Each story has a common theme that interlaces with the next one. Today we’ll be talking about Goedam Collection Episode 2: Destination.
So as I mentioned above, Goedam [도시괴담] is a neat little collection of eight short ghost stories. I believe some may be based on (Korean) urban legends, because I know for sure that I’ve heard about:
the bathroom ghost (episode 1 – I even had my own experience with one!)
another ‘you’ killing and taking over your body (episode 3 – I even read a webtoon not too long ago on it. I didn’t bookmark it because I was thoroughly unimpressed. If I remember the name or find it again, I’ll link to it-)
the elevator game (featured in episode 6 of the Goedam series)
and just…Korean shamans…(episode 8 of Goedam) – again I have something I’d really like to link to but for the life of me can’t find the English or Korean name of the film.
(Here it is! It’s a 2011 cellphone short called Night Fishing or “Paranmanjang” directed by Park-Chan Wook. I remember viewing the short during a course in film school. Would highly recommend it to anybody interested in Korean horror movies.)
Anyway, the stories all have a common theme as the undercurrent of the series.
If you’d like to know more about that, here’s a great comment review by sabinochka from MyDramaList. This user also suggests you watch the entire Goedam collection backwards to understand the full story. Beware of spoilers.
Today I would just like to focus on episode two of this collection, titled “destination”.
In short, a cab driver is working late one night.
He decides to pull over and take a snooze for an hour or so. He is then awoken by a “beautiful” woman dressed in all white entering his cab despite the sign being off.
The woman asks to go to Samjeong Motel in Ilsan and after the GPS cannot find it on navigation, the driver agrees to accept her directions to the location. The radio still won’t work for the duration of the ride and the pale woman begins acting creepy and telling the driver to turn right on a straight road.
The spirit then decides to claw the cab drivers eyes out and take over his cab.
Now with control over the taxi, the wasteful ghoul leaves a perfectly good pair of eyes in the street and drives off into the night.
All jokes aside, these sorts of stories are prevalent even here in the West.
The vanishing hitchhiker is an urban legend I’m sure most people are familiar with by now. The legend goes that while traveling by vehicle, a driver picks up a lone man or woman on a desolate (or country) road. The rouge traveler gets in and sometimes requests a location, or sometimes just quietly rides.
The two could be having a conversation, or maybe it’s just a silent journey and when the driver looks back – the passenger is gone.
Often with these stories, it seems the spirit just wants to get home. They will then disappear near the location of their ‘accident’, and the driver will pass a memorial or roadside shrine and scratch their heads.
Usually, no harm should come to the driver.
Or at least that’s the case in most stories I’ve read.
But what do you think?
Have you ever had an experience with a vanishing hitchhiker? What do you think about the phenomena of ghost passengers getting into taxis? And…why do you think spirits stay on earth long after their deaths?
We are also creating East Asian pop culture inspired designs for fellow fans, Visit our Redbubble store if you have a chance – you get cool gear, and it helps support the blog!
☆ In Asian Spaces