Are there really happy endings? As a kid I thought they existed. Forgive me, I have been watching or rather re-watching a couple of K-dramas, one because I am finding it hard to get hooked on to a show. Two, I don’t have much else to do. Usually, when you start watching a show and if it’s good, you develop a loyalty, which means you will patiently get through the show with all its ups and downs. Shows, Anime, Manga taught me about commitment. The meaning of being attached to something.
As I mentioned in my last post, I have been trying to find the passion I had when I was a teenager. So I went back not only to books, but to shows as well. Unlike books, I find it harder to get attached to shows, because they end abruptly. Some end in the middle, some end at a beginning. It’s only in India that shows never end. Everywhere else, shows come with limited episodes and seasons. In India, they go on for years. Characters die and come back, some characters are reincarnated and you follow the story through multiple generations. Essentially, they are endless.
Before I had access to the internet, TV was a dinner time watch of one episode of a melodrama my mother and father would put on. So I never really had a liking for TV from the beginning. When I did develop a liking it was for Beyblade and Pokemon, these I loved with all of my heart. Kids fighting by spinning tops or creatures popping in and out of balls at a kid’s beck and call.
Now as a grown-up I look for reality in what I watch. I am critical of fantasy unless it’s sufficiently justified. Now I look for things like ‘good acting’, ‘great storyline’, ‘strong scripts’. These concepts were alien to the child in me and to an extent still are. How I have changed? I grew more and more suspicious and grouchy with time.
So, I was watching one of my favourite K-dramas, While You Were Sleeping those who’ve watched it may agree or disagree. It’s a typical prosecutor romance drama except the protagonists have dreams about the future. To me, the popular opinion doesn’t matter. The acting was great, the script was great, the comedy was my kind, it was just such a wholesome show. Some dramas are not simply content, everybody has followed some content that is beyond criticism, you love it and cherish without any inhibition, as they are.
This drama kept me company in London through some cold, morose nights. Whether it was the Soundtrack, or one-liners, I developed a friend in the drama. Today, I began re-watching it. I began seeing it with fresh eyes, and I guess the success of the drama lies in being able to pull me back into it just like it did the first time.
Still, since I knew what to expect when the end came I smiled, instead of my heart sinking like the first time. Every time a good drama ends my heart sinks even if the characters end up getting married or they die or they succeed. Happy endings never feel happy. But, after re-watching this drama I finally felt alright when it ended. I understood what a happy ending means. It took me by surprise
It’s being satisfied when something comes to a close. It’s not that happy endings are a fantasy, or just a lie. They become fantasies and lies when you build them up in your head. I tend to do that, I expect so much from a happy ending, that perhaps it will never feel happy, forget happy enough. Sometimes less is more.
I’ve subconsciously been expecting so much from life that I am constantly disappointed. Maybe pessimism is just a manifestation of high expectations. So whenever something good happens, it invariably becomes and anomaly. I guess something slipped through the cracks with this show making me realise this fact about myself.
Although, I am not exactly sure about how I can lower these expectations. That’s the catch. Will I feel like this with the next ending, or will this be an anomaly? I may have to watch more shows, and get attached to them to test this. I am not sure. It was after watching this drama for the first time that other dramas stopped grabbing my unwavering attention. It raised the bar so high that all the other dramas I watched felt unsatisfactory. Yet, there’s a part of me that asks, just because it’s an anomaly does it make it any less of a reality? It does not.