The Village Part 1&2 Chat: Attack of the Vacant Heroine

Posted by Stephanie on October 20, 2015


the village

Stephanie: The first episode! Let me start by saying how happy I am that Viki decided to pick this up for subbing!

Jacqueline: RIGHT?! Thank God for Viki saving the day. Again!

Stephanie: So let’s kick this off! I wanted to see this because it seemed like it wasn’t going to be your typical Kdrama, it seemed a little bit creepy–maybe a little bit scary? And I have to admit, the first two episodes have really done a good job at setting the scene–despite some things we didn’t quite care for.

Jacqueline: Absolutely. I think the show has a wonderful premise with lots of potential, but there’s no question my biggest complaints so far are HELLA clunky exposition farting all over the place, and a heroine who makes me wanna face-plant my keyboard. It does have its issues, but I’m hoping my issues with episode 1 and 2 get ironed out as the show progresses.

Stephanie: LAUGH! I usually call out shows for having exposition fairies, the one person who’s only purpose in the entire drama is to come out, give out the necessary information, “Well you know when…” Or “That person? Well you know she…” but in this drama? It seems like every side character has taken their turn jumping into a scene to drop info and leave quietly. If I had to name a fairy, it would have to be Eyeshadow Lady, the creepy next door neighbor. “Oh you know the murdered girl? Yeah, she used to live here.”


Jacqueline: All of your words are so accurate, it hurts. Aside from a ceaseless barrage of Insert Character Type Here spraying their exposition all over the place, and ignoring how the heroine is a big bag of wide-eyed nothing with a burned spaghetti noodle for a spine AND a nonexistent personality to boot…I’m also pretty grumpy over how the drama seems to have taken every Dramaland character type and trope, thrown them at the wall and said, “Ta-da!” We’ve got a horny suspicious teacher, a tortured problem-child, some old scheming politician poot, small town shenanigans, something about a serial killer? There are so many pieces to this puzzle that the drama has just thrown at the viewer in two hours that I just finished ep 1 and 2 and I’m half confused. Is that just me being my typical idiot-face self, or did you get a sense of “What the what?” plot-wise?

Stephanie: First off, let me just say, I think you are COMPLETELY off the mark on the burned spaghetti remark…. burned spaghetti is tough. There is no toughness in this wet rag. Which actually surprised me because, I’m not sure why, but I expected her to be a stronger character. Now that I look back at all the promotional whatnots, I do see she is rocking the same scared/startled expression on her face. Yes, there are a lot of stereotypical characters in the plot–I think you also forgot the disapproving grandmother–but with the exception of the heroine and the politician, I’m actually really enjoying them. I’m not sure what their deal is, but they all seem to have crunchy layers. Right now, and yes, I know they are throwing us some red herrings, but I can’t tell who are the good guys and who are the bad guys or how they fit into the plot at all (going back to your question.) despite the stereotypes, there is still a lot here for us to learn.

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Jacqueline: LOL Right?! Alas, I think that analogy got away from me, but my brain was like, “Wait, burned spaghetti is brittle right? Heroine looks like she’s gonna break is someone blows on her? PERFECT!” Which was equally frustrating, because like you I assumed from the promotional material we were going to get, if not a badass heroine at LEAST someone who acted like she has a functioning brain capable of thought processing. While there are a lot of “Spin the Wheel and Take a Number” stereotyped characters, like you I also found them to be, while admittedly clichéd, probably one of the best elements to this show so far. Yeah, they might be rehashed but the actors, namely Murder Suspect #1 (who I affectionately refer to as Grumpy Madam Glass Artist) put a lot of nuance into the body language and subtly of their characters. While I’ve crapped on this drama more than praised it so far, I especially enjoy how the director is lingering on characters and using tiny moments into what may or may not be a character’s inner motives. I’m calling it now, though (and watch me be ten kinds of wrong in ___ number of episodes until it’s revealed); Sexist Cheating Politician Wannabe Dude is the murder-rapist. Screw that guy.

Stephanie: Oooh, should we start taking votes on who the killer is actually going to be? Or, if there is some sort of love interest who he is going to be? That might be interesting for the first episode, see where we end up. You bring up so many points, I don’t want to miss! My big one is for the direction, I think that they are trying to make it too suspenseful? Like they are trying to creep out the audience with the music and the actions, that, if they just let it happen naturally, it would actually be more effective.

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Jacqueline: One, yes, I think we should definitely play “Guess and Speculate” about love interests and evil-dudes. (Though I don’t think we’re gonna get much in the way of any love-lines going canon. Just a feeling.) Two, I absolutely agree with the forced suspense moments. They don’t pay off because we see the fake-outs coming, but I wonder if that’s more of the writer’s fault than the director? Or maybe a need to get as many suspense moments crammed into the early episodes for trailer-fodder? Regardless, let’s hope they pipe it down by ep 3.

Stephanie: I feel like whoever we choose for a possible love interest, he is probably in the automatic running for killer, right? I think the only one we can eliminate as killer is the artist, because the podunk town can totes tell that a decomposed body left out in the elements for almost 2 years, that is just down to skeleton, was raped before she was murdered.

Jacqueline: I WISH I COULD TYPE MY AGREEMENT LOUDER! Because yeah, you know, DNA material is indestructible and killer’s penis was so mighty, that even with nothing but bone marrow left, rape kit still says Go. *Insert loud eye roll here.* That’s okay, though, I’ll forgive the drama because ADORABLE BETA POLICE GUY WAS ADORABLY BETA! (Dear drama gods, please don’t kill and/or make Adorable Beta Police Guy dead. Or the killer. Or a dead killer.)

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Stephanie: Hahaha, no, I don’t think we have to worry about him being the killer–I think he is the one person who we can be pretty sure he’s not the killer. (Although that makes him the perfect killer, doesn’t it???) Can I also pop back to one more super obvious thing that bothered the heck out of me? WHY haven’t they shown us, the audience, what is in the all important letter that sent her back to Korea? We learn that everyone thinks she’s dead. And the letter came from someone in the town that she’s trying to find, but she never gives a name to anyone. Was the letter not signed? Or did she just not read the letter? WHY DIDN’T SHE GOOGLE THAT SHIT BEFORE MOVING TO KOREA??

Jacqueline: *Dies laughing!* RIGHT RIGHT?! I don’t know if her/the script’s “Durka-durka me don’t know” idiocy bothered me more…unless the script is suggesting based on the end of episode 2 (the implication that supposed dead sister wasn’t dead but is NOW dead, whereby making it possible she sent the letter and Heroine Face only discovered it two years later because granny went sky-diving off a Skyscrapper…apparently.) Also ghosts. Apparently they’re real in this drama, along with stupid heroine’s and mysterious letters?

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Stephanie: Yes, that was a bit of an eye roll-y twist at the end that she found the necklace the possible sister (dead sister) wore–but it also brings up the bigger question. Is it a coincidence that she’s here? We don’t know that the grandmother was a suicide. There is also the fact that the guy bumped into her at the teaching assignment office and helped her pick up the paperwork–he could have easily slipped that school on the top of the pile. If so though, who knows she’s alive (although it looks like the other dead sister wasn’t’ so dead in the past) and why would they want her to come back?

Jacqueline: EXACTLY! It’s a mystery wrapped inside an enigma wrapped inside a taco. All in all, we’ve got the suspicious car wreck, a potential cover up from the past, a serial killer a few towns over, a dead body-figure-it-out, cheating spouses, ghosts popping up because of course, and a child running amok who may or may not predict death omens. Not bad for just 2 episodes, I think.

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Stephanie: Well, now I want a taco. And I want to watch those two other episodes we have to catch up on! I need to see if pervy art teacher is possibly not as bad as he looks and if dear brother is possibly not as good as he looks. Gah! I feel like we’re missing so much, but I think that’s the mark of a good show. I think the artist is a great character, I alternately feel bad for her and still can’t believe the position she’s put herself and her daughter into. I want to know what’s up with Brother dearest and the dead sister/art teacher, and I want to know what soon to be dead girl saw the night in the woods. But I guess we’ll find that all out later.

Jacqueline: So many questions! I feel like dear sweet brother is too sweet (am I the only one reading an Oedipus rex complex out of him with him and artist/step-mom? Maybe I’ve read one too many seedy dark eroticas LOL.) Either way, he’s pulled some suspicious antics, and I’m exceptionally curious as to how this litany of characters are going to tie back together for the big ol’ through line conflict. Right now, everything feels disenfranchised and fragmented, so I’m excited to see where the drama takes us next and how everything will congeal!

Stephanie: Congeal. Ew. All in all, despite how nit-picky we are (we pick because that’s just what we do) despite, the fact that I really dislike the heroine, all the exposition, and the forced suspense, I’m enjoying the heck out of this. The episodes move quickly. Oh, and what the heck is up with walnut fondling man? I wonder who he is? Could HE be the hero? Or the person orchestrating her return? I just don’t know. And I kind of like that.

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Jacqueline: Oh, you mean Mr. “I’m Fondling Two Walnuts That Totally Make It Look Like I’m Palming a Dude’s Balls?” Because my theory he’s suspicious horny teacher dude who is actually trying to bring down the killer, and he’s orchestrating heroine and pulling the strings and every other dramatic metaphor I can think of. Who knows if my theory is right, but based on how bratty high school chick so comfortably got into that car (a car which looked suspiciously like Cheating Old Guy’s and how she SOOO desperately wanted the Problem Child to get her a job at said Cheating Old Guy’s company) my money is on him as the killer, and Horny Teacher as the incognito good guy.

Stephanie: Hmmm…. so now we’re down to the placing bets part of the evening? Let’s see. It makes sense plot wise that she’d get tangled up with Brother Dearest, because that would mix her in more with the family. There is also the Pervy Art Teacher because he doesn’t seem to be as bad as he was first made out to be–but his aggressive kissing and money stealing does seem to put him out of the running. Right now, I think I will put my walnuts into Walnut Handler’s hand and say him for love interest? Now killer? My gut is saying Brother Dearest. He did just come back from being gone for a couple of years. He freaked when he realized where she lived and he has that thing for his stepmother who was being bothered by dead/not dead/dead art teacher sister.

Jacqueline: I think you’re right in that Brother Dearest is tied up in the mystery…maybe he killed Art Teacher for his love-that-should-not-be, that his dad (AKA Cheating Old Guy) is playing around with high school girls but is more of a red herring than the actual killer, and that Walnut Guy is definitely a character we’ve met so far in the drama…but who? I don’t know. Find out NEXT TIME on…wait…Wrong thing, LOL.

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Stephanie: Now that our guesses are set in stone. Wait. I think you waffled there. Killer. Love Interest. You must definitively choose, right now.

Jacqueline: I feel like there might not be just one killer. A killer, and a coverup, as it were. I don’t think Walnut Guy is going to be an antagonist, but I also don’t believe any love-lines are going to go legit in the show.

Stephanie: Do I smell waffling??

Jacqueline: BWAHAHA. I’m a pancake girl, NO WAFFLES! LOL Nah, I DEFINITELY believe Walnut is a good guy (just suspicious for the sake of suspicion) and I believe the Brother is the most likely killer at this point, with Old Cheating Daddy tied up in the case. I definitely don’t think the artist/wife has much to do with the murder, because that would be WAYYYY too easy.

Stephanie: Waffler.

Jacqueline: PANCAKES FTW! 🙂

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** Due to the delay in finding someone to sub this, we are one week behind. Good news? We’ll have two posts this week to catch up.

Like Jacqueline? Check out her
Fangirl Musings (YouTube)
Diehard Fangirl (Tumblr)

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