As mentioned before, here's my post regarding Korean version of Dragon Zakura; God of Study. Although this name is widely used, but I think the accurate translation would be from official KBSWorld site: Master of Study, since they're not God, and the main theme in this drama is mastering how to study well. I finished this drama during a crucial time as I have 3 quizzes this week, and marks will be included into the Final. =P
As you all knew already, this is a story about a lawyer who wants to save a school by trying to send 5 dumb students into the top university in Korea, in order to raise the school reputation and attracts more enrollment by the next year. In that way, the school will overcome its financial crisis. Kang Seuk-ho, a delinquent-turned-lawyer will train 5 students; Hwang Baek-hyun, Kil Pul-ip, Hong Chan-doo, Na Hyun-jung and Oh Bong-goo, in a special class designed to send them into the top prestigious Chun-ha University. This drama will follow up their story and how they overcome the obstacles.
This is a remake, so it's nice to see how Korean-touch will make this drama, like Boys Before Flowers over Hana Yori Dango. There was some romantic feeling added, as usual of Korean Drama, and some tips & tricks to study High School subjects, which I think attracts students and maybe mothers to watch this drama. Low rating in the beginning seems to improve 200% after a few episodes aired. If only the subjects were taught in Malaysia, I'll surely recommend this drama to all mothers and teachers. But still, it's a must watch to teach us why do we study in our life. Maybe an exam booster for all students as well. =)
The main premise for this drama is about where there's a will, there's a way. As Kang Seuk-ho said, "With correct study skills and strategies, anyone can get into the top university". I learned that this phrase is not the main intention, but his purpose is to let the kids realize that studying is important, regardless of the result. If they can grasp the determination, they can do anything in this world.
Positive points about this drama:
Nice thing about this drama is because all the kids are cute! Yoo Seung-ho, Go Ah-sung, Park Ji Yeon, Lee Hyun-woo, and Lee Chan-ho bring great impression to the viewers and actually, I love seeing the kids on screen more than the adults. One more factor; I like their school uniform! Why did Korea and Japan's school uniform so beautiful? Dunno if you realize it or not, but students in Japanese school drama always wear their uniform until late at night. Maybe it's because the uniform is stylo? T____T
2. Tips and tricks
To understand the teacher's explanation, some graphic animation and skits were shown. The analogy used was easy to understand, and at the end of the episode, the kids will show some study tips for the students. I think it's an attractive points for the story. Based on my experience, if viewers take them SERIOUSLY, it's actually true.
It's rare to see relationship other than love in a Korean Drama. Maybe it's because this is an adaptation from a manga (Japan), so there're some Japanese touch in it. We can see student-student friendship and even teacher-student love. Definitely this is another great story after Great Teacher Onizuka. Combine them, and we'll get a perfect school story related to delinquent-turned-good.
1. Not all subjects were stressed equally.
Throughout the story, Math is the only subjects that get most screen time. Major tips and tricks was about Math. But maybe this is my feeling because Language subjects were mentioned theoretically; feel the context from your heart, be friendly with the subjects, etc. I mean, it's hard to potray something like that in a drama and I think the crew did a good job with them.
Science subjects were solved with Mind-tree, but I think Dragon Zakura came up with something else. Can't remember. So, a bit lacking in that.
2. Love story was abrupt
Some people will say this is negative point so I will include this because the story toyed with our feeling! Romantic scenes were shown in every episode but no conclusion or whatever in the end! Episode 12 will mark this change, as they make their strict decision to study harder and throw away all the monkey-love feeling. =P
But for me, this is actually a good point. Love is useless. They want to enter top university so just study and study! It's a heartbroken thing for the viewers but it's necessary for the kids. This is the same as SoEul couple in Boys Over Flower, their romantic story was left undecided. It's up for the fans to make up their own story. At least fans will have some fanfics to do.
I still cannot decide to go with Baek-hyun/Pul-ip or Chan-doo/Pul-ip. =P (Hyun-jung still a cute one so regardless of the outcome, they'll still make a great couples).
3. False hope?
An article was published bashing this drama because it's mainly giving hope that everyone can excel if they study, even if they're poor. They can enter the top university and change the rule of the world. The article may be a little skewed because it was published half-way the drama was aired. This issue was elaborated a little through Baek-hyun, but judging from the intensive care Seuk-ho provided, the article still proven true. Major problems with the world is not getting good education environment (Dedicated teachers, high quality materials, and good places) that usually money can solve by going private.
In the end, rich guys with private tuition will fill up the quota of university entrance and leaving behind the poor one; Just take a look on JPA scholarship. So, the world still will be dominated by the rich one. But a little motivation will not hurt right? After all, without motivation, even the rich and smart guys will not study and excel. And if no one wants to challenge this, when will we succeed? =)
Although some study points already mentioned in the drama, I'll list some that should be noted:
1. Building the foundation.
Basics is the main key in studying. Math is all about formulas and spontaneous answer to simple questions. Building the basics will help in further study and prevent students getting bored because they can't understand the new terms.
2. Study in groups.
This one actually never mentioned clearly. Baek-hyun said to Hyun-jung, "If you go, that won't make five." meaning Special Class will not be formed without five people, holding her from transferring school. Then they starts study by themselves, peer-to-peer teaching and being together without any of the teachers around. It resembles a study group, isn't it?
3. Exams is just a test.
I love this one. Failure is not a marker for you to give up. Regardless of the results, you should keep studying. Even harder and harder. It's like study is part of your life. After all, this is the main theme of the story. =)
My score: 9/10
Negative points were covered up well, make me feels like all the mentioned above was already answered in this drama. Add the positive points, this is a worth watching. Maybe there're some slacks, but never disturb the flow of the story.
Translation score by Haru2Subs: 7/10
Some grammar and structural errors, and some translations are hard to understand. Maybe the direct translation caused this, but a little editing will make the subtitle better.
J-Drama Dragon Zakura was a hit, and brought a big changes in Japan Education when the application for Todai University increased 12% after the drama was aired. This is what the media should do. Sadly nowadays, all magazines and newspapers in Malaysia do is reporting gossips and crimes, while the films and dramas always focus on rempit and bohsia. No wonder Malaysia is fucked up right now. Maybe they didnt realize the power of mass media to change the world. The only thing they know, people love that kind of shits and they should focus on that. People afraid of my tiny little blog, so imagine what a bigger platform can do. Unbelievable? Check the screenshot below.
This is part of mediaPERUBATAN's mission: To bring POSITIVE changes to the world of medical students. I welcome any articles, videos and any other means related to medical worlds to be published in PERUBATANonline. I don't care if you're a medical students in Egypt of India or UK or wherever. If you got the good thing, share with us. An empire starts with a small village; Goguryeo empire that owns half China a long time ago is actually starts with a refugees camp. (Since this is entertainment blog, I can't mention Islamic empire. People will mistake this blog for a religious one. =P)
Lastly, please check out this Exam Booster message from Bureau of Academic. And maybe someone should come up with ideas to adapt this story into Malaysia, just as Great Teacher Onizuka was adapted to Guru Terhebat Olan by PTS Publications. =)
Cheers and Let's study until we feel we will die from it!
p/s: I wrote about study but all people knew I never study seriously. =P