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Kdrama : Tunnel (2017)

Think Jack the Ripper, the Zodiac Killer and The Phantom Killer, people who were 'identified', with some even communicating with and taunting the police and investigators, think people who were 'delighted' with their work of art and yet, never caught. Tunnel may not be the first to do so but it uses the same premise for the unsolved Hwaseong Serial Murders which happened between 1986 to 1991. Two million man-days were spent on tracking one man down resulting in 21,280 possible suspects. O.o

The shitty thing about cases like this is when the statue of limitation kicks in and if the case remains unsolved, chances of ever putting the perpetrator behind bars is close to nill. Investigators know that it is always a race against time.
Most lawsuits MUST be filed within a certain amount of time. In general, once the statute of limitations on a case “runs out,” the legal claim is not valid any longer. The period of time during which you can file a lawsuit varies depending on the type of legal claim - courts.ca.gov
Tunnel is played by three main actors - Choi Jin-Hyuk, Yoon Hyun-Min and Lee Yoo-Young, all of whom delivered either a wonderful performance or an eerie-spooky role.

The basic premise of the show is that Gwang-Ho, a detective trying to solve a serial murder case in 1986 and while he was pursuing the suspect into a tunnel, emerged at the end of it in another timeline...2017. That's 30 years later and legally speaking, let's just say that the statue of limitation has already kicked in. This means that whatever murder case that Gwang-Ho was trying to solve back then has...er....expired. XD

The murders (stories) came hard and fast, and it is sometimes hard to keep track of who is who (so many actresses employed as corpses - lelz). Just go to the Wikipedia page and have a look at the list of casts. So many dead people, so many witnesses, so many possible suspects...and to top if all off, two actors play the same role (one for when they're younger, one for when they're older) AND there are two 'main suspects' (one for the 1986 timeline and another for the 2017 timeline (read : copycat murderer).

It's a great show for crime story lovers like me but it would be great if it wasn't so episodic because it feels rushed and choppy at times. They have to understand that we, the viewers, are still digesting (maybe over the next few days) the content of what we just saw. LOL


What was knee-slapping funny were two things - the sunbaenim-hoobae (ranking system in S Korea) changed dynamics and the focused-intelligence-based growing relationship between the two main characters. There's no lame three-corner love story. The subordinate 30 years ago is now of higher rank so, when his former boss came charging into the future (he still remains his old former boss self) but the former subordinate has now gone through 30 years without him but still idolize the hell out of the man.

Gwang-Ho may have gotten off to a bad start with Sun-Jae but there's something to be said about how, despite not seeing eye to eye, they're always getting the same ideas at the same time. Using different methods (a smartphone, GPS and DNA test availability may have put the 1986-Gwang-Ho at a slight disadvantage but his street smart methods sometimes works just about the same). They are driven to find the criminal and wipe that smirk off his face and then pummel it like mashed potatoes. LOL. That's just my imagination, sorry.

For some reason, they started Jae-Yi (a criminal psychologist) off as a creepy b***h who could have possibly been an insane murderer as well. She was as unhinged as the people in the mental hospital that she was found walking out of early in the episode. Many times, using camera angles and lighting, she was portrayed as loony. But there's a reason for it, wait for it. XD

What I didn't really like were the over-use of creepy background music, too many corpses and close-ups...I mean, I don't need so many details and frankly speaking, I don't need to look soooooo DEEP into the eyes of a dead woman (pretend or otherwise). I KNOW THEY'RE DEAD, move on, NEXT! #runsforcover

But one thing's for sure, it's good actors galore! The angst you see on-screen is so convincing that it makes you weep. When they spend a good 2 minutes on-screen chasing down the bastard, so close yet so far, and they pummel the criminal into the ground the moment the guy is caught, makes you do the dab! The frustration of running after the man and then lose him...

Now, let's get to the emotional part. The end.

Although we started off in 1986, much of the show is spent in 2017, with only a few short hours spent tunneling and twisting back and from the two timelines. So, (spoiler alert), the ending was a little inadequate because they did not show us much about what happened to the people in 2017! They ended it back in 1986. I know it's the same people, I know...but it's not the same. W....T....F.....It's the time-traveling version of leaving you hot and dry. #lol

But I am glad that it wasn't something illogical like some shows. It actually made sense, well, they tried their hardest to make it make sense and I give them THAT much credit for it. It was overall a very good series with some parts rushed and maybe a little too graphic for your 3-year-old but its breakneck speed of development provides for good entertainment.

Oh, did I mention good acting? OK, very good acting.





8/10

Credit:

  1. Hwaseong Murders - Wikipedia
  2. Tunnel (2017) 
  3. 5 Serial Killers that were Never Caught
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