‘The paper house’ did not become the success we know today until it made the leap to Netflix. On the platform they saw a vein and revived a series that everyone considered closed, reaching up to three more seasons exclusively on the platform. Of course, before the last one was released they had already launched a Korean remake that debuts on streaming this Friday June 24th.
The big question with ‘The paper house: Korea’ was to what extent it was going to distance itself from the original series and propose something different. Obviously, there are a few changes, but when it comes down to it, it’s closer to being a copy than anything else. The worst of all is that basically everything that gave personality to the Spanish series is offer something that is more of a copy than an adaptation.
very few variations
One of the first aspects that draws attention to ‘The paper house: Korea’ is how much it seems to feed on familiarity with the universe created by Alex Pina. And I’m not saying this because nicknames are maintained or a mint is robbed again, but because even the choice of the actors who play them seems to be motivated by it. And then they power it up to the point where the new Denver (Kim Ji Hoon) even seems to imitate the unmistakable laugh of Jaime Lorente giving life to the same character in the original Spanish version.
That is something that runs through the series at all levels and is to some extent understandable. After all, if the base material has been so successful, better not touch too much. The problem is that then the existence of ‘The paper house: Korea’ begins to lose meaning and one gets to wonder what exactly he is doing seeing something like that.
On the one hand, the remake could have opted for a more vibrant approach and in line with those Korean thrillers that they are so good at. Unfortunately, that energy is not there, since it is also committed to an evident continuity with respect to what has already been seen in ‘La casa de papel’. There are just a couple of alterations here and there that remind us of the staging particularities of other similar proposals in this country, but they are nothing more than small mirages. The rest was already and better in the original, but it is only fair to point out that it is technically well resolved.
What is interesting about ‘The paper house: Korea’ is the scenario that it proposes close to the dystopian, but it is still the background. Sometimes they take advantage of it to introduce some change or to make some curious sociological point, but the feeling remains that this base would have given much more of itself in a series built around the union of the two Koreas.
The big problem of ‘The paper house: Korea’
Nevertheless, the real problem with this korean adaptation is its lack of identitybut the most striking thing is that the most serious thing at this point is the result of what seems like a thoughtful decision to lighten the most personal section of the protagonists and focus more clearly on everything that surrounds the robbery.
Here the flashbacks have a much smaller presence, the same thing happening with the fact that Tokyo (Jeon Jong-seo) and with any other detail in which it is not strictly necessary to stop. That ranges from small details like the choice of nicknames to other more important aspects such as what links the robbers to each other.
And the consequence of this is that the characters do not finish working, often giving the feeling of being little more than mere stick figures. The one who comes out the best is The Professor (Yoo Ji-tae), but because the very development of the story means that he has to show more facets of his personality than the rest.
He is also the only one who can really bring out a bit of that playful facet that helped ‘The paper house’ so much to define its own identity, but soon it is diluted to give everything a much more serious approach in everything it proposes. . Sometimes there is some effective addition, but the usual thing is that it ends up neutralizing the possible impact of the series. Perhaps that is not so obvious if you have not seen the original, but here it leads to what should be vibrant ending up bordering on the bland at times.
Having said all this, I do not want to imply that ‘The paper house: Korea’ is a complete waste of time, since it inherits some of the virtues of the original and there is always the curiosity to go looking for differences. But this should be a hobby with much more to offer and not a passable but very inconsequential remake.
‘The paper house: Korea’ is a simple rehash of the Spanish series. A priori it had everything to be a vibrant update, since a Korean remake just sounded appealing for what they have shown there in the thriller genre, but the chosen approach is often closer to one of those new Hollywood versions that take what evident and what made the original work special is left behind. Better to give a chance to other of the great series that Netflix has released this year.