Monday, August 18, 2014

Surplus Princess Episode 1 – A Fanfic Made Real

Ever wonder what a good fanfic story would look like if it were ever made into a drama?  Oh boy it would look very much like the first episode of this drama.  My daughter, Panda, and I settled in to watch this show and I don’t think she’s recovered as there’s so much to squee and laugh over.  There are a lot of references to pop-culture from Western and Eastern media so I’m sure I didn’t catch it all.  Feel free to point out the ones I missed as I would definitely like to know.  Ok… On with the show!

The Ending is the Beginning:

We start with a lone woman on a beach barefoot at sunset.  She is reminiscing about her last 100 days, the happy memories and friends.  In a somber voice over she asks us if we are curious about why she’s standing there.  She says she’ll tell us as we see her hand clasp that of a man’s as she slowly dissolves into bubbles {fade out with Goodbye and some sad strings}.  Did I also mention that this is a retelling of The Little Mermaid Tale?  No?  Oh! My bad! OOPS!

 {Queue peppy music and animated title screen to the Han River}

Our main character is swimming and narrating that there are lots of creatures in the sea unknown to mankind but there’s one important thing missing.  A male human for her to fall in love with. She introduces herself as Aileen, the 18th mermaid (played by Jo Bo Ah).  She’s into human smartphones (you know they are waterproof these days and she’s got a sweet one on a lanyard around her neck), celebrities, online shopping, fashion, dramas, movies, food, etc. [she’s a fangirl like me.  I like her already].

Turns out she’s a stalker and she’s been checking out this guy for six months now.  “The hottest guy on earth”, “Perfect Face”, “Perfect Body”, and an apple bottom that she wants to bite [me too, I seem to have a craving for an apple right now]. 

Her ogling of him is interrupted by the slow-mo entrance of a staffer calling out to Mr. Apple Butt who is the celebrity chef Kwon Shi Kyung (played by Song Jae Rim).  Queue back to back scenes of him preparing and cooking a very tasty looking fish as a film crew records him.  It seems to go well until he notices a missing table mat and halts filming.  He’s about ready to call it quits for the day until said staffer tears off a piece of her lace skirt to make an impromptu piece for him.  He calls for everything to be reset and he goes out onto the boat to take a break while they set up for the next shoot. 

Aileen is fine with this as he’s now closer and she can get a better look at his butt [girl after my own heart]. This sets the scene for her to duck into the water when he almost spots her. He does catch her tail breaking the water when she dives a second time.  He thinks it’s a tuna and goes to snap a picture with his phone only to lose his balance and he slips, knocking his head before falling into the water unconscious.

She goes to rescue him but not before snagging his cell and stuffing it down her top.  She proceeds to kiss him and, thanks to this being a cable drama, it’s not the press your lips variety but with tongue action.  Her reaction is priceless! "Oh yeeees!" complete with hand grab to that yummy apple butt. 

But all good things come to an end and this steamy kiss is interrupted as Shi Kyung is “rescued” by the staffer.  Aileen looks up with longing as he is pulled away to “safety”.

We move scenes to a house with the sign Surplus House posted out front (clue in on how the show’s title comes into play) which turns out to be a share house. [SIDE NOTE:  For those unfamiliar with the term, a share house is basically a house in which you live with roommates and you share the main facilities.  Sort of like a boarding house.]

We pan through a room with motivational notes posted all over the place like “Let’s get a job, Lee Hyun Myung!”, “Annual income of 60,000!”, “Don’t give up”, etc.  The room’s occupant is typing out his story.  Meet Lee Hyun Myung (played by Ohn Joo Wan).  He is a three-year veteran of job hunting who can write 70 cover letters in one sitting. During this whole scene he is “composing” [he’s typing on the keyboard like it’s a piano and can I say I was giggling through it all] his latest work as classical music is playing in the background.  Aileen, in voiceover, introduces him as an "Expert Autobiography Fabricator" and someone she was meant to meet [dun dun dun]. As he finishes we hear slow clapping and Aileen introduces her at “that witch from earlier”, Yoon Jin Ah (played by Park Ji Soo).  She’s the staffer from the previous scene.

Apparently she is Hyun Myung’s girlfriend.  He tries unsuccessfully to initiate skinship but she fends him off with the excuse that she’s got to pack as the movers are coming in the morning.  They are interrupted by the other share house roommates when she is called downstairs and presented with a cake made of Choco Pies and a congratulatory song about her leaving the house. Aileen continues her introduction of the other occupants of the house.

First up are the three etceteras. Do Ji Yong (played by Kim Min Kyo) who is an Ivy League School graduate but ruined his life with playing video games.  Next is Big (played by Nam Joo Hyuk) and Aileen says his real name is a secret.

Then there is the owner, Lee Sun Kyu (the actor has the same name as his character?).  She introduces the final roommate (played by Kim Seul Gi) with “I. Won’t. Tell. You.” It’s plain that this roommate does not like Jin Ah at all as she passes by and gives her the cold shoulder bump.

Afterwards the three male roommates are taking bets on Hyun Myung and Jin Ah breaking up which looks like a sure fire deal after we see her shrug him off to take a call from Shi Kyung.  Hyun Myung muses that it seems like they are separating even though she is just moving across the river.

We move onto one of K-Drama’s prerequisite scenes.  The brooding in the shower with the half-nekkid man and as Aileen put it earlier, Oh yeeees!  Shi Kyung is thinking about that underwater kiss and is wondering if he dreamt it up.  When a delivery man shows up with his newly cleaned clothes, he’s given a shiny bit of something that looks valuable they found while cleaning it.  Flash over to Aileen and it turns out that said shiny bit was one of her scales that came loose.  It’s really cute that she uses a starfish as a band-aide. [He he he]

Aileen is attempting to get into his phone and when she does she goes gaga all over the pictures on it.  She insists to herself that this is not an invasion of privacy as she is just attempting to get information to return the phone to its owner [riiiiiiiiiiiight].  She gets a Tweet alert and it’s Mr. Apple Butt stating "It was love. I want to find her and my cell." [OMO]

When she intercepts an invite on Mr. Apple Butt’s phone for a swanky party (O M G the ad for it is über cheesy) she decides she needs a pair of legs to attend.  Can’t dance on a tail ya know! 

We next see her swimming towards a multicolored cove and someone is humming Disney’s “Part of Your World”.  There are a bazillion wine bottles floating around and here we meet Aileen’s unnie, Sevelyn the 17th mermaid who apparently is a huge lush.  Apparently Sevelyn as she had let slip that her friend Prilly had managed to become human after finding out how to do so from her and Aileen tries to begs for unnie to tell her how.  With much begging and the promise of a purchase of Ballantine's 30 Year Old she’s told the secret.  Aileen must look for Ahn Ma Nyeo who turns out to be a creepy looking man in a hooded trench coat.  Ma Nyeo denies having any potion that would turn her human (as he clutches his belt conspicuously) and sends her away as he exits in a cheesy way [sooo cheesy].

The next morning finds us in Jin Ah’s new apartment as Hyun Myung stops by to help.  In the midst of their horseplay her mom pops in and she stuffs him in a closet [boy oh boy is he ‘flexible’].  Ms. Mom lectures Jin Ah to drop her loser of a boyfriend and hook up with one of the men in the building since they have six figure salaries here.  It’s why she got the place for her to begin with.  Hyun Myung topples out, excuses himself and leaves [aww].

Later that night he’s fielding one rejection text after another as his roommates are pestering him when he gets a text for a second interview.  Celebrations all around!

Meanwhile, Jin Ah “coincidentally” runs into Shi Kyung while she’s out running.  He ignores her for the most part until they share an elevator at the apartment building.  He apologizes to her since he tends not to notice people when he’s concentrating on something.  He even offers her thanks for the save and quick thinking that day.  Jin Ah tells him she just moved into the building (flash back to her seeing him while she and her mom were out looking for a place and she insists on moving in here…)  [Uh Oh. That scheming little wench!]  After she exits on her floor we see him look at his reflection and there’s this ominous vibe I’m getting [shudders].

Switch to the etceteras giving Hyun Myung interview tips to help him get the job.  It’s adorbs but he ends up having a nightmare involving his heart bursting at the interview [ewww].  He spends the rest of the night practicing.  As he’s walking to his interview the next morning he calls Jin Ah and cheerly tells her all of the things he’ll buy but she hangs up on him when she spots Shi Kyung missing the bit about a proposal from Hyun Myung.  He greets her this time and even mentions that he prefers her previous perfume to the one she’s wearing now.  As Jin Ah and another co-worker are gabbing about the encounter {queue in the opening song to the anime Attack on Titan} their supervisor peers over the cubical partition (like one of the colossal titans from that anime) to scold them. [This is when my daughter, Panda, fell out of her chair laughing so hard]

Meanwhile, Aileen has been camping out at Ma Nyeo’s stopping grounds waiting to bribe him with an antique vase and a crude ton of pearls.  She ends up mugging him and near drowning him for the ‘potion’ when he proves uncooperative. 

Ma Nyeo begs her not to drink it as he cries that it’s not the potion.  Of course she ignores him completely and  proceeds to down said pilfered potion and we queue in the transformation from mermaid to human à la Sailor Moon style.

She then plummets to earth like a comet and we pan to her crouched like a terminator.

...  [bwa ha ha ha ha ha ha]

1 comment:

  1. So Excited to read the next recap. Very fun drama!


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