Two months ago, (2021) tvN aired a fantasy romance drama entitled Scripting Your Destiny. The story centers around a god of destiny who falls in love with a mortal while writing her fate.
“Love… a gift from God for the courageous.” – Scripting Your Destiny
Ho-Yoon, a junior god of destiny, boasts that Jung Ba-Reum’s destiny is the most unique one he has ever written and is determined to make a masterpiece out of it. He wants to write a wonderful love story for Ba-Reum and, while contemplating what that could be, learns he personally knows Ba-Reum’s first love, Go Chae-Kyeong, a young woman who lives in the building where he is the landlord. When Ho-Yoon discovers Myeong, a senior god he knows, is temporarily writing Chae-Kyeong’s destiny, he makes a deal with him and begins writing her destiny himself so Ba-Reum will finally be able to be with the woman he loves. However, the more Ho-Yoon gets to know Chae-Kyoeng, the more he comes to care about her which is something gods of destiny are never supposed to do. Having feelings for a mortal and interfering in their written destiny is strictly forbidden, and the consequence of disobeying the rule brings about that god’s elimination.
“Whoever feels happy will go through an equal amount of hardship. Whoever suffers will gain an equal amount of wisdom. But regarding love… love is the only thing that is unfair.” – Scripting Your Destiny
Twenty-four-year-old Go Chae-Kyeong lives with her mother who runs the coffee shop in their building. She just recently took over as the head writer of the drama Accounting for the Married, when the show’s original writer left. The drama had been fairly popular until Chae-Kyeong took the reins but now the comments about it that she reads online are less than favorable. While in college, she changed her name from Go Eun-Seon to Go Chae-Kyeong because her mother was told her daughter would have a better fate with men if she had a different name. As a drama scriptwriter, she goes by her mother’s name, Yang Mi-Soon, and she also has the nickname Go’spresso.
Ho-Yoon and Myeong are gods of destiny stationed at Mapo Chilsung Hall.
Ho-Yoon is a sober person who never smiles. His mortal cover is as the landlord of the building where Chae-Kyeong and her mother live and work. He is a matter-of-fact type of person, unpretentious, and extremely honest. He wants to write a romantic love story for Jung Ba-Reum and ends up using the one in the short story Chae-Kyeong wrote while in high school, entitled Magenta Pink Rain.
Myeong is the senior god who often has to remind Ho-Yoon about the rules of scripting destinies. He fancies himself a romantic and thinks he knows just how to craft superb love stories for the humans he writes for. Myeong-Joo is handsome and quite personable.
Jung Ba-Reum is an assistant director at RBS TV station in the drama department where Go Chae-Kyeong is employed, although he has no idea she works there. He has liked Chae-Kyeong since they were in high school together, in fact, she was his first love. He is an intelligent, kind young man who hopes to make it big as a head director someday.
The actress who plays Go Chae-Kyeong is Jeon So-Nee. You can read about her in my When My Love Blooms review.
Playing the part of Shin Ho-Yoon is 26-year-old Ki Do-Hoon. He began his entertainment career in 2015 as a model and then went on to acting, his debut being via the movie C’est Is Bon. The dramas I’ve seen that he’s been in are Should We Kiss First and the second season of Love Alarm. He has yet to appear on the big screen.
The god of destiny Myung is played by Park Sang-Nam (who used to go by the stage name Park SeulMaRo) who has been active in the entertainment industry since 2015 when he debuted in the music video of TaeiK for I’ll Tall U. Since then he has been in several webdramas and has appeared in the dramas Age of Youth, My Sassy Girl, and Big Issue.
Twenty-seven-year-old Kim Woo-Seok plays the part of the too-good-to-be-true Jung Ba-Reum. He made his acting debut with a supporting role in the 2017 Kdrama Love Playlist: Season 2. Since then he has appeared in several other dramas but the only other thing I’ve seen I’ve seen that he’s been in is A Piece of Your Mind. Woo-Seok’s brother is singer Kim Min-Seok from the music duo MeloMance.
The one word I can come up with to describe Scripting Your Destiny is – boring. So, what’s the problem? Well, nowhere in the story was there a time I thought, “I cant wait to see what happens next.” The characters mostly just talk to each other. There isn’t even an obstacle anyone has to overcome until around episode eight, and there are only ten episodes in the whole thing! The show’s scriptwriter is Eun Sun-Woo, who happens to be a close junior of Kim Eun Sook (who has written many excellent dramas including Secret Garden, The King: Eternal Monarch, Descendants of the Sun, Mr. Sunhsine, and Goblin) whom she has worked with for a long time. Kim Eun Sook kindly helped out by giving lots of advice during the webdrama’s planning process. Interestingly enough, I wasn’t able to find anything else under Kim Eun-Sook’s name so it looks as if Scripting Your Destiny is her writing debut. All I can say is – Keep trying, Writer Eun.
I’m guessing scriptwriter Eun Sun-Woo is a big fan of the Japanese manga Death Note because this webdrama appropriates a few of that story’s ideas. In describing Scripting Your Destiny to my roommate, we began talking about the similarities between it and Death Note. (I love Death Note! I own both the manga and the movie and also have a Death Note t-shirt.) For those of you who are not familiar with Death Note, in the story, Shinigami are in charge of writing down the death of humans in the Death Note book, and whatever they write comes to pass. If a Shinigami falls in love with a human and uses the Death Note book to change the person’s fate, that Shinigami is killed/eliminated. (It happened to Gelus because of Misa Amane.) The biggest difference between the two plots is that the gods of destiny write every moment of a person’s life, whereas the Shinigami just write their death. However, rule-breaking results in the same punishment – elimination. If you’ve read the Death Note manga, watched the anime, or have seen the extremely entertaining 2006 Japanese movie of the same name, you’ll be able to detect the similarities of the two stories fairly quickly. Me?… I much prefer Death Note!
I was absolutely shocked when I discovered the director of Scripting Your Destiny, Kim Byung-Soo, is the same person that directed excellent dramas such as Nine: Nine Times Time Travel, Queen In-Hyun’s Man, Bubblegum, Bride of the Water God, Hwayugi, and He is Psychometric. This webdrama is nowhere near what he’s capable of – imagine a tenured university physics professor substituting in a kindergarten class.
There were way too many “oops” peppered throughout this webdrama. The following are some I noticed…
- Just a few minutes into the first episode we get the first very obvious one as Go Chae-Kyeong is checking out at a convenience store. We see exactly eight items in her hands, four yogurts and four ramens. She sets them on the counter but when the gal begins to ring them up, all of a sudden there are two different things there. Then we only hear about four check-out beeps before Chae-Kyeong is told how much she owes. Oh, and when Chae-Kyeong goes up to the counter she startles the employee there who is watching a drama on her phone and the girl quickly pulls out the earbud from her right ear. However, a second later it’s back in that same ear and she pulls it out once again! Yikes!
2. There’s one line where Ho-Yoon says he’ll be back at the time Chae-Kyeong had told him to show up the next day, but we hear the whole conversation and although she NEVER told him a time to come, she acts as though she did. Wrong reaction.
3. We see two people at a hot dog stand. One orders a hot dog and without the worker giving it to her, low and behold, it’s in the young woman’s hand the very next shot. A little later on she mentions she took one bite of it but the bite that is missing is facing the audience, not her mouth! What?
4. Although it’s raining, we don’t see any splashing as people are stepping out of a bus onto the pavement. Yet, when Chae-Kyeong gets off the bus in the same place everyone else did, she steps down and splashes into a big puddle. Now, how is that possible?
5. Twice we see with our own eyes that when a god of destiny develops feelings for a human, they are eliminated (disintegrate) immediately. However, when Ho-Yoon begins to fall for Chae-Kyeong, he hangs around for quite some time.
6. One god of destiny claims he had been eliminated many times but another explains that the third time a god of destiny is eliminated there is no coming back. However, the audience witnesses one god come back after being eliminated three times! Why would a writer make rules when they intend to not follow them?
7. It’s a huge deal that a lady comes to Chae-Kyeong’s mom and informs her that the landlord doesn’t want to renew the lease and she’ll have to move her coffee shop to some other place. Yet absolutely nothing is ever said or done about it after that initial encounter. Why bring something up and act like it’s a problem if it’s never going to be mentioned again?
8. Chae-Kyeong takes a bite of ramen from her own bowl and the other end of a noodle that is in her mouth is in Ho-Yoon’s mouth. The chances of that happening when two people are eating from the same pot is slim, however, the odds of it happening when one person is eating from their own bowl/lid is zero! Eight “oops” – almost one an episode. How can a writer and/or director miss things like this?
The drama’s music gets an A+. Every single song is excellent, so good, in fact, that it’s difficult for me to say which is my favorite. And the instrumental songs are delightful. A few that stand out as exceptional are Romantic Bright Theme l and ll, Silly Mistake, Unrevealed Fate, and Absurd Reality. You ought to check out the soundtrack and see for yourself. You can find it on YouTube if you’re interested.
The scenery that stands out in this drama is the place where all the human’s life destiny books are kept. They never explain what the place is but they do say the two gods we come to know are from Mapo Chilsung Hall so maybe that’s the name of the place. It’s round, extremely tall, has several small staircases throughout, a desk to write at, and TV-type screens that can show what’s going on in the human world. It’s pretty cool.
The god’s hall (workplace)
No evil characters
Writing leaves a lot to be desired
The story is kind of dull
Unoriginal- god’s of destiny mimic Death Note’s Shinigami
Lots and lots of “oops”
No chemistry between leading man and woman
Acting is only so-so