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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "I'm Not a Robot" Episodes 23-24

2018/01/11 | Permalink

The bulk of episode twenty-three is actually exactly what I was hoping for when it came to a reunion with Min-gyoo and Ji-ah. Sure, the whole situation is explicitly comically contrived, but it gets them talking. And the more Min-gyoo talks, the more obvious it is that he's a lonely socially isolated man who has no idea how ridiculous he sounds discussing AZ3 with excessive childish enthusiasm. Min-gyoo really needed this - a chance to talk about AZ3 with a stranger. That really was all he wanted.

But as usual everything beyond Min-gyoo's milleu is less impressive, mostly because none of it has been very well developed. Baek-gyoon and Pie have a whole extended conversation about Baek-gyoon wanting to get back together with Ji-ah. To be entirely honest, I wasn't sure for a long time whether Baek-gyoon and Ji-ah had actually been a couple or whether he just had a creepy crush on her. We never saw them do couple things in flashbacks, and it was unclear whether Baek-gyoon actually had permission to use Ji-ah as AZ3's character model in the first place.

In general "I'm Not a Robot" has used a lot of elaborate coincidences to hold its story together. Three times now Ji-ah has met Min-gyoo in completely different roles, not counting the near misses in episode twenty. Also her brother works as Min-gyoo's personal assistant. That last one is just completely random, since this aspect has never been important to the story and still isn't by the time we get to the end of episode twenty four.

Yoo-cheol too struggles for relevance, even though he is the main villain and acquires some critical intelligence about the AZ3 project. And also Min-gyoo's medical condition, apparently. I would have thought that everyone knew Min-gyoo had some sort of medical condition, what with the way he adamantly insisted that no one get close to him. In fact, the very first scene of the drama was just Min-gyoo aggressively jumping on a few people to prove he had it.

The main problem with "I'm Not a Robot" is that instead of developing its minor characters, the drama instead chooses to focus on redundant dead end storylines. It gets tiring - the last four episodes could have easily been just two. We have Ji-ah resisting Min-gyoo, they have a final romantic night together, and then the cliffhanger where he realizes the truth. Everything else has just been filler.

Review by William Schwartz

"I'm Not a Robot" is directed by Jeong Dae-yoon, written by Kim Seon-mi-I and Lee Suk-joon-I, and features Yoo Seung-ho, Chae Soo-bin, Uhm Ki-joon, and Park Se-wan.

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