So "Single Wife" ends up concluding the logical direction it took with the previous episode that barely touched on the main conflict at all, and brings upon a final glorious comeuppance against In-hwa. I remain baffled just as much as I did last time as to what exactly happened to the premise. We had certainly received hints that In-hwa was a corporate vulture, but those barely even registered as a subplot. Now Hyo-rim and some bald guy I'm not even sure has a name have to work together to bring her dad back to stop her.
In a way it's actually pretty fitting how Ra-hee only just barely has anything to do with this storyline. It's like I've mentioned repeatedly- we've never seen Ra-hee stick her neck out for anyone or do much of anything substantial. Ra-hee doesn't even really act in her own best interests most of the time. Again, this is how Ra-hee is in the position of being an accidental bigamist in the first place. She just trusted that Min-hong would finish the divorce process for her.
This also creates the hilarious implication, when Ra-hee fails to show up to get the divorce finalized again, that she really is just a complete scatterbrain who can't be trusted to follow through on anything. I felt bad for Min-hong less because I wanted him to be happy with Ra-hee and more because he had become emotionally attached to a completely emotionally unreliable woman. Min-hong was, for most of "Single Wife", a man without options.
Which leads us again to the weird situation that it's Jae-min and Hyo-rim who get the genuinely affective emotional scenes regarding their familial issues. Their father, who is at the center of this conflict, is not a character we ever actually knew very much about, so we're just left to assume that he was a good dad and that this family will pick up the pieces and move on with life. Certainly Jae-min, protests to the contrary, appears to have moved on from Ra-hee.
I didn't especially want to finish "Single Wife" when circumstances beyond my control made it impossible. And now, having gone through with finishing the drama, I will admit that this was not the ending I was expecting. It was unsatisfying, but in the sense that I was reminded that there were some interesting story elements that were largely left unexplored for the sake of obnoxious situation comedy. I guess that's better than the drama having no redeemable qualities whatsoever.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Single Wife" Episode 12"
by HanCinema is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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