Sweet Home K-Drama Review & Summary: A Violent & Engaging Horror

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Video Source – Netflix (Netflix YouTube Channel)

Sweet Home is a K-Drama based on the webtoon series of the same name by authors Kim Carnby and Hwang Young-chan. It is everything you’d expect from a K-Drama thrilling, suspenseful with a pinch of comedy. It was already a hit when it was released on South Korea’s publishing portal, webtoon so when the news of the TV adaptation broke the fans were concerned if it could live up to the successful graphic novel.

The Korean drama was successful but maybe some of the graphic novel fans might not be completely satisfied. As fitting 140 chapters in a 10 episode is a practically impossible feat so some things were left out. However for people who have not read the graphic novel, Sweet Home is a breath of fresh air. 

Sweet Home K-Drama Cast

  • Song Kang as Cha hyun su
  • Lee Do hyun as Lee Eun hyuk
  • Lee Si-young as Seo Yi Kyeong
  • Go Min si as Lee Eun yoo

Sweet Home K-Drama Plot

Following the death of his family in an accident, Cha Hyun soo moves to a new apartment. He is suicidal but the day he was planning to do it, he hears his bell ring. When he goes to check who it is, he sees his neighbour saying “I’m hungry” outside through the intercom. But the neighbour slowly turns into a monster and Hyun su gets scared and doesn’t reply.

After a minute he checks again and opens the door and finds no one outside. Slowly there were some sounds and strange incidents started happening in his apartment complex and all over Korea. As people start turning into monsters,  Hyun su and the other residents try to survive. They band together and have to barricade their building’s entrance while trying to take back some floors and fight monsters. They are faced with many situations where they have to face monsters, and other groups of hostile people and ration their supplies to survive till help can reach them.

We can see the different types of people contributing in positive ways, some being heroes and some helping others. But there are also a few who are a menace and create trouble among themselves for various reasons. It goes to show the true human nature of characters when stuck in a life or death situation. 

Sweet Home K-Drama Review

Sweet Home K-Drama Review

I was a fan of the original webtoon and when I learned about the TV adaptation I was excited to check it out. I was thrilled when I finally saw the series as it was directed by Lee Eung Bok. The show managed to incorporate most of the intriguing parts of the webtoon and even though it was only 10 episodes long, it didn’t cut out a lot of the scenes.

It was fast-paced, suspenseful and overall true to the original. But there were some aspects left out like the inner desires of the people becoming monsters, Hyun soo and Ji soo’s relationship and how they build a close bond and Sang Wook’s character though being a gangster, was a morally good character in the comic. But if you have not read the comic I recommend getting into the series right away without comparing it to the original as it is great as a stand-alone.

As a whole, the show had a great look to it with the green and red-toned palette. It resulted in a grunge look and feel to the series and was able to portray the various emotions of characters in a bleak and dreary background. But the CGI was decent too, but the monsters looked like they came out of video games made in the early 2000s. But it was not too disappointing but it could have been better and elevated the experience as a whole. The cast was outstanding and did a great job at portraying their character’s struggles, whether it’s the past trauma or emotional baggage that haunts them in an already post-apocalyptic world.

Lee Si-young Shines in Sweet Home

Actress Lee Si-young who played the new character Yi Kyung blended in well with the rest. The actress actually put in a lot of effort training her body months prior to and during shooting to be able to build a perfect physique and pull off all the difficult stunts without using stunt doubles as much as possible. Her character was one of the strongest people both physically and mentally in the building after the protagonist Hyun Su, almost overshadowing him. It is rare to see such muscular and physically strong women in K-Dramas.

The series was also one of those unique roles for the actor Song Kang (as Hyun soo) than the usual romantic light-hearted roles he played before. He was able to portray his potential and versatility because of Sweet Home. I liked that each monster presents a unique challenge to the main characters as they try to move around the halls to gather supplies and find safe spaces. The character interactions with each monster made each encounter feel different and nuanced,  so trying to survive against them never felt stale like it would when dealing with a horde of shambling zombies.

We get a few glimpses of humans about their life before turning into monsters and how their inner desires influence their monster design. Even though we don’t know who turned into which monster there are several clues in their character design and how they move through the environment that reflects their inner desires. These things elevated the show and made it refreshing from the regular zombies or undead in other series of the same genre.

Also while Sweet Home does rely on a lot of blood for the horror it is also successful in utilising the feeling of dread hanging over everything the survivors do. Sweet home is one of those few horror pieces that I have seen where almost all of the characters were engaging and I wanted most of them to survive the horrors going on around them. Add that to the genre’s interesting premise that shakes up the conventions even though it makes heavy use of its troupes.

The Movie Culture Synopsis

I thoroughly enjoyed my time watching Sweet home. In the end, it was not perfect but was definitely refreshing from the other entries of a similar genre. I recommend streaming it on Netflix and reading the comic as well if you have the chance. Both are great pieces of entertainment and can be something different too.