MG VS HYD VS BOF – Part 5: The Last Words

27 03 2010

So where were we?

*flashback*

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Oh yeah. That’s right.

So does this mean that Meteor Garden is indeed my favourite of the three adaptions of the world’s most celebrated fangirl Asian drama? After nearly an entire decade, after 96 episodes, after all the crazy sleepless nights, after this grueling comparative breakdown I (semi) coerced myself through, does it all add up to mean that Meteor Garden is actually number one in my heart… does it ? Does it really?

*closes eyes in deep thought* * opens eyes up again*

No. Nuh-uh. No way.

It’s Hana Yori Dango.

If there’s anything anyone should get from all this, it is this one simple fact:
Love knows no reason (yeah yeah it’s all v. sappy >_>;)

Consider this; if logical reasoning ruled, our Weed Grass Heroine surely would’ve ended up w/ our Autistic One, right? He is the “ideal” guy, the sensitive one who is always there to support her, he is her soulmate. But it’s not that kinda world. In the end, ultimately her heat beats for our Arrogant Leader. That’s just the way it is.

And if I think about it, Meteor Garden is, in a way, like my first love. Although it wasn’t technically perfect, there were so many other things about it that just felt so naturally right. I laughed & I cried along every step of the way. No question it will forever remain close to my heart & I will forever love the Taiwanese F4.

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[ Possibly my fave F4 pic ever ^^ ]

But Hana Yori Dango is like the one drama series that I had been waiting for all my life. It came along & swept me off my damn feet, unexpectedly & foolishly. It’s everything I ever wanted- & more. If Meteor is my first love, then HanaDan is undoubtedly my most loved.

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[ Rui, it’s okay. I’ll secretly go out w/ you (!) ]

Boys Over Flowers is like the series that came along & tried to take my heart away. In the end though, it only left me reminiscing the greatness of its predecessors. I don’t mean to offend the many avid supporters of the series out there when I say that overall, for me, the story did lack. I didn’t feel the same level of satisfaction, I didn’t feel the same wave of chemistry & I never really felt that empathetic towards any of the characters (bar one or two.) Most certainly, I don’t think it was as great as many of the new age fans have made it out to be. It’s barely even close to being the best Korean series ever so how the heck can it be THE best series ever??

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[ Props to BOF though, for naming Ji Hoo‘s horse Rui. Homage paid <3 ]

By now you’re probably more than likely thinking that I fully despise, hate on & want to spit all over the BOF situation but truly, I do not. This is what I want to clarify. I did honestly enjoy watching it. I seriously kept crying “I want my own Ji Hoo sunbae!!!” so much I may as well have had that as a slogan inked onto my body. But did I fall in love w/ the series? No.

Maybe it’s simply a case of my heart already been given away.

For me, it’s HanaDan number one & forever <33

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*puts on Jeff Probst accent* My blog has spoken!

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P.S. For those who have managed to endure all five posts, thankyou!! I hope you enjoyed reading it ^_^

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61 responses

30 03 2010
Ender's Girl

Great closing statement, jicks! I really did enjoy reading (and re-reading!) all five posts, and I hope you get to do more of this comparative analysis stuff in the *ehem* near *ehem* future. (hehe… pressure much?) =D Bravo, girl!

Yeah, I know what you mean about MG having that sentimental spot in your heart (mine too! wuz also my first Asian dorama), but HYD being the best-made adaptation overall.

ZOMG that F4 piccy…. KAWAAAAAAAAAAIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII *dies* (Uh, wrong language. What’s Taiwanese for “damn they look so bloody cute together hubba hubba”? XD)

30 03 2010
mamae

i really enjoyed reading your posts, though we may disagree on some, it was fun reading them. i sure hope the next country to make a version of MG HYD BOF could surpass meteor gardens classic-ness since they started it, hana yori dangos great storyline, and boys over flowers grand set-up.

26 05 2014
Grace

I don’t want another country’s remake (I hear there are already Philippines and American ones), I want Meteor Garden 3 :/ How unsatisfying was the ending? We had to bear watching the whole Ye Sha situation for like 99% of the season and didn’t even get a good proper ending. It felt unfinished and prepped for Season 3, I don’t know why it never happened. Even 10+ years on, hope springs eternal…

9 06 2014
jicks

Omg the Ye Sha thing drove me bonkers too. But where is this American version you speak of Grace? I think I vaguely heard about it sometime ago but didn’t think they actually put it into production. Bit scared to find out actually.

Also, mamae, I think I never saw your comment until just now – sorry! Thanks for taking the time out, and although we may not agree on everything, it’s nice to know we share the love for the story XD

31 03 2010
aspotoftea

This (all 5 posts) was an awesome read! It must’ve been a lot of fun and also a lot of work to write with objectivity (or with as much objectivity as a fan can ^_~ ). Great job, and thanks! ^_^

31 03 2010
jicks

lol You’re 100% right, trying to stay objective wasn’t easy. Then again, fangirling is a tough life lol

Thanks for swinging by & leaving a nice comment ^_^

3 04 2010
Paprika

I loved reading through your posts! It’s been a while since I rewatched Meteor Garden or Hana Yori Dango but going through these made me want to watch them rightnow. While I didn’t always agree with your rankings, most of the time, they were spot on!

4 04 2010
fantasTaec

*waves hello* Read through your 5 posts and squealed every time Hana Yori Dango was mentioned, I am THAT biased. Maybe if I actually took the time to watch Meteor Garden, I may have had the opportunity to compare the existing versions but since I am both a) lazy and b) undeniably in love with Tsukasa, I don’t think that would turn out well ^^

Good job though. :) *applauds*

4 04 2010
jicks

*bows* Thankyou thankyou lol

I’m not in love w/ Tsukasa per se (I will leave that to you) but I do love him & all his bakaness glory. If you want to take him I will “settle” for Rui xDD

P.S. Maybe try an episode a week for MG??? ;O

6 04 2010
lanilakwatsera

OMG! I love your discourse on Hana Dan.
Great to know that there’s also someone out there who loves HYD like I do!
I love your blog.

By the way, have you heard that ABS CBN is doing their own Hana Dan?
Personally, I hated it. What about you?
I just don’t feel like we can do justice to the story. (sigh…)
:-)

7 04 2010
jicks

You mean, a Filpino version?? Is that officially confirmed/Kamio Yoko approved? I’m pretty sure that Kamio san has stipulated she will only give out the rights to use her story once every 4yrs (notice the time period btwn MG, HYD & BOF) so even if this version is going ahead, it won’t be a few years until we see it. Hopefully the time factor will help them finetune the quality side of things. I’m not familiar at all w/ the Filipino entertainment scene but I am always up for a HanaDan storyline ^_^

10 04 2010
yetispageti

After reading your posts, I am planning to watch MG and HYD again! :p I watched BOF but the jandi girl is not convincing enough to get me addicted.. so i stopped watching after 5 or 6 episodes. hehe

Nice posts, great reviews and comparison, i like your biases (for hyd) because we share the same thoughts. :P and i love the taiwanese F4 pic above!

10 04 2010
jicks

^Well, I suppose my opinion posted on Jan Di def isn’t helping convincing you to keep on w/ BOF lol

BTW, I’m not bias!! *tweaks eyebrows evilly* HYD really, really does float my freaking boat xDD

14 05 2010
asiandramareviewer

*Nods head* Yeah. I enjoyed HanaDan somewhat more than Meteor Garden. I loved the setup for this with the gold, silver, and bronze medals. ^_^. Jerry Yan, Vic Zhou, Ken Zhu, Vanness Wu, why are you all sooo pretty?? Good thing you’re biased about HanaDan.

I really loved reading this and I might.. MIGHT do one. Except writing this will probably take me a year.. I so love to procrastinate.. xD

14 05 2010
jicks

Biased for HanaDan?? Darn, I was trying to conceal it! lol Glad we share the same love ^_^

You should totally do a comparison! I would be there to read it for sure. I’m not going to lie, it was hard work & pretty time consuming… but really fun reliving it all xDD

24 05 2010
fierte

HanaDan!! HanaDan!!

Loved your review although like the others said, I may not have always agreed with you. But since you are a HanaDan fan, all is good in the world!

But seriously though, I think the order in which you watch it is very important. A lot of people who say Meteor Garden is good are the ones who have seen it before HanaDan. Therein my friends lies the trick. For those who watch HanaDan first, BOF is a pale pale second (mainly because Tsukushi was ruined). When you watch Meteor Garden after HYD, it feels as though Meteor Garden is really slow.

Personally, my one crib with your review is the F4. I thought HYD’s F4 was beyond awesome because there was a real friendship and interaction and you could tell that the others like Tsukushi too which was obvious. Meteor Garden’s F4 was better? hmm…I must watch it again :P

I end by saying HanaDan!! HanaDan!! again. :D

24 05 2010
jicks

Hey thankyou for dropping by & taking the time to comment ^_^

I watched MG first, then HYD, then BOF. I generally try to watch things in chronology as I like to “pay respect” to those who “made it first.” I def agree w/ you, the order of watching can be really influential but I think if people try to stay objective, they’ll be able to attain pretty clear perspective.

I think for those who find MG slow, it may not necessarily be a fact but perhaps the patience factor is lacking &/or perhaps it’s not being used to the pace of Tw-dramas. Or it’s simply a matter of being from a different generation. I actually don’t think Mg was that slow (believe me, I’ve seen much slower dramas.) All in all, I think they used the episodes quite well in developing their characters & their relationships.

Oh don’t get me wrong, I still heart the Japanese F4 muchly xDD I do agree w/ you that you could tell they all liked Makino ^_^ But I think exactly the same thing about the Taiwanese F4 & Shan Cai xP (not swaying you to re-watch MG at all lol)

HanaDan!! HanaDan!! HanaDan!! lol We should forever chant that xDDDDDD

7 06 2010
sara

wonderful review….just keep sometimes nodding and other time disagreeing with your view…am too an MG obsess in its heyday….
anyway it all boils down to chemistry…not everyone has the same likes and dislikes and for me although BOF is thinly tolerable in the second half and such a mess I was caught in the madness of it and I truly loved Lee Min ho’s Goo Jun Pyo and next to Jerry Yan breakthrough performance he’s the best for me…he’s got so much potential to be awesome but the script and the story line just prevent that to be ever happen… I’ve too watched Hanadan but the image of the tough, tall, awkward lovable bully Dao Ming Si is greatly imprinted in my head and I can’t process someone that is not physically what I imagine a Doumyouji will be….
so for me MG and BOF wins

7 06 2010
jicks

Thankyou Sara & hooray for an MG fan in the house!! ^_^

In terms of his acting, I don’t think Lee Min Ho was bad, but like you said, chemistry can be perceived differently by different people. And it’s not just chemistry btwn the actors in the drama, there’s also chemistry btwn the actor & the audience. I just connect w/ Lee Min Ho as much as I did w/ Matsumoto Jun & Jerry.

But it’s all good, we can agree to disagree ^_^ Besides, if you didn’t fancy Jun quite as much, that just means that’s one less girl I have to fight for him over lol ;O

18 06 2010
doozy

Hi jicks! I landed here through E.G.’s blog and am loving my stay. Great work on this epic comparison. I thoroughly enjoy reading all five parts.

19 06 2010
jicks

Hey! Nice to meet you doozy :))

Thankyou for the nice comments *does a cursty* ^^;; (I tried my best lol) Would love to know your personal fave in regards to the MG/HYD/BOF scenario though ^_^ I promise I won’t bite if you don’t say HanaDan xPP

I did catch your name over @ E.G.‘s awesome blog… you appear to be a Tsumabuki Satoshi fan, right?? ;O He really is living proof that acting talent does co-exist w/ charmingly boyish good looks, isn’t he… loved him best in Orange Days <3

20 06 2010
doozy

HanaDan was the version that I saw first. I watched BOF a while back when it was airing and have not seen MG.

I saw HanaDan a couple years ago so my memory of it has faded but I do remember that overall, I enjoyed it. It had alot of charms and like you described, chemistry as well. While watching BOF, I, naturally, compared the two and chemistry, I felt, was the one of the most important thing that BOF lacked. Like, are these boys REALLY best of friends who’ve known each other since young? Does JanDi really love JunPyo? Not sure. Just wasn’t feeling it.

So… if I were to pick favs between HanaDan and BOF, they would mostly be from HanaDan in important categories like best couple and main lead characters. Although, from what I do recollect from my watching experience of both, my fav “Vanilla best friend” would be Kim So Eun’s portrayal.

“you appear to be a Tsumabuki Satoshi fan, right?? ;O He really is living proof that acting talent does co-exist w/ charmingly boyish good looks, isn’t he… loved him best in Orange Days”

*Nods in agreement*
I am totally a fan! Orange Days was my fist ever Jdorama, which was a great introduction to this new form of entertainment. (New because at the time, I honestly didn’t know that Jdoramas existed and that they are actually really good!)
When I was deciding which show to watch from E.G.’s list of recommendations, I watch the first couple minutes of Ep. 1 of most of them, and when I got to Lunch Queen Ep. 1 and saw Satoshi, my decision was made. Look no more, Lunch Queen here I come! 12 episodes later… Jun-ni! Hehe.

21 06 2010
jicks

YEP YEP YEP to everything you said about BOF. I do think Kim So Eun was perfect as Ga Eul. I just feel for her having to do so much for that wannabe casanova “couldn’t grow a beard if I tried” So Yi Jung >_<; (okay, okay, he wasn't that bad…)

Good thing we all discovered J-doramas! Like you, I’m a bit of a late bloomer in that department. Orange Days is a nice introduction, the cast is so dreamy (as adorable as your dear lil Jun-ni is, I would take Kai in a heartbeat any day xD) My first J-dorama was One Litre Of Tears– almost didn’t continue on w/ my J-dorama experience after that because I was fearing, “fricks, is every Japanese series gonna make me cry this frkcn much???” *chokes on Kleenex*

14 07 2010
Anne

I would have to say that deep down that since score doesn’t matter that Meteor Garden is and always been my fave. Since the few scores that matter to me are those based on character (and oddly enough, not related to acting). Acting wise it would always be HYD, BOF, then MG. But I think because MG followed the manga alot better, their storyline was solid (at least before II began), and that the characters had better development.

Most importantly, I always find a success (or at least my liking of the series dependent on their female characters, the one i relate to the most) I personally admired and could relate to Shan Cai’s personality. She was absolutely strong, and the most independent of them all but still filled with the basic insecurities and worries about the future we all have (although i think Mao’s best represented a high school student). I think she really represented the weed personality, and after watching BOF, it just made me admire her even more, since Jian Di really didn’t seem like the brightest or even the most courageous or resilient of the bunch, even her best friend seem closer. In addition, MG F4’s were nicer and therefore their actions were more forgivable of the batch. (The BOF’s F4 made me wonder how Jan Di could look at these guys without cringing about the things they’ve done – I guess forgiveness is a good thing)

15 07 2010
jicks

Thankyou for sharing your thoughts ^_^

But I think because MG followed the manga alot better, their storyline was solid (at least before II began), and that the characters had better development.
^I wouldn’t argue against the individual character development in MG because it was probably the most achieved out of the 3versions but they did have 20episodes in S1 to do it; as opposed to HanaDan where they obviously had half the amount of time in the first season to tell the story & develop the characters blah blah blah.

I think both the Japanese & Taiwanese versions did justice to the true essence of the story, it’s just that HanaDan did it in more of a shoujo manga kinda way, whereas MG was more real-life.

Amen to your “how Jan Di could look at these guys without cringing about the things they’ve done ” comment. I know. *splatters pottery clay into So Yi Jung’s pretty snow white face*

And I think you’re right about Ga Eul being closer to the Weed Grass spirit than what JanDi was- I would elaborate but I don’t want to say (more) bad things about our Korean BOF heroine gone wrong…

15 08 2010
wolforion20

The Japanese version is my favorite, too, as it was my first. Followed closely by MG (which at times seemed to be the most accurately following the manga) and with BOF being nowhere near the previous two. As much as I enjoyed the drama, damn it was lacking in what it really needed to succeed.

30 08 2010
Dana:)

Personally I’m in love with MG!!
I love it until now 4 me it’s the best followed by HanaDan!
I enjoyed the MG more maybe bcz it’s the 1st thing that I’ve watched and will alwaysbe my fav. and I freaking love the t-f4 and basically most of the characters ( except somtimes SC annoys thecrap out of me). HanaDan would probably has the best actors and BOF hasthe best production but no 1 can replace MG!!! It made me cry, laugh, and sometimes both!!

And I hate it hiw people judge it by their looks not bcz of acting and storyy line ( no offense BOF fans) I mean dude r u seriously blind?? Can’t u tell wats thebig diffr between the 3 of them!! Goshhh imean I’m inlove with Jo hoo but men they r not comparable with the other two; howeve there’s no doubt that hey spent huge money on production!!

2 09 2010
jicks

except somtimes SC annoys thecrap out of me
^lol What part of her bugged you??

I never really got annoyed by the girl just… frustrated w/ how most of the time she was just SO unwilling to face her feelings / put her yourself first. If I were here & I had the chance to hook up w/ Jerry, I def would’ve sacrificed my friends lololol (not my family though! haha) Just joking ;O

And I hate it how people judge it by their looks not bcz of acting and storyy line ( no offense BOF fans) I mean dude r u seriously blind?^haha ^U^
I like to put it this way sometimes- if you stripped (or toned down) all the styling & the glitz & glam & the luxurious off-location shoots AWAY from BOF, would the series have been as appealing & enjoyable as it was? Would the acting & the storyline be enough to compensate? Probs not ^^;;

If you did the same thing to HanaDan, I still think the chemistry btwn the cast would’ve made it a v. good watch, plus, the plot was THERE. And MG, even w/ its not-as-high-grade production still managed to captivate is us all. So, hey, girl, I have no problem w/ you going MG forever all the way! ;O

16 10 2010
I43i<3u

Hi I really enjoy reading these!!!! I was wondering if u would do the same thing 4 ISWAK and playful kiss!! I just love how u compare and contrast them!! Ur the bestt

16 10 2010
jicks

Hello! Thankyou for your kind comments! :))

Actually, you don’t even need to mention the ISWAK & PK thing, my insides are already boiling over itching to do it lol It’s been a while since I’ve seen Joe & Ariel getting all cutesy w/ each other though so I will definitely need a rewatch there. Still waiting for PK to conclude before I hit it all in one go (are you enjoying it??) so please bare with me & stay tuned V(^_~)

27 10 2010
I43i<3u

Yup it was really fun watching pk and sometimes I actually think that PK is in the same level as ISwAK but nuh!!!! Iswak is still the best forme :D arjoe 4ever!!!!

I just finish watching PK 2 days ago and boy do I like it!! But I love ISWAK more :D and all I can say is good thing BSJ is god dam hawt lol bcz it’s really uncomparable to tw ver!! The chemistry doesn’t much up to them. And the storey lines r really for teenagers like me but I still prefer the tw

ps. Every single scene in the tw ver of zhishu and quang xi makes me giggle so much!! I mean there’s time that I have the same feeling for the k ver but it not enough :D

27 10 2010
jicks

The Taiwanese, from what the series I have seen at least, are actually very good at turning manga stories into live-action series. I don’t feel like they necessarily go all gung-ho on the quality of their production in terms of settings/scenery/costume etc (whereas Korean series tend to splurge big in this area) but the Taiwanese do have a nick of creating memorable couples. They tend to be able to pick the perfect actor & the perfect actress. Joe & Ariel are a perfect example of this. Just like you, I don’t think I ever stopped grinning in ISWAK xDD (Wasn’t so much of a fan of They Kissed Again though… have you watched that as well? Does PK follow any of the storyline from TKA?)

I’m a bit nervous now that I am about to hit Playful Kiss… it’s gonna be hard for me no longer being allowed to cry out “Jiiiii Hoooooo sunbae” whenever I see Hyun Joong’s face anymore lololol

Btw, are you checking out Joe Cheng’s latest series?? xD

28 10 2010
I43i<3u

Yup totally agree with u!! Lol
that’s wat especial about the tw dramas! It is the fact that they were able to find an on-screen couples that has a big chemistry lol
anyways about PK,,, hmmm dnt worry about him he is still as hot es ever :D but damn he improved a lot in acting!! Lol he finally shows some emotions hahha

PK is a really light drama!! It’s funny and improved but it’s uncomparable to tw ver! The acting was ok but hmm it sometimes get OTT!! And the kisses is also kindda good for a Korean drama hahaha!! U know wat? I mean it’s not a hot as the kisses in ISwAk and TKA! And also One of the down part for me is that they made the most characters soo cartoonish!! And also the development between the main leads went too fast considering that there’s only 16 eps!! So yah and u could tell that iswak portrayed a lot of the scenes better than pk!! And the rest I leave it to ur judgement since ur the expert here lol :D

Ps. Yup I heard of his new projects like Love or Bread but I can’t watch it!! And trust me I tried to but I can’t seems to stand a goofy Joe Cheng!! Bcz everytime I look at him I remember a cool, cold, and smart zhi shu!! And heard he’s going to have a new drama this year!! I just can’t wait lol

31 10 2010
jicks

And heard he’s going to have a new drama this year!! I just can’t wait lol
^^It’s already begun! Series is called That Love Comes, I believe a couple of episodes have already aired… but I am one for waiting til all eps+subs are done then I swoop on & hit it all in one shot~~~

Here’s an Eng subbed extended trailer for the series: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EPgPANfD2W4
…I don’t know how much of my inner fangirl has to do with this belief of mine but I think Joe Cheng is definitely a very much better than average actor. Definitely one of the best out on the Taiwanese idol scene.

Re Love Or Bread, haven’t had the guts to touch it since after They Kissed Again, I don’t I think I could bare another series with Ariel Lin ever again… ><;

9 12 2010
Ccdesu

Hehe read your blog! Although I haven’t seen MG yet, I do agree with you on the fact that HYD > BOF. Merely because…HYD is my number one drama. Out of all dramas. That is a hard thing to say.
Interesting posts~ :D

9 12 2010
jicks

Hey Ccdesu, thanks for stopping by & leaving a comment (& saying nice things domo, domo ;))

Glad to meet another dorama fan! Do you watch mainly Japanese series? It is tough to argue against HanaDan being number one (obviously I liked it xD)… it’s not often that everything about a series comes together so perfectly <3

15 12 2010
Ccdesu

I’m currently watching J-dramas to better my Japanese for VCE! I used to be realllyyyyy into K-dramas but then found their melodrama and cliches a bit too…

19 12 2010
jicks

Any excuse to watch Japanese dramas! lol j/ks ;) I think my lil brother tried doing the same thing but he did say that he found the language spoken in the shows to be quite a bit different from the what the books were teaching, which is no surprise, but hey, every little bit helps. Good luck wth ya VCE!

Korean dramas were what turned me into a majorly crazed Asian drama fan, too!! I still enjoy them, but I am very selective- more often than not, it has to feature an actor & an actress who I like. But when I do fall in love with a Korean drama, I fall HARD xD

17 12 2010
nur

Lol, I read your postS on MG vs HYD vs BOF at 2am in the morning *holiday!* and now I want to reread the manga XD not watch the movie, read the manga. *so weird*

Anyway, I pretty much agree with most of your comments for the last 5 post on this (although I’m like er, 9 months late? haha) and I found myself agreeing with you that while the “winner” goes to MG, I myself love HYD the most, maybe cause I’m reading the manga in Japanese and HYD is in Japanese and its …. related …. (okay fine, maybe cause I’m biased over the OST HAHA) XD.

Oh, and yes, like you, MG was like my first love!!! When HYD came out, I was over the moon!! and while there are some scenes from MG that I hope HYD would do better, I was like, okay nevermind, HYD still is the bomb! XD

Well not to say that BOF was not good…. Maybe cause I read the manga, I was hoping alot from the drama. Furthermore, having to know how makino and domyouji is really like, BOF made me ….. sad in a way. I mean, Domyouji is someone that has no soul in him at first (in the manga, soujiro and akira told the monkey-girl *haha* that she’s lucky that she met domyouji AFTER the makino-period, cause when domyouji loses his memory, his soulless eyes were like pre-makino days) yet in BOF… junpyo got a sense of humour! It left me in shock for days! *_* it got me thinking, “who are you and what have you done to the real domyouji!?!?!” Although yes, like you, the lustful factor for BOF made me watch it till the end…….

Ah, sorry for the long comment. I’m just excited that someone else has watched all 3 versions. I couldn’t find anyone else that watched all 3 cause they kept saying, “noo, Taiwan version is toooooooooooo long! I don’t wanna watch it!” blablabla.

): sad deshou?

19 12 2010
jicks

Hi nur, welcome & thankyou for taking the time to comment! And make no apologies, I am all for lengthy comments! (As you are about to experience lol xDD)

I’ve only read few volumes of the manga (can’t afford all 37 of them! lol x_O) so I am tipping my cap off to you for going there~! Is it much different to the anime? Since you’ve read the manga & watched all three official live-action adaptions (double, triple, quadruple hat-tip! xD) are you able to share which live-action version is truest to the manga? ^_^

…yet in BOF… junpyo got a sense of humour! It left me in shock for days! *_* it got me thinking, “who are you and what have you done to the real domyouji!?!?!”<<<LMAOoo *pounds fist on table* That's priceless! But that sense of humour you mentioned about Goo Joon Pyo, it wasn't even a likeable one, I mean, to me it just came off as very immature in an arrogant way i.e. NOT.A.MAN *note to self: must stop bashing the dude* lol

And what you said about when Domyouji loses his memory & "his eyes were like pre-Makino days"- I remember they mentioned this in both MG & HYD. Definitely key moment!

Ah, sorry for the long comment. I’m just excited that someone else has watched all 3 versions. I couldn’t find anyone else that watched all 3 cause they kept saying, “noo, Taiwan version is toooooooooooo long! I don’t wanna watch it!” blablabla. ): sad deshou?
^^Well, ahem. Yes. I used to get rather irritated actually when people would blatantly attack MG when they hadn’t even seen it (funny still, when they admit they haven’t seen it but still go ahead to criticise it. Oh well.) Now I just think it’s a shame because they are missing out on something that is (to me & you & alot of other people who have seen MG) pretty downright special. I mean, we can go on about how MG was what ignited the Asian idol drama phenomenon across the Asian fangirl globe but the series itself, even with some of its sometime questionable production elements, the story & the characters were freaking some of the most memorable, ever. Of course, I am not talking about MGII here… lol (although I did still watch & enjoy ^^;)

21 12 2010
Zephania Novia

You’re worth every compliment! I enjoyed reading your perspectives so much! I love the humor, too. Keep on doing this..ganbatte ne!

23 12 2010
jicks

Gah, sankyuu, that’s so sweet! (I think I may be blushing lol) But seriously, feedback like this really helps me plodder further along.

Thanks again :)

24 12 2010
Yeahh

Omgsh I totally enjoyed reading your blog.

I appreciate the sleepless nights you had just to do this. In return, let me thank you by saying that YOU ROCK. :D I seriously loved this and some remarks of urs even craked me up :D

Good job XD

26 12 2010
jicks

Hey, thankyou for your nice comments! :)

I do try (lol) but in the end, sleep deprivation is nothing since I’m just happy to know that I can sometimes amuse people other than myself tehe :D

Thanks again for stopping by!

9 04 2011
reviewbyme

Yay nice post!!!
It’s nearly a whole year late, so forgive me!!

I never watch MG, doesn’t like taiwanese dramas. And BOF bored me after 7 episodes So love HYD all the way!!!! But i always wonder which one is the better one cause lot of people never watch all of 3, so thx for point this one.

I think i fell in love with Jun after watching this. his really nailed the charcter really well. My favorite part is especially in the lift and when he regained his amnesia.

And you’re a kimura fan to!
Do you know that hanazawa rui character is based on Kimura? and also the voice actor of Hanazawa Rui in the anime CD.

13 04 2011
jicks

haha It’s never too late to discuss this trio of classics!!! So thank YOU for stopping by & sharing the love!!~~

Re Taiwanese dramas, I know they’re not everyone’s cuppa tea but believe me, when they are good, they are VERY good. They know how to make a put together a good couple that’s for sure. And I know I’m not the first, nor will I be the last, but I do highly recommend MG, because it is one of the earlier big idol dramas :)

Re BOF, lol, 7 episodes is pretty awesome! I know MANY people who didn’t make it nearly that far^^;;;;; I stuck it out. Still don’t know if that was a good thing or not, lol.

Ditto on both those scenes you mentioned! Every HanaDan fangirl would totally agree! Have you seen any of Jun’s other works? Can I tease you with Gokusen? ;) And I NEED to ask this, too *thickskinned* :Are you an Arashi fan, too? -_-;

Re Kimura Takuya, how can anyone NOT be a fan of the Great One, lol. Yes. As much as I love to poke fun at him every now and then, I do think he is beyond amazing. What’s your favourite series of his (because you know everybody has one ;)))

Omg, I’ve never read anywhere about the character of Ru being based on Kimura… where abouts did you see this? Don’t quote me either, but I’m pretty Rui was voiced by another voice actor in the anime. The only thing I think Kimura has voiced is the lead role in Howl’s Moving Castle (awesome film by the way!)

14 04 2011
reviewbyme

Re Taiwanese, i don’t know, i watch a couple dramas in Tv but it never interest me.

Re BOF, but the first couple eps is really funny though, i really laughing all the way the interaction between jan di n jun pyo. but when they started to noticed each other feeling, it just meehhh, hate it..

Of course i’ve seen his other works!
Gokusen 1! when gokusen 2 showing i really hope for another YankumiXshin, but NOOOO, Kame!!!! I hate you!!! LOL Xp
Kimi wa petto!!! I want my Jun momo too! he’s so cute on this one, i don’t care about koyuki, i just watch my momo
Smile!! i stop after 3 eps, Jun in pathetic role doesn’t interst me, but Shun role is SCARYYY!!!
And his movie about incest, (i forgot the tittle), is really creepy me out, but strangely Jun is still awesome!!
and his movie with arashi, a really weird movie but still good

Hmmm, i don’t know if i were their fan or not. I know couple of their song, remember all the member name, but only Nino and Jun drama that i ever watch. But they still the first JE that i notice

Re Kimura, Huwwaaa. i can’t choose either one. They’re all my favorite!!!! But if i have to choose maybe Hero. great casting and really love the stories, especially the case (I’m a law student!).

Well, I don’t know the truth about based on. but the voice actor ,In the manga, the author said herself and she got the chance to talk with him. and i think is in first drama’s cd. If you still don’t believe me, check this http://rz-jocelyn.livejournal.com/4835.html . It’s got all the information of SMAP contribution in manga and anime world.

17 04 2011
jicks

You’re a law student? That’s so cool! Lots of studying for you I presume! But remember to take time out in between… & watch alot of doramas ;)

Aaaaaah, Hero. Classic (lol, all his series are classics xDD Even Moon Lovers, for it’s epic failness, lol.) Classy, pitch-perfect comedy. And of course, the reunion of Kimura & Matsu Takako ^_^

Thank you for that SMAPpy linky! xD XD Interesting read for sure! I actually do remember them making a reference to Kimura Takuya in Taiwanese Hana Kimi. In fact, I recall him being mentioned on some Taiwanese game/variety show, too… I think Show Luo was involved. I watch quite a bit of Hong Kong stuff & even today, when they talk about the Japanese entertainment industry, Kimura’s name does often come up. It just goes to show how great of an influence those SMAP boys have had on so many generations :)

OMG, hells yes, Shun was freakazoid2000 in Smile! When he kicking the crap out of Gakki… I was thinking to myself, “No, Rui!!!!! Hanazawa Ruiiiiiiiiiii!!!!!!!!!! Rui, you would NEVER hit a giiirlllll!!!!!” lol. Agreed Jun’s role was far from his best work. Too much (bad) crying ><; Actually, apart from Shun, I loathed the entire series.

And his movie about incest, (i forgot the tittle), is really creepy me out, but strangely Jun is still awesome!!
^Oh, you mean Boku wa Imōto ni Koi o Suru? I still haven’t seen it because I just can’t get my head around the whole falling in love with your own sibling idea……. but if you’re giving Jun’s performance the thumbs up, then I may just have to grit my teeth & get into it…

18 04 2011
reviewbyme

Well this past year, i think there’s a lot more Japan that the studying itself. And i have to blame some hot “nearly-40 but still perfect” guy and his “i can’t desribe the word for how incredible they are” manband. my life never the same again…

re Moon lovers, after all the bad reviews, i only watch the first 15 minutes and 3 last eps. He’s act not that bad i think. Ren is a jerk and don’t we all hate him in that drama?! So it means, he really play the character really well :D

He really is something, doesn’t he? Even those monster rating drama can’t still describe how amazing he is. Japan entertainment (and JE itself) really change because of him and SMAP. i can’t imagine Japan without those skinny look alike JE junior and their gay costumes. ;)

Oh my, i can’t stop myself if talking about him. please scold me if this annoy you!

Re Boku wa imoto. Yes that movie! I was like “EEWWW, She’s your sister” in every scene. But the ending turned out to be nice, not that bad movie i think. At least i can see Jun acting kakkoi again

Btw about Shun. have you seen Juui’s dolittle?

18 11 2012
Marie

I’m a big fan of the manga and so far, only Meteor Garden Season 1 and Hana Yori Dango did justice to it. Meteor Garden slavishly followed the manga and it really made me happy I watched it first before Hanadan! I preferred the couple development there more (cause it gives me more time to forgive DMS. LOL) and Shan Cai will forever be my favorite drama version of Makino (sinceshe happens to be the toughest of them all). Hana Yori Dango (my overall fave) managed to achieve MG wasn’t able to do: Domyouji growing into a mature and selfless person who is capable of putting others before himself (which is part of many things Makino changed in him).

And no offense to all BOF fans–but I think that “adaptation” butchered everything I love about the manga. I don’t really mean to hate on the series. In fact, I was one of those excited fans waiting for each ep release of it before but to see it being transformed into a cliche Prince-Cinderella story made me cringe. You have a no-brainer for Makino and a coward for Domyouji — just what the hell were they thinking? Hanadan is supposed to be a story about Domyouji growing into a person because of Makino’s influence. But instead, we got a well-adjusted hero who pose on magazines and play team games and a heroine who doesn’t act like a normal human being The feelings portrayed here are so artificial as well. I didn’t question myself why DMS fell for Shan Cai and Domyouji for Makino — but until now I still wonder what Jun Pyo saw in Jan Di that made him fall for her. I think they would be fine without each other.

2 03 2013
jicks

Marie, you have no idea how happy I am to meet someone who sees the who MG/HYD/BOF business the same way as me! lol.

I was actually watching bits of MG the other day and even though the fashion police would be running after the entire cast and crew, the story is still as fresh and genuine as ever. The acting is real (I think the awkwardness actually adds to relatability the characters exude) and Shan Cai is simply someone you can imagine having as a friend. Someone you WANT as a friend.

19 07 2013
Aki

Super late comment, but I just finished rewatching HYD last week so…my feels…XD

Just wanna give my 2 cents:
MG – I liked it a lot. A whole lot. I just didn’t like how it became so dragging in the 2nd half. But I can’t remember wanting to rewatch MG again. And everyone looked too old to play high schoolers (I don’t even remember the setting much. Was it high school or uni?).

HYD – Not perfect, but definitely the best of the 3. There’s just something about it that’s so touching and special that you just want to watch it again and again (like with Nobuta wo Produce). F4 bond was cute. Domyouji/Makino chemistry was so believable that I started to ship Maotsujun too. And of course, Matsujun nailed the character. So good.

BOF – I think they focused too much on the look and forgot about character and storyline development. I like Goo Hye Sun but damn, Jan Di was annoying. Jun Pyo was just ok. Lukewarm. Ji Hoo…I won’t even go there.

I enjoyed reading your posts! Brought back a lot of memories. XD

14 03 2014
jicks

Aki! I hope you get to read my SUPER (even) late(r) reply! LOL.

Re MG, the backdrop was a university, my liking for the series definitely would’ve been lessened had they tried to convince us they were in high school, because, well, just as you said, clearly they don’t fit the part physically.

Re HYD, Jun and Mao chan were perfectly suited to each together, and to this day, they still stand as one of my most adored couples (as in, I want to hug them and squeeze their babies’ cheeks, lol). I’m glad you agree that Jun nailed the role XDD (I would’ve thought there were would be way more people with this train of thought!)

Re BOF, 100% nodding my head w everything you said, except… why you not like Ji Hooooooooo? lol.

Would love for you to read this and hear me say thank you! : )

19 12 2013
Jinger

Hi!

After rewatching BoF and Meteor Garden 1 and 2, I can’t stop myself from commenting on this blog. Although, I havent watched HYD until now, I must say, this is so far the most logical review about the 3 versions that I have ever read. Kudos, :)

I would like to add, I am biased with Meteor Garden since I grew up in an environment where the Taiwanese F4 made every girl’s heart beat faster (the first time). I agree, the bond of the original F4 was exceptional.

Others may seem to love Boys over Flowers even if there were many flaws, probably because, it’s the newest version. We know for a fact that MG fever reduces as time goes by. Younger ones, who watched or will be watching MG for the first time, may feel bored because the settings and fashion style were old school. They can’t even relate. So, I guess younger generation appreciates BoF more than MG generation peeps do and vice versa.:)

For HYD, I can tell that it’s a good version also. However I just can’t delve into detail about it.

Thanks!

14 03 2014
jicks

Jinger, I really hope you get to read this – firstly, sorry for the tardy reply, and secondly, thank you so much for your lovely reply!

I wholeheartedly appreciate your remarks about the logical review – believe me, coming from someone who can be, uh, slightly emotional, this means a lot. I am biased at the best of times, but I did try to look at things as objectively as possible, and not just rely on nostalgia.

Yes, the appreciation for MG vs BOF does seem to heavily come down to the generation factor, and it’s completely understandable. Though I would like to think (or hope) that people can appreciate the rawness, or “realness” of MG. I hope you get to see Hanadan at some stage and come back and share your views. Would love to hear about them because I feel like we have similar values tastes XD

Thanks again for your kind words, and much love!

26 05 2014
Grace

I agree totally! And by the way, I came across your blog posts as I was writing my own review of Meteor Garden. I feel sad that people who didn’t watch Meteor Garden way back when won’t be able to appreciate how great it was.

Let’s face it, a lot of teenagers and young adults watch these dramas for the eye candy, not only in terms of the actors but the sets, wardrobe, cars etc. MG’s cast were small time actors, not idols and established veterans, and the budget was tiny.

I loved your reviews of the 3 dramas, and it seems most people agree Hana Yori Dango was the best so I will watch it when I can (even though I’m very skeptical because I don’t find the boys remotely attractive, and BOF made me fall asleep when I tried to watch it, tbh). Oh and like another reviewer, I’m glad the Taiwanese F4 won the most important battle! ;) But I still think MG’s soundtrack should have won that category too, Ni Yao De Ai really pulls at your heartstrings!

9 06 2014
jicks

Hi Grace! Where is your blog so I can stalk and read your review, please? haha :D

I thoroughly agree, everyone and everything about MG created themselves through that series. It was just people acting it out in a way that made you feel like they could be the same peeps hanging out at your campus.

I also didn’t think much of the physical attractiveness of the HYD F4 prior either (hadn’t seen them in anything before) but their acting changed all that – the saying that people become more beautiful when you find out how wonderful internally they are is true! :D

And thank you so much for your kind words regarding my review! I really just blurted out everything that I felt, but everytime I hear someone like you who agrees with what I say makes me feel awesome :D Looking back though I probably didn’t give as much props to the MG soundtrack as I did at the time – I do remember sobbing everytime Ni Yao De Ai was played too :,(

2 07 2014
Project Gora

Just found your blog after re watching Hana Yori Dango. I agree with you MG is my first love BUT HYD is my ONE TRUE LOVE :) MG is the first asianovela I’ve seen, it was shown in the Philippines when I was still in highschool. I’ve seen HYD way back in college and it remains my absolute favorite! MatsuJun and Inoue mao’s chemistry is perfect!

7 11 2014
jicks

Project Gora! Apologies for the ridiculously tardy reply, but I am so glad we share the same sentiments! Re Jun & Mao-chan, completely agree, they were gorgeous together- in the comedic, dramatic,, & romantic scenes. Heard a little rumor recently too that they’ve been secretly dating since Hanadan… I think my inner fangirl would die in joy if they wed in real life XDD Anyways, thank you for stopping by and leaving a reply! xx

29 08 2014
saumya

BOF is what introduced me to kdramas first, even though i dint like it all that much and stopped after 8-9 episodes…. but that dint s top me from watching a lot of other kdramas (which i luvd) .

only recently i decided to watch hana yori dango. (i see less of jdramas) and fell completly in love with it…. :):):)
then i binged watched all the version of the story i could get …. luvd meteor garden, not so much meteor shower and couldnt stand the american version.

overall favorite – hana yori dango <3 <3

7 11 2014
jicks

Heya saumya! Thank you for sharing your thoughts :):):) Haven’t at all touched Meteor Shower, heard the storyline deviates a bit from the original plot, but gah, the American version?? I remember reading small talks on it aaaages ago but didn’t realise it actually went through into production. Sounds like I need to dodge it with a 10ft stick though. :P

Boys Over Flowers was… probably not as bad as what I made it sound (though not far off, LOL) but yah, there are plenty of other much more amazing Korean dramas out there. What are some of your favourites?

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