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Series / Wonderful Days

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Wonderful Days (Korean: 참 좋은 시절) is a 50-episode South Korean drama series starring Lee Seo jin, Kim Hee sun and 2PM’s Ok Taecyeon. It aired in KBS 2 in early 2014.

Kang Dongseok, a genius prosecutor in Seoul, is transferred back to his hometown of Gyeongju, and reconnects with the family he hasn’t seen in 15 years. His big, screwed-up family includes his older brother Dongtak, an events emcee and aspiring actor, his twin older sister Dongok, who is mentally challenged, his younger brother Donghui, who speaks with his fists and works as a bodyguard in a money-lending business, and his younger twin siblings Dongju and Dongwon, who haven’t even met Dongseok yet. These siblings live with their mother Soshim, their grandfather Gisu, their twin uncles Ssangshik and Ssangho, and their father’s mistress Yeongchun.


Cha Haewon, the daughter of the richest man in Gyeongju, is now living in poverty after her father’s death and works in the same money-lending business as Donghui. She used to be in love with Dongseok, the son of her family’s housekeeper, but got her heart broken after he betrays her feelings. Upon Dongseok’s return to Gyeongju, the two are reunited and rekindle their old love.

The series contains examples of:

  • Adorkable: Donghui in his attempts to be a father and to be a romantic.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: When they were young, Haewon always tries getting Dongseok’s attention, but he doesn’t seem to return her feelings. He actually likes her a lot, even before the time she started liking him.
  • Aloof Big Brother: Dongseok to his younger siblings. But he cares for them in his own way, he just can’t show it well.
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  • Always Identical Twins: Averted. All twins shown in the series are fraternal.
  • Amicable Exes: Dongseok and Haewon try to be this upon their reunion.
  • Amicably Divorced: Averted with Dongtak and his ex-wife, Suji, who are not in good terms and do not talk to each other. Also averted with Donghui and his ex-wife, Jeonga.
  • Anger Born of Worry: Soshim is prone to this towards all the family members.
  • Awkward Father-Son Bonding Activity: Donghui takes the kids out to camping, where he reveals that he is their father.
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: A non-romantic example. Dongseok and Donghui fight a lot but Donghui doesn’t betray Dongseok for Seunghun, and Dongseok helps and consoles Donghui whenever he has problems.
  • Badass Family
  • Bastard Boyfriend: Taeseop was this to Soshim and Yeongchun, and to all the other women he had. He doesn’t even remember Yeongchun upon their reunion.
  • Berserk Button: Don’t mention Jeonga or hurt Dongok while Donghui is in the vicinity.
  • Big Brother Instinct: All the big brothers have their moments.
  • Big Brother Mentor: When Donghui struggled with his studies, he asks Dongtak to teach him. Dongtak does, but not before suggesting that Dongseok should be a better tutor.
  • Big Brother Worship: Dongju and Dongwon admire Dongseok for being an intelligent man, unlike their other older brothers.
  • Big Fancy House: Haewon’s family used to live in one. Now, Dongseok’s family lives in a big house, but not as fancy as Haewon’s old house.
  • Big Little Brother: Donghui is taller than his older brothers, his uncles, and his father.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: The series revolves around the Kang family.
  • Black Sheep: Outsiders call Donghui this, as he is the only violent member of the family.
  • Bonding Over Missing Parents: Jeonga was an orphan and Donghui was abandoned by his birth parents. Donghui told Jeonga he wanted to raise the children together so the children wouldn’t bear the pain of not having parents.
  • Broken Pedestal: Donghui admired Dongseok and followed him around, but they grew apart after the diamond ring incident involving Dongok.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: Dongok had a crush on Dongseok, which worried the whole family. She gets over it after learning that she shouldn’t look at Dongseok in a romantic way.
  • Brother–Sister Team: Dongwon and Dongju.
  • Career-Ending Injury: Dongok is said to be smarter than Dongseok, and would have been more successful than him if it weren’t for the accident.
  • Celebrity Paradox: Avoided with the existence of 3PM, but an Okcat plushie is occasionally seen in the house. Taecyeon is the owner and creator of that character.
  • Chick Magnet: Donghui.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: Haewon hopes to have this with Dongseok.
  • Cool Big Sis: Haeju to Haewon, though she is sometimes more immature and petty than her younger sister. Haewon is this to Donghui, though the latter won't admit it.
  • Daddy's Girl: Haeju and Haewon, when their father was still alive.
  • Disappeared Dad: Dongtak, Dongok, Dongseok, Donghui, Dongju, and Dongwon’s father hasn’t come home in the past decades, except on the night when he “came home for ten minutes” and made Dongju and Dongwon.
    • Dongju and Dongwon aren’t actually his children, but Donghui’s.
    • Taeseop, the father, later comes back, and no one welcomes him, even his own father Gisu.
  • Disposable Fiancé Dongseok has a fiancée named Jingyeong, who surprisingly didn’t give much of a fight when Haewon and Dongseok got together.
  • Doorstop Baby: As a baby, Donghui was left in front of Soshim’s house, only with a note saying that he is Taeseop’s child.
  • Doting Grandparent: Gisu likes talking to and playing with all of his grandchildren, and welcomes Haewon, Misuk, and Wujin warmly and gives them the same treatment.
  • Doting Parent: Soshim dotes on all her children except Dongseok.
  • Double In-Law Marriage: Dongtak and Haeju were the first to get married, then Dongseok and Haewon.
  • Extreme Doormat: Everyone regards Soshim as this, because she allows her old mistress to order her around even though she isn’t a housekeeper anymore and does all of the chores in the house.
  • Family Business: The restaurant is owned by Soshim, Ssangshik, Ssangho, and Yeongchun.
  • Family Theme Naming: Dongtak, Dongok, Dongseok, Donghui, Dongju, and Dongwon. Haeju and Haewon. Ssangshik and Ssangho.
  • Feuding Families: Dongseok’s and Haewon’s households.
  • First Girl Wins: Haewon and Dongseok eventually get together.
  • First Love: Haewon’s first love is Dongseok. And his first love was her, too.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling:
    • Dongtak and Donghui are seen as the foolish siblings to Dongseok, but it’s actually the other way around because Dongseok doesn’t care about the family affairs.
    • Haewon is the responsible sibling to her older sister Haeju.
  • Gratuitous English: Donghui sings a song about personal pronouns while studying English.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Donghui.
  • Happily Adopted: Donghui, so much that he doesn’t accept his birth mother upon finding out her identity.
  • He Cleans Up Nicely: Donghui wears suits when visiting Dongju and Dongwon’s school, so that he could leave a good impression.
  • Hollywood Tone-Deaf: Dongtak tells Donghui not to sing because the latter is tone-deaf, but Donghui is played by an idol singer.
  • Housewife: Soshim, who eventually grows out of this stereotype once she starts expressing herself.
  • Instant Fan Club: Donghui gains one when he visits Dongju and Dongwon’s school.
  • Ladykiller in Love: Donghui turned down all of the pretty women for Jeonga.
  • Like a Daughter to Me:
    • Gisu loves Soshim and Yeongchun more than his own son. He loved Soshim so much that when he died, Soshim replaced him as head of the household.
    • Soshim tells Yeongchun that she doesn’t think of the latter as a mistress, but as her daughter.
  • Like Brother and Sister: Wujin and Mari, who are childhood friends.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: Donghui doesn’t tell Mari any of his problems, and she usually finds out from the children instead.
  • Love Before First Sight: Mari started to like Donghui based on the letter he left behind (which was actually written by Dongtak).
  • Love Confession: Almost all of the adult characters in the series do this at least once.
  • Massive Numbered Siblings: Soshim has six children: Dongtak, Dongok, Dongseok, Donghui, Dongju, and Dongwon. It’s later revealed that Donghui is not her child, and Dongju and Dongwon are his children, so she only has three children.
  • Missing Mom: Ssangshik and Ssangho’s mother passed away prior to the start of the series. Mul’s parents are divorced. The twins’ mother abandoned them.
  • Momma's Boy: Dongtak, Dongseok, and Donghui. But especially Donghui, who likes clinging onto his mom even though he’s already 29. He does not act towards this way towards his birth mother.
  • Multigenerational Household: The grandfather, his two sons, his daughters-in-law, his grandchildren, and his great grandchildren live in the same household.
  • My Sister Is Off-Limits!: When Dongseok and Donghui found out Dongok was seeing a man, they did not react positively.
  • Parental Abandonment:
    • Yeongchun abandoned baby Donghui in the cold at the doorstep of his father’s house, but years later, she comes back for him without telling him that she’s his mother.
    • Jeonga left the twins in the cold outside their house. Now that the twins are children, she tells Donghui that she doesn’t want anything to do with them.
  • Parental Favoritism: Soshim loves all her children but her favorites are Dongok and Donghui. Especially Donghui, who she spoils a lot and doesn’t spank. Donghui calls her out on it, saying that she must have seen him as a pitiful child who was abandoned by his mother.
    • Donghui gets angry when Gisu refuses to eat after Dongseok left the house, causing him to call out his grandfather on his favoritism.
    • After the boys marry, Soshim favors Haewon, while Taeseop favors Haeju.
  • Parental Substitute: The twin uncles say that Soshim was the one who changed their diapers and raised them since childhood. She was also the one who raised Haeju and Haewon. She also raised Donghui, who wasn’t her real son, and took in Yeongchun, who she treats like her own daughter.
    • Haewon says she helped Soshim raise Donghui.
  • Rags to Riches: Dongseok, who was a housekeeper’s son, became a successful prosecutor. Said housekeeper is now the owner of a restaurant.
  • Secret Relationship: Ssangshik and Misuk were dating for 10 years without anyone knowing.
  • Shared Family Quirks: Shown in an episode where Donghui and Taeseop were shown to have the same habit of scratching their neck.
  • Shout-Out: Mari is a big fan of 3PM, and 3AM is also mentioned to exist in the series.
  • Sibling Seniority Squabble: Dongwon, Dongju, and Mul argue about their roles in the family often.
  • Sibling Team: Dongwon and Dongju.
  • Sibling Triangle: Becomes a subplot when Ssangshik, who is dating Misuk, develops a crush on Myeongran, who falls in love with Ssangho.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: Dongseok is calm and stoic most of the time, while Donghui is violent and outspoken.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": The KBS YouTube channel has their names romanized as Dongseok and Donghui, but spellings like Dongsuk and Donghee are also common.
  • Stalker with a Crush: Haewon to Dongseok when they were young.
  • The Stoic: Dongseok.
  • Successful Sibling Syndrome: Dongseok was able to go to Seoul and become a prosecutor, while his older brother Dongtak fails to be an actor, his older sister Dongok stays at home, and his younger brother Donghui has a reputation for being violent.
  • Thicker Than Water: The reason why Donghui doesn’t betray Dongseok when Seunghun asks him to.
  • Time Skip: The series skips to one year after the reveal that Haeju is pregnant with Dongtak’s child.
  • The Unfavorite: Dongtak, which doesn’t go unnoticed by his son.

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