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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Drinking Alone" Episode 15

2016/10/24 | Permalink

At long last "Drinking Alone" has hit the point of serious self-reflection on the part of its characters- although for me this is too little too late. The grand output of Jeong-seok and Ha-na's relationship consits of a couple of decent dates at the tail end of Jeong-seok acting like a jerk. The way he keeps talking about "quality" is, I think, supposed to be cute but all it ever does is remind me how generally mean-spirited the man is.

For a sense of perspective, I found Jin-i and Jin-woong's romance to be more convincing simply because we've had a much better look at what they do in casual moments. Jin-i and Jin-woong have a good professional rapport and mutual respect. They don't necessarily like each other, and their interactions through the episode involve some rather...not positive reactions. But hey, they've been through bad situations before (mostly involving Jeong-seok) so they'll get through this too.

Elsewhere Chae-yeon manages to warm my heart with her cold robotic demeanor by finally providing an actual argument why Myeong is being mopey and dumb. This is something I would have really liked to see sooner, because last cliffhanger, all I could think was that Myeong's appraisal of Jeong-seok's character is mostly character. The man is, in fact, a fink, and we've never really seen him act in a genuinely noble way to any kind of ambiguous situation.

The jokes are still funny, I guess. I liked the extended flashback to that one really great time the three idiot students had way back when. It's both funny and also kind of sad that Gi-beom and Dong-yeong have such an overall positive opinion of a social encounter that never actually ended up going anywhere. It's emblematic of how incredibly clueless they are of social cues in general. Which as always tends to put a damper on any interpretation that makes these guys seem intelligent and right-minded. But even so. Jokes are something.

They're just not that much. Even the food porn has gotten a tad lazy. No exposition or tying into the larger themes at all. We just see someone..."Drinking Alone", and that's apparently all the commentary we need anymore. "Drinking Alone" irritates me the most in that it never seems to actually be making any kind of statement about anything, however vague. It's just about characters who struggle to make the most minor superficial changes and for me, that makes the overall drama very static.

Review by William Schwartz

"Drinking Alone" is directed by Choi Gyoo-sik and Jeong Hyeong-geon, written by Baek Seon-woo, Choi Bo-rim and Myeong Soo-hyeon, and features Ha Seok-jin, Hwang Woo-seul-hye, Park Ha-sun, Min Jin-woong, Kim Won-hae, Gong Myung and Key.

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