The much-anticipated fantasy drama Bride of the Water God is finally here!
After many aesthetically pleasing teasers and hype-inducing poster releases, the drama released its first two episodes last week. So, does it live up to its expectations?
On one hand, it’s always a pleasure to be able to watch Nam Joo Hyuk’s beautiful visage and the drama has had some very pretty scenery so far. Also, how could we ignore Habaek going around basically shirtless (#blessed). But on the other hand, Bride of the Water God is not as serious as I was expecting it to be. And for those who have read the original manhwa, the drama is a far cry from the original storyline.
Here are some thoughts on the drama so far:
1. Habaek is certainly an interesting character
You would have thought that someone whose full title involves things like ‘Water God,' ‘Future King of the Water Kingdom’ and ‘Future Emperor of the Divine Realm’ would be extremely intimidating and possibly fear-inducing. It seemed like this was the type of character Habaek would be when he was first introduced; haughty, dismissive of his subordinates, and a bit of an insensitive guy. Any character that is introduced via an aerial shot of their own massive portrait is bound to be just a tad extra. But on Earth, with most of his Godly powers (apart from his ability to be perfect at everything he does) stripped away, Habaek is reduced to an exceptionally good-looking guy with delusions of grandeur.
There are so many questions that come to mind in regard to Habaek. Why does he have no powers, and will he be able to get them back? Will he ever be able to enjoy the deliciousness of fried chicken???
2. The fantasy world is so aesthetically pleasing
The drama begins with a scene where a monk discusses the Divine Realm. It's in this opening sequence that we are gifted with glimpses into the Water, Earth and Air Kingdoms. These scenes of the Divine Realm are beautiful and filled with visually amazing features that really bolster the fantasy. I mean come on, Whales in the sky!? Everything, from the landscaping, to the massive palaces, to their costuming, is super hectic and you can’t help but want more of these scenes where the fantasy world is explored. Hopefully as the drama progresses, we will be able to see more of each kingdom.
3. It looks like the bad luck will never end for So Ah
So Ah is your classic bad luck ridden female lead. She’s drowning in debt, her parents are noticeably absent and probably already deceased, her business isn’t doing well, and it’s been hinted that she has a rather tragic history. To further emphasise how unfortunate she is, the first two episodes have been a succession of misfortunes - she breaks down in the middle of the mountains, gets chased by a boar, and her employee breaks off a very expensive windscreen wiper, and that’s not even half of what happens to her. Plus, the High Priest’s musing that she won’t live long, and the scene where she looks like she’s drowning in the future seem rather ominous. Here’s to hoping that So Ah won’t have the tragic ending that is being suggested.
Aside from all the tragedy, So Ah is pretty relatable.
4. The actual storyline is moving a bit slow
Things have been moving pretty slow in the first two episodes, with the exception of the two leads kissing (they moved fast, dayum). Most of what has happened so far can be placed into three categories; So Ah being unlucky, Habaek being a noob about the human world, and Habaek trying to convince So Ah that she is his servant.
The pace is somewhat understandable given that this is a fantasy drama and they need to establish the setting and all that jazz, but it would be nice if we could pick the pace up a little.
There have been some pretty good comedic moments though; Habaek’s inflatable castle next to the river, complete with unicorns and other assorted pool toys is hilarious and just had to be mentioned at some point.
The Bride of the Water God has had a solid start but it doesn’t seem to have captured the hearts and minds of the world like Goblin did. We still have not been introduced to Krystal and Gong Myung’s characters yet, so it’s likely that all the twists and turns are yet to come. Stick around, things are bound to get interesting.
Hear us on SBS PopAsia Digital Radio
Listen in 24/7 on Digital Radio, by downloading our free mobile app or by streaming live here on our website.
Download the app here: