Reviewing Vincenzo – SPOILERS


Plot


Vincenzo Cassano had his life uprooted after he was falsely led to believe his mother abandoned him as a child in South Korea at the age of eight. He was adopted by a family in Italy; however, after his adoptive parents were killed in a burglary, he was taken under the wing of the Mafia. Vincenzo became a lawyer who worked as a consigliere for the Mafia.

Don Fabia is the head of the Cassano mafia family who unfortunately dies. Afterwards, his biological son attempts to kill Vincenzo out of jealously. Before fleeing to Seoul, Vincenzo settles a score with a rival mafia head by setting his entire vineyard on fire.

Once in Seoul, he sets out to recover 1.5tons of gold that has been secretly stashed within the basement of the Geumga Plaza. Unfortunately, a real estate company under Babel Group has illegally taken ownership of the building, so now Vincenzo and Babel are caught in a battle over the building.

It is at this moment, he crosses path with Hong Cha-Young who opposes him by working for Babel Group. However, after the betrayal of Babel who were behind her father’s death, she switches sides, thus Vincenzo and her having common ground to work together. Alongside the tenants of the Geumga Plaza, Vincenzo and Hong Cha-Young try to legally defeat Babel, but when all fails, Vincenzo resorts to mafia tactics to thwart corrupt lawyers and systems.

Along the journey, we see Vincenzo fall in love with Hong Cha-Young, and the tenants of the Geumga Plaza achieve social justice with the aid of Vincenzo and Hong Cha-Young. Vincenzo is able to recover the portion of gold that belongs to him, and secure a brighter future for all the tenants and defeat evil with evil.


Characters


Vincenzo Cassano:

A well put together guy with a dark sense of humour and correct amount of badass that mingles with morality upheld towards good humans. Also has a particular love for Boolaroo suits. He takes it upon himself to cleanse the world of sinners and lives by the philosophy “only evil can punish…evil.” This line lowkey breaks my heart because despite all the crimes Vincenzo commits, he’s only doing the work the legal, political and criminal system fails to do so due to corruption, bribery and power hungry people. He also states “Not everyone deserve to love. Those who harm or hurt others don’t deserve to love. For them, love is nothing but an accessory,” and I’m like noooooo, Vincenzo darling, please don’t let that stopping you from falling in love with Hong Cha-Young!!

Hong Cha-Young:

Okay, so she’s got such a wild, quirky personality. It took me a few episodes for me to be like okaaaay, I think I can vibe with you. She’s very down to earth and brutal, doesn’t hold back and at no point in the drama does she change her characteristics to make people love her or support her. At first, I was very bitter towards her for opposing her father and being blind to how her workplace, Babel, were corrupt and committing crimes. Sadly, it took the murder of her father for things to hit hard, but since that moment, she spent every second plotting on Babel’s downfall.

Jang Joon-Woo:

I’M SORRY BUT how did this…

turn into this?!?

This plot twist just came out of nowhere. Jang Joon-Woo did such a good job of acting as the naive goofball that everyone looked down on, that it came as a shock when it’s revealed that he’s the leader of the evil company that is Babel. While orchestrating murders, bribes, and corrupt moves, he maintains the sweet, soft facade of being the intern at Babel. It takes a couple of episodes for the watcher to be looped into the secret whilst Vincenzo and Hong Cha-Young remain clueless for a while longer. Vincenzo has a close escape when Jang Joon-Woo sets up his assassination but of cause no one can kill a mafia dude.

Here’s a moment where his soft facade clashes with the dark side of him. Of course Vincenzo comes running to save her!

Chairman Jang Han-Seo:

He got done so dirty! He deserved a happy ending in my opinion, but alas, he was selfless and sacrificed himself to prevent Vincenzo and Hong Cha-Young from dying at the hands of his step-brother, Jang Joon-Woo. Still…they could have not given him fatal bullet injuries argh!!

The chairman was pretty much the puppet of Jang Joon-Woo, and had to obey his every whim, and present himself as the real boss. This left his step-brother to scheme away in the shadows and gain power. However, along the way, the chairman grows sick and tired of the number of innocent deaths and teams up with Vincenzo to bring him down. Initially, Vincenzo was stubborn and said he didn’t want to stoop so low to take advantage of family betrayal, but after the Chairman persists and his actions reflect he is a good person, Vincenzo backs down and joins forces.

Choi Myung-Hee & Han Seung-Hyeok:

These two are pure evil. Prosecutor Choi Myung-Hee belongs in hell, and has no remorse or conscious. Killing innocent people to win cases, and get her way is second nature to her. Han Seung-Hyeok is self-centred and when things get heated, tries to evade death by trying to cut deals that protect his lifeline.

Hong Yu-Chan:

This is Hong Cha-Young’s father. He refuses to back down from Babel group producing harmful drugs and taking over the Plaza illegally despite his life being on the line. He states: “Smart people may rule the world, but reckless and stubborn people like me protect this world.”

Cho Yeong-Un:

He’s the owner of the Plaza, and a portion of the gold belongs to him. He’s also a longtime friend of Vincenzo yet he manages to momentarily betray Vincenzo due to dire financial situations. He was forgiven and given a second chance…

Jung In-Kuk:

He’s a red herring! I honestly thought he was genuine and when he turned out to be a money, power chasing traitor, I was surprised. Even Babel group was surprised as they thought he was a threat to their downfall.

An Gi-Seok:

He’s part of the International Security Agency who out of curiosity trails Vincenzo against his boss’s scepticism. In the end, he’s able to pull a few strings for Vincenzo and bring the sought after Guillotine file that contains all the corrupt transactions and documentations of politicians and key members of society.

The Plaza residents:

These lot go over and beyond to defend their home, but also assist Vincenzo and Hong Cha-Young with their mafia like tactics to bring down Babel.


CHARACTER BONDS I DIGGED:


Vincenzo & Hong Cha-Young:

Their chemistry is impeccable and so natural. You see their love mature slowly over the episodes, but you have to wait till the very last episode or so before they confess their love and have some cute intimacy. Honestly, one of my fears was that the show would end without either acknowledging their love. Despite having their moment, Vincenzo is unable to stay safely nor legally within South Korea so he escapes to an island, yet he invites her to come over anytime, and sneaks back for a political event. He never fails to send her a postcard monthly. It’s heart breaking for the show to end with no real closure…I NEED TO KNOW that they reunite and get to marry and have kids and enjoy life…

Their humour, wit, intuition, resilience is unmatched. I also love how they are both unapologetically themselves, and neither conforms or changes themselves to be desirable to the other. Hong Cha-Young remains the weird eccentric girl, and Vincenzo remains the sinner with good intentions.

Vincenzo & Chairman Jang Han-Seo:

The chairman idolises Vincenzo as his older brother and is appreciative of Vincenzo’s intervention in his life. A tear was nearly brought to my eye when Vincenzo acknowledges the brotherhood they share in Jang Han-Seo’s last moments. Everything he could never find with Jang Joon-Woo, he found within Vincenzo.

Misc:

Vincenzo is briefly reunited with his mother and he finds the real reason why he was “abandoned.” His mother had a terminal illness and wanted him to be surrounded by love and family, and not be left on the streets. His mother was also framed for murder by Babel group after he left for Italy, and as Vincenzo and Hong Cha-Young battle to prove her innocence, Jang Han-Seo murders Vincenzo’s mother.

Nam Joo-Sung aids both Vincenzo and Hong Cha-Young to avenge Hong Yu-Chan’s murder. He worked alongside Hong Yu-Chan to take Babel to court.

Park Seok-Do and his mob initially crossed the wrong path of Vincenzo when hired by Babel to rough the Plaza residents up. Eventually they switch sides and work alongside Vincenzo which is heart warming to see.


SOUNDTRACK:


IS heavenly and the characters really embody the soundtrack vibes.

You can listen to the entire soundtrack on Spotify or Youtube. My favourite soundtrack has to be Adrenaline – Solar. The instrumental version just hits differently and it makes me think of Vincenzo walking away from the chaos untouched.


FINAL WORDS:


Vincenzo was my second K-drama, and I loved every second of it. Admittedly, I only got proper obsessed with it after the third episode, but I’m so glad I didn’t give up on it. The characters are so versatile and the chemistry between everyone is portrayed so organically. Nothing ever seems forced, which makes it so much easier to become emotionally attached to the characters.

The humour throughout is refreshing and the romance is not what drives the show – rather romance matures as time progresses and doesn’t derail the action of the show. The plot progression is crafty with several red herrings, and plot twists out of nowhere. The cinematics reel you in and the show ends nicely, although it leaves us longing for more.

Many themes and concepts are explored throughout the show such as loyalty, justice, corruption, greed, unconditional love, evil. Characters contrast each other; some expose the bad in others, whilst others bring out the goodness hidden away.

Vincenzo is now my fav shows of all time oops…

If you’ve already watched it, come on, let’s vibe in the comments! If you have any other K-dramas you’d recommend to me, let me know! And if I’ve intrigued you enough, you can watch the trailer below:

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