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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "This Life Is Our First Life" Episode 2

2017/10/10

Faced with the tremendously awkward prospect of living with a member of the opposite sex which they are not especially attracted to, Se-hee and Ji-ho choose to address the situation in terms of fundamentals, rather than overthinking the whole gender issue. Ji-ho needs a quiet, clean place to focus on writing. Se-hee needs a functional roommate to help pay the bills and not destroy the apartment. They are so ideal it's obviously foolhardy for either of them to try to find an alternative elsewhere.

So instead, they get in deeper. I really loved the cliffhanger here. It's so shocking in context, yet in full perspective of all the personal and professional problems Ji-ho and Se-hee deal with, the solution they come up with really is the only logical one available. Above all else Ji-ho and Se-hee most value their ability to move through their lives without having to go through the trouble of having to explain everything to family and co-workers.

Just observe the divergence of reactions, as the information that Ji-ho and Se-hee are the opposite genders ripples through their social groups. Ji-ho and Se-hee themselves think deliberately about the practical impacts this has on their lives, and observe that gender has little to do with their being functional roommates. Ji-ho and Se-hee are only ever in the same room together during leisure time and what do you know, they have the same hobby- watching soccer games.

But everyone else constantly gossips, sometimes even to Ji-ho and Se-hee directly, overthinking everything, and generally annoying both of them. "This Life Is Our First Life" very instriniscally grasps the introvert mindset in a way I am not used to seeing. It is made very clear that Ji-ho and Se-hee sincerely love their more extroverted friends and family members. Yet their desire to keep a safe distance from their loudness is nothing personal.

Also note how Ji-ho and Se-hee are wholly different people in spite of their sharing introverted character traits. When Ji-ho and Se-hee talk about their not being mutually attracted, honestly? I believe them. Se-hee is fascinated by the idea of drama in the abstract, but hates it in real life, and is stimulated by a constant change of focus. Ji-ho just wants to hang out with his cat and solve all of his problems with cold hard logic. They really do not make sense as a couple at all- except in the purely utilitarian sense, and what is marriage if not utilitarianism?

Watch on Viki

Review by William Schwartz

"This Life Is Our First Life" is directed by Park Joon-hwa, written by Yoon Nan-joong and features Lee Min-ki, Jung So-min, Esom, Park Byung-eun, Kim Ga-eun, and Kim Min-suk.

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