This drama's emphasis on cynicism and negativity is the main interesting hook holding all the action together. This episode runs into a slight problem, though, in that Song-I's general unlikability makes it extremely difficult to sympathize with her when she runs into a problematic situation. Her petty actions to date have been self-destructive, and hurt the people who enable her, but the damage has been relatively easy to contain. Here, someone unrelated to the main plot has been straight up murdered and Song-I is in possession of important information relevant to that event.
For whatever it's worth, the victimized woman was probably not a good person. "My Love from the Star" gets credit for not just pretending like Song-I is a singular bad apple. It's clear that scummy behavior runs rampant in the entertainment industry here, and it's easy to intuit that the these other bad celebrities are being enabled the same way that Song-I is. A photo shoot takes a particularly bizarre direction, pretty much entirely because no one in the room has the guts to just tell the showboaters to knock it off.
Min-Joon seems to be running into a similar problem at this point. It's clear that he knows helping or even trying to help Song-I is a bad idea, but he keeps on doing it anyway out of sentimentality. This episode's flashback to the Joseon period makes it all too clear what the potential costs of that kind of situation are, since we discover that Min-Joon's reason for staying behind was not as romantic as we have likely been assuming.
While I didn't have a strong positive reaction while watching the episode, reflecting on the events of the storyline it's pretty inescapable that all of this really does tie in well together. It's just difficult to let my guard down and give the drama the benefit of the doubt, since "The Heirs" likewise had the initial appearance of trying to do something interesting with romance tropes only to drop this subtext almost entirely by the end.
The main thing "My Love from the Star" has going for it in this department is the discovery made near the end, which brings a direct alarming sense of urgency to the decisions Min-Joon has made and could potentially mean another four hundred year layover under the same circumstances as when he was first left behind. As yet it's unclear whether Song-I or Min-Joon is going to be the main significant beneficiary of character development in this drama. Either way, their acting does an excellent job selling these two as being at a crossroads with an uncertain future.
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] "My Love from the Star" Episode 4"
by HanCinema is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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