Korean Drama

Falling for Innocence: Episode 1-8 Review (Not a Recap)

I think this is the year of getting out of my drama funk. Falling for Innocence is one of the dramas I have loving. Though, the story arc set in the business world is really not my feel, but just the drama behind it and the motivation of attaining power is brings out an interesting show. This is not going to be a recap, but an analysis/ trailing thoughts of the show I have come to love. Let’s dive right in.

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Falling for Innocence is about a ruthless investor, Kang Min-Ho (Jung Kyung-Ho) who gets a change of heart, literally, and develops a new personality that will make him have a softer heart and feelings to life. Due to his new heart, there is a struggle of his former self and his new organ, especially when he comes in contact with a Kim Soon Jung (Kim So Yeon), his secretary.

I will break down the characters in categories in order to sum up all 8 aired episodes.

Min Ho and the Rest of the Business World

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Min Ho is shown to be heartless, no pun intended. He doesn’t give a crap about anyone as he is filled with revenge and a short amount of time to fulfill his plan. His purpose of making sure that his uncle suffers is clear, but as the story unfolds, here is no real clarity of Min Ho’s inner perspective of why we need to see his uncle go down.
From flashbacks, his father had sudden passed away and the business, Hermia Corporation, was rightfully Min Ho’s. The uncle, however, claims that his brother, Min Ho’s father, left the company in his care instead. His mother tried to fight the stockholders, board members and his uncle from taking the company from Min Ho, but all the stockholders and board members turned their backs on her and his uncle was made President. This really took a deep affect on the mother, hence her suicide. Experiencing that as a child is painful, however, that is all what we are given.
We do not see any instances as Mi Ho growing up to show us that his uncle really as bad as Min Ho wants him to be. From their interactions, the uncle hasn’t tried to really defend himself and he looks like the victim of circumstance as Min Ho looks like a jerk who is fueled by bitterness and anger and taking it out on his uncle. There is no define clarification on why the revenge. So when Min Ho plays a hand in order to come out victorious, he just looks like a soulless thug with no meaning. He is so blinded by revenge that he doesn’t see that he is hurting those around him and himself in particular. From a young age, Min Ho began to create a steel wall around his heart and focus on bringing down his uncle. Ironically, he has a weak heart; a disease that is passed down from his father. He is given a timeline by his doctor and he uses this opportunity to work harder than ever and becomes more cold-blooded in the business in order to see his uncle crumble before he leaves the world. However, things begin to change as soon as he as he encounters secretary Soon Jung.

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Joon Hee, the Other Guy

Aside from Min Ho, there is another character that seems to want to build a life of success and power, however, the way he goes about it is manipulative and sneaky. Lee Joon Hee (Yoon Hyun Min) is Hermia’s corporate lawyer. Though, he is a lawyer, he is not taken seriously by the President or by the directors of the company. He does the dirty work for the President and this doesn’t get him recognized properly. He wants to build a name for himself so that he can become someone of recognition. Hence, he becomes a double agent, so to speak, with Hermia and Gold Partners (Min Ho’s company and rival company to Hermia). He ends up becoming an acting president after the death of the President, Min Ho’s uncle.  Unlike Min Ho, Joon Hee has a clear purpose, which is to attain power in order to be seen.
He has always felt like his timing was off in everything. So in order to make sure that time is on his side, he tries to bend it. But, one really cannot control time, so even though he thinks he is doing something for the good guys, he really is getting deeper into the hole he has begun to dig and time is really not on his side. In terms of his relationship life, Joon Hee holds a touch for Soon Jung, but as stated earlier, time had never been his friend. He always waits till he gets something before he can declare his love for her. Due to his callous ways, Soon Jung is beginning to see the real Joon Hee and so do we.
He believes that his goal is a means to an end, however, he is so deep into his actions that he is beginning to think that whatever he does is for the greater good and for Soon Jung. In other words, he makes Min Ho look like a saint as compared to him. With Min Ho, though ruthless, he is strategic. He makes sure it hurts that one person he is targeting, however, Joon Hee goes for the kill. He doesn’t care about the consequences as long as Soon Jung is not affected. In contrast, Soon Jung does get affected by his actions, either directly or indirectly because she is close to those in power, being a secretary and all.
Joon Hee is a lot similar to Min Ho in the sense that he is lost as well. Growing up, he never had things that most kids did, due to his background so he worked hard to get it in order to show for it as compared to please himself. He thinks that having the finer things in life and a name to show for it will get him recognized. That philosophy has always stuck with him and it is so sad that even though he has a path, he is going the wrong way about it and it not only hurts him in the process, but those around him as well. See what I did there, just like Min Ho.

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Dong Wook is passionate.
Soon Jung’s boyfriend, Ma Dong Wook (Jin Goo) is a detective. He doesn’t let thing easily go. He lives in the moment as his philosophy of life is “the future is unknown.” He deeply loves Soon Jung as his whole life revolves around her. Their love goes way back to elementary school to when Soon Jung was a newcomer at school. They have been friends since including Joon Hee. However, Dong Wook beats Joon Hee to the punch as Dong Wook is a guy of action; he just goes for Soon Jung regardless of what he has or will have. After proposing to Soon Jung, with the help of Joon Hee, Dong Wook and Soon Jung decide to surprise his dad at work with the news.

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By the way, his father and Joon Hee’s dad works for Hermia, the corporation Min Ho is trying to close down. A tampering of a product that is mass produced is a catalyst for Min Ho to forcibly close the business since it lost lots of money. However, Dong Wook cannot stand still and watch his father and the workers who have become his second family, be humiliated and out of work, so he goes on detective mode to know who the cause of a product tampering is. He finds out that Joon Hee is behind the scheme. However, before he can bring Joon Hee to justice, he becomes a victim of a mysterious hit-and-run.
I like Dong Wook and his philosophy, YOLO. However, sometimes he is too nosy. I get it, you want justice for those who are treated unfairly, but sometimes there are matters that really shouldn’t be of a concern because it just isn’t. It is unfortunate that he got killed in the process, but his death is for the greater good. Let me explain. Because of his death, we and Soon Jung get to know the real Joon Hee and not the Joon Hee that secretly is in love with his best friend. In addition to Dong Wook’s sacrifice he gets to save a life twice, Min Ho’s actual life and finding a purpose in life.

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Min Ho Heart Thumps
Min Ho gets a heart transplant after his finally gave out. A new heart means a new him. However, he doesn’t understand what that means. All he knows is that his heart beats faster and louder when he is around Soon Jung.  This is all new and confusing for him, but that doesn’t stop him from being a mean, jerky boss.         However, there is definitely a personality change for Min Ho as he actually thinks before he acts; this is due to the influence of Soon Jung. He is trying hard to fight the feeling, but he just can’t. So how come he is around Soon Jung so much? The President and Min Ho decide to play a game of pass the secretary around so Soon Jung becomes Min Ho’s and the President’s secretary.
After series of yelling and violent display of anger towards Soon Jung, Min Ho’s new heart begins to feel for Soon Jung. Everything he does seem to be out of concern for Soon Jung. So, he decides to act out what his heart is beating for. Even though I love the new Min Ho, especially when he is around Soon Jung, I would still like to see his process of how he is adjusting to his new life. We hear how he is changing from other people, but I want to see it from Min Ho’s point of view. That will really drive the plot forward and will be super interesting to experience because we will be able to actually see his thought-process and reactions first-hand than from those around him.

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Soon Jung’s the Loyal One.
Though, her loyalty lies with the President. After the President’s death, she stays with Min Ho, though not by choice, but by obligation. She feels that she needs to become the voice of reason towards Min Ho’s outrageousness. Even after her finance’s death, that still hasn’t stopped Soon Jung for caring for Doog Wook’s dad or the workers at the factory. She is spunky, yet reserved and zealous about what she believes in.
Though, she gets chewed out a lot by crazy hormone raging men, nonetheless, that doesn’t deter her as she still stands her ground. What I like about Soon Jung is that she is not docile. She knows how to pick her battles, though the people she is against with are irrational. And because of their uncertainty, she is able to defend herself and voice her opinion. It seems though that she is becoming affected by Min Ho’s weird and quirky charms. A guy who didn’t grow up loved is fighting hard to be loved and she is the one who can “tame” him as she understands where his projection is coming from.

Overall
     I like the storyline. The story is fast-paced and there is no room for misunderstanding as it cuts through the chase, just like Min Ho. Though, the heart having a cell memory is something I still do not believe in, as organs do not hold memory cells that can be transferred, but the writer wants us to suspend belief. It is written well where is not too far-fetched or too serious. Min Ho still retains who he was while trying to become someone who he wasn’t; he doesn’t need a new heart for a change of heart. Hehe! He didn’t lose his old self because of a new heart, but rather the new heart is a symbol of trying to live a better life after given a second change. Though, the new heart just happens to beat faster around a particular person and no, it is not secretary Woo Sik hehe!

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Now that Min Ho has lost his purpose—revenge— he doesn’t know what to do. That was what got him through life as he was growing up and now that it is gone, he is like a lost boy struggling to find his way home. Hopefully, as he tries to become a better man, he finds a new and better purpose that will make him live life not regrettably.

Photo credit: dramabeans-falling for innocence recaps

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