Kim Ji Woong and Yoon Seo Bin looked so freaking good together in ‘Kissable Lips’, of-course someone had the good sense to cast them as a romantic pair again. Thankfully, their 2022 Korean series ‘Roomates of Poongduck 304’ has a better developed plot and gives the actors more time to develop a believable relationship.
The story follows Ji Ho Joon (Kim Ji Woong), a wealthy 29-year-old womanizer whose father takes away all his credit/debit cards and forces him to live life on a regular employee’s salary. Ousted from his posh apartment, Joon takes up a room in the humble Poongduck villa, which is owned by the closeted Seo Jae Yoon (Yoon Seo Bin). The two start their tenant-owner relationship on the wrong foot, quarrelling the minute they meet, but in an unlikely co-incidence, Ji Ho turns out to be Seo Jae’s new boss at work. Can the two new roommates/workmates make things work between them?
This was a simple and cozy looking series, with warm tones (like most Korean shows) and pretty spaces. For a change, the writers aren’t ambiguous about a protagonist’s sexuality; because a lot of Asian series tend to be weird about labelling their leads and go the “he/she is not gay, they just happen to fall in love with someone from the same gender” route. Seo Jae is honest about being attracted to men, while Ji Ho Joon seems to be bisexual and isn’t too hung up about who he dates. Singer Holland has a small silly cameo which triggers the incidents in this romantic comedy. And while there’s no antagonist, Kang Woo Jung plays Seo Jae’s exploitative friend Yoo Seung, a sales professional who cheats people to meet his targets.
Eight episodes long (with 30 minutes each), ‘Roommates of Poongduck 304’ could’ve used a few more episodes to make the relationship progression of the lead couple seem smoother. One minute they are fighting, the other minute they are swooning over each other, but their romantic moments are cute. Kim Ji Woong is very charming as the suave Ji Ho Joon, it’s strange the actor hasn’t gained more fame, because he looks like he was handcrafted to be a romantic lead and will remind K-pop fans of Kim Taehyung. Actor Seo Jae Yoon needs more work with his acting skills but is a lot better in this series than he was in ‘Kissable Lips’. Their chemistry has vastly improved, and they make an adorable pair.
For a fluffy romance series, it’s a 7/10 from me.
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