Thursday, August 28, 2014

Drama Review~Marriage, Not Dating (Korean)

Title: Marriage, Not Dating; Marriage Without Love
Writer: Joo Hwa Mi
Director: Song Hyun Wook, Lee Jong Jae
Producer: IOK Media
Main Cast: Yeon Woo Jin as Gong Gi Tae, Han Groo as Joo Jang Mi, Jeong Jin Woon as Han Yeo Reum, Han Sunhwa as Kang Se Ah, Heo Jung Min as Lee Hoon Dong, Yoon So Hee as Nam Hyun Hee

Genre: Romance, Comedy, Drama
Original Run: July 4, 2014 - August 23, 2014
Duration: 1 hr. 7 min.
Original Channel: tvN
No. of Episodes: 16
Language: Korean
Links: MDL ~ Wikipedia ~ Viki ~ Drama Site

Synopsis: Wealthy plastic surgeon Gong Ki Tae is a successful and happy bachelor who does not want to find himself a wife. He believes that his life is perfectly planned, and being single is the only option he accept. However, his family is badgering him to marry. In an effort to get his parents off his back about the constant string of blind dates and marriage prospects, Ki Tae purposely brings Joo Jang Mi home to meet his parents posing as his girlfriend, certain that they'll never approve of her.


My Rating: 9.5/10

My Thoughts: I loved this drama! It was so much fun to watch! It was a bit different from the usual dramas and a breath of fresh air.

Story: The story was really good and interesting. I loved how they showed a snippet of a shocking scene at the beginning of each episode that really heightened the expectations. There was never a dull moment and I enjoyed the whole drama. It was funny and sweet and I especially liked that even when the melodrama came along the writer never forgot that this drama is originally a romantic comedy. I agree that a rom-com is incomplete without a little drama but in some dramas when it's time for the melo the writer forgets that the drama was supposed to be a rom-com and then it's melo everywhere (Fated To Love You, I'm looking at you). I'm glad that this didn't happen with MND. The main couple's story as well as the stories of the side characters played out really well and the pacing was very good. I lost a little interest towards the end but it was quickly regained and by the last episode I found myself not wanting to say goodbye to this drama.

Cinematography: I don't usually talk about this because I don't have such a keen eye for such things but in this drama even I noticed that the shooting was done brilliantly! I loved their use of reflections and close-ups. The close-ups made for some pretty funny scenes but they were also used in serious ones with added impact as well. I especially remember a scene in one of the last episodes where Gi Tae & Jang Mi are walking by a river and their reflection is shown first and then they are shown. I found that very beautiful.

Actors/Characters: All the actors in this drama were brilliant and brought their characters to life! From Heo Jung Min as the funny Hoon Dong to Kim Hae Sook as the serious mother-in-law, everyone was brilliant! I fell in love with Han Groo (and her voice)! She was so lovable! She played Jang Mi so well! I don't usually like characters like Jang Mi but Han Groo really made her likable and relatable. Even though I'm nothing like Jang Mi, I understood her feelings perfectly.

I'm usually good at recognizing idols in a drama. They have a different look. But I never could have guessed that Han Sunhwa is an idol! She is super pretty, yes, but she just didn't give that idol vibe. She did do a great job though, as Se Ha, and even though I was supposed to hate her, I didn't. I just felt sorry for her.

I'm not sure how I feel about Yeon Woo Jin. He did a very good job and was even able to pull-off the embarrassing stuff which very few actors are able to do (Joo Sang Wook being the only one I know of). I kind of like his character too. And I did want him to end up with Jang Mi. I even understood why he wanted to be alone. But I didn't feel a connection with him that I want to feel with the main characters.

In which Joo Jang Mi represents us.
Uhm... Han Yeo Reum. Well... Jeong Jin Woon has pretty impressive abs ;) Hehe~ Sorry! He's not bad at acting either and since he's an idol he has a good voice too. But what was Han Yeo Reum? He was so mysterious and at first I really liked the mystery but they never revealed the mystery, at least not completely. Which made me very angry. Even then, it was okay. I forgive you. Because Han Yeo Reum has great abs ;) Hehe~

I really liked Yoo So Hee's character! Not because she was likable but because but because it was a very daring step at the part of the writer. Hyun Hee was definitely not the usual best friend. She was selfish in the natural way and she was cunning. I really liked the deviation from the conventional lead's BFF.

All the side characters were great as well and did a very good job. I would especially like to mention Kim Hae Sook here. She did such an awesome job playing the mother-in-law! Her character was very well-written and was one with a lot of depth and she did such an awesome job playing her! Her expressions, her breakdowns, I really loved her acting! She was an evil mother-in-law but really she wasn't evil and I never hated her. I always knew she must have some reason for her actions.

Overall: I really really enjoyed this drama! The funny scenes, the sweet scenes, the sad scenes, the serious scenes, everything! I would highly recommend this to any rom-com fan.


  1. Hello. This is A.K.I.A. Talking…
    Thanks for the great review of Marriage, Not Dating! I enjoyed it a lot.
    I added it to my collection of reviews for the show. The show has now an average score of 85%.
    Here is a link to the page if you would like to give it a look:
    Thanks again for the review.

  2. My sentiments exactly,Great Review!


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