing DH barely talk to his wife gave me much more of a chilling feeling. I think the emotional distance from DH is the first betrayal that happened here. It's just stark the way DH is so open to JA by comparison. The drama shows us how precious that relationship is, but if we invert that, it's crazy to think how cheap DH and YH's relationship seems. Does DH's consideration for YH's material needs matter without love? Doing chores and buying food, that's not why (at least I hope) anyone finds a spouse. To say that you're married to someone and then close your heart off to them - I feel like that's as bad (if not worse) than having an affair. 

     

    Maybe I shouldn't be harsh since DH's closed actions is definitely because he's depressed. The moment where I think DH first feels comfortable opening himself up to JA (ep 6?) is after she slaps the coworker for him. So he admits to being vulnerable but he knows that JA has taken his side. Compare that to him talking about his wife, when she asks why he's drinking first thing at home after being hungover from the night before, why he looks so sad going to work, he completely shuts down and deflects ('everyone else is like that too'). Maybe he was the kind of person who needed a kindred soul to open to, and YH just wasn't it. But I think it's meaningful that this conversation is the first thing he thought of after he finds out about YH's adultery (before their arguments about ideas about family/where to live). That comes first before everything. It's actually crazy that he can't/doesn't talk about feeling depressed with his wife. 

     

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  2. On 4/18/2024 at 12:53 PM, sweetroad said:

    But I think you're right - it goes deeper than kindness. People were kind to JA "four times" throughout her life and that didn't really lead to transformative change.

     

    On 4/18/2024 at 9:26 PM, Raymond said:

    Your pinpointing of exact relevant events in the drama is so convincing! JA also said it is easy to be a good person if got money. When one is absolutely penniless, in the bottom rank of the society, what can one offer to be kind?

     

    I feel like there's a level of helpfulness in between the people who only helped four times and DH, and that's the janitor. I think he's as kind of a person as DH is, but just wasn't as knowledgeable to help with her grandma, or bold enough to confront the loan shark. But he's still the place JA goes when she's sick and needs help. Realistically people won't have be able to live up to what DH can do, but being as kind as the janitor is more than enough. 

     

    On 4/19/2024 at 11:52 AM, sweetroad said:

    Have you been re-watching the drama lately? I tried to watch Episode 16 the other day, but it is sad to think about LSK no longer being with us.

     

    I was able to rewatch the last few episodes recently. Strangely I didn't really feel jarred by it - maybe it because I don't really see My Mister as contributing to what happened to LSK. It was a lot different when I watched The Dark Knight for the first time as a kid and was convinced that playing the Joker contributed to Heath Ledger's unstable mental health. But I think it would be really tough to watch much of the first half of this show again, because DH is in such a rough shape there. 

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  3. On 12/1/2023 at 5:56 PM, sweetroad said:

    In fact, PDH and LJA understand each other very well in all sorts of verbal and nonverbal communication

     

    It also doesn't take that long for JA to understands him, once she can hear him. When she's thinking of the moments she liked listening to (ep 15), they're all relatively early on (eps 4-6). It's like DH and JA got to know each other over the first six episodes, and everything after is them doing what they have to do for each other, to protect each other, now that they know how precious the other is. Even though I've seen so many actual romance dramas before and after, it's hard to surpass the intensity of the feelings here. 

     

    It's impressive that JA can see the humanity in DH, because he's in a position where he's so restrained and subdued. He doesn't truly express himself when he's at home or at the bar with his friends. At work he just looks pitiful, he gets bullied by his superior for not wanting to cut corners. Like it must be so boring to see everything about a human being in each moment, and yet that's all she needs to fall for him. 

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  4. Maybe this is a sacrilegious thing to say considering how well people reacted to Parasite, but I thought My Mister used LSK's talent in a way that no drama or movie I've seen with him came even remotely close to doing. That sense of humanity - when LJA says that by listening to him, she felt what it must be to really be human - I can't think of anyone else who could've pulled that off.

     

    I feel like there are other actors in the K-drama world that often play these hyper-confident, very charismatic characters all the time. I wish there'd be more writers like Park Hae Young to use their talent to create more meaningful characters, to portray men who are a bit more relatable and interesting, and move us all the more because of that. Her characters are the only ones where I truly feel (regardless of gender), that part of me is on the screen. 

    • Like 2
  5. 11 hours ago, sweetroad said:

    Have you seen Reset? I saw that one of the actresses in Go Brother is the female lead in Reset. Reset is very good and addicting!

     

    Yeah, I liked it a lot! I especially enjoyed all the scenes at the police station, it felt realistic (or at least as realistic as a timeloop could be).

     

    I found an aerial video of the ending scene being shot on Twitter, looks pretty similar to the original. One thing I realized recently is that when JA hears DH's voice in the restaurant and just starts gravitating towards him, it's a bit similar to when he sees her across the street when he's driving with his younger brother and just keeps gazing at her. Like there's the same sense of nobody else being there other than each other - her face, and his voice. And in those moments, they just want to follow each other.

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  6. 12 hours ago, sweetroad said:

    Interesting! And - funny that they released those photos so early in the game. I feel like I've been spoiled as to the ending. :lol:

     

    One thing I notice is that the female lead character doesn't seem all that "bright" and happy in these pics, unlike Ji An in the original. Hopefully that's just because we're only seeing a few moments of filming, and hopefully the Chinese story will show she's content and "at peace" at the end. I shouldn't judge too quickly. :sweatingbullets:

     

    I wish they waited a bit closer to the show started, now I feel a sense of anticipation. Seeing her look different makes me wonder if it'll be an ending with more of a sense of longing. I saw a movie (Go Brother) with the actress that was pretty good, so I'm optimistic about this acting-wise.

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  7.  

    On 12/4/2023 at 8:22 PM, Raymond said:

    Watching others kdramas just couldn't stop reference back to MM.

     

    On 12/1/2023 at 5:56 PM, sweetroad said:

    That's so true. In fact, PDH and LJA understand each other very well in all sorts of verbal and nonverbal communication, but it's PDH who can't say everything he wants to say, verbally.

     

    I've had this same problem with comparisons, but I feel like that happens when other dramas have a similar subject or theme but either lack the same emotional depth, they feel contrived in some of the decisions that characters make, or have scenes that seem a bit purposeless. Especially death or funeral scenes where you wonder if someone really had to die, especially if it's all forgotten about like 20 minutes later.

     

    The review that you linked was really interesting. I liked this section a lot:

     

    Quote

    PHY believes and says “Every relationship is fascinating and precious,” so why do we say no to making more of them as we age? The norms in civil society is a good reason, but maybe a superficial one. She maintains it's the simple act of being vulnerable that leads to building and treasuring relationships; one of those things we tend to lose as we "age". The facade to maintain as a successful person is at odds with being vulnerable so we have to fragment the contours of our love and maintain boundaries. It’s why the relationship between Dong-hoon and Ji-an is—and has to be—cemented on wiretapping and surveillance and the ugliness of baring your soul, against your will even. 

     

    Even though JA and DH both seem to realize very quickly (pre-wiretap) that they are similar, there's an initial reluctance to get closer. JA reacts so negatively when DH first starts talking about her, his pity for her to others. Being that vulnerable makes it easy for others to look down on you. But his actual feelings about his life (feeling that he has nothing, that he's being punished) weren't things JA learns through the wiretap, but come directly from him. The wiretap makes every action of his known to her, but his thoughts and feelings he has to share on his own. Maybe what the similarity allows is that DH and JA can see each other and be evaluated by each other without the negative emotions they each have for themselves. Deep down, both of them want someone that can comfort them.

     

    I love the way this reviewer thinks about what it means for relationships to be fascinating and precious - that it isn't just the grandma admiring/approving of JA and DH, but the way we should live our own lives. In order for a community to last over time, don't there have to be meaningful relationships across ages? If the neighbourhood is like a warm blanket made up of the people inside, it slowly gets frayed when people move elsewhere or pass away. But by forming new bonds, a new row gets stitched onto that blanket, and it perseveres.

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  8. 6 hours ago, Raymond said:

    Reading the different MM forums, after episode 12, many can't see how DH won't be totally upset, and no way he can forgive JA once know about the wiretapping, giving his normal very private personality. Quite simply they ignored the PD/writer have shown us DH is a totally different person in front of JA. He is not his normal self, not his usual character, he would do anything to keep her in his life by then. So there is no point guessing his future actions relating to JA using his normal character, I believe.

     

    Even JA assumes he'll be upset when he finds out. And at the funeral she wonders if that's his last kindness, and whether he'll just leave her. Maybe it hasn't truly hit her, how much of a difference she's made for him, how unique that relationship is (until she remembers her grandma's words).

     

    I guess it's also an expectation from other dramas, lead characters always having to split up for some reason, justified or not. But there don't really seem to be those kinds of 'bad communication' moments here

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  9. On 11/18/2023 at 1:19 AM, Raymond said:

    And JA must also know she is too much an attraction/temptation to DH (impossible not to aware of all those secret glances in the office, in the train etc).

     

    Just as much of a sign is the way he's obviously thinking about her and her words when she's not there. And whenever she hears herself brought up around DH, she just stops in the street and listens so attentively.

     

    On 11/18/2023 at 1:19 AM, Raymond said:

    And that's why the final handshake is so significant showing DH no longer needs to resist the temptation.

     

    Yeah, if JA confessed to him again the way she did the first time, there's no way he'd push her away now. But also, I think that whole scene shows a change in the emotional relationship between the two and not just a physical difference. They don't pity each other anymore! Earlier, so much of their mutual feelings was centred around that. DH even tells the monk earlier in the same episode before the timeskip that JA is the most pitiful person he knows. But that seems to be replaced now with happiness, joy to see each other changed for the best.

     

    The way JA walks towards DH once she hears his voice at the coffee shop reminds me of the heart scene where DH stares at JA on the sidewalk after playing soccer. They're both totally fixated. JA just walks away from her friends with a distracted nod and follows his voice, while DH keeps looking at her while driving away. In those moments it feels like there's only one other person in each other's world.

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  10. On 11/6/2023 at 5:36 AM, Raymond said:

    The only 'self censor' by PD/writer I can imagine is DH's speech to JA at the place of the janitor after finding her. I don't feel 'knowing someone would accept whatever that someone do' make any sense. He certainly knows both JY and YH very well and no way he would accept what they did. The original script might be 'loving' rather than 'knowing' make more sense linke many already suggested. And if there is no controversy at all, with a forced kiss in the beginning, there should be a genuine kiss at the end to close the story arc, just like the rejected hug and real hug, and also  what happened at the end of BJ Diary.

     

    The quote about knowing someone, I interpret it as meaning 'I know you, I know that you are good and have good intentions, so nothing you do will bother me'. To accept everything about someone does seem like another way of saying love though. It reminds me a bit about what the monk says - that there isn't a single thing he hates in the world. I think DH doesn't know his wife that well, he doesn't intuitively grasp her mental state the way he does with JA. And he doesn't talk to her or share things with her that would help them understand what they don't know. Only the affair and the subsequent argument lets their true feelings come to the surface and be known to each other.

     

    But I do think there's a self-censor in the janitor's place. It's still strange to me that he doesn't do anything (i.e. try to comfort her or move next to her) after she starts crying. It's weird to imagine him just watching her cry, that doesn't feel like a very realistic response (especially after the speech he just gave!).

     

    On 11/10/2023 at 3:12 PM, sweetroad said:

    These days, what makes the most sense to me is that JA doesn't contact DH because she doesn't want to bother/burden him anymore, since he was already avoiding her before she left for Busan. It may be she thinks he stays with Yoon Hee, too. But the biggest thing (and probably most hurtful thing) is that he was avoiding her for a few weeks while she stayed at Jung Hee's. She probably doesn't feel the confidence to contact him after she leaves Hugye.

     

    And DH refrains from contacting her, since she's made it clear that a person who can be happy without her has no appeal, and that she wants to start over as if she has no history. Personally, I think there's a bit of a noble-martyr complex there for JA as she lets him go by saying those things; obviously she's still in love with him when they reunite, so it's not true that a happy DH wouldn't have any appeal for her. :)

     

    At that point, I don't think there's much left to do for JA. DH's safe, he tells her that 'she saved him', so she doesn't really need to protect him anymore. But just because JA's left the neighbourhood doesn't mean they're not with her. She's following her grandma's advice (and also her promise to DH) to be happy, as the way to repay them for everything. Maybe she still kept that promise to Jung Hee - to meet during those 2 times of the year - while being away in Busan.

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  11. On 11/5/2023 at 6:15 AM, Convergence said:

    Personally I like to imagine the timeskip never happened (an overused plot device in kdramas I hear) as I find it unrealistic for them to voluntarily and completely cut contact after such an emotionally intense, and crescendoing 'courtship'; but it is canon, so to answer your question. The third party to that handshake would definitely wonder what was between them. 

     

    I just think the creators chose to have them have no contact during the timeskip just to be able to make the last scene more poignant, it is more poignant to have a character ask dramatically "When did you return to Seoul" instead of them saying "Oh, yeah, I remember your text from a few weeks ago, that you'll return".

     

    I wonder if it's meant to mirror the way the monk left the neighbourhood. DH says in ep 8: "The entire neighbourhood was in shock... he said he wanted to try becoming a person who had nothing". When JA leaves, the people in the neighbourhood are all surprised, and they ask her if she needs to go so far. But more than that, at that point she's lost her grandma, and by (temporarily) cutting ties with DH, she gets to experience what it's like to have nothing, to have nobody. To see what remains after. DH starts to experience this as well when he finds himself alone at his apartment after his wife leaves. And after experiencing this, we see JA teaching others (about sign language) just like how the monk guides others.

     

    What the monk is saying as Jung Hee comes to see him is important: "People think that outside things cause discord in their hearts and that outside things fill their hearts with joy... one sees the things that one sees within oneself in the outside world... humans are bound to see things they desire. They end up searching for the things they want to see within themselves in the outside world."

     

    When JA gets beat up by the loan shark, she plays DH's voice telling her that she's a good person, over and over. Similarly, DH is comforted when JA texts him 'it's not a big deal'. Eventually, JA and DH will be able to say these things directly to themselves. In this relationship, where they pity themselves and each other, being able to relieve their self-pity opens up a different way of being with each other. To be happy with others, you have to be happy with yourself, right?

    • Like 3
  12. On 11/1/2023 at 11:48 AM, sweetroad said:

    And with Momma Park cleaning Jung Hee's bar for her on a daily basis, wouldn't she have run into JA there? I don't think Jung Hee could have kept JA a secret from Momma Park for very long (like she did on JA's very first morning waking up there). In my imagination Momma Park would have heard about JA in conversation, and seen her around, perhaps probably meeting her officially one afternoon at JH's bar. I wonder how their relationship would've been.

     

    I wonder if she just stayed away from the bar for a bit after hearing Jung Hee's excuse, to give her more space.

     

    On 11/1/2023 at 8:37 PM, sweetroad said:

    It's neat to see the "movement" of her attitudes toward DH mirrored in PHY's description.

     

    I was thinking of worry a lot here (though not said by PHY), it seemed like the main emotion involved in a lot of the scenes we think indicate 'love'. DH worries about JA missing her stop, and stays nearby to see her arrive. JA worries about DH when she hears him fall near the railway tracks, and sees him at the bridge. Maybe worry is a greater feeling here, because it's shown like a stronger version of pity or sympathy. It's more than just feeling sad for someone, they think of each other as important. Worry relates to care - DH's biggest show of affection for his wife is always asking to buy groceries for her.

     

    I've been wondering recently about the speech DH gives about 'the things that make you you'. To me it seems to relate to why JA had to move to Busan, that she couldn't just be someone reliant on DH without ever having explored herself elsewhere. And it shows why DH has to break up with his wife, that he has to find a new way to live, a new set of anchors after his first set breaks down. Because just living just one way (the family man, the loyal friend/subordinate) makes you vulnerable when anything goes wrong with that identity. And maybe PHY is trying to say that people have to find some kind of internal strength that other relationships can build from, that keep them going when they're just by themselves.

    • Like 1
  13. On 9/5/2023 at 9:18 PM, sweetroad said:

    And sometimes I wonder how close DH really is to the ahjussis at JH's bar. They seem to talk a lot to each other, and they definitely know him, but I wonder how much he invests in them as far as being open and vulnerable. He seems to enjoy their company to a point, but it's almost like they're a comfortable shoe that he slips on at the end of the day. He's used to them and to that lifestyle, especially if it means getting away from home... But how much does he actually confide in them? In his more melancholy moments he can be found at the other restobar, not at Jung Hee's.

     

    None of them seem to know about his mental health struggles. I think Jung Hee might be the only woman who's deeply involved in DH's life who isn't in the know (his mom, YH, and JA are all aware), which is shocking since she spends so much time around him. I think there's a flashback where YH asks DH 'you call this living?', and basically the only other person who has the same willingness/awareness to confront him similarly is the monk when they meet.

     

    On 10/12/2023 at 12:06 AM, Raymond said:

    Were Dong-hoon and Ji-an love in My Mister? - How do you define that? Respect, sympathy, pity, affection, etc. There are complex emotions buried there. The writer himself didn't think it was love, but the director listened carefully to the writer's story and said, "Then, I will see it as love." It is said that he said.

    A good drama does not necessarily have to be in agreement between the writer and director. I thought it was okay for opinions to differ like this, and that doing it this way would make viewers feel different emotions.'

     

    Respect, sympathy, pity, affection - that seems like the exact order of emotions that comes here for JA (with DH pity comes first). JA starts to respect and sympathize with DH when she overhears him defending his brother, she pities him when she sees the way he's treated at work, and then she feels affection for him when she decides to run after him. DH pities her first, and then starts to respect and sympathize with JA when he sees her taking care of her grandmother - affection comes afterward. Another emotion here is gratefulness - DH for the bribe getting thrown away, JA for the help taking care of her grandma.

     

    On 10/21/2023 at 1:16 AM, Raymond said:

    I worked for a very small firm once and the owner and his wife smoke 'grass' once in a while. They are just normal kind people (not that I would join them). True alcoholism caused serious problems and kdramas worst offenders promoting it.

     

    This whole situation made me think a bit more about alcohol and its role in this story. I got one of my closest friends to also watch this show, and the first thing he pointed out was so many of the characters being raging alcoholics. I do think that My Mister has something meaningful to say about the role of alcohol in society. It's not just YH who suffers from her husband not being with her because he's drinking everyday, it's all the wives of the soccer club members (they report them to the cops over their drinking and driving). It's kinda wild that the community here is literally a bar. JA doesn't ever meet the people in DH's life who aren't alcoholics (his mom, SIL, and the monk).

     

    But I did think that My Liberation Notes would've been better if Mr. Gu had some other problem other than alcoholism, there were so many alarm bells for me with his character.

     

    I think My Mister is probably more vulnerable than other shows to having a lead actor with legal issues, because so much of the story relies on DH's character being ultra-moral, this unrealistically decent guy. And deep down you always know that an actor has their separate life and isn't the person on screen, but it's one thing to be vaguely aware of that, and another thing to have an actor be criticized very publicly.

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  14. 6 hours ago, Raymond said:

    Thanks for sharing. Yes if true that’s not too good in Korea. But in western societies drug use (of course no good to health) won’t make any news, not in entertainment industry, nor in normal society, as long as not die by overdose (too many sad examples)

     

    The press release seems to say marijuana (and not any actually serious drugs). I've always found it kinda hilarious how in k-dramas marijuana is such a big deal, while alcoholism is so casually accepted, and straight-up glorified even. The inconsistency is just silly.

     

    On a related topic though one thing I liked a lot about My Mister is that there were multiple scenes where people were worried about DH smoking cigarettes, it seemed like something that was disapproved.

    • Like 2
  15. On 10/8/2023 at 11:22 PM, sweetroad said:

    That's how I understood it, too - that he really wouldn't be living any kind of daily life with YH and his son for 8 or 9 years. That's probably the saddest part of DH's life, that his son is growing up away from him. :(

     

    I didn't even think of that, it's kinda heart-breaking to realize. It makes the scene with him crying in front of the picture of their family even sadder. 

     

    On 7/15/2023 at 11:04 AM, dongans said:

    That reminded me of episode 8 from My Liberation Notes, where Mi Jeong (female version of DH) says to Gu that "you can do anything in front of someone that likes you". Park Hae Young thinks about that more than we know... The unpeeling feeling; To be "naked" and raw and vulnerable only in front of someone that you love.

     

    Recently, I was thinking about this idea again. Isn't it relieving for people to be known? To be understood? I was curious because at first, DH says that he feels sad that JA understands him ("I'm sad that she knows me"). I'm not sure if that's because he's sad that she has the life experience to grasp his problems, or because he feels ashamed at the way he's living. And then later, he says "It's difficult to be around a person who saw you so vulnerable. And you end up not wanting to see them". And he says "I'm scared becase I feel you know everything without me telling you". And here he avoids even looking at her while he's talking about himself. 

     

    But in some ways, his actions kinda contradict that. Cause while he's scared of her seeing through him, he does things that bring them closer together. He doesn't avoid her. I feel like what she provides at that point is a sense of presence. Someone that sees, that understands, and is just willing to be there next to him. Unlike Mi Jeong, DH didn't have a choice in being vulnerable ("I feel like you know without me even telling you"), but he doesn't recoil from it, he starts to feel safe around JA. And in the container scene, it's clear how important 'being known' was to him, that she stayed next to him.

     

    On 10/12/2023 at 12:06 AM, Raymond said:

    '7. Were Dong-hoon and Ji-an love in My Mister? - How do you define that? Respect, sympathy, p ity, affection, etc. There are complex emotions buried there. The writer himself didn't think it was love, but the director listened carefully to t he writer's story and said, "Then, I will see it as love." It is said that he said.

    A good drama does not necessarily have to be i n agreement between the writer and director. I thought it was okay for opinions to differ like th is, and that doing it this way would make viewe rs feel different emotions.'

     

    Now clear we are seeing what the director’s impression from the story (plus all other emotions from the written story), and shown us on screen accordingly. It is the very first time, at March 2023, such love line ever reviewed from the production team. Wonder what are the key differences between what is filmed/shown to what is written regarding the love element? Such as 'buy me slippers', 'the monk friend’s advice to DH how to live happily, DH in the car after soccer seeing the love sign then JA at the traffic crossing, and turning back their heads at the end' etc etc?

     

    Are there any differences at all? Isn't the director just saying that the combination of all those feelings = love? While the writer's more focused on showing the complexity of the feelings, and avoids concluding them into one type of relationship. This story feels very coherent, it doesn't feel like it was pushed in any one direction (despite all the media interviews about 'no love line' and so on). I think there is as much in the script making romantic hints as there is in the direction. 

     

    I've been wondering about the heart sign. Cause he sees the heart from his friend and smiles. And then JA behind him, and he wakes to life. Before that he looks so lifeless, even though he was playing well in the soccer game that just finished, it doesn't seem to mean anything to him. Maybe the heart here is JA bringing him to life, like what CPR would do. And he doesn't want to let go of her presence there, so he keeps looking at her. 

    • Like 3
  16. 1 hour ago, Raymond said:

    But I think the character in DH is one of the best I ever watched in kdramas, most day to day, believable, kind of man, with ordinary job, simply tried his best in very human manner, with understandable human feelings, and very decent as well. Mr Guo is a bit too rich, and with odd kind of job, to be a day to day kind of man.

     

    I completely agree. I felt like there was something missing with Mr. Gu's character, his backstory felt a little flat. But weirdly it didn't even matter because I felt like that story was mostly about Yeom Mi Jeong, who I feel might be the most 'real' character I've ever seen in a k-drama. 

     

    I tried watching Another Miss Oh, and finding it hard to continue, there just wasn't anything I found all that interesting in the first couple of episodes. The characters especially aren't anywhere as compelling

    • Like 1
  17. 2 hours ago, Raymond said:

    It is more a review of himself rather than what others would think, which is much less important, I believe.

     

    Yeah, it's his self-acceptance and self-understanding that are the most important. Though I was thinking during my latest re-watch, that maybe the person I want to see JA spend time with the most isn't DH's family, but actually his friend Sang Won, since he seems to understand him the best. 

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  18. 4 hours ago, sweetroad said:

    I had thought that he didn't have any more affection for her, as I felt in her immediate reaction (after waiting for him to answer and him remaining silent) a sense of devastation

     

    You're right. I think earlier he was more conflicted, and by the point of their confrontation, he was clear about what they had to do. Him asking her about wanting something on the way home seems more like out of habit, I think that would be consistent with her saying that he doesn't know what she wants, since it lacks passion. 

     

    On 10/4/2023 at 6:40 PM, Raymond said:

    There are many kdramas with stronger healing lines than MM, like It is Okay Not to be Okay, or even What's Wrong with Secretary Kim etc

     

    I think the difference here is the approach towards healing, that it's something people need to do on their own, rather than something you get by being in a relationship. Love is important, but it doesn't cure everything, people need to gain the strength to do that themselves. The feeling of psychological growth is so great with PHY dramas. 

     

    4 hours ago, sweetroad said:

    Have you seen Healer, with Ji Chang Wook and Park Min Young? It's tied with IOTNBO in 2nd place, for me, and is also a healing drama, although there's a lot more going on in the story

     

    For me, Healer (especially, it made a huge impact) and IOTNBO were the first two romance dramas that I really liked, they set the bar for me. Though as far as PMY romance dramas go, nowadays I'd say that When the Weather is Fine is my favourite of hers. At least it's single-handedly convinced me that I should join a book club at some point in the future. :)

     

    Recently I've been thinking about what it means when they say in My Mister that something 'isn't a big deal'. A lot of commenters expected the wiretapping to be a big deal, and it wasn't. We expect the adultery to be a big deal, and it is, but it doesn't get confronted for a long time, I think 11 or 12 episodes. The things DH does for YH aren't a big deal to her, but they are to JA. She reacts so differently to the way he expresses care (asking if he should buy things), and his treatment at work. Maybe the lesson is the importance in finding someone who's in line with you about the things that are important in life (i.e. family for DH and JA, affection/passion for YH). Or just someone who's willing to care about those things even if they don't get it immediately. It's not like JA was ever a soccer fan, but she gets what it means to DH as soon as she sees the way everyone comes together at the funeral. It's also important to have people who think what happens to you is a big deal. DH is never assertive, except when it comes to the people he cares about. Even JA, despite being a more brave and active character, is kind of similar - her actions are to either protect her grandmother, or to protect DH. I don't know if we ever really see YH or DJY reliably prioritize others like that. 

     

    Another thing I was thinking about is in episode 3. "There was never any temptation. So I don't know if I have a lot of willpower or not". At the time, it makes sense to think about this in the sense of him (not) being tempted to ever have an affair. But another way to think about this is his will to live, to make it through the troubles he has in the future. He picks himself up off the ground in front of the railway tracks, he walks away from the bridge when he's thinking of suicide. And I think that's the more important temptation, the one to give up on life. And it's what PHY wants to say both here and in MLN that people have the strength to overcome. Like DH picks himself up in both those occasions even without knowing he has JA's support. When KH talks about the internal strength that the kids have in the movie 'Nobody Knows', it's the same thing, right? 

    • Insightful 1
  19. On 9/28/2023 at 12:19 AM, sweetroad said:

    Thanks for pointing out this pattern in the show. That’s a nice insight. Another scene that follows this approach is when Yoon Hee asks, “The reason you want to stay in this marriage isn’t because you still have affection for me, right?” and Dong Hoon is silent. 
     

    Any other scenes you can think of that have this pattern?

     

    What does silence mean here? An inability to deny? Confirmation? I think he feels both ways. He does still have affection for her. And he does feel betrayed by her. It's not one or the other. The way he tells her to not talk to Joon Young in episode 3 says volumes.

     

    I think one time where DH does deny it is when he says 'I'd do the same if it happened to you' when his coworkers are telling him his concern for JA seems weird. At the time I wasn't totally convinced, but maybe all these other times where he admits things through his silence means that he was truly being honest there. 

    • Like 1
  20. On 9/23/2023 at 10:15 PM, sweetroad said:

    I think DH flip flops so much during the show - his decency of course won't allow him to start anything romantic with JA, but in scenes like this where he demands the slippers, he can't help but say things that do draw JA's heart deeper in love/like with him. So he's not purposely playing with her, but I think he's still crossing a line.

     

    The entire give me slippers speech can be seen as him leading her on.

     

    He's denying what he's feeling. He tries to backtrack by saying things like 'in 10 years or 20 years when we see each other again', but when JA brings up her moving to Busan, he's sad, it moves him enough to agree to hug her. Maybe what makes My Mister feel more romantic than most (if not all) romance dramas I've seen is the shared understanding between DH and JA. He lies a fair bit (both to her and himself) and tries to deny his feelings, but she can see right through him. There just aren't lasting misunderstandings the way there are in every other show. The only disagreement after they're tied-up is in episode 9 when DH finds out about JA wanting to keep the bribe, but that makes him want to understand her more, and leads to the relationship getting even stronger. 

     

    DH makes a commitment to JA early on ('No matter what I hear about you, I'll pretend that I didn't hear it'), and he asks her to pretend not to know if she ever discovers his secret: 'if nobody knows, it's not a big deal'. But the instant either of them have the opportunity to confront the person hurting the other (the loan shark / YH), they take it. They seem aligned in a rare way, they don't hold things against each other, they always try to understand the other, even when they're hurt. DH so effortlessly forgiving her for the wiretap might be the epitome of this. 

    • Like 1
    • Insightful 1
  21. On 9/4/2023 at 4:45 PM, sweetroad said:

    That's what is striking me on this rewatch now (I'm through episode 9, for the nth time) - DH is so relaxed with JA. In contrast to his conversations with YH where he's silent, tense, or even just abruptly gets up and walks out the door, with JA he remains engaged, he's listening to her, and responding to her in ways that makes sense in "normal" human interactions.

     

    I think the only exception is when JA tries to talk about her feelings for him, and then (for most of the show) he behaves the same way he does with his wife. He'll try to avoid her, walking faster, moving away from her. Maybe the difference is how JA reacts to that. She's not disappointed, she doesn't have an expectation of a romantic relationship with him, so she can take this kind of rejection. In episode 13, where he speeds up as soon as she starts asking him whether she made him feel uncomfortable, and then dispassionately rejects her offer of a hug, JA takes that so calmly. 

     

    But I think YH is hurt by this same type of coldness, because the things he does for her aren't what she needed. And he never seems to let her know him well enough to give her a pathway to meet him halfway, to understand him. It feels like a big deal when they're just talking normally with each other, when they're listening to trivia on the radio in the car.

     

    Another thing I was wondering about is during the very last scene. As JA and her colleagues are walking into the cafe, one of them seems to say (according to the translation) something like 'Really? They make it too obvious'. And that happens right before she hears DH's voice and walks over towards him. Is that supposed to tell the audience to look deeper into the relationship here?

    • Like 2
  22. On 9/5/2023 at 9:18 PM, sweetroad said:

    And sometimes I wonder how close DH really is to the ahjussis at JH's bar. They seem to talk a lot to each other, and they definitely know him, but I wonder how much he invests in them as far as being open and vulnerable. He seems to enjoy their company to a point, but it's almost like they're a comfortable shoe that he slips on at the end of the day. He's used to them and to that lifestyle, especially if it means getting away from home... But how much does he actually confide in them? In his more melancholy moments he can be found at the other restobar, not at Jung Hee's.

     

    I wonder how much of this is due to the hierarchical divides that age seems (as far as I can tell through watching dramas) to create in South Korea. Other than JA, the people who DH is closest to are his brothers (connected by blood), and then Jung Hee and Sang Won, who are both the same age as him. I agree that he doesn't seem close to everyone else at the bar, the rare conversations he has with them seemed entirely superficial. And I think that's because of the age gap, they're all older than him, and that stops them from being close. He doesn't spend much time with his sister-in-law (Ae Ryeon), and yet she seems to understand him a lot better than the ahjussis he interacts with every day, and that's because they're the same age and have shared experiences as classmates. 

     

    But JA cuts through all of that, she refuses to talk to him differently because of the age gap from almost the very beginning (ep 3), and he acknowledges their similarity soon after (end of ep 4). I'm curious about what he means when he says then that he's sad that she (JA) knows him. I don't think he cares about her enough yet to be worried that he's setting a bad example or causing her to be unhappy (the way he is when he talks to her at the shack). Is it the feeling of having his vulnerabilities discovered? But he doesn't even know about his wife cheating on him at that point. Maybe he's thinking that it's his unhappiness, the dreariness of his life that would let the people around him down, and that might be why he reacts so negatively when JA asks him in the previous episode what his parents would think of his life. It's kinda sad that he has this fear of discovery even before he knows the extent of his failure. 

     

    On 9/6/2023 at 8:26 PM, sweetroad said:

    Ko Mun Young is so unlikeable in the beginning of the show, but her narrative arc is beautiful and so touching. And how the two brothers' relationship changes and grows always moves me to tears. Hope you can finish the show - it is done so well. The main character, Moon Gang Tae, reminds me of Park Dong Hoon, in that both start out numb and repressive and wake up to themselves and their own needs and desires.

     

    I also liked IOTNBO a lot, but I feel like it was almost the opposite of My Mister in some ways. I felt like the heart of that show was the relationship between the two brothers, and that KMY was basically a plot device (albeit a very interesting one) for them to get their feelings through to each other. While in My Mister, the relationship between the two leads is central, and everything else builds that. 

    • Like 1
  23. 5 hours ago, sweetroad said:

    I still think it's strange how he just ignores Yu Ra the first time he meets her at Jung Hee's, but the brothers explain it away as him being extremely shy (which further highlights that his un-shy interactions with Ji An are not the norm)...but it still feels rude.

     

    I thought the same thing, it was really surprising that Yu Ra just brushed off being ignored so casually. I think it's because he's at his comfort place, that he doesn't bother with social niceties with people he doesn't know yet. If it were work, he'd probably say something in that kind of situation rather than letting his shyness come through. 

     

    It's interesting that DH is so shy, because I'm not sure how much of an introvert he is. He spends a lot of time seeking out other people's company, whether it's JA, or his brothers and friends at the bar. The more isolated life that a lot of introverts would prefer - spending most their time alone with their partner - is what he avoids. And he never seems like he's enjoying any of the time spent alone, he doesn't recharge that way. If his social or emotional battery ever recovers, it's from spending time with people like JA and the monk. His brothers and Jung Hee don't seem to know what to say to him to make him feel better, which is kinda sad, but on normal days I think they keep him stable rather than tiring him out. 

     

    6 hours ago, sweetroad said:

    And knowing that Ki Hoon intentionally insulted her and made life miserable for her 10 years ago, I can see how conflicted he is. The writer really wrote their story quite well.

     

    Yeah, I like Yu Ra much more than Ki Hoon in that storyline, she didn't really do anything wrong. And I kinda like that she ends up separated from him and in a better position in the end, she deserves it. 

     

    1 hour ago, Raymond said:

    In addition there are so many kdramas that the main leads separated mid way in the last episode and reunited at the end for a happily after ending.

     

    At some point I thought back at all the romance kdramas I'd ever watched, and I felt like 90% or more of them had the leads separate and then re-unite in the story. At least in My Mister there's a good reason for it, unlike other stories where it feels like the writers just ran out of plot and needed to have some unnecessary drama. 

    • Like 1
  24. On 8/31/2023 at 4:43 PM, sweetroad said:

    Totally agree. They became quite campy and overacted. She's a hilarious actress, though. I just saw her in Dinner Mate and she was like an alpha female. :lol:

     

    Yeah, and I felt like the most important part was less the cheating and more everyone knowing about it and not doing anything. Especially since nobody seems to care when he ends up getting dumped and struggling. I feel like there was a missed opportunity here, since figuring out what to do when people in your social circle are cheating on their partners is a relatively common problem that people have. 

     

    How did Dinner Mate end up being? 

     

    On 8/31/2023 at 4:43 PM, sweetroad said:

    I noticed in episode 1 that he wasn't even all that surprised that Yoon Hee would miss their niece's wedding. They hardly talked that evening, either, when she got back from her time with DJY and DH got back from the wedding.

     

    On 8/31/2023 at 4:43 PM, sweetroad said:

    I had to chuckle last night while watching Episode 6 - DH is a downright chatterbox when he's with JA, and in Ep 5 and 6 she's just giving him short answers. The whole dynamic is kinda cute.

     

    DH was disappointed in YH for missing the wedding, she knows he's disappointed, but he doesn't confront her. Even when they have their one big fight, when DH gets angry at her for cheating on him, he doesn't bring up anything else wrong with the marriage. It's YH who talks about the problems that she had, the moments that bothered her. 

     

    But DH complains to JA about the things she does that bother him, he casually argues with her or pushes back on things she says in a way he doesn't with his wife. He tells her off for slapping her co-worker, he tells her he feels humiliated to know people are speaking badly of him behind his back, he gets defensive when she says the people who bought her food weren't nice people, etc. And all that's healthy, he's alive when he's with JA, he's listening and reacting to what she's saying, rather than the zombie he is around his wife. Their conversations feel 'complete' in a way that doesn't even happen when talking at the bar to his younger brother or to Jung Hee. 

     

    It's just nice to see him just talking to JA, to see him putting effort and bonding with her. 

     

    --

     

    Thinking about this a bit more, I think it's the unwillingness to argue, the weird nonchalance about really important things that makes Soo Yeon's side of the relationship seem shaky. It feels like she's as checked out and hopeless as DH is. There were times when I thought she expressed more love/affection for her affair partner than her actual husband. 

    • Like 1
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