We take a small break from the serial killings in“Tunnel – Drama”as Gwang-ho and the station group try to solve a series of break ins and a related murder. Seong-sik confronts Gwang-ho with his confession and that brings about a bigger need for caution on their part. Episode four also provides us with some much needed backstory for Jae-i and Seon-jae. The identity of the Gwang-ho born in 1988 is revealed and the serial killer resurfaces.
We finally have an adorable reunion between Gwang-ho (Choi Jin-hyuk) and Seong-sik (Jo Hee-bong). Everything from the way they fumble between formal and informal speech to their trust is lovely to see. It is also a smart writing decision. Seong-sik has inside knowledge and rank, meaning he provides emotional and practical support. He is also a receiver for our hero’s thoughts and ideas. A hero constantly thinking or talking to himself about his own main story is less interesting than dialogue.
I am glad to see that our other main characters are developed a bit as well. Jae-i’s (Lee Yoo-young) story and the way it ties into Soo-jeong’s tragedy tackles the topic of survivor guilt and it brings us closer to our leading lady. I feel that she has not been entirely truthful about her past, however. We still have the pencil mystery and her obsession with serial killers, so there is surely more to it than what she has revealed. She did say that those doing the talking often lie to achieve their goal after all.
We finally see Seon-jae’s (Yoon Hyun-min) own story teased as well. I was entertaining the thought that he is Gwang-ho’s son, since their current bickering and possible bonding later on must have a reason behind it. However, a birth secret feels too soapy for this series. Still, we are starting to chip away at his story just at the right time. Any more stalling and he would have remained too boring for too long. The fact that he has a past with the serial killer makes him relevant.
Episode four has its standalone case, but I am glad to see that the main plot carries on. OCN shows have often had the problem of pushing the entirety of their main story to the beginning and end. I am also proven wrong in my earlier assumption that a younger Gwang-ho does not exist. I wonder whether his involvement is only caused by the time anomaly in order to cover for our protagonist or whether it means more.
At this point, I am slightly worried that the creators may not have time for everyone’s personal arcs, a murder mystery and a well structured time traveling aspect. That being said, the drama’s good balancing of these elements so far means that it can shift focus as needed. Now that the killer, who apparently never time traveled, is back I look forward to what lies beyond this introduction.
“Tunnel – Drama”is directed bySin Yong-hwiandKim Seong-min-I, written byLee Eun-mi-IIIand featuresChoi Jin-hyuk,Yoon Hyun-minandLee Yoo-young.