Drama Review: That Winter, The Wind Blows (그 겨울, 바람이 분다)
(16 episodes/currently airing/watch on DramaFever.com/image from http://baramibunda.sbs.co.kr)
You can already guess by its name that “That Winter, The Wind Blows” is an intense melodrama. After watching almost half of the series, I can say that the makers and actors are doing a pretty great job in presenting the complicated plot and keeping the story very intriguing. I am not usually a fan of heavy dramas, but this one is just right for me. Nothing seems overdone or lacking. At first, I thought that maybe I can skip watching it. But I was very curious because I have not seen Jo In-Sung and Song Hye-Kyo in any project together. Because of the two strong actors, watching a melodrama has become a new experience!
So okay, what is this all about?
Well first, the story is based on a Japanese series, “I Don’t Need Love, Summer “. The South Korean movie, “Love Me Not”, starring Moon Geun-Young and Kim Joo-Hyuk, was also based on this. However, I have not seen either one so I am not sure how different the drama is from those two.
“That Winter, The Wind Blows” tells the story of two very lonely people, Oh Soo and Oh Young. Both of them have a solid group of people who support them but despite this, in their hearts, they are still alone. Oh Soo is a gambler who got himself in a sticky situation and must find a large amount of money in order to stay alive. Oh Young is a blind, young heiress looking for her only older brother, who she has not seen since she was a little girl. Soo decided to pretend to be Young’s lost brother to take her money but his plan is, of course, not going to be easy. Feelings get involved, and more and more, these two people start to protect and care for each other.
The Main Characters
Oh Soo 오수 (Jo In Sung/조인성) is a handsome gambler and playboy. He was still a baby when his mother left him under a tree during a cold winter. He grew up in an orphanage and lived with his friend’s family during most of his youth. He became a very prominent player later in his life. He was living a high-class and very posh lifestyle until his jealous and slightly crazy model girlfriend plotted against him and got him arrested. The story becomes very interesting when he got out of jail.
Oh Young 오영 (Song Hye Kyo/송혜교) is the heiress to a big company. Her parents divorced when she was still young then her mother and older brother moved out. Young was left with her father and her father’s household staff. She had brain cancer shortly after her parents’ divorce and her illness has caused her to lose her eyesight. Years have passed and Young’s father died and she is now alone, without anyone who she can truly trust. She hopes that in finding her brother, she will feel happiness again.
The Supporting Characters
I am also excited about the fact that two of my favorite young actors are in this drama.
Jin-Sung 진성 (Kim Bum/김범) – who is from Boys Over Flowers – is Oh Soo’s long time friend and right hand. His loyalty is shown when even after Oh Soo got out of jail, he still met with him and swore that he’ll stick with him.
Hee-Sun 희선 (Jung Eun-j/징은지) – who is from Answer Me 1997 – is Soo’s and Jin-Sung’s other friend. Hee-Sun’s older sister was Oh Soo’s first love. Although she hates Oh Soo for what had happened, she still likes him for the person that he is. She’s struggling with her emotions towards Soo most of the time, but she finds that what always prevails is her desire to help her friends.
A screenshot from That Winter, The Wind Blows
The story is set in a city. Oh Soo used to live in a modern and spacious condominium unit, while Oh Young lives in a big mansion, probably located just in the city’s vicinity. There are some scenes that are more cozy and personal, like Young’s room, the garden, and the cafe. The entire story happens during the winter. I feel that whenever they are outside, they should be wearing at least 2 more layers of clothes!!
Verdict (so far…)
I like this drama mainly because of the main characters. They are both victims. Since they are very young, their rights to a happy life have been taken from them. Oh Soo, an orphan, became pathetic and selfish. When he was a teenager, a girl fell in love with him and she became pregnant with his baby. But he turned her away in fear that he will not be able to give her and the baby a good life. The girl met a terrible accident and died. Since then, Oh Soo has hated himself for the incident and he has been haunted by her memory.
Oh Young, on the other hand, had a very secure life. However, she has become completely dependent on her father’s staff since she became blind. She suspects that her father’s secretary had prevented her from getting well. Her hopes of getting better have slowly faded when her condition worsened with time. In one episode, as a high-schooler, Young has said in a video that her oppa will find out what happened to her and he will fight for her.
I will continue watching this for 3 reasons:
First, Jo In-Sung was actually one of the very first Korean actors I’ve seen. I was still in high school when I watched him in Nonstop Sitcom Season 2. Now, I realize how great of an actor he has become. After every episode, I would ask my mom “Did you see that?!?!” LOL. He’s just incredible.
Second, I am almost convinced that Song Hye-Kyo is a blind person. I want to catch her in a scene where her eyes would meet with someone else’s. But NO. She is always gazing outward with no focus in her eyes. Also, she would seem cold and irritating in a scene, then she delivers a line and tears would start flowing! I can’t stop myself from getting teary-eyed sometimes, too. Great acting! This is truly an amazing cast.
And lastly, I want to know how all this would end. I am in the middle of Episode 8 and I still cannot figure out how things will turn out. Will Soo succeed in taking the money? Will Young find out that Soo is not her real brother? What is up with Secretary Wang and Attorney Jang? All these questions must have answers!! I can’t wait for the next episodes. ^^
I have had several “drama dates” with my mom since I started watching. She thinks that In-Sung is so charismatic and Hye-Kyo is as beautiful as she was in Full House, maybe even more beautiful. If you’re also watching the series, what are your thoughts??
Happy watching, everyone! ^^