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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Mask" Episode 5

2015/07/02 | 663 views | Permalink

Romance starts in earnest in episode 5 of "Mask". It is the catalyst for change in Min-woo's brickwall personality and it is the one small happiness for Ji-sook in her new, masked life. Surrounding that romance is the darkness of intrigue, deceit, and the hunt for more money and power.

Seok-hoon is a master manipulator and revels in his conquests. Although his wife, Mi-yeon, knows she's the victim of his lies, she often falls for them anyway while Seok-hoon watches with glee. It is the fact that he enjoys his villainous behavior that makes his character so powerful - that and Yeon Jung-hoon's portrayal. Ji-sook is the perfect opponent for him because despite her lack of power, her gumption carries her through. Seok-hoon aims to take down Min-woo, but his true opponent is his wife. As Min-woo finds clarity through his illness, he too will become a strong opponent.

That clarity is fueled by his burgeoning feelings for Ji-sook who surprises him with her genuine kindness. He expected cruelty and an obsession with money. She also gives him the affection that he has been deprived of since the tragic death of his mother. Ju Ji-hoon plays Min-woo's small moments of realization with panache. They come through as little revelations rather than a steady growth of understanding. The revelations are usually accompanied by some sort of violence outburst. It matches the severity of his mental illness, but makes him emotionally abusive towards Ji-sook. I dislike this, but as time passed in the episode, that violence tempered. As it did, Ji-sook opened to him more. The development of their relationship, despite the forced proximity, is moving along at a realistic pace. Both of them need warmth in their lives because they live in a viper's nest.

Ji-sook's family retains prominence in the drama and I like that. Ji-hyeok is her troublemaker brother who continues to make trouble in order to support his family. It is also he who discovers his sister may be alive. His love for his sister contrasts well with Min-woo's frosty relationship with Mi-yeon. Idol actor Hoya is proving again that he is a gifted actor whose performance is layered and thoughtful.

Min-woo's stepmother and sister are like a group of sharks circling when they smell blood. They know that Ji-sook is hiding a secret and go after it. "Mask" seems determined to pit Min-woo and Ji-sook against the world, which is very dramatic and exciting, but it could reach the point of excess.

While the blooming romance between Min-woo and Ji-sook is sweet, the dance near the end was exceedingly cheesy and unnecessary. The smaller moments depicted their affections much more effectively. Their natural personalities won over their masks. The question is: will the masks win out in the end?

Written by: Raine from 'Raine's Dichotomy'

"Mask" is directed by Boo Seong-cheol, written by Choi Ho-cheol, and features Soo Ae, Ju Ji-hoon, Yeong Jeong-hoon, and Yoo In-young.


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