Dream High is a Korean drama/musical series but I’m not in the authority to say if it is or isn’t a Glee rip-off because I don’t watch the latter. You know that this would be an entertaining series because five of the main stars of the series are KPop idols. They are Ham Eun Jung from T-ara as Yoon Baek Hee; Suzy from Miss A as Go Hye Mi; IU as Kam Pil Sook; and the 2PM guys – Taecyeon as Jin Gook and Wooyoung as Jason. The only pure actor from the group is Kim Soo Hyun who plays Song Sam Dong. He managed to be at par with the others, even in the performances.
The six are students at Kirin Art High School and the series showed their struggles as they try to achieve their dreams of becoming superstars. The first episode introduced the singer K, who is said to be the first Korean to win a Grammy. Any of the six can be K and this is apparent as their talent level progressed with each episode.
Every episode featured at least one musical performance from the group. The target audience is definitely the Kpop fans but it was still enjoyable according to my aunt who doesn’t care about the idols at all. One of the memorable performances in Dream High was when Pil Sook, Hye Mi, Sam Dong and Jin Gook performed SNSD’s Genie.
IU, Suzy and Eun Jung were the real reasons why I watched Dream High. Eun Jung’s acting has greatly improved compared to her performance in Coffee House. She’s the resident bitch in this series that I would love to hate but just can’t do it.
IU did well considering it was her first time to act. Her character used to be fat but she strived to slim down to achieve her dream and to get Jason to notice her. IU is one talented girl and the character of Pil Sook felt like it was tailor made for her.
Suzy was criticized for her acting in the early episodes but you can tell she worked on improving it as the show went on. For a first time actress I’ll give her a passing grade. She’s the opposite of Pil Sook because in the last episode of Dream High, she looked like she gained weight.
It’s not just the students who made Dream High a good drama series. The teachers also contributed to make the episodes interesting. I had my doubts when I learned that Park Jin Young will be on screen aside from being the musical director of the series but all of it was erased when he provided a lot of funny moments that is a welcome break from the heavy stuff.
Uhm Ki Joon is Teacher Kang, the mentor of the Dream High kids. His acting was definitely the most consistent one from start to finish. Plus his love line with Teacher Shi was fun to watch.
Lee Yoon Ji plays Teacher Shi. I have a love-hate experience with her character. She is Baek Hee’s mentor, which means she is the bitch who taught Baek Hee how to be one. But in the end she made amends and became a good teacher to the six stars. Plus the teacher triangle Kang-Shi-Yang was very entertaining.
Ahn Kil Kang played Ma Doo Shik, who is the first good loan shark I’ve seen in a Kdrama. Not only did he bankroll and jumpstart the careers of the 6 Kirin students, he even turned away from being a loan shark and started a legitimate business.
There were no surprises when Dream High ended except for the identity of K. Let’s just say that he’s neither Jason nor Jin Gook. Everyone is successful in their own ways and not everyone became a pop star in the end, which made the ending more believable.
Dream High is a good drama – all 16 episodes of it. It has all the right elements of a drama. Plus I’m satisfied with its ending. It might have some lapses in the acting department but it made up for it with the jokes and the heart-felt performances from the cast members.