K-Drama Review: When the Camellia Blooms

Sanskriti Saxena, Delhi

The 2019 KBS drama ‘When the Camellia Blooms’ focuses on the daily lives of people in a small town of Ongsan, amidst an unsuspecting threat. Oh Dong-baek is a single mother played by Gong Hyo-jin. Hwang Yong-sik is a police officer played by Kang Ha-neul.

File:When the Camellia Blooms.jpg
Picture Credits: Wikipedia

The role of a famous baseball player and Dong-baek’s ex-boyfriend Kang Jong-ryul is played by Kim Ji-seok. Other characters include Dong-baek’ son Pil-gu, Yong-sik’s mother, Dong-baek’s mother, Choi Hyang-mi (played by Son Dam-bi) and Jong-ryul’s wife.

The drama starts with Dong-baek’s struggle to earn a living through her bar ‘Camellia’ while dealing with gossips around her. Yong-sik’s strong dedication and persistence towards Dong-baek is refreshing to watch as she is reluctant to accept his feelings. Eventually, the romance between both the leads is very intriguing as characters get so well immersed in their roles that their age difference becomes almost negligible.

Kang Ha-neul, as a police officer is a playful character who never gives up on Dong-baek and is stubborn. It’s interesting to hear him speak in a country accent. Jong-ryul, as second male lead, tries to balance his life with his wife and later on tries to build his bond with his son Pil-gu about whom he didn’t know before. Pil-gu, as a child, also explores various changes in his life that have arrived due to the presence of Yong-sik and Jong-ryul. However, the hints of happiness in Dong-baek’s life is threatened by a sinister lurking in the background marking her as a target. The threat makes their entangled lives even more complicated as they try to overcome it together. The drama also focuses on the different phases of motherhood such as how a relationship with mother affects each of the characters’ lives. Hyang-mi’s life has been shown as a roller-coaster. She might be seen as rude and selfish initially but by the end of the story, everyone finds out the reason behind all of that.

The original soundtrack of this drama comprises of eleven parts. In addition to this, the drama has a special OST ‘The First Noel‘ sung by various artists like Kim Yeon-ji, Onestar, Yongzoo, Ga Eun, and few more. There are also short various Pop OSTs in the drama for various scenes which created a special effect on the scene. The OST ‘Like A Heroine In The Movie’ sung by Punch, a famous singer, is the most viewed and the popular one. Other OSTs are also apt for the various scenes like OST part 2 ‘Loser’ clearly depicts the Yong-sik’s character on how he felt sometimes in comparison to Dong-baek. Other artists who have contributed to lovely songs are John Park, Soyou, Heize, Kim Feel, Kim Na-young.

This drama is a lightweight combination of comedy, romance and thriller. It explores varied relationships between the residents of the town and the changes in their lives. The threat to the lives of residents makes the whole town united and create new heroes. The bonding between parents and the child is also emphasized in the story. If you are looking for a fierce female lead who can take care of herself and her family, and a male lead who just has eyes for his girl, this drama is your stop for a complete package of fun and thrill, and will show a new perspective on life. The drama is also available on Netflix. Do give us your views if you have seen this drama!

5 Comments Add yours

  1. Yash Sharma says:

    Wow, like I’ve seen interviews of the cast and all but I’ve never seen it. Sounds interesting, I think I’ll give it a try. Thanks!

  2. priyasuryavanshi says:

    Woah, I really enjoyed your article I will give this drama a try thanks a lot

  3. riyarcworld says:

    For the first time, as a kdrama lover i listened and enjoyed a different dialect of Korean langauge.. Kang ha-neul nailed his role.

  4. sanskriti says:

    After reading this amazing review of yours, I’m definitely going to give this drama a shot 🙂

  5. SHEFALI SINGH says:

    It’s Gong Hyo-jin’s drama. In my list now!
    She’s actually my favorite leading actress. Her acting in Master’s Sun was 대박(great).

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