I am proud to present you all “The Drama That Will Wreck Your Life.”
Quite a few weeks ago, I stumbled across an Instagram post about a new ongoing drama which starred Seo In Guk. Having watched most of his dramas and being a fan of his work, I was quite excited to see the new project he was working on. Hallelujah!! Thankfully, I stumbled (or rather pulled and got wrecked completely) into one of the best dramas I have watched in this entire year.
The Smile Has Left you Eyes (Hangul: 하늘에서 내리는 일억개의 별) is a remake of the 2002 Japanese television series “Hundred Million Stars from the Sky.” Having not watched the Japanese version, I went into this drama with no expectations and boy, did I fall hard for it.
Being a HUGE K-Drama fan, I tend to give the benefit of doubt to all dramas. Usually, I watch around two episodes of each show before deciding whether I want to go ahead or not. However, my choice of genre in K-Dramas usually does not fall into the conventional “oh-so-romantic” ones. I tend to choose gritty and underrated dramas (which usually falls under the crime-thriller or supernatural genre). Therefore, tvN and OCN are one of my go-to channels. Under the impression that The Smile Has Left Your Eyes may also fall under my type of entertainment, I decided to give it a try. And I was proved beautifully right.
First of all, let me talk about the entire mood of the drama. The aesthetic and the colour-grading of the drama is so demure that it grabs your attention and lets you know that this is not going to be your typical fluffy one. Throughout the drama, there seems to be concealed veil of darkness which can be felt on every nerve. Director Yoo Je Won presents us with every aspect of human emotions in this enchantingly crafted drama – loneliness, happiness, conflict, love, fear and majorly trauma. The portrayal of mental illness is also so sensitively handled that viewers actually get to understand the perspective of people who are still trying to heal from their past scars.
Whoever was in charge of the casting deserves a big fat bonus – Period!
Each and every character in this drama is so central and important for the plot of the drama, so much so, that no one feels left out. The three main characters manage to bring such depth into their on-screen personas that it feels as if you can connect with them and understand them. This was one of the main reasons why the drama was a huge success for me – the stellar cast and the director’s freedom to the actors to express themselves in their own unique way.
Seo In Guk as Kim Moo Young
There are three words to describe Kim Moo Young’s character – Enigmatic, Bewitching and Morally Conflicted. What starts out as a simple guy who works in a brewery later on develops into a complicated character with so many emotional scars that you feel like you understand him but also you don’t (I hope you get what I mean XD). There are many moments when you feel if he really is a good guy as Jin Kang pushes him to be. His switch from a smiling face to just plain unemotional eyes is a sight to see and makes your skin crawl letting you wonder if he really is the hero of this story. A huge applause to Seo In Guk for pulling off such a complicated character. His entire performance is so expressive even when he is not even saying a single word – his eyes say it all. Kudos!
Jung So Min as Yoo Jin Kang
At the first glance, Jin Kang seems like the typical female lead in any K-drama. She is someone with a sweet, kind personality and has a pretty rich best friend whom she adores a lot (even though the friend doesn’t really seem to care about her). However, like Moo Young, she has her own share of emotional wounds which she keeps wrapped up under that smile of hers. Jin Kang bonds with Moo Young over their similarities, but they way they express it is so different. Therefore, Jin Kang wants to show him that he can change and be a better person. Jung So Min delivers an amazing performance as Jin Kang and the scenes where she becomes emotionally overwhelmed deserves a huge round of applause. You go girl!
Park Sung Woong as Yoo Jin Goo
Warm, fluffy and an overprotective brother is what we see when we are introduced to Yoo Jin Goo, a homicide detective. His love for his younger sister, Jin Kang can be seen from Episode 1 and we get to know how much he is protective about her. Yoo Jin Goo’s character development was the best for me. From the loving brother to the stone cold violent detective who is so sure that Kim Moo Young is a monster in disguise is a spine-chilling transformation and Park Sung Woong delivers it. Like the other characters, Yoo Jin Goo also carries his own share of emotional turmoil and therefore lives a quiet life in the police station while remaining dominated by the Chief of his team. While some of his actions are very irrational, he does show the length a person can go to protect his loved one.
Reason to Watch It
The Smile Has Left You Eyes may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I would personally highly recommend you to give it a try. This drama will push you into an emotional roller-coaster ride but you certainly won’t be disappointed. Yes, there are some jarring potholes (which K-drama doesn’t) but that is made up by the flaming chemistry between Seo In Guk and Jung So Min. I mean just look at them, how can you not love these two?