2012 came to an end for almost week now. Last year I returned to the dramas world, so here goes my updated biased list:
Current FAV Actresses
1) Ruby Lin – (since 1999 Princess Pearl II) – Home sweet home
I’m not a fan of women-focused palace scheming dramas, but I’ve finished Schemes of a Beauty and The Glamorous Imperial Concubine. That alone actually spoke of my love for Ruby and the productions because as a TVB regular, I couldn’t even move passed episode 1 for the popular War & Beauty and Beyond the Realm of Conscious. Her voice is fantastic for OSTs too.
2) Kim Ha Neul – (since 2002 Romance) – The best actress
Finally a romantic comedy TV series by Kim Ha Neul! I got to admit, I was way too hyped up for A Gentleman’s Dignity, because her co-star was the one and only Jang Dong Gun! Once you expected a lot, even if the drama turned out great (my #2 of 2012), something still felt lacking. What fell short? 1) Jang Dong Gun, my love from All About Eve, appeared like a perverted ahjusshi 12 years later. 2) KHN and JDG had to share screen time with 3 other couples.
KHN was hilarious as expected though! She got me into liking CNBLUE’s Step-by-Step, was that the title? lol! The drama got great OST!
3) Moon Chae Won – (since 2012 Nice Guy) – 2012 brightest actress
Unlike Gentleman, I came into Nice Guy not expecting much, except Song Joong Ki was cute on Running Man. I left Nice Guy totally in love with the new actress, the new actor, their characters, the couple, the plot, the drama as a whole, which ended up my #1 drama production of 2012. Been such a long time since I last immerse myself into a drama. If this drama lacked anything, it would be the lack of a memorial OST.
The fun of discovering a new favorite – you ended up with a must watch list. Thumb up for her other hit The Princess’ Man!
4) Niki Chow – (since 2006 Under the Canopy of Love) – Yey, she’s back!
Bottled Passion & Sergeant Tabloid were typical, yet pleasant TVB dramas.
5) Fala Chen – (since 2008 Moonlight Resonance) – Fighting Fala!
Queens of Diamonds and Hearts may appeared like another crappy TVB comedy, but I really enjoyed seeing a different side of Fala, who played Chung Mo Yim with a birth mark on her face.
I’m excited for her Triumph in the Sky 2 with Julian Cheung in 2013. I’m sorry for all her negative press from this filming and hope it won’t all affect her career. She’s one of few young TVB actresses with mature acting skill and willing to take on a variety of roles. I absolutely adore her independent mind, rather than being another TVB’s puppet. Fala has this classy lead actress vibe that reminds me so much of the original fa dans – Kenix Kwok, Ada Choi, Maggie Cheung and Jessica Hsuan. I hope she’ll be around for a long time!
6) Song Hye Kyo – (since 2000 Autumn in My Heart) – Where are you?
Although I’m trying to stay cool for her TV comeback That Winter, The Wind Blows in Feb 2013 with Jo In Sung, I’m totally excited. I miss SHK dearly.
7) Kim Tae Hee – (since 2004 Love Story in Harvard) – Korean goddess
I was watching KBS 2012 Drama Award and saw Lee Da Hae promoting IRIS 2. I decided to check out the original IRIS. What took me so long? Hardcore action drama isn’t my cup of tea. But hey, KTH and LBH were HOT together!!! That candy kiss was disgusting though. I miss KTH too!
8 ) Janine Chang – (since 2011 Sunny Happiness) – An underrated actress
Taiwanese dramas tend to be simple with recycled elements, yet it works perfectly for a romantic comedy viewer like myself. Sunny Happiness and Real Love Please Ring the Bell Twice were sweet.
9) Tang Thanh Ha – (since 2008 – Suddenly I Want to Cry) – SHE GOT MARRIED!!
Normally I’m very supportive of my favorites, but for once I am absolutely crushed that TTH got married in 2012! Why so early? It’s so difficult for VN to find a youthful actress who is comfortable in her own skin on-screen and off-screen. She’s beautiful inside out too. We finally discovered this flawless actress, yet the 26-year old actress left us with just 4 TV-dramas! The last production was back in 2008 too! I know TTH’s smart, but she doesn’t have to plan her career so wise – leaving at her peak. I wish her all the best.
10) Jin Se Yeon – (since 2012 Bridal Mask) – Most anticipated rookie of 2013
I was debating whether to put Shin Se Kyung or Jin SeYeon at #10. I knew them in 2012, and both gave me quite a fresh feeling.
Shin Se Kyung starred in Fashion King. The best thing and only thing right about the production was casting a fantastic bunch of young actors – Shin Se Kyung, Kwon Yuri (SNSD), Yoo Ah In and Lee He Joon. High Kick Through the Roof and Tree with Deep Roots were more of her representative works. I thought it was so anticlimax though; if you watch Chinese period dramas, when they’re preparing some top-secret activities, they’re training for some sort of big physical battle. Tree’s top secret was creating their own writing system, using words to represent themselves. It was cool!
In the end I keep Jin SeYeon at #10, not sure why really. I’m just more excited to see what the young actress has to offer in 2013.
The Forgotten: Kenix Kwok, Ada Choi, Maggie Cheung – Because they were a huge part of my childhood, I didn’t want to admit it. L
And, my ultimate bias – Girls’ Generation – I wouldn’t have returned to TV-dramas without them.