‘The Glory’ K-Drama Gets a Twist as Director Admits to School Bullying
The Netflix K-drama, The Glory has re-sparked popularity as it premiered its second had of the first season. Its storyline has captured global attention as writer Kim Eun-seok was inspired by real-life bullying stories and a haunting question her daughter asked her. But as fans watched The Glory Part 2 continues Dong-eun’s quest for revenge, they never expected the K-drama director to be exposed for past bullying.
Real-life events inspired ‘The Glory’ main character’s story
Dong-eun was the victim of heinous bullying as a teenager by a group of wealthy and elite students led by Yeon-jin. The brutality she experienced from her almost pushed her to the edge of death until she realized they did not deserve to win. Instead, Dong-eun gives up her lifelong dream of becoming an architect, drops out of school, and plans her revenge on her. Almost two decades later, she has perfected her plan to tear apart the lives of her bullies. All the while, she never committed a crime or got her hands dirty.
The Glory is another K-drama that spots the prevalent issue of the vicious bullying cycle teens face in South Korea. The bullying stories are not simple problems like gum in the hair and nasty words written on school lockers but full-fledged physical abuse, mistreatment, and lack of adult intervention.
Fans were left in utter shock over the most horrific abuse Dong-eun faced at the hands of Yeon-jin. Her favorite way of torture was pressing a searing hot curling iron onto Dong-eun’s skin in multiple places. youI have Glory had a heartbreaking moment as Dong-eun revealed the scars as proof to Yeo-jeong why she is hellbent on revenge.
But the scars were inspired by a real-life bullying case. According to The Korean Herald, the incident occurred in May 2006 at a girls’ middle school in Cheongju, North Chungcheong Province. It is almost precisely as the K-drama described. Three female students burned their classmate with a curling iron. They would also peel her scabs from her to keep the wounds fresh. As they were minors, they were not punished.
‘The Glory’ director was accused of bullying during his high school years
Days before the official premiere of The Glory Part 2, fans were in for the shock of their lives. A K-drama so heavily seen with the long-term and emotional effects of school bullying would experience its own scandal. According to Koreaboo, The Glory Principal Ahn Gil-ho was accused of past high school bullying.
A netizen broke the story and was interviewed about the events. The netizen claimed they had learned that Ahn was directing the revenge K-drama and its overall storyline and could not keep quiet. While claiming they have no issue with his success de él, “However, I can’t forgive him for having the audacity to direct a drama dealing with school bullying like The Glory.”
Per the incident reported by the netizen, Ahn was a high schooler in the Philippines and was dating a middle schooler at the time. The netizen and a few others teased his then-girlfriend of him. Ahn ordered them to be brought to him. He and other students assaulted them. “He threatened to stab us with a knife. We were assaulted for about two hours,” explained the netizen.
While hesitant to come forward with the incident, the netizen’s Korean friends encouraged them. The netizen explained that if Ahn denied the claims, they would come forward with testimony from the people involved. but does The Glory Principal admits to bullying, or does he claim innocence?
K-drama director comes clean about what happened in high school
According to Soompi, Ahn initially claimed innocence about the bullying and had no recollection of hitting someone. Koreaboo reported that Ahn’s then-girlfriend came forward to explain what had happened. She claimed that the teasing did not warrant the extreme violence that occurred.
“Contrary to what people think, my friends didn’t tease me to the extremes. It was more like the usual joking around and bickering among friends…If I knew my friends would be assaulted like that, I wouldn’t have told him about it at all,” she said. Another witness explained that the wounds the victims were given could not have easily been forgotten.
But on March 12, according to Soompi, Ahn issued an apology. He admitted to the events that took place in 1996 while studying abroad in the Philippines. Ahn explained that he had learned his then-girlfriend from him was being teased, and “he momentarily got emotional and gave another person an unforgettable wound.”
In recent years, actors and celebrities have made headlines with many accusations of school bullying. Some have been proven true or have been fabricated. The Glory director’s bullying reveal hit harder due to the intense subject matter of the K-drama.