Evilive Season 1 Review – Welcome to the dark side!

Season 1



Episode Guide

Episode 1 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episode 2 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episode 3 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episode 4 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 5 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 6 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episode 7 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episode 8 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episode 9 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 10 – | Review Score – 4/5



Every human has a dark side; the difference is shunning or letting it in. Evilive is a South Korean legal and crime drama following the story of a lawyer, Han Dong-soo. Dong-soo used to be a law office manager before a conspiracy cost him his career, and he had his law certificate suspended for three years.

Three years later, Dong-soo is a livelihood lawyer who makes ends meet by taking up random cases and representing minor criminals willing to pay him. He is reasonable and rational until he crosses paths with a second-ranked member of a criminal organisation, Seo Do-young. 

Evilive explores Dong-soo’s transformation from accepting his current situation to standing up against those who stepped on him. Do-young offers Dong-soo an opportunity he cannot refuse. While working for Do-young, Dong-soo constantly faces situations that tortures his moral consciousness. He walks a thin line between righteousness and evil. Dong-soo’s half-brother, Han Beom-jae, walks with him in his struggle and acts as his moral compass. 

Evilive is a legal-themed drama that explores the various facets of humanity in a twisty and tension-filled 10 episodes. In addition to delving into the dark side of justice, the script touches on various plots, including ambition, family, power, police procedure, crime, gangs, morality, inhibitions, and human nature.

Although the script becomes predictable towards the end, it is still thrilling to watch Dong-soo’s changes as he lets go of his inhibitions. The changes accompanied by wardrobe upgrades mesmerised viewers, drawing them in. 

One aspect that stands out about Evilive is that it is an anti-hero series. The plot of most dramas, especially legal, crime, or police procedural, is to transform evil into good. The police arrest the criminal in the end, or the criminal chooses to transform to be on the morally acceptable side.

Evilive takes a different approach by changing a righteous man to the dark side. In addition, the series takes a logical approach to the transformation. To stand at the top of the world by letting go of all the inhibitions and morals has a cost. The anti-hero might gain all the wealth, respect, and status he desires, but he must lose something. Is he willing to give up everything else, cross the line, and accept the consequences? 

The diverse cast depicting versatile characters in Evilive makes the show great. Hang Dong-soo starts as a minor lawyer who seeks out criminals to make a living. On the surface, Dong-soo appears calm, kind, content and rational. However, he harbours deep ambitions and desires, which start to show when he meets Seo Do-young. He has the innate character to be ruthless, cunning, greedy, and selfish.

Seo Do-young is mesmerising on-screen with his good looks. However, hiding behind his handsome demeanour is his ruthless and unpredictable nature. He is selfish, arrogant, stubborn and unloyal. He distrusts everybody, is overconfident, and easily steps on everyone to get to the top. 

Another important character is Han Beom-jae. Although he is agreeable to his half-brother’s ideas, he is also intelligent, knowledgeable, and skilled about computers and programming. Moon Sang-gook is the most influential lawyer in the city and the owner of Moon Law Firm. He uses his influence as a renowned lawyer to hide his criminal activities. He is ruthless, without principles, arrogant, selfish, and narcissistic. Attorney Moon Hae-jun’s son is timid, boastful, egotistic, and his father’s lackey. 

Overall, Evilive is an exciting, thrilling, but predictable tale of human nature. It is logical in its portrayal of the contradictory relationship between Do-young and Dong-soo. It is action-packed and intense, especially following Dong-soo’s character change from the timid coward in the first episode to the scheming, ruthless gang leader in the final episodes. The amazing acting of the two main characters makes the series among the best K-dramas of 2023. 

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  • Verdict - 8/10

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