Strong Woman Do Bong Soon shows how a lovable and well written lead couple can elevate a romantic comedy to new heights.
The premise alone is fairly interesting, with the leads flipping traditional gender roles. The female lead is the strong, "hero" of the show while the male and second male leads take on the more conventional role of the sidekicks. She undergoes a good amount of character development, learning to love herself and fit in better with society while the male lead is the more socially adapted one who supports her. The swapping creates for a more refreshing story because the base premise is fairly new at it's core. Are there some cliches? For sure, there's the chaebol shenanigans, but even those aren't dragged out unnecessarily long and have their own little twists thrown in. And the added touch of a darker mystery gives some heft.
The strongest aspect by far though, are the main couple. Bong Sun is the more weakly written character still manages to undergo a lot of growth and flip between being a cute, twenty-something girl and someone whose not afraid to use her strength to help others. A lot of the winsomeness draws from Park Bo Yeong. The breakaway however is Park Hyeong Sik, who makes An Min Hyeok a memorable, charming male lead whose facial expressions are great. He's improved leaps and bounds, and a shout out has to go to the writer for creating a male lead who can accept that he can't fix everything and sometimes just needs to be the supporter for what his girlfriend wants to do. The villain of the show is creepy in a way you would expect from a darker, thriller and lacks a certain narrative oomph but he does well enough to cause tension as needed.
The supporting characters are by far weaker, with Guk Du being a weak contestant and Bong Sun's family, while loving, often feeling flat (or as the case maybe in certain situations, infuriating based on actions). Some aspects of the comedy also fell flat or cringeworthy; you got an idea of what the show was aiming for but it felt somewhat insulting and annoying. The gang (both the adult and high school ones) add some nice comedy but eventually began to feel old the longer the jokes and scenes ran. The attraction of the show was the main couple, and when the focus wasn't on them, it was definitely felt.
A recommend for any fan of romantic comedies. Even if the rest of the show becomes weaker over time, you'll love the main couple.