Lee Seung Gi's Mouse premieres with a dark plea from its psychopath: Please help me not become a monster

tvN's new psychological thriller, Mouse, is off to a great start with evidence to prove. Here are the highlights of this beautiful episode.
Lee Seung Gi's Mouse premieres with a dark plea from its psychopath: Please help me not become a monster
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The serial killer tracking drama, "Mouse", premiered on March 3 with a stable rating of almost 5 percent. The drama enjoyed an average viewership rating of 5.4 percent in the metropolitan area, with a high of 6.3 percent, and an average rating of 4.9 nationwide.

The first episode of Mouse, rated R, focuses entirely on introducing the antagonist, the Human Hunter. Spanning over a period of 30 years, the episode was like a history lesson of the life of the Human Hunter, Jae Hoon. With all the time jumps, backward and forward, we come to a full circle by the end of the episode.

Year 1990

A psychopathic serial killer, The Headhunter, has spread fear among the masses. He kills people, leaving their headless bodies to be found later. What we witness is his attack on the 18th victim, whose corpse was found floating in the sea. Other than being headless, the corpse also has a mark on it F25.175ex which, as per our speculation, seems to be something like a tag - Female, aged 25, 175 might be the height in centimeters and the significance of "ex" is not very clear. By this time, the fear among the public has now manifested to anger. The President visits the National Police Agency, to create hype for the next elections, and berates them for not doing their job well.

Prof Dr Daniel

Dr Daniel Lee (Jo Jae Yoon), a Korean-British doctor of genetics and a criminologist, is a nominee for the Nobel Prize. His focus of work is the Psychopathic gene and he is called to Korea to present information about the same at the National Assembly to help make a decision. While in the country, he makes it a point to visit his friend, neurosurgeon Dr Han Seo Joon (Ahn Jae Wook) and his expecting wife, Sung Ji Eun (Kim Jung Nan).

Dr. Han Seo Joon

He is an all-around handsome man with excellent speech, manners, and a good sense of humor. He was in a relationship with Dr Daniel's sister, Jennifer, before she was hacked to death by robbers. Following the incident, he returned to Korea where he met his current wife Sung Ji Eun, an intelligent and righteous woman.

The Go family

The Go family of four members were the next targets of The Headhunter; accidental, but targets nonetheless. Off on a trip to camping grounds, they reach their destination only to realise that the place was closed due to heavy snowfall. Yet they decide to spend the night there considering it was supposed to be a birthday gift for their youngest. The happy occasion soon turned into a nightmare with the arrival of our serial killer. The adults of the family were killed before their headless body was thrown in a mineral spring nearby. The older son, Go Moo Won (Jo Yeon Ho) exposed himself to protect his younger brother Go Moo Chi (Song Min Jae), whom the killer hadn't seen and he had assumed that the family had three members.

Witness

The killer ran away hearing the sirens which, fortunately, saved the life of Go Moo Won who was immediately given medical attention. Go Moo Chi, witnessing his mother being killed and the attack on his brother, was traumatised. But he was the only witness and had seen the face of the killer. He does identify the killer, thereby, causing his capture.

The Headhunter

The Headhunter, identified by Go Moo Chi, is none other than our neurosurgeon. The evidence, Go Moo Chi's mother's head, is found in one of the snowmen in Dr. Han's backyard. He gets released by claiming to not have made the snowmen but his wife has photographic evidence. We are also made aware of the fact that Jennifer, his former lover was not attacked by robbers but Dr. Han Seo Joon had stabbed her over and over again because she aborted his child. "Propagation of species" is also the reason he gives his current wife for marrying her.

The year 2000

Dr Daniel returns to Korea for a guest lecture and is sent an unnamed package, bets on prisoner Han Seo Jun being the sender, carrying mice. Sung Ji Eun gives birth to a boy, Jae Hoon, who is now a kindergarten student. He comes across a mouse and carries it to their trip to what seems like a reptile zoo. He sends the mouse into a cage that houses a rat snake and watches them attack each other with an eerie smile.

The year 2005

Jae Hoon is now an elementary student; the class prez. Sung Ji Eun has remarried and given birth to two children. Jae Hoon, dreams of becoming a doctor and has an IQ of over 160. He might be abused by his stepfather considering his ghastly drawings. The boy is very curious to the point that he cuts open the belly of a rabbit to check whether it was pregnant or just fat. This leads to a guardian call that his mother couldn't attend. He is slapped and in retaliation, kills all his stepfather's beloved fish and his older child Choco, a pet dog. Angry for the abuse that followed and believing his younger brother to have tattled, he tries to bury him alive but their mother intercepts. We later see montages indicating Jae Hoon killing his stepfather and half-siblings. His mother isn't seen but she might have been dead for all we know.

Present Day

We get to the present day with a narration continuing from Jae Hoon's visit to a church 15 years ago. "Please help me not become a monster." According to news reports, a corpse of a female student was found in a grape farm. Jae Hoon continues, "My prayers were not answered. And I became a killer, after all."

Jae Hoon could have been saved from ending up a killer like his biological father, even though he possesses the psychopathic gene. We have seen that psychopathic and genius genes look so similar that even an expert in it, Dr. Daniel, is not able to distinguish between the two. If only the child would have been taught the right way to satisfy his curiosities, he might have been salvageable.

It was an episode with no breathers and a terrific introduction to something very promising. The next episode will introduce us to our protagonists and if the preview is any indication, we are in for a ride.

ALSO READ: After Lee Min Ho's Pachinko, Oscar winning Parasite actor Lee Sun Kyun to star in Apple TV series Dr. Brain

What did you think of the premiere of Mouse? Share your thoughts with Pinkvilla in the comments section down below!

Anonymous 1 month ago

It gave me the creeps but I couldn’t stop watching it. The acting is superb! Lee Seung gi really got into character - one which I haven’t seen from him before. Can’t wait to watch the next episode!

Anonymous 1 month ago

So far I am strangely repelled, and intrigued. This drama, I'm hooked already. Best of luck Lee Seung gi and Cast to a Successful Outcome to this new drama.

Anonymous 1 month ago

THE best thriller i ever watch. Can't wait to see next episode.