I asked my wee niece Meems to fill y’all in on what she’s been watching and rewatching across 2020 (since I’ve just been bouncing between Love O2O and Romance is a Bonus Book) and the baby came through! Here are five dramas that my smallest nieceling has been circling across the year and some of the reasons why she liked them!
Summary: Park Seo Joon plays an arrogant boss to Park Min Young. One day she tells him that she’s going to resign, after that he tries everything he can to make her stay.
What I Like About It: There is a lot of character development, you can see how some of the characters grow as people. This show does have some dark scenes, but it’s mostly light-hearted and funny moments. The romantic scenes were adorable and the OST was really nice as well.
I knew I’d wind up writing about blackface before this project was done.
Early on in my research before I ever had the #StitchProcesses hashtag and back when I could pretend I wasn’t super invested (like yes, there was a time when I could “play it cool” about all of this), my youngest niece and I went on a binge of research on YouTube. One of the things that kept coming up during my early outlining was how so many of the lists of cultural appropriation taken to extremes involved blackface from idols as part of the problem.
Within minutes of scrolling through YouTube, we came across acts like the still active and (sort of) blackface-ing Bubble Sisters. We saw a (racist in its own right) documentary on blackface in Korea and Japan that showed a large number of blackface moments that left us both shaking. Some of the same incidents involving idols – like A Pink’s Bomi made up as Michol, the Bubble Sisters’ everything, and Super Junior’s Shindong and Yesung in two separate instances of Blackface and other members of the group supporting a performer in blackface – show up on those same lists about cultural appropriation.
The only problem with that is that blackface is not a form of cultural appropriation. It is minstrelsy and horrifically antiblack on top of that, but it’s not appropriation. They’re not appropriating anything, they’re insulting it.
I can’t think of any drama that makes me happier than 2019’s Romance Is A Bonus Book does.
Written by Jung Hyun-jung and directed by Lee Jeong-hyo, this scripted romantic drama has so much going for it… and had my heart from the first few minutes of the very first episode. Like from the literal moment that Lee Jong-suk’s Cha Eun-ho sees Lee Na-young’s Kang Dan-i in her wedding dress and whispers a stunned compliment about how beautiful she looks, I was in.
Every time I rewatch Romance is a Bonus Book, I’m overwhelmed by how much fierce fondness I feel for the leads. This is my first drama experience with Lee Na-young, but my second with Lee Jong-Suk (my niece had me start W a few years back) and so I didn’t know what to expect from her Dan-i or their chemistry as a couple.
From the start though, I fell for Dan-i. I’m not being dramatic here. I fell hard for her.
There’s an error in this video that I did actually catch before it posted…
I wanted to open with that because it’s honestly hilarious. I copied the original introduction for this video – which I had originally drafted and recorded last year before the world was Like This – which means that I didn’t update it to include how much work I’ve done across this project.
At this point in 2020 after a solid year of working on this project, we’re at eleven articles, twelve related articles, two Spotify playlists, nine videos including this one, two pieces of Patreon-exclusive content, countless twitter threads, and two podcast appearances.
That is a lot of work, y’all.
And I am honestly maybe only halfway done. Two thirds if I squint.