Monday, May 25, 2015

Orange Marmalade Episode 3 - What's The Sudden Rush?

It's time to get down to the nitty gritty of discussing the actual plot and character movement of this drama.  With less sexy skinship time, it is definitely easier to focus and dissect what I like, and what I think could have used some tweaking. So come with me as I chat the good and the bad of episode 3 - with tons of screen caps of Shi Hoo and Jae Min of course.  We are not going totally crazy just focusing on things like plot and character development.  The Khotties need their time to shine.

The first two episodes primarily focused on Jae Min and his emotional turmoil which was glorious since Yoo Jin Goo is an amazing actor.  And after watching today's episode I know why we get so much focus on our leading man.  It's because our leading lady's acting style falls just a tad bit flat without him holding her up.  It is not to a point where I can't stand her, but I will say that the poor thing has only one or two looks.  On an up note, she is very pretty with those simple looks and while she is never going to win any acting awards, I find her tolerable.  
Also why I was trying to stay awake through her angst scenes *Whispers.... Ma Ri's younger brother is even a better actor than our leading lady.* I did notice that she has a gorgeous speaking/singing voice.  But then I started contemplating as to why I did not notice this earlier?  Turns out that Ma Ri barely spoke more than a line or two at a time and I never noticed.  Guess I was too busy at staring at Jae Min.  Ooops.
Is anyone else really loving Shi Hoo's storyline?  For me he was the shining star of episode 3, and not just because he is uber hot playing a guitar (although that helps).
I also like that Shi Hoo is not trying to destroy (at least not specifically) the budding relationship between Ma Ri and Jae Min. He does not try to butt in on the neck nibble moment and while he was tempted to throw away a note that Jae Min wrote to Ma Ri, he instead puts it back into her notebook.
There actually is a valid reason for Shi Hoo to warn Ma Ri about falling too hard.  Shi Hoo is aware that Jae Min's stepfather is a vampire (who is coincidentally Shi Hoo's uncle) and Jae Min has some serious anger issues towards all vampires.  We get more detail in the wedding flashback as Shi Hoo (and we viewers) realize that the writing is on the wall,  Ma Ri is going to get hurt by his hatred.
We also learn that Shi Hoo's parents were both "staked", leaving an orphaned and angry child behind.  His uncle (Jae Min's stepfather/teacher) is worried that Shi Hoo is going down the same path and asks Ma Ri to take him under her wing.  Maybe join the band so Shi Hoo has some kind of outlet.

It is not that I have second lead syndrome.  However there is a depth to Shi Hoo's storyline that is missing from our OTP (One True Pairing).  I hope this will shift once the vampire/human issues become more of a roadblock, but I have to admit sometimes my mind drifts despite the pretty on my screen.
So..............anyone else wondering what the fudge happened following Jae Min's aggressive neck nibbling?  Was it awkward after?  Did he run away?  Did Ma Ri go " were the one I almost gave a hickey too.  My bad?"  Nope.  Instead we just see Ma Ri playing the guitar and realizing that Jae Min had always been around her during her blood/suck issues.
We don't really get to delve too deeply into this  since Ma Ri's little brother Joseph goes missing from the park.  Ma Ri, Shi Hoo, and her family are desperately searching for him since there is an added issue when dealing with vampire toddlers.
New tidbit on this drama's vampire mythology.  Young vampires (until they can talk) can't be around humans by themselves since they can not control their need to munch.  Needless to say, that takes terrible toddlers to a whole new level.

Jae Min also helps search for Ma Ri's brother, putting out an alert on his social media connections.  This provides a lead, that Joseph is at a local playground.  Jae Min finds Joseph first and does a super sweet "come to Hyung" speech. But Joseph is only focused on Jae Min's sexy neck (I understand where you are coming from little vamp) and goes in for the bite.
Ma Ri arrives just in time, grabbing Joseph away from Jae Min ( I laughed that Joseph did not want to let go of his prey.  That kid is kind of cute). Upset that Jae Min almost got attacked and her secret outed, Ma Ri simply runs away without even a word of thanks.
I know it is a slight romantic damper when your little brother is about to eat your crush, but she could have at least said thank you.

Mostly because there was really nothing I wanted to say in regards to these scenes, other than he is looking mighty fine.
Even his hands are sexy!  CNBlue bias for the win!

And it is at this point of the episode that I really started raising my eyebrow.  Mostly because we zoom through a whole lot of time and plot potential with just a song montage.  Ma Ri rebuffs Jae Min's feelings (but does finally say thank you), relationships are rushed, band growth and development are pretty non existent.  It is amazing how much can be shallowly shown in 4 minutes.  At least we find out that Orange Marmalade is the name of the band.  One mystery solved.  I am a little disappointed that this is only 12 episodes, mostly because the pacing feels off. Really really off.
The one saving grace was the beautiful confession scene between Ma Ri and Jae Min at the lighthouse.  I like the idea that you can make a wish and it will come true, not to mention the scenery was spectacular.  Despite the lack of believable character growth, I did get some happy feelz, when the two finally gave into their love and kissed.  Ma Ri's tentative kiss and Jae Min's more in depth counter-kiss were very sweet and beautifully directed.

- Final Thoughts -
I am disappointed that the whole music band story was passed by so quickly.  It was the main focus in the webtoon and I was looking forward to the adapted version of the story.  Instead we got just  a lot of generic kdrama band scenes which left me bored.  
I have to assume that the writers are just skipping it all because of limited time and because they will be focusing more on the human/vampire racism issue.  I will reserve my opinion on this til in the future.
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  1. Apparently we've had some bad translation on Viki again. Shi Hoo' s parents aren't dead. They are being held and tortured by being deprived of enough blood to drink. This is very bad for vampire health, as we learned when Ma Ri didn't eat breakfast and collapsed at school.

  2. I thought ep3 was also a bit rush with the band and such too... Still as a whole I really enjoy O.M., so much... it's lite and fluffy thus far... thank you Amber for the cartoon ... havent seen them in a long while ... Fun read as usual <3

  3. Apparently they will split these 12 episodes into three seasons. One in the present day , one part in Joseon and one in future. I wanted to see more on how the band got together too.

    1. I heard that... Although how it is going to be split up and why I am not sure. Will it be the same cast in three different stories? Reincarnation? Completely different from the web toon

  4. This split series idea sounds crazy. I am reading the (very slow moving) web toon so I'm hip to the idea of more action but - three time periods? Sounds like they are jumping on the "Scholar who walks by night" bandwagon.

    1. And personally, I am not convinced that two out of the three leads are good enough actors to pull off that type of complicated acting. A high school romance sure, but a sageuk? Nope, not buying it.


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