Episode 1 of Goedam gravitates around a young girl at school called Seo-Hui. She’s haunted by the death of her equally intelligent classmate Ji-Ye. Excusing herself from the class, Seo-Hui wanders down the hallway where the lights start flickering.
Sensing someone nearby, she starts biting her nails and heads into the bathroom. In the distance, a ghostly figure disappears from view. As Seo-Hui looks set to smoke a cigarette, an ominous creaking in the stall next to her leads the girl to find a strange figure disappear into the toilet.
As everything descends down into silence, the ghostly figure, plastered in blood, appears and giggles, “Found you”. The next scene shows Seo-Hui upside down in the toilet. With the blood-soaked stall a gruesome crime scene, we cut back to that poster from before. This time though, Seo-Hui’s mouth contorts up into an awkward smile – just like Ye-Ji.
The Episode Review
With no context surrounding what’s happening in the episode, at face value is a pretty average episode. However, the entire story is based on an old urban legend which became really popular in Korea during the 90’s. This legend revolves around ominous noises in a school, created by an upside down corpse pounding its head against the floor.
The real crux of the fear comes from seeing this twisted face in tight spaces including under school tables, desks or, in the case of this short, a bathroom door. This helps bring that final reveal into context and makes the urban legend aspect much more consistent.
Of course, the episode itself doesn’t really explain this so Western audiences will undoubtedly be confused. While it’s not outright scary or fear-inducing, it does do well to bring a popular cult legend to the screen.
With a decent amount of gore and a couple of nice jump scares, Goedam gets off to a pretty good start with its first episode.
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3 thoughts on “Goedam – Episode 1 Recap & Review”
I found it plenty creepy. I was confused as to why the girl seemed to fee so much guilt. Was she bullying the dead girl when she was alive? Not sure why she was chosen to die? Would’ve been nice to know some more backstory about her and her struggles when she was alive. But still an awesome tale.
This wasn’t scary to me, but I’m not Korean, nor would I voluntarily stay at a high school that long. I DID find an urban legend that almost completely follows this episode, so I imagine it terrified Korean kids more than anyone: the Kong Kong Ghost.