K-Drama Review: ‘Business Proposal’ A Show That’s Worth a Try Before Calling It Too Cheesy and Corny

Kdrama Business Proposal review

Edited by Young Jun Yang
Translated by Kim Hoyeun

Kdrama Business Proposal review
Credit: SBS

The love story between a boss and an employee, a rich man and an ordinary woman. We’ve seen this sort of romance countless times, so to be honest, I didn’t think this would be any different. But something’s weird. Yes, it’s typical and childish, but I can’t wait to see the next episode. It’s about SBS’s drama A Business Proposal.

Shin Ha Ri, who works at GO Food, once again takes her best friend’s place on a blind date and, as usual, tries to sabotage the date. But the person whom she was set up with was none other than the new president of her company, Kang Tae Moo. Knowing that she has to sabotage the date even more so than usual, she puts on the best “crazy girl” show. She knows that she did her part more than enough, but hears from her friend Young Seo that Kang Tae Moon wants to marry her. And of course, he has his own story. His idea was that Jin Young Seo, the only daughter of Marin Group, is his most suitable mate to stop his overzealous grandfather that wants to marry him off. The only problem is Jin Yeong Seo he met isn’t the “real Jin Young Seo.”

Just reading up to here, you’ll know how the story will unfold from here. Shin Ha Ri’s real identity will be revealed somehow, and Kang Tae Mo will pretend to date her to throw off his grandfather. Not to mention the heart-fluttering moments between the two while their “office romance” and “Cinderella story” unravel. And up to episode six, the story unfolds exactly as I expected.

But despite the obvious plot, we find ourselves hooked on A Business Proposal because of the “familiarity.” The drama doesn’t try to hide its intention to fully utilizes all the cliche elements of a rom-com. Actually, it openly shows its intention, and strangely, this explicitness comes to viewers as a strength rather than a weakness.

Also, the fast-moving plot is another big plus. Shin Ha Ri’s identity is revealed in just four episodes, and the characters’ past history shown in the form of a one-person play or profiling helps viewers to focus on their chemistry. Without all the “dragging” storyline and the typical villains that hinder the characters’ love, A Business Proposal is so easy to enjoy. How it emphasizes the “comedy” more than “romance” also helps people focus more on the story, and witty dialogues and cartoonizing the exaggerated situations give a big laugh.

Kdrama Business Proposal review
Credit: SBS

We can’t leave out the actors. Following The Uncanny Counter, Kim Se Jeong is showing another flawless performance, enough to hear that she’s met yet another “best character of her life.” From theatrical comedy scenes to exciting romance scenes, she can do it all. Ahn Hyo Seop captures the viewers’ hearts with his perfect looks that make him look like he had just popped out of a cartoon. He’s showing off his presence as Kang Tae Moo, a narcissistic perfectionist who’s also unexpectedly clumsy and cute. Needless to say, these two actors’ chemistry is undoubtedly amazing. Of course, the sweet romance of Jin Young Seo (Seol In Ah) and Cha Sung Hoon (Kim Min Kyu) will also make you want to start dating again.

However, how the episode of illegal filming in the play wrapped up was a bit disappointing. The fact that it didn’t explicitly describe the crime and how Jin Young Seo, the victim, tried to take the evidence to the police herself were different from other projects and were commendable. The same goes for showing how the victim suffers from the trauma of such a crime. A Business Proposal is overall light but still dips into what’s important. However, how Kang Tae Moo uses his power to solve the issue and the story of Jin Young Seo and Cha Sung Hoon getting together because of it are a bit questionable. I’d have much rather seen Jin Young Seo and Shin Ha Ri carrying out their own revenge on the culprit.

Having reached a turning point, A Business Proposal will now show Shin Ha Ri and Kang Tae Moo’s romance in earnest. Yes, we expect to see a series of cliches, but considering the show’s unique charms, we find ourselves thinking, “So what? It’s so funny.” If it continues its momentum, I carefully show my anticipation for A Business Proposal to be one of the SBS’s well-made romance dramas alongside Our Beloved Summer. (8/10)


Editor Yang Young Jun: There is at least one good part in every movie or TV series. A media geek who isn’t picky with genres.

Translator Kim Hoyeun: If you are a fan of K-drama, K-movie, and K-pop, I am your guy. I will continue to provide you with up-to-date K-entertainment news.


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