The drama follows the story of office worker Park Song-ah who meets and subsequently falls for a chef named Yuk Guk-dae. However, this is not without some struggles. With Guk-dae’s obvious dislike for her and another romantic rival on the scene, this drama looks like another generic romance.
As the episodes are shorter than an average drama, just a bit over 20 minutes, there are some large effects on the plot progression. There are two main differences, the plot progresses at a fast pace but in a simple way. In fact, after four episodes I would say this drama is still in the process of fleshing out characters and setting the scene. It makes the characters more intriguing, don’t you think?
Plot-wise this drama is nothing special, as it tends to lean towards using clichéd plot twists. For instance, the girl makes mistake and has to work for the guy she likes trope. However, it is lighthearted and humorous as it goes through each twist making the drama effortless to watch. This simplistic tone allows the drama to focus on characters and even better, the food!
Something else that might have caught your attention while watching this drama would be, of course, TVXQ’s Yunho and not just because he looks gorgeous in all black clothing. His character is the real pull of this drama whether you’re watching for his good looks or his acting. He has come a long way from his foray in acting with Heading to the Ground.
Yunho plays the unpredictable and strict chef Yuk Guk-dae. His character keeps you on your toes from the very beginning, as you can never quite pin his personality down. There are parts of his personality that are intriguing and others not so much. I have spent a fair amount of time saying ‘You’re a dick’ at my computer screen due to some of the things he has done. For instance, in the first episode he got mad at Song-ah for opening the wrong lunchbox when he gave her the wrong one in the first place. Talk about poor customer service. However, just when you are sure he is an asshole, he suddenly switches personalities and becomes nice again. Like when he honestly shared his passion for cooking with Song-ha. As a result, I am seriously getting whiplash from all his mood swings. Now I find myself holding out for glimpses of the personality I do like to keep me interested.
As ironic as this is, it is his sassy personality that comes out when he is dealing with Song-ha and his employees that grab the most attention; it gives the character its own unique charisma. I just wish he could show this side of his personality without being irrationally unkind at the same time; it just doesn’t fit together with his persona as a professional and a human. In no way am I rooting for the main couple to get together, at least until he realizes the error in his ways. He has been set up for some major character development and that development is what I am routing for more than any romance.
As for the main female character, she is essentially a push over to the point where she is unlikable. She is following in the footsteps of many other female drama leads being unconsciously pushed into unbelievable situations; mostly situations that involve a lot of gorgeous men. The only thing that saves this character is the actress’s hilarious acting in front of food. She looks at food like a lot of us look at our biases. I don’t blame her at all because if I had to choose between the two, I would definitely pick food.
The food was basically the incentive to watch this drama – well that and Yunho. Quite a lot of the drama is dedicated to very important montage scenes where glorious amounts of food is prepared, cooked then devoured. It definitely gives everyone their healthy dose of food porn. Therefore, I recommend having snacks near by because you will definitely get hungry while watching this drama.
We also got introduced to the second male lead, Song-ha’s friendly new boss named Jang Seung-jo. His character is quite bland because he was introduced as the generic rich businessman that is ‘everything’ women want. He openly pursues Song-ha from the very beginning. It is interesting to note that his advances don’t tempt her. In most romantic dramas, the female lead is either ignorant of the second male lead, has feelings for them or are confused by them. However, Song-ha is sure of what she wants even if she has a bad taste in men. This assertiveness is a spark of hope for a character that tends to get pushed around a lot.
Though I Order You is nothing to write home about, it is still an enjoyable drama; it is simple and great for curing boredom. It has the potential to develop into something more than that if it focuses on the characters and allows them to evolve. However, they better not sacrifice the focus on the food to do this. Don’t you agree?
(Images via SBS Plus)