Thursday, October 31, 2013

Taiwan trip

I am going to predominantly Taipei, Taiwan at the end of the month. Am conflicted if the weather merits a jacket or something thicker or just umbrella or with umbrella. Hopefully not hot. Anyway I read there are some places to buy some awesome Taiwan-only souvenirs which are affordable. If I do come across those stuff, I will be sure to buy some back to share with my fellow readers (not from Taiwan but is there ever any Taiwanese reading my blog?). Anyway still about 20 plus more days to go so I am jumping the gun. 

To those who received my momentoes from my past trips (here and here), I hope you are or have enjoyed the items you received! I am still obsessed with those maps I got from Beijing and Xian.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

[O] Breaking Bad [2013][TV][Others]

22.10.2013
Season 3 of Breaking Bad was super duper awesome bitch!! (Jesse talk). OMG, when Walter knocked down those 2 drug dealers, it was like fist pump in the air. And then of course he coerced Jesse into killing an innocent "cook", that was another piece of his humanity hacked off. But still, amazing Season 3!!


PREVIOUSLY POSTED ON 21.10.2013
I was looking at theCHIVE (NSFW!!)  and I saw the following:-



I had  a good laugh.




I am watching Breaking Bad now, thanks to the fact that it has completed it's run of 5 seasons and so I can just watch them as and when I want to. Problem is once I began I can't stop watching. It gets better and better. I am at Season 3 now and the show is interestingly getting even better than last season! It is very addictive and I love to see the "man up" of Walter White. Of course he is getting evil soon so I like that too.

Funny conversation.

 I was recommending Breaking Bad to someone I know who is a HUGE fan of Game of Thrones, the series. I explained the storyline and she said;

Meth? Nahhh I don't want to watch a series about drugs

I asked why not?

Because they're drugs, I just don't feel like watching such an abhorrent series about drug dealers and all

I said "But it doesn't glamorise drugs. In fact that Walter can earn so much but no where to spend the money and fears for his life and in the end losses everything. That's how the series will end"

Still about drugs, not right to watch.

So I said "So it is ok to watch paedophilia, rape, graphic sex scenes, nudity, murders, executions, child kidnappings, betrayals, traitors ... all that in Game of Thrones but not about meth?"

But Game of Thrones is about the iron throne!

And I was thinking, Breaking Bad is about Blue Crystal Throne. Sigh... skewered morality I suppose.

Believe me, Breaking Bad does not glamorise Meth or drugs. It in fact makes meth as a vehicle since it is a popular drug which has very very bad consequences (1 year and you will lose all your good looks, age 30 years and have scars and wounds like you were punched every single day of your life) as well as drug cartels and what nots. Rather realistic sort of depiction if you ask me. And quite funny too even in dire circumstances, especially with regards to an old man who can't speak who is in a wheelchair with a bell (ding! ding! ding!) as his indicator of yes or no.

Anyway I am obsessed with Breaking Bad. I in a way sympathise Walter White but I suppose after a while a man can only make up so many excuses that whatever criminal activities he is doing, he is doing for his family. He had enough chance to stop but he didn't. The actor, Bryan Cranston actually changed in the way he stares and all. Season 1 was all doe eyed innocence, Season 2 was fear but Season 3 onwards, his eyes became still, quite scary looking whenever he stopped, he relaxed and he stared. Quite a performance.

Anyway I know I am late on the bandwagon. Before I end this post, one more picture to share (also from theCHIVE;


Cute eh? OMG that's a freaking Great White Sharkkkkkkkkkkk!!!!!!!

Fish are friends, not food.

Friday, October 18, 2013

[O] Hanzawa Naoki [2013][TV][Jp]

This is a collection of various commentaries and opinions about this series under one post. If you see this at the top, this means it is updated. For more under this post, do click the Read More button. I welcome your comments and your thoughts as well so do use Post A Comment and do indicate which episode you're talking about. Since this is a threaded comment system, you can reply directly to any given comments you wish to reply to. When this is done, I will move this to Reviews Database.


 

MORE INFO
D-addicts wiki
 
DOWNLOAD
The torrent from D-addicts (848x480 x264 version) and the subtitles here (the Hanzawa Naoki Complete 480p.rar version).


HOW TO WATCH  
If by computer or laptop, place both the mp4 file together with the ass (subtitle) file in the same folder. Make sure the name is the same such as:-

Ep1.mp4 must be the same as Ep1.ass 

Since the downloads are complete with corresponding names for both video and subtitle files, all you need to do is to place them in same folder.

If by Ipad, directly place the video files into your Ipad. However Ipad could not recognise the subtitle files so to watch in Ipad, download the video player like Player Xtreme HD, then using your Ipad go to the app and then buy the full version. Then use itunes to place both video and subtitle files in same app or folder and make sure the names are the same. When in Player Xtreme HD, play the video file, go to the subtitle tab and switch on the subtitle tab and voila, now you can watch them all in Ipad! Definitely worth the money.

If by Nokia, same method as computer/laptop. But the subtitle file must first be saved as SRT file to be recognised. 

19.10.2013
UNTIL EPISODE 10 (FINAL)
OMG, the last showdown between Hanzawa and Owada was epic!! Totally so OTT in everything but epic as in EPIC. I love the scene where Hanzawa says to Owada "I will pay you back! Double payback.. no! Hundred times over!!" and Owada smiles his evil smile as he says "10 X 0 is 0, 100 X 0 it still.. ZERO". And the ending is sorta very real and totally sets up for the sequel which I now wait with abated breath. Give me the sequel, now!! And I mean NOW! What a series. What an ending! Let me gather my thoughts and hopefully will write a proper review.

14.10.2013
UNTIL EPISODE 9
OMG, one more episode to the end. I won't say much, I will leave it for my review but if there is one series you must watch, this is the one! Just pure satisfaction from watching it! That's all I will say for now! TVB? They won't be able to remake it without making it bloated. Sorry TVB, you just don't have it in you to make this thought provoking series.

10.10.2013
EPISODE 1 & 2
TVB officially bought the rights to this smash hit in Japan about the banking industry and since officially TVB bought it, it will only mean TVB means business. Reading Jaynestars news here, it seems TVB wants to cast an actor in the lead role of Hanzawa Naoki that epitomises coolness and if that is the case, that series is doomed to oblivion for comparison between original version and the remake. Why? Naoki isn't cool. He is acting cool. He is actually a man who knows his career will go belly up if he doesn't recover the $500 million for his bank and so he is also desperate. So cool can that be? Roger Kwok looks like the original actor and I bet, a much better actor because the Japanese counterparts tend to be very OTT in everything. Roger Kwok will display all that is needed and more in the titular role of Naoki. Unfortunately as TVB is always terrible in making casting decision, they will probably cast Chilam or Kevin Cheng, neither having that acting gravitas for such a multi layered character that is almost a super hero for ordinary folks.

As for the Japanese version, I am at episode 2 and I tell you, woahhhhhh... a good one. However the contents of the series would be better off for a 2 and a half hours movie rather than 10 episodes. But then TVB will most likely make it 30 episodes minimum so who am I to complain about the Japanese' ability for brevity? In 2 episodes the series basically established all the characters' background and motives and I tell you, brevity is indeed beautiful! The version I got is the lower quality version with very good fan sub in English, except for the subtitles' placement, everything was ok. I am enjoying the series thus far even if the acting is seriously OTT in the sense the characters are like holding it all in, about to burst. But I love how Naoki is stopped by his supervisors at every step of the way and how he fought back and how his colleagues quietly helped him. There are some often repeated scenes, like how his late father advised him that the relationship between people and people are the most important and not to be a robot, and I mean in 2 episodes that scene was repeated at least 5 times. But this series slowly peels away Naoki the man and his motive for working at the bank but first, whatever motive that may be, he will need to solve the more immediate problem; getting back the $500 million bad debt loaned to a company that went belly up not long later but the CEO is happily living in luxury and under the cloak of bankruptcy. And he must get the money before the Tax Dept with its crazy effeminate balls crushing boss gets it before him and he needs to get the money without any help from his own bank who places more importance in him preparing accounting reports for the next meeting rather than getting back the money.

If you're not watching this series, may I recommend that you do. But proviso; the acting is really very OTT. But the tight storyline, the brevity of it, the straight to the point and the lack of romantic love interest is what makes this series enjoyable. Japanese when making TV series will TV series like this; love story will be love story. Banking empire will be banking empire. Mystery is mystery. They don't mix and they don't match. You get whatever the genre is, no more and no less. And when they do it right, you get a classic in min 10 episodes, max 12 episodes plus 1 special, 2 movies and if they're a hit, 10 more episodes, 1 more special and another movie. The end.


Thursday, October 17, 2013

[Funn Stuff] New Samsung Galaxy

This one had me laughing so hard!!




Would you believe me if I tell you when I hold the Samsung Galaxy Note 3, I was so so so scared? Because it felt and looked so fragile. Extra stress, not my choice of phone. BUT the video features are awesome; subtitles, MP4 and AVI. Yeah!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

[O] Cheongdam-dong Alice [2013] : The versus of all versus in K-drama & review

This is a collection of various commentaries and opinions about this series under one post. If you see this at the top, this means it is updated. For more under this post, do click the Read More button. I welcome your comments and your thoughts as well so do use Post A Comment and do indicate which episode you're talking about. Since this is a threaded comment system, you can reply directly to any given comments you wish to reply to. When this is done, I will move this to Reviews Database.



 



UPDATES - 17.10.2013
Finally I reached episode 16, the final episode but not before I got so sick from hearing the word "sa-rang". Satisfying predictable ending with the guy accepting girl with her gold digging ambition and all. I have no versus for this last episode, it was the finals of all finalities, In the end Super Chaebol's son said to Poor Gold digger;




I love you because I need you and I need you because I love you... I can't differentiate between the two anymore .. all I know is I love the Han Sekyung who is standing before me...(Disclaimer : Not exact dialogue as in English subtitles but close to them enough.)

And one kiss with that K-drams requisite camera doing round and round and round and I realised Poor gold digger who was starting work that day as Intern Designer will quite her job that very day hence shortest intern designer career ever. After all being wife of only son of Royal Group's chairman is a full time job plus overtime.

What I do like though is Nervous Wreck's ending where she said to her husband;





You said I am not worth hundreds of millions of dollars.. well I thought about it and you are not worth hundreds of millions of dollars too. So .. I choose divorce. (Disclaimer : Not exact dialogue as in English subtitles but close to them enough.)

.. and she walked out coolly, see The Bitch and basically told The Bitch her choice and walked away triumphantly. There may be a hint of romance with Tommy Hong, the perpetual matchmaker of the gold diggers.

And what does Funn says? My very short review.







You go girl! And finally the series ended. FINALLY!!

I have had it with sa-rangs! I don't want anymore sa-rangs! I mean if love is as painful and as doubtful as this series shows it to be, I don't want love. I just want money. I am not as ambitious as Poor Gold digger. I just wanna be rich. Is that too much to ask for? I can't forever run after Super Chaebol's Only Son and pander to his e-ve-ry-sin-gle-need. I can't. I will lose my sanity.

On a serious note, performances wise, if it isn't for Park Shihoo I have given up on this series. I know I know of his scandals and all, but admittedly this man has some serious acting chops even if his acting required in this series is to be either super silly or super serious. Nothing in between. Moon Goonyeung is ok. I just am not quite convinced or maybe ever since she realised she loved him, she became morose, so sad, so sulky. So why do you love?! Others are either required to be super cool, super angry, super slick or super nervous.

Seriously the acting in here is not one note, they're one direction (not the boy band!). Sometimes it feels so boring but there are some moments, like in those versus moments that made this series so satisfying to watch. I do like the ending. I mean after all the tears and doubts the solution was so darn simple, why didn't she show him that notes she made earlier about loving the secretary before discovering he was super chaebol's only son? All those drama for nothing!! But then this wouldn't be K-dramas. By the way the fashion of the rich is just so silly. But every piece of suit worn by the male actors in here are precisely cut. I love the suits. I could marvel at the suits and jackets. But everything else seems like senses overload to me.

But honestly speaking, if you can get past the scandal and all, I say give this series a try. It is a 10 episodes series expanded to 16 episodes so do expect for looooooooooong moments in one particular area or pauses. Remember my Hanzawa Naoki post? If Hanzawa-san follows this series' format, he would have collected back the 20 billion yen debt by episode 10 and still our chaebol people can't get out of the misery of love, money and doubt, not for another 6 episodes. So it can be tiring, like how Triumph In The Skies II but no country can make such a slow moving snail paced love story of one singular couple as effectively as Korea. You will know the couple, you will cry with the, laugh with them or even throw things at the TV screaming OF COURSE YOUR SUPER CHAEBOL FATHER PAID FOR THAT BLOODY PAINTING YOU BLOODY IDIOT!! It is because it is immersive. K-drama does best when they can immerse you into their characters and follow the couple closely. Some k-drama fails when they tried to do more because there isn't more to say. K-drama is restrictive and works best in restrictive environment. And this series is an example of best restrictive storytelling which gives a satisfying end. So yeah, I recommend this.

THE END!

Now your turn. Have you watched this? What do you think of this? I will be moving this post to Reviews Database soon but you can continue to comment here for the next few days before I close the comments and you can continue your comments in Reviews Database.


Anyway got more posts after the jump. Quite classic scenes in terms of versus!


UPDATES - 16.10.2013
My god, some major craziness in the fashion front. The guys dressed like women, women dressed with that jacket forever on their shoulders but not fully worn, 4 inches heels, minimum and yet not so much attention paid to the hair! And how does Poor Gold digger could be at so many places so fast? Can she teleport or is Korea's trains so efficient? And in one morning, prior to work she went to so many places. Must be an early riser! Anyway some more versus for you. These are all from Episode 15, one ore to go before the end. This episode is all about confrontation and questions, more and more questions. You will start wondering why Super chaebol's son can have so much free time to be so anguish over sa-rang? Ahhhh because THIS IS K-DRAMA! Sa-rang is EVERYTHING! Tonight, at least one sa-rang per sentence! And I do understand his anguish; he wonders whether poor gold digger is sincere, whether she is now absolutely true to him. This kinda make super chaebol's son like those women tearing out flower petals and crying DOES HE LOVE ME? DOES HE LOVE ME NOT? but in English literature, maybe he is Heathcliff, the tortured soul banging his head on some tree? I don't know! All I know is this entire episode is snail paced, and for once I need to use a four letter word to describe my feelings... some major fuckery going on that I can't begin to understand. At least just 1 more episode but you know, still fun to watch in its sadistic snail paced way. I have decided; this series' 1 hour is my life's 1 hour. But I must say the dialogue even if sorta dramatic is real. I feel like Han Sekyung at times, tired of being poor, luck is never on my side and I am sure those super successful people thinks like Seung Joo, like you're poor because you didn't do enough. Anyway here are some major scenes worth recapping BUT I must say this time I embellished the dialogue a bit although in essence they are fairly accurate.

Disclaimer
Not exact dialogue as in English subtitles but close to them enough.


VS 



Poor goldigger: Seung Joo, everyone says you will die after knowing the truth.

Super chaebol's only son: What?

Poor goldigger: Your friend said so, your PA said so, your father said so.

Super chaebol's only son: What? I will die?

Poor goldigger: They think that knowing the truth about me will kill you.

Super chaebol's only son: WHAT? Wha... why... no, I won't die!

Poor goldigger: Of course you won't. Remember your promise? You will only die when I leave you.

I like this scene though. He was like why everyone thinks I will die and everyone does see him as some very fragile expensive vase. His reaction was funny. Her new strategy now is to be totally and absolutely honest and to let him see her face everyday, to feel her presence, to know the real her.


VS 

Super chaebol's only son: So who are you? Are you sincere or are you materialistic?

Poor goldigger: I can't differentiate any more. I can't decide which I am.

Super chaebol's only son: So... you want both?

Poor goldigger: Yes. I always thought I was useless. The Han Sekyung of the past was weak, she was of no use to anyone and to the world. But when I was with you, everyone told me to be good to you, to take care of you, to protect you.  I had a purpose. Suddenly was of some use to someone, and that is you. You once told me I was your home you can go back to.

She was practically begging without really begging and that man can't get out of his head on that one single question; when did her deception start? Feel like slapping him but I shall reserve all my hate for THAT BITCH.


VS 


Super chaebol dad : You will leave my son, end the relationship.

Poor goldigger: No I won't.

Super chaebol dad : What?!

Poor goldigger: Sir, everyone thinks he will die when he finds out the truth. He knows the truth and he is still alive. He hasn't left and run away like everything thinks he will. Sir, let him do what he wants to do his way. I know you have your own way of doing things, and you expect much from him, but he has his own way to meet your expectations.

Super chaebol dad : My expectations?

Poor goldigger: To one day be your successor of Royal Group.

Super chaebol dad : Like as if he will...

Poor goldigger: Sir, have you ever wondered why he joined Artemis? If he is as reckless to your expectations as you say he is, he would have continued to be a painter. This is what he loves to do and yet he joined Artemis where he can combine his love for art and... to prepare himself and to show you his worth as your successor.

Super chaebol dad : *Silence*

Poor goldigger: Sir, let him show you his worth, his way. And I love him. Let us deal with our issues ourselves. If we can't work things out, that is between us.


I like how she talks to his dad. Respectful and yet total honesty. She understands his son more than he understands his own son. And she understands him more than his son understands him, like the issue about who paid $30,000 euro for his painting? I know, she knows, everyone  knows except Super Chaebol's son. Sometimes he is really really dumb.


  VS  


The Bitch : I must admit, I am sorry to have to let you go, due to the state of things. I lost the multi million dollar contract, and you... you lost him. But then when I thought about it, I feel glad. I have given up on the multi million dollar contract and it was worth it because justice has been dispensed.

Poor goldigger: To you, you have given up on the contract. But to me, I haven't given up on Seung Joo and he hasn't walked away from me.

Go Poor Gold digger! I feel like slapping that smirk on that Bitch's face!


VS 


Poor goldigger: You do realise the sale of that painting was pure luck?

Super chaebol's only son: What are you saying?

Poor goldigger: Didn't you ever wonder why someone would pay so much for a painting by a total unknown? The sale of the painting did help you to where you are today. You were lucky.

Super chaebol's only son: Pure luck? You think I am where I am because of luck?

Poor goldigger: You have in born luck. Not like people like me, we don't have any luck at all. No matter how hard we work, how much effort we put into what we do, we can't change the state of things. We are still in that state of things because we don't have that sort of luck.

Super chaebol's only son: STOP TALKING LIKE A LOSER!! I didn't have anything too! I had to work hard to achieve what I have today. I had no money for food, I had no place to stay, I suffered too, it wasn't all luck!

Poor goldigger: So are you saying I am the way I am because ... I am stupid?

Super chaebol's only son: YES!

Harsh but admittedly true. Think like a winner. But later he saw her struggling to get into the train like all mere mortals. Poor girl... she needs her chauffeur and only he is rich enough to give her one.




Chaebol husband : I will give you one chance to redeem yourself. You will go to Cha Seungjoo and get back the multi-million dollar contract.

Nervous Wreck: What ?

Chaebol husband : Well, you did say this relationship is a business and you worked hard in this business with me. So now is your time to show your worth in this business. If you can get back the contract, you can continue to enjoy the benefits of this business. After all, do you really think you're worth that contract's worth? Do it and you are still in this all.

I get his hurt but the way he said those words to her, I feel what a jerk!

And finally ...

VS  

Super chaebol's only son:  Why is it so many people want to enter into CheongDam-Dong? What is so damn special about this place? For me... it is just a place I live in.

Funn Lim : Oh poor dear, even I get it WHY she wants to get into CheongDam-Dong but you don't. Is it because you're really stupid, really naive or really ignorant? Are you so naturally rich you don't understand us mere mortals? Was Poor Gold digger right when she said you have inborn luck and so you may struggle but you can't understand why you even had to struggle?

Sigh.. at least just 1 more episode when we shall have a happy ending. I feel the entire series is like one major philosophy thesis on "Sa-rang, K-drama and why we even bother to watch?". The answer lies in "sa-rang" itself. Sometimes we can't help to torture ourselves  because of the promises and we always hope for light at the end of the tunnel of absolute misery. Kinda like how I feel when watching K-drama.


UPDATES - 09.10.2013
Evelyn asked a rather good question which requires someone to understand how K-drama works;
how come poor gold digger can find super chaebol son so easily and make him fall in love with her??

You see, for someone who does not watch k-drama, you must understand a few things about k-drama and what makes k-drama a k-drama;

1. The love story is almost always singular, meaning unlike TVB with so many pairs and ending with none of the pair being the highlight, K-drama almost always concentrate on 1 pair at a time and you see them from day 1 until last day, from falling in love to out of love to marriage, etc. So you basically get to know the pair very very well;

2. K-dramas on paper always have such fantastical storyline that you will wonder, seriously? WTH? You sure can work ah? And when you watch from Episode 1, barring any really truly awesomely bad acting, it always works. It makes sense even if you wonder, don't these people work? Isn't he a designer? How come he is NOT designing but just play cupid? Why is a poor girl could afford so many different hand bags? How come she is wearing such high heels when she is a simple girl? Well take my advice, forget all that questions. Don't matter in the end.

3. They're always, ALWAYS about "sa-rang" which is one of a few words you must learn when you watch K-drama apart from oppa, unni, hyung, noona, abuji, omunyi. Sa-rang trumps them all because sa-rang is love. Remember that.

4. There is always a scene of pitiful crying, a scene of "OMG I COULDN'T BELIEVE THAT IS HAPPENING TO ME" ultimate ultra unbelievable shocked look, a bitch, a nice girl, a manipulative parent, understanding but "we are not compatible with the super chaebol" sort and some awesome kissing scenes.

So, now that you know the basics, you will understand the plot more.

Our hero, the super chaebol's son was a cynic in love because he was cheated of his love once and his father, who he himself got betrayed by his own wife taught his son never to trust a woman, again. Our heroine, poor gold digger was not always a gold digger. She was poor, but she was constientious in work and is a really really nice girl. Unfortunately being really really nice doesn't mean she will get accepted into the super rich society, even with her qualifications, she is judged by her fashion sense. Her first love, her boyfriend stole some bags from super chaebol's son's company called Artemis and our heroine went to see the chairman, who is really super chaebol's son but she doesn't know it and she thinks he is the secretary to the chairman. From a cynic, his heart melts when he finds himself seeing someone so pure, so naive, so true in all things sa-rang and he likes her, a lot. Because deep down our super chaebol's son wants nothing more than to love and be loved, those pure sort of love where his money doesn't matter but his person does. He sees that in this really really nice girl. However really really nice girl is frustrated with her station in life when she is rejected in work even when she has the qualification, simply because she does not have that chaebol pedigree, and she meets her old school frenemy who married into the chaebol family of GN Fashion. She asks the Nervous Wreck for advice who gave her her own special "how to dig gold" book and so our really really nice girl begins to plot to become the gold digger. She is like Alice, looking through a looking glass into the wonderful land beyond her reach and she is waiting for her white rabbit to lead her into that beautiful bountiful land called Cheongdam-dong and she is hoping her white rabbit will be the chairman of Artemis. Unbeknownst to her, super chaebol's son pretending to be some poor debt ridden secretary is actually that white rabbit! She found herself falling for this guy, but she wanted more and so she decided she needed to reject our hero. Our hero by that time is like this girly teenager so in love with her because she is what he is looking for in those pure sa-rang sort of girl is afraid if she knows the truth that he is Artemis chairman she may reject him; because in his eyes she is that sort of girl that doesn't care for money. When one day she finds out he is the chairman of Artemis but he doesn't know she knows it, she cries her heart out; because she realised from now on her every interaction with super chaebol's son will be something tinted with insincerity and she realised her old self, that really really nice girl is dead and she is now the poor gold digger (quite a nice scene really). But what she doesn't know yet is, although this secretary is really chairman of Artemis, he is actually the only son of Royal Group's chairman, the super chaebol and so that makes him the super chaebol's son. Wow! Right? But when she knew, she made up her mind. Whatever she does, however she acts, she will do it because she loves him. So what if she likes him for his money? So what she also gets to be the Madam of Royal Group one day and become from dirt like chicken to a bright phoenix? The primary thing is she loved him first as that poor debt ridden secretary. She wanted to tell him the truth but she realised she couldn't because that would hurt him. So she decided to keep quiet until she learned that when his heart was first broken by Nervous Wreck many years ago, he pretended nothing happened for 2 weeks and then went into hiding and let himself go for months. He is someone good at hiding, at pretending nothing is wrong, that he'd rather be fake happy than real miserable. So even if he abandons her, she decided she must make him face the truth and in the end accept her for who she is; gold digger, yes, but a gold digger who truly and deeply loves him and wants to make him her entire world. That whatever she does, she will do it not to preserve herself, but to ensure he is happy, and genuinely happy. 

I mean she will be the perfect gold digger isn't it? I mean anyone poor marrying into super rich will be viewed a gold digger anyway. But she will be different in the sense she really loves him. She doesn't care for that moniker anymore. She just wants him. Hence what she said to The Bitch in my very first Versus Recap below. And he must understand and accept there is no such thing as pure sa-rang where money is not an issue. Money here is a  bonus which means she wants both; man and money. I mean I admire her courage and she did become the perfect daughter in law that super chaebol really liked; she brought both estranged father and son together. So what if she likes to dig? This is gold well spent in  my humble opinion.

One very interesting scene much earlier where he didn't know she was a gold digger per se and she almost wanted to tell him the truth but after hearing what he said about seeing her as his "home" that he can go back to in comfort and assurance, she made him promise her that if she ever leaves him one day, he will die instantly. He promised and so she promised him that if he ever abandons her, she will not abandon him; she will run after him, she will look for him, she will let him see her everyday and she will always be by his side, whether he wants her to or not. I thought that was rather morbid but sweet.

Anyway that is why he loves her deeply. Because through her he finds his capacity to trust and love again and to accept love. For her, through him she finds security and comfort. However when the father, super chaebol dad found out that potential super chaebol's son might be cheated by not one but TWO gold diggers, super chaebol dad sighed and said "Poor guy...". True. Poor guy.

On paper this might look so impossible. But if you follow the series from episode 1, you will be convinced it is possible. That is the magic of k-drama; they make the impossible seems possible, that is if you can stand the first 2 episodes. If you can't get past 2 episodes, you really should move on to another k-drama until you find the right one.

One thing I really do love about K-drama is their depiction of a guy's love for a girl. It is that sort where the guy should and and the sensible hero WILL go for the girl who makes his eyes light up and smile everytime he sees her. The one series that epitomises this very thing is All About Eve where our super chaebol guy's eyes always light up whenever he sees the not that poor but super cute and really really sweet girl the heroine. If you're not a K-drama fan, and everyone will say start with Winter Sonata, I will beg to differ and advice you to go for:-

1. All About Eve
2. Hotelier

These 2 will make you love K-drama but the subtitles suck. If you can find fansub, go for fansub versions. If you have the stomach, then go for Winter Sonata and those tragic ones. I don't, so I will say go for ..

3. My Lovely Sam Soon 

And then if you're sick of modern day K-drama, go for the mother of all costume K-drama which for once has more than just about sa-rang and that is ...

4. Jewel In The Palace

If you survive all 73 episodes of it (or 72?), then you can move on to other notable quirky K-dramas like Oh My LadyDal Ja's Spring,  King2Hearts, Vampire Prosecutor (which I hate and couldn't stand 1 episode of it so I never finished), Iris (can't stand the acting and storyline) and anything with my Seunggi in it (which I never got to watch). As you can see I am still stuck in the old time K-dramas. I am really not that into the new ones really.

Now after you're SICK of K-dramas, trust me, go for the Variety Show and there is only one mother of all K-Variety show I will ever recommend and that is 2 Days 1 Night season 1. Remember, SEASON 1. You can download almost entire Season 1, from the appearance of Lee Seunggi to the last episode for the original gang, all with beautiful English subtitles. You won't find the earlier 25 episodes or so because without Seunggi, no one bothered at all and I believe about 3 episodes are missing in the middle. And what can you see in 2 Days 1 Night Season 1? Seunggi's underwear and watch in amazement at how he juggled his filming life, study life, singing life, social life and variety life. Believe me, your life will be consumed by this punishing, quirky, real, heart warming and ultimately funny travel-variety show. In fact you can skip the k-dramas and go for 2 Days 1 Night.

For fans of Joo Won (hero of Gaksital, another series I can't stand and also Good Doctor which I find painful to watch) you will want to catch him in Season 2 of 2 Days 1 Night. He is leaving the show by the way, very very sad day for me!! You will love him in this variety show. As a snippet of what you can see, you will see his very humble abode, his messy but surprisingly comfortable and humble room and quiz books on his bed where he is studying up quizzes because he might be asked quizzes in 2 Days 1 Night! I love him there and then. Fans of Cha Taehyun will see the bad luck streaks and of course his super duper cute children who are destined to be in entertainment industry. 



If you're not into K-variety show and wants to get into K-drama, like I said, always start with All About Eve. You can do no wrong with that. 

Any questions? Ask away! I am no K-drama expert but I have seen enough to know the way they present a story. I may not know every actor though. 

Anyway got more posts after the jump. Quite classic scenes in terms of versus!


UPDATES - 08.10.2013
I was watching Episode 14 of Cheongdam-dong Alice tonight and it was an entire episode of confrontations between everyone, as in versus. This is the mother of all versus in this K-drama and well, I enjoyed it. Each has its logic even if some I don't quite understand. I must recap this because the dialogue is ... well.. mother of all versus!

A summary. 

Poor golddigger decides to come clean so that Super chaebol's only son will no longer run away from reality and accept her for who she is, warts and all. Hence the following drama...By the way chaebol means this. I suppose you can imagine Faceshop owners.. rich right? Hyundai richer right? Samsung even richer I suppose? So imagine Super Chaebol dad is Samsung. Chaebol duo is Hyundai. Poor gold digger is nobody really. I suspect even if she is from Face Shop, The Bitch will still be butt hurt. 

Ok, here goes,  in chronological order as per the events in Episode 14.

Disclaimer
Not exact dialogue as in English subtitles but close to them enough.


VS 


Poor goldigger: I have lied...

Super chaebol's only son: Don't you say it. Don't you dare or I will kill you!

Poor goldigger: You should not be the one going to hell, I am, for the wrong I did to you. The burden is mine to carry, it shouldn't be yours. The guilt is mine, not yours.

Super chaebol's only son: You... have... ruined... everything!

Seriously, he was like a heart broken teenage girl. First time I think I have ever seen a girl doing the legwork looking for the guy and the guy running away like some girl who got her heart crushed. I kinda found that funny, in a way. But of course the hurt was real, she did plotted and all but seriously, not enough to deserve to go to hell... but of course what is K-drama is not for K-drama DRAMA style.


VS 


Super chaebol dad: You have agreed not to tell him! Why? Why did you tell him the truth?!

Poor goldigger: Because ... I don't want him to run away from reality anymore.

Super chaebol dad: YOU IMBECILE!! YOU WILL LOOK FOR HIM, YOU WILL BRING BACK MY SON TO ME!! DO YOU UNDERSTAND ME?!

Poor goldigger: Yes...


VS 


Super chaebol dad : The deal is over.

The chaebol duo:  What? But... why?

Super chaebol : You can ask your daughter for the reason, she will know why.

And the girl actually looked worried but then she should have know the consequence. Old man in Episode 13 already said to her to keep the scandal quiet, but she didn't do that. In case you are totally lost, a summary;

Chaebol duo, comprising of father and son wanted to marry off the daughter/sister, The Bitch to Super chaebol's only son but son never even talked more than 1 sentence with her. Moreover he was in love with Poor Golddigger. The Bitch got really butt hurt and revealed the secret meeting between Poor Golddigger and Certified Golddigger sister in law which was recorded where they kinda said something to that effect. She showed it to his dad who told her politely to keep it quiet for the sake of his son's very very very fragile heart (figuratively), if not he will call off some business partnership between the 2 family but she got so butt hurt, she decided to show it to Super chaebol's only son who acted as if nothing happened and in total and absolute denial. Daddy found out and hence this brief but satisfying scene. GO SUPER CHAEBOL DAD!!


VS 

Cheabol duo's wife/mom to The Nervous Wreck (daughter in law/wife of chaebol's son) : I should never have allowed filth like you to enter into my family! You have destroyed us! Not only have you caused the rift between father and son, now you want to destroy this family too! You ... you are .. filth!

Anyway the mother's reaction?

 

No no, not her saliva but rather classic Asian style reaction, throw water on face. Kinda pitied her since not really her fault.


VS 

Chaebol dad : You have lowered yourself to this level, how can you? How can you become so vile? To this level?

The Bitch : Am I suppose to sit by and let him insult me? You will deal with her (sister in law) but you will let that Han Sekyung (poor gold digger) go. What about me and the insult to me? Father, you just let it slide! You didn't even try to defend my honour by insisting on the (marital) union!


Chaebol dad : Of course I won't. Affecting the multi million dollar deal? You must know when you have lost! You lost to her! Pure and simple! You should have just let it go (concede defeat)!!

The Bitch is so butt hurt by the fact a nobody beaten her in the game of getting the richest guy on the planet to the altar despite the fact that the rich guy never even said to her anything, not even a date and in fact he would never have agreed to anything his father said anyway. Crazy woman and her father set her right!! Go Chaebol dad!




Chaebol husband : I should have known better.. no! I do know, deep down in my heart... you didn't marry me for my good looks did you? No you didn't. You married me for security. You married for comfort. You want someone to protect you, you want someone to leech on and that someone is me.

Nervous Wreck: What is next? Divorce?

Chaebol husband :I suppose so.


Nervous Wreck: But everything I did, I did it also for you.. to protect you..

Huh? Don't get it! Anyway I wonder, did she ever loved him? And dude, a woman who marries for security doesn't mean she doesn't love you. Like Poor Gold Digger, she does love Super Chaebol's son.




Total wordless silence between 2 women that is The Bitch and Nervous Wreck. I mean what else to say? Both women were silly and both got nothing in return except The Bitch is still rich but probably out of favour with her dad. She will survive, no worries. But still, what a bitch! And I like this scene because for once Nervous Wreck could look at The Bitch in the eye, on eye level, really hard as opposed to in the past where she is always averting, always scared, begging and at The Bitch's mercy.


VS


Poor gold digger : If you want me to get lost, I will. You want me to leave, I will. But I won't let you run away anymore. You must face the facts. You can't forever run away. Stop running.

Super chaebol's son : Whatever this may be, however I will become or what will happen next, there won't be Han Sekyung my in life anymore.

Poor gold digger : You have shown me your true self. Now let me show you my true self. If after what you have seen and you still insist to leave and abandon me, then fine, I will concede that much.

Yeah! Show him! .. Errr what exactly? Never mind! Show us all!! 2 more episodes to a predictably happy ending. Anyway this guy.. he's so girly I tell you. This is like reversal of gender! He is like "You hurt my feelings, wahhh wahhhh wahhh, don't touch me" and she's like "Please listen... blah blah blah". The girl has a point though, whatever her point is.

Sigh! Every time I look at the lead actor I feel what a total waste. His career is most certainly sorta kinda almost perhaps maybe probably most likely over but that man can certainly act. Some scenes rather masterful as well. He made his character likable when in paper I am sure the man is such a wuss. His fans will disagree on the "sorta kinda almost perhaps maybe probably most likely over" part, perhaps. Maybe he will resurface 5 years later but what a total waste of talent. That's why never ever do one night stands. Whether he did it or not I do not know and I don't know enough to form an opinion but I can certainly say he can act. But I won't rush off to watch his other series because the likelihood of what he was accused of may be quite likely and I have no wish to support such a man. But until I am certain, I am quite happy I can still at least enjoy his performance in this tortoise-paced series.

By the way are you his fan? What is your conclusion? Still support him?


PREVIOUSLY POSTED ON 08.10.2013


  VS 

I was watching Cheongdam-dong Alice and there was this scene where this super rich girl facing a poor girl who snagged the super duper chaebol rich man's son, as in 10th richest man, IN THE WORLD sort of rich and this super rich girl was not happy she lost out to a nobody and so she insulted the poor girl and called her a gold digger.

Fair. She did approach the rich man's son, the only heir of an aptly named Royal Group for the purpose of marrying into money. But then she said something which made me go, yeah lor!

Basically poor girl turned gold digger (henceforth Poor gold digger) said;

Gold digger? My kind? Just because I am poor and marrying into money I am called a gold digger and your kind? A business deal? A merger of 2 families? But you're after his money too. You yourself said you see marriage as a business deal, you are marrying him for his money. You are a gold digger too.  To you he is nothing more than business. But to me... he is my whole world. That is the difference between you and me

And of course rich girl (henceforth The Bitch) took the high road and sarcastically replied;

The difference between you and me is that when this is all over, I am still rich and you.. you will be reduced to nothing, like how you were

Woahhhh... bitch fight!! Yeah!!  Both have a point but poor girl said it right; how come poor marrying rich is gold digger but rich marrying super rich is a business merger? Aren't both gold diggers? The joke is the poor gold digger is madly in love with that rich man's son who he himself is also rich and successful as well. But of course in Korea there is a difference between rich AND chaebol rich. Chaebol rich comes with "I am so better than you" sort of attitude, like royalty, at least that's what TV is telling us.

I wouldn't want to marry into chaebol rich, or else I will end up like the poor girl's school frenemie who married the chaebol rich and ended up being looked down by mother in law, sister in law, acting like a maid, can't have a temper or personality and worse of all, when things go wrong, she is perpetually scared shit. Serious! And even chaebol rich (in this case the GN Fashion group) is not as rich as the super chaebol rich (in this case Royal Group).

K-dramas is beginning to sound a lot like Hindi films except Hindi films is never about 2 super rich and 1 poor girl but rather 1 rich girl, 1 poor guy and a scary super rich father who probably screams "GET OUT!" in English, a lot. Or nowadays money or social divide is never an issue, just plain old love.

By the way friends in Korea if there's any, I thought Gangnam is the rich place? Or is Gangnam the shopping place and Cheongdam-dong the rich man's living place?

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

[O] Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China [Book][Jung Chang, Author]


I am currently reading this book, Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China by Jung Chang. Just released and I bought it to read an alternate perspective of this ... dastardly woman. The jacket of the book says;

Her original first name was considered too inconsequential to enter in the court registry, yet she became the most powerful woman in 19th-century China. Born in 1835 to a prominent Manchu family, Cixi was chosen in 1852 by the young Chinese Emperor Xianfeng as one of his concubines. Literate, politically aware, and graceful rather than beautiful, Cixi was not Xianfeng's favorite, but she delivered his firstborn son in 1856. When the emperor died in 1861, he bequeathed his title to this son, with regents to oversee his reign. Cixi did not trust these men to competently rule China, so she conspired with Empress Zhen, her close friend and the deceased emperor's first wife, to orchestrate a coup. Memoirist Chang (Wild Swans) melds her deep knowledge of Chinese history with deft storytelling to unravel the empress dowager's behind-the-throne efforts to "Make China Strong" by developing international trade, building railroads and utilities, expanding education, and constructing a modern military. Cixi's actions and methods were at times controversial, and in 1898 she thwarted an assassination attempt sanctioned by Emperor Guangxu, her adopted son. Cixi's power only increased after this, and she finally exacted revenge on Guangxu just before her death in 1908

Two chapters in and I feel like I am reading a rather twisted love letter. Everything we know of this woman is negative. Evidence is in her actions, decisions and unintended monuments. However the decline of Qing Dynasty is not her fault; the demise of that dynasty is also not her fault. Her fault was doing nothing to slow it and doing everything to hasten it. But this book seeks to change that perception, as it writes by way of newly released documents, decrees, etc. No doubt every ruler/leader starts by being earnest but as they all say, power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely. I skipped to the last chapter or so and I was shocked by the brazen announcement; that Puyi ran to the Japanese and established Manchuquo because he couldn't stand how her body was treated by the rebels. I thought that was rather simplistic and white washing. So I turned back to the first chapter and began reading earnestly. I do not dispute her intelligence, her keen eye for things but when I read how she had a great friendly relationship with Empress Zhen, I felt that can't be. No one can ever be that friendly earnestly with her rival in love. And then the book launched into an attack of her husband Emperor Xianfeng, blaming him for the start, loss and everything of the Opium Wars I felt that wasn't right. Was he supposed to pander to the westerners' demands for more ports to sell OPIUM to the Chinese people? And when the author suggested that Cixi actually had opinions on governance but was shut out by the Emperor, it was almost as if declaring as a justification how she would be able to do a better job. What a nonsensical tosh if you ask me. I feel the book is looking at state of things of the past with a modern eye and that is not accurate.

Since I bought the book I shall read it with an open mind. After all, histories are written by the victors and victors are rarely kind on their nemesis/losers. But the things I have read thus far is against everything I know about Cixi. So my conclusion, thus far is, every influential people would have done something bad, every despot something good, at least at some point of their rule/influence.

Anyway I am continuing my reading to see how the author forms a different opinion of one of the most maligned woman in Chinese history. And no, I don't think she launched modern China. When she died, she did take with her the old archaic dynastic China though.

By the way it does at times feel like I am reading TVB's The Confidant (here, here, here and here)!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Saturday, October 12, 2013

The IMAX 3D experience

I have never walked into an Imax theatre but decided to do it for Gravity after what I read. I paid RM29-00, excluding parking and petrol because there are only TWO IMAX theatres in KL/Selangor and one is in Sunway Pyramid which I read is the first and the other in 1Utama Shopping Complex (Old wing) which is newer. I walked into the theatre awed, and after watching Gravity I have decided for Hobbit 2 I will watch in IMAX. It was quite and experience and Gravity is such a movie for such an experience. I felt like I was in space. And it was a tense and fantastic movie too only if you watch in IMAX 3D. I mean the acting is so-so (too much heavy breathing) but the plot and the effects were outstanding. If you watched it in ordinary 2D or just 3D, I am sorry to say you will find the movie boring. But in IMAX 3D, everything is so clear, so big and with 3D dimension that is totally and absolutely awesome. It heightens the experience and believe me, Gravity is the movie to get that sort of experience. Don't waste it on Transformers and the likes, which will show how huge things are but only Gravity could show the huge DEPTH of matter. But for Hobbit 2, I like the idea of seeing the dragon Smaug in 3D and huge like that.

Was RM28-00 (minus RM1-00 for online booking) expensive for a movie? Yes. But then, you must at least watch one movie in IMAX 3D and so for me RM28-00 plus tol plus petrol plus fear of getting lost plus am totally lost when in 1Utama and etc is money well spent.

P/S Since my movie was 1st of the day, the theatre only switched on the air-conditioner when I walked in which was hot. But halfway through I appreciate the not too cold environment. The seats are comfy but hot and sorta itchy because the material used. Popcorn was ok. I wish IMAX is with GSC, at least better popcorn. I also prefer leather seat rather than those fabric seat.And the whole TGV settings is so darn dark BUT at least got seats by the side when you're waiting for your hall to open. I like it. Far but clean and new-ish. But I won't go there for any movie. Just for IMAX 3D.

And I am beginning to sound like an infomercial. 


Thursday, October 10, 2013

OMG to some upcoming new stuff on TV

OMG!! OMG!! OMG!!!

The Patriot Yue Fei is finally here, in HD! Yeah! 

Wayne Lai and Moses Chan's new comedy about lawyers will be coming soon! Yeah! Maybe I will do an episodic thoughts or maybe I am too lazy.

I am downloading The Prince of Lan Ling and as I am downloading I am sorta going "Yeah right ha ha ha" at the idea of Feng Shaofeng as having a face so beautiful he had to wear a horrible mask when in battle (probably to mask the fact that being too beautiful no one will be scared of him). Funny how Ariel Lin is cast as his love interest and whilst I like Ariel, she is no beauty.

I am crying that Joo Won is leaving 2 Days 1 Night. Noooooo!!!!!!!

I may be watching a new K-drama starring Choi Ji Woo, I think. Or maybe not.

Am downloading Breaking Bad to watch, so far watched 2 episodes, quite interesting even if weird.

And am reading Percy Jackson's latest adventure, The House Of Hades and lamenting the fact that such  a book or books should be made into proper movies but the last one I saw, Sea of Monsters had me falling asleep!! A travesty of an adaptation of my favourite character, Percy Jackson so yeah, maybe I don't want them to touch my other favourite character, Nico.

I have also splurged a bit on movie watching where I will watch Gravity at some Imax 3D cinema where the ticket is double the normal ticket PLUS a few more Ringgit. Why? Because I read this is the only way to watch Gravity. Truth is I don't care for Gravity, I wanna see Imax 3D even if just once and reading how Gravity is the movie to see in such a format, I chose that movie. Me, alone. And at a cinema I'm not quite sure how to go also!!

By the way do you often watch movie alone? I used to have a companion but she is busy working on weekends now and frankly I don't think she likes to join me for movies anyway, and I don't have many friends and so I always end up watching alone which I am ok with. I even watched The Conjuring alone, scared the bejesus out of me. 

How about you? Do you watch movies alone?

Monday, October 7, 2013

The games I play & my gaming habits ...

Remember my post here?  Let me refresh your memory;

The Legend of Zelda : Twilight Princess and my Nintendo Wii
I am still playing Twilight Princess and am now at Goron mines
Well I like to talk more about my gaming habits and the games I play because that's what I have been doing these days on my Ipad. Basically this is my gaming habits;

Computer
Burger Shop 2

Nintendo Wii
Legend Of Zelda : Skyward Sword
Fishing game

Ipad
Everything else

If Ipad has Burger Shop 2 I will play it in Ipad. Love the controls. 

I have been spending quite a few on buying games from Itunes. All are worth the price of $0.99, $1.99, $2.99, $4.99 and the most expensive, $6.99 and that is for Infinity Blade II. Wow... the graphics I tell you, I got blown away. The game play though is like a slasher movie set in some fantasy land. Just slash at every level. I quite enjoyed that. I also enjoyed and still enjoying Fruit Ninja which I have it in my Nokia N8 but on Ipad... wow... lovely! I also play those parking games, puzzle stuff and a wonderful adventure RPG game called Lili which I just walk left, walk right, solve some problems which is my favourite. I want to have more of such games. Graphics again is drop dead gorgeous.

I am also playing Burger Shop 1 in Ipad (I in fact PAID for it despite having exact same copy in my computer) and also that addictive Candy Crush. I am stuck at Level 52 I think, that one level before another chocolate region is opened and right now I am more than stuck. I refuse to pay for level up though. I will break it at some point.

As for apps, this area I have wasted money on some good ones until I found an even better one. I bought 2 sleeping aids which is great, like creating my very own zen like environment. But I am looking for those post it stickies that can stick in Home Screen and then I found out I can't even have different background for different home screens! Come on Apple! Surely such a simple preference must be made available?! COME ON!! What Air Play lar, this lar that lar and yet can't even change wallpaper for different Home Screens!

Anyway, awesome!

As for my Wii, I have stopped Twilight Princess and went for Skyward Sword. Wow, the controls.. wow.. accurate!!

Of all the games I have ever played, I only managed to finish 3 as in played till completion.

One will be on my old Compaq computer playing Marco Polo journey through China, second will Burger Shop 1 and third is Burger Shop 2.

I think Candy Crush is on course to be my fourth unless can't make it that far without paying.

And thereby ends my writeup about gaming habits.

Friday, October 4, 2013

What's wrong with Miley Cyrus?

I know many are asking what's wrong with Miley Cyrus? Is she ill? Is she being advised, badly? Is she heading for a trainwreck?

Well, I will say nothing is wrong with her. She knows perfectly well what she is doing. She is not having some early life crisis. She is in fact creating one. She planned all this stuff and so she is perfectly well. So don't worry about Miley. Whatever you see her doing, she wanted to do it. Am I ok with it? Of course not. When you can't act or sing or dance or perform, what's the best way to promote yourself? Do it the Madonna way. Hopefully she will have sense to stop it sometime later and opt for the elegant route. Until then, oh I think she has more to do, like this vulgarity of a photoshoot. She is giving Rihanna a run for her money, except Miley did it worse because she is so much younger. Only 20 and is spent. I guess after that is just up up up.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

[Funn Stuff] I want! I want!

I read an article at Mail Online and I saw the following pictures and I went .. "I WANT! I WANT!". So gorgeous, like ... like.. jelly beans! What are they? See pictures first!





Click the jump link to know what these are!!




Wow! So gorgeous!!