.. 그래도 계속 지켜볼 겁니다~ ♪♬

‘Biyeon’ by Go Jin Young & Jeong Joo Hee

Called ‘비연’ (‘biyeon‘), I think this song refers to the ‘tragic (悲 bi) fates (緣 yeon)’ of the characters in drama 짝패 (‘the duo’), but I much prefer the simpler meaning of ‘flying (飛 bi) kites (鳶 yeon)’…

Photo thanks to 노을님, taken at the Uiseong International Kite Festival 2011~

-ㅁ- ‘비연의 비연’이라는뜻으로 가면 훨씬 더 멋있지않늘까 생각이드네요…

If the sky’s a stage, we are  but kites bobbing / soaring / biding time in the wind. The higher you go, the lonelier it gets, the more insignificant everything becomes~ Without rhyme or reason, kites find themselves hurtling to the ground, whipped by a merciless wind or failed by it’s very absence – and sometimes bringing down others along the way? ㅜㅜ

~.~

Am also loving the sepia captures at the ending of each episode (^^; It’s nice how a drama doesn’t forget the audience who returns late and manages to catch only the last bits of the endings… still, we count for the ratings no?)

There’re more than a hundred images coming up, you might want to listen to the song again while scrolling ~ ^^;

~.~

About the drama..

9.55 pm every Mon-Tues, since Feb 7 2011.

Producers Im Tae Woo, Kim Geun Hong; Writer Kim Woon Gyung

Starring Chun Jung Myung, Lee Sang Yoon, Han Ji Hye, Seo Hyun Jin, Lee Moon Shik, Seo Yi Sook

MBC’s official site: http://www.imbc.com/broad/tv/drama/mate/

Filming location photo gallery: http://imbbs.imbc.com/list.mbc?bid=mate_photo

(L-R) Choi Woo Shik, Lee Seon Yeong, Jin Sae Yeon, Noh Young Hak

Indisputably, the kids have made episodes 2~8 a joy to watch (episode 1 featured the babies in exchange). The four went through their ups and downs, they all had their inferiority complexes, their moments of courage, time to be confused, time to bond, time to switch alliances… ah, how I miss them.

How about the adults? After thinking back at my on-off viewing after episode 10… I just hope the following 2 characters get more sensible developments for the next 10 episodes. There are just too many things I like about the drama, I can’t give it up, but oh the many times Dong Nyo and Chun Doong exasperated me… >.<

1) Dong Nyo’s character development

Cool badass females in many sageuks are usually those in power in the palace (eg Mishil of Queen Seondeok, Jang Heebin of Dong Yi, Choi Sanggung of Dae Janggeum). I’m not sure if Dong Nyo can be regarded as the first ‘self-made’ female CEO in ancient times. She runs her trading business at an inn, meticulous and fully in charge. However, the drama doesn’t give much screen-time to her struggles in her career, as compared to, say, Soseono in Jumong. Instead, the screen-time of Dong Nyo is focused on her respect for her dad and her dad’s betrayers; on her love for both Gwi Dong and Chun Doong.

What is going on inside Dong Nyo, that she must give her ‘love’ and ‘respect’ in this way? I was relieved when Chun Doong finally steeled his resolve in episode 22 and told her he’s giving up on liking her (well, will he? ^^; ) The most %!@#! moment for me of Dong Nyo came was when she tried to anonymously force her dad’s murderer to confess by pretending to be an Ahraejok (name of a gang of righteous thieves), pointing a gun at an impoverished ex-yangban… What’s the intention of the writer – a way to make poor class-conscious Dong Nyo find out the ugly truth via the ugly way?

I really like pretty Jin Sae Yeon, enjoying her portrayals of scholarly daddy’s girl – ahgasshi, even when she kind of looked down on Dal Yi (but which led to cute moments of irritated Dalyi seething with anger and nearly killing Gwidong… *rofl*) ~~ Please, in the remaining 10 more episodes, please let Dong Nyo make up her mind, regarding her identity, her dad’s killers, her future.

2) Chundoongie Jung Myung

*sigh* I started watching this show because of him! >__<

And dear Noh Young Hak had done such an earnest, impassioned portrayal of beggar-with-scholar-genes Chundoongie. I don’t know what happened but Chun Jung Myung morphed the character into someone with totally no trace of his beggar origins.

I try to rationalise that as he grew up, Chundoongie’s superior scholarly genes overcame his formative childhood in the beggar huts, that this happens to all kids with yangban-blood. But then how would one explain Gwidongie then? He doesn’t seem to have any traits of his inferior origins nor any of the high and mighty airs of his yangban upbringing (unlike Dong Nyo).  So I came up with another wierd theory that probably Gwi Dong’s beggar genes’ dislike of scholarly pursuits enabled him to be a yangban free of class arrogance~ ( ><);

Thank goodness neither adult Gwi Dong nor Lee Sang Yoon gave me reason to ponder their existence in the show. Why can Gwidongie fit so well into the show, whether he’s shooting guns or arrows, fighting with villains or his dad, being a mummy’s boy or having pity on another beggar’s child? And why on earth am I asking this silly question of why characters fit into the storyline?

Maybe it’s just Chun Jung Myung being too modern and unconvincing for a sageuk role? Personally I feel that even the way Chun Jung Myung speaks in the sageuk sounds unnatural to me, unlike Gwidong his jjakpae buddy… and actually everybody else (There I go again..) Me aside, the folks at 10Asia had wondered (besides whether to switch to watching Midas) if it’s an optical illusion that Chun Doong’s forehead seems to widen with every episode *rofl*

In a way, I can’t fault Chun Jung Myung for not acting well. Especially the many hurt, betrayed, confused moments, which I think he emoted pretty convincingly.. but I see Chun Jung Myung in pain, not Chun Doong in pain.

And thus during the drama, whenever adult Chundoong says  ‘대체 왜 제가 그래야 합니까? 하기 싫습니다!” (‘Why do I have to do that? I hate doing it!‘ in a very formal, sageuk way) and adds a trademark CJM frown of hurt, I actually think out of the drama and wonder if Chun Jung Myung’s telling this to the writer, or to us viewers, instead.

But the rest of the cast are pretty interesting to watch~~ ^^ The corrupt, the corruptible, the victims of corruption, the usefulness of this way of life… very refreshingly portrayed in this sageuk~ And, of course, the OST.

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