The first two episodes of the tvN suspense drama “Flower of Evil” starring Lee Joon-gi and Moon Chae-won are out now, and boy, am I hooked.  K-drama writers should take notes from this drama on how to make an episode worthy of a season premiere.  

The characters

Baek Hee-sung (Lee Joon-gi) seems to have the perfect life.  He’s a loving husband to Cha Ji-won (Moon Chae-won) and a doting father to his daughter Baek Eun-ha.  He runs a metalcrafts workshop attached to his house so he gets to spend more time with his daughter and even does most of the household chores like cooking.  But behind the smiles is a dark past that he tries to hide from his family.

Meanwhile, his wife Cha Ji-won is a police investigator at the violent crimes division.  Unlike her detective colleague, Ji-won is more pragmatic, someone who values physical evidence during investigations.   She also has a keen eye for details that might seem trivial but prove to be valuable to the cases she handles.  At home, she is quite inept as she leaves everything to the care of her husband.  For someone who is sharp-eyed, it remains to be seen whether Ji-won really knows nothing about her husband’s past.

The story (warning: spoilers ahead)

In the first episode, we see the happy family together as they prepare for Baek Hee-sung’s birthday dinner with his parents.  Hee-sung’s parents, particularly his mother, show distaste for Ji-won.  Not even their granddaughter Eun-ha’s charming heart pose gets to fluster them.  

When Ji-won steps out from the dinner, we get to see an interesting interaction between Hee-sung and his parents where they talk about hiding the past.  

Mom: “Does your life feel like it’s yours now?”

Hee-sung: “No way. It was never once mine so I really don’t know what that means.”

Ji-won, who was called to work, is investigating the case of a boy who was seriously injured after falling down the stairs.  The kid blames his father for the fall but Ji-won is unconvinced and later on uncovers the truth.

Meanwhile, a reporter, Kim Moo-jin takes a liking to the story, knowing well that a father trying to kill his son would surely make the headlines.  We learn that he’s the author of several crime stories, one of which, is about the serial murders in Yeonju city.  Moo-jin borrows a pen from Ji-won’s police partner, who reveals that it was made by Ji-won’s husband, who’s a metal craftsman.  He mentions later on that the killer behind the Yeonju murders was also a metal craftsman.  Ji-won gives him a pen and her husband’s business card in exchange for good words about the product on social media.

Later on, Moo-jin, who wants to have a silver necklace repaired, goes to Hee-sung’s workshop.  The reporter instantly recognizes Hee-sung as Do Hyun-su, his former townmate and the missing suspect in the murder of a village foreman eighteen years ago.  When it becomes clear that Moo-jin is going straight to the police once they finish their chit chat, Hee-sung tackles him, ties and locks him up in his workshop’s basement.  

An unsuspecting Ji-won goes home to her loving husband who happily makes pizza with their daughter.  And that, my friend is how you start an intriguing series.

Is it worth watching?

Having been a fan of K-dramas for two decades, I am pleasantly surprised with the changing landscape of K-dramas.  Although some have yet to escape from the typical love square, chaebol heir falls for quirky gal formula, it’s refreshing to see other genres like the suspense thriller “Flower of Evil.”  There’s enough suspense and mystery in each episode that will leave you hanging and asking for more.

“Flower of Evil” is now streaming on Viu Philippines.

Myla writes news stories for a living and watches K-dramas for leisure. She enjoys doing both for Hallyudorama.

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