I’m approaching Legend of the Blue Sea with a great deal of trepidation. While I’m fond of both Jun Ji-hyun and Lee Min-ho, writer Park Ji-eun made me want to tear my hair out with the second half of You Who Came from the Stars. Will Writer Park have learned anything from what went wrong there in the non-human/human setup? Will she keep the good parts of that setup and add upon them? Will it just be a retread of her previous work? Will this banish Lee Min-ho’s toxic lead cloud? Will Jun Ji-hyun steal every scene easily and end up being the best part about the show?
We’ll see. In the meantime, here are my four hopes for the show:
- Well-defined parameters for the mermaid’s mermaid-i-ness. One of the biggest weaknesses of You Who Came from the Stars (and to be fair, a lot of kdrama SFF) is the lack of clear boundaries on what supernatural creatures/entities/items can do. I want to know the rules, whatever they are. I want to know what game we’re supposed to be playing so I can scream foul if a deus ex machina shows up on my screen. Otherwise, if I can’t figure out how to make things add up, my faith in the story starts to crack, and it won’t be long until critical failure. And I get grumpy when that happens.
- A romance of mutual adoration. I don’t mind if it takes a while to get there, but I want these two to be head-over-heels for each other. I want them to be a team. I don’t want them to spend most of the time apart for noble idiocy or because of gaslighting—once they’re in love, they’re in love, and they stay there. They communicate with each other and depend on one another. They trust each other. Don’t waste my time with anything less. I want nothing less than an OTP out of this.
- Actual, clever cons. I’ll let Lee Min-ho’s “disguises” pass, but I want to believe his character really is the conman of the century. Surprise me. Outwit me. Delight me. Actually make me believe you are the best of the best and not just a self-appointed genius. And Shim Chung needs to become an integral part of the team, please.
- Shim Chung gets to make some female human friends. I want her to get out and explore a wide swath of the modern human world, and that includes forming important bonds with other humans besides her love interest. Give her fun, interesting ladies to hang out with! Please let this show pass the Bechdel Test in at least six episodes.
So tell me, are you going to be checking the show out? What are your hopes for it? Leave them in the comments below!