K-Drama Premiere: “The Spies Who Loved Me” Revs Up Spy-Love Story Draped With Intrigue & Romance
Zippy with a riveting hook, The Spies Who Loved Me stuns delightfully while mixing undercover work elements in its premiere week episodes!
Acquainting viewers to the series main leads’ real and secret identities, The Spies Who Loved Me opened to an amusing note in contrast to the usual serious tone of espionage theme. That aligns to the romance layers intended to blend in the story. For its second episode, it pictured a heavier overview of what to expect in the series.
Premiere Week Rating:
Premiere Week Recap
The woman who married twice
A successful wedding designer, Kang Ah-reum (Yoo In Na) has a happy life going on her. After bouncing back after her first divorce, she has since married handsome diplomat – Derek Hyun (Lim Ju Hwan).
Five years ago, in the beautiful Jeju island, she met her first husband, Jeon Ji-hoon (Eric Mun). The latter is an interpol agent who is set to complete a mission with his fellow agents.
Unfortunately, there was a mess up in the room trap they set as they await the person they intend to lure. Ah-reum who was supposedly meeting investors for her business was led to the room, the interpol team will use to capture their target.
Recognizing the fraudster who is also on their wanted list, they bust the meeting, eventually saving Ah-reum from being scammed. Ji-hoon chases after their true target to close the mission.
When he spotted Ah-reum sitting at the hotel lobby feeling dejected, he joins her for a quick chat. He brought her to a nearby church to solve her problem of throwing the wedding dress she made. She was able to sell it to a nun who generously host simple weddings for couples in the church at discounted price.
Eventually, Ah-reum and Ji-hoon engage in a whirlwind romance leading to their marriage. Sadly though, the marriage failed to survive.
Reunion at Jeju island
Because of her close friend Sophie (Yoon So Hee), Ah-reum flies to Jeju island to attend her wedding. She met her second husband through Sophie who is an acclaimed scientist. Unknown to her, Sophie and Derek are members of Helmes, a top corporate espionage firm.
Sophie colludes with Ji-hoon turning her back from the spy company, but Peter (Jeon Seong Bin) who loves Sophie and also a member of Helmes, discovered the looming danger faced by their organization.
On the night of Sophie’s bachelorette party, she is about to meet Ji-hoon and asked him to dress up as “sheriff”. However, Peter arrives and with her initial plans about to be in peril, Sophie escapes mindlessly not knowing that her friend Ah-reum and Ji-hoo ran after her. A mysterious man also follow suit and chases after her.
A sound of gun being triggered erupted and we see Ji-hoon meeting eyes with Ah-reum who fell on the ground. Surprised to see him again after meeting at the church’ bench where their romance starts earlier, they gaze at each other while blood drips on Ji-hoon’s wounded arm.
The magical moment of meeting again in fireworks and her ex-husband’s “sexy sheriff” attire vanished when a mobile phone rang. Ah-reum discovers Sophie’s phone and proceeds to the security team’s office with Ji-hoon tagging along. She was told that her friend’s stalker was being held captive there. However, the highly-skilled Peter easily escaped the security officers.
Making an excuse that he needs payment for his pole dance gig, Ji-hoon coaxes Ah-reum to lead the way to where Sophie is staying. Instinctively worried about her ex-husband’s wound, Ah-reum takes a portion of cloth from her dress for a temporary bandage. While taking care of the bloody cut, Ji-hoon gives a meaningful stare.
Ji-hoon gets information from Ah-reum that his source, who turned out to be Sophie, is a lead scientist of EcoSun project, which develops fusion energy to create artificial sun. Meanwhile, Sophie runs aimlessly in a forest while the mysterious man chases after her.
They arrive at Sophie’s place and while rummaging on her things which hint on her leaving the country, they reminisce adorable memories of when they were married.
Ah-reum’s First Failed Marriage
While trying to look for Sophie, Ji-hoon asked his team to help in searching. Ah-reum helps Ji-hoon apply medicine on his wound and change the bandage as well. Ji-hoon’s teammate Seo-ra arrives and is definitely not a good sight for Ah-reum.
Flashbacks of Ah-reum and Ji-hoon’s sweet couple life turned nightmare reveals implied picture of Ji-hoon’s infidelity witnessed by Ah-reum. The third party is the same woman with whom Ah-reum did not have a pleasant encounter the last time they met.
A six-country collaboration, EcoSun project is a fusion energy research project. With its no-radiation pitch, the project secured an immeasurable value. Initially proposed as technology to be shared, the plan did not push through, with its lead scientist, Sophie, striking a deal with Helmes.
When Sophie wakes up in the forest after a fall and losing consciousness, she sought help from her friend Ah-reum. Seeing his ex-wife in a rush, Ji-hoon follows her to a theme park. Spotting Sophie, he heads to where she is, just as Ah-reum also looks for her friend.
Unfortunately, Ji-hoon got sidetracked and Sophie bumps to the man who has been chasing her. Escaping to a merry-go-round, Sophie is cornered by the man chasing her. A painful scream erupts calling the attention of Ji-hoon, Ah-reum and all the people in the park. Seated in one of the cars of the theme park ride is Sophie’s lifeless body.
Premiere Week Afterthoughts
The Spies Who Loved Me is a perfect addition to career people’s K-Drama midweek plate. It is not too light, but you can feel the romance and spy elements intertwine.
So far, I want to know why the marriage fell through between Ah-reum and Ji-hoon. On that note, their painted back story was well-pictured in the opening episode inviting viewers to hope they can get back together. Obviously, they still care for each other.
This series seem to be incorporating flashbacks along the way. The female lead’s entanglement to two husbands with different spy jobs obviously is the shill and crux at the same time. Additionally, for its opening week, it was draped with nostalgia, mystery and romance.
I am expecting to get to know Lim Ju Hwan’s character more and how his love story with Ah-reum will be compared to his ex-wife’s first. Notably, some lines in the screenplay were penned exceptionally. Hopefully, more will be captured in the future episodes.
While we get the overview of the series in the opening chapters, the decline of the energy from first episode is noticeable. There’s a lot of characters moving in the story, a situation common for its announced genre.
Sophie has impliedly warned her friend to be wary of her former and present husbands. Although Ah-reum has not processed it yet, we know that she will come in between the case involving the two spies. Ultimately, that’s also the time we can confirm whether whose love between the two is a sham.
The series has a long way to go, and it’s hard to predict the narrative’s direction yet. Hopefully, the story gets back to a livelier vibe even if it will pick up the projected enthralling plot bends and conflicts ahead.
Next week’s preview looks going to heat up with Ah-reum’s husbands meeting. Save your mid-week K-Drama watch slot for The Spies Who Loved Me!
Photos/Videos: MBC | iQIYI
Streaming Site: iQIYI