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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Switch - Change The World" Episodes 21-22

2018/05/02 | Permalink

So Joon-soo was working with Do-chan all along. That's unavoidable, since Joon-soo is trying to cover up the fact that he's violently ill- a fact of which we are quickly reminded. Now Do-chan has to take up the mantle again, and pretend to be Joon-soo. While I can kind of get everyone at the office being accepting of Joon-soo's abrupt personality changes, Tae-woong's tacit acceptance of Joon-soo is starting to make the drama's chief villain come off as a lot less threatening than he used to be.

The weird part is, Tae-woong is every bit as brutal as he used to be. We get a fairly graphic example here of what happens to prosecutors under Tae-woong's command who don't give him the performance he would like. By contrast Joon-soo's success in infiltrating Tae-woong's organization comes off as rather unearned. I keep waiting for the revelation that Tae-woong is actually on to Joon-soo and Do-chan, yet we never get there.

"Switch - Change The World" is just being too obvious. Well, actually, the bigger problem is just a lack of decent con artist setpieces. In general it's been pretty dull watching Joon-soo go to evil board meetings with boring technical discussion. Watching Do-chan go to evil board meetings with technical discussion is ultimately not much of an improvement. Even if we are getting exposition, none of it is terribly interesting, so the pacing drags.

Good ideas in general are at a low point. Observe how we even get the classic scene where a male lead grabs female lead out of the path of an oncoming vehicle. "Switch - Change The World" is not and never has been a romance, so why even bother with the weak sexual tension? Granted, Ha-ra is not the most obviously useful character at the moment. But then no one else is either because the story is largely just standing in place.

The lack of factionalism continues to bother me, if only because exploring the motives of peripheral characters in greater detail would make for much more convincing set-up than what we get here. After everything we learned about his daughter and how he's been used by Tae-woong, I would think Jung-pil might have his own agenda. Instead, all we get is more talk of dull business deals. I mean really, Joon-soo could have been doing all that. Putting the more interesting Jang Keun-suk in that role doesn't inherently improve the execution.

Review by William Schwartz

"Switch - Change The World" is directed by Nam Tae-jin, written by Baek Woon-cheol and Kim Ryoo-hyun, and features Jang Keun-suk, Han Ye-ri, Jung Woong-in, and Jo Hee-bong

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