I have recently started watching this interesting Korean drama "Secret Garden" starring Ha Ji Won and my favorite Hyun Bin online at (http://www.jacinda1st.com/2010/11/secret-garden-english-subtitles.html). "Secret Garden" is a weekend fantasy romantic comedy drama replacing SBS’s Life Is Beautiful since November 13.
The drama tells the story of Kim Joo Won (Hyun Bin), a seemingly perfect man who hides an arrogant and eccentric side, and Gil Ra Im (Ha Ji Won), a stuntwoman whose beauty and body are the object of envy amongst top actresses. One day they went deep into the mountains and entered a strange house, where a strange woman offered them wine to drink. The next day, they found themselves in the other's body. This will be Ha’s first drama in nearly four years, ever since she played the famed gisaeng Hwang Jini in the drama of the same name. Since then, her film career has taken off with hits like disaster flick Haeundae and melodrama My Love By My Side. She’s slated for another film this year, the action blockbuster Sector 7.
Actor Yoon Sang-hyeon also stars in this drama and his serious but naughty smile is melting women's hearts. Yoon Sang-heyon is showing strong acting as Hallyu star Oscar in the drama. Especially, the scene in which he meets his ex-girlfriend Yoon-seul (Kim Sa-rang), his facial expression looks like he was about to cry and charismatic dancing when he was practicing for his concert.
Secret Garden has already been sold abroad, more than two weeks before its premiere date. Looks like the star-studded combo of Hyun Bin and Ha Ji-won was enough to get it sold on name recognition alone. The writer-PD duo (Kim Eun-sook and Shin Woo-chul) is the same team behind Lovers in Paris, Lovers in Prague, and On Air.
Scenarist Kim Eun-sook is back, the writer of romantic series about couples in love ("Lovers in Paris", "Lovers in Prague" and "Lovers") and dramas about professionals ("On Air", "THE CITY HALL"). Here, the word 'back' contains two meanings. That she is back with an SBS drama titled "Secret Garden" and that she has gone back to telling a story about lovers. This may have some asking whether she is going back to her old ways but that is not true. The story of a blunt rich man falling in love with an ordinary woman who has a strong ability to maintain her livelihood may seem similar to "Loves in Paris" at a glance. But by adding the setup that the main male and female characters' souls are switched, "Secret Garden" strays away from ending up as another Cinderella story and instead heads toward becoming a comic fantasy drama. In other words, "Secret Garden" is like new seeds sown on familiar grounds.
The strongest weapon "Secret Garden" holds is in how its characters' souls are switched, to the extent that both main cast Hyeon Bin and Ha Ji-won said, "Our souls switching is the toughest yet also the most attractive element [to the story]". The blunt and arrogant department store owner Kim Joo Won (Hyeon Bin) turns into a pathetic man and stuntwoman Gil Ra Im (Ha Ji-won) who was always saying she is sorry, shakes her finger at Hallyu star Oscar (Yoon Sang-hyeon) without an ounce of hesitation, the man she had idolized for so long. And the absurd yet detailed setups such as how Joo Won will scream like a girl and crouch down, or say, "I just really wanted to tell you this is a really expensive brand" while turning his body around and pulling out the tag of his sweatsuit, as well as Ra Im increasingly acting like a man, is visual proof of writer Kim Eun-sook's words that she "will in a much more fun way show imaginary scenes that cannot stray too far from people's imagination". To top this off, the lines the actors say in the drama are tossed back and forth at a speed that adds to the cheerfulness of the drama.
The viewer will be able to tell that writer Kim's most recent drama, SBS' "THE CITY HALL" which talked about politics with city hall set as the background, is noticeably different in terms of both genre and characteristic to "Secret Garden" which she said, "I intentionally wrote to be fun". And it comes after how after writing six dramas till now, she "contemplated on whether to write a drama that helps the world or one that will see good ratings". She decided, "I let go of the depth I showed in 'THE CITY HALL' and my greed as well and made a drama which is easy for the entire family to watch on the weekends".
In the drama, Ha meets our hero, played by Hyun Bin, and they get off to a bickering start — only to end up trading souls/bodies. Hyun Bin plays Joo Won, the typical cold, rich businessman. A fate of twist puts him into the body of Ha Ji-won’s stuntwoman character, Ra Im. Yoon Sang-hyun is Oscar, a playboyish Hallyu-star singer who’s big in Japan. Joo-won and Oscar are cousins, yet also bitter rivals. (Example: If Oscar buys a sports car, Joo-won buys a sports car dealership. Another hostile pairing is between Ra-im, aforementioned stuntwoman, and Yoon Seul (Kim Sa-rang), an educated and talented CF director. They get tangled up in one particular encounter, and the former scrapes the latter’s pride, rendering all future encounters tense and contentious.
Yoon Seul and Oscar are formal lovers and they broke up due to some misunderstandings and they still have feelings for each other but are too proud to show it. Yoon Suel is eying marriage to Joo Won to irritate Oscar and hates Ra Im for always being around the cousins. Rounding out the main cast is Philip Lee who takes the role of martial arts director and Ra-im’s boss. The role will likely take advantage of his fluency in English, as his character studied abroad and worked in the Hollywood system.
Song Yoon-ah will make an appearance in the drama and will appear in a scene involving a giveaway event at the department store owned by Hyun Bin, which is promoted with the tagline “Top Star Song Yoon-ah’s Fashion! Giving away Song Yoon-ah’s coat, handbag, and watch!”
I love Joo Won's beautiful house in the drama.