The Rim is back on the small screen! Rejoice! However, the first week of Unkind Ladies (or Unkind Women) spared minimal screen time to The Rim (I wonder if Mary is watching Show), and the story is focused more on one of the four Unkind Ladies.
The Unkind Ladies are referred to the family of four women of three generations, matriach Kang Soon Ok (Kim Hye Ja), her daughters Kim Hyun Jung (Do Ji Won) and Hyun Sook (Chae Si Ra), and Hyun Sook’s daughter Jung Ma Ri (Lee Ha Na). [Hey Mary, you’re now in the same drama as The Rim!] We get the focus on Hyun Sook during the first week, with introductions to characters related to Soon Ok as well.
Hyun Sook is one who means well but somehow ends up doing the wrong things and brings trouble to those around her instead. She attributes her failure in life to her high school teacher, Na Hyun Ae (Seo Yi Sook), a unyielding and rather cold person. Because of Teacher Na, Hyun Sook ends up being expelled from school (for a theft accusation). Since then, Hyun Sook’s life went continuously downhill, and she also becomes an unwed mother, giving birth to Ma Ri.
Ma Ri kind of takes after her Mom, being somewhat hapless and means well, but because of some misunderstanding (which was not even in her control), Ma Ri is on the verge of losing her job as a lecturer. Of course, the person who’s involved in her current sorry state turns out to be Teacher Na’s son, Lee Doo Jin (Kim Ji Seok), and he did not even mean for things to turn out like this, but of course the characters still do not know of the complicated relationships they share.
And The Rim…we know he’s the half-brother of Doo Jin, but there’s no interaction between the the brothers, and all the viewers are introduced to is The Rim plays Lee Roo Oh, a taekwondo instructor at the same school where Ma Ri teaches at. I thank the makeup team for using huge tapes to cover up The Rim’s tattoo (I wish Korean TV can be like Taiwanese TV – hugeass tattoos go on screen) so that we get to see The Rim half-nekkid. In the showers, but not brooding. Ok, I digress.
Anyway, Hyun Sook ran into trouble for losing all Soon Ok’s money in an investment (she really thought she can double Mom’s savings), and in a bid to reap the loss, she went to try her luck at some illegal gambling den, and ended up running for her life when the police came busting the den. Hyun Sook goes to pay her respect to her late Dad, and intends to take her life. She is saved by a very rich lady, Jang Mo Ran (Jang Mi Hee), who was actually her Dad’s lover, and caused unhappiness to Soon Ok during the marriage.
Show does a quick job setting up the conflicts among our characters, and also the dynamics of the family of women. Elder daughter Hyun Jung is the so-called successful child, a senior news announcer, despite being single. Hyun Sook is the underacheiver who only brings her family problems. Soon Ok seems to show favoritism, but I believe there’s more to it. I also hope to see more of the Lee brothers, and not just a love triangle between them and Ma Ri. Love triangles are so yesteryear.