Friday, November 28, 2008

Video clip "introductions" for DJY, LM, CS

Watching the music videos or intros (entradas en espanol), I wonder if someone who has never seen any of the particular tv series can understand what's going on... or is it like trailers for new movies--they hope it looks interesting to entice audiences to check it out? (For instance, I never saw the STAR WARS films in the theater or even on video or broadcast TV in their entirety. So what I imagined from the first trailer was (to me) more interesting; perhaps more like book RIDDLEMASTER OF HED, or Lloyd Alexander's PRYDAIN series which I may have been reading around that time...)

On Youtube, my list of "favorited" video clips (search for "ChulinFan"), includes music videos for DAE JO YOUNG, and modern classic telenovelas CORAZAN SALVAJE and LA MENTIRA.

To help give clues to those new to DJY, drama basically could be described as sort of Romeo & Juliet story of star-crossed lovers. Our Noble Hero and Khitan princess Chulin fall in love when he is just a beardless boy. Perhaps a symbol of divided Korea, they are warriors fighting on opposite sides. In one cliff-hanger scene, he wishes her to be "reborn in a world without war".

After struggling with their conflicting feelings, each mutually saving the live of their "beloved enemy" repeatedly, Chulin decides to desert her tribe to join DJY; they intend to marry.

But before they can officially announce their secret betrothal, Chulin's childhood friend Lee Kaigu (who was adopted by her father who found boy baby abandoned on the prairie) gravely wounds DJY. Believing he was killed, she is blackmailed into marrying Lee Kaigu who threatens to reveal identity of her child's biological father--and therefore, sentencing an innocent baby to certain death at hand of the enemies of DJY. Ironically, Kaigu's biological father was traitor to DJY's homeland--and old rival of DJY's long-lost loyal father, a trust-worthy soldier.

To fulfill request/order of dying former king of conquered Goguryeo (who wants the man he most deeply respects & trusts to protect his homeless niece) , DJY marries the last princess. She has loved him for years; vowing before she met him that she would "only marry the hero who will save this country". Unsure if DJY loves her (or at least, it's in different way than Chulin).

Monday, November 24, 2008

What I've been watching (Telemundo en espanol)

Also found interesting (what little I saw) modern morality story made in Colombia, SIN SENOS, NO HAY PARAISO, especially the trio of brave, resourceful good girls, Julieta & her school girl pals, Lina & Natalia. Stammering Jota, who turns from a life of crime, reminds me of a young Eduardo Palomo: not handsome like anti-hero Baryon (who eventurally bites the dust), but skilfully shows struggles of boy who's not too strong, choosing right over riches.

"Jota" is talented subtly comic actor as well (for much need light relief, after amusing pig-tailed henchman played by Luis Gatica--sinister "Santiago" of LA MENTIRA--is knocked off. BTW, Luis is real nice guy in real life--and he's fluently bilingual in Spanish and English! ) Based on novel by journalist Gustavo Bolivar Moreno; library catalog review in English says NBC interested in doing US version a la "Ugly Betty"/Betty La Fea.

Started watching DONA BARBARA starring Edith Gonzalez--but again, not enought time for much TV watching--tho I read English translation of novel that telenovela is loosely based on, considered literary classic in Latin America, assigned for school reading in 1940's at least.

If DB is ever available "on request" in some distant future, would love to watch Edith Gonzalez in vastly different role than all her blue-eyed, pink and white complexion blonde "buenas" (good girl) heroines--tho those were entrancing too! (Perhaps oldest novela I saw her in was 1988 MONTE CALVARIO with young Arturo Peniche, remade as "Te Sigo Amando").

Recently read very interesting 16 page scholarly study by a USA university professor about political & social levels explored in CORAZON SALVAJE (both TV version starring Edith & Palomo AND the classic book trilogy). Will try to post a link to online essay

Sunday, November 23, 2008

What I've been watching (KBS Korean)

Speaking of DAE JO YOUNG, on a happier note, I noticed young actor who played the appealing Prince Geum also plays another likable boy in contemporary "dramedy" (drama with comedy) MOM'S DEAD UPSET. He gets interested in the niece of title character, an art student with psychic abilities (not quite a traditional Korean woman shaman, but likely inspired by those.) Opening of very first episode had her boil pig's head to offer gods, then drop it--hot!!

I started watching both GREAT KING SEJONG and MOM'S DEAD UPSET, but have missed a lot--and the later may be winding up in a week or so, as it's on evening both weekdays at 7:30 and weekends at 8 PM on KXLA, broadcast from Rancho Palos Verdes (weathy LA suburb).

If I ever become a millionaire, I'd buy MDU on DVD from Episodes On Request store, then maybe skim thru storylines about young woman lawyer who marries divorced man with sulky little daughter AND timid pretty poor girl (like traditional Hispanic telenovela "sufrida" heroine, she cries buckets) who marries rich boy (who has requisite bratty mother that young couple lives with). Part that I relish, featuring character that first caught my interest is the amusing courtship of endearing "Prince Geom" (she keeps telling him to get lost-- she trying to whack him with a book while he tries to kiss her--LOL!)

After DAE JO YOUNG ended with apparent heir to throne of new kingdom riding off into new adventures, I'd been trying to imagine what the future bride of "the boy who will be king" might be like. Truly "Prince Charming"--shy, serious, loyal & loving (when he and his noble king/father wept all over each other upon finally revealing who they were--SNIFF!). For such a sweet, yet strong young man, a girl like the feisty psychic of "Mom's Dead Upset" seems perfect!

(P.S. Search for "Mom's Dead Upset"+KBS turns up some interesting info; note comments by 'tvkitty' --who is NOT me writing under a different name--does she have a life outside telly?;)

Saturday, November 22, 2008

How time flies!

Been a long time since I last posted here! Keep thinking of comments I want to note here, but too much else to do, and I get distracted... So here's something of an update if anyone's still visiting (and I may direct someone else here from yet another blog I started (and also lack time to update often). Oh, well, if I ever "retire" and/or become independantly wealthy, there's no lack of hobbies and interests for me to pursue to help fill up my time!

Think I mentioned (somewhere) I'd read TALES OF A CHINESE GRANDMOTHER by Frances Carpenter, a collection of Chinese fairy tales, legends and description of traditional life in China. I later read companion volume by same author, TALES OF A KOREAN GRANDMOTHER.

Korean anthology gives clue to purpose of little buttons in front of ears on winged black caps (woven of horsehair) worn by officials in Korean drama GREAT KING SEJONG (about life of Korean king who encouraged sciences & arts, including development of phonetic alphabet to increase literacy among his people, still in use today. Several stories mention green jade buttons indicate someone is a high-ranking official. King and princes have gold buttons.

This Korean collection, apparently published for children, still touches on "adult" subjects such as corruption in government, especially "squeeze" or wide-spread, accepted bribery necessary to get things done. Added chapter about mid 20th century divided Korean strikes a depressing note for me in contrast to description of childhood listeners.

That emotion, however, might be example of han, the uniquely Korean trait which books by Jill Dubois and EVERLASTING FLOWER may have said is untranslatable--melancholy, suffering or sorrow (title of DAE JO YOUNG theme song) may be partial meaning in English.

Clip of video with DJY theme song "Sorrow" is on YouTube; will try to add link here later.