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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Spy - Drama" Episode 3

2015/01/16 | 798 views | Permalink

Apparently the emphasis "Spy - Drama" has put on romance was deliberately in the service of the story. This is in fact a battle between the power of spying and the power of love. A battle which so far love is mostly losing. While Hye-rim and Woo-seok are perfectly capable of communicating with each other, in terms of the spy world their success here is pretty limited. At best, they can manage a negotiation.

This leaves Seon-woo in his usual muddled position. His character remains in an awkward place. The simple fact of the matter is, he doesn't have access to enough information regarding what the bad guys actually want to be able to make any useful deductions about their next moves. By contrast, members of Seon-woo's own team are clueless enough that they've left obvious information about their own movements without even realizing it.

The implications of this are mildly intriguing. Seon-woo is a capable team operative, and his willingness to be helpful even after hours is a clear sign that he's good at taking everyone's feeling into account. This also translates into the personal sphere. Seon-woo takes a classic romantic comedy misunderstanding and prevents his girlfriend from reading anything negative into the situation by just acting so trustworthy. Score another point for healthy relationships being more entertaining to watch than trainwrecks.

While we don't really know much about Gi-cheol, what's already completely obvious is that he doesn't trust Hye-rim at all. Gi-cheol knows for a fact that his only leverage is bullying on the basis of a threat he doesn't actually want to have to deliver on. This forces the man into a stalling posture- a fact of the storyline that's somewhat irritating, given that Gi-cheol is essential to driving the actual action of the story. The other characters aren't capable of that much on their own without proper motivation.

This episode may lack some of the speed of the last one, but the emotional elements are interesting enough to keep most of the story fairly well-focused. I particularly like what the drama's doing with Woo-seok. Initially he just seemed like a throwaway character. Woo-seok then uses the power of flashbacks to realize that unless drastic action is taken, that's exactly what's going to happen- the family he loves will get thrust into crisis with him powerless to do anything about it. Woo-seok may still be powerless, actually. Even so, the fun is in watching them all try.

Review by William Schwartz

"Spy - Drama" is directed by Park Hyeon-seok, written by Han Sang-woon and Lee Kang and features Kim Jae-joong, Bae Jong-ok, Yoo Oh-sung, Ko Sung-hee, Jung Won-joong and Kim Min-jae.

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