Hotel Del Luna: Hotel del Luna (Full Season)
January 18, 2022 3:41 PM - Season 1 (Full Season) - Subscribe

When he's invited to manage a hotel for dead souls, an elite hotelier gets to know the establishment's ancient owner and her strange world.

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The Review Geek review: "Hotel Del Luna is one of those rare Korean dramas that strikes at just the right time and leaves an emotional crater in its wake. With 16 episodes expertly blending romance, drama and horror, Hotel Del Luna twists and turns through its dual-narratives, split between past and present, before converging into a concise, well written and satisfying finale that ends things on the perfect note. Combining the talents of both IU and Jin-Goo, Hotel Del Luna successfully delivers one of the best K-dramas of the year and does so in style. .... Hotel Del Luna is the perfect advertisement for Korean drama and a must-watch for anyone who enjoys a romantic or comedic drama. The series consistently surprises and has enough twists and turns along the way to keep you coming back for more. With each episode clocking in at 75 minutes, there’s enough time to allow the characters to grow and the impressive aesthetic style glows through every episode. Although a few of the subplots drag on a tad too long, including the Ji-Won ghost angle, for the most part Hotel Del Luna can do no wrong, bowing out as one of the best dramas of the year."
posted by oh yeah! (14 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I didn't love this one as much as the rave reviewers - I think I was hoping for a happier ending, though it's not like the show doesn't tell the audience from the start what the characters are fated for. But this was my first Hong Sisters show, so I didn't really know what to expect. Still, I can see why it did so well in the ratings when it was airing in 2019, and I did like it overall. Gorgeous leads, a terrific ensemble, nice soundtrack (though they leaned pretty heavy on that stringed-instrument comedy cue), and a good mix of genres.
posted by oh yeah! at 8:34 PM on January 18, 2022

Hotel del Luna was pretty good. But some of the Hong Sisters' back catalog is a lot better, despite some lower production values, and is worth seeking out. My Girl is enchanting—that lead actress, wow, so funny. Couple or Trouble was quite enjoyable, if odd (based on the movie Overboard, which my wife and I watched together countless times, although I know many others find it creepy). You're Beautiful is amazing and had some gender-bending stuff back when you didn't see that a lot in Korean dramas. My Girlfriend is a Nine-Tailed Fox is hilarious, and is I think the best work Shin Min-a ever did. Greatest Love is worthwhile, despite the weird idea that the lead actor has a mechanical heart (yeah, it's a metaphor, I get it, but still). Master's Sun is freakin' Shakespeare, so so good. The others (especially Korean Odyssey) bored me, but each to his own.
posted by jabah at 5:09 AM on January 19, 2022 [1 favorite]

Unfortunately only 'Korean Odyssey' is on Netflix US so far (I watched the first episode at some point but didn't feel motivated to keep going). Hopefully they'll add more of the Hong Sisters shows.

Re: Overboard, I've watched it many many times too -- Goldie Hawn & Kurt Russell have such fantastic chemistry, and them having been together for all those years in real life kind of cancels out the creepification factor for me. It's like they're just role-playing in public. So, I'd probably like 'Couple or Trouble' too. Ah well. Either Netflix will add them, or eventually I'll have watched every Netflix kdrama available and sign up for Viki to start watching their back-catalogue.
posted by oh yeah! at 5:31 AM on January 19, 2022 [1 favorite]

If you're not in the US (or use a VPN), Master's Sun and My Girlfriend is a Gumiho might be available to you on youtube with English subs (along with a lot of other SBS shows, including ones that don't seem to show up on the playlists page for some reason).

The Hong Sisters dramas I've seen so far have all* been great except for a very long, very draggy and angsty penultimate act that feels completely pointless and loses the exact spark and charm that make the rest of the show work so well. Actually My Girlfriend Is a Gumiho also suffered from some secondary characters who were like black holes of charm and spark throughout the entire show, which sucked (because the main couple were so good).

* To be fair I don't remember this being as big a deal for Korean Odyssey/Hwayugi, but I watched it a long time ago. It starts off slow and the main couple isn't sparky like in the other shows, but the charm starts to build once the found-family thing gets going. I liked it.

I don't know why - it's not like I'm trying to shill for them - but I always feel like pointing out that you don't actually need to sign up for Viki at all to watch most of the shows there. It's very easy to dip in and out of.
posted by trig at 7:47 AM on January 19, 2022

I've not watched Hotel Del Luna (but plan to one day, if only for IU's outfits) BUT I will say if you're going to watch the Hong Sisters' back catalogue, skip Big.

It's not worth it, not even for Gong Yoo (sigh, what a waste...). The premise seemed like it could be appropriately wacky, and the first 8 episodes were pretty decent. But you will feel like you wasted your time if you see it to completion.

I'm not sure the Hong Sisters' style ages well, but I concur that My Girlfriend is a Gumiho, Master's Sun, and Greatest Love are worth checking out. I'm also biased towards You're Beautiful because it was one of the first dramas I watched (back during the days). But I don't know that I can say that it's as good as the other three.
posted by paisley sheep at 9:25 AM on January 19, 2022

I don't know about good, but YB definitely had some of the most memorable cuteness.
(I too have not yet watched Hotel Del Luna, but it's on the list)
posted by trig at 9:37 AM on January 19, 2022

eventually I'll have watched every Netflix kdrama available and sign up for Viki to start watching their back-catalogue.

For some reason, when I sign in to, every drama I want to watch requires a Viki Pass plan to watch it. But, when I look for the same drama on, I can watch it with only a sign-in and no plan or fee. For example, I just watched Secret Garden (again) on kocowa, while Viki requires a subscription. For another example, I see that the Hong sisters' drama Couple or Trouble can be watched on kocowa for free, while again viki requires a subscription. Seems odd, maybe it's just a glitch?
posted by jabah at 10:30 AM on January 19, 2022 [2 favorites]

Viki and kocowa have some kind of cooperation agreement, but I think they're two separate companies with different rights to different shows?

Anyway, on viki whether or not a show needs a pass seems to change over time. (Also, for travelers or VPN users, it changes from country to country too..)
posted by trig at 11:30 AM on January 20, 2022

My issue with Viki is not so much the sign-in/account setup, it’s that it’s not yet an app on my smart tv, so I’d have to watch it on my laptop or via a Roku stick, so there’d be a downgrade in video quality. (Also, I got my BFF hooked on kdramas, but she likes to watch the shows after I’ve finished them, so I can spoil her for anything too upsetting or tell her to skip a series altogether, and I know she’s not ready to sign up for Viki yet either.)
posted by oh yeah! at 1:01 PM on January 20, 2022

I am currently watching this and IU's outfits are definitely a worthwhile reason to indulge in this drama!
posted by Julnyes at 9:15 AM on January 24, 2022 [1 favorite]

I need to vent about ep 10 for a minute. Chun-sung ends up meeting his mother who has been haunting a book where she keeps the pictures of her and her baby (Chun-sung).I don't know if more will be revealed later, but I feel so gutted for him. He meets his mother (from whom he has been estranged his entire life) and finds out she wants the pictures of them together to be hidden. And then escorts her to heaven like any other guest. There's no explanation or backstory. Just heartbreaking.
posted by miss-lapin at 12:18 PM on April 22, 2023

Ok NOW I need to vent about ep 13. Poor Chung Myung. Bugging around 1300 years and then has to save the dude who is healing Man-wol's heart even though he isn't the villain she thinks she is. Whatever pain she feels, my empathy is for him. Give that man some champagne and a spa weekend at least.
posted by miss-lapin at 10:12 PM on April 22, 2023

And more venting. My heart broke when Man-wol turned away from Chung Myung. I knew it was going to happen and hell HE knew it was going to happen (after all he just said, for the second time, this is the end for us) but man I wish that he had gotten more than what he did.
posted by miss-lapin at 8:26 AM on April 23, 2023

OK I finished it. I wish I liked it more.
posted by miss-lapin at 4:55 PM on April 23, 2023

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