My Girlfriend is a Gumiho

Cast: Lee Seung Gi | Shin Min Ah | No Min Woo | Park Su Jin

 Cha Dae Woong (Lee Seung Gi) is a student at an action school, raised by his wealthy grandfather and aunt. While his grandfather would like nothing more than for Dae Woong to marry quickly and give him grandchildren, Dae Woong himself only wants to play! His life changes forever when he visits a shrine and sees a painting of a gumiho (nine-tailed fox), whom a monk tells him was imprisoned there by the Three-god Grandmother. Suddenly there is a thunderstorm, and Dae Woong’s phone runs out of battery. Yet he is startled when a mysterious voice talks to him and tells him to draw nine tails on the fox in the painting. She tells him that she’s the gumiho in the painting, and was released thanks to him! Before he leaves the temple’s grounds, Dae Woong injures himself badly. Sensing his impending doom and wanting to repay him for her freedom, Mi Ho gives him her fox bead, which will keep him alive. He tries to get rid of her, but Mi Ho follows him all the way to Seoul. What will Dae Woong do with a 500-year-old myth following him around and always begging for meat?!

Acting: Like Secret Garden, I was drawn to this drama more for the female lead than anyone else. Lee Seung Gi is first and foremost a singer, not an actor, so I was really worried that he wouldn’t be able to do well. Thankfully, the script allowed both of the leads to shine! Shin Min Ah can do any role, but if this story got any more dramatic, I’d suggest finding a new male lead. Seung Gi is not the right man for the heavier drama. This was my first time seeing a more fun and light-hearted side of Min Ah, so I was really excited. She was absolutely perfect for Mi Ho. Just the right amount of playful and yet able to remind us that gumihos are a force to be reckoned with! Park Su Jin was excellent as Eun Hye In, Mi Ho’s rival in love. She was the perfect amount of catty and selfish balanced with the drive to succeed.  You’ll probably recognize Byun Hee Bong, as he’s a bit famous for playing very Korean grandfathers. To jog your memory, he was in My Girl and One Percent of Anything.

The only problem I had was with Park Dong Ju. No Min Woo came off as detached and not not very into his role, but that was more the fault of the scriptwriters than the actor. He makes the best sorrowfully longing faces, though!  Dae Woong’s aunt (Yoon Yoo Seon; she also appeared in Goong and Marry Me, Mary!) and the Director Ban (Sung Dong Il) also had their own hilarious romantic adventure, which is the source of a lot of the humour in the show. I’d have to give the award for best supporting actor to Kim Ho Chang, the actor who plays Dae Woong’s best friend Byung Soo. Despite failing at capturing Seon Nyeo (Hyo Min of Kpop girlgroup T-ara)’s heart, he is the unexpected voice of reason in the show.

Music: If you don’t get addicted to the main title, you are a stronger soul than I. There are a few songs that stood out as the best to me, but I ended up downloading the whole soundtrack anyway. Fox Rain by Lee Sun Hee was the perfect blend of innocence with a twinge of loneliness, which pretty much sums up Mi Ho. It has an addictive melody that will have you humming it after hearing it for the first time. Sha La La was actually sung by Shin Min Ah herself, and also has a very whimsical feel to it. It perfectly matches the mood of the drama; it’s great for singing to yourself in the shower! Trap by No Min Woo, was mostly used as Dong Ju’s character song, but also seemed to come up whenever something bad was going on. It has this mysterious, sort of electronic feel to it, which easily makes scenes more ominous. On the other hand, Losing My Mind by Lee Seung Gi was used whenever Mi Ho and Dae Woong’s hearts are closest, or after joyous events. While this song is also autotuned a bit, it has the opposite effect of Trap. It’s an instant mood-booster! Overall, I’d say that the music was pretty good.

Script: The overall feel of the drama is much lighter than I’m used to with period dramas, but that definitely was one of its strengths. I know that the plot is centered around Mi Ho and Dae Woong, but there are important sidestories that were neglected. For example, we know that Dong Ju’s love ran off to be with a human several hundred years ago, and that she asked him to kill her. We also know that Mi Ho was created using her essence (hence why they are identical). I think that they should have given more details involving that tragic love , so we could better understand Dong Joo. It is also pointed out that Hye In is a halfbreed like Dong Joo. This is never explored, and could have been an awesome facet to the story. It was also said that Dae Woong “miraculously” recovered from the accident that killed his parents because his grandfather was by his side. Did his grandfather use magic?  Is Dae Woong also part non-human? Since it’s mostly an urban fantasy, I feel like time invested in unanswered questions would have been well spent. Instead, we get a lot of unnecessary filler that’s just prolonging the inevitable coming-together of Mi Ho and Dae Woong. Overall though, it was a decent script without getting too heavy on the drama.

Cameos:  Uee (ep 5), Park Shin Hye (ep 6), Lee Hong Ki (ep 16)

Overall Rating:


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