Hee-tae is continuing to delude himself into thinking that he can somehow just walk away from this marriage without there being any serious interpersonal consequences. As memorably demonstrated in one phone call, the rest of his family has absolutely no idea what's going on with Il-ri. To the contrary, they think things are going quite well. And Hee-tae himself is barely doing anything to defuse this notion as he hopelessly tries adjust Il-ri out of his life without hurting anyone else.
While I was expecting "Sensible Love" to portray Hee-tae in a negative light, it's surprising how this has been accomplished mainly by having the man act strangely passive-aggressive. When one character discovers the true state of Hee-tae and Il-ri's relationship, Hee-tae responds by making an actual serious apology. Hee-tae knows that he's the one being unreasonable even though the affair obviously wasn't his fault.
Hee-tae's main fear right now is that he's being treated like a doormat. Which with romantic affairs is generally a reasonable assumption to make- or is it? That is, once again, the main moral point of "Sensible Love". While everyone knows that cheating is bad in broad strokes, real life doesn't exist in broad strokes. The situation that created the romantic collusion between Il-ri and Joon was almost entirely unique to their personal circumstances. It had very little to do with Hee-tae except to the extent of how far Il-ri was willing to go.
Il-ri feels obvious guilt, and Hee-tae stubbornly refuses to acknowledge that. Even Joon feels guilt, now that the issue has been thrust out in the open. But even more oddly, Joon feels confusion. If Il-ri left Joon to go back to Hee-tae, why is Hee-tae being so sulky and angry? As has been noted, Il-ri and Joon never really did anything. Most of Hee-tae's frustration quite literally comes from his imagination, and has been aggressively stoked by an interloper.
In any event, by the end of the episode it would seem that Il-ri has had enough. If Hee-tae can't be reasoned with, then that leaves Il-ri with no choice but to try and come at the problem from another angle. At this point it's clear that any realization Hee-tae comes to regarding the long term situation will have to happen as part of his internal struggle. If neither Il-ri, nor Joon, nor any of the other secondary characters can get through to Hee-tae, there's nothing much to really discuss here.
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] "Sensible Love" Episode 10"
by HanCinema is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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