Encounter (Boyfriend) Korean Drama Review

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Encounter (Boyfriend) is one of the most anticipated 2018 Korean drama, not only because of it’s high profile main leads (Song Hye Kyo and Park Bo Gum) but it is also a comeback project for both of them. Previously, Park Bo Gum stole the heart of Korean drama lovers through “Moonlight Drawn by the Clouds” in 2016. While Song Hye Kyo mesmerized the audiences with her acting skill and deep chemistry with her co-star and now husband, Song Joong Ki in the 2016 “Descendants of the Sun”. Not to mention that this is Song Hye Kyo’s first drama after her marriage to Song Joong Ki, whose close friend is Park Bo Gum. What a connection they got here!


Cha Soo Hyeon (Song Hye Kyo) is a big hotel chain CEO and daughter of a reporter-turned-politician who get used to her life becomes public issue and has no control over her own life. Even her marriage and then divorce to the son of a giant company owner was made to support her father’s political career. Kim Jin Hyuk (Park Bo Gum) on the other hand, is the eldest son of a common family with a great sense of responsibility and sees values even in the slightest thing. The two meet through series of incident in Cuba that lead to them spending a fun day together, believing that they have little chance to meet again in Korea. To their surprise, Jin Hyuk then got accepted as a new recruit in Dong Hwa Hotel and there he meets Soo Hyeon again, only now as an employee and a boss. Will their relationship from Cuba took a next level? Their story gets more complicated with Soo Hyeon’s family drama and ex-husband come in the picture.

Main Casts:

  • Song Hye Kyeo as Cha Soo Hyeon, initially a curious and bright woman but becomes numb after her father got into politic. To support her father, she married a huge company heir but then divorced after her husband pretend to cheat for her to escape his mean mother.
  • Park Bo Gum as Kim Jin Hyuk, an innocent, pure and sincere young man who treasures everything in life. He can be persistent to pursue everything he sets his eyes on.

To Love:

  1. Park Bo Gum awesomely showing different charms just by changing his hairstyle.
Left to Right: Live the moment tourist Jin Hyuk, Typical office worker Jin Hyuk, Professional Front desk officer Jin Hyuk

2. Song Hye Kyo’s timeless beauty that helps us easily forget about her and Park Bo Gum’s 12 age difference and focusing more on their on-screen chemistry.

Soo Hyun is indeed supposed to be older than Jin Hyuk. But who would’ve guess that they are 12 years apart in real life?
We’d say that they are 3 years apart the most!

3. If we should name 1 word for this drama, it’s going to be: Beautiful. Everything about the drama is beautiful. Beautiful casts, beautiful scenery, beautiful cinematography, beautiful lines, beautiful soundtracks.

Beautiful Shot and Casts

4. The drama gives us different point of view that certainly a good news for feminism as it put the spotlight at the capable Cha Soo Hyeon, gives us a rare glimpse of sismance between Cha Soo Hyeon and her female secretary/friend, and it shows many independent and leading women such as PR Team leader, Cha Soo Hyeon’s mother, Cha Soo Hyeon’s mother, Mrs. Lee who often gives solace to Soo Hyeon and Jin Hyuk, and also Jin Hyuk’s mother.

5. It gives out a positive vibe and heart warming story. This drama is best to watch with our love ones or after going through a long day because the plot itself is pretty slow and full of heart warming moments. It even may teaches us about true happiness.

6. Heart fluttering. As the story started with a fluttering roman holiday then develops into a deeper stage of relationship, we cannot help but to swoon here and there while reminiscing our own love life.

To Hate:

  1. The main story is actually the classic rich-poor forbidden love and offers no creative plot twists. The only thing that help this drama is the casts (along with their acting skills and professionalism), the heart fluttering roman holiday, and other beautiful parts of the drama as mention above. Also what makes it better is that the drama change the typical rich man into a rich woman instead. Other than that, it is actually nothing new.
  2. Unclear purpose of Kim Jin Myung (Jin Hyuk’s younger brother). Other than giving out a role to an idol-actor, Jin Myung doesn’t have an impact in this drama. Unlike other supporting roles in Korean drama, Jin Myung doesn’t have any love line, he doesn’t really brighten up the mood (honestly the PR team did better at this part). His only meaningful appearance happens near the end of the series where he got into a fight for Jin Hyuk. And to be honest, Block B’s P.O. acting skill is still not good enough compared to other supporting idol-actors such as 2PM’s Chansung, EXO’s Chanyeol, etc.
  3. The drama focuses more on Jin Hyuk-Soo Hyeon’s relationship that it fails to make proper use of the other characters or events. For example, Soo Hyeon’s ex-husband actually can be a prospective character to spice things up. They can give him a chance to “properly” try to win Soo Hyeon’s heart, make Jin Hyuk jealous, blatantly betray and hurt his mean mother, or anything, but that’s not the case. Also the mean ex-mother-in-law always described as scary and full of tools to hurt Soo Hyeon, but she actually did nothing to prove that. She didn’t even have the chance to fight back to make the series more exciting. Also, Jin Hyuk’s old friend who secretly in love with him seems to be neglected by the writer.
  4. This drama gives out a resemblance with “Something in the Rain” in many ways, but unfortunately these include the bad ones: unnecessary break up caused by the characters’ overthinking over something that’s not even happen. Also, both of the drama, although beautifully enjoyable, not really have intense climaxes.

Rating: 7/10

More drama like this: Something in the Rain

More drama with beautiful foreign scenery:

Memories of the Alhambra

Black Knight