So I was right. And I was wrong. Yes, I’m going to talk about the Husband first and get that out of the way so I’m free to talk about the families, which was the real heart of the show. For this reason, I’m not disappointed. In fact, I’d name it my favorite of 2015. That doesn’t mean I’m not blindsided.
I had an inkling from the first time the boys discussed who they liked that Taek was the one. I also had that feeling every time Duk Seon talked about marrying him, even though it was in a joking way.
I pushed those feelings down because I loved Jung Hwan so much. It’s testament to how great an actor he really is. There were so many beautiful moments between them. Not to mention how different the future husband’s personality seemed from Taek’s. They really pulled the rug out from under me.
The ending, however, had me in tears almost the whole time. Happy tears because I loved everyone, and sad tears because I didn’t want to say goodbye.
Rather than talking about plot, I’d like to talk about the things I wish we could’ve seen, and the things I really loved. I’m a believer in bad news being delivered first, so let’s start with what we missed.
1. Dong Ryong getting a girlfriend. He was the block group’s guru, and he so deserved a better farewell than he got. I was hoping he’d hook up with Tweedledum. But no, he dates some mystery girl we don’t get to meet. *tear*
2. Duk Seon’s Secret Santa. I can’t tell you how upset I am we never got to see the ending of the Secret Santa drama. We were shown everyone giving gifts, except for Jung Hwan’s gift to Taek, and Duk Seon’s gift to Jung Hwan. So sad.
3. Jung Hwan finding a girl. Did we have to do Boys Over Flowers, again? I would hope Jung Hwan liked someone else, but we don’t get to see it. As far as we know, he only confessed to Duk Seon, and since Duk Seon’s family moved the countryside, I can only assume Jung Hwan’s family is there as well. At least Chilbongie got a girl. Thanks Answer me series for ripping my heart out again.
4. Duk Seon and Taek announcing their relationship. Yes, that moment everyone was gathered on the stairs waiting to hear if the scandal was true rocked, but it also stunk that we didn’t get to see Duk Seon getting yelled at when she came out with the truth.
5. Another wedding. Don’t get me wrong, the Bo Ra-Sun Woo wedding was AMAZING. I ugly cried through the whole thing. But come on, we don’t get to see Duk Seon in a wedding dress? It must’ve been because she was older when they married, but I still feel the sting.
6. KIDS. I know they don’t all live on the same block anymore, but couldn’t we get a reunion scene where all the cousins play together? Is that too much to ask??
Considering how long that list is, I think we needed one more two hour episode. However, I will say this the drama ended perfectly. Which brings me to the things I loved.
1. The empty block. I know, I know. It tore my heart to pieces, too. (cried for a good half hour afterwards.) But that’s what made it so amazing. The imprint of that torn down and empty block will forever scar me. If that’s not great story telling, I don’t know what is.
2. Jung Bong and Min Ok. I finally remembered her name! I have to say, their romance was actually my favorite. In episode nineteen we finally got to see who her dad was, and he turned out to be a big cuddly teddy bear.
It was enough for me to see her introduce Jung Bong and for them to have a cute family moment. Not to mention the hilarity of when Min Ok’s dad realize Jung Bong is the same guy she dated in high school. Ha!
3. Duk Seon’s Orange Lipstick. I loved this scene because it goes to show how we never really grow out of being awkward, It just takes on different forms as we get older.
4. Sun Woo and Bo Ra’s wedding. I know you were waiting fir me to get to this part. I feel like I need to take a Korean history class before I watch another Reply show, because I had no idea last names were a hurdle to marriage. I wanted them together so bad, I couldn’t imagine something so simple keeping them apart.
Yes, I cried as they convinced their parents.
I cried to see all the support the block gave them.
But I completely lost it when I saw Bo Ra in a wedding dress.
Combine that with all the people I loved in the same room, and I was a snotty disaster. The group photos too. Just..UGH.
5. Duk Seon and Taek moments. I need three more episodes of Duk Seon’s and Taek’s relationship, but that’s mostly due to how amazing their time was together on this ep.
There were back hug scenes.
And a hearty dose of jealousy.
But the most touching part was when they both agreed neither of them would change.
That, and when she sat Taek down and told him off for giving away money. And when he did the same to her for partying all night (add with that her bad dancing and it’s a major win.)
6. Getting the chance to look back. Everything else in this episode was good, but nothing warmed me as much as all the block kids together. That flashback to them playing, and Duk Seon with those chubby cheeks threatened to make the feels explode.
If that wasn’t enough, they had to throw in Duk Seon going back and seeing all the boys waiting for her.
And when they turned little again as their moms called them to dinner…blubbering mess. What a tribute to the youth and the great adventures they had on a now abandoned block.
“Longing for that time, and longing for that street, is not because I miss a younger version of myself. That’s the place of my father’s youth, of my mother’s youth…of my friend’s youth…it’s the place that holds the youth of everything I love.
“In that landscape, where we won’t be able to gather like that again…I regret being unable to say my final farewell. To the things that are already gone…to the time that has already passed, I want to say a belated farewell. Goodbye, my youth.
“A time so warm and pure it was painful. Can you hear me? If you can hear me, answer me. My 1988, the days of my youth.”