Hihihihihi everyone ^u^ I’m jumping aboard the AVV ship to provide you with moar recaps and moar reviews and moar what-have-yous~ I’m going to start with a small, currently airing series, a Taiwanese drama called Just You (就是要你愛上我lit. Just want you to love me) starring some fluffy puppies called Aaron Yan and Puff Guo.
I picked this project for a few reasons: It’s short (10 episodes), cute, with a engaging storyline (unless the writer gets whacked later on in the show), and most importantly, the chemistry between Aaron and Puff is fireworksworthy (if that isn’t a word, I’m inventing it now for them~). Aaron plays the boss from… a very rich, good-looking hell: suffering from OCD, no emotions, snarkiness, and a sad backstory, while Puff plays the perky employee who unwittingly ends up as roomies with him, and decides that the most expedient way to make him loosen up is to make him fall in love with her.
Note: Since I am on a very horrible internet connection, the screencaps are not the best you will get to see, but I shall try my best ^^ EDIT: Since the connection is really horrible, I have decided to use the screencaps courtesy of xsweetwhispers, littlecloverstar and chocoblueberries. xsweetwhispers is especially awesome since it’s mainly a YaLun blog, and she has barebone summaries of the episodes up waayyy before me (I have no skills in trying to be brief, as you shall see.
We start off with our peppy heroine Cheng Liang Liang (Puff Guo Xue Fen) in bubbleland, in a beaauuttiffuul house, as the hero Qi Yi (Aaron Yan) pulls up. He looks at the foreclosure sign on the entrance door, picks it off, folds in neatly, and walks in. Enter Liang Liang, expecting someone else, and then… let’s just say nekkid bodies were involved.
Cut to: Liang Liang dressed, and Qi Yi informing her that he is the new owner of the house who wants to move in immediately… into an empty house. Liang Liang, on the other hand, is reluctant to do so, having paid six months’ worth of rent in advance, and besides, do you know how hard it is to find a home in Taiwan during the early summer months?! She’s had enough of this, and firmly tells him that she isn’t moving out, before rushing to work (although she gets intercepted by bestie#1 (Princess) first, and promises to lay her soul bare later).
At work, she meets with her colleagues and bestie #2, Kate, who is fully prepared to play the role of blushing bride. Hell, she even has a planner with everything planned: proposal by 27, wedding by 28, baby #1 by 29, baby#2 by 30. Meanwhile, she’s working at GAZE, a marketing and advertising company, alongside her beloved Alex (Tang Zhen Gang), when some boxes with a set of instructions arrive. They set to work, creating the office detailed in the instructions. As soon as they’re done, they rush to the hall, where the proposal site has been prepared. Alex proposes, Kate accepts, crowd cheers, ring starts to go on finger… and then a wild OCD Boss appears!!!
Calmly, collectedly, and with great poise, Qi Yi lets them know his true thoughts on love: he’d rather not have it in his company. And by rather not, he means that he will fire your bum on the spot if you so much as make googly eyes at each other. And then he waits for the ring to go to it’s rightful place…
And so, the ring makes it’s way to Alex’s pocket, as Kate runs weeping. Liang Liang gives chase, comforting her, and Alex follows soon after, reminding her that he has to support his parents back in the countryside, and so he cannot afford to be jobless. Kate, however, is not impressed at the wimpy show of love in the face of adversity, and yells at him that she wants to break up, going so far as to tear up her life planner (you’d think she’d keep something like that on Evernote…).
A bit later, Princess, having heard of the situation, rushes to the company with fried chicken, since, and I quote “Fried chicken is good for the soul.” My heart. Protect it. This woman is after it. Just as they start bad-mouthing the Prez, the devil turns up, and informs everyone that he has hi-I’m-not-a-mean-boss-at-all-just-misunderstood-and-cold-and-harsh-and-I-would-like-to-know-you-and-if-you-are-any-good-to-me interviews. At said interviews, Qi Yi proves to be quite good at reading people, and decides that Liang Liang needs to be gotten rid of, ASAP. Meanwhile, he’ll settle for making her work overtime organizing paperwork while he has staring contests with her.
As soon as work is over, Liang Liang rushes to Da Yan Ge (who clearly adores her)’s petshop, to buy her goldfishie Shan Shan food. He advises her that maybe Qi Yi is crusty due to reasons unknown, and to go easy on him. She thanks him for letting her vent, and rushes off to her best friends.
Said best friends sit plotting Qi Yi’s downfall over dinner. It is decided that the fastest way for him to allow office romances is to get into one himself, and Liang Liang is unanimously elected to be the seductress due to her resume: loyal, never-back-down, sense of self-preservation nil, and most important of all: she lives with him.
Liang Liang rushes home, motivated by this very solid and well-thought-out plan of attack, and decides to use the first tip Princess gave her to worm her way into Qi Yi’s icy cockles of the heart: through his tummy, and so sprinkles seafood seasoning into his stew. But not before they have another fight about her moving out.
As they sit down to eat (or in Liang Liang’s case, to annoy Qi Yi), Qi Yi starts going into anaphylactic shock; he’s highly allergic to seafood. One look at him choking, and Liang Liang heroically piggybacks him to the nearest hospital, since she can’t find any taxis and ambulances haven’t been invented yet (quick shout out to fans and haters of real life alike: if something like this happens, dial 911 or it’s equivalent like it’s your goddam job, kay?).
Qi Yi is given medicine, and refuses to speak to her, glaring her out of the taxi when she tries to follow him. Trooper that she, she camps outside of his bedroom door to make sure he doesn’t… stop breathing? Whatever, the intentions were good. Come morning, she’s still there, and he softens a little, going from ignoring her very existence to barking at her that if she is even a second late, she will out of a job.
She barges in with only 30 seconds to spare, much to her colleagues’ relief and Qi Yi’s irritation, and the small company proceeds to start with the presentations, at the end of which they are all rebuked, thoroughly and harshly. They are not professional enough, and the work is substandard, and they need to shape up or be shipped out. Liang Liang is sent to negotiate this harsh ultimatum, and is informed that he will give them another chance, however, if they fail, Liang Liang has to take responsibility and quit.
The next day, the two rework to produce a new proposal, and to this end Qi Yi drops Liang Liang in the shopping and business district of town and asks her to fill up 500 surveys. Meanwhile, he observes the buying habits of the populace. The come up with the realization that no one wants to drink coffee in the summer, and iced coffee is either too sweet or too bitter for their intended market.
However, while things are going swimmingly on one end, the other end of the balance has a tornado whirling, and when Kate and Alex are found trying to keep a low-key relationship going, they are asked to quit, amidst much weeping.
Liang Liang comes home remotivated by the happenings of the day, only to find the front door locked and Qi Yi inside, listening to Beethoven while meticulously chopping veggies. So she does what we all would do: calls the security and asks them to open the door since her boyfriend is mad at her being a bit late and has locked her out, and she’s worried since he has suicidal tendencies and she’s scared he’ll give in to temptation if left alone. Oh, and he has some form of PTSD where he forgets that she’s his girlfriend due to his negative feelings towards himself. Standard explanation, no?
In the face of such perseverance, Qi Yi finally relents and lets her live in the house, albeit she will have to follow his OCD rules on just about everything and she has no choice but to agree. Liang Liang then heads to comforts Kate in the neighbourhood cafe, and discusses the summer coffee issue with Ba Si Da Ge, the owner and prize-winning barista. Kate and Princess promise to help out Liang Liang in the project, when Qi Yi walks in. Ba Si Da Ge and Qi Yi know each other, and Qi Yi convinces him to help create a mix of coffee beans that would be suitable for a summer drink.
Job well done, Qi Yi and Liang Liang head back home, where they’re faced with a power outage… and then soon after (with meticulous timing), a water outage. Incensed, in part due to the shampoo still in his eyes, Qi Yi asks for a bucket of water, which is delivered… with much touching. And then it has a leaf in it which triggers his OCD (watching him squirm at the mint leaf in his tea the next day is one of the best things ever).
Back at the coffee shop, tastings are underway, and everyone finally agrees on the perfect coffee mix; however, there is a problem: the beans for the mix come from a local recalcitrant and arrogant farmer, who does not have good relations with the company GAZE is currently subcontracted for, making it pretty hard for the GAZE to present their product.
Tired and somewhat dejected (and in Qi Yi’s case, paranoid, after Liang Liang tries to seduce him), the duo return home, only to find that Liang Liang’s parents have come over to stay a couple of nights. The family’s interactions, both amongst themselves and with Qi Yi, make him long for his family, and he starts warming up to them~ (My god, the face Qi Yi has on while the parents pile on food into his bowl is so full of mixed feelings… he’s happy and sad and dumbstruck, and he likes it but he’s too much of a tsunedere to express that and oh!~)
Comments: I cannot stress how much I adore this show. Everything from the opening and ending to the interludes to the BTS is adorable. But the adorable cake is taken by Aaron and Puff. Seriously. I never realized that Aaron was such a good actor, since his previous projects he was either a secondary lead, or stuck in an awful show (yes, Alice in Wonder City, I glare upon thee). His facial expressions (his eyebrows, GAHHH) are well worth rewatching a few dozen times. He can act out a whole scene without uttering a sound, and his face does all the work. He’s also really good at quietly doing little quirky things that highlight his OCD, like carefully folding the foreclosure notice and tucking it into his pocket, and… well, just look at the gifs~
Puff Guo I only knew of as a member of DreamGirls, and she was cute in the miniseries that aired for the band (recaps and videos linked here: A Fairytale World), but those ten minute shorts did not enlighten me to how good she actually was. She reminds me of a mix of Ella and Ivy Chen (and Aaron reminds me of a Lee Jun Ki lite, but that’s a different story), and even her facial expressions (her lips, in fact) are note-worthy.
The supporting cast is good as well, and shine in their moments (special shout-out to Cheng Mama and Da Yan Ge, who you might know as the mother of half of Taiwanese heroines, and Da Yan Ge, who was recently adorable in Two Fathers). And while I can gush more, Imma just leave you with many gifs, so you can go watch the show yourselves ^^~