Strong Woman Do Bong Soon: Korean Drama Review

strongI have been remiss in doing reviews for the recent Korean dramas that I watched mainly because I’ve been really really busy with work but I’ve been really interested in JTBC’s “Strong Woman Do Bong Soon” from the start. Being a serial binge watcher, I tried my best to stop looking at episode teasers or reading news about the series lest I crumble and give in to the drive to watch it as it aired weekly. For its final week, I decided to toss caution in the wind to time my viewing to prepare for the ending and it was fun and agonizing at the same time.  Three words to sum up this drama? Too. Darned. Cute.

Synopsis: On the outside, Do Bong Soon (Park Bo Young) appears to be small and fragile but she holds a hidden power handed down to generation after generation of female members of her family. She has super strength that she decides to keep secret lest she be branded a weirdo by the people who know her, especially her childhood friend and long time crush — Detective In Gook Du (Jisoo). Her paths cross with Ainsoft CEO Ahn Min Hyuk, who, upon witnessing her powers becomes attracted and intrigued by her at the same time. With an imminent threat to his life, he hires her as his bodyguard. As they face dangers together, they begin to develop feelings for each other.

Let me just say that I loved “Strong Woman Do Bong Soon” from start to finish. At first, I thought that it would be very similar to another drama that I loved — “Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo” (which I finished in just three sittings) but it was something completely different except for the fact that both series highlighted women’s strength. I loved the very light approach to the series but most especially the chemistry between lead stars Park Bo Young and Park Hyung Sik. Park Bo Young was adorable and cute which made the strength of her character stand out even more because of the contrast. Also, her portrayal of a super strong female and an emotionally vulnerable girl at the same time was just perfect.

Park Hyung Sik’ Min Hyuk in “Strong Woman Do Bong Soon” was just super cute when he was flustered by Bong Soon, or when he was jealous of Gook Du, or when he couldn’t help himself as he was falling head over heels with his super strong bodyguard. When he looks deeply in her eyes and tells her how he feels every single time, it hits audience straight to the feels because of his sincerity. I loved it when he was there to comfort Bong Soon every time she was unsure and afraid and the fact that he feared for her safety and wanted to protect her was very touching and moving. (Don’t just take my word for it. Watch it). I loved this pairing. Definitely one of the top Kdrama couples in my list.

I liked how “Strong Woman Do Bong Soon” highlighted women empowerment and how the males in this series accepted and supported Bong Soon in her journey because they loved her. Fans would definitely feel conflicted with a second lead syndrome because Jisoo’s character was also a great guy. His scene in Episode 16 when he was finally able to open up about his feelings to Bong Soon would definitely make viewers wonder about what ifs but by this time, #MinMinXBongBong has already been solidified as an end game couple (Personally, I was shipping them from Minute 1 — sooo cute). I wish Jisoo would get his own leading man role soon but I don’t want his character to be too serious like in “Scarlet Heart Ryeo” or in “Strong Woman Do Bong Soon.” He is great with rom-com characters like Kim Bok Joo’s co-worker in “Weightlifting Fairy” for his brief cameo.

Mainly,  “Strong Woman Do Bong Soon” was such a hit because it didn’t take itself too seriously. It combined all of the elements of a good drama and blended it to come up with a perfect formula.  Not only did the leads deliver on their characters but the secondary characters pulled their own weight as well. I loved Bong Soon’s family, and her high school posse — and even Boss Tak’s gang — leave us not forget the poop wine, which was hilarious and gross at the same time.  I wish though that there could have been more scenes with Min Hyuk’s family as well. His gangster dad seemed really cool and it would’ve been nice if there was some closure about his family issues.

All in all, “Strong Woman Do Bong Soon” was able to deliver a serious message about taking responsibility for one’s strengths (literally and figuratively) in a light and fun atmosphere by using sometimes over the top comedy that pokes fun at the common tropes in rom-com. It maintained audiences’ interest with a multi-faceted story that engaged and entertained from the first minute up to the last. Never a boring moment with this series, whether it was in solving crime or falling in love. But its main strength was truly the insane chemistry between the lead characters. I fervently hope that Park Hyung Sik and Park Bo Young get to work in another rom-com soon, and I mean soon.  For now, I will content myself while watching this series over and over and over and over again.