Review: Someday or One Day (2019)

In my last post, I reviewed a drama and gave it a lower rating. I thought that I would review an amazing drama this time. Someday or One Day is a Taiwanese drama.

Synopsis

Huang Yu Xuan is a 27-year-old woman who misses her boyfriend Wang Quan Sheng, who went missing two years ago. She is unable to accept that he is gone and is still searching for him. One day, she receives a walkman and cassette from a mysterious sender. As she listens to the music, she wakes up in the year 1998. She is now a 17-year-old girl named Chen Yun Ru, who looks exactly like her. In Chen Yun Ru’s body, she meets a schoolmate who looks exactly like her missing boyfriend, except… he’s not her boyfriend. His name is Li Zi Wei!

Huang Yu Xuan soon discovers that Chen Yun Ru will die in the year 1999. She needs to find a way to prevent Chen Yun Ru’s death before she dies in her body.

Thoughts

Three words: Just watch it.

For you anime fans out there, I know what you might be thinking. It’s kind of like Erased, right? Kind of! It’s different from Erased in some ways because Huang Yu Xuan goes into someone else’s body instead of her own. I think that this is really unique. There is also a heavy romance component in Someday or One Day, which is done extremely well.

You’ll most definitely like this series if you like the Taiwanese movies, Our Times and You Are the Apple of My Eye.

What I like about this drama is that it is not predictable. As someone who has watched a lot of anime and Asian dramas, I can practically guess how shows will end. This drama kept me on the edge of my seat.

When I watched the first episode, I felt like I was watching a movie. The cinematography is on-point, the music is memorable, and the acting is realistic. I felt very emotional and balled my eyes out… just by the first episode.

This drama covers mature themes so I wouldn’t recommend it to younger audiences. It covers topics that are taboo in Asian culture and you don’t see many dramas talk about these topics.

As mentioned earlier, the music is memorable. The songs are so good. A lot of the scenes are pleasing to the eyes and look really aesthetic.

Final verdict: 9.5/10 This is hands-down one of the best Asian dramas I’ve seen.

Note: There is an extra scene on YouTube, which is meant to be watched once you have completed the series. Be sure to watch it after you’re done!

Review: My Fantastic Mrs Right: Season 1 (2020)

Episodes watched: 6/12

Synopsis: Mi Xiao Qi drops from the sky and lands in Bei Yue Kingdom of Kun Peng Continent. She’s a young woman, except she’s turned into a fat cat. When she transforms back into her human form, she must meet her fated lover and make him fall in love with her. Together with her fated one, they must find the four pieces of the magical jade. Otherwise, she will die!

Thoughts: This kind of drama seemed like my kind of show. I really enjoyed the historical comedy drama, The Eternal Love, so I thought that I would love this one too. The first couple of episodes were funny, but it became less funny later on.

My main problem with this drama is that there is no flow. The writing is all over the place. Things progress quite quickly and it seems so unrealistic. I feel like the characters do have good chemistry, but the drama does not do a very good job at portraying that. I understand that this drama is meant to be fun and silly, but the flaws take away from the enjoyment of the show.

On the flip side, I really like the characters. Xiao Qi in her cat form is adorable. The idea of the drama is hilarious, but the execution was poorly done.

Final verdict: 6.5/10 Dropped.

Thank you, The Untamed

I recently finished the Chinese drama, The Untamed. I’ve watched many Asian dramas. According to MyDramaList, I’ve watched over 1000 episodes. Most of the time when I finish a drama, I just move on and watch the next thing… but I have to write about The Untamed. The Untamed is an exceptional drama. I give it 10/10.

Throughout my life, I’ve heard people talk about shows in a negative light.

“It’s just a show.”

“Everything is fake.”

“Watching TV is a waste of time.”

It’s really not just a show. I think that we all know that dramas are fictional. Is there anyone who doesn’t know this? I think that people who really appreciate dramas and anime are cognizant of the amount of time and the effort that went into making the show. Actors, directors, producers, scriptwriters, voice actors, camera crew, costume design team, those who work on the sets, those who work on the props, and subtitles, the editing team, the animation team, the list goes on… Pre-production of The Untamed took two and a half years. Saying that watching TV is a waste of time is almost disregarding all of these things.

The Untamed cast practiced posture, calligraphy, martial arts, musical instruments, and more. Since The Untamed takes place in ancient China, they went through training to learn these skills.

Several of the cast members sang their own character songs. They’re really talented.

  • Wu Ji – sang by Xiao Zhan & Wang Yibo (Wei Wuxian & Lan Wangji)
  • Wei Wuxian’s theme song – sang by Xiao Zhan (Wei Wuxian)
  • Bu Wang (Lan Wangji’s theme song) – sang by Wang Yibo (Lan Wangji)
  • Chi Zi (Wen Ning’s theme song) – sang by Yu Bin (Wen Ning)
  • Hen Bie (Jiang Cheng’s theme song) – sang by Wang Zhuo Cheng (Jiang Cheng)
  • Bu Wang (Lan Xichen’s theme song) – sang by Liu Haikuan (Lan Xichen)
  • Gu Cheng (Yi City group’s theme song) – sang by Sun Bolun & Chen Zhuoxuan (A-Qing)

The youth group also sang their theme song. The rest of the character songs are also really nice. I think the songs really convey the characters’ feelings.

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This is not a goodbye post because there’s still the Mo Dao Zu Shi donghua, novel, and manhua. Maybe I’ll rewatch The Untamed one day. I think it will be interesting to compare the different versions. I think that The Untamed did an amazing job at portraying the relationships, given China’s heavy censorship. I think they made it obvious and clear.

Missing: Wei Wuxian nendoroid (It’s out of stock… I really wanted it…)


Full episodes with English subtitles are on Netflix and YouTube.

When You’re Close To Finishing A Show… But Don’t

I never had this “problem” before, until recently. I’ve finished some shows, but other shows… I am close to finishing them (just 2 or 3 episodes until completion) but I’ve stopped watching them. I like the shows, too. See below:

  • Gosick 22/24
  • 2Moons 9/12
  • Eternal Love of Dream 53/56
  • TharnType 9/12

& I’m trying to figure out the reason(s) for why I do this. Do you guys do this too? I have a few ideas:

1. You don’t want the series to end. You aren’t ready to let go of the characters and the series. If it never ends, you can avoid feeling the post-series “void.”

2. You are afraid of a bad ending, or a rushed job.

3. The show already gave you everything you wanted… whatever that was.

4. You lost interest in the show.


I’m sure there are more reasons. If you can think of more reasons, please let me know. I feel like none of these are exactly it for me.

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How I’m feeling

What I’ve Been Watching During Quarantine

I got into Thai dramas for the first time and now I’m obsessed. I haven’t watched anything from the new season of anime yet…

I don’t normally watch romance shows (Click here for more context) and now everything I’m watching is romance (except for One Piece).

Animation

One Piece

Right now is the perfect time to watch One Piece. I’m on the Zou arc, if anyone wants to start right now and catch up. It’s only 750 episodes, hahaha. You can watch One Piece with English subtitles on Crunchyroll.

Mo Dao Zu Shi

This is actually a donghua (Chinese animation), not anime. It is much more than just a BL (Boys Love) story because there’s so much action and adventure. You can watch MDZS with English subtitles on YouTube from the official channel!

Chinese Dramas

The Eternal Love of Dream

This Chinese drama broke 1 billion views in one week. If you’ve watched Eternal Love, this drama focuses on the side couple from Eternal Love: Feng Jiu and Dong Hua Dijun. It’s a more accurate retelling of their story from the beginning (it’s based on a novel). You can watch this drama with English subtitles on YouTube from the official channel!

The Untamed

This is the live-action version of Mo Dao Zu Shi. You can watch this drama with English subtitles on YouTube from the official channel or on Netflix!

Love O2O

I think this is one of the best Chinese dramas. I love the actor, Yang Yang. You can watch this drama with English subtitles on YouTube from the official channel or on Netflix!

Thai Dramas

Sotus

I felt a little uncomfortable watching some of the scenes because the SOTUS system seemed problematic (to me). After I finished the drama, I learned that the SOTUS system in Thailand is real. I thought it was just fiction. It also feels wrong to criticize the system since I’m an outsider.

Besides that, the drama was really good. You can watch this drama with English subtitles on YouTube from the official channel or on Netflix.

Why R U?

I heard that this series got postponed because of COVID-19… I hope that they won’t rush the ending. Saifah is so cute.

My Engineer

I’m just waiting for the next episode right now. I saw that unofficial channels have posted the newer episodes, but I refuse to watch those. The show is already free on YouTube… Watching it from the official channel is the least we can do.

The Eternal Love (2017) – Episodes 1-3 Impressions

Title: The Eternal Love/双世宠妃

Release year: 2017

Episode count: 24

I started a Chinese drama called The Eternal Love. It’s not to be confused with Eternal Love or Three Lives, Three Worlds, Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms, which is an entirely different Chinese drama (the latter is one of my favourite dramas, by the way – go check it out).

In The Eternal Love, Qu Xiaotan from the modern world is isekai’d into historical China. In other words, she time travels and occupies the body of Qu Tan’er, the second daughter of the Qu family. The catch is that whenever she tells a lie, the real Tan’er wakes up from the body. Xiaotan and Tan’er basically switch back and forth and do not retain memories of each other.

Now for the plot. Xiaotan/Tan’er is forced to marry Mo Liancheng, the eighth prince. Xiaotan does not like the idea of marrying a stranger, while Tan’er is in love with Liancheng’s brother, Mo Yihuai. However, she marries him with the intention of spying on Liancheng. Xiaotan is left in the dark about these schemes which is really confusing for Liancheng.

Tan’er is proper and follows the traditional norms of the time period. Xiaotan, on the other hand, is rebellious and unapologetic. She is infuriated that she experiences mistreatment from her father’s consort and that she was forced to marry a stranger. She makes several attempts to return to the modern world.

This drama is hilarious! Xiaotan cracks me up. Since she is a character from the modern world, only we can understand her references to certain things (i.e. the toothbrush, modern slang). Her and Liancheng have great chemistry. He always has her back, cares deeply for her, is good-looking…

I’m definitely going to keep watching because this drama is so funny and because I love both the main leads. A lot of historical dramas have a serious tone to them and they are quite long… Time passes so quickly when I’m watching this drama. For a romantic comedy historical drama, this one is done really well.

BL Review: HIStory 2: Boundary Crossing

The 2018 Taiwanese drama is also known as HIStory 2: Crossing the Line. I started the show this morning and was immediately hooked. There are 8 episodes and I just finished the show, haha.

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The show makes me so happy. In 2017, same-sex marriage became legal in Taiwan. I’ve been a BL (Boys Love) fan for many years but felt frustrated at Asian dramas because of the censorship. For example, in China same-sex marriage is not legal and in the BL series and films I’ve watched, the kiss scenes were deleted. Doing this made the shows confusing to watch because key scenes were removed, and sends out an unfortunate message to everyone. One of the series I enjoyed was discontinued.

The legalization of same-sex marriage in Taiwan was a great thing (and still is) for people in the lgbtq+ community and for the country. Now in 2018, we have great BL dramas and the kiss scenes are not deleted.

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Xia Yu Hao and Qiu Zi Xuan

Xia Yu Hao and two of his friends, Wang Zhen Wu and Wang Zhen Wen, enrol into a new high school. Yu Hao was kicked out of his old school because of a fight. Yu Hao reluctantly joins the school’s volleyball team after being coerced into joining. He becomes close with Qiu Zi Xuan, a senior student who is the team’s manager. Due to an injury in the past, Zi Xuan is unable to play volleyball.

Wang Zhen Wu and Wang Zhen Wen are step-brothers and later join the volleyball team as well. Zhen Wen starts to ignore Zen Wu and it frustrates Zen Wu a lot. Zen Wu and Zhen Wen are the secondary couple in the series and don’t get as much screen time as the main couple. I like that there is more than one couple in the series because it mirrors a lot of BL manga. Yu Hao actually reads BL manga (probably for research), hahaha.

Although this is a BL romance drama, volleyball was a huge component of the series. There was even a Haikyuu!! reference! We get to know some of the other volleyball players and I liked that the show was not just about the two couples. While the couples are certainly the main focus, there are other things going on with the plot. I also loved the other characters in the series, like the captain of the volleyball team. This was a problem I had with the shojo manga, Dengeki Daisy. I dropped the series because I didn’t like how there wasn’t much plot apart from the couple.

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Wang Zhen Wu and Wang Zhen Wen

This drama was a refreshing break from disturbing BL manga and webtoons. If you’re a reader of Korean BL webtoons, you will know that they have a lot of disturbing ones out there. Maybe that’s your thing, and I’m not going to judge! But for me, personally, I hate webtoons like Killing Stalking. The relationship is not healthy. For manga and webtoons in general, consent is important to me. If there is no consent, I will probably not like it.

In this series, both couples are so gentle with each other. When one person is sleeping, the other covers a blanket over him and does it in such a lovingly way. The way the characters look at each other is so cute. It’s hilarious when the characters get jealous.

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In comparison to other romance dramas (including straight couples), it is less dramatic because there aren’t really any threatening people trying to sabotage their relationship. I liked this about the show a lot because it feels more realistic this way. When a drama gets too intense because of an evil person getting in the way, it’s usually not as good. I like it when all the characters are fairly decent and understanding people.

None of the characters displayed discrimination against people in the lgbtq+ community. Unfortunately, it happens way too much in Korean webtoons and Chinese manhwa where a male character feels “disgusted” by the boys’ love. -.- Both couples talk about liking another boy and it’s clear that they do not see anything wrong with it because love is love. They also don’t like it when another person discriminates against lgbtq+.

One of my biggest pet peeves in BL series (manga, webtoons, anime, dramas, movies) is when a female character tries to break up a couple between two gay men. The female is aware that they are gay but “refuse to believe it.” -.- Rest assured, this does not happen in this show.

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Other notable aspects of the show:

I loved the character development in Xia Yu Hao because he goes from a delinquent student with a cocky attitude to a sensitive and caring person who is passionate about volleyball. Maybe he was always like this, but it is less obvious in the beginning.

Overall, I definitely recommend this series. It’s a great BL drama because of the reasons mentioned above, and the volleyball team side to it was enjoyable to watch!

Korean Dramas I Loved

Korean dramas are really good quality because they have a high budget, especially since they’re super popular in Korea and throughout the world. The actors and actresses are always attractive too.

I do have some problems with them because most of the time, they are very dramatic. Sometimes the drama seems too unrealistic and I feel like I need to take a break from watching them. I also don’t like how so many dramas follow the same storyline: Rich, attractive boy falls for poor, average-looking girl. Now that you know a bit about my tastes, here are Korean dramas I loved!

Thanks Neko Nyan for giving me the idea for this post. These aren’t in any order.

1. Lie to Me (2011)

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Okay, this one follows the rich boy, not rich girl trope but Ki-joon (the CEO) is so sweet! I hate Boys Over Flowers because I think that falling in love with a rich guy who bullied you is problematic. It’s different here. In order to impress her friends, Ah-jung (the female lead) lies and tells her friends that she is married to Ki-Joon. Her lie spreads like wildfire and everyone in the country finds out about it through the media and news outlets. I love how he agrees to pretend to be married to her HAHAHA! I definitely think this drama deserves to be more popular.

2. My Girlfriend is a Gumiho (2010)

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I don’t have strong opinions about the male lead but I love the female lead, Mi-ho. She is so kind-hearted, funny, and naturally gorgeous. She will defend herself if she has to. Mi-ho is a gumiho, which is a nine-tail fox. She is found by the main lead, Dae-woong, and tries to live life as a human. Dae-woong does treat her well and it’s a good love story. The soundtrack is beautiful – I love this song the most.

3. Cunning Single Lady (2014)

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I enjoyed this drama a lot more than I anticipated! It’s binge-worthy and the female lead is so beautiful. The main couple were married in the past but got a divorce because Jung-woo, the male lead, was too poor. Years later, Jung-woo is the CEO of a huge company. Ae-ra starts working at the company for revenge.

Okay, you probably think Ae-ra is a horrible person. She’s actually a really good person! I don’t want to spoil anything so you’ll just have to trust me. I love romance dramas with sweet male protagonists. Even though Jung-woo thinks that Ae-ra is trying to get close to him for his wealth, he’s still so kind to her. T_T

4. 38 Task Force (2016)

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I LOVE dramas that involve con-artists or deceiving people. In this show, a tax collector sees injustice because he works for a government agency but the people who are not paying their taxes are very rich and get away with it. The tax collector, Baek Sung-il, teams up with the con-artist, Yang Jeong-do. Yang Jeong-do gets a team of people and together they scam the rich people. It’s super interesting and when it came out, I checked every week if the new episode was out because I was so excited to watch it.

5. Liar Game (2014)

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I blogged about this drama before in my “10 Live-Action Manga Adaptations I Enjoyed” post. You can read that here.

In Liar Game, the goal is to deceive the other players. If you win, you will get a lot of money but if you lose, the money lost becomes your debt. Da-jung is tricked into joining the game. She’s very naive, and gets former con-artist and former psychology professor, Ha Woo-jin, to help her. Ha Woo-jin is brilliant.

This drama is based on a manga but they made a lot of changes to it. I usually don’t like it when shows deviate from the source material but these changes were refreshing and pleasant to watch. They made the Liar Game into a reality TV show and so the game is watched by a lot of people. They also changed the games, which was nice because I didn’t know the outcome of the games. The two main protagonists are similar to their manga counterparts but the other characters are very different. I didn’t have complaints about that. It’s a really good remake. The Japanese drama, Liar Game, is more true to the manga but this drama is worth watching.

6. Money’s Warfare (2007)

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In this drama, Na-ra becomes homeless after a series of unfortunate events. These events happen early on. Na-ra picks himself up and becomes a loan shark. His job is to collect debt from poor people, but he uses unconventional methods. There are some really funny scenes. Na-ra is awesome.

10 Live-Action Manga Adaptations I Enjoyed

Many anime fans don’t like live-actions of anime. Period.

I also (mostly) agree. But… live-actions dramas are better than films. With episodes, it allows the show to have more depth. One major problem in all live-action films is that they cut a lot of important scenes and most of the time, they cut out important characters.

These aren’t in any particular order. I won’t be talking about the plots of these shows, just what I liked about them. I don’t watch as many dramas as I used to, so the newer live-actions will probably not be on here. Nonetheless, I still find value in making this list because good shows are good shows, no matter how old they are. 😉 If you’re interested in knowing which dramas I’ve watched, you can view My Drama List (still incomplete) here.

1. Bloody Monday (2008)

I enjoyed this Japanese live-action because Haruma Miura and Hiroki Narimiya played their characters really well. The instrumental soundtrack is beautiful. Listen to this and you’ll know what I mean. Also, both seasons played music by Flumpool, which is my favourite Japanese band.

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2. Boku dake ga Inai Machi (2017)

This is better known as Erased. It is a Japanese drama. I didn’t think I would be interested in time travel but I was proven wrong. I often take breaks from dramas and anime (My Drama List reflects this by the number of dramas I am “currently watching”) but I binged this show. Special thanks to Fed for watching it after my recommendation!

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3. GTO (1998)

This Japanese drama stands for Great Teacher Onizuka. I watched this before I started university and I feel like it changed my life. That’s a really bold statement but I began to see life a little bit differently in “unconventional” ways.

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4. Hanazakari no Kimitachi e (2007)

This Japanese drama is also known as Hana Kimi. There are so many actors!!

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5. Hotaru no Hikari (2007)

This is a Japanese drama based on the josei manga with the same title.

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6. Kurosagi (2006)

I’ve watched every episode in this Japanese drama at least 10 times, and the reason is because I used to really, really like Kurosaki, the main character.

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7. Liar Game (2014)

This is the Korean live-action adaptation. It is different from the manga because they made the Liar Game into a TV game show. I love how they changed it to better suit the current generation.

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8. Liar Game (2007)

This is a Japanese drama. I do prefer this over the Korean live-action of Liar Game.

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9. Smiling Pasta (2006)

This Taiwanese drama is based on a manhwa. I haven’t read the manhwa because it’s really hard to find English scanlations of it (or even the work in its original language). However, this drama was able to make me cry and laugh in the same episode.

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10. Switch Girl!! (2011)

This is a Japanese drama. Mariya Nishiuchi was perfect for the main role because she was a model of Seventeen at the time, and so were other actresses (her character does modelling in the drama too). I am her fan. ❤

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My Drama List

If you watch Asian dramas, I recommend you use My Drama List if you haven’t already. It’s like My Anime List, but for dramas! Basically, you mark down the statuses of different shows and movies you’ve watched, record the episodes you’ve seen, give them ratings and leave comments.

I do have some issues with My Anime List, but I like it better than My Drama List because  it is harder to find shows on MDL. The shows should be separated by genres and in categories such as ‘Korean drama’ and ‘Japanese drama,’ etc. They don’t have that. That’s why I’m missing a lot of shows on my list!! I can remember the plots and characters’ appearances of certain dramas, but I don’t remember the names of the dramas.

If you’re interested, My Drama List can be found at https://mydramalist.com/dramalist/alpaca_xx 

Please note that it is incomplete because of the reason I explained above. I actually just filled out the list recently so I have not entered any episode data on my ‘Currently Watching’ list. I don’t know if I will be able to because I haven’t watched dramas in a LONG time, which means I don’t remember what episode I’m on! T_T With that being said, my ‘Currently Watching’ list is not being counted in my Profile’s episode number and time watched information. Most of these shows are from 2009~ because that was when I watched a lot of Asian dramas.

My Anime List is private, but I can tell you that it’s longer than My Drama List. My Manga List (this is on the My Anime List website) is longer than My Anime List.

What does this all mean? 

It means I’ve watched a lot of T.V. and it’s no wonder I have poor eyesight AND I’m not sure whether I am proud or if I pity my soul…

Moving forward…

Now that I have My Drama List kind of filled out, expect some drama recommendations and favourites posts in the future!!! Even though I do not plan on ranking any of these dramas and movies, I still remember what I enjoyed (or hated) about them. ^_^