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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Golden Tower" Episode 10

2014/09/24 | 413 views | Permalink

Well, the parody of "Tazza: The Hidden Card" was exactly as advertised. It is indeed a parody of that movie. I don't mean to flippant here but the whole plot trajectory is pretty obvious from the beginning so there's not much to be surprised about. Personally I blame the preview from last time. All there really is to look forward to here is the contortions the cast goes into here pretending to be characters pretending to be tough gamblers who end up running up against actual professional gamblers and inevitably failing.

More surprising territory is entered here with the parody of "My Brilliant Life", which isn't really a direct parody. Mostly it's just wordplay and the overarching theme of the second part of the episode, which is about how sons aren't actually magical and wonderful, but actually kind of terrible. Some people wonder why it is that Koreans these days prefer daughters over sons when in antiquity it was the other way around. The argument presented here is a fairly convincing one.

"Golden Tower" is still a fun gag comedy show, but I wonder if at this point I've just adjusted to it to well. Most of the bits are funny, they're just not outrageously super funny. The drama's mainly just coasting along on the minimum standard of providing a sense of relief to a person who's had a long day by providing lots of dumb jokes and over-the-top acting in a rural setting where the problems are completely different compared to our own.

To be sure, it's a sense of humility I still very much appreciate. While pretty much all the characters are either scammed or somehow found out by the gamblers, the person who got everyone into this mess in the first place is the guy who's been agonizing this whole time about betraying the trust of the farmers. It's appropriate that he's the one who has absolutely no clue how gambling schemes actually work and is the one in need of rescue. Especially when that rescue is entirely thanks to a good deed he did last episode with no expectation of a reward.

The humor pretty much works well enough here that I don't have much to complain about. It's hard to escape the impression, though, that I was supposed to relate to these situations a little more. I've never gotten deep into gambling, nor have I ever agonized that much about my position in life as a son or as a potential father. Maybe these threads run deeper in Korean culture- who knows? "Golden Tower" isn't about serious exploration anyway. It's just a vehicle for jokes after all.

Review by William Schwartz

"Golden Tower" is directed by Min Jin-gi, written by Jeong In-hwan, Jo Seung-hee-I and features Choi Jong-hoon-II, Lee Yong-joo, Kim Jae-woo, Baek Bong-ki, Hwang Je-sung and Bae Seul-gi.

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