Bad Detective: Bad Editing?

There are times I wonder if I haven’t been paying enough attention to Bad, cos some scenes, imo, are pretty abrupt. Like in ep 5, when Hyung-min took a hostage’s car keys in the dressing room and we see him ordering Choon-man to continue to serve him and cover his tracks for “both their good” in his getaway car…and then we leap to Hyung-min trying to create a diversion to sneak out of the shopping mall.

So while we are made to assume (I hope) that due to the police cordon and checks on the shoppers/ staff leaving the mall, Hyung-min was unable to escape via a car, which is why he needs to sneak out by clubbing a few sales assistants to death. On one hand, I take it as a compliment that Bad thinks highly of its viewers, and that they can arrive at this “logical conclusion”. On the other hand though, I am not even sure my assumption (over Hyung-min’s actions) was correct.

I don’t see it as a case of a Kdrama not “spoon feeding” its viewers. I view it as lazy story telling instead. While the “leave-me-hanging” is still acceptable in an ending, having it happen in mid-show can cause the narrative to feel disjointed. It is as though we missed out on something that happened on screen, or something happened off screen which we are unaware of. And all we see is the after effect. Which leaves me scratching my head and trying to recall what just happened.

Same for the start of ep7 — the abrupt beginning of a pool of officers swarming over a car with a broken window and bloodstains on the windscreen did not relate to me until the characters mention Officer Chae’s kidnapping. And then I went, “Oh…so this was the aftermath”. (duh)

Granted, these logic leaps are not over an uncrossable chasm, but they do make the viewers disoriented — especially if the start of the episode is a continuation of a story which happened a week ago (and that is assuming everyone religiously watches Bad as soon as it goes on air each week).

That is why traditionally, most dramas (whether Kdramas, Jdorama, HK serials, etc) will have a short “flashback” sequence to allow viewers to play catch up on the previous episode. It may not be that important for a drama that airs daily, but for a weekly or fortnightly drama — the “what-happened-previously” is very helpful. I’m quite surprised Bad did not choose to use this format.

And coming from a national TV station???


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