I think Daemul
is a perfect lesson in how your drama expectations can often be wrong. When it was first announced in 2008, I was a giddily excited fangirl. The drama (finally out in 2010) turned out nothing, nothing
like I expected, and yet I love it madly, obsessively, ridiculously.
In my defense, when it was first announced, all I knew was that the manhwa this was to be based on was about the first female President of Korea and the gigolo her political enemies hired to bring her down (he was interested because of some revenge-related issues). Any plot/vibe similarity between that story and the story of a rising and idealistic female politician and her incorruptible prosecutor BFF/potential OTP - i.e. what the drama turned out to be about - is pretty marginal, one has to agree. (Yes, kdramas are known for their crazy plot twists and Daemul is scheduled for 26 eps, and may possibly get an extension if its insane ratings continue, but to imagine Do Ya becoming a gigolo, especially a gigolo dedicated to wrecking Hye Rim, requires more imagination than I currently possess).
So yes, entirely different beast, but I love it so very much. Its functional OTP in the middle of all the dirty politics, really makes it shine.
You know, there are no words for how much I love the OTP of Daemul
. It would be so easy, with poorer writing, with poorer acting, to turn them into almost propaganda cliches - she is an idealistic politician fighting for the rights of her fellow citizens. And he is the hard-charging prosecutor, fighting corruption whenever he finds it.
And the thing is, the above is true, but that is nowhere near the sum total of it. No, they are nuanced flesh-and-blood people - she is often afraid, angry, at the end of her rope, and she pays for everything with flesh and bone. And he is boyish, eccentric, a whackjob, really and with so much open warmth and vulnerability I just want to bask.
And they are perfect for each other. I mentioned some time ago that the two main romantic modes in a kdrama are "they bicker/fight/hate then fall in love" and "he worships the ground she walks on." The latter is by far my favorite (which explains why romcoms are my least favorite genre - they tend to overwhelmingly prefer the first mode). And Daemul is such a great example - I love the way he loves her. It's just so total - he is always there to support her but there are no big dramatic gestures (not even when events themselves are dramatic - as when he gets stabbed in front of her). No, he is just there for whatever she needs, without making romantic demands because he knows she may still be grieving for her husband. And the thing is, she is worthy of such devotion - she is an amazing person but she also cares back for him, fiercely.( Caps of shippy amazingness from eps 5-8 )
Daemul, you are officially amazing.