KDRAMALOVE KOREAN DRAMA REVIEWS

Perhaps Love
사랑한다면 이들처럼 (2008) MNet and SBS 4 Episodes
Romance, Grade: B



Korean Drama Review by Jill, USA

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Perhaps Love (2008) is a movingly bittersweet - but admittedly nothing too original - Korean drama that was only 4 episodes long, so it won't take up much of your time, yet it still will entertain you and make you feel close to the characters. I suspect it was created as a sympathetic acting vehicle for the popular singer Hyo Ri Lee, and she does give a nice performance here as a young lady who finds love in an unexpected place (a hospital!). Her male co-star, Dong Gun Lee, is also a singer and Hallyu star actor with a lot more acting experience (Stained Glass, Friends, Ruler Of Your Own World, Super Daddy 10, Lovers In Paris) and they are both joined with fellow cast member, enigmatic actor Joon Ho Jung (who was so chilling a year later as Byung Hun Lee's rival in IRIS), as the young lady's shady business manager.

I read on one website that this drama was banned in Korea for "various violations" but what those were I have no idea, they weren't stipulated. I suspect that whatever they were they were ultimately resolved, for the video files I downloaded for this show on Dramaload.com had the MNet TV logo Station 12 in Korea plainly shown in the top right hand corner (which I conveniently removed for my own homemade DVD version!), so someone recorded them off television at some point. Other websites also state that the drama was shown on station SBS as well (if you click on the link you'll see the webpage is still up!). Perhaps the "violations" were of a technical nature, not artistic, and once they were taken care of the drama was then permitted to be broadcast, on two different stations no less.



The Story: Na Lee (Hyo Ri Lee) plays a professional singer (of course!) who has hidden her true identity by wearing various disguises while performing, but she is about to reveal her face for the first time on a nationwide broadcast when she suddenly faints in the lady's room, allowing another singer to take her place on stage. When that woman's face is revealed during the performance everyone assumes that it's Na Lee. This other woman becomes a hit instead!

Na Lee is rushed to the local hospital and is eventually discovered to suffer from leukemia. While she is being wheeled into the emergency room a male patient named Tae Jung (Dong Gun Lee) is wheeled in unconscious at the same time and their hands touch briefly as their gurneys are moved within close proximity to one another. Tae Jung is a loan shark who was holding onto a briefcase loaded with money when the department store he was in suddenly began collapsing. It took rescuers a week to find him alive under all the rubble - the briefcase filled with money is missing! - and he becomes a media sensation when he is discovered. While in the hospital recovering from his wounds, his doctor informs Tae Jung that he has been diagnosed with an inoperable cancerous tumor, and he has only a short time to live. The news devastates him, but after he begs the doctor to try and save him and receives an answer that it is not possible, he stoically comes to terms with his fate and determines to live out the rest of his life fully and beautifully, away from the loan shark lifestyle that had corrupted him.

Ironically, Na Lee's and Tae Jung's hospital rooms are right next to one another. As both Na Lee and Tae Jung try to recover they happen to meet on the rooftop of the hospital and begin chatting and getting to know one another; it's pretty obvious he is attracted to her immediately but she takes a while to warm to him (he seems too forward to her at first, which puts her on her guard). When both are released from the hospital they begin to spend a lot of time together doing fun things, and relaxing together during road trips. In one amazing sequence they actually go bungee jumping together (with Rod Stewart's great version of It's A Heartache playing in the background). Yikes! I think my jaw dropped to the floor during that scene, it scared the life out of me because there was no warning that they were going to do it (but it also gave me goosebumps because it was so beautiful).





Problems and people from their past do tragically intervene on their new-found happiness (for instance, Tae Jung's boss wants that money back that went missing in the building collapse, and Na Lee's manager becomes jealous of her new relationship with Tae Jung). At least one person in this love relationship is destined not to make it. You never doubt, however, that this couple truly love one another and it's heartwarming to see them create their own little emotional love nest together, knowing their time together is short.

I never expected going in to it that this 4 episode, rather simple K-drama would be the best show I ever saw, but I still enjoyed it. Some of the nicest scenes are of Hyo Ri Lee singing songs in English. If you like these actors definitely check it out on
Dramaload.com.



Where's our handsome fellow? I know he's under there somewhere!

My ONLY real criticism of this show has nothing to do with the story line or its production values, but rather with how actor Dong Gun Lee's appearance comes across as an unkempt, disheveled, scruffy, and rather klutzy character. This actor is physically gorgeous to look at, he's smooth, he's sophisticated in real life, and I think the producers did a great disservice to him by making him look like he never bathed, got a haircut or shaved during this show. I kept blinking at the screen, trying to find that handsome man that I knew was there underneath the ragged appearance! Other comments I've read from people who have watched this show say the same thing. If someone is that good-looking, please don't hide it! The audience will feel deprived, and you don't want that when putting on a show! :)