It's impressive how quickly "Road to the Airport" has gone from making Soo-ah and Do-woo's situation look romantic to making it look like a horribly bad idea. Soo-ah is, by nature, such a forthright person that she simply lacks the proper energy necessary to maintain any kind of romantic affair. It's a weird contrast to Jin-seok, whose main natural resistance to extramarital entanglements is his tendency to get bored very quickly with silly women who want to get entangled with married men.
To get a sense of just how bad Soo-ah is at this, she confesses (almost) everything to Mi-jin at the first opportunity, relying only on the natural protection that Mi-jin has no idea who Do-woo is. Mi-jin's role here is a difficult one. She wants to be a good friend to Soo-ah without destroying the poor woman's marriage. So Mi-jin's only resort is to try and hunt down the information necessary to try and find some sort of solution to the problem. Mi-jin's prior role as a rumor assassin comes in handy here for the sake of this search.
Elsewhere characters have moved into odd complacency with regards to Annie's death. Do-woo actually gets along better with Hye-won now that he's accustomed himself to her simply not caring. That Do-woo now has something almost approaching friendship with the generally antisocial Min-seok is mildly alarming. It shows us that, far from being the loving father who grieved powerfully over Annie, Do-woo is retreating into basic selfishness as a survival mechanism.
It's this selfishness more than the affair itself that threatens Soo-ah and Do-woo's lives. Consider how Hyo-eun is a wreck, even though she's mostly recovered from the direct trauma of Annie's death. The reason is simple- owing to her parents' erratic work schedules, Hyo-eun is a brat without proper roots. Annie was her only friend. And even if Hyo-eun's school is fantastically unhelpful when it comes to dealing with Hyo-eun's problems, Soo-ah is too generally distracted with the Do-woo situation to really pay proper attention.
That fantastic sense of loneliness that pervaded "Road to the Airport" in the early episodes is still here. A kiss does not change that. In fairly perverse fashion, by seeing each others' pain Soo-ah and Do-woo actually appear to have lost a decent amount of their empathy to engage with the important people in their life. In the long run this is actually isolating then more compared to where they started out. This is horribly sad- not to mention properly melodramtic.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Road to the Airport" Episode 8"
by HanCinema is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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