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“Mouse” Korean Drama Review: Should Psychopaths Be Identified Before They’re Born?

Mouse Korean drama review

The Korean drama Mouse gives us an insight into psychopathic killers. The dark theme of this drama, coupled with the fact that Lee Seung-gi is the male lead, caught our attention. 

Here is a brief Mouse Korean drama review for those who are on the fence about watching the drama. However, it’s recommended to watch at least the 1st episode before reading this.

A psychopathic serial killer terrorises Korea

mouse korean drama review - poster
Image credit: tvN

Lee Seung-gi plays police officer Jung Ba-reum, who is hot on the heels of a serial murderer. Ba-reum survives a terrifying encounter with the murderer. However, his life is turned upside down while he tries to nab the killer. 


 1. A serial killer is on the loose

mouse korean drama review - dead body
Image adapted from: tvN

A headless body of a woman is found floating in the sea, and the side of her hand is tattooed with what looks like a code. She’s the 18th victim of a serial killer who brands his victims.

mouse korean drama review - unknown woman
Image adapted from: tvN

At the beginning of the 1st episode, before the body was discovered, a woman stranded during a heavy snowfall helps a little girl whose father is unconscious after a car crash.

However, while she was trying to help, the woman gets attacked by an unknown man as the little girl cries in the distance. 

The scene ends, so we don’t know what happened to the little girl, or whether this woman was the person found in the sea.

 The serial killer is nicknamed “Head Hunter”.

2. It’s possible to identify psychopaths in advance

mouse korean drama review - daniel lee
Image adapted from: tvN

The drama cuts to a scene in a university in England, where a lecture about psychopaths is taking place.

The professor, Daniel Lee, references the most notorious murderers in history: Charles Manson, Edmund Kemper and Ted Bundy. It was discovered that the genes of these 3 murderers and the psychopath gene that Daniel identified had a 100% match.

He claimed that this discovery means that it’s now possible to identify psychopaths while they’re still in the womb.

mouse korean drama review - political figures
Image adapted from: tvN

Daniel’s discovery gets tangled in politics. The unsolved serial murders pose a problem for the current political party in power, especially with the upcoming elections. We see 2 people discussing the possibility of passing a bill to legally use the DNA test proposed by Daniel Lee, but they can’t get around the issue of human rights. 

mouse korean drama review - assembly meeting
Image adapted from: tvN

Daniel is asked to return to Korea, where he explains the results of his discovery at a national assembly. The government suggests that a bill be passed so that mothers can be forced to abort her child if the DNA test shows that the fetus will be born as a psychopath.

However, the opposing party questions the accuracy of the DNA test, which is 99% accurate. The 1% is the “genius gene”, which is indistinguishable from the psychopath gene. This means that a potential genius could be misidentified as a psychopath.

A vote takes place, and the bill does not pass. 

3. “Head Hunter” is caught, but another psychopath is born

mouse korean drama review - seo-jun
Image adapted from: tvN

Later, the “Head Hunter” is finally caught. He’s no other than Daniel’s good friend, Han Seo-jun. Chillingly, he is also married to a loving woman, who is pregnant with his child.

Devastated, his wife asks him why he married her even though psychopaths are known to only love themselves. He says that it’s because he needs an offspring to be the next Han Seo-jun.

mouse korean drama review - seo-jun's wife
Image adapted from: tvN

The wife agrees to take the DNA test, and finds out that her baby does indeed have the psychopath gene. She wants to abort the baby, but she’s too far into her pregnancy to do so. We don’t know if she decided to give birth, but seeing that she was unable to abort the baby, she probably did.

mouse korean drama review - strange boy
Image adapted from: tvN

A few years later in the drama, we are introduced to a strange boy. He draws disturbing pictures and even sliced the stomach of a rabbit in school in order to check if it’s pregnant. 

His concerned teacher meets with his father, who begins to notice that his son displays violent tendencies.

mouse korean drama review - silhouette
Image adapted from: tvN

The drama brings us to the present, 15 years later. The boy is now grown up, and we hear him say that God did nothing to stop him from becoming a monster. A news reporter talks about the murder of a female college student, and the possibility of a serial killer on the loose.

The timeline fits, but we don’t know if this is really the son of Han Seo-jun. We’ll need to watch more episodes to find out. 

Verdict: 4.5/5

Mouse is perfect for fans of the thriller genre. Some scenes are particularly terrifying though, and are not suitable for the faint-hearted. 

The introduction of a DNA test that can identify psychopaths before birth is thought-provoking and worthy of a discussion with your friends after watching the drama.

The 1st episode was dedicated to setting up the background of the drama, so we have yet to see any of the main characters. But Mouse certainly got our attention, even though the main plot hasn’t started.

“Mouse” Korean drama review: Psychopaths, DNA tests & ethics

There are many questions that are yet to be answered. Is Seo-jun’s son the current serial killer, and how is Jung Ba-reum related to Seo-jun?

You can watch Mouse on Viu.

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Cover image adapted from: tvN 드라마(Drama) and tvN 드라마(Drama)