This review has been pending for AGES. I have all the notes, I spoke to my friends and gathered their opinions on the show and got all the points ready. All I had left was to actually write the review.
Anyway, hi y’all! I absolutely ADORED Strong Woman Do Bong Soon and I can’t wait to completely dive into this review. So let’s get to it.
What is this drama about?
Do Bong-soon comes from a line of really strong women and is SUPER strong herself. She can lift cars and throw people into air with ease. The legend is that if the women use their strength for selfish reasons, they lose their power. They’re supposed to use it for good.
Until now, Bong-soon has only been using her power to the minimum, working mostly on being normal.
This drama is about Bong-soon who is now losing control of her powers, has taken the job to protect a CEO, and is crushing real bad on her high school friend.
While Bong-soon works as a bodyguard or the cute AF CEO of Ainsoft, Ahn Min-hyuk, romance buds between the two and it’s THE CUTEST THING EVER.
But there’s also a thriller element with women being kidnapped & disappearing without a trace. The police team, which includes Bong-soon’s crush In Guk-doo, have a hard time finding clues. Bong-soon gets involved with the case and vows to find the culprit.
What I loved:
- DO BONG-SOON. What a cutie. Few minutes into the show and I was already laughing to tears. She’s short & cute but when she uses her strength it’s so contradicting that it’s bloody hilarious.
- Ahn Min-hyuk, CEO & cuteness extraordinaire. He is the PERFECT romantic interest for Bong-soon. It didn’t take long for me to become invested in him. He was equally prominent on screen as Bong-soon.
- The romance, though. Even though she likes In Guk-doo in the beginning, she starts having feelings for Min-hyuk (who already liked her loads by then) and it was TOO ADORABLE. My heart could not take their relationship. Too good.
- Amongst Strong Woman fans, the two are knows as the “puppy couple”* and it describes it all.
- In Guk-doo was second to only Min-hyuk. I would have had a major crush on him right from the start if Min-hyuk was less prominent.
- The kidnapping storyline made the show more than just romance. Guk-doo, Bong-soon and Min-hyuk all follow the serial kidnapping incidents and try to find the culprit.
- Other than that, there was also a minor storyline of Min-hyuk receiving death threats and being the victim of murder attempts.
- One thing I really liked was the emotions shown in the drama. They came out well. Specifically, I loved the portrayal of emotional vulnerability. It was done really well, in all of the characters.
- Every Kdrama I’ve watched so far have had comedy elements, big or small, and Strong Woman was no different. But I do want to mention that the comedy is a HUGE part of the show. It takes up a lot of the time and it’s hilarious.
- The ending scene in 15th episode, which is THE MOST IMPORTANT scene, was done damn well. I loved all the badassness (yes I’m making new words now).
*point written specifically for my friend Sabby.
What I did not like:
- While the thriller part was a good addition, the scene & the vibe changes weren’t handled well. There would be dark and creepy vibe and suddenly when the scene changed, we got happy and cutesy vibes. So sudden that it was disconcerting.
- In fact, the vibe change was a recurring thing. Every time there’s a thriller scene, it suddenly ends and we’re back to cutesy AF things.
- Bong-soon’s mother. Oh god I HATED this character’s existence. At least the villain is required but WHY HER. She’s very partial towards Bong-soon’s twin brother Bong-ki, only gossips with her “friends”, leaving her husband to manage their store alone and also abuses him. She also talks bad about him.
- There was some explanation (if you can call it that) about her behaviour at the end to kind of “redeem” her, it wasn’t enough. She is a bitter woman who lost her powers due to selfishness.
- While Bong-soon liking Min-hyuk was cute and all, we didn’t actually get to see her feeling for him develop. We saw him like her and suddenly at one point she liked him too.
- The plot line following Bong-ki, Guk-doo and Guk-doo’s girlfriend was VERY UNNECESSARY. I hated it.
- I also didn’t like how the drama ended for Bong-ki and Guk-doo. Was dissatisfying.
- There were TWO love triangles overall and BOTH got on my nerves.
- I’ve noticed that a lot of Kdramas focus at least a little bit on the supporting characters. It makes the story wholesome but is sometimes wasteful. In Strong Woman, almost all focus on supporting characters was boring. And unnecessary. There were RANDOM characters just thrown in. I was completely uninterested.
- The drama would have been much shorter and to the point without all the unnecessary things.
- There was one “Indian” character and he was SO NOT ACCURATE to facts at all, starting with his name. I was so annoyed by that. Shows how much research was done.
- Some parts too damn cheesy. I mean, my bar for extra cheese is low but I do think that they could have been low. The dialogues did not come out well too.
- The intensive romance parts were weird. I’m assuming they tried for a sexy mood, if I can it that, but it was weird in the middle of all cute vibes.
- The police team who were investigating were useless. It was supposed to come out as policemen who lazed around but got things done in the end, but I saw nothing get done.
- Even Guk-doo was like “I’m such a good detective” and felt superior to the lazy ones but couldn’t think straight and get work done.
Do Bong-soon, played by Park Bo-young, was THE BEST. She cute and small but super strong and has a very out-there personality. She was awesome as the main character.
She’s damn strong, not that smart academically, is bold sometimes and very shy during other times. She’s also SUPER CUTE when she’s crushing. It’s all stars, heavenly backlit crushes and romantic music.
Her dream is to design a game character who’s like her, and that’s the reason she ends up guarding the CEO of Ainsoft, a game company.
Her personality growth throughout the show was really nice as well.
Park Hyung-sik acted brilliantly as Ahn Min-hyuk. I cannot imagine any another actor in his place.
Ahn Min-hyuk is the CEO of a game design company called Ainsoft. He has an estranged relationship with his family, who are also rich. His dad is actually head of a string of companies and is powerful but Min-hyuk left and started Ainsoft from scratch.
I’m sad that Min-hyuk’s determined and resilient personality was not brought out much. It could have added so much to his character.
He’s also damn cute and funny, setting well with the drama’s main theme. For the first time I actually saw a guy head over heels for a girl and act like it. That was refreshing.
In Guk-doo, played by Ji Soo, was a compelling lead. He wasn’t another cute character. He was more edgy and rude. I actually went on to watch another drama starring Ji Soo because I liked his acting so much.
Ji Soo is a policeman and is transferred to the department that is assigned the serial kidnapping case. He tries to be a good policeman and a good boyfriend. The main reason I like his character is because his vulnerability was brought out well at the right points.
There were SEVERAL supporting characters, and I cannot get into all of them. They were fine enough but as I said before, way too much focus on unnecessary characters.
The music SET THE MOOD. The selections were perfect for the show and the scenes. I really like the soundtrack.
Here are my favourites:
Discussion (INCLUDES SPOILERS)
If you don’t want to get spoiled, click here to skip to the “overall” concluding section.
Okay FINALLY. I have so much to talk about in this section.
What a stupid ending for Bong-ki and Guk-doo! They just end saying that people like them drift from people to people while really few people find their happily ever after and ?? that’s so negative ??? At least have hope?! What shit.
I did not give a hoot about the goons/construction workers. WHY did we have so much focus on them?! That too they had to make it worse by adding Nizamuddin, an “Indian” monk, and making him throw water on them to cleanse them. Ugh.
I’m disappointed that we saw Bong-soon showing way more feelings for Guk-doo than Min-hyuk. With Guk-doo, she was always melted and crushing hard but that wasn’t much with Min-hyuk. It was mostly Min-hyuk crushing on her and having butterflies. It’s true that she was crushing on Guk-doo for most of the show, but still.
I have mixed feelings about Min-hyuk’s complicated dynamic with his family. The part about his favourite brother and him forgiving him was nice but the rest of the family could go off. Okay maybe the dad can stay but overall it was so-so.
The bomb scene gave SO MUCH EXPECTATIONS and ended very lame. It was also immediately followed by a cute scene, which was a weird and sudden vibe change.
So yeah that.
Now, let’s get to plot holes.
- It was a BOMB. How did it explode into FIREWORKS when Bong-soon threw it into the sky. It should have been only one explosion.
- How the hell were there no repercussions? The whole building had to be evacuated due to the threat and it was a huge thing. Yet there was no extra security added the next day or news coverage etc. There wasn’t even concern from Bong-soon’s family.
- The legend said that the strong women cannot be selfish and hurt innocent people otherwise they’d lose their powers. But in the first episode Bong-soon hurt Min-hyuk’s assistant and BROKE HIS TAILBONE, which caused him to be in the hospital for a long time. How did that not count.
Oh also, the epilogue!
That was damn stretched. We had the epilogue for a WHOLE EPISODE. It was cute and all but it went overboard. I agree that they wanted to give a happy ending but I could have done without a lot of it. It felt very filler.
Despite there bring more negatives than positives, I actually really liked the drama.
You should watch it because it
- does a real solid on comedy and
- is super cute.
A friend asked me why the show is so popular if it has many bad points. It’s because even though the direction hadn’t been done well, the main characters themselves and the main plot (on it’s own without the several small supporting characters) were pretty good.
If you’re in the mood for something really cute that’ll give all the happy feels, watch this. It’s kinda similar to the chick lit genre of books.