kooriyuki: There has got to be some real bad luck going on if anyone actually can relate to our female lead Bo-nui (Hwang Jung Eum). Lucky Romance has some really over-the-top superstitious beliefs in an otherwise common KDrama rom-com, with a geeeeeeeeenius male lead (whose childhood reminds me of The Plan Man) + a Candy female lead, a rich and famous second male lead and a likely bitchy second female lead. It’s the subtle differences (so far) that makes Show quirky, but I’m not sure if the quirkiness will last.
It took me awhile to figure out (before we were shown) that Bo-nui is also well-versed in programming languages, despite her numerous part-time jobs as a waitress or cleaner. I thought that’s really convenient so that eventually she can work with our male lead, Je Su-ho (Ryu Joon Yeol). I do appreciate that Bo-nui is not your usual Candy, and she really believes that she’s born with bad luck that caused the death of her parents and her sister into a vegetative state. She need not take on so many jobs if not for her boss vanishing without paying her salary, and for paying for her rent and sister’s hospital bills. It’s more realistic to her situation as a Candy, rather than the usual run-in-the-mill Cinderella-ish Candy.
Su-ho is the opposite of Bo-nui, logic vs superstitions. I’m thankful that Bo-nui is not stupid as other rom-coms would have their female leads to be, though must Su-ho really be a geeeeenius? He’s kind of like an Asperger here, not really good with human relations but thankfully he does have a good friend (seems like most male leads these days have a good friend who either runs a cafe or a restaurant). Ryu Joon Yeol has a cute chemistry with Hwang Jung Eum, which I think is essential to Show. Su-ho seems to be interested in Bo-nui (THE kiss!), and I can’t wait to see how they’re going to transform each other.
On to the second leads, I’m more interested in Gun-woo (Lee Soo Hyuk) than Seol-hee (Lee Chung Ah), because he’s adorable with the childhood crush on Bo-nui while she feels more of the stock bitchy second female lead than anything now. I’m already starting to feel bad for him because hey, that’s one long crush! However I think he should be told that no one’s gonna take childhood crushes seriously, epecially when he was like, not even in elementary school then? I think they’re new characters for the drama, and I have not read the webtoon before. I do wonder if Show was picked by tvN, will it stay closer to the original (a look at Cheese in the Trap says no).
I do hope that Show will stay quirky (or anywhere along that line), even if it means having Bo-nui do outlandish superstitious stuff (I thought it was heartbreaking for her to do the ritual as dictated by the fortune-teller for her sister). I don’t think dramaland need any more normal rom-com, but we do need those that don’t comply to conventions. Anything to do away with the bad luck! Go go Tiger Man!
sab: It took me some time to warm up to Lucky, cos I found ep1 rather tacky. Initially, I’d assumed it’s the cut and dried Candy-Cinderella-melts-stuck-up-chaebol narrative with Hwang Jung-eum acting her usual quirky self as Bo-nui. Bo-nui is at first glance, the very typical Candy who holds umpteenth part time jobs and yet has this (forced?) cheeriness over her poverty. And Ryu Joon-yeol plays the stuck up, low EQ-high IQ chaebol type of a flourishing gaming company. And predictably, these 2 polarized characters somehow manage to meet and fall in love in the middle ground that is Kdrama.
Turns out that Lucky isn’t run of the mill Candy-Chaebol story. Bo-nui turns out to be a computer genius herself — the first inkling we have to her talents is when her fren seeks her help to unblock the hack that Zeze’s 2 disgruntled employees place on the company’s (almost) launched game, Genius II. And later, we learn that Bo-nui weird dislike/ avoidance for anything related to Zeze Company may be linked to the day where she stayed late to find Su-ho’s bug in the preliminary interview and thus, miss the chance of rushing to hospital earlier to sign off the papers for her younger sis’ op.
Which makes the premise of “luck” vs. “misfortune” in Lucky rather interesting. How much of the “bad events” are caused by Bo-nui or are they unrelated? Taking her interview at Zeze as an example, you can “blame” Bo-nui for her refusal to give up cracking the bug that “caused” her younger sis to have a lower surviving chance cos of the delayed op. However, the person who came up with the ridiculously difficult test question should also be blamed — Su-ho.
Same for Bo-nui’s earlier misadventures that caused her to be ostracized in school. Juz cos she somehow missed getting hit by balls, or not falling sick, whereas her classmates bore the “brunt” of her near-misses, she is labeled as a walking-talking bad luck totem. Eventually, the childhood trauma of being isolated and blamed for misfortunes that are not her fault led Bo-nui to become neurotic over her so-called “evil influence”.
So much so that Bo-nui is unable to see good fortune standing right in front of her. And ironically, the streak of unacknowledged good luck she is experiencing stems from her earlier actions. She befriended a young, lonely Gun-woo, who returns 15 years later as her Black Knight (or swoony second male lead), and as for Su-ho, he recognises her talent in programming, and is literally begging her to sell him her new game idea (or if not, join Zeze). And what does Bo-nui do? Push away both men (or her good fortunesss)…unless they happen to be born in the year of the Tiger.
On the other end of the spectrum though, is the wholly logical, analytical Su-ho. Who, despite being anti-superstitious, hilariously keeps bumping (literally) into Bo-nui in what can only be considered as a string of “fated” events. Like how often CAN you meet the same person in a day/ week when you are at different locations and doing different things??
So yeah, I’m invested in how Lucky deals with the aspect of luck as a grant by some higher powers (aka Fate), or luck as the end-point in a series of decisions (aka Will).