This may be very opinionated for me to say, but episode 11 of 'Missing 9' may have been the series' most pointless episode to date. An incredibly significant instigator to the plot's impending turn of events happened at the end of the last episode - Seo Jun Oh (played by Jung Kyung Ho) has returned alive! But alas, episode 11 seems to think it's viewers will find it just so darn funny if the whole episode consists of fooling around with nothing significant happening to advance the plot, going, "You thought Jun Oh was going to pop up in front of Choi Tae Ho (played by Choi Tae Joon) and smack him upside the head? You thought wrong! Sike!"
Let's quickly list out the events that occurred in this episode. Jun Oh and Ra Bong Hee (played by Baek Jin Hee) eat Chinese snacks at the home of an elderly Chinese man, who happens to be a Chinese medicine practitioner. Jun Oh gets on an illegal boat to return to Seoul, where he gambles all of his possessions away. Jun Oh and manager Jung Ki Joon play old fashioned arcade games, eat tteokbokki, and go to a public bath. (Lost somewhere in the midst of that little bromantic date, they make up and Ki Joon apologizes for lying for Tae Ho.) Bong Hee's mom finds Jun Oh unworthy of being Bong Hee's husband, rather preferring one of the much older lawyers, like prosecutor Yoon Tae Young (played by Yang Dong Geun). What have we learned in this episode? Oh yeah, that Yoon So Hee's phone might have a tiny little clue to serve as evidence, needed to prove that Choi Tae Ho is a murderer. End of episode, goodbye!
Even the actors got bored of the plot and started playing a much more interesting arcade game.
Previously, I had held some high hopes that because the progress of the plot in the first half of the series had gone by so quickly, the story would introduce more concepts and plot twists we couldn't foresee before, in the latter half. But those hopes were just way too mighty high. Here we are at episode 11, 5 more episodes to go until the end, and the production team has apparently run out of material, so that Jun Oh's illegal boat trip from China to Seoul with a band of circus performers(?) takes up half of an episode.
Furthermore, in my earlier reviews, I was under the impression that some of the aesthetic features of this drama played some important roles in the drama's overall mood, theme, and so on. Man oh man, wrong again! All of the bright colors that we began seeing around episode 4 or so, the neon-ish lights coming from off the set somewhere, and the color-coded wardrobe that the main characters have been wearing - they not only don't have much conceptual meaning, they're starting to get distracting. I'm especially very distracted by some of the fashion choices that the drama's coordinators have been making the actors and actresses wear. I want to focus on the serious conversation that Ki Joon and Ha Ji Ah (played by Lee Sun Bin) are having, but his bright green turtleneck and overly curled up hair style is making it really hard to find the scene serious at all. Do any of you agree with me when it comes to these distracting fashion statements?
Another thing that happened this episode, Jun Oh gets stuffed in a locker by illegal ship operators.
The one good element that is keeping this series together, in my humblest opinion, is Jung Kyung Ho's performance. It's been a while since the actor's been on the small-screen, but he has not his touch, this man! More than that, his ability to become Seo Jun Oh's character to the bone is so remarkable, it's the biggest asset 'Missing 9' currently has to offer. To elaborate, the plot of this drama has been leaving viewers very dissatisfied with Choi Tae Ho and CEO Jang Do Pal's triumphant evil ploys, the inability of the other characters to do anything to help or even stand out as stronger characters themselves, and the overall pace of the drama having become a snail's crawl, especially now that all of the survivors have returned to the present.
Seo Jun Oh's reunion with Bong Hee, was necessary to happen for this drama to pick back up the pace. However, what is not necessarily an obligatory element, but rather a surprising and reassuring element, is the trust that we viewers are able to put on Jun Oh, even in episode 11. Nothing much happens, and Jun Oh wastes the episode away with his dumb and stubborn antics, like complaining about turtlenecks and being jealous of Bong Hee's relationship with Yoon Tae Young. Yet, both Bong Hee and us viewers have this unwavering trust in him, that he won't get into real serious trouble where it matters, and that as the lead male character of this series, he'll continue to lead this drama with both his comedy and his heroism. Now, pulling off trash-bag-fashion AND earning the trust and respect of viewers to save the day? That's good acting for ya!
And that was the last she ever saw of him... JK!
For those of you still sticking around with this drama, let's agree that if the plot doesn't get moving in the next episode, we'll all grab our saws and axes and hospital gowns and charge into MBC just like those Chinese goons in episode 10, okay?