“Don’t let me dream any longer” solidifies some of the show’s ideas while retaining some mystery and ambiguity.
This recap of The Sound of Magic season 1, episode 2, “Don’t let me dream any longer”, contains spoilers.
If the first episode of The Sound of Magic was about establishing the characters and the premise, “Don’t let me dream any longer” is about really bedding in the ideas about how these people relate to one another.
Of course, as the real world continues to blend with the fantastical, there continues to be ambiguity around whether Ri-eul is actually magical or not, which is entirely the point. The theme of belief runs strongly through the premise, and it’s probably no accident that Ri-eul approaches his marks by asking them about their belief in magic. It’s much easier to convince someone who wants to be convinced.
The Sound of Magic season 1, episode 2 recap
Ah-yi is obviously susceptible to the idea of her circumstances being bettered rather than to the idea of magic itself. But that creates some moral predicaments for her since she knows that the owner of the store has gone missing thanks to Ri-eul but doesn’t quite know what that really implies or what she should do about it. On the one hand, maybe he is magic and made someone disappear. On the other, maybe he isn’t magic and kidnapped or murdered someone.
This is a predicament. Is Ri-eul following her? Even if he is, since he’s able to intervene in the loan sharks who’re definitely following her, is the fact he might indeed be following her more tolerable or justifiable?
“Don’t let me dream any longer” deliberately toys with this by having Ri-eul perform a trick… that is quickly exposed as being staged. Ah-yi is given a glimpse of potential magic and is then crushed by the disappointment of it being a trick. This relates to the whole idea of magic in general. Even if you know it isn’t real, isn’t the illusion enough?
The same ambiguity persists when Ha-na attempts to uncover Ri-eul’s secrets, including accusing him of being responsible for – or at least having knowledge of – the disappearance of Ha-yoon, a missing girl from school. Is the light-and-shadow show real? Would it implicate or exonerate Ri-eul either way? This is the beginning of a darker mystery forming in the show’s background.
But there’s a more grounded dynamic moving to the forefront, which is the relationship between Ah-yi and Il-deung. He clearly has a thing for her, but for all his academic aptitude, he just doesn’t know how to deal with it. The Sound of Magic episode 2 helps to put the point across using some stylistic flourishes, but at the center of it, really, is confusion, and that comes across well. A closing moment of Il-deung offering to pay Ah-yi to throw the math test is indicative of simply not knowing what else to do.
But the real meat on the bones of this episode is what Ei-eul begins to represent to Ah-yi beyond that idea of salvation, which is truth, here coaxing her to a realization about her mother then ties back into her current predicament and abandonment. Whether Ei-eul is properly magical or not scarcely matters – if he can allow Ah-yi to see who she really is and how she really arrived at this point, then that’s magic enough.