Roommate season 1 is over. That is a HUGE RELIEF. Don’t get me wrong. When the premise of this show started, I was psyched out because it promised that it would give the regular inside life of Korean celebrities: actors, singers, martial artist, model. It was seasoned with different people who are trying to break that stereotype of who they are portrayed in media and show who they really are. Hence, roommate.
P.S. I wrote more than expected. Sorry 🙂
Going into the show, I really didn’t have any high expectations of what the show encompasses, except 11 different professionals living under one roof and them forming a friendship, relationship and maybe enemies along the way. This concept, just like Big Brother, is something I found interesting because it shows fans of these professionals that they are just people, like me and you. So making their fans see who they really are will give these celebrities a break in living their life as they try to make a living in Korea.
What originally drew me into watching was because of actor Lee Dong Wook. I like him and some of his work. He is not the best of actors out there, but from the way he acts, I watch only his rom-com dramas & his presence occurrence in Running Man (another variety show), he seemed to have a down-to-earth personality. I wasn’t familiar with other celebrities. But watching the show, I began to enjoy each person/ developed characters (reality show guys!!). It wasn’t laugh-out-loud funny, but it was enjoyable and just something to watch while relaxing on Tuesday evening after a hectic day.
Sure, the producers of the show tried to create a love-line: Nana of Orange Caramel and Jo Se ho, a comedian/actor) or Park Bom of 2ne1 and Lee Dong Wook, which I felt was unnecessary because you can’t help who you fall in love with, but it sure brought in awkward laughter from the way one person tried to impress the other or make a fool out of themselves. Watching 2 hours of this show every Monday night/Tuesday was a little bit ridiculous. Sometimes, I could barely sit to finish Running Man (not that it wasn’t interesting, just that it is not the same as drama-watching, story line and all), but i DID. There were sometimes, that nothing happens on the show, and sometimes something did. For example, Park Min Woo’s reckless driving while really tired or Nana’s lack of direction made herself and Song Ga Yeon get lost for almost two hours on their way home from grocery shopping –a 10 min driving commute from the house to the store. (Being there 🙂 )
However, the recklessness or the random love line was not enough to pull in ratings. The ratings were so ridiculous( below 7%), I felt that the show would have randomly ended. This show had netizens criticizing each person left and right for their behavior–Nana’s being disrespectful to her elders (Shin Sung Woo& Lee So Ra) to Park Bom not speaking clearly and articulately properly to Se ho’s unnecessary forcefulness on starting a love line with Nana. Even when the show had a “big” scandal (oh that word, Can’t wait for Scandal 🙂 ) with Park Bom, one would think that in a weird, sadistic way, the ratings would go up, but it brought down the ratings worse than you can say most actress in Korea do not go under the knife. It was bad. Due to her scandal, she left the show abruptly. I was beginning to warm up to Bom and her antics and it was sad to see her leave as the past incident affected her future.
One thing I can say in terms of one of the reasons the ratings were bad is the fact that the editing of this show was abysmal. I get it, it is a variety show that wants to show the “realness” of individuals, with a dash of entertainment, but that doesn’t mean that the editing has to lack in preciseness and sense. hehe. It was horrendous. From the previews of the show, one would think that it would be an engaging episode. But IT WAS MISLEADING. After episode 3, I started getting pissed at the lack of what to expect. So I just took the previews at face value and just watched the show knowing that the previews IS NOT WHAT YOU EXPECT. hehe.
Anyways, getting to know each character was fun. There were some characters that were funny and some were just there and faded even though they look like cool peeps to hang with. I love Lee Dong Wook more (funny guy); Jo Se ho is a hoot (dur he is a comedian); Nana- didn’t know her, but she is so cute (personality, d’oh); Park Chan Yeol is super, duper cute (he is now a matured man hehe); Song Ga Yeon is the cutest being ever, Hong Soo-Hyun, when I see her work now, I see her holding a huge cup filled with wine 🙂 or trying to get with a cute young guy; Shin Sung Woo..a man that can COOK & is Hot…what is more to say; Lee So ra, a cool big sister to have around; Park Min Woo is a sensitive guy (need more of those around); Seo Kang Joon. Oh my, don’t know where to start with him. All I know now is when I see him act (What Happens to My Family) I see dancing Dashman who is so adorable. And Park Bom was a hoot.
This is reality show is all about showing fans that entertainers are just employees like you and me. Sure, they make us laugh, entertain us by forming love lines with their TV co-stars, they bless us with their awesome music or impress us with their fighting skills, nonetheless, they are regular after all that show. They make mistakes, have huge crush, drink wine from a cup, cook like their life depended on it and just laze around with their friends when not working. This was the message the show was trying to get across. Celebrities are people too and what they portray on TV or how they are on stage is different from their real lives. If they are able to separate that identity, then why can’t viewers.
Ever since Park Bom left the show, some roomies began to leave as well to focus more on their new and restart career. Now there are new characters to jump start season 2 that premiered on Sept 21. The theme for season 2 is “It’s Okay, Roommate” which emulates a recent k-drama show, It’s Okay, It’s Love. The new cast looks like fun. Which I am loving and can’t wait. There are more seasoned and comfortable in being on a variety show. Some characters are still going to be on the show (Dong Wook, Se Ho, Nana, Min Woo and Kang Joon. Hopefully, this new cast will bring in the rating that this show deserves in terms of showing the “real life” of celebrities who are scrutinized constantly by the public.