VERY IMPORTANT NOTICE

A must read, if you don't already know ...








Written by Funn Lim



"I was really hoping one of them just drop dead with some incurable disease which was the trend in Korean love stories before with which I am happy is no longer the trend but at least just for this one, just one time"






SPOILERS ... SPOILERS ... SPOILERS



NOTE
This is not a full review but an opinion


RELEASED IN
2010


Except for the first few episodes, Cinderella's Stepsister turns out to be possibly one of the most hyped and worst Korean series of all time. I am trying to write a review, in fact trying to articulate my words but all I can remember is their meandering melancholy, anger, tears and seeing those 2 in love that went nowhere but staying stuck and rooted in their longing for one another when a simple "Eun Joo ya, saranghae" will probably solve every problem faced by these 2 except for the supposed killing the father part. The entire series was 20 episodes and I double checked the number of episodes to be sure and indeed 20 episodes but at least 10 is devoted to doing nothing but cry, cry and cry. I was hoping someone will get blinded or struck down with cancer which I have a feeling the writer was tempted to do so to Hyo Sun's character but except for the father, no one else dies at all. The business part is childishly written and characters exciting at first when introduced in the end turns out to be just another ke-le-fe because nothing ever happens. Even the character of Jungwoo ended up doing nothing but aimlessly and endlessly supporting Eun Joo, except of course with some nice romantic moments like he carried her and ran all the way up a hill. And that was a complete waste of time because the story stopped developing when the rival teenagers grew into rival adults. The fashion was terrible. The settings never move beyond the big old house or office or forest. I'll be damned if I see some scenery in this series. Even the special effects seem to dry up when they all grew up, the very few things that is unique about this series, Eun Joo's constant dream and imagination. The original story posted by KBS seems to change beyond recognition and in the end we are left with a sappy underdeveloped non moving love story that isn't even a love story. Many times I just wish they know there's something called handphones. 

The acting however saved the series from total annihilation and that is largely thanks to the 2 veteran actors, the super weird but charismatic Kim Gab Soo who plays the father and whose death caused the final demise of this series and Lee Mi Sook the mother who was excellent but in the end given little to do except for conniving and then regretting. 

The younger ones fared worse quite simply because their characters never went anywhere. 

Moon Geun Young perfected the angry stare look and in fact she did little except looking that way although occasionally you will see a small smile or some big tears. She shouts a lot, push people away a lot and basically just death stare many people a lot. I find her character tiring after a while and her performance stagnant and uninteresting when her character grew up still sullen and sulky although her best scenes were always with Kim Gab Soo as she was less angry but darn rude and Lee Mi Sook where her anger moves away from just pure anger and unhappiness and moves into regret and a certain fear. I wasn't wowed by her performance to tell you the truth because the character sucks. 

I was however mighty impressed with Seo Woo (yes, she looks weird, yes, her face is plastic, yes, she has obviously done work to her entire face but you must admit, she can act) who played a young spoilt teenager very convincingly and despite there were moments she may turn bad or whatever, I wasn't convinced she would be. I knew Hyo Sun deep down still yearns for acceptance, she is a nice girl through and through. Unfortunately her character may have developed a little, especially her confrontation with her stepmother and frankly Hyo Sun seems to be the only character that changes or rather has something else to do than meandering suffering, I just thought if only the entire series were better written, Hyo Sun would have been wonderful to watch. The guys didn't fare any better. Chun Jung Myung has dazzling smile and after a while, his entire back story about his mother, his half siblings, his father, I never understood any of that. He just seem to serve Eun Joo's suffering and nothing more. Taecyeon had it worse. He didn't even get the girl in the end even if Eun Joo in real life may be in love with Jung Woo without realising it since she seems to ease up when with him. Performance wise, Taecyeon whom I know is a famous pop star in a boyband and is extremely popular is the worst of the 4, but to be fair to him that is because his character had little to do.

I must however applaud the best performance in this series, and that is Moon Geun Young's hair extensions in the beginning of the series, quite simply because they have a life of their own in her performance of the sullen character. That extends to the wind (I suspect the big huge fans) and a lot of running by Moon Geun Young who could really really run.

I was thinking what went wrong with this series? And I am convinced it is the writing. It just began spectacularly and then went kaput. All we are left with is a series that had such a great beginning that the fans felt compelled to follow through and I suspect many are disappointed to have wasted precious hours on this junk. Yes, a junk. First half great, second half junk and unfortunately a series must know how to begin well and end even better. I gave up watching half way through, began reading the recaps instead and then picked up a bit and then just felt I have wasted enough time on this. It is nowehere near the greatness of some very memorable Korean love stories and eventhough it was suffering to watch Winter Sonata, I can't believe there is one series whose love story is worse than Winter Sonata and that is Cinderella's Stepsister. And funny thing is it didn't start as a love story. It started with a tale of 2 sisters but in the end became no more than a love story with the sisters concept being pushed away. What a total waste of a great idea.

Give it a miss. Save yourself some time and just watch something else, anything else which I know may be worse than this but seriously why watch a series with a foregone conclusion? I was really hoping one of them just drop dead with some incurable disease which was the trend in Korean love stories before with which I am happy is no longer the trend but at least just for this one, just one time. I was hoping Eun Joo will be the one to die because frankly I grew tired of her "I am angry! I am so so so angry! I hate everyone! I hate my life! I don't belong here!" cue the death stare and her rudeness.

WAIT! That's it! The review, as above! Ok, now I don't even need to write it! I will just post this as an opinion. Great! Now I can just stop thinking how to write this review!


SOME GOOD LINKS
- The official summary
- The series' entire full recap, read this and you don't even need to watch the series. I applaud the passion of the writer in all the details, knowing how suffering it was to watch this series.


5 comments:

  1. First half great, second half junk and unfortunately a series must know how to begin well and end even better.

    Couldn't agree more with this statement. The series has so much potential in the beginning, but toward the middle the plot just goes nowhere, stuck in perpetual angst.

    Did you watch the parody clip I sent you?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes I saw it. I am not familiar with the group but I did recognise the same actor in the same role which I assume is in the same band. You know, I didn't think the parody was funny BUT the actor, the one playing Eun Joo got the expression perfect.

    ReplyDelete
  3. That is Nichkhun (the groom in the WGM clip I sent you). He's dubbed as the male version of Moon Geun Yeung, because they look similar.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Do they look familiar? I mean he did get the sulking part perfect. The clip is a bit blurry though and the fans never stopped screaming.

    ReplyDelete
  5. According to Taec, the team always make Nichkhun portray Eun Joo whenever he need to rehearse his lines in the actual series.

    ReplyDelete

All replies and discussions will be posted in this review itself, so do remember to bookmark this review and check back from time to time for any replies.Thank you for your active participation.