Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The battle of summer dramas 2008

There was a battle last night with 2 dramas starting at the same time. Next week, the competition will intensify with MBC joining the battle.

After a derth of interesting dramas in the 1st half of the year (only 'On Air' was of any interest), it seems the competition has started to heat up recently and will continue in the next few months to come until the end of the year.

'Gourmet'
SBS: Mon/Tue, 17/06
Kim Rae Won, Nam Sang Mi, Kwon Oh Joo, Kim So Yeon
thread on soompi
SBS official site
trailer


This is probably one of the most anticipated drama for now, if only because of the storyline and theme- food. The movie version, 'Le Grand Chef' did very well in the box office. The drama version should have more opportunities for character development and a chance to look at the Korean gourmet. I know I was salivating when I watched the movie. hehe!

           

Of course, many people will also be looking out for Kim Rae Won, as he hasn't done anything since 'Which Star are you from?' in 2006. This young man has come a long way since his 'Plum Blossoms' days. ^^ Wonder if he's still as shy since the last time I met him in Singapore.....

But besides Kim Rae Won, I am also looking forward to Kim So Yeon. Remember when I was blogging about 'All About Eve'? Kim So Yeon was so good at her character that I could not bring myself to hate her, and I think alot of people felt the same way too. I've not seen her drama for a long time and I'm really looking forward to it.

'Strongest Chil Woo'
KBS 2: Mon/Tue, 17/06
Eric Mun Jung Hyuk, Goo Hye Sun, Yoo Ah In, Kim Byul
thread on soompi
KBS official site
trailer


This is Eric's 1st saegeuk or period drama. As I was telling someone the other day, it's kind of difficult to imagine him in such dramas as I kept thinking of him as a rapper in Shinhwa. Still...his acting skills have been pretty good so far. I'm sure there will be much comparisons between 'Iljimae' (starring Lee Jun Ki and doing very well currently) and 'Hong Gil Dong'. All 3 dramas have this robin hood theme. Actually, quite a few have already called Eric Korea's version of Zorro. And he does look like one, doesn't he?


Goo Hye Sun is completely new to me but if you are a Singaporean (particularly if you belong to the more matured crowd), then you may recognise her. She was in the daily drama, 'Pure 19' and is now capturing the interest of all my friends' mothers as it is airing on Channel U currently. ^^

Another note of interest, remember the strong, goofy man in 'Coffee Prince Shop No 1'? Well, he's in this drama too. hmmm..... interesting....

'When It's at Night'
MBC: Mon/Tue, 23/06
Kim Soon Ah, Lee Dong Gun, Kim Jung Hwa, Lee Joo Hyun
thread on soompi
MBC official site
trailer


This is probably the one only drama amongst the 3 where the female lead is much more anticipated than the male lead....not that I dislike Lee Dong Gun. BUT, I think alot of people are waiting eagerly for the return of Kim Soon Ah to the small screen after the success of 'My Name is Kim Sam Soon' in 2005. Would she still be as funny?

Btw, the pose does look ala Mr and Mrs Smith, doesn't it? hehe! It was pointed out by quite a few people on soompi.

For Lee Dong Gun, this was a great effort on him as he had to commence shooting not long after the tragic murder of his brother in Australia.

And the setting is rather unusual too. Kim Soon Ah is a sexy government official, tasked with the job of recovering national treasures and Lee Dong Gun is the flirty professor, who has been appointed to help the team. I believe Kim Soon Ah will be able to deliver her brand of humour with no problem and it will be great to see Lee Dong Gun again in a comedy after his last few sad, serious, tragic roles.

'My Sweet Seoul'
KBS: Fri, 06/06
Choi Kang Hee, Lee Seon Gyeon, Ji Hyun Woo,
thread on soompi
SBS official site
trailer


This drama is not much talked about and I'm not even sure if many people know about it as it's airing on a Friday night...which is rather unusual. But because of Lee Seon Gyeon (aka The Voice), I've taken an interest in it. And if you don't know The Voice, then you've got to watch this...

The Voice

I'm not familiar with Choi Kang Hee but I noticed that she's can be considered as a veteran actress as her career started way back in 1996. Anyway, I like her looks in this drama.

As for Ji Hyun Woo, he has quite a lot of fans, young and not-so-young (though I would say most of them are probably young...hehe!). He stirred up quite a bit of interest in the drama 'Over the Rainbow' but I sitll think he was strange in 'Meri Daegu'.

Anyway, like many of the Korean dramas nowadays, this is also adapted from a book. It's about a single woman, seeking love. I guess a bit like 'Bridget Jones' Diary' + 'Sex in the City' + 'Dalja's Spring'. Perhaps because this theme has been explored quite a bit recently, hence there doesn't seemed to be much interest. Still... I like the feel of the preview/ trailer that I've watched.

At the moment, after last night's fight, 'Gourmet' is leading slightly (as I suspected) but it will become more interesting next Monday when 'When it's at night' joins in the war for ratings and viewership.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Fans and fan clubs

Fans are important to an artiste, without them, it would be difficult for an artiste to survive. So the artistes and the management are often very nice to the fans...even if at times, these fans can be a pain in the butt.

Side track: I just read that there's this fanatic fan who's been stalking Rain for 5 years but they don't really dare to do anything because afraid the whole thing will blow up.

If an artiste is really popular, fan clubs will be set up...often voluntarily by fans themselves, who will sacrifice time, energy and money to do so. In other words, the fans will 'work' for the artiste willingly...for free. I know, I know...silly right? Sigh... I can't comment much coz I'm one of those silly people too.

Anyway I guess one of the easiest and fastest way to form a fan club is via the internet. With all of us being globally connected via the internet now, nothing is easier than starting a fan club in cyberspace, where hardly any cost is involved. The only thing needed is time, energy and commitment. Fans from all over the world can join with just a click of on the keyboard. And don't look down on these informal fan clubs ok, their news, photos and video clips are often faster than the media and the official sites. I know many SG media check on the internet sites and keep in contact with fans to make sure they have the latest news.

Increasingly, many artistes not only set up their own management agency, but also their own official fan clubs. I guess they have more control this way.

Jang Dong Gun, Lee Byung Hyun, Rain (I must say I am impressed with Rain's website) and DBSK all have their own official fan clubs. Of course, there is often a charge for it. Think Rain's membership cost US$50 and you get a ticket to one his fan meeting in return...air ticket and accomodation not included hor.

Side track: Super Junior (consisting of 13 members, yes, 13 members!) is also split into sub groups, sometimes with the addition of new members in those sub groups. So you have Super-KRY, Super-M, Super-T, Super-Hmmm....maybe the management is thinking of doing the entire alphabet? As if it wasn't confusing enough trying to identify 13 guys...who to me, all look strangely alike. Anyway, it seems there was protest from some fans who insisted that the official fan club can only consist of the original 13 members....Hmmm...

Anyway, what led to this post? Because Joon's Family (Bae Yong Joon's fanclub in SG) just celebrated its 5th anniversary last Saturday.

BYJ has an an official website but no official fan club. Apparently he did have one, once upon a time but didn't like the way it turned out..so he decided..no more official fan club. Well, no matter, fans like us in various countries set up fan clubs for him voluntarily and willingly. And although we are not 'official', we are pretty much recognised by the agency.

And don't ask me what possessed me to help set up a fan club 5 years ago when I didn't even chase any fans in my younger days. My husband always thought I was having a early menopause. But truth be told, actually the journey has been rather interesting so far. I've also learnt alot and most of the time, it has been rather fun too.

BUT...it is time consuming...

So, it is perhaps time to slow down.

It is quite incredible that after 5 years...there were still over 80 people attending the gathering. I firmly believe that besides the common interest of BYJ amongst us, it is the friendship that we've formed over the years. Of course, it was a chance for many of us..who whould normally have to look after our family and career, to let our hair down as well. ^^

Our beautiful signage designed by Kelly

Quite grand right? Got all these nice glasses and waiters serving us.

Kelly stayed up till 5am to do this. Each ticket has a different picture. Cool right?

Every year, we have to source for door gifts. Thank goodness, every year..we always managed to get something and KTO has always been a strong supporter. ^^ The highlight? His autographed photo lah...

Over the years, we've 'developed' many photos for display at different times...in fact too many to keep, so they were up for grabs by the members.

Mini TWSSG display


More display


Who are they taking photos of? Could it be....?

Hehe! No lah, it wasn't BYJ but Lee An, our special guest for the gathering. Looks like he may have gained a few fans too.

Lee An's performance


He managed to get our ladies up and dancing. Not bad hor...


Jos suggested sparkling juice since it was our 5th anniversary. So you can't have bubbly without a good, old 'yum seng' right?


The cake is always a highlight of our gathering. Not sure if it's the picture on the cake that's a draw or the cake itself. But...the cake was very, very nice. Yummy.

All gone...almost...*burp*

Hehe! Only Jessica's teacher, could sing the BD song in Korean...


No, it's not a striptease dance...just part of the game.

Our mandatory group photo..but quite bad hor...Kelly's photo definitely better.

Someone emailed me afterwards to say that she hope that JF would be able to celebrate it's 10th, 15th and even 20th anniversary. I was like...let's not think too far. ^^

Happy Birthday Joon's Family