In the Mood

I finished both episodes of Itakiss in one go yesterday and my heart is broken.  I’m in denial to face the lives of our Itakiss darlings filled with stress and hurdles, frustration and bruising of the heart.  C’est la vie, but it is too real ( not saying it’s bad) to see our manga characters going through the deep end of facing harsh reality like the rest of us.  I want to give them hugs, but I need some myself.

I was going to lighten my own mood by fanficing cute fluff out of 13, 14 but is that even humanly possible?  I got too worn out to revisit the episodes.   So as one lifelong experienced procrastinator, I distract myself with things at the other end of the spectrum:  hot sweaty bloody grimy period ahjusshis

That is why I clicked on Patriot YueFei.  It’s watchable and better than I expected, surprise surprise,  but I lost interest after 3 eps.  Huang Xiao Ming will forever cause me perplexia.  I’m not blind and I can’t deny his face is gorgeously chiseled, but when he emotes, it’s like the girlfriend of different lighting in Seinfeld.  I can’t help but crack up when he’s crying or angsting, he looks utterly clownish, and when he’s smiling or smizing, I cringed at all the unintentional sleaze oozing from his every pore.  I can see what he’s trying to do, but it always evokes the wrong emotion in me without ‘fail’.

His Yue Fei, in stills, is breathtaking.

Any long shots of him, lovely.

Then, he emotes.

Yup.

The production is at the very least not toying us with too much flagellation of our sanity.  This has decent production values, and if we turn a blind eye at all the ‘harmonious’ censorship fallacies: for example, the late Song is no longer fighting the ‘Jin’.  The same Wanyan are Jurchen and Jurchen only so as to not ‘belittle’ the Jin ethnic minorities, because harmony is the highest priority of society.  The writing is serviceable, and at times stupid, but it’s not the level of insulting.  Ruby Lin is still attacking her supporting role with the same doe-eyed sweetness like her Princess Pearl days.  I do not mind her, per se, but it’s unfathomable how one could not improve an iota in decades.

A pal said my mind with this cap:  HXM, undeniably gorgeous you can’t take your eyes off him, and this loving longing stare is quite effectively romantic, but the problem is he’s throwing this at EVERY GUY in every single scene, this is to the Wanyan warrior from the enemy front, but even I rolled my eyes when this is how he looks at his his bromantic buddies whom he showers with, constantly, actually even his Mom is at the receiving end…. but one exception is Ruby.  They have little to nil chemistry.   He is an actor with no control whatsoever, but he follows direction quite well.  That is why he can be decent when he’s on a very tight leash of a good enough director.  He’s better than I last saw him on TV, fine in passing scene, but every nuance in closeup, so so wrong.  But if you are a fan, he’s trying so hard, and he’s not stringent with fanservice at all.

Trashbin. The story proper, if they are adhering to any historical accuracy, is too black and white boring for me.

Then I clicked on Blade/Sword and Petal/Flower.  And I will be very bothered with this show, very.

After the 2 episodes, I should’ve had 20+ cold showers and still I would be too freaking hot and bothered by Choi Min Soo alone,

*LICK*

and *breathebreathebreathe* has Uhm!!!!!!!!#$%^&*^&%^$!!!!!!!!Force been more UHMMMMMMMMMUUNNNNNFFFFFFFFFFFFFF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have nothing intelligent to say, no surprise there, guess what is in my head except embarrassing never before imaginable (trufact) dirty deeds I must do to each and both of them?!!??!?!?!?????  Ok 20+1 cold showers necessary.  Zatoichi is all cool, blind with his sword.  Choi MinSoo’s Yun Gae So Moon can slay me a thousand ways with barely moving a single muscle or hair on his face, let alone a word.

Can someone just gif every second of the Yun’s for a rainy day for the love of womankind and be my loveliest life-ruiner?

You know how much I am enslaved in love with WKW and I’m calling this In the Mood for Saguek, In the Mood for Goguryeo HotSuperBAMFs.  Did they utter words?  That is honestly too much to ask of any woman or man.  Words are for us lesser moderners, they can speak with part of their backside and messy manes alone.

Everything is so cohesively in tune, except for some imo wtf Heroine fangirling mood music.  I totally got flashbacks to the Shaw Brothers Wuxia cheesy gold of the 70s which is one of my first and forever cinematic love:

but as much as I love the 70s camp, I don’t have the time to dwell on  flashbacks of swinging swords and horses when I can hug and kiss my screen enjoying UUUUNNNNFFFFHHHMMMMMforce romancing Kim OkBin whom sorry, I have to paste my face to.

but that little piece of ‘whimsy’ music was snapping me out of my leaking faucet-mouth of droolz and I don’t need the bother of flashbacks ( I frankly thought my streaming was screwy and it jumped back to a previous scene not long ago…that unnecessary) to remind me how sizzling HAWTTTT! and impossible to not flail and fangirl the UNNFFHHHMMMMM, I have many scenes, so memorable a feast, so lush with sensory overload, done with the loveliest sparce bold strokes I have no problem to be sated and keep hitting replay till I get more, which any sane/insane person who’ve watched this @#$@%^%#*&%^%$! would.  I do think Mr PD indulge a little too much in a scene here and there, but this is nitpicking when I only need the men be on the screen breathing while I cease to.

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14 thoughts on “In the Mood

  1. *semi-spoilerish*

    I have to admit I was quite annoyed by Naoki in the most recent Itakiss (14). I know he’s lying, but I have little sympathy for it – I think Kin-chan hits the nail on the head. He is making Kotoko suffer, and for no good reason at all. No one wants him to do this, not even his father. The filial duty card is total bullsh*t here – it’s more like misplaced pride where you kid yourself that you are doing something for others without actually having asked them if that’s what they want (which is presumptuous and selfish rather than kind and selfless). Instead, everyone is cheering for Kotoko, Matsumoto (!) and Yuki (!) included.

    I’m very glad that Kotoko accepted Kinchan’s request for a date. She needs to let Naoki go and put herself first, and be happy. Naoki needs to experience what the loss of Kotoko feels like, he needs to see that Kotoko’s love isn’t something he can just take for granted, but that he has to choose it and cherish it. I really, really hope he chooses it, rather than others paving the way for him (e.g. the perfect girl giving up on him first or Kotoko pursuing him further or his mother enacting further schemes to sabotage the omiai).

    I know that beneath the surface he of course loves Kotoko, but as I said for one of the earlier episodes, I want to truly see him suffer the loss of Kotoko for, like, a whole episode.

    Kinchan, of course, has amassed yet another gazillion brownie points (indeed, I’d cheer for a K-K end pair if I didn’t know Kotoko’s feelings for Kinchan are and will always be as a friend).

    1. Naoki is not!Kinchan, he’s annoying and in his own orbit. I’m not letting him slide, but that’s his character construct and even with growth, some things are just impossible to change completely. I have quite a few things to ramble on with ep14, but it’s heavy and even dragging the tone to more seriousness than I want for the enjoyment of Itakiss, I’m pulling my hair as is how to go around it and still post sth ‘fun’. :/

      Again, I’m not too keen on making Naoki suffer, and I see him suffering plenty in 14, poor thing. I can’t fault him for deeds he is clueless on. He is repenting his sin in 12, in his head, he thought pushing Kotoko away now, when he hasn’t stated the obvious to her, or I should say he hasn’t sort everything out, nor decided how to approach his feelings for her, it is more ‘rational’ to not start anything at all, because he doesn’t really see a choice. He actually begged for Kotoko to help him out of the runt in his weird ways with words, or else why would he spill out the exact what when where with the date?

      Imo, Irie is the most miserable and pathetic thing in 14. You are stating an excellent point and I’m nodding my heads off at Kotoko letting go of all the Irie entrapment and progressively look for happiness as her own person, be it a date with Kinchan and enjoying it. But I am already seeing and feeling Irie hurting in the loss of Kotoko, even though he’s the one pushing her away and he’s not taking Kotoko for granted, hasn’t for a while. I won’t impose a longwinded essay on you in a reply, I’ll say more in a post soon! *hug*

      And KINCHAN, you know how much I adore this Kinchan, I have never thought Kotoko will be happy with any previous Kinchan, but I will vote this Kinchan is a grander dreamboat than Iriekun. But then, the conundrum is we seldom make all these calculation and our heart follows through obediently. I’ve never felt a previous Kotoko entertained the thought life with Kinchan could be lovely. Here, I’m pretty sure Kotoko is aware of it, but still her heart beats for the other guy.

      1. Naoki is not? I got a bit confused… (missing word?) Or you mean Naoki is not Kinchan? I have to admit this part of the manga is my least favourite (which isn’t the characters’ fault, but the author’s), and I do know that Naoki is suffering here. But I still think his actions are lame, his whole pretense towards that perfect girl and saying he likes her (don’t remember her name and don’t care enough for her to look it up), because rationality be damned! He is smart enough to know that there is more than one choice, he just need to think one up with his superbrains. He also knows that his family doesn’t want him to do this, so I’m going to say the same: he is being inconsiderate here, not acting selflessly in the interest of others.

        I just want to see him suffer properly because I’m a little evil. 😀 I mean, just recall zombie Kotoko… or Kotoko staying up all hours, cooking and cleaning and waiting for Naoki… because while before Naoki was teasing Kotoko (e.g. the date with Matsumoto), his actions here cut a lot deeper. Or rather, they cut through all ties! I mean, if you marry, that’s a lengthy (possibly lifelong) commitment. I’ll forgive him… if he makes the choice for Kotoko all on his own.

        Yeah, Kinchan is a grander dreamboat indeed… but Kotoko’s heart does indeed beat for the other guy and that has to be accepted and I’m fine with that. In fact, doesn’t that make Kotoko smarter than Naoki? Naoki knows who his heart beats for at this point but he is still leading on other people, while Kotoko is neither going to force her love on Naoki, nor lead on Kinchan. Kinchan, well, he’s the female Kotoko, isn’t he? Incredibly caring towards the one he loves, and always putting them first, even if it will hurt him.

        I have a feeling that he’s not going to find his own love in this Itakiss version, there isn’t really any time left for anything to develop properly.

        1. Yesyes, I mean Naoki is not Kinchan in his incredible caring sensitive sensibility. Naoki is still self-centered in his thoughts and opinions, even if his intentions is more considerate of everyone around him actually, but he hasn’t even see a care to develop much normal social skills communicating with even his family, he’s his own island and he did not see the need to change it till Kotoko enters into his life. So he has no agency to express what he truly feels and wants nor can he indulges others around him to how much he does care and think about them.

          I have a different pov on what’s going on in 14. If we step out of shoujoland, there is this harsh, ruthless truth some or most of us have to face when love is not the same as marriage. This is my zombieIrie episode. He is not a shade as forthright as Kotoko in expressing it out in such direct physical ways how miserable he’s feeling inside, but that little scene of him slouching on his little sofa in his frigid little room is like he has every bit of his life sucked out of him. imo he knows how he feels, he is aware he is in love with Kotoko, but he faults himself as a direct cause of Daddy’s demise, as much as others could’ve told him otherwise, he is in deep guilt and this is more self flagellation, he no longer sees him thinking of himself and following how he feels as a choice. Of course everyone will encourage him and Kotoko, because they care about him and knows that is where his happiness lies, he sees that too, but he does not have the heart in him to be that old entitled prince on his pedestal and not put his dad’s company first. This is the chance to save it swiftly and cleanly from financial ruins and he is basically whoring himself. And what is complicating things is what if blueblood beautiful gentile heiress is his ideal type on paper?! What if after feeding everything data through his superbrain, she will make so many problems go away and be a very practical match in life? And if we poll RL society, is every swoony shoujo magic, skipping of heartbeat that significant in the long haul? Wouldn’t Heiress be the realistic choice?!?

          1. Naoki is his own, socially inept island, but he has also been the “do everything the parents say” son, which is not what is happening here. Of course, going his own way is what he has been testing out since he met Kotoko and realised challenges can be fun, so in some way what he’s doing now is both contradictory and not. He’s sticking to his old ways of not communicating with anyone, but also acting like he didn’t use to by going against his parents.

            “that little scene of him slouching on his little sofa in his frigid little room is like he has every bit of his life sucked out of him” I know, I know…. I did pick up on that, and that it was his way of suffering. I just want MORE SUFFERING because I’m EVIL. ;-D

            “this harsh, ruthless truth … when love is not the same as marriage” – depends on where you are perhaps. In (most) Western society, the marriage ideal does involve love (although perhaps not only), in places where arranged marriage is predominant, other factors may be more important (not to suggest that love isn’t there at all or can’t develop).

            “Wouldn’t Heiress be the realistic choice?!?” That’s a good question. In my book, the the Naoki-Kotoko pairing doesn’t win out because of the shoujo magic, but the Heiress would be a reject at this point because Naoki doesn’t know her! We’re talking… weeks of acquaintance, at most? It’s not the lack of romance, but I’d just balk at marrying anyone I’ve known for less than… I don’t know, 2 years, minimally? She could be a total psycho, you wouldn’t know at this point….

            Of course, if arranged marriage is acceptable to you, then that’s irrelevant (not the psycho bit, but the marrying a stranger).

            1. In fact, let me add to that that I don’t think Naoki should marry Kotoko at this point, but that in my book (in RL) they need to actually, officially be in a relationship for, ummm, a year, before they should marry. Admiration from afar (even within the same house) doesn’t count.

              1. I agree. Irie is not capable of knowing Kotoko well enough as in to put himself to use in considerate and care for her to marry her. IMHO, he doesn’t deserve Kotoko atvm. We saw him clunkily figuring her out and was befuddled by her most of 4 years now. But, sorta same token, I do not think Irie places the fact he doesn’t know the Heiress as a dealbreaker counting her out and the ‘arranged’ marriage. I’m not for or against it. It is practiced and I have RL friends who went through with the ‘arrangement’, in the form of a modernized spin and is living happily. Also there is this complexity in many society where enforcement of social norms and filial piety is expected of every individual and most will comply on surface, but it can run parallel with individual thoughts of an adopted Western/global views on romance and marriage. Arranged marriage is a lacking translation of Miai, I see it as match.com done by the folks instead some shrewd online dating site, the gist of it is still 2 people meeting, then getting to know each other and the final say, the ball is still in their court whether the courtship ends up with them walking down the aisle with their own feet. What I mean by love is not the same as marriage is exactly because Irie is the one who can’t trust himself following his own heart because he just realized he has one, he’s over-thinking everything in his life more so now than ever, and this is understandable for someone who really has never had any vexing in life, however little. So he is most fearful of just trusting his gut and feeling and he’d rather listen to his cold head. He is this gorgeous peacock who just needed to preen his all in place all the time brainfeathers all his life but pushed off the cliff without ever using his wings, that is, he didn’t even know he has wings and need to fly.

                So what I meant in my comment is marriage and love is not as black and white exclusive, but 2 circles in a vin diagram where the portion collide varies with everyone. I would not label Irie as doing everything the parents/society say. You really do see him as a mama’s boy once he can tie his own shoelaces (and pick his own outfits!)?! We’ll have to share a disagreement. I think MamaPapaIries honestly have no worry with him since he’s very young and they have not the need to put a stance in anything involving him. IT is a booboo on them because like many Asian parents, the focus is much put on the brains and academic success when the emotional nurturing of the child can be neglected. He’s actually have his way with everything till Kotoko. It’s just that he has been doing did not deviate from what a perfect son should do, not because he saw the need to comply to whatever his parents dictated. He must’ve made careful and conscious processing of what is expected of him and decided he has either nonchalant/ no protest or it has been aligning with what he deemed fit himself. I also see Irie has thought of a type in his mind, and it’s opposite of Kotoko, ie really closer to what Heiress is on surface, or else he wouldn’t even bother stating Kotoko has absolutely no chance, yes it’s mostly hotheaded stupidity out of jealousy he said those mean mean words, but he is not really one that has any ability to lie.

                Again, we can ‘know’ someone for years and decades and still not really know him/her. I do not really trust my own judgment esp when clouded by emotions since a few hard lessons learnt, so I always ask for as many opinions, from pals, from parents, imo it doesn’t hurt to know as much of that person on paper and that is what a Miai can be a shortcut. I think the brilliance of this Itakiss is I can’t rule out Irie and Heiress be a comfortable match of life’s companion, I think that is why this Irie is in a stickier situation because he’s aware himself and life with Kotoko could be a roller coaster, they really have not a lot of common interests and brainwaves and so forth. There is still no formula for a happy marriage imo, I can’t practically say love conquers on.

  2. AHAHA Mookie I love how you talked about all 3 dramas that I am curious about! I was wondering whether or not Patriot would be good, sounds like it is just alright. Visually though it looks good. I also think Ruby is playing it safe with this role. T_T And you are making me verrry interested in Blade & Petal.

    1. I make the effort to DL and rewatched the 2 eps of Blade and Petal. And, I do not think I’ve read much of the subs, I should, I s’posed, but I JUST CANT!

      First 2 eps of Patriot is quite decent, but ep3 brings it down a couple notches, so adios for me. It wasn’t on my list anyway, so unless it’s so good I can’t look away, I don’t have the time to continue. That said, HXM is not at his worst, there are scenes he’s reminding me of the very green thing with potential he was.

  3. You nitpicking girl, there can never been too much of HOTMINSOO and HOTUHMFORCE, even in flashbacks! _($#*(+_#@#)@+#)@+#)@+(#+@(#

    The 最高境界 in here, Choi Min Soo acting but NOT emoting at all.

    1. CMS’ UberBAMFness is all in the eyes,actually a few mm behind those magic globes of his, the BEST kind of emoting.
      But I have pause, and rewind, and replay. Those flashbacks just somehow feel intrusive when everything is tonally heightened, glorified, no nonsense.

  4. OMG… you watched Blade and Petal too *squeeeee* i think i’m in love with this show, B&P is my second sageuk, so i have no reference to compares, but i really like the execution here although i read that so many ppl said it was weird and trying so hard to be subtle, how’d you think ?? nevertheless i’m enjoyed it so far, and call me weird but i lurveee the rock music everytime our OTP meet LOL

    1. This show PWNs me and I have no capacity to watch anything else. I was planning to start Cruel City, but I think I should give that widely regarded great drama a better chance to have a piece of my heart and attention when I can calm the heck down.

      This is like a dream period I would say this is from my id for my id, but I still could never for the life in me imagine nor dare dream such a drama would exist. Let me put it briefly, I love my wuxia novels to death, but I still insist they are impossible to adapt. THIS is what I want my wuxia dramas, every single one of them to be like. stylized, indulgent but with such a heightened logic and purpose for everything happening on the screen. I still think it’s a bit too much for that piece of fangirl/skipping of heartbeat music with the flip and the petals even though I can comprehend what it’s trying to convey, that simple out of this world exp of meeting that certain person that will forever mess up every logic and sense in your life. BUT in 3, 4 it is so doing the job it is intended to and I can, in hindsight (and rewatch) appreciate the first encounter more. Still, it’s a shock and it’s weird.

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