Mystic Pop-up bar

(From left) Manager Gwi, Wol-Ju and Sung Jae.

Cast and characters

  • Yook Sung-Jae – Han Kang-Bae
  • Hwang Jung-Eum – Wol-Ju
  • Choi Won-Young – Manager Gwi

The story

With just a touch, Kang-Bae has the unfortunate ability to make people share their deepest, darkest and saddest woes. It has complicated his life massively to say the least.

One day, he bumps into Wol-Ju who discovers his ability. She becomes super interested in him because his unique ability could help her fulfill a centuries-long goal of resolving the grudges of 100,000 souls.

Not exactly a people person, Wol-Ju finds it challenging to get people to pour out their woes to her. (She’s not exactly the touchy-feely type.) But Kang-Bae will allow her to speed up the process and get her job done fast. An especially valuable talent now that her deadline is fast approaching.

If she’s not able to meet her 100,000 goal in time, she will end up in (gasp) hell.

My thoughts

I was really bored during COVID-19 lockdowns and Mystic Pop-Up Bar felt light and funny enough so that I didn’t have to think about killer mutant viruses, so I decided to try it.

However, I was pretty sure that I would quit it in an episode or two out of boredom. When it first came out I was influenced by a review that said that the show didn’t offer anything exciting, so I assumed it was going to be a yawn fest.

I was pleasantly surprised! I loved Wol-Ju. I totally didn’t recognise Hwang Jung-Eum, who played her. I often found her acting a little too screechy for my liking, but she totally embodied Wol-Jul here. Her shrieky ways was perfect for hot-tempered bar madam Wol-Ju, and her comedic timing made it even better.

What I like about the show

Quirky fun, with an unexpected angsty plot that threads throughout the show. The show deceptively begins on a heavy, sad note – making you think that it’s a tragedy. Then it quickly becomes a fun, quirky show and for a while, we forget its tragic start. However, we will soon understand the haunting beginning of the show, and the tragic tale comes to a very satisfying conclusion at the end of the show.

What I didn’t like

That it’s so short! The drama is only 12 episodes long which was unusual for a Korean drama, which is usually about 16 episodes long.

I would have loved to see more of our trio, especially after all the secret histories were revealed in the last episode.


Very – the drama/grudge of the week episodes is all memorable and fun in their own way.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars!


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