Category Archives: TV Series
Doctor Stranger – Final Review and 14 Episodes of Quack Couple Moments Plus HoonHyun Alternative Ending
I need to close this bitter-sweet chapter of my Kdrama viewing experience by ending it with a more “balanced” review. I’ve already ranted my disappointment last week and that’s the end of it. I’m promoting good vibes as I bid farewell to my two favorite characters (Oh Soo Hyun and Park Hoon). Warning: Don’t continue reading below if you hate spoilers.
Final Review and Rating
Of all the Kdrama series that I’ve watched, Doctor Stranger is the only one where I have a love and “more” hate relationship. Story-wise this series is a big let down, plot-wise the worst, and OTP-wise, the worst of the worst. There are a lot of questions that never got an answer until the end, sloppy character development of the main female lead (Jae Hee), illogical plots (especially the North Korean spy angle), bad writing, and a very lousy acting performance from one of the main female actresses – Jin Se Yeon.
On the positive side, Doctor Stranger is redeemed by the stellar acting performances of the other 3 main leads (Lee Jong Suk, Kang So Ra, and Park Hae Jin). Also, the cinematography is quite great and the medical story plot is not that bad. I’m also thankful to this series because I discovered Kang So Ra, a very talented and dynamic actress who instantly captured my interest when she was introduced in episode 3. Lastly, though the screen writer failed a lot in providing logical consistency to the overall plot of the story, I still thanked him for giving my favorite protagonist (Oh Soo Hyun) a very good back-story, character development, and making her the real heroine at the end of the series.
My final rating for this series is 6/10.
Would I Recommend Doctor Stranger to Other Kdrama Viewers?
In a heart beat, my answer is always a big NO. Save your 20 hours by watching other worth while dramas such as I Can Hear Your Voice, Dong Yi, Bad Love, Rooftop Prince, Secret Garden, or you can just watch the re-run of Cosmos in National Geographic Channel. Avoid this drama if you don’t want to be disappointed. But, if you want to torture yourself, then go on, watch and get yourself annihilated. LOLS!
Top HoonHyun aka Quack Couple Moments in “14 out of 20 episodes”
I would like to bid farewell to Doctor Stranger with only good memories in my mind. Thus, I will only reminisce HoonHyun in the throwback screenshots below. These sets of photos can fully explain why their pairing is more realistic and is larger than life compared to the first OTP.
Fourteen bloody episodes of sweet trolling. Thanks writer-nim, I’ve just listed you in my Top Writers to Avoid List. Nevertheless, I’m quite happy that before the final bomb, our fellow Soompier had already written an alternative ending for our favorite couple.
HoonHyun Alternative Ending
In literary fiction, there’s no such thing as an absolute ending. In the original book, Soo Hyun and Hoon end up together. In the drama series, they didn’t end up but in @kiyasnow mini-manga series, Oh Soo Hyun and Park Hoon meet each other after two years and ended up living together for the rest of their lives. This is the beauty of fictional stories. (:
This semi one-shot manga starts two years after Park Hoon and Oh Soo Hyun got separated due to the unavoidable consequences brought by South/North conspiracy and the scandals that happened to Mweongwoo Hospital.
Thank you so much @kiyasnow for this very sweet ending. For those who are still interested to watch despite all the warnings, feel free to visit the official HoonHyun aka Quack Couple Thread in Soompi. There you can read some fun and interesting opinions from the viewers who rooted for Hoon and Hyun. Good luck!
The fan art I used as a featured photo in this blog post is created by @Kiyasnow.
English translation of Episode 19 preview
Translation by @oyeleyeolusina in Soompi.
SH: Tell me, did you all along plan for my father to die.
JJ: Soo Hyun
SH: Get out of this hospital immediately.
Unknown voice ( maybe lollipop ahjussi): It was done by Cha and I definitely have to find it.
PM JSJ: You did it on purpose, you doing this is going to be the end for me.
TS: To betray the PM.
PH:A person like Jang Seok Joo is someone with no right to lead the country.
President: There is a person I would like to meet
President: Doctor Park Hoon.
JH: You are meeting the president.
PH: If the plans of the PM JSJ is revealed, we can get a safe haven.
President: Park Hoon what did you just say.
PM: Where is the president.
I am not surprised that agent Cha is back. He is a character that is not easy to kill and even if the writer needs to kill him, he has to finish him off in the most dramatic exit ever, not just a mere fall in the river. The hot North Korean villain is back and I suspect that he’ll bring the ultimate bomb twist most viewers have been expecting since his disappearance.
The Dreaded Ending – HoonHyun, HoonHee, or None?
At this point of the story, it is really difficult to tell. Though I want Hoon to end up with Soo Hyun, there’s a high probability that he would end up with Jae Hee. But, given the fact that agent Cha is back, the following can be considered as reasons (based from the facts in the drama) why Jae Hee won’t end up with Hoon.
- In earlier episodes, agent Cha told Jae Hee that he created her. Is this one of the reasons why Jae Hee broke up with Hoon for no clear reasons? Why would agent Cha tell that to Jae Hee if that is not true?
- Jae Hee tells different variations of her story. To Soo Hyun, she said that she knows what Hoon did to her dad even before the day that they met in the hospital. Oddly, she told Hoon that she has just recently found out about her dad when PM Jang told her. Why she can’t tell a simple truth to both people? She’s still hiding something. This is the reason why I can’t help but think about the book’s ending (Jae Hee chose another man and left Hoon).
- At this point of the story, it’s all up to Jae Hee. If she’ll leave Hoon because she truly believes that most of his actions are prodded by guilt and not love, then I’ll say, she really has another agenda why she came to South Korea as a spy.
- Also, I’ve posted this already, if her truest intention is to be reunited and live again with Hoon, why go back to North Korea (and be a comrade with agent Cha)? She said she was shipped to Japan (after she was separated with Hoon) and finished her “medical studies” there, then why not go (from Japan) straight to South Korea? Or, is the Japan story another lie?
The screen writer has so many loose ends to tie that I doubt if he had successfully did it within the two episodes that will be aired tonight and tomorrow. A possibility of an open ending is lurking in the corner. Aisssh!
In the previous episodes, we saw Jae Hee telling Soo Hyun that Park Hoon loves her. In this episode, we saw Jae Joon telling Park Hoon that Soo Hyun really likes him. With this train of events, it is safe to conclude that within the final 2 episodes, we’ll see Park Hoon realizing his feelings towards Hyun. Awww! Pretty much exciting. *spazzing* Still, I’m keeping my emotions intact because there’s actually a high probability that my delusion won’t happen. ): Check this link to know why I’m focusing more on the romance part. Check this link to learn more about my thoughts about this series.
Jae Hee Breaks Up with Hoon and Keeps on Rejecting Him
Not just once but thrice that Jae Hee brutally pushed Hoon away in this episode. I really don’t understand why she needs to do those stints. I really want to pull my hair every time she’s on screen. Her recent actions don’t make sense and I think that she’s lying to both Park Hoon and Soo Hyun.
I don’t know but I really have this bad feeling about Jae Hee. Since she reappeared in episode 3, I really can’t trust her character. Oddly, for the first time, I agree with her. Hoon is indeed not in love with her. Hoon’s obsession to find her and be with her is caused by guilt when he failed to protect her in Budapest. Now that she’s blaming Hoon for her father’s death, I hope they will break up for good. (Quack shipper much. Lolz!)
Jae Joon is Entrusting Soo Hyun to Park Hoon
Jae Joon revealed his true motive to Park Hoon because he knows that he can’t just entrust Soo Hyun to anyone except Hoon. When he told Hoon that Soo Hyun really likes him, it is similar to saying that he’s entrusting Soo Hyun to him because he knows that she will be badly devastated after what he will do to her dad and their hospital.
I’m hoping that Hoon will become Soo Hyun’s main ally in the final 2 episodes. I’m hoping the screen writer will stick with the book’s ending (but, of course, he should alter it a bit to make way for a happy ending). When the producer announced last week that they are sticking with the original script’s ending, I was quite sure that HoonHyun would be the endgame. But, still, there’s really no guarantee that it will happen. ):
In the last 2 episodes (that will be aired next week – Monday and Tuesday), I hope Jae Hee will fade in the screen for good. If she’s going to give up Hoon then she better not eat her own words. I’m tired of watching her “constipated face” this whole time. Since the series never bothered to give her character a back story and proper development, then she should go. Either she’ll return to North Korea, die in the midst of the mission, or not appear anymore on the screen. Jin Se Yeon’s very poor acting performance is actually one of the reasons why this series is harshly criticized not only by the local viewers their in South Korea but by international audience as well. Arrghh!
Good bye, Jae Hee err Seung Hee or whatever!
I decided to review Doctor Stranger even though it’s already too late because it causes so much disturbance in my Kdrama routine. If I’ll rate this series, story-wise, I can’t even include this in my top 15 best dramas. Honestly, I have second thoughts if I’m gonna recommend this to anyone. I still have to see the ending before I’ll decide if this drama is worth anyone’s time. As of this writing there are 2 more episodes to go until the finale. This series will end next week, Tuesday night.
Though I enjoyed the medical suspense part, the utterly obvious plot holes, illogical character development, and ridiculous storyline are just too much. I can’t even blame those people who sputter profanities and rude comments against this series, because same as me, they are also just hugely disappointed. (The only two major aspects that redeemed this drama are the main actors and actresses performance and its cinematography.) But, why do I waste so much time watching this if I hate it a lot?
Actually, I just discovered that you can really hate a drama and still continue to watch it because you are quite interested on how all the craziness will end. Also, if weird things occur – such as you, rooting for the 2nd female lead for the first time in your over a decade of voraciously consuming “gazillion” of drama series, you just couldn’t stop because it is such a bloody mystery that needs to be solved.
The Sizzling Chemistry between Park Hoon and Oh Soo Hyun
I am shockingly one of those thousands of delusional fans who are shipping Park Hoon and Oh Soo Hyun to end up together. So weird because in my over a decade of watching Kdramas I never shipped a 2nd female lead but DS breaks this record. This is a history in the making! Lol! In my over a decade of watching Asian dramas, this is the very first bloody time that I love the 2nd female lead character (Oh Soo Hyun) and hate the first female lead (Jae Hee). I root for Soo Hyun like a lunatic that I want Jae Hee to disappear for good. Hahahaha! (My attachment to these fictional characters are getting weirder and weirder.)
Jae Hee is Leaving Hoon Soon and Tells Soo Hyun that He Loves Her
In episode 17, I had finally deciphered Jae Hee’s ultimate intention. All along I’ve been doubting her motives for coming to South Korea. Her role as a North Korean spy (who is in cahoots with the Prime Minister to put the President in coma) has a very clear mission to fulfill, and rekindling her romantic interest to Park Hoon is just part of the show to finish it. Poor Hoon.
Jae Hee’s confession to Soo Hyun that she will be leaving soon confirmed my suspicion that there’s a higher probability that the ending of this series won’t veer away from the original ending in the book (Doctor Stranger is based in a best-seller book – Northern Doctor). In the book, Park Hoon will end up with Soo Hyun. I just wish that they’ll incorporate a time jump, and later on we’ll see Hoon and Soo Hyun happy together as a couple and are successful in their career as thoracic surgeons.
In this episode, Jae Hee also told Soo Hyun that Hoon is the reason why her father died. That Hoon killed her father to save her and she’s not sure anymore if she can still continue loving him despite all the things that happened between them. She then told Hyun that Hoon really loves her and he just hasn’t realized it yet. She asked Soo Hyun to wait for him because later on Hoon would eventually realize his feelings.
It’s clear as blue sky now that Jae Hee has no intention in staying with Hoon after her mission. She said that she will be going back to Japan. Her coldness to Hoon in this episode mirrors her reactions in that flash back scene in episode 5 (Hoon chasing her inside the hospital while she intentionally avoided him). Her facial expressions in that scene showed contempt and disgust towards Park Hoon. Jae Hee’s pretense has now been shattered. Oh, YEAH!
Oops! You’re not lost. This is still my blog. Incorporating dramas and gore movie topics in this blog has been part of my content plan long time ago, but I excused myself for always being “too busy” that I never had a time to do it. Yet, I’m doing it now. *claps*
Though I’m now too late to start reviewing this messy series that has disturbed my normal Kdrama routine, I still want to get on and ride along with the “crazies” who decided not to drop it until the very last episode.
What is Doctor Stranger?
It is a Kdrama series that tells the story of Park Hoon, a genius thoracic surgeon (who was raised in North Korea) and his struggles to find his first love (who was separated from him) while living a new life as a doctor in one of South Korea’s most respected hospitals.
This series (as of this writing) is still currently airing in South Korea with 4 more episodes left before it will end. If you want to catch up what happened from episode 1 to 16, do an intensive reading here.
Episode 16: My Review, Thoughts, and Reactions
Just when I started to give up that there’s no hope left for Park Hoon and Soo Hyun to be the end game, this episode sparks new probability for their tandem. But, how could this become possible when the story is now focusing on Seung Hee/Jae Hee’s noble idiocy to self-sacrifice herself to save Hoon and his mother? Realistically, pretty much too little possibility if I’ll believe that what the screen writers want to do is actually what they will do.
Park Hoon and Soo Hyun as the End Game
In a scale of 1 to 100, the probability that this will happen is well below 20%. Although I still want to believe that there’s a bigger chance that my favorite tandem will end up together, looking at how the story progresses, there’s only a slim chance that my wish and my fellow “quackers” wish will come true. Anyway, despite these, I still don’t lose hope. It’s not over ‘til it’s over.
Does Hoon Has Developed Some Deeper Feelings for Soo Hyun?
In this episode, the screen writers are actually playing with the minds of HoonHyun shippers. Showing us scenes where Hoon is conflicted and battling with himself if he’ll text Soo Hyun or not, showing that he is bothered and uneasy and keeps on checking his phone. And then we see him defending Soo Hyun against a thug, comforting her while she cries, and lying to Seung Hee/Jae Hee when asked if he’s with the former. If these are just mere trolling, and not part of the plot to decide who will end up with whom, then I’ll say fuck you DS screen writers! You’ve been trolling us since episode 3 and now those are all just for NOTHING?
Does the Prime Minister Take Seung Hee Seriously?
One of the main reasons why I’ve been wanting to drop this series since earlier episodes is the inconsistency of the plot that it loses its logic and credibility. Nevertheless, I decided to continue for the sake of knowing what will happen next. Honestly, I remain mainly because I ship Hoon and Hyun. But, although I’m focusing my attention to the romance part of the drama, I still can’t shake off how the politics and conspiracy plot annoy the fucking shit out of me.
In this episode, I feel like a 5-year old while watching Seung Hee orchestrated a deal with Prime Minister Jang. I can’t help but cringed because it is just very laughable. How come a North Korean spy with less than 2 years’ experience can threaten a very powerful man with 30 years of scheming and connection to back him up?
Seung Hee’s character shamed and destroyed the reputation of spies and covert agents (say hi to Carrie Mathison and Evelyn Salt) in the world of fictional espionage and detective stories. The mere fact that she told the prime minister that she had already revealed their grand plan to his enemy (Park Hoon) is already an epic failure. The actress who plays the role didn’t manage to convince me that she’s actually talking about a very secret mission to South Koreas 2nd most powerful man. Also, when she threatened the prime minister about his plan to become the next president, I wanted to smash my head on the wall. What are you talking spy? How could you guarantee that the North Korean government will go along with your plan when you’ve already betrayed them? Oh, come on!!
I did a face-palm while I watched the rest of the scene.
My Reaction to Those Who Assassinate Soo Hyun’s Character
I only have one thing to say – just wait and see. I’m still not changing my prediction that she’s the dark horse in this whole grand conspiracy between North and South. Wait and see, and be careful, Soo Hyun’s will gonna kick some more nuts in the next episodes to come. Bam, bam, bam!
Fan-made photo uploaded by Lhyna Chellzya McEachran at the You Are My Destiny Facebook Fanpage
She knocks on your car that rainy day. She begs you to bring her to the hospital. You thought she’s crazy. She arrives at your arranged marriage meeting that very fateful day. You thought it’s just very coincidental. You found out that she’s just a poser. You hated her for that. You hated yourself the most because you’re falling for her.
You asked her if she has feelings for you. You were so disappointed when she answered none. You gave in to your parents’ will and got engaged to someone else. You thought you will forget about her, but it’s actually the opposite.
You defended her when she was accused of plagiarism. You rescued her from the wilderness when she was lost. You tried your best to protect and showed her how much you care. But your efforts just vanished to thin air. You’re engaged and you can’t do anything. You become tired of your limited freedom.
You broke the engagement. Everyone around you kept blaming her. They hated her because she’s the main cause of the chaos you made. You decided to go to America. You asked those people whom you can trust to keep an eye on her. You promised her that you’ll never let her go the second time you two will meet again.
You found out that her new family kicked her out. You left America and tried to find her. You’re too worried of her whereabouts. You searched for her everywhere… And at last, you found her. You would never let her out of your sight again. You would never leave her behind. You two will always be together. You two will face together the harsh conquences you tried to escape. You two will make it through. Kang Hose, Jang Saebyuk…
It’s now exactly 41 days and 10 minutes before Christmas, but I’m really not that excited about it compared to those previous Christmases in the past few years. I rarely hear Christmas songs these past few weeks and the weather is really hot. I don’t know why I don’t feel any connection or anticipation about the coming festive celebration.
Anyways, we will have our company’s Christmas party this coming 14th of December. This is actually my first Christmas with the company, but it’s still the usual manita/manito stuff for exchanging gifts. We are obliged to announce our wish list so that our respective manitas or manitos will know what specific gifts they have to give us during the party. I really don’t fancy anything expensive. I just want stuffs that can make me laugh and can also make me cry at the same time. So here is my wish list:
Any DVD copies will do, but they should be clear copies.
1. Devil Beside You(Mike He and Rainie Yang). This is the best Asian Drama series according to BestStuff.com.
2. Vampire Knight(The Anime Series). I’ve actually read the manga, but it’s still stuck at chapter 43. I just want to have the anime series copy for a change.
3. Hana Yori Dango(The Japanese Version). Though this is a Jdrama which has the same plot with Meteor Garden, I still want to watch this because a lot of people said that it’s better than the Taiwanese version. They said that it’s more loyal to the manga compared to MG that has lots of additional scenes.
4. Princess Hours(Korean Series). According to BestStuff.Com, this is the best Korean Drama series of all time. I hope the review won’t fail my expectation. Hehehe.
5. My Girl(Another Korean Series). I dunno if this one is great, but a friend told me that it’s rather funny.
6. Claymore(The Anime Series). I’ve read the manga of this, and it’s still stuck at chapter 82. Just want to see the anime version for a change.
Hmmmn…I guess that’s all for now. I mean 14th of December is still several days away. I’ll just tell you if I’ve changed my mind. Anyways, any four of the above will do. Lolers!
Thanks Manita/Manito. (:
I just watched Survivor Philippines last night at GMA 7. The production is really big, and grand and all. The location is well, as what you would expect, a very secluded place somewhere in Thailand. It is called the Devil’s Island. The name could tell you hundreds of unimaginable obstacles all the survivors must go through in order to win the most coveted three million pesos.
There are actually 18 castaways, 9 males and 9 females. All are competing against each other to become the very first sole survivor. And I already have my favorite castaway. Well, no other than Raymund Francis Rustia aka Kiko. It’s obvious that he’s the hottest male in the contest. With those long dread locks, well toned body, and “animalistic” appeal, all girls are definitely drooling in front of their monitors. Hahahaha! And mind you, he has a beard and a mustache too. Very interesting!
Kiko showcased his gentleman side in the pilot episode. The survivors’ very first test was to swim from their boat in the middle of the sea to the island. Unlike others, who just swam their way to the island on their own, he, on the other hand seemed to play the selfless gentleman, by helping some of the girls who has difficulty in swimming, to get through the test. That’s why he ended up in the last batch to reach the island. Well, we don’t know if this behavior is just for the sake of the show, but nonetheless, by doing a such he had lowered his probability of being voted out earlier in the game. And that’s a very nice strategy.
Photo Credit: SurvivorPhilippines.TV