July 10, 2013

Vampire Prosecutor Season 1 Revisited

I can’t really say why balmy nights turn my thoughts to the blood-sucking undead. Summer and vampires just seem to go together.

Since my dramas-to-watch list is ever-lengthening, I don’t usually watch one I’ve already seen. However, everything I liked the first time in Vampire Prosecutor Season 1 – acting, cinematography, music – is just as good the second time around. And the two episodes that wrap up the season are considerably clearer. I think I finally have a firm grip on the storyline.

Now that I’m free to focus on details other than plot, here’s what jumped out at me.

SPOILERS AHEAD

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September 11, 2012

Damo with Lee Seo Jin - Watch with me!

Damo – Episode 1

Something about fall puts me in the mood for sageuk. SO many episodes, though! Do I want to be watching the same drama until spring? But I found just the thing in my DramaFever queue.

Damo (다모), an MBC drama from 2003, is positively petite by sageuk standards, at a mere 14 episodes. I’m curious to see some of Lee Seo Jin’s earlier work, and I always appreciate a storyline that revolves around a Spunky Heroine.
SPOILER ALERT: stop here if you haven’t watched yet
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May 20, 2012

Vampire Prosecutor Season 1 – Episode 10 Korean drama review

men and women arriving with suitcases at a rural resortWe’re back to TV satirizing TV. Ahh. This time it’s a surprisingly compatible hybrid of finding-love reality show and English country house murder. The Vampire Prosecutor (Yeon Jeong Hoon) gets called away from the crime scene early in Episode 10, leaving Prosecutor Yoo (Lee Young Ah) and Detective Hwang (Lee Won Jong) to work the case on their own.

They’ve finally started to bond – she praises his interview technique and offers to follow his plan. He recognizes her persistence and thoroughness. They rib each other about romantic experiences, and we learn his sexism is fueled by an early disappointment in love (this is rot, of course, but Lee Won Jong is so likable he can get away with it).
Prosecutor Yoo and Detective Hwang listen closely to a witness
However, despite the growing camaraderie, they aren’t making much progress solving the crime. There are cameras all over the grounds, and the alibis all check out. Even the special insights of the Vampire Prosecutor aren’t much help.
SPOILER ALERT – stop here if you haven’t seen this yet.
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May 12, 2012

Vampire Prosecutor Season 1 – Episode 9 Korean Drama review

Vampire Prosecutor wearing black shadesEpisode 9 of Vampire Prosecutor Season 1 is a tale of gangland infighting and seriously dysfunctional family relationships. Which is kind of the same thing, isn’t it? It opens with a ridiculously obscure scene, jam-packed with confusing intercuts, shifting camera angles and flashbacks, that is supposed to set up the whole storyline, but only makes sense after you have seen the rest of the episode – twice!
SPOILER ALERT: If you haven’t watched yet, stop here.
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April 27, 2012

Vampire Prosecutor Season 1 – Episode 7 Korean Drama review

TV mocking TV is one of my favorite things. Episode 7 of Vampire Prosecutor Season 1 opens with Chae Wook’s Invective Show. Invective. Now there’s a word you don’t get to use every day – not in my line of work, anyhow. Did you have to look it up to refresh your memory? Me too.

The fictional talk show seems mild by American standards. A supposedly ruthless host lures notorious guests onto the show with promises to avoid unwelcome topics. Naturally he breaks that promise the moment they are on the air. You’d think the title “Invective Show” would tip them off, wouldn’t you? Maybe they neglected to look it up.
talkshow set with semicricle of plastic lawn chairsfor the female audience
It’s hard to be sympathetic towards people who are not only pretentious, criminal and even murderous, but terminally gullible on top of it. And what is up with the entirely female audience on plastic lawn chairs? But I digress. The point is, when the host is murdered, suspects abound. Topping the list is a head-tripping self-styled psychic who predicted the death. Lee Won Jong’s questioning of this suspect, who bedevils him with cryptic nonsense, is a high point of the episode.

In this episode, we learn what happens when
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April 7, 2012

Vampire Prosecutor Season 1 – Episode 6 Korean Drama review

Episode 6 of Vampire Prosecutor Season 1 brings a touch of comic relief. From the opening shot, where we think for a split second
Yun Jung Hoon removes his blazer
that we are watching Yun Jung Hoon strip (don’t tell me your mind didn’t go there), to the round robin of verbal posturing between fight club contenders, the episode tickles and toys with us.
SPOILER ALERT: If you haven’t seen this episode yet, stop here. MORE…