Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Disney+ Review: Snowdrop

One of the KDramas that is on Disney+ that I have heard a lot about is the show Snowdrop, which stars Blackpink member Jisoo. I was not sure at first if I wanted to watch the series because I thought it was a period drama. I can’t explain it, but period dramas, specifically dramas where characters are in costume in KDramas, is one sub-category that I cannot find much interest in. I’ve tried to start a couple, but I never finish them. I later found out that the drama was set in the 80s, and I realized it was not as period-ish as I thought so I went ahead and started watching it.

The show is set in 1987, with Jisoo’s character Yeongro as a college student living in an all-female dorm. She meets and falls in love with Sooho (played by Jung Haein), someone she met on a group blind date. One night, she finds him lying in her dorm room covered with blood and she assumes that he is a pro-democracy protester like her dorm mate and decides that she must help him and hide him from the authorities. She later finds out that not only is he NOT a protester, but he is a North Korean spy who was sent by their government to help certain South Korean officials to rig the elections in their favor in exchange for money. Finding himself trapped in her dorm with the other spies, Soohoo is left with no other choice but to take everyone hostage until they can find a way to escape back to North Korea.

From what I’ve read online, there were a couple of controversies about this show, with the biggest one being that the show tackled a period in history that led to the changes that resulted in the democratic form of government that they are using today. It was a sensitive period and people criticized the show for rewriting this critical part of history by saying that student protesters could actually be North Korean spies. As someone who is not that familiar with the history of South Korea, I agree with the point of view that by setting the story in this significant time in their history, it would be easy for someone like me to assume that while the story was fiction, that the historical parts could have been based on facts. Viewers could get the wrong idea about this part of history, even if they put disclaimers on it being a work of fiction. 

I wasn’t sure at first if I was going to like the drama but now that I think about it, Snowdrop was something that I found myself glued to from start to finish. It has such a good mix of elements in it: school drama, friendship and loyalty, family drama, government conspiracies, power struggles, and of course, romance.  I was also hooked on the theme song that played during the opening credits. By the final episode, I realized that I was already singing along to the song when it played to start the show.  Very catchy!

One of the things I enjoyed about the show was the fact that it featured some actors that I liked from other shows like Kim Mingue from Business Proposal, and two actors from one of my favorite KDramas, Missing: The Other Side, Heo Joonho and Song Geonhee (he only had a small but significant role though). I also liked that the writers were able to feature each character in such a way that viewers would either want to root for them or be happy to see them get the karma that they deserve in the end. It was also great the way the writers made viewers feel confused about what each character was going to do or where they were going to end up in the end. Not knowing who was the spy or who was going to betray or help everyone was part of what kept the show interesting. 

Given the North-South Korea Romeo and Juliet type of romance that the two leads have, it’s a given that I would compare this to Crash Landing on You. As sad as the ending of this show may have been, I felt that this ended on a more realistic note than Crash Landing on You. We all want that happy ending for the leads, but realistically speaking we all know from the start that a happily-ever-after was not going to happen for them.

While it was something that entertained me enough to watch from start to finish, given the heavy theme of this show I don’t think this is something that I would want to watch again in the future. I also would not recommend it to someone who wants to watch KDramas to feel good. It’s a good show, but that ending was just too sad for me to ever want to relive the experience of watching it.


No comments

Blog Layout Designed by pipdig