Cruel City: Ep 10

Drama ReviewsKorean Dramas

Episode 10 makes episode 9 look waaay better.  T____T  At first it feels like it’s trying to pick up the pace with the romance & the drug deal with Safari…but instead everything falls flat.  Part of the problem is the huge action scene at the end which turns out to be a big flop.

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I was wondering how Cruel City would establish a love triangle especially since it seems like Hyung Min x Soo Min would not work out at this point.  But now it’s confirmed that Soo Min likes Hyung Min and that she’s been harboring feelings for him since she was a young rebellious whippersnapper.  It is hard to tell if this is just a harmless crush on her oppa aka her sister’s boyfriend, or if it’s something more than that.  I think it has developed into something more than just a crush considering how she agreed to devote her life to undercover work and how she is always yearning for his attention.  And omg, was I the only one surprised when Hyung Min actually looks HAPPY and handsome in all the flashbacks?  I guess he really has changed dramatically since Kyung Mi’s death.  *tear*

But Soo Min’s feelings for Hyung Min also make her relationship with Shi Hyun even more confusing.  If she likes Hyung Min then why did she sleep with Shi Hyun?  And she claims that she’s not drunk, in other words, she’s consciously making this decision to sleep with Shi Hyun.  Did she choose Shi Hyun because she’d rather give her virginity to him and not to a stranger?  I’m so confused. 

I know a lot of people were excited to see REAL KISSING with Jung Kyung Ho Shi Hyun & Soo Min but my mind wasn’t on their so-called sizzling chemistry.  Instead I was left wondering what even happened to lead up to this bed scene in the first place.  It just sorta..happened.  AND!!! AND!!! Was I the only one who suddenly realized…WAIIIIT A MINUTE.  DOES SHI HYUN KNOW THAT SOO MIN IS KYUNG MI’S LITTLE SIS?!?!  I mean he is the boss of a gang and an undercover cop, I’m sure he’s got his information networks.  Also he grew up with Kyung Mi in the orphanage, I’m sure he must’ve known Soo Min at some point of time.  If he does know who Soo Min is, that would be a game changer because instead he would have an ulterior motive in getting close to her.  He’s already sparing Hyung Min out of guilt towards Kyung Mi, so surely he would do the same for her little sis.

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^Bottom right pic: Even though I was wondering what the heck Shi Hyun was thinking when he goes to the police station of all places, I really like the short shot of him longingly looking back at the police station.  Even though he is a part of the police, instead he feels separated, isolated, and so far away. 

Now, why does Shi Hyun save Soo Min?  Is it because he LURVES her and CARES FOR HER?  I’m trying hard to be unbiased towards Soo Min x Shi Hyun, really I am, but I would say that his motivations are not out of any romantic feelings for Soo Min.  In his conversation with Jin Sook, he asks if she’s going to make Soo Min just like Hyun Soo’s girl all over again.  Shi Hyun is scared that Soo Min, an innocent girl, will get caught up in something that she doesn’t have to be in.  He doesn’t want Soo Min to die in vain all because of Jin Sook & Co.’s doings.  Also in the ending, when Shi Hyun pretty much tells Soo Min to get out of their world, he is giving her one last chance to leave because he wants her to have the opportunity for a better life.

I feel like Shi Hyun is loosing his footing because he’s going around all over the place, leaving traces of his identity.  Is he really gonna meet Min AT THE POLICE STATION?  Is he really gonna give Soo Min his REAL NAME?  Is he really gonna save a stranger just because he pities her and doesn’t want her to end up like Hyun Soo’s dead girlfriend?  *facepalm*  Shi Hyun is not invincible, and all of these careless acts could eventually bite him in the behind.  I know we all want him to show his acts of compassion and show how much he cares for his companions but really, he can’t always be the good guy that comes to the rescue.  So far he’s had tough decisions to make but he most always makes the right decision.  (saving Hyun Soo from Safari, saving Soo Min, etc.) What about the times where he has to go against his convictions for the sake of survival?

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I’ve said this before, but I do wish that the drama would show more of Shi Hyun’s moral dilemmas and how he has to sometimes compromise and forgo his morals for the sake of survival.  Cruel City does an excellent job of showing how Jin Sook does not just coldheartedly make her decisions; she does have feelings involving the people she uses, but that doesn’t stop her from doing what she has to do to survive.  I really like the scene when Jin Sook is deciding whether or not to use Soo Min as the middle man to deliver the payment for Safari’s drug deal.   Jin Sook has a lot of flashbacks to her memories with Soo Min, which not only shows that she dotes on the girl but also proves that Jin Sook believes Soo Min is loyal and trustworthy.  She needs a loyal minion for the job and Soo Min fits the bill. It’s not that Jin Sook wants others to take her place to die for her, but she knows that sacrifices are necessary to maintain her high position on the totem pole.  She has weighed her options and in the end, she decides that Doctor’s Son life takes priority over her sisterly bond with Soo Min.

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I feel like everyone got trolled by the preview for this episode.  When it shows that Shi Hyun asks what a woman would like, everyone jumped to conclusions that he was referring to Soo Min.  Instead he buys something for Jin Sook.  This part is also unclear…was he thinking of buying something for Soo Min, but instead he decided to see what kinds of things Jin Sook would like to test it out?  Or is he giving Jin Sook a present to try to apologize for their previous arguments?  I’m not sure but it was sad to see how happy Jin Sook is when she sees Shi Hyun’s gift…and then when she sighs after Shi Hyun dashes off to leave.  Awwwwww.  :'(  Even though Jin Sook always puts on a strong front, I get the feeling that she is actually really lonely. 

I’ve gotta love Safari, because he’s the one who asks Jin Sook what Doctor’s Son is to her.  A son?  A MAN?  (Me: OMG OMG PLEASE ANSWER!!)  Well of course Jin Sook DOESN’T ANSWER.  Jin Sook & Shi Hyun’s silence says a lot about how ambiguous their relationship really is.   We can’t go on dragging this question for too long but part of me is scared to find out the real answer.  I’m still really scared that Shi Hyun’s romance with Soo Min will tear him and Jin Sook apart.  Was I the only one freaking out during the short scene when Shi Hyun steps out of the elevator, only to miss Jin Sook going into the elevator by a near second!?!?  IS THIS FORESHADOWING SOMETHING!??!?  NOOOOOOO!!!!!!

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^How did Soo Min run in those high-heeled boots? O_O

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I feel like the ending scene is where this episode really blew it.  T__T  It seemed like they were trying to force in an obligatory action scene but it failed to be suspenseful and meaningful.  I know the whole cat-and-mouse scene where Shi Hyun & Safari are hiding amongst the bookshelves was supposed to be all cool and intense but for some reason instead I just started laughing at it.  O___O”  And of course, the “twist” where Safari whips out a police ID badge just made me go “WHAT THE HECK JUST HAPPENED? OH PLEASE NO.” instead of “WHOAA GOOD TWIST!”  I highly doubt that Safari is an undercover cop because even if he was, he wouldn’t be carrying around his badge in the first place.  That’s way too risky.  Also if he was really undercover he wouldn’t reveal himself in front of someone else (aka Doctor’s Son).  Anyways if Safari somehow is an undercover cop, I would be disappointed because that’s one too many and Safari is already an awesome character as he is. 

Overall
Wow I sound really butt-hurt over some parts of this episode but in hindsight, episodes 9-10 were just ok.  This episode tried but didn’t really reach what it was aiming for.  I now have a much better impression of ep9 although I did enjoy some hints of Shi Hyun & Jin Sook’s relationship in this episode.  I do wish that this episode had transitioned more into the Pusan story arc because it’s about time we move on to the real deal. Hopefully Cruel City redefines its direction and has more fluid pacing in the next episode.

heisui

I'm heisui, an Asian drama blogger and the creator of My Drama Tea. I love stories and writing, so I watch dramas and blog. I especially have a penchant for Japanese and Chinese dramas, and those hidden gems that are waiting to be discovered. Oh, and I'm Legend of Zhen Huan-obsessed!
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Cruel City: Ep 11
  • I was ‘butt-hurt”, too.
    I’m admittedly emotionally numbed by it all. It doesn’t quite grab me in the gut as it did in some earlier eps. But that’s not to say there weren’t some lovely flashes of poignancy in little scenes involving Shi-hyun and Jin-sook so well noted.
    But back to the butt-hurt… Maaan… Must everyone be an undercover cop? I really hope Sapari isn’t. I like him just the way he is, too.

    My laptop’s ruined so I’ve raided my dvd stash and dug out my Infernal Affairs trilogy… Now THIS is the deal.

    • Yeah I feel like the ending scene was even almost borderline Athena/Iris-ish. T_T I know, hopefully everyone isn’t an undercover cop, I mean come on!!!!!

      LOL I hope your laptop gets fixed soon! I’m sure your DVD’s can keep you occupied though. 😉

  • it seem to me that safari is lkely in the same position with scale..they both running from death by turning themselves into police.. i think that safari was undercover cop before and he did somethng that he cannot be a cop anymore..i dont know why but i think he keep a huge secret from jin sook and shi yun..

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