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[2018] Chàng giàu nàng nghèo - Rich man poor woman - Ha Yeon Soo, Suho

Remake of Japanese drama Rich Man, Poor Woman heads to MBN, Dramax

by girlfriday

EXO’s Suho (Star of the Universe) and Ha Yeon-soo (Legendary Witches) have been cast to headline a new romance drama called Rich Man, a Korean remake of the J-drama Rich Man, Poor Woman. Is that really the title? How… literal. The series has been picked up for simultaneous broadcast on cable network MBN and streaming platform Dramax, and premieres in May.

The original Japanese drama aired on Fuji TV in 2012, and as you might have guessed, it’s a love story between a filthy rich man and a poor woman. Suho has been cast to play the young geeeeenius programmer and CEO of the massively successful tech company Next One. He sounds like the standard prickly, handsome, wealthy drama hero, except that he has prosopagnosia, or face blindness, which prevents him from recognizing the face of the woman he loves.

Ha Yeon-soo will play an endlessly optimistic young woman who is unemployed and has “a memory like AlphaGo.” She applies for a job at the hero’s company, which is how they’ll meet. Also joining the cast is Oh Chang-seok (Defendant) as Next One’s co-founder and vice president with a mysterious side, and Kim Ye-won (Revolutionary Love) as Oh Chang-seok’s younger sister and gallery curator.

I haven’t seen the original, but it sounds like a light workplace romance akin to I’m Not a Robot without the robots. The casting stories are promising a bickering romance, so there’s definitely potential for some rom-com hijinks in there. Rich Man will be penned by writer Hwang Jo-yoon of Twelve Men in a Yearand the movies RampantMemoir of a MurdererMasquerade, and Old Boy, and directed by PD Min Doo-shik of web dramas My Only Love Song and Click Your Heart.

It’ll air on Wednesdays and Thursdays beginning May 9.

Via MBN

Rich Man Korean Drama Review

Posted on July 11, 2018 by Kay

Rich Man Korean Drama - Suho and Ha Yeon Soo

Rich Man (also known as Rich Man, Poor Woman) tells the love story of a genius tech CEO (Suho) who has a condition where he can’t recognize faces and an optimistic woman (Ha Yeon Soo) with an amazing memory who is looking for a job at his company.

Rich Man has a very classic romantic comedy set up. I mean the title alone gives you an idea of what to expect. He’s super rich, and she’s not. But there’s definitely more to it than just that basic premise.

Suho plays Yoo Chan, and he is your typical arrogant, rich lead. He’s also a genius and has a difficult time understanding others. But of course, he has that difficult past that haunts him as he deals with a complicated condition. Enter Kim Bo Ra.

Rich Man, Poor Woman Korean Drama - Ha Yeon Soo

Ha Yeon Soo is Kim Bo Ra who is just finishing up college and is struggling to find a job. She’s feisty with an amazing memory. Circumstances land her at Yoo Chan’s company where the two begin their relationship. And Ha Yeon Soo is all kinds of adorable, and I just loved getting to see her in a lead role. She really needs more of those!

Min Tae Joo (Oh Chang Suk) is Yoo Chan’s partner and close friend. He is also our supportive second lead who is very warm and caring towards Bo Ra and acts as a buffer between her and Yoo Chan.

Min Tae Ra (Kim Ye Won) is Tae Joo’s sister who owns an art gallery. She’s wealthy, sophisticated, and usually gets what she wants. So when she takes an interest in Yoo Chan, she expects to get him.

So as you can see, Rich man has a very classic set up. There’s nothing new here, but it does its job and delivers this classic story in an entertaining way. I found it to be a very pleasant watch and just all around enjoyed it. There are some rom-com clichés, but they are executed nicely.

Rich Man has a really nice back story that connects the characters. Yoo Chan has longed to find his old love but has been unsuccessful over the years. Then Bo Ra shows up with a mysterious connection to her that immediately grabs his attention. We slowly learn about Yoo Chan and Bo Ra’s connection to this woman from their past. Then when the truth comes out, it’s finally an opportunity for everyone to deal with it and move forward.

 Rich Man, Poor Woman Korean Drama - Ha Yeon Soo
 

Then the main story of the drama develops quite nicely too. We get a well paced story that is plotted well. The drama nicely builds the tension as it progresses which allows us to initially connect with the characters and get accustomed to everything before diving deep into the story. The second half of the drama then delivers some very emotional story lines as our characters have to face some harsh realities.

I’m also someone who doesn’t much care for business politics, but I wasn’t bothered at all by it in Rich Man. I thought they were interwoven with other scenes nicely and were kept direct and to the point. That allowed me to actually be interested in what was happening at the company which is a pretty rare thing for me.

Now I should give you a little heads up. The main romance in Rich Man is super slow to develop. I found it interesting that Yoo Chan and our second lead Tae Ra have an actual relationship for a good chunk of the drama.

She definitely has some classic qualities of a second lead like being jealous and a bit controlling, but they were toned down, and I actually found her to be pretty decent most of the time despite some of her more annoying qualities.

While we do still get relationship developments between Yoo Chan and Bo Ra throughout the drama, it ends up taking a while (as in most of the drama, be prepared) for them to get to that point where they are both on the same page and really ready to embrace their feelings for each other. Mostly, Yoo Chan has a lot of maturing to do as well as dealing with some difficult truths.

But we finally do get some romance to blossom between Yoo Chan and Bo Ra. I always love watching the arrogant guy warm up and fall in love. And how could you not fall for the sweet Bo Ra? She’s amazing!

But the thing to keep in mind is that the story really is more about their journey as characters, so in many ways the love line felt secondary. I would have liked to have seen the romance element be stronger, but honestly, since the story was so well done, it really wasn’t a problem.

Then we have a nice little bromance to enjoy between Yoo Chan and Tae Joo. They not only run the company, but they are also close friends. Tae Joo believes in Yoo Chan’s abilities and is always right there beside him to help him.

But like Yoo Chan does with everyone, he has a hard time truly appreciating Tae Joo. Of course, this creates some friction. It’s an interesting relationship on many levels, and I really enjoyed watching it play out from start to finish.

I was genuinely surprised by Rich Man. It seems so basic, yet it really pulled me in. I enjoyed all of the characters, the main story, the back story, and it even had some nice little side stories. It was light and fun with a solid emotional core and a great soundtrack to enhance it. Overall, it was a very enjoyable watch.

My Rating: 7.5/10


First Impression: Rich Man – Episode 1-8

Rich Man (리치맨Richimaen) is a 2018 television series starring Kim Jun Myeon (also EXO’s Suho; EXO Next Door, The Universe’s Star, How Are You Bread), Ha Yeon Soo (Monstar, Potato Star, Legendary Witches), Oh Chang Suk (Princess Aurora, Innocent Defendant) and Kim Ye Won (Suspicious Partner, Revolutionary Love). It is a remake of the 2012 Japanese television series Rich Man, Poor Woman. The drama is airing on MBN and Dramax starting May 9, 2018 on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 23:00 (KST) time slot.

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First Impression

The rich man and poor girl trope has been a favorite not just in Kdrama-la-la-land, but also in various Asian dramas. Admit it! We see it every day and it has become a drama story staple that you roll your eyes at it just with how cliche the theme is, but then you become drawn to the story you are uncapable of dropping the drama in the end. Unnecessary but definitely wanted. Craved from time to time.

I am one of those who must have rolled her eyes upon seeing the storyline Rich Man has. Also hesitated with the prospect of getting a remake that is bound to ruin the original and flop like a dying bird flapping its flightless wings until it crashes down in a very ungraceful fashion.

To say the least, I didn’t expect much from the drama.

Giving the lead role to EXO’s Suho (Kim Joonmyeon, but Suho to me since I’m a fan) must have been a deciding factor for me to give the drama a shot, but it also made me hesitate, considering the notion whenever idols act in a drama, plus the implication people give whenever an idol from SM Entertianment is picked to lead a drama. You know, just look at their history in this field and you’ll realize it’s only rare their dramas get out of the gutter in terms of evaluation. That I must admit to, but I’m not saying these idols don’t have potential. In fact they do. It just so happen people who live because of dramas like this have more expectation and only wants the best from actors. Double standard much? Haha.

Nonetheless, as a fan, my faith stays with Suho. I’ve seen him act in The Universe’s Star too and there’s no doubt I’ve seen some talent from him then. Besides, Ha Yeon Soo ( I watched her in Monstar before) looks fresh from the get go and I think she fits her fun role as Kim Bora.

I am quite interested in how their chemistry will work too that I decided to watch this along with Come and Hug Me even though both are still on going dramas. Usually I am not the type to wait for upcoming episodes since I am a very impatient person, but anything’s fine that piques my interest. So, isn’t that saying something?

The story

Rich Man focuses on the story of two individuals from very different social statuses and their unknown past resurfacing through their uncanny reunion as the prickly boss and the applicant who is in her 31st job interview.

As their worlds meet, Lee Yoo Chan (Kim Joonmyeon) finds interest in Kim Bo Ra (Ha Yeon Soo) who most definitely reminds him so much of a beloved girl from his past. And with her reunion with Yoo Chan, Bo Ra’s life is about to change for good…or should I say the worst?

Anyway, Lee Yoo Chan is a genius programmer who later becomes the CEO of IT company NEXT IN. Despite his outstanding background and handsome looks though, Yoo Chan has Prosopagnosia (in science; is a neurological disorder characterized by the inability to recognize faces).

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Kim Bo Ra, on the other hand, is a graduating student from university that has failed all her past 30 interviews. Despite so many setbacks in her job hunting though, Bo Ra is a very positive character that is all sunshine and unicorns and has an excellent memory that is incomparable to any other.

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With this sole talent which makes her really remarkable plus hard work, Bo Ra tries her best to get the job but fails to pass her interviews because apparently having an excellent memory alone isn’t that ‘marketable’ and can be easily replicated by other applicants that can do better than her in other aspects.

Downcast by hard competition the working world has and her inability to spend for her family as a consequence of not having a job, she strolls by the park one night and meets Min Tae Joon (Oh Chang Suk). Bo Ra mistakes Tae Joon for a regular worker at Next In, but finds strength from him with the encouragement he shows her.

Bo Ra is back on her feet soon enough as if nothing happened, ready to face another failing battle and then Tae Joon just had to inject the idea of her trying for his company, Next In.

At first, Bo Ra isn’t sure what to think of it, considering the IT Company is more on the innovative side of things–more on computer programming, software development, etc–but she takes sudden inspiration from Lee Yoo Chan’s promotional video of Next In ready to take in new applicants and tries out the application process only to disappoint herself when the prickly CEO unfortunately preys on her and berates her in front of hundreds of applicants.

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Bo Ra is distraught by how awful Yoo Chan’s personality is that she blurts out the first thing that comes to mind–Kim Boon Hong’s name–before leaving behind a very stunned and confused Yoo Chan to himself.

She goes back home to another failure, but somehow Yoo Chan is put into a bind with his ‘mini file’ project that he comes to need Bo Ra’s excellent memory to perform the task of flawlessly discussing their material in front of very important government officials that can back up their project for good. Of course, Tae Joon, who has a soft spot for Bo Ra, puts in a good word for her and eventually Bo Ra gets the part-time job of her life with the best pay.

With her skills, she is able to impress the Minister and her delegates with her presentation of the ‘mini file’, but one mistake has Yoo Chan screaming at her face, saying she was fired and that he doesn’t want to see her. A few more screw ups and their next big project is bound to go down the gutter without even seeing the light.

This persistent girl, however, took it as her responsibility and chased the minister every day with all her might to convince her that they should still invest with the ‘mini file’ for its innovative-ness and potential.

Yoo Chan seemed like he isn’t shaken by everything that happened and goes to Geneva to pick up the key to their success. Without anyone knowing, Yoo Chan goes back to Korea and meets the minister. He presents to her what the mini file can do and the minister is indeed touched by Yoo Chan’s thoughtfulness in thinking of her during the short demo. In the end, she agrees to help them pass the proposal for government funding.

In a sudden turn of events, Yoo Chan who is in a better mood, accepts Bo Ra as a regular employee of Next In, but then giving her an ultimatum of a month to come up of something innovative that will help the company profit. Bo Ra is inspired to do her best, but is admittedly not the best person to come up of something ‘out of the box’ that her proposals all get junked every time she shows it to Yoo Chan.

Even so, despite Yoo Chan’s constant rejection of her ideas and prickliness around her, Bo Ra isn’t one to give up on him just because he’s a jerk. And somehow she slowly makes it not just in Yoo Chan’s heart but also Min Tae Joon’s.

However, in the whirlwind of events while hearts flutter in happiness, excitement, curiosity and pain, Min Tae Ra appears in the picture and completes the square. She eventually starts dating Yoo Chan, if not for her persistence and Yoo Chan’s uncaring attitude towards trying out a relationship with her which is absolutely dysfunctional and doomed to not last forever.

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Tae Ra tries her way into Yoo Chan’s heart, but no matter how much effort she puts into it, Yoo Chan is always drawn towards Bo Ra even without her trying to win him–in a romantic kind of way. Tae Ra is left with bitter feelings about this because she knows what she is seeing, so she braves herself to her road in winning Yoo Chan’s heart.

However, in episode 8, despite finding out the sad truth from Bo Ra in the most unconventional way–finding out she really knows Kim Boon Hong and that she’s already dead seven years ago–and being anguished by her betrayal, Yoo Chan finds himself driving back his motorcycle to Bo Ra in the middle of the road and tells her how he can only think of her and remember her face alone.

Thoughts on Episode 1-8

The Good

I think I started to watch this drama with mild interest. For a drama with actors that doesn’t have a strong acting background (start up actors) and a cliche plot that should only replicate the original, this is good so far for a remake. I haven’t really seen the original version and don’t have any plan of watching it, but for the a drama that doesn’t give me that much hype (except for the hype that Suho is the starring male lead), I think the story has more depth than people thought.

Yes, the rich man falling for the poor woman is a total cliche we want to shove to the background, but Yoo Chan’s disability to remember faces and Bo Ra’s secrets, Next In and the love square are enough of an addition to interest me.

I believe that Rich Man is much better than any other dramas that has an idol as the lead character in many ways. The fact that it has a good on going story line, which at least makes great sense and consistent connection to its various subplots, and the other fact that the sequence isn’t dizzying and that it’s cute though emotional and that the characters are easy to love (except the jerk version of Lee Yoo Chan) are plus points to value, though admittedly it is sub-par to its other competition in the drama field right now.

Still, there are many things to celebrate about it than not, you know? And I can’t say that it’s trash because it’s far from being one, though I can’t speak the same for other people who have different taste than me.

The So-so but not so bad

Cliche plot — and yes, we’re already there. No need to talk about how generic the plot is, considering the rich man falling for the poor girl is a K-drama staple, the defining factor now is how they are going to make this kind of plot standout, though I haven’t really seen something above average about it as of yet. Just mildly interesting, but definitely hooking.

Min Tae Ra — I definitely don’t despise Kim Yewon, but sometimes her roles can be so infuriating like Min Tae Ra, who knows she’s pretty and capable and rich that she thinks Yoo Chan only deserves to belong to her. She’s not the kind of drama queen that bitches at the female lead, but she definitely stinks of jealousy and insecurities.

What’s worse is the show making her Lee Yoo Chan’s girlfriend when our poor Kim Bo Ra is at the sidelines watching, teary eyed and silently envious. I really can’t stand this kind of plot cliche, but what can we do? Maybe you need to hate someone in every drama, just like this.

The mystery that is Kim Boon Hong — I really don’t mind talking about Kim Boon Hong and how awesome or great she is Yoo Chan can’t forget her. I guess, there’s just always that first love you will forever be hung up on until you find the closure that you’re looking for, but sometimes I don’t like how they give too much emphasis on Kim Boon Hong only to leave us hanging.

Until now, at episode 8, I’m confused who Kim Boon Hong is to Lee Yoo Chan. Maybe the drama wasn’t just able to establish a clear picture of who she really was yet. But putting two and two together it doesn’t take rocket science to know that obviously Kim Boon Hong isn’t his mother (I read that in the original version, it was his mother he had been looking for), but a first love that could have taken the role of a mother, a best friend and a sister to Yoo Chan, just like how it had been described in the drama before the big reveal, which is not really so big since Bora didn’t have the courage to tell Yoo Chan face to face about Boon Hong and had to take the latter route of telling Tae Joon the truth and Tae Joon passing the message to Yoo Chan, who later reads Bo Ra’s email stating the truth.

I was hoping for more impact on this since the story so far largely revolved around Kim Boon Hong in its first half, but the anticipating had gone to waste after what they did. Anyway, at least it’s one secret out.

Cast & Characters

They are not the so-called powerhouse cast you might have looked forward to, but their quite diverse backgrounds and experience in the small screen is to an extent that they can deliver and keep you looking for more despite the inevitable flaws in acting. Still, there’s always room for improvement and we can only hope that Rich Man will get better in its upcoming episodes.

Kim Joonmyeon (also Suho) as Lee Yoo Chan. I know I am not the only one who thinks Suho looks too young to become a CEO, but anything’s possible in K-dramas. Rich Man made it possible for fans (a fantasy come true!) and viewers alike to see Suho in this light.

Gladly, Suho does look the part, although sometimes I feel like his angelic face won’t allow him to look like the prick he should be for his role. His nasty remarks, power play and jerky-ness as Lee Yoo Chan gladly helps convey who he is as the character and not the idol who is part of the band, although it’s still somehow hard to separate him from being that, but I am working on it.

His acting, however, is quite commendable. He makes it believable as he can do, though sometimes I feel like he’s being too rough with his role that it doesn’t feel right in the eyes. Nonetheless, I am glad that I don’t hate Suho for his role. That’s all that matters.

Ha Yeon Soo as Kim Bo Ra. At first, I thought Ha Yeon Soo looked too young for her character (but really her looks is definitely deceiving! She looks so youthful I am surprised she’s already 27), but Bo Ra’s just out from college so I guess her looks played the part with her age in the drama although she looks still quite younger than that, that she can be mistaken for a high schooler.

But then Ha Yeon Soo delivers a strong performance with her bright and persevering character as Bo Ra, who’s definitely good at heart and easily likable for her friendliness. She can truly make friends even with people who dislikes her, and if that ain’t a talent, I don’t know. She’s just so nice you will only find her annoyed at someone and voicing out her unnecessary opinion when drunk.

Ha Yeon Soo is good in her portrayal of Bo Ra that it’s not hard to say she’s one of the few good things that happened to Rich Man. And though sometimes I cringe at the way Bo Ra acts, I feel like she’ll need it to identify herself from the other characters.

Relationships

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I’m picking the most remarkable ones since there’s just too many connections made:

Bo Ra and her family – I most definitely love the way Bo Ra interacts with her family. In this modern world, it is nice that she doesn’t forget those people she had left behind and always thought of them so deeply it’s quite touching. Plus, I definitely love the accent whenever they talked. It’s very raw but also funny.

Bo Ra and Mi So – I feel like Mi So is Bo Ra’s counterpart; where Bo Ra is the modest one, more conservative one, not so materialistic one, Mi So is the more practical and realistic and most definitely materialistic in a sense I doubted her when she started dating Do Jin. It’s clear in her eyes that she’s aiming for him because he’s capable, that it’s too late when I realized she really liked him after they broke up and she tried to grab his attention.

Nonetheless, Bo Ra and Mi So together is quite adorable, and sometimes with a pinch of salt thrown, destructive one moment and then the next laughing again. I think that’s the best kind of friendship, wherein you fight a lot, but then make up at the end of the day even without saying, just laughing at the reason why you even fought.

Yoo Chan and Tae Joon – Where Yoo Chan is the infuriating friend who does whatever he wants, Tae Joon is the sponge that absorbs. I’m just happy that Tae Joon can’t stop doting on Yoo Chan no matter how ugly his attitude gets.

Bo Ra and Tae Joon – Despite the age gap, I will probably stan this ship second to Bo Ra and Yoo Chan if Yoo Chan doesn’t exist. Tae Joon just cares so much about Bo Ra that it’s quite admirable and at the same time pitiful, knowing he must know there’s something special going on between his best friend and his crush.

Yoo Chan and Bo Ra – The absolute mix of hot and cold, love and hate. Sometimes I hate Yoo Chan for being rude towards Bo Ra. He’s like a kid who vies for his crush’ attention by bullying her–which is so childish! But then, I definitely feel the chemistry steaming off the two of them. The only thing that must be missing will be a kiss to seal the deal. Now, that I am looking forward to because I don’t know how they are going to do it. Haha.

Since Yoo Chan kissed Tae Ra first, I just can’t picture Yoo Chan and Bo Ra kissing or hugging. I just think it’s weird, but I am still definitely going to watch out for it.

Overall

They say ignorance is a bliss that’s why I am not going to watch the Japanese version to keep my opinion unbiased towards Rich Man. I’m not sure how great the original did, but I am most definitely seeing potential with the Korean remake, considering the level of similarity it has, but also what they did different with it that makes it unique from the former.

I know that Rich Man isn’t the drama that will trend like the Reply series or Goblin, but hey it’s not that bad. Yes, the plot is cliche, the acting is sub-par to others and sometimes cringey, but the overall production–looking at the big picture–is worth investing your time and emotions with, especially when you want something light yet sometimes dramatic.

So, fill in that blank day with a Rich Man drama marathon and let me know what you think of it!

Rating this drama, I’m giving it a 4.1 out of 5 for exceeding my expectations and for the characters having good chemistry. 

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