Sunday, October 17, 2021

Kara Para Aşk (Black Money Love): Bölüm 1 (2014)

Series Summary (from Fun Network):
 Omer is a police officer. After the death of his fiancée he suffers great pain. Sibel, Omer's fiancée's, body was found on the top of a cliff, in a car next to a fairly old, rich business man. After the shock of her sudden death and the accusations of his love cheating on him, Omar realizes that there is more behind her suspicious murder.

I'm watching this because ... My reasons are two-fold. 1. After the series finale of Baht Oyunu and the decent into total telenovela drama by Aşk Mantık İntikam, I wanted something different. So I knew I'd be choosing a drama (rather than my usual romcom) as my next dizi. 2. Barbra Streisand posted about this on Instagram a few weeks ago, and I thought, "Why not?" So I picked this one over the zillions of other dramas available on Fun Network.

Recap: The story begins with Omer and his team rescuing a bunch of children being held by ... I'm guessing a trafficker? (This part wasn't super clear.) Omer receives public recognition for this rescue, and he is granted one month leave as a reward. This is perfect, as he has postponed his engagement ceremony with Sibel, his elementary teacher fiancée, due to his work. Following a night out with Sibel, he takes her home and spends some time with her family. The engagement ceremony is scheduled for the next day, and Omer and Sibel banter about the ring - she wants to see it, and he tells her to wait for the ceremony. Omer leaves Sibel with her family, and he goes to hang out with two of his friends who are also police officers.

Meanwhile, Elif has just returned home (maybe from Italy), and her family throws her a surprise 31st birthday party. Elif's father is a famous businessman, and the two are very close. He ends up leaving the party early because of work.

Early in the morning, Omer's friend gets a call about two people who were found dead in a car. Even though he's on leave, Omer decides to go along. When they arrive, they find two people who were shot through the head - Elif's father and Sibel. Omer is shocked and confused - Sibel was a school teacher who seemingly lived a quiet life, and he knows he left her at home with her parents a few hours before. He has no idea how she could be connected to this man.

Omer and Elif first cross paths at the morgue - he has just said goodbye to Sibel (he put the engagement ring on her finger 😭), and she is going to identify her father. The episode ends with Elif arriving at the police station to answer some questions about her father. (Note: This is where the Netflix first episode ends. The actual first episode continues for more than another hour, but I'm watching on Netflix, so I'll stop here.)

Reactions: While this is a fairly slow episode, I enjoyed it. I wasn't quite sure of the identities/significance of everyone, and I think that's because I got the shortened version of the first episode, thanks to Netflix serving the episodes in American-sized pieces, rather than the long Turkish version. (Everything is there; the Netflix version has 164 episodes instead of the Turkish version's 54.) Obviously, Sibel had secrets Omer knew nothing about; there's a bit of foreshadowing when he discovers that she's been smoking again, when she had promised that she would tell him if she started. Elif doesn't have much screen time in this episode, so I don't know much about her, but I can tell she's a strong woman and will probably be the glue that holds her family together.

Keep Watching? Yes. I think this will be a very engaging dizi!

Where to Watch: Netflix or Fun Network. I'd recommend Netflix because the subtitles are excellent, and it's certainly easier to commit to 45 minutes to an hour at a time, as opposed to more than two hours. Netflix has this rated TV-MA for language; I can't remember actually seeing any swear words, but there may have been some.

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