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A Gentleman's Diginty--Episodes 1-2
Contains Spoilers for Episodes 3-4
A Gentleman's Diginity took a nosedive for me in episodes 3 and 4, but episodes 5 and 6 are looking up a bit, so I'm back on board for recapping/reviewing, despite losing some love for the show.
As the third episode opens, our F44 (the group of four best friends in their early 40's) are hanging out in a club, talking to a 20-year-old girl and claiming that they are not ajusshis but oppas, who are a mere 30 years old! Ehh. Then they find out that the girl they're all chatting up is the daughter of a former schoolmate of theirs who married early. Eww. They bolt from the club, feeling a hefty case of the heebies-jeebies, as well they should.
Wipe That Smirk Off Your Face, Do Jin.
So anyhow, due to some weird circumstances, our heroine Yisoo has confessed her love to our hero Do Jin, but she doesn't really like him--she likes one of his best friends, Taesan. Do Jin plays along because he's head over heels smitten with Yisoo, but doesn't know how to win her over. They don't really begin to date after this; they're just connected closely enough to confuse Taesan and everybody else about how closely connected they are.
The Do Jin/Yisoo love line isn't the only one progressing in these episodes. Taesan's 24-year-old kid sister Me Ahri is in love with sensible lawyer Yoon. I'd be rooting for this couple harder if she didn't spend most of her time trying so desperately to get Yoon's attention that she acts 14. He clearly likes Me Ahri, but for me to support these two, their entire dynamic will have to change drastically.
Go Save Someone Else From Falling Dishes, Yoon.
There's a lot of great back-and-forth one-upsmanship between Yisoo and Dojin as he weasels his way into driving her to a baseball game she's umpiring. He abandons her to save Jung Rok from yet another self inflicted dilemma, so Yisoo steals Dojin's beloved car and leaves it waiting for him with a stinky dried squid hanging from the rear view mirror.
Smileyface Octopus Mocks You.
More pranks and banter are exchanged, but our lead couple reconfirms their key conflict--Yisoo still likes Taesan, no matter how much fun she has fighting with Do Jin. Do Jin also compounds the issues that keep them apart by continuing to romance other women while he's pursuing Yisoo. I can understand Do Jin not wanting to wait around just to be Yisoo's back-up date, but doesn't he realize that she's not going to think he's serious about her? This just makes him look like more of a jerk than ever.
Yisoo's unrequited love for Taesan also gets an extra push because her roommate Sera seems to be dating other people behind Taesan's back. It's a mystery why Yisoo is working so hard to preserve the sanctity of Sera's relationship with Taesan when Sera herself seems to be pulling the relationship apart at the seams.
Doesn't Know How Good She Has It.
Episode 4 ends with Sera realizing that Yisoo loves Taesan, which should nudge the plot forward at least a little, because right now everyone's at a stalemate. No one's marrying, breaking up, or getting together and that's not good, because there's not much else happening in this story besides the relationships.
Things I Loved:
1. Taesan's Sweetness. Taesan's just a regular old everyman, but he knows plenty about how to treat ladies properly. He's good enough friends with Yisoo that he warns Do Jin to stay away from her, not out of some misplaced sense of romantic jealousy but because Taesan knows Yisoo's too good for Do Jin and will likely get her heart broken by him. He's like everybody's protective (yet not overbearing) big brother.
Taesan Will Fight For Your Honor.
1. The Creep Factor. Watching 40-something guys hit on a 20-year-old is gross. I'm pretty openminded about age differences, but this pushes the limit too far, partly because the guys are lying about their own ages and partly because it's four dudes alone in a room with one girl. Nothing happens, and I still feel icky about the scene. *shudder*
No, Jung Rok, it's Not That Funny.
2. Jung Rok's Cheating. It's still being played for laughs, and I still fail to find it even remotely entertaining. I want Jung Rok's rich, smart wife to get rid of him and go conquer Wall Street or something.
You're Too Strong To Stick With the Likes of Him!
3. Yisoo's Passivity. There's not much for Yisoo to do in these episodes other than evade Do Jin's calls and secretly adore Taesan. I like her best when she's teaching ethics and working on her hobby as an umpire, because that makes her seem like a real woman with a lot going on in her life.
Not Really Developed As a Character.
Watch A Gentleman's Dignity HERE on DramaFever.
Episode Evaluations: I'm still watching, but the hero's looking more like a jerk and the heroine's looking more helpless, so these episodes really didn't work for me.