The story has long since moved past tensionless social battles. The last cliffhanger featured Jin-han losing his temper and making direct threats. And the cliffhanger here is even more pronounced. Eun-soo has finally managed to anger enough people severely enough that they're willing to respond with force instead of just letting her insult them for another day. The fact that Eun-soo has a defendable angle no longer matters. Eun-soo has been too deceptive and manipulative at this point for anyone to believe anything she says anymore.
By now I really just feel bad for the characters who have been giving her the benefit of the doubt. While on one end Eun-soo lambasts Jin-han for failing to be a father to the adult son Jin-han didn't even know existed until a week ago, Eun-soo also attacks Jin-myeong for...well, whatever she can really. It's hard to ignore the irony. Jin-myeong was Hyeon-seo's actual father figure for the young man's whole life. He wasn't perfect- who is? But for Eun-soo anything less than perfect is an avenue of attack.
There's some interesting synergy between the Eun-soo plot and the alleged central loveline of Deok-in and Jin-woo. Note how Eun-soo describes love, obligation, and marriage to Jin-han. Her ideas are pretty warped and messed up- like a parody of how a rich person might see these things. But then we see Jin-woo moving into an engagement with a woman he doesn't actually care about. And the analogy is pretty apt.
This is especially true when we consider that Jin-woo's character backstory, the main reason for Jin-woo's poor parenting abilities, and thus the reason why Deok-in's son died, all sprung from Jin-woo entering into another such marriage with his previous wife. Jin-woo still hasn't figured out that a working relationship requires mutual respect. That's what he had with Deok-in that was really special, and looking at Kyeong-cheol now, it's clear this is also what Deok-in values in a partner.
Eun-soo doesn't understand the concept of mutual respect. For her family life is about inflexible obligations, and a willingness to accept atrocious behavior in the name of not upsetting the status quo. It's about holding grudges indefinitely for the sole purpose of political maneuvering. "Make a Woman Cry" is making some fairly strong social commentary about how not to treat other people. Although right now I'm mostly just relieved that nothing too terrible happened offscreen- the preview was very reassuring in that regard.
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 email@example.com.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Make a Woman Cry" Episode 35"
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