K-Drama: ‘Romantic Doctor Kim’ First Impressions

Episode 1 of Romantic Doctor Kim comes in swinging hard like a wrecking ball, taking everyone out in one fell swoop. It’s pretty progressive for a k-drama and an enormous amount of events unfold in just the first hour. We have quite the intriguing setup and it will be interesting to see if the drama can maintain this fast pacing without compromising story and character arcs.

As a young boy, Kang Dong Joo, loses his father while he’s waiting at the ER to be seen. Another patient, comes into the ER at that time, and he’s taken as a top priority because of who he is. Kang Dong Joo’s father dies and he loses it. He comes back the ER with a bat and starts destroying anything and everything. A doctor steps in and calms him down before he can cause more harm to himself. As the doctor treats Kang Dong Joo’s injuries, he gives him some sound advice. If Dong Joo wants revenge, he needs to become better than the people that let his father needlessly die. Of course Dong Joo isn’t quite sure what that means at that time, but we forward to him as a grown up and intern at that very hospital.

Kang Dong Joo:

Not only is he a bit cold and prickly, but he refuses to take menial orders from his sunbaes.

He’s already clashing with last-year-resident Yoo Seo Jung as he mistakes her actions with another patient. She later apologies for not recognizing how serious the woman’s condition is, but not before giving Dong Joo a taste of his own medicine for tattling on her. She assigns him the worst cases in the ER. Dong Joo is not thrilled, but he does his job and he sees it through to the end. Eventually, the two manage to find common ground. He even assists Seo Jung well for the very first time and she commends him for it.

I’d love to know more of Kang Dong Joo’s story, thought. After his father passed, he ended up studying medicine. What about his mother? Does he have any other family? He seems saddened when he learns that Seo Jung doesn’t have any family.

Yoo Seo Jung:

She reminds me a lot of Lee Hae Sung from D-Day. Not only is Seo Jung a very passionate doctor, but she’s willing to do what it takes when a patient needs instant medical attention. Even if she’s not quite qualified or authorized to do certain procedures or surgeries, she steps up and does what needs to be done — even at the risk of dealing with medical malpractice. It’s a risky move, but at the same time, it shows how much she wants to desperately save a life at any cost. It makes me wonder about her history. From the way she reacted to the first critical patient when the pole slipped out of him, it indicates that something happened in her past to make her this way.

Nonetheless, I do like her character. I also really respected her when she told Doctor Moon that she wavered when Dong Joo confessed to her earlier. While brutal, I love her honesty. Too bad it just upset Doctor Moon and he drove off into the intersection without paying attention to the darn traffic signal. And cue the k-drama truck of doom!

After losing Moon due to a hemorrhage of the brain, Seo Jung takes off in an effort to clear her head and mind after her abrupt loss. While hiking, she trips and hurts her ankle badly and is later found by a man who happens to find her while he’s hiking — a convenient plot device but I’ll take it for what it’s worth.

Final Verdict: 

This was a crazy, action-packed first episode. Between Dong Joo entering the picture and already confessing to Seo Jung, it looks like it’s going to be a wild ride. Also, Seo Jung has just lost a man she was dating. I have no idea how deeply involved they were or how much they loved each other, but I’m sure this event is going to radically change her. Will she still be Crazy Whale or Queen of Index Finger? I guess time will tell if she can lick her wounds and find a way to move on.

As for Dong Joo, as adorable and abrupt as his confession was, it was just way too, well, abrupt. I’m a little frustrated that we have random love confessions in the first episode alone. Of course we’ll probably be going 100 steps backwards after this point, (I haven’t watched beyond this episode. I’m watching/catching up on way too many dramas. Omo!) but I would have rathered we did without the make out scene in the storage closet. It was really well done, but I worry about Dong Joo. He’s strangely endearing and completely enamored by Seo Jung, which I can’t fault him for, but there are a lot of unknown variables with his character, especially with him seeking revenge for his father. Hopefully, that will be something Dong Joo can move beyond at some point.

 

Overall, I’d rate this a decent beginning. Doctor dramas tend to be hit or miss for me, so I look forward to seeing if Romantic Doctor Kim can do something different than it’s predecessors and show me what it’s got to offer. I’ll tune in for a few more episodes to see if something can reel me in, but it’s not a must-watch drama for me at this moment. Things are just beginning, so I won’t judge too quicky — these are simply just my first impressions — and a lot can change in a couple of episodes.

If anyone else is currently watching this drama, feel free to sound off in the comments below and let me know what you think.

Note: I’m just rolling out the posts lately. Sorry, readers! It seems that my time gets more scarce and it’s hard enough just to be able to watch a drama. Nonetheless, I am enjoying my Thanksgiving vacation and hope to pump out more material this weekend including my thoughts on Legend of the Blue Sea (ep 1-4), K2 (the ending), and 1% of Something (series overview/review). These might not all be posted this weekend as I still have to finish watching K2 and 1% of Something, but Legend of the Blue Sea is definitely happening as I’m working on it right now. I’m also working on a pretty important post that will talk about the future of this blog and some things I hope to integrate in the new year. 

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