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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Incarnation of Jealousy" Episode 21


I feel like "Incarnation of Jealousy" has waited twenty-one episodes to finally touch upon the issues that it did in this latest episode. They dig deep into the hearts of our characters, passed the childish bickering, love triangle jealousies, and insecurities.

Hwa-sin has the biggest breakthrough. During yet another ridiculous fight with Jeong-won over Na-ri, Hwa-sin admits to changes his dreams since loving Na-ri. He wants a family and a wife. His love isn't a passing fancy. Perhaps it was Jeong-won's straight-edged friendship, or overcoming breast cancer, or simply loving Na-ri that inspired the change. Perhaps he is finally ready. Whatever the reason may be, Hwa-sin is determined to marry and have a family with Na-ri. The breast cancer that fell by the way side is neatly tied up with a cute dance scene from Hwa-sin (the first big reaction we've seen to any of his cancer news that makes any sense.) But is the news delivered at the end of the episode that delivered the K.O. blow. Hwa-sin has been consistently pre-occupied with the definition of manhood and how breast cancer cuts into his manliness. The discovery of impotence nearly breaks him. While it's obvious that this plot point has been a long time in coming, it still felt thrown in there for drama's sake, especially since his desire for marriage and family was just recently prominently proclaimed. I do like that it further allows the show to explore the definition of masculinity through Hwa-sin's character, but I wish it felt a bit less haphazard.


Although surprised by Hwa-sin's proposal of marriage, Na-ri seems all for it. She takes time to think without telling him so and that causes misunderstandings. This couple loves each other, but they have a lot to work on in the communication department. At this point her character seems to be stagnating. It is the men, especially Hwa-sin, doing all the growing. Even Jeong-won has stopped and has become a desperate, lovesick puppy chasing after Na-ri. I wish they'd do something else with his character.

As for the reporter mothers and Ppalgang and the chef, it seems as though their storyline is thrown in whenever time needs to be filled. All of them act like a very strange little family, but their story doesn't feel serious despite the fact that it is. At some point Chef decides he likes Reporter Bang and kisses her, but that too, seemed strange. Everything but matters concerning Hwa-sin and Na-ri are sloppily put together. With three episodes to go I don't expect much in the way of fixing this problem, but I do hope it doesn't get worse.


Written by: Lisa Espinosa AKA Raine from 'Raine's Dichotomy'

"Incarnation of Jealousy" is directed by Park Shin-woo, written by Seo Sook-hyang, and features Jo Jung-suk, Gong Hyo-jin, Go Kyung-pyo, Lee Mi-sook, and Park Ji-young.

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