The perspective shifts this time around from Chang-min to Jin-hee. Jin-hee has broken the cardinal rule of pretty much any social relationship ever- make a good first impression. In retrospect it probably would have been a better idea for her to show up late with a doctor's note rather than stumble out into the middle of the introduction still wearing her dirty clothes from last night. Not just Chang-min, but all of the other interns are icy toward Jin-hee, probably because they don't think she'll be around that long.
While the first episode showed the breakdown of the Chang-min / Jin-hee relationship as being a collaborative effort, this time the sympathy is clearly with Jin-hee. She's just in a much more sympathetic situation. Even if her ex-husband wasn't standing around making life miserable for her, most people can relate to the fallout from making a bad first impression. Jin-hee is capable of being a good doctor, but that's not something she can easily prove immediately.
Unless we count the ending anyway. Which frankly, I thought was really weird. It's clearly a near death situation with serious dramatic stakes, but the direction tries to play the sequence off as comedy. The music too is rather inappropriate. If anything about all that was supposed to be funny I failed to see the humor in it. Hopefully by the next episode we'll get some down to earth fallout from what happened.
Beyond obsessing about the future direction of a drama that's only just started, it's also worth taking into account the way Chang-min's character is exposed here. The guy's just really bossy- not just to his ex-wife but to all the other interns too. In one memorable scene Chang-min even tries to dictate terms to a superior- this goes about as well as might be expected. Ironically, if Chang-min would give the actual honest reason why he doesn't want to work with Jin-hee, he might make more progress. Chang-min is still stuck in a cycle of assuming people should do whatever he says. The other interns might put up with it for now, but in time I imagine this could become a problem.
The characterization in "Emergency Couple" remains strong, and aside from the aforementioned awkward ending, the drama does a fairly good job of capturing how people's personalities dictate the way they act in an unfamiliar situation. As of yet, though, I don't feel the drama as a whole is particularly strong. There's no compelling humor or story hook. At the same time nothing is really horribly awful though, so it's probably worth waiting around to see what this drama is trying to do.
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] "Emergency Couple" Episode 2"
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