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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fantastic" Episode 10

2016/10/01 | 5186 views | Permalink

With So-hye out of the hospital, "Fantastic" enters into a fairly predictable holding pattern. Obviously Hae-seong is quite pleased to have her around again, and this is a significant booster to his mood. But the sacrifice dynamic has been reversed in a possibly more risky direction. Even doing his own stunts Hae-seong isn't in that much physical danger. So-hye, however, knows full well that her health is at risk, and has to make a conscious effort to ignore that.

The general impression thus created is that while love is obviously nice and good, it does tend to encourage love martyr behavior, and that's bad. Of course, on general balance there has never actually been a good solution to So-hye's situation, which puts Joon-gi in a suitably ironic spot. So-hye has taken his advice and mostly recovered her mental health, but in the process her physical health has now entered a state of jeopardy.

All the same these are nice problems to have considering how "Fantastic" remains as ever a melodrama. Jin-tae (played by Kim Young-min) is Seol's husband. Like the rest of Seol's in-laws, he's a generally useless character whose significance is mainly that he's a jerk. I was surprised, though, that the events of last episode were severe enough to actually bring about an emotional change in his behavior. For the worse, obviously, but at least his actions are more purposeful now.

This works to create a good parallel between So-hye's good relationship and Seol's terrible one. So-hye and Hae-seong keep secrets from each other- chiefly, that they are comically, excessively overenjoyed when the other reaches out for a date. The flashback revealing their dynamic was always like this is similarly good. It's all too believable that So-hye maintained this emotional stance to Hae-seong consistently throughout, even when in the end she accidentally broke the relationship off by intimating that she didn't actually care.

That can be a legitimately horrible feeling- that even if you love someone, they don't actually care and possibly never did. This is the only way I can figure that Seol is still together with Jin-tae. Twisted though this may sound, Seol and Jin-tae do care about each other, in the sense that they hate each other, and while this is obviously not an ideal situation, it does at least inspire them to acknowledge each other. It's OK to care after all- even if the cliffhanger insinuates that in the short term, sometimes that may be a problem.

Review by William Schwartz

"Fantastic" is directed by Jo Nam-gook, written by Lee Seong-eun and features Kim Hyun-joo, Joo Sang-wook, Park Si-yeon and Ji Soo.


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