Solomon's Perjury is a murder mystery that digs into what really happened regarding the death of a student and deals with the growing pains of teenagers. On a Christmas night, a student fell off the school’s rooftop and died. The police concluded that he committed a suicide, and the school immediately tried to hold a memorial ceremony to quickly move on. A couple of days later, a mysterious statement from a witness who saw the student being murdered was delivered to Seo Yeon, a classmate of the dead student. While the school, the police, and the press fight over who is right, many students get hurt. The only thing the adults care about is closing the case. Seo Yeon and some of her friends declare that they can’t stand by quietly and let this unfair process continue, so they decide to hold a school trial in order to uncover the truth, saying “we’re not going to just let this go.” Students act as counselors, judges, and jurors in the school trial. The trial reveals ugly secrets about the murder case and the hypocrisy of the adults involved in the students' fight for the truth.
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I loved this drama in the sense that it was very well written. There weren't many plot holes (that i could remember lol) and the writer stayed true to the previous episodes/overall plot rather than trying to manipulate and fool everyone at the end by introducing a whole different reason to why Sowoo died just to create an "illusion" of a major plot twist. Instead, the reason why Sowoo died kept you second guessing until the last episode but when the truth was revealed, it doesn't really take you by surprise either.
More than anything, I also loved the characters. For me in particular, even though Bae Joonyoung acts more of a side character, I believe he was very important to the story. In a way (not completely...but in a way) his story sort of mirrors that of Jihoon's and Sowoo's but with a more positive outcome. [SPOILER]: His almost suicide attempt, his crippling family and their mediation, and at one point his outlook on life. [END SPOILER] His character fighting through all that while the trial was still ongoing made me feel even more sympathetic towards the other two characters; it made it more real. That's just me though. Oh and the subtle romance between him and Seoyeon was a very nice addition!! It was the perfect relief to the bleakness of the drama. There wasn't much but it was cute.
I have more to say about the other characters but I'm lazy and this would turn into a 10 page review so I'll stop here.
Anyways, overall I give this drama a 9/10. I don't really have anything bad to say. Though one thing that got me a bit ????? is WHY is it so easy to gain entry into the school at like 11pm lol??? You have kids going up the roof top and into classrooms when it's pitch black. One way to decrease the number of student suicides on school grounds? Lock the school gates mayb. Also, I'll say this; although the reason for Sowoo's death didn't surprise me, I'm mad that he died that way. No, I'm not talking about the school. As much as I wanna rant about it, it's a major spoiler so I can't lol.
Solomon’s perjury is a dark, gritty drama, taking a realistic spin on the awful, inhumane educational system, the gloomy side of teenagers -bullying as one of the main topics-, the lack of compassion of grown-ups and the general selfishness of people caring only about their lives and nothing more. The drama illustrates a very clear and vivid picture of school system and teenage life not only in Korea per-se but on a world-wide spectrum.
The drama is centered in a high school where a student presumably commits suicide, or did he? The students take things to their own hands and try to find what exactly happened after the disinterest of the adults. Solomon’s perjury primarily focuses on two elements; firstly the unfairness of the educational system and secondly the rough life of adolescents.
We get very close insight on how the educational system works, teachers and professors caring much less than expected about the education of their students, but mostly want to secure their jobs and reputation of their school. Furthermore, not only we understand how private schools work, where equity is sacrificed in the name of money –as everything else-, but also how no adult really cares about justice but essentially for their own profit and well-being.
Furthermore, we see first-hand how the students cope with their cruel reality. Talking about barbaric situations, bullying in school as well as domestic violence take the first wheel here presenting the severe repercussions they have on teenagers. The drama focuses heavily on the brutal reality of students having to take on numerous exams, unceasing pressure to succeed and be perfect as well as endure heartless teachers, problematic classmates and merciless parents. Several strong messages sent here as well targeting domestic violence and bullying most significantly: “violence only breeds violence, but in the end it’s also a choice!”
It was inspiring to see a bunch of 18 year olds caring much more about justice and fairness than people who get paid to do so, showing that kids even in the midst of their beefs are way more lawful than adults.
The drama is quite short and I’d say fast paced. It focuses on 3-4 specific characters trying to solve this case and their personal lives at home. I’d describe Solomon’s Perjury as an ambitious mystery thriller. It had its fair share of twists and it was interesting from start to finish and strong but I can’t say most of it wasn’t predictable. Still very entertaining though.
Having said all that, I can’t deny for a drama wanting to depict something real and significant it went on an increasingly unrealistic route to stay original. While I do appreciate where the writers were coming from and all the serious and important issues they addressed, I can’t deny I raised my eyebrow in front of the way the plot was developed.
The students decide to start their own school trial to solve this case and find the truth. What type of authority this school trial has? Considering students were barely interested in signing the petition to start the trial in the first place the auditorium was awfully packed when the trials started. Suddenly the students cared? We get a bunch of 18 year olds playing court, acting like proper prosecutors and attorneys and actually starting talking like ones. How? Did they stop studying for their high school final exams and picked up some legal books or they’ve watched too many legal dramas?
On top of that they started calling themselves prosecutors, attorneys and judges. You are students accept it! And to top it all off, when this little joke started getting out of hand, attacking teachers ect, the teachers barely did anything as well as the parents. The “judge” who was supposed to be a suppressed kid who only studied was yelling at his mother “take her out of the auditorium” and she just walked out? My mother would have come up to me, slapped me and dragged me out by the ear… I didn’t know if this was a bunch of kids playing court or a legal drama set in a high school somehow. This was all just too much to go with and accept.
What’s more, the seemingly normal, ordinary students started feeling increasingly difficult to relate to, acting like brats with psychological problems or one-dimensional wannabe “prosecutors” who couldn’t keep their emotions at place. At some point I felt the need to scream, y’all need serious psychological support before trying to solve anything. There’s only so much I can blame to troubled characters and abusive parents. 80% of the parents happened to be awful people somehow; just too convenient, a tad too much if you ask me.
In all its questionable nature Solomon’s perjury did leave a strong and memorable impression which is enough for me to recommend to everyone who wants to watch something more serious than usual and is into school dramas and crime mysteries.
Since this is a habitual question I’ll mention it. The drama offers only limited and subtle comic relief, while it has little to no romance, so you’re informed about what you’re getting into.
The acting was pretty satisfying considering I’d never seen any of the actors before this and all of them are very young. However, I can’t say any of the performances was memorable. Still, I’d love to see each of them again in the future nonetheless, especially Jang Dong Yoon who left the strongest impression.
Even in its far-fetched nature Solomon’s Perjury sent a lot of meaningful messages like the fact that we barely know the people around us, but it’s in our hand to acknowledge and appreciate them; the significance of friendship, forgiving ourselves firstly and those who wronged us, the unlimited potential of life and most importantly an extremely strong message of never giving up. No matter how difficult it might be today, there is always a brighter day coming tomorrow. If it’s winter today, just remember spring is coming!