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

Monday, January 11, 2016

Oh, My Venus!





Title: 오 마이 비너스 / O Mai Bineoseu
Former: Oh, My God!
Genre: Romantic, Comedy
Episodes: 16
Network: KBS2
Period: 2015, Nov to 2016, Jan





Cast




Synopsis


Kim Young ho is a personal trainer for Hollywood stars. Even though he comes from a wealthy background, he suffered a devastating injury during his childhood. Now, he overcomes his problems with patience and stubbornness.
Kang Joo eun is a thirty-three year old lawyer. She has struggled to support her family. Now, Kang Joo eun is overweight and not so attractive.  ~DramaWiki (with changes)

Review


What this is REALLY about is a beautiful, young woman named Joo eun, nickname: Daegu's Venus. (Min ah).

She had looks, personality, and popularity through college but remained level-headed.

She worked hard to become a support lawyer, but she also ended up becoming chubby, run-down, and complacent with the status quo.




Young ho (Ji sup), on the other hand, while being born into the lap of luxury, had a really tough life as a child who suffered with (what the subbers referred to as a type of) cancer that meant numerous operations on his right leg just above the knee.

Young ho spent much of that childhood in a wheelchair.

His mother is dead, his father (Il hwa) is emotionally remote, and his grandmother (Hyo jung) is busy building the family empire.

Young ho grows up lonely and in pain.

However, he manages to overcome that obstacle and become a world-class personal trainer with a bit of a one-track mind when it comes to the body and health.

When the story begins, he's leaving Migu due to some scandal (with a blond named Jennifer Anderson -- LOL --  you decide if it is Jennifer Aniston or Pamela Anderson) and returns to Seoul with his two, good buds -- a hotty MMA pro (Sung hoon) and a twitty young kid (Henry) who code-switches but mostly speaks phrasal English throughout the show.

I think they added Henry's character not just for filler, but as an attempt at bromance with the MMA dude -- which didn't quite work for me.

Anyway, while our sexy Young ho is embroiled in this scandal and attempting to avoid his family responsibility, our nerdy Joo eun is being harassed, teased, and even stalked.

She's working at a prestigious law firm and is determined to trial domestic abuse cases, but her chauvinistic boss (who magically vanished less than a quarter of the way through the show) keeps shoving cases at her that do not appeal or that go against her moral ethics code.

She's forced to fly to Migu for a weekend deposition, and on the return flight, she suffers a stomach ailment that lands her on the aisle floor writhing in pain.

Enter our hero, Young ho, who is not only a fitness specialist, he's also great with all types of medical conditions and performs unlicensed practice on the human body.

(Don't quote me on that, either. The subs were DIVINE, but they flashed by too fast to really be able to read and comprehend -- maybe he told us about his MD status, but I never saw it.  Seriously, the Dramafever subs were great but moved a bit too fast most of the time).

The airplane aisle emergency is the first of many bump-into encounters within the first two episodes.

The two leads meet, clash, meet, clash, meet, clash, and then end up working together after Young ho discovers that our Joo eun suffers from hypothyroidism and needs to start taking better care of herself.

He's saved her a few times from a stalker, and once from her ex boyfriend, but Young ho is in the habit of 'helping the weak'.

The romance that forms is plausible, and at no time in the sixteen episodes did I get the impression that our sexy Young ho was shallow when dealing with our pudgy Joo eun -- more kudo's to the script writers!

Joo eun is in a 15-year, go-nowhere relationship with her high school sweetheart (Gyu woon), who happens to work for Young ho's family Dynasty, which Young ho will eventually have to take the reigns of and run against his will.

Woo sik dumps Joo eun and not too long afterwards, she discovers that he's messing around with her new boss, Oh Soo jin (In young), who also happens to be Joo eun's ex-closest college friend from their law school days.

Back then, Soo jin was twice as fat as Joo eun became but a sweet, thoughtful young woman with a sharp brain and graduating first in her law class. Now, she's this svelte knock-out all tall, trim, and mod as Joo eun's overlord (so to speak).

We got to watch as Young ho reluctantly introduces Joo eun to his world while Joo eun had enough time to show him hers, and I think that helped to create the perfect blend instead of adapting to one over the other or making one sound better/worse than the other.

The intensity increased late in the story and climaxed in a startling and terrifying way.

Yet, there is a happy ending, and it's a funny one, too.




Technical Stuff


The  downward spiral  trope is expected in order for the story to have purpose, but the Cinderella aspect is so over-rated and over-used anymore, I've stopped complaining about it occurring in every, freaking K-do to come along.




Joo eun isn't destitute nor impoverished, but she does hail from humble beginnings while our dashing hero who rides up on his white steed is beyond wealthy and beyond HOT.

The twist comes in that our leading lady is pudgy as well as nerdy yet retains her old-school mentality and doesn't allow her unbecoming transformation to get her down. It actually annoys her that others judge her for what she's become rather than who she is and always has been, and I think that's pretty cool.

What was also obvious and unlikely with VENUS was that while our hero is and always will be hot personified, his character lived in the shadows of not only his fortune but his fame and his good looks. He never quite saw himself for what he'd really become and continued to cast doubt on himself because of what he used to be.

Nice plotting there, script writers!




Joo eun also had a realistic amount of screen time to ponder her fate, overcome her loss, and decide it's time to move on -- as opposed to the script writers forcing on her an unrealistic 180, an illogical epiphany, or the annoying tough-as-nails I'm Done, Bitches!

The romance was gradual, as was the pace of the story.

There were infrequent flash-backs, and not a whole lot in the way of dwelling scenes with overly melodramatic background music to accompany it -- although the OST left much to be desired.

Was not impressed with the soundtrack for this one.

Individual acting remained superb by all, but together sometimes, not so much. Min ah is a class act any time, being funny, serious, and even mysterious when it is called for or needed in a scene.

Sir So will remain the undisputed King of dramas.

For a long time, I worried that he'd fade into type-cast oblivion as a bad-ass bad guy with huge kahunas.

Here, and in the last five dramas that he's starred in, So has shown us his ultimate range and depth of development. It is never contrived or forced and always believable even when he does little to add emphasis to any scene or emotion.




The third-place romantic couple involved in this one was simplistic, concise, and not as invasive as it could have been.

Strangely enough, I started to want more of their story and less of the one involving the two leads (lol and mian hae, Sir So-fine).





The two young would-be lovers had the kind of magnetism I had hoped So and Mi na would evoke, but sadly, it just didn't work out that way.

Lastly, we have the title to deal with.

Technically, if you are comparing it to  Oh my God, then it requires the comma-interjection: Oh, My Venus!

For emphasis, like:  Oh My, Venus (taking a cue from George Takai's Oh My!).

I chose to title it as I see fit, that's all.


Some Thoughts


As much as I looked forward to seeing VENUS, and as much as I love, adore, cherish, admire, and WANT Mr. So in my life (even if it is on-screen and not real), this turned out to be a bit of a disappointment.

The plot was good and the story flowed well enough, but this was not an amazing drama.

I am also a bit confused about why I really, really like both leads in their other dramas, but together in VENUS, the chemistry just wasn't there.

I'll admit to their working well together and sharing a bit of the same comedic personality, but it just wasn't enough to make me believe in them or feel any connection.

They won a Best Couple Award at the 2015 KBS Drama Awards, so I must be alone in my decision.

What I did like was the refreshing amount and continuity of believable romantic encounter scenes that this show offered -- for a freaking welcome change.



Hell, yeah!



















Not a single eye-pop kiss scene and no coquettish virgin bullsh*t when it came to romance in general.

Well, there was that one instance when the hot MMA fighter finally revealed himself to the pesky model/actress who pursued his fine ass throughout the show, but . . . I think I was just as surprised as she was!


now that's a kiss, folks!


Speaking of the aside characters --

I liked Joon sung's having to deal with being adopted, searching for his birth mother, and discovering that she'd been in an abusive relationship that led to murder.

Joo eun's real purpose in becoming a lawyer had a lot to do with her wanting to champion just such causes, and they did touch upon them in the drama, but maybe not enough or with as much impact as I would have liked or at least expected.

They became a bit of an afterthought (filler) instead.

However!

I appreciate the simple fact that the story centered around the two leads and their eventual relationship instead of getting bogged down with a ton of needless fluff -- going into unnecessary detail with other issues surrounding the love story.

The two secondary leads and their on-again, off-again romance proved a bit stale after a few episodes. And they didn't offer any sparks, either.




Again, I was of the impression that the story would expound on the strained relationship between the two female attorney's when it didn't. They kind of left us hanging, and with areas of recap about the past vs. the present, and then at the very end the loose ends are neatly tied up and . . . all's well that ends well.

Disappointing, but not by much.

I also kind of thought that she presented much better as the timid fatty than as the reborn, slim version of herself.

Lastly, there was no Korean bitch-fest going on during any part of this drama, and I want to personally thank the writers for this bit of refreshing THANK YOU VERY MUCH in the welcome change department.

Even the anticipated Dynasty Dame's eventual meet & greet with her potential  oh, so beneath her family  future daughter-in-law wanna-be -- no claws revealed; no poison daggers aimed; no venomous slurs being spit out across an immaculately set table.

So, to wrap up, I liked it but not as much as I thought or hoped that I would, even if it did star Sir So Ji sub.

Screen Shots



















nice crotch feels scene 


yeppeun



cool in a creepy sort of way


he finally smiled!







envy the stuffed bear







a recurring dream of mine



does he need something else?

















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2 comments:

  1. Amazing drama.. I really enjoyed watching every episodes..
    Our JiSub was handsome and sexy as always.
    Thank sweet Rain for sharing your review with me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're welcome! Glad you liked it :D

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