Bulgasal Immortal Souls is a fantasy-thriller Korean drama created by Jang Young-woo, Kwon So-ra, and Seo Jea-won and stars Lee Jin-uk, Kwon Na-ra, and Lee Joon, alongside other cast members. There are 16 episodes, and Bulgasal Immortal Souls episode 1 has a runtime of 78 minutes.
Netflix describes the series as:
Cursed since birth and exempt from death, a revenge-driven immortal sets out on a quest to reclaim his soul and end a 600-year-old vendetta.
– Bulgasal Immortal Souls episode 1 recap contains major spoilers –
Bulgasal Immortal Souls episode 1 starts with two people fighting over a bridge and eventually falling over, into the water. A voiceover tells us that there were monsters a long time ago and after the death of all of them, only he remains. To put an end to this curse of immortality, he has been searching for a woman, whom we also see here.
We then cut to a bunch of people trying to walk from one place to another where they come across a horrible monster. One of the women offers up her baby and calls it cursed, saying that the Bulgasal will come for them. However, the monster runs away upon seeing her. Later that morning, her husband is unable to find her and goes out to see that she ended her life… not before she gave birth to the baby.
10 years later, the kid has grown up but is still hated by everyone around him because of what happened during his birth. After a man from the clan is killed, they all blame the boy for the misfortune. Poor thing has no one since his father ran away, and the villagers hate him. He runs away to a cave where he stays alone and must fend for himself. That night, the murdered man’s wife and kids, too, are murdered. The villagers decide to kill the kid in order to end the reign of the Bulgasal.
After a tough chase, he falls under icy water and thinks that he’s dead but is saved by someone mysterious. That morning, he wakes up in Bulgasal Immortal Souls episode 1, to find a beautiful woman looking at him. Unfortunately, the villagers find him as well and are almost about to stab him when the mysterious woman blocks their murder attempt and is stabbed instead. As she dies, the boy starts crying.
Another attempt at his life is thwarted by General Dan Geuk of Goryeo who stops them from murdering him. The kind-hearted general takes pity on him, names him Hwal and takes him with him. Before he leaves though, he is warned that the Bulgasal will kill him if he takes his side. Unaffected, General Dan rides off with Hwal and the latter looks back at the murdered woman.
17 years later, in the early Joseon era, General Dan is old and has lost one arm. He talks about Hwal, describing him as someone who has surpassed his own expertise in monster hunting. He is loved by all and the monsters fear him as much as people fear the Bulgasal. Anyway, we then see Hwal and his army fighting against a terrifying monster who can rule over people’s thoughts. The monster’s design is pretty scary and the sequence is thrilling.
Of course, there will always be people who will hate anything that you do and there are people in the ranks who do not like taking orders from a man of “low birth”. Anyway, Hwal and General Dan have a sweet moment where the latter tells him to be born as his own son in the next life – he will protect him. It is apparent that General Dan is extremely fond of Hwal, especially because his son saved his life from a monster once.
Anyway, as they are having this conversation in Bulgasal Immortal Souls episode 1, they get devastating news from home and they go back to find General Dan’s grandchild dead and his daughter inconsolable. Of course, she blames Hwal for the misfortune and he is, of course, racked with guilt over it. He is certain that it is his curse that has brought about the misfortune of those around him. After he comes home, it comes to light that Dan Sol is actually Hwal’s wife and these are their children.
Anyway, Hwal tells her that he will take A-chal with him to fight and end the reign of Bulgasal and break his curse, in Bulgasal Immortal Souls episode 1. Back at his old village, Hwal finds his old village-folk who are trying to murder another child. He takes the child away from them which results in a fight between the two factions. In between this, he sees the mysterious woman who was murdered while protecting him and he follows her. When he catches up to her, he comes to the realisation that she is, in fact, the Bulgasal.
Just when he was about to get his answers, she is shot by his men. That night, after he hears A-chal asking his mother whether he hates him because of his blindness, Hwal goes out on a quest to free his son from his curse alone. Unfortunately, though, the Bulgasal goes after the entire village and by the time Hwal comes back, it’s too late. On the bright side though, A-chal and his wife are able to escape but are followed closely by the Bulgasal.
In a heartbreaking scene, Dan Sol asks A-chal to run and find his father and the poor boy blindly screams for him and walks in random directions in the woods. Meanwhile, Sol tries to fend off against the Bulgasal alone while Hwal tries to follow his son’s voice. Sadly, though, they both die gruesomely at the Bulgasal’s hand. In the short time we know Hwal’s family, it is heartbreaking to see A-chal dying in his father’s arms without ever knowing how he looks.
As he mourns his family’s death, Hwal is stabbed by the Bulgasal, but miraculously comes back to life.
Final Thoughts: Bulgasal Immortal Souls episode 1
Bulgasal Immortal Souls episode 1 has a lot happening here. Monsters, ghouls, humans who kill monsters and whatnot. It’s an interesting story filled with mysticism and intrigue. The first episode, of course, only creates the base for the upcoming 15 episodes and it’ll be interesting to see the direction it takes after this.
Bulgasal: Immortal Souls is streaming on Netflix.Instagram & Facebook to keep yourself updated with the latest news and reviews.