Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Next K-Pop Star!!!

So for all you Americans, we have American Idol. Now there are a whole bunch of versions of American Idol around the world and on American Idol we actually get a lot of international people who try out. Korea has their own version called SBS K-POP STAR and is a collaboration between the three big entertainment companies SM, YG and JYP. And instead of Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson you've got international star BoA, Pop-Star and CEO J.Y.Park, and CEO of YG Entertainment Yang Hyun Suk.

Auditions have been taking place all over the world from France to Argentina. Contestants are judged on singing, dancing or rapping talent. You could win 300,000,000 KRW ($285,000,000) including the release of of international album and be accepted into YG, SM or JYP training programs! Oh, they train you good...whip you into shape!

Check out this clip of 15-year-old Park Ji Min covering Adele's Rolling in the Deep.

Let's Learn Korean!

The New Year is coming up! So let's learn how to say it in Korean! Sae hae bok mani badesyo!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

K-Pop Obsession: Co-Ed School Bbiribbom Bberibbom

There are not many groups in Korea that are both girls and boys. I'm not saying there aren't any but not many that are 2+. Co-Ed School supposedly has four girls and 5 guys, they debuted way back in 2010 and I haven't really seen anything new since then. They had two hits and now I'm not even sure if they're still a group. They do have a sub-group called Five Dolls that consists of the 4 girls plus some other girl. The two hit singles are actually very good (despite the autotune scandals), but vastly different from each other. Bbiribbom Bberibom doesn't really mean anything, it's a cutsey-comical music video that has a cameo by T-ara's Eunjeung. You'll recognize some of the music and dance moves in resemblance to Lady Gaga's "Telephone."

Visual Concept: ♥♥.5/5 Video Concept: ♥♥♥/5 Singing Talent: ♥♥♥♥/5 Music/Sound: ♥♥♥♥/5 Dancing: ♥♥♥/5 English Usage: ♥♥/5

Overall Rating: ♥♥♥/5

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Happy Christmas!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas day. I hope Santa brought you some gifts that you'll cherish for a long time. To celebrate, let's look at some beautiful Korean and Japanese Christmas Cakes. First up is Korean cakes!

And now some Japanese Cakes!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

K-Pop Obsession: Jinwoon's You Walking Towards Me

This weeks obsession is not the usual poppy synth with catchy dance moves. It's Jinwoon from ballad group 2AM! He's actually a very talented guitar player, I was very impressed. I think I like him the best out of 2AM, he makes the funniest faces and is always so cute! His song, "You Walking Towards Me" is very soothing and the video unusual for a music video.

Visual Concept: ♥♥♥/5 Video Concept: ♥♥♥/5 Singing Talent: ♥♥♥♥♥/5 Music/Sound: ♥♥♥♥/5 Dancing: N/A English Usage: N/A

Overall Rating: ♥♥♥.5/5

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Rice Field Art

In Inakadate, Japan the farmers are known for their agriculture artistry. Check out some of the amazing images in rice!

Let's Learn Korean!!!

It's been a while since the last Korean lesson, but here we go! Check out this site. It helps you learn the Korean Hangul using an interactive site!!!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Drama - Lie to Me

Genre: Romance, Comedy
Episodes: 16
Network: SBS
Broadcasted: May 9, 2011 - June 28, 2011
Lead Actors: Yoon Eun Hye, Kang Ji Hwan, Sung Joon, Cho Youn Hee

My Rating: ♥♥♥.5/5

So I just finished this drama yesterday. It's been a while since I've really been "into" a drama. It all started when I thought I'd just watch the first episode to see if it was anything like the American "Lie to Me." Gotta say, the two are not even close. Lol. Plus my favorite actress Yoon Eun Hye is in it, so I instantly fell in love. Add the fact that you can watch all 16 episodes for free on Hulu and you've got a deal!

With that said there are a few minor things that bother me... The characters don't really develop at all! Even a main character's story line seems to be forgotten and loose ends left to hang. The drama moves from hilarious and witty female lead to mushy, unrealistic romance. No one really believes you can fall in love so deeply so quickly. Now it seems like every Korean drama there is always a really rich guy and a poor female. I am dying for something different! Pleaseeeeeee! And get this, the song Kung Fu Fighting, is used in it. I thought it was so out of place that I just bursted out laughing! No! No! No!

Basic Synopsis: It all starts when Ministry of Culture official, Gong Ah Jung lies to her friend to get back her that she's married. Little does she know her lie leads to her friends thinking she's married to CEO of World Hotel Hyun Ki Joon! To keep up the lie, Ah Jung has to convince Hyun Ki Joon to play along. All of which results in hilarious and romantic situations.

Friday, December 16, 2011

K-Idol Commercials

So I was surfing around, bored out of my mind, on YouTube and I came across this really funny commercial featuring BigBang's G-Dragon and TOP. It led me to even more commercials in which idols endorse certain products in really funny ways. Check out some of the best I've found:

GD & TOP - Sparklingade

SNSD - Banana Milk

SHINee - Chicken

CNBlue - Experia Mini

2PM - It's Skin Ver B

2AM - BHC Chicken

2NE1 - 11st

Uee - Cool Soju

She asks, "Are you my first?"

BONUS!!! Britney Spears for a Japanese Candy (1999)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

K-Pop Obsession: BEG's Cleansing Cream

It's Brown Eyed Girls again this week! I woke up this morning wanting to hear this song first thing! I love them, I could seriously listen to them all day! And the music video will not let you down, it is so unique in the fact that it portrays something that is so much deeper and is more symbolic than anyone can realize. BEG Fighting! I love you girls!

Visual Concept: ♥♥♥♥/5 Video Concept: ♥♥♥♥♥/5 Singing Talent: ♥♥♥♥♥/5 Music/Sound: ♥♥♥♥/5 Dancing: N/A English Usage: N/A

Overall Rating: ♥♥♥♥/5

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

59 Member Group, AKB48!

I'm not sure why I'm just discovering this group now, but here it is. This Japanese female idol group is called AKB48. It currently holds the Guinness World Record for largest "pop group." There are currently four teams: Team A (16), Team K(16), Team B (16) and Team 4 (11) for a total of 59 members. The team names seem to be named without any rhyme or reason...wouldn't you think it would be Team A, B, C etcetera? The group was created in 2005 by Yasushi Akimoto, all around entertainment producer badass. He also went to create other groups SKE48, SDN48 and NMB48. How do I characterize this group? They are very...Japanese...

AKB48 is named after an area in Tokyo called Akihabara (or Akiba for short) where they have their own performance theatre. I don't know about you, but when I say their name I think about some sort of machine gun...Their concept is to create a theatre-based group that you can see live daily. They still perform there but it has become so popular that you can only get tickets through a lottery system! Of course, all the members are very "kawaii" and young looking. I believe the oldest is maybe 23??? Anyways, all their performances and music videos seem to involve school uniforms and some form of bikini. Kekekekeke! I have pulled some of the more memorable videos for you to oggle at. So far I have not been able to determine if there is a leader, but I have seen one girl featured a lot. I can't imagine the competition these girls must go through just to be noticed in such a huge group.

Now I also have to set something straight. I truly and sincerely want to cheer these girls on. These girls are doing their best with all their talent! Achieving the dream of idol is not an easy road to take; especially in a world and industry where it's "sex sells." Rehearsing, dieting, takes a special kind of person to endure all that training and still manage to shine on stage. I admire the strength of will most artists and idols go the same time, I find it utterly ridiculous to see the need to constantly show these girls in bikinis and underwear; there are just too many perverts out there!

"Heavy Rotation"
Right off the bat, this video took me by surprise. Very NSFW, people at the office might look at you weird or think you have a really bad case of cute Japanese girl fetish. There is sexy lingerie, girl-on-girl kissing and over the top cutsey Asian poses. Beware. You have been warned...

"Everyday, Kachusha"
Okay, girls in school uniforms riding bikes around, eating ice cream and then dancing at the beach with bikini's on. Lol. Japanese girls really like to wear their hair or place a bow/flower to the side of their head...a lot...

"Surprise Tears"
More school uniforms, I'll say about 80% of their music videos they are in school uniform. I have no problem with school uniforms, I actually like them. I'm guessing it's easier to dress all 40+ if they all just have the same uniform. Haha! It's to my understanding that only 20 members are in the music video and the rest are AKB48 backup dancers.

Monday, December 12, 2011

South Korean Military

Yesterday? Was the 63rd Armed Forces day in Gaeryongdae, South Korea. Check out these skillz...

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Drama - My Girlfriend is Nine-Tailed Fox

Alternate Names: My Girlfriend is a Gumiho
Genre: Romance, Comedy, Fantasy
Episodes: 16
Network: SBS
Broadcasted: 2010-Aug-11 to 2010-Sep-30
Lead Actors: Lee Seung Ki, Shin Min Ah, No Min Woo, Park Soo Jin

My Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥/5

This is probably my second favorite Korean drama of all time! It made me laugh, it made me cry, it made me copy her hairstyle! I forced my younger sister to watch it with me a second time and I got her hooked on it! Even though it follows the spoiled rich guy falls in love with girl theme, I really thought the drama had a real sense of fun and fantasy! As some of you already know, I love Lee Seung Ki, partly because I think he looks like my younger brother, but I thought he was also very good in "Brilliant Inheritance."

This drama is produced by the same people who did "He's Beautiful" so there is no skimping on locations, wardrobe or CGI effects. Plus there are cameos made by Uee, Lee Hong Ki and Park Shin Hye! Awesome!

Basic Synopsis: Cha Dae Woong is living his spoiled life of a wannabe actor/stuntman when he nearly get's himself killed running away from his grandfather. He releases the spirit of a trapped nine-tailed fox from an ancient painting and in return she loans him her magic orb (which heals him). Dae Woong is scared to death she might eat him, but all Miho wants is to become a normal human being.

Fun School Buses

Check out the awesome school buses some preschools and kindergartens use in Japan. If I had a school bus like any of these, I'd always want to go to school.

My Neighbor Totoro?
And of course, Hello Kitty bus!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Eric Yeo's "Girl With a Pearl Earring"

Check out creative director (Ogilvy & Mather Singapore), Eric Yeo's, video for Faber Castell. Using one line he recreates Vermeer's "Girl With A Pearl Earring." So cool!

Faber Castell from eric yeo on Vimeo.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Life-Like Japanese Robot

Check out this creepy life-like Japanese robot. Next thing you know you won't be able to tell humans and robots apart...

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

K-Pop Obsession: IU's You and I

This weeks K-Pop obession is none other from IU's latest album, the single "You and I." As always, IU's voice is sweet, lovely and full of emotion. It is so wonderful to see the music video come out to be so magical, steampunkish and cute! There's definately a Christmas feel to it that is so infectious! IU's got me doing the clock dancing sequence around the house!!! And to top it off, there's a goose! Normally, I don't really care for...fowl...but the one in the video is soooo cute and good-natured! Check it out! This song is definately going on my Christmas playlist.

Visual Concept: ♥♥♥♥♥/5 Video Concept: ♥♥♥♥/5 Singing Talent: ♥♥♥♥♥/5 Music/Sound: ♥♥♥♥/5 Dancing: ♥♥♥♥/5 English Usage: N/A

Overall Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥/5

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


This was brought to my attention by my fellow online shopper and Asian enthusiast Lauren. Check out STYLENANDA.COM!!!! A great Korean based company that offers global shipping on women's clothes, unmentionables, make-up, shoes, bags and jewelry! Everything is sooooo cute. I waaaaaaaaannnnnnttttt!!!!! Take a look at some of my wishlist:

Long Sleeve Collar Dress
Free Size
* Looks like IU's Dress from her album cover Real Fantasy!!! *

Bright Oversized Cardigan
Free Size
* I actually think the ear hat/scarf thingy is more interesting. *

Oversized Tiger Sweatshirt
Free Size

Long Chiffon Sweatshirt
Free Size

Monday, December 5, 2011

Drama - Cinderella's Sister

Alternate Names: Cinderella's Stepsister, A Modern Story of Revenge
Genre: Melodrama
Episodes: 20
Network: KBS2
Broadcasted: 2010-Mar-31 to 2010-Jun-03
Lead Actors: Moon Geun Young, Seo Woo, Chun Jung Myung, Taecyeon

My Rating: ♥♥♥.5/5

This drama was the first Korean drama I've ever watched! This series doesn't typically follow the sappy, comical romance of the other dramas I've reviewed. It's actually quite moody and depressing...but saved because of some scenes with great acting. That said, there is a lot of over-acting, crying, and melodramatic music.

The entire drama follows a loose interpretation of the story of Cinderella. There is an evil stepmother, a stepsister and a "Cinderella." Now throw the fairytale story into the modern world and you have a perfect drama filled with lies, revenge, jealousy and one-sided love. But like all the other dramas, it can get slow and the characters frustrating. And the one character I like dies!!!

Basic Synopsis: Eun Jo grew up on the run with a gold-digging mother. It's not until her mother meets the father of young girl Goo Hyu Sun and marries him does Eun Jo start to realize how evil her own mother is. Eun Jo is dark, unfriendly and out-of-place in her new home where her stepsister, Hyu Sun, is adored, worshipped and spoiled. The family business is making traditional wine and the sisters grow up with the dramas of betrayal and happiness in love and business.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Taekwondo Shufflin' in Korea

This is the greatest thing I've ever seen. Taekwondo shuffling' and breakdancing! Yaya! Makes me want to shuffle!