In a nutshell: How can I accurately convey the awesomeness of this drama without over selling it? It’s a quiet, almost gritty, story about friendship and growing up and protecting what’s important. Or maybe it’s just about these six guys in a band. But, don’t let the title fool you. Each character is more than just a pretty face, or a character-trope. They all breath with such life they become something more than “lead” “second lead” “supporting role” “comic-relief”. They’re Byung-hee and Ji-hyuk and Do-il and Hyun-soo and Kyong-jung and Ha-jin. And their journey is important and you care about it even when it’s off-screen. The plot and the characters are so organically tied together it’s hard to tell which is influencing what. It’s the best kind of story and happens far too infrequently and I adore it when it does.
A little more gushing: But just a little more because I think it’s best to go into this one as unspoiled as possible. I adored how much this drama trusted that life was enough. That angst didn’t need to be borrowed or hyped or wailed over. An example: Three of the boys avoid going home. They all know it and know the reasons why and, other than a joking reference or two, it’s not focused on. It adds a flavor the viewer is trusted to understand and yeah, we may feel for them, but the boys don’t dwell.
And then there’s the music. They did such a good job on the music! Some pretty big names from S. Korea’s rock scene were involved… but I’m really ignorant about that scene myself so can’t really comment (especially since my google-foo has utterly failed me). Except to say the songs totally earwormed into my brain and I loved it. And if I knew some Korean and could’ve memorized the lyrics I’d still be singing them like a madwoman. But at the same time, in-show the music sounded a little sloppy and muddy — like it was being played by an actual garage band, which I really appreciated. It made their progress that much more real as the song became clearer.
A definite rec on this one.
*Another “only on HULU” title change. This time I suspect it was fear of the “flower boy” phrase throwing off their audience. Though I’ll also say, the replacement title works.