The title cards for each episode of "Because It's the First Time" aren't really descriptive. They're more like punch lines that only make sense after the joke has been told. It's like a stand-up comedy routine where the comedian straight up tells you what the punchline of the joke is going to be, but it takes him so long to get to that point that by the punchline comes up you've forgotten that he told you the joke in advance, so it becomes funny again grabbing it from memory and realizing how the delivery of the joke was misleading.
As that run-on sentence indicates, explaining how this specific joke works takes almost as much time as you need to just tell the joke in the first place. Which is a fairly accurate summation of "Because It's the First Time" as a whole. The humor isn't really witty so much as it is overly self-involved. Which is appropriate, because this is exactly the kind of life attitude the main characters have. Why settle for easy solutions when complicated ones allow for more time to hear your own voice?
The cast has really good chemistry- all of them consistently give off a convincing sense of simultaneously being annoyed by their friends while also being hopelessly unable to extricate themselves from all the endless, pointless drama. Song-yi is especially amusing as the young woman who doesn't seem to have any actual attractive traits at all, yet constantly manages to endear herself to the men in her life via sheer quirky eccentricity.
This too is an accurate descriptor of the drama's overall tone. No matter how annoying and stupid the characters get watching them bumble through life is actually kind of cute. They're not mean-spirited so much as they are inexperienced and used to getting what they want. It's hard to begrudge them for facing the day with a smile when we're constantly reminded of the lousy part-time jobs they have to struggle through.
"Because It's the First Time" has the bubbly cheerfulness of a web drama with the kind of ephemeral conflicts and conflict resolutions that well behoove the format- so I'm still a little surprised that "Because It's the First Time" is not, in fact, a web drama. It's certainly better paced than most of them. While there's not much of a story to speak of isn't that what life generally is when you're twenty anyway? Just trying to decide if something is about to begin or not.
Review by William Schwartz
Staff writer. Has been writing articles for HanCinema since 2012, having lived in South Korea since 2011. Started out in Gyeongju, then to Daegu, then to Ansan, then to Yeongju, then to Seoul, lived on the road for HanCinema's travel diaries series in the summer of 2016, and is currently settled in Anyang. Has good tips for utilizing South Korea's public bus system. William Schwartz can be contacted via firstname.lastname@example.org.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Because It's the First Time" Episode 2"
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