Jang Bori is Here! 왔다! 장보리 is one of those long, highly dramatic, and highly coincidental K-dramas that I usually avoid considering that I tend to prefer 16 episode rom-coms with short and sweet plot lines that zip by fairly quickly. After a few episodes, however, I was completely hooked and spent many number of nights and weekends marathoning this show.
Plot Summary: Jang Bo Ri (Oh Yeon Seo) is the granddaughter of a famous hanbok artisan while her mother and aunt in-law are two of the potential heirs to the business. An accident causes her to be stranded in a rural area of Korea where she is found and unofficially adopted by a woman who has an ungrateful daughter of her own (Lee Yoo Ri). As a result, the heroine’s life changes completely as she suffers through the constant lies and deceit of everyone around her.
Rating: Must-Watch (5/5)
Jang Bo Ri and all the women characters strive to become expert hanbok artisans. Anyone who enjoys dramas about fashion and clothing will enjoy this aspect of the drama that brings attention to an exquisite art. While it is about a more traditional piece of clothing, so much of the drama’s appeal can be seen in the scenes where the fabrics are carefully dyed, or the artisans are sewing and designing authentic hanboks. I have honestly learned more about hanboks than I ever would need to.
Jang Bo Ri is a very likeable character overall. She is a positive and genuine person whom throughout the drama, you hope will be rewarded. She struggles through so much, and yet through all the struggling, she maintains a positive, honest, and genuine demeanor. This is in contrast with her adopted “sister” who is extremely deceitful and whose evilness only continues to grow over time.
This drama is addictive even in spite of its extremely “out-there” fictionalized events, things that would never happen in real life. These long and drawn out plot devices that have you shaking your head at how bad it is are what makes this a 3-star drama, but my unstoppable addiction for it is the reason why I consider it a must-watch.
If you enjoy ridiculously dramatic melodramas with a character you will root for to the end, then you will enjoy and be as addicted as I was to Jang Bo Ri. Clearly, the show must have done something right that it warranted a Chinese remake in 2017 titled Because of Meeting You.