Whatever grievances I may have with "Missing 9", I have to say that the creators are good with swiftly addressing some. The comedy in episode twelve works and the excitement is back. Most importantly, so is Tae-ho's place as the main villain and just in time for a reunion he wishes never happened. Everyone is frantically chasing after the phone, which creates entertaining urgency.
Whoever decides on the occasional baffling "comedy" finally takes a break and the episode delivers giggles wisely and for enriching our characters. Bong-hee (Baek Jin-hee) is a country bumpkin who wants to be fancy for a hotel in one moment and in the next she is tailing evidence. Joon-oh (Jung Kyung-ho) is a stealthy hero, but he freaks out over a pimple. It is nice to see that they still defy stereotypes when reunited and the comedy promotes this.
It is also nice to see how great a pair they make. Bong-hee has regained her bright side and determination ever since Joon-oh returned and he has felt a sense of responsibility after being inspired by her role as a provider and protector on the island. They both have equal importance in this story, they both have agency and focus. This is the beauty of treating characters with equal care and the lack of discrimination between the leads further elevates their lovely relationship.
Going to less pleasant things now, Tae-ho (Choi Tae-joon) is finally back and I can let out a sigh of relief. Episode eleven really got me worried over a potential shift, but our serial killer is thankfully as nosy as he is insane. Having two alpha villains is admitedly much more interesting than Do-pal (Kim Bup-rae) being a submissive puppet, but he should definitely remain in lesser overall "villain standing" and have less focus than the person whose evil deeds we have been following for most of the series.
We also see the return of Gi-joon (Oh Jung-se) and Ji-ah (Lee Sun-bin) back to normal, including their relationship dynamics. Ji-ah has been very yielding lately, which goes against her previous characterization. Her swear-storm and subsequent hair slaps at Tae-ho are a thing of beauty and her thankfully finite silence with Gi-joon over their predicament brings them back to a healthier relationship status and helps them break their oppressive obedience.
Of course the person of biggest interest now is Hee-kyeong (Song Ok-sook), who is also the most morally ambiguous character around now. Song Ok-sook masterfully carries this mystery of Hee-kyeong's true feelings and therefore future choices. Hopefully for our hero team, she is someone who wants to be comfortable, but has enough sense of responsibility to do the right thing.
Written by: Orion from 'Orion's Ramblings'
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Vasia, also known as Orion or Ori online, is currently doing opinion pieces and database upkeep. She has a love for good TV and a penchant for rambling in written form. Vasia can be contacted via firstname.lastname@example.org.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Missing 9" Episode 12"
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