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Sunday, October 23, 2011


My current favorite Korean drama, which I just finished around 10 minutes ago, crying like a mad woman.

From left: T.O.P from BigBang, Jeong Jun-Ho, Kim Tae-Hee, Lee Byung-Hun, Kim So-Yeon & Kim Seung-Woo.

IRIS is a Korean spy drama produced under KBS in 2009. The drama stars Lee Byung-Hun, Jeong Jun-Ho, Kim Tae-Hee, Kim So-Yeon, Kim Seung-Woo and BigBang's T.O.P, and was filmed in many different countries including South Korea (Seoul), Japan (Akita), China (Shanghai) and Hungary (Budapest). The drama received many awards from the 2009 KBS Drama Acting Awards. More info here.

The story revolves around Kim Hyun-Jun (which is also the drama writer's name) [Lee Byung-Hun], his best friend Jin Sa-Woo [Jeong Jun-Ho] and their shared interest Choi Seung-Hee [Kim Tae-Hee]. Hyun-Jun and Sa-Woo were brotherly best friends serving in the Special Forces, when one day they were separately taken to a mysterious place where they were put through tremendous torture.

When they were finally conscious again, they were told that the torture was a "rite of passage" to enter an organization called National Service Security (NSS) which was created under special orders from the previous president. They also found out that Seung-Hee, the mysterious girl who caught both their eyes, was their team leader in NSS.

Hyun-Jun and Seung-Hee soon become intimate, despite Seung-Hee's previous words about NSS not tolerating relationships between agents, while Sa-Woo tries his best to suppress his feelings.

While in Budapest, Hyun-Jun is secretly given a solo mission by NSS' leader Baek San [Kim Yeong-Cheol] - to assassinate a big political figure of North Korea. Wounded and at risk of being exposed, he hides in a hotel room. After being told by Baek San that he's now on his own, Sa-Woo appears, pointing a gun at Hyun-Jun.

A series of complicated events twist Hyun-Jun's life upside-down. At one point Seung-Hee and Hyun-Jun both mistaken each other dead, and Sa-Woo is unconsciously sucked into IRIS by Baek San, who is a high-ranking member of the mysterious organization.

Hyun-Jun joins a team of North Korean terrorists, with vengeance against Baek San in mind.

There's a lot more to describe, but I'm afraid you'll have to watch the drama yourself if you want to know the story. I'll also be a good girl and not give away the ending, but I can guarantee for those who are emotional, you'll cry your eyes out.

Athena: Goddess of War is a spin-off of the original IRIS series aired on SBS in the end of 2010. A movie was also premiered, basically describing the original story but with extra scenes. IRIS 2 started filming March 2011 and was scheduled to air on KBS2 in October of the same year.

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