Happiness [First half comments]


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If you are one of my followers in twitter I guess you would be aware of how much I’m gushing over this weekend drama. And it’s a delight that I jumped right onto the wagon and watched it even though it aired 2 years ago and it’s extremely long, I have to say so far, it’s worth it and I’m glad I’m watching this two years after for me to be able to marathon it in consecutively boring days and to replace the drought the 2010 airing dramas has given me so far. Let’s place a little simple & brief introduction about what this drama is all about first.

[Please note that the coverage of this review will only be for Episodes 1-29, as I have a lot to rant about this long long weekend drama.]

Introduction:

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This 2008 Weekend drama with 58 episodes entitled, Happiness / I Am Happy  행복합니다, shows a story about two families who are in a different society, they have their fates meet up as they all get entangled up on each other. Here are some of many examples. The eldest daughter of one of the top companies of Korea, SJ Group, has been working as a regular employee and dating a Representative who isn’t aware that he is dating the eldest daughter of the President of the company. This will show the different societies we have now, the eldest son and the youngest daughter will also be part of a love affair with regular people, poor, middle-class, not as rich as them kind of people. For short, your typical Korean Drama neighbor.

The history:

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It’s pretty dramatic why I had to place the title to be that way. (hehe.) Like what I said before, I’ve been dead tired on how much the weekend dramas I have watched or for short, the 50 episode drama, had gave me a bad experience. I’m glad that I took a break on these dramas for like 5 months or so. Why? This heaven-sent drama had just fallen right under my arms and pretty much told me that there’s still some life and will power on those kind of dramas. I don’t know why I had suddenly thought about this drama, I knew about this long before, October 2008, maybe? The 50th episode was one of an editing test when I wanted to join a subbing team, then like after a year and a half, I suddenly found myself in the page of the download links of this drama, posting up in twitter how much about it, looking up on comments, reviews about it, a background check on the PD and Writer, then I had to click the download button on the first episode until it suddenly went on and on. I have to say that I’m once again watching a drama in which I have no idea what was it about, it’s just sudden.

The Happiness.

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To keep it short in context, the first half of the drama showed indeed Happiness, strong & interesting characters, intellectual dialogues, delivery of emotions is well brought up and the twists aren’t like a chain in some dramas it has a different kind of twists that can be solved.

To put it off simply, Happiness is indeed a delight. Most people check on first impressions, a drama must have a strong impression for it to be continued, luckily this drama was able to exhibit a strong first impression on its first half. It’s very safe to say now that this drama was able to achieve the viewers heart and including mine 50% and that percentage will remain. To say it shortly, if I were to encounter some unwanted scenes in the second half, I would still be delighted that I watched this, I wouldn’t be hitting my head on the walls regretting why I spent my time watching this, those kind of situations. It’s safe to say that, ‘I’m glad I watched this, I had fun and you left me good memories I would never forget.’

To be able to put up more liveliness on the plot a writer must be able to show the characters strong and weak points properly. The first half was able to show a strong sense on its characters, though not all has came out on their shells yet but the second half will explain more, a very interesting history and how they were able to develop as well. If I were to describe it, I couldn’t possibly say that it looked a little forced or like just to have some screen time for that character they placed him/her into such situation. A big NO to that, the characters are definitely interesting and showed some good sense about the story develops as well. Props to the acting of all these artists, if I could remember, I think I had no negative comments about the way they act while I was watching. The scenes are very brought up that’s why you won’t be able to care less about it. Also, why I love the characters, this isn’t the stupid like drama, I always love a character who is straight to the point, it’s as if they really knew everything and isn’t naive. It was favorably more lovable because it showed that kind of trait.

The scenes of the show are very rare to be found on a weekend drama so far. The secrets wherein you would think that it would take a millennium for it to be discovered were not there. The twists and secrets were revealed in the proper time, manner and it didn’t become too draggy at any point. An example may be was the secret of Seo Yoon to Joon Soo about her being the president of the daughter. The secret of Ji Sook that he has a son with Sang Wook. [Since we’re talking about the first half, this only covers being revealed to Sang Wook and the wife of Sang Wook, Ha Kyung, which is considered as fair already.] The relationship of Ae Da and Kang Seok. [I have to admit a little that I felt uncomfortable with that relationship because of them hiding and Ae Da’s continuous lies upon going to practice, sneaking out during the night despite the continuous threats of Butler Lee.] The very cute love story of Mrs. Ahn and the Lee brother’s father. [Though this story will be fully bloomed on the first part of the second half, still it was also revealed to some that they are interested with each other.] About the twists and secrets of the whole drama, I have said that it isn’t like a chain, comparing it to some dramas wherein we find some difficult situations which are hard to handle as a viewer, this drama was showing a light yet heavy kind of twists. The situations are like beyond-mankind. Unlike some which I think can only be solved by the gods?! If I were to put it simply like that.

The Sadness.

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This drama was indeed unexpected for me. But still, I can’t help but be irritated on some of the characters and scenes that are happening. Not all dramas has all the strong points, a viewer will for sure have found some weak points for it as well. Sadly this drama falls mostly on the weak points for its characters. I loath very much Ji Sook for being very stupid and falling for that gross and stupid, Sang Wook. I find Ha Kyung [who is becoming more and more evil on the second half] to be more interesting and I dig her character very much for being a secretive type of doing plans.

Plus the two brothers, Joon Gi [a ARTIST bum] and Joon Young [the hopeless student] are like blood sucking people. Well, gladly the two will improve more on the latter half and will show more developments about the story related to them. [I’m still on the part of development for Joon Gi while Joon Young I’m on the part of Joon Young had fully matured, which has been a great development.] And also, Seo Yoon’s gangster side had been shown on the first half as well which will badly damage the relationship of the married couple. Let’s just consider this as a side-story since the story on that part wasn’t much focused on them because of Ae Da and the affair of Sang Wook. But like what I said the ones which I hated mostly on the first half would be off good use on the second half and have a wide development of them.

The impossible is possible.

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We’re all humans, that’s what they wanted to show. I love it how it portrayed that, the President of SJ Group can once in a while drink soju with his in-law in a not so fancy place where they normally should be, the Madam of SJ Group has always found soju to be more tasty than the ‘for-rich-drink’, wine & expressed how much she loved Pig Feet, the biggest was the marriage of a high-class person and a normal employee and the most cute, I can say was the relationship of the housekeeper & the in-laws of the housekeeper’s boss. Fair is fair, people are people. A very indirect statement which was what the writer was deeply developing and showing all along. If in old children stories we have our ‘lesson learned’ well, this show had it as well.

We all love supernatural things, don’t we? Surprising happenings that would make us stand up on our feet and just scream how awesome it is. Thinking that this drama didn’t feel like very long just watching the first half was a big amazement for someone who was failed numerous times or fooled by long series. It felt like I was just watching some short drama wherein everything is moving so fast, developing well and is a delight to watch. It was seriously amazing and I’m fond of it already.

I Am Happy, Happiness.

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What more can I say to show that I’m very pleased on what this drama had in store and had showed me especially for this first half? It was very strong, funny, witty, heart warming and a more pleasant feelings I can express. If I were to point out the very strongest batch of episodes for this show, I would point out that the strongest which portrayed very much emotions and made me smile after each episodes, the first 14 episodes was a wow to watch and a must seen as well. This weekend drama had given me a much better hope to continue on a long series and made me trust on people’s judgment as well. 58 long episodes, approximately an hour for each episode making it 59 hours can make you do very much, gladly the 29 hours of this drama was well worth it and I’m expecting more from as it blooms much more and shows more sides of it. It was seriously a very refreshing first half, a great start, it’s lovable all through out.

Commenting on each characters, Jjong Ah has some very very cute scenes, her frank dialogues and funny antics is one of a kind. Director Lee, the mother of Seo Yoon, is a very cute and upbeat kind. She’s selfish and expects for her children to listen to her only, but she has both sides as well, a evil one & a jolly kind as well. Ji Sook was one of the most stupid if I have to say, her character has loved a stupid man, her escape door was already shown to her yet she took the long and difficult route to take and her life is seriously messed up now. Seo Yoon was fierce and strong, but surely she would be the most I would miss if I were to end it. She’s sincere and shows only her true side. She can sacrifice little but she must do what she wants to do. These are just part of the jam-packed cast of this show. And I will surely miss them if I were to part ways with them. I’m glad I’m watching this long series but sad as well it’s nearly reaching the finale. Here’s one thing for sure, this long drama will be staying in my HDD despite taking up 35.3 GB off my space, I mean, it’s worth it and I’m glad I can play it anytime I want and just have a short time laughter of memories.

Since I love this show oh so much, here are more captures of some juicy and cute scenes:
(If you want to see it in full screen, drag the image to your tabs or copy the link then enter.)

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One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Thanks! on October 20, 2010 at 4:01 pm

    Thanks for the detailed review on this weekend drama. I’m always looking for a good drama to watch, as there’s always a surplus of mediocre ones. Sometimes I feel like recent Korean dramas have become so tied up in extravagant production that the dramas lose their heart, or emotional appeal. For example, King of Baking, Kim Takgoo, had really low production costs, but it had an amazing script that was perfected over the years. The plot was quickly paced, with three scheming, flawed, yet “empathizable” villains, that kept viewers on the edge of their seats, waiting to see how good would triumph over evil. Personally, I found that the second half dragged on on a bit, but never mind, the point is, a classic tale of retribution mixed with romance and family hooks viewers. I’m not, however, in favor of makjang dramas. KOBKT was balanced by heart warming, occasionally funny, loyal characters and a feel good ending.

    On the other hand, Fugitive Plan B, has snazzy action scenes, slick special effects, and large scale props and settings, yet I don’t feel too attached to the drama. I loved that it was an action-comedy, because it’s unique and refreshing, and it kind of reminds me of Mixed Up Investigative Agency, yet I was turned off the superficiality sometimes of Rain’s acting (don’t get me wrong, I think Rain’s a pretty darn good actor), and the coldness of Lee Nayoung’s acting (don’t get me wrong, I loved her in Someone Special). The whole segment where her father, foster parents, and grandparents die in succession didn’t really move me, rather, it was so random and overdone, it was kind of funny, as in a “are you kidding me?” suspension of disbelief kind of way. I suppose I should give episodes 3, 4, etc a chance, though. I guess dramas with large budgets are no different than mega production summer blockbusters like Spiderman and Saving Private Ryan, and other expensive, bad movies that are so overblown that careful editing, nuanced acting, stellar script writing, and craftsmanship get overlooked. And low budget dramas are similar to indie gems, like the Hours or Slumdog Millionaires. Though of course, once in a while a large scale movie, like Lord of Rings, will meet both critical acclaim and financial success. And in both cases, veteran actors play a pivotal role in the quality of the film. But sometimes, even the most stellar of actors can’t rescue a sinking ship.

    Anyways, I haven’t seen a good drama since Bad Guy, and before BG, I haven’t seen a good drama for a very loooooong time, and I’m always trying out new dramas, only to give up and save the best of the mediocre dramas for when I’m truly desperate.

    I check out mostly prime time dramas, so I suppose I should check out some dailies/ weekends. I just find them rather slow paced. However, I’m glad to read from your review that Happiness is unconventional, with great villains to spice things up, and fast paced.

    BTW, thank you sooo much for posting up Box Office and TV ratings so frequently and diligently!! Your lists are primarily what I use to find out about new dramas.

    Reply

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