I slept at 3:30 AM a while ago even though I had work because I ended up binging the first four episodes of Buamdong Revenge Club, whilst drinking soju too! Hahaha. Anyway, I ended up going to work late but who cares because my heart felt fuller than it was before I got to know these amazing ahjummas and THE KID WHO MADE ME FINALLY ACCEPT THAT I AM A NOONA ALREADY. I know the show is over now and my Checking in on posts were for checking in on currently airing shows but this is my blog and now I’m using it for when I want to talk about a drama’s episodes. Hope you can discuss this amazing show with me!
I initially had no plans on watching Buamdong Revenge Club. Maybe because it obviously has no romance and while I’ve finally diversified the genres I watch, I still prefer my rom-coms any day. Aside from it lacking romance, I’m also not that interested with revenge thrillers or revenge melos. It didn’t help that the poster looked like three snooty and rich ahjummas exacting revenge.
HOW WRONG WAS I? Not only are they not snooty but this isn’t a revenge thriller or a revenge melo. It is such a heartwarming found-family comedy-drama that managed to win me over with just the first episode. I guess I should have watched the previews before judging a drama by its poster, huh?
I only tried the show because people on Dramabeans have been raving about it. Yes, I am always affected by populist views especially with kdramas. Remember when I watched Meloholic? And that was just an “okay” drama so of course I can’t let a good/great drama pass me by.
Anyway, so for those who don’t know what it’s about, here’s the premise. Jung-hye (Lee Yeo-won) is 36 years old and the one who started the Buamdong Revenge Club. In a marriage meant to benefit two families, she constantly receives grief for being unable to bear a son. Her husband now reveals that he has a son out of wedlock Soo-gyum (Jun of U-KISS), who’s 18 years old, and he brings him to their household! Jung-hye is of course pissed at the situation and she wants to exact revenge on her husband (played by the police chief in Forest of Secrets so you already know that we hate him HAHA). She enlists Mi-sook (Myung Se-bin), 42 years old, who’s being hit by her husband (who’s running for Minister of Education and is friends with Jung-hye’s husband because OF COURSE ASSHOLES ARE FRIENDS WITH EACH OTHER), to join in the revenging. She also enlists Do-hee (Ra Mi-ran), 45 years old, a fish market vendor, who’s being oppressed by the haughty parent of the kid who bullies her son, and whose daughter who’s a teacher is being preyed upon by the school principal, in said revenging. SORRY FOR ALL THE RUN-ON SENTENCES AND THE INFINITE CLAUSES AND THE CONFUSING PRECEDENTS.
Anyway, the club doesn’t want revenge such as killing or anything against the law like that. Which surprised me because all this time, I thought that was the point. So imagine my surprise when I ended up getting these three cute ahjummas finding petty ways to take on revenge. Putting on a laxative on the principal’s drink so he ends up getting embarrassed in front of a talk. Things like that. You can see a gif below where Do-hee fights back by being elegant and unperturbed by empty threats.
It was so fun and while watching, I completely didn’t notice the time. I mean, I end up staying up until 3:30AM! Maybe because the show is only 12 episodes long, the storytelling is tight. No such things as filler scenes. Every scene has a purpose, whether to further along the plot or give us a better understanding of our characters.
But not only was it fun but it was also so heartwarming. Seriously. I cried at every episode because these actresses are just so good at their craft that they just gut me at certain scenes. Mi-sook’s abusive husband was enraging and every scene of her family life is painful. Do-hee’s made me cry, but those are tears from feeling loved. Do-hee is such a loving single mom and her scenes with her son Hee-soo and daughter Hee-kyung feel so real. You can feel the familial love from across the screen. Meanwhile, Jung-hye’s life is so cold but unexpectedly, her stepson brought warmth into her life.
I love this bit in the drama where Jung-hye is attached to a certain toy. Apparently, she bought it when she discovered that she’s carrying a baby, only to suffer a miscarriage. The toy gets broken but it was Soo-gyum, her stepson, who fixes the toy and gives it back to her. The symbolism was high in that one, as if Soo-gyum is giving her the chance to have a child too. I definitely teared up with that single scene.
It doesn’t help that Soo-gyum is such a kindhearted kid, while not being a pushover. He plays the adults too and seriously, the found family feelings are very strong in this one. Not only between Soo-gyum and Jung-hye, but among all four of them, including the other two ahjummas. Each of these women gained friends because of this club and while it was revenge that initially bonded them together, it made my heart so full to watch them just being there for each other as sisters. (Also, they keep on drinking and YAAAAASSS TO THAT.)
Okay, I’ll be honest, another reason I gave this show a chance is because I got curious about all the posts I read about shipping Lee Yeo-won’s character with her stepson. I saw screencaps and I’m already interested in it despite never finding that dynamic interesting before.
And now that I’ve seen a couple of episodes of Buamdong Revenge Club, can you blame me though? Just look at how they first met. (He’s swimming for chrissakes!) Such a classic set-up for some teenage ogling but don’t worry, it didn’t go there and won’t go there. (They have a found-family dynamic going on that is so precious.) [Still, feel free to ogle the kid. Hahaha!]
Anyway, I couldn’t enjoy Goblin fully before because I couldn’t get behind a romance between a high school kid and an adult. Please, just do not. I also had second lead syndrome in Flower Boy Ramen Shop because not only was Jung Il-woo’s character a high school student in there, he was also a jerk. BUT WHAT HAPPENED TO MY STRONG STANCE ON THIS ONE? Why am I shipping a high school senior (granted, he’s 18 in here) with Lee Yeo-won? IT’S SO WRONG BUT I STILL WANT IT. I want him to just grow up and romance her but HELLO, THAT’S NOT GONNA WORK BECAUSE SHE’S HIS STEPMOTHER!
I’ve talked about this with @klurker on Dramabeans but we were both surprised by how much we ended up shipping them. Jung-hye was so endearingly childlike so she doesn’t feel like a mom. (And Lee Yeo-won is so beautiful and she doesn’t age.) Then we have Soo-gyum who’s only a high school senior but is very wise for his age, and perceptive too. (And Jun is hot, seriously. Those arm veins, do not get me started.) But even removing the physicality of this shipping, I love how they just understand each other so much, with or without words. It still boils down to their characters’ emotional landscape and the role of the other in it. AND GOOD LORD WHAT ARE THOSE LOOKS OF UNDERSTANDING AND SOLIDARITY THAT YOU TWO ARE SHARING? SOO-GYUM, STOP BITING YOUR LIP AND SMIRKING AND SMILING LIKE THAT, YOU.
I’m going to hell. Hahaha. But who cares when you get scenes like this??? Lee Yeo-won is so cute as our maknae ahjumma and her drunken self is even cuter and so so so endearingly childlike!
I thought that the actor who plays Soo-gyum must have been an actor who just still hasn’t found a bigger role for his name to be known. Maybe cameos here or there or maybe he played as student #2 or something like that. So I was really surprised to see that 1) he’s an idol, and 2) THIS IS HIS FIRST ROLE. Even from the first episode, I was amazed at how natural he acts. He’s not THAT great but he’s good. Anyway, I’m hoping to see this kid in more projects! In a drama with three amazing actresses, he’s holding his own. Great job, kiddo.
(And seriously, I didn’t find him attractive in episode 1 but the more I saw him, the more he got handsome in my eyes? Seriously, he’s so charismatic and with such a natural and great onscreen presence too. HE CREATES THE SEXUAL TENSION I’M SENSING WITH THE BEAUTIFUL LEE YEO-WON, I SWEAR. HE CREATES IT ALL BY HIMSELF. IT’S HIS FAULT I’M LIKE THIS. And then I googled him and he’s only 20 years old and FINE, MY RULE OF NOT HAVING CRUSHES ON CELEBRITIES YOUNGER THAN ME IS NOW OFFICIALLY NOT IN PRACTICE. You win, Jun. You broke me. Hahaha!)
So, what up. I ended up just fangirling over Jun. I COULDN’T HELP IT. Also, I don’t want to talk a lot about what happened in the show because you might not want to read spoilers. And I just wanted to urge y’all to go watch this show! And if you’re already watching it, let’s talk?? I SERIOUSLY NEED TO SPAZZ ABOUT IT WITH SOMEONE! Mehrong from Jung-hye!