I recently heard myself rationalising my sad over-consumption of K-dramas in this fashion: It opens a window to how people in a different culture view the same issues, like how in Hindi films (note how I am so desperate for back-up that I resort to a non-TV example), there’s this marvellous, touching respect for elders that you just won’t find in a Hollywood movie.
Well, I won’t dispute with Moi-of-the-Recent-Past: I’ve verily been exposed to refreshingly dissimilar attitudes and perceptions through the freighter-load of shows I’ve gone through. I’ve felt my mind and heart and hopes expand as I strolled through the streets of Baltimore, the lanes of London, the corridors of Tokyo and the boulevards of Seoul, all while being royally entertained.
I just want to share a conviction that has been set in stone after finishing a Japanese drama for the first time in a long while. Pride, starring the one and only Takuya Kimura and possibly the best TV kiss of all time, was mostly riveting and nicely compact (only 11 episodes), and without a doubt fantastically produced. But I couldn’t help but be convinced that, while Japanese and Korean societies both have their ironclad rules and formalities, the former is suffocating in its refined repression, while the latter is delightful in its irrepressible outbursts of ire and passion.
So, in the end, after imbibing so much ‘culture’, I’ve ended up discriminating against one. Or have I ended up being discriminating?