TvN’s Start-Up, which can be streamed on Netflix, has caused K-drama fans quite a frenzy as to whose love train should they be on between the geeky Nam Do-san and the business savvy Han Ji-pyeong. To be honest, we at HanaDulSes are confused as well; both have good intentions for Seo Dal-mi, both are good-looking, and both are skilled in their own right.
Nam Do-san may not be the typical male lead which are often characterized as manly assertive, confident, and to some extent dominant. However, his masculinity rests on his ambition and his kindness. He is even referred to by his friends as the “Living Buddha”. Han Ji-pyeong on the other hand possesses the typical characteristics of a traditional male lead – successful, assertive, affluent, and charming. No wonder fans are divided because of how well these two leads were characterized differently which provided a picture of the different colors of masculinity; that male personality is not one dimensional.
The narrative of the drama does not even help the divided fans. Han Ji-pyeong is the voice of the letters Seo Dal-mi exchanged with when she was young while Do-san is the name behind those letters. It basically is a love battle between Seo Dal-mi’s past and her present. With only two episodes left, Start-Up’s love train will finally reach its destination. Whose dreams will prevail and whose hearts will be left broken.
May we always choose to do the things we love the most…
P.S.: Episode 14 might be a huge tell-all… 🤔