sab: On the whole, I enjoyed the pace of Lookout’s narrative, even with its obvious slowing down in the trial of Chief Prosecutor Yoon. Mainly it’s Lookout’s plot twists that make the show engaging, plus a stellar performance by Kim Young-kwang as Leader and of cos, Lee Shi-young’s action moves. Although the ending has Do-han taking the fall with Shi-wan, I think it is a fitting closure for his character. While there may be tiny hints of potential romance brewing between Do-han and Soo-ji, it is highly improbable that they CAN be together. Not after Soo-ji knows that Do-han let her daughter die without stopping Shi-wan or rescuing her. Similarly, Do-han will never stop beating himself up for his inaction. Or rather, his choice of inaction.
While Lookout may be an Under Dog wins the day type of story, it also explores the moral complications in our Vigilante Group’s actions. Their modus operandi is obviously illegal – hacking, identity theft, wiretapping, housebreaking, hijacking…to name a few. And there is a reason why such activities are against the law, they invade another’s personal space, and in some instances, places the victims in danger. Since Do-han is the figurehead and also the mastermind behind the vigilante group, he somehow must pay the price.
Based on how Lookout ends, I suppose there may be a chance for a Season 2, with possibly Eun-joong at the helm? I find him to be rather underutilised in Lookout. He is the antithesis to Do-han – he firmly believes that Law and Order are there for good reasons. And although his absolute trust in the judicial system is shaken, Eun-joong still has not lose hope. He continues to be a prosecutor of integrity, even if it means letting himself be relegated to a suburban Prosecution Office. Do-han, on the other hand, had lost faith in the legal system, and uses his technical knowledge of the Law to look for loopholes. If Eun-joong in Season 2 gets to lead the team (and he is already sort of making use of them in the ending of Lookout to pin down criminals), he will be able to deliver the team from their darker past, where they seek to redress grievances based on the objective of gaining revenge for themselves.
If there’s anything I want to complain about Lookout, probably it’d be in its penultimate eps, where Shi-wan had trapped Se-won in the boiler room. From the setting, there are stuff (like an extinguisher) which Se-won could have use to break open a window to escape. Weirdly (and totally illogically), she doesn’t. kooriyuki explains it away as Se-won’s apathetic and hothouse flower personality. However, I call it lazy mise-en-place and the set director ought to be fired.
kooriyuki: As sab mentioned above, I’m usually lenient to drama characters because that’s how the scriptwriter wrote; the more inconsistencies a character show, the lousier is the writer. I thought Se-won has been pretty consistent in that she’s terribly naive due to her lack of friends and self-confidence. Therefore it’s understandable that she 1) went up to the rooftop looking for her “friend” Shi-wan despite knowing what a monster he is, 2) oblivious to her surroundings which could have helped her escape.
Same as sab, I enjoyed Show overall, for its engaging story-telling and some very dark psychotic characters. I find it interesting that post-Park Geun Hye’s impeachment, there’s a spike in dramas dealing with corruption within the lawmakers (ie Forest of Secrets, Suspicious Partners and the upcoming Falsify) and Show here chooses to deal with the corruption by using a group of maligned people. It’s pretty chilling that the villain prosecutors do believe they are upholding the law by bending it to suit their own twisted ideals and they actually get away with it. It speaks alot about the Korean society I suppose, if writers are actually inspired to come up with such stories.
I also like how Show balances the heavy with some cute, as Key and Kim Seul-gi has some really adorable chemistry between them. I can only lament at the shortening screentime of Kim Tae-hoon as Show progressed. It’s such a shame to have his character relegated to the sidelines and we’ll never know if he really had romantic interest in Soo-ji, and how he actually become less rigid (?) in his work.
And of course, the ending was a wee bit unwarranted, although I thought it’s only befitting (?) that it came in a full circle that Do-han fell to his death (?) with psycho teen Shi-wan since he didn’t stop Soo-ji’s daughter’s tragedy from happening. Years of drama watching taught me that 1) never expect happy ending and 2) it’s perfectly possible to have no lovelines between leads. Thus I wasn’t as taken aback/outraged (?) that Do-han was killed off.
Lookout isn’t perfect, but it’s definitely one of the better offerings in Dramaland this year.