There are consequences for everything
Ye Rim, is the pretty class president. She looks perfect from all angles with her attractive appearance and top grades. Once she notices that something strange is going on, she takes action to uncover the mysteries of her school.
Native and/or alternative titles: 악몽선생; Nightmare High
Countries: South Korea
Genre: Mystery, Supernatural, School, Suspense
Director: Hyun Moon Sub
Writer: Jung Yoo Suk, Hyun Moon Sub
Cast: Kim So Hyun, Lee Min Hyuk, Uhm Ki Joon, Kim Da Ye, Baek Seung Do, Seo Shin Ae, Ji Eun Sung, Jang Gyeing Eob, Kim Ji An, Kwon Young Min, Choi Yu Jin, Yang Hak Jin, Ahn So Rim, Seo Jong Bong, Han Sung Min, Kim Ji Young
The web-drama totally starts off with an anime/manga vibe to it, therefore, my expectations were raised and I am happy to say that I was NOT disappointed. The overall story was interesting and stimulating, makes you think about everyday life and emotions from a different perspective. About how every small emotion can pile up into something huge. I really loved how in such a short span of time they focused on and showcased the stories of a variety of students beautifully.
The individual stories of the students were quite amazing and really focus on the problems faced by the South Korean society at present as well as general issues faced by teenagers and the youth. Things like pressure to be the best in academics, to be beautiful, to be part of a group, issues of bullying and harassment, searching for one’s purpose in life or one’s goals, wanting to be popular and so on.
The story is basically about a new teacher who is he Temporary homeroom teacher of Ye Rim’s class. But, something is off about the teacher. The students who meet him for personal consultation start acting weird and end up disappearing. The strange thing is that after they disappear the rest of the students completely forget about the existence of them. So Kang Ye Rim and her best friend Seo Sang Woo decide to find out exactly what is going on. But in the process, they get a little too involved. Turns out that the teacher actually makes contracts with the students where he helps them fulfil their deepest desire but with a condition, if not fulfilled then the student would be erased from the memories of all the people.
Now, the teacher is a love-hate character for me and for probably most of the people. I guess he is a stronger and scarier enforcement of the concept of tough-love because he makes the students face their emotions and their deepest desires and realize just how materialistic and pointless it is in the long run. How the insecurities and fears and their mixed-up priorities don’t really matter and just seems important because of youth and immaturity (maybe).
I personally feel that Kim So Hyun’s character Ye Rim is supposed to symbolize the average person who simply notices and observes that something is wrong or that a wrong act is taking place but turns a blind eye to it. We all do this at some point in time and most of us may not even realize that we are doing so because after a point it becomes an unconscious act on our part. In the same manner Ye Rim unconsciously or sometimes even consciously noticed that something was going on with the kids but doesn’t do anything about and assumes the role of a kind helpful soul despite ignoring such situations and kids. Although, the ending leaves a chance for people to come to their own conclusions about the entire situation and so it is more philosophical and I guess every person can internalize the ending in their own way. Somehow, the little mystery and unanswered questions that remained, in the end, made me even more satisfied with this drama. After all, not everything in life has an answer, some things just happen and all we can do it accept it and move on.
The music was also brilliant and so impactful. It really increased the feels of a lot of scenes for me especially the suspenseful ones. Also, even though the name of the web drama is Nightmare Teacher which made me expect this to be a horror show but it really is mostly suspense and fantasy and practically has no horror element to it. It also has an alternate dimension type of feel to it if you see the end but it is not really mentioned so anywhere whether this is an alternate dimension or whether time just resets itself or if it was all simply a nightmare.
The acting was spot-on. All the actors both main and supporting were brilliant. The students played their roles to perfection and the teacher was incredible. I would literally get chills every time he gave that cold calculated smirk. Kim So Hyun has always been one of my favourites and she is definitely worth her salt yet again. Though she had a relatively simple seeming role, the subtlety in her change of expressions and body language was really good.
I think because this was a web-drama, due to its necessity for shortness the drama skipped some parts and left some parts unexplained and random but it was not anything major. I personally felt that every second of the drama was well-utilized and this drama brought forward different perspectives about how we view emotions and situations, especially in a teenager’s life.