There is always room for a good ol’ fashioned romcom. The kind that easily puts a smile on your face with sweet, fluffy moments and an endearing and charming cast. SBS’ Business Proposal (사내맞선/The Office Blind Date) is exactly that kind of series. The romantic comedy features Ahn Hyo Seop, Kim Sejeong, Kim Min Kyu and Seol In Ah in a wholesome, feel-good story that takes on very familiar K-drama elements and puts together what is ultimately a fun and enjoyable time.
Shin Ha Ri (Kim Sejeong) is a researcher at GO Food. Her best friend Jin Young Seo (Seol In Ah) convinces her to go on a blind date instead of her and by posing as her. But she unexpectedly comes face to face with her company’s new president, the handsome and all-business Kang Tae Moo (Ahn Hyo Seop). Though Ha Ri’s initial goal is to turn Tae Moo off in order to save her friend from the arranged coupling, Tae Moo is instead all the more intrigued. And when Ha Ri is found out, Tae Moo proposes a contract in which they pretend to be dating in order to get his grandfather off his back about marriage as well.
Meanwhile, it’s love at first sight for Young Seo when she runs into Tae Moo’s best friend and executive secretary Cha Sung Hoon (Kim Min Kyu). And the hilarious romantic hijinks commence for our four main characters.
Business Proposal definitely does not aim to reinvent the wheel. The series relies on very familiar set-ups. Whether it’s the boss-secretary dynamic or the mistaken identity or piling up of little lies; it’s all familiar territory. But the series is able to keep everything fun, light and enjoyable.
It is a fast-paced affair as the series actually moves quite quickly with regards to the central “conflict.” And perhaps it moves a bit too quickly as a lot of the tension is resolved earlier than some might expect.
But the cast is able to elevate the straightforward material into something worth watching and enjoying.
Ahn Hyo Seop, Kim Se Jeong, Kim Min Kyu and Seol In Ah all play what might look like stock K-drama characters. But they do it very well. Their charm, charisma and chemistry overflows in a way that you can’t help but be engaged and invested in how their stories play out. Even when you know exactly what’s ahead. All are able to effortlessly handle the comedy and romance, as well as the sprinkling of dramatic moments. And their blend of mature sexiness and sweet fluff is an irresistible combination.
In stories like this, the main draw is always watching the fun cat and mouse game and the anticipation of when the house of cards regarding the unmalicious lies fall. With the series’ 12 episodes, they waste no time and do not drag things out longer than necessary.
Once the near-misses and big revelations are over, the series moves on to focus on the budding romance for our two couples.
Though the series might slow down a bit by the end, when it comes to stories and a series like this, that is perfectly fine. Again, Business Proposal does not aim to redefine any concepts. And in fact, other series have done a better job at taking a similar premise and giving it a refreshing twist.
But Business Proposal is ultimately an irresistibly charming and enjoyable time. Its wonderful cast and wholesome, feel-good approach to familiar ideas is more than enough for a fulfilling, romantic and fun K-drama experience.