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Why I Like [K-Dramas]

June 1, 2010

안녕하세요! Krista here. ~~

On a normal Wednesday, I would be at school right now. **  More specifically, I would be in Algebra right now.  {Why the schedule coordinator decided that after a day of classes, we would be any sort of productive is beyond me.  But I will say this – they obviously didn’t do the same Algebra that we’re doing…}  Today isn’t a normal Wednesday, though.  Long story short, I went home ill, and after taking some medicine and cozy-ing up to a very hot rice bag, I am now feeling well enough that I should be doing the homework that I know is going to be due tomorrow. Except I’m not.. =^^=

[**Note: When I started writing this.. it was Wednesday. And school was still in session. Now, it is Tuesday. And school is officially out for the summer. (Hooray!) ^^]

Instead, I’m watching Oh, My Lady! episodes online.
Honestly — the only reason I’m really watching this drama is because Choi Si Won is in it… I know. How’s that for terrible? But in my defense – I’m not the only one. Evan watches shows/movies that have Kim Bum, and Jess is ALL OVER anything that has T.O.P. [See how well we didn’t plan for all of us to have different favorite actors/singers?? ] So far, I’m really not sure about it. I love seeing Mr. Choi acting, and I do feel a little bit of an emotional attachment to the main characters, but it doesn’t quite have that “addictive” quality that I’ve subconsciously been expecting ever since I watched my very first K-Drama, Boys Before Flowers.  Regardless, I’m the type who does not believe in giving up easily..  and if Choi Si Won is in it, you’d better believe I’m going to support him and watch the whole thing!! ^^

Anyway, that’s not my point.
A while ago, I was talking to someone about how I sometimes feel as if my family doesn’t approve of my being so interested in the Korean culture, especially Korean media.  Though I’m not sure they remember it, they gave me what is probably some of the best advice I have ever received.  (*Ahem*  Fangirltainment via Youtube.. ^^)  She told me, “If [someone] asks you why you are so into it, face [them] and tell [them] specific reasons why…  Don’t be embarrassed by what you like.  Unabashedly defend it.
Every so often, those words crawl back into my head.  ‘Why do I like this? If someone were to ask me, what would I tell them?  What is my reason for listening to/watching this?’  I’m not always able to say why exactly, at least not right away. But eventually, it comes to me.

Today was one of those times..  right in the middle of episode 5.  One of the characters is talking to the female lead about another woman.  [I would probably call the way she describes this third woman as “swooning,” but I realize that isn’t how she views the third woman…] She says something about the lady having talent, a great personality, and a great body.
It was here that I realized – I like K-dramas because when I watch them, I want to become a better person.
Let me explain..

I haven’t seen many K-dramas — actually, just 5 including this one (Jessica is giggling at this. She says she hasn’t even finished one.. ^^ )…  but I find that in at least one point of the episode, someone is describing someone else and they always have this very.. respectful tone in their voice.  They say something about the other person being someone to really look up to, someone they aspire to be like.  And I realized – how many American dramas have scenes like that?  Where the ethical person, the person with integrity and values is the one being praised?  So many shows that I’ve seen or seen commercials for seem to praise the seemingly bad person.  They try to make it look like it’s desirable to be rude and disrespectful, to have no values, to do what you want, when you want as long as it makes you feel good.
But not Korean shows..  (Well, the ones I’ve seen.)  When I am watching K-dramas and this scene comes up, it never fails that it causes me to stop and think about my own reputation.  If someone were describing me, what words would they use?  Would it be words like the ones heard in those shows, or would it be unfavorable words like the ones found in so many American television shows aimed at young adults nowadays?  {Granted — I realize that not all American T.V. shows are bad, but lately it seems like so many of them are.}  I honestly don’t know how that conversation would carry out, but I hope whoever is describing me would feel comfortable using good words — honest, loyal, respectful, kind..

So, I guess my bottom line is this:  I love that Korean T.V. shows portray honorable characters in a positive light and not a negative one.  I like that when I watch them, I feel encouraged to try to be a better person.  I want to be reassured that it’s okay, even that it’s a good thing to have morals, values, integrity.  I once read this quote, and as I’m running through all of these thoughts in my head, it keeps coming back.  “That’s what it takes to be a hero, a little gem of innocence inside you that makes you want to believe that there still exists a right and wrong, that decency will somehow triumph in the end.” [Lise Hand]  I want to believe that there are still heroes like this in the world.  I like K-dramas because they make me want to be a better person, and because they give me hope that there are still good people in the world.

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