Crime Scene

And so to South Korea, home of the amazing The Genius, for this Summer’s Worthwhile Bother’s Bar Reality Game Discussion Page, that of Crime Scene.

South Korean hero Bumdidlyumptious is subbing the series into English. Here’s where you’ll find links to episodes and here is her Twitter for latest news.

crimescene

This game stars six Korean celebs – some you may recognize, some new ones (Bother’s Bar mascot Hong Jinho, Jun Hyanmoo, Park Jiyoon, Henry, Lim Banggeul, NS Yoonji) and together they play a game that’s part Whodunnit murder-mystery dinner and part One Night Werewolf

Someone has been murdered (fictionally) and the six contestants pick roles of six people who might have been the murderer. Each of them gets some time to learn the character, their motiviations and movements. One of them however is the murderer and is aware of all the clues that point to them and throughout the course of the game must try and throw suspicion onto the other characters.

Each case spans two episodes, the first one is largely exposition – the characters explained, they get to go around the crime scene looking for clues, some discussion. The second episode for me is where the real meat lies – by this point the contestants are more into their characters and take playing detective more seriously. At the end, they all vote on who they think the murderer is. The person with the most votes goes to “jail” and we’ll find out if they’ve been correctly convicted or not – a correct conviction by the majority means that majority gets to take bags of gold coins, if the murderer walks free they get to take all the bags of coins that would have been won by the incorrect majority.

It starts as a game of exploration, becomes a game of logic and ends up being a really fun game of bluff.

It’s very stylishly done (i.e. uses the Tron Legacy soundtrack) and has a fun live viewer participation poll element.

I don’t think it’s as good as The Genius, but I certainly think it would have an easier chance of translating to the West.

We started discussing this in the comments on the Bar, here’s where we discussed episode one and we had a quick chat about episode two here. You should discuss the show further here. New eps go up around Tuesday.

SPOILERS: Once an episode has gone out with English subs it’s fair game for discussion. Enter at your own risk!

62 thoughts on “Crime Scene

  1. David B

    Incidentally, I hear there is a small flurry of international sales for The Genius, so you never know…

    Reply
  2. Brig Bother Post author

    EPISODE THREE:

    Whassup! An amusing look at the Korean interpretation of the UK Sixth Form system, there.

    Alright, that was fun, although I think it’s reinforced the issue I have in my mind is that the issue with the first episode of each two-parter is that there’s not enough pointed revelation really – they play up the motive so much (which is reasonable enough) but it’s edited so that they’ve basically all got grounds for the murder, and the actual proper meat – howdunnit – doesn’t really come into it until the hints start coming at the end of the episode.

    That said, I think they’ve put more effort into pointing out why things might be interesting during the crime scene investigation bit (and it read like all the clues including the missed ones would be online after the episode). But you do kind of know that large amounts are going to be irrelevant because the hint will turn it all on its head. It makes for a good story to be sure, but it’s also something you’d need to eliminate or do a bit more cleverly if you bought it over to the West. Right now the casting is boosting it. I was amused when they revealed Henry got told off for not taking the first one seriously enough!

    I don’t know who the murderer is. But I’m sure they couldn’t possibly do it “cover it with sound” two murders in a row, surely?

    Reply
  3. Matt Clemson

    Wassup?

    The bit that’s struck me in the second case is how quickly they’ve reacted to feedback; not just teasing Henry, but also the improvements to the direction – the helpful shots indicating interesting objects in a given room – and a notable gameplay change in the change to the way the first vote is run in order to encourage discussion.

    Part of me wants to see if I can find details of the case, given it’s British. The other part wants to avoid spoilers.

    Reply
  4. Deo

    Wassup?

    I felt kinda sad when Henry get the “hot water”. The hunting clues does really get “revised” and makes things more interesting. But why they don’t visit the teacher’s laptop? We will never know :/

    I have a question. Does school really goes until 9 pm in UK?

    Reply
    1. Brig Bother Post author

      Ha ha, it bares very little resemblance to the UK school system.

      I suspect the closest idea was that it’s based on sixth-form – kind of the step between high school (secondary school) and university between the ages of 16-18. Unless it’s changed in the fifteen years since I’ve been there, classes tend to end 3:30-4ish, certainly not 9pm, although I don’t doubt that many places will offer extra-curricular activities after normal hours (mine certainly did, we used to play Magic: The Gathering in one of the rooms for hours one night a week).

      Certainly my sixth form wouldn’t expect you to wear a uniform. Especially a bright pink one.

      Reply
      1. Matt C

        I was wondering if it could actually be a boarding school. That’d account for staying particularly late, at least.

        Reply
        1. Deo

          But her mother asked her victim to go home together. Certainly, it’s not boarding school.

          Ps: Indonesia school starts at 6.30 am (yes, that early ) until 3 pm in high school.

          Reply
          1. Matt C

            My parents were teachers, and at one point my mother was a teacher at the school I was enrolled in; I’d hang around in the evening until she’d got her stuff done before she took me home. So I guess that’s one way things could happen: Mother works at a boarding school, since she works there she enrolled her daughter there, but they don’t actually stay overnight on the premisis.

        2. Deo

          Oh. I know why school lasts until 9 pm in crime scene.

          In South Korea, school DO lasts until 9 PM. 🙁

          Reply
      2. Alex

        My sixth form made you wear a uniform. It was basically in a school with exactly the same hours and occassional afternoons off for ‘study leave’ (Counter Strike).

        Reply
  5. Jenny

    OK I cheated – I watched the Chinese subs for Ep4.

    This Case #2 is definitely much better than Case #1 as it does not depend on straightforward evidence like the CCTV which eliminated most of the suspects at a go. We as the audience have better overall view of the whole setting so some crucial points were not that difficult to pick up. The cast, on the other hand, had limited perspective on-set and had to make reasonable deductions given their own meticulous investigations and thorough search, so it was really tough on them. Well, I guess having played an interesting escape room over the weekend made me more empathetic towards them, haha!

    The editing and production improved quite a fair bit in such a short time; the pace is now more snippy and engaging, so kudos to the production team. (The producer was quite new I think. His previous work was a just-for-laughs variety show tailored for Shinhwa, the longest running idol group in Korea at 16 years.)

    There will be two new guests next week. Henry will be replaced by another idol Minhyuk. The other new guest, probably to lend even more authenticity, is a veteran police officer who has more than 20 years of experience.

    Reply
  6. Deo

    Hail physiognomy!

    I was completely fooled, and that physchio…bleh….. turns out to be so real.

    I can’t really comment for this episode. I’m just…speechless… What a twist. Congrats, murderer! Just, wow.

    Reply
  7. Brig Bother Post author

    You deduction idiots!

    That was hysterical. I loved it when they went looking for the button, and then didn’t find it AND THEN DID FIND IT AND IT WAS SO EXCITING and it then wasn’t whose they thought it was.

    Jinho is such a good game player, always thinking a move ahead.

    I still believe episode twos are way better than episode ones. All the interesting stuff comes out in them.

    Reply
    1. Jenny

      SPOILER: It’s hard not to be awestruck by Jinho. He thought many steps ahead of others. The button ‘cover-up’ , voting strategy and convincing speech were master strokes.

      Reply
  8. Brig Bother Post author

    Although I hope they don’t do “cover it with sound” AGAIN next week. Maybe that’s quintessential to all murders, I don’t know.

    Reply
  9. Deo

    But there’s one thing that doesn’t make sense? Where did the second flute hidden? Anyone?

    Reply
    1. Matt Clemson

      I assume the second flute was irrelevant. A music room has music supplies in it, and one of them was an empty flute case.

      Reply
  10. Deo

    I like the name of the play on the ticket at the crime scene: “I don’t stutter but I murder”-by Jinho.
    They really tease him, don’t they?

    Reply
  11. Jenny

    Gosh, this is even more difficult than the previous two cases. I can’t really eliminate anyone, though my prime suspects based on what were revealed so far would be Secretary Kim and Employee Yoon. My guesses for cause of death: chemical emitted by humidifier (only fatal for people with heart problems), or electrocution because of water spilled (killer later activated sprinklers to cover the water tracks).

    The cases and pace are getting better and better, you can sense excitement building up esp at the end, when they were about to reveal the cause of death. I am developing new theories every time I run the case over my mind, gah!

    Reply
  12. Brig Bother Post author

    I’m a deduction idiot so I’ve basically got no idea, but I particularly enjoyed the briefing session (especially Director Ma’s), and then the Detective saying it’s probably a woman and then voting for Director Ma.

    It’s really interesting having a proper professional detective on the show, for the programme makers surely they have to be really hoping he gets it right to lend the show an air of authenticity and not just some celebs mucking about.

    I’m intrigued as to what when and how much the celebs are briefed about the minutiae their characters because certainly in the edit they’re very quick to come up with answers to questions that may or may not be relevant – like the sudden “can you control the sprinklers from the security room?” one, which you’d probably need to know the answer to if you were the murderer so you can lie about it but would probably not have a detailed prepared response if you weren’t.

    Reply
    1. Matt Clemson

      I don’t buy the “Stalker security guard” possibility; it all seems a bit of a public murder for that. Which doesn’t necessarily rule out Jinho’s character, but if it is him, I don’t think it’s as simple a motive as that.

      My gut feeling is that the humidifier is in some way the murder weapon. It’s kind of prominent and airborne poison that dissipates is a good means of killing someone. Could be a red herring, naturally.

      I’m still convinced there’s some more significance to the fact that so many people went to the toilet at similar times to one another. I’m thinking the sprinklers may be a coincidental red herring, too; if the fire alert *hadn’t* happened, when and how would the body have been discovered, I wonder?

      Reply
      1. Lewis

        I’m guessing the coffee cup is a double bluff. Everyone here is going “oh that’s too obvious, it’s the humidifier” but I think the humidifier is a bit too Phoenix Wright, by which I mean the coffee cup is the obvious thing so it’s not that so it’s the *next* most obvious thing. That or she was just strangled.

        I think the detective is at a bit of a disadvantage here, normally he’d have more police techniques than just questioning and simple observation, forensic techniques that aren’t available here. Or maybe they are given the DNA analysis last week, who knows! I’d be surprised if nobody asks for a chemical analysis of the coffee next week, but the sprinklers might have diluted any remaining poison to being undetectable.

        What I’m most curious about is if the viewers at home knew something last week (and especially on episode 3) that the contestants and I didn’t know. Jinho was the prime viewer suspect almost from the get-go, either they had something obvious on the website that was mentioned or they believed the ridiculous physiognomy argument!

        Reply
        1. Lewis

          Oh also I think it’s one of the girls. I’m guessing the producers wouldn’t want the same person to be criminal twice in a row, for various reasons, and the easiest way to do that is to alternate criminal gender each week. Also also I’m looking forward to Sunggyu on week 7!

          Reply
  13. Brig Bother Post author

    From Bump’s Twitter:

    “Lim Banggeul had to pull out of Crime Scene because of her schedule. Kang Yongsuk will replace her and it’ll be 1 episode per case now.”

    Really interested to see how doing a case in one ep pans out.

    Reply
  14. Matt Clemson

    So, without spoiling Episode 6 at all… do I take it from the end trailer that in Episode 7, they’re all playing men?

    Reply
    1. Jenny

      Looks like it. Five prisoners and one (sexy, short-haired) warden. The highlight for Ep7 will be the ‘reunion’ of Jinho and Sunggyu, about a year after their initial link-up in “The Genius”.

      Reply
    2. Brig Bother Post author

      Although I haven’t watched it yet (and won’t until Thursday sadly) feel free to spoil and discuss away now that ep 6 has gone up!

      Reply
  15. Jenny

    Spoiler: Tears change (almost) everything. Hurhur.

    The detective found all the right clues, like cause of death being electrocution, the correct cut live wire and possibility of sleeping pills that ‘immobilised’ the victim, but well, too bad…

    The Venn diagrams by Jiyoon (Agent Jang) impressed me the most, as it singled out the killer explicitly. She also stuck to her guns and remained unswayed by the tears, maybe because she is female as well.

    Jinho (Security Chun Boan) deduced the correct method of activating the sprinklers. He was also very sharp in noticing that everywhere in the office was soaked except the toilets, and concluded that the toilets did not have sprinklers. This raised his suspicion that someone seemed to have reacted way too quickly given that she claimed that she had been in the toilet when the water from the sprinklers came down.

    TBH I have come to love the 2ep/case format as it heightens suspense and gives lots of room for viewers to play detective. Too bad now they have chosen to reveal the killer in the same episode instead of the next.

    Reply
    1. Lewis

      Personally I think the format change is a good thing, and I can use an example actually…

      You say that it leaves room for the viewer to play detective, and that’s partially true. But given what happened in this case, there was really no way that the viewer could accurately do so. There was no way, based on what we actually saw in episode 5, to know that electrocution rather than poison was the cause of death. The hints given by production like the CCTV footage are vital aspects of any actual criminal investigation, so correctly deducing anything is going to be hard without them given at the start of the second episode.

      I also think, as has been pointed out here, that the first episode feels rather slow, in that we get everyone’s alibi and a fair amount of speculation on motive, but we don’t tend to see concrete evidence found in anyone’s first 10 minute investigation. And it’s hard to find something concrete in those 10 minutes, since you have an entire house/school block/office building/prison to search through and only 10 minutes to do it. The decisive-evidence raincoat from case 1 was never going to be found, it was too well-hidden to be found given the restrictions the cast had on their investigation and the number of possibilities.

      Reply
      1. Matt Clemson

        …which does lead into another point: I’m *very* impressed with how rapidly they’ve taken in feedback and adapted. Over here I suspect they’d stick with one format for *at least* an entire series of a programme and only then think about modifications in a post-mortem afterwards. Here, though, they were changing up the formula from as early as the second case!

        One thing does strike me, though: This is a fixed-duration series, with a preplanned number of episodes. If they went in at the outset with the intention of running five cases over the ten episodes, and at this stage are swapping to one case/episode, suddenly they’re increasing the amount of cases they have to film; two extra sets, two extra storylines, two extra wardrobes… and given the *rate* they’re producing them at, they have to churn those out in a couple of weeks.

        That’s assuming the episode count isn’t changing, of course (which would be, conversely to above, a *bad* sign!), or if they’re doing something more complex with their structure.

        Reply
        1. Brig Bother Post author

          I think the plan was always ten episodes. I’m sure it wouldn’t be that hard to come up with two more scenarios – the wardrobes and props seem pretty generic, although filming a few more inserts might add a little to the budget. It looks like a two week lead-time.

          Very interested to see how well they can condense it into single eps (although for all we know it might just be 2.5 hour episodes). I stand by the idea that the ep ones don’t really tend to eliminate people and it doesn’t really get going until the hints are revealed, but it is quite important to have a bit of backstory and motive.

          Reply
    1. Jenny

      E07 is based off a case from the US, and apparently quite a high-profile one, since I see that The Boston Globe did a special on it.

      Reply
  16. Brig Bother Post author

    Well that was basically hilarious, lots of quite fun red herrings, and Jinho solves it again! Although more by intuition than deduction I think.

    I think they’ve done quite well in knocking 50 minutes off the runtime, it all felt like killer and no filler. I think I miss the mid-game vote as a fun diversion though.

    Reply
    1. Matt Clemson

      With all the little diversions and puzzles it made me think that I’d love to see a modern Korean take on The Adventure Game.

      Yeah, I think they did very well at making it a more manageable size. The new lawyer rankled against me at first but grew on me over time, I’d like to see how he develops over time. What’s War of Words?

      Was the right-hand side of the set almost entirely surplus to requirements? Not sure there was much of importance over there.

      Was surprised by the casual mention to tune in next week at 11pm. I’d never really imagined it as such a late-night show.

      Once again, the next time trailer made me do a double-take.

      Reply
      1. Jenny

        “War of Words” or “Sseul Jeon” is a commentary programme (also on JTBC) that critiques the latest Korea entertainment happenings, and at times how they reflect and relate to the socio-political scene in Korea. The panel of hosts (9 of them?) include Crime Scene’s ace Park Jiyoon, CS’s new lawyer player Kang Yongsuk and Kim Gura (of The Genius season 1).

        The right-hand set of the set is pretty much useless save for the kitchen/restaurant where the ice cubes were taken. I guess having to search a bigger set served to confuse and stress the players out? Some had raised the doubt if the murder weapon was really workable in reality, but I thought it as being quite an ingenious idea.

        I think Jinho’s method so far is by way of elimination. Only two other people besides the victim could have possibly known about the blackout – Larcenist Park and Pickpocket Kang (assuming he lied about only helping to steal the ice but not the blackout plan). However, Kang had a difficult obstacle in sharing of room with Kim so movement and absence would have been obvious, whereas Park stayed on his own.

        Reply
  17. Deo

    Here’s a note:

    if you think, you failed to guess the criminal and you think you are deduction idiots?

    Fear not!

    1 % of the viewer choose the guard. This 1 % is the TRUE deduction idiot.

    ( And yes, I got this one right =) _

    Reply
  18. JC

    Fun episode. I was completely thrown by Jinho’s “in the same way” comment, which I couldn’t rationalize in any other way than a guilty Freudian slip.

    I like the new format, though I’m struggling to see how the suspects could have uncovered the glow in the dark clue given it was hidden underneath the body.

    The recent closing statements have been good at explaining how the murder was committed but poor at demonstrating the logic that could be used to identify the murderer correctly – e.g. the raincoat in case 1, and the clocks in the school (my favourite so far).

    Reply
  19. Poochy.EXE

    I quite like the single-episode format, since the old format felt a little too slow at times.

    But I’m also starting to wish they’d find some cleverer guests at this point. Henry spent most of his time being a total crackpot, and this time Lawyer Kang quickly got tunnel vision of the sort that usually gets people eliminated in no time flat on The Mole. Surely they could’ve found better players than them.

    Reply
  20. Jenny

    IMO E08 is really a dampener. Too straightforward plot, restricted setting and requirement for specialised knowledge mean the suspect is too easy to deduce.

    Two more episodes left for the season. Heard the favourable response for season one has paved the way for a second season, but one thing for sure it’ll take months to return. Just look at The Genius.

    Reply
    1. Poochy.EXE

      Thanks to the last couple episodes, I had actually overthought the metagame and expected the specialized knowledge part to be an intentional red herring, since on more than one occasion we’ve seen one last revelation during the second on-site investigation leading a couple players astray. The actual criminal ended up being my #2 suspect because of that.

      On the other hand, it was far too easy to eliminate the delivery boy early on. I think this in turn gave Lawyer Kang a lot more freedom to both investigate as well as convince the others later on, since it was pretty obvious he wasn’t the criminal, and that ended up blowing the case wide open. I think that was the main flaw of the episode. But at the same time, it allowed us to see plenty of cleverness from Lawyer Kang, which was a nice change of pace from Jinho always being the clever one.

      Reply
  21. Deo

    Ah.. I failed….

    I have no comment, but here’s two thing that made me love this episode

    1 > Here’s a tip for watching it : Mute the sound and think that the mother-in-law has the sound of “Big Mama” (I did it since the beginning and I have good time.

    2 > Lawyer Kang did great =)

    Reply
  22. Brig Bother Post author

    I like the fact that all the characters are being renamed [Job] [Contestant], presumably to make it a bit easier to follow.

    However I did find myself not really being very bothered this week, as I suspect we’ve basically seen everything the show’s got to offer. There’s only so much you can do with a stage and a couple of rooms and some standard props. I think if you were to do this in the West it’d have to be on location.

    Reply
  23. Deo

    I hate how the money is distributed… But by far this is the most hardest case and the most scariest ones.

    And saw the most shocking twist of idiot and genius, by yourself =)

    But about the competition prize, after 7 cases, $850 is really small. ($850/7 taping is $121, While The Genius is $79000/12 taping is $6583)

    PS: I got it right! Yes!

    Reply
    1. Brig Bother Post author

      Haven’t watched it yet, but fully expect the players would have got an appearance fee for each episode to make up for it. They were hosting as well, effectively.

      Reply
  24. Nico W.

    I just watched a couple of episodes and I think the format at the end was better than splitting cases up. However the show wasn’t really all that surprising to me. This means I didn’t always get the criminal right, but I didn’t bother much. And I think there wasn’t enough money at stake in the final. I think they were paid for appearing, but 121$ is probably less than the value of the prizes the viewers could get. Seems a bit unfair to me, but all in all I’d be happy to see a Western adaptation. Do we know anything about the Dutch version of Genius? I remember I read the bought the rights, but will it air this year?

    Reply

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