Juvenile Justice Review: Netflix’s Korean Courtroom Drama Makes You Think About the Laws for Minor Offenders!

Juvenile Justice, aka Sonyeon Simpam, is directed by Hong Jong-chan and written by Kim Min-Seok. The Korean series stars Kim Hye-soo as Shim Eun-seok, Kim Mu-yeol as Cha Tae-joo, Lee Sung-min as Kang Won-joong, Lee Jung-eun as Na Geun hee, Park Ji-yeon as Woo Soo-mi, Park Jong-hwan as Go Gang-sik and several others. There are 10 episodes of 1-hour each. The Korean courtroom drama has is dubbed and has subtitles in English.

The synopsis reads, “Juvenile Justice deals with a judge – Eun-Seok – who dislikes juvenile delinquents, later realizing the social troubles children face and how society is also responsible for the children’s malicious behaviors.”

Netflix’s Juvenile Justice Review is Based on First 5 Episodes and Contains No Spoilers

In Netflix Korean courtroom drama series Juvenile Justice, we meet judge Shim Eun-seok, who joins a new Juvenile Court at Yeonhwa District. Shim is a no-nonsense person, with a cold stare in her eyes and a distant personality. Cha Tae-joo, who already works at the court, is Shim’s colleague, completely opposite of her. Together, they handle several juvenile cases where these minors are either offenders or victims.

Shim Eun-seok despises children a lot. Her approach towards these juveniles is somewhat similar to an adult suspect/convict. Shim believes that these minor offenders should be given the harshest punishments. She wants these young people to learn that anything wrong they do has severe consequences.

Outside the juvenile court, people are protesting against the juvenile laws for not being strict enough. These protests happen every day. Nothing breaks Shims’ beliefs. In 5 episodes, we see Shim and Cha Tae-joo handling several cases where the minors have committed inhuman crimes. Sometimes, the young ones are also at the receiving end of wrongdoings by the adults.

Juvenile Justice Still 1

Juvenile Justice makes you think about juvenile laws everywhere. Everywhere in the world, people below 16 or 18 have committed crimes that one can imagine only a sadistic or serial killer can plan. In real world, from brutal rapes to murder/mutilation of their victims, many minors have crossed every limit that terrifies a grown-up. So it does make you think – Should the minors be given a lenient punishment or a severe one like any other adult criminal considering the intensity of their crimes?

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Episodes 1 and 2 of the Netflix show Juvenile Justice send chills down your spine. It’s unsettling to see what some young kids are capable of doing. What’s disheartening is some do it for fun and have no regrets about their actions. The first 5 episodes of the Korean show are gripping and thought-provoking. So is Shim Eun-seok right when she says these minors should be given the strictest of punishments and made realise the gravity of their crimes?

Actor Kim Hye-soo as Shim Eum-seok doesn’t speak much in the beginning. However, whether in the court or to Cha Tae-joo, culprits/victims, Shim says something so compelling that you pause and think about it. Kim owns the character of Shim, making you admire and eager to get to know her more. She’s brutally honest, powerful and doesn’t bow down to anyone trying to shut her up. Kim Mu-yeol brings a great balance with his empathetic character as Cha Tae-joo alongside Shin Eun-seok. The actor is quite likeable and has his battles too.

Juvenile Justice Review: Netflix's Korean Courtroom Drama Makes You Think About the Laws for Minor Offenders!

Juvenile Justice Review: Final Thoughts

Overall, after watching the first 5 episodes, I think Netflix has given another exceptional Korean show. The courtroom drama makes one think about what’s right and what’s wrong. It’s a solid attempt to show that we still have a lot to change in our society. The narrative is intense, brilliantly presented and well-acted. Should the kids solely be held responsible for their criminal actions? Is it the parent/parents’ failed upbringing that makes them take such a dark turn? Will giving a juvenile punishment to a serious minor offender change him completely? Questions like these don’t have a definite answer.

The show is now streaming on Netflix.

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REVIEW OVERVIEW

Overall

SUMMARY

Juvenile Justice Review: Another great Korean show has arrived on Netflix. The story is gripping, brilliantly written, and well-acted.

1 COMMENT

  1. In the show people are actually protesting to abolish the juvie laws, not because the law is too harsh like the writer says, but because they are not harsh enough. The current sentiment in the Korean society is that the kids are getting smarter and are deliberately abusing the legal system, because they KNOW they will not be tried as an adult so they will not get jail time no matter the crime, even murder. All the events in the TV show are based on actual crimes that happened in Korea.

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Juvenile Justice Review: Netflix's Korean Courtroom Drama Makes You Think About the Laws for Minor Offenders!Juvenile Justice Review: Another great Korean show has arrived on Netflix. The story is gripping, brilliantly written, and well-acted.