The 2018 Korean drama series My Secret, Terrius has been trending on social media in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, because of a scene in the first season's 10th episode, where doctor talks to one of the lead characters, Yoo Ji-yeon (played by Im Se-mi), about a coronavirus being mutated in order to become a weapon.
My Secret, Terrius is currently available on Netflix as part of its Korean drama series library.
The synopsis of this K-drama reads, "A secret agent who detaches himself from the world after a failed operation tries to unravel the mystery behind a neighbour's death."
Here's how the scene goes based on its English subtitles. (If you want to skip to the scene, go to the 50-minute mark.)
Doctor: "We must do more research, but it looks like a mutant coronavirus."
Yoo Ji-yeon: "Corona? Then MERS?"
Doctor: "MERS, SARS, the common flu. They all fall in the same family with the same gene information. The coronavirus attacks the respiratory system. During the 2015 MERS epidemic, the mortality rate was over 20 percent."
Yoo Ji-yeon: "But that's not serious enough to be used as a weapon. Am I wrong?"
Doctor: "Like I said, this is a mutant virus. Someone tweaked it to increase the mortality rate to almost 90 percent."
Yoo Ji-yeon: "90 percent?"
Doctor: "What's more serious is that the coronavirus has an incubation period of 2 to 14 days. This virus was manipulated to attack the lungs directly within just five minutes of being exposed."
When Yoo Ji-yeon asks if there is a cure, the doctor answers, "There's no cure or vaccine at the moment. They're hard to develop."
A Tagalized version of My Secret, Terrius was aired on ABS-CBN from September to November 2019 with the title Codename: Terrius.
Netizen's reactions to My Secret Terrius
The scene was quickly noticed by netizens and posted on social media. Some netizens believe that the Korean drama series may have predicted the current coronavirus outbreak, saying that they had goosebumps upon watching the video. Others were surprised by this scene that aired two years ago.
But then, there are others who tweeted that My Secret Terrius did not predict the coronavirus, because the term has already been exisiting since the 1960s, and refers to a collection of viruses.
British newspaper Metro.co.uk discussed the viral scene, explaining that My Secret, Terrius did not predict the coronavirus.
According to the article, the term coronavirus has been used by the medical community for a long time, and it refers to a number of viruses, including the common cold.
Medicine.net explains that MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV are also examples of coronaviruses.
COVID-19 is a coronavirus that originated in Wuhan, China.
In the story of My Secret, Terrius, the coronavirus is depicted to be manmade.
Metro.co.uk pointed out that while there are conspiracy theories about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) being manmade, scientists believe that the source of the outbreak is from an animal.