Korean action thriller drama “Search“Is the perfect way to end the 2020 Year of Drama with monsters, mayhem and some good old-fashioned battles against evil.
Sergeant Yong Dong Jin (Jang Dong Yoon) lives a simple life as a sergeant in the South Korean armed forces. He has a close group of friends, his military dog Leo, and is a month before his release.
Everything seems to be fine until he is ordered on an expedition to the DMZ in the middle of the night to investigate some missing soldiers. Who is leading the expedition? None other than his ex-girlfriend, Lieutenant Son Ye Rim (Krystal Jung). The two must put their past friction aside to track down their missing colleagues. But something is watching them from the darkness of the DMZ, and it is not human.
“Search” is a must with a mixture of heart, action and boneless moments. It’ll have you on the edge of your seat one moment and tear you apart the next. OCN is known for its darker fare and this drama is no exception. With only 10 episodes, it’s a quick, exciting watch and easily fits into a cold Saturday afternoon. If that’s not enough to get you started watching the drama, check out the other reasons why you should add this show to your binge watch list below!
A warm male lead
Yong Dong Jin shakes the stereotypes of the military, which are strict and silent. Like Yoo Shi Jin in “Descendants of the sun” Yong Dong Jin is very in touch with his feelings. He cares about and supports his team, and he’s not afraid to question authority or show emotion when losing someone who is important to him. In a military drama, it’s especially great to have a character that is easy to put down, like Dong Jin. You feel his pain and fear as the conspiracy he exposes grows. This connection between character and viewer would not be so deep in a less likeable hero, for example a stereotypical arrogant male lead.
Jang Dong Yoon is the perfect choice to play Dong Jin. He has those wonderfully expressive eyes that convey every emotion his character feels. The show often has moments when Dong Jin remains stoic and doesn’t have to show any outward feeling due to military protocol. One look into Jang Dong Yoon’s eyes and everything that Dong Jin feels is exposed to the viewer. In a 10-episode high-tension drama, he manages to bring Dong Jin to life in a way that feels fresh and alive. The abs are the cherry on top and he loves his dog. What is there not to love?
A charismatic female lead
Krystal Jung shines as the tough, nonsensical Son Ye Rim. In a complete role reversal, she is the hottest elite officer to lead the first night mission to the DMZ. She is extremely intelligent, got the highest scores during her officer training, and even completed training overseas. This is definitely not a woman in need.
There’s always a chance that cold female characters may be a little emotionless, but that’s not the case with Ye Rim. She’s wild, but she still has a heart. She is able to separate her story with Dong Jin from her work together and comfort him when he is hurt. She saves him the life and the life of the team several times. In addition, she is also the first to find out that something is wrong with the soldiers found dead in the DMZ, and that more than just rabies is going on. Definitely girl crush material.
Krystal is really good at portraying these somewhat cold but extremely competent characters and always finds a way to make them her own. Ye Rim feels like a real military officer, and it’s hard not to let herself into her tenacity and heart. It goes perfectly with Dong Jin.
The slowly burning romance
Ah romance. This invisible train between two people that keeps us all on screen. “Search” might be a thriller, but it finds a way to weave a subtle undercurrent of romance between the two main characters that feels organic and alive. There may be monsters to fight and conspiracies to solve, but sometimes there’s nothing like a karaoke night with your ex-partner that you still have a crush on. At least, that’s what Dong Jin and Ye Rim end up doing, if not on purpose. The lingering feelings between the two offer to remove a few deep glances and wistful glances, and they repeatedly save each other’s lives (because nothing says so true love!).
These two convey a romance that feels deep and organic. Not the heart-fluttering connections and shy looks between a couple who haven’t gotten together, but the enduring bonds between a couple who had everything, lost it and want to return to each other. It feels like a mature romance and goes well with the rest of the show. There is no genre whiplash here!
The high octane twists and turns and thrills
“Search” is a compact drama. With 10 episodes, this show means taking a punch, and it definitely does! The first episode alone holds birth secrets, numerous deaths and monster attacks and introduces the conspiracy that holds everything together. Each subsequent episode is a brisk ride with twists and turns left and right. What’s especially exciting about this show is that everyone has more information than the heroes. Dong Jin, Ye Rim and their team run blind into a death trap. They must work together and swiftly to defeat the human and non-human monsters while the evil lurks within their own team.
A multitude of supporting characters with vivid stories of their own just add to the ride. There’s the mysterious Captain Song Min Kyu (Yoon Park) who for unknown reasons is in danger of being tried before a court martial. Despite his poor reputation in the military, he is strangely given the chance to lead Dong Jin and Ye Rim’s team in order to be rid of any wrongdoing. There is also Kim Da Jung (Moon Jung Hee), the former head of an all-female squadron who retired from the military under mysterious circumstances and now works as a leader at the DMZ memorial. All of these people play a part in the DMZ plot and make for a nerve-wracking, intense watch!
The deep questions
“Search” asks difficult questions. How far would you go to cover up your biggest mistake? At its core, the drama is an exploration of the human psyche under duress and how mistakes in the past completely realign the future. The drama explores the depth of greed in the character of Congressman Lee Hyuk (Yu Seong Ju), one of the soldiers who sparked the catastrophic event that spawned the monsters that haunt the DMZ. Lee Hyuk hides the truth behind the tragedy he has caused to serve his selfish achievements and uses it as a means to gain power.
However, it’s not just Lee Hyuk who serves as the great mastermind behind it all. “Search” shows that the monsters of this world can be closer than we believe, as Lee Hyuk’s insidious brand of evil surfaces in the military and in members of the Dong Jin and Ye Rim team. Then the question arises whether it is possible to eradicate such an evil without losing humanity. “Search” says yes.
Check out “Search” below!
Hey Soompiers, did you see “Search”? What do you think of the drama Let us know in the comments below!
Shalini_A is a longtime Asian drama addict. When she’s not watching dramas, she works as a lawyer Ji sang and tries to write the greatest fantasy romance ever. Follow her further Twitter and Instagram and don’t hesitate to ask them anything!
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