warning: may contain spoilers
“A gambler and con man pretends to be the long-lost brother of a blind heiress, but these two damaged people come to find the true meaning of love after meeting each other.”
The plot actually makes sense during the start. A con man who pretends to be the long-lost brother of a rich heiress just because he has a similar name with his friend who died from an accident. He’s into gambling and he had no money to pay off his debts, so he had no choice but to do it. What’s hard to understand was during the middle to the latter part when the dragging begins. The fake siblings played a long game of push and pull. They fought and made up, fought and made up. I couldn’t recall how I managed to survive 16 loong episodes. I wished they added more subplot and improved the storyline. I also did not like how they got to the ending part when Oh Soo gambled for the last time to finish everything. If he was going to ever gamble, I wished he could do it during the start so he wouldn’t get to know Young and hurt her feelings. I think that the writer could be more creative in ending the drama, not just resort to gambling. That’s like going back to square one. I got disappointed with the storyline as the drama came to an end.
While the writing is a bit lacking, the cinematography and the actors actually made up for the lacking part. The cinematography is as beautiful as the actors. From what I’ve read, the staff used expensive cameras to film the actors up-close to highlight their emotions and even their smallest movements. This was a good investment because they were really praised for it. Even if the actors were not moving or froze in action, it’s still beautiful to look at. The winter season with the piles of snow were also lovely to see. Probably one of the best in cinematography among Korean dramas.
Jo In Sung as Oh Soo — It’s been a long time since I last saw him in a drama, and this was in What Happened in Bali. Although I forgot everything about that drama already and have forgotten Jo In Sung’s acting as well, it’s just noticeable in this drama that he’s already a great actor. He’s not the best actor I know out there, but he definitely has everything you’re looking for when it comes to lead actors. He’s tall and good-looking, but umm.. yeah lacked some muscles. He’s incredibly thin; I really think he’s thinner than me. Never mind this, as long as he did well in this drama, that’s what matters. His style in this drama was also unique. Jo In Sung can definitely pull off suspenders in the most fashionable way.
Song Hye Kyo as Oh Young — Song Hye Kyo is still beautiful as ever. She may not be my favourite female actress, but I have to admit that she’s really pretty. She portrayed a very different role back in Full House and this time as Oh Young. We can really see how she can do well in different kinds of roles. Although I don’t really like Young’s character, but Hye Kyo really did her best in this role. Pretending to be blind even if you’re not in real life is really difficult. She also received a lot of praises and gained a lot of attention for her role as Young.
Kim Bum as Park Jin Sung — He was so cute in Boys Over Flowers! After that drama, I have not followed his other dramas anymore. It’s so nice to see another side of Kim Bum in this drama as Park Jin Sung. He looked really manly and cool, totally different from his role in BOF. I guess he can take variety of roles now than just being a cute guy. I didn’t really notice his acting skills back then in BOF, but this time I really felt that he was exerting a lot of effort in showing his skills as an actor. I wish to see him in a more mature role next time and hopefully a lead role?!
Jung Eun Ji as Moon Hee Sun — Loved Jung Eun Ji in Answer Me 1997. This time it was a challenge for her to act using Seoul accent as she mainly speaks in dialect. I really think that she practiced a lot with her accent. Although I’m not Korean, but it seems like her manner of speaking was natural and similar to her co-actors. What’s more challenging for her was acting alongside Kim Bum and she even once complained because he has a smaller face contrary to hers. I just find her cute while acting, because she seemed like she’s just acting herself. Her role is no different from her in real life. It’s only Eun Ji’s second acting project, but she appeared to be confident with her acting and her skills matched with her co-actors. I love to see Eun Ji challenge a mature role or a girly role maybe in the future.
The ending is quite vague. We don’t know if the last scenes are real or if it’s only a dream. Oh Soo and Oh Young met again at a restaurant where Soo is working. Young’s vision is blurry but she can see more now. They strolled around the streets with cherry blossoms as background. My interpretation? I want to be pessimistic this time. Young did not survive the surgery and it’s all a dream. The doctor said that the survival rate is less than 10 percent and they already said that it’s incurable. As for Soo, we don’t know if he survived the knife attack. I assume that he’s still alive. I think that the director wanted the drama to have a happy ending despite of the death of Young. They want to end it with Young and her happy memories with Soo. For me, this would be more satisfying and different rather than always have a happy ending.
“Winter Love” should be the Best OST of 2013. The One sang many great OSTs last year, but out of all the hit songs, the one that’s still stuck in my head until now is this song. Winter Love really reminds me of winter and especially this drama, That Winter, The Wind Blows instantly, without any doubt. If you want a girl version of this, you should listen to 2EYES’ version. It’s also a lovely version but nothing beats The One when it comes to singing soundtrack songs. “And One” by Girls’ Generation’s Tae Yeon is also a good song that I recommend.
The drama had a good start but it dragged along the way to the point that it became unrealistic. 16 episodes was too long for this kind of plot. I’m torn between recommending this drama or not, because the sceneries and the characters are so beautiful to look at, but the plot isn’t. The cinematography was just too wonderful that I’ll forgive the writer for the bad storyline. Fans of the actors should definitely not miss this. For melodrama fans, I suggest a better melodrama.