Melancholia -- Episodes 5 & 6 : Tolerance is a Double Edged Sword that Leads to Cruelty
I enjoy how Melancholia's story flows, and that's a credit to the writer, but also the director and actors. Brilliant storytelling, Im Soo Jung and Lee Do Hyun are excellent, but so are the other cast members -- a fantastic job all around. It's amazing, yet sad to realize through this drama how highly intelligent people, especially teenagers, feel trapped and even cursed by their brightness, blamed for it. So they try to pretend they're not smart, but then they don't feel true to themselves. Lee Do Hyun does an excellent job in bringing that aspect of the drama to life.
So many evil deeds, yet everybody seems so calm throughout them, be it the evil doers or the receivers. If I was in Ji Yoon Soo's shoes, I doubt I'd be as understanding or calm as she has been throughout the whole ordeal she suffers from Ye Rin's and those who empower her. I commend Yoon Soo for her patience with Ye Rin and the school. Her behavior is notable, especially as a warm and accepting teacher, but when one is overly indulgent, it compromises their values, principles and ultimately integrity. By allowing Ye Rin's ugly choices time and time again, Yoon Soo dulled the boundaries of acceptance, it's almost like she's enabled her. Ye Rin isn't interested nor cares to accept her limitations. She would rather blame Seung Yoo for her limits than accept he is smarter and admit she needs help. The moment Ye Rin demanded her parents take whatever measures to ensure she is number one, she crossed the line from being pressured to the mastermind.
Everything is going wrong for Yoon Soo, from her private to professional life. When all she wants is to teach, share her passion for math with her students. But because she connects with the one student who shares her passion, and helps him realize that passion she gets on everybody's adverse side, especially the privileged spoiled parent students who are enabled to consider that their mere existence qualifies them as geniuses. I mean, I look at Ye Rin, and I can see deep down she isn't a bad person, nor driven by hate. But she can't stop herself from wanting or the desire to be the best, or appear as the best, and is willing to accept and do anything to get that recognition. I still fault her parents, teachers, and school management for making her. At the beginning, her parents were the aggressors, pushing and pressing, but the minute she decided to cross the line between wanting and blatantly taking what isn't hers, she became the attacker. It was sad watching that transition.
Yoon Soo's personal life isn't any better, but I somewhat blame it on her for choosing to ignore the clear signs that she and Sung Jae aren't suited for each other. It's that passiveness in her professional and personal life that cripples Yoon Soo, how I wish she realized she deserves so much better. I've tried to understand him, but I've failed each time. To be honest, I don't like him, but mostly I don't understand why he's so threatened by a teenage boy's crush. It is normal for a teenager to feel smitten by a compelling person who captivates their attention -- it's called adolescence -- it's no difference than crushing on a celebrity despite the lack of personal contact, it still happens. Crushes are much more about the admirer than the admired. I appreciate that Seung Yoo gets a little too protective of Yoon Soo, but she's never once crossed the line to give Sung Jae reason to doubt her. The more I think of things, Seung Yoo's romantic crush seems far less alarming than Ye Rin's identity crush. She too is fixated and crushing on both Seung Yoo and Yoon Soo, but a distinctly different level that's proven to be more dangerous.
I will say this until I am green in the face. I cannot understand how greed can be all consuming, blinding anyone, Ye Rin or No Jung Ah, and everyone else, to the consequences their actions have on the innocent. What has Yoon Soo or Seung Yoo done that is so terrible that it warranted either of them working so hard to make them feel ashamed, and even worthless, especially No Jung Ah. She is nothing more than a narcissistic sociopath. To contaminate Yoo Soo's life, your life in front of her fiance, her in-laws, and her guests on her wedding night, and destroy Seung Yoo with such malice and do it knowingly is evilness to the core, but what's worse are all those people from the parents to the teachers who knew No Jung Ah's intentions, the accomplices by association who knew the truth and chose to believe the lies because it met their agenda.
It is so true when they say sometimes people walk through life blindfolded, and try to deny that they are the ones who securely tied the knot. They would rather blame others for their ignorance when they are fully and utterly responsible for it. The scene where Yoo Soo in her beautiful bridal gown and Sung Jae in his tuxedo are walking hand in hand, and the phone of Yoo Soo leaning on Seung Yoo suddenly comes up on the photo reel is probably the cruelest and saddest of this drama. They say when one thinks of cruelty, one must try to remember the stupidity, the envy, the frustration from which it has arisen, but it is hard to do that when it is deliberate, intentional, opportunistic, cowardice, and vile minded. Whatever satisfaction, No Jung Ah, and all those who reveled in it felt it is but temporary. Nothing in this world is eternal. The injustice they committed will come back to bite them sooner or later, and I cannot wait to see that unfold. Watch Epsidoes 5 & 6 here.