Sooo, I’ve really been feelin’ quite out of sorts about Big, the Mon-Tues drama starring Gong Yoo and Lee Min-jung. Now that I think about it, I had mixed feelings from the start. I’m a long-time Hong Sisters fan, so I was excited for their new drama. I hated Lee Min-jung’s character in Boys over Flowers but loved her in Cyrano Dating Agency. I wasn’t a Coffee Prince fanatic (I know, I know, how is that possible, right?) so I didn’t lean too heavily one way or the other for Gong Yoo. Suzy: hmm… the jury’s still out on her. Baek Sung-hyun: I’ve loved him since Damo and Stairway to Heaven days and think he’s defs underrated and underappreciated. Setup complete.
I fell HARD for Gong Yoo in the teasers and the first few episodes. Now get me straight: I shipped his Yoon-jae, not his Kyung-joon-in-Yoon-jae. Just something about the sweet, gentle, ever-so-slightly shy Yoon-jae gave me the tickles. As in “eeeek, aaaackk, oh my gawsh I wub him!” Why didn’t I ship the latter Gong Yoo? Student-teacher romances have never been my favorite. The age- and relationship-appropriateness factor are just kinda ick for me. But if done well, I’ll get on board (case in point: Gong Yoo and Gong Hyo-jin in Biscuit Teacher and Star Candy). Anyhoo, I was kinda offput by the Da-ran-Kyung-joon angle to begin with, but on top of that, I just didn’t feel that Kyung-joon was the same character pre- and post-soul-switch. Shin Won-ho isn’t the most polished actor, and his Kyung-joon was pretty aloof and… emotionless. Gong Yoo’s Kyung-joon is absolutely adorable in his immaturity, mischievousness, and underlying sweetness and vulnerability. The disconnect between the two portrayals was defs a stumbling block in developing my love for Big. And on top of that, I reaaally wanted Da-ran to end up with Yoon-jae. Three episodes into the drama, after learning that Yoon-jae had followed Da-ran around at the wedding, I was in serious problem-land.
I have a tendency to ship sinkers. As in Won Bin in Autumn Fairy Tale. Or Lee Jun-ki in My Girl. After having my heart broken too many times to count, I wised up. The female lead always ended up with the male lead. And the male lead was usually the more famous/popular actor. Commence happy days of shipping the OTP. Then comes along Big. I have noooo idea what the Hong Sisters have up their sleeve. I really love Yoon-jae and hope against reason that he’ll be the end game. But I have a verra strong feelin’ – okay, proof in the form of the official website’s relationship chart – that Kyung-jae (Kyung-joon inhabiting Yoon-jae) is the central character. So now what do I do? I can’t let go of Yoon-jae, but that takes away from the whole viewing experience, aka the joy of shipping the OTP. *sigh*
Nonetheless, I was enjoying myself. Immensely. Then Episodes 5 & 6 dropped the energy level, and I found myself today moving Episodes 7-10 to my external hard drive – unwatched. Gasp! How had I skipped two whole weeks, four whole episodes, of Big without realizing it?! I mean, yes, The Chaser has been rocking the Mon-Tues scene the last 6 weeks, but that’s certainly no excuse!
Big is starting to wind down, and the last couple minutes of Episode 11 have me semi-hooked again. But I’m not quite feelin’ it like I used to, and I don’t know who/what to blame. What went wrong? I’ll be tunin’ in for the last few weeks, but I may just be skimming half-heartedly, and that makes me sad. I’m sad Big is not doing too well ratings-wise, especially for Gong Yoo’s sake because he’s been marvelous. And I’m sad I’m not liking this one as much as I want to. Overall, a very coorrnfused and sad panda.