THREE DAYS THE TRILOGY
Intially, Presidential Security Service Agent Han Tae Kyung (Park Yoo Chun) believed that his father’s death was caused by a mere traffic accident. After a string of suspicious activity at home and at work, he comes to the belief that there is a bigger conspiracy at play and it may involve the Blue House. His suspicions are confirmed when South Korean President Lee Dong Hwi (Son Hyun Joo) goes on a holiday at his private villa.
The electricity goes out, three shots are fired in the dark and then the President is nowhere to be found. The drama attempts to follow the format of 24 where the narrative is told in “real time” but the story is split into three different chapters, Battle’s First Act, Showdown and Conclusion, with each chapter being three days in length.
So I’m really confused by the title of this drama. I get that it wanted to split each three day block to create a three act drama but why not just call it 9 Days? I didn’t have this overwhelming notion that the three day block made a big difference in how the story developed as the time constraints felt ambiguous most of the time. Whereas in 24, the 24 hours plays a critical role in how much time it might take to get a task done. That being said, I think the drama Two Weeks does a far better job in showing how the time constraint hurdle is essential to the storyline.
The drama does a great job in getting the viewer hooked from the get-go. I was really intrigued by the conspiracy plot. The viewer is given such little information at the beginning that we get involved trying to piece the conspiracy together alongside Han Tae Kyung.
Adding to the plot, the actors are so great at not showing all their cards to Tae Kyung that it was hard to figure out who to trust and who not to trust. President Lee was incredibly suspicious and Tae Kyung’s mentor/Head of the Presidential Security Service Ham Bong Soo (Jang Hyun Sung) is discovered to have his own agenda. Who are the true power players behind the government?
I thought it was pretty ingenious that the drama came up with the Yangjinri incident. It was in the late 90’s when there were a number of skirmishes between North and South Korea and even one incident in 1996 where they tried infiltrate into the South. At the same time, South Korea has been dealing with the fallout of the IMF scandal. What if there was a way to kickstart the economy again by trying to incite a war? WWII helped the US out of the Depression Era. Not saying that that’s how the economy works but the drama posed some interesting questions.
And those questions make us point fingers at a lot of potential villains. Ultimately, the drama introduces us to the shadowy figure, Kim Do Jin (Choi Won Young). There are things that I liked about Kim Do Jin as the antagonist. He’s egotistical and I liked his commanding manner of speech. I even liked the fact that he made clay models of people and places as it made him appear like he was a god. And of course, all evil geniuses must play chess, right?
However, I began to find fault with the drama when our evil characters captures our hero and basically threatens before letting him go. Really? Why would Do Jin even bother letting someone like Tae Kyung go and further ruin his plans for world domination? Sure, you can argue that Do Jin is crazy but I don’t buy it.
What we ended up with was a very repetitive drama. What happens today? Oh, just another day in the office where someone is trying to kill Tae Kyung or Yoon Bo Won (Park Ha Sun), the police officer who ends up helping Tae Kyung. Or discovering that this other character, whom we though Tae Kyung trusted, is now a traitor. Oh and what’s going on with this conspiracy? Here’s this long, drawn-out explanation. The next week, we got the same story.
In an attempt to answer the traitor storyline, saying that the traitor isn’t really a traitor, we get treated to flashback. I can’t count how many times the drama tried to resolve a conflict with a flashback. I’ve expressed my concerns about Writer Kim Eun Hee before and I’ll say it again. She has really great ideas and conflicts that would make a really unique drama series but her ability to keep that suspense going is poor.
Park Yoo Chun and Park Ha Sun do their best to keep the plot moving along but Son Hyun Joo mostly looks bored in his role as the President. Even the artist’s OST tracks were a wrong fit for this drama and it’s not like I didn’t like the music but there’s a continuity gap between the instrumental and non-instrumental tracks. The non-instrumental tracks barely does much to heighten the emotions of the storyline. As a result, there’s a lot of promises in the first half of the series but you discover it’s just all smoke and mirrors and there’s not much substance to keep the thrill ride alive.