Open Thread: Healer Episodes 7 & 8

Welcome to the Open Thread, everyone! I had to have this screenshot headline our post, because, what a pivotal moment, for our OTP connection!! 😍😍

SOME IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENTS, before we begin:

ZERO SPOILER POLICY

1. We will be adopting a ZERO SPOILER POLICY for this Open Thread, except for events that have happened in the show, up to this point.

We don’t want to spoil anyone’s watch experience with spoilers. The spoiler tags don’t work in email notifications, therefore, please take note that WE WILL NOT BE USING SPOILER TAGS FOR THIS OPEN THREAD. ANY AND ALL SPOILERS WILL BE REDACTED to protect first-time viewers in our midst (although, I’d appreciate it if you would save me the trouble of having to redact spoilers, heh 😅).

This includes, but is not limited to, how characters &/or relationships develop, later in the show.

We need to protect the innocent! 😉

SPOILER ZONE

2. HOWEVER!! If you’d like to discuss spoilers from a rewatcher’s point of view, I’ve created a SPOILER ZONE for you, where you can discuss all the spoilers you’d like, without the need for spoiler warnings. You can find it here!

Without further ado, here are my reactions to this set of episodes; have fun in the Open Thread, everyone! ❤️

My thoughts

Episode 7

Well, the plot thickens, so to speak.

We hadn’t seen this last episode, but Sabu and Ahjumma really do their best to get Jung Hoo to leave the country and not come back, for at least a year. That’s gotta mean that Jung Hoo’s getting uncomfortably close to some information that he’s either not supposed to know, or will hurt him, when he knows?

How like Jung Hoo to not only defy orders, but also, lean in and go back to work at Some Day, precisely because he senses that that’s one of the key reasons Sabu wants him out of the country.

Part of it definitely emotional baggage and resentments towards Sabu, since we’ve been told in broad strokes that Sabu had abandoned Jung Hoo, although we don’t know the details around that abandonment.

How interesting, though, that as Jung Hoo stands outside Some Day, and surveys the area, he muses in voiceover that he senses a trap, where, if he gets caught, he’ll get hurt.

The fact that he is going against his instinct to not go any closer, and run away, shows how personally invested he’s become, in uncovering the truth that Sabu and Ahjumma seem to want to shield him from.

Of course, there’s also the Young Shin factor, although I don’t think Jung Hoo’s admitting that even to himself, at this point. He tells himself that there’s no point in saying goodbye, when they’re never going to meet again, but I’m pretty dang sure that Young Shin’s also part of the reason he actually wants to stay at Some Day.

How curious, that Secretary Oh had been sent to Moon Sik by the person they call Elder, 22 years ago.

We’re not super clear on the details of the relationship between Elder and Moon Sik, but it sure looks like Elder’s more involved in Moon Sik’s business than average. Secretary Oh’s probably a spy, right? To make sure Moon Sik sticks to Elder’s orders, and doesn’t get any funny ideas of his own?

And how interesting, that Secretary Oh’s verbal report to Moon Sik indicates that it’s Moon Sik who’s bought Some Day and the building it sits in, not Moon Ho. From the sound of it, Moon Sik used Moon Ho’s name in the purchase. Unless I’m misunderstanding this conversation..?

It’s actually quite sad to see Young Shin experience another anxiety attack while in the office. This means that all the scary, violent events she’s recently experienced, &/or had exposure to, have really been haunting her.

How interesting, though, that it’s Young Shin’s instinct to grab onto Jung Hoo’s arm, and that this is the thing that calms her, possibly even more than the medication itself.

This is definitely an echo of that earlier incident, when Young Shin had had trouble sleeping, and had eventually slept soundly, after grabbing onto Jung Hoo’s arm, while lying on the couch in the living room.

These are definitely callbacks to that flashback, where we saw how little Young Shin had slept, clinging onto little Jung Hoo’s arm.

Ordinarily, I’d roll my eyes at such a heavy-handed treatment of a childhood connection between an OTP, but in this case, it feels organic enough to the story to feel plausible. And I can believe that perhaps Young Shin subconsciously finds a lot of comfort in grabbing onto Jung Hoo’s arm, that she’s not even cognizant of, at this point.

I really like that conversation that Young Shin and Jung Hoo share in the pantry, after Young Shin recovers from her anxiety attack.

Beyond the fact that she’s comfortable enough to talk with Jung Hoo about her crushes, and why it’s one-sided, I really like the natural empathy that she shows towards Healer. The fact that she’s homed in on the fact that he’s always alone, and that he needs to be alone, out of necessity, must hit Jung Hoo really hard.

I feel like this must be the first time that he’s felt understood, by someone else. And Young Shin demonstrates that understanding and empathy so naturally; I’d be drawn to Young Shin too, in Jung Hoo’s place.

Jung Hoo’s jealousy towards Moon Ho every time Moon Ho shows an interest in Young Shin, or stands close to Young Shin, or touches Young Shin, is pretty cute. As in, I don’t typically take so well to petty jealousy between male leads, because the comedy around that tends to fall flat for me.

However, with Jung Hoo, his petty jealousy feels organic enough to feel natural. What I mean is, his petty jealousy comes across as childish, but he’s been so isolated, that I could believe that he’s new to all these feelings and doesn’t know what to do with them. Plus, the quirky, childish reactions fit well with his stuttering, nervous Bong Soo persona.

Conversely, I’m feeling Moon Ho’s training sessions with Young Shin less.

I mean, this also kinda-sorta played for.. well, not exactly comedy, but still entertainment, with Moon Ho doing a role play with Young Shin to test her interview skills, and I find myself feeling perplexed with Moon Ho’s approach to mentoring. He just.. doesn’t strike me as particularly helpful, with his tough love sort of approach.

I have to admit, I did enjoy the scene of Healer infiltrating President Hwang’s house, and teaching him a lesson on violence, before taking the hard disk evidence from President Hwang’s safe.

Ordinarily, I’d feel more perplexed, I think, about a male lead taking a golf club to another character, but in President Hwang’s case, where it’s to teach him a lesson after he’s used similar weapons to inflict violence on women, I feel like I can give Healer a pass. 😅

I found it really quite satisfying to see the Double S dudes finally getting into President Hwang’s study, only to find President Hwang all battered and crouching in fear, with Healer long gone, with the hard disk. Muahaha. He really is the best there is, in the business.

Ahhh. The scene where Young Shin meets Healer on the rooftop!! 🤩🤩

It’s so like Young Shin to put herself out there, and make herself vulnerable, like this. The way she ties that scarf around her face so that she won’t see him; the way she just stands there and calls out to him, believing that he’s there; there’s just something so open and vulnerable about that.

I’m actually pretty sure that it’s against Healer’s MO to speak to anyone while he’s in Healer mode, but he speaks to Young Shin, in spite of it.

He’s becoming more and more personally invested in Young Shin, I feel like. And, the way he looks at her, is so intent, too, like he’s not sure what to do with her.

I like the fact that Young Shin’s smart enough to conclude that the fingernail clipping he’d taken from her before, had been for a DNA test, though I couldn’t help giggling at Healer’s bemused expression, when she asks if he’s her father or brother. HA. 😂

And there’s that moment when Young Shin touches Healer’s jacket, and in response, he takes her hand for a long second, before putting it away from himself.

Ahhh! Listen, it’s still skinship, ok?? 🤩🤩

Sabu and Ahjumma meeting over a drink in their Sunday best is very cute, honestly. It’s kinda trippy to see Ahjumma all decked out with a fancy little hat, when all we’ve seen her in, are those comfy sweats.

How curious, that Sabu actually suspects Moon Sik of being behind some of the bad things that had happened to their group of friends.

Guh. How badass of Healer to go right into Moon Sik’s study, to negotiate with him. He’s so unafraid, and so in control. I love that. I also love that he’s so prepared. Healer’s long de-activated that emergency button that Moon Sik puts his faith in, even before Moon Sik had realized that Healer was in the room.

BUT. How inconvenient, that Myung Hee full-on sees Jung Hoo’s face, and reflexively addresses him as Jun Seok! That’s his father’s name!

This is going to clue Moon Sik in on Healer’s identity, isn’t it? That can’t be good, can it..? 😬

Episode 8

Well, this is what I call a pivotal episode! 🤩

As it turns out, Jung Hoo’s encounter with Myung Hee doesn’t only ping Moon Sik’s curiosity, it pings Jung Hoo’s curiosity too.

I’d somehow had it in my head that Jung Hoo already knew that Myung Hee knew his father, since he’d seen the group photo on her night stand. But.. I suppose having her react to him and mistake him for his father takes it to another level, because it just makes him more determined than ever, to find out more about Myung Hee and how she knows his father.

So far, we’re not told why Sabu had left Jung Hoo, but so far, I can’t help but feel a measure of vicarious resentment towards Sabu too, on Jung Hoo’s behalf. After all, from what we’re told, Sabu had been Jung Hoo’s only person, for a long time, and then one day, he’d abandoned Jung Hoo, who didn’t have anyone else in the world.

That’s so sad, honestly. And Jung Hoo’s already so wounded, from how his mother left him behind, to get married again. It feels like Sabu’s hit him where it hurts the most, and so, in light of this, I can’t help but bristle somewhat, at the playful, teasing tone that we hear Sabu using with Jung Hoo.

After all that’s happened, surely it’s not ok to tease Jung Hoo like this, while withholding yourself? That’s gotta be so hard, for Jung Hoo. 😩

I can understand why Jung Hoo had so much aggression and resentment in him, growing up, and why he would decide that never expect anything from human beings, not least their understanding and attention.

And yet, that’s exactly what he’s getting from Young Shin, whether as Healer or as Bong Soo, and I feel that that’s systematically unsettling him, to the point where he just can’t ignore it anymore.

I thought it was a pretty typical but dirty move on Moon Sik’s part, to send Jong Soo in to Some Day undercover, but it’s pretty great, that Jong Soo’s so loyal to Moon Ho, that he ‘fesses up pretty much right away.

I guess this means he’ll be a double agent, since I suppose now he will only report to Moon Sik, the stuff that Moon Ho approves?

And what a classic Jong Soo move, to approach Young Shin herself, to ask about Chae Young Shin, pfft. Good thing he comes across as so harmless, I guess.

It’s pretty smooth of Jung Hoo to barge into Young Shin’s meeting with Moon Ho and Boss Jang, all sputtering and nervous in classic Bong Soo style, and then plant a bug under the table, before leaving the room, so that he can listen to everything that’s being said.

What unfortunate timing, for Young Shin to see that email coming in to Moon Ho’s account, on behalf of Healer, right when she’s telling Moon Ho about Healer having helped her to acquire the hard disk from President Hwang.

Poor Young Shin. In this moment, as all the various pieces fall into place in her head, she really does feel rejected by both her crushes. I think that thing that mortifies and humiliates her the most, is the thought that she’d misunderstood Healer as having a personal investment in her safety, when he’d actually been paid for his work.

Gah. That’s gotta sting.

That’s also probably why Young Shin buys Moon Ho’s cover story about having ordered background checks on her and all the other reporters via Healer. That honestly doesn’t makes sense, like, who’d pay that kind of money just to do background checks on potential future employees?

But Young Shin buys it, and I believe it’s  because she’s not thinking very straight, because she feels so crushed by the disappointment and embarrassment.

I’m actually rather taken aback that Moon Sik reacts to the news about Young Shin, by hallucinating about his old friends Gil Han and Jun Seok. I mean, I had the idea in my head that Moon Sik’s done some very bad things to his old “friends,” but I’d also assumed that whatever guilt he might have felt, must have been resolved long ago.

So, it’s rather startling to me, to see him hallucinate like this. It makes me think that he’s had a lot of guilt building up over the years, and this latest information about Young Shin is making all the troublesome memories come flooding back – along with the guilt that he’d felt, at whatever he’d done.

We still don’t know what Moon Sik did, exactly, and how he’d caused Young Shin to disappear, since we see in flashback that he’d been the one to pick her up from what looks like an orphanage. Did he end up losing her after this? Or did he decide to abandon her again, after finding her? That’s a terrible, cruel possibility.

Interestingly, the hallucinations that he suffers, make me see Moon Sik in a more human sort of light, in the sense that, at least he’s not heartless, if he feels this guilty?

Gah. How terrible, though, that Secretary Oh reports the incident to Elder, and then takes it upon himself to get rid of Young Shin, who he sees as the source of Moon Sik’s troubles, and therefore, his weakness.

I’m glad that Moon Ho sends Jung Hoo with Young Shin, when she goes to interview Yun Hee, for a couple of reasons.

1, it gives us a chance to see Young Shin having that cute, jubilant reunion with all the ex-cons, while Jung Hoo looks on in bemusement, AND, 2, we also get that scene where Jung Hoo basically touches Young Shin on the forehead, as an act of rebellion against Moon Ho’s orders for Healer not to make any further personal contact with Young Shin.

Pfft. Our Healer can be so droll and so cheeky at the same time.

And then there’s the part where Young Shin does the camera test, and starts addressing the camera, while she talks about her heartbreak. I think it’s important for Jung Hoo to hear how she feels, because this is about how she perceives his feelings for her, after all, even though she doesn’t know it yet.

I feel that Jung Hoo feels Young Shin’s heartbreak viscerally, even though he probably can’t articulate it. From the look on his face, it definitely gives him pause.

I couldn’t help but smile a little, when Jung Hoo realizes that the reason Sabu keeps asking him random questions about cake and chocolate, is because it’s his birthday.

AW! Sabu cares! And, that clearly matters to Jung Hoo, even though he’s said in voiceover several times now, that he doesn’t expect anything from humans.

Now, on hindsight, it feels like he says that more to convince himself than anything else. Poor Jung Hoo.

What a horrible turn of events, though, that he gets that call while on his way to meet Sabu, that Young Shin’s missing, and very likely in great danger, since someone’s taken the trouble to trick her using voice modulation.

I feel SO sorry for Young Shin, for going through this, because it’s scary and stressful enough for anyone, let alone someone who’s already prone to anxiety attacks. Poor Young Shin’s gone through enough for several lifetimes, honestly.

I’m SO relieved that Jung Hoo gets there in time, and I can’t help having stars in my eyes, at the way Jung Hoo gets to Young Shin, with zero hesitation. And then there’s also the way he secures her so deftly with that safety rope, before wrapping her in his arms.

Plus, the way his rigged pulley system works, to pull them up to the roof, as the elevator breaks loose and falls down the shaft, is so thrilling, honestly.

Ahhh!! 🤩🤩

It’s just like Young Shin, though, to berate Healer right away, for risking his life to save hers, because he could have literally died. Again, it’s one of those Young Shin things; no one else has shown Jung Hoo such strong, effortless empathy before, and it throws him, every time.

It’s so poignant, really, that in this moment, Young Shin tries to speak on business terms, thanking Healer, and then expressing regret that she doesn’t have money to repay him for saving her. This is definitely coming from her coming to the conclusion that Healer has no personal interest in her, and has simply been hired to save her.

I believe it’s because Jung Hoo now knows how brokenhearted she really feels about this, that he turns back, after having made to leave. Like he indirectly indicates with his voiceover, he’s done with not expecting anything from humans, as he turns back towards her; he’s acknowledging his emotional connection to her.

On top of that, I also believe that it’s because he wants her to know that it’s not “just business” on his side.

He’s so gentle and tentative, as he folds up the edge of her beanie, to unveil her lips, and he’s so tender too, as he leans in to kiss her.

Ahh! He’s expressed his feelings towards her, even though he hasn’t said the words, and I’m swooning and melting all over my floor.

Now Young Shin knows, a hundred percent, that it’s not a one-sided crush anymore, too.

Eeee!!! 😍😍😍

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Gigi
Gigi
5 months ago

Healer is my first non-Netflix kdrama after Goblin and I’m the only one among my friends who’s watching it so it’s so great to see this discussion here! It’s like I’m not alone ☺️ Love the drama so far and it felt so great to recognize that Healer’s and Young Shin’s first kiss was during the first snow (at least I think it was the first in the show so far) and that it’s significant 😻

beez
6 months ago

I may be the only nerd who finds this interesting, but here it is
https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/islandia-lets-buy-an-island-micronation/index.html

I thought that Healer must be very, very rich to even consider buying his own private island but then I read the article linked here and thought… not necessarily. 🤔

beez
6 months ago

My thoughts that I wrote while watching:
Ep.7
We see where Healer learned to dress as a office cleaner (in Ep. 2 or 3?) but where Teacher can get away with it, there’s no way anybody would believe Healer’s young, giant, hulking size in that disguise, especially when that job is usually frail elderly ahjummas.

Why is there a lone tree stump on this very modern rooftop? It’s not even wide the way a stump made for people to sit on is. Am I supposed to believe Healer brought it just to sit that package on? If so he could’ve just brought a rock. I suppose an employee could’ve brought it up there to sit/eat/smoke, but a chair would make more sense.

Ep. 8
Healer had a very busy day. Worked at SomeDay, went and beat the crap out of woman beater/pimp Construction CEO, gave the tape to his growing crush, then traveled out to Moon shik’s home to clear his frame up. (I think they said in Ep 3-4 that Moonshik’s house is a 2 hour drive from the city.)

It tickled me to see Amazing Dad holding court with a royal dismissal wave to his loyal ex cons.

Watching Young shin with the ex cons explains the conundrum (for me) of her hatred/reaction to violence and yet her attraction, or maybe rather the fact that she’s not repulsed by a rough guy like Healer. She wasn’t raised to look down on people who’ve got some “situations” in their past. I have to remember she hasn’t seen the background info that we’ve seen. She only knows (thinks she knows) that “he doesn’t hurt people”. I love how Bong soo looks uncomfortable and mumbles “sometimes people might get hurt”.

The Hat Kiss! I swear, in 2014 when people kept telling me about The Hat Kiss and sending me clips of it. I thought “what’s the big deal? That’s kind of silly.” But context is king because once I finally watched the series after it was over in 2015, I’m flailing and swooning and swooning and flailing every time I see it! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

beez
6 months ago

My thoughts as I read KFG’s noted:

“Part of it definitely emotional baggage and resentments towards Sabu, since we’ve been told in broad strokes that Sabu had abandoned Jung Hoo…” quoting Kfangurl”
The other part is his rebellious nature that says do the opposite of authority

“…Moon Sik used Moon Ho’s name in the purchase. Unless I’m misunderstanding this conversation..?” quoting kfangurl

My subs on several different platforms: The Weasle reports to Moonshik that Moonho sold his shares and property that were in Moonho’s name but technically belong to The Elder. Then Moonshik says that Moon ho asked his permission. (Which feels like Moonshik is covering for Moon ho because I can’t imagine him actually asking to sell things that are in his name. I can’t even believe that Moon ho would’ve knowingly allowed things to be put in his on behalf of The Elder.)

Btw, Kocowa translates The Elder as “Boss”. “Boss” sound far less ominous, imo.

Ahhh! Listen, it’s still skinship, ok??” quoting KFG
You bet your boopy it is!

Did anyone notice that at the beginning of episode 8, when we revisit the scene from episode 7 of Myung hee running into Healer that this time it’s the actor who plays Healer’s dad in the Healer “suit”?

“…we see in flashback that he’d [Moonshik] been the one to pick her up from what looks like an orphanage…” quoting KFG –
I think it was a police station but I could be wrong and my assumption could’ve clouded my view. But either way, I thought it strange that the director chose to have them reunite outside. Maybe production costs limited showing the inside of the police station/orphanage?

Last edited 6 months ago by beez
j3ffc
j3ffc
6 months ago

Re Young Shin’s assertion that humans read the entertainment news first (if only that could be true again), I’ve wondered if the online entertainment news outlet could be inspired by any number of real-life variations on the theme: Someday = Soompi maybe?

beez
6 months ago
Reply to  j3ffc

– I get the imprison that Someday is more like Dispatch. Dispatch is the S.K. media news outlet that catches the K celebrities as they stealthily try to get away with dating. (Poor things.) They’re truly paparazzi in the sense of jumping out from behind trees and parked cars, lying in wait for unsuspecting celebrity couples who try to use the darkness of night as cover for their relationships.

beez
6 months ago
Reply to  beez

impression

J3ffc
J3ffc
6 months ago
Reply to  beez

Gotcha! I had not heard about Dispatch before, but the modus operandi sure sounds right.

J3ffc
J3ffc
6 months ago

So, I had to watch the camera test scene a couple of times because, uh, you know, to make sure that the camera was really working. 🙈

But I’ll tell ya, that ex-con behind the bar doesn’t miss a thing. I suspect that that will be as the saying goes “not for nothing” later on.

Kay
Kay
6 months ago

That screenshot is iconic for sure 🙂 Definitely some great episodes packed with emotion, excitement, and feels!

Kim
Kim
6 months ago

Just wanted to say that I’m really loving this show! My heart jumped when he finally kissed her. So sweetly too. Loving the two of them together. I like how without him even realizing it she is breaking through his shell. Worming her way in and touching his wanting to be alone and not need anyone and making it melt. And the fact that they were so comfortable with each other when they were little kids makes it so nice.
I love how he is privy to her feelings for him by way of Bong Soo , I’m wondering when she will find out that Bong Soo and healer are one person..
I liked the flashback with Moon Ho and Jian(Young Shin), when he is coaching her on appropriate interviewing technique, back to when they were kids and she was trying to get his attention and he wouldn’t pay her any mind til she threw something at him. It was so cute how much her cared for her back then. Which just reinforces the fact that he is very angry at his brother for what he thinks he did to her. And the fact that he lied to Moon Ho and Joan’s Mom that she was dead. I really want to find out what happened with that.

Well, now I have to wait til next week for more.

beez
6 months ago
Reply to  Kim

hahaha @Kim. I didn’t catch that in all my many rewatches – that Jian throws things to get Moon ho’s attention right after Moon ho was coaching Young shin about “throw your shoe if you have to!” 😆