Friday, July 3, 2015

Male Leads Who Are As Frustrating As Heck

With the end of Warm and Cozy, we have to talk about the fact that Baek Geon Woo was probably one of the most frustrating male leads ever.  I wanted to like him, but couldn't, because he wasn't the same (or nice) for more than two seconds.  He was so freaking frustrating!

Anyways, it made us scream all the time.  It didn't help that The Producers also had two of the most frustrating male leads ever.  I seriously wanted to grab those boys by the shoulders and shake some sense into both of them.  So I made a list of all the most frustrating male leads.  There are so many that are just jerks, and for too long, and its just bah!  So here are the ones that made my list:

Baek Geon Woo- Warm and Cozy

As I said earlier, Baek Geon Woo is probably the most annoyingly frustrating male ever.  He is actually a spoiled little five year old.  He was constantly changing his mind, not saying what he really means, power playing, and being a general little turd.  He was just constantly messing with her instead of loving her, and it sucked.

We had to constantly tweet our frustration.

GEON WOO. Shut. Up. Stop being petty and just tell her how you really feel.

Yeah Mayor, get him drunk. That's the only way to get anyone honest in this show.

The drama at the end of that show was just ridiculous.  Even after he finally liked her all they did was talk around each other, hurt each other because they wouldn't say what they should and only said hurtful things instead.  It was a constant stream of idiotic behavior that would make us say "seriously?" all the time.  We wanted to like him, but we just couldn't.  Imagine anyone but Yoo Yeon Seok playing this frustrating boy would have probably made me not even want to like him because he was written so terribly.  What an annoyingly frustrating boy.

Baek Seung Chan & Ra Joon Mo- The Producers

I loved petty little Baek Seung Chan.  But I hated it when he was chasing after noona.  I just 100% didn't want them to be together, because they would be awful together, but he was so one tracked minded that he literally was the worst (when chasing after noona), but also the best at other times (like when he was with Cindy), but the worst.  He was just clueless for too long, and then disruptive of a couple who were already struggling because they were both stupid enough on their own already.  He was like a double edge sword.  He was awesome when he was trying to be a good PD, but those very same qualities that we loved one moment (such as his determination, loyalty, and hilarious pettiness), would be the downfall another moment when they lead him to stupidly chase after the wrong woman in the stupidest of ways.  Even if I wasn't shipping him with Cindy, I would not have wanted him to be with Ye Jin, because that would be unhealthy for both of them.  Just the way he went about chasing after her was just no.  No no no no no no.

Really, Seung Chan?  Because I hate that you hate that, because I hate how you like her.  I love you, but just not when you are being an idiot about your love life.

But you know who was also an idiot about his love life?  Ra Joon Mo.  The king of inaction.  He was worse than Oppa from Reply 1994.  When he did say something it was as clear as peanut butter so Ye Jin wasn't going to understand it because she was as perceptive as a brick wall.

But the thing that made it so frustrating was that it was so realistic.  This is the sort of crap that would happen in real life, because people are scared and don't want to mess up friendship for love.  This is very typical behavior that drives us all crazy even when we pretty much all do it.  That's why its so frustrating.

Tae Kyung- You're Beautiful

Hong Sisters are always pulling this sort of crap.  The frustrating jerk leads.  Sometimes they can pull it off, sometimes not.  This was more of a case of not.  He was such a jerk for so long.  Even after he liked her, he was being a jerk.  His jealously was jerkish, it was all just a lot of mean.  It's a wonder they ever got together.  No wonder everyone had second lead syndrome, because Tae Kyung was just mean for so long.  The only endearing thing about him was that face he made... and being chased by a pig.

Lee Young Jae- Full House

Full House was 16 episodes of Young Jae being dumb.  All this couple would do is fight and not say what they really mean, and 75% of that was completely this dude's fault.  He was so obsessed with that bra slut that he treated his wife like crap.  Even in that picture, that's not the way to react when a girl confesses.  Seriously, this dude was immature, awkward, hot tempered, and just an idiot.  I don't think there were more than two seconds of cuteness per episode, and the ending couldn't even make up for all the crap they put us through.  So much painful frustration.

Choi Hyun Wook-Pasta

Here we have a misogynist being brought down by love,  Well, that's just a frustrating situation right there.  So what if he had a painful past with a female chef/girlfriend?  No excuse for his behavior.  Even after he started liking her, he was a gruff jerk all the time.  He was just as frustrating as heck.

Baek Seung Jo- Playful Kiss

The whole premise for this story is frustrating.  Another case of a guy who says one thing, does another, and messing with girls' heads.  Refuses her, but won't let her see anyone else, and is just generally a big smelly jerk.  Just like this picture, he is always leading her on with his double talk and word play.  Seriously, this couple was doomed from the start, but still he lead her on until he couldn't live without her.  How is that for a frustrating story.  Yuck.

Qi Yi- Just You

Here we have the king of suppression.  Yes, he's constantly in a bad mood, because he hated love.  Oh, past trauma.  He suppressed so many emotions that the only thing that came out was anger.  He also wouldn't say anything, because when the bitca suddenly showed up, he felt like he couldn't tell Liang Liang he liked her and be with her until that was cleared up first.  So frustrating!

Sure, say in your head how much you like her, for our benefit.  That's not going to help your relationship progress.  Grr.

Goo Jun Pyo- Boys Over Flowers

Where would this list be without the biggest jerk of all time?  There are so many things that Jun Pyo did that were completely not ok.  Even after he was supposed to be changed and better.  He was an overbearing jerk who had way too much power and anger management issues.  That bullying crap from the beginning, yeah, there is no way to make up for that.  That's just evil.  Anyways, he was frustratingly bad and somehow we were supposed to like him and think it was a great romance.  Well... whatever.  This couple in general was just crappy, neither one of them said what they should have, there was an evil mom messing things up, and yeah.  It's frustrating to have to deal with a rich jerk for 25 episodes.  But Lee Min Ho's Goo Jun Pyo was actually a bit better than the manga's original Domyouji Tsukasa, who was even more evil and less clueless, but still...

Lee Shin- Heartstrings 

I hated this drama.  It was so awkwardly bad.  They wrote this boy's character so wrongly.  He was a jerk to Lee Gyu Won for so long, all the while he is liking that professor in a stupidly obsessive way, and then when he's rejected he suddenly moves on with no problem and all so suddenly likes Gyu Won.  They were such an awkward couple too.  No chemistry because they were too busy being awkward and arrogant/angry.  Boo.  Frustration.  Lame drama.

Ren Guang Xi- Autumn's Concerto 

Ok, in his defense, he was lied to for six years by absolutely everyone he cared about.  That sucks.  He deserved a bit of revenge.  The frustrating part is that it went on for forever.  He was so pissed off, but that just proves that he still loved her despite of the lies.  But could they talk about it and just get back together?  Nope, he had to keep testing her, because he couldn't trust her, and she had to keep lying, because she didn't trust him, and then right when they were about to get back together they would fight again.  Ahhhhh!  Just get together already and stay together!  The frustration was bearable until about episode 17 (of the 21 episode version), when they should have gotten together, when they fought AGAIN and it caused more trouble.  Then they frustratingly only got together in the last 20 minutes of the last episode, because everyone was too stubborn to make up and trust each other, etc.  So frustrating I could die.

Shin-gun- Goong

Why can't these men ever talk about their feelings?  This couple made me want bang my head against a wall.  It was so funny when I started this drama, my friend (who had never watched a Kdrama before) hated Shin and liked Yul (shudder) and was surprised when I told her that she would love Shin and hate Yul by the end.  I didn't know that, I hadn't seen it before, but drama experience told me so.  That didn't mean that there wasn't going to be a lot of frustration before.  In fact it guaranteed it.  However, this drama was over-the-top with it.  I was so freaking annoyed at how frustrating this couple could be, especially Shin, because he just wouldn't say anything good, and when he did it was always in a mean way that wouldn't convince her that he actually did like her.  He had been mean and pissy to her for so long that she couldn't even believe him when he did say he liked her.  I guess it was awkwardness and man pride, but really is it that hard to just say you like your wife and do nice things for her?  He did it, but not consistently, and using press conferences to confess is crap.  Seriously everyone in this show is a frustrating idiot... or just plain evil.  Yep.

Cun Xi- Fated to Love You

Cun Xi was just a butt.  He was so stubbornly charging in that one direction, aka chasing after Anna,  that he couldn't even tell that he was falling in love with his wife.  He would get jealous, do nice things for her to spite her, and then treat her like crap seconds later as he remembered how much he "loved" Anna.  He just didn't get it for so long that he was so flipping frustrating.  Boo, Cun Xi, grow up faster.  Anna is crazy!  Boo!  Even after he figured it out he was frustrating because he was still a bit of an idiot.  Well, at least he's consistent.  He only has one speed in love.  Charge full ahead.

Choi Joon Gi- High Society

Part of me loves the concept of the evil plotting gold digger Derp Face, but at the same time, he's so obviously trying to be bad when he's a good person that it's frustrating.  He obviously knew who she was from the start, but is also obviously being a gold digger/revenge seeker.  I'm not fully caught up to the show, so I'm not completely sure, but he's already frustrating me with how much of a jerk he is.  I am way more invested and interested in the other couple, the Chang Soo/Ji Yi couple, who are actually being sincere and progressing... kind of.  But seriously, this confession scene just frustrated me:

Oh really, so you reject her meanly just so you can ask her?  Also, it's not that big a deal for her to ask, or is your man pride hurt?  Boo!  Jerk!  Not cool!  I have a feeling that he's going to be much more frustrating in the future.

While there were only two Hong Sister's male leads on this list, I seriously had to consider putting more on, because they almost deserved it.  The boys in My Girlfriend is a Gumiho and Delightful Girl Choon Hyang both almost made this list, it was a close fight, but they were just frustrating and not as frustrating as heck... although Mong Ryong was very, very, very close.  That kid was a frustrating idiot... but he was also hilarious... it's a toss up.  I think I was just more frustrated at Noona and Ahjussi to put much of the blame on him, even though he was an idiot.

Anyways, I do have to state that a little bit of frustration is not bad for a drama.  Isn't that one of the driving forced that keeps us coming back?  We are frustrated and intrigued, so we can't wait for the next episode?  But that is only within a certain limit.  There is certainly no call for a drama to be nothing but frustration.  That's just crap.  Unlike Warm and Cozy, which was altogether too frustrating, dramas should have a balance between the different things that are happening, and definitely always have a justification for any frustration that happens, and not just go over-the-top frustrating for no good reason.  Seriously.


  1. I LOVE this post! (I'm sorry. I know I say this a lot, but it's true). This is the main reason why I often have second lead syndrome. Why do they have to make leads so often jerks. This list could be twice as long because so often the male lead is not just cold but calculating mean and then gets meaner the more he likes the girl to try to prove to himself that he doesn't like her. UGGGH. I couldn't understand why everyone was falling all over Jun Pyo, for example, because he (and his posse) were really cruel. Scary cruel. Borderline sociopath cruel. And then to have her fall for him didn't make any sense when she knew what he was capable of and watched how he was so terribly mean. It was the same for me and You're Beautiful. Jus a mean nasty guy; mean to his bandmates, too not just to her. If he is mean to his friends . . .? The closure of these dramas are always a bit troubling because there really needs to be an equal amount of episodes showing us that they are really different now to make up for all the bad memories, but usually there isn't. We're lucky if we get 15 minutes at the end of the last episode, which is never enough.

    1. I know! I'm glad there is starting to be a trend for nicer guys as male leads, because those jerks are just the worst. I especially agree about them being even meaner when they are trying not to like the girl. It's just so dumb. If jealousy makes him into a bigger jerk, then no thanks. She doesn't need emotional abuse to tell her how much he likes her. No way.

    2. I think this is why Bung Do from Queen In Hyun's man was such a big hit. I loved the show, but I think he stood out so much because he was just so . . .nice and clear and honest from the beginning. It was like they literally had to go into the past to find a guy who was decent and make it believable to modern audiences. He is completely without guile or games. Even good guys are usually secretive or have some hang up, so anyone who is direct and treats people well was such breath of fresh air.
      And can I do a shout out to Dean in Just You? He was the redeeming quality for me because he told Aaron's character everything I wanted to tell him AND did not turn into the evil second male lead. Bromance for the win! Date the Deans of the world, people!

    3. I loved the Dean bromance! I was always slow clapping for him because he took the words right out of my mouth. Bromance ftw!

      I agree about Bung Do being an early example of how nice guys just rock. Seriously though, having to go to the past to find him is just sad in concept. There are nice guys in the present! Nice guys can be nice and there can still be conflict and drama. I hope they continue to break out of the jerk male lead stereotype, because it's dumb and overused.