"Im Hwa-soo" is finally in pre-production, but the troubles of Yeong-bin and his "Entourage" do not end there, as they need to work with the film's peculiar director, who even surpasses Yeong-bin in flimsy behavior. Meanwhile Eun-gap tries to gather up more actors for his agency, but he worries over a notorious playboy's condition to have Joy as his manager. That is when Idea's CEO enters and threatens the group's working life once more.
Oh Dae-hwan as director Yang Man-ho is a blessing and a curse in this episode. He is certainly entertaining for a while and most importantly, he is worse than Yeong-bin (Seo Kang-joon) when it comes to his treatment of the production process and colleagues. Perhaps this is the idea behind his character; to make our unlikable hero seem like the better man for once. It is also a little too late to fix this, however, let alone cover it up.
As a guest role, Oh Dae-hwan's appearance has its good and bad points. I do appreciate the meta goodness in his "Squad 38" reunion with Lee Sun-bin as well as Man-ho's adoration of Ma Dong-seok. On the other hand, the episode makes his lifestyle and his work shenanigans too repetitive. "Entourage" has this problem with its cameos frequently. It parades celebrities in front of the camera with no purpose or it milks their appearances too much.
Back to the story now, Eun-gap (Cho Jin-woong) continues to run around fixing messes and handing down roles. However, while Ho-jin (Park Jung-min) gets a regular job with regular problems, Joy (Amber) is damseled. This is a shame for a character who has defied gender norms and formed a great boss and employee friendship. Perhaps the story wants to portray the dangers of being a female manager, but the presentation only uses her to elevate Eun-gap's rescue, rather than focus on her perspective.
Regarding our antagonistic forces, the series seems very confused about what it wants, since we have Kang Ok-ja (Choi Myung-gil) and Jo Tae-yeong (Jang So-yeon) as alpha females. In retrospect, CEO Jo has been more involved with the team, but then where does the story leave Ok-ja? She has been teased as someone who still has fondness for Eun-gap and the story behind that and her betrayal needs some closure.
At this point whatever happens is only a slow, pitiful burn to the finish line, since no amount of final episode excellence can fix what has been a very dull, very lacking in soul and entertainment series. Perhaps this will be a good lesson for Korean drama makers. A famous cast and flashy premise can do very little without a strong story, a good focus and engaging characters.
Written by: Orion from 'Orion's Ramblings'
Vasia, also known as Orion or Ori online, is currently doing opinion pieces and database upkeep. She has a love for good TV and a penchant for rambling in written form. Vasia can be contacted via email@example.com.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Entourage" Episode 13"
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