Saturday, June 9, 2012

I Do, I Do (through episode 4)

This drama is really unusual.  At least, maybe, my reaction to it is unusual because it may just be me.  But I'm not really feeling the love line but I am completely invested in the two female leads.  

A lot of K-dramas have trouble with the heroines.  Sometimes they are nothing more than a cardboard cut out that reacts to the hero but we have trouble understanding what motivates them or why they are feeling what the audience is told they feel.  And as for the B female lead, well usually she's just a crazy, clingy chick who puts the E in Emotional Disorder. 

The reason I'm digging I Do, I Do is that both women are becoming very compelling in their own right, away and apart from the male leads and their story lines, particularly when they are together. A lot of this is the writing, but I think you really have to credit the actresses, Kim Sun-ah and Lim Soo-hyang.

Spoilers after the jump...

In episode 4, Yeom Na-ri has a confrontation with her mother that spoke volumes about their relationship.  There is an adversarial quality that makes me wonder if her mother doesn't see her as competition in some way.  Particularly as it seems to be one-sided.  Yeom Na-ri's interactions with her mom and the phone call to her father in episode 3 where she was practically begging him to make some time for her point to a young woman who is desperate not just for her parents' approval but their attention as well.  

My hope is that she will find a mentor in Hwang Ji-an and that Hwang Ji-an will lighten up and realize that people are just as important as success. 

Hwang Ji-an is right at the verge of reaching the goal that she has worked for. Yeom Na-ri's mother favors her for the presidency and is dangling the possibility of a pret-a-porter  line.  I loved the fact that there is a guy (I'm not sure of his name) that Park Tae-kang meets who knew Hwang Ji-an before her success.  The story of her fumbles as a rookie makes her seem more human but also shows just how hard she's worked to get to where she is.  That kind of struggle makes a person hard.  No wonder she's turned into Medusa. 

But I think she is also like a lot of successful people in that she's failed to generalize that struggle.  It's been all about her.  She doesn't seem to realize that everyone else is struggling too. Like Park Tae-kang says "Why does everybody have to be so mean?"

For Yeom Na-ri there are two reasons: 1.  her mom prefers Hwang Ji-an to lead the company.  2.  Being the same age as her mother, Hwang Ji-an is displacing her anger at her mother on Hwang Ji-an.  So she's kind of repeating that whole "my mother, my competitor" thing all over again at the office. 

I also find it interesting how Yeom Na-ri and Hwang Ji-an's relationships with their parents are contrasted against the loving relationship Tae-kang has with his dad.  He is struggling the most out of anyone (he's homeless, for pete's sake!) but I would say that he is generally the happiest.  His suffering is situational, but his dad clearly says "I believe in you.  Who would I believe in if not you?"  That's all any child wants, really.

"My life isn't more worthwhile just because I'm higher in rank." Thanks to some baby therapy (you are too darn cute, even if you do keep making really bad menopause jokes, Dr. Jo) Hwang Ji-an's becoming a human.  And when she confronted the gossiping hens at work: Badass.  We know how much it took out of her to do it, but that just makes it even more brave. I think that might be the point that I started to like her as a character, as well. 

So now she's got a deadline for becoming human:  9 months.

ETA:  According to Dramabeans, Madame Jang is Na-ri's future stepmother.  This seems odd considering the conversation in episode 4 where Madame Jang refers to Na-ri's overcoming her (Madame Jang's) vulgar roots.  Sigh!  It's tough depending on subs and recaps.

No comments:

Post a Comment