19 September 2013

WHO ARE YOU: EPISODE 15 & 16 (Final)

KOREAN DRAMA REVIEW: WHO ARE YOU (2013)


Well, here we are in finale week!
I really enjoyed this series for what it was, sweet, simple and engaging on an emotional level. It never tried too hard and so therefore never overshot the mark, keeping me satisfied and involved right to the very end.




Episode 15:
Well, in regards to the police stuff and the whole smuggling plot arc this conclusion was unsurprisingly lacking in both logic and suspense...... did it matter? Not to me. This show has never pretended to be a gritty or realistic look into detective work and so this rather neat and easily accomplished ending to that storyline was something that I kind of expected. 

So basically, as soon as Shi On manages to turn that main Thug Dude against Police Chief Moon everything starts going her way, and within moments we are watching her and her new gang of police officers arresting all the big bad guys in charge of the smuggling ring, even parading the witness past Police Moon just to prove a point and scare him, while triumphant music plays in the background triumphantly ( I am pretty sure you are meant to protect your witness and not put him on 'show and tell', but whatever).
Even if it was all pretty simple, I must say I still enjoyed watching Shi On interrogating that main Thug Dude and manipulating him into turning against his former employer, as well as her fun strut into the board room to both embarrass and arrest Police Chief Moon.  (I always enjoy the sight of arrogant and  blustering old men shouting the obligatory 'How dare you? Do you know who I am?' as they are taken down and ruined...... Is that weird?)



Anyway, now that has all been tied up into a nice neat bow we can move onto the main story, being of course Hyung-joon. 
Right now I can hear the hearts of a thousand fangirls breaking into tiny pieces all around the world, because the whole Hyung-joon being brought back from the dead thing was most definitely a big tease...... and yet I think it did actually work. 
As in it upset the hell out of me. 
In a good way though, getting me right in the gut. It was such an incredibly sad way to finish the second last episode but it probably needed to happen. Shi On was beginning to become ready to move on, to focus on life, on her future and not her past. 
And Hyung-joon could see that clearly. 

I will also make a note that Hyung-joon didn't seem particularly surprised to see his coma body, making me believe this was something he was aware of all along, but also that he didn't really want Shi On to know about it, realising that there was no going back for him and that giving her hope that he was still alive wasn't a good thing. 
And though it does seem particularly cruel to give Shi On this senseless hope at the last minute, I also think it will aid in her healing process in a way too, because she was never with Hyung-joon when he died, she never saw his body and therefore she never properly grieved for him as a result. Now she has that chance, this time she was beside him as he died. She knows that Hyung-joon loved her and that she loved him, and Hyung-joon also made it clear what he wants for her in her life, that the reason he hung on all these painful years was because he was to afraid to let her be alone, thinking no one could ever love her as much as he did. That without him she couldn't survive. 
Which he has finally accepted is not true. 
Because of Gun Woo.

It must be so incredibly painful for Hytung-joon to have see Gun Woo slowly (and innocently) taking over his role in Shi On's life, but in a way it was clearly a relief for him as well. Hyung-joon knows he has to go, there is no way around that, and as he said that coma body is not really him, it is just a shell and really he died six years ago (sob). And now he can finally let go knowing that Shi On will be okay.

I found this episode quite painful and sad to watch, just because it was so unexpected to watch Hyung-joon let go so soon after Shi On found him again, but like I said, finding his body and saying goodbye to him properly will be part of a grieving process for her, it will be a healthier (but no less horrifying) ending to their heartrending bittersweet love story. 



As for Gun Woo, he is in love with Shi On and even Hyung-joon has admitted that. 
I like that when Gun Woo was stabbed and possibly dying the first thing on his mind was getting the truth out to Shi On about seeing her dead love. I like that when he thought it was a possibility he would never get another chance he told her straight away, but I also like that when he is awake and well again, hearing Shi On's confession and acceptance of his love he becomes more selfish, if only for a little while. 
When Shi On tells him that her answer is for Gun Woo to get well again and then return to her side, Gun Woo soaks it in, listening to the words he has been waiting for all this time and letting himself believe it. You can see that when Shi On first begins to speak, he does try to stop her, but in the end her words are too sweet and he has wanted to hear them for too long, so Gun Woo lets himself have a small time of believing in this future that Shi On presents to him.

But he is not the kind of man to keep quiet forever, no matter how badly he wants to, and so he does tell her the truth eventually, and straight away he begins to doubt that Shi On will ever come back to him at all.



I also really liked the scene where Gun Woo is struggling down the hallway in pain, thinking again over the lovely words that Shi On told him back in his hospital room. He looks so hurt and unhappy, like he knows it is all over now, that Shi On is so beyond him again. But then he remembers the part where she asked him to get well and come back to her, and its like suddenly a light goes on and he nods. And then he does exactly what she asked of him, whether she wants it anymore or not. He gets dressed and walks straight into Hyung-joon's room, just in time to comfort and look after Shi On in her time of need.
This to me signified that Gun woo decided not to give up.  Even if Hyung-joon is still alive Gun woo is going to fight for Shi On because he loves her. And it is only because he is that type of a man that Hyung-joon is willing to leave Shi On in his care. Because Hyung-joon knows that no matter what, Gun Woo won't ever give up on her.


Episode 16:
'I wanted to see you smile brightly like before.'

'But you're not around.'

'I didn't think there would be anyone who would care for you as much as I did in this world.
But now I can leave in peace.
Shi On. I died that day six years ago.'

'But you're still alive like this. Why?'

'That's not me. It's just an empty body. With no meaning.
Don't cry. I'm fine.
Don't get sick. Start driving now 
Don't lose your stuff.
Have a cute baby with the one you love..... and be happy with him.'

Aaaaaand Hyung-joon out.

Well, basically all the heavy stuff was covered last episode so this very last finale was just a fluff epilogue for no reason other than they had an episode to fill and it is fun for fans to watch Shi On and Gun Woo be happy for once.

I am not really a huge advocator for the time jump normally but in this case I think it was a good thing in regards to the believability of Shi On and Gun Woo's relationship. I really liked the sensitive way Gun Woo backed off after the funeral, the way he made it clear to Shi On that he was still 100% wanting to be with her but that he understood that she needed space to recover.
And I liked that as soon as enough time had passed he was right back to where he had left off, yet this time Shi On is on the same page too, and completely ready to meet him halfway.

I love that we didn't have to deal with a last episode filled with being boring and angsty for no reason (except to use as filler drama) and that whatever issues did arise in this last hour were resolved incredibly quickly and not dwelt on for long. I guess that really this was an hour of fan service fluff, getting a chance to watch Shi On being cheery (and jealous) for once which was actually pretty sweet.
Of course there is absolutely nothing ground breaking here, and the show could have just as easily tied things up satisfactorily with one episode less, but to be honest I still enjoyed this sweeter, slower ending just for what it was, a little bit more time with this OTP.

I even quite enjoyed the hint at the end that there were going to be some ghosts again, as I like imagining our leads solving mysteries in the future, working closely together and supporting eachother as they help other people.
It is a nice image to end this lovely show on.




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