If you are a fan of Asian drama and also have affinity to watch horror, Netflix has brought you yet again another video game turned series to give you the nightmares.
The very first two episodes of the first season of Detention are out now and new episodes are to be added in the sets of two each following week this Month.
As per the plot, the eight-episode series focuses on “a tormented student” as she “uncovers unsettling secrets about her remote high school as betrayal and a paranormal encounter upend her life”.
Taiwan though fighting long for its sovereignty also has Chinese as its official language and so the show is in Chinese as well. It has been made in collaboration between Netflix and Taiwan’s independent Public Television Service – stars Lingwei Lee as Yunxiang Liu and Ning Han as Ruixin Fang.
Detention takes place in 1960s Taiwan, more than a decade into the 38-year period of martial law known as the White Terror. This period plunged the country into an oppressive Orwellian nightmare that lasted nearly four decades. Around 140,000 Taiwanese citizens were imprisoned, and up to 4,000 executed for their real or perceived dissidence toward the ruling Nationalist Party of China government at that time.
The setting of the series is quite eerie taking us to a small town in Taiwan. It seems like a time capsule for we see prohibition of books, walkmans for audio, and also usage of CDs which needs to acquired from cities and is unavailable in small towns. There is always a certain amount of haunted feeling attached with old schools, abandoned buildings, and deserted or less populated towns which has depicted vividly in the series. Rebirth or possession of a long lost spirit seeking revenge or redemption is core of the plot.
A very charming thing about Asian dramas is that is everyone is well dressed – whether it’s a fashionable outfit or a mere school uniform. Also, the sanctity of home and religion are maintained.
The actors are quite good for their age and bring out the best of what they have been directed to play.
Detention and Devotion – two separate debut titles by Red Candle Games have been added to one of the world’s biggest East Asian media preservation libraries, the Harvard-Yenching, which is located at Harvard University this year.
Yet Devotion had to be pulled down following the controversy of an in-game poster that insulted the Chinese president.
On the other hand, there has already been a movie based on Detention in 2019. The recent television adaptation aired simultaneously on Netflix and Taiwan’s independent Public Television Service.
On the fright meter, a chicken hearted can surely sense the ghostly presence while watching and give it it a 7/10.