Can’t get enough of the wacky romantic comedy Secret Garden? Thanks to the popularity of the drama series, the story will be adapted for several additional formats: a novel, a photo comic book, and a soonjung manhwa (aka shojo manga, or romance-themed comic book).
The novel will be written by a new writer, Kang Yi-eul, and will include many of the drama’s most recognizable bits of dialogue as written by scriptwriter Kim Eun-sook. An example: “Is this your best? Are you sure?” which is the icy comment Joo-won always levels at his staff, which intimidates them and asserts his position as alpha dog. As though his position as CEO and his general hauteur weren’t enough to cow them into submission.
In the photo comic book, memorable scenes will be captured in stills and arranged, comic book style, to tell a story. Since all of its material will be taken from the drama proper, the story won’t be new, so I suppose it works more as a collector’s item for drama fans. It’ll be published in two volumes. The actual (soonjung) comic book, in contrast, will diverge from the drama’s established storyline to include new plotlines for the characters.
Hmm, it’s good for the drama producers, but I’m not sure how compelling this franchise will be without the crackling onscreen chemistry between Hyun Bin and Ha Ji-won (and the childish rivalry between Hyun Bin and Yoon Sang-hyun). At least readers will have their portrayals in mind when reading the new material, which should help.
The novel became available for preorders this week, and preorders open up for the first of the two photo books next week. The manhwa collection plans to go up for preorders in January.