‘The Tale of Gumiho’ featuring Jo Bo Ah, Lee Dong Wook, and Kim Bum dares to tread where no ordinary supernatural K-Drama ever has. Tottering on the fine line between fantasy and plain horror, we’re halfway down this spooky narrative with quite a few mysteries and complications that are yet to be resolved. The sharp pinch of gore is undercut by the sweetness of an ill-fated romance at the plot's center. Lee Dong Wook is undoubtedly brilliant in his role as Yi Yeon as it is indeed not his first time at the supernatural rodeo. However, Jo Bo Ah takes the lead with her inane human-ness. Something rotten and evil lingers behind the scenes as well as behind the skin, but that does not stop Nam Ji Ah (Jo Bo Ah’s character) from being incredibly in touch with her mind and heart. Ji Ah is extremely likable and as intelligent as one can get, exemplary of a strong and independent female character in K-Drama. The Korean entertainment industry is seeing a rise in female-oriented art, especially dramas and cinema, and while not all attempts are done right, this one surely is. Kim Bum’s character, although antagonistic as we’re made to believe, is truly difficult not to sympathize with. For once, the so-called “villain” has motivations that are understandable, taking into consideration that he does not owe his behavior to human standards, being half-human himself. A cute little romance blooms between Shin Joo (played by Hwang Hee) and Yu Ri (played by Kim Yong Ji) to lighten the atmosphere while the Imoogi now has a face (quite a handsome one) in Lee Tae Ri. Here are 4 mysteries that remain elusive that one can expect to be addressed in the second half of the show.
The place where everything started and the place where everything is likely to end, Yeou Gogae evades understanding. It is still not sure what creatures were responsible for the accident that occurred at Yeou Gogae or where exactly, in limbo, Ji Ah’s parents are stuck. No hint is presented with respect to the ultimate question besides the fact that the President of the broadcasting station Ji Ah works at, who is harboring the Imoogi, is the one who was after Ji Ah. It is clear from the story so far that Ji Ah was pledged to be sacrificed to the Imoogi, but her father in her past life, the King, took it upon himself to protect his daughter. However, the Imoogi still demands his original sacrifice. The President, slave to the Imoogi for centuries in exchange for unnatural longevity, does its dirty work and thus caused the accident in Yeou Gogae in order to claim what belongs to his master. However, Ji Ah survived and her parents’ bodies were switched with malicious, shape-shifting entities, assumed to be foxes as well. Even though Yi Yeon ultimately saves the little girl, she loses her parents forever with no certainty as to whether they’re even alive or not.
Left completely like a loose thread in the story, the island has not been addressed ever since the episode where Ji Ah and Yi Yeon return from the same. It is clear that the island has a significant role to play in the story, considering that Ji Ah’s parents seemed to have visited the caves there and the shaman who intended to offer Ji Ah as a sacrifice to the Imoogi refers to the torment Ji Ah’s mother went through while she was in her womb. The sudden disappearance of the villagers, the strange murders, the headless dead bodies, nothing is addressed with solidity, or is investigated further. With the background story more or less clear, it is expected that the island will be revisited soon.
With the fox bead now gone, Ji Ah is in imminent danger at all times. With her connection to the Imoogi and the Imoogi’s strong insistence on having Ji Ah as his sacrifice and thereby, his bride, it will be interesting to see how Ji Ah retains her identity or loses herself and when. It is obvious that Ji Ah has had moments ever since her childhood, where her personality has completely changed as the Imoogi took over, but she never has any memory of the same. With that amount of control over Ji Ah, there is no stability possible in any situation concerning her. For the couple to have their happily ever after ending, the Imoogi will have to be eliminated completely, including the part of it inside Ji Ah. Will fate repeat itself once more?
Yi Rang’s background story is extensively presented through every episode of the drama, and there is very little chance that the show decided to do so simply to make him a likable villain. He may have owed his life to the Imoogi after Yi Yeon slashed his stomach, but his heart belongs to his brother. Chances are, Yi Rang will most likely form an alliance with Yi Yeon, although it might be unbeknownst to the latter.
This possibility is solidified by the fact that Yeon chose to save Rang from his nightmarish virtual reality that was constructed by the Imoogi’s orders. Now aware that his brother wouldn’t abandon him and that he never did so in the past either, Yi Rang’s priorities might lie elsewhere than they originally did. This might lead to Yi Rang sacrificing himself for his brother and his happiness, but that’s all speculation at this point.