KDRAMA REVIEW | CHICAGO TYPEWRITER

I AM BACK! I can’t believe it’s been four months since I wrote my last KDrama review—The Lonely Shining Goblin. I thought I’d never recover from that one. HUH. Now, I can’t shut up about Chicago Typewriter! HOW IT IS SO UNDERRATED HERE?! HOW?! HOW CAN YOU SLEEP ON THIS GREAT STORYTELLING???

Since Goblin, there wasn’t any KDrama that I was interested in. But last month, a mutual on Twitter asked me if I’ve watched Chicago Typewriter. To have someone asks you about a series or book surely makes him remember you through it. I got curious! The typewriter word alone made me giddy about it already. Typewriter should mean there are writings involve, right? I searched about it but I didn’t actually read what was it about. That’s me. I don’t really read synopsis or reviews if it’s a recommendation from friends. I trust you! I want things to shock me. And hell was I.

THE STORY

Chicago Typewriter is about three friends during 1930 Joseon who fight against Japanese occupation. 80 years after, they met again due to unfinished business they had before. Will they be able to fulfill their promise in the past? How will they manage to accept their reincarnated selves in the present time? What awaits for them in the future aside from a liberated country?

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I know. Here we go again with reincarnation but CT has so much more to offer than that. I love how smoothly it transitions from present back to the past and back again. You can say that the cinematography is so on point. The way it changes palette from now and then is flamboyant. Can I just say that the 1930 scheme looks like my blog’s motif? Maybe one of the reasons why I love the relationship of colors in different coffee blends is it somehow reminds me of the life in the past. Vintage. Nostalgic. I’m such an old soul.

I love how the story has a touch of mystery that I couldn’t wait to unravel the whole narrative since the first episode. You have this idea that their past lives were tragic but how exactly it’s gonna end? It was both misleading and predictable in a way but without jeopardizing its coherent trajectory.

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these are my screenshots

They spent their youth using both intelligence and violence as resistance to Japanese rule. It opened a door for us to appreciate more the independence we have now—not just in South Korea or here in the Philippines but also in other places around the world.

The writer in me wanted to weep on this part. I can relate in so many levels. Let’s all write something good. Together, we can create a better nation.

THE CHARACTERS

Yoo Ah In as Han Se Joo (present); Seo Hwi Young (past)

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[Text Translation] “The star writer who’s suffering from a writer’s block.”

Han Se Joo is the Stephen King of Korea who is suffering from slump. His writing career is at stake. He tries to live on his own and make it to the point not to ask for help from anyone. He has been stabbed behind his back many times that it is hard for him to trust again. He is guarded but wait until you see how charming he can be once his walls come crashing down.

When he got the typewriter he found in a cafe in Chicago where he did a signing, his life started to change.

Let’s appreciate his house filled with books! Definitely one of the reasons why you should watch this. VERY IDEAL.

Lim Soo Jung as Jeon Seol (present); Ryu Soo Hyun (past)

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[Text Translation] “The legendary maniacal fan of the writer.”

She is a registered veterinarian but quit the job after they had to kill the sick cows because there weren’t enough vaccines to save them. She often refers to it as “the cows are still crying” whenever people tell her to get back to her profession. (THAT IS SUCH A HEARTBREAKING BACK STORY, MIND YOU) She is also a shooter but had to stop picking up the gun because it makes her remember her past life. She ends up trembling whenever she tries. (MY HEART IS WRENCHED) She is Han Se Joo’s first and number one fan (FANGIRLS CAN RELATE 💯) until she unstan because of his attitude.

Ko Gyung Po as Yoo Jin Oh (present); Shin Yul (past)

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[Text Translation] “The ghost writer hiding behind the star writer”.

He is a ghostwriter who is literally, a ghost. He helped Se Joo get over his slump and together, they start writing a novel. He is the only one who remembers their past lives at first but he doesn’t completely know how the three of them (Se Joo and Jeon Seol) parted ways. Yul will make your heart explode—both in good and bad ways.

As the story progress, they found out about each other’s side of the story. I LOVE DIFFERENT POINT OF VIEWS BECAUSE IT HELPS ME UNDERSTAND THE CHARACTERS MORE.

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You will love this trio, both their past and present selves. The character development is very well established. I REALLY LOVE IT. SO MUCH I FEEL LIKE CRYING 😭😭

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It has its fair share of love and romance but not in a cheesy and sappy way. They are comrades more than lovers.

Now, it’s time to ask you these..

Who will save who? Who will kill who? Who will love who? Who will betray who? Who will give up? Who will resist? Tell me after you find out. 🙂

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This is the ending you should anticipate.

MY FAVORITE QUOTE THAT I’LL LIVE BY:

조국은 빼앗겼지만 나에게서 문장을 빼앗을 순 없어

Even though my country has been taken away, they can’t take my words away from me.

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HOW POWERFUL OUR WORDS CAN GET??? This reminds me of what GAT Jose Rizal once said: “I do not write for this generation. I am writing for other ages. If this could read me, they would burn my books, the work of my whole life. On the other hand, the generation which interprets these writings will be an educated generation; they will understand me and say: ‘Not all were asleep in the nighttime of our grandparents.'”


That’s it for my review. It’s not really long compared to my previous ones because I learned not to spoil anything. HAHAHAHA! Really, I hope you will watch this. Especially if you are an aspiring writer like me. I’m also a sucker for history so this is a treat. I appreciate the past eras even more.

Let’s all live well and be well. Whatever we do now will surely make its mark to the future. Be the voice you wanna hear and be the words you wanna read.


The sound playing in the background is one of the OST from the series. I hope you like it. My heart aches everytime I hear this. My exact thoughts after I finish the series while listening to the songs:

You know how we get sad sometimes without any particular reason? Maybe these souls from the past really live through time. If we don’t reincarnate, maybe the feelings of love, heartache, betrayal and passion lives on—from past to present to future. The grudges stay. The determination remains. All these feelings are incorporated to the world we live in now and it will for the longest time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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