Fated to Love You (2014)
Directed By: Lee Dong-yoon & Kim Hee-won
Back in my high school days, when I watched Asian dramas religiously, I came across the original Taiwanese drama, Fated to Love You. I wasn’t really interested in it because none of my favorite Taiwanese actors and actresses were in it, and it didn’t seem appealing from the trailers and promotional posters. In fact, when the South Korean version came out I had no interest in watching it, but opinions change and so I watched it. Best decision I made all summer!
Lee Gun (Jang Hyuk) is the successor of a large organization owned by his family and Kim Mi Young (Jang Nara) is just an average secretary at a law firm. These two people happen to have crossed paths due to some accidental circumstances. After having a one-night stand, Kim Mi Young gets pregnant with Lee Gun’s baby. Their worlds collide: Kim Mi Young must give up her mundane life and become Lee Gun’s wife while Lee Gun must give up the love of his life, Se Ra (Wang Ji-won) and become the husband and father of his new family.
So my sister and I mainly watched this drama because her favorite South Korean actor is in it, Choi Jin-hyuk. I watched a good chunk of Choi Jin-hyuk’s dramas and he always plays the second lead. A majority of the times I feel bad for him because he doesn’t get the girl in the end except in two dramas where he is the main guy, Emergency Couple and Pride and Prejudice. However in Fated to Love You, even though he doesn’t get the girl, he gets a nice conclusion: he reunites with his sister. It didn’t have this big dramatic moment but it’s subtle and sweet.
I find the drama, Fated to Love You, charming. And that “charm” comes from the cast. Jang Hyuk and Jang Nara worked together before in a 2002 drama entitled, Successful Story of a Bright Girl. They have great chemistry and balance each other out in this drama. Lee Gun is charismatic but childish—he is an adult with a heart of a kid. (As a side note, though, I found Jan Hyuk’s laughter to be the most amusing thing I’ve ever heard in a drama.) While Kim Mi Young is our favorite girl next door character—ordinary but has a potential of being amazing if she just believes in herself. And in this series, Kim Mi Young transforms into a confident, independent woman. I enjoyed both of the main leads’ characterization: they were fleshed out pretty well. Aside from the charming main leads, I thought that Lee Gun’s grandmother and Mi Young’s mother were adorable. They truly wanted what’s best for the two and didn’t really meddle in their love lives unless necessary. Their family members, friends, and co-workers really wanted the two to get together since they see the sparks between them.
Personally, I think the South Korean version of Fated to Love You has one of the best plot and development sequences in comparison to other dramas I’ve watched. The plot moved along smoothly and didn’t leave any gaping holes for the viewers. I also enjoyed that the exaggerated dramatics were kept at a minimum and that rather than having a physical character as the antagonist, most of the struggle between the two leads is due to their relationship problems and personal feelings.
Fated to Love You should be on your “Must Watch” list. Now does the South Korean remake convinced me to watch the original Taiwanese version, not really. The South Korean version has an engaging storyline and interesting characters that were brought to life by a talented cast, but I don’t think the Taiwanese one would reach my expectations. So as a personal preference, I say watch the South Korean remake and if you are curious then watch the original Taiwanese version.