Is this Sungkyunkwan Scandal v 2.0 that I smell? The recipe of one uptight young man, one mane of glory, one womanizer, and one too pretty to pass for a real boy cross=dresser, equals a sageuk fusion cake!
I am totally in the mood for the hijinks of another ancient F4 complete with palace politics. MDBC tells the story of young Crown Prince Lee Yeong who is the carefree, yet sarcastic underdog of the palace. His father seems to be a lame duck of a king who is being controlled by the queen’s family. Instead of embroiling himself in the palace battle, the Crown Prince prefers to stay out of the way and constantly dons costumes in order to explore out of the palace. One day he meets Ra-On, who on the surface looked like a young noble boy. However, Ra-On is actually a girl who is trying to earn a living doing whatever she can whether that be writing fake love letters or acting in a circus play. One love letter she ends up ghost writing for, was actually between the Crown Princess and a noble who was in love with her.
As it is the first drama of 2016 for me, I hoped to get off to a good start this year. I had some expectations due to the hype of this webtoon and my love for the actor, Park Hae Jin. Luckily, I am pleased to see how Cheese in the Trap is shaping out. The story tells of a young girl, Hong Seol, who at first glance seems like a Candy, but isn’t quite. She is from a poor family background and of course works multiple jobs to pay for tuition at her university. She does have that diligent attitude like most main leads, but also has a frightening colder side on rare occasion. At university, she happens to cross paths with Yoo Jung, a seemingly perfect sunbae who is smart, friendly, and handsome. However, interestingly enough, he has a very manipulative and dark side. He enjoys getting his way, not by dirtying his own hands, but by subtly forcing others to match his agenda. Hong Seol sees through his kind facade and he seems intrigued by how much she dislikes him. However, Yoo Jung is persistent about figuring out Hong Seol and worms himself into her life. She grudgingly becomes closer to him and they even start to date. Meanwhile, a rebel like young man, Baek In-Ho, manages insert himself into her life as well through several coincidences. They establish a friendly rapport and even bicker! However, Baek In-Ho seems to have a dark history with Yoo Jung. While their history hasn’t come into clear focus yet, it seems that Yoon Jung had something to do with Baek In-Ho breaking his piano-playing hands. However, it does seem to be more than that since In-Ho’s family seem to be living off of Yoo Jung’s chaebol household’s money as well. Yoo Jung is not quite a likable character as he becomes disturbingly cold and double-edged at times, to the point where you start to think if he has any real emotions at all.
Through the many teasers before the premier, I had pegged Cheese in the Trap as a rom-com. However, its darker half has got me interested. Park Hae Jin seems to be drawing on his Bad Guys role at times and becomes very cold/frightening at times to the point where you think he might have actually killed a guy in his past. He has that way of intensely staring and that cruel smirk which makes me wonder if Hong Seol will get seriously hurt if she is in his way. Meanwhile Hong Seol is pretty relatable and I enjoy how the whole story is told through her point of view. We hear her thoughts in addition to the actual dialogue. I am definitely looking forward to how this story is going to pan out (though I can already feel that my heart is going to break for rebel In Ho!).