Stranger Season 2 (2020) poster
8.5
Your Rating: 0/10
Ratings: 8.5/10 from 9,639 users
# of Watchers: 20,688
Reviews: 49 users
Ranked #452
Popularity #731
Watchers 9,639

The prosecutor's office and the police find themselves on opposing sides. The prosecutors, including elite prosecutor Woo Tae Ha, want discretionary power over investigations. Meanwhile, the police, including Choi Bit, try to get the complete investigative authority that is independent of the prosecutor's office. In this tense situation, Prosecutor Hwang Shi Mok and Detective Han Yeo Jin chase after the truth in a hidden case. (Source: AsianWiki) Edit Translation

  • English
  • 中文(简体)
  • 中文(台灣)
  • Русский
  • Country: South Korea
  • Type: Drama
  • Episodes: 16
  • Aired: Aug 15, 2020 - Oct 4, 2020
  • Aired On: Saturday, Sunday
  • Original Network: Netflix tvN
  • Duration: 1 hr. 2 min.
  • Score: 8.5 (scored by 9,639 users)
  • Ranked: #452
  • Popularity: #731
  • Content Rating: 15+ - Teens 15 or older

Where to Watch Stranger Season 2

Netflix
Subscription (sub)

Reviews

Completed
Jeana
118 people found this review helpful
Oct 4, 2020
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 15
Overall 9.5
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 9.0

An excellently written masterpiece that will make you feel intelligent.

Season 2 of Stranger follows the journey of Prosecutor Hwang Shi Mwok and Superintendent Han Yeo Jin in their relentless persuit of the truth even when everyone around them seems hella shady.

If you don't remember season 1 at all, I suggest you give it a rewatch before going into this or else find a friend who is a MASSIVE stranger fan to run you through the past events like I did. Why? Because, even though S2 follows a whole new storyline, the characters are the same. There are no re-introductions as their personalities have already been established in the previous season. And this season deals with the aftermath of a lot of things that went down in the past.

I, for one watched it 3 years after finishing the first season and because of my goldfish memory, I remembered absolutely nothing. Despite that, however, the story hooked me in and kept me with it throughout.

Stranger 2 is less action focused and takes more of a philosophical note for the most part. It's a critique on the system that runs a country. It shows how power is exploited. How the media, the prosecution, the police and the conglomerates influence the very foundation of a nation and yet there is always some conflict of interest between them.

The story starts with a battle between the police and prosecution as they debate over investigative rights. A lot of dirty politics is involved as both the sides try to one up each other. From there on it branches out to multiple plotlines as more and more cases, mysteries and problems come to light. Nothing is handed to you on a plate. The drama gives you a serious mental workout as it forces you to pay attention to everything. Slowly but surely, all the various plotlines come together to meet and punctuate the overall message with multiple punches.

The show, like its predecessor does not bank on thrill or 'the next big moment' instead it takes its time, moving with this undercurrent of tension you can't look away from. All along, you feel like something important is happening and you just can't miss it even when there are no huge developments.

The beauty of it is that nothing that's happening is stupid. This is not a show that is trying to pretend to be complicated and fool viewers into thinking it's smart with lazy writing. It's actually fucking smart with zero plotholes as the story flows smoothly, connecting all dots as episodes progress. And it hits home beautifully as the final episodes approach and the intensity skyrockets.

However, I will say that this is not reccomended for those who like their shows easy to digest. Who don't like heavy dialogues and aren't fans of politics, debates and philosophical questions. 'Cause there is a LOT of that stuff. To the point that I actually felt productive after watching each episode. I felt my mind broaden and working overtime and I absolutely loved every second of it.

Ofcourse, with a show like this the biggest danger is of it going in the direction where it becomes clinical, preachy, dry and boring. And that's where the drama wins by using small but extremely powerful interactions between characters that does wonders to humanize everything and make you emotionally connect with these people.

Shi Mwok, our emotionally stunted prosecuter is so clueless and indifferent about feelings that it's simply hilarious and adorable. Han Yeo Jin, with her quirky personality and chill as fuck persona is extremely endearing.

We saw the camaraderie between them in season 1 and that was one of the major selling points of the show. But, in this one, for the majority of the drama our duo stands on opposite sides confronting each other and you feel rather starved for their interaction. So when it happens, it's all the more impactful.

With incredible small gestures and tiny moments they show how they care for each other. How she's still his best friend. How they are the ultimate team. How she's the only one he feels comfortable around and how they just seem to get each other. And it's absolutely glorious.

These two are badass in a very real sense. There's no posturing or camera effects or cheesy dialogues/action scenes that make their badassery known. It's the effortless good in them and their dogged pursuit of what's right, realization of their own mistakes and unimaginable strength that wins your heart.

It also helps that both the main leads have extremely natural and nuanced acting. Bae Doo Na and Jo Seung Woo just killed it. With the latter blowing your mind with the subtlety of his expressions and the former making you invested by the transparency of her emotions.

The season also explores a plethora of other characters, with their own motivations and personalities that are extremely well developed. Strong women in power. Morally grey characters who come through deliciously. The acting is outstanding across the board and the soundtrack is phenomenal.

You think the OST (an instrumental with no lyrics) is nothing special? Wait till it makes the simple act of two people talking business in an office, the most thrilling thing to ever happen to you. Simply stunning.

The show also has one of the most beautiful endings I have ever seen. It's so full of hope and warmth that it made me cry.

Even as it highlights the never ending corruption, the ugly politics that makes one feel that their country is too far gone to make a change, Stranger comforts and shows what it could be. How, in these murky waters, being true to yourself is the real power because it gives you dignity, confidence and most importantly, peace.

So all in all, I'll say that while Stranger 1 is kinda like everyone's cuppa tea as a crime/thriller, Stranger 2 is definitely an acquired taste. It's still excellent though and completely unique in its genre with masterful execution. Hopefully, some news of a 3rd season will come to save all of our souls soon enough.

So hey, if you wanna leave the mainstream behind, feel a little bit smarter after every episode and question everything you know about the system, then this show is your go-to!

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Completed
AudienceofOne
60 people found this review helpful
Sep 8, 2020
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 10

Another perfect season of Forest of Secrets (Stranger)

Forest of Secrets continues to shows Korea how it should be done. This is what happens when a writer as skillful as Lee Soo-yeon gets teamed up with brilliant actors, a talented director and a PD that understands how to bring all of that talent together.

Jo Seung -woo is back as Hwang Shi-mok, the incorruptible prosecutor suffering from brain damage following surgery when he was young. He is joined once again by idealistic police officer Han Yeo-jin (Bae Doo-na). Set several years after the events of the first season, time and an inherently corrupt system has not been kind to either character, both ground down by the machinery of justice and both clearly nearing burnout.

This season starts with fog, Shi-mok's headlights illuminating it faintly and this image underpins everything the writer is trying to tell us about the quest for justice. Which way do we go through the fog? What step do we take? Which direction is the right one and which just gets us more lost? While blood splatter led us through the forest in the first season, there is no clear direction here: just people going through the motions and wondering whether they make any difference in the world.

The tone of season 2 is not just grim, it's leaden. The weight of those years bears heavily on our two protagonists as they attempt to navigate their way out of the fog, their path lit however dimly by a belief that justice is possible even if the pursuit of it is exhausting.

Forest of Secrets has grounded its narrative in this season in the fight between the police and the prosecution over investigative rights. As the infighting accelerates and the two sides seem more intent in slinging dirt than in serving the public, corruption gathers apace as it always does. And with our eternal partners Shi-mok and Yeo-jin on opposite sides, both will begin to question their role, their ethics and their ability to retain their independence and objectivity in an environment where it seems everyone is compromised in some way.

Forest of Secrets 2 may not be as rollicking as its first season but the writing is even more skillful, insightful and mature. We flounder in the dense fog as much as our characters do at first, waiting for that path out. And by putting us there and building that atmosphere, everyone involved shows us that they are truly at the top of their game.

Everything - the writing, direction, music, design - every aspect of this drama is almost perfect as its first year was as well.

This remains the pinnacle of Korean drama and its sophomore season merely cements that rank.

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Details

  • Drama: Stranger Season 2
  • Country: South Korea
  • Episodes: 16
  • Aired: Aug 15, 2020 - Oct 4, 2020
  • Aired On: Saturday, Sunday
  • Original Network: Netflix, tvN
  • Duration: 1 hr. 2 min.
  • Content Rating: 15+ - Teens 15 or older

Statistics

  • Score: 8.5 (scored by 9,639 users)
  • Ranked: #452
  • Popularity: #731
  • Watchers: 20,688

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