The highly anticipated SBS drama is finally out, “While You Were Asleep” promises romance, thriller and comedy, did it deliver? And was it worth the hype?
Lets find out.
First we’ll recap the most important events that took place in the 1st and 2nd episode before we jump into the review.
Episode 1 Recap
Hong Joo wakes up from deep sleep. She saw a handsome man coming to her rescue, had blood on his forehead, she gave him a hug and told him “I believe you, because its me.”
She wakes up puts her glasses on and writes down the dream she had. She is shocked by this dream, she is hugging a man she’s yet to meet.
Two brothers are moving in next door, she takes a look at the older brother and notices that it was the man in her dreams. Seung Won tells him to give them rice cakes and introduce himself.
He goes over and flashes a big smile, he introduces himself but gets rejected badly, he is angry about how rude the girl next door is to him even when she just met him.
Hong Joo takes the bus to go somewhere in the morning, and Jae Chan appears, he sits right next to her. She starts to believe he’s hitting on her. She goes further; he follows her and sits next to her.
She decides to get up and scold him for trying to flirt with her. Turns out Jae Chan was moving along with Hong Joo to give room to highschoolers to sit on the bench.
After embarrassing herself she rides the bus (the wrong one), Jae Chan remembers the voice and realizes it was the same rude girl next door who rejected his rice cake.
Night time comes and Hong Joo is helping out her mother, a tattooed man who has a bandage pays for his bill, Hong Joo and her mom immediately remember that she dreamt of this guy who went up in flames at a gas station while lighting up a cigarette.
They go outside and try to give the man a warning, they tell him smoking will kill you but to no avail. He goes to fill up his van with gas and while lighting a cigarette he goes up in flames.
The next day, Jae Chan wakes up; this is his first day in the prosecution office. The girls who’ll work with him point out how handsome he is before being interrupted by attorney Yoo Beom.
Yoo Beom offers to pay for the welcoming cake, he tells them he used to tutor him, and back then Jae Chan was pretty dumb.
They go to the office and see Jae Chan taking selfies with his badge. Jae Chan isn’t so happy when he sees an old familiar face.
In the office Yoo Beom is too busy bragging about how good he was when he used to work as a prosecutor, Jae Chan asks him why he’s here. He tells him he came to welcome him back as a prosecutor, he thinks they’d help out each other in the future, (win-win situation)
Jae Chan then remembers the time Yoo Beom suggested something similar to that. He talked about a win-win situation. 13 years ago, Yoo Beom suggested they tamper with his report card, Jae Chan’s father would increase Yoo Beom’s payment by 10 dollars each time his class ranking went up.
After giving it some thought, Jae Chan agrees to the plan. Back to the present time, Yoo Beom takes off after hanging up the phone with his Valentine’s day date. Jae Chan isn’t happy about running to him once again after all these years.
Hong Joo is having yet another bad dream. It was Christmas time and her hair was long, she looked at a letter her mother had written. It appears that her mother died because of her.
She wakes up very scared she writes down the dream she saw, she runs to the kitchen to see her mother preparing her breakfast, her mother notices her tears, Hong Joo denies she was crying.
On the news, the tattooed guy she saw in her dreams has indeed been in an accident and he died just like she predicted. She starts crying and goes to pick up scissors to cut her hair.
Her mother tries to stop her. Eventually she tells her mother that she had a dream she died because of an accident she caused, she had long hair in her dream, so she decided to cut it short in an attempt to change her destiny.
Her mother consoles her. The mother is also sad, following her daughter dream she appears to be writing down a will of some sort, in way she was preparing for her death.
The next day, February 14, Valentine’s day, Yoo Beom picks up flowers and heads to his date. In the parking lot he sees Jae Chan. Hong Joo is Yoo Beom’s date, they run to each other before they go their separate ways.
Yoo Beom recalls the time he helped Jae Chan get a motorbike, Jae Chan recalls it differently. Back in 2003, there was an accident, Jae Chan’s father was scolding his son for the motorcycle accident. Jae Chan ends up admitting he tampered with the report card to buy the motorcycle accident, as he tries to explain that “an accident” wasn’t fault his father cuts him off.
Hong Joo is paranoid, she can’t stop thinking of her mother, she calls her but she’s not picking up the phone. Hong Joo decides to go back to her house, Yoo Beom offers to drive her back in the snow.
Her mother answers the phone, she appears to have left it in the restaurant and a nice gentleman who creeped behind her gave her the phone.
So they take their time slowly in the snow, Hong Joo asks Yoo Beom to take care of her mother in case something bad happens to her. Yoo Beom asks her if she’s fine, when he turns his head towards Hong Joo he hits a young man and crashes the car into a poll.
The man he hit and possibly killed was the same nice man who gave Hong Joo’s mother her phone back.
Hong Joo wakes up, its Christmas time. She sees her hair has grown back. Her aunt is there by her side, she’s happy Hong Joo finally woke up.
Hong Joo looks for her mother, her aunt tells her that her mother died while overworking herself trying to cover the expenses of her hospitalization following the accident.
She reads the same letter her mother wrote back in February after Hong Joo told her that she dreamt she had died. Her mother has left her some money in the saving accounts she has.
She starts crying asking her aunt to tell her that this is a bad dream, her aunt tries to calm her down and tells her that she must stay strong, she has to stand trial.
Hong Joo yells, “why do you keep telling me its an accident I caused? I wasn’t the one driving. I didn’t cause the accident, it wasn’t my fault.”
Episode 2 Recap
Jae Chan and investigator Choi Dam Dong arrive to interview Hong Joo regarding the accident that took place 10 months ago.
She insists that she wasn’t the one who drove the car that fateful day. Prosecutor Jae Chan says her blood was found on the air bag.
He then adds that the CCTV footage showed that she was the one who was pulled from the driver’s seat not Yoo Beom. She tells Jae Chan that she thinks Yoo Beom tampered with the evidence.
And had wiped his blood off the airbag and moved her to the driver’s seat. Jae Chan tells her that what she says is mere sepculations and that they trust evidence.
He tells her that it’d better she admits to it, so it can act as a mitigation to her sentence, he also says that the family wants her punished.
After the interview, she tries calling Yoo Beom but he doesn’t answer his phone, she decided to take her own life. Jae Chan rushed to the top of the building in an attempt to stop her from committing suicide.
She insists it wasn’t her fault, he tries to convince her and says he’ll believe her. This doesn’t sway her, she thanks him for choosing to believe in her, before she jumps to her death.
Turns out all of this was merely a dream (ughhh!) Jae Chan wakes up frightened by how real the dream looked.
His younger brother wakes up and sees Jae Chan awake, Jae Chan says he had a weird dream, the girl next door committed suicide because her mom died.
His brother insists it was just a dream. Today is Valentine’s day and Jae Chan is supposed to go pick up his new car later. On his way to work he spots Hong Joo sitting waiting for the bus.
He tries to convince her not to go anywhere near cars but points out that she is dating Yoo Beom and has a date with him tonight. Hong Joo is freaked out, she hops into a taxi running away.
The day proceeds just like Jae Chan’s dream, later that day he sees Yoo Beom coming in holding flowers, he welcomes him and ask him to take him to that sushi restaurant he wanted to go to.
Yoo Beom rejects his offer saying he has a date. When Jae Chan sees Hong Joo he tells her, “Haven’t I told you to go straight home today?”
Yoo Beom isn’t happy about whats going on. He takes Hong Joo inside the restaurant. Jae Chan along with his brother await something to happen.
Seung Won wakes up when he sees the Jae Chan jumped out of the car when he saw Hong Joo and Yoo Beom driving away. He goes back into his car and chases them down the street leaving Seung Won behind.
He chases them and catches up, he crashes to their car and stops the accident from happening. Yoo Beom exits the car, he is not happy that he almost got killed by Jae Chan.
Just like Hong Joo’s dream, Jae Chan appears from the snow and opens the door, he asks if she’s okay. She is taken back about all that is going on, again her dream came true.
Yoo Beom is angry, he confronts Jae Chan and asks, “Was it because of that motorcycle accident?”
Flash back to the past, Yoo Beom appears to have crushed the motorcycle to a store of some sort, the police is coming, Yoo Beom asks Jae Chan to pretend it was his doing.
At first Jae Chan refuses to. Yoo Beom says he’ll say Jae Chan did it, and he wonders who would police believe. Yoo Beom exits the place and leaves Jae Chan in the mess alone.
Back to the present day. Yoo Beom is scolding Jae Chan, telling him he’s out of his mind. Jae Chan says he did it to save lives, he did it because he would’ve killed someone, and framed Hong Joo for it, her mother would have died and Hong Joo would’ve committed suicide feeling victimized.
Yoo Beom still believes that Jae Chan is crazy, he asks Hong Joo if she believes him. Hong Joo runs towards Jae Chan and gives him a hug, saying, “I believe you because its me.”
I am pleasantly surprised by how good the drama is.
I am critical of time-lapse or future-past dramas because in my opinion, the time travel theories and such better fit a movie scenario than a drama scenario.
2017 had more than its fair share of past-future drama that focuses on stopping future bad events from happening. We’ve had it, too many dramas wants its audience to focus on the same outcome, the fact that you probably shouldn’t toy around with the future.
Although this drama is not about someone traveling to the future, it is about someone dreaming of what will take place in the future. More or less its still the same thing. They know of what will happen and try their best to stop it from happening.
The last time I saw Suzy in a drama was back in 2014 “My Love from the stars” it was a cameo. The last time I saw one of her dramas was back in 2012 with “Big.”
To be honest, I am not a huge fan of Suzy or Lee Jong Suk, but I do admire how good of an actor Lee Jong Suk is, I also like the scripts he pick, even when sometimes they go downhill so fast and annoy the hell out of me.
I always thought Suzy was an okay idol actress, not excellent but not bad. I was shocked by how much she improved. I heard she did great in “Uncontrollably Fond” but I never saw how much she improved myself.
The two are oddly very cute together, I actually ship them. Even if Suzy is dating Lee Minho I still believe they look absolutely cute together.
Chemistry aside, lets talk about the plot, because I always have some sort of issue with the plot.
The first thing that comes to mind, and the entire “fateful” meeting of the two doesn’t add up. Let me blow your mind.
So Jae Chan dreams of Hong Joo, he sees that she got into a car accident, killed someone while driving. We all know that Yoo Beom was the one who drove, but since she mysteriously fell into a coma despite the fact that the hit wasn’t that hard, we see that the prosecution is almost 100% sure that she was the one driving.
This entire hypothesis itself is flawed. Jae Chan shows Hong Joo CCTV footage of firefighters dragging her out of the car driving seat. Hong Joo says she wasn’t driving and Yoo Beom must’ve somehow switched their seats.
If he really did it, it would’ve showed on the CCTV footage… this is where I was a little annoyed.
The CCTV footage would’ve shown Yoo Beom taking her into the driving seat so it appears as if she was the one who drove. Since we already know Yoo Beom is not the good guy, there is a possibility he would have tampered with the CCTV.
If you’re willing to argue with me on that I get it. But the prosecutor Jae Chan should be a little suspicious if he saw that the CCTV footage miraculously only showed that Hong Joo was the one taken out of the driving seat.
Since he’s a patient, I don’t think he’d have a good idea of what CCTV footage there were or have enough time to tamper with the evidence before the police got their hands on it.
Thus the entire premise of the two fatefully meeting and Jae Chan saving her life, is flawed. Sadly, the writer didn’t bother to think this through more than once.
Which annoys me, I wanted to be more impressed, I am impressed and I like it so far, but not as impressed as I wanted to be.
In the plot description they talk about how Hong Joo’s character is the one who sees the future, suddenly its Jae Chan’s character as well….. what.is.going.on?
I don’t get it. SBS spent so much time promoting the drama as if Hong Joo was the only one who dreams but it seems like Jae Chan will also be dreaming and his dreams will also become a reality.
I don’t know whether they were going with the “surprise” element here. I am taken back, but I do believe its far more interesting if the two co-dream (if that’s even a word) of the future and work together to save lives.
This was my only issues with the plot so far. I have a feeling I am gonna love Yoo Beom’s character, he’s gonna be the instigator of trouble, I can’t wait to see what bad things he’ll do next.
I like the chemistry of both leads together so far. Suzy’s performance is very good. Lee Jong Suk’s character is equally adorable. I like how he isn’t portrayed as the “perfect” prosecutor but rather the dumber one.
His character is very relatable unlike the last one he played in W two worlds. I also like that he doesn’t come from a rich family and neither does Suzy’s character, I like that the writer is trying hard to steer clear from normal clichés we’re so used to in kdramas.
So what did you guys think of it? do you like the drama so far?