In a somewhat refreshing change of pace Se-jin actually ends up working against I-kyeong instead of against her. That Se-jin's original plan would go so poorly was predictable. That the story itself would end up acknowledging this is much more surprising, and we appear to be going into the final stretch of episodes with I-kyeong as a genuinely sympathetic character. This nice, even as it calls unfortunate attention to the fact that so much of "Night Light" up until now has been a complete waste of time that didn't work in service to this point.
Still, the change in action is nice. One factor I like is how I-kyeong has a small highly competent team prized for personal loyalty, whereas her opponents have faceless goons working for a paycheck. I-kyeong does have her own goons, of course, but only ever uses them on home turf against enemies she's sure they can subdue. Here, Tak is the one who saves the day by taking initiative and staying on top of a difficult situation long enough for I-kyeong to come up with her own proactive plan.
Se-jin, too, is a very dynamic and effective character- as long as it's in the context of I-kyeong's plans. Observe how Se-jin unintentionally comes across some information that's a lot more relevant and interesting than I-kyeong's secret weakness of last episode. That's what makes Se-jin interesting. She can see subtleties that elude other people, even I-kyeong, and Se-jin's cheerful personality inspires loyalty among I-kyeong's team even as they are first and foremost on I-kyeong's side.
This is nice to watch and all, but then we get moments like with Gun-woo that serve to remind me that the alleged male lead in "Night Light" never really does anything. Much like his boneheaded relatives, Gun-woo is very bad at seeing the big picture and practically has to be led into the action by I-kyeong. The sheer efficiency by which I-kyeong can coolly dispose of any plot against her is scary.
So it's all the more pity that "Night Light" still can't come up with a credible opponent for her to face off against. Indeed, the climax here may very well be the dramatic climax for the entire drama, leaving us only with denouement afterwards. And that's just plain disappointing considering I can barely remember who the exposed corrupt bad guy even was. Ah well. We can always hope for better.
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] "Night Light" Episode 18"
by HanCinema is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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