"Hwarang" is in every way as fun and lively as it was promoted to be. There is a touch of gravity to even out the levity and many of the flower boys have been introduced. Director Yoon Seong-sik ("Bridal Mask", "Lee Soon-sin is the Best", "The King's Face") delivers fresh cinematography while drama special writer Park Eun-yeong-I definitely has a touch for trendy dialogue and writing.
Park Seo-joon is charming as Moo-myeong is as charming as always with a touch of comedic. Joining him is Lee Kwang-soo as Mak-moon who is the master of physical comedy and together they make up a silly pair who steal into the capital to find Mak-moon's family. It starts an adventure inside the insulated capital where the first meet-cute between Moo Myeong and Aro (Go Ara) takes place and we trickle through meetings with the flower bloys Soo-ho (SHINee's Minho), Ban-ryu (Do Ji-han), and the young king (Park Hyung-sik). We meet the rather one dimensional power-hungry queen, Ji-so (Kim Ji-soo), and the man who gathers the flower boys, Wi Hwa-gong (Sung Dong-il). All of the introductions are pretty typical of fusion sageuk, complete with K-pop in the background, testy beautiful men, a couple of fights and showing off how amazing they are.
The main intrigue is between a group called True Bones and those who are not. Queen Ji-so wishes to retain power and is emotionally withholding towards her son. This is most definitely a key point to be played on and the future presence of a legion of flower boy guards for the young king will definitely develop that. Go Ara is a poor story teller who is working to make ends meet, but she is, too, a True Bone so with many happenstance meetings, she will likely be drawn into the central intrigue. We have yet to meet a few of the promoted characters, but we have met idol V in his acting debut, which is sure to make many BTS Army fans happy (including me!)
For a first episode, this was pretty typical in terms of writing and execution. This does not mean that it wasn't entertaining. It was very entertaining. I just hope for more development starting next week. I'm anticipating this week to be purely plot set up and showing off the beauty of the boys.
Written by: Lisa Espinosa AKA Raine from 'Raine's Dichotomy'
Note : due to licensing, videos may not be available in your country
Journalist, drama lover, and foodie, Lisa enjoys exploring Korea, speaking the language, and soaking in all that dramaland has to offer. Her Korean husband laughs that she knows more than he ever will about dramas and K-pop. Lisa Espinosa can be contacted via email@example.com.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Hwarang" Episode 1"
by HanCinema is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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