With our heroes closing in on Il-hwan, things get heated as the two villain sides try to help or stop them. Tae-gon makes his choice on which side to place his life on while Jeong-il is backed into a corner as plans Il-hwan’s downfall from the sidelines. Meanwhile, Soo-yeon is running the show for her father and our villainess becomes crueler by the minute as things before more dire.
As we approach the finale, we get a mixture of well-placed traps and convenient idiocy as well as a lot of back and forth blackmailing. Despite the hectic nature of these happenings, I have to commend the episode for keeping the throne of the “final boss” up for grabs for most of its duration. While the result is still the expected one of Jeong-il (Kwon Yul) as the end-game villain, the process is still thrilling.
I have more mixed feelings about the leverage Soo-yeon (Park Se-yeong) uses against Jeong-il. On one hand, I do love it when a character in a Korean drama does the smart thing and makes a backup plan. The shirt bluff by itself is not a bright example of strategic thinking, but the writing turns it around by making it the bait for the actual trap. Jeong-il’s lack of alertness while still working in the lion’s den is typical plot-progressing obtuseness, but Soo-yeon’s moment of glory is still solid.
I wish these more interesting traits in characters were brought up earlier, in fact. This series would have been a pleasant, even riveting experience with characters who have interesting and layered presence. I love the Soo-yeon who is intelligent and conniving as well as the one who is emotion-driven. I just wish those sides had been hinted and developed equally throughout the series, rather than taking turns. The same goes for all the main characters.
I also feel Tae-gon’s (Kim Hyeong-mook) character had potential as someone driven by loyalty, cowardice and failure as a father. While his potential has gone unrealized, I enjoy seeing him stand up to his tyrant. The blackmail sequence is a believable one given his former positions as a prosecutor and Taebaek lawyer. However, it is his enjoyment of this task which I find amusing and all credit goes to the actor for that.
Artists come to life when given good material to work with and “Whisper” is finally using its talent more. It is a bittersweet pleasure to see the actors grasping at the emerging richness of their characters. It is sweet because it makes for an entertaining viewing experience. I just wish “Whisper” were a great series, rather than one which could have been great.
“Whisper” is directed by Lee Myeong-woo, written by Park Kyeong-soo and features Lee Bo-young, Lee Sang-yoon, Kwon Yul and Park Se-yeong.
Written by: Orion from ‘Orion’s Ramblings‘
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“[HanCinema’s Drama Review] “Whisper” Episode 13″
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