The opening sketch is just a tad long, even if the premise is reasonably funny. Fortunately, everything else mostly falls into the standard pattern of "The Lover"- to the extent this drama has a standard pattern at all. I get a disordinate amount of enjoyment just wondering how exactly "The Lover" is produced. It often feels like the characters who get showcased are chosen by the availability of their actors. Really, though, who cares about that? It's the jokes that matter here, and the main theme this time is how much nonsense a person will put up with from their significant other.
Interestingly, a big driving point here seems to be that having a working humorous attitude is in fact an important part of a romantic relationship. The whole incident with the goofy candid pictures is noticeable for never really turning into a full blown fight between Do-si and Doo-ri. He straight up lets her delete the incriminating photos just for the sake of needling her on- which oddly makes Doo-ri look like the meaner person for actually posting this stuff online.
Nothing is really that over-the-top though. It's rather telling that the only time I had to actually turn away from the screen was during the whole tooth sketch. Goofy faces, butt-scratching, the constant removal of pants, these are all factors I can tolerate. But that ugly blemish in that terribly friendly smile...ooo, just terrifying! I find myself wondering how many times they had to shoot that scene to get it correctly, since it's not like that kind of thing ever happens intentionally.
In addition to nonsense, there also seems to be a point here about being willing to accept or not accept obviously absurd arguments. Most obviously this comes up with the clothing sketch, where Jin-nyeo rather obviously seems to not understand the entire reason they're sorting clothes in the first place. But it also makes a strong appearance in the lone Seol-eun / Hwan-jong piece, which once again appears to be about validating Seol-eun's weird fetishes.
Speaking of which, is is just me, or do a lot of the previews lately seem to be faking out pregnancy scares only to never actually have anything like that happen in the drama itself? I halfway suspect that that's what we're counting down to- a day where all the couples simultaneously discover they're pregnant, or at least have an actual discussion on the subject. The exception obviously being Takuya and Joon-jae who will probably just manage to resolve the are-they-or-are-they-not-gay question once and for all.
Review by William Schwartz
"The Lover" is directed by Kim Tae-eun-III, written by Kim Min-seok-II and features Oh Jung-se, Ryu Hyun-kyung, Jung Joon-young, Choi Yeo-jin, Park Jong-hwan, Ha Eun-seol, Terada Takuya and Lee Jae-joon.
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] "The Lover" Episode 8"
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