We are at the end of the drama. How did you feel about it? Whatever your opinion, remember Mimi warned us not to use violence. For myself, I could use Gangster PI and his knives.
Joon deceives everyone
This drama is built around a series of fake-outs and lies that get bigger and bigger. Last week Joon seemed hostile to the wanna-be girlfriend. This week they are quite amicable as he sees her off at the airport and thanks her for being a fake girlfriend. WHAT’S THAT? If this was supposed to make us feel better about him dumping RaRa, it failed! I was immediately incensed that he was LYING AGAIN.
The most important scene in episode 15 is Joon walking into his father’s office and finding his parents discussing that he has leukemia. They tell him he will get better for sure and then cry all over him. (How encouraging would that be?) After that, the story is about how he deceives everyone. That’s when he gets the fake girlfriend to help him, Gangster PI to help with faked pictures, and tells RaRa he doesn’t like her anymore. His mom meets with Dr. Cha, gives him money, and has him take credit for buying the salon and studio buildings. There is a lot of crying, and though the acting is fine, I didn’t sign up for a show with a lot of crying.
The reason Joon gives his mother for this deception is that he doesn’t want RaRa to see him ill. What the crap, Joon? RaRa was upset enough when you lied about your age. She could have helped you through your illness if you had told her. The main problem with this story is that it is presenting Joon in a romantic way when he is actually manipulative and controlling. What kind of message is it sending to young women who are watching the show? He feels that it is his right to make decisions for this woman and not let her make her own choices.
Telzeytalks: Our first impression that Joon’s mother was harsh has mellowed somewhat, but why is she going along with this? His dad said he would cure him, but Joon went to the airport. Weren’t his parents with him to the hospital? Mom sure cried a lot. Did I tell you there’s a lot of crying in this?
Kmuse: I will admit that I still wasn’t that put off at this point. It just seemed to be traditional noble idiocy that I have seen in tons of other shows. However, things escalated in scale to the point there should have been no going back.
Clkytta: Big sigh; please prepare for a tirade of epic proportions. Noble idiocy I was prepared for, this storyline went way beyond that. It’s been a few days and I’m still angry and my eyes are still swollen from crying.
MiataMama: SO. Much Crying. Joon cried. Mom cried. RaRa cried. And I was a snotty, sobbing mess. This drama did a quick u-turn and went from my favorite happy place to heartbreak city.
Stringing everyone along
A hiccup in Joon’s plan is that RaRa’s memory gets jogged by seeing a picture of him wearing glasses. She suddenly recalls meeting him in a cafe the day her wallet was stolen, and that he paid for her watermelon drink. So she returns there and texts him, and he relents and goes to see her. The cafe was called dodosolsollalasol and he tells her he made an Instagram account with that name to cheer her up. After that, they have a few cute scenes in Eunpo and then he lies that he is going to the US to go to school.
Haraboji wakes up from his coma, so RaRa goes to see him in the hospital and thank him for the piano. He admits that he used Joon’s account name when he sent the piano. She gives him a letter that Joon left for him, but he doesn’t let her read it. We find out later what it says. “I have blood cancer. I wanted to tell you the truth because I’d feel so bad otherwise. And please don’t tell RaRa.” What the double-crap, Joon? You would feel bad about lying to Haraboji but not to RaRa?
Joon agrees to come to a Christmas party but never shows up. The neighborhood people are all there, as well as Haraboji with his son and Jae Min with his dad. Jae Min and Dr. Cha play the piano for everyone, and RaRa plays a duet with a recording of Joon shown on a huge wall screen. Afterward, she goes home, and Joon’s mother shows up wearing a black dress. “Joon was very happy here,” she says. “But he can no longer come. He was very ill.” When RaRa hesitatingly asks if Joon is dead, Mom cries. Then RaRa cries. I warned you there was a lot of crying. But how can Mom be so heartless as to deceive anyone this way?
Everyone remembers Joon and mourns in their own way. RaRa sits weeping at her favorite overlook, recalling that he had asked what she would do if he suddenly disappeared. Ha Young holds on to her mom as they cry together. Seung Ki sits alone, sobbing in anguish, remembering Joon hugging him hard and telling him he was scared. Dr. Cha sits alone in tears, remembering Joon asking him to care for RaRa because he wouldn’t be there. AND THIS WAS ALL UNNECESSARY GRIEF. It was a lie, and Joon wasn’t really dead. It was a very cruel and heartless thing to have done.
Telzeytalks: This whole drama plot relies on lies. Gangster PI and even Dr. Cha went along with it for a while. Why did Haraboji never call Joon out? He should have said something. When someone lies, you can’t trust them anymore, and then what kind of relationship do you have left?
Kmuse: I wasn’t overly shocked that Joon lied about being dead since this has really been his go too reaction anytime he got into trouble. The lying, not the dying part. The boy runs away from his problems and just doesn’t let anyone in. I just assumed that Joon almost died, his mother misspoke a little early, and Joon just went with it, not wanting to cause RaRa more pain if he didn’t live. HOWEVER, after having time to really digest the events as they went down (and not adding my own assumptions on what happened behind the screen.) I have to admit that this was pretty much inexcusable. Joon should have either shared the truth the second he was out of the woods, or his mom shouldn’t have said he was dead if he wasn’t really dead. So messed up.
Clkytta: This was a huge slap in the face to anyone who has lost someone, especially to cancer. YOU DON’T SAY PEOPLE ARE DEAD UNLESS THEY ARE DEAD. You don’t put an entire community through the grief these people went through. I was convinced that Joon was dead. His mom’s grief was so strong, and maybe she could have played that card to keep him and RaRa apart, but not as the character she was at the end of the show. This was a mom who would do anything for her son to make him happy. This was not a woman who would sob like that and lie. I feel very betrayed by Mom.
MiataMama: I don’t even know where to start. When they said Joon had died, I just couldn’t believe it and my heart shattered and broke into a million pieces. This story was supposed to have an annoying time jump and a happily-ever-after ending. But instead, we were lied to and had to grieve the death of a fictional character that, SURPRISE! wasn’t actually dead. What. The. Heck?!? Writer-nim, I’m extremely disappointed!
Five years later…
Five years have gone by and we get to catch up with everyone. RaRa is taking care of a baby and we wonder if it is hers, but nope. Seung Ki and Ha Young are married and this is their child. They are all going to a party Stylist Mom is having with the neighborhood ladies. She seems to be dating Gangster PI and Dr. Cha is dating his ex-wife. Jae Min is in Germany going to school with RaRa’s old teacher. Haraboji has died.
Six minutes before the end of the drama – six minutes people – RaRa is playing the piano when Joon walks up the hill. He opens the door, and there he is, the same as ever, holding out his arms to her. She hugs him, but a little later, she starts crying and asks, “Why didn’t you contact me at all? I thought you were dead.” That’s what we all want to know. She hits him, and he laughs. “I wanted to wait until I was fully recovered.” They kiss, and we get two minutes of flashbacks. That makes only four minutes that we get to see them together. Is that enough?
Telzeytalks: So he laughs and doesn’t think it matters that he made RaRa miserable and unhappy for five years? FIVE YEARS? After she had already suffered through the death of her father? How can she forgive him for a trick like that?
Kmuse: We needed more than just a kiss and happy ever after. What kind of girl accepts that he lied to her for five years? Sigh.
Clkytta: All of episode 16, MiataMama and I were crying and screaming. Joon was dead, and everyone was still grieving but trying to move on. We were sobbing like we actually knew Joon. Then, like the biggest lie ever, the biggest betrayal ever, Joon is standing there. I wanted to push him off the cliff. LIAR! FIVE FREAKING YEARS! No, you stay gone if you pull crap like that. You don’t get to come walking in and kiss the girl and gently tease her like nothing happened. You stay dead after five years. There was nothing romantic about the pain she went through. I’m done with him. This was physically painful for me to watch.
MiataMama: DITTO to EVERYTHING Clkytta said! I was still crying over the fact he had died when he nonchalantly waltzed back into LaLa Land. Um?!?! NO!!! Just no. Your actions are not even close to acceptable, Joon.
Well, what did you think of the drama? It had a lot of cute parts, and a lot of beautiful piano music. Are you angry at it, or can you forgive it? Does four minutes at the end qualify for Happily Ever After?
Telzeytalks: Most of this drama was really cute, and I loved most of the characters, but the ending ruined it. I feel like the writer broke faith with the audience. The show was promoted as a romantic comedy, and the beginning was very fluffy and light, and then it turned into a melodrama. Having Joon be so duplicitous was even worse. If he had really died I wouldn’t have been so angry as I am now, because it really destroyed his character. If I ever am tempted to watch another drama by this writer, I am going to wait until it finishes airing so I know how it ends.
Kmuse: I am so sad that the show tanked in the last 90 minutes. I would have been much happier if they had just gotten married young. In my opinion, he graduated from high school and he was free to be happy. The writer could have easily just had him go to school for a few years and then end the show on a happy note. Instead, we got a bunch of crazypants angst that didn’t need to happen.
Clkytta: I now have a drama I hate more than Something in the Rain. This is hands down the worst drama I’ve ever watched. This was my happy place for weeks during 2020 when I needed something fluffy and wonderful, and then they pull this shoddy writing crap and make Joon into a monster. No one who truly loved someone would ever put them through five years of sorrow and grief like that. There is no way to justify this ending; it’s not romantic; it’s cruel. It’s also horrible writing—this kind of ending needs to have build up. We need to suspect that mom is lying, we need to have a reason to believe that he’s not really dead, but we were given nothing but grief. Ugh. I’m going to go put an ice pack on my poor swollen eyes.
MiataMama: I find myself grieving the fact that this could have been my most favorite drama of the year if it weren’t for that horrid ending. Sigh. I really loved the characters, their development, and the story-telling. But that unnecessary and dramatic turn at the end was really infuriating. I’m so heartbroken and angry. I need to go rewatch an old favorite – something that I know ends well – to console myself now.
Until the next drama comes along,
Dramas With a Side of Kimchi