As truths are slowly revealed to key players, the weather grows quickly stormy and as unstable as an electrical storm. In the eye of the storm Ji-sook and Min-woo slowly grow their love, and although it's sweet, this is truly just the calm before the storm for their relationship.
The burgeoning love between Ji-sook and Min-woo is made possible because first Min-woo, and then Ji-sook, allowed him and herself to open up to love and the fact that they must trust another person. The sweetness of their relationship is strong enough to balance out the turmoil of the rest of the drama as well as the trust that has built between them as they help each other to adapt and grow. We as the audience know that the trust will be shattered when Ji-sook's major truth is revealed - she is Ji-sook and not Eun-ha. Picking up those pieces can also show how strong they are as individuals and as a couple. Or "Mask" could butcher it and just use elements and create melodrama for melodrama's sake. From what I have scene in the past thirteen episodes I think that "Mask" will surprise us.
Bitter heartbreak has befallen Mi-yeon and that has sharpened her into a wicked opponent. Not only does she know that Seok-hoon loves Eun-ha, but she has discovered that her pregnancy was false and it was the one bit of news carrying her through the difficulties in her life. Now that she has been utterly deflated, her despair spurs her to act out against Ji-sook, the liar. Unfortunately her actions also harm her brother who she secretly cares about, but her pain is too overwhelming for her to care. Much of this plot is overwrought as the genre is wont to do, but the emotion portrayed is decidedly real and Yoo In-young delivers a layered performance that grounds what could be an over-the-top character.
Seok-hoon has discovered that Mi-yeon killed Eun-ha and this is a turning point for him. He already distrusted her as he distrusts everyone, but this is the first time she has genuinely hurt him. Yeon Jung-hoon, like Yoo In-young, grounds this selfish, moraless character and creates a man we dislike, but very much can empathize with along with the strong writing.
Melodramas use human fault and tragedy as the center of intrigue and plot. What makes individual melodramas stand out from the pack is if the characters grow beyond the tropes and stereotypes. "Mask" is one such drama. There is a fair amount of the overly dramatic, but it is the depth of character that sets it apart.
Written by: Raine from 'Raine's Dichotomy'
Journalist, drama lover, and foodie, Lisa enjoys exploring Korea, speaking the language, and soaking in all that dramaland has to offer. Her Korean husband laughs that she knows more than he ever will about dramas and K-pop. Lisa Espinosa can be contacted via email@example.com.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Mask" Episode 13"
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