emothy: (massu ;; oiran photoshoot)
The end! Words of warning: watch this and be prepared to fall utterly in love, only to get your heart ripped right out on the journey. Iljimae is the most fucked-up, tortured protagonist I've ever seen (and I've read about FitzChivalry Farseer!). He is so flawed, but I grew to love him so, so incredibly much despite that. And so many other characters. It's such an imperfect world in this drama, though, and it isn't for the faint of heart.

That said, it didn't end badly, and it got me so much because I loved it so much. Well, the characters. The storytelling was weak at the beginning, and also a little towards the end. But the writing of the characters was amazing, and when it was good it was VERY, VERY GOOD.

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 23: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 24: Spoilers )
emothy: (Default)
Drama, my heart. I would hand it to you but you've already torn it out violently and trodden on it, ripped it to shreds, and laughed about it. I don't know if I can go on.

...Who am I kidding, I can't stop like this, not when we're so close to the end. HOW THE FUCK IS THIS GOING TO END? HOW?

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 21: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 22: Spoilers )
emothy: philip lee in legend (legend ;; chuh-ro)
Two down, four to go omg! XD

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 19: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 20: Spoilers )
emothy: (Default)
Could I get any more confused? I mean, sometimes I feel like we're seeing too many minor characters, and then a whole episode FLIES by and I can't believe so much has happened and yet we're not so far from before as I thought. None of this is bad, I'm just so whirlwinded and swept up and have no idea what's going on in a really good way <3

...Thank goodness for Jung Il-Woo's pretty face helping me through these emotional times ;D

(Channeling Bae Yong-Jun as Dam-Duk, what? XD)

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 17: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 18: Spoilers )
emothy: philip lee in legend (legend ;; chuh-ro)
Oh my, I sense a darker turn coming to this series, and I had already thought this series had plenty of that to its name, so it's a mini revelation to realise how wrong I was!

...And no bad thing, either. I'm rather looking forward to it XD

(Did you notice how I didn't post screencaps of Jung Il-Woo for either of these episodes? What restraint! XD)

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 15: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 16: Spoilers )
emothy: philip lee in legend (legend ;; chuh-ro)
Going into watching something with expectations is probably inevitable - when looking for what to watch you choose by description of the show (whether the themes and plot are something you would personally enjoy), or by other people's reccommendations and opinions... But The Return of Iljimae is surrounded by SUCH enthusiasm for how amazing it is by a few people whose opinions I look to, that as I watch it I don't know how much of my response is my enjoyment, how much is me being too critical because I expected so much, and what I really, truly think myself! It's very confusing.

At this point all I can say is, I have really enjoyed watching these last two episodes. I suspect once this is all over I may require a rewatch, without the liveblogging in the background sometimes throwing me out of a scene in order to speculate. Knowing the overall events but being able to immerse myself back into it properly and see how I feel after a second viewing, if it holds up to scrutiny. I guess I'm getting attached and worried these aren't my own feelings, but merely outside influence?

But at the same time, if so many people think it is good there must be some reason, right? XD Although to be honest I'm the type to be MORE critical when other people like something, not less!

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 13: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 14: Spoilers )
emothy: (Default)
You know, I think this drama has found it's identity. With a steady pace to follow and not such a frenetic plot, trying to build up every piece of backstory and experience that makes Iljimae who he is, we're able to begin to follow a slower, more confident progression now. So much less narration, so much less having to just directly explain things to us because there doesn't seem to be enough chance to show them in their own right.

I have to say what with everything that happened in the first seven episodes I wondered how they were going to keep the pace, how much exactly was still left to happen, and what could possibly be stretched into twenty-four episodes. I still wonder, but in a more positive way. I wonder where the plot is going, because I can't predict it myself, and that's good, it keeps me interested!

I do suspect, however, that this may have been a drama better filmed as two series - Iljimae's life up to age 20 or 21 for the first, and then a second series that follows what is going on now.

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 11: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 12: Spoilers )
emothy: philip lee in legend (legend ;; chuh-ro)
This series is much improved now we're following a linear timeline. No need to jump back to explain anything, no need to show a future event to foreshadow it. Just take it all as it happens and enjoy the ride. (I wish we'd gotten here sooner!)

Even the events are more settled, in one place, with more of a permanent cast now, because before Iljimae travelled so much and met so many people. Both ways have their pros and cons, but we can use this solidness right now after all the moving and changing around. I'm not questioning what he does so much as I have been before, practically screaming "SHOW ME, DON'T JUST TELL ME, I NEED TO KNOW WHY!" at the screen XD Things are being shown more.

Episode Ten was a definite highlight, some wonderful moments in there for me. And now I need to go onwards desperately!

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 9: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 10: Spoilers )
emothy: (Default)
I don't quite know what this show is doing to me. One moment I love it, the next it disappoints me, but the true draw, the important character - Iljimae, keeps me burning for more. I adore him, he's a really intriguing character, I only wish the format of the drama supported that a little better. Sometimes you feel like the things that have happened to him are just too unbelievable, and often I feel like we aren't given enough chances to see the way he changes and grows, we're only told about it.

On the absolute plus side the way almost all the characters are portrayed is wonderful - even minor characters and ones who only appear in one or two episodes are interesting and make an impact on you. Also, every time we're given proper scenes following the 'present' timeline to chew on (rather than annoying time-jumps and utterly useless narration) they are wonderful and enhance things greatly. I just wish they'd commit to focusing on them.

To summarize - I suspect whoever wrote this drama is much better at characterization than they are at pacing, and often fall down at the Golden Rule: "show, don't tell".

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 7: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 8: Spoilers )
emothy: (pot - fuji haunting)
Iljimae is shaping up to be the most unlucky and tortured soul in a drama ever, mentally. He's too good of a fighter to actually get harmed physically ;) But seriously. MOST TORTURED CHARACTER. EVER. His misfortunes go off the scale of all possible bad things that could ever happen ever. (Thank god he looks so pretty while suffering).

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 5: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 6: Spoilers )
emothy: (Default)
This is much better. More moments of the present time in this story now, and less flashbacks (and when there are they are directly related to the story, short and succinct), and much less annoying narration. There are a few characters I'm really starting to care about, not least Iljimae himself. His situation is none of his own doing, and yet he is suffering big-time.

Also, I am going to start adding images to the top of my liveblogs, because PRETTY :D (eta; Have also added screencaps to the top of nearly all the older liveblogs too :D)

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 3: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 4: Spoilers )
emothy: (Default)
Apparently I'll put up with a fair amount for a pretty face and the promise - from multiple drama review sources - of a good saegeuk drama. I think perhaps if I hadn't watched other dramas (made in later years) before this I would be less critical right now. My biggest issues right now are: feeling like we as an audience are being talked down to, too much explanation for things we don't need explained - give us some credit! And then on the flipside, some happenings that seem a little bit of a stretch, silly or not believable enough. But recalling that this is based on a manhwa, I may have to accept that. (Still think they could've tweaked it a bit more for TV purposes though).

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 1: Spoilers )

- The Return of Iljimae, Episode 2: Spoilers )


emothy: (Default)

July 2015

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