dangermousie: (Goong by gasmask)
I have realized that in the last 12 months, the only romcom drama I came even close to finishing was the off-beat Marry Me Mary, where I lasted 11 episodes.

When I started this drama obsession of mine, 6 or so years ago, if I had to pick my favorite genre of drama, it would have been a romantic comedy. But while I will always have a grandfathered love for romcoms I fell for over the years (My Girl, Goong, Coffee Prince etc) and would enjoy rewatching them, I have been less and less interested in the genre and have come to realize that, by now, for a kdrama romcom to work for me would require a minor miracle (Taiwanese and Japanese romcoms, as rare as the latter are, still appeal to me due to their feel and vibe, though they are not my favorite genre of either twdrama or jdrama).

I could go all crotchety old-ladyish about it and claim that they don't make them as well nowadays but that wouldn't be true. A romcom kdrama isn't any more likely to be flawed than any other genre. And take something like My Princess - cute concept, good script, leads I adore, and yet it still couldn't keep my attention past episode 2. I have no problem with watching 59 (!!!) episodes of Song Seung Hun in a revenge/mobster epic and easily follow Kim Tae Hee as a spy or a supernatural killer, but stick them in a romcom and I lose interest faster than you can say "but they smooch!"

I could probably chalk it up to being an angst junkie (and I am) but I don't think this is it. My love of fictional angst is merely a symptom of something else - high stakes. I need high stakes to get really involved and romcom is unlikely to have it. There isn't much brain food in it either, but ultimately, I can't claim every agsty drama I like is intelligent. It really comes down to stakes - "why should I care?" Of all the drama worlds, the romcom one is the safest. In a period drama, horrible things may happen. The stakes are insanely high in revenge dramas and melodramas too. In them, death and sanity of/vengeance for yourself and/or your loved ones are on the line. What's the worst that can happen in a romcom? Two fairly decent people won't get together. It's sad but not when compared to murdering evil parents or beheading. There is no lasting harm from the worst-possible scenario in romcom - after all, without Monster McEvilsons to really bring down doom, if the OTP doesn't hook up, it's their own fault. In a way, romcom has to work even harder than any other genre - stick a character in mortal peril and it's easy to care what happens to him/her. But to make you love them enough to care about everyday things - that's harder.

Still it doesn't explain why I enjoy relatively low-stakes dramas like Dream High or Gloria (before it went into its murder/revenge mode which, ironically, I liked less). Maybe the artificial cuteness of romcom set-up is less interesting to me? I think the older I get, the less want the entire drama to revolve around romance even when the drama is a melodrama, much less when the stakes are less than life/death.

I honestly have no idea.
dangermousie: (Goong by gasmask)
I have realized that in the last 12 months, the only romcom drama I came even close to finishing was the off-beat Marry Me Mary, where I lasted 11 episodes.

When I started this drama obsession of mine, 6 or so years ago, if I had to pick my favorite genre of drama, it would have been a romantic comedy. But while I will always have a grandfathered love for romcoms I fell for over the years (My Girl, Goong, Coffee Prince etc) and would enjoy rewatching them, I have been less and less interested in the genre and have come to realize that, by now, for a kdrama romcom to work for me would require a minor miracle (Taiwanese and Japanese romcoms, as rare as the latter are, still appeal to me due to their feel and vibe, though they are not my favorite genre of either twdrama or jdrama).

I could go all crotchety old-ladyish about it and claim that they don't make them as well nowadays but that wouldn't be true. A romcom kdrama isn't any more likely to be flawed than any other genre. And take something like My Princess - cute concept, good script, leads I adore, and yet it still couldn't keep my attention past episode 2. I have no problem with watching 59 (!!!) episodes of Song Seung Hun in a revenge/mobster epic and easily follow Kim Tae Hee as a spy or a supernatural killer, but stick them in a romcom and I lose interest faster than you can say "but they smooch!"

I could probably chalk it up to being an angst junkie (and I am) but I don't think this is it. My love of fictional angst is merely a symptom of something else - high stakes. I need high stakes to get really involved and romcom is unlikely to have it. There isn't much brain food in it either, but ultimately, I can't claim every agsty drama I like is intelligent. It really comes down to stakes - "why should I care?" Of all the drama worlds, the romcom one is the safest. In a period drama, horrible things may happen. The stakes are insanely high in revenge dramas and melodramas too. In them, death and sanity of/vengeance for yourself and/or your loved ones are on the line. What's the worst that can happen in a romcom? Two fairly decent people won't get together. It's sad but not when compared to murdering evil parents or beheading. There is no lasting harm from the worst-possible scenario in romcom - after all, without Monster McEvilsons to really bring down doom, if the OTP doesn't hook up, it's their own fault. In a way, romcom has to work even harder than any other genre - stick a character in mortal peril and it's easy to care what happens to him/her. But to make you love them enough to care about everyday things - that's harder.

Still it doesn't explain why I enjoy relatively low-stakes dramas like Dream High or Gloria (before it went into its murder/revenge mode which, ironically, I liked less). Maybe the artificial cuteness of romcom set-up is less interesting to me? I think the older I get, the less want the entire drama to revolve around romance even when the drama is a melodrama, much less when the stakes are less than life/death.

I honestly have no idea.
dangermousie: (Goong by gasmask)
I have realized that in the last 12 months, the only romcom drama I came even close to finishing was the off-beat Marry Me Mary, where I lasted 11 episodes.

When I started this drama obsession of mine, 6 or so years ago, if I had to pick my favorite genre of drama, it would have been a romantic comedy. But while I will always have a grandfathered love for romcoms I fell for over the years (My Girl, Goong, Coffee Prince etc) and would enjoy rewatching them, I have been less and less interested in the genre and have come to realize that, by now, for a kdrama romcom to work for me would require a minor miracle (Taiwanese and Japanese romcoms, as rare as the latter are, still appeal to me due to their feel and vibe, though they are not my favorite genre of either twdrama or jdrama).

I could go all crotchety old-ladyish about it and claim that they don't make them as well nowadays but that wouldn't be true. A romcom kdrama isn't any more likely to be flawed than any other genre. And take something like My Princess - cute concept, good script, leads I adore, and yet it still couldn't keep my attention past episode 2. I have no problem with watching 59 (!!!) episodes of Song Seung Hun in a revenge/mobster epic and easily follow Kim Tae Hee as a spy or a supernatural killer, but stick them in a romcom and I lose interest faster than you can say "but they smooch!"

I could probably chalk it up to being an angst junkie (and I am) but I don't think this is it. My love of fictional angst is merely a symptom of something else - high stakes. I need high stakes to get really involved and romcom is unlikely to have it. There isn't much brain food in it either, but ultimately, I can't claim every agsty drama I like is intelligent. It really comes down to stakes - "why should I care?" Of all the drama worlds, the romcom one is the safest. In a period drama, horrible things may happen. The stakes are insanely high in revenge dramas and melodramas too. In them, death and sanity of/vengeance for yourself and/or your loved ones are on the line. What's the worst that can happen in a romcom? Two fairly decent people won't get together. It's sad but not when compared to murdering evil parents or beheading. There is no lasting harm from the worst-possible scenario in romcom - after all, without Monster McEvilsons to really bring down doom, if the OTP doesn't hook up, it's their own fault. In a way, romcom has to work even harder than any other genre - stick a character in mortal peril and it's easy to care what happens to him/her. But to make you love them enough to care about everyday things - that's harder.

Still it doesn't explain why I enjoy relatively low-stakes dramas like Dream High or Gloria (before it went into its murder/revenge mode which, ironically, I liked less). Maybe the artificial cuteness of romcom set-up is less interesting to me? I think the older I get, the less want the entire drama to revolve around romance even when the drama is a melodrama, much less when the stakes are less than life/death.

I honestly have no idea.

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dangermousie

November 2012

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