No way man, you tell me that’s UGLY? I say Park Kyu hotness alert OKAY? There’s no way I’m gonna get around to this stupid title, maybe I should just use Fool’s Watch instead (which doesn’t exactly sound any better but hey, no ugliness innit?).
Team Park Kyu!
Every time I see Im Joo Hwan, I think Park Kyu. Every time someone mentions his name, I think Park Kyu. I get flashbacks memories of all the wonderful things that came out of Tamra, The Island. I think he’s never gonna break away from that tag/label, ever EVER. One of the most memorable and impressionable characters to ever grace TV. I don’t think I can ever forget.
He’s back for SURE, and looks as handsome and adorable as ever. Totally making me want to check out his daily Ugly Alert, but ahhhh DAILY! 😦
The adventure in Tamra Island/Jeju Island has ended for good.
A wonderful and lovely journey which ended with a teeny weeny feeling of regret and disappointment– yet was all worth the toil and turmoil. A journey filled with fun and pain, and yet was worth all our our laughter and tears. A journey filled with magic and fantasy, which gave us endless joy. And lastly, a journey to be remembered for a very very long time.
What I liked about Tamra, The Island was that it came in an unusual package — an ensemble combining a unique (fantasy-like) setting, a refreshing storyline, spectacular scenery (plus music) and most of all, a breathe of fresh air which set it apart from the trite and norm of Korean dramas that we’re so used to seeing.
It had lovely close-ups and portrayals (but which may not be entirely realistic) of the Jeju female divers, going on their daily routines, searching for sea food/creatures to feed their families. It allowed us to see how simplicity in lives of the Jeju villagers , or even the slightest and most trivial gifts and blessings rendered upon their door steps, can actually bring about the greatest joy. It served as an eye-opener to us non-Koreans or even Koreans alike, in opening our eyes to the rich and abundant history on how Jeju Island came to its being today. It gave us a closer look on how a small and negligible community, when united, can bring about a big impact to its people, government and nation. It showed us how conscience and one’s own happiness can clash at any point in time and how one can be sacrificial to the extreme just for another’s sake. And last but not least, it gave us wondrous fun – in seeing Beo Jin strive to break out from her normal life, going all out to see the world outside with William and and at the same time, savouring all her endearing moments with her family and her dearest Exiler- Park Kyu. In short, it was an enjoyable and meaningful journey of discovery/lesson of self-worth and happiness. =)
Everything from the plot, acting, chemistry to the music/OST has been pretty much a wonderful treat for me. Acting was good across the board, with an exceptionally breakthru performance by Im Joo Hwan as the righteous and self-sacrificing Park Kyu. Seo Woo was spot on as the cheerful and bright Beo Jin whilst Pierre Deporte and Lee Sun Ho were decent enough to get the drama rolling with fun. Chemistry between the characters was good thru out, enhanced by the ligthhearted and spunky music (added with a flair of European and Korean mix) – giving the drama a breathe of excitement and thrill. And most of all, the scenery – BREATHTAKING.
Save for occasional glitches in flow and pacing of the drama and some redundant scenes of Beo Jin going back and forth between William and Park Kyu (and her crying like an emotional wreck in almost every episode), Tamra’s nothing less than a wholesome package of wonder and amusement. Definitely a blissful journey worth the 16-episode ride.
However, that’s not to say that Tamra’s without any flaws at all. The ride was meaningful, yes. The ride was fun, no doubt. BUT, again, nothing is perfect. What started out to be an exciting drama ended in a very simple note, satisfying (enough) to some, rushed to many. I myself thought it lacked the “punch” and intrigue it had in the first three quarters of the drama – mostly due to it having fallen into the trap of “Korean drama endings”. You know what I’m talking about. But I guess the broadcasting station MBC ‘s partially to blame for this. Had MBC not cut off 4 episodes of the drama (just because the ratings faltered), the drama could have been better, and definitely could have ended the same way it did without disappointing its viewers. Had MBC not done what they’d done, Tamra would have been a brilliant piece. Not that it wasn’t a great drama or anything, but it definitely could have been better.
Let’s just hope the full DVD/20-episode version would not disappoint, and would give us viewers a altogether different viewing experience. I personally have nothing to complain (tho the wait is agonizing), as 4 more episodes of Park Kyu/Im Joo Hwan is definitely going to be <3333 for me.
Last but not least, I’d give this drama a 7.5/10. (Might be an 8 if I get to see the uncut version?)
K-drama has never been so crack-like addictive.
That’s what I have to say about Tamra, The Island, a saguek-fantasy Korean drama which I’d just started watching 2 days ago.
I was quite hesitant to start on this drama in the beginning. I read the synopsis in Soompi thread and it didn’t appeal to me at all. It’s a fantasy fusion saguek, that I could tolerate. I didn’t know much about the actors, not a good sign but still acceptable. But the worst thing that it’s all about a chamber pot and some funny people living in an island called Tamna (didn’t know it was Jeju back then, I thought it was some made up fictional island)! How ridiculous right? It cannot get worst than that, RIGHT?
But boy I was SO WRONG. Am totally eating my worlds right now.
Thanx to the overwhelming and over-zealous recommendations in Dramabeans, I caved in. Gave the first episode a try. It was good. That led me to the second episode, which had me hooked. And then the 3rd, the 4th….
There was no turning back after that.
I’m only on Ep 4 right now, so I can’t really say that this drama is GREAT or BRILLIANT or anything. But Tamra, The Island is just about the most innovative and creatively unique Korean drama I have seen in ages. And it has me thinking about it 24/7. No joke.
What sets Tamra apart from other Korean dramas? Well, it has an interesting setting, a fantasy-like background never seen in Korean drama before (well save for Legend, if you wana count that). It has a mix of characters from different and diverse cultures (English, Korean and Japanese) with them having a considerably good grasp of the languages (phew, finally!). The characters are quirky and charming in their own ways. Acting is decent and solid. And most of all, the music/OST just gets me into a trance. I just immediately stop in my tracks to indulge myself in my own fantasy world whenever the songs start playing. It’s like I’ve entered into a world that I can only reach in my dreams. The combination of those elements just weave into one seamless and beautiful picture… so fairytale-like and romantic.
You know how Beo Jin’s always so cooked up with going outside to explore the world with William? How she wants to stop being a diver and be confined to Tamra her whole life? All that somehow resonates with how I feel about myself. You want to break free but yet cannot because you are confined to how and where you were brought up. You want to tread miles but cannot afford to because you have responsibilities to bear. So, seeing Beo Jin and William go dive together under the fantasy like ocean – it makes me really happy. Happy because I know whilst I cannot break free, at least I can feel it whilst watching them dive without any worries or burden. It’s something unreachable and virtual, but it makes me feel really really good.
Don’t want to spoil the drama for anyone here… but let me just grace your ears with these 2 songs from the drama ~~~ see if you get the feeling I was trying to explain before…
And oh yes, before I forget.. need to rant about this newfound crush I found in Tamra..
It’s none other than….
…Park Kyu played by actor Im Joo Hwan.
He plays a Yangban from Han Yang (Seoul now) who was expelled and exiled because of his flirtatious ways with married women. Sounds like the typical rich and arrogant cheabol you always see in Korean dramas right? But again, that’s the reason why I always love K-drama cheabol characters. They make me fall head over heels for them… because when we strip off their outer layers, we see a different person within. Same like Park Kyu here. He may seem aloof, distant and arrogant, but deep inside,, there is a different side to him (which I have yet to fully discover). That makes the whole viewing experience all the more fun, because I want to know who is he, why is he acting this way, why does he act like he doesn’t care but yet does harbor concern when the people in the village are in danger…etc. A character so intriguing that I could not help but be drawn to.
The actor Im Joo Hwan does a wonderful job with his character Park Kyu. I’ve seen him act in other not so prominent projects before (and wasn’t exactly captivated by his acting or anything). But in Tamra, he’s the shining star. Totally overshadowing the rest of the actors. Don’t get me wrong, I think the other actors are doing a considerably decent job too. Seo Woo comes close to becoming the next Yoon Eun Hye (her physical comedic acts are on spot, and when she cries, she becomes an emotional wreck) whilst Pierre Deporte (or Hwang Chan Bin?) is doing an okay job as a newbie. But when Im Joo Hwan comes in as Park Kyu, he just takes over. Word.
His mannerisms, gestures, facial expressions and his voice…everything, just draw me in like nothing. When he speaks, I go GAGA – because his voice is just to die for. When he goes into deep thoughts, I get spellbound – because his eyes make it difficult for me not to stare twice, thrice or even longer. When he starts elaborating on his theories, I get so engrossed that I don’t notice anything other than him. Now I’ll just have to wait until he cries his eyes out…
So there goes another long-winded rant. Just needed to get that out since it’s all I think about all day. >.<
I hope to write another entry on the drama when I finish the whole thing. It will be ending its run in Korea in a week’s time and I hope to marathon all the episodes before the grand finale. Hopefully it would still hold its steam by the end.
I heard about the major editing which MBC decided (curse THEM!! cos I know I won’t have full 20 eps of Park Kyu/Im Joo Hwan) because of low ratings or over-budgeting reasons? I really hope they don’t butcher the whole thing… because there’s nothing worst than having to live with the regret of not having a good ending to a great drama. MBC, please do it right this time. PLEASE.
Lastly, an additional picture for laughs…
credits: video/pic uploaders