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Do Do Sol Sol La La Sol [2020]

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Director: Kim Min Kyung
Writer: Oh Ji Young


Main Cast:
Go Ara as Goo Ra Ra
Lee Jae Wook as Sunwoo Joon
Kim Joo Hun as Cha Eun Seok
Byeol as MiMi

The writer of this drama had also written “Shopping King Louis” and “My Secret, Terrius”, both of them quirky rom-coms that are very engaging and satisfying dramas. This drama would prove to be as quirky and as charming as her previous works.


However, she introduces a strange twist at the end which almost ruined the drama for me, and to this day makes little sense to me. So, this drama review will be in 2 parts, with the second part in the following post under a spoiler.


The title of this drama refers to the first bar of the song “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”, a piano piece that is special to the heroine of this drama and her father.


Summary and Review:
This is the story of Goo Ra Ra, the spoiled yet naive daughter of a wealthy widowed man who has studied piano her whole life because of her father’s happiness at seeing her play.  She finally graduates from university where she was a piano major, and decides that she has had enough of piano forever, opting to do all the things that she had been unable to do while studying the piano. She and her adorable white pomeranian MiMi live the high life, cruising the city and having fun. At her father’s request, she even gets engaged to a doctor who in turn is marrying her for the promise of having his own hospital built by her father.


On the day of the wedding, Ra Ra meets a scruffy Sunwoo Joon who hand delivers her wedding bouquet to her after having witnessed the motorcycle accident of the man who was delivering RR’s wedding bouquet to her. However, just as the ceremony is to start, Ra Ra’s father finds out that he’s lost all of his money, has a heart attack, and dies. The groom’s mother grabs the groom and runs out of the wedding hall with him.


Ra Ra is left with very little money and no place to go, having to go into hiding from her late father’s creditors. After a text message from someone called DoDoSolSolLaLaSol, she ultimately ends up in Eunpo Village, a small coastal town, where she runs into Joon again who becomes her support, financially, emotionally, and in anything that RaRa needs done.


RaRa eventually starts up a piano studio called La La Land, and starts forming relationships with the people in the village, including a newly divorced doctor who had also moved to Eunpo from Seoul. The doctor actually knows who RaRa is, and that she had been engaged to marry one of his friends, however, he keeps that a secret, not wanting RaRa to feel any embarrassment because of it.


Over time, RaRa and Joon start to fall in love. Joon is always very caring and thoughtful towards RaRa, but he has a lot of secrets. One of the big secrets is that Joon is younger than RaRa (he’s high school age while RaRa has finished university) and had dropped out of high school after experiencing trauma at seeing his best friend die in a traffic accident. Also, Joon has known RaRa for much, much longer than she realizes.


There are also a few mysteries built into this drama. There is an ongoing mystery of who the mysterious DoDoSolSolLaLaSol is. Initially, RR is convinced it's someone who knew her and her father which is why she is willing to follow DDSSLLS's suggestions. However, there are plenty of red herrings before the truth is revealed.


Go Ara is unexpectedly charming as Goo Ra Ra, the young woman who overcomes personal tragedy to retain her bright personality and her basic trust in people. Her previous dramas have been hit or miss for me, mostly misses, but I loved her as the effervescent RaRa. Lee Jae Wook is captivating as the brooding but caring Joon. He is not a classically handsome male lead, but makes up for it with his acting talent and charisma. And, some of the best scenes are with RaRa’s dog MiMi who looks on knowingly in her scenes and has an amazing array of outfits of her own.


The direction and cinematography are passable, though this drama’s strength is in its story and the cast, especially the chemistry between RaRa and Joon.


Ratings will be given in part 2 of this review.

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Part of the Review - with total spoilers in the spoiler



The surprise twist is that Joon unexpectedly disappears towards the end of the drama for 5 years.


It had been revealed that Joon is the runaway son of a wealthy hospital director, and he is eventually forcibly reunited with his family, only to escape to be with RR in Eunpo. However, he also develops a serious life threatening illness which leads him to returning to his parents’ home to be cared for, and then shortly disappearing completely from RR’s life and Eunpo Village.


So, the life threatening illness is a groan inducing k-drama trope anyway, however, the way the ending was handled feels manipulative and silly, trying to convince us that Joon had died of his illness. Also, this feels out of character and a stark contrast with the caring, thoughful Joon that we had been watching for most of the drama for him to leave without a word to anyone and not reach out for 5 years while RR and the other villagers are wondering whether he is alive or not. It struck a very discordant note in an otherwise very good rom-com.


And when Joon finally does reappear, he doesn’t have a very good explanation for his disappearance and total silence other than that he felt he had to wait until he was fully recovered to come back to her. Huh? Really, let the woman you love think you might be dead for 5 years? Then you just come back and all is forgiven. Sigh. That’s just so weak.


Plot - 6  This is mostly because I’m still annoyed with the ending time jump.
Cast - 9  The cast was uniformly excellent.
Production Value - 7  It's a very viewable drama incorporating both scenic panoramas as well as more intimate scenes. Also, the classical piano pieces that serve as the theme for each episode are really gorgeous.
Re-watch Value - 4  Again, after almost a year, I'm still annoyed by the ending and the time jump. However, the first 14 episodes were fun and lovely, so I'll probably watch those again.




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On 6/30/2021 at 1:32 AM, stroppyse said:

Re-watch Value - 4  Again, after almost a year, I'm still annoyed by the ending and the time jump. However, the first 14 episodes were fun and lovely, so I'll probably watch those again.

You are so generous. Haha! I think the first 10 or so episodes are worth re-watching. The remaining few episodes are not and should never exist. :laugh:



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