Jae Ho is the MVP
He’s been playing cupid in the house and I am here for it. He has a clear grasp of people’s emotions. I honestly believe that the Hyun Woo – Young Joo ship wouldn’t be sailing as it is right now if it wasn’t for him. Thanks Jae Ho!
Remember when he helped Hyun Woo – Young Joo clear their misunderstanding?
Or when he created an oppoortunity for skinship between Hyun Woo and Young Joo?
While it may not be everyone’s cup of tea, I love me some medical dramas (only if they are done well and realistically, so BYE DESCENDANTS OF THE SUN). Cross is a medical drama focused on organ transplants which I am very familiar with as I work on a transplant ICU! The main character Kang In Kyu is on a revenge warpath to dig out the organ harvesting rings and stop the illegal trading of organs. His journey starts when his father is brutally murdered and all his organs harvested because they were scrapped for money for his sister’s treatments. As a result of a scuffle between In Kyu and the leader of the ring, Hyung Bom, In Kyung injures his head which in turn gives him a sharper sight than most humans. In Kyu decides to make it his life goal to find Hyung Bom and punish him. Under the guidance of Jung Hoon, a organ transplant doctor, he becomes a doctor as well. His personality is exceedingly cold and robotic as he is so focused on capturing the perpetuator that made him suffer for 15 years. Thus he becomes a doctor with an aim to harm rather than heal. Soon he becomes a prison doctor in an effort to kill Hyung Bom slowly with medicine. However, this plan is derailed when Hyung Bom finds out and escaped. In Kyu is shortly transferred to the same hospital that his foster father, Jung Hoon, works at. He tries to repair the strained relationship between him and his foster father due to past misunderstandings. However, he soon finds out that the hospital executives themselves are involved in illegal organ trading. With the help of tentative friendships he made along the way, he sets out to trap Hyung Bom and put him away forever.
While Ko Gyung Po was decent in the drama, I felt like this role did not suit him very well. He has a very puppy dog lost kind of look and just doesn’t feel harsh enough. I think a grittier actor may have fit this role better. However, it was fun to see how his sharper eyesight worked to his favor when fighting! Now for the unfortunate sexual harassment scandals that Cho Jae Hyun was involved in, I cannot fault him on his acting skill which is superb, but I am glad he come forward to admit his transgressions. This resulted in his removal from the drama, albeit the drama was in it’s final stages anyways. All in all it was a decent watch with realistic organ transplant ethical dilemmas to think about.
It took me a long time to post this. To be honest, this is more of a review than a first impression of Mother, the Korean remake of the famous Japanese Mother drama. Even now, as I write this, my heart aches in a way that is hasn’t been before.
Mother is a drama that documents the journey of a woman who rescues an abused and neglected child and goes on the run with her. Soo Jin is a socially awkward bird researcher is currently between jobs as she prepares to go to Iceland to fulfill her dream career. She has a cold and distant personality which leads her to stay out of complicated situations. However, her attention is drawn to mature and pitiful child in her kindergarten class that she is the substitute for. She noticed the telltale signs of abuse on the poor child and grudgingly helps a fellow teacher pursue the case. Time after time again, she encounters Hye Na and can’t help but have emotional flashbacks to a past trauma she also endured. It finally comes to a point where Hye Na’s mother leaves her for dead in a trash bag by the curb. Soo Jin decides she will take this child and go on the run with her to save her. She fakes Hye Na’s death and thus begins their arduous quest out of the country. Their journey is incredibly difficult and then encounter many unfortunate situations. However, Soo Jin and Hye Na, who goes by Young Bok, develop a deep emotional relationship. Young Bok sees Soo Jin as the mother she never had and just soaks up all the love that Soo Jin gives her. She learns to let go of her past and embrace each day as it comes. This journey also matures Soo Jin who learns to accept other’s help and brings down her tall wall that she had built around her heart. Without this journey, she would never have encountered her birth mother along the way or made up with her adoptive mother.
Without giving away the ending, I must say it is one that is very realistic, but also so optimistic and perfect. There was not one episode where I was not crying. The story is incredible touching and it features all types of mother and daughter relationships, good and bad. It showcases the sacrifices a mother is willing to make to protect her child, whether they be biological or not. The story is very dark and has a lot of triggering content, so please watch at your own risk.
I must say that there was not one character that was wasted in the story. You even feel twinges of sympathy for the unlikable characters as most of them are molded by their circumstances. Lee Bo Young is very talented at playing the role of a “mother” as showcased by her previous drama, God’s Gift, where she was also searching for a child. She is so natural and raw in this drama, that you can feel her pain. And now, Heo Yool, god what an AMAZING child actress. This is her first drama and she carried it on her back! I can’t believe that this is her first one as she is so immersed in such a difficult role for a child to play. Can you imagine playing an abused kid in the drama? She has a air of maturity that you just don’t see in kids her age. I just am astounded at what a masterpiece this drama was and it will be forever in my favorite dramas list even though I used a whole box of tissues while watching it.
If you haven’t already, check our first post on Heart Signal 2!
With everyone’s occupation and age revealed, the dynamics are slightly shifting. This can be a good or a bad thing depending on who you are. For Hyun Woo, the reveal is great. He was already perceived as charismatic but given his age, he also appears more mature. Also, what’s not to find attractive in a man who cooks?
However, the age reveal was bad news for Gyu Bin. He turns out to be the youngest. I can see him heading for the Friend Zone and staying there. I doubt that we’ll have a dongsaeng-noona romance here. Sad.
There are a few highlights in this episode. Let me walk you through the most important scenes. Spoilers ahead.
Heart Signal 2 is a dating reality TV show, which brings together a group of women and men together in the same house. Without further ado, let’s talk about the cast.
Oh Young Ju (27 years old)
If I had to use one word to describe her it would be poised. I’ll confess: Young Ju is my favorite so far. I love how natural she is. Like everyone else, she is here to play the game but she doesn’t try too hard (aka playing desperate). Sadly, I am worried this might not last long. She’s clearly shown interest in somebody who doesn’t seem to reciprocate her feelings. I hope she keeps it moving and finds somebody else to like.
Jung Jae Ho (28 years old)
Occupation: Founder of a IT startup
If I had to use one word to describe him it would be considerate. Jae Ho cares for every one in the house. This is something that I’ve noticed since the first episode. As one of the few people to arrive first in the house, he warmly welcomed all his other housemates. In addition, he often takes the lead but not in a overbearing way.
Joo continues to see Ryo. He takes her on fancy dates – restaurant and movies. But her mind is constantly going back to all the simple and yet enjoyable things she did with Seua.
Seua is still going on a jealousy spree. He goes as far as to tell Ryo that he needs to back up because Joo is his girlfriend. Possessive much. Seua doesn’t stop there and even throws a few punches. I have to say that this scene is the one that made me totally dislike Ryo. I found him not trustworthy since the beginning and he just showed his true colors. Ryo reminds Seua that he’s only “a temple boy” – meaning he [Ryo] has more money and a better social status. That was just so low SMH. Joo should have let Seua punch Ryo to his heart’s content 😈.
The situation escalates and leads to a big argument between Joo and Seua. The latter questions Joo about her going out on dates with Ryo. Joo answers that she is free to do so since there is nothing between Seua and her. Seua insists that she shouldn’t be saying that after all they’ve been through. TRUE TRUE TRUE. Joo keeps lying to herself. Seua asks if Joo would be alright with him taking another girl out. Her answer: Yes. Seua says that alright. It’s clear that Joo has been treating him like an option the all time but he can’t do that. He also wants Joo to admit that her going out with Ryo is because he can buy her everything and anything. Ehh, he went a little far with this one. We know our Joo isn’t like that. Seua adds that she’s like other girls – obsessed with men and their money.
Joo is still not accepting Seua’s feelings despite him trying so hard. Seua uses every trick possible to spend extra time with Joo. The best example is Seua staying over at Joo’s because of the rain. He makes himself comfortable, takes a shower and even spends the night over. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing Push in the cute little PJ dress. So tight and so cute at the same time!
Cute thing Seua does for Joo in this episode: He sets up a little camping area just for them. They both can gaze at the sky in the perfect setting.
Seua also deserves a high five for being so straight forward. He clearly doesn’t have time for nonsense. He clearly tells Joo: I like you. Her response annoyed me so much: She rejects him!!! Seriously why???! I can’t even. Deep down, the confession makes Joo happy but I still don’t understand why she rejects him, especially since we all know she likes him too. Well, actually I do. Having all the zits on her face made Joo lose her confidence. It’s almost like she feels she’s not pretty or good enough to be in a relationship. That’s my understanding of the situation. Part of me understands how she feels. To be in a relationship, it’s extremely important to feel comfortable with yourself first. But Seua and her are just too cute together!
Despite the rejection, Seua incessantly pursues Joo. I love it! Every little moment of the chase is adorable. If Joo wasn’t interested it would be extremely annoying, but we all know she is so it’s cool :-D.
Joo and Seua finally find Tik’s house only to discover that she used all the money. Tik isn’t as well off as she pretended to be. When Tik’s father couldn’t send her money, she used all the funds collected. Seua threatens to call the cops on Tik, but she begs him. Tik promises to return the money, but Seua is understandably furious. Why use money she didn’t have? Why not work? For real, she should have lived within her means.
To help her friends, Joo decide to work part-time and save the money to pay for the jerseys. Unfortunately, the money she makes is too small. Joo tries to negotiate with the jersey shop owner, who nicely accepts to let it go. No more payment! Joo is relieved, but not as much as Bee!
Bee’s leg is slowly healing and he tries to take advantage of the situation as much as possible – endless flirting attempts with Seua. I don’t blame him.
Why is it that I still can’t hate Ning? Despite everything she puts Seua through.
Ning keeps acting shady with Seua, being all jealous of girls calling his phone when she is the one two-timing. The nerve of this girl. Seua always try to diffuse the tension by being easy going but Ning isn’t letting it go.
Bee seems to be standing up more for Seua, throwing implicit remarks to Ning: Oh, I can’t stand women who two time! Who does that?! So shameless. Gosh, I love Bee so much. Readers must be tired of me saying this. Please don’t hate me and keep reading.
Seua quickly discovers the truth when grabbing noodles with Bee and Joo. Tot, Ning’s Boyfriend 2, shows up and sits with them. He stirs a conversation with Bee and Joo, which at first is completely harmless. The stress almost makes Bee choke on his noodles. Poor Bee and Joo; they weren’t ready for this. Then Tot starts asking about Ning. Is Ning in her room? He didn’t call before coming. Anyhow he’s going to buy sweets and it would be nice of Joo and Bee to deliver them to Ning.
Bee’s heart nearly stopped