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“A Business Power Couple”: Thoughts on What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim?

whats' wrong with secretary kim
(Via Viki)

What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim? (김비서가 왜 그럴까)

(Drama 2018)

This South Korean drama is based on a 2013 novel of the same name and a 2015 serialized webtoon. Vice Chairman, Lee Young-joon (Park Seo-joon), always had his right-hand woman, Kim Mi-so (Park Min-young), with him for everything. However, one day, Mi-so decides to resign from her position after working with Vice Chairman Lee for nine years. Lee schemes to try to get Kim Mi-so to stay: he even tries to convince her to be his wife. Eventually, Mi-so and the Chairman fall for one another.

Vice Chairman Lee and Kim Mi-so are a “power couple.” They know how to manage their time between work and personal affairs, they set goals and make plans to achieve them, they are both self-sufficient and are committed to taking care of one another (even if they have different love languages.) It’s interesting how their work relationship blends into their personal relationship because they treat their relationship as if it’s a business. They want it to run smoothly and if there’s a bump in the road, they would like to clear it up quickly. Yet, at the same time, they act very childishly around each other, which kind of keeps the spark between them. The humor comes from Vice Chairman Lee acting all narcissistic and then Kim Mi-so shuts him down and ignores his antics because they don’t work on her.

However, I did like the fact that this story balances romantic comedy with trauma. We learned later on that Lee Young-joon and Kim Mi-so were both kidnapped at a young age, which has led to an estranged relationship between Lee Young-joon and his older brother, Lee Sung-yeon (Lee Tae-hwan). The love triangle between Kim Mi-so and Lee Sung-yeon was pretty weak and I didn’t think the romantic tension amongst the three main characters was needed. Yet, I do think Lee Sung-yeon aids in helping Lee Young-joon’s overcome personal trauma, and so I applaud the character, Lee Sung-yeon, for that.

My favorite part of this series is the Lee Min-ki and Jung So-min’s cameo in one of the episodes. They portrayed Kim Mi-so’s parents. They starred in Because This Is My First Life as the main couple for that series, and so it was great to see them again as a married couple. I really loved their chemistry in that series and this one.

Overall, What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim? is a fun romantic comedy. Aside from the humor that the main couple brought to the series, the supporting cast also had its moments. I really enjoyed watching the blossoming relationship between the new secretary, Kim Ji-a (Pyo Ye-jin), and the workaholic, Go Gwi-nam. Fun fact: The actor who played Go Gwi-nam, Hwang Chansung, is my favorite singer in the K-pop group, 2PM.

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