For all the hoopla regarding the technical problems involved in pursuing the current case, the actual mystery resolves with relatively little real difficulties. The clue that ends up bringing everything together ends up being an observation regarding additional evidence that was implied to have existed by some of the CCTV footage, but which the characters haven't investigated because it's a bit of a lateral thinking puzzle. In all fairness given the sheer quantity of CCTV footage on display here it's understandable that no one thought of this sooner.
Unfortunately, the relative ease with which the case is solved ends up begging more questions than answers. Most importantly, why was it necessary for this to be a two-part mystery? The actual process wasn't difficult enough to justify the extended runtime, and the lack of real apparent difficulty makes the workplace discussions a lot more pointless. That leaves characterization, and the characterization here isn't particularly impressive.
It would seem that Yeol-moo is really good with kids, or maybe it's just the ones that remind her of a departed sibling. Either way, it's a level of personal engagement with the case that feels rather inappropriate. I wouldn't have minded this so much if the first two episodes had given any indication of Yeol-moo being well-inclined to this kind of work. But that's just the problem. It didn't. This is all new material.
Other characters don't fare much better. Either their story arc moves on a completely predictable trajectory or their screen time is cluttered up with comic relief. The mood whiplash gets really bad here, as we sometimes transition between jokes and serious dramatic tension with barely a moment's interlude. The weirdest part is that all of this in the service of exposition- again, the exposition that normally would have come in the first two episodes. Its appearance here is quite a bit more awkward.
For what it's worth, the plot arc here appears to mostly be leading up to the confrontation at the end between Yeol-moo and Dong-hi. Where this is going to go I have no idea. It's hard to see how a drama that's mostly concerned with present-day cases can convincingly wedge in a storyline about something that happened a long time ago. Given that "Pride and Prejudice" struggles the more plot threads it tries to juggle at once, hopefully it will try to build this next plot hook up more gradually.
Review by William Schwartz
Staff writer. Has been writing articles for HanCinema since 2012, having lived in South Korea since 2011. Started out in Gyeongju, then to Daegu, then to Ansan, then to Yeongju, then to Seoul, lived on the road for HanCinema's travel diaries series in the summer of 2016, and is currently settled in Anyang. Has good tips for utilizing South Korea's public bus system. William Schwartz can be contacted via email@example.com.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Pride and Prejudice" Episode 4"
by HanCinema is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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