March 17, 2020. It’s the first day of a de facto quarantine here in the San Francisco Bay Area. And one of my first thoughts is I wish had a group of friends like the gang on the Netflix Korean drama My First First Love (첫사랑은 처음이라서) to spend it with.
Having a little more time to indulge in some Korean dramas I may have missed in the last year, I finally got around to watching, quickly finishing and falling in love with My First First Love.
Starring Ji Soo, Jung Chae Yeon, Jung Jin Young, Choi Ri and Kang Tae Oh, My First First Love is a nostalgic and etherial slice of life story.
The series tells the story of Yoon Tae Oh (played by Ji Soo) as his friends, for different reasons, move into his home. Here they experience love, friendship, highs and lows and everything in between. At first strangers, they all grow closer while helping each other follow their dreams. Or in some cases, help each other find their dream.
My First First Love is a lighthearted and cheerful series that is grounded in reality. Sometimes that reality is very harsh. But each of the characters are able to learn and grow through their experiences.
The series does not wallow in idealism. It doesn’t try to be edgy just for the sake of being “edgy.” Yes, it’s wholesome. But it presents a realistic and down to earth picture of life for these characters. Thus, as a slice of life story, we the viewer are able to come along for the ride and are able to relate to the struggles and joys our new friends encounter.
And that may be the best aspect to take away from the series. Friendship. And the meaning of it.
Friendship can mean many different things to different people. It can be romantic or purely platonic. It can be between family members or total strangers. My First First Love is able to show friendship and its many forms. And because of that, it is able to invite you the viewer to become a friend of theirs as well.
That feeling resonates throughout the two season, 16 episode series. A feeling of hope and positivity thanks to knowing and having people who are there to lift you up when you need it. The little moments every day that can shape our lives and how to cherish those moments.
This is also the kind of story that requires pitch perfect chemistry from its cast to work. And you can be sure that that’s exactly what this series has. Our main five, with all their different personalities and struggles, are brought to life by a talented and charming cast. Things never get too crazy, but the cast is able to play off each other and work with excellent timing to hit all the right notes whether it’s the funny, laugh out loud moments or the quieter and more emotional moments.
My First First Love is a sincere look at this moment in time in the lives of Tae Oh, Song Yi, Do Hyun, Ga Rin and Hoon. It’s not so much a spoiler to say that everyone gets a happy ending because the joy of watching the series is in the journey and getting to know these characters as if they were your friends in real life.
As we live in a time of great global uncertainty, My First First Love is able to present a hopeful, yet strongly realistic story that engages you and in turn maybe instills a little bit of hope and happiness in your own life.