Wow, wow, wow. I feel like I’ve been repeating myself a few times with some of the movies/dramas that I’ve recently watched, but I can’t help it. I often go into dramas or movies without much knowledge or expectations so it blows my mind when I come away from a project that I enjoyed or found intriguing. ‘Revenge of Others’ was that drama for me and I think I kind of like what I saw from the drama so far.
‘Revenge of Others’ stars Shin Ye-eun (Meow the Secret Boy), Lomon (All of Us Are Dead), and Seo Ji-hoon (Mama Fairy and the Woodcutter). The drama follows Shin Ye-eun’s character, Ok Chan-mi, who transfers to her twin brother’s high school to investigate the mystery behind her brother’s sudden death. There, she encounters Lomon’s character, Ji Soo-heon, who embarks on a journey himself of getting revenge for students who have been bullied at the school.
As usual, potential spoilers down below so please read at your own caution 🙂
‘Revenge of Others’ was another one of those dramas that wasn’t on my watchlist or radar at all initially, but I decided to give it a try after seeing that it was on Hulu. To my surprise, it turned out to be a much better watch than I thought. At first, the drama gave me similar vibes to ‘Solomon’s Perjury’ which was also about a high school student’s mysterious death (which ironically also starred Seo Ji-hoon as well). Obviously, the two dramas are different in the rest of the story and its direction. I guess the thing that I found the most interesting, intriguing, and fascinating about this show was just how violent it was. I was not expecting at all the blood and the gory violence especially given that this is a high school drama. I can’t even say for sure if the blood and the goriness is necessary either for the storytelling aspect, but it does make for an interesting watch. When you watch Soo-heon beat up the bullies in the second episode, he goes hard and he has no hesitation in punishing the bullies for their actions (rightfully so) and it was a bit frightening to see him so relentless.
Yet at the same time, there’s this odd sense of satisfaction knowing that he was getting revenge on the bullied students who were afraid to stand up for themselves and attack the powerful bullies back. Soo-heon is standing up for the bullied on their behalf and I’ll admit that the drama got a bit more intriguing towards the end of episode 2 when the revenge arc started. The extra detail that the drama added where Soo-heon enacts the revenge to gain some monetary gain to support his ill mother also adds another layer of complexity and difficulty to the revenge scheme. He’s not just doing this for the students who were bullied; he’s also doing this for himself.
Speaking of Soo-heon, I totally could do without the whole brain tumor sub-plot to his character as it seems a bit random and unnecessary. I’m not entirely sure how it relates to the rest of the story so far in regards to Chan-mi, the high school, the bullies, and so forth. It felt a bit distracting watching the scenes related to his brain tumor whether it was the doctor appointments or him suffering from the symptoms of his illness. We learn in the drama that he doesn’t have much longer to live so I wonder where the drama plans to take his character. I’m assuming he will die in the end, but maybe, just maybe, there’s a splinter of hope somewhere that he will survive?
In regards to Chan-mi’s arc and journey, I find it so interesting just how complex and complicated her investigation behind her brother’s death is. As we learned in episode 2, her brother was not all that innocent as she initially thought. He wasn’t a good person; he was also a bully himself to an extent and treated others without kindness. It’s one thing to investigate the person behind your brother’s death, but it makes things so much more complicated when you learn that your brother was not who you thought they were.. that they also had another side to themselves that they hid from you or did not show you. It just makes things that much more complicated because you thought Chan-mi’s brother was just an innocent victim in all of this, but there’s more to his story than what meets the eye. It’ll also make the investigation so much more challenging because that could open up the number of suspects who could have targeted Chan-mi’s brother. When you learn that he wasn’t such a nice guy himself, who could have been the one to commit the act and kill him? It was never going to be easy for Chan-mi to figure out who killed her brother, but learning these cruel and shocking bombshell details about him along the way only adds another layer of difficulty and issues to it all.
I really like Seo Ji-hoon as an actor and I was hoping he would play a bigger role in the drama (as if in being a co-male lead or something). It’s great to see him in another drama again and his character in the show is a bit more lowkey (for now of course). It’s a bit frightening because he ended up in an accident that caused him to go into a coma. Thankfully, he woke up from the coma but has now lost his memory so he has no idea as to who his family and friends are. That only adds another sense of mystery to his character and I assume he (or his family) has some kind of connection to Chan-mi’s brother’s death or just the high school in general. It’ll be interesting to see how Seo Ji-hoon’s character evolves throughout the drama.
Overall, ‘Revenge of Others’ was a fascinating watch. It wasn’t the most action-packed, it was a bit slow at times, and there were definitely a few scenes where your stomach twisted into knots and you felt uncomfortable or heartbroken. Outside of our characters’ lives, there are also many tough issues that the drama covers within the location that it takes place at. ‘Revenge of Others’ might not be a drama for everyone and there will be scenes that will be very difficult to watch or stomach (TW: rape, sexual assault, suicide, violence). However, the drama does a good job at keeping things real and exposing all the disgusting stuff in high schools that is far too often swept under the rug or not talked about. I think I’ll keep tuning into this one for now and hope that it keeps this pace. Though a little and sluggish at times, the drama knows how to keep you on the edge of your seat and that’s good enough for me.