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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Golden Tower" Episode 7


Apparently Chuseok is now kind of like Valentine's Day? I know that sounds a little absurd on its face, but think about it. This is a rural district with an obvious deficiency in possible romantic partners, and parents who are pretty insistent that the family legacy continue. Of course love stories are going to take a central part of that, even if it comes off as absurdly melodramatic as in an exhortation from the deathbed.

As usual "Golden Tower" continues to have a good sense of humor about all this. There's actually two deathbed exhortations here, and the second one is even more absurd. Most of the episode is just comedic misunderstandings, really, and even when they're obviously going to be dumb jokes, it's never really clear what that dumb jokes is going to be. The completely innocuous gift of a watch, for example, leads to an absurd misunderstanding that leads to another misunderstanding that all has to be cleared up with a silly explanation that everybody accepts because who cares it's Chuseok let's party.

The pacing is still weird. "Golden Tower" is apparently now in a pattern where the first thirty minutes plays out like a normal sitcom and the next fifteen minutes is just a preview for the next episode, which is kind of like only being able to hear the set-up to a joke without actually getting to the punchline. The comedians are all of good enough quality that they're still fun to watch, but I'm really not sure why the scripting's set up like this. Maybe tbecause technically this is part two of a three part episode?

Well it's still annoying. A big point is made of a billiards battle, and then we never actually get to see it. I don't know who the guest star is- presumably someone very good at trick shots, yet the camera frustratingly never gives us a full view of the table, which is by far the best way to present pool playing shenanigans. It's fortunate that there's all these other shenanigans going on or else this would be particularly irritating.

Just to be totally clear though- a few organizational hiccups notwithstanding, this is another very strong episode of "Golden Tower". Everybody seems to have fully figured out the kind of comedic persona they're going for, such that when we get slight alterations of the characters' normal personalities, it all comes off very organically. Even though there's plenty of the usual holiday stress conflict, "Golden Tower" doesn't overemploy its hand, resulting in a very fresh fun episode that catches a wide variety of the holiday's emotions. The conclusion to the harvest season next time is sure to be a fun enough time as well.

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-ki.

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