One Percent of Something series review

Third generation chaebol, Jae In (Ha Seok Jin) is forced by his grandfather to date school teacher, Da Hyun (Jeon So Min) in order to inherit the company. What starts out as a business agreement becomes something more as Jae In and Da Hyun warm up to each other.

Junggugeo Kaenada 중국어 캐나다: ★★★★
Only 만: ★★★.5

Side dish: If you’d like to eat something to remind you of the hot kisses on this show, why not some hot chicken? Here’s a recipe for Hattie B’s Hot Chicken From ‘Fried & True’ from Serious Eats.



Junggugeo Kaenada 중국어 캐나다: You suggested that I try watching “One Percent of Something” and I have to thank you for making the last 16 hours of my life so enjoyable.

Only 만: I didn’t have to do much convincing; I just mentioned that the kisses between the leads were amazing, and you did the rest.

Junggugeo Kaenada: The kissing between Ha Seok Jin and Jeon So Min was indeed fantastic. Not at the level of “Lie to Me” nor “Coffee Prince”, but definitely high in calibre.

Only: They were surprisingly intimate for a Kdrama, and I was amazed to see them kiss like the grown-ups they were. And, they were so affectionate with each other that the kisses seemed like a natural extension of that, but with more heat. I mean, I could spend the entire review on kisses, but let’s not. Aside from the kisses, what did you like about “One Percent of Something”?

Junggugeo Kaenada: I loved this cable drama for many reasons. It was succinct with each episode lasting 35-45 minutes. As a result, it focused on what the audience really cares about, which is the romance, rather than trying to fill time with work or court or family drama. Best of all, the couple acted like real adults who are attracted to each other rather than chaste robots.

Only: I loved that it was so focused on Jae In and Da Hyun’s budding relationship. It did occasionally feel like the other characters were getting the short end of the stick, but it was hard to care, since the two of them were so charming together.

Junggugeo Kaenada: There were many secondary characters who were interesting enough to warrant more screen time. The tall, dark and handsome cousin, Tae Ha for instance. The support staff such as lawyer, Hyung Joon and harried assistant, Dong Suk were unique and interesting, even in their limited roles. I actually wanted the writer to delve more into Jae In’s relationship with his biological mother; that felt like a wasted opportunity.

Only: I kept expecting them to touch on that, and was surprised when it never came up. It felt like they skimmed over that story for the sake of expediency, which made me wonder why it was mentioned at all. I had the same feeling about Tae Ha’s late stage romance with Soo Jung, which felt a little tacked on at the end. Actually, I wish we’d seen more of Tae Ha in general.

Junggugeo Kaenada: The funny thing was that they had multiple opportunities to delve into melodrama, and just as the story lines were dangled before the viewer, they were quickly snatched away. Tae Ha could have been a rival for Da Hyun’s affections, but he was so late in entering the love triangle that he never stood a chance. Then, there was the crazy ex-fiancée, Joo Hee’s kidnapping scheme. She created an opportunity for misunderstanding and strife, and all it did was unify Jae In and Tae Ha as allies.

Only: Joo Hee felt weirdly out of place, like an old-school character in the wrong setting. I wish they’d dispensed with her altogether, because the character never got more depth than being an annoying plot device. Plus, the whole kidnap plot was bonkers.

Junggugeo Kaenada: Joo Hee and her drama were bizarrely jarring though not the most disappointing thing about the show. That would be Da Hyun’s concession to the chaebol wife role. Through much of their relationship, Jae In and Da Hyun kept insisting on being fair. Yet, when the couple finally broke down after trying to stay apart from each other, Jae In basically told Da Hyun that she would have to suffer the hardships of being a chaebol wife. I had hoped that he would offer to step down from being the head of the company, maybe share responsibilities with Tae Ha or even the overworked assistant, Dong Suk. That would have solved the majority of the problems Da Hyun expected to face.

Only: I did wonder why the two of them were so adamant that there was no compromise between the two options. But, I did like how straightforward Jae In’s approach was, once he figured out that he couldn’t live without her.

I was a bit bothered by the show’s insistence in casting possessiveness as proof of love. Jae In telling Da Hyun that he didn’t want her speaking with other men was creepy, not romantic.

Junggugeo Kaenada: Unfortunately, I am ready to forgive this show for those transgressions, because I was so won over by the chemistry of the leads. Watching Jae In and Da Hyun just enjoy being with each other and finding opportunities for skinship was swoon worthy.

You watched Ha Seok Jin in “D-Day”, and you did not appear as impressed with his performance in that show. So, this production seemed to bring out the best in him.

Only: He was pretty underwhelming in “D-Day”, but his kissing technique in this show has made me see him in a whole new light.

4 Comments

  • “Unfortunately, I am also ready to forgive this show for those transgressions, because I was so won over by the chemistry of the leads. Watching Jae In and Da Hyun just enjoy being with each other and finding opportunities for skinship was swoon worthy.”

    Yup. All of the above. They had this uber natural and still Hot chemistry.
    The drama was such an unexpected gem. One of my favs for the year

  • I only have a few k-drama facts and most of them are about this show – because I was quite taken with the original. I re-watch it pretty regularly.

    Both versions are slow starters – but the original, with more episodes, was able to slowly bring the story up to speed.

    The original also had longer episodes so they were able to get the background characters (the lawyer had a romance with Jae In’s sister, Da Da met the grandfather many times – even after she found out his position and she had lots of interaction with her brothers and adopted sister storylines) the stories they needed. The original Tae Ha was also a looker!

    Yes, Da Da was a much more old-fashioned, obedient daughter who lived at home but she still had a career and a dating life as well as loving family. In fact, I think the original family was the first real, supportive k-drama family I ever saw that didn’t want their daughter to marry the rich guy! I’m glad they kept that question in the new version as well even if they dumped her family.

    The original show also ran on weekends so it had more family story lines. This revamp was written by the original script writer (who was also the author of the original book) but I just don’t think they understood how modern show storylines worked and that is what made it seem odd.

    I liked Da Da as a character both times (and Jae In,too, – even if he was a butt in both versions!) because I saw her a real woman who worked, expressed her opinion and had self-worth. The newer, choppier version had a more modern sensibility to dating and skin-ship but I think it lost a bit in the updating. I’m glad you watched, though!

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