Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Dissection of Yoon Ji Hoo

...according to me.

Hyung loves to read manga, and I have the impression that he likes translated manga more than mahnwa, altho they're mostly shounen ones.. Naruto, One Piece.. mmm, why is Bleach not in his list? It's a good manga, hyung! Go read it!! But I digressed. Being a manga fanatic, I wholly approve of this. Mahnwa graphics are beautiful, but most of the plots are really meh. The only mahnwa I've liked so far is "Daddy Long Legs"...and even then, I hate the way it ends. Arrgh. I usually avoid mahnwa no matter how beautiful the cover is. Waste of my money... sorry mahnwa artists ^^;;

Anyway, so when hyung said he read Boys Over Flowers comic twice, I assumed he read the translated manga one.. not the mahnwa, was I wrong? Is there even a difference in the story plot or characterization between the manga and mahnwa versions? Since I've only read the manga version, the way he played Ji Hoo fit my assumption though.. read this description:
  • Rui Hanazawa (花沢 類 Hanazawa Rui?) is Tsukasa's best friend who becomes Tsukushi's first serious romantic interest. He is generally quiet, but has a soft spot for his close friend and Tsukushi's idol, the model Shizuka Todo, whom he has harbored feelings for since childhood. His character is a bit complex, and his feelings for Tsukushi are in a nearly constant state of flux (varying from annoyance to love), but above all cares about her a lot. In season two of Hana Yori Dango, he grows closer with Makino, but he also claimed that he loved her and that he is the one that would make her happy, not Domyouji. They eventually become very close friends and she depends on him as a confidant. According to Tsukushi, Rui Hanazawa is the one who can heal her wounds and make her feel happy and calm again when hurt by feelings for Tsukasa. Although he still loves Tsukushi, Rui eventually comes to accept Tsukasa and Tsukushi's relationship, vowing to stay by their side to make sure their love goes smoothly. It is suggested that while Rui will always care deeply for Tsukushi, he will eventually meet someone special one day.
Rui has Asperger syndrome, which makes socializing difficult for him. He has trouble recognizing facial expressions: for example, when trying to draw Tsukasa, he drew an expressionless egg with curly hair. These are personality traits which he still holds.

Remember Song Woo Bin said Ji Hoo is erratic (or at least that's how the dialogue was translated)? Combined with his Asperger syndrome, I think this is the hardest character to portray in F4. That was what I thought since I watched Vic played Hua Ze Lei in Meteor Garden, which is when I fell in love with Rui. Simple-minded complicated good-looking weirdos are my specialty. I fell in love with Rui in 2 seconds. Except the one played by Oguri Shun, maybe because he carried with him emotional baggages from all his previous acting experiences. IMO, Rui seems best played by newbies.. which Vic and hyung were at the time.

Faces of Hanazawa Rui (link)
Poor Goo Jun Pyo.. he never had a chance. The drama was Yoon Ji Hoo's from the word GO. Of course everyone has her/his own F4 favourite, but as a whole.. it was hyung who shines the most. Those who dislike hyung or Yoon Ji Hoo will not have a good memory of watching BOF coz he's in every plot-defining frame. I even thought the director and scriptwriters had a soft spot for him that they gave him all these cute scenes and dialogues to melt girls/women's (and men's too?) hearts. Even hyung said it (as frank as ever) in that New Caledonia interview. It's a good thing that Lee Min Ho is such a good actor, but the Best Actor in the Seoul International Drama Awards 2009 still went to hyung. Well, some of you can protest till the cows come home.. but he got it. I can't believe he won 1st place competing against my lovely Jun Ki. Hmm, maybe I have a talent for liking only the best? Hyung also got 1st place in this Korea Drama Festival 2009 poll. That's good. He loves awards.. :P

I didn't know hyung from Adam when I first watched BOF, so all this talk about him just having a “pretty face” to attract fangirls from all over asia is such a dumbass comment. All the F4 members have pretty faces, that's why they're called Flower Boys, dumbo... get with the program. And I have an aversion to liking an actor just coz he's good-looking. In fact, the more good-looking he is... the more I need him to be talented to like him, or else he'll just get a loud boo from me (which is why I can't watch popular movies in cinema).

I have no technical knowledge about acting, nor do I care to have it coz it's a different world from mine, so why should I bother? I'm just a nobody in the audience. When I saw hyung play that violin, I confess that my first feeling was an allergic reaction. Or more like... WHO'S THIS NOBODY WHO DARED TO PLAY MY RUI?? ...yep, I'm possessive of that character haha. But hyung is the one who played Rui the way I've always imagined Rui should be. See, Hua Ze Lei is too soft. He wants Shan Chai but he doesn't exactly fight Dao Ming Zi for her. Mostly he stays by her side like a calm and vast ocean that never wavers and responds to her whenever he's needed. Yoon Ji Hoo is more pro-active, getting punched violently twice for his effort and forcing Jun Pyo to 'sacrifice his life' in order to support Ji Hoo's struggle to win Jan Di, but despite this... you just know that Jan Di and him are not suited to be together. His grandfather says it best.. he's too quiet. You can sense how reclusive he is, despite him always getting into one activity or another whenever Jan Di is around. How did hyung manage to convey that stillness?? Ish awesome.

A girl wrote in a blog that hyung displayed discontinuous acting. I have no idea what she meant by that but that's how Rui is. Discontinuous. He lives in a world peopled only by those he lets in. Ji Hoo may hug Jan Di a lot, but he has a deep aversion (more like... 'unfeelingness'?) towards other humans whom he does not accept. Jun Pyo, who's supposed to be more volatile and scolds people as he pleases, is a warmer person than Ji Hoo. Being so nice to Jan Di, F4, his grandfather and a few other people and then so cold and emotionless towards the rest of the characters... is that what she meant by discontinuous acting? Only towards the end of the drama, Ji Hoo was able to make some kind of connection with strangers with Jan Di's coercion, i.e. the scene of him playing harmonica in the clinic.

I read a lot of comments about how wooden hyung's acting was at the beginning. I'm not sure if this is true for hyung... like he said, he's still a chick when it comes to acting. But to me, that's the Hanazawa Rui I've been waiting for. Wooden with others, animated with Makino, comfortable with the F4, totally uncaring of his surrounding, emanating such an intense aura just by standing there and watching everyone doing their own thing, single-minded when it comes to pursuing Makino despite knowing they can't be together.. while helping her to deal with her feelings towards Domyouji. There're times when hyung became more natural.. talking, laughing, smiling... and I was sitting there screaming... GIVE ME MY (WOODEN, COLD, ERRATIC) RUI BACK!! (lol) ..and he always comes back. Thanks hyung, for never forgetting.

I love Rui. I love him as much as a warm-blooded person can love a fictional character. I wish I could see him again... played by someone else this time. I still think of the 3 actors.. hyung depicts him as he is, or as I wish he would be... as if he has stepped out of the manga and become human right in front of my eyes. The fact that Kim Hyun Joong is 180 degrees different from him is amazing. Everytime I watch hyung's clip when he has his Ji Hoo style (hair, clothes, etc.)'s like I'm watching someone else. I get a dislocated feeling. Have to remind myself all the time that this is hyung during filming, and not a Yoon Ji Hoo's doppelganger. Mesmerizing.

I've written so many words, yet I don't think I've carried out this dissection of Yoon Ji Hoo well at all. Aaaaaa... I fail as a surgeon! 

Afterwards, I tried to search on the net to know more about this Kim Hyun Joong guy. Then of course I found out that the real person is more interesting than the character he played in BOF. How can that be?? hahaha.. it makes watching Yoon Ji Hoo so unsatisfying, demmit. Why would I want to be with Yoon Ji Hoo when hyung is prancing around on my youtube screen being totally adorable and entertaining? He puts me in such a weird dilema.

Hyung... SAIKO! Aishiteru yo~

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