Wow. Some eagled eye viewers guessed correctly that Sung-hee and Councilor Chun are a pair of father-daughter. A nice twist in character-relationships. However…I still need to rant about Sung-hee.

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I really see no purpose to Sung-hee as a character in 38, other than “proving” that Jung-do isn’t a bad egg in the past (and present). Hopefully, with the upfront knowledge (from ep11) that she is Councilor Chun’s daughter will provide a more interesting layer to her character. Currently, other than being Miss Goody-Two-Shoes and Jung-do’s ex-lover, Sung-hee hasn’t really grown much in terms of character development.

In fact, I’d go out on a limb to say her character has remained static. In harsher terms, boring. The naïve Sung-hee in the past who was “played out” by Jung-do remains naïve today. She still believes that doing things by-the-book will give her by-the-book results. Thus, she wastes her time, and effort, banging her head (metaphorically speaking) against Chairman Bang’s door. Only to be thrown out in shame and implicating Team Leader Kang.

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Ironically, her fiery (and clearly, not thought through) attacks on Chairman Bang are not consistently applied. She gives up the moment she feels the heat — and tries to persuade Sung-il to do the same, to ignore Chairman Bang’s owed taxes, so that everything can remain status quo. In fact, she exemplifies what the baddies in 38 have been saying — that the “lowly commoners” are easily contented, preferring not to rock the boat, and to look the other way…thereby further enriching those who are already rich, and corrupted.

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Although Sung-hee appears on screen with a higher frequency than her dad (Councilor Chun), it is the latter whom I find more interesting. From the hints 38 dropped (via Sung-il), Councilor Chun used to be a trusted hyungnim, and he is also genuinely upset about Sung-il brother-in-law’s (also an ex-colleague) suicide. I wonder what made him join “the other side”. I won’t be surprised if the initial reason is to make use of the dirty money to perform a greater good.

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You can argue that Sung-hee is a perfect foil to her daddy. Whilst Councilor Chun has wandered off the path, Sung-hee remains straight as an arrow. Then again, it’s a real pity. I was really hoping for her to join forces with Sung-il/ Jung-do. Although she did a cameo as Jung-do’s “wife” during the Chairman Bang Operation, it was shortlived.  With only 4 more eps to go, I’m not confident that her character can make a 180 deg about turn.

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