Now that I’m all caught on up Cruel City (Heartless City), it’s neat to work backwards like Memento on its trail of drama goodies. I did keep this drama on my radar when I knew Jung Kyung Ho was cast as the lead in his first post-military service comeback drama. But the inclusion of Nam Gyu Ri totally turned me off, plus for whatever reason I wasn’t in the mood for a gritty cops-and-drug dealers niche cable drama. When the first stills and teaser trailers were released I checked it out casually and then promptly set it aside. If this drama was good I would return to it, if it turned out to be dreadful then no time wasted. For the sake of Jung Kyung Ho’s career I’m thrilled this drama rocks, but it’s a long 20-epiosder and I’m a tad annoyed at myself for jumping in so early. The first teaser trailers for the drama were actually comprised not of scenes from the drama proper, but of a specially filmed sequence where leads Jung Shi Hyun and Yoon Soo Min encounter each other in a hotel, end up in bed, and a trigger is pulled. Cruel City indeed, that could be a PSA for avoiding prostitution. Soo Min is styled very retro while in one teaser the identity of her bed mate is purposely kept under wraps with his face shown only partially.
Though of course we know its Shi Hyun, and knowing these two are going to have some sort of cross-purposes and uncontrollable torrid love affair even while the body count piles up, the betrayals keep on happening, and the good and bad people keep switching sides, that’s going to be some serious angst on the table. I think in superficial ways this drama has shades of Time Between Dog and Wolf, but comparatively TBDAW was definitely more vanilla and because it aired on MBC the conflict was relatively manageable for the characters compared to here. No diss on TBDAW, one of my top-10 dramas ever, but CC definitely have the edge on being more…..unflinching. I’ve watched plenty of K-movies so the casual and direct violence here doesn’t faze me in the least, and I hope no one will avoid this simply because its on the wild side. I’m pretty much predicting an epic romance between the OTP once they actually start interacting in earnest (bonus points if the scene filmed for the teasers are actual scenes from later on in the drama, that would be awesome), but I’m already invested in the individual journeys that Shi Hyun and Soo Min are taking by themselves to achieve their very difficult objectives.
OTP teasers for Cruel City: