If you’re ready for a riveting conversation with a friend, watch the crime/thriller Kdrama I Remember You (aka Hello Monster). That show will give you enough material for a two hour debate. The main topic of discussion?… Are psychopaths born that way or are they “made”?
Lee Hyun is a professor, author, lecturer, and an amazing criminal profiler. He can sense things and see crimes play out in his mind and then uses those hypotheses to solve murder cases. When he was about 10 years old his father was killed by a young man named Lee Hoon-Young who escaped from prison and his younger brother went missing that same night. Twenty years later he’s back in Korea, from teaching in the States, looking for the vile criminal that murdered his father in cold blood and wondering if his brother may still be alive somewhere.
Cha Ji-An is a police detective assigned to a special murder investigations unit. She knows all about Lee Hyun, having met him when he was little just after his father died and his brother disappeared. Her father was a prison guard who went missing the night Lee Hoon-Young escaped and is thought to have been his accomplice.
Seo In-Guk plays the genius Lee Hyun, a man who shows very little emotion, almost always speaking in “matter of fact” terms, and whose serious nature prevents him from smiling very often. He’s a difficult person to warm up to, usually keeping a good amount of emotional distance between himself and the rest of the world. As a young child his relationship with his father was strained and cold but he dearly loved, and took care of, the little brother who looked up to him.
Jang Na-Ra is tough Cha Ji-An, a detective who truly enjoys being a cop and is loved by her teammates. She’s small but fearless and does her job well. She’s attracted to Lee Hyun and enjoys working with him on cases.
One tremendously huge shout-out for Park Bo-Gum who won the Best New Actor award, the Best Supporting Actor award, and the Popularity Actor award for his portrayal of attorney Jung Sun-Ho. I loved him in Tomorrow’s Cantabile but his acting is absolutely amazing in this!
I debated whether or not I should tell you about “the bad guys” and finally decided to let the show explain it all to you. So I can’t write anything about certain actors and characters. Sorry. I just don’t want to spoil it all.
I kept wondering what made the character Lee Hoon-Young so evil at such a very young age. He already had a criminal record for murder and was in prison as a teenager. What, if anything, happened? How does someone feel no remorse over taking a life? I’m so glad the writer eventually gave us some background on him. Did that help me understand his crazy way of thinking? Yes. Did I agree with it? Absolutely not.
There’s a scene where two murders are calmly conversing, over dinner, about how they suspect someone is planning to kill another person. Their facial expressions and voices are no different than if they were talking about new flavors of ice cream at the local convenience store. And it made me nervous when I listened to one of the characters so matter-of-factly tell Lee Hyun that he had only killed people that deserved it. Yikes. Those things were so unsettling! Yes, this was only make-believe, a screenwriter’s imagination, everything was pretend, but there are people in real life that think that way. And that’s one big reason I Remember You is so interesting.
This crime/thriller is amazingly well written. It’s not really a mystery because a few episodes into it we find out who is who, bad guy-wise, that is. However, there are a few surprising things we discover all along the way and some we aren’t told about until very close to the end. There isn’t a single boring minute in any of its 16 hours. If you’re thinking there may be a lessened feeling of tension because we know who the two main evil people are, you’d be mistaken. For some reason, the fact that we do know who they are seems to add to the tension in this particular drama.
There’s some good action throughout I Remember You laced with a little bit of romance, both being written and performed very well. One of its best qualities, though, is the ending. Endings are important because they’re the last thing we think about as the credits are rolling. Pride and Prejudice is a superb Kdrama with a horrendous last hour. That one episode took the show from “WOW” to “wow”. Golden Cross, on the other hand, had a knock-out ending that brought the show from “okay” to “YES“. Sometimes the writer comes up with a way to wrap up a show that is very satisfying to the audience and Kwon Ki-Young, I Remember You‘s screenwriter, did exactly that by providing us with a perfect ending! Sequel, please!
The soundtrack is fantastic with enjoyable numbers like Lim Kim’s Who Are You among many other wonderful songs. I can’t recall a single one I didn’t like. My favorite, by far, is Remember performed by Dear Cloud. It’s one of the best Kdrama songs I’ve heard all year.
Scenery is varied and blends into the events of the drama wonderfully. There are shots on a windy pier, a university’s lovely campus grounds, an empty rooftop, an art gallery, and many “depressing” places like a prison, coroner’s office, dirty garage…
I really, really like this show. Dramas that make me think and inspire conversations with others long after the show is over are always right up there with the best of Kdrama entertainment. I still ask for people’s opinions about the moral dilemma presented in Winter Sonata. This drama did exactly the same kind of thing to me, making me want to talk to friends about the characters. I’m anxious to find out people’s opinion on the question in my opening paragraph. I guarantee I Remember You will be on my mind for a long, long time to come.
Smooth flowing storyline
Interesting subject to talk about with friends
I didn’t find any