Sunday, December 14, 2014

Written on


In My Love From Another Star: American Cast, Chris Lives Korea speculates about which two actors could play the leads in ABC's remake. I like his picks!

A Korean in America offers an in-depth analysis of the narrative of MY LOVE FROM ANOTHER STAR. She also explores some of the show's flaws:
What I am trying to say is that it is easy for Korean dramas like this to bog down to be just a collection of scenes albeit nice scenes. “My love from another star” fits this case. It is less evident in the earlier episodes when there was enough initial plot generated by the premise of the show’s concept. However, once this is gone, it becomes a chore to just get through the show.

This is somewhat of a typical phenomenon for Korean dramas. However, with “My love from another star”,  it is worse since its narrative is not meant to be meandering. For god sakes, it has a ticking clock built into the basic plot premise.
Perhaps the ABC version is an opportunity to address the flaws--assuming, of course, that the ABC version doesn't introduce significant new ones!

In ABC's adaptation of "My Love From Another Star" is bound to falter (via The Filter), Allen Donne explains why he doesn't have high hopes for the remake

Now ABC seeks to emulate that success by taking the same story and concept but importing it for American viewership. The project will recruit the creators of the original Korean drama to executive produce alongside Elizabeth Craft and Sarah Fain in order to maintain that original magic.

No matter how much they try, though, this adaptation is a terrible idea.

… it’s clear that there are some polarizing differences between American Korean TV….

… But even if ABC somehow manages to make the original one or two season format work, there are still some major cultural differences that might get in the way of the show’s success.

While I have my own doubts about the viability of ABC's remake, I also fear that assuming American/Western audiences can't accept or won't adjust to the uniquely Korean elements of the show creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. It's past time that general American audiences learn about the glories of Asian cinema. ABC's remake, if it stays true to the spirit of the original, could be a step toward that kind of enlightenment.

I also think Mr. Donne underestimates the power of the particular romance trope at the heart of MY LOVE FROM ANOTHER STAR:

Perhaps the biggest difference between American and Korean television is how the two audiences view romance. In America, things like kissing or sex are common nature in romantic shows. In Korea, there’s a warning that viewers should be 14 to even see the lewd act of kissing. In fact, one of the reasons the protagonist of “My Love from Another Star” was so popular was because he was targeted towards a more socially conservative audience. The protagonist, portrayed by the very handsome Kim Soo Hyun (“Moon Embracing the Sun”), was not only handsome and fit (there’s a scene in the first episode showcasing his abs in the shower) but also smart, cultured and, most importantly, a virgin. The character had never even kissed anyone in the 400 years he spent on Earth. To an American audience, he’d be seen as maybe too childish or even a loser.

As I've noted before, Do Min Joon is very similar to Star Trek's Spock. I'd be surprised if anyone thinks Spock comes across as "childish" or a "loser." And wouldn't you know--Spock fan fiction with romantic elements was not only written by women, but the stories were also some of the progenitors of science fiction romance.

Plus, the reserved, distant hero is common in many romances. So I don't believe the hero of ABC's remake will come across as "too childish" or "a loser" to the American audience. On the contrary, romance fans will recognize the archetype for what it is.

Joyfully yours,