“Who am I?” delivers a fair bit more spooky imagery as it turns out a deal with the devil comes with some interesting terms and conditions.
This recap of Detention season 1, episode 2, “Who am I?”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
Detention episode 2 opens by returning for the third time to Chao roaming the grim corridors of the Hancui Building and being accosted by Fang Jui-hsin’s ghost. As Yun-hsiang snaps awake we realize she was dreaming this sequence, but that is by no means to say it wasn’t real. The usual routine continues. Tablets are taken. Ominous warnings about “dad” are given.
Yun-hsiang has caused a fair amount of trouble at school, though, and Inspector Pai has no issues telling her mum about it. As they’re talking, we see Chao’s mangled corpse being wheeled away. Despite the efforts of Pai and the Principal, chatter about recent goings-on has not been quelled. Pai wants to whip Class 2-1 into shape, but the Principal has apparently made other arrangements. Both are fuming that the ghost-quelling rituals haven’t worked.
“Who Am I?” is largely about those rituals, since they’re Wen-liang’s family business and it’s he and his father who have to perform the latest one. But before that, we’re introduced to Shen Hua, the Principal’s son, who is the new substitute teacher in Class 2-1. He seems a cool guy, not at all down with the usual draconian measures, but isn’t he the “other arrangements” the Principal has made? Isn’t it then impossible to trust him on that basis? I’d say so. Nevertheless, he sets the class homework to determine who they are in whatever medium they choose.
Anyway, after a nighttime jaunt back to the Hancui Building — some of the students believe they can get literary advice from a ghost there — we learn a bit more about Wen-liang’s family. It was his grandfather who was really into the ghost thing, but since he died six months ago the business has been passed down, and Wen-liang is skeptical that he and his father can retain the same high standards. He’s proved pretty correct when the actual ritual to purge the Hancui Building takes place. Scenes of it are interspersed with those of Yun-hsiang inside the building, seeing the walls bleeding and spirits zipping around the corridors. This is where “Who Am I?” delivers the bulk of its classic horror visual beats, as the ghosts inside mill around and look spooky. During the ritual, Wen-liang gets a bit flustered, which leads to it not working out quite as intended. His dad is forced to hang talismans around and profusely apologize to the Principal. Will it work? Of course not!
By the end of the episode, Yun-hsiang is deeply changed by her ghostly experiences. She writes and reads aloud a very bizarre poem for her homework, all about being half-dead and hideous, and while Shen Hua is dead into it and invites her to join the poetry club, it represents a pretty fundamental shift in Yun-hsiang’s character. This is confirmed when we see her return home and look into the mirror, where her reflection is joined by that of Fang Jui-hsin. Maybe, Yun-hsiang says, she came here just to meet her. Maybe indeed.
Thanks for reading our recap of Detention season 1, episode 2, “Who am I?”. For more recaps, reviews, and original features covering the world of entertainment, why not follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page?