Following the release of Kim Yoo Jung’s former Moon that Embraces the Sun rival, Kim So Hyun’s Let’s Fight Ghost, Korean dramas have been recently receiving a flak from netizens due to the casting of these teen actresses opposite their grown up leading men. I’m personally not bothered by the age gap since they have acting skills that are way beyond their years and I’d rather watch them instead of some bland ones who are of legal age.
From The Moon that Embraces the Sun, 17-year-old Kim Yoo Jung stars in another sageuk, this time entitled Moonlight Drawn by Clouds. Based on the web novel Gooreumi Geurin Dalbit written by Yoon Yi-Soo , Kim Yoo Jung plays a character that reminds me of Park Min Young in Sungkyunkwan Scandal and Ha Ji Won in Empress Ki. Hong Ra On, disguised as a man, earns a living by counseling other men and helping them out with their dating issues. When one of her clients chicken out on a date, Ra On appears at the meeting place on his behalf, unaware that the woman “he’s” supposed to meet is actually the princess. However, the love letter gets intercepted by the Crown Prince who sneaks out of the palace, dressed as a nobleman, to meet the “man” who’s been sending his sister the cheesy letters. And you know how it is in dramas. They actually believe a woman is a man simply based on how she’s dressed up even though her body build, voice, face and everything about her screams FEMALE.
Park Bo Gum plays the protective brother and Royalty in disguise. This isn’t his first sageuk as he already briefly appeared in Gaksital which is set in the Japanese era. This, however, is his first Joseon era sageuk and he’s definitely a great addition to the list of Korean dramas’ most attractive Crown Prince characters. Lee Young looks like the perfect Prince although he’s actually far from it. Mischievous and hot-tempered – the wind literally blows his cover and the King finds out he’s not taking his studies seriously. He causes his eunuchs a lot of trouble and earns him the nickname, ‘dung’, which means ‘crap’.
B1A4’s Jin Young takes the major supporting role, Kim Yoon Sung, after BTOB’s Yook Sung Jae declined due to scheduling conflicts. That makes me sad since I’ve been looking forward to seeing the latter in a sageuk and I’m pretty sure he would’ve brought a strong second lead game again just as he did in Who Are You: School 2015. Come Back Ahjussi‘s young Han Gi Tak, Kwak Dong Yeon, plays the mysterious Moon Jae Shin-like character.
Moonlight Drawn by Clouds delivers the same vibes as the 2010 sageuk fusion romcom Sungkyunkwan Scandal but with an even lighter tone featuring its cute young actors in vibrant setting and lively background music. Upfront disregarding the historical facts from which some characters were based on, this is a coming-of-age, youth romance drama that utilizes the overused cross-dressing trope followed by a case of mistaken identity BUT has the makings of being well-loved by many thanks to its lead actors’ equal individual charms and intense dramatic skills.