Episode 1 – | Review Score – 3/5
Episode 2 – | Review Score – 3/5
Episode 3 – | Review Score – 3/5
Episode 4 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episode 5 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 6 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episode 7 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 8 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 9 – | Review Score – 3/5
Episode 10 – | Review Score – 2.5/5
Episode 11 – | Review Score – 2.5/5
Episode 12 – | Review Score – 2/5
Episode 13 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 14 – | Review Score – 2.5/5
Episode 15 – | Review Score – 2/5
Episode 16 – | Review Score – 3/5
She Would Never Know could be a great romcom if it were 6 episodes shorter. While most Korean dramas work beautifully within its 16 episode structure, She Would Never Know slips up with a bloated run-time and a story that eventually runs out of ideas.
The story here revolves around the workplace romances and drama inside KLAR Cosmetics. Smart and successful Song-A works as a marketer and she brightens up the room every time she enters. With high aspirations of starting her own cosmetic brand, in secret she happens to be dating her boss, BM Jae-Shin.
However, Song-A’s junior and work colleague, Hyun-Seung, takes a fancy to Song-A and tries to win her own. It’s a simple concept in truth, but one that’s made a little more complicated than it first seems. As we soon find out, Jae-Shin is actually engaged to the Chairman’s daughter, Hyo-Joo – something Song-A is not aware of.
In predictable rom-com fashion, Hyun-Seung and Song-A start to grow closer together. The trouble is, the rest of the story doesn’t have enough substance to really progress and move beyond this central idea. Once the knots are untangled, the drama almost completely dissipates. This is made worse by the fact that the supporting characters and their stories are far more interesting than the central conflict.
First up we have Hyun-Seung’s older sister Ji-Seung, who winds up getting involved with Hyo-Joo’s brother and Jae-Shin’s best friend, Jae-Woon. The pair have very little screen-time but their moments are fun and lighten the mood.
By comparison, you have younger sister Yeon-Seung, who’s married to quiet and reserved Woo-Hyun. Their marital issues are strained by the introduction of Chef Ryu, Woo-Hyun’s best friend.
Both of these subplots have some nice moments but unfortunately find themselves relegated to the shadows for large stretches of the run-time. Instead, She Would Never Know valiantly continues to show Song-A and Hyun-Seung’s will/won’t they romance, complete with all the usual clichés one would expect from this genre.
Thankfully, the acting does go some way to diminish the issues felt here. Both Won Jin-A and Ro Woon put on a decent performance as the two leads while Ha Yoon-Kyung, who plays Yeon-Seung, is easily the stand-out. The range she exhibits during some of her emotionally charged scenes late on really help light up the otherwise dull shades filtered across this show.
Unfortunately this isn’t enough to shake off the shackles of mediocrity that hold She Would Never Know down. This series is so inoffensively bland that at times it’s easy to forget the brighter moments of the run-time.
The second half in particular, from around episode 10 onwards, slows the pace to such a degree that many people will inevitably fast forward through until the drama picks up. Unfortunately, it never does.
There’s just enough here to stick with until the end, with a finale does wrap up all the loose ends, but the ride to get there is far more of a slog than it needs to be.
She Would Never Know is a show that could have been great. There’s certainly a lot of potential here but it’s squandered in a story too compact for the usual 16 episode format.
The result then is one of 2021’s most inoffensively bland Korean dramas. She Would Never Know is not a bad show but it’s not a particularly good one either, leaving things with an indifferent shrug rather than a rapturous string of applause.
Verdict - 5.5/10