Our favourite Kim family returns for a fifth season, and we present to you a recap of the series and our take on what to expect from this point onwards.
In the times of mundane sitcoms that come on-air and go off-air within weeks, ‘Kim’s Convenience’ stayed around. As the 5th season of ‘Kim’s Convenience’ has begun airing, the critics and audiences’ ratings are making the show still bask in all its humorous glory. The story of the Kim family, the loveable Korean immigrants, somehow surviving in the west, became one of the most-watched sitcoms on CBC Network when it debuted in 2016 and since it began streaming on Netflix, the show has gained a humongous international loyal fan-base.
- ‘Kim’s Convenience’ Review
- Will Jung and Appa ever reunite?
- Will Janet find her peace?
The Kim family, whose patriarch ‘Appa’, played astoundingly well by Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, runs a convenience store, named Kim’s Convenience’ (trust us, this is the least creative the creators have gotten with the show). The central story centres on the lives of Kim’s family, which includes his religious and strict wife, his estranged son Jung, and his daughter Janet.
Most of the humour is juiced from the clash of traditionalism vs modernism between the parents and the children. With a host of colourful recurring characters such as Arnold ‘Kimchee’ Han and Alex Jackson, the sitcom keeps the humour consistent, while also managing to exhibit some raw emotion from the viewers through some realistic and hard-hitting conversations.
What makes ‘Kim’s Convenience’ great?
The sitcom further provides a great outlook into the lives of immigrants in Canada, especially the first generation of them, such as Jung and Janet here.
How do they cope with the immense pressure to feel ‘included’ in the western culture while facing an identity crisis fuelled by their native traditions? Without being racist, the sitcom handles the sensitive issue quite well and the humour further gives a clean pass to the makers of the show to take some creative liberties, along with using the real-life experience of immigrants.
Other than milking the immigrant angle, the show also smartly tackles the issues young adults face, which was universal in nature. Janet’s confused love life has become a sort of a running joke on the sitcom, while Jung’s discontentment towards his father being one of the highlights of the show. Jung believes in an independent identity, away from his family, while Janet’s dreams of becoming an artist further amplify the issues for the parents, especially the church-going strictly South Korean mother Mrs Yong mi-Kim. Did we ever mention that Jean Yoon perfectly embodies the characters and delivers the performance of a lifetime?
Somehow, there are a few tropes that the show couldn’t resist, despite trying very hard to be as original as it can. For one, the show shakes off as many stereotypes as it can while telling the story of the first-generation immigrants. The show tries to keep most of the characters adhering to the “multi-cultural” reputation of Toronto but while doing that, how justified is it to set a show in Canada showing almost no White people.
The city is presented as if there are only 5% White people left in Toronto. The same issue marred another Netflix hit ‘Never Have I Ever’, where the show got so “multi-cultural” while patting its own back, that you wonder whether Los Angeles has been deserted by the White population. While ‘Kim’s Convenience’ does shy away from being too “politically correct”, it still needs to work on this minor.
One other overused sitcom trope ‘Kim’s Convenience’ juices to an extent that it feels artificial, is the fact that even the smartest people are seen doing stupid things. But this trope can be forgiven as the humour does its work, and there are very few jokes (if at all) that fall flat. Most of the lines and punches land perfectly as intended and earn some great laughs from the audience.
Will there be a season 6?
A year ago, the show’s producers renewed the show for two more seasons, meaning the work on the 6th season is probably already underway while the 5th season is currently being broadcasted. There are many questions that will hopefully be addressed in the next few seasons. Will Jung finally make peace with Appa and return home, and work at the family’s store? Or whether the animosity between the father-son due dies down as Appa forgets what dark path Jung had treaded earlier. Janet’s story arc has been full of many ups and downs and it will be interesting to see where it leads.
So, tune in to Netflix and become a part of the crazy Kim family for some great laughs and some emotional family-drama.
Write in comments about what you think of ‘Kim’s Convenience’ and where do you think the characters are going to go from there.