Episode 1 -| Review Score – 4/5
Episode 2 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 3 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 4 -| Review Score – 4/5
Episode 5 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 6 -| Review Score – 5/5
Episode 7 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 8 -| Review Score – 4/5
Episode 9 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 10 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 11 -| Review Score – 4/5
Episode 12 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 13 -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 14 -| Review Score – 4/5
Ever wonder what goes on in someone’s head? Well, wonder no more. Yumi’s Cells is a charming, fun-loving Korean drama that dives head-first into this idea, taking inspiration from Pixar’s Inside Out. The premise is pretty simple and with a straight forward set of episodes and likable characters to boot, tvN have struck gold once more with this rom-com.
The story itself centers on Yu-Mi, an ordinary single working woman. She spends her days at Daehan Noodles, with a likable group of characters while remaining desperate to find “the one”. A failed blind date, an annoying coworker in Ruby and rotten luck combine to leave Yumi hopeless. Until one fateful day.
Set up on a blind date, Yu-Mi meets Koo Woong, a programmer who’s certainly not your conventional suave guy. He rocks up to the date in shorts and a t-shirt but the pair do slowly warm to each other over time.
This essentially forms the crux of the show, with lots of embarrassing scenarios popping up along the way. Woong has bathroom problems on his first visit to Yu-Mi’s house (every person’s worst nightmare!) while Yu-Mi ends up booking a hotel room with a glass bathroom. These scenarios work well to leave both characters vulnerable and buck the trend of having these characters perfectly suited to one another from the beginning.
This is an important theme really as Yumi’s Cells navigates through the ups and downs of relationships, before ending with a somewhat ambiguous and open conclusion. Now, it’s worth noting that the show has been renewed for a second season so this isn’t too much of a problem.
The unique element in all of this though comes from Cell Land. Inside each of us is a sort of village controlled by all our different emotions. If you’ve seen Inside Out then the concept here is pretty similar, although much more fleshed out in terms of world-building. From a Lust Cell that shoots out inappropriate innuendos to a dumb-sounding Hunger Cell that just wants to eat, each of these different Cells has its own personality, which works wonderfully across the season.
Some of the best moments for this show comes from seeing the difference between Woong and Yu-Mi’s Cell Lands – like Lustasaurus in Woong’s Cell Land compared to a simple character in Yu-Mi’s, is all part of the undeniable charm this one weaves so effectively.
Ultimately though, Yumi’s Cells is a well-written, fun-loving K-drama. It’s the perfect remedy to some of the more serious and gritty Korean dramas out there and a must-watch for anyone looking for a compelling romantic drama.
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Verdict - 8/10