Li Da Ren and Cheng You Qing have known each other for more than half their lives. Starting out as rivals in high school, and culminating to being each other's best friend and rock, the two have gone through all the ups and downs that life had thrown them. And despite knowing each other better than they know themselves, they've always been out of sync when it comes to love.
On You Qing's 30th birthday, as she frets about becoming old and unmarried, the two strike a deal. The first person to marry will win NT$100,000. As they both attempt to make their relationships work, they start to question why all their break-ups boil down to one point; their friendship with each other.
In a relationship where everyone can see that You Qing and Da Ren have secretly been in love with each other for years, the question becomes, who will take the next step and risk their friendship in order for them to finally become in sync?
This would be one of those dramas you regret not watching when you had the chance. Months before I completed the drama I decided to give this drama a go.
However back then all I could think about was Ariel's annoying character from her successful drama It Started with a Kiss 1+2. I played the first 10-15 minutes before Chen Berlin even appeared and I stopped watching. The first 15 minutes were slow, If I had known that I was a little bit more patient or gave this drama an actual chance then I would find myself falling in love just a few minutes after dropping. Why? Chen Berlin who is known as Li Da Ren in this gem of a drama appeared and he just lit the whole drama up.
I finished the first episode and I was already falling for this drama truly, madly and deeply. I found Ariel lovable! and Chen Berlin dashing! I would slap myself silly for not continuing after those 15 minutes. If only I gave the drama a real go then it would have been in my life longer.
We all make silly mistakes and I should really watch 3-5 episodes before thinking about dropping.
So this drama is about two best friends who have known each other for about 10-15 years and one thing is certain from the very start. Li Da Ren loves and has always loved Cheng You Qing. It is also obvisous that You Qing feels the same but she's a woman and she's naive and I guess you could say she's scared about losing Da Ren. Li Da Ren starts to date a girl called Maggie who is very annoying and If I ever come across a girl like Maggie I will run for the hills. The thing about Maggie is she plans and she plots. Maggie wants the perfect boyfriend/husband and this girl has a list of qualities her perfect man has to have and it just so happens Li Da Ren ticks all of her boxes (He would tick mine too) so this begins the love triangle. Even though I said "I would run for the hills" I would say she did help You Qing wake up a bit but You Qing is very complicated especially in her love life. This is when her ex-boyfriend comes back and they had/have a very intense relationship. You know the type one minute they are arguing and the next they are sucking each others faces off.
Throughout the whole drama we are rooting for Li Da Ren to win his girl! We want Cheng You Qing to wake up and realise that Li Da Ren has always and
will always be there for her. He is her soulmate. This is the type of drama where you watch one episode and you don't go "I might watch episode 2 tomorrow" no...
you say "Next episode NOW!" and you keep on saying that until you realise 13 hours of your life have passed and the drama is over. The couple is no more and you won't see anymore Li Da Ren and Cheng You Qing scenes. You will find yourself depressed and it will probably take you about 1-3 weeks to find another drama. However those 1-3 weeks of depression are worth those beautiful 13 hours.
P.S:. If you think Ariel and Joe Cheng are IT then think again. It's all about Chen Berlin and Ariel!
A story about two best friends who not so much fall in love as realize they've always been in love with each other, In Time With You is not groundbreaking in terms of the best-friends become lovers storyline, but it definitely is fun in its own way.
Far from having the over-the-top feel of so many Taiwanese dramas, In Time With You is more serious in its depiction. Da Ren and You Qing go through the ups and downs that all best friends face, and they display the inherent blindness towards each other that is so common between friends. The story-while sometimes head desk worthy when it comes to You Qing's selfishness and Da Ren's lack of action-is rooted in their family, work and friends as much as with each other, and it's great seeing a show where the two leads are so heavily influenced by others. Because that's reality.
The acting is great as always from Ariel Lin, who despite being given a character whose new on the heroine front (You Qing is anything but bubbly and more often the type of person you'd hate to know in real life), she still manages to pull off the moments that draw you in; You Qing's doubts about herself and her relationships as well as the ups and downs she faces as she nears the big 30.
While Chen Bo Lin and Sunny Wang had their moments and brought their characters to life, it was Ariel who really owned the show.
As mentioned , the story, while nice, was also quite frustrating as You Qing's story with Li Wei stretched out, and Da Ren's inactiveness continued, so much so that there was a point where you wondered whether Da Ren really suited You Qing and if Li Wei wasn't the better option. It would have been nice to see the two go through the ups and downs of having taken the next step, as being friends is one thing, but being in a relationship is completely different.
Overall, In Time With You is no trend setter but it is a great show to watch for those who are fans of the best friends become lovers concept, or for anyone who wishes to watch a Taiwanese drama that's more serious and realistic in its' portrayal. Not the best, but by far, definitely not the worst.