The Queen of Asian Drama is Back with more Irreverent Reviews and Snarky Commentary.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Boys Over Flowers / 꽃보다 남자 / Kgotboda Namja

Yes, that's five (count 'em) FIVE suns.

I know ~ I KNOW I said I wouldn't like this version, which is why it's taken me this long to blog about it.

I was bored, what can I say.

No, that's not entirely true.

See, what happened was, I watched PERSONAL TASTE before this, and Lee Min ho grabbed my attention a lot quicker than Kim bum could - so THAT'S why I decided to give the Korean version of a popular-for-no-good-reason story done-to-death a try.

Now, I just like Lee Min ho AND Kim bum even more ~

As for the far-fetched storyline and its fictional characters - no - I still think this one is entirely, too over-rated and only because each of the 'live' versions starred some mighty fine booty ~ well, at least as far as the Taiwan and Korean versions go, that is.

So, here are my standings with regards to the three versions:

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I haven't, even watched Meteor Garden 3 yet - and not that I don't want to or anything - it's just that I either didn't know about it, or I did but I read some bad reviews that kept me away?

I can't remember now, but I'll do that someday soon so I can tell the whole world Yes! I'm one of the billions of silly people who did this thing start to finish!

Just kidding ---

I'm sticking with my original opinion about it being so wildly popular because of the boys and not the storyline, so that's what I'll blog about today.

Meteor Garden took for-EVER to tell the story - but, c'mon now, who cares if it means getting double-time to stare at guys like JERRY YAN, VIC ZHOU, and VAN NESS WU !!!!

Of the three girls, Barbi is most beautiful, but that's not a good thing for this, particular type of story.
She was actually TOO beautiful to play the part of a silly, no-nonsense poor girl having to endure the constant, negative pressure imposed upon her by a bunch of rich snobs with nothing better to do with their time than to torment someone beneath their social status.

I watched Meteor Garden first, and at the time, I had NO IDEA it was based on anything, or that Hana Yori Dango was its spin-off, or that M-G was a spin-off of HYD --- or even that it was based on Manga, for heaven's sake.

I chose to watch Meteor Garden for the guys, nothing more - and when it was over, I was like, DAYUM! That was some pretty phenom stuff!

The only 'character' played perfectly and to-the-hilt by all, three guys from all, three countries was the lead protagonist, Dao Ming Si, Domyoji Tsukasa, and Goo Joon pyo, the wealthiest snob and leader of the F-4 gang.

Dao Ming Si had the funniest hair, Domyoji did the mixed metaphor lines best, and Joon pyo played the bumbling idiot like no other.

So now here I go with my best of those three:




I'm so naughty - (giggle) - I just think he's really hawt, even if I think Jerry is hotter - he just wasn't all-that in Meteor Garden, so Lee wins this one!

Okay, so next, we have the so-called 'minor' characters to analyze with scientific precision


We have Hua Ze Lei (Vic Zhou), Hanazawa Rui (Oguri Shun), and Yoon Ji hoo (Kim Hyun joon)

Honestly, I still can't see Oguri in Hanazawa Rui's face (or is it vice versa?) Every time I look at the images, I don't see HIM - so, does that mean he did the best at stepping out of himself to enter the true character of the quiet, thoughtful boy who ends up helping the girl in her time of need?

I don't know -

I'll be forever GRATEFUL that Vic didn't dye his hair 'orange' for the part of Hua Ze Lei, which is also why I had a really hard time getting into Kim Hyun joon's Yoon Ji hoo AT all, and maybe that's why I don't see Oguri in Hanazawa.

However ~

While I thought that Hua Ze Lei did the best job convincing me that he cared about Shan Cai more than Hanazawa Rui did with Makino Tsukushi or Yoon Ji hoo did with Geum Jan di, I thought that Hanazawa Rui did the best job at showing his fidelity to the F-4 leader than the others, and I thought that Yoon Ji hoo did the best and most memorable job of portraying the melancholic gentleman with issues.

So, here are my picks for this category:

3 2 1

Now for the third-string players:

Xi Men (Ken Zhu), Nishikado Sojiro (Matsuda Shota), and So Yi jung (Kim bum)

TOTAL prejudice here - sorry, can't help it - I just, don't care for Ken, and I honestly can't recall the dude from Hana Yori Dango - but, who is alive that stands a chance against BUM?!

This is a hands-down decision, agreed?

3 2 1

Poor fella's - what can I say.

Shota is a cutie, I'll give him that - but, as I said already - sho' nuf step-asides in the presence of Prince Bum-Bum, so get over it and MOVE on.

Interesting to note here is that until I watched the Korean version, I cared less about the fourth dude in this story - but, now I'm not so sure anymore that character was so 'useless' aside from being just, another pretty face and a necessary 4th to complete the dynamic quad.

Mei Zuo (Vanness Wu), Mimasaka Akira (Abe Tsuyoshi), and Song Wu bin (Kim joon) may have been minor incidentals in this story, but it wasn't until Korea got their hands on it that they bothered to explore and go in-depth with EACH of the 4 guys.

In Meteor Garden, they hung out a lot more than they did in Hana Yori Dango, that's for sure.
Mei Zuo was always there to lighten the load, so to speak, the way that Yoon Ji hoo seemed to do FOR Song Wu bin - which seemed out-of-character after seeing it twice.
I may be wrong (and sometimes that actually happens, believe it or not! :-) - but aside from hanging out at the manse every, so often laughing at or telling Domyoji to get his sh*t together, the asides in Hana Yori Dango are less than memorable in my mind.
With Boys Over Flowers, we were kept in nearly constant contact with Jun Pyo and Jan Di while also finding out the secret lives of the rest of the characters - I liked that!

EXCEPT for our lowly 4ths, who never get the girls, the billing, or the screen time.

Vanness had little trouble finding work (or girls) after Meteor Garden!
I have to wonder if the other two 4ths can or will be able to say the same thing.

Remember the scene where they go to Jan Di's tiny flat and help her redecorate, and when they're through, they eat and play a mixed-up game of 'spin the bottle' that turned into 'truth or dare' when the bottle was only spun once and then forgotten while the 'truth or dare' continued?


Anyway, it warmed my heart when it came Jan Di's turn to ask a question of someone, and they had the choice of being honest or kissing someone at the table, and she chose to ask Wu bin if he was a girl, which of his buddies would he choose to fall in love with.

He seemed as surprised as I was that she chose him!

Wu bin got to cry on Yi jung's shoulder about being ashamed of his gangsta (Mafia, was it?) father, too, and yet every time they needed muscle to get out of a jam, it was WU BIN and his father's strong-arms that came to the rescue.

Yes, of the three, Vanness WU had them beat like BUM in the 'looks' department - but here's how I'm voting in the 'captured my heart' category for the lowly, misunderstood and least represented group of guys:


So, it looks like the version I resisted watching because of pre-conceived notions about the cast & story ended up being the best of the three -


I still think the story itself is ridiculous, predictable, and a waste of time - but NOT the fact that we got to watch some of our favorite, hunky actors portray those dorky people.

MARS - from a Taiwanese Drama viewpoint, has yet to be surpassed in the area of real, intelligent, and memorable watches from that part of the world.

I thought Korea was bad about catering to a narrow audience all the time, and now it seems Japan might be thinking this is a good idea, more's the pity, but Taiwan has yet to come up with anything in the way of mature, interesting, and even MEMORABLE drama, yet they have a lot of stars who'd be ideal for such roles.

Taiwan needs to get in touch with REALITY if it wants to play AND WIN at this game.

For now, I watch Down With Love so I can stare at Jerry Yan and MUTE Ella and the nasty hag chasing his ass in every episode while teasing his best friend.

Ella looks downright STUPID, and I don't care how many girls think it's CUTE - it's stupid - no, it's embarrassing and wrong for any grown woman to want to walk around looking that way because some pedo writing manga geared toward an audience he wants to fondle says so.

Her voice is annoying, her facial expressions are inhuman, and is there ANY reason under the sun why a hot-ass attorney would go after a girl who looks like she's twelve??


There is far, too much sappy, sweet sentimentality geared toward an audience of 10 to 16 year olds and I, for one, am disappointed that the big-wigs behind these productions can't see beyond the 'pedophile's dream' aspect of what they deem to be 'quality' entertainment.

And now, I'll step down off my soap-box to bring you the images I captured while watching BOYS OVER FLOWERS

I didn't do this cause he looks funny or cute - I did it cause he looks like a GIANT seated beside her!

here, too - he actually looks even larger

this is just pretty

and, so is this

I want to eat here! (with HIM, of course)

more pretty stuff - and choosing to shoot this scene at night was a stroke of genius

yea, he's fly - but this is about the 'rape' field (I wonder if the crew did this on purpose?) hahaha

ok - so much for the kawaii aspect of the show - now for the ha-ha funny stuff

is it slow well-being, or being slow well, and does it make any sense either way? Is this meant to imply the opposite of fast-food?

I did this for the lamp, actually - but the subs are too funny to ignore

wait - are those - boobs?? where the haal did THEY come from, I wonder?

and, this could a been such a romantic moment, too

a ... a what??

and, again - A ... what?

no comment - just (giggle)

I can't, even begin to figure out what the attempt was here

Awright - enough with the silly and on to bigger, BETTER things, like - yea, THAT.

wonder what it's like

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