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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Missing 9" Episode 16 Final

2017/03/10 | 593 views | Permalink

The end is here for the survivors of a terrible crash. I am not referring to the plane one, but the crashing and burning of the plot for "Missing 9". The trial for Joon-oh takes place and Tae-ho becomes desperate as everyone groups against him. We all know what he does when he is desperate and perhaps this mirrors the creators' murder of their work during this slow burn towards the finish line.

I do not know what sorcery causes Korean drama creators to drop the ball so hard at times. I realize time constraints and business-related demands can be daunting, but it still does not explain why some shows seem to completely lose it just as they are ending. "Do not commit crimes", says Choi Tae-joon. "If you do murder several people, all you need is an apology", say the creators as they raise a middle finger to viewers.

Tae-ho telling viewers to stay away from crimeTae-ho trying to kill Do-pal

I am not saying that Tae-ho breaking down and stopping his murder spree is irrational in any context. It would fit a different story. I am saying that it makes no sense for someone who has been presented as a cold-blooded, methodical killer. This is not a man who has only killed or thought of killing through clouded judgement. We have not seen significant inner struggle either. You cannot have a scary, cartoonish villain and then pull the remorse card without people noticing the problem and calling you out on it.

When the series was well into its main part, I had expressed worry over its duration. Finding out it would be sixteen episodes instead of twenty was some comfort. The truth is, however, that this has been a story for ten, maybe twelve episodes. There is not much to be said and done after all survivors and witnesses are accounted for and so the writers become desperate. Enter Do-pal (Kim Bup-rae) and the evil prosecutors.

Bong-hee and Joon-oh liking his lawyer's planThe victims and the perpetrator

The fact that this was once an exciting, well designed story makes the last few episodes even worse. Odd humor aside, "Missing 9" had been great. There was suspense, mystery, a strong cast of characters with potential, good conflicts, fun interactions and good chemistry between the actors. As an overall work it would have been a really entertaining new idea. I am just not sure if it is worth the failings of the latter half.

I suppose that depends on one's tolerance for its shortcomings. "Missing 9" breaks many character stereotypes, it provides a healthy main pairing, occasional moments of good comedy and a compelling premise. It provides a lot of the things I personally like. While I appreciate those and the effort put into creative works, there are too many flaws for me to give it the thumbs up as a reviewer.

"Missing 9" is directed by Choi Byeong-gil, written by Son Hwang-won and features Jung Kyung-ho, Baek Jin-hee, Oh Jung-se and Choi Tae-joon.

Written by: Orion from 'Orion's Ramblings'

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