Tae-woong's status as a credible villain continues to plummet. The whole scheme involving his elaborate fake injury was bad enough. Tae-woong's schtick has been his ability to single-handedly run a room even when other people who technically outrank him are inside. Fake pity doesn't really work with that. Besides that issue Tae-woong's grudge with Do-chan has become increasingly petty and personal, such that Tae-woong no longer much acts like the leader of a criminal empire.
But flashbacks damage Tae-woong's reputation as much as anything else. I was assuming that Tae-woong's murder of Jeong-pil's daughter was a premeditated act intended to help him consolidate power, and that the arrival of Do-chan and his father was an unfortunate coincidence. Instead, we find out that Tae-woong was a fumbling buffoon the entire time. In retrospect the question is begged as to why Jeong-pil so credulously accepted Tae-woong's explanation of what transpired.
I might have been able to get behind this change in characterization if "Switch - Change The World" was showing us that Tae-woong's carefully crafted image is actually a facade, and that in reality the man is just a two-bit thug with exceptionally good luck. But then, that would require the heroes make serious inroads to defeating Tae-woong now that they know his weakness. Instead, they make clumsy strategic decisions and continue to be outmaneuvered.
The biggest bit of progress comes, from all places, a Skype conversation with a random foreigner who just gives In-tae an incredibly powerful hacking program without even bothering to ask why he wants it. This much is sloppy scriptwriting. Imagine if the foreigner had shown up several episodes ago and asked In-tae to do something in exchange for the program, which is essential to taking Tae-woong's operation down. Now there's an excuse for Do-chan's team to run a con that actually services the plot, and ends up being relevant to the climax.
"Switch - Change The World" has been very bad when it comes to properly building up past storylines into a climax. Any battle between Do-chan and Tae-woong is given at best cursory reference after it happens, then proceeds to be irrelevant forever after. I'm also feeling a bit unnerved by story elements that are so undeveloped I'm not even sure why they're in the drama at all. Observe how Ha-ra has a sister, who is a reporter. This adds nothing, mainly because the reporters in "Switch - Change The World" demonstrate surprisingly little long form curiousity.
Review by William Schwartz
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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] "Switch - Change the World" Episodes 25-26"
by HanCinema is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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