Episodes 1 & 2 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episodes 3 & 4 – | Review Score – 3/5
Episodes 5 & 6 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episodes 7 & 8 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episodes 9 & 10 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episodes 11 & 12 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episodes 13 & 14 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episodes 15 & 16 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episodes 17 & 18 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episodes 19 & 20 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episodes 21 & 22 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episodes 23 & 24 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episodes 25 & 26 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episodes 27 & 28 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episodes 29 & 30 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episodes 31 & 32 – | Review Score – 4/5
What would you do if you were rich? It’s a question everyone has asked themselves at some point in their lives, and especially in a world where materialism has become bigger than ever. Woman of 9.9 Billion gives an original twist to that question when our protagonist finds a bag full of money on one fateful night. Across 32 tense episodes, this Korean drama manages to keep its pacing consistent throughout, giving us some expected but shocking twists as we follow the shady characters’ journey. The show does tail off a little throughout as it changes to a more psychological drama but the great characterisation and excellent performance from the actors makes Woman of 9.9 Billion a decent thriller.
The story revolves around Jeong Seo-Yeon who’s struggling to cope between her manipulative and violent husband Hong In-Pyo and an unsatisfying affair with Lee Jae-Hoon, the husband of her childhood friend, Yoon Hee-Joo. On one fateful night, Seo-Yeon comes across a crashed vehicle containing 9.9 Billion wan. With the help of her lover, she decides to keep the money, determined to start a new and better life. At the same time, disgraced cop Kang Tae-Woo struggles with the loss of his brother and is after some answers. The two will eventually meet and face some challenging situations, leading to a climactic and explosive finale.
One of the more impressive parts of this show stems from how easy it is to root for most of its characters, despite all of them committing crimes. This is thanks to the decent characterisation done as the weeks tick along. It’s very difficult not to feel sorry for Seo-Yeon as we slowly see what she has been through, even after her future actions surrounding the money. We’re also slowly introduced to our main villain and while it did feel a little underwhelming towards the last few episodes, there were still some tense moments there.
Cho Yeo-Jeong (Seo-Yeon) and Jung Woong-In (In-Pyo) both earned KBS awards for their performances in the show and it’s absolutely warranted – both of them are fantastic here. Yeo-Jeong managed to portray her character very skilfully; starting as a weak and powerless wife to a more confident and fearless woman she slowly develops into as the episodes tick along. At the other end of the spectrum, Woong-In’s portrayal of the evil husband was chilling and impressive up until the very end, with quite the twist as we reach the final episode.
The soundtrack too is really good, offering up a blend of classical music and some tense orchestral scores, giving the show more seriousness and suspense. “LadyBlue” by Oisin Lowry, a title using acoustic guitar and simple lyrics, is arguably the stand out addition and helps prop up the quality of the sound here.
It’s not all heart-pounding action though, Woman of 9.9 Billion also tackles some interesting themes. It shows just how far people are willing to go to be rich and even going so far to commit some serious crimes. The drama did a great job presenting us with a decent story, full of solid performances from the cast and some shocking twists. The pacing is steady and despite a change of tone towards the end, Woman of 9.9 Billion offers up a decent thriller for fans of this genre. With plenty of shady characters to root for, this drama offers up an intriguing and original premise and should please anyone looking for a tense and thrilling series to sink their teeth in.