Thursday, February 13, 2014
YFAS: Not ready to let go
How does this show mix so much light and dark into one hour without setting off the eye-roll alarms? It should seem manic the way it swings from pain to punchline and back again. But I'm buying every minute. And wishing I could get my hands on the recipe, 'cause this angsty, alien fruitcake is too good to only enjoy once.
The thing I love about this show
No matter how hopeless the future looks, the script never forgets to mix in a heaping spoonful of humor. After a heartbreaking scene where Song-yi abandons Min-joon in the woods because she can't handle the one month expiration date on their relationship, we're treated to a sobfest sing-a-long in Se-mi's van. I credit the writer for inserting such a scene at the right moment to relieve the tension. And I double credit Jeon Ji-hyun for her ability to sell any situation and make it seem sincere, no matter how farcical the premise.
Keeping the in-laws happy
I dub this scene “Do Min-joon babysits Song-yi’s brother”. The way he humored an irate Yoon-jae like he was entertaining a five-year-old, and then bribed him with an offer of chocolate milk delighted me to no end. And the fact that this milk came in a juice box with a straw just added to my glee. All it took was one selfie with his fancy, high-powered telescope to turn “Stay away from my sister!” into “Hyung, she doesn’t deserve you”. I hope this isn’t the last we see of this duo because I can imagine all sorts of brother-sister squabbles as they fight over who gets to play with Do Min-joon today.
Petty superpowers for the win
I’ve already devoted an entire post to how awesome the superhero vibe of this show is. But how much fun was it to see Min-joon use his abilities to be the best Alien Boyfriend ever? Someone needed to teach that spiteful director a lesson as he made a woman WHO JUST GOT OUT OF THE HOSPITAL BECAUSE OF AN ACCIDENT ON HIS OWN FILM SET dive down a hill for take after take. I wish that mound our hero mind-pushed him off of had been a little taller, but at least his sadistic sidekick went tumbling down with him. And then the hilarious scene with Song-yi taking everyone to the cleaners in Go-Stop. Talk about a sore-winner. I wonder if she knew her superpowered boyfriend was stacking the deck? But the best part may have been the adoring smile on his face as he watched her enjoy her lucky streak. I’d trade in the flying, teleporting, time stopping extras any day, for a guy who would look at me like that, even when I'm being ridiculous.
The Sides are stepping up
I understand the necessity of giving extra screen time to the side characters as the story nears the finish. The stars must be exhausted from their copious scenes, and need someone else to share the burden. In so many other dramas, it feels shoehorned in, like a sudden romance for a co-worker that we don't even remember the name of. But I'm really enjoying the deeper storylines for Star's side characters. The little brother hijinks are totally floating my boat. And I am loving the new and improved Hwi-kyung. I'd actually be satisfied to watch him take down his brother, instead of our alien hero. I don't know why they refuse to flesh out Se-mi's character more. After Queen In-hyun's Man, we know Yoo In-na is totally capable of winning us over. I'd like redemption and a happy pairing for her and her longtime crush.
The most revealing epilogue, yet
So now we know that Song-yi makes it out of this show alive. I had my suspicions that we might be headed for some sort of double-death Romeo and Juliet climax mixed with a reincarnation They-Can-Be-Together-In-The-Next-Life cop out. But this epilogue showed us a hale and hearty Song-yi 100 days later. So that’s a little over two months after Min-joon’s scheduled departure. And she’s sitting in Namsan Tower waiting for someone. The obvious question is “Who?” I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a fake-out with her comic-book store friend arriving to keep her company as she sits there remembering her lost love from the stars. I really have no idea where this show is heading. Well, I have lots of ideas, but which one do I really want? If Min-joon misses the spaceship for the second time and chooses to remain on earth, he will still look like a baby-faced twenty-something when his significant other is a tottering senior citizen (a fact that was hilariously realized this week by a panicking Song-yi as she tried to slow down the aging process with face masks and hula hoops). As our age-obsessed actress so aptly put it, “That’s not a happy ending!” What if Song-yi decides to return to his planet with him? That somehow seems unlikely. Or our alien explorer could leave for home, find a magic pill that turns him human, catch the next new and improved comet back, and come walking into that restaurant as easy as pie. Yeah, that’s a total cop-out. I must have my happy ending! I just don’t know what it is.
Two weeks and still plenty of story left. But even if there wasn't, I imagine Jeon Ji-hyun could make a phone book sound brilliant, so I'm looking forward to our remaining time together. But when all is said and done, will I be able to let go?