Posted in Commentary, Drama Series

Remember–War of the Son: on episode 3~4

I knew the trial would lead to this verdict, i saw this development coming from the first minute of the show, so while the outcome wasn’t in the slightest bit surprising, i was still riled up at the process. “How could they do this to Dad?” has become a rhetorical question because when the rich powerful corrupt baddie is your opposition, money talks. As long as the decision makers’ voices can still be bought with money, the ultimate truth shall remain hidden and buried. That’s the bad news. Good news is that has happened; the real war is about to begin… with adult Jin-woo behind the wheel.

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Episode 3 and 4 are still spent in the past. The trial is ongoing, public opinion has been formed, but there’s also a change of defense attorney from the stuttering novice public defender tackling his first case to the infamous gaudy lawyer with a perfect win/loss records. That comes with not only experience but also crafty methods as well as loyal minions on the wing. Despite the buzz that Park Dong-ho is willing to take on any case with sizeable paycheck, money isn’t his only consideration, so when he decides to defend Dad (for next to nothing at that), things are starting to look up. He won’t bet on a losing horse anyway.

We’re assured that he’ll do whatever it takes to obtain smoking guns to prove Dad’s innocence. Which is done in no time although the legality may be questionable. A great breakthrough it is, though i admitted to being worried that we’re given the full picture of that fateful night, and the culprit’s confession is gotten on tape so early in the game. I mean, if the perp will only get caught toward or at the series’ end, for the sake of our blood pressure and sanity, i’d rather watch the good guys taking baby step progress toward the big reveal rather than being thwarted big time. In the same vein, i’d rather to see Dad pronounced guilty due to lack of evidence to prove otherwise than conspiracy.

Because i want to see scenes like this in more than just two episodes:

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Because we’ve sit through enough of Jin-woo’s crushed, helpless, tear-filled expressions.
Because we’ve shown what a great mutualistic partnership the two make.
Because Dong-ho’s reassuring “you’ll laugh with me at the end” statement made me swell with optimism i’m already looking forward to that day and moment, no matter how long it takes.

And because his betrayal hurts more than anybody else’s.

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His staunch and confident bearing is a nice contrasting complement to Jin-woo’s timidity and overall naivety (in addition to his warmness toward Jin-woo) i was so ready to bask in the bromance that i can’t believe Show decides to pull a You’re All Surrounded on us by creating a hard-to-mend rift between them. I’ve anticipated something to ‘happen’ to Dong-ho for him to fail to acquit Dad, but i didn’t expect it to be this, or worse, that he’d totally give up trying just because Joo-il asks him to, after playing the you-owe-me-a-debt-of-gratitude card. Sure, there’s a real untold reason behind that request, but i still can’t fathom his willingness to throw his client under the bus and sacrifice his reputation as an always-win lawyer just because of that. Anybody must have found it odd that the assertive lawyer who’ll do whatever it takes to win the case doesn’t even put up a fight and merely looks on as two lives are destroyed by his silence.

Nevertheless, i can see why it works plot-wise to spur Jin-woo’s drive to be who he is at the present. Betrayed by the person he had complete trust in, Jin-woo learns that no lawyer is trustworthy that he has to become one to save Dad. Before the prosecution date, that is. Ah, so the show’s opening scene is his biggest fear as well as worst nightmare, isn’t it? I’m curious to see the kind of person/attorney he’s become after that day, how the ordeal affects/shapes his personality.

And Dong-ho had better try his damnedest to make it up to the client he let down grandly but later on claimed to not give up on. He might feel bad at the moment, i wonder what he’ll feel upon discovering that his dad was at the wheel of the truck of doom which took away Jin-woo’s mom and brother while he himself was responsible for robbing him of the last family member he has.

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If anything, i’m happy that we’re back to the present as everything that happened hitherto is nothing new — the plot has been milked in a lot of other dramas. Dong-ho pretty much dominates the first four episodes that it shall be interesting to see Jin-woo takes center stage hereafter. I hope the focus in the upcoming episodes is still on Dad’s case though.

Lastly, i think it’s not complete not to bring up our psychotic villain Nam Gyu-man. I’m already hating him to pieces while utterly impressed by the actor’s portrayal. Namgoong Min breathes life into this rotten character incrediblty well that i thoroughly enjoy seeing his myriad deranged expressions and wish he were more layered. Cuz now he looks pretty much a one-dimensional evil who’s cowering before his equally godawful father and pulling rank on everybody else; on the other end of the spectrum stands our purehearted hero. Black and white characters ain’t fun to follow — the greyer, the better.

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I blog sometimes, gush ofttimes, snark all the time.

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