Edited by Hwang Hong Sun
Translated by Kim Hoyeun
SBS drama My Love from the Star, which aired in December 2013, gained rave reviews with an average viewership of 20%. It received much love at home and abroad, especially in China. Drama clips exceeded hundreds of millions of views on local online video sites, and in Baidu, China’s largest search site, drama-related words topped the list of popular search words day after day. How did the drama capture the hearts of so many? We look at the charms of My Love from the Star, which is still considered one of the most successful examples that led the Korean Wave seven years later.
Kim Soo Hyun & Jun Ji Hyun’s Reunion After 2 Years
My Love from the Star tells the story that takes place when Do Min Joon, an alien who landed on Earth 400 years ago, meets the biggest Hallyu star Cheon Song Yi. Kim Soo Hyun played the role of Do Min Joon, who can’t forget the girl he met for the first time when he landed on Earth, and Jun Ji Hyun took on the role of Cheon Song Yi, who is lonely due to her family feuds despite the colorful spotlight. In 2012, the two worked together as a couple in the movie The Thieves, and met again in a drama after two years to tell the story of love that they had not achieved before.
The chemistry between Kim Soo Hyun and Jun Ji Hyun got even better as the story progressed. Kim Soo Hyun’s affectionate love despite his seemingly cold and distant actions gave heart-fluttering moments, while Jun Ji Hyun perfectly digested Cheon Song Yi’s unique character, showing off an irreplaceable presence. The two actors’ passionate performances led to drama’s hit, and Kim Soo Hyun and Jun Ji Hyun each won Top Excellence Award and Grand Prize at the 2014 SBS Drama Awards.
Various Genre Combined with Romance
My Love from the Star seems like a romance story about the love between Do Min Joon and Chun Song Yi, but when you dig in, there are a variety of genres. The scene where alien Do Min Joon shows off his extraordinary physical ability to save people in crisis is thrilling like a superhero movie, and the moment he meets and influences people in real history (since he has lived on Earth after landing during Joseon Dynasty dynasty) feels like a part of a time-travel movie. Also, when psychopath killer Lee Jae Kyung is chasing after Cheon Song Yi, drama creates tension like a crime thriller, but at that moment, Do Min Joon and Cheon Song Yi are brought closer. In other words, the drama has solidified its romance, which is at the center, by faithfully conveying the fun in every genre.
Because Cheon Song Yi is described as a Hallyu star, many stars actually appeared as both big and small roles. Starting with Yoo Joon Sang, who appeared as Lee Hee Kyung’s (Park Hae Jin) boss and showed comic acting, to Sandara Park, Kim Won Joon, and Park Jung Ah appeared as fellow stars. Among them, Suzy, who appeared as a student who has a crush on her professor Do Min Joon, drew attention. Kim Soo Hyun and Suzy once collaborated as high school students dreaming of becoming top stars in drama Dream High and gave a big laugh by borrowing the setting from the drama in My Love from the Star.
Actors Who Became Stars with My Love from the Star
Many actors became stars thanks to the huge success of the drama. First of all, Park Hae Jin, who played Lee Hee Kyung, an old friend of Cheon Song Yi, received much love for his romanticist side of being wholeheartedly into one woman, and later became the next Hallyu star by making back-to-back hits with Bad Guys and Cheese in the Trap.
Shin Sung Rok, who played the role of Lee Jae Kyung, Lee Hee Kyung’s brother and a psychopath killer, kept his cold and creepy manners till the very end, intensifying the tension. His charisma shown in the drama was so great that he filmed commercials that parodied Lee Jae Kyung’s character, and later played leading roles in big projects, including The Last Empress, Return, and Vagabond. Kim Kang Hyun and Lee Yi Kyung, who are currently working as scene stealers in various works, appeared as Song Yi’s manager and secretary Lee Shin, who helper Lee Jae Kyung’s misdeeds.