Case File # 1
Sisyphus: The Myth
Warning: contains mild spoilers from episodes 1-4
Case Log # 1
The substation is a mess.
At approximately episode 3 of a suspect going by the name "Sisyphus: The Myth" several moods clearly turned sour (the investigator's among them) and complaints began rushing in on our hotlines. Several charges were being lodged against the plaintiff. Chief among them: several counts of assaults on logic and blatant CGI hijinks. With these patterns emerging and the office inundated with complaints, an investigation was launched into the suspect and the results... as always, you decide.
Identifying the Suspect
|Billed as JTBC's 10th anniversary celebration, Sisyphus the Myth is a sci-fi-action and soon to inevitably become a romance endeavour. Flaunting Jo Seung Woo (formerly Hwang Shi Mok of Stranger) and Park Shin Hye of Memories of Alhambra (LOL) as two caught in the winds of a conspiracy chock-full of time travel and apocalyptic stakes.|
That is, at least, the most recent beginnings of the tale. In reality, this show has been somewhat in the works since 2016 then a project billed for SBS when it was pitched to them by writers Lee Je in and Jeon Chan Ho. This agreement with SBS later fell through, however, and the two were basically dragged on to wipe the proverbial rump of Fate and Furies writer Kang Cheol Woong after he dipped 4 episodes into that series.
After this, King Pin SBS, eager to imitate the villains they often portray, copped up and failed to pay the duo for services rendered. In response, they terminated their contracts and went over to JTBC to pursue The Myth, clearly finding more receptive ears there.
And so production starts, encountering the COVID snag in November 2020 with a temporary shut down in production but with principal photography having begun much earlier in May that same year.
We'll handle these one at a time. The proper investigations begin.
Charge 1: CGI Hijinks with Constable Chris. P. Bacon
Now folks, let's be real. We've been here and done this - we're veterans.
We have seen the anal bead dragons of A Korean Odyssey,
and who could forget The Bride of Habaek... you know the one.
So let's not pretend that K-drama has ever been a bastion of great computer-generated graphics. For this case, however, the boots got to come down.
Grappling from buildings using Windows XP Movie Maker and Filmora Aftereffects is not OK. Ziplining off buildings on pantyhose thick rope? Unacceptable.
I won't even begin on that.
|Now before we get ahead of ourselves and toss them in a cell let's be reasonable. The minor CGI moments are executed well. The sugar cube scene and transits from the other side are pretty well done. |
Additionally, the opening moments of episode four showcase solid locations and environmental design. The issue is these are the minor moments and when your show is billed as an action CGI set-piece drama we expect the set-piece moments to be good.
|Most of the show's CGI problems rest snugly in poor staging. The pantyhose zipline is a brilliant example of this. Park Shin Hye fires out a zipline from a building clearly the highest point in the surrounding area into, as far as the viewer sees, absolute oblivion.|
The grounding of the scene is in that way lost and the physics and gravity hijinks that result later are a laughable affair. Let's not even mention the several openings for any of the truckload of police officers who could have taken a neutralizing shot but didn't. As a constable versed in shooting down suspects with their backs turned this is most disappointing.
Charge 2: Assault on Logic with Captain Sum Ting Rung
Now wonky CGI is one thing but the Star-Trooper tier aim of the mysterious Control Bureau is something else. It achieves some of the most transparently "because plot" moments in the series.
Control Bureau has a clear shot on Park Shin Hye LMAOXD suddenly their brains stop and we can't make that simple shot. One moment they're shown as ruthlessly hanging witnesses the next LMAOXD two bystanders is too much for us to not cap Park instantly.
In the process of getting this clip, I caught on to even more hilarious mishaps. At 0:02 you can see on the building to the left at least three persons with a clear shot of Park even when in the scene prior they were hiding from the one's behind her in this shot. A second later at 0:03 is clearly where the scene was cut because those men on the left roof just disappear (OOF). They return at 0:10 and still don't shoot. Not to mention the delay from the guys directly behind her.
Moments later they light the whole damn community up with gunslinger drones alerting twice the amount of people than before and it's a simple clean-up. WELL......WHICH IS IT, WISEGUYS!! Are you incompetent or just plain stupid?
| The Control Bureau hijinks don't end there, however, because despite their seeming love for discretion they then engage in a full-on high-speed chase through Seoul while getting the police involved. After all, forget the masquerade, it's whatever at this point.|
Not to mention them unloading live bullets into the smokescreen during episode 4 and then being told they want them alive only after. WHATTT?? In fact, they can't seem to make up their own minds on whether they want Billionaire boy toy and Future Park alive or not. Despite the insistence of the leader, he wants them in one piece their actions don't seem too keen on it.
Don't get me started on the way they don't rush in after the guys inside are clearly engaged and need back up or don't do the basic securing of the perimeter. My policing skills are hurting from this and so is my brain, and these are but a few of the logical infractions in only two hours so far and limited to one story entity.
The brokers remain a somewhat mysterious entity but certainly are not anywhere near the level of finesse foreshadowed in the two beginning episodes. After the amusing pantyhose zipline express, our main leads are intercepted by Mr. Park and the eye candy henchmen (because we all know that's all they are there to be), Twiddle Dumb and Twiddle Dunce. Swept up and off to their fridge.....and oh god it's boring. Amazingly, in their time spent with them, more is learned about Park's preference in coffee and the airheaded pretty boys before we're off on an agonizingly long quarrel over a damn diary. Yes, the diary itself is somewhat significant to the story. Was the length of time the scene took up - NO. The result here is Park - I kid you not - giving Billionaire computer wiz toyboy his phone in an "I aM VeRY smArT" moment.
It comes to a beautiful head, however, when Hot Extra number one - armed and loaded - is somehow overpowered by Billionaire ToyBoy and isn't immediately shot from behind as the other idiot watches. Classic.
For whatever reason, on a somewhat odd note was also the seemingly amateurish understanding of the brokers that Park Shin Hye's character possessed. Sure, she was knowledgeable about certain processes but far too much of these scenes seemed to catch her in a perplexing ignorance.
Ascertaining a verdict
Now we must note that we're only four episodes in. At the same time these kinds of problems just four episodes in isn't a good sign, not least for a drama billed this heavily. The evidence collected here by the Kontent Gyeongchals is subject to revisiting as the series progresses. As of now the verdict still remains in the hands of the writers, editors, and your own. What say you? Will you be tuning in for more or is this your cue to leave?
With the report finished this has been Kontent Gyeongchal. Signing out.
Editors: BrightestStar (1st editor)