I never expected to find a great science fiction series from Korea, but thanks to my sister Lucy’s suggestion, I decided to watch The Silent Sea. Did this series fulfill my love for great sci-fi? Put on your spacesuit and find out in my review.
The Silent Sea
The Silent Sea is a South Korean sci-fi thriller series that is an adaptation from the 2014 short film called The Sea of Tranquility that was written and directed by Choi Hang-Yong who also directed The Silent Sea series. The series stars Bae Doona, Gong Yoo (from Squid Game), Joon Lee, Kim Sun-young, and Si-ah Kim as Luna. The first season has eight episodes. The premise of the series is that our planet is suffering from severe water shortage due to climate change.
People are dying from what little water remains, which is mostly contaminated, and food is scarce due to the desertification (fertile land becomes deserts). Governments across the globe are reduced to rationing out water based on a person’s financial status. Basically, the future of humanity is not only royally screwed, especially for the poor, but the only hope for survival is obtaining water from the moon. There is just one little problem. Something happened to the scientists already on the moon who were researching Luna water. Yes, my little astronauts, the moon does have water, and NASA is aware of this, and you can read up on it, here.
The government picks a crew to go to the Balhae station to find out what happened to the scientists and to bring back a valuable specimen. One of the crew members is Doctor Song Ji-an (Bae Doona). Doctor Song Ji-an has a personal reason to go on this mission. Her older sister was the lead scientist working on Luna water. Captain Ryoo Tae Seok (Joon Lee), who oversees this mission, also has personal reasons to go to the Moon. His young daughter is dying from drinking contaminated water, but she is promised better water and hospital care if Captain Tae Seok accepts the assignment.
Conclusion and Spoilers
The Silent Sea is a tightly, well executed script that doesn’t immediately hit you over the head with the horror elements of the story. There are enough quiet moments in the series for us to get to know the crew, and that means that we get to actually care what happens to the characters. This means when the crew begin to suffer horrific deaths after contact with Luna water…we are invested in what happens to them although not everyone on this mission has clean hands. There are two saboteurs who work for a private corporation that will get very rich if they can get their hands on the mysterious specimen.
It isn’t until the sixth episode that we learn how dangerous the Luna water is to humans or that the sole survivor of the first expedition is a young girl, Luna 073 (Si-ah Kim). Dr. Song learns through ship logs that her sister was experimenting on children. They all died except for Luna 073…but the ability to drink Luna water and survive has its drawbacks.
Like I said in the beginning, there are eight episodes, which I binge watched in one night because The Silent Sea is kick-ass awesome. You can catch the series on Netflix to find out what happens to the crew and Luna 073….and hopefully, there will be a season two.