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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 20 (final)

2014/09/08 | Permalink

"Fated to Love You" has come to a heartwarming end. It was very neatly concluded. This finale's ending was the victim of a lack of material as it crawled along to the finish. Despite that, it was still satisfying to see Geon and Mi-young get their happy ending and live as a family with everyone who is important to them. The finale does not reflect the rest of the drama, which, in general, moved along at a decent clip.

The episode was packed with sappy romantics and a reliving of the Macau incident that began the fated relationship. While some good-feeling moments and romantic scenes always welcome, the episode was comprised of nearly all such scenes that contained very little plot material. "Fated to Love You" began to lose steam last episode, which foreshadowed the stall in this episode. Again, this is satisfying to watch, it's just not very satisfying to write about.

What was most underdeveloped was the relationship between Daniel and Se-ra. Even in this final episode the two didn't receive enough development. Their reunion was glossed over with tears and affectionate behavior. It would've been better had the separation been addressed more heavily earlier on so that the two could work out any issues that come from being separated for so long. Se-ra's character was needy, and perhaps that stemmed from her childhood, which would have been a wonderful avenue to explore. The tensions between her and her mother weren't effective because they were arbitrary. They did not stem from anything and were not properly resolved.

The same goes for Daniel. His need to love Mi-young was shown, but not thoroughly explored. He had a need for family that could've been used to create so many wonderful twists in his character. He was a character with untapped potential. He was also a character whose personality changed drastically from the first episode to the last. I wish he had kept the edge that he had been given earlier on so that it could've been juxtaposed with the kindness he showered on Mi-young.

Yong and his mother were also underused, but their conclusion was satisfying. Geon accepted them officially as his family and that began a beautiful change in both of them, especially Yong's mother. Again, had this happened a little earlier we could've watched Yong's mother's growing pains as she grew out of her bitterness and into her new role, which would've been funny as well as touching. Yong was accepted by Geon earlier, but more brother time would've been better. "Fated to Love You" was primarily about family, about what it is to be family, and including Yong's acceptance into Geon's family in a bigger way would've had much more impact.

The relationship between Geon and Secretary Tak was winning as far as sidekick-type relationships go. Tak was not only goofy and a source of comedy, but he was competent and genuinely cared about his boss. His conclusion in the story was a little excessive, like many of the bow-tied endings for the minor characters. So many perfectly concluded stories was unnecessary, but were utilized to fill time.

Despite all of these criticisms, what "Fated to Love You" did so well was create an atmosphere and a solid main pairing with consistent traits. Geon and Mi-young are a genuinely sweet, honest couple who stay true to themselves despite the passage of time. They are strong characters because of their personalities and the support systems they have around them like Mi-young's mother and Geon's grandmother. The viewers traveled with Geon and Mi-young through their journey, drawn in by the earnest emotion and very real issues that the couple faced. The entire cast had wonderful chemistry that extended beyond the camera to the audience. Jang Hyuk and Jang Nara, especially, embodied their characters so sincerely that they felt achingly real.

At the end of its run "Fated to Love You" can boast of being an effective drama even though it had a few incomplete plot threads. It was a beautiful study of the quirky Geon and his love Mi-young.

Written by: Raine from 'Raine's Dichotomy'

"Fated to Love You" is directed by Kim Hee-won-II, Lee Dong-yoon, written by Jo Jin-gook, Joo Chan-ok and features Jang Hyuk, Jang Nara, Choi Jin-hyuk and Wang Ji-won


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