For today’s post, I’m going to talk about something call “idol drama.” This is a relatively new term for me since the first idol drama that I saw was just back in 2007. I’ve come to recognize that this genre has been highly popularize in many Asian countries especially Taiwan and Japan. If there’s anyone who know more about this and would like to correct me, please do so.
And so my definition for idol drama is a drama series that employs or sometime builds around its cast – in this case idols. Idols, in my opinion on the term, are individuals who are currently the most popular in their field. From what I’ve seen, many of them are singers who garnered many fans and shot to fame. Their popularity and large fan base soon become incentives for directors to hire these singers to act in their drama shows. This could sometime results in a great and fresh show with new faces for a change. Other times, disasters spill over when these singers are unable to act. Why? Well, because they’re singers and have no training in acting. So from what I’ve come to understand, idol drama are shows that showcase many idols as the main cast. With their current popularity, the directors are hoping for a high rating to boost his or her career.
My first idol drama was Hana Kimi the Taiwanese version. The show employed Ella from a popular girl-band group S.H.E. and Wu Zun from the group Fahrenheit. After watching it, I was actually really pleased with it. I think everyone did a pretty good job though there were moments were a bit of overacting occurred. Of course, with the two main leads being from two of the most popular band at the time, the show had great ratings and reviews. In Japan, things get a bit more interesting because their idol stars often act with well train actors as well! So good things do happen with idol drama. However, there are oodles of times when it does not work. And although a lot of people might have enjoyed this show, Romantic Princess proved to be a bad example of idol drama for me. It again showcases Wu Zun as one of the lead and Angela Chang who has been a singer for most of her career. For this show, without a great storyline or script like Hana Kimi, the actors show their inexperience with lots of awkwardness.
As a result, recently, I’ve been looking into movies more often than drama. In movies, directors are more invested in their actors as only great ones will be able to deliver a great story in only 1 hour or 2. A great drama is hard to find because it’s somewhat like a really long movie. You need good actors and a good plot to keep the show going for a long period of time. So with idol drama being filled with mainly inexperienced actors, I’ve become reluctant in watching a lot of Taiwanese show. However, I’ve taken a liking to Korean and Japanese drama shows who usually mesh these new actors with experienced ones on show like Kimi wa Petto and Hong Gil Dong. Of course I’m not saying idol drama are bad either. I think it’s great for an individual to be talented in many art forms. However, my problem is if their endevors are to cultivate their talent or to get more money.