One of the newest dramas to star an idol, Sweden Laundry, has developed a decent following online. It stars Song Ha-yoon as Bom, an adult tired of her mother’s favoritism towards her siblings and Teen Top’s Changjo as Soo Chul, a hard working artist with a soft spot for Bom.
Bom works hard to support herself and her family in various jobs, however, with little appreciation from them. She then decides to follow her dreams and the first step is opening a laundry mat. Bom receives a gift from her dearly departed grandmother to aid her in becoming successful: the ability to see what problems people are having in their lives from simply touching their clothing. Originally, Bom wants nothing to do with others, despite being assured that helping them would lead to her own success, and being warned bad things would happen if she did not. Eventually, a series of accidents convinces Bom to follow her grandmother’s words, starting with helping budding artist Soo Chul.
SPOILERS – From the first episode it seems this is a dramatic retelling of Cinderella, with Bom first being introduced washing laundry outside while her mother and sister, Eun Sol, ask to borrow money to prepare Eun Sol for another audition. Bom’s brother, Eun Chul, is a brainiac currently studying to become a judge and is also pampered by their mother.
Bom is able to buy the space for a laundry after recieving a loan from her friend, and suspected loan shark, Young Mi. After she sets up shop, Bom has an encounter with Soo Chul where she causes him to lose his art work. Soo Chul is the first person she said required to help, much to her disdain. However, she is able to recover his artwork and form an odd friendship with Soo Chul, who sets up a makeshift art studio in the laundry shop.
Bom and Soo Chul have many adventures in attempting to help others, eventually having to deal with personal issues through her gift. Many of which seem like fillers to segway into the bigger plot in later episodes. In between these adventures, Eun Sol deals with the issues of being a newbie actress, including having difficulties booking jobs. Eun Chul also has a bit of an identity crisis ultimately deciding to quit his schooling and earn money to prevent their mother from having to take extra odd jobs. Out of this Young Mi’s seemingly pointless crush on Eun Chul begins to change, with Eun Chul and Young Mi spending the night together at a hotel.
Bom goes through some personal growth as well; one of her tasks includes going to great lengths to help her first love, Ki Joon, and his fiancé find a lost couple ring. In the midst of everything, Soo Chul decides to confess his feelings for Bom, who has a vision of these events and tries to prevent them from happening. It seemed the more dramatic the drama became the more realistic the acting from HaYoon became.
The drama comes to a head when Bom has a vision involving herself. Out of this, it is discovered Young Mi is pregnant and ______ is injured, different than in Bom’s vision. Eun Chul and Young Mi decide to get married and this causes issues between their mothers. This conflict is highly entertaining at times, especially when they drink together and cry about their issues. A running gag is the un appealing appearance of Young Mi’s father, with people becoming physically ill seeing him.
As usual with dramas there is a big secret involving Bom’s family and Bom mistakenly thinks she is adopted. In reality, Bom’s mother is step mother to Eun Chul and Eun Sol, having taken them in after the death of her husband. In relation to a deal (raising Eun Chul into a fine adult)their mother had with Eun Chul and Eun Sol’s biological aunt, she must pay her back for various expenses spent on Eun Chul through out his life. Addditionally, Eun Sol is angry at her mother for not revealing the truth and runs away from home. The family manages to pull back together in time for Eun Chul and Young Mi’s wedding. Bom and Soo Chul also end on a hopeful note before his departure for a job in America.
Despite the goofy premise of the show, it is well worth watching. Both fans and non-fans of Teen Top will enjoy this show, including a single-episode cameo from Teen Top’s Niel. Also for those who will watch for Changjo, you will be pleasantly surprised at how much you like the series as a whole. Changjo and Ha Yoon have very good chemistry together and make episodes more enjoyable. Many people voiced complaints about the ending of this drama however, the possibilities it holds makes it almost better than a romantic kissing scene. Almost.
Photo Credit: DramaFever
—- Ke’Anna Bullard