Detective Ryu Sung-Jun (Ok Taec-Yeon), his brother, Judge Ryu Sung-Hoon (Ha Seok-Jin), and social worker Jo Eun-Ki (Jung Eun-Ji) race against the clock to solve the murders of a group of jurors who seem to share a mysterious connection before the killer strikes again.
South Korea sure is in good shape this year when it comes to thrillers: after Big Mouth, here comes Blind to turn our brains to mush through a captivating plot and some of the most sadistic cliffhangers I’ve ever seen.
Screenwriters Having Fun
The countless memes circulating on social media are a testament to the feeling that many of us had watching Blind: the writers were having a grand old time running circles around us, dropping clues only to disprove every single one of our theories a few minutes later. In other words, a puzzle-drama, which is something I really like.
Yet, while this part is very entertaining, the world that Blind takes place in remains endlessly bleak. It’s a pitiless arena where the strong devour the weak, where very few are genuinely good people, and where nobody’s safe from a terrible death. Some of those were actually very tough to swallow since they fought so hard to live, and maybe this is something this drama wants us to think about: death and its unavoidability.
A Cast in Great Shape
It’s been ages since I’ve seen either Ha Seok-Jin or Taec-Yeon in a drama. In fact, the last time was 1% of Anything and Dream High respectively. So of course, they’ve had a lot of time to hone their skills. And while Ha Seok-Jin’s performance isn’t really memorable (which, to be fair, could probably be attributed to his character’s personality), Taec-Yeon’s offers a couple gems here and there which show how much he’s grown as an actor.
Among the main three, however, the one who really impressed me was Jung Eun-Ji, whom I’d never heard of (yes, I know she’s popular), and who had a few scenes which felt very real, even if her character sadly fades into the background a bit towards the last part of the series.
So we have a plot that runs at a thousand miles an hour. But just like for Big Mouth, I wish some things had gone differently. Most of the characters stay firmly on the mediocre side of intelligence, which leaves a lot of questions unanswered at the end. On the one hand, it’s somewhat interesting because they’re “normal people” embroiled in a terrible series of happenings, but on the other hand, it makes Blind a bit lackluster in spite of how horrible it can be. Because smart is sexy, and there’s nothing more satisfying than seeing big brains fight it out.
A Promising Future
In the end, the one thing I’ll take away from Blind will not be its plot or production values, but a few new faces that really stood out among the cast. Park Ji-Bin, with a fairly impressive list of secondary roles to his name, did a fantastic job. I loved his character, and it’s pretty obvious that he did as well: he clearly has a lot of fun performing. Young Kim Gun-Woo’s murder glare doesn’t demerit either: although he hardly ever speaks most of the time, Yoon-Jae really doesn’t need any words to make one terrifying kid. And on the musical side, Sweet Dream, by Park Jun-Hwan and Shoon, wins by far if only because of how deliciously eerie it is, and how well its lyrics carry the tragedy of this story.
All in All…
A captivating thriller which handles its suspense very well, slipping a few editing gems here and there to keep the mystery going. Although many questions remain unanswered by the end, Blind remains a great watch, based on a very dark premise and some very promising young actors I hope to see more of in the future.
Country: South Korea
Starring: Ok Taec-Yeon, Ha Seok-Jin, Jung Eun-Ji, Park Ji-Bin
Aired: 09/16/2022 to 11/05/2022
Number of episodes: 16
Genres: Mystery, Crime, Thriller
My Rating: ★★★★☆