Eat, Love, Kill Is a Must-Watch Melodramatic Thriller

Directed by Hong Jong Chan, Link: Eat, Love, Kill is the new melodramatic thriller released by tvN and Disney+. Spread evenly over 16 episodes, Link provides a very unconventional storyline by fusing in the genres of romantic comedy, fantasy, thriller, and mystery. Though it may sound peculiar, the show brings out the best of these elements and effectively mixes them. Due to this, it has been one of the most anticipated K-Dramas of 2022.

Starring Moon Ka Young (True Beauty, Tempted), as No Da-Hyun and Yeo Jin-Goo (Hotel Del Luna), as Eun Gye-Hoon, the two leads attract most of their fan bases to the show. It follows the story of No Da-Hyun and Eun Gye-Hoon – one is a famous chef and the other is a hardworking girl trying to find her way into the world. Due to some circumstances, they find themselves back in their hometown – where everything went wrong. Slowly, mysteries unveil themselves and the two find themselves linked through emotions. Now, they must find out the secret of a murder that happened 18 years ago.


Unlike other rom-coms, Link offers a lot of unfamiliar flavors throughout its runtime. It touches upon sensitive topics of child kidnappings in its murder-mystery storyline, and also shows deranged stalkers through Shin Jae-Hwi’s character, Lee Jin-Geun. It is also a story about a serial killer that targets children, demonstrated through the kidnapping of Da-Hyun and Gye-Hoon’s sisters in their childhood. Another atypical feature of Link: Eat, Love, Kill, is that it does not give us the typical rom-com that leads to a happy ending. Instead, it offers a more bleak and realistic ending, with everyone, including the leads, finding the answers and peace they were looking for.


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What Worked:

Link is a show that has garnered much attention because of the effective mixing of different genres. The color palette aids the environment, and the mood of the show aids the genre in the current scene. Intense and complex scenes are accompanied by a gloomy tint and scary camera angles. However, contrasting scenes included a colorful neighborhood and elements of rom-coms, like constant bickering between the leads.

The beautiful dynamic present between Da-Hyun, her mother, and her grandmother adds mostly to these contrasting scenes. Their witty dialogue and everyday antics bring an element of comic relief. However, these characters are also portrayed perfectly in darker scenes, like hiding the body of the stalker whom Da-Hyun accidentally kills. Other characters also add a lot of depth to the storyline and have many interesting backstories that beautifully gel into the main storyline.

The female lead, is a very jolly actress with a solid and determined work ethic. Her performances in shows like True Beauty and Tempted have really shown her acting capabilities. Taking all this experience into account, she does absolute justice to No Da-Hyun. Da-Hyun is a complex character with a lot of hidden struggles and emotions, which Mun Ka-Young perfectly portrays with her facial expressions. Her empathy and sentiments are clear to viewers throughout the show.

The male lead, Yeo Jin-Goo, is the recently up-and-coming actor known for Hotel Del Luna and The Crowned Clown. He has delivered many complex characters in the past and does so effectively in Link, as the celebrity sous chef Eun Gye-Hoon. Gye-Hoon holds a lot of traumas from his complicated past of losing his twin sister. He is the unorthodox male lead looking for answers until he feels the same telepathic connection he felt with his sister, with Da-Hyun. He holds the specialty of making viewers feel his emotions. Especially in the scene when his sister’s body is finally found, he delivers a dialogue that reduces the audience to tears: “I’m sorry for being so late”, with tears gushing down his face.

Lastly, an unexpected treat is that viewers get to witness tasty recipes and dishes through the TV. As Gye-Hoon is a chef, the beautiful montages of the dishes he makes with intricate recipes are an absolute delight for viewers. The camera angles follow the food and show Gye-Hoon’s attention to detail with each food recipe.


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What Didn’t Work:

Doubts related to this thriller came about because of the unnecessary dragging on of the show to reveal answers regarding the murder mystery. Fans had to wait, and sit through and absorb a lot of information until they got the central answers. This bothered many viewers and might cause some to lose interest in the series.

Another aspect that bothered viewers was the extreme damsel in distress portrayal of Da-Hyun. Fans thought that the script lacked a lot of things that could be centered around Da-Hyun, instead of her always needing Gye-Hoon to protect her. Screenwriters could have provided more liberty to the female lead in this case. Adding to this, fans also did not like how Gye-Hoon’s character was more superficial. Considering Yeo Jin-Goo’s previous, more versatile acting experiences, this character, in comparison, felt a bit stagnant.

The show also lacked action sequences, considering the storyline and some of the scenes present. Viewers felt that the show felt a bit incomplete as the action scenes were a bit less than needed. However, the screenplay writers did a decent job of not rushing the story too much. Everything happened at its own pace, provided viewers with shocks and warm-hearted moments, and wrapped up the story nicely.

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