[K-DRAMA] Marry Him If You Dare / Mi Rae’s Choice

warning: may contain spoilers

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A time travel drama from future to present, set in the world of television broadcasting.

Na Mi Rae is an ordinary 32 year old woman who is working in a call center. She still dreams of becoming a writer for a television show with her age. One day a strange woman appears and introduced herself as Na Mi Rae, her future self. It took time for the present Na Mi Rae to believe her. The future Na Mi Rae who is also called Ahjumma tells her present self that she must not marry Kim Shin, a YBS announcer. In the future, Na Mi Rae was married to Kim Shin, and she wasn’t happy with her marriage life. One reason was because someone precious to her died because of Kim Shin. Ahjumma went back to present time to prevent the marriage from happening and to change her life. Ahjumma was trying to set-up Na Mi Rae with Park Se Ju, a rich conglomerate who is the successor of YBS. One day while Na Mi Rae was driving, she coincidentally had a minor car accident with Kim Shin. They were heading to the police station to report the situation but Na Mi Rae found out that Kim Shin’s driving license is expired. To not ruin his image, Kim Shin decides to let go of the accident and not report it to the police. In return, he guarantees a job to Na Mi Rae in his team in the broadcasting network. Coincidentally, Na Mi Rae’s brother is the team leader where Kim Shin works. Also, Park Se Ju disguises himself as a VJ in the team. Ahjumma found out about this and allowed Na Mi Rae to work in there since the man she’s setting up with Na Mi Rae is in the team.

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This drama is quite fresh because it time travels from future to present instead of the usual travelling into the future or to the past. Watching the first few episodes were acceptable, but through the middle until the end, I didn’t know where this drama is heading to. It’s messy and the storyline is dull with no suspense or whatsoever. I didn’t find the drama appealing and thrilling as I watch but it purely spelled b-o-r-i-n-g. It wasn’t what I was expected because obviously the writer didn’t utilise the time travelling well. The scenes from the future were all bad and unhappy memories. I wished they played with the future, like showing funny and innovative stuffs from the future. The method of time travelling was also very old school. There’s nothing new with the elevator as a means of traveling. I mean, they could be more creative right?

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I’m also disappointed with the character developments and their personalities itself. Their characters weren’t distinctive enough. Na Mi Rae and Kim Shin’s relationship put them together in an awkward situation. They’re not dating, but they like each other, but because of circumstances, they can’t end up together. There were too few scenes of them together. There’s really no chemistry between these two. They didn’t even have a hug or kiss scene which I think is definitely lacking in a Korean drama. It’s a Korean drama essential by the way. It seemed that Na Mi Rae and Park Se Ju had better chemistry. At least, they get to share a blanket together and had a back hug scene. But that doesn’t seem enough. Na Mi Rae doesn’t exactly like Park Se Ju either, it’s as if she was forced to pursue their relationship. Seo Yoo Kyung also likes Park Se Ju, but because of Se Ju’s persistent love for Mi Rae, she backs out. I didn’t like the characters’ personalities at all. Ahjumma really messed up with their lives. They were living normally, but why did she ever come to ruin their lives? It makes me want to pull Ahjumma’s hair so much.

Characters:

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Yoon Eun Hye as Na Mi Rae — I don’t count this drama as one of Yoon Eun Hye’s successful dramas. Yoon Eun Hye is such a popular and brilliant actress, but I guess she should pick dramas more cleverly next time. I didn’t enjoy Lie To Me as well, and I’m hoping that she challenge herself with more roles that are different from the ordinary and the usual. The character Na Mi Rae seemed weak and lost. No matter how well Yoon Eun Hye portrayed Na Mi Rae, the character is not a likeable one. I don’t understand how she thinks. She hesitated her relationship with Kim Shin, but seeing that there are no more chances, she goes to the latter who is Se Ju. She didn’t give a “no sign” to Se Ju either even if she clearly didn’t like him. The transformation of her hair from curly to straight didn’t leave any impression at all. It was barely noticeable or am I not just paying attention? I guess it wasn’t Eun Hye’s mistake, but merely the character itself didn’t allow her to show off her acting skills.

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Lee Dong Gun as Kim Shin — He is a familiar actor that I’ve seen in past dramas, and I’m actually excited to see him back on television. However, this first project after his army duties wasn’t a success. Lee Dong Gun is a great actor but I guess he wasn’t really able to show his skills much in this drama as Kim Shin. I felt that he was more of a second lead actor rather than the leading actor. The first few episodes, Kim Shin’s character really stood out but as the story progressed, his character gradually faded and it seemed like Kim Shin feels lost. I sort of pity him because he’s supposed to be a strong character, but ended up as a weak character. Kim Shin is a male lead character that’s easily forgotten. FNC Entertainment, the company that manages him should pick a better role for him next time.

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Jung Yong Hwa as Park Se Ju — I can’t deny the fact that I’m looking forward for this drama just because Yong Hwa is part of this drama. I’m happy because he has a considerable lengthy screen time even if he’s just a second lead actor. He definitely stood out in this drama, and there were times when I felt that he was the lead actor because he seemed to have more scenes with Mi Rae. I couldn’t exactly decide whether his role was suitable for him or not. I prefer him playing the role of the VJ rather than a chaebol. He seemed too kind to play a rich businessman. I guess hairstyles do matter too, because I like his hairstyle with bangs better. Park Se Ju is a likeable character at first, but I started to dislike his personality. He is really one persistent man. Can’t you even realise that Mi Rae doesn’t like you, but why are you still sticking with her? My heart aches while witnessing this unrequited love. Seeing Yong Hwa act again makes me excited yet nervous and shy for him. His acting definitely improved from his past dramas, You’re Beautiful and Heartstrings. I guess there’s still room for more improvement as he still seemed a little awkward in some scenes. Even if I’m a fan, I prefer him singing because he has so much more confidence performing onstage.

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Han Chae Ah as Seo Yoo Kyung — I really thought Seo Yoo Kyung would be a typical cutesy second lead actress, just there to annoy the lead actress or follow one of the actors around. I guess my first impression of her eventually changed as I saw how hardworking Seo Yoo Kyung was. She turned to be likeable character after all and probably the only character that I like until the end. I guess she was mature in her ways of thinking. She knows when to continue and when to back-off. Even if Se Ju doesn’t like her, she continues to be by his side supporting and giving him advice. Apparently, the writer didn’t give much attention to Yoo Kyung through the end of the drama. Acting-wise, I simply love Han Chae Ah’s portrayal of Yoo Kyung. I think she was suitable for this bubbly and likeable character.

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***ENDING SPOILERS***

I’m usually fine with open endings. I actually liked the Korean drama Big’s ending, but definitely not this one. As the literal translation of the drama says: “Mi Rae’s Choice”, Mi Rae was given a chance to choose between Kim Shin and Se Ju. However, even if she chose a guy, it wasn’t actually revealed as to who she chose which was a big big mistake. There’s the guy’s hand and the baby out of nowhere. I’m really curious with her choice, and that’s what actually made me look forward for the ending. But they gave me an unsatisfying ending instead. The initial dilemma of this drama is not resolved at all. I also didn’t like the fact that they used the parallel universe theory wherein Ahjumma is from another universe and no matter what the present Mi Rae does, it doesn’t affect Ahjumma’s life in the future. Also, when they told Ahjumma that her husband, her Kim Shin from the future, is actually alive. Wasn’t he supposed to be dead already? This confused me a lot and the direction of the drama is really lost. I really really wished that Kim Shin just pursued his relationship with Mi Rae after he knew about it. And Se Ju just back out from pursuing Mi Rae. Even if I’m really rooting for Se Ju during the start, it’s so obvious that Mi Rae doesn’t like him. Also, it’s Lee Dong Gun’s comeback from the army, at least give him the limelight that he deserves? I guess the writer wants to respect the audience’s choice by letting them decide. But remember, isn’t it Mi Rae’s Choice?

***END OF SPOILERS***

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Soundtrack:

Crappy writing aside, the songs in the soundtracks weren’t bad at all. Kim Tae Woo sings the opening theme song entitled “My Lady”. It’s catchy and fit for this drama. My personal favourite would be “I’m OK” by Yuna of AOA. It’s also called Na Mi Rae’s theme song. It’s very upbeat and addicting, and the lyrics really fit Mi Rae’s personality. On the other hand, “Casting Love” is a song composed by very own Jung Yong Hwa. The upbeat yet relaxing tune is very Yong Hwa. How I wished that he was the one who sang this song instead. “It’s You” by Park Hyo Shin is a typical ballad track of a soundtrack. When it comes to ballad, I love “Only Me” by Melody Day better. It’s more memorable for me. Overall, the soundtrack is good and passable, but I can’t count it as one of the best.

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Marry Him If You Dare is such a boring drama. I wondered how I survived 16 hours of watching this. If it weren’t for Jung Yong Hwa, I’d probably skip it. I love the four main leads, but the rest of the cast were just so-so. The storyline also made it worse. A time travel drama from future to present is a great idea but I guess the writer doesn’t know how to make good use of this plot. I also couldn’t classify this drama in the rom-com genre, because there were too many sad scenes and few to no sweet memorable scenes. The ending was also a big disappointment. If Mi Rae was given a chance to choose, you also get a chance to choose whether to watch this drama or not. Watch it if you dare!

Rating: 4/10

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Recommended Korean Dramas (2013) | My Asian movie & drama

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