First Impressions: “Kill Me, Heal Me”

The first episode of “Kill Me, Heal Me” begins with a short visual preface on the back story of our main man Cha Do Hyun (Ji Sung) and his family tragedy. Bringing us ten years prior to present day, Cha Do Hyun is a kind, popular student and football player at an American school, but purposely far away from his grandmother and mother. A physical encounter with the abusive father of a classmate triggers trauma from his childhood, which triggers something even darker: his dissociative identity disorder (aka multiple personality disorder).

1. Cha Do Hyun discovers the monster living inside of him.


After the incident with the abusive father, Cha Do Hyun’s DID kicks in and sends him into this fearless, cruel personality. Though he returns to the house and beats the father to a bloody mess, he remembers absolutely nothing when he wakes up as his normal self. It seems that it is after this he discovers his disorder.

2. Someone has been following Cha Do Hyun for a long time…


We meet Oh Ri Ohn (Park Seo Joon), a mystery novel author by the pen name “Omega-3” on Cha Do Hyun’s present-day flight back to Korea. Though he is a quite cheeky and seems to be a point of comedic relief, it soon becomes apparent that he is much more than meets the eye. As he goes through some of his stuff in his car, he pulls out a binder full of pictures and articles of Cha Do Hyun—the same articles from the visual preface in the beginning.

3. A woman from Cha Do Hyun’s past in America appears again in Korea.


While at an exclusive club with a close friend of his, Cha Do Hyun encounters Han Chae Yun (Kim Yoo Ri). Though their full relationship to each other is still a bit vague, it is clear that they were more than just friends. As she is down on the dance floor with his friend, Cha Ki Joon (Oh Min Suk), he stares down at her and has a flashback of bashfully making plans with her on Christmas Day.

4. Psychiatrist Oh Ri Jin chases a rogue patient, chancing upon Cha Do Hyun for the second time.


Our final main character, Oh Ri Jin (Hwang Jung Eum) had appeared earlier in the episode when she angrily met her brother, Oh Ri Ohn, at the airport when Cha Do Hyun arrived in Korea. Because her brother falsely channeled the reporters to her, she was being driven crazy with them thinking she was actually the author. Making a scene, Oh Ri Jin was hauled away by her brother as he loudly apologized for his “sick” sister.

Later, when one of her seriously mentally ill patients goes rogue and escapes the hospital, Oh Ri Jin figures out where she went and chases her down. She discovers the woman, who had just approached Cha Do Hyun and was flirting with him, but when the patient sees Oh Ri Jin, she hurriedly tells Cha Do Hyun that Oh Ri Jin is her crazy patient who is out to get her. Being too trusting, Cha Do Hyun stops Oh Ri Jin thinking that she actually is the patient.

Frustrated that he won’t let her go, Oh Ri Jin flips Cha Do Hyun over and onto his back. As you can guess, that is a mistake.

5. Cha Do Hyun’s cruel personality, Shin Se Gi, comes out and cockily takes over.


Cha Do Hyun had rushed to the bathroom as he felt his personality switch approaching, but he switched before he could take his medication. As Shin Se Gi steps out of the stall, a man doing his eyeliner is startled and ruins his makeup, and the man becomes angry. Needless to say, Shin Se Gi initiates a fight and steals the man’s jacket and earring because they’re “his style.”

As Shim Se Gi leaves the club, he runs into Oh Ri Jin again. A set of slightly cheesy scenes ensue as Shim Se Gi boldly tells Oh Ri Jin to remember that exact moment (February 7, 2015 at 10 p.m. on the dot) as the exact time he fell for her. Then the biker gang of the man from before arrives after getting a call, and prepare to beat him. Of course, he beats each of them single-handedly.

My First Impression:

MENTAL ILLNESS DRAMA!! Being that “It’s Okay, It’s Love” is my favorite drama of all time (for many reasons, but largely for the successful portrayal of different mental illnesses), I was super, super excited to start this drama. Since I love psychology, I’ve always found certain mental illnesses (actually schizophrenia and DID in particular) very intriguing, and have liked seeing the different ways they are portrayed—granted that they are portrayed correctly.

Anyway, even though I found the little eye color change when Cha Do Hyun turns into Shin Se Gi just a little, tiny bit extremely cheesy and obviously unrealistic, I was pleased overall with the portrayal so far. I’m really hoping that even with the many different personalities that are going to be depicted, each one will be medically accurate—eye color change aside, of course.

In terms of the other characters, I’m definitely looking forward to an explanation of Oh Ri Ohn’s collection of information on Cha Do Hyun. I mean, since when has that kind of thing been revealed in the first episode of anything? Not that I’m particularly complaining. And then there’s Oh Ri Jin. Her personality is right up my alley, and I can’t wait to see more. She had a little monologue in her head near the end of the episode after Shin Se Gi “confessed” to her where she talks through a cliché hoping he won’t say it and he does. When the bikers showed up, she asked herself why the genre changed from a romance comedy to action… to an erotic… then to a bromance. Yeah, she and I clicked.

Are you excited to start this drama? Which version of Do Hyun appeals to you more?

[tv]Coming soon to SoompiTV Kill Me, Heal Me[/tv]

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