Jung Woo! Jung Woo! Jung Woo!
I knew you were good, I knew you had the chops… but I never knew when given the right material, you could be this FCKING FANTASTIC!
I am a new fan, a performance in Ep 11 alone which cemented that, take that!
I really cannot reiterate more HOW SO VERY MUCH I love Jung Woo as Oppa in R1994. I am not just impressed awestruck and blown away, I am COMPLETELY FLOORED. Over how natural and simplistic his portrayal is, the intricacy, the delicateness in expression, the effortless nature of his performance. I know you know, and you can see, his performance as Oppa isn’t particularly WOW stellar or grandiose, it isn’t even a performance so captivating to the point I am overwhelmed with emotions I can’t control. There are actors who ride on method, there are those who ride on charm and charisma, there are those who just look good enough to scratch thru the surface, and there are ones who are just born talented, to be the characters they play. Jung Woo is no doubt most definitely the latter, proven by how much he gives and is able to convey with what little information we know about Oppa the character.
You know I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want Oppa to be endgame, it’s always been the case (for my own pure shipper heart <3). But that aside, it doesn’t mean I don’t see and get the bigger picture of what R1994 is in essence, it’s about growing up, going thru life with the fun lil hijinks and hiccups along the way, experiencing feelings that are new or foreign, and that it’s not just about who is better or who should be with Na Jung (for goodness sakes). She ends up with whoever she likes, and the person she ends up with loves her back. Plus all are good and happy in the end, it’s just as simple as that. 😉
The reason I don’t join discussions or debates on who the hubby is or should be and stuff… because only the writer knows and our CSI skills can only get us that far. I’ve long forgotten and somewhat given up on the guessing game because it’s not something that I can control and nothing I can do about when things are not in my favour. We all believe and see what we want to see, feel for the one who makes our hearts beat and ache. Of course hearts will be broken, tears will flood if endgame isn’t uri sweetest Chilbongie or awesome Oppa, we are just fangirly like that, but put yourself into Na Jung’s shoes, follow the girl’s heart. And problem is solved.
I get why people are frustrated with Oppa, and are not agreeable about how he’s somewhat toying with NJ’s feelings and leaving things hanging. It’s not the best way to treat a girl like that, furthermore a girl who has boldly mustered her courage to let her feelings known to you despite whatever consequences that may come. I get it and I totally understand. People are sick of waiting, and making people wait isn’t exactly a nice thing to do, or something that one should do. But as usual I run to Oppa’s defense (I’m an Oppa fangirl to death!), not that people will take it, but I do and actually understand what the writer is trying to tell with Oppa’s hesitation and silence on all fronts. This is a telling of a situation and relationship that warrants some consideration and thought, it’s not complicated or complex to the point that stones will be thrown if words are said, but it’s not exactly the simplest of all either. If everyone was or is as forefront or straightforward as Chilbongie, if things are just as easy as ABC, things will be so much easier, I’d get my fairytale love story in a go, the drama will end there because all feelings will ALREADY have been made known.
It’s a legit and understandable reason, why Oppa’s acting the way he is. I can totally get by how a lot of things and factors are taken into consideration when analysing his relationship with and feelings for NJ. It’s not just about how it’s not forbidden, and how getting together will not change a thing because they’re not related (aka not fauxcest) etc, but it’s also about the ramifications and consequences of having everything and every single moment they’ve shared as family and siblings in the past put to the test. The possibility of having to face something different altogether. Things between them will change, oh yes most definitely, and change is not for everyone. Oppa has been brotherly oppa to NJ for as long as he can remember. He knows her in and out she knows the same. Some might say, hey that’s even better and easier for them to get together since they practically know each other from tip to toe. But I tell you it’s not that easy, even for close friends, soul mates who know each other SO WELL, to really break through that familial closeness and bond, to take that one step further, it does require a certain courage (yes Oppa does lack that courage I will concur). I’ve personally tried it before and it doesn’t… always work, the whole dynamic with that person changes. It depends on the person of course because not all are the same, and Oppa is that one person we’re trying to understand here. What happens when a person is the sensitive type who overthinks? What happens when one tries to accommodate all and to think for others (here NJ’s family and how they don’t consider him a potential love interest). It’s the characterisation we’re talking about here, not what he should or should not do. Oppa’s hesitation and reluctance can be seen as a cowardly and selfish response to NJ’s otherwise courageous act, why can’t he act upon his feelings direct? But feelings are feelings, there are many, not just love, not just affection. Oppa’s feelings for NJ are not as simple as ABC, it’s not just love between man and woman, their love transcends beyond that very pure element of love. There is just too much history between them. It’s also why I totally get and understand what Oppa said to Haetai in this episode, that how he thinks their relationship cannot progress with their past in the mix. It’s not all that complicated the way I see it, and NJ likes him too, so what’s that big of a deal? It’s not a big deal, the deal is that Oppa is an oppa who puts everything into perspective of others, an oppa who thinks about the many many possibilities and situations that could come into play. In short, he’s just like me and many other people out there I’m sure they are, one who overthinks. Well it doesn’t give him the reason or excuse to act oblivious (come on the girl is waiting!), of course that I concur and I feel for NJ deeply, but I also cannot unsee the amount of thought Oppa’s put into considering their relationship on a different level other than what they have going on right now. It actually hurts to see him go through all that. I nearly cried. T__T
The very reason why I lovelovelovelove Oppa the most. It’s the very bias in me – Jung Woo who makes every single scene of his so realistically moving and effective. The way he conveys all those varying emotions. The way he internalises each emotion and expression. The performance is not powerful in a sense that it grips or makes you surge up in overwhelming emotion, it’s a performance that gets through you like ripples of water, slowly, it creeps up to you gradually, you feel tears forming, your heart aches, you want to hug this man.
I am Oppa and Jung Woo biased, I will say it again and again. But that does not mean I don’t love the rest of the characters for who they are, they are all awesome and unique, none caricatures written to pander to the Korean drama stereotype. Chilbong continues to charm with his forever sweetness and consideration of NJ’s feelings, I am totally fine and will be happy if he ends up being the groom (in fact odds are mostly in his favour), Haetai makes bromance look so easy, I LUB him for his thoughtfulness and I secretly hope he gets a girl or get his short time with NJ (if they ever stand a chance because they ARE adorbs together). And SCP and YJ, need I say more? <3333
Drama is not flawless or without things to nitpick, it’s rather long and has plenty of stuff that I don’t really care about. Some parts don’t even gel in TBH. But I give it to the writer for wanting to make something different than what we have on TV nowadays. And what I love most? They insisted on Jung Woo as Oppa.
The best thing to ever happen in K-drama this year.
I LUB YOU OPPA!
credits: JW DC gall/ JW Soompi thread/ kdrama.com/tumblr/photos as tagged