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A whimsical twist on a slice-of-life drama

Netflix is ​​home to a number of Korean drama series, and it’s safe to say that the popularity they bring isn’t going away anytime soon. The sound of magic is an example. Who would have thought that upbeat musicals, awe-inspiring magic tricks and challenging reality checks would ever go hand in hand? Not only that, but the hints of teen romance, murder, suspense, and awe-inspiring musicals were enough to keep audiences on the edge of their seats. While it may seem like it managed to tick all the right boxes, it may be worth watching what the drama has to offer.

The sound of magic stems from a web-toon that encompasses a range of genres. Directed by Itaewon Class director Kim Sung-yoon, this series features six lengthy episodes. The plot revolves around a teenager, Yoon Ah Yi (Choi Sung-eun), who struggles with crippling poverty and is bullied at school. She has to raise her younger sister and take care of various loan sharks. Just when the 17-year-old thought she had found a guardian angel, betrayal ensued and things never quite went her way. That is until she meets a strange magician, Ri Eul (Ji Chang-wook), a man who is the living embodiment of serendipity. Throughout the series, Ri Eul tries to convince Ah Yi that magic is actually real and can be implemented in our daily lives. However, she refuses to believe it. That’s until she realizes the real magic inside her.


Who are the characters?

Ri Eul, also known as Ryu Min Hyuk, is a magician who lives in an abandoned theme park. He is seen as a crazy, twisted man who is a bad influence on everyone around him, but he begs to disagree. He is a child stuck in the body of an adult. He believes in the existence of magic and wants others to believe in it too.

Meanwhile, Ah Yi is an innocent, hardworking teenager who has learned to extinguish the spark of childhood in her mind and submit to the cruelties of the world. She becomes an adult living in the body of a child. Then, Ri Eul becomes his source of motivation and strength with his incredible magic tricks, his songs and his kindness. He manages to make her see the world through his eyes.

Another character, II-Deung (Hwang In-youp), is a wealthy high school student who also has his share of problems in life. He has a good head on his shoulders and knows how to take control of his life. He falls in love with Ah Yi and strives to protect her from the magician’s delusions. He then changed his mind about Ri Eul.

Although the trio share many similarities, their main commonality is that none of them match today’s standards set by society.


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What worked?

While there’s more to the show than sunshine and rainbows, the real message behind it lies in its heartfelt and subtle life lessons. These meaningful messages are perfect for those struggling to find their place in today’s society. The plot also shows that people should never change to fit everyone else and that it’s okay to want different things.

One of the strengths of the sound of magic are magic tricks. Each of them is displayed in an alluring way by the actors. While the magic tricks are all about misdirection, Ri Eul does a great job of keeping the audience close, literally.

Ri Eul and Ah Yi mirror each other well. The antagonist, Baek Ha-Na, shows off her brilliant acting skills that are sure to make the audience furious with her. Hwang In-youp’s acting skills perfectly transform him into the character of an arrogant, kind and troubled rich kid.


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What went wrong?

There were a few plot holes that went unaddressed. For example, in the last episode, the police couldn’t find Ri Eul after she disappeared. Even though they knew there were trapdoors on the floor, the police did not hesitate to look at them. Viewers also had to interpret the mental illness Ri Eul was going through. Another thing that left the public curious was the theme park mailbox. If all of Ri Eul’s magic tricks were fake, how did the letters left by Ah Yi disappear?

Some emotional scenes were rushed and some of the musical score was bland and had no emotional value. For example, in the “Do you believe in magic“song, the lyrics didn’t make much sense, and there was nothing magical about them, unlike the visuals.

It’s a story as old as time, and yet the world of The sound of magic tugs at the heartstrings like no other, transporting audiences to a magical realm. It has stunning cinematography, impeccable sound design, and an assortment of original music that will stick with fans long after the drama is over. Whether the viewers are Ji Chang-wook fans, theater buffs, or just casual drama watchers, The sound of magic is something not to be missed!


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