I’m going to stray from my usual posts to focus on yet another branch of delightful Asian dramas: Taiwanese dramas.
While I don’t have the experience with t-dramas the way that I do with k-dramas, I’m still going to spend a little bit of time talking about my new favorite drama, Murphy’s Law of Love. I’ve been feeling a serious lack of connection with dramas lately. After Healer wrapped up in early February, I feared that the bar had been set too high. (What could top that drama for me? What could be half as appealing as Healer was? Ji Chang Wook, this is all your fault!)
I’ve been singing the drama blues, readers. It seems that I’ve started more than half a dozen dramas and then… well, I kind of left them hanging. New, old… didn’t matter. I couldn’t find a single show that hooked me in five minutes. The struggle was real until I gave Murphy’s Law of Love a chance.
I do warn all of you that this post will contain spoilers. If you haven’t watched the series or if you’re not up to date, please proceed with caution.
Murphy’s Law of Love is a charming, upbeat, and most importantly, sincere, drama that focuses on the ups and downs of love. Whether it’s falling in love or experiencing the end of a great love, our male and female leads both find a productive way to deal with these situations. The best part of this drama is that it’s more character driven than plot driven. The only other Taiwanese drama I ever watched was Fall in Love with Me, and that turned into crazy town in the last couple of episodes, so I’m really enjoying the process of these characters growing, moving on, and forging lasting friendships/relationships.
Ji Jia Wei and Guan Xiao Tong have both been seriously burned from love in the past. Their heartbreak is gut-wrenching. As ways to cope, both find a radially different focus on love. Xiao Tong decides to use her psychiatry background in an effort to help match couples together. Helping others find love helps Xiao Tong to cope with her own past and lack of a love life.
Ji Jia Wei is, at times, frigid. He can be a little mean — but his mean is more teasing-spoken-with-a-straight-face. This man has been hurt terribly by love. He can’t seem to let go of his ex. He still loves her. I’m even willing to bet that Jia Wei hasn’t gotten over her because of the possibility of her returning. He ends up starting a business where he helps divorcing couples find peace and happiness with the end of their marriages.
Of course Ji Jia Wei and Guan Xiao Tong get off to a rocky start. They have plenty of assumptions about the other, but when they actually start to spend time together, they realize that they both possess good qualities. There’s also the fact that they even have touching conversations about things that matter to them. In any kind of relationship, it’s a major plus when you can talk to that other person, especially when you make yourself vulnerable by talking about difficult events in your life.
You know, going into this drama, I thought I actually going to love a second male lead for once. I don’t know what it is about Xiang Zi Yan, but the novelty wore off with him too quickly. I’m not saying that a genuinely nice, good guy is a bad choice, but Zi Yan just doesn’t seem to fit Xiao Tong. I don’t see the chemistry. I bet they could live as a couple somewhat happily, but I’m not sold on it transforming into love. Xiao Tong doesn’t seem to see Zi Yan that way. Nonetheless, I do find them cute when they spend time together, but I always keep thinking of the crazy, psycho (even attractive!) chef from Sensory Couple. Will I ever be able to look at an attractive chef in Asian dramas the same way ever again?
Anyway, the point is that this drama is pretty solid so far. Great writing, believable acting, palpable chemistry between our leads, and I’m already addicted to the soundtrack. The plot doesn’t seem to be crazy or all over the place. I only hope that it continues to be a strong, well-written drama as there are still 13 more episodes. And in drama land, we all know that absolutely anything can happen in that amount of time.