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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "My Unfortunate Boyfriend" Episode 4

2015/04/18

Any fears I had last episode about "My Unfortunate Boyfriend" not taking Ji-na to task for her bad behavior would appear to have been unfounded. Right away Ji-na is confronted rather uncomfortably about how inappropriate it is to hit another person with so little provocation. What's more, Ji-na is so ashamed of herself that she manages to completely forget why she came to the arboretum in the first place. The results are rather comical.

Hye-mi is another element of the drama that I like. Rather than being the standard catty second female lead, Hye-mi is frequently totally correct in every criticism she makes regarding Ji-na. What's more, Hye-mi is a very competent, capable woman in her own right. It comes as little surprise that Hye-mi ultimately prevails in the workplace challenge, because absent adrenaline, Ji-na really is lacking in anything that could be called a spectacularly innovative and good idea.

Ji-na still hasn't figured it out yet, but she really does need Tae-woon. He motivates her to act in a way that is public, flamboyant, attention-getting, and above all else clever. If Ji-na wasn't so mortified about the prospect of anyone thinking she was romantically attached to Tae-woon she would have seen the entire chase sequence as being a golden opportunity for promotion.

That's another nice positive point of the drama- the visuals. They're not just for our benefit. Other people notice, just as an example, that Ji-na looks absolutely fabulous wearing that red dress. They also see that gardening suit notwithstanding Tae-woon is a kind, handsome, charming young man. This is what I mean by the actors being well-cast in terms of looks. The viral video trope is normally rather annoying yet here I actually find it fairly believable that such a ridiculously romantic backdrop could find its way all the way back to the home office.

What really sells the humor, though, is that even though Tae-woon is the guy literally getting knocked down Ji-na is the one who's suffering from more meaningful setbacks. If Ji-na stays in the office, she fails. But every time she leaves the office, inevitably she runs into Tae-woon because they work for the same people. It's just in a different capacity. The lack of much in the way of direct plot is somewhat worrisome- but the individual jokes are so strong I don't actually mind that much. Food striptease? Aggressive bathroom stall antics? Frollicking? All sounds good to me!

Review by William Schwartz

"My Unfortunate Boyfriend" is directed by Nam Gi-hoon, written by Lee Jae-yoon-IV and features No Min-woo, Yang Jin-sung, Jung Yoon-hak and Han Tae-rin.

 

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