We’ve come to the last jam session of our doctors at Yulje hospital. This episode has a lot of character stories, and yet true to form, it is about another day in the life rather than a dramatic ending. As we did with the first season finale, let’s take each character in turn and see how they are doing.
One day at lunch, Song Hwa tells the others she is dating Ik Joon. They don’t believe her; no matter what she says they just laugh. Seok Hyeong says he’ll eat his hat and Jun Wan and Jeong Won make similar extravagant promises. Even when she gets out her phone to record their statements, they don’t take her seriously.
It’s not until Seok Hyeong sees her in the garden and tells her he’s dating Min Ha that he starts to believe her. He doesn’t get it until she admits she still feels awkward, and he exclaims, “So it really is true!” And they laugh together. But no one else understands. When Jeong Won tells them his mother is going to Spain on a pilgrimage with Jong Su, he insists that they are just friends like Song Hwa and Ik Joon. They don’t tell him any differently.
Seong Hwa has two brain hemorrhage patients in adjacent rooms in the ICU, with opposite outlooks. One is the patient from Mokpo who we have met before, who Ik Joon did a liver transplant on and Jun Wan did heart surgery for. The other man, who is new to us, was leaving his wife’s funeral and suddenly collapsed. Song Hwa does what she can, but has to tell the Mokpo family she is afraid he is brain dead. She tells the other family their dad is regaining consciousness and they can make eye contact when he wakes up, and they immediately try to wake him up.
Telzeytalks: I had to laugh at the dumbfounded look on the guys’ faces when Song Hwa held out her phone to record. But it was so sweet in the garden, to see the tiny changes in Seok Hyeong’s face, as he went from dismissal to doubt as he stood up to leave, and then turned around and sat down again to be sure he had things straight. And he was so happy for them!
Drama Geek: Yay! I was able to binge watch and catch up. I did FF through a ton of hospital stuff because it’s just too real right now, but I watched almost all of 12 without skipping much. Song Hwa went through a lot over the two seasons but has always been steadfast. She’s a brilliant surgeon, an amazing professor, she’s also the best at giving advice and taking care of her friends. Her final cases were a reminder that sometimes a doctor can only do so much, and then they have to let life do the rest. I’ve waited for the moment when everyone would find out Song Hwa and Ik Joon liked each other and it did not disappoint. I also thought it was a hilarious way for the writers to admit that the older couple is totally dating without saying it.
Karie the Maknae: Seong Hwa is the epitome of grace. I have absolutely adored her consistence and loyalty and good humor, and the loving but firm way she’s handled her residents. One of my FAVORITE moments, however, was when Jeon Mi Do got to show off her real voice during the karaoke session while Ik Jun got delusional for a minute.
Eating together in her office, Ik Joon tells Song Hwa that he wants to do things other couples do. When she looks inquiring, he says he wants to feed each other like other couples do. He holds his mouth open like a baby bird while she picks up something with her chopsticks but then she cracks up. She feels too silly and can’t do it.
Ik Joon has a liver patient who skipped out a year ago when he was supposed to have surgery and now is really sick. He wants to wait a week for the patient to recover from pneumonia before doing a transplant, but the patient suddenly vomits blood and they have to do an emergency transplant that night. They have difficulties, but Ik Joon is very relieved to be able to tell the family that the surgery went well.
Song Hwa and Ik Joon go camping together, this time without Uju. The two of them enjoy sitting and watching the campfire, until Song Hwa admits she is tired and goes to bed. Ik Joon sits up a little longer to make sure the fire is out, and then retires to the same tent.
Telzeytalks: There was a lot of time spent on surgeries in this episode. I must admit sometimes I lost track of what was going on or who was who, what with everyone wearing surgical masks. I thought I followed it, but wasn’t sure Ik Joon was talking to the right family afterwards – somebody tell me if it should have been the wife in the picture above.
Drama Geek: Sorry, I skipped anything that Ik Joon did with his patients this episode so I can’t help you. I was SO happy that this couple didn’t change. Yes, they get to share that tent at the end of the night, but they are still an amazing pair of friends who love and support each other no matter what.
Karie the Maknae: Yep, that’s the right one as far as I remember. Ik Jun has been a ray of sunshine and laughter and unassuming genius. He is, by far, my favorite character and one that I will remember for a very, very long time. Darth Vader Daddy for the win!
Jeong Won and Gyeo Wool go out to dinner, having no trouble feeding each other tidbits, and looking very natural, although she still has shy moments. They are genuine and sweet, and she is much less stressed now that her mother is doing well. When they meet in the stairwell later to consult about a case, they are very comfortable together.
Jeong Won is worried about doing a bowel transplant for a little four-year-old girl. He is very cute with her when she comes in for her appointments, and has been teaching her to wink. She can’t eat by mouth and is on a feeding tube, because most of her small bowel had to be removed when she was a baby. Her mother wants her to have a chance at a more normal life, even though she knows this surgery has a low success rate. Luckily in this case, it all goes well.
At band practice Jeong Won breaks the news that he is going to the US to study bowel transplants for a year. When asked if he is going alone, he adds he is taking Gyeo Wool with him. He assures them that he will be back, but Ik Joon still mutters, “Why do I have the feeling this will be our last jam session?”
Telzeytalks: A couple of episodes ago I guessed right about someone going to the US with his girlfriend, but was wrong about who it was. It makes sense that Jeong Won would come across a difficult type of surgery that he would want to learn more about. He and Gyeo Wool are pretty low key, but they seem like they are happy together.
Drama Geek: I loved that this couple was together the entire season and they showed how they supported each other during their very busy lives. I was very happy when Gyeo Wool finally told him about her family, and wasn’t surprised at all at Jeong Won’s response. I felt sending him to the US was a throw back from the first season, but this reason for leaving made way more sense. His main goal in life is to help children the best way he knows how, and Gyeo Wool is the kind of girlfriend and doctor that would follow him while he did that.
Karie the Maknae: Jeong Won’s selflessness and supportiveness have been a delight to watch. I’m so glad that he and Gyeo Wool are set up for a long, healthy relationship, and that he’s doing something for himself for once.
Jun Wan has a young patient who has heart problems that give him trouble breathing, and such severe scoliosis that he can’t lie down flat to sleep. Jun Wan reminds the mother that it’s a high risk surgery, but adds, “He can’t go on like this.” He calls in a more experienced surgeon to help, and they decide to use one artificial valve and repair the other one. When Jun Wan checks on the child in the ICU later, we see that they have fixed things well enough that he can lie down flat on the hospital bed.
Ik Joon and Song Hwa eat out together, and invite first Ik Soon and then Jun Wan to join them. They argue the merits of ganjjajang with and without eggs, and how much better it is in their home town. Then they move on to a karaoke place, where the siblings do a coordinated song and dance routine, and then Song Hwa sings. Ik Soon is horrified and Jun Wan barely survives, but Ik Joon enjoys the whole thing, thinking how cute she is.
At her military base, Ik Soon gets a message she has a visitor and runs to the gate to find Jun Wan waiting for her. “Don’t tell me you’re here to see me,” she pants. “No,” he replies, “I came for ganjjajang.” She tears up and smiles, and he takes her arm and then hugs her.
Telzeytalks: Well, here’s the problem couple with the noble idiocy in their past. I was ready for Jun Wan to go on to someone else, but he missed her and was really lonely without her. The way they have slowly resolved things in the last few episodes has been believable, so it’s a nice progression.
Drama Geek: We finally get to hear Song Hwa’s real voice!!!! It was perfectly placed so we knew only the smitten Ik Joon could hear that voice coming from her. Everyone else was cringing so hard. It was perfection. I loved the double date and it made me realize that I was okay with Ik Sun and Jun Wan back together because it made sense with their connection and it made him happy.
Karie the Maknae: I’m glad Jun Wan is finding a way to be happy, and I really, really hope that Ik Sun finds a way to be brave instead of running away from her problems. I wish we had seen a little more of that growth for her, but overall, if he’s good with it, then so am I.
Jong Su has retired and is living at Rosa’s house and paying rent. Seok Hyeong’s mom comes to tell them her son has a girlfriend and the girlfriend persuaded him not go to the US. She knows his mom is not well and he needs to take care of her. Mom is very happy about this girlfriend, but hasn’t met her yet. Rosa and Jong Su don’t let on that they have met Min Ha and pretend not to know anything.
Seok Hyeong walks Min Ha home; she has told her parents about him, and he has told his mother about her. Min Ha asks when she can meet her. “The later you meet her the better,” he says. She doesn’t want to say goodbye, and understands now why people get married. He thinks she should get to know him better. “This may be new to you,” she replies, “but I already waited a long time.” That’s when he kisses her, a short one and then a real one.
We see Seok Hyeong get called in to the hospital repeatedly for emergencies, but his big scene is when Jae Hak’s wife has her baby. Four months have gone by and she’s finished her chemo, and Seok Hyeong has watched over her and is there to deliver the baby. They are very happy to hear the baby cry quickly and be declared healthy. Oh, and the police have caught the housing scammer from two years ago, and Jae Hak has his money back.
Telzeytalks: One scene I had really wanted to see was Seok Hyeong’s mom meeting Min Ha, since she made such a fuss over the lipstick incident. But it looks like it’s getting smoothed over. It’s pretty funny that he tells Min Ha the later they meet, the better!
Drama Geek: Out of all the doctors coming into season 2, Seok Hyeong had the most room to grow. He really opened up and became a sweet cuddly bear. His courtship of Min Ha made me so happy. They could be as cheesy as they wanted and I was tickled pink. I just loved them together and I’m glad they found each other. I was totally fine with them not showing her meet his mother because I didn’t want the mother to ruin my happiness. I really feel like Seok Hyeong was a genius and has learned new tricks in dealing with her so he can protect his partner.
Karie the Maknae: Seok Hyeong truly epitomizes “still waters run deep” for me, and I was thrilled with the steps he kept taking to protect Min Ha and their new relationship. I totally get his insecurity, but I know that Min Ha will help him see himself the way she sees him soon enough.
Thoughts and Feelings
At the end of the day we say goodbye to our docs as they gather on the hospital patio to watch the sunset. “I used to like to watch the sunrise,” muses Song Hwa. “Sunset is better,” says Ik Joon, “because then it is time to go home.”
Telzeytalks: I’ve really enjoyed this show. I loved what good people most of the characters are,; and became fond of them all, including a lot of the side characters like our twin interns. It felt like it dragged somewhat in the middle and got real tired of Ik Soon’s story, but I’m glad they didn’t waste time on hospital politics. It’s been nice to look forward to it each week.
Drama Geek: I have mixed feelings as we say goodbye. I know some of that has to do with watching a hospital drama during a pandemic. I still think no matter what was going on in the world or my personal life that I would have wanted less medical jargon, less explaining things to family members, less surgeries, and just less of all of that. The characters are who we fell in love with and we know they are caring surgeons. I wouldn’t have wanted to skip this season though. So many great moments, so much laughter, and they did a wonderful job with most of the romances. All of them will be memorable characters that I will come back and watch their jam sessions and listen to the beautiful music they made together. It was worth it for the leather!
Karie the Maknae: I was excited for the journey, and loved our characters even more by the end. I’m with Drama Geek in wishing that the writers had focused more on the doctors during this second season, but I’ve also seen reports that some of the episodes have had a positive effect in Korea. Organ donors alone have jumped by a significant percentage because of certain Hospital Playlist, and I can’t deny the need for that. Overall, I was happy with the drama, but highly doubt that I’ll be watching it again. It was good for what it was, and I feel like we got the closure we needed.
Someday, let’s all watch the sun set together —
Dramas with a Side of Kimchi