Lovers of the Red Sky
Genre: Historical, Romance, Fantasy
Origin: South Korea
Air-date: Aug 30, 2021 – Oct 26, 2021
Starring: Ahn Hyo Seop as Ha Ram, Kim Yoo Jung as Hong Chun Gi, Gong Myung as Grand Prince Yangmyeong, Kwak Si Yang as Grand Prince Juhyang
If you needed proof that Korea dramaland hates me after all, I bring to you definite proof. How do you fumble the bag so badly Korea? HOW? Ugh.. A moment of silence for how excited I was back when I did my First Impressions.. Now let’s continue.
Usually I would say that I have complicated feelings about dramas that lost their sauce midway, but with this one in particular, my feelings are crystal clear. This drama could’ve been IT, but it had a fatal flaw which permeates throughout many destined/soulmate dramas and that is the lack of strong romantic chemistry. Now, the reason I clarify and say ‘strong romantic’ is because there is something there but it wasn’t enough to carry this drama all the way. Matter of fact, I can now say with certainty that the only time I ever seen Ahn Hyo Seop pull his weight in a ship was Dr. Romantic. I have more thoughts on his performance, but let’s get into the positives first.
The positives of this drama lie within the casts’ synergy and the initial parts of the story. The story had wonderful moments of humorous relief and the atmosphere overall was never bogged down by the seriousness. I was very very much into the first six episodes of this drama and that’s why I said that the initial parts were captivating. I also thought that a majority of the roles were casted quite well because let me tell you, I could feel the bitterness and conviction behind Juhyang’s words every time he was on screen. That man screamed villain. Similarly, Kim Yoo Jung gave her all when it came to giving the emotional Cheon Gi scenes. Gong Myung’s Yangmyeon was probably the only character with a steady brain throughout this series. Unfortunately, as we move onto the negatives of this drama, I will preface this by saying, I did get a huge helping of second lead syndrome and not simply in the realm of me wanting her to be with the prince, but rather that he was a consistent character with consistent motivations. Kim Yoo Jung also just happened to have an easier going chemistry with him as well. This could be due to the fact that he didn’t have to strain with himself and could just like her without qualms, but I wasn’t able to see the actor clearly struggling like I did with Ahn Hyo Seop.
Sadly, the good did not outweigh the bad in the case. This drama became a chore to get through when I realized that I could hardly recall anything of importance that happened when I watched episodes 7 to 10.. And to my disappointment that continued on throughout basically the entire series until the final episode. There was no sense of urgency or feeling that the characters tried to evoke and it was kind of poor storytelling for the audience to be aware of things that the characters weren’t because it felt like nothing was happening while we waited on those reveals. That being said the biggest negative for me was, Ahn Hyo Seop, and yes this pains me to say, but he was not giving. I made a comment where I said he finally decided to act again in the last two episodes because it’s true. His acting performance aside, the character of Ha Ram gave me whiplash. Which brings me to the fact that I just couldn’t buy the love because he was giving me nothing. Like how you make the child actors put out more chemistry than you?? The childhood meet cute was 1000% better than their actual relationship. I understood why Cheon Gi was so dead set on him, but like the current present Ha Ram was not doing it girl. Also her gaining back her eyesight cause the curse broke cause Ma Wang was sealed??? Wtf?? That makes no bloodclaat sense. Insulting my motherfucking intelligence.
Since I don’t want to end on a bad note let’s appreciate the fact that the OST was fire. Let it also be known that I would watch a second season or a spin off that focused on the princes’ battle for the throne because that in and off itself was more interesting that anything this show gave us in the last eight or so episodes. If you want to watch this I would say skip episodes 7-13 and you’ll still have watched the entire show. I can’t help but feel disappointed with this one, guys. Sigh.
Rewatch Value: 1/10