[Review] Jeon Woo Chi – 전우치

OH DO IL EE GWAN JI ME A SUPERHERO

Jeon Woo Chi (Cha Tae Hyun) is a Taoist wizard who once studied under Hong Gil Dong.  In order to rid the country of corruption and get his love Hong Moo Yeon (Uee) back, Jeon Woo Chi must fight against two other power wizards, Ma Sook (Kim Gab Soo) and Kang Rim (Lee Hee Joon).

Certainly the drama is a bevy of talented actors, but Cha Tae Hyun takes the lead.  It’s no surprise that Cha Tae Hyun is perfectly suited to play the wiseass-cracking Jeon Woo Chi.  Jeon Woo Chi’s mischievous nature is what bring you in but his determination to fight for what he thinks is right is what makes you stay.

Out of all the supporting character, I like Bong Gu (Sung Dong Il) the best.  Sure, he’s the comic relief but Sung Dong Il always manages to amaze me with how he approaches each of his roles.  Bong Gu is an uneducated con man until he encounters Jeon Woo Chi who entrusts him with helping Jeon Woo Chi’s cause.

Thus Bong Gu becomes an invaluable ally and I simply Cha Tae Hyun and Sung Dong Il have such great chemistry together.

It’s a little hard to assess Uee’s acting in this drama as Moo Yeon is kind of a boring character.  However, I thought she seemed decent early on being burdened with the emotional weight of her deeds all the while under Ma Sook’s spell.  Later on, she also acts as Woo Chi’s conscience when his anger gets the better of him.

Jo Sung Mo – 사랑해 (I Love You)


조성모 – 사랑해

Kang Rim, on the other hand, was a pretty disappointing characters.  It’s not due to the way Lee Hee Joon plays him but the problem was in the way he was written.  I’ve seen conflicted villains before but there wasn’t any further depth to his character.  All the mystery, intrigue and hurt surrounding him fades away in the first act of the drama.  I just lost interest in him and any sympathy or hatred I may have had for his character just fades into indifference.

Adding to the problem with Kang Rim’s character is the issue that the stakes in the drama never escalated high enough.  From Woo Chi’s first encounter with Kang Rim after leaving Yuldo to Moo Yeon coming to her senses and turning the tables on Ma Sook and Kang Rim.

Then it builds up to Kang Rim losing Ma Sook and to continue his plan of helping influential officials all the way to the throne.

The drama also played with the notion of trust over and over and over again.  It’s just all added up to a severe lack of intrigue.

That’s the most disappointing part of the drama as a cast of this magnitude deserves better.  It’s not as if the writing was completely awful.  It’s just that the drama feels like children’s television as Jeon Woo Chi is a superhero who is fun but always manages to bring evildoers to justice at the end of the day.  I guess the producers were just banking on the stardom of Cha Tae Hyun rather than plotting a complicated story arc.

Rating

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