Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes
Drama stills from Netflix
When I first heard about Crash Landing on You, I thought it’d be too cheesy for me – a South Korean heiress crash landing in North Korea and falling in love with an army captain? But seeing all the hype over the BinJin couple, I decided to give the drama a go. And I couldn’t stop till the end!
The 16-episode drama, which just ended on February 16 on tvN and Netflix, is directed by Lee Jeong-hyo (Romance is a Bonus Book) and stars Hyun Bin (Memories of the Alhambra) as Ri Jeong-hyuk the army captain, and Son Ye-jin (Something in the Rain) as Yoon Se-ri the heiress. Jeong-hyuk conceals Se-ri’s identity by proclaiming that she’s his fiancée. The two gradually fall in love, but their relationship is complicated by interventions from various forces, including Jeong-hyuk’s real fiancée Seo Dan (Seo Ji-hye) and Se-ri’s ex-suiter Gu Seung-joon (Kim Jung-hyun).
Even though Jeong-hyuk and Se-ri look perfect as a couple, and the drama keeps emphasizing Se-ri’s impeccable fashion choices, I often felt more attracted to Seo Dan’s outfits (or even Se-ri’s mom’s, to be honest) when watching the drama. To decide who’s the true fashion queen, I’ve made a thorough comparison of what Se-ri and Seo Dan wear.
SPOILER WARNING: If you haven’t seen the drama, watch out for spoilers below!
Round 1: The powerful side
Both Se-ri and Seo Dan wear suit jackets a lot, but Se-ri’s choices have more variety in terms of cut, texture and color. Seo Dan’s longline monochrome felt coats make her look tall, but they also conceal her feminine figure, making her look rigid and boring. Luckily, she often wears silky tie-neck blouses beneath to counter-balance the sturdy coats.
Se-ri’s jackets are detailed with trendy elements like tweed, quilt, plaid, oversized contrast lapels, peplum and double-breasted cut. She also knows how to flaunt her gams and balance her look by wearing mini skirts. It’s true that Seo Dan probably can’t wear mini skirts in North Korea, so she’s doomed in this round.
Round 2: The playful side
While I expected Se-ri to play the fashion goddess after she returns to South Korea, her off-duty looks in her homeland are surprisingly tame. She wears staples like striped shirts, cardis, leather jackets and plaid coats… just like any other woman. She wears a gorgeous longline camel felt coat with black leather panels on the bodice when she goes to negotiate with Chinese gangsters, but other than that, I can’t recall another standout casual look from her.
Seo Dan wears leather jackets and plaid coats as well, but her leather jackets come in different lengths. I fell in love with the longline black lace-hem jacket that she wears with a red lace dress in her final appearance. There’s also another longline black leather jacket that she wears with a white side-bow blouse and sage green pleated skirt, and a mid-length one that she pairs with a coral leather shirt and black pleated skirt.
For this round, every time Seo Dan is juxtaposed with Se-ri, the former wins in my book – you could blame it on Se-ri’s lack of options when she’s trapped in North Korea. Yet even in Switzerland, Seo Dan’s boldly patterned blouse and white trench coat completely wins over Se-ri’s tourist tee when they meet at a souvenir shop, and I have to say Seo Dan’s black-and-white plaid coat is more eye-catching than Se-ri’s brown plaid coat when they meet on the bridge.
Winner: Seo Dan
Round 3: The feminine side
Seo Dan almost never wears knits when she’s outside. This can be a personal preference, but it hides her softer side and makes her look less approachable. She also refrains from wearing anything that’s too revealing. Florals give a feminine feel when done right, but head-to-toe florals make her look old-fashioned.
Se-ri wears lots of knits during her stay in North Korea, and the floral dresses she wears in the final episode are very impressive: she wears a bib-neck chiffon pleated gown with a high-bun hairdo, a Queen Anne-neckline bodycon dress with her hair down, and a soft pink bow-neck chiffon dress in the final scene.
Round 4: Hanbok-inspired
Seo Dan knows how to spice up her clothes with a touch of traditional hanbok aesthetics. She had me at hello when she made her first appearance in a stunning white-and-fuchsia outfit. There are also pops of bold but tastefully coordinated silky colors in her other outfits that make her look flamboyant without being pretentious.
Se-ri’s North Korean fashion haul is a daring try, but I doubt that anyone would wear those apart from at fashion shows!
Winner: Seo Dan
Round 5: Jewelry
Se-ri takes a rather minimalist approach to jewelry. She has tons of earrings but not many are exceptional. On the other hand, Seo Dan taps into the hair clip trend with her iconic hairstyle featuring lavishly bejewelled hair pins over her left temple.
Winner: Seo Dan
My overall fashion queen is Seo Dan. What about you?