Korean dramas are all the rage for quite some time but somehow I haven't properly got on board the Hallyu train.
Perhaps, it's my limited knowledge of all the little quirks and nuances. My working knowledge is limited to the inevitability of the following scene, which I can bet with my last won that it's a permanent fixture of any self-respecting Korean drama with at least two pretty protagonists.
Oh and another thing: some Korean dramas tend to veer quite closely towards absolute tragedy and may not be good for a person working from home this pandemic season to review.
So when my business colleagues arrowed me to write a review on this new drama, Doom at Your Service, a Viu Original k-drama series, I was in two minds.
Is my fragile heart ready for more heartbreak now that I'm stuck at home with the kids in this relentless weather? But isn't it nice to just watch dramas during regular working hours?
Yes and hell yes. Respectively.
And here we are.
Now before we go into the review proper, I must reiterate that:
a) I'm no expert in Korean dramas
b) I'm no expert in Korean dramas
c) Repeat point a and b
Episode 1: I'm Really Dying
The drama opens with some grim news despite the aforementioned protagonists.
This is Tak Dong Kyung (Park Bo Young). This is the face she makes when she's been told that she has multifocal glioblastoma, or brain tumour. And she has only 100 days to live.
Talk about kicking things off in a real depressing mood.
But wait, there are more lemons.
On that very day…
a) she discovers that her "boyfriend" is actually happily married and a soon-to-be father;
b) she gets water thrown at her by the pregnant wife at a crowded cafe;
c) the entire altercation was caught on video with netizens wishing her death;
d) some perv takes photos of her on the train;
e) she gets drenched to the bones as the skies open up;
f) her good-for-nothing brother asks her for money.
All these on her parents' death anniversary. Help.
So after one drink too many, she makes a wish upon several shooting stars: that the world ends.
Enter Myeol Mang (Seo In Guk), who is Doom in human form and is, I quote, "Responsible for death and destruction of humans and things."
Something like Joe Black from Meet Joe Black but instead of peanut butter, Myeol Mang is more into putting cigarettes in his mouth without actually smoking them.
You see, Myeol Mang is sick of being an eternal who exists only to serve mortals and thus is waiting for someone to wish for the death and destruction of the world on his birthday so that he can quit being eternal.
And without spoiling the story, let's just say that both female and male protagonists agree to help each other: by wishing for the end of the world and to die painlessly.
Episode 2: Hold My Hand
So now that Tak Dong Kyung and Myeol Mang are well acquainted, here's the rule that Dong Kyung needs to do so as not to feel any pain from her brain tumours: hold Myeol Mang's hand.
Before you flip the proverbial table, do understand that such skin-on-skin contact is vital for character progression and any potential romantic relationship to blossom. So please, do not flip the table.
Well, holding his hand helps "charge" a magical red string bracelet that will block out any pain emanating from her tumour.
I'm pretty sure he's not joking or trying to be cheeky because he's more in love with the notion of ending the world than having some limited physical contact with a dying lady. And besides, he's not human; he feels no emotion.
Does he really?
Anyway things are progressing real fast because by the end of the episode, Dong Kyung is inviting Myeol Mang to live together.
Fast game, bro.
Episode 3: Living Together With Myeol Mang
This episode opens with instant regret from Dong Kyung for even suggesting that they live together.
Too late though as Doom himself has made himself quite comfortable, shifting his entire house so that both can cohabitate without losing one's way of living.
What can I say about this episode other than that the chemistry between these two is literally through the roof?
Now, here's what we know so far:
Dong Kyung is dying
Myeol Mang is 100 per cent doom and zero human
Their pact states that she has to wish for the end of the world so that he can grant her a painless death
And if she doesn't honour the pact, Mr Doom will kill the person she loves the most
All she needs to do now is to fall in love with Doom himself so that she can live and no one gets hurt.
I mean that's an easy way to up the romantic quotient but well played, Dong Kyung, for outmaneuvering Doom himself.
Well, at least for now.
Should you watch it?
I thought it was pretty addictive to be honest. Especially that cliffhanger from episode 1: you kind of know what will happen but hey, two pretty faces and pretty cinematography got me hooked.
Would she be able to outwit Doom? Surely there are more twists and turns since the first three episodes already got me kinda tangled up (in a good way)?
To be frank, even though I'm a non-k drama lover, I still can't wait to binge watch the remaining episodes (currently there are 10 episodes available for streaming now on Viu).
The characters, the subplots and the chemistry all help things move along pretty well, without any gaping plot holes or choppy flow.
And the kicker? It's streaming free on Viu.
9/10 would recommend if you have exhausted your watchlist and are looking for a good show during this stay-home season.
How to watch it?
Simple. Just catch it on Viu .
All photos via Viu .
This post is sponsored by Viu.
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