Some families talk about politics and social issues when they gather. Mine talks about celebrity gossip and drama updates. (Don’t judge! It’s a way for us to de-stress!)
I wanted to welcome you all to the most recent Sunday brunch conversation between me and my mom, Mama Blue. This is a transcript of an actual conversation between Blue and Mama Blue on Sunday, February 20, 2011. The original conversation was in Korean, but has been translated into English for this blog. Please note that certain parts of the conversation were omitted for irrelevance. (Warning: there may be drama spoilers ahead. Approach with caution.) Sit back, relax, and enjoy!
(Episode 15 of Athena playing on the laptop that is sitting on top of the kitchen table)
Blue (B): Athena? Why are we watching this?
Mama Blue (M): There was nothing to watch. I just turned on one of the later episodes to see what has been going on with this drama. Anyway, who’s the villain here?
B: Cha Seung Won. And the last time I checked, Soo Ae was the mole. Not sure if she’s still the villain. (looking at the screen.) Man, this drama sure bombed.
M: That’s too bad for Jung Woo Sung.
B: From what I’ve seen, he wasn’t that good. But after making a rare drama comeback, it must hurt.
(car explosions on screen)
M: Well, they sure didn’t scrimp on money.
B: It would have been better spent on hiring a better writer.
M: It must be hard for this genre to make a hit in Korea. Except for Lee Byung Hun, everyone failed, including Rain and Jung Woo Sung.
B: That’s because Korea’s doing a bad job on making the story compelling. American dramas like 24 and Alias were hugely successful, not only because of the special effects and explosions, but the story was just more grabbing. By the way, there’s going to be another of this type of drama starring Lee Min Ho.
M: Who? The kid?
B: Umm, the kid?
M: That boy from Boys Over Flowers.
B: He’s in his 20s. He’s hardly a “kid.”
M: He’s a kid. Besides, I never cared for him. It was you who kept talking about how talented he was.
B: I see now how raw his acting actually is, but he’s not too bad for his age. By the way, how was President? (Note: My mom had just finished watching episode 18 of President earlier that morning.)
M: Ah, it was very good.
B: What happened?
M: Same old. But it was just good. Oh, they now know that he’s Choi Soo Jong’s son. (pause) Did you finish What’s Up Fox last night?
B: Yup. I stayed up late to finish it. The ending was bleh (시시해), but overall, I really liked it. See, I almost ended up never watching it because you told me it sucked.
M: I never said it sucked. I just said it was okay.
B: It was cute, and definitely better than any of the rom-coms playing right now. Why haven’t we gotten any good romantic comedy dramas lately? It was miles better than Secret Garden or My Princess. (pause) You know, I didn’t think Go Hyun Jung looked particularly pretty in the drama. I think she looks better now, but she’s definitely 복스럽게 생겼어. (Note: Literally means “looks like she would have good fortune.” Used to describe someone with a cute face with round cheeks. Historically fit Korea’s standard of beauty, and Korean elders used to say such a face brings good fortune to everyone around her.)
M: Back then, I didn’t think she would end up being such a top star as she is now. That woman has had such a fancy life… having been married to a chaebol and now living her life as a top star.
B: So true. What a life. And she was Miss Korea too. Wasn’t she the first runner-up?
M: Yeah, I think you’re right, and Oh Hyun Kyung won that year.
B: You know, I read a poll that people voted Oh Hyun Kyung and Lee Honey as the most beautiful Miss Korea winners of all time.
M: I didn’t think Oh Hyun Kyung was that pretty.
B: Not anymore after all the stress that she’s gone through, but I did think she was when she first debuted. I remember you thought otherwise even back then. (pause) Anyway, so yeah, Go Hyun Jung was a top star before getting married, then married into the richest family in Korea, got divorced and rose to receive top star status once she returned to show biz. Man, what a life!
M: You think she was a top star before getting married?
B: You don’t think so? She was definitely one of the most popular young actresses, and then she got married at the peak of her fame immediately after Sandglass.
M: Hmm, that’s true. But I don’t understand why she is being regarded as such a top star now?
B: I don’t know. Probably because of Queen Seon Deok? And besides, she was a former Samsung family member. People would have to treat her with respect.
B: OMG, Chun Jung Myung is so adorable! Who knew? I can now see why he’s an actor-material. (Note: My mom has always commented that his physical appearance is too “average” to be an actor.)
M: He has country boy looks.
B: But he has a small face and is so tall. What kind of a country boy looks like that?
M: If you go to the Korean countryside, all the boys look like that.
B: What?! Which countryside are you talking about?! Because surely there can’t be Chun Jung Myung look-a-likes roaming around in herds in the Korean countryside. If there are, I’m moving there.
M: I’m just saying he doesn’t have the chic city boy look. Not necessarily a bad thing.
B: Who has the chic city boy look then? So Ji Sub? I think Yoo Seung Ho does. Song Seung Hun? Definitely not his name…
M: What was his name again? Song Seung Byun?
B: Song Seung Bok.
M: Oh, man! That name doesn’t suit him at all.
B: What were his parents thinking when they named him that?! That’s just cruel. But you know, he’s a good looking guy. And Kim Tae Hee, she is pretty after all.
M: After all? She’s acknowledged by everyone for her looks. It was you who kept saying you don’t understand why everyone praises her looks.
B: I never said she wasn’t pretty, but that she just doesn’t have maeryuk (charm). Her bad acting didn’t help. But I must admit she’s cute, and I was wrong.
M: It’s amazing how much her acting improved.
B: I know! I really thought she was one of those who have no hope, like Jeon Ji Hyun or Kim Hee Sun. I thought Song Seung Hun improved as well, just not as much as her. But grrr, he’s still twitching his head every time he tries to emote! It’s sooo annoying!
M: It’s surprising no one advised him not to do that.
B: Guess no one would dare to correct a “Hallyu” star. Hmph.
M: By the way, speaking of Chun Jung Myung, isn’t he in a new drama?
B: A sageuk. The Duo. You saw the first episode, remember?
M: Oh, that’s right. I remember now. By the way, you can switch the show if you want.
B: Yeah, I don’t think I want to watch this anymore. What should we watch? Are you up for a drama or a variety show?
M: Which drama?
B: How about the gisaeng drama?
M: Anything but that.
B: C’mon, it’s not THAT bad. (turns on Running Man)
M: What’s this?
B: It’s a show with Yu Jae Suk.
M: Is it new?
B: It’s been on for several months now, but I’ve only watched a couple of episodes myself. I just wanted to see who’s the guest for this week.
(The guest is Hyun Young.)
B: I don’t care too much for her. It seems like she’s lost much of her popularity after she broke up with Kim Jong Min.
M: Why did those two break up anyway?
B: How am I supposed to know?! But I’ve always got the feeling that he broke up with her.
M: Why do you say that? I think she broke up with him. (pause) Whose voice was that?
B: The one who just spoke? It was Haha. He’s on the show.
M: He sounds exactly like MC Mong. So not only do they look alike, they sound alike too.
B: And they’re best friends. MC Mong should have just gone to the army like his friend did. See, Haha came back from the army and returned right back to Infinite Challenge. 1 Night 2 Days would have likely just accepted him back once he returned from the army like they did with Kim Jong Min. You know who’s timed his departure for military duty well? Hyun Bin. He’s leaving after a huge hit. That’s the best way to leave to ensure that your return would be highly anticipated.
M: Is he really that popular right now? Why? Because of his 문자왔숑 (“you have a message”)?
B: Hahaha, not just because of that but because of the entire Secret Garden craze. They’re all like Hyun Bin this, Hyun Bin that, Joowon this, Joowon that. Everyone except you and me went crazy about that show, it seems.
M: I don’t get it, but your aunt said she liked the show too.
B: Bella was in love with that show as well. I thought the final three episodes were very well done, and I re-watched the first couple of episodes and liked it a lot better the second time around. I think I might have been too harsh on the show, honestly.
M: You know who ruined that show for me? You did!
B: What did I do?
M: You told me that the drama was about soul-swapping, and you gave me the impression that it wasn’t very good so I started the series with initial prejudice against it.
B: You asked me what the drama was about, and I just said it’s about soul-swapping. You asked, and I just answered.
M: Don’t answer next time.
B: Well, then don’t ask!
M: You know, I was watching Entertainment Weekly show yesterday, and Hyun Bin did not look so skinny when he did that movie with Tang Wei.
B: No, he definitely didn’t look like that last year (or was it two years ago?) in Friend either. He just suddenly started looking like that in time for Secret Garden. If the rumors are true that he and Song Hye Kyo broke up, perhaps he lost the weight from being stressed or upset about the break up.
M: Are they still not being seen with each other?
B: In an interview, Hyun Bin was asked, “Of course your ideal woman is someone like your current girlfrend, Song Hye Kyo?” And he said “Sure. Of course.” (Note: His exact words were “그렇죠. 아무래도.” It carries a slightly different innuendo from the English translation, which is hard to get across.)
M: What a wishy-washy answer. It was obviously a fishing question to test his response to the breakup rumors.
B: I mean, if they really did break up, what else could he have said without actually acknowledging that they did break up. If they did break up, it’s obvious they would wait to announce after he’s left for his military duty to keep the media frenzy down as much as possible.
M: The other alternative is to not answer and just smile.
B: C’mon, mom. Not answering or “no commenting” at that point is to acknowledge that you’ve broken up.
M: Guess you’re right.
Man, we Blue women gossip a lot! We can never seem to stay on one topic!