Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Podcast with the Metropoltician: Korean Wave Ebbing

A bird's eye view of Hallyu-wood (thank God that lame-brained plan was scrapped).

I'm finally recovering from the worst jet lag ever.

I think it has a lot to do with the crazy travel schedule I had.

Basically, I went from Seoul, to L.A., to Miami, to the Bahamas, to NYC, back to L.A. and then up to San Francisco in three weeks. I adjusted to the time zone in California just fine and spent most of my time there, but, for some reason, adjusting back has been just brutal. I think this is the first day where I've not napped.

However, beyond that I've not gotten much done.

In the useless cycle of web surfing that I was doing I did notice that I'm on another podcast over at the Metropolitician's blog and I didn't link it here.

Here it is. This one is about the Korean Wave and how it's ebbing.

There are many reasons for it and I lack the skill to be meaningful, understandable, or well-spoken on the issue right now.

All I want to do is nap, but I think the jet lagged excuse can only last for a week or so, so I've got to just get over it.

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  1. Expat Jane I love some of the Korean Wave and some of my favorites are My Wife Is a Gangster starring the beautiful Shi Qu(I hope I spelled that right)the ever gorgeous Oh Ji Oh(even Shi said that), M(starring my boy Kang Dong Won)a lot of people couldn't quite grasp the concept but I could and it was something totally different for other movies.
    In addition, I liked Joint Security Area, The Host and the upcoming movie I hope to see Hansel and Gretel, Changing Partners with Lee Dong Gun(very arousing and sexy movie).
    Of course, there is a movie I want you to be on the lookout for and that is Destiny-Fate starring Kwon Sang Woo and Song Seung Hun, should be very very good. What are some of your favorite television dramas.

  2. Well, while the rest of Asia and the world, was getting into Korean pop culture I wasn't. I've got a couple of movies that I like, both of which you named.

    So I don't have a favorite hallyu TV drama. This is where
    Dramabeans is the expert ;)

  3. That was a really interesting podcast, and I totally see the flaws in the whole hallyu marketing craze. It's odd at times.

    (That little kids D-war review is hilarious, btw!)

    I have to admit, when I first got into Kpop culture, I found it fascinating. I was even going to go see Rain when he came to MSG! (I couldn't convince my friends to come with me though,so that was the end of that,lol).
    But I slowly became turned off by how derivative it could be.

    So I still find korean culture and kpop culture interesting, just not as much as when I was in the "discovery" phase.

    "My Name is Kim Sam Soon" was a really cute show though...have you seen that?

  4. Nope, I've not seen that show.

    One big problem I see with K-pop culture is the tendency to copy and compare rather than innovate. I'm not saying Koreans aren't innovative. Of course, they can be.

    But on just about every level of socialization being creative is discouraged. You're supposed to be the same and I think when something jumps off everyone does the same thing. This happens in the West too, but being creative or different is more encouraged than discouraged. This is particularly so in the States where the individual takes precedence over the group.

    The marketing of hallyu was just bad. Instead of encouraging writers, producers and directors to keep being creative and producing quality stories, it just got mass marketed. The folks in Bollywood have it right. They produce great movies. They don't make plans to build dumb ass amusement parks.

    Koreans still have yet to figure out how to market Korea and Korean culture effectively. They have a staggering inability to explain aspects of their culture without referencing other cultures. For example, instead of explaining gisaeng, female court entertainers, and their history there is always the inevitable shortcut of saying they're Korean geishas rather than going through the effort of explaining what they are and what makes them unique to Korean culture.

    Granted there are similarities, it's just that if you're discussing sumo wrestling with a Japanese person, I doubt they're going to invoke any images of Korean ssireum wrestlers.

    For hallyu to take off again creativity, thinking outside of the box, needs to be encouraged. Also, Koreans need to learn how to big up their culture without constantly cross-referencing other NE Asian cultures.


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