Monday, November 20, 2023

Daily Dose of Sunshine

 For a few episodes of "Daily Dose of Sunshine" I thought it was verging on a rom-com, but it is a more than satisfactory drama.  There are a few relationships to follow, but the setting in a hospital psychiatric ward gives mental health a focus.  All sorts of mental disorders are brought to our attention.  

A Colo-rectal doctor with a patient in the psychiatric ward has his own OCD problem.  His rival for the attention of Jung Da-eun has a panic disorder which affects his ability to get a good job.  Patients with schizophrenia and suicidal tendencies are among those requiring care from psychiatric doctors and nurses.  Some of the staff are detached or at least apparently so, but many put in long hours and get attached.

There is prejudice against mental illnesses.  The main character Jung Da-eun goes through a serious bout of depression and when she goes back to work has to endure strong distrust from the relatives of patients that would demoralize anyone.  Staff is mostly supportive, but when hospital directors learn of the re-hiring they become concerned for the hospital's image.  We see that she and those she cares for are better off for her experience.

Among the general public depicted there was embarrassment associated with mental illness.  Discrimination was pretty blatant.  A supervising nurse pointed out that anyone could become mentally ill and we should not be judgmental.  An end theme was that everyone is balanced between normal and abnormal.

Rosalynn Carter died while I was watching the end of this series.   One of the her many accomplishments was her work bringing mental health to the public's attention.  There was an unhealthy stigmatism in America which she helped to alleviate.  We need more like her.

A personal beef.  IMDB gave more coverage to the dubbing actors than the original actors and I believe was misleading.  Nonetheless they gave it a higher than average rating and some very favorable reviews.  I watched the subtitled version, but the actual actors even in the dubbed version deserve the major coverage.  Dubbing is important to more fully appreciate the story for those who are turned off by subtitles, but the original actors are more critical to understanding.

There is a plot with a few sub plots and romance and humor, but likely you will remember the theme surrounding mental health and perhaps ponder how you might fit in.

The series was based on a webtoon by Lee Ra-ha who was a nurse drawing on her personal experiences.

Jae-gyu Lee is the director.  He actually has 9 film credits as an actor and only 2 as director.  I would say he does a pretty good job presenting the actors credibly. 

J. Q. Lee, writer has 9 credits as director, but this is first credit for writing.

Music was by Mowg.  He came by that name as a corruption of Mowgli of "The Jungle Book" when friends in New York noticed a resemblance.  He had fled to New York to get away from his parents who disapproved of his musical interests.  He plays different instruments, but is well established as jazz bass guitarist.  With many awards he has over 66 film credits including "Masquerade" (2012), "Miss Granny" (2014), "The Age of Shadows" (2016) and "Burning" (2018).   While checking bear in mind I actually bought two selections of Mowg's as well another of his from a different movie.

Min Kyung-Shin was the editor with at least 4 film credits.

Park Bo-young played the lead who went through a period of serious depression.  While in high school she did a television ad.  She got off to a fairly good film career, but got tangled with legal issues and was not in films for a few years.  She went on to be a leading lady with prolific awards in major hits.  She has 26 film credits including "The Werewolf Boy" (2012).  She has also been prominent in several charitable projects.

Yeon Woo-jin played the colorectal doctor with the obsessive compulsive disorder.  He started as a fashion model and went on to have 30 film credits including "Thirty Nine" (2022).  See which includes Thirty-Nine was well as a few other interesting series.

Jang Dong-yoon played the man with a panic disorder.  He has 18 film credits.

Lee E. Dam played a nurse colleague who didn't really want to be a nurse.  She has 5 film credits.

Chang Ryul played Dr. Hwang who provided good advice.  He has 11 credits including "My Mister" (2018).    See

"Lee Jeong-eun played a supervising nurse.  She was an assistant director in theatre and later got involved with musical theatre.   She also had been an acting teacher.  An early film of hers was a small role with "Mother" (2009) her first collaboration with famous director Bong Joon-ho.  A few years later he gave her a role as the pig's voice in "Okja" (2017).  Then he gave her most famous role in "Parasite" (2019) which won a lot of big awards including for her.  She has 46 film credits also including "The Attorney" (2013), "The Wailing" (2016),  "My Holo Love" (2020), "Hometown Cha-cha-cha" (2021), "Juvenile Justice" (2022) and "Our Blues" (2022).  See

Mental health is portrayed in many worthy movies and series.  As a series this one is easy to follow and understand.  I highly recommend it.

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