What do you get when two veteran producers, one rookie producer, and one sassy singer meets under one KBS roof? One hell of a disaster!
… Kind of like the premiere of “Producer.” After weeks of building anticipation, exaggerating hype, and filming in extreme secrecy, what we got in the end were two rather dull and flat episodes. Sure, I cracked a smile and even a few laughs here and there, but “Producer” didn’t live up to the expectations the drama had roused in us, even if the star-studded cast wonderfully portrayed their individual roles.
Introducing the Dolphin, Ra Joon Mo.
Particularly skilled in hitting rock bottom with his variety shows, Ra Joon Mo (Cha Tae Hyun), the current producer for “2 Days, 1 Night,” never seems to get a break. With his tendency to fumble over his words and get his point across in a dignified manner, it’s no surprise that he frequently gets summoned to the KCC for reprimand.
He’s kind of a coward in that he hates conflict and confrontation, which means he sidesteps around his issues as much as possible and makes others do the dirty work for him… until it all goes horribly wrong.
His redemption comes in the form of being honest with his girlfriend, Shin Hae Joo (Jo Yoon Hee), that things will not work out between them and apologizing to “2 Days, 1 Night” member, Yoon Yeo Jung, for how he handled (or mishandled, as the case may be) in informing her of her dismissal from the show.
Meet the Jindo Dog, Tak Ye Jin.
Most well-known in the entire KBS building for her fiery temper, Tak Ye Jin (Gong Hyo Jin) is actually a secret groveler and puts up quite a front for being tough and difficult. She’s the PD for Music Bank, which sounds like great fun, but her issues are never ending, especially when it concerns top singer, Cindy (IU).
The two clash and dangerous sparks fly over a sexy, see-through top, which was, in my opinion, the highlight of the drama thus far. It doesn’t help the growing tension when Baek Seung Chan (Kim Soo Hyun) accidentally sides with Cindy rather than his sunbae (senior) or that her ire is further intensified when she realizes she has to pay him 830,000 won for denting his father’s expensive, imported car.
As if we don’t already feel sympathetic enough for Ye Jin, she avoids having to live in her car or a hotel by squeezing her way into temporarily rooming with her childhood friend, Joon Mo, who now owns the apartment her parents lost in the past due to financial difficulties.
Here’s Slacker Boy, Baek Seung Chan.
Awkward and amusingly obtuse, yet honest and straight forward, rookie PD, Baek Seung Chan, swiftly becomes the latest target for others to practice their wraiths on. He chose his career path in order to follow his first love and promptly gets his heart broken on the very first day when he finds out that she’s dating none other than his “2 Days, 1 Night” variety show boss, Joon Mo.
He suffers from numerous embarrassing mishaps due to sheer misfortune and always gets scolded by his co-workers for being a blockhead, but at least his heart always seems to be in the right place. He captures the attention of Cindy when he offers her the company umbrella on a rainy night, but there’s a bit of a misunderstanding between them, and I’m curious to see how that will eventually play out.
Getting to know the Ice Block, Cindy.
Sassy, overconfident, and easily irritable, Cindy is a top singer who soars to fame as a soloist and leaves behind her girl group, Pinky4. Although she’s seen as simply rude by others, even her fans, it’s obvious that her company’s CEO, Byun Mi Sook (Na Young Hee), is partially, if not mostly, the cause of her detachment since there’s a tinge of disdain coming from her when the two are together.
And while it can be considered a downright catty thing to tell her junior trainees to quit, I found it to be more of a cautionary, speaking from personal experience, piece of advice, especially when she pairs the statement together with directions on how to get away with cheating on their strict diet of one yam a day. It makes me curious about what difficulties and burdens she’s had to overcome as a celebrity to be so dark, hollow, and empty on the inside.
There’s no warmth to Cindy and certainly no joy. Only when she’s completely alone do we get a sense of her loneliness, which is a great reminder that what we might see as sunshine and rainbows, might be anything but for the person actually living the lifestyle.
Slow to begin and slow to end, I honestly felt like I wasted my time watching the first two episodes of “Producer.” I like the characters and the chemistry is wonderful, especially between Joon Mo and Ye Jin, but the plot, itself, is dull and duller.
I found myself wondering if I should soldier on next week, especially because so many of my favorite actors and actresses are a part of this production. After an internal battle, I ultimately decided that, yes, I will, because I appreciate Baek Seung Chan’s adorable personality and the mysterious iciness that surrounds Cindy. I also can’t wait to find out if Joon Mo and Ye Jin will end up together (fingers crossed!), so my only hope right now is that the plot will begin to pick up the pace.
With the recent news about the change in directors though, I feel a stronger spark of hope that “Producer” will be all that KBS has been hinting that it will be. I suppose we’ll find out, won’t we?
What was your first impression of “Producer,” Soompiers? What kind of pairings are you hoping to see? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!