First Impressions: Doctor Stranger


Wow all I can say is Doctor Stranger is all kinds of crazy. This show is definitely not for kids, nor for the faint of heart. I really felt like I got whiplashed watching the first 2 episodes. Actually even after the first episode I said to myself “What the hell did I just watch??” Episode 2 rolled around and I was back for more crazy lol. Like many dramas, this drama doesn’t escape from the absurd scenes that do not make any logical sense. As always, I just turn a blind eye towards it because well…it’s dramaland, anything goes sometimes despite how ridiculous it maybe. As crazy and insane as this drama is, I won’t deny that it’s entertaining. I’m not usually a fan of medical dramas because I feel a lot of them are always the same. Usually it is the cast that would draw me to watch a medical drama, in this case that person would be my puppy Lee Jong Suk.

I was debating whether or not to write a post about the drama because all I could really say is how crazy the drama is over and over. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like it. This drama is a weird combination of so many genres: medical, spy, romance, thriller, political and a bit of comedy thrown in there as well. I can’t even begin to describe it because there’s just so much going on. In more simpler terms according to the given descriptions, this drama is about Park Hoon (Lee Jong Suk) a South Korean who grew up in North Korea along with his father. He is trained to be a become genius doctor and eventually lands a job at one of the best South Korean hospitals after being defected. Due to his upbringing in North Korea, he is treated as a foreigner or stranger. He is also trying to find his North Korean first love Song Jae Hee (Jin Se Yun) by using any means possible. What is with Korea’s obsession with genius people in dramas? Anyways moving on…

The more I kept watching the drama, the more confused I became, but after this weeks episodes (up to episode 8 now), I’m starting to think “Aw yeah this drama is getting really good!!” I’m actually looking forward to whats going to happen next and see what other secrets will be revealed. It is starting to become a bit “clearer” on what is going on especially with the whole hospital and politics involved. Although I don’t quite understand what does North Korea want with Park Hoon nor what is Seung Hee/Jae Hee’s mission. At this point I believe Seung Hee is Jae Hee and I think Park Hoon knows as well but he’s just pretending to not know in order to protect her? Park Jae Jin’s character Jae Joon I believe is that orphaned boy coming back for revenge. Soo Hyun played by Kang Sora, I think is actually the only one out of the main cast with a more normal background, it seems. Honestly I don’t know what else to say because this drama confuses me to no end but it is so intriguing.

I guess I’ll talk a bit about our characters. Lee Jong Suk’s character Park Hoon is very interesting having grown up in North Korea under such horrifying and unimaginable conditions. Especially, working in that medical laboratory where he was forced to practice on real people. At the hospital he gives off the wacky, silly and playful personality, which I believe is his way of coping with his past traumatizing experiences. However, when it comes to anything related to Jae Hee, he goes batsh!t crazy. I really can’t blame him because Jae Hee was mainly one of the most positive things in his life. I actually got chills in episode 7 when Park Hoon burst out in anger at Director Choi about being abandoned in NK and how he could never understand what it was to live in such a horrendous place. He was also angry how Choi said he ended up being a skilled doctor anyway, but Hoon outright told him doctors do not kill people, but in NK they do kill people and that he had murdered countless people with his own hands. Park Hoon is such a dark complex character with a very tortured soul. Lee Jong Suk really brought out that rage and anguish that was more kept hidden before with his more happy-go-lucky-ish kind of exterior. I didn’t expect any less from Lee Jong Suk who is proving to himself that despite being quite young, he can play very different and complex roles.

I actually really like Kang Sora after watching her in this drama. She really left me a bad taste in Dream High 2 and it was my first time seeing her act in anything. That drama itself was a mistake to begin with and in my mind I chose to believe it doesn’t exist because of how terrible it was. Funny enough my baby Park Seo Joon was also in it… sigh its too bad about that drama. I think for the first time I actually like the second female lead in a drama. I like her character who is a strong yet also kind. I love how she doesn’t let her asswipe douchey step-brother step all over her and can stand on her own. She has really good chemistry with Lee Jong Suk too and I also thought I wouldn’t mind shipping her and Park Hoon together if it doesn’t work out with Jae Hee/Seung Hee.

Jin Se Yun I’m okay with, I don’t particularly like her nor do I dislike her either, but I think she’s really pretty. I think she was good at playing the first love Jae Hee who was very sweet and lovable. However, now that she’s playing Seung Hee I can see the weakness in her acting probably due to her lack of experience. I find it is more difficult to portray Seung Hee who is a much more complex and darker character like Park Hoon and Se Yun’s acting chops don’t quite cut it yet. I really did enjoy her scenes in the beginning with Lee Jong Suk as Jae Hee, they do have chemistry together as well. Who knows, maybe her acting will improve as the drama continues to develop or rather it spirals down into even more epic craziness.

Park Hae Jin’s Jae Joon is such a huge contrast compared to Hwi Kyung from My Love From Another Star. He’s so cold and calculating here and he really pulls it off. I disliked his character from the beginning but now that I realized that he’s possibly the orphaned boy, I can see that he and Park Hoon are kind of on the same side, in that they are both fighting against the same people who had a hand in destroying their families and lives. Possible bromance in the future? Yes, please I love bromance, if you giveth, I taketh.

I think this drama for most people is they either love it or hate it. I don’t think there is much of an in between. It really depends on your personal preference. If you can accept the crazy and ridiculousness of it all, which there’s a TON of it, definitely give it a chance especially if you’re a fan of the cast as well. I won’t guarantee you won’t get a headache from trying to figure out what exactly is going on in the drama, but at least I can say it is at the very entertaining. This drama is definitely strange for sure and you probably won’t find anything else like it at the moment. So if you’re curious, give it a peak. And please somebody give Park Hoon a hug, the poor boy really needs it, stat!


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