First Impressions/Review: Mrs. Cop ~ Episodes 1-4
The first 4 episodes deliver a pretty concrete resume of what to expect when it comes to a drama. It’s not a universal truth or an axiom, but it usually works. Just like with Last, i wanted to start Mrs. Cop for some time now, but my deteriorating drama condition and the fact that i wanted to watch the first 4 episodes in a row didn’t let me start it earlier. The cast itself was a tempting and strong enough reason to find myself in the world of Mrs. Cop and the expressive and diverse acting is the strongest card that will keep me on board. The arch diagnosis is positive, i enjoy Mrs. Cop’s journey so far even though it gets on my nerves sometimes and it’s not the cast’s fault! It has humor, feels and action, but it also has an immense sense of the “renowned” South Korean drama police.
One day you wake up and you find out that Kim Hee Ae who doesn’t require any further introductions will be the leading figure in another drama. It’s the day you decide that you will definitely watch that drama no matter what and here i am. You also become aware that Son Ho Jun will be there as well and Reply 1994 memories instantly woke up! Shin So Yul too? A little bit of Reply 1997 reminiscence never hurt anyone!
Heo Jung Do whose teacher role in Heard It Through the Grapevine is recent is more than welcome! Lee Da Hee whom i loved in I Hear Your Voice is a part of Mrs. Cop‘s world too and last but not least, Kim Min Jong. I am not that familiar with him and that’s the reason why i didn’t mention him earlier, but Mrs. Cop will be a good chance for me to get closer to his acting skills. The fans of BEAST will be pleased to find Lee Gi Kwang acting here and i shouldn’t forget mentioning Jung Soo Young whom i recently witnessed in School 2015 and Discovery of Romance!
The cast itself makes you have high expectations, it’s something good when the drama rewards you when it comes to the journey and the destination, but sometimes things don’t flow as expected and disappointment always awaits in a corner. The storyline is simple, it’s about a single mother and combative police officer, Choi Young Jin (Kim Hee Ae). It’s all about the ups and downs in her competitive work life, it’s something that always affects her role as a mother and the amount of time she devotes to her daughter, Ha Eun. And that’s when her sister, Choi Nam Jin (Shin So Yul), comes into play as the responsibilities of a mother have fallen upon her shoulders.
Detective Park Jong Ho (Kim Min Jong) is always by Young Jin’s side and tries to assist her whenever she finds herself in trouble. It’s something that happens quite often dare i say as she’s willing to see each and every case to the very end regardless of the impact it will have upon her or the pressure she may go through! Jo Jae Deok (Heo Jung Do) is Young Jin’s devout friend and quirky colleague who follows her career’s ups and downs, always accompanied by his wife, Hong Ban Jang (Jung Soo Young). Both of them are hilarious figures and they were born to be together in their own universe!
Young Jin gets demoted after a serial killer case which ruined her emotional world and her career eventually, but she remained faithful to her ethics by always preserving the value of truth in her life. As a common police officer she didn’t fail to show her potential and she was accepted anew in the violent crimes division. The new team is being forged under Jong Ho’s command, but the one who’s really in charge is Young Jin! They are being accompanied by Jae Deok who returned alongside Young Jin and detective Lee Se Won (Lee Gi Kwang). The team gets completed by Min Do Young (Lee Da Hee) and Han Ji Woo (Son Ho Jun) whose relationship with Young Jin began with misunderstandings!
Thoughts: Should i start with the complaints or the positive aspects and expectations? Well, i will let it flow in the aforementioned order since my complaints are not many. It’s actually only one and it has to do with the first two episodes to be more precise. It’s all about the renowned South Korean drama police force, i guess we’re kind of fed up with this very specific presentation of a useless police department being unable to catch a single criminal.
The writer managed to present a sinister and arrogant criminal devoid of human feelings and consciousness and it was something more than positive, but the whole investigation process and action was leaning towards the direction of someone toying around with a whole police department. It felt like watching someone play Grand Theft Auto and had the story not reached the end by the end of the second episode they would have to call the army during the third one!
You surround a whole block, the whole regional police force is in an uproar and nobody’s able to catch a single criminal? And when Jae Deok finally corners him, Young Jin who’s the chief of the team finally relaxes and checks her cellphone to finally get alerted by the gunfire? And it’s not like the criminal escaped once, it was happening over and over again turning it into a makjang bloodshed.
Ι will say it once again because i don’t want to be misunderstood, it’s not the cast’s fault at all. If the writer wanted to keep the very specific sub-story flowing for 2 episodes, even in a more quirky or serious tone, there were many possible pathways the writing could have walked upon, but presenting a useless police force for yet another time was the easy way out.
Police officers are not enlightened superheroes, but they are not that worthless either, it felt as if each and every one of them was lacking principal training and equipment in a serial killer case that was plaguing society. I am not condemning the writer though, there were many feels in between and thanks to the exceptional acting they were delivered to the fullest in front of our very eyes.
Had Mrs. Cop been one of my first action/crime dramas i admit i would had been thrilled by the amounts of feels and the whole chasing, but the whole process was ill-natured and it was based on fundamental weaknesses that were never supposed to be there in the first place, but they were and Mrs. Cop isn’t my first action/crime drama to be so lenient.
The first two episodes failed to deliver executive consistency, but they managed to preserve the emotional background of the drama to the fullest. What was learning to walk during the first two episodes finally found a representative presentation in the world of adults during the 3rd and 4th episodes.
I would never refer to the corrupted police department chief and the armchair equivalent of people who are no other than the internal affairs department. I refer to our main figures and the characters around them and i hope that the team that’s about to be completed will be combative and representative of the circumstances story-wise. Okay, i ranted a bit and i let it all out, but i couldn’t keep it inside.
However, i have a thought flow in my mind which could do justice to the aforementioned malfunctions. Young Jin had to divide herself into a hardworking policewoman and an exemplary mother, but the first parameter wouldn’t let her become the second one due to lack of time. The more she was struggling to be with her daughter the more difficult it would get and all this internal struggle had its own impact in the whole case regardless of the corrupted police department chief’s presence.
Her overall approach and further emotional involvement, but also her inability to conceive whether she truly wants to resign or not, were aspects that led to her demotion since lying isn’t a part of her dictionary. At that point in her life she could value the time she would spend with her daughter. Ha Eun stealing to be with her mother and Young Jin realizing she was no longer in pictures with her daughter had devoured her and when you take into consideration her work’s pressure it must had been unbearable.
Young Jin would also work on her mind’s consistency in order to remember her good old self which was presented all along the way during the second case in the 3rd and 4th episodes, something that would lead to her promotion back to where she belongs. After taking Ha Eun’s heartrending yet kindhearted approval was a ray of light that could actually point towards the exemplary and combative Young Jin who doesn’t care about hierarchy when it comes to justice, the one we all want to see.
One of the most exceptional aspects of the drama must be the chemistry between Kim Hee Ae and the child actor who performs as Ha Eun. When they play together it’s bliss and you can sense their mutual longing to be together, but also the vast shades of reality that keep them apart. Ha Eun being proud of her mother being a police officer and eventually deciding to sacrifice their time together so that her mother will maintain the role model image in her eyes was beautifully presented.
Mrs. Cop can be a representative drama on the struggles a hardworking widowed mother can go through and i am looking forward to that direction. She has to work hard so that her daughter and sister will be able to live and chase after their dreams. She can’t have everything and working with passion is something that keeps her mind occupied. Kim Hee Ae’s multifaceted and expressive acting lives up to any expectation and she’s the core of the drama, not only because she is Mrs. Cop, but because she proves it with every passing episode.
You can witness the canvas of her face changing colors according to the situation and all the like-minded emotions are being portrayed with the emotional charge and tension or elegant bliss they’ve been asking for. But it’s not only her, everyone’s doing a good work whether they are leading or secondary figures and one thing i must point out is that there’s a flowing sense of chemistry that binds together all the figures in the storyline.
Shin So Yul is more than cute through her explosive yet caring interactions with Young Jin and the sense of betrayal she unveils once Ha Eun forgets about her every time her mother’s around! Kim Min Jong is highly representative of the obedient to protocol yet fair detective Park Jong Ho and his interactions with Kim Hee Ae are one of a kind. When they are not tense due to Young Jin’s decisions they are utterly hilarious and both of them possess the attitude of friends and colleagues for years with all the quirky liberties between them in they way they express themselves!
As an extension of that quirky ambiance, the jeet kune do teacher of Heard It Through the Grapevine is a detective here and Heo Jeong Do is highly representative as the hilarious figure Jae Deok has to present! Lee Gi Kwang as detective Lee Se Won doesn’t appear much, but he seems to be doing fine and he’s actually more screen-friendly than many idols turned actors who ruin roles with more airing time.
Can’t wait to see more of Han Jin Woo’s story as his girlfriend’s loss is too much of a burden in his social life, but also in the way he keeps on living; day by day. He was hilarious as a traffic cop, he had the attitude as if he owned the streets, but what i’m really looking forward to is the way he will pace with the rest of the team! Lee Da Hee isn’t only beautiful, she’s also talented and she clearly depicts the freshness of a young detective whose role model, Young Jin, appeared in front of her very eyes but she failed to recognize her. After the misunderstanding was solved she’s more than glad being praised for her skills by the woman that inspired her!
It’s not all that heavenly in a world of cops and criminals. It’s a corrupted world in which the chief of Young Jin’s police department is constantly being bribed by Kang Tae Yoo (Son Byung Ho) in order to protect his more than spoiled, senseless and eventually dangerous excuse of a son. Have i told you already how much i despise both of them whenever they appear on screen? I hope they won’t be around for many episodes.
The fact that Young Jin arrested him and put him behind bars placed her at the center of Tae Yoo’s attention. Things are going to get a bit more complicated now that prisoner 1057, Park Dong Il (Kim Kap Soo), will be getting out of jail soon. The past and the present will come to haunt Young Jin and sadly, but inevitably, her personal life, including her daughter, will become the target of old and new grudges one way or another.
Director Yu In Sik does justice to his lenses and the cinematography of Mrs. Cop’s world is acclimating itself to the surrounding environment whether it’s indoors or outdoors. It clearly depicts the flow of a field investigation whether action occurs or not, the warmth of a humble household or the more clinical ambiance inside the police department and the lighting factor plays its own part. The ratings of the drama are pretty strong and as time passes by they reach higher peaks.
Mrs. Cop has the potential to become one bright example of an action/crime drama infusing the sense of maternity as opposed to work life in a challenging environment, everything that derives from this ongoing collision and how both aspects affect one another. The undeniably great acting and intriguing characters are here, many hilarious lines parade in front our very eyes and the cinematography keeps Mrs. Cop’s world in motion in a highly representative way. All that remains is for the storyline to do justice to all the aforementioned factors and eventually complete one another!