The Bad Kids (2020) poster
8.6
Your Rating: 0/10
Ratings: 8.6/10 from 2,320 users
# of Watchers: 8,022
Reviews: 30 users
Ranked #344
Popularity #1899
Watchers 2,320

A story that follows three children from a coastal town who unintentionally film a murder scene. As the kids become involved with the suspect, it opens up a case that is far more complicated than it looks and entraps several families into an unpredictable outcome. (Source: ChineseDrama.info) ~~ Adapted from the novel "The Gone Child" (坏小孩) by Zi Jin Chen (紫金陈). Edit Translation

  • English
  • 中文(简体)
  • Русский
  • Ελληνικά
  • Country: China
  • Type: Drama
  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: Jun 16, 2020 - Jun 25, 2020
  • Aired On: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
  • Original Network: iQiyi
  • Duration: 50 min.
  • Score: 8.6 (scored by 2,320 users)
  • Ranked: #344
  • Popularity: #1899
  • Content Rating: Not Yet Rated

Where to Watch The Bad Kids

iQIYI
Free (sub)

Cast & Credits

Photos

The Bad Kids (2020) photo
The Bad Kids (2020) photo
The Bad Kids (2020) photo
The Bad Kids (2020) photo
The Bad Kids (2020) photo
The Bad Kids (2020) photo

Reviews

Completed
PeachBlossomGoddess
61 people found this review helpful
Jun 27, 2020
12 of 12 episodes seen
Completed 6
Overall 9.5
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 10
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 9.5

True Lies

This must watch crime drama hooked me from the start and commanded my undivided attention till the end.  My review is going to be brief because for this drama, spoilers will vastly diminish your viewing experience so best steer clear of the threads until you are done.

Three children from broken families - Zhu Chao Yang (Rong Zishan), Yan Liang (Shi Pengyao) and Yue Pu (Wang Shengdi) accidentally record footage of a murder in progress. They bite off more than they can chew when they go toe to toe with the murderer in a deadly cat and mouse chess game that could lead to mutually assured destruction. This is brilliantly written and superbly acted, with dynamic relationships, complex emotions and mirror lead antagonists. The sophisticated and nuanced performances of all three child actors and notably Rong Zishan are impressive beyond words. They are surrounded by a veteran cast that deftly portrays realistic, empathetic characters with very human failings. This is a dark story about how social and familial pressure and occasionally just darn bad luck can make people do both deeply moving and terrifyingly chilling things. The suspense builds naturally as a result of gripping storytelling and acting and is not artificially induced by music.

As a mystery buff, I have loved the unreliable narrator style of storytelling since I read Agatha Christie's "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd". The kind of darkness of human nature explored in this drama also coincides with my other Christie favorite "Crooked House" so this drama checks all my boxes. However, the adaption of this type of narrative style to film is incredibly difficult and usually disappointing - the movie version of Ian McEwan's Atonement is a classic example. So I am just bowled over by how meticulously and insidiously well executed The Bad Kids is. Even if you watch this without blinking, you will inevitably miss many of the true lies and scratch your head as to when and where the lines between fact and fantasy get blurred. There is no shocking "Aha!" moment - indeed initially I was convinced with and unquestioning of my first impression of what happened. I fell for the fairy tale hook, line and sinker. And then insidiously, all the alternate possibilities started to creep up upon me and drew me into re-watching. I watched this two times and and parts of it more than that and yet the ambiguities and different possibilities persist. That is actually what is fascinating, thrilling, chilling and absolutely mind blowing about this experience. 

Of course there are some mild logic flaws but this is truly so well executed there is little to pick at without being petty. I can't praise this enough, it has to be the best crime/mystery I have watched as of June 2020. It can hold its own relative to the best in class of this genre not just in China but anywhere and everywhere. Two thumbs up!!!

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Completed
Richel
38 people found this review helpful
Jul 13, 2020
12 of 12 episodes seen
Completed 1
Overall 9.5
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 10
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 10

Intelligent suspense takes its most elegant form in The Bad Kids

My preferences in entertainment go a little something like this: sure, I’ll give it a shot. Wait. It’s scary? Yes, I’m slowly backing out of the room.

The Bad Kids is not horror, nor would I—even in all of my yellow-bellied glory—consider it traditionally scary. Even so, you'll be able to tell about five minutes into the first episode that this is not to be watched on any day when you want a fun, happy time. If fully immersed in this drama’s eerie atmosphere, I can wholly believe that you may lay awake that very night, contemplating the series of fictional events that you have borne witness to. It's an addictive kind of insanity. I’m definitely not saying this out of personal experience…don’t know what’s leading you to think that…

I strongly advise potential viewers to go for a totally blind watch-through; hence, I won't be mentioning any aspects of the plot here. Even if you usually do not care about being spoiled before watching something, you absolutely should not look up anything about this show before you finish every single episode. Central to The Bad Kids is how it produces a phantom instinct within your gut as you try to figure out what is going to happen next, and that engrossment in the story evolves into a part of your own satisfaction. Let the show work its wonders and let yourself absorb it fully.

One point about the story that should be mentioned as a selling point, though, is that while The Bad Kids is about crime, it focuses on that through relatable themes like family bonds. A major plus to the watching experience is how you are forced to form and change your opinions about each character based on how they treat one another—and in what situations. I’ve rarely seen characters being depicted with this degree of care in other works. They feel genuinely human: imperfect, self-contradictory, and emotional.

I was also impressed to the extremes with the acting. Imagine the perfection that's in not needing to fall to the level of typical high-school dramas, where the lead teen is played by a dude in his twenties with clear skin. That perfection exists in The Bad Kids, where each of the three child actors—whose roles are incredibly demanding—are literal children who do not falter at all within their roles. Though I’m giving a special shoutout to the kids, I don’t want to gloss over the other actors who elevated the story. Every cast member was flawless in their depiction of their characters and how they collaborated with one another to depict intensely real relationships. Qin Hao is also someone that I will be keeping an eye on in the future; the way that he balanced the good and evil of his character so naturally gave me chills.

The Bad Kids has skyrocketed up to become one of (if not the superlative) my favorite dramas ever. Days after finishing the last episode, I couldn’t fend off the temptation to start again: and this time, I took notes so that I could keep track of every possible hint that the producers dropped. That’s right—this self-proclaimed hater of note-taking in school willingly opened a notebook and clicked a pen just so she could wrap her head around this show. And I loved every second of it. You might take this as evidence that I'm a tad cuckoo in the head (you probably wouldn’t be wrong), but you’ll understand me as soon as the credits roll on the last episode. There's so much detail to process and make sense of.

If this level of writing, acting, and production could be held as the standard for Chinese dramas, then I am impatient for what is to come. Until then, I’m going to treat my drama withdrawal with perhaps a third dive into this show.

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Recent Discussions

Title Replies Views Latest Post
What is your interpretation on the bad kids? by keepdreaming 9 0
Ashlynx
Jan 16, 2023

Details

  • Drama: The Bad Kids
  • Country: China
  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: Jun 16, 2020 - Jun 25, 2020
  • Aired On: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
  • Original Network: iQiyi
  • Duration: 50 min.
  • Content Rating: Not Yet Rated

Statistics

  • Score: 8.6 (scored by 2,320 users)
  • Ranked: #344
  • Popularity: #1899
  • Watchers: 8,022

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