[Webtoon Wednesday] Mad Dog

Title: Mad Dog

Author/Artist: Haribo

Rating: Adult

Genre: BL, gangster/crime, enemies-to-lovers

Hosted On: Lezhin

Official Link(s): English

Official Summary:

Some people thirst for power while others want nothing more than to live low. Hamin has always been resentful of the label that comes with being his father’s son—he didn’t ask to be born into a mob family! After much trial and error, Hamin finally breaks ties with his family and begins to live the life he’s dreamed about. That is, until he gets kidnapped and finds himself under the protection of a certain Kwon Sehyuk. All Hamin wants is his “normal” life back, but Sehyuk is as far from normal as a person can get…

My Thoughts:

I love a good gangster series, but it takes me a while to settle into them. This is maybe my first Korean organized crime series and I honestly picked it up because I enjoyed the unhinged energy of the “top” in the series, Sehyuk from the cover! I’m actually obsessed with Sehyuk.

When Sehyuk first saw Hamin when they were teenagers, he fell for him despite the physical and social distance between them3. It was a one-sided obsession that lasts over the years, culminating in Sehyuk rescuing Hamin after another criminal group sets their sights on him in order to get access to his father. After years apart, both men have changed. Sehyuk has become the “mad dog” right-hand-man of Hamin’s abusive father while Hamin has cut ties with the man and seeks to live a normal life, far from the violent shadow that stretched overhead for years. Sehyuk, in his adulthood, sees Hamin as an interesting toy that he can play with until he gets bored. Hamin, in love with his secretive senior, thinks Sehyuk is a boundary-pushing asshole who needs to leave him alone. They clash at every single possible point that they can, but while it’s serious for Hamin… Sehyuk thinks it’s all a cheeky joke.

Mad Dog is absolutely a tricky enemies-to-lovers romance. Hamin doesn’t quite understand it, but as annoying as Sehyuk is (and how dangerous…) he’s not the real bad guy in the story. That much becomes clear a few chapters in. And Hamin’s virtue (and virginity) might be at risk from Sehyuk, but there are worse things in this world –

Especially because the family of Hamin’s senior… is the group gunning for him and the higher ups made it clear that trafficking Hamin is absolutely on the radar for him.

Aside from the temptation and the cat-and-mouse aspect of their relationship, what draws me to Sehyuk and Hamin’s relationship is the way the couple seems trapped in a cycle of predestination. It feels as though, despite how badly Hamin wanted to escape his father’s shadow and the stain of being a “gangster’s son”, with Sehyuk at his side… that’s exactly what he’s going to become. There’s something about the trajectory they seem set on… It seems like there’s a high potential that Hamin will become a monster on his own terms.

Now I could be wrong, I’m halfway through the series so far because I’m dragging it out, but the energy… it just feels like the path our dudes are on… is going to be awful. Fully entertaining. But awful. I’m really looking forward to seeing how things develop … or devolve… in the future of this series!

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