It is no secret that Korean drama favors the melodramatic over the cheerful and that stories outside a certain premise pool do not often end up well. However, hope is a strong emotion and whenever a show comes along that looks fun and upbeat, many begin the same circle of excitement and trepidation. "Masked Prosecutor" could go very wrong in many ways, but it might also inject some much needed lightness into the medium.
Ha Dae-cheol (Joo Sang-wook) is a seemingly self-centered prosecutor whose only concern is how he can advance his career. Yoo Min-hee (Kim Sun-ah) is a righteous homicide detective whose values for rules and order clash with Dae-cheol's easy-going exterior. However, Dae-cheol has a secret. At nights, he uses a mask to hide his identity and pursue criminals outside the confines of the law.
Campy or Embarrassing
The teasers and especially the luchador (Mexican wrestler) mask have taken many by surprise and for good reason. Dramas are usually about presenting a cool and handsome male lead and things which might harm that appeal are minimized. Putting an attractive man and his fine suit in a sparkly wrestling mask does cause some cognitive dissonance, but it also shows a work which is not afraid to be silly. However, not taking oneself seriously is when something becomes fun. If the series crosses that line, it will just feel ridiculous.
The cast for this show is well liked and Kim Sun-ah is probably very missed by drama fans, but at the same time, "Warm and Cozy" and "Mask" have their creators and genre going for them. The former is a more straightforward romantic comedy by beloved writers, the latter a dark work that audiences would probably like domestically. "Masked Prosecutor" appears to offer crime and romantic comedy at the moment, but is more of a hard sell in premise.
Dramas have a habit, especially in the last few years, to stifle any comedy or light fun with dramatic turns and a dark shift in tone. This is a big worry for such a show, especially given it is a crime one where revenge will play a big part. However, assuming it will manage to maintain its current style, it looks like something which might take a less dreary approach to its topics. If a team is bold enough to create a funny superhero, it might just manage to resist the norm.
Cast and Crew
The cast is solid and they can handle both comedy and drama, which is good for any show and given the unpredictability in the outcome of such lighter efforts. At the same time, writer Choi Jin-won has shown skill in revenge and crime stories, both more serious and comedic. With works like "Big Man" and 'The Apprehenders' in his filmography, it is safe to be at least a little bit hopeful. Kim Yong-soo-I, the second production director has also worked in some impressive shows.
The more something differs from the usual, the harder it is to predict how it will turn out. "Masked Prosecutor" has the opportunity to bring some laughter and an uplifting story of justice to viewers. At the same time, the past has shown that most shows which try to be quirky and fun do not do well and/or are thrown back into the melodramatic pit of drama standards. Hopefully, the production can handle or is prepared for both possibilities and can still create an entertaining show regardless.
"Masked Prosecutor" begins its run on May 20th and will air every Wednesday and Thursday at 22:00, on KBS2.
Written by: Orion from 'Orion's Ramblings'
Vasia, also known as Orion or Ori online, is currently doing opinion pieces and database upkeep. She has a love for good TV and a penchant for rambling in written form. Vasia can be contacted via email@example.com.
"[HanCinema's Drama Preview] "Masked Prosecutor""
by HanCinema is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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