One of the best and most confusing parts of Netflix’s Black Summer is the use of Sun, the Korean woman who is actually much better at survival than she may appear. It was a unique twist, having her speak Korean the entire time. But many fans wish there was an option to see subtitles for what Sun said.
Although in the beginning, it was fairly easy to guess what she said based on the context and her gestures, there was one scene in Episode 7 where Sun gave a long monologue and it was impossible to guess what she was saying. Thankfully, someone on Reddit was kind enough to share the translation. Read on to learn what Sun was saying. (And if you never got to see Z Nation, the sequel to Black Summer, you can watch it on Amazon here.)
On Reddit, user catsgelatowinepizza shared that they speak Korean and were very frustrated that the show didn’t provide subtitles for Sun. That was especially a problem during Episode 7, when Sun apparently shared her entire backstory and it was incredibly fascinating. Here’s what catsgelatowinepizza wrote:
Ok so she basically says that she crossed the River Tuman (which borders China, North Korea and Russia) because she was so hungry, which means she escaped North Korea. That explains her rather old fashioned name (Young-Sun is not a trendy South Korean name) although she didn’t have a North Korean accent, but honestly at this point I’m happy to have a Korean actor who can actually speak Korean, not Daniel Dae-Kim in Lost haha.
Anyway she monologues about escaping across the Tuman, and she knows her mother will still be waiting for her back home. And she wants nothing more than to sit down and eat a really good meal, in peace, taking all the time in the world. That’s what I remember but also about the long and short of it. Why didn’t they subtitle it?
Another Redditor, XaeroDegreaz, offered this translation from the same scene:
At first, I didn’t have enough food to eat so I ran away, after that I got further away from my mom as I keep running away just for some food to eat. Although I am away from her now, I know that she will be waiting for me there at the end. Then when I see her, I would tell her that ‘I am sorry that it took me so long.’ Then we will have a nice dinner in peace while chitchatting.
If you were able to understand Sun, you’d realize that not only was she one of the best survivalists of the group, but Christine Lee, who portrays Ooh “Sun” Kyungsun, is a very talented actor. The character Sun was originally from North Korea. She escaped North Korea, which is part of the reason she’s so great at survival, and all she really wants is to see her mother again and sit down for a good, slow-paced meal.
Earlier in the season, when they were at the diner, Sun tried to explain that they need to aim for the brain in order to kill the zombies. So apparently Sun was the first person in the group to figure out how to stop the zombies, but no one could understand what she was saying. 🙁
Personally, I think having subtitles for Sun would have made the episodes far more fascinating. We could feel her frustration at not getting her points across, and could enjoy the irony that she knows how to kill the zombies but can’t explain it to anyone.
Redditor catsgelatowinepizza also noted that the one time she was subtitled, they used “hai hai hai” which wasn’t even what she was saying. Apparently “hai” is a Japanese word, not Korean, so it wasn’t even something Sun was saying at all in those scenes.
The Redditor added: “It’s honestly really refreshing to have a badass, vulnerable woman of colour character who’s not stereotypically pretty like a doll.”
And that’s a great point. Sun was a breath of fresh air in the show, and her character had many layers that were missed without subtitles.
(If you never got to see Z Nation, the sequel to Black Summer, you can watch it on Amazon here.)
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