Angel Eyes: Series Review

I now realise that real love isn’t easy or simple. It is made up of laughing so hard you cry, embarrassing dance moves, nit-picking, arguments over who started the argument, kisses on the forehead, forgiveness, intimacy, fights, make-ups, home cooked meals, vacations, anniversaries, pain, ups, downs and everything in between.

But that look, that only the two of you share that says nothing and means everything, can still make you weak in the knees and vulnerable beyond measure.

Real love is everything all at once right in the gut over and over again. – Serena Dyer

If you were given a chance to love for the third time, will you choose to love the same person? Dong Joo and Soo Wan will undoubtedly choose each other still. Despite of everything they have been through, the love they have never ceased and it just continuously grew in time. They have the kind of love that endures trials, and rejoices in triumph. I feel so happy to have experienced their love that made every smile, every hug, every kiss, every tear so worthwhile that I wouldn’t mind falling in love for a hundred times more.

Honestly, I would prefer that the series ended in Episode 13. I enjoyed how Dong Joo and Soo Wan fell in love when they met again, how they stayed together despite knowing the truth, and how they are just so in love with each other.. it was an amazing experience. But as I write this I realised the importance of the latter episodes. Falling in love again for the third time. I think most can relate to it, allowing your heart to love again.

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FINALE:

Watching Episode 15 raw, Soo Wan isn’t comfortable with the idea of having Dong Joo in her life after knowing the painful truth. I was trying to understand her, until it came to a point that I ask myself what am I to do in her place?

I went blank.

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One must be so strong enough to face this ordeal. The scene at the church, I really thought there will be an ambush wedding of some sort. But then again, Soo Wan isn’t in her right state. She’s very hurt and emotionally overwhelmed, the timing isn’t right. That being said all I thought of is that Dong Joo have to find her back because Soo Wan is lost. If Soo Wan was able to find Dong Joo, with the help of that passionate night. I wonder how will Dong Joo do the same? He is a seeker, is he going to hold on even if Soo Wan chose to let go already? How will he have her back? Questions, I hate that I have many at this point.

It’s always been Soo wan who is very proactive in the relationship. She’s always seem to be ahead of Dong Joo to the point she bought the rings! She sought for truth at first, when Dong Joo chose to stay away from her. Soo Wan desperately asked him not to leave and accepted him again when he returned. She gets hurt but her love for Dong Joo still wins over anything. But now that she decided to let him go, what should be done?

I’m actually more excited in a way because it is Dong Joo’s turn. I already saw how much Soo Wan loves him. I know that Dong Joo loves Soo Wan too. But in this situation, what will he do? How strong is his love for her that he will be willing to wait for her to comeback? Will he have the tenacity and the patience to wait even if uncertainty is looming around? She may never return to him, you know. Soo Wan gave her permission this time for Dong Joo to leave, hearing that must have hurt.

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In Episode 16, its all about self-loathing for Soo Wan and more tears for the OTP. I’m dreading to see them apart and it pains me that this drama cliche happened. Separation is inevitable even for a couple bonded strongly. When I heard Soo Wan’s reason, I started to understand why they need to separate.

It takes a whole person to love completely. When you are broken and you try to mend the pieces again with the help of someone it will bring much pain when you separate. It is like a piece of you is with that person, a part of you will be missing once that person goes away. Soo Wan and Dong Joo needs time to mend their broken self alone so that when they meet again, they are complete enough to love fully.

Soo Wan is the type that gives her all to Dong Joo. She is never a mediocre. It became clear to me that she needs to accept the situation without covering it. Dong Joo thought of forgetting things like it never happened. Soo Wan can’t just leave things this way and live with Dong Joo with a heavy heart. Their parents are involved, they can’t simply set aside things. There is no true happiness when they choose this path.

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When she found out about the truth, she felt that she doesn’t deserve Dong Joo’s love anymore. Even if her heart doesn’t want to, she pushed him away, thinking its all for his own good. What is the writer trying to tell us in this situation? Give up your love? Is it really the best answer? When in this dire time, you need someone to be there with you too. Pabo, Soo Wan pabo.. She even returned the necklace! But when I saw Dong Joo’s shirt being held by Soo Wan, I realised something. It’s no longer Dong Joo’s Dad (necklace) nor Jung Hwa ssi (ring) that symbolises Dong Joo’s love for Soo Wan, knowing how significant these are to him. This time, it’s just Dong Joo represented by that shirt, that is left for her. Purely traces of him..

Dong Joo knows that he only wants Soo Wan in his life. But his love isn’t a selfish one that he is willing to understand Soo Wan and give her the space she needs. When he gave the box of his letters together with the player, it just proved to me that Dong Joo is a man who thinks less of himself. Soo Wan touched the letters preciously because its Dong Joo’s heart written all over it. She played Dong Joo’s message to her.. and this scene just made me cry buckets.

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I think more than his words, its actually the sound of his pain that truly pierced her intensely. I mean, for me hearing his voice was enough signal to cry a river. But the thing that really got my heart was the moment I heard Soo Wan’s cry upon hearing Dong Joo sob in so much pain, no words is enough to describe it. The sound of his cry explained how he truly felt at that moment. Watching it raw and repeating it again still brought the same chilling, piercing pain that just stabs the heart. How it felt for them, I can’t even fathom in words. All I’m thinking is, how can one ever think of letting this kind of love go? Can they just hang on together? Why separate? I am selfish to think this way.

The conversation Dong Joo had with Dad was really touching. He was honest enough to tell him how badly he was hurt letting Soo Wan go, losing her means the world to him. But he has to, even if he can’t bear not having Soo Wan in his life. Aww. Can I have someone like you, Dong Joo?

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Dad’s sudden death is still hard to accept, though we know the road is bound to go that way. He collapsed as he gets up just to call Dong Joo. Dad still thought of Soo Wan and entrusting her with Dong Joo. It was really a poignant scene. Dong Joo tried to save Dad as he performed CPR, even Ji Woon arrived to help. Dong Joo won’t stop, but when Soo Wan arrived things became even harder to accept. I felt every minute of this scene. Losing someone so precious, someone you really love, I can’t even put words that can explain how it really feels even if I have experienced the same. This is a situation you have no control of and the emotion you get out of it is unbearable.

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Soo Wan’s response to Dong Joo in the recorder is as piercing as the way Dong Joo felt. I particularly loved it when Soo Wan asked what she will do if she wants to see Dong Joo badly but he’s not there anymore. Aww. It’s not the thought that she can’t live without him that made this so touching. It is the fact that she needs Dong Joo and yet she can’t have him as much as she wants to. Especially at this very moment. The realisation that both need each other to live was done powerfully by their emotions. It is the love they have for each other that overcomes the pain. But this does’t mean they will move forward with just love alone. Reality is that they need to accept the harsh truth and not simply forget it like nothing happened.

Ji Woon and his mother needs to own up and take responsibility for their actions. Finally, Dr Oh became honest about what she did to Jung Hwa ssi. It is a hard pill to swallow for them both. When Ji Woon realised the consequence of the accident, he corrected his path. He knows that this thing won’t be kept wrapped up in secret for long. He was right to say that Soo Wan will find out the truth no matter how they avoid and keep it all in.

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When Dong Joo mentioned about “if”, I also hate that word. “What if?” This question always bring about the pain of doubt and regret. It is not a good question to ask oneself. Despite of all the “if’s, Dong Joo’s stayed by Soo Wan. His patience is admirable. He is staying beside Soo Wan, taking good care of her even if she is practically a statue. Unmoving. It is frustrating to watch her this way, self-loathing and stubborn. Even Dong Joo’s kiss didn’t wake up our Princess! Well, she isn’t really a damsel in distress who needs a Prince and marry to live happily ever after. Their love is more than just a tale to be told, it is to be experienced.

The road to happiness is really rough. We still have to pass the separation phase. Soo Wan needs the healing power time offers. Can time help, can she really set aside her love for Dong Joo? What about our man? How long can he wait?

One year have past and Dong Joo took over the Seyoung Hospital and Heads the Emergency Department. When a woman came to seek a Doctor’s advice, or should I say she really went to see Dong Joo. We all wondered what this woman means. Well, this just assured us that Dong Joo won’t waver even if all the fish is lurking around to catch him. He is already taken.

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Soo Wan is living in the countryside helping as much as she can especially with the elderly. Simple life. A box of letters written for Dong Joo are her only possession. It is obvious, Dong Joo remained in her. The separation is not to forget Dong Joo, it is really to find herself again. If something is lost, it will definitely be found. Dong Joo went to a medical mission that Ji Woon asked him to do volunteer work for. Lo and behold, the place is where Soo Wan lives. Unbeknownst to Dong Joo, he just went there as a doctor. Fate will really find a way.

Dong Joo was the doctor asked to help a patient in labor, Soo Wan happened to be there to assist. Dong Joo arrived and heard Soo Wan’s voice. They looked at each other intensely, like they did the first time. At this moment, there is much longing from both. Soo Wan is hiding her true feelings for him, she’s no longer the bold Soo Wan. Because of her fear to hurt Dong Joo, she kept her feelings to herself. Good thing our Dong Joo won’t give up.

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Every weekend Dong Joo visits the fishing village with one mission, to catch a very stubborn fish. As weeks pass, it seemed that his bait is not working. One day he came and arrived late that Soo Wan worried he stopped already. Sign number one. Even if she is pushing him away, she is still expecting him to visit. Sign number 2, she prepared him food knowing he will be back. Foolish Soo Wan. She is truly a Yoon Ddol at best.

Before Dong Joo and Soo Wan finally get together again, she needs to experience losing him. Literally, I mean almost. Good thing this drama isn’t about killing everyone in the series, though the writer is really good at it. Dong Joo had a car accident and was admitted to a hospital to recover for days. Soo Wan knows his worth in her life and pleaded him to wake up. When he did, she promised to follow his orders, whatever it may be. It’s all sweetness from here.

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All that has value takes time, we just need to have the patience to wait for it. Dong Joo and Soo Wan proved that after climbing a tedious mountain and overcoming life’s trials, true love is waiting in the end.

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CHARACTERS:

THE PARENTALS – More than the love story its actually the love of the parents that is really the highlight. You want to know about unconditional love? There’s nothing more that can define it best than the love our parents have for us.

Literally they will do anything, absolutely everything for the love of their child and they won’t even expect anything in return. This is clearly shown right from Soo Wan’s mother or Jung Hwa ssi’s sacrifice. Who can top that love? They say we can do crazy things for love. Killing someone is the extent of the craziness as shown in this series but covered another part of sacrifice too, as shown by Jung Hwa ssi’s love. A love that sacrificed her own to give life to another. Dong Joo described the warm love his mother gave him to endure life and he is thankful to have her, happy to live having Jung Hwa ssi’s love. Even Dad’s love for him, it is truly something one can’t imagine or measure.

PARK HYE JOO – “While knitting thread by thread you think of that person. Even when your attention wanders for a moment, as if repenting for a wayward heart. You have to unravel it from the place it went wrong and restart from that place.” We didn’t have a chance to enjoy Jung Hwa ssi much but good thing Hye Joo is there since she is Jung Hwa ssi personified! It is a bit awkward that she fell for Woon Chan, but we know better. I love how fierce she is and glad that despite experiencing rejection, Teddy is there for her. You know sometimes, someone better will come if we know how to let go.

KANG JI WOON – he is so kind hearted that I can’t bring myself to hate him or feel otherwise. Despite the fact that he accidentally hit Jung Hwa ssi, he was just at the wrong time that day. The good thing about his character is that he knows when to stop, when to hold back and to own up to his mistakes. He won’t layer something bad with another mistake, instead he corrected it. He has much respect with the people he care for the most that he’d be willing enough to be punished for his mistakes and not cause further harm to anyone.

He lived in a very sheltered life, with no real friends. When he met Soo Wan, he felt the warmth of her persona and understood her pain. That scene when he told her “I’ll wait for you..” has become one of my favourite line in this series. I’m such a weakling for a man who waits and wholeheartedly do so. Ji Woon showed so much respect to Soo Wan’s heart, its admirable that he thought of her happiness and set aside his own. What a man!

CHA MIN SOO – What an awesome bestie! I love most of her lines when it comes to love. This happened to be one of them: “Don’t you just need to be with each other if you love each other?” She is simple minded and I love it! The writer is the one making things complicated, right? She was determined to help Soo Wan and Dong Joo, not just with the case of Jung Hwa, but most importantly when it comes to the matter of their hearts. She may look like she is clueless, but she has seen true love in Dong Joo and Soo Wan. Even Ji Woon thought her a valuable lesson in love.

YOON SOO WAN – “If you could measure the love you have for someone with a ruler, that is not the time you love, but you know it when you lose that person through pain. The fact that you can hurt this much, you can be sad this much, miss this much, this made me realise the size of my heart that I didn’t know everyday. But it is strange, right? No matter how hurt or hard, the world that I did not know Park Dong Joo, I think I will not trade it for the present me. They say that a very painful love is not love, but I still want to call you, us, love.”

I love her character. I think she’s one of the fiercest and most daring, especially when it comes to love. She really went directly to Dong Joo, aiming for his heart without fear. I also love that she gets jealous when it comes to Dong Joo, she is just so transparent. To say she is a strong woman, as Dong Joo described her to be, is an understatement. She is an ancient pillar that is hard to put down, heavily built in time that it takes a man like Dong Joo to carry.

PARK DONG JOO – a man who loved only one woman his entire life and has a heart that yearns for Soo Wan only. From the start until now, seeing and experiencing his love for Soo Wan, I still can’t find the right adjective to describe him. His love for someone makes him say “I will wait for you. I will walk slowly. Walking alongside you is more important than speed.”  It is touching to hear these words from a man whose love is willing enough to stay true to his words and do it.

WANJU COUPLE:

What is love? Surely each have a definition for it. And when I watch dramas, I tend to know how love is defined in different ways. In this one, I can simply say it is Dong Joo and Soo Wan becoming one. Love is having the heart to forgive, to remain in love even if its tormenting and loving one person from start to end. I can still go on and on, you know.

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Dong Joo wished to find Soo Wan and she became his reason to come back. The eye contact at first was enough to melt anyone’s heart. Their longing for each other resonates with the way their eyes met. Can we really recognise love at first sight? I mean, can you really tell its love? The two of them felt it. The answer to my questions became possible. I just love every stare, the way they question each other without words.. it speaks volume. #soinlove

Episode 4 stare down was such a delight to watch. I love Soo Wan’s fierce persona, that she’s not afraid to confront Dong Joo and look at him directly into his eyes. Their bickering at first was not just done for the sake of arguing. It seems that both are testing each other. Isn’t it nice to see Soo Wan constantly bogging Dong Joo, surprising him with her curiosity and boldness?

Soo Wan’s nearness created a different heart beat for Dong Joo. Soo Wan recognised the rhythm, it is so unique she thinks it is impossible her instinct about him could be wrong. She just knew, it is the sound of her first love. Dong Joo felt it too, he was just hesitant to confront it head on the way Soo Wan did.

This couple made me believe that it is possible to love one person for the second time, or third, or fourth without thinking of it as foolish. You can choose to love the same person over and over. That you will prefer to just have only him, all your life and ask for no one else. This made the WanJu couple so powerful because their hearts genuinely loved each other, beyond distance, time aside and amidst difficulties. We know this love by heart but Dong Joo and Soo Wan defined it better. They have a kind of love that is worth to have anytime.

If there is only one thing that the Wanju couple left me with is this: Don’t wait for the person you love to be gone before you do something. Sometimes we just learn the value of something important when we lose it. It seemed foolish that we waste precious time, if only we can choose to love now. Easier said, but most of us fail on this. Why wait for that awful thing? Losing a person you love is dreadful. You don’t want to experience it, ever. I don’t want to experience it again. But we can be so stubborn, right? Like Soo Wan. This series can serve as a lesson for us to be like Dong Joo who waited even if it took a thousand years, even if the mountain was too steep to climb, he still choose to love Soo Wan. Only her.

Lee Sang Yoon and Ku Hye Sun’s chemistry is really palpable and it never wavered until the very end. All I see is them enjoying their characters who are so in love with each other. It is evident that their chemistry explodes on and off screen. I understand the real-life well wishers, I can’t blame you. Who wouldn’t want to see both actors happy like how Park Dong Joo and Yoon Soo Wan is, right? There’s a clamour for the love to be real. And I’m just so happy that both successfully made us feel true love and it didn’t feel like they were acting. It was so natural, you want it to be real.

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I was a happy camper watching them together. My heart is full of joy and love seeing them on screen. I’m all smiles, and sometimes it just comes naturally. Most of the time I forgot I’m watching a melodrama. I really do hope they will have another series or movie. Like what Soo Wan said, I think Lee Sang Yoon and Ku Hye Sun are the twin stars that shines brighter together. It was really that good! What an amazing chemistry, literally sparks fly and it was beautiful.

A melodrama can be intimidating to watch however you can set aside that fear. Enjoy how it is to love and be loved by watching this series. It reflects a life full of trials that produces happiness in the end. Have fun experiencing Dong Joo and Soo Wan. When they look at each other, its an assurance that whatever life brings, they will choose to love each other, over and over and over again..

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Until next time!

 

 

 

 

 

13 Comments

  • Swee says:

    Dear Leila108,
    This review is so well written that my heart aches and tears came to my eyes. I watched the last 2 eps raw and have the subbed versions downloaded but refused to watch it coz I enjoyed this drama so much that I did not want it to end.
    Love the OTP and OSTs, yes, I wish these two leads will collaborate again in a movie or drama, miss their gazes, smiles and dimples.
    Thank for reviewing, I enjoy reading it.

  • Alexis says:

    That was an amazing review. Thank you so much and may you find yourself a real Park Dong Joo 🙂

  • Ivoire says:

    Thank you for the review! I have been waiting for your thoughts on the drama ever since it ended. Thank you for finishing your thoughts (giving us your last thoughts) on the drama. I will be off to read now 🙂

  • Rushie says:

    Wow, I wish I could write that Well. This review just reminded me of all the reasons why I loved this show. And Yeah, Lee Sang-yoon is my favourite Gu Hye-sun co-star yet. Their chemistry is off the charts. Until the next drama.

  • Hahanzyy says:

    Thanks so much for this review. Love your thoughts and deep insights. You helped me understand and accept the later part of the drama more bcos I was upset with Soo Wan being such a “noble idiot”. Now I’m enlightened and understand why she acted that way. And your are so right about LSY and GHS being twin stars. Their chemistry is indeed explosive 🙂

  • Ruth says:

    Bravo! Awesome!!! You really took my thoughts and put it in this insightful piece of writing. I was frustrated at viewers’ negative comments on Soo Wan’s attitude and the writer’s story towards the last few episodes….man! I could understand very well why Soo Wan acted the way she did & how necessary the last few episodes were, so much so that I wish I could explain to these viewers! So grateful that there is such a talented writer like you who wrote a review that speaks heaps about the Wanjoo love story. Indeed, only GHS & LSY could do justice to this story.

  • cinders h says:

    I am so delighted with your review of AE..well written and pointing to the core of every spirit experiencing LOVE. Great job! and thank you very much. It is my word of mouth to my family and friends around the globe to watch AE. There is substance in the storyline and execution of both leads – indeed, a perfect chemistry……profound and it is love beyond human comprehension.

  • myra do says:

    We consider this ROMANTIC drama the best for 2014! We love the the love Team pairing of GHS & SLY as well as the younger version, there was TEAMWORK, the love scenes were passionately done, SUPERB love songs. They are all fit into ONE item with great excellence. Today we’re following LSY & GHS probably because we consider them as one of the best KOREAN ACTOR of today. Keep it up! CONGRATULATIONS! Oh, never we forget all of their STAFF’s as well most especially the DIRECTOR & WRITER of course!

  • ais says:

    Awesome review. Angel Eyes is the most heartwarming drama I have ever watched! And yes, kdrama fairies, another project for this beautiful, BEAUTIFUL pair 🙂

  • jolly97 says:

    Beautiful. AE and Wanjoo is simply beautiful. This is the only drama that I can watch over and over again, and won’t get boring. Just to see them together make my heart flutter. And the kiss scenes in this drama: DAEBAK!!! I never see other kiss that show so much love in their eyes. I can say: you nailed it GHS and LSY!

    Thank you for this review. Love every part of it.

  • leslie says:

    I just love your review 🙂 you totally said almost everything that’s on my mind 😀 jjang! <3

  • I c e says:

    I can’t stop smilling as I read all your points and i love everything that you have said:) awesome! 🙂

  • W O W says:

    Thank you for this wonderful review for Angel Eyes, you have definitely said everything what’s on my mind in this drama. AE is the only KDrama i’ve watched from start to finish and never gets tired of watching it over and over again.. I totally agree that LSY and GHS has a great chemistry and gave justice to their characters. The story is close to reality and everybody can relate to the characters.. Everything seems perfect to me that i can’t still get over with the story… I hope to see LSY and GHS in future projects, they really look good together. God Bless.

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