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K-drama Flashback: Lee Minho Stands on The Forbidden ‘DMZ The Wild’

The actor recounts a tale of tension on the border, unveiling an unknown, ironic world

Debashree Dutta Mar 04, 2022

Lee Minho in 'DMZ The Wild'

The MBC special DMZ, The Wild, a documentary by Kim Jinman introduces viewers to a restricted demilitarized zone (DMZ) that has been in place for decades. A land of land mines, barbed-wire barricades under the discreet scrutiny of the North and South Korean military. The deserted area devoid of human habitation is home to the wild; some of the rarest species of animals and birds. This nature documentary is beautifully captured and structured like a unique storytelling experience of the Hallyu superstar Lee Minho.

The four-part documentary series that premiered in April 2017, depicts a lonely land, the forbidden land where human history has created a natural paradise. This military line that separates the North and the South is the most important front in the Korean War, accounting for two-thirds of the conflict, as well as the DMZ, a military action zone that has been inaccessible for years since the truce. It is the world’s largest temperate virgin forest, where human experiences of sorrow correlate with the existence of wildlife.

The series opens with a prologue that heralds the commencement of an adventure, a unique collaboration between Kim Jinman and Lee Minho. In the first part, dubbed Endless War, Lee is on location into the woods amidst the wild narrating his experiences. The second episode, The Guardians, revolves around rare birds and aquatic animals as well as their survival strategies. The final part, Land of Coexistence, follow an encounter with the soldiers patrolling the hazardous border, those from an army unit who are on duty guarding the border, the DMZ as well as the animals.

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When you watch the episodes, you’ll see how the actor camped out in sub-zero temperatures and survived harsh climate, natural adversities in close proximity of animals, like venomous snakes, otters, wildcats, to name a few. From October 2015 to March 2017, Lee committed a year and a half to this project to raise awareness of the DMZ’s endangered biodiversity. Since it’s a high security zone under surveillance, allowing none to come within the jurisdiction of the volatile border, this documentary becomes a must watch as it unfolds the inside story. DMZ The Wild is a great piece of information with high production and entertainment value, and surely deserves to be included in our ‘K-drama Flashback’ series.