Don’t let me dream any longer
Episode 2 of The Sound of Magic begins with Il-Deung at school, approaching Ah-Yi and talking to her about magic. He clearly likes her and asks if she’s free after class. He tries to give her a can of drink too but his whole planned speech (the one has has scribbled down on his hand!) goes completely awry.
Ah-Yi is distracted, partly because the owner of the ON shop has gone missing. After Ri-Eul’s little disappearing trick, Ah-Yi knows he’s responsible but isn’t quite sure how. She deliberates over whether to tell the police or not.
Ah-Yi doesn’t, as it turns out, and instead heads to the abandoned theme park to find the magician. She doesn’t find him but does run into a talking parrot that tells her “the boss is a b*stard. He disappeared.”
This, she deduces, is linked to the man disappearing in the street. AH-Yi remains conflicted over wheTher the magician is actually a good person or not.
She brings those conflictions with her when Ri-Eul shows up at her house that night while she’s with her sister. Given she was at the theme park earlier on in the day (which Soo-Hee and Ha-Na, the two bullies terrorizing Ah-Yi at school, realize while they’re filming) Ah-Yi believes that she’s been followed.
Unfortunately, Ah-Yi has also been followed by loan sharks who are after her father’s money. Ah-Yi obviously doesn’t know where her father is but the boss doesn’t believe her.
As things grow heated, Ri-Eul jumps in and saves Ah-Yi’s life. “Help me.” She pleads with him. Ah-Yi wants to escape the hell she’s in.
After conjuring up notes into thin air, Ri-Eul ignites them and as they explode in the air, it quite literally rains won notes, which float lazily to the ground. Off the back of this, Ah-Yi starts to believe that this man has been sent from heaven and has been brought to her to help. Only…it turns out the money is actually a stage prop.
As a result, Ri-Eul is beaten down by the sharks who do leave, but promise to return again soon. Ah-Yi feels betrayed and leaves the magician.
At school, the midterms are coming up and Ah-Yi eyes up the stack of books Il-Deung has. He allows her to borrow them from her, as the pair agree to study together in the library later on. While they do, Ha-Na loudly proclaims – while filming – that she’s going to uncover all the secrets of the magician.
Ha-Na heads there after school and begins annoying the parrot, prodding it with a stick. Ri-Eul is there too, and he’s not happy with their appearance. In fact, he challenges her to see if the magic he does is really real or not. This comes in the form of a trick involving shadows.
Just before stabbing Ha-Na’s shadow, she suddenly perks up and asks whether he knows Ha-Yoon. Earlier in the episode we learned that she’s missing from school and challenges Ri-Eul over whether he could be responsible for that.
When she also mentions Ah-Yi, the trick ends with a bolt of lightning, which plunges the hall into darkness. Ri-Eul decides not to do magic after all. Instead, she leaves the girls to pass on a message to Ah-Yi that he’s waiting for her.
Il-Deung struggles to control his hormones as he attempts to talk to Ah-Yi and study with her in the library. As everything fades out of view, the only thing remaining is a desk with Il-Deung on the guitar, singing to her.
This surreal and comedic moment eventually sees the pair head off together, huddled under an umbrella to escape the rain. Il-Deung casually suggests they start dating that weekend.
Ah-Yi isn’t sure how to approach this and looks set to reject him. Instead Il-Deung saves her the trouble and makes out like it’s all a big joke. When he’s picked up from school, Il-Deung hands over the umbrella to her and leaves.
The next day, Ah-Yi shows up at the theme park, as instructed by Ha-Na and Soo-Hee. Ri-Eul promises to help her and that he likes her… but Il-Deung happens to be listening to all of this. When he leaves, starting to believe Ha-Na’s rumours about him being her sugar daddy, the truth is unveiled to Ah-Yi. Ri-Eul points out that the messages she’s been sending haven’t actually been read by her mother.
When Ri-Eul conjures her phone out from behind her hair and the words of her messages start to appear on the table in the watery ink stains, Ah-Yi is shocked and realizes, with horror, that her mother is dead.
Through flashbacks we see the heartbreaking moment Ah-Yi witnessed her leave as a child, as she packs her things and leaves in the morning. She doesn’t even bother to look back, abandoning Ah-Yi to her fate.
At school, Ah-Yi is approached with a proposition from Il-Deung. He wants her to throw the math test and let him be first. In exchange, he’ll pay her.
The Episode Review
Things are really starting to get interesting in The Sound of Magic, which manages to blend these real world problems with the fantastical world of the theme park and this magician.
The question of whether Ri-Eul is actually magical or not remains a big talking point but what’s interesting is that Ri-Eul asks his subjects whether they believe in magic or not. This seems to be a way to discern how easy or difficult it will be to make these tricks real, which could well be powered by the idea of “belief”, even if the person in question is adamant that it doesn’t exist.
Either way though, Il-Deung has completely misunderstood the situation with Ah-Yi, which looks like it could cause a lot of problems going forward. As the son of the Chief Prosecutor, he has a lot to live up to and he’s also struggling with the pressure. The difference here though, is that Ha-Na has managed to warp his beliefs into thinking Ah-Yi is acting shadily.
There’s a lot to like with this episode and there’s certainly plenty going on too, leaving the door wide open for the rest of the season.