Although much of what happens in the Korean drama Bad and Crazy involves close interactions between a corrupt detective named Su-yeol and a mysterious character named K, actor Lee Dong-wook would not describe it as a buddy drama.
That’s because Su-eol, played by Lee, and K, played by Wi Ha-jun, are in essence one person.
“Even though they have completely different personalities, they’re all Su-yeol,” said Lee. “We just have two actors to express his split personalities. Through the two personalities I hope that viewers can see the growth of Su-yeol’s character. It’s a story of Su-yeol and people around him helping him grow and solve cases and eventually being happy together.”
Su-yeol’s character needs to grow. His ambition led him to aim for a promotion and his questionable ethics prompted him to ignore situations that did not further his career. He doesn’t like to get his suit dirty, but he’s fine with looking the other way when an important person commits a crime.
Then one day K shows up and helps Su-yeol remember he once had a conscience. K is a reckless motorcycle-riding jump-into-the-ring fighter. He’s the person Su-yeol might have been when he was young and idealistic. Perhaps K is the person he could be, if he listened to his conscience. K physically forces Su-yeol to do just that, no matter how crazy his immediate involvement seems. He prompts him to act even if it jeopardizes a possible promotion and might endanger him physically.
“Su-yeol was only after obtaining material success, but as he goes through a chain of events, he eventually becomes a better person,” said Lee. “He works hard to serve justice and along the way, reconciles his relationship with his family.”
Wi Ha-jun describes his character K as “a righteous and crazy hero.”
“He’s crazy because he’s willing to take any risk and dives right in when he witnesses injustice.”
Wi wanted to play K because he can identify with his character’s righteous reaction to injustice.
“I couldn’t stand it when something unjust happened when I was in school,” said Wi. “So I got worked up and fought against it. That’s one similarity we share. Also, I make childish jokes and giggle with my close friends. I think that’s similar to how K and Su-yeol bicker with each other.”
Wi, who attracted international attention with his role in the drama Squid Game, thinks the chemistry between Su-yeol and K is the key to this drama and it’s certainly obvious. The actors display their comic chemistry when they bicker like best friends then showcase their well coordinated timing during action scenes. The iQIYI original drama may not be a buddy drama, but there’s definitely bromance.
“When we actually began the shoot, we had better teamwork than I had imagined,” said Wi. “That’s why I mentioned that I’d like to receive the Best Couple Award with him.”
Wi jokingly suggested they deserved the Baeksang Arts Award during a recent interview, but he’s serious about how unexpectedly good their working relationship was.
“It was a little pressuring at first because it was my first time meeting Dong-wook, but he led me well,” said Wi. “He went along with the things I had practiced and prepared. He was really considerate and so warm that I could be at ease while acting, and I learned a lot from him. He always worked hard and shared his ideas. He always trusted me and went along with my performance. That’s why we had good chemistry and we could show our bromance.”
Best known for his roles in the Korean TV dramas My Girl, Scent of a Woman, Hotel King, Guardian: The Great and Lonely God and Tale of the Nine-Tailed, Lee describes Bad and Crazy as a new kind of drama.
“The drama focuses on the growth of Su-yeol as a person, not his suffering from his split personality, and I think that’s new for viewers,” said Lee. “It’ll be fun if you empathize with him. Also, the endless action scenes and cases will be another interesting point.”
Lee recently finished shooting the film Single in Seoul. Wi, who appeared in the dramas 18 Again and Romance Is A Bonus Book, will have a busy 2022.
“I’m going to star in two works simultaneously in the first half of 2022, and one of them will air in the second half of the year,” said Wi. “It’s a completely different character from K, so I hope you’ll look forward to seeing it.”
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