“Tomorrow” K-Drama Raises Awareness On Suicide, 3 Points To Ponder

Tomorrow (2022) is a fantasy-action Korean drama that explores social issues, raises awareness on suicide, and prevents cases by helping concerned people change their mindset and ways.

The show is rated 18+ that contains violence, substances, sexual violence, suicide, and self-harm. Every episode begins with a warning that says, “Tomorrow is a fantasy series about a special team who takes care of humans with a high risk of suicide. If you are struggling with these themes, this show may not be right for you.”

The topic sounds heavy yet arouses curiosity for viewers who can handle in watching it. The various stories of suicide in four episodes so far, are realistic in illustrating what they experience mentally and emotionally. The camera works, technical effects, musical score, as well as the cinematography look highly impressive while the actors’ performances are all great.

Despite its delicate theme, actor Rowoon’s character as an innocent and gullible Grim Reaper makes the drama somehow lighter and fun to watch.

However, here are three points to ponder and consider while watching the series:

1. It’s an eye-opening experience that allows you to see the inner battles of a person who takes one’s own life.

Suicide is one of the most serious health concerns worldwide. According to World Health Organization (WHO), more than 700,000 people take their own life every year and that South Korea is the fourth highest country on suicide rate in the world.

The Korean series, Tomorrow, which started airing last April 1, 2022, explores this topic with lifelike stories. Although fictional, it serves as an eye-opening experience that unearthes what goes on in the mind of a person who takes one’s own life.

Without going into the details of every story to avoid spoilers, here are some examples of conversations that conveys the emotions of someone struggling helplessly:

“What changes when you die? What does that solve?”

“At least I won’t be miserable.”

“It feels like everyone’s moving ahead and I’m the only one who’s lost my way. Like I’m the only loser. Like I’m the only one standing still.”

“With time, you should’ve forgotten about it. If you couldn’t, you should’ve overcome it. You think everything will be over if you die?”

“At least it’ll hurt less than it does now.”

  • “I feel like I’m trapped in a never-ending forest of time.”
  • “Tomorrow will be no different from today, so will it be any different a year from now?”
  • “Rather than living like this, I thought dying would be the better option.”
  • “You don’t know what this pain is like. You can’t even imagine it.”
  • “It might have been just a moment for you, but for me, it’s been a lifetime. The trauma.”
  • “He’s not doing anything. It’s as if time has stopped for him.”
  • “There was something broken about her. She was trapped in the past. Like a prisoner. Unable to forget…”
  • “Those who stomp on others don’t remember. Only those who get stomped on remember.”
  • “Some people are the opposite. Their past becomes more painful as time goes by and becomes wounds, and when they can’t bear it anymore, they make that drastic decision.”

2. It illustrates the reality on how society deals and responds differently with a person’s pain.

The drama’s approach in showing different kinds of perspective and responses on pain and suicide is somewhat true and realistic.

Firstly, it introduces the objective person who sees the act of suicide more than the struggling person.

  • “Suicide is a form of murder. It’s a brutal murder of themselves.”
  • “How is taking your own life any different from murder? It is the most selfish act, with no consideration of the pain of those left behind.”
  • “Suicide is the biggest mistake a human can make and a crime that should never be committed.”
  • “Pain is the essence of life. It’s a living human’s fate to struggle and move forward in spite of that pain.”

Secondly, it introduces the empathic person who sees the person in pain more than the act of suicide.

  • “These people have been pushed by the world to the edge of the cliff. Do not make light of their choices.”
  • “It is the final cry for help from those who wish to live more than anyone else.”
  • “Their lives could have been in that much pain. They might not have had any other choice.”
  • “They just want to smile and live normal lives. It’s not that they want to die. It’s that they just didn’t want to live like that. So don’t talk about them like that when you don’t know anything about them.”

Thirdly, it introduces the passive person who dismisses the topic and rejects the person in need.

  • “No one ever helps because they’re scared it’ll affect them. It’s the same then and now. Nothing has changed. It’s like a tunnel with no end.”
  • “The world is all the same. Whether it’s at school or at work, no one sides with losers like you.”
  • “People like you always say you were just joking after trampling on someone’s soul. But it’s hell for those on the receiving end. Do you know that?”

3. The drama provides encouraging advices on life, but in the real world, help is also available.

The drama introduces the Risk Management Team from Jumadeung Company whose special mission is to prevent suicide and save those who are about to give up on their lives. It is composed of three Grim Reapers, played by Rowoon, Kim Hee-sun, and Yoo Ji-on.

The drama also offers help to those who are struggling with this health concern, providing a link at the beginning of each episode that says, “For more information and crisis resources, please visit Wanna Talk About It.”

Here are other available resources online:
Open Counseling
Psychology Today

Meanwhile, here are some motivational pieces of advice from the series:

“Failure means you should try again. You just have to keep trying hard. Then it’ll work out one day. It will.”

“As you live, there will come a moment when you realize it was all for today. So live.”

“It looks like a passing shower. It’s going to pass by soon, so don’t stand in the rain all by yourself.”

“Thank you for hanging in there and for not giving up.”

Copyright 2022. Myra Bansale for KORB Blog.

Genre: Action, Drama, Fantasy
Synopsis: The series depicts the grim reapers who guided the dead to save the people who want to die.
Based on: a webtoon, Tomorrow by Llama
No. of episodes: 16
Starring: Kim Hee-sun, Rowoon, Lee Soo-hyuk, Yoon Ji-on
Written by: Park Ran-i, Park Ja-kyung, Kim Yu-jin
Directed by: Kim Tae-yoon, Sung Chi-wook
Original network: MBC, Netflix
Date: April 1 to May 21, 2022

Photos: MBC Drama