• M

    Whenever I have extra money, I’ll sometimes blow $50 on random asian movies. After reading the synopsis of M I knew that I had to have it. The protagonist is Ma-Ri, a seemingly normal Koran high school girl. She has two best friends and Ji-Suk, her high school crush. Unfortunately, Ma-Ri has a “devil inside of her.” When she was born the soul of an aborted baby, M, entered her body. After a terrible string of events Ma-Ri disappears for eight years and her family and friends are told she is dead. Her friends find her working at a hospital as a doctor. Ma-Ri has amnesia and her family and friends are trying to make her remember who she is. Meanwhile, M is trying to take control of Ma-Ri’s body and seek revenge on the world.

    This is my first K-Drama, so I wasn’t really sure what to expect. The box informed me that this was in the top twenty most-viewed K-Dramas of all time and sparked quite a controversy when it first aired. A lot of the series deals with Ma-Ri rekindling and coming to terms with relationships between her friends and family. Her high school crush, Ji-Suk, is now dating one of her best friends. There’re several soap opera-ish elements like that going on amidst all the supernatural stuff.
    Like any good drama, M left me wanting to watch the next episode immediately after
    finishing one. It was addicting. That being said, it isn’t perfect. There are some character motivations and plot holes that don’t quite make sense to me. The special effects aren’t

    overly cheesy. The music is pretty good. The acting was good except for the American doctor who spoke English…it was just awkward. The pacing and direction are a little foggy at times,

    but the ending was satisfying.
    One element here worth discussing is the issue of abortion. Apparently this caused some controversy when M first aired.
    Whatever side of the issue you’re on, I don’t think this will really influence your opinion

    of this series. To be honest, I wasn’t sure this series was saying anything about abortion until the last thirty seconds or so of the final episode.

    I feel M is a decent drama with some interesting concepts that could have been executed better than they were. The abortion element might give people something to discuss, but this series isn’t especially deep; it’s a love story with a supernatural element thrown in. For all its flaws, M is certainly interesting and definitely entertaining.

    Rating: 7/10
    Final Thoughts: Worth seeing if you want something a little different. Not perfect, but worth the watch.
    Availability: Currently available from YA Entertainment. I got mine from YesAsia for $13. The YA version English subtitles are excellent.
  • Chinese Detectives-Are Kisses Out of Fashion?

    This album has been long out of print and I was surprised to find it on Amazon from a German seller for under $10. Chinese Detectives are a cover band with former APB member Per Aksel Lundgreen. Essentially, they took some of their favorite 80’s tracks and applied an updated coat of dance-candy.
    There’s not a bad track here, though obviously some outshine others. Some of the shiner tracks include Hit That Perfect Beat (originally by Bronski Beat), You Think You’re A Man (originally by Divine) , Where Do The Boys Go? (originally by Men Without Hats), and State Of The Nation (originally by Industry). IMHO, the best track on here is Are Kisses Out of Fashion, which was originally a minimalist electro track by Sudeten Creche.
    Desirèe Grandahl’s vocals really work for the songs and the programming is top notch. I can’t find a track on here that doesn’t get my foot tapping at least a little bit. Usually cover CDs are compilations and the quality of the tracks vary. Are Kisses Out of Fashion is constantly good throughout. Any fans of 80’s music or synthpop should check this one out.
    Rating: 9/10
    Final Thoughts: It’s a gem. Get it now.
    Availability: OOP from Tatra Records. There are a few copies over at Amazon Marketplace.