Review – Flower Boy Next Door
Oh, Flower Boy Next Door! My face hurt from the perma-grin I wore during each endearing adorable scene. You were as cute a box full of puppies! For about four or five episodes.
————- SPOILERS FOLLOW ————–
This show has two things going for it. Cuteness and Super-cuteness.
Cuteness? An ensemble cast of fresh-faced slender Koreans with quirky personalities.
The interactions of this large cast of cutie-pie characters wraps around you like a bulky wool sweater in a cold, cold apartment. You’ll be so comfortably entertained, you’ll barely notice that there isn’t much going on. Kinda like staring at the fire in the fireplace. Enjoy the ambiance and let your mind wander.
Super-cuteness? Enter Enrique. The wacky, over-the-top Korean from Spain who skips through the world like his personal playground. He won me over with a hand-made robot and a creepy panda hat. He made rolling up your pants to your kneecaps in the winter stylish. I didn’t even realize he was the male lead until about half-way through the drama! Surely this little Rainbow Dash won’t win the serious reclusive gal’s heart… not when there’s an equally serious artist pining for her next door… surely not. But lo and behold – Rainbow Dash comes down from the glitterly clouds and actually makes some human-based moves on the wide eyed lady. Color me impressed, k-drama.
Want some sprinkles on that double-layered cake?
How about a seriously talented comedian playing the sleep deprived editor?
How about yet another example of Korean dogs being more adorable than American dogs?
There was so much going for this show, I was sure I had found a new all-time-favorite.
The whole story takes place almost entirely inside an apartment complex – one of those big, blah buildings that cram people in like sardines. For once, the interiors of the apartments revealed the personalities of the tenants. No oversized pictures of themselves hanging on the wall, no spotlessly clean floors, no plants that require a character to lovingly clean each green leaf while the maid sweats in the next room polishing silverware. Instead, there were tons of books and toys and overflowing trash cans and beat up fridges and crappy desks covered in clutter. The lighting sucked. There weren’t any cool lamps or awesome sculptures or modern sectional couches. These were the apartments of twenty-somethings…
I love shows that feature characters who work AND produce a tangible product we can see. This show had two webtoon artists working together to create their first online story. And we got to see it! In various stages of creation, no less.
There was so much to like! It was a buffet of sweetness!
So… what’s my problem?
You know that scene in Full House where the male lead tells the female lead that he’s bought her a car? And takes her outside to reveal the magnificent sports vehicle in the driveway? She squeals with delight and gushes and jumps for joy. Then the male lead points to a bicycle. It’s a brutal trick of misdirection and indifference to her feelings. That’s the perfect analogy to what happened to this show somewhere around episode five… I was carjacked and left with a cute bicycle all the way until episode sixteen. In Full House the guy was just being facetious. In Flower Boy Next Door, the drama was just clueless… I don’t think they realized they dropped the ball at all. What? You wanted to keep the car? Really? But the bike is more earth-friendly! It has tassels on the handlebars! To hell with that. I don’t want to peddle around a middling drama after I was spoiled on speed and humorous adrenaline.
Flower Boy Next Door is a big tease. I absolutely loved the first few episodes… which was why I was even more disappointed with where it went and how it got there. Still, if you’re in the mood for something light and fluffy, then this drama delivers. For a while, at least. It’s worth it just to see Enrique babble at warp speed about anything and everything that pops into his fluffy head. He really was super cute.