Crash Landing On You: An In-Depth Review
Have you ever fantasized about some freak tornado picking you up and gently landing you into the arms of your forever soul mate? Well you can see this fantasy play out by watching Crash Landing On You, a Korean soap opera making waves on Netflix. The story is about a millionaire heiress, Yoon Se-ri (Son Ye-jin), who has a passion for paragliding. One fateful day when she is out paragliding, a tornado grabs her and deposits her in a tree across the border in the demilitarized zone between South and North Korea. As she is struggling with the straps that have her dangling high up on the tree while also making calls on her cell phone, a group of soldiers come to investigate the commotion. Se-ri’s eventual love interest, Captain Ri (Hyun Bin), happens to be one of the soldiers.
Can Love Scale All Mountains?
It is quite clear from the first episode that Crash Landing On You stays true to South Korea’s soap opera formula. That is the two protagonists in the show face challenges of mountainous proportions that stand between them and their love. As you know, the South and the North are not in friendly terms and this is skillfully highlighted in the show. This is probably because one of the people on the writer’s team for the K-Romance is actually a real North Korean defector.
“I only have one shadow when the sun comes up, and not even a shadow when there’s no sun above. That’s my life in South Korea.”Kwak Moon-wan, article on Subin.kim
Kwak Moon-wan served with the North Korean elite Supreme Guard Command which gave him the privilege of working overseas. However, when he was ordered to return to Pyongyang in 2004, he learned that the reason for the order was that one of his friends in Moscow had reported some of the things he had said in a private conversation. He decided to defect without his wife and son. Just like him, the two main characters in the show have to make choices that go against their nations. Then there is also the fact that Se-ri is a rich business woman with almost everything money can buy while Captain Ri is no stranger to poverty. Kwak Moon-wan is in the perfect position to portray North Korean life, especially life in the North Korean military.
But despite the Crash Landing On You’s very sensitive storyline that includes the protagonists avoiding death by a whisker a couple of times, the show is actually a rom-com that portrays a three dimensional view of North Korea. The two protagonists have several comedic moments but it is Captain Ri’s loyal soldiers that deliver most of the comedy. Crash Landing On You has already been acclaimed as one of the highest-rated Korean dramas. It hooks you right from the start because of its realistic storyline and the challenges the two protagonists have to face in order for them to stay in love.