Drama Review – You Raise Me Up (Wavve, 2021)

I thought this would be a pure rom-com so I was actually surprised at the eventual message about social stigmas (no, it’s not about erectile dysfunction). Show is short and sweet at eight episodes, and we follow the changes Do Young-shik (Yoon Shi-yoon) went through to regain his self-confidence, after years of subconscious self-loathing and low self-esteem. The first few episodes were not in Lee Ru-da (Hani) the female lead’s favor, as she set out to help Young-shik not because she’s first and foremost an urologist but rather it was a childish bet between her and boyfriend, psychiatrist Do Ji-hyuk (Park Ki-woong). She did eventually change for the better (she was a lot more superficial in the beginning), perhaps because she felt guilty for being indirectly causing Young-shik’s pain and trauma. Even Ji-hyuk had character growth and I’m grateful for this being a short drama which meant there was no time wasted on the usual petty second lead.

The dialogue was quite cheeky throughout, with puns and meta peppered over the episodes. Underneath the jokes, there was sensitivity and emotional trauma which Yoon Shi-yoon portrayed pretty well. I felt particularly proud of Young-shik when he finally stood up for himself and spoke against the stigmas that were unfairly attached to him just because of his personal preferences that went against conventions. Young-shik actually rediscovered his old confident self with the help of Ru-da, as they revisit their shared past before the unexpected incident which caused their separation and also Young-shik’s sudden, unexplainable obsession with the color pink. I wouldn’t go into the problematic and questionable behaviors of our doctors here as this is not a medical drama.

I quite like this little gem, flaws and all. It was an easy watch and overall a thoughtful drama.

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