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

Saturday, June 19, 2010

하이에나 / Hyena


I chose this because it stars Oppa Sin, but I really had my doubts about this when the 'synopsis' likened it to Sex & the City for guys.


Having never watched one, single episode of said U.S. sitcom, movie, Broadway music - whatever - all I could think was that it'd be 16-episodes of stereotypical trash.


Recently, I watched a documentary about life in Asia, and the guy doing the show met with some classy, working women who said that they constantly watch U.S. tv to keep up with '...the latest trends.'

When he asked them what they watch, they all replied with 'Sex & the City', and in a tone that made it seem like the guy asking the question was from another planet.

He laughed (as I would have done), and when they wanted to know why he thought it was funny, he said that if they really wanted to know what life was like in America, that they should watch 'Married With Children' instead.

!! AGREED !!

That little scene in the documentary stuck with me and made me think - AGAIN.

I've always had trouble with the fantasy/reality aspect of Asian drama - not knowing what is real and what is make-believe.

I live in America, so I know the difference between reality and fantasy - no one needs to explain to me how a show like 'Sex & the City' is as far-removed from reality as they come.

Yet ~ when I watch things like Hyena from Korea - I'm left to wonder if life might, really be that way - for them - or, at least for the ultra elite over there anyway.

The Chinese women in the documentary seemed to be going out of their way to dress, act, live, and even talk like what they see on television - which, to me, is very scary.


Maybe I wasn't there the day that the imaginary line was crossed and fantasy (television) suddenly became reality?

Regardless - I'm going to stick with my old-fashioned view about television being fake and life being real, tuvm.

That goes for anything I see in Asian cinema as well.


I haven't seen Oppa Sin since the end of Project Runway: Korea!

He's so yummy.

When I saw him at the runway show on Project Runway: Korea - I got scared.

I'm thinking - gawd, please don't be the weird host chick's boyfriend!!!!

Don't DO me this way!!!!

I didn't like her - but that has nothing to do with Hyena - so

It's a 2006, 16-episode Korean drama about four guys in their thirties and how they exist day-to-day over there.

Kim Min jong is Kim Chul so, a bad-luck guy working as a PD at a television station alongside his pulled-together, handsome, and extremely successful, younger buddy, Oh Man suk as Choi Jin beom.

Chul so has a reputation for being a jinx, so no one wants to work with him, and on every assignment he's ever had, something disastrous always occurs to spoil things.

The chemistry between all, four guys is incredible and life-like - so it was hard to decide which of them was best or most likable at any rate.


As far as I'm concerned, Choi Jin beom's older brother, Choi Jin sang (Yoon Da hoon) stole the show.

He's a romantic porn novelist with the pen name Late Autumn, and from start to finish, his main goal in life is to lay every woman in Korea.

These, three guys live together in a cozy apartment in a huge complex somewhere in Seoul, and though Jin sang is closer to Chul so in personality, they have to tolerate stuffy Jin beom because he's the one with all the money AND a car.

Oh Man seok as Jin beom

The fourth guy, Sin Seung rok's character, is Lee Seok jin, a talented chef who has his own television show that spotlights cooking and features women as his guests.

He's also gay.

At the start, we find out about a 'scandal' brewing between him and a famous actor he's dating.

Seok jin has to abandon the relationship for the sake of his love, and the gay actor gets married in order to stave off the bad publicity.

Yet, it isn't until way late in this show that his friends find out the truth about him.

So Yi hyun as Lee Jeong yun arrives from the States to get married to a man her parents picked out for her.

She's a grad of Johns Hopkins and a promising, young doctor, but in Korea she is a lush with a broken heart.

She and Chul so bump into each other at a club, where he hopes to score the night before his wedding, and they end up together inside a hotel room.

Jeong yun makes it in time for her wedding, but poor Chul so arrives in his unfastened street clothes looking a mess and hung over.

His bride-to-be walks off and the family beats him down before his buddies drag him back to the apartment to scold him for being a jerk.

Jeong yun sees Seok jin trying to help Chul so, and she runs from her wedding to chase after the car.

Turns out Jeong yun met Seok jin on an airplane, and they had a bit of a fling in America when Seok jin bailed, leaving her a note that said he wasn't good enough for her.

Now she wants him back, and she's willing to let it all go in order to gain back the love she once had, too.

Her wealthy parents abandon her, leaving her penniless, and the hospital in America fires her for being a no-show.

Jeong yun becomes good friends with Chul so, and she and his older brother end up working with him at the television station as his writers.

Chul so is heartbroken and wants to try again with his fiance, but she's over the bum and hits him with a line no guy ever wants to hear:

"I had the best orgasm with him (the new guy), and you never made me feel that good in bed."


He ends up being the new lush while Jeong yun cleans up after getting to move in with her beloved Seok jin.

Seok jin is trying his best to move on and not think about what happened between him and the gay actor, and since his mother has a weak heart and ends up in the hospital all the time, he even attempts 'going straight' for the sake of his parents.

Jin beom gets laid about as often as his randy, older brother does - but his taste is far, more refined and has a host of requirements for the women of his choosing as well.

He has a one-night stand with an attorney who is a raving beauty while his relationship with an Oriental Medicine practitioner is beginning to heat up.

조한나 / Jo Han Na - she's really pretty

Jin beom has had a ten-year, one-sided love affair with a mousy sunbae from college, though, and as hard as he's tried over the years to let it all go - he can't forget her and ends up screwing things up between him & the pretty doc when sunbae returns from the states as a divorcee with a little girl who runs a 'hof' bar (whatever that means).

I had a hard time trying to figure out if this guy was hot or not ...

One minute he looked questionable -

and then in another scene, he looks totally do-able!

anyhow - there was a super-funny scene where his older brother, Jin sang, receives some Viagra from his deep-voiced buddy

and he decides to take two for more potency when, after the drug takes affect, Jin beom walks into the apartment with their parents.

Jin sang tries to hide the 'boner' with a pillow, his mother keeps asking why he looks flushed, and Jin beom yanks the pillow from Jin sang's hand, exposing the 'truth'.

That night, at a bar, the guys are all together, and Jin beom is anxious to tease his embarrassed, older brother about what happened, so he holds up his jacket and asks Jin sang if he can use him as a coat rack.

Later, Jin sang mixes a smoothie and tosses in two viagra, handing the drink to Jin beom and telling him it's super healthy.

Jin beom then goes on a date with Jo Ha na when she sits beside him to check his pulse since he looks flushed (trying to remain calm while 'down there' is in a rage).

She accidentally touches him there - and they end up in a hotel room.

Naturally, Ha na is totally in lust now and wants the relationship to blossom with the intent of marriage while Jin beom is still thinking about his first love and a smooth way to dump the doctor without hurting her feelings.

Curiosity about sex and the single girl here ~

I might be entirely out of the loop this time, too, but - if she's single and living on her own - what is the reason for 'doing it' at a hotel instead of at her apartment?

Hotel sounds so cheap to me - so I'm confused.

Ok - so later, and after the Viagra has worn off, Jin beom keeps bumping into his first love, and at the same time, he can't get it up with the pretty doctor, who is becoming increasingly frustrated and losing self-esteem as a result of his inability to perform.

In an elevator, Jin beom is with his first love when she falls asleep on his shoulder, and suddenly -

It's Ba-aack!

Here's another curiosity I have about Korean dramas in particular ~

Seok jin is driving all over town trying to find Jeong yun, and when he does, she's drunk - so he carries her on his back to the apartment.

So, where is his car, and why didn't he just drive her home???

It wouldn't be as 'romantic' to carry her like a mama carries her baby in the rice field??

I, for one, would rather stumble home in the dark than to be carried this way, in a skirt, by a man.

These aside, I thought that Hyena was an awesome story with likable characters -

oops -

I'm lying now.

Jeong yun was annoying start to finish - even if she did manage to get all the guys to like her by the end.

The way she talked when she was with Seok jin irritated the crap out of me.

Tee-hee's, stupid grins, whining while jumping in place, and acting like a helpless schoolgirl annoys me, sorry!

And, I may be wrong, but I think the writer may have misconstrued the old adage about 'when you're comfortable enough to fart in front of him, then it means the relationship is secure'

Jeong yun let one go the first night she moved in with Seok jin and I find that incredibly hard to believe, considering how 'crazy' about him she was, and how hard she was trying to get him back.

The next day, she runs to the guys apartment down the hall to use their bathroom because she has diarrhea and doesn't want Seok jin to hear or smell anything.

Yet, in front of three, veritable strangers, she doesn't even think to turn on the sink before she starts dumping??

The guys are trying to eat their breakfast, and when Seok jin comes in asking where she is, they tell him she's playing them some symphony music in the next room.


Later, and while she is seated between both Seok jin and Chul so, she lets another one rip, then she tries to blame it on Chul so.

Maybe it was just meant to be ha-ha filler or something?

I'm not sure - but, -- OR maybe I'm too uptight and that's why guys don't like me?

I would rather DIE first than do something like that, and I was married for ten years!

There was a lot of chick-puking in this one, too.

Again - it boggles the mind to think that a guy is so desperate that he'd forgo the smell of vomit on a chick just to sink his wanker in her.

eeeeeew to infinity.

My odd sense of what is right and what is wrong aside ~ Hyena was a memorable drama and one that I recommend to anyone in need of a good laugh.



  1. don't have a hard time... jin beom is hot hehehe. i've watched 4 episodes and love it so far.

  2. I was googling Hyena and randomly ended up on your blog. Great review! I was also wondering whether you had the name of that documentary since it sounds quite interesting?

  3. Hi Sarah - Thanks for the comment, I appreciate your input! As for the 'documentary' (which is probably the wrong word on my part) I watched it at
    I just wanted to get back right away with a response, but will 'try' very hard to look up the URL (if it isn't gone) and post it for you.

  4. Hi, I would like to know if anyone of you know where can i watch this drama with eng sub? thanks! :)

  5. hi Rain, what was the ending of Hyena?

    The last part i saw, chul so fetched jeong yun in the airport and then they saw his ex on the airport too.. and that was the end of it :(

    i guess what I have watched isnt the ending part but it says episode 16.

    Nice review by the way :)

  6. they're having open enrollment at until July 5th if you're interested - you can watch all 16 FULL episodes at this website

  7. Dramafever has the entire series, now. I'm watching it right now. Was just trying to find out more about it when I stumbled on your blog. Good review btw! VERY funny show!

  8. Thanks for the review. Totally agreeb with you about the lead female actress, so annoying from start to finish. She is suppose to be a doctor? But she acts so dumb and annoying. Liked everyone else though, so funny .


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