Bloodhounds review: Compelling thriller comes with engrossing action sequences

In Bloodhounds, Gun-woo and Woo-jin, two boxers, face an evil loan shark who is bent on destroying the lives of innocents for his own profit. The series is now streaming on Netflix.


In December 2020, Kim Gun-woo and Hong Woo-jin compete at the Rookie of the Year boxing tournament. They both become friends once Gun-woo defeats Woo-jin in the finals.

Gun-woo competed to earn the winning amount so that he could help his mother pay off her debts. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, many local businesses are struggling, including Gun-woo’s mother’s cafe.

The associates of Kim Myeong-gil, the CEO of Smile Capital, scam Gun-woo’s mother by offering her a loan at lower interest rates without highlighting the extension fee she will have to pay.

When Gun-woo’s mother fails to pay the extension fee, they decimate her cafe, and Gun-woo is warned not to contact the cops. If he does, his mother will be killed. At times like these, Woo-jin stands up for his new friend.

Woo-jin’s attempt to get his friend a loan leads the both of them to Mr. Choi, a loan shark who is already investigating a client of his who might be connected to Kim Myeong-gil.


Woo Do-Hwan as Kim Gun-woo and Lee Sang-Yi as Hong Woo-jin put forth an endearing bromance on screen that has almost no conflicts, and yet somehow it works.

Both of the actors are able to convey why these characters work great together despite being complete opposites of each other. Kim Gun-woo is more of an obedient and kind guy, while Woo-jin is the cocky comic relief.

Kim Sae-Ron also shines as Hyeon-ju. She is the rebellious one who completes Kim Gun-woo and Woo-jin’s group.

Heo Jun-Ho, as Mr. Choi, stands out as an inspirational leader to the younger characters in the show. Similarly, Lee Hae-Young, as Hwang Yang-Jung, and Ryu Soo-Young, as Lee Du-Yeong, are given their time to shine as mentor figures too.

Both Hae-Young and Soo-Young’s characters have some sort of legendary story of their own, and their portrayal of these characters lives up to these stories.


Bloodhounds made the right decision of setting this story during peak COVID times. Those days elevate the plot that the show is exploring. Since it’s very recent, one understands what the local shop owners, like Gun-woo’s mother, are going through. Also, the atmosphere and characters wearing masks further push this thought and remind the viewers of these dark days.

Bloodhounds is a very simple story of good vs. evil. The show doesn’t make the story too complicated. All the twists are plain and yet so entertaining. The action, the gore, and the cut-throat situations make a viewer stay glued to the screen.

All the action sequences are well-choreographed, long, and detailed. In the earlier fight scenes, one can notice that both Gun-woo and Woo-jin heavily rely on their boxing skills to fight, and by the end of the show, they learn a lot more by being around Mr. Choi and his associates.

For every predictable plot twist, Bloodhounds brings an unpredictable one. Thus, balancing everything well. This move works for the simple plot as well as for the eager viewer.


From the fourth to the sixth episode, it feels like the show forgets that Gun-woo and Woo-jin are the lead characters. Mr. Choi, his lieutenants, and their stories overshadow them. The show should have put more focus on how these figures influence Gun-woo and Woo-jin.

The final two episodes jump off the track several times. Adding comical and unnecessarily extended scenes is not the right choice here.

Furthermore, the creators remove Hyeon-ju completely from the finale. Hyeon-ju is a strong third member of Gun-woo and Woo-jin’s group. Not giving her story a fitting end is disappointing. Especially when all the other characters get a happy ending.


Bloodhounds is an action-packed thriller that has bromance, emotions, and a lot of well-choreographed hand-to-hand combat scenes. With a very simple premise, viewers can enjoy the show without having to focus too much on the minor details.

Bloodhounds review: Compelling thriller comes with engrossing action sequences 1

Director: Kim Joo-hwan

Date Created: 2023-06-09 12:30

Editor's Rating:

Also Read: Bloodhounds summary and ending explained

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