My Beautiful Bride – What a Surprise

I was not going to watch My Beautiful Bride at all. I didn’t have too much interest in watching another revenge, action/thriller sort of drama. But I just tuned in to the first episode for the heck of it and boy was I surprised. I don’t even know why I was surprised. My Beautiful Bride, despite the lame title, was certainly more interesting than I had anticipated.

Kim Do Hyung (Kim Moo Yeol, whom I’ve never really seen before) works for a bank and is a very straight-laced, plays by the rules kind of guy. It also makes him adorably dorky too because he’s so serious about everything, and yet so earnest and in love with his girlfriend, Yoon Joo Young (Go Seung Hee, who’s not so bad here compared to her turn in The Night Watchman’s Journal). He wants to do right by her, especially since they have been sort of living together and he really wants to make her his wife. The only problem is he comes from a well-to-do family and his parents would never approve of the poorer Joo Young.

In any case, he proposes to her, and she hesitates to say yes because… yes, she has a past. A very dark past that could get her in loads of trouble. However, she is also five weeks pregnant and would love to start anew with Do Hyung.

The problem is, she never gets to tell him about her pregnancy before she goes missing.

Flash back to three years prior and we learn that Joo Young used to work with Detective Cha Yoon Mi (Lee Si Yeon, whose fighting scenes have a layer of surrealism because we all know that with her boxing skills she can knock out every guy on set with just one punch). Yoon Mi was in charge of the missing persons department and had discovered that all of her missing people were usually tied to some loan shark, and those loan sharks worked with the “Shadows” who would eliminate people to pay back the debts. The man behind all this is Song Hak Soo (Lee Jae Yong), and he’s a hard man to catch.

But Yoon Mi does everything she can to track him down, and the only way to catch him is through a woman: Joo Young. She worked with Yoon Mi as an informant to finally pin down Hak Soo and put him in jail for all those crimes – which included killing people and selling their organs in the black market, and also sending women to foreign countries as sex slaves.

So in the three years while Hak Soo was in jail, Joo Young was able to safely live her life – somewhat cautiously, but able to go back to a normal life. But when Hak Soo finally gets out on parole, everything changes. And that’s when Joo Young goes missing. Out of her choice or not is up for debate, but she has one determined fiancé who will do anything it takes to get her back.

Do Hyung is such a serious and harmless character, which makes me wonder how on earth he’ll become a hero in a few episodes. He’s not exactly the hero type, even though we know he’s really fit because he bikes everywhere and runs an hour on the treadmill every morning. But just because one is fit does not mean one knows how to fight. At least the endearing thing to all his seriousness is also his naïveté. When told to entertain a client (who happens to be a loan shark in actuality, and working for Hak Soo), he buys him cake instead because he doesn’t drink, and doesn’t know how to entertain someone with dinner and alcohol. We all know that “entertain” means to a certain extent to bribe someone, and so does the client, Park Tae Gyu (Jo Han Chul). He excitedly accepts the gift, only to discover that it’s really cake and not money hidden inside. It’s not like Do Hyung did anything wrong, and Park Tae Gyu, for all his fearsomeness, can understand that. But it’s just really funny that Do Hyung is so innocent. He’s good at his job, but just fails at this one thing that is technically illegal but necessary for his job, if you know what I mean.

I like that this drama is presenting a very simple plot at first that will only get complicated with additional elements when Do Hyung gets deeper involved with his fiancée’s past. I like that there’s no love triangle with the detective. I like this one minded-ness that the first episode’s script has because it makes things a lot easier to get invested in. I don’t have to try to keep track of too many tidbits of information that may or may not be important to the story because the drama is trying to introduce everyone at once. Instead of requiring two episodes to get sucked in, this just needed one.

I’m hooked. And I’m going to keep watching somehow. Let’s hope it stays good.

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