Why are really good dramas so underrated?

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sophliet
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Why are really good dramas so underrated?

Post by sophliet » Apr 9th, '11, 05:25

Some of my favorite dramas are so tragically underrated, that it is appalling. While other fluffier dramas are popular, these dramas with great storylines and amazing cast are unheard of. Makes me wonder what dramas I am missing.

The ones that I love are
Kdramas:

Que Sera Sera (my favorite)
Once Upon A time in Saeng Chori (how can this one not be popular *gasps*)
Capital Scandal

Under TWdramas, I really like - Easy Fortune, Happy Life
Once again this drama is not well know.

Please post dramas that you think are really spectacular but were underrated....
Thanks!

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Re: Why are really good dramas so underrated?

Post by Sakari » Apr 9th, '11, 07:02

sophliet wrote:Some of my favorite dramas are so tragically underrated, that it is appalling. While other fluffier dramas are popular, these dramas with great storylines and amazing cast are unheard of. Makes me wonder what dramas I am missing.
But how do you define "underrated"? That is, what makes you think Que Sera, Sera, say, is underrated? What should happen to make it look properly rated to you?

Do note that there is no universal, objective standard for what is a good drama. What you think is a great storyline may bore others. What is fluffy to you may be amazing to others.

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Post by sophliet » Apr 9th, '11, 07:09

Underrated to me means that it is hardly ever mentioned. and Que Sera Sera falls in that category. Most Kdrama fans haven't heard of it. Now you can argue with me on that point and say that you know lots of people who know of it. But I haven't noticed that so I'll stick to my point.

Well obviously many viewers are finding some fluffy dramas very entertaining: HENCE THEIR POPULARITY!
And I probably find these fluffy dramas quite entertaining myself.
The question was why aren't the previously mentioned dramas popular too considering they have equally interesting (or better) plots and casting.

Basically, I am trying to find good dramas that are not so well known. I have pretty much exhausted all the popular ones. So now I don't know what to watch. But once in a while I come across a gem of a drama which I have never even heard of.

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Post by Ethlenn » Apr 9th, '11, 08:38

Que Sera Sera was in my 10 first dramas ever watched, and I recommend it to everyone all the time.
The problem lies in viewers. Most follows the general trends, ratings etc., and doesn't read the synopsis. If the plot interests me, the drama doesn't have to be filled with A-listers. Plus, if I like certain actor/actress, I try to watch everything he/she's done. Simple. This way I came accross few nice dramas.
And underrated means what the word means: ratings below expected. Because of: not easy plot, lack of super-idol-stars, the same time slot as other, much hyped drama etc.
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Post by rambutan » Apr 9th, '11, 10:00

My Friend, the Legend. It has depth, a great story, excellent cast and execution. :)

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Post by Puppet Princess » Apr 9th, '11, 17:35

Actually, I thought Que Sera Sera was pretty popular when it aired. Everyone was talking about it and Eric is a major idol, though he's probably considered from the previous generation of idols because the man is no longer 23. The fact is... it's been 4 years. A lot more dramas have come out. I even notice people mentioning Full House and Winter Sonata a lot less these days. While these dramas may not get their rating for the actual content of the drama, they get most of their credit as infamous dramas that lured in international markets. Once upon a time you could not go in any thread without seeing everyone rave about how these were the best two dramas ever made.

On top of that Que Sera Sera had a very heavy and eccentric plot. Most people watch dramas to feel good. Dramatic dramas that make you cry are less popular these days... hence why Korea has dramatically shifted away from the depressing cancer story dramas.

Then of course you have to keep in mind the largest demographic in online drama watchers are teenage girls between the ages of 13 and 25. What do you think fangirls like to watch and talk about?

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Post by Archaenon » Apr 9th, '11, 17:43

Once Upon A time in Saeng Chori

I agree, I enjoyed every episode. I was so annoyed it was looked over compared to other shows that were getting attention.

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Post by sophliet » Apr 9th, '11, 19:08

Archaenon wrote:Once Upon A time in Saeng Chori

I agree, I enjoyed every episode. I was so annoyed it was looked over compared to other shows that were getting attention.

I went past it several times actually. If it wasn't for the handful of viewers who had given the drama rave reviews, I would have never watched it.
Sometimes the synopsis doesn't do the dramas too much justice either.

Que sera sera, IMO was a happy drama more or less. Yes, the male and female lead had trouble getting together (due to their destructive tendencies) but it was a pretty jolly ride. The funny thing is that I loved Eric and Lee Kyu Han equally! So whoever the girl ended up with, I would still be happy :)

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Post by Archaenon » Apr 9th, '11, 20:21

sophliet wrote:
Archaenon wrote:Once Upon A time in Saeng Chori

I agree, I enjoyed every episode. I was so annoyed it was looked over compared to other shows that were getting attention.

I went past it several times actually. If it wasn't for the handful of viewers who had given the drama rave reviews, I would have never watched it.
Sometimes the synopsis doesn't do the dramas too much justice either.

Que sera sera, IMO was a happy drama more or less. Yes, the male and female lead had trouble getting together (due to their destructive tendencies) but it was a pretty jolly ride. The funny thing is that I loved Eric and Lee Kyu Han equally! So whoever the girl ended up with, I would still be happy :)
Kang Nam-Gil is one of my all time favorite Korean actors, so I auto-watch everything he's in. I have a tendency to follow actors no matter the plot. I usually find a ton of good shows giving everything a whirl once.

As for QSS I loved it too, I also didn't mind who she ended it up with, but man did it make me not want to watch the ending, and I put the last two eps off for months before I buckled down and just watched them.

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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 9th, '11, 21:36

Like people have said before me, the masses go for what's popular, not what's good. If an idol is cast or it's a rom com or promoted well, people will go for it.
If money isn't put into promotion because the channels don't deem a show "crowd magnet" enough, people don't notice it and wouldn't get it even if they did.

I agree about Capital Scandal as well. It's has a very good plot, the look is awesome, the characters interesting and it's an all around fabulous korean series.
It even has a very good cast of talented actors. Problem is, there are no idols and also, not every actor/actress in there is a model and 100% plastic fantastic.

Same thing happens in many countries. Even the U.S. There are many little gems of series that got canceled or only managed to get a cult status and fans.
And every piece of crap that comes out, which is exactly like some other piece of crap, somehow becomes the most fashionable and trendy thing to watch.

It's common in entertainment. It happens with music, with movies, with series. In some of these media, to a larger degree than others, that's true though.

It's also about the "feel good" factor. And that is something I myself understand. People don't generally want to feel like crap and have tragic endings in series.
And Korean entertainment seems hell bent on making things either fluffy and shallow and stupid or serious, but too heavy and tragic. "Everyone dies" tragic.
Even worse, some series try to have both humor and "seriousness" in them so they end up with a crazy "starts off funny and then everyone dies" kind of plot.
When people invest in a show and characters emotionally for so many episodes and unless the show is downright depressing to begin with, this can annoy.

I think this gap between light and heavy should be smoothed over. "Happy end" romantic comedies should not all be shallow neither heavier things only tragic.
Even so, since it's the "what's popular" issue that is the biggest problem for ratings in Asia, correcting the gap in genres wouldn't fix much. I'm just wishing here.

And on to my suggestions then. On the Korean side, I'll keep saying That Fool is amazing. I don't know how popular it was, but it's really not like all the rest.
It's a good example of how you can have what I was talking about. A happy series that has some depth and isn't only targeted to teenage girls or ahjummas.

On the Japanese side, and although I don't know how popular it was, I'd say Zeni Geba. It was what a revenge/thriller series should be. Withough much "melo".
It's one dark, twisted and very interesting work, with a good cast and a really amazing performance by Matsuyama Kenichi, who is really giving it his all for this.

P.S: I really like Kang Nam Gil in every work I see him. I don't chase after his works, but when I see his name on the cast, I can't help but let a little "Oh! Nice!" out. :D

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Post by sophliet » Apr 10th, '11, 03:58

Orion - well said! its tragic but true. haha i wish there was a list which i could refer to 'Here we have all these awesome dramas that you probably have never heard of, go watch them' I have not watched That Fool or Zeni Gaba. So I will definitely hit them up. Thank you for your suggestions :)

Kang Nam Gil is indeed very good and his dramas do turn out to be quite spectacular.

BTW, has anyone watched Magic starring Kang Dong Won? This is another drama that I have never heard of but accidentally came across while looking him up. Is it any good?

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Post by Keiko1981 » Apr 10th, '11, 04:23

Puppet Princess wrote:Actually, I thought Que Sera Sera was pretty popular when it aired. Everyone was talking about it and Eric is a major idol, though he's probably considered from the previous generation of idols because the man is no longer 23. The fact is... it's been 4 years. A lot more dramas have come out. I even notice people mentioning Full House and Winter Sonata a lot less these days. While these dramas may not get their rating for the actual content of the drama, they get most of their credit as infamous dramas that lured in international markets. Once upon a time you could not go in any thread without seeing everyone rave about how these were the best two dramas ever made.

On top of that Que Sera Sera had a very heavy and eccentric plot. Most people watch dramas to feel good. Dramatic dramas that make you cry are less popular these days... hence why Korea has dramatically shifted away from the depressing cancer story dramas.

Then of course you have to keep in mind the largest demographic in online drama watchers are teenage girls between the ages of 13 and 25. What do you think fangirls like to watch and talk about?
The age could be one reason. But what I think of is that most people seem to watch the more recent dramas (current running ones) and forget about the older ones.
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Post by el_canuck » Apr 10th, '11, 04:28

"Harvest Villa" had everything in a Korean series, romance, comedy, murder/mystery but not from the big three networks, overlooked but wonderful. One of my favorites.
"That Fool" was great and so was "Star's Lover".
"My Name Kim Sam Soon
"Coffee Prince"
"Full House"
These three are considered classics and each one is a little different than the rest or were trend setters that the rest followed.
The latest future classic I believe is "Secret Garden"
I think people want romantic comedies to be feel good. They can read or watch the news for drama.
The Japanese are more on the serious side, I think.

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Post by sophliet » Apr 10th, '11, 04:34

el_canuck wrote:The Japanese are more on the serious side, I think.
Lol I think so too. I recently watched Bloody Monday (a Jdrama) and was truthfully shocked when they showed blood (and quite a lot of it too) on the drama. It is not like I haven't seen blood in movies (mostly Hollywood movies) but I don't believe I have seen it in asian dramas. But it was a great drama nonetheless. I think in Kdramas it is more implied than anything and even then you have comedy and a bit of romance involved (mind you, im not complaining though).

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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 10th, '11, 10:37

sophliet wrote:BTW, has anyone watched Magic starring Kang Dong Won? This is another drama that I have never heard of but accidentally came across while looking him up. Is it any good?
Look at my avatar/signature set. I'm the resident Kang Dong Won nut. Seen everything of his but two movies, one not yet released. So yes, I've watched it. :rofl:

Magic and The Devil slight spoilers ahead


It was very promising, the Zeni Geba way, but the same thing happened as it did in The Devil. It turned too sappy/melo. Which is why I think the japanese series are just better at such stories.
Kang Dong Won is awesome as a cold-hearted male hussy and gold-digger and I actually want to see him again in such a role because of this series, but the series itself could be much more.

They have to learn to leave cold/raw things that way and not go for the "he's a tortured soul" in such a shallow and melo way. And leave romance the heck out or don't make the characters so pathetic.
Both here and in The Devil, the main girl you respect, who has a brain suddenly turns into an idiot with a death wish who doesn't mind the fact that these guys are sociopaths and wants to "save them".
And just as you respected the guys for being such cold bastards, they grow a conscience. Because if someone has been a cold blooded all around bastard so long, they can change so instantly.

Sigh. I love you, korean dramas, but try and make at least one mystery/revenge/thriller series without "romance" and all the cliches. I expect such crap from melo and rom-coms, but not you, honestly.
I may be falling into the generalization trap here, I probably am, but the only 3 korean dramas of this kind I started to watch, turned out that way. Bad Guy, The Devil, Magic. Am I just unlucky here? Or right?

That said, "Magic" is quite a good series. It's got a nice cast, it's not boring and as long as you accept the fact that it has that soap-opera feel Korean melo can't seem to get over, you will enjoy the show.
Kang Nam Gil is also very good in it, because he actually plays an even bigger and more useless bastard than his son (Dong Won). I really like actors who can make you both love them and hate them.

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Post by Sakari » Apr 10th, '11, 11:05

Orion1986 wrote:Like people have said before me, the masses go for what's popular, not what's good.
I don't see that whatever the "masses" go for is not good. The Harry Potter books, say, are enormously popular. Does that mean they are not good?

In KDramas, The Sandglass is one of the ratings leaders of all time. Does that mean it's a bad drama? I don't think so.

Whether it's Korean TV ratings or buzz on Internet forums, they seem to have little to do with what I myself regard as good dramas, that is, which dramas I like. I have liked Winter Sonata and What Happened in Bali and Hello, God, say. This year, I have enjoyed Sign. Then again, I didn't particularly like More Beautiful than a Flower or La Dolce Vita or Secret Garden.

I mean, I have given up on expecting other people to agree with me on "good" dramas...

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Post by el_canuck » Apr 10th, '11, 11:19

Instead of calling one countries drama crap, take it for what it is. If you want one type watch Japanese, if you like lighter watch Korean. They both are good, be happy you have a choice. If you want garbage, watch American. There they just cancel it right in the middle or leave you hanging till they return in the Fall (if you are lucky). The choice is yours.

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Post by Ethlenn » Apr 10th, '11, 11:23

I think this thread is pointless.
Each individual has a different taste for dramas. Why is it so important to have others thinking the same way?
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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 10th, '11, 11:31

You misunderstood what I was trying to say. I meant the masses go for what is definitely popular and well promoted, but not necessarily good. Coffee Prince is a lovely series and it was popular too.
What I meant was that the biggest audience of such popular and trendy shows are teenage girls. And they're not the best judges for quality. If the idol or actor they have a crush on is in it, they like it.

Personal preference plays a big role in deciding what you like, but not in judging the overall quality of the show as given by its makers. How much and how good work they put into the story and everything.
There are shows I may not have personally liked, but I think are of high quality and very well done. For fangirls, anything that has fanservice and hot men is a masterpiece. They don't differentiate as much.

So, what I meant was, you can't decide if a show is well made, with care and real talent put into it depending on the ratings and popularity. Because trendy-loving audiences don't really judge the works they watch.

Also, el_canuck, with all due respect, I think you have made a general conclusion about my own personal tastes from a single comment I made. I haven't watched japanese dramas in about 2 years because I prefer Korean ones.
I just said that, based on my tastes and what I've seen, I think in the thriller/revenge story department, japanese series seem to be more on the money than the korean equivalents. And I DID say that's just what I got from three shows.

And I have every right to call a show crap, if I don't like it. It's not my fault someone might assume I am stating it as if it's God's real truth and will. We're expressing our own ideas and opinions here. Not practicing evangelism. :D
Either we agree on the fact that what we say are our own personal views (as it's logical since we can always only say our "truths"), or add "imho/I personally think that/my view is that" in every sentence. I ain't doing that. Sowwy. :-)

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Post by Puppet Princess » Apr 10th, '11, 18:13

These days I am usually turned off by shows with excessive popularity. Even if the raving is deserved. Perhaps this is because over the years I have learned not to trust the opinions of others to match with mine. The majority of drama discussions will be about how great the show is without much explanation as to why. There are very few people I will listen to when they tell me I need to watch a show because it's awesome. And that's because these people know me well enough to know what I will think of things... most of the time. For the most part I decide for myself what I will watch based on synopsis, plot, trailers, and even just checking out episode one. If after the first episode I have the urge to keep watching then it's probably good enough for me. Plus... I have the free will to stop watching a drama at any point I want if I no longer like it.

Now, that said... it doesn't mean I only like well written, acted, and produced dramas. I like different shows for different reasons. I like some shows for the amazing unique or superbly realistic plot. I like others for the amazing performances by the actors. I like some for just making me laugh or feel good. I've liked shows I thought I would hate and hated shows I thought were exactly the sort of thing I love.

For example... three of my favorite dramas...
What Happened in Bali - One of the first Kdramas I ever watched. I liked it so much for two reasons. The ending was so shocking, unexpected, and memorable. And I watched it while I was in bed sick. So even though it was sooooo slow, dramatic, and boring, my concept of passing time made it less of an issue and it made me forget I felt like crap.

Someday - Again, not a very fast paced drama. However, I loved it because of the lack of cliched characters. Everyone was mature and adult about the relationships. It didn't have those evil manipulative characters. It was realistic. In real life people don't use trickery to make people stay with them even when they do not love them... which is a common plot line in most other Kdramas.

Smiling Pasta
- I will be the first person to say that this is probably one of the worst dramas ever produced. It's a TW-idol drama staring 99% singers complete with very bad acting, a ridiculously bad predictable plot, and really cheap production. Despite all that, I love it. It's just very cute and upbeat. I've seen it several times because it's one of the dramas I watch when I am feeling down. Sometimes I even just watch a few random episodes to cheer myself up. I know it's a bad show, but I personally just find it really hard not to smile and feel all warm and fuzzy while watching it.

So I suppose what my point is... I don't think it's an effective use of time wondering why a certain show you like is ignored or if the show everyone is talking about is really as good as they say. Different people have different tastes... the same person can have varying tastes. Instead of asking other people what they think, just check it out yourself. Worst thing that can happen is you don't like it and stop watching.

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Post by sophliet » Apr 10th, '11, 18:25

el_canuck wrote:Instead of calling one countries drama crap, take it for what it is. If you want one type watch Japanese, if you like lighter watch Korean. They both are good, be happy you have a choice. If you want garbage, watch American. There they just cancel it right in the middle or leave you hanging till they return in the Fall (if you are lucky). The choice is yours.
I think there was a comparison done on what is portrayed in either kind of dramas. For example, say Kdramas deal better with romance while Jdramas touch more on the serious side of things. And that is entirely true. Both are equally good in their own way. And people watch both with different expectations. And yes Hollywood does tend to cancel their shows when they notice fewer ratings. However, it is also true that they air more episodes in general. While Asian shows generally tend to go for an average of 20 eps, you can have upto 8 seasons for popular American shows. I suppose if you look at it that way, it is somewhat justified. One of my favorite shows called Firefly was cancelled. That was pretty frustrating.

Ethlenn wrote:I think this thread is pointless.
Each individual has a different taste for dramas. Why is it so important to have others thinking the same way?
Now regarding how this thread is pointless. The purpose of this thread was for me to discover dramas that perhaps other people came across and really liked. But said dramas don't have much of a fan base. Hence, its a) hard to find them or b) when found, hard to tell whether its a good dramas or not because you've never even heard of it. And lastly this thread allowed me to perhaps vent a little bit too because my beloved dramas deserve a little bit more. I do realize the reasons behind the system and I know that these dramas will probably remain this way. All I can do is promote them myself :)

Orion - thank you for your detailed explanation of Magic. I did notice your Kang Don Won signature and was hoping you would answer my question. I am a huge fan myself. I think I really got hooked on him when I first watched him in 'A wolf's Temptation'. I had watched 1% of Anything before but after seeing him on AWT, I went and rewatched 1%

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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 10th, '11, 19:30

You're welcome, hon. ^ ^

And Firefly... *sigh* A sad day in American series' history indeed. I loved that series. The DVD set is sitting proudly over my TV.

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Post by el_canuck » Apr 10th, '11, 19:53

I agree that many of the Kdramas are judged on the good looks of the stars, but some also have good scripts and are very different as in "Bali". "Coffee Prince probably could not be shown in the USA because of gay undertones, so that show is different. In 2007 it did not win all the awards at MBC because "Legend" took top awards, but at the World TV Awards in Monte Carlo, 1st Shop of Coffee was the first Korean drama to EVER be nominated and is still a top streaming and down loaded drama. And Legend has almost been forgotten.

As for the girls who watch Kdramas, my WIFE would argue with you.
The wife watches more Japanese because they are shorter in length, right now I am watching Japanese getting ready for our trip to Japan in 2 weeks.

Goodbye Solo also a good and different drama.
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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 10th, '11, 20:04

We're talking main and largest demographic. For romantic (the most mass-drawing and popular) kdramas, the main audience in South Korea is teenage girls and housewives.

My mom watches kdramas and she's 58. I'm 24 and most of the ladies I know here are 25-40. But the popularity and ratings within the country don't come from us. And hype spreads.
If a show is popular with the crowds in Korea, it will become popular abroad as well. Because fangirls are more involved with the internet and more vocal about their likes. So, it spreads.

That's why it's tricky to go for a series if it is popular. Like with all things in life, one should have their own preferences and judge what they want and what they'd like for themselves.
What we're talking about in this thread, are well made dramas of good quality content and richness that did not hit the spotlight because they were not liked by those audiences.

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Post by el_canuck » Apr 10th, '11, 20:15

So What, Deal with it.

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Post by sophliet » Apr 10th, '11, 20:39

el_canuck wrote:Coffee Prince probably could not be shown in the USA because of gay undertones, so that show is different.
The wife watches more Japanese because they are shorter in length, right now I am watching Japanese getting ready for our trip to Japan in 2 weeks.
Hahaha, I think Coffee Prince would do quite nicely in the US. Gay overtones are abundant in their shows and movies.
Anyway hope you have a good time on your trip. Are you going on vacation or is it a humanitarian trip?
Orion1986 wrote:We're talking main and largest demographic. For romantic (the most mass-drawing and popular) kdramas, the main audience in South Korea is teenage girls and housewives.
That is a big factor indeed. The most noteworthy example would be the Kdrama You're Beautiful. I mean its good but to call it the best romantic Kdrama ever, isn't that a bit of a stretch? Haha I just know someone is going to bash me for this ;P
Regarding Firefly, I actually watched Serenity first which totally warped my idea of the series. For the longest time, I did not watch the series because Serenity by itself was quite confusing and seemed disjointed. When I finally watched Firefly (and so glad I did), boy did I find the best show ever! The movie takes on a whole new perspective when you watch it in the right order. That is, watch Firefly first and then watch Serenity to appease yourself with what could have been if the show hadn't been cancelled :cry:
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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 10th, '11, 20:49

You're Beautiful, Boys Over Flowers. A couple of dramas that are way overrated. And I personally liked the first one, since it had a tongue-in-cheek tone. Hated BOF. But neither is worth its hype.

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Post by sophliet » Apr 10th, '11, 20:58

BOF - *sigh* I know I sound shallow but I just could not get over Jan Di's haircut!
I thought Autumn Tale was slightly overrated. But I am slightly prejudiced in this since I don't like dramas where the main characters die.

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Post by Sakari » Apr 11th, '11, 06:11

sophliet wrote: Now regarding how this thread is pointless. The purpose of this thread was for me to discover dramas that perhaps other people came across and really liked. But said dramas don't have much of a fan base.
If that was your purpose, then perhaps you should have thought of another title. If you ask "Why are really good dramas so underrated?", you come across as someone who knows which dramas are really good and who knows which dramas are underrated. Those are pretty bold claims. Which is why I thought further explanation was needed.

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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 11th, '11, 12:27

I do agree on that one. You could rename it to "Good but underrated dramas" or "Suggest dramas that are good, but not so popular" or something like that. To save yourself the trouble. ;)

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Post by sophliet » Apr 11th, '11, 21:44

Sakari wrote:If that was your purpose, then perhaps you should have thought of another title. If you ask "Why are really good dramas so underrated?", you come across as someone who knows which dramas are really good and who knows which dramas are underrated. Those are pretty bold claims. Which is why I thought further explanation was needed.
These dramas are very good and the people who have watched it are quite appreciative of them. Since they do not have higher ratings, other people don't know about them. Some of my friends who recently got interested in dramas have hardly ever heard of them. So when I recommend it to them, they are astonished as to why these amazing dramas are so unknown. What you infer from my post is upto you.

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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 12th, '11, 08:54

The problem is that the internet is full of people ready to take offense from the tiniest thing not even directed at them.
So, when you say "these dramas are good" it makes you seem like you are a know-it-all, even if it's only your opinion.

It's just how the internet works and changing the title to something more general or open will save you the trouble of having to explain yourself to everyone who gets offended by you expressing your opinions.
Trust me, I know. Me and some other girls here are among the biggest "b*tches" in the Kdrama section, simply because we don't add "In my honest opinion" and "I think" and "It's just me", in every single sentence.
Since we think it's only reasonable those are our opinions and not God given truths. I'm not saying you should mind people who are offended. I rarely do and keep going anyway, but a title is easy to change.

It's a bit of tact that saves you lots of grief and doesn't require you changing your opinions or the way you write or what you say at all. Some people just use a title or a sentence to hang onto and whine.

I personally think this is a very interesting thread as there doesn't seem to be a thread for dramas that didn't do well in the ratings game. And I'm tired of seeing "BOF" and "Marry me, Marry" in EVERY suggestion for a good drama.
But changing the title only slightly to inviting people in telling you what dramas they think are good and underrated instead of sounding like you know which are and just want them to tell you why, based on your views, is easy.
It's like advertising. You have to find catchphrases and mottos that make people want to participate, that make them feel important and wanted. Make them feel you want their opinion and expression to be the No.1 thing in the post.

This concludes Ori's short-ish lesson in tact and b*tching. Please switch to side B. :P

I really should refrain from writing as soon as I've woken up. I write too much. XD

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Post by el_canuck » Apr 12th, '11, 10:53

Where have you been reading? In Drama Wiki, Marry Me Marry received ratings around 5%, that is about as low as you can go. The show was really bad and I believe the director quit half way through. Some just care about good looking stars and not the plots, but that happens everywhere.

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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 12th, '11, 11:12

Well, for Marry, I was referring to popularity on the net and especially because of the fanbase of the actors. The ratings were low, I know, but I see it mentioned everywhere.
And since we're all foreign fans here, I think sophliet doesn't only mean ratings within the country, but also popularity online. And Marry Me, Marry seems to "get around".
It's a series "people talk about" and many fans of the individual actors seemed to love, exactly because they didn't look at the series itself, but the cast and the fanservice.

Also, you're right, but it was actually the writer who hightailed out of there and I don't blame her. I only watched 2-3 episodes, but it did seem quite out of sorts. I imagine it got worse, for her to leave.

I don't know about the popularity or ratings of 1% of Anything, but that was also a fun drama. Nice usual rom com. But it looked too dated and frankly, the soundtrack was bad enough to bother.
However, Byun Hee Bong is always a pleasure to watch and he's real fun in this one. It also has some nice characters and although it gets boring sometimes, it's at least worth a look. For a rom-com.
As for Kang Dong Won in it, he wasn't that good at the time. And rom coms don't seem to be "his thing" after all. Some fanservice, but not much to admire talent and acting wise. Just a fair warning.
It's not anything special, but I'm only mentioning it because it's "old" and people tend to forget about older series a bit. Well, since popularity is also about "what's fashionable right now" and all.

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Post by Issy » Apr 12th, '11, 12:32

after watching Kdramas for over a year and a half, that's how i see it. as soon as a big name actor or actress is tagged with a particular drama, it automatically turn on fan-girls hype button and they rate it as highly popular and great drama.
so many times i read in so many threads even before the drama has started, that "how great this drama" would be and how it is " the best dram" the year. so naturally, when great shows that don't have big name actors/actress will suffer from low rating and attention when some times they deserve much more appreciations.

one of this dramas that I know suffered a big massive huge low rating when it was really one of hidden gems out there is Tamra The Island. I came across this drama by accident and when i was reading one of bloggers review. I watched it last year and since then it holds a top position in my favourite drama listing. not to mention that it made me forever fan of Lim (Im) Ju Hwan. I bought the DVDs and since then every time I feel low or depressed, all I have to do to make smile again is just to watch one or two eps of it.

even though it is based on Manhwa and story-lines are not complicated, characters, acting, scenery and music are so great that makes you love the drama. I still have to see someone who has seen it and did not like it. Of course, this is my honest opinions but I really can back them up with every review I read about it.
It's just because it does not have a very big name actor connected to it (which was done intentionally by the PD) and they did not do a well deserved PR or Posters unfortunately suffered low rating and it was cut to 16 eps when it was originally intended for 21 ep.
It bothers me so much when a good actor or a drama does not get the deserved credits rating and some other Idol drama does when they are equally as good or maybe even better.
:crazy:
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Post by Sakari » Apr 12th, '11, 13:04

Orion1986 wrote:Well, for Marry, I was referring to popularity on the net and especially because of the fanbase of the actors. The ratings were low, I know, but I see it mentioned everywhere.
See what I meant, earlier? You did not say you meant (low) popularity on the net when you said "underrated". So, somebody thought you meant (low) Korean TV ratings. Confusion, right?

This is why I wish people would say clearly what they mean by "underrated"/"overrated" and "good"/"bad". The latter, because, well, some people seem to be able to like dramas that they say are bad and to not like dramas that they say are good. Which I don't understand at all.

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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 12th, '11, 13:37

I guess "underrated" means "Did not get much attention or hype". Because for personal preferences, it's a whole other ballgame.
One can consider a drama good in quality, but not like it or find it lacking in some things, but somehow dig it. On a personal level.

But speaking clearly is not easy. Something that's clear to someone might be confusing to someone else. We can't predict what every other user will think of what we write.
Or mind every single sentence we write because someone somewhere might not get it. If something confuses you, ask the person "What do you mean by that?". Simple. :-)

Since sophliet made the thread, ask her. She can tell us clearly what she means by underrated and then we can all suggest shows depending on what she means.
We're different people of different cultures. We're bound to have confusion.No reason to get frustrated over it. If you don't get something I say or find it weird, ask me.

Issy-kins, it's sageuk, right? Is it like SKKS or too "sageuk-ey"? Lol. I mean, would I be bored or should I maybe check it out? And you know how I feel about tragedy. XD

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Post by Issy » Apr 12th, '11, 14:03

Ori, the setting and storyline is sageuk (ish) but at the same time you don't feel like you are actually watching a sageuk drama like you do with SKKS. it blends away smoothly and make you forget about it. 8)
ps. Tamra people are just so great and so funny to watch in there. every character big or small impressed me with their performance. and I am not talking about my first male lead :mrgreen:
I will not recommend any drama or movie. just read some about it and decide. :P
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Post by sophliet » Apr 13th, '11, 03:42

Orion1986 wrote:The problem is that the internet is full of people ready to take offense from the tiniest thing not even directed at them.
So, when you say "these dramas are good" it makes you seem like you are a know-it-all, even if it's only your opinion.
Orion, what you have said is indeed very true and I have seen this so many times on boards, its damn near frustrating. Let me tell you that I have edited some of my comments twice (even thrice) just here for this topic. I would read a comment and in the heat of the moment, write something to retaliate. But then I would revisit and change it so that it does not sound offensive (just so that I can put an end to an argument). It is probably always best to be diplomatic but the things people pick on sometimes are so insignificant.

When I mention underrated, I am not scouring the internet to see what kind of ratings a drama got, either here on the net or back in the country of origin. It is from my personal experience that many good dramas get overshadowed by other dramas, which are either equally good or in some cases not so deserving. In either case, when I as a viewer look for dramas on the internet, what I get is these over-hyped dramas. Some of my favorite dramas, I have found by accident. Hence, this post was for me to point out as to how some of these spectacular dramas are so unknown and perhaps give other viewers a chance to say the same and tell us about some of their favorite dramas that are also not very well known.

Issy, Thanks for the suggestion. I have not heard of Tamra the island and will look it up :)

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Post by TofuQueen » Apr 13th, '11, 04:21

No idea how it did in ratings or internet popularity, but one of my favorite K-dramas of all time is Evasive Inquiry Agency and I never see it talked about anywhere. :scratch: I can definitely understand that it wouldn't be everyone's thing..."quirky" might be putting it mildly...but I thought it was great.

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Post by Archaenon » Apr 13th, '11, 21:30

TofuQueen wrote:No idea how it did in ratings or internet popularity, but one of my favorite K-dramas of all time is Evasive Inquiry Agency and I never see it talked about anywhere. :scratch: I can definitely understand that it wouldn't be everyone's thing..."quirky" might be putting it mildly...but I thought it was great.
I love that show, no one cared about it while it was airing it seems.

On the Marry me Mary note, the show was plain awful, I don't understand how it lasted it's entire run.

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Post by sophliet » Apr 14th, '11, 03:09

Haha it took me a while to figure out that Marry Me Mary was the same drama as Mary Stayed out all Night. Anyway my confusion aside, i did feel like a lot of people recommended this drama on the boards when it came out but some of the blogs that I rely on for my Kdrama information gave it poor reviews, so I had put this one on the bottom of the list to watch. Not to mention, I am not a huge Jang Geun Suk. I would however have watched it for Kim Jae Wook's sake. But considering the mixed response, I think I'll skip this one (for now atleast). Such a waste of a good cast though.

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Post by Orion1986 » Apr 14th, '11, 03:38

I tried both this and Bad Guy for Kim Jae Wook. I wanted to see if his acting is progressing, since there is a spark of potential in the guy. Well, for a model-went-actor. But I couldn't handle it. Dropped both. XD

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Post by sophliet » Apr 15th, '11, 18:10

Oh I tried Bad Guy for Kim Jae Wook and Kim Nam Gil's sake! I loved Kim Nam Gil in Lovers but unfortunately this one I couldn't finish.

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Post by jubies33 » Sep 17th, '11, 01:18

i don't know if it would be underrated but I don't really notice anyone talking about queen of reversals. It is a bit longer so some might be hesitant to watch but it is a good mature drama with believable acting. It is one of my favorites. I agree on once upon a time in saengchori it was great but I never hear about it. Someone did mention that they couldn't find eng subs for it though. I watched it on dramafever so I had no trouble but for people in other countries if they can't find subs that may contribute to it being underwatched if not underrated.Another one for me(may not be everyones cup of tea) is call of the country. Kind of i love lucy-esque. The chemistry between all of the characters was great and ryu jin is such a lovable idiot.
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Post by haruma_obsessed » Sep 17th, '11, 02:47

I don't know about other people, but I understood what you meant by "underrated." It's not too hard to apply to "good, but seldom spoken of or given proper credit" both from ratings OR on the internet.

Anyway, if it comes to KDramas, I haven't watched any because they're too long for me. If anything, I'm going to watch some of Choi Siwon's dramas when I actually do get the time, but that's because I like that singer/actor. I'll watch everything from my biases, really, whether it be Super Junior for KDramas or Miura Haruma for JDramas.

The shows that my stepmom watches also influences me. ROOKIES was my first ever Asian drama and I loved it. Mr. Brain was another one from her. After ROOKIES, I then watched Bloody Monday because the guy on my manga slip was hot (Miura). I don't trust public opinion much because I tend to have different and specific tastes.

Many like feel-good or romance. I like action and comedy (like Binbo Danshi) and don't mind--and sometimes crave--dark themes, like in Smile. I can't really stand romance too much unless it's SATURATED in comedy, and I hate watching dramas with weak protagonists (like girls--or guys, but usually girls--who can't do anything for themselves). I usually don't watch "love-triangle" dramas, either. So that's sometimes why I don't watch mainstream dramas (like Hana Yori Dango), but at the same time, that's what gets shoved at me when I ask for something good.

If anything, I think it's just that everyone recommends the same things, but if you're willing to accept that, then that's fine. If people REALLY wanted to watch good but uncommon dramas, they'd persist. When I ask for good dramas, I also make it a point to emphasize that I will accept dramas that aren't quite popular, too, AS LONG AS THEY'RE GOOD.

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Post by el_canuck » Sep 17th, '11, 03:49

haruma,
You mean they are good according to YOU. that is not an easy task. You maybe are new to this, while many of us have been watching for a few years or more.

Try watching a drama with actors not singers out of KPOP or JPOP who are cute to lure in kids that care more about looks than acting.
JDrama has a lot of school drama which at least gives kids acting experience so that when they are in their twenties, they should be veterans and better actors.
KDramas will pair seasoned actors and or actresses with idols who do not know anything about acting, sometimes you get lucky, but many times the veteran actor cannot support or help the unseasoned idol.

Before you watch a drama, check it out at Drama Wiki and check out the actors also. Look what they took in college and if it says "Singer and Actor". Now maybe you are ready to watch a "good" drama.

Here are some of my unsung hero awards
1. The Man Who Can't Get Married (laughed my ass off)
2. Harvest Villa
3. Goodbye Solo
4. Stars Lover
5. Sea God

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Post by JaJe » Sep 17th, '11, 15:17

I actually don´t understand why so many are bashing over "Marry me, Mary". I watched it for the story, not for the cast. Actually Jang Geun Suk was the only one whose name was familiar (I wasn´t a fan, butI had seen "Baby and me" some months before). I really loved the plot. It was really confusing at times and I hated how everybody ALWAYS misunderstood things, but in the end I enjoyed it really much. It has something in it that makes it different from other korean dramas.

From Japanese dramas I found it quite interesting that "TROUBLEMAN" had low ratings. Ok, I know it isn´t a mainstream and it doesn´t have so famous cast (except Kato Shigeaki, Nukumizu Youichi and Osugi Ren), but it was amazing piece of art!

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Post by el_canuck » Sep 18th, '11, 00:48

It seems you like the bad stuff, in that case watch Paradise Ranch, another actress teamed with an "Idol Actor", pure garbage, but takes place on beautiful Jeju Island. The island is nice. The oonly thing nice about this drama. This drama came in under the radar, BECAUSE IT SUNK!!

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Post by haruma_obsessed » Sep 19th, '11, 04:54

el_canuck wrote:haruma,
You mean they are good according to YOU. that is not an easy task. You maybe are new to this, while many of us have been watching for a few years or more.

Try watching a drama with actors not singers out of KPOP or JPOP who are cute to lure in kids that care more about looks than acting.
JDrama has a lot of school drama which at least gives kids acting experience so that when they are in their twenties, they should be veterans and better actors.
KDramas will pair seasoned actors and or actresses with idols who do not know anything about acting, sometimes you get lucky, but many times the veteran actor cannot support or help the unseasoned idol.

Here are some of my unsung hero awards
1. The Man Who Can't Get Married (laughed my ass off)
2. Harvest Villa
3. Goodbye Solo
4. Stars Lover
5. Sea God
Thanks for the recommendations. When I have room on my hard drive and time, I'll check them out. However, remember that even from your side, biases come into play. You have no idea what sorts of dramas interest me, so I'll give you a heads up in case any of these fit the profile. I hate excessive romance. That's my biggest one. Like you said, these are good according to YOU, but I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and check on them anyway.

Also, I haven't actually seen any KDrama. They're too long for me in that I don't have that sort of time to watch them. Also, you're sort of talking a bit condescendingly, don't you think? I can tell good acting from bad acting for the most part. I mentioned Choi Siwon because I like him, so I'd like to check out his dramas first if I ever get into the KDrama scene. If he's not good in it and it affects the drama so drastically that I can't enjoy it, then I won't watch. Simple as that. I don't seek dramas from JPop boys, either.

I'm sure you didn't mean to be offensive, but I can't catch your tone via forum, so it just sounded that way to me. I know how to judge at least on a basic level of skill, so I'd appreciate it if you didn't insinuate that I don't and assume that I merely choose actors for looks as if I'm some tween.

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Post by HAVA-RAVA » Sep 26th, '11, 15:45

I think that KDrama Hong Gil Dong is really underrated. And JDrama LIFE is an other one.

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Post by rootabega » Sep 27th, '11, 04:18

[quote="el_canuck"]It seems you like the bad stuff, in that case watch Paradise Ranch, another actress teamed with an "Idol Actor", pure garbage, but takes place on beautiful Jeju Island. The island is nice. The oonly thing nice about this drama. This drama came in under the radar, BECAUSE IT SUNK!![/quote]

So YOU say, ha, ha! :whistling:

To all the fine gals, please stop editing your comments because a couple of insecure members can't stand hearing honest opinions. If you learn to censor yourself excessively when you're young, life could be rough going. The world is full of bullies looking to vent on ordinary, reasonable people.
P.S. I have found this thread supremely useful in helping me to choose my next K-drama.

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