A video surfaces on the Internet of an obviously terrified woman begging for help. Obviously the question quickly arises as to whether or not the video is fake- but as far as the detectives of "Missing Noir M" are concerned, the important problem is simply to find her first and ask questions later. As usual, delving into the greater context of the case quickly manages to bring up some rather dispiriting, discouraging stories that are just, well, really grim.
I've tried to be a good sport about the depression-inducing nature of this drama to date but this episode really just pushes it too far. The format is identical to the last time, is part of the worst of it. Once it's determined whether or not this case ends in success or failure, it's on to an epilogue that seems to accomplish little more aside from twisting the knife in the realization that this entire situation was just really...bad.
I'm barely even trying to guess the next stage of the mystery at this point because I know I'm not going to like the answers. For what it's worth, this is a different kind of dread than when I try to avoid predicting plot points in a drama where I'm expecting the answers to be stupid. "Missing Noir M" continues to be a good quality production and the explanations do make sense. The drama's goals are accomplished. It's just, the goal at this point seems to be to make me want to slit my wrists. That's not a very good goal to have absent of context.
Most OCN productions have some pretension of being like slick filmatic thrillers, and I think one of the issues I have with "Missing Noir M" at this point is that it feels more like a movie than it does a drama. These single-shot episodes just feel really long, and the payoff isn't really that great. Even ignoring the questionable goals of such a depressing story in the first place, I can't help but feel kind of weird when the Triforce of all things becomes a serious plot point.
It's kind of surprising that I'm not recovering better, given that there's only episode of this drama per week. I kind of feel like I need a month to get ready for the next round of "Missing Noir M". At the very least I definitely preferred the two-part episodes, if only because there was less focused depressing material to fixate on. Right now I just hope that the larger overarching plotline doesn't turn out to just be a grander scale version of these smaller ones.
Review by William Schwartz
Staff writer. Has been writing articles for HanCinema since 2012, having lived in South Korea since 2011. Started out in Gyeongju, then to Daegu, then to Ansan, then to Yeongju, then to Seoul, lived on the road for HanCinema's travel diaries series in the summer of 2016, and is currently settled in Anyang. Has good tips for utilizing South Korea's public bus system. William Schwartz can be contacted via firstname.lastname@example.org.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Missing Noir M" Episode 6"
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