Before I get into reviewing this I want to make it clear that none of the content being reviewed in this post is suitable for children and even for adults is probably going to be confronting. Anyone who has been following the copious posts about Killing Stalking on Twitter probably already know that, but just giving everyone else fair warning.
Part of me really wonders how either of these two characters function (or functioned) in the real world. Sangwoo clearly manages to maintain a facade of sanity given his highly dedicated stalker didn’t have a clue about his psychotic side. And while Yoon Bum didn’t really seem to have a great life it was clear he a least got by day to day to the point where no one noticed he was a creepy stalker. Though, in Yoon Bum’s defence it isn’t as if we are seeing him at his best as he trembles and cries his way through chapter 3.
And why wouldn’t he? His legs have been broken and very poorly treated, he’s been locked in a basement, when crying because of the quite naturally intense pain he would be feeling from this situation Sangwoo cuts him with a tin lid and then complains it isn’t any fun because Yoon Bum is all bone and doesn’t have enough flesh to cut into. Does the perpetrator actually get to complain in that situation?
Despite quite clearly being unhinged and dangerous, Sangwoo remains an intriguing character. He’s playing with Yoon Bum but at the same time Yoon Bum hasn’t responded the way Sangwoo has expected from his previous experiences (which at this stage its seeming like he isn’t exactly new to this whole imprisonment and torture thing). This is fascinating Sangwoo but its also pushing him to test the bounds of this relationship. While that might lead to him tripping himself up, at the moment he is very much in control and the only question is how much rope is he going to give Yoon Bum before he tightens the noose.
One thing I found interesting was how quickly Sangwoo seemed to go back on his own opinion. Yoon Bum begs not to be returned to the basement saying he would do anything and Sangwoo initially mocks him.
Of course it’s dark… It’s a basement.
However, soon after, Sangwoo seemingly decides to leave Yoon Bum on the main floor but restricts how close to the door he can get. These sudden changes in direction make Sangwoo seem even more unstable and dangerous. While this decision seems to be in Yoon Bum’s favour it doesn’t seem like it will be without consequences in the long term.
I’m not going to lie, I found chapter 3 the most confronting so far. We’re no longer setting up the scene or establishing these characters so the shock and gore tactics are no longer scene setting but becoming an integral part of the narrative and the lingering focus on the pain as a result of these actions is certainly making itself felt (though not consistently given within the space of a bath we’ve gone from whimpering pain on the floor to merely shocked gasps when hitting a bump and to be honest I’m thinking broken legs that haven’t been treated would probably be hurting a little bit more consistently).
All and all I’m thoroughly caught by this story now. I need to know where these characters are going. I’m not expecting this to be a pleasant journey but I am hoping these characters continue to intrigue and make me think about their actions and how we ended up here.
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