Starring: Kim Myung-min, Kim Bum, and Ryu Hye-young
As predicted, Law School is heavy on the How To Get Away With Murder vibes. Yang Jong-hoon (Kim Myung-min) is your resident tough as nails professor at Hanguk University, and his law students run the gamut of legal drama archetypes. There’s Han Joon-hwi (Kim Bum), the clever Golden Boy and Kang Sol (Ryu Hye-young), the flustered Scholarship Kid. These other archetypes are present as well:
- Kang Sol (Lee Soo-kyung) as the Cold Genius (That’s right…this drama has two characters with the same name. She’s known as Kang Sol B, while Ryu Hye-young’s character is known as Kang Sol A)
- Seo Ji-ho (David Lee) as the Stick in the Mud
- Jeon Ye-seul (Go Yoon-jung) as the Pretty Girl
- Yoo Seung-jae (Hyun Woo) as the Nice Guy
Episode one follows this band of characters as they become embroiled in one of their professor’s murder during a mock trial on campus.
If you’ve read any of my other reviews, then you’re already familiar with “Three Yeses and a No”. If not, the way it works is: I pick three things I like about the episode (or the drama overall) and assign them “yeses”. I usually assign one “no” to anything I don’t like or feel could’ve been improved. If the episode is really good, I skip the “no” completely. Before I delve into them, I always go over what we, as the viewers, learned during the episode:
What we learned this episode
- Professor Seo Byeong-joo is murdered in the midst of the law students’ mock trial. Someone dumped meth in his coffee, and forced him to drink it.
- Jeon Ye-seul finds his body.
- Both Professor Seo and Professor Yang are ex-prosecutors. They stepped down after Yang tried Seo in court for accepting a bribe, and lost.
- There are only two entrances into the room Professor Seo is found in. One is through the courtroom being used for the mock trial, and the other is through a prosecutors-only entrance activated by fingerprint.
- Professor Yang, Vice Dean Kang Joo-man, and the law students’ footprints are all found in this room. The students also see a deliveryman enter.
- A newly released child rapist is spotted hanging around the premises as well.
Yes to “Yang-crates of Horror”
It’s what the law students nicknamed Professor Yang, because he uses the Socratic method. Socrates is a famous philosopher, so I know of him, but don’t know what his main method of teaching was. I looked it up, and it basically entails asking students complex questions to encourage critical thinking and uncover their underlying beliefs.
Professor Yang has built his reputation on this, and being on the receiving end doesn’t look fun. Poor, unsuspecting Sol A gets thrown a question during class, and the professor is so relentless, she almost vomits. Asking complex questions is one thing, but triggering panic attacks in students is another. I’m not a fan of these kind of teachers in real life, but I can’t deny that they’re intriguing on screen. And Professor Yang is no exception. I’m looking forward to learning more about his past, and seeing some vulnerability.
Yes to Professor Kim Eun-sook going into labor during class…???!!!
So, this goes back to the child rapist I mentioned under What we learned this episode. His name is Lee Man-ho, and Professor Kim (who also works at Hanguk University) sentenced him to eleven years in prison when she was a judge. She wanted his sentence to be longer, but couldn’t swing it since Man-ho committed his crimes under the influence of alcohol and claims not to remember anything. When he finally gets out of prison, the first thing he does is pay Professor Kim a visit in the middle of a lecture to taunt her. She’s pregnant, and he stresses her out so much, blood begins sliding down her legs and she goes into early labor. Fortunately, Sol A and Seung-jae manage to get her to the hospital. It’s a very intense, thrilling scene.
Up until this point, I really like that the drama shows why Professor Yang and Kim leave their prestigious careers to become teachers. It gives me a good sense of their characters, and how they feel about the many loopholes in the law.
Yes to the mystery
I’m ready to figure out who killed Professor Seo. At the end of the episode, Professor Yang gets arrested for it, but I saw that coming. He has motive, and flat out told the cops he’s a suspect. But he’s definitely a red herring. Especially since he mentioned that the other suspect could be Lee Man-ho, who was spotted around the university at the time of the murder. I’m itching to understand the connection between him, Professor Seo, and Professor Yang. And why Professor Yang needs him to reveal the license plate of a car involved in a “seemingly” unrelated hit-and-run.
I don’t have a “no” for this episode, because it sucked me in completely. The concept isn’t unique, but the dialogue is sharp and the characters peaked my interest. Funnily enough, I didn’t learn much about Han Joon-hwi (other than him being at the top of his class) even though he’s one of the main characters. He’s a mystery, but I suspect that’s on purpose. The teaser for episode two reveals that Professor Seo was his uncle, so things are bound to get even crazier. Could him being the criminal in the mock trial be foreshadowing? Maybe the next episode will make things clearer.