Reasons to watch Swallow the Sun

I’ve only started watching Swallow the sun a few days ago, but I’ve found myself quite hooked. The reasons?

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(credit: SBS/Soompi)

The beginning: It all starts out flashy, showing us the nighttime scenery of Las Vegas and then to a wild car and helicopter chase in Africa. Wow! You just know they’ve brought out the big guns for this production, literaly and figuratively. But before you know it, you move back to the past, to see how all of this began. We get to see the starcrossed love between abalone diver Mi Yeon and the fugitive criminal Il Hwan. In my opinion, after seeing 11 episodes, the actors playing Mi Yeon and Il Hwan are some of the best on the show. The way they looked after IH was hauled back to the mainland was heartbreaking. It’s then that you know: Love was there.

Il HwanMi Yeon

Visuals: This show really handles the scenery well, making the most of every location, be it the Las Vegas nightlife, or South African wildlife. Action scenes are pretty well shot, with an awesome car chase in the Nevada desert. I also like the Cirque du Soleil scenes, it makes me want to buy tickets and go see it sometimes.

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Storyline: It’s a good Kdrama storyline with all the necessary ingredients. Sure, it may be a bit predictable at time and plot holes are bound to show up, but mostly the story is interesting and fast paced. It hasn’t been boring yet.

Jung Woo: The first time I saw Ji Sung in a drama was Save the Last Dance for me (which I saw only recently). I wasn’t blown away there, but here he is kinda awesome. Maybe he’s too nice for the part, but that is also part of the charm. His cuteness (especially around Soo Hyun) makes him more likable. And his coolness becomes apparent in his fighting and snipe shooter scenes. Whoa! I would like to see some more emotional scenes though, but I’m sure those will come when he finds out all the secrets. Nothing like an identity crisis to bring out all the tears and anger. Can’t wait!

STS F4 (as displayed in the first pic): Yeah, an overused term, but when I saw somebody use it on viikii it was sort of appropriate. The 4 mercs together are awesome and funny. Hopefully none of them will die…

Women: It’s nice to see a few ambitious and smart women. The main female lead, Soo Hyun, played by Sung Yu Ri is sweet, but no angel. She’s smart, has goals and I think she could even be plotting revenge in the future. She’s not dense about people’s intentions and knows fully well what she is doing. One can only admire that. And until now I haven’t seen any particularly clingy women in the show, which makes me happy. Even Mi Ran, whom I figured would be Tae Hyuk’s clingy ex, seems to be more business orientated than love orientated. In fact, the only clingy one I’ve seen so far is Tae Hyuk (played by Lee Wan) when it comes to Soo Hyun. Moreover, we see some women who are more in touch with their sexual sides, without coming off as total skanks (in my opinion that is).

Music: The music is nice and dramatic and fit the mood of the drama most of the time. I really like the instrumental songs. Even if the songs 운명 and 목수리 by TRAX + Air are a bit overused, I still play them on my Itunes. They’re quite catchy!

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Reasons to not watch the drama

Acting performances: While most are acting decently, some are not. For an example, I can’t say I really dig the part of Jang Min Ho. I don’t really feel his cruel and vicious part, even when he throws things around. Tae Hyuk feels kind of bland to me, while he started out sexy enough. And though I love Sung Yu Ri, her acting hasn’t made any lasting impression on me yet, but I still have good hopes. The scene in Hong Gil Dong where she finds out the truth about her parents was an awesome performance on her part, so I’m hoping she will show similar emotions here. For now, she’s nice playing a cutesy but ambitious woman, but not yet memorable. The worst acting comes from the western actors. I really cringed at some scenes, for example, those with SH’s fat boss Jenny. The way she reacted after SH told her off..OMG! Or the eye bulging scene where SH caught her brest friend in bed with a man. Stupidest thing ever.

The “English”: You know you’re in trouble when you can’t understand a word they’re saying when you are supposed to actually be able to understand them. Sung Yu Ri may have the excuse of having a short tongue, but it doesn’t make her English scenes less cringeworthy. Same goes for Jackson’s (Yoo Oh Sung) lines. It’s not just flat, it’s inaudible, laughable, unprofessional. It tells me Korean schools need to improve on their English classes. I remember how my school teacher tried to hammer in the proper pronounciation (the British pronounciation, not American) at my Dutch school. I should be grateful of the proper education I’ve been given, really.. Ok, off-topic.

Since we’re only half way into the story, I shouldn’t say too much. Hopefully the story keeps its fast pacing and weaves in some nice twists. I really wonder what will happen after the Africa arc.

The latest eps are subbed on http://viikii.net

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(credit: SBS/Soompi)

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