Gu Seo Jin is a third-generation chaebol who runs the theme park Wonder Land. He seemingly has everything — looks, brains, and fortune. But a traumatic incident in his childhood resulted in Seo Jin having a split personality — one is a cold, ruthless man, while the other is the polar opposite, someone kind and gentle. Because of this, he vows never to date or marry. Seo Jin wants to get rid of the circus show at Wonder Land due to low ticket sales and high overhead costs, but he butts heads with circus master Jang Ha Na. Ha Na insists on saving the failing circus and dreams of revamping it back to its former glory. She soon finds herself falling for both of Seo Jin's personalities. ~~ Based on Lee Chung Ho's webtoon "Dr. Jekyll Is Mr. Hyde". Add Synopsis In Portuguese
Cast & Credits
The beginning was slow and boring, the show picked up around ep 5 (that's when it was actually really good) and the excitement lasted until ep. 10 or so, then the show turned flat like a pancake and only kept flattening towards the ending. The two last episodes were completely ridiculous, the writer had no idea about DID whatsoever! The chemistry between main characters died somewhere along the way. This is weird because Seo Jin and Hana had chemistry, but Robin and Hana didn't; they were like two children playing together.
I didn't have much expectations, but for Hyun Bin this was a failure. I think he did great job with Seo Jin but perhaps two personalities were too much for him to handle. Robin turned out to be weird (with overacted expressions) and boring, an extremely dull character with no chemistry with the camera or any other characters. Han Ji Min was quirky at first but soon lost her charm and transformed into a woman of one face. Sung Joon had enough charisma and a powerful aura, but unfortunately he didn't have enough space to shine and suffered from repetitive lines and scenes (and bad directing). What a waste of talent. He is worth so much more than this.
Han Sang Jin pulled it through the whole drama with guaranteed brilliance. His character was interesting, he felt and looked like a man who worked in an amusement park. Sang Jin was the only one who truly brought his warmingly silly character to life and he really shone. Shin Eun Jung had the same dull face throughout the drama and her character, despite being smart and having potential, was ruined with poor script.
All side characters except the secretary Know were completely meaningless and the pathetic little love triangle on the side was purely a filler. Okay, I admit that Detective Na vs Seung Yeon was quite a fun ride and there were not enough scenes of them together. But the cops in general were way too stupid.
Yeah, what should I say? The whole implementation of hypnosis and all that, it was a refreshing idea but failed because it was taken too far. The whole DID issue had potential but at some point the DID turned into Robin. I understand where the writer was going with this. She tried to create a conflict between the real man and the illusion, with the illusion being way better than the real deal. However, the writer failed miserably because instead of concentrating on the conflict and bringing out the whole heart-wrenching reality of it all, she concentrated on a ridiculous love relationship instead. This drama could have been brilliant, a struggle between real and imaginary, two realities crashing together and confusing everyone around to the point of madness. This whole idea went down the drains when DID became Robin and Seo Jin was sort of abandoned to deal with his problems alone. I am sure that by writing the ending as it was, the screenwriter tried to go for a fresh image. But the point of the whole show was not love to begin with. It was the conflict, which was forgotten, and the show lost its standing. Hana was one of the dumbest and maddening characters I have ever seen.
The first part of the story concentrated a lot on the problems of Seo Jin and his past. It was interesting until several repetitive flashbacks clogged the episodes. I also wished there were more quirky scenes with Seo Jin and Hana to back up the last episode. The silly grudge of children was taken on a complete new level. The trauma of that grudge was never explored fully and in the end it was pushed aside in a hastly manner. The whole idea of that hatred was that it stemmed from pain and loneliness, but the bad guy remained flat, his character was trapped in a superficial shell and never explored to the depths of his soul. I'm saying that the darker moments could have been way darker and with much more impact had the writer concentrated on the right things. Like the battle within, not what was going on outside.
All in all, this show was either a mess with its characters running around out of control or then flavorless snail-paced boredom wrapped in pink, fluff and all cute with some glitter on the top. There were some loopholes, which could have been avoided easily. And the worst thing of it all: despite being a slow run the ending was still rushed. How? Just how is that possible? You had two freaking hours!
This drama has had a lot of bad press, with rival multiple personality based drama Kill Me Heal Me starting a few weeks before this and being shown on the same two nights at the same times, that drama grabbed people's attentions in Korea, and throughout the rest of the world many already had their expectations of how they thought this drama should be, and so didn't appreciate Hyde, Jekyll, Me for the seperate drama it is.
I understand this comparison due to the dramas' certain themes, and it is human nature to search for comparisons when something is rather unique, not to mention airing at the same time anyway. With a story or situation that has been done many times before, people are less prone to making comparisons, if at all. However a drama centred around a character with dissociative identity disorder is rather rare.
Personally I'm really picky when it comes to enjoying and rating dramas. Many I find too straightforward, too predictable, and going by the same format, and that has been my main issue with some of the more highly rated, popular dramas lately. Whereas I like originality, unpredictable things happening in a drama, the story transforming in different ways to what is expected, and characters that develop well.
With this drama I liked how the story and events occuring adapted as it went on, which kept it from being predicatable as to what would happen next. I guess it was because the writers were having to change their original plans, due to the success of KMHM grabbing much of the audience for its specific timeslots, and I'd read they did a big rewrite around episode 8. However I found it worked well because of that, as I never knew where they were going with this series, and it kept me interested.
Whilst it did have its moments that weren't as good, such as an over-the-top beginning episode, and after several thrilling episodes at one point during the series, it did get slower in comparison for a while, and I think they should have expanded more on the darker aspects for longer, but nonentheless I soon got back into it, particularly when they started developing the story regarding Robin.
The popular issues that many have mentioned:
This issue regarding the personlity/character of Robin, has had a lot of people complaining about the writers having certain characters even consider that Robin is seperate to Seo Jin in any way. Whilst I agree that he technically isn't real, and only part of Seo Jin (a part obviously missing from his normal persona since they're so different), it is however, a good question about what makes us ourselves. Physically we have our own bodies, and in Robin's case he's a part of Seo Jin's, but other than that, what makes us ourselves are our general persona, our memories, our feelings, our interests, our talents, etc, so if those make us unique, would a different personality that has those seperately be almost like a seperate person in a way? Obviously a problem for the main personality themselves, but I love how in this series they gave the other personality more depth, made him more human, and didn't just use him for entertainment purposes, but rather as a seperate character.
Plus many complained that the script was bad and too illogical. Whilst I actually like certain things that stray from the logical norm in a drama and if done right they can really add to the drama well, however to be honest I didn't really find that much illogical about this series at all, other than a few action scenes at the beginning.
For example, one of the things several people were complaining about as being illogical was Soo Hyun and the grudge he held. However, I thought (without giving any spoilers) that it wasn't surprising considering what he went through, and it is drama after all. Also at least he had a reason, as in real life there have been so many cases of people commiting such terrible crimes for very little or even no reason, so really nothing is unbelievable in regards to this.
Also several people were complaining that in one of the episodes it was unrealistic that the police were slow to show up at the scene. Personally I thought they didn't show up any less quickly than any other drama would have done, as this worked well in order to build up the tension during the events that were happening. Plus any drama series with totally efficient police I'd actually regard as unrealistic anyway, and it certainly doesn't help build up the suspense in a drama if they're there straight away.
There was also another issue that others regarded illogical and unrealistic. I don't want to provide a spoiler so won't say what, but personally I thought it interesting how they explored the possibility that it could scarily go further than what is currently known at the moment. After all, this is drama not a documentary, and even documentaries sometimes explore possiblities based on theories.
Acting and Characters:
When it comes to the acting, I did agree with others that Han Ji Min definitely could have done with being more expressive, her character Ha Na would have been more likable had she done so, but I quite liked her nonetheless.
With Hyun Bin, this is the first time I've watched him in anything, and whilst my immediate reaction to the cold, selfish, obsessive, and somewhat inhuman Seo Jin was one of dislike and I was wondering how I was going to get into this drama with such a character, yet with his transformation into the totally lovely, warm, much more human personality, Robin, and particularly when Robin started getting more screen time, my opinion completely changed, which I think is fantastic as he really did well portraying the two vastly different personalities. I thought he did an especially good job when he had to act as one personality trying to pretend to be the other. Now that was something that took some really good acting to pull off correctly, and he did, it really came across as one pretending to be the other, without him transforming directly into that persona.
As for the other actors and characters, I particularly liked Lee Seung Jun as Kwon Yeong Chan (Seo Jin's long suffering but ever faithful secretary), I thought he was lovely and added various lighter and comedic moments to the series, as well as helping to keep Seo Jin's secret as much as possible.
Han Sang Jin as Ryu Seung Yeon (Executive Director of Wonder Group Hotel), and Lee Se Na as Choi Seo Hee (Secretary of Wonder Group) were both great as a kind of comedy duo as well, and rivals to Seo Jin.
Whilst I won't go into details about the other actors and characters, they all did well in their roles, several characters got more depth to them as the series went on, and others became more likable and made for some nice lighter moments.
Another issue with the acting/characters was regarding the leads and their love story, as they didn't really push it further enough, and quite often the chemistry didn't come across as well as it should. However I come across this so often in dramas, and romance in a drama is not a high priority for me anyway. Although I must say there were several moments, particularly later in the series when the chemistry had improved.
I really liked the setting of the theme park and circus, it particularly added to certain moments, such as when Robin first appeared for longer near the beginning, it was so appropriate to his warm childlike personality, who like a fantasy action hero kept dashing out to save Ha Na. The beautiful lights in a section of the park were also a perfect addition to an early romantic scene.
The house Seo Jin lived was so appropriate to his personality, with it being so tidy and organised, with neutral shades, mostly conventional browns, black and white, and bachelor pad modern square furniture, all whilst being very grand and expensive, since he was a rich chaebol heir. However at the same time he had a beautiful sanctuary of a room, filled with plants, a fountain, candles and gentle lighting, a place where he could shed that uptight and director/businessman persona, and take some time out and calm himself, which also reflected that he wasn't just as he at first appeared, there was much more to him.
In regards to the music, whilst a lot of the songs seemed typical of the average Korean drama, they did go well with the events that were happening, and there were a few songs and instrumental pieces that were really nice. My favourite of the drama, was one particular instrumental track that had a sort of magical vibe to it, and really added to the scenes where it was used, I don't know what it was called but it was beautiful.
Whilst I'll rewatch films, it is rare I rewatch a TV drama series, and with this one I already have done.
Certain dramas are great the first time around but lose their appeal upon a rewatch particularly if the story is straightforward and/or the drama is mostly reliant on keeping the audience guessing in order to keep it interesting. However with those dramas, once the answer is known they generally aren't as good the next time around, unless the characters were particularly interesting.
With this series, because it was split into different sections, and the story came across more like it had been adapted as it went on, it made it so it was just as interesting the next time around, and I think it will still be just as enjoyable another time.
I also noticed I was even more into the characters upon the rewatch. Whilst I liked Robin a lot from about the 3rd episode onwards, and there were other characters I quite liked as well, others it took me longer to warm to, and so upon the rewatch I was liking those others much more as well from the start, and it therefore made it more enjoyable.
To those who haven't yet given this drama a go, I definitely say don't let others' comments put you off this drama, and don't compare it to Kill Me Heal Me. Whilst they both centre around the issue of DID, and both have a dark story revolving how the main character ended up with a split personality, so it is easy to start comparing them putting one up against the other, they are both very different dramas otherwise.
Hyde Jekyll Me, like its subject matter, was very much like the essence of a multiple personality, particularly as the tempo and the genres were always changing and adapting. Just like Seo Jin's two sides, it was much more serious and slower a drama during parts, but then suddenly livened up its pace, turning warm and feel good at other times. It was a drama that delved into dark storylines without breaking them with a bit of lightness or comedy, and had some great thrilling moments, whilst at the same time it did have its light and fluffy moments and scenes of comedy as well. Also like the two personalities, this drama could be cold at times, but then at others filled with emotion, and with so many beautiful moments.
It was also interesting and appropriate that since Hyde, Jekyll, Me was based on a webtoon, that they had a character (not mentioning who) as an author of a webtoon themself, and the freeze frames at the end of each episode had a comic book style about them with little excerpts of writing saying quotes or questions appropriate to the drama and/or the current events within those specific episodes. This was a nice little extra.
Overall, whilst it certainly is not for everyone's tastes, I thought it was a very enjoyable drama, and now actually one of my favourites. So I'd definitely recommend it, but advise to be open-minded when trying it out.