Tuesday, November 24, 2020

My Dear Youth: The Coffee Prince Reunion

In the early years of Korean dramas making their way to the Philippines, one of the series that I completely fell in love with was the show First Shop of Coffee Prince, aka Coffee Prince. Starring Yoon Eun Hye and Gong Yoo, it was a love story that revolved around a coffee shop where the lead characters worked. It was a show that made me a fan not just of the story, but of the actors involved in the series as well. Naturally, I screamed with delight and excitement when I found out that they were doing a cast reunion.

Unfortunately, it was not the kind of reunion that I expected. I can’t say that I was surprised that it ended up the way it was given the current pandemic, but it was still disappointing. I would have loved to see the cast all together instead of being in three separate groups. Still, I cannot complain, it was still a reunion and it was still a nice look back into the show that I loved so many years ago.

Of course, Gong Yoo and Yoon Eun Hye were interviewed together (and separately) at the main location for the show, the coffee shop itself. They caught up with each other, looked back on scenes from the show (with them both cringing at their kissing scenes), and talked about their respective experiences as a result of being on the show. Similar setups were given for Lee Sun Gyun and Chae Jung An (at the home of Lee’s character in the show) and for Kim Dong Wook and Kim Jae Wook.

All the actors talked about how good of an experience it was to be on the show. I think part of the success of the show was because the actors all had a good working experience in the series. Every actor interviewed talked about how the show was like looking back on first love. While some of them were already actors at the time, it was this show that established and helped them to make a name for themselves in the industry. It was also good to see that all of them had gone on to good projects after the Coffee Prince, most notably the fact that Gong Yoo and Lee Sun Gyun have been part of movies that have become successful internationally (Train to Busan and Parasite, respectively).

One touching part was when they talked about Lee Eon, who passed away a little after the end of the show due to a vehicular accident. It was very obvious during the interviews that the cast were all very close to each other and was affected by his death. Gong Yoo even commented that he and Kim Jae Wook cried so much when Lee Eon died. He was still so young when he passed, it was such a shock when I heard the news back then. It was nice that they gave him a little tribute during the reunion show.

It was good to see Yoon Eun Hye and Gong Yoo together again. It would be nice if they could work together again soon. They had such good chemistry together in the show that I thought that they were a couple in real life. I remember watching a teaser for the reunion and both had commented on how they were both still single after all these years. Wouldn’t it be cute if by some twist of fate these two actually end up together in the end? I would like that, but a reunion project would be OK for me too.

Did any of you watch Coffee Prince back in the day? Did you get to see the reunion show? It’s on Viu right now! Go and check it out!


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