The Glory, who showed the seriousness of school violence, did it have to be like this?
Moon Dong-eun, a high school student who was born as the daughter of a single mother and lived hard with her dream of becoming an architect. One day, Dong-eun meets Park Yeon-jin (child role Shin Ye-eun) and his friends Lee Sa-ra (child role Bae Kang-hee), Choi Hye-jung (child role Song Ji-woo), Jeon Jae-joon (child role Song Byung-geun), and Son Myung-oh (child role Seo Woo-hyuk) at the gym. When Dong-eun refuses Yeon-jin’s request to clean the bathroom instead of him, they start bothering Dong-eun in all sorts of ways.
to put up with mental and physical abuse when schools and police didn’t even protect themselvesDong-eun, who failed, chooses to drop out and has one resolution. I promise to avenge them. Moon Dong-eun (Song Hye-kyo), who became an elementary school teacher over time. With the help of Kang Hyun-nam (played by Yeom Hye-ran), who was suffering from domestic violence, and Joo Yeo-jung (played by Lee Do-hyun), a senior Go player who had a desire for revenge against the criminal who murdered his father, he finally puts his long-paced plan into action.
It is not a day or two that school violence has become a serious social problem in Korean society. News reports of school violence appear every time you forget it. The increasingly brutal methods and levels of school violence make us question whether Korean society properly prevents and punishes school violence. Maybe that’s why? In recent years, many members of the public are paying attention to the lives of perpetrators after school violence.
A case in point is the accusation of school violence that shook the sports and entertainment industries in 2021. Among popular celebrities and famous players who may be considered to be in the category of public figures, those who were found to be school violence perpetrators were kicked out of the industry in a big controversy. In fact, it is natural to inflict reasonable pain on the perpetrators of school violence and restore the lost happiness to the victims. It’s just that justice hasn’t been done right in reality. Kim Eun-sook’s revenge play “The Glory,” released by Netflix, depicts a struggle to correct this tangled definition.
A source of attraction, structurally described school violence.
So The Glory is devoted to describing school violence. The more you sympathize with the reason why Dong-eun decided to take revenge, the higher the immersion in this revenge play will be.
In particular, the drama repeatedly emphasizes that school violence is not simply caused by an individual’s fault, as Kim Eun-sook’s interview said, “I thought I had to make ‘Oh, I didn’t do anything wrong’ and ‘Yes, I didn’t do anything wrong.’ Dong-eun’s involuntary close-up of the scene of scratching a burn scar highlighting the victim’s trauma, or describing various aspects of school violence and pointing out structural problems.
In fact, the vicious circle of school violence appears in various forms. Through the flashback scene, various images of Dong-eun’s damage pass by, and each time, it points out a different context of a different context. A typical scene is when Dong-eun meets Yoon So-hee (played by Lee So-hee) at a pharmacy and is called to the gym to be asked by Yeon-jin to clean the bathroom instead.
This scene clearly shows the vicious cycle of school violence in which the bystander becomes the victim and the victim becomes another perpetrator. Even after witnessing So-hee receiving medicine while scratching a burn scar at a pharmacy, Dong-eun does not take any action. However, when So-hee commits suicide because she cannot overcome the pain, Dong-eun becomes her replacement at the gym. As a result, Dong-eun, who vowed revenge, eventually steadily implemented the plan and turned into another party and perpetrator of violence.
The surrounding environment that fosters school violence is also subject to accusations. The first thing that catches my eyes is Kim Jong-moon (Park Yoon-hee), a teacher who has no will to solve problems. He takes care of the perpetrator first, not the victim, when he was called to the police station, and accuses the victim of various harsh acts. When Dong-eun submits her dropout letter, she even beats her for fear of having problems with her work evaluation. The basis of this behavior seems to be based on the idea that accidents should not occur in schools. Rather than actively solving the problem, it is only trying to maintain the status quo. This is more pronounced by looking at the attitude of the parents of the perpetrators. They don’t discipline their children for their cruelty. I reprimand him for just making noise by growing his work. In the process of quietly reaching an agreement, the issue of the gap between the rich and the poor is a bonus.
Speed that maximizes the pleasure of the genre.
At this time, the way “The Glory” displays school violence scenes is eye-catching. This is because it brings liveliness to the drama that could have been trapped in the formal style of revenge. Revenge plays inevitably have a strong impact on the ending of revenge, so the contents of the early and mid-stage, which builds motivation and background, may be boring or frustrating. But The Glory doesn’t tell the story in chronological order. Dong-eun inserts past scenes like flashbacks with a short breath between the processes of practicing revenge as planned, juxtaposing the progress of revenge and the reason. As a result, the speed of development naturally increases without missing specific and in-depth descriptions and settings, and the attraction of the play is also stronger.
The overall structure of the drama is more impressive as Dong-eun’s plan to socially destroy the perpetrator is paired with school violence. This is because she plans to reverse the method of school violence she experienced and return it to the perpetrator. A typical example is revenge on Kim Jong-moon, who was a homeroom teacher in high school as a teacher. It is especially significant because it is one of the few revenge whose results were clearly revealed in Part 1. Dong-eun informs her old teacher that she has become a teacher and makes him nervous that his misdeeds will be revealed. Also, as a junior in school, he intentionally approaches Jong-moon’s son and breaks down his family relationship by instilling doubts about his father.
In addition, Yeonjin’s group is cornered with the method he suffered. Once the experience of being a bystander and a victim is utilized, it creates a crack between the perpetrators. They do not miss the fact that there are perpetrators, victims, and bystanders who are relatively less involved in misdeeds. It stimulates Son Myung-oh, who is not treated as an equal friend, to embrace the plan, and uses it as a tool to restrain Yeon-jin, Sarah, and Jae-jun by threatening Hye-jeong, who was relatively treated badly. The school, which used to be like hell, is also used in reverse. A typical scene is the monologue that the classroom is his own gym. All parents, whether they want to or not, cannot help but send their children to a closed society and school where all authority and power are concentrated on teachers. By persistently digging into this reality, Yeon-jin, who has to leave her daughter Yesol to Dong-eun, is extremely anxious. This revenge plan is also seen as a mechanism for conveying a clear sense of subject matter. This is because, as can be seen from saying that one’s revenge is never glorious, it is only to receive back the natural punishment that one has not received in the same way.
Conventional settings and flat character disadvantages
However, the first part of “The Glory” has many disadvantages. It may be a hasty judgment because only half of the total amount has been released, but there are parts that do not meet expectations compared to the title of Kim Eun-sook’s revenge play. For example, it wastes the power of cool and exhilarating storytelling while using too familiar settings as its main material. In the second half, the secret of birth is highlighted as an important subject of conflict, and the confrontation between the biological father and the biological father continues. The road begins to leak as a popular drama that can be seen in Korean dramas. From the point of view of viewers who expected a brain fight in the double track or suggestion using Go, there is plenty of room for likes and dislikes of this development.
The flat portrayal and utilization of villainous characters are also problems. The drama basically tries to justify Dong-eun, who tries to get revenge by any means without giving Yeon-jin and her group a little room for sympathy. The problem is that they suppress individuality by portraying them excessively passively to make them judged villains. While Dong-eun is tightening her neck, they are helpless without responding properly. He only shows angry, embarrassed, annoyed, and sneering reactions, but fails to lead the play. In addition, the description of the poor and the rich as if they were cut by the dichotomy of good and evil adds a sense of wit. Although it seems to be intended to criticize the innocent perpetrators and the upper class, it seems to be trapped in a stereo type. As a result, as Dong-eun’s plan progresses, the tension in the play decreases in inverse proportion to the pleasure. Still, there is room to look forward to the second part because there are signs that some characters, including Yeon-jin, will be used differently in the ending.