[K-DRAMA] Fated to Love You (2014)

warning: may contain spoilers

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Do you believe in fate?

Plot:

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Fated to Love You created a Korean remake of the popular Taiwanese drama. Lee Gun is from a rich family and is a CEO in a hair product company. He’s in a relationship with his long time girlfriend named Kang Se Ra and plans to propose to her in Macau. Meanwhile, Kim Mi Young is an ordinary girl who came from a small island and who is working in a law firm. She has a nickname called “Post-It Girl” for always accepting requests and errands from her co-workers. She won a hotel room coupon in Macau so she went to Macau with her male co-worker. Lee Gun flew to Macau on the same day. That night, both of them drank some drink that made them dizzy and drunk. The two crossed paths and shared the night together in a room. Although it was merely an accident, they promised never to see each other again. When they came back to Korea, Mi Young found out that she was pregnant. After knowing this, Lee Gun was hesitant but just accepted the fact that he’s going to marry her for the sake of the baby. Will this shotgun wedding truly work or will this resort to a divorce? What will happen to Se Ra and Gun if she finds it out?

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Opinions:

I loved the Taiwanese version of this drama, Fated to Love You. It was one of the highest rated dramas of all time in Taiwan. No doubt, I felt excited because I knew Korean dramas are much more fun to watch than Taiwanese dramas these days. I wondered if they will follow the script or change it. This Korean remake didn’t stick to the original version which is both a good and a bad thing. Good, because at least the writers are doing their jobs to make it better, and there’s something to look forward to while watching this drama. It’s bad because I didn’t like how they came up with the idea that the male lead was sick and even incorporating amnesia into the storyline. I’ve seen like a hundred dramas/movies that dealt with amnesia and I’m so tired of this story. It’s the usual ingredient to a Korean drama which meant boring and uncreative. The story was something that I’ve seen or heard before, I just couldn’t remember where. And when Lee Gun wanted to break up with her because of his sickness, but he truly loves her. Isn’t this very familiar? I really can’t remember which drama. It was still questionable as to why they included amnesia into the story. I wished they could be more creative, but I’m glad that they story was more polished and the flow of the drama was good.

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I can’t help but compare the Korean version with the Taiwanese version. Of course, both of them had a fair share of flaws but each of them had their own distinct color. I may be wrong, but since I’ve watched the Taiwanese version almost 8 years ago, I’ll just base it from what I still remember. The Taiwanese version focused more on emotions and feelings. The male lead was really having a hard time and kept going back and forth between both girls. I also remembered how he was so cruel to Xin Yi. The most memorable episode of that version was when Xin Yi and her baby’s lives were in danger after she was hit by a car. It was such a meaningful yet touching episode. I loved how the Taiwanese version was more realistic and it was more relatable to viewers. On the other hand, the Korean version was dreamy and romantic. I had nothing to say with the props and setting because Korean dramas always have beautiful sets. I loved how Lee Gun sticked to his feelings and didn’t changed his mind. He still loves her year after years. The Taiwanese version was so draggy, even dragging it into 24 episodes. Although the Korean version was also draggy, I felt that the latter half was so much better than the first half. I also couldn’t forget how they tried to make a storyline out of that incident in Macau. I mean, it’s so funny how those two Hamo-hamo men tried to create a fuss over Lee Gun. I felt that it was forced while the Taiwanese version was more realistic. My vote goes to Taiwanese version. Nothing beats the original! Although Korean version twisted its story a bit, it was still quite an interesting watch for me.

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I’ve heard from a lot of people that they couldn’t get through the first episode. Many couldn’t stand the male lead so they quitted watching the drama. I have to admit that the first scene was a major turn off. When Clara appeared with the shampoo commercial, I thought I was watching a real commercial or another drama by mistake. And to add that was the mysterious guy who did his own version of commercial. In my mind, I thought: “Is this really the male lead?!” lol I struggled watching the first episode, but I managed to continue to watch until the last episode. And I didn’t regret wasting my 20 hours with this drama. It’s true that this character Lee Gun is weird (not your usual boy-next-door character), but you’ll eventually get used to him.

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Jang Hyuk and Jang Na Ra first worked together in a drama called a “Successful Story of a Bright Girl” which aired in 2002, and after more than 10 years, they finally reunited again with this drama. I didn’t watched that drama but I heard it was a popular one. When I was watching Fated to Love You, I didn’t noticed that they actually worked together years ago. There’s no spark for me. It’s like Mi Young looked too young for him and Lee Gun looked too weird for her. It was when Mi Young came back from France and used her name Ellie Kim and when Lee Gun changed his hairstyle that I realised that they looked quite good together.

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Aside from the leads, the drama wouldn’t be so fun to watch without the supporting characters. Lee Yong and his mother weren’t on the original version, but stepmothers are there for a reason- to annoy you. I also liked Secretary Tak because he’s definitely trying his best every time he’s on scene. I also enjoyed Mi Young’s family because they spoke another accent which I really loved to hear. Mi Young’s mother really did a job well done. She may be harsh and loud in speaking, but she actually cares a lot about you.

Characters:

01

Jang Hyuk as Lee Gun — I’ve known Jang Hyuk for so long since he’s quite popular and often mentioned in news, but I realised that I haven’t watched any of his dramas yet! He was so dislikable especially in the first episode. I thought that he was weird and creepy because of his laugh and hairstyle. My attitude towards him didn’t change until episode 9 or 10 wherein it fast forwarded to 2 years later. I wondered why people called him handsome, but after the change of hairstyle, I realised that he is indeed handsome. Hairstyles are really really important especially for guys! He started to become likeable to me and his creepy laugh was something that I became used to. His laugh is kinda contagious; I also unknowingly laughed with him! With regards to his acting, I think this energetic and funny kind of guy suits him as he was able to pull off the character quite well. I don’t think a lot of handsome actors are willing to take this role. I also noticed that he often do ad-libs to end the scenes and he was so natural. I guess it takes time to actually find this guy admirable. Just have some patience!

02

Jang Na Ra as Kim Mi Young — I knew Jang Na Ra from School 2013 as the high school teacher. She is also known for having a baby face despite the age. This time, I’m quite unsure if she can handle the role well. Just like how I felt towards Jang Hyuk during the first few episodes, I thought that she wasn’t suitable for the role. She’s like a woman stuck in a little girl’s body. How would she be able to portray a pregnant woman? Thoughts like these changed after seeing her chemistry with Jang Hyuk. It was through the latter episodes that I realised that they looked good together and their characters matched. It really takes time to get used to Na Ra portraying this role. I also found her lovable and mature while trying to hold back her childish husband. Although I felt that Jang Hyuk stole the main spotlight for the drama, Na Ra and him looked good together!

03

Choi Jin Hyuk as Daniel Pitt — It’s quite often that I’m seeing Choi Jin Hyuk in dramas. He has been on a roll ever since his appearance in Gu Family Book. I wasn’t prepared to see him here but am glad to do so. I really think that he suits second male lead than male lead. He looks really mature and serious, but he’s quite childish and seemed nice at times. He’s perfect to be the “neighborhood oppa” of Mi Young. He’s such a nice guy to be able to stay with Mi Young after all these years. If I were him, I’d give up a long time ago. This makes second male leads so much likeable. I felt that he was so natural in portraying this role, and he seemed to enjoy his role. I can’t wait to see him in another drama. Recently, he was discharged from the army due to injury. I wonder if he needs to go back to finish his duty or wait for the “2 year period” to end and have a comeback drama next year?

04

Wang Ji Won as Kang Se Ra — Wang Ji Won was perfect for the role because she was originally a ballet dancer in real life. There’s no need for her to practice ballet but just focus on her acting. She wasn’t really likeable for me because she showed a chic and mean personality. I remembered that I didn’t liked “Anna” from the Taiwanese drama as well. Nonetheless, she was a good addition to the cast. She didn’t really stood out for me, but she did well in portraying her role.

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Ending:

As usual, it was a happy ending for everyone as all questions have been answered and knots have been tied. I found it funny when they were trying to hook up the single characters especially Doctor Octopus and Mi Young’s mother. I really didn’t expect that! lol Lee Yong’s mother didn’t approve of Yong’s girlfriend, Ji Yeon, but after finding out that she comes from a wealthy family, she welcomes her instantly. Daniel was finally able to find her long lost little sister who was Se Ra. For the main couple, they had their honeymoon at Jeju Island and Chairwoman Wang wanted to have a grandchild soon so she sent Secretary Tak and Yong to make the incident in Macau happen again. Finally, they were able to have twins.

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Final Thoughts:

This Korean remake of the Taiwanese drama, Fated to Love You, wasn’t faithful to the original, but it had its own touch of beauty and creativity. It’s mainly suitable for the Korean audience and those who enjoy rom-com Korean dramas. It has the basic formula of your ordinary K-drama. Many people didn’t like this drama at first, but trust me, all you need is a little patience, and you’ll learn to like this drama too. I started to have doubts, but it ended happily and turned out to be a likeable drama. It just didn’t stood out as my favourite.

Rating: 6/10

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