The story of Gu Jae Hui, a girl, who comes from America to meet her idol Gang Tae Jun -- a high jump star. In order to meet him she must pretend to be a boy and become a student in his school. Jae Hui wants to support Tae Jun because for some reason he decided to end his career.
Jae Hui is a lovely boy, living in an all-boys school in Seoul and shares a room with her big idol Tae Jun. Her best friend is Eun Gyeol and even though she sometimes has problems with other students, everything seems normal. Or rather would be, if she wasn't a girl and hiding her true identity. She came to the school to help her idol - Tae Jun - back to high jumping. Because back in time, when she lived in America, he helped her out with his wise words and now she wants to return the favour by helping him jump over his shadow - and that without having anyone realize, that she's a girl! Let the game begin...
The first part of my review shall be only about this Hana Kimi, and no other version I've watched so far.
It's a nice story. A story that you can hardly mess up. Having some guys think they are gay and watch them later when they realize it's a girl is nice! Worked in many series already. And the school is also rather funny. Even the rather bad actors didn't make me hate the drama in any way. It was a bit hard to watch them play that way, but it was okay. I've seen worse. Actually, Hyeon U, the one who played the second main male character, was pretty good! I liked his acting and looks. And also the rest of the cast was nice. Just Minho rather disappointed me and I would've expected Sulli to be more...masculine. Since she played a boy and they gave her that role and all... I won't even mention Kwanghee and how forced his acting looked. Maybe he should try to go for Taiwan dramas? Poor guy...
Now, for the story - they did chagnge quite a bit, but that made it enjoyable. For example, they did mess around with the ending. And they also changed some characters. But I think they wanted to make it better with that, and even though I can't say it was a lot better than usual, I also can't say I dislike the changes.
What I dislike is all the advertising in the whole drama. All the time. It's from SM Entertainment, so the two leading characters are from an idol group. Fine. The whole OST is sung by SM stars. Still fine. But letting EXO appear in the drama was already very awkward and seemed desperate. Oh, and have I mentioned the load of Samsung ads in it? Normally you can only see the phone, but here, they even show you how awesome their new camera is and what aweseome functions it has! Annoying! Really, I wouldn't mention it, if I didn't find it really annoying. They even had the nerve to make some single shots with only the camera screen on it, showing it's loading bulk and how they switch screen... Annoying!
Now, compared to other Hana Kimi versions, it wasn't that bad. I liked the chemistry between the characters and the school still looked like a lot of fun. I just didn't like how nobody ever doubted her as a boy. She doesn't look like one in any way I could think of, where Ella in the TW version really looked like a boy! I think even Maki did a better job trying to hide her feminine side.
In the end, they tried really well changing the story to make it better and didn't fail at that. Additions were nice to watch, the pace was good and aside from all the ads, I like it.
But the acting was way too bad for me to give it more stars. 3* and a recommendation for all the SM Entertainment fans out there.