What Mary Thinks: Mad Dog

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And onto the next drama! As I mentioned in my other ‘What Mary Thinks’ post on ‘Because This Life is Our First’, I am also watching ‘Mad Dog’ starring Yoo Ji-Tae and Woo Do-hwan.

Just to give some context into the drama, Yoo Ji-tae and Woo Do-hwan both lost loved ones in an airplane crash that happened two years ago. The drama basically showcases their journey into discovering the truth behind the accident and what exactly the cause behind it was. The drama involves a lot of dangerous missions, evil people, and insurance talk that I sometimes do not understand. But the drama itself isn’t so bad and actually does a decent job in keeping the momentum alive despite many things going on.

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Before the drama aired, I already knew that I was going to watch it. Woo Do-hwan who I first discovered in ‘Save Me’ and is now in love with and am keeping my eyes out for is playing a main character in this drama. I knew I could NOT not watch this drama. Similarly with Ryu Hwa-young, she’s always been my favorite prior to her acting career (when she debuted as a T-ara member), but her acting career has really taken off and she’s so charming as an actress. Since two actors that I liked were in the same drama (and the drama is also setting them up to have a love line with each other), I knew that I could not miss the drama. Granted, Woo Do-hwan and Ryu Hwa-young have probably become the sole reasons as to why I’m watching ‘Mad Dog’ at this point, but hey, sometimes you gotta make sacrifices and do things you don’t want to do just for some people. Here’s to hoping this drama will actually be worth it in the end.

I think I knew almost immediately that this drama wasn’t going to be what I wanted it to be. It’s action-packed, has multi-dimensional characters, showcases great teamwork with our ‘Mad Dog’ team, includes comedic scenes for relief, and so much more, but I think my issue with the drama is its editing. After watching the first week’s episodes, they felt a bit too choppy for me and I felt like the editing was rushed which therefore affected the tone of the drama for me. Had the editing and even filming was different and a little bit more slow and engaging, I think I would have been a bit more engaged as well.

That’s not to say that the drama is horrible though. I think that ‘Mad Dog’ has made some interesting decisions so far that I wasn’t expecting, but it’s full of action and there are clearly a lot of stakes at risk in pursuing the investigation behind the airplane crash. One thing that I was not expecting was Woo Do-hwan’s character Min-joon to NOT be on the same team as the Mad Dog team. In fact, I came into this drama thinking that they were going to be on the same team so when I watched the first week’s episodes and saw that they weren’t I was in total shock and disappointment. I know that Min-joon and the Mad Dog Team have their own ways in doing the investigation, but at the end of the day, they are both trying to get down to the details of the incident and what exactly happened which is therefore why I would love to see them all work together. I think episode 4 was such a brilliant and well-made episode in that Min-joon was actually working with the Mad Dog team to make some progress on the investigation and unsurprisingly worked so well together which I absolutely loved. Watching that episode made me want to see Min-joon join the Mad Dog team and made me think about how much potential is being wasted in the drama so far because Min-joon isn’t actually working with the team. It’s been interesting seeing how they have each been going about their own ways to get clues and hints and details to uncover the truth about the incident, but they would get so much more done and achieve so much more success if they partnered up and worked together. Unfortunately, neither Min-joon or the Mad Dog team feels the same way and have troubles trusting each other even though they’re moving towards the same goal. It’s such a shame and I really hope to see the two team up again to defeat the bad guys in this drama.

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In terms of acting, I actually think this drama has revealed some of the cast’s weaknesses. Maybe it’s because I haven’t watched all of ‘Save Me’ that I find Woo Do-hwan’s acting a bit awkward at times in this drama. Granted, he’s barely just starting his career acting so his acting won’t be entirely perfect, but I also do feel like maybe his acting in ‘Save Me’ was either better or the director did a great job in hiding his weaknesses (or at least with what I saw in that drama). Woo Do-hwan is very charismatic though and even though he can be awkward at times in ‘Mad Dog’, he still does a great job in portraying the mysterious, persistent, and often times conflicted emotions that his character conveys. I think even veteran actor Yoo Ji-tae is struggling at times in this drama compared to his other dramas and movies. Maybe it’s because his character doesn’t demand too too much from him that he’s not really emoting much or just simply doing much, but I do think he’s trying to work with what he got so there’s that. All the other cast members are fine with me and it’s not like their acting leaves much to be desired, but I also feel like stronger acting could have been the difference in making this drama a bit tad better for me.

I wished that we could have gotten in ‘Criminal Minds’ the team that we have in ‘Mad Dog.’ The Mad Dog Team all work really well with one another and even though you don’t get any background story on the other team members (similarly to Criminal Minds), the context into Kang-woo and Min-joon’s life does a good job in helping you understand why the Mad Dog Team have such strong teamwork or why they’re investigating the airplane crash the way they are. We should have gotten glimpses of Lee Jun-ki and Moon Chae-won’s characters in ‘Criminal Minds’, but what we got instead were just different cases each episode followed by your usual procedural investigations which didn’t leave a lot of room for excitement and team building. It’s such a shame because ‘Criminal Minds’ had everything going for them except that it just didn’t choose to get those things actually moving.

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‘Mad Dog’ isn’t my favorite drama currently and probably won’t be, but I’m satisfied with how things are going. I sometimes do get bored with all the insurance and airplane politics, but that’s what this drama is entirely about so I can’t complain too much about that. However, I would love to see Min-joon work more often with the Mad Dog team than by himself. He’s been collaborating with them a little bit more often lately, but they are still wary and cautious when around one another. Here’s to hoping that they’ll get rid of the trust issues and instead learn to trust each other and work together. Min-joon and the Mad Dog team are really going to need that trust and teamwork to defeat the big old baddies in this drama.

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