The noona romance has been flourishing in recent years, and it’s such a welcome sight. Young heroes are finally ditching the Lil Bro Zone and winning over their noonas! How awesome is that?
I remember first watching I Hear Your Voice in 2013 (I know I bring this show up a lot, but GAH, I love it to death) and everyone in the comments thinking there was no way Soo Ha would actually get the girl. Then as the drama went on, I began to wonder ‘Wait, is this really happening? Is the puppy gonna have a happy ending??’ *angels sing*
It’s a different story with oppa/ahjussi romances. I think audiences are still hesitant about those and I’m wondering if it’s a gender issue. Why are people okay with an older woman dating a younger guy, but when an older man is dating a younger girl, he’s suddenly a pedophile? I tried to go through all the oppa romances I’ve seen and sadly, the first thing that came to mind was She’s So Lovable (Ugh, why am I still thinking about you? Go away). Although, the problem there didn’t lie with Rain being a lot older than Krystal. I just didn’t understand why his character liked hers. So that was really just lack of logic, and to be honest, lack of chemistry. And I do wonder if two actors having a major age gap kind of tampers with their onscreen chemistry. If an actress is younger, will the actor hold back? And vice versa? It’s possible. We certainly know that’s not always the case, as we’ve seen in Marriage Contract (which I’m still enjoying as of now).
The point is, I myself have no problem with age gaps. Heck, I’m always ecstatic at the mention of a new noona romance. In my eyes, if a couple seriously loves each other, or if I can’t even tell there’s a huge age difference, then what’s the big deal? So there’s that. But when one person in the couple is legit underage, I can see why people get upset. High School King of Savvy is an example of where you’re not entirely sure whether or not to root for the main couple. Because the guy was only 17, if I remember correctly. But that didn’t bother me too much since I knew in real life, Seo In Guk was actually in his late twenties.
Then there are dramas where instead of the characters, it’s the actors that are underage, like the case of Hi! School: Love On and actress Kim Sae Ron. Sae Ron was only 13 or 14 at the time of the drama, with male co-stars that were about 24 and 23. The boys (Infinite’s Woohyun and Sungyeol) sooort of passed off as high schoolers, and they were cute with Sae Ron, but I can list quite a few scenes (ahem, the bubblegum scene…) that had me squirming in my chair from discomfort. And now, next month, she’ll be in another drama with an even older co-star, Yoon Shi Yoon. Ehm… Hrm…
Yeah, that was my initial reaction. And I still don’t know how I feel about it. The sageuk drama Mirror of the Witch will have Shi Yoon and Sae Ron as love interests, which… Eh, had me pondering for a good while. After seeing some behind-the-scenes photos, I think they actually look… okay together. Shi Yoon Oppa still has his baby face and Sae Ron does look more mature (I just can’t get over her tiny frame). And who knows, maybe they’ll be great together. But at the end of the day, she’s still 15 and he’s still 29. It’s not the 14 year age gap that bothers me; it’s where the age gap is. It’d be different if she was 19 and he was 33. That, I’d be fine with. Then they’d both be adults, so I’d go ahead and tell them to make out as much they want.
*scratches head* I don’t know about this, guys… I really don’t. What sucks is that I find the plot of this drama sooo interesting, and it’s Shi Yoon’s comeback, so I don’t think I can just stay away from it. I want to watch it and I want it to be good. Now, I’m not saying Sae Ron is a bad actress (in fact, she’s very likable), but I feel as though her being underage will give the drama some limitations. But if they don’t limit themselves, there’s also the potential of doing too much, which could really anger some viewers. I think either way, some people won’t be happy. I’ll try to greet Mirror of the Witch with open arms and an open mind though. After all, I know this is just acting and it’s all strictly professional. Let’s see what these two have in store for us~
What are your thoughts on the Mirror of the Witch casting? Or on age gaps in dramas in general?