[Drama Review] ‘Man to Man’ – Episode 1

[Drama Review] ‘Man to Man’ – Episode 1

Meet Kim Seol Woo, aka Agent K, agent extraordinaire. His job is to track down wood carvings that could implicate corrupt chaebol Mo Seung Jae in a finance scandal; they contain details of a slush fund that his grandfather saved for 40 years. Put simply, bribes, cash that is unaccounted for. This wood carving is in the hands of the Russian oil tycoon Chairman Victor. Chairman Victor has ties to Yeo Woon Gwang.

Park Hae Jin as Kim Seol Woo

Yeo Woon Gwang is an actor and a spoiled brat. Famous for the bad-boy and villain roles he adopts, he does many of his own stunts, having been a stuntman before he turned to acting.

Park Sung Woong as Yeo Woon Gwang

Woon Gwang’s manager is Cha Do Ha, a sasaeng who got a real job to be close to the man she obsesses over. She is also obsessive over keeping him to a strict diet and to keep his lips off of other girls. She also is jealous of Seol Woo, since he showed her up as a bodyguard.

Seung Jae is trying to track the wood carvings down and has employed another security firm to do this. Agent K is also trying to do the same, employed by the government. To get close to Chairman Victor, he has to go undercover and become Woon Gwang’s bodyguard.

Definitely a good blend of comedic and high-octane moments. This drama has its share of action scenes and is tempered by the antics of the Hallyu star and Seol Woo’s attempts to protect him. Not to mention the tactics of Do Ha, who would just as soon be rid of our undercover hero.

Seol Woo plays a great straight shooting man, and the writers play his deadpan expressions off in some very hilarious situations, like when Do Ha tries to escape his grasp, and instead he makes her do a spinning tango move before grabbing her again. She’s indignant, and he’s stoic. It’s comedy gold.

There’s also some delicious action here, which is usually what I crave. In Budapest Seol Woo infiltrates a prison to break out Petrov, a Russian officer. Seol Woo definitely knows how to fight, shown when he takes down a prison rape gang. Do Ha gets her own share of excitement (and awesome comedy), as she races through the streets of Seoul at breakneck speed, frightening Woon Gwang into submission. And the scene with the forklift? I’m still laughing.

Cha Do Ha, as a main character is currently (as of the first episode) annoying. Her slavish devotion to Woon Gwang is a tad over the top, almost as awkward as it is funny. And that haircut! Kim Min Jung is not an ugly woman (check out ‘Gabdongi’ if you don’t believe me). But the haircut they give her does nothing to frame her face and makes her look at least 10-15 years older and frumpy.

I looked forward to this show because I had heard that one of the lead writers of Descendants of the Sun was responsible for the script, and I figured that it would turn out to be a quality product. I was not wrong. While it’s not perfect (what first episode is?) I think in time Do Ha’s hijinks will grow on me (and hopefully the haircut will too). I do love the action, and I can imagine things getting more intense the further in we go.

SEE ALSO: [OP-ED] Why fans feel angered when Korean idols ‘change’

Get K-POP Merch @ allkpop The Shop