Post devoted to Lee Hong-ki

Lee Hong-ki, you adorable, adorable monkeyyy.
I’m still smiling from the after-effects of watching ‘Noriko Goes to Seoul’. Not because the one-episode drama is a great piece of art or anything( it’s far from that) but because I finally got to see LEE HONG-KI again!!!
For those of you not in the know, Lee Hong-ki starred in the hit k-drama ‘You’re Beautiful’ a few years back, and was the ONLY one from the cast that I wholeheartedly liked and who didn’t drive me crazy with inexplicable indecision or bad acting. From those of you who’ve watched the series, I can practically hear the gasp of disbelief, or if you’re a crazy fangirl, scream of outrage. Yes, I found Jung Yong Hwa’s acting flat and Park Shin Hye’s character’s passiveness unbearable and Jang Geun Suk’s character’s emotional constipation excruciating. IT’S LIKE YOU KNOW SHE’S INTO YOU, AND YOU CLEARLY LOVE HER TOO BUT YOU’RE TOO STUPID AND SPOILED TO JUST FREAKIN’ SAY IT. Maddening, I tell you. The first half of that drama rocked, but then when they just kept them apart due to no tangible reasons other than their own respective stupidity, it got kinda much for me. Jeremy, played by Lee Hong-ki was the anchor, the reason I’d break out in a smile, the reason I watched till the end. His child-like reactions to everything, his smile, his pout, his evil-eye expression, he made the drama truly memorable for me. It surprised me to see a singer (he’s originally a singer from the indie band FT Island) act so well. His rejection was the only one that made me cry. He should have had a role with more air-time. I would LOVE to see him in a serious role and finally ‘get the girl’, but I guess he’s too young (only 21) to be bagging roles like that (Drat!) I wanna see him happy! What’s a girl gotta do, huh?

Let’s see, he’s a good actor, he’s unbelievably cute, has an amazing voice, with the cutest set of expressions (I love his stink-face!) yet for all that he’s incredibly elusive. He’s only done THREE shows since 2009. Seeing him again in ‘Noriko Goes to Seoul’ reminded me of all this. HE’S TOO GOOD TO ONLY HAVE SO LITTLE UNDER HIS BELT. You, Mister need to get busy.

Noriko Goes to Seoul is about a middle-aged Japanese woman, Noriko (played by Takashima Reiko, whom I excitedly recognized from Yamato Nadeshiko Shichi Henge) who is diagnosed with cancer yet goes to Korea to fulfill her dream of singing before her favorite Korean star. There she meets Min-ha, played by Hong-ki and they both bond with each other and positively influence each others’ lives. Its not a spectacular drama, the parts without out two main leads tended to drag (I was alternatively gritting my teeth and laughing at the Miyuki parts). Noriko’s Korean accent sounded like the sound you make to scare little kids, and her singing was so purposefully horrible that it was just plain funny. That aside, her acting was admittedly good, and Hong-ki was spot on with his stuff too. Their unique relationship, what with her calling him ‘Master’, was funny, but its progression into a more meaningful, lasting connection was really heartwarming to watch. It was obvious how much they cared for one another. Ever since she finds out that his mother passed away from cancer, Noriko is reminded of her own daughter, and not wanting her to end up downtrodden by life and giving up, ends up pushing Min-ha towards achieving his dreams and he, in turn is moved by her belief in him. Hongi-ki is an actor who’s face is like an open book, so he’s perfectly suited to play the sulky teen with the heart of gold. Here are a bunch of stills from the drama.


This last picture in particular warmed my heart. It wasn’t part of the drama and I really was disappointed that they didn’t even hug once during the whole thing. So seeing them like this made me SO HAPPY. 😀 Go Hong-ki!!

Now I’m off to go watch ‘Muscle Girl’! 😀


About thejawavillager

I am a mad scientist with an underground lab rivaling Dexter's that I will soon use to rule the world. Join my army or be killed in the aftermath.
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24 Responses to Post devoted to Lee Hong-ki

  1. Becoming Bitter says:

    Ah! Another fellow K-drama/K-actor fan/junkie. I enjoyed his acting in Your Beautiful as well. I completely agree with you. Too much indecision, angst, and the dragging of the plot was annoying. Extremely annoying. Even though he was a comical character he had depth and quick decision making abilities. Very few actors can play off comical roles well. The danger is always over acting which Lee Hong-Ki never did. I am limited to watching things available on mainstream Korean drama/movie providing sites so I’m not sure I’ll be able to watch Noriko goes to Seoul. I know you are a LHK fan, but have you seen Protecting the Boss? I highly recommend it. It was hilarious. By the way feel free to drop by my blog sometime.

    • I’M HALF-WAY THROUGH IT!! I love it so far. but iI wish she’d kick more ass. I’m at ep 10, I think.
      and you can watch Noriko goes to Seoul on dramacrazy, or you can download it from d-addicts, that awesome life-saver of a website 😛
      and I shall definitely check out your blog, you seem like a kindred spirit 😀

  2. Becoming Bitter says:

    You have good taste in dramas. After the numerous weak female characters in K-drama land I’ve seen (the crying and what not), I felt that she was a life saver. Thanks for the info. I didn’t know dramacrazy had Noriko goes to Seoul. You’re welcome to stop by my blog anytime. Recently it has undergone extensive reconstructive surgery. Whenever you get time read my posts and let me know what you think.

  3. alua says:

    Ditto on the never-hugging. Especially at the airport – I thought it was so clear that she’d become some sort of substitute-mother figure for him. There she is leaving for another country, with a potentially fatal disease, and you don’t hug her? Do Korean film/dramamakers want to make us think Koreans are totally cold people?

    • I KNOW, RIGHT? What the hell is ‘ I know. Even if you don’t say it, I know’ supposed to mean?! We want hugging. Though it clearly is a tribute to his good acting that even without any external show of emotions like hugging, LHK could still show by his facial expressions how much he didn’t want her to leave.

  4. alua says:

    Definitely want hugging. Even if we know that it is a Korean film (or drama). But it’s just the “human” thing to do, you know, to hug people, especially in situations like that.

    Sometimes I think maybe I’ll have to go live in Korea for a while to understand this, because maybe it is like that there?

    At least facial expressions are still allowed 🙂 I couldn’t do much with the “I know. Even if you don’t say it, I know” (wayyyyy too vague), but LHK’s facial expressions did say it clearly at least.

    • alua says:

      That was supposed to be in reply to you, thejawavillager

      • I got that. And I agree. I WISH I could speak Korean so I could actually fantasize about visiting there once.

      • alua says:

        You could always start learning Korean? No? I’m self-studying Korean (plus hoping to get a place in the free language class offered by my local Korean Cultural Centre next term). It’s quite different from other languages I know, but I rather like it.

        Plus, you might get away with just English. What you need is a plane ticket (and money to stay)!

      • Haha, true. I dunno. The only way I can learn from where I am is online. And i trie this free site..and well, it wasn’t what I expected. They expected me to know how to read Hangul from the beginning. I can only read a little, so I had to drop it. Do you know of any sites that help you learn Korean? I would LOVE to know, seriously.

      • alua says:

        Well, reading isn’t so hard. You just need to keep the hangul alphabet next to you and learn it as you go along. (I have this one stored on my computer: I love Hangul (and the Japanese scripts too although they are more complicated), so I found it quite easy to learn – whenever I watch a drama or film, I try to decipher actors’ names in the credits, or the title, things of the sort – that way you can get good practice and learn quickly.

        Don’t know too many Korean resources yet, although I will be adding them as I go along on my delicious account ( look for the “korean” tag).

        King’s College London has a website with many language resources links:

        Sorry for the late response btw – the notification for your comment somehow ended up in my spam inbox!

        • OMG ALUA!!! Thank you so much for the links! Its just what I’ve been looking for but somehow never found. Im printing the alphabet sheet asap. I know it, but always get confused later, esp when it comes to the vowels. Thank you again! 🙂

      • alua says:

        🙂 I am a proficient googler. I google till I find (otherwise I can’t get it out of my mind…), a habit others make fun of really….

        I actually have a Korean (and Japanese) Teach-Yourself book, which I got through Amazon, but it didn’t include an alphabet chart. I thought that was really stupid, since it’s such an essential and basic thing! So I googled….

        There’s some logic behind the characters too, e.g. the ‘a’ and ‘ya’ have the little – on the same side of the vertical line, any vowel with ‘y’ has two dashes, will the ones without a ‘y’ have only one… so if you remember that, it’s easier to learn the alphabet too. And any ‘w’ sound is really a combined ‘eu’+’i’ (which, if you sound it out, makes a lot of sense).

        • Hey! that rhymed ‘I google till I find, otherwise I can’t get it out of my mind’ 😛
          I was having trouble with the w sound, what you said made a lot of sense, thanks! I’m in the middle of writing this post on Taegukgi (I just watched it and was very moved by it) BUT its gotten way too long! I don’t think anyone would read it now. It started off as a review, and somehow morphed into a full blown recap. IT’S OVER 3000 words! oh, despair! Do you think I should scrap it?

      • alua says:

        Don’t scrap it! Could you divide into parts and post them within a few days of each other? That way it might be less intimidating.

        Or edit it down – but if you were really moved by it and had a lot to say, that would seem like a pity.

        You’ve got one reader at least 🙂

  5. Becoming Bitter says:

    You had better comment on my blog Villager. How can an Asian friend of mine not comment. Oh yeah, I totally agree with you and alua. Some characters are too rigid. Hugging is the natural thing to do.

  6. Becoming Bitter says:

    I am learning Korean… by watching k-dramas that is! That’s nice alua that you’re learning Korean. How lucky. Oh yeah… villager did you comment on Haikus for Her? I saw your comment for the men one. You and situ have such funny comments. People are actually following them.

    • I’m learning Korean that way too, but I wanna speed up the process. My friends already think I’m crazy, might as well go all the way and have some fun while at it. 🙂 I read ‘Haikus for Her’…didn’t I comment. I’ll go fix that right now…

      • Becoming Bitter says:

        *cyber hugs* My funny villager. Loving your comments. Same here! Most of my friends are like WTF are you interested in this stuff for.

    • alua says:

      진짜? My friends wouldn’t do follow suit, but they wouldn’t react like that either.

      But yeah, I though, why not? And really, why not learn Korean? Might as well. Then I don’t have to wait for subbed dramas either. (Actually, I’ve told myself I’ll help with the subbing once my Korean gets good enough.)

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