CAST: Byun yo-han, Song Kang-ho, Oh Kwang-rok, Jin Ki-joo

DIRECTOR: Shin Yeon-shick

Park Doo-chil, also known as Uncle Samsik (played by Song Kang-ho), is a central figure in Hulu’s latest K-drama political series. From the first few episodes, it becomes evident that this seasoned fixer has his hands in every aspect of the struggling country’s affairs. In a fast-paced and gripping narrative, viewers are immersed in the intricate web of political maneuvering, with Samsik serving as the unwavering anchor we can all rely on. However, there’s a potential challenger: Kim San (portrayed by Byun Yo-han), a young politician introducing American ideals into Korean politics.

Uncle Samsik (TV Series 2024– ) - IMDb

Written and directed by Shin Yeon-shick (known for Cobweb and Cassiopeia), Uncle Samsik begins in the middle of the action at an undisclosed military location in South Korea. Here, Kim San finds himself unexpectedly interrogated. As the series unfolds, Yeon-shick gradually reveals the complexities of the main character, Uncle Samsik, through the perspective of the idealistic Kim San. We quickly see how this enigmatic social influencer becomes entangled in the lives of others.

To establish the character’s influence and reach, the story briefly flashes back to 1959. Yeon-shick effectively sets the scene, capturing the essence of a time marked by rampant corruption following the Korean War. Despite economic struggles, powerful figures like Doo-chil thrived in this corrupt environment, making the era come alive for the audience, even those unfamiliar with it.

In his first drama series role, Song Kang-ho brings a natural charm and charisma to the character of Doo-chil/Samsik, which becomes especially pronounced in his interactions with others. He seems to transform into Uncle Samsik when he needs to manipulate those around him. Although the character remains enigmatic early in the series, it quickly becomes apparent that he is not someone to be trifled with. His ability to read people with ease allows him to navigate and overcome various challenges. However, as Episodes 1 and 2 of Uncle Samsik suggest, what rises must eventually fall.

Song Kang-ho's Disney+ Series Uncle Samsik Gets Release Date

The catalyst for his downfall? It’s hard to pinpoint exactly, but all evidence so far indicates Kim San as the likely cause. In a government highly suspicious of anything even vaguely associated with Communism, San’s idealistic views are not well-received. He is determined to improve the economy and help South Korea prosper. His connections with potential political candidate Joo In-tae (played by Oh Kwang-rok) and In-tae’s daughter, Joo Yeo-jin (played by Jin Ki-joo), put him in a precarious position.

Kim San’s optimism is precisely what attracts Doo-chil/Uncle Samsik. His ideals align with Samsik’s goals, making him a prime target for collaboration. Uncle Samsik wants to convince Kim San that their partnership can be mutually beneficial. However, working with a mastermind like Samsik always comes with strings attached. Whether one is a politician, a gang member, or an ordinary citizen, if Uncle Samsik helps you, you are expected to return the favor.

Uncle Samsik release date, cast, plot and more on the historical K-drama

Byun Yo-han portrays the idealistic young economist Kim San with a blend of passion and weariness. Kim San is a man who has experienced suffering, hunger, and the potential for Korea’s prosperity through economic investment. He represents what Doo-chil might have been in his youth. The question remains whether Kim San’s idealism can withstand the influence of the older, more powerful man.

Adjusting to the characters in the series takes time, partly due to the fast-paced nature of the story. While this rapid pace is common in K-dramas and not necessarily negative, the quick shifts between different perspectives in the first episode require the audience to keep up. Despite the dizzying array of characters and groups, once the viewer is up to speed, it becomes clear how intelligent Samsik is and the precarious situation he has created for himself.

Uncle Samsik - Wikipedia

Yeon-shick has set himself the challenging task of depicting the corruption and turmoil of this era in Korean history. The country, struggling to recover from the devastating aftermath of the war and seeking independence from foreign aid, provides the ideal backdrop for the complex characters in this story. Under Yeon-shick’s direction, Song Kang-ho masterfully portrays a survivor who has repeatedly pulled himself out of the wreckage.

Uncle Samsik wastes no time diving into its political landscape at breakneck speed, yet its central character remains compelling. Song Kang-ho’s Samsik, with a sparkle in his eye hinting at the resilient survivor within, is a charismatic enigma determined to build a better Korea. Whether his efforts will ultimately be successful or in vain remains to be seen. Driven by strong performances and its rapid pace, this latest K-drama series is sure to captivate viewers.

Uncle Samsik Episodes 1-5 are now streaming on Hulu, with new episodes premiering weekly on Wednesdays.

Share this article:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

most popular

I have read and agreed with the terms and conditions and privacy policy.

what you need to know

in your inbox every week.