Welcome to the Open Thread, everyone! Gosh, can you believe that we’re already at the end?? 🥲 It’s been such a good time, rewatching this show; thank you for joining me on the journey! ❤️
SOME IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENTS, before we begin:
1. There’s no Spoiler Zone this week, since this is the final two episodes of the show.
2. Our next Wednesday group watch will be of Heard It Through The Grapevine, which will start on 4 May 2022.
I will make an announcement with all the relevant details, next Wednesday, 27 April 2022.
Without further ado, here are my reactions to this set of episodes; have fun in the Open Thread, everyone! ❤️
I find that I tend to be wary of penultimate episodes, because so many dramas end up messing it up, as they try to amp up the excitement and dramatic tension, to usher us into the ending.
Because it’s been so long since I last watched Healer, I honestly didn’t know what to expect, coming into this penultimate episode.
I’m so pleased to say that this turned out to be a lot more solid and satisfying than I’d imagined. This, even though I already have a high opinion of Show, overall. That’s pretty impressive.
For a start, I was pretty horrified that our baddies successfully get Healer on camera, and even manage to coerce Jung Hoo into admitting to a murder that he didn’t commit – all by threatening him with the safety of first Moon Ho, and then Young Shin.
I have to admit, though, that their plan is very shrewd, and I also have to admit to feeling reluctantly impressed, that their plan actually works.
Guh. These people are horrible.
Elder looks so benign, even as he basically blackmails Jung Hoo into working for him.
Moon Sik is kinda worse, in my books, because the person he’s manipulating and using for his own agenda, is his own brother. And he just keeps on smiling through it all, even though he can totally see that Moon Ho is very upset.
He reminds me of an indulgent parent, who’s smiling at his child’s peevishness, because he knows that the child will grow up to see the error of his ways, and realize that Dad had been right all along.
Except in this case, he’s not Moon Ho’s father, and he’s the one who’s delusional about how right he is. 🙄
I’m so relieved that Young Shin’s ok – that scene where Secretary Oh is holding her hostage, was so stressful to watch! – and that Jung Hoo gets to her relatively soon.
The way Jung Hoo and Young Shin cleave to each other, the moment they set eyes on each other, so full of relief, is moving to behold. After all that stress, this feels like a sweet respite, even though Jung Hoo’s technically still in trouble.
It’s so sweet, to see how worried Jung Hoo is, for Young Shin’s safety. The way he keeps checking, to make sure she’s not hurt, and wasn’t manhandled, is so tender, and I do love how searching his gaze is, as he looks at her.
On another note, I’m so glad that Jung Hoo doesn’t do the noble idiot thing and attempt to withhold information from Young Shin. Instead, he tells her everything, including how he’d made the false confession, and how Elder’s threatening him with it.
Ahh. It sounds simple, but this kind of forthright honesty between couples, particularly in times of danger, isn’t as common as you’d think, in Dramaland.
I love that Jung Hoo and Young Shin talk about it so plainly, and I love that Young Shin is immediately with Jung Hoo, on not giving in to Elder’s demands, even if it means a dangerous fight ahead.
Plus, it’s just like her, to want to fight alongside Jung Hoo, even though it means being in danger. I’m glad though, that Jung Hoo dissuades her from it. After seeing how Young Shin’s safety can be used against Jung Hoo, it does seem like the wiser idea, for her to stay out of it.
It is so heartachey, though, as Young Shin realizes that she won’t be able to even see Jung Hoo for a while, since he’s going off the grid to deal with the situation with Elder.
I know this is partly her wanting to see him because she knows she’ll miss him, but I also get the sense that this is coming from a place of worry.
Young Shin’s concerned for Jung Hoo, because he’s going to be in a dangerous situation, and not being able to contact him, means not knowing whether he’s ok. I can imagine how hard that would be.
Over at Moon Sik’s house, again, we see how delusional Moon Sik is, the way he thinks that Jung Hoo being noticed by Elder, is a great opportunity, rather than a great danger.
I’m glad that Myung Hee’s tapped his study, because this turns out to be the way she learns that Ji An’s alive, and that Moon Sik had lied to her about Ji An’s death.
Gosh, that must be so horrible for her. I’d honestly rather that Moon Ho had told her, earlier. That would have been a less horrible way to find out, for sure.
The breakfast scene the next morning, when Myung Hee tells Moon Sik that she’s leaving to look for Ji An, is so masterfully delivered by Do Ji Won.
Myung Hee’s got such complicated feelings towards Moon Sik. He’s the one who had been there for her, when she’d had no one, and nowhere to go. He’d literally saved her.
And yet, he’s also the one who had lied to her about Ji An’s death, thus inflicting the greatest emotional wound on her, as well.
Do Ji Won’s delivery of Myung Hee’s response to Moon Sik, as she lays all of this out, is so wonderfully complex and so elegantly profound. So much gratitude, giving way to such a deep sense of betrayal.
Oof. It’s hard to imagine how Myung Hee must feel, but Do Ji Won’s delivery gives us a very good flavor for it, I think.
In the meantime, I have to admit that it’s pretty cool to see Jung Hoo in Healer mode again, as he goes about collecting the fingerprints of all the guys working for Manager Ahn.
It wasn’t until this point, that I realize it’s been a while since we’ve seen Jung Hoo don his Healer wings, and I got a thrill from him slipping in and out of places unnoticed, while getting all the information he needs.
At the same time, it’s so poignant to see Jung Hoo and Young Shin being separated, and working to deal with the isolation, in their own ways.
Young Shin looking out her window, on the off-chance that Jung Hoo’s hanging around her home; Jung Hoo hiding out at an internet cafe, and watching Young Shin’s reporting videos on Some Day; there’s so much sweet angst here.
Because both Young Shin and Myung Hee are going through a hard time, I found it extra nice, to see them get to spend a bit of time together, when Moon Ho brings Myung Hee in to Some Day, for an interview.
That scene, where Young Shin tells Myung Hee, so animatedly, all about “her man” fighting against Elder, and Myung Hee listening so intently, is so, so lovely and heartwarming.
THE FEELS, y’all. 🥰🥰🥰
Augh. The only thing that would’ve made it better, was if Myung Hee knew this was Ji An who was telling her all about “her man.”
On a completely different note, I am quite tickled to realize that Detective Yoon kinda-sorta-maybe-definitely has a crush on Ahjumma. HAHA.
I don’t know how I managed to miss this on my first two watches – I was probably preoccupied with our OTP, that’s what – but this was a new discovery for me, this time around.
It’s in the little things, like how Detective Yoon is so pleased to see that burner phone that Ahjumma’s left for him, that he kisses it briefly, and smiles this dorky shy, very pleased smile, like a teenager who’s just managed to score the phone number of his crush.
GOSH, like seriously, HOW DID I MISS THIS BEFORE?? I love it, in case that wasn’t clear. 😂😂
That said, I was really quite nervous about Manager Ahn and his team getting hold of Ahjumma’s location, and racing over there to get her. I’m just so, SO relieved that Jung Hoo manages to catch wind of it, and gets there in the nick of time, to save her.
It was still very poignant, though, to watch Ahjumma pack her things to get out of there. From what I can tell, this had been her home; she ate, slept and worked there, all the flippin’ time. The way she looks at the kids’ clothes that she’d knitted and set aside, is also so full of pathos.
Guh. It feels like Ahjumma’s leaving her life behind, as she prepares to run away. 😭
Still, better to leave your life behind, than get caught in a dark trap set by bad guys, so I’m just glad that Ahjumma’s ok.
The silver lining to this incident, is that Jung Hoo and Ahjumma finally meet face to face. Ahhh!! This is almost as exciting as Jung Hoo and Young Shin properly meeting face to face, for the first time.
I love Jung Hoo’s expression of curious wonder, and I love the fact that he just can’t stop himself from staring at Ahjumma, now that he’s got her in front of him. And, the way he laughs to himself, is kinda great; it makes me feel like he’s happy to see Ahjumma, finally. 😁
I’m so intrigued by the way Jung Hoo asks Ahjumma if she’d like to do something fun, after talking about how he’s tired of fighting against the minions that “they” hire.
And then we cut to Jung Hoo, Young Shin, Moon Ho AND Ahjumma, all fired up and looking ready to rock and roll.
Ahhh! It looks like we’re heading into our final showdown, and it promises to be badass AND exciting.
Bring it on, Show! But also, do you really have to end..? 🥲
All in all, I’d say that while I didn’t love everything about the finale, Show does give us an ending that’s pretty solid, when everything’s said and done.
And when I say that I didn’t love everything about the finale, I’m being a little nitpicky, really, because Show does pretty darn well – as long as you remember that this one is best digested with a manhwa lens on.
That manhwa lens comes in very handy, to deal with any stretches in logic, and any required suspension of disbelief, to go with. And, because I love this show so much, I’m more than happy to lean into the manhwa lens all over again, to get maximum satisfaction, from this finale.
For a start, I am very much entertained by the scene where Manager Ahn’s men try to ambush and intimidate Young Shin, and Jung Hoo swoops in, in full Healer mode, and basically kicks those guys to the curb, all while trying to provide a nice explanation to Dad and Ahjusshi, who are tied up, and looking on.
Their shocked faces tickle me a great deal, as I imagine their previous impressions and opinions of Bong Soo being a weakling who can’t protect Young Shin, come crumbling down to the ground. 😁
Tee hee hee. It’s so great. And I feel so vindicated, on Jung Hoo’s behalf!
Also, I can practically see the gears in Dad’s brain churning, as he tries to piece everything together in his head in a way that makes sense. 😆
I also love the idea of Moon Ho, Jung Hoo, Young Shin and Ahjumma joining forces, to work as a team.
Ahhh! Just the idea of this hodgepodge team, working in harmony, each contributing their unique skills and talents towards a common goal, pleases me greatly. 🤩
I also love the secondary idea that comes to the fore, that as a team, these people help and protect one another. Like how Ahjumma and her team prevent Moon Ho from being caught in that trap, where he’s photographed in a compromising position with a minor.
And, it’s also touching, that when their plan to find the real person responsible for Park Dong Chul’s murder fails, Young Shin is quick to volunteer to run away with Jung Hoo, if all their other efforts to go after Elder fail.
Aw. Her sincerity about this is so sweet, especially since she is cognizant of the fact that this option would entail her leaving behind all the other people whom she holds dear.
It’s not that she wants to; it’s that, it all boils down to the fact that Jung Hoo is the most important person to her.
One of the key things I was a little dissatisfied with, in this finale, is the fact that we don’t get to see Myung Hee receive the news from Moon Ho, that Ji An is alive, and that Young Shin is indeed Ji An.
After all that build-up towards what feels like a key plot point, it feels a bit like a cheap move, that this reveal happens off-screen.
Sure, we do get a wordless happy reunion, complete with smiles and tears, but.. I guess I wanted more, from this arc.
I wanted to see Myung Hee receive the news, and process the news, and I wanted to see more than a silent reunion. I wanted to hear what Myung Hee and Young Shin had to say to each other, now that they’ve finally found each other again.
I do love, though, that we get to see Dad showing Myung Hee all of Young Shin’s photos, over the years, and talking through each one. That was sweet. That shared love for Young Shin that draws these two strangers together so swiftly, is truly moving to witness.
I’m also a little dissatisfied that Moon Sik isn’t directly implicated in our team’s final takedown of the baddies. I suppose I can infer that Moon Sik would be implicated during investigations, though.
I did find that scene, where Jung Hoo goes to seek Moon Sik out, and Moon Sik drunkenly identifies himself as Gil Han, very telling. It makes me think that all these years, he’s wanted to be Gil Han, to Myung Hee – when that’s the one thing he can’t be.
I suppose this is his escapist fantasy, that he’s really Gil Han after all. It’s pretty sad, come to think of it, that his fantasy, is to be someone else, other than himself, even though the world at large looks upon him as a highly successful man.
The entire Plan B mission, which turns out to be an undertaking to incriminate Elder, while faking Jung Hoo’s death, has a heist-like flavor to it, and I think, is best digested with a manhwa lens on.
That makes everything land a lot better, particularly in terms of how everything conveniently falls into place, exactly as our team needs it to.
And of course, there’s the thing where Jung Hoo’s right there, alive, but yet he’s reported as dead.
And there’s that other thing, where Ahjumma doctoring past files, to replace Jung Hoo’s face with the real Park Bong Soo’s face, conveniently erases everyone’s memories of these documents looking different, in the past.
The manhwa lens helps with all of that, to smooth over these little humps and bumps, that an over-analytical lens would find troubling.
Am I a little miffed at Show for leading us to believe for a hot minute, that Jung Hoo’s died? Yes, for sure.
Am I more than mollified, though, that Show reveals quickly enough, that it had all been a ruse, and that Jung Hoo not only comes out of this alive, but no longer with murder charges against him? Definitely yes as well.
Plus, I’m just really happy and buzzed, to see Young Shin and Jung Hoo, continuing to live the reporter life, after all of this blows over, with Young Shin being the one to front the interviews, and Jung Hoo being her cameraman and photographer.
Aw. That feels quite fitting, doesn’t it, that Jung Hoo’s following in his father’s footsteps, just like Young Shin’s following in her mother’s footsteps? 🤩
And most of all, how very lovely, that they are just.. happy together, now. They’re no longer wrestling with unknown ghosts from the past, nor are they dealing with bad people who want to get rid of them because of their ties to an inconvenient past.
They’re free to live, to love, and to be, and I love that.
Last but not least, it makes me inexplicably happy, to see that Jung Hoo still likes to hang out in high places – but the difference is, he doesn’t hang out there alone anymore, because now he’s got Young Shin with him.
Ahhhh. The feeeels. So lovely. 😍😍
“Oh my love.. I’m all yours.. And there will never be another one ’cause I’m eternally yours..” ❤️
Dear KFangurl, thank you so much for recommending Healer to me. I just finished the finale and have swooned every single episode. As a journalist myself, I find there’s so much to relate to in the story, but then there’s also this novelty of the night messenger element and the heroic missions Healer gets to embark on with our two co-leads.
Big applause to Writer Song Ji-na for writing such an epic series, and directors Lee Jung-sub and Kim Jin-woo for executing it so well. And of course all the actors who brought the characters to life, and everyone else who supported them. Well done.
I honestly loved the penultimate episode more than the finale. It was intense, with Jeong-hu having to confess to murdering Park Dong-cheol in order to save Yeong-sin’s life. That’s love.
And then as a consequence, he has to switch Healer mode back on so he can find evidence to prove his innocence, and that mean cutting contact with her and the world for the time being. He loves her enough to sacrifice their being together for her safety, but just as enough to fight to not make that sacrifice permanent, i.e. don’t go to lifetime prison for it and don’t spend life as a fugitive without her. Make it safe to be back with her already.
That said, I wish this happened a couple of episodes sooner, because with just one episode left, it felt so rushed to have to bring closure to such a big bomb AND all the other storylines we’ve come to invest in all this time.
And I’m not too happy that the closing case to be a new one we didn’t have time to invest attention and emotions into. I wish we had just focused on an epic closure to Omega Holdings’ minium case (that was never resolved despite the Someday broadcast featuring Myeong-hui, was it?), more time to dramatically punish our longtime criminals (of course, Elder and our goons, but also Mun-sik and Assistant Oh), and most of all, the reunion between Myeong-hui and Ji-an, and Myeong-hui’s life after marriage.
That said, Writer Song still delivered a solid and memorable finale, and I have every respect for the existing finale. However, my different preferences from the existing finale has inspired me to toy with an alternative ending for Healer, which I will include in the comment.
HEALER ALTERNATIVE ENDING
Jeong-hu gets to clear his name through alternative evidence that result in a warrant for the arrest of Elder, Manager Ahn, and the murders of Ko Seong-cheol, Hwang Je-Guk and Park Dong-cheol. There is also evidence for Omega Holding’s similar recent crimes that are strongly connected to the 1992 minium case.
(I would much prefer this scenario vs such a different and random closing case like a Koryo-saram virologist, who seems to speaks abnormally good Hangugeo, seeking asylum in South Korea after her Elder backed Russian scientist mafia poisoned this country’s waters).
Through Detective Yoon, Jeong-hu has his innocence guaranteed in return for his collaboration in catching Elder’s crew, though this will require Jeong-hu penetrating the enemy camp to play double agent.
They plan for this operation to coincide with the Seoul mayoral candidate debate to be televised live from ABS, hosted by none other than Executive Producer Kang Min-jae. And of course Kim Mun-sik will be one of the candidates debating against his opposition. All of Elder’s, Manager Ahn’s and Double SS’s resources will be concentrated on securing this mayoral debate and whatever dirty trick in the playbook to orchestrate an unfair landslide victory for Mun-sik.
Jeong-hu is looking forward to an emotional reunion with Yeong-sin after weeks or maybe even months living on the run, but (like the original finale) Manager Ahn’s goons have incapacitated Appa and Ajusshi in the cafe as they attempt to kidnap Yeong-sin again. Jeong-hu fights them off single handedly as he nonchalantly reintroduces himself to Appa and Ajusshi.
After Jeong-hu clears the cafe of the goons and calms Yeong-sin down with medication, Mun-ho and Ahjumma show up at the coffee shop. They all sit down with Appa and Ajusshi to explain what happened in 1992 and what it has to do with what is happening now. Appa gets a bit mad about Jeong-hu lying about his identity earlier, but offers his legal services should this come to Someday News or Healer in a legal battle.
Meanwhile, Ajusshi calls backup from his fellow ex-cons to keep the coffee shop safe for the next couple nights or so. Appa calls the night after his boys pay him respects and dance with Yeong-sin a little. And with that, Jeong-hu, Yeong-sin, Mun-ho and Ahjumma pull an all-nighter to plan Someday News’s alternative broadcast of the debate and the police ambush.
After spending most of the series with growing animosity towards Mun-sik, this all-nighter meeting finally shows Mun-ho agonizing that it has come to this between him and his own older brother. Maybe we see brief flashbacks on how a pre-schooler Mun-ho quickly went from Mun-sik’s little brother to the pirate radio fantastic five’s very own sixth member, and how everything Mun-ho has become today has been a continuation of that.
Then Ahjumma can be Mun-ho’s voice of reason, reminding him that what matters is who is standing with Mun-ho now to really continue the cause that the fantastic five put their lives on the line for. Myeong-hui, the love of Mun-ho’s life, who has had her life on hold for 20 years due to justice yet to be served. Yeong-sin, who Mun-ho has grown to care for and is the reason why he’s fighting for this now. Jeong-hu, whom despite the love-hate relationship, Mun-ho needs to carry out this mission successfully. Millions of Koreans who have suffered the way they all have at the evil hands of Omega Holding’s impunity, and the continuation of that suffering should this Omega-backed government under Mun-sik be allowed to take the throne and plunder this nation unbridledly. They say blood is thicker than water, but sometimes there simply isn’t enough blood to thicken a deluge. And we know Ahjumma says this coming from a deeply personal place, having sacrificed being on her son’s deathbed to serve her country in a heartbreakingly silenced battle against Omega.
Before dawn, Healer reports to Elder for duty and gets to work with Manager Ahn concerning the mayoral debate. Meanwhile Someday News has all their reporters planted at the locations where the police ambush is planned, except maybe Reporter Yeo and Editor-In-Chief Jang who are in charge of the studio.
Yeong-sin is done up and wearing another power dress underneath a sharp black trench coat, but unlike last time she wears her signature army boots for maximum mobility and looks edgy as hell. With Ahjumma’s high tech help, insider leaks from Healer and her own thief-like spying skills, Yeong-sin makes it into the studio audience. She sabotages Mun-sik’s part of the debate with incriminating questions while Someday News airs evidence no talking points can deny.
Manager Ahn’s goons attack Yeong-sin but Healer comes to her rescue while his glasses relay the video onto Someday News’s live broadcast and while he nonchalantly incapacitates Yeong-sin’s attackers and hides her somewhere safe. The police come ambushing the studio to arrest Mun-sik and the goons.
Kang Min-jae is furious and never wants to see Mun-ho again. While it does hurt him to burned a bridge with both an important colleague and an ex-girlfriend he is still very much attracted to, there is also relief in closing this chapter for good and moving on to where his heart is, both career-wise and potentially romantically with someone else.
Elsewhere, Elder, Manager Ahn, Assistant Oh and all the accomplices get arrested, though not without some serious resistance. All the Someday News reporters on the ground get both their brush with danger as well as their moments to shine.
A horrified but relieved Choi Myeong-hui watches as the view count skyrockets to the millions. Now she knows the truth about the bad man she said goodbye to, who killed the man she loved and made their daughter disappear as he kept her in a cage for over twenty years. She also looks at Mun-ho with so much pride in what he’s become, embodying the true spirit of the pirate radio she sacrificed for with Oh Gil-han, Seo Jun-seok and Ki Yeong-jae. But it is Yeong-sin that melts Myeong-hui’s heart as she hears the young reporter on Sunday News echo what was once her call on the 1981 pirate radio: “Democracy, democracy, where are you?”
Myeong-hui’s nurse stands by with medication to anticipate a seizure, but through happy tears Myeong-hui assures her she is fine. She asks the nurse to take her to the kitchen.
Back at Someday News, Mun-ho and Yeong-sin are the last to arrive for the evening and their colleagues applaud them as heroes. Naturally, Mun-ho and Yeong-sin deflect the praise back to their team of incredible journalists. They also want to congratulate Park Bong-su for the work well done today but he is missing. Mun-ho announces an office dinner celebration with beef and soju but it will be tomorrow night because he has somewhere to be tonight.
Cut to Jeong-hu, who is visiting a just arrested Mun-sik in his detention centre. Mun-sik is having delusions, and did not even need a drink of alcohol to get there. He introduces himself as Uncle Gil-han, who has been arrested for gathering evidence at the minium transfer, and the imaginary friend next to him as Uncle Mun-sik, and he has a conversation with this imaginary friend. The correctional officer tells Jeong-hu that Mun-sik has gone insane since his arrest and will need psychiatric support, though it will be a long and difficult process to get him the care he needs.
From there we see Jeong-hu meeting Yeong-sin, who has a bouquet of flowers and two bottles of wine. All smiles and hand-in-hand, they take the elevator up to Mun-ho’s apartment. Myeong-hui has invited them for dinner and is delightfully surprised to learn that Yeong-sin’s boyfriend has been Jeong-hu all along. She recalls Yeong-sin telling him that her boyfriend has made Elder mad and went on the run to fight him, so Myeong-hui is extra impressed with Jeong-hu. She tells Yeong-sin what an honest, happy-go-lucky, hilarious and helpful man her boyfriend’s dad Jun-seok was.
Inside, Myeong-hui has prepared a feast not unlike the kind we saw in the first episode, when it was for celebrating Ji-an’s deathday and Mun-ho missed it over some work drama. But of course today’s spread is for much happier occasions: Myeong-hui’s new chapter of life in Seoul, a belated celebration of Mun-ho’s acquisition of Someday News, and the arrest of the criminals she and her friends spent their youth fighting.
What Myeong-hui did not see coming was Mun-ho’s announcement over dinner. Here we learn whatever it was the recent inciting that prompted Mun-ho to suspect that Ji-an is still alive. Presumably this would have to do with Mun-sik’s cover of nearly twenty years no longer able to hold its own and several external things beyond his control subtly giving him away.
We also learn, without it necessarily being a confession of romantic feelings, what exactly is this sense of indebtedness Mun-ho feels towards Myeong-hui that drove him to hire Healer to find Ji-an at such a timing. And Ji-an has long been found, alive and well and having been raised happy by an Appa who loves her as well as a village of protective Ahjussis. And, well, Ji-an is sitting right next to Myeong-hui right now.
The tears come running in a long tender hug. Myeong-hui’s lifelong grief has ended, as well as Yeong-sin’s wondering of her early life. There is overwhelming love and consolation that this mother and daughter have found each other, and gratitude that Uncle Mun-ho and Jeong-hu risked their lives and careers to make this happen. All their hearts are full to the brim, and even the usually cold and prickly Jeong-hu gets misty in the eyes.
They look at the fantastic five photo one last time, pouring soju for three shot glasses. Myeong-hui tells Gil-han their daughter is back, and what a wonderful young woman she has become, following in her birth parents’ footsteps. She tells Jun-seok she always knew he has been innocent, that he and Gil-han sacrificed their life for Korea’s democracy, and that the justice has been served towards the evil men that took their lives. She thanks Ki Yeong-jae for raising Jeong-hu on behalf of all of them when Jun-seok could no longer do so. It’s hard to wrap around what Healer does, but Healer has completed fighting the cause that is the reason of the fantastic five’s pirate radio all those decades ago. And while Myeong-hui is sorry that Mun-sik betrayed them and is finally punished for his crime, she is also grateful that he has helped her live to see this day and hopes he will find redemption in a future she wants nothing to do with.
Ahjumma has a new standalone house on a mountaintop, and it is a lot brighter than the den apartment she used to live in. It’s quirky but homey, decorated with her cute knitwork and all. There are photos of her with her late son, implying that she has made peace with his death now that Healer has brought down Omega. After nonchallantly rolling her gimbap and not bothering to cut it we see climb up the attic to what looks like a maze of a server room and the lair of her work station. Ahjumma is back in business!
Dae-yong resumes as full time as the new Healer, but she is so much better at her job now. While Jeong-hu has stepped down from his former Healer duties, he mentors Dae-yong once a week or so as her Sabu, training her to step up the skills she needs for her job. We see a split screen where the materials Dae-yong practices with her Sabu helps her jump buildings, slip in and out of places unnoticed, and work together with Ahjumma to complete some adrenaline rushing missions.
Jeong-hu reconciles with his mother and properly meets his younger half-brother and stepfather with no hard feelings.
Myeong-hui finalized her divorce with Mun-sik, earning half of the marriage’s assets. With that she opened a gorgeous Ji-an’s Bakery and Bistro with raving reviews from food influencers and even a famous chef or two. In her opening press conference we learn that cooking has been how Myeong-hui healed herself from the tragedies she has endured—losing her mobility, family and journalistic career. So now in this new chapter of her life she turns to what she does best: cooking and storytelling for a cause. Also, Thursday night is journalists night at Ji-an’s, with discounts for those who show a media badge, and TEDx like talks by Korean and foreign journalists sharing their greatest works and life stories. Videos of Ji-an’s journalist night talks are archived on Someday News. Huge round of applause, cameras flash. Yeong-sin, Mun-ho and Jeong-hu beam proudly at Myeong-hui.
After the press conference, Yeong-sin introduces her Appa and Myeong-hui. They share a tender moment. How have you raised such a bubbly and upbeat daughter? I don’t know, we all wonder how. I brought Yeong-sin’s childhood photo album. Yes please, let’s see them over dinner, come follow me to the VIP room. As their conversation fades, we overhear Myeong-hui saying she plans to be a disability friendly employer, and Appa saying he does not have much experience there, but will be happy to share what it’s like being an ex-con friendly employer and giving people a second chance to find their place in society. The camera pans to a decorated photo table showing photos of the fantastic five, young Oh Ji-an with young Myeong-hui and Gil-han, and adult Chae Young-sin with Chae Chi-su Appa. There is also a photo of Myeong-hui with the Someday News crew, with Mun-ho’s eyes smiling juuust a little to brightly slightly towards Noona’s direction.
Jeil News has been dissolved and some of their assets went to Someday News, which gives them more resources to upgrade their operations. Yeong-sin is seen driving to work, finally. Park Bong-su had reintroduced himself at Someday News off-screen, and Mun-ho announces that Jeong-hu has completed his certification as a HEFAT (Hostile Environment First Aid Training) trainer, and that he will train all his colleagues to make sure all Someday News journalists are equipped to survive, escape and fight back safely in case they encounter any violence and compromising complications on the job.
HEFAT is super hard for Yeong-sin, with simulations of kidnapping, firearms explosions, carjacking and tending to amputated limbs. But with lots of help and support, including off-screen counselling, Yeong-sin is finally able to complete her training with open eyes and an alert mind, even without her panic medication. Jeong-hu and Mun-ho are super proud of her when she gets her certification. So Mun-ho tells Yeong-sin to brace herself because she will need these HEFAT skills to survive.
Next thing we know, Reporter Chae and Cameraman Seo are traveling the world on duty, doing conflict broadcasts for Someday News in places like Myanmar, Yemen, Somalia and Mexico. We see see freeze frames of Yeong-sin’s broadcasts juxtaposed to the poster in Yeong-sin’s room of Mun-ho reporting from Iraq, and we know that she has achieved her dream. We also see split screens of Yeong-sin and Jeong-hu with those of Gil-han and Jun-seok as Reporter and Cameraman, and we can rest assure that the two dads are watching over them from heaven.
Jeong-hu and Yeong-sin do their monologues about what they love, and what they hate being the things that keep them away from what they love. Meanwhile explosives explode, goons attack and other dangers happen. And Jeong-hu is always ready to rescue Yeong-sin, but now we see that HEFAT Yeong-sin no longer needs rescuing half as much as she does an equal partner who cherishes her in their adventures. After hours we see Jeong-hu and Yeong-sin cuddling and drinking beer in high places, and from the contented smile on his face we know that Jeong-hu too has achieved a dream better than buying an island with a pet cheetah.
In credit stills over MLTR’s Eternal Love, we see Jeong-hu and Yeong-sin flying to Panama from Mexico, and taking a boat to the Pacific side of Panama to scatter Sabu’s ashes. And more stills back in Seoul show their further journey with their careers and the people they love.
I may as well tell y’all here since you guys are who I communicate with most. I won’t be able to participate as much as I had planned to on the next two group watches. My son told me today that he’s closing on my new house on the 29th (next week) and I have to hurry and pack. And there’s a million things that have to be done.
Wow, congrats on closing on the new house, beez! The 29th is coming up really soon; that’s a bit overwhelming I imagine!
I was so proud to come here and tell you I watched Ep 1 of Heard it Through the Grapevine, too 🙂 . Come join us on the group watch when you can!
I’ve done as much packing as I can today and now I’m ordering food and will sit back and watch Grapevine right now!
Wonderful! Glad you can unwind a bit. I just finished Ep 2 of Grapevine :). It gets better, right? RIght now I am kind of hating In Sang’s parents. But also laughing at how ridiculous they are.
Beez – Good luck with your house move. Do be safe as well. I read that this drama is really under-rated and very good but unfortunately I won’t be joining in as I have lots to catch up on my existing drama watch list. And then this Marvel guys also release movies in multi-verse now and I need to watch a bit around that before I go to watch Dr.Strange next week. btw do you know JCW’s Sound of magic is coming on Netflix on May 6th :-). He looks absolutely beautiful in the trailer.
Happy group-watching and hope you all have a good time.
princess, i’m kind of repeating myself, but i do feel sorry you will not join us. this is one drama that can not be missed, so do hope you’ll watch it some time later. (of course , it’s much more fun to do it together). for some reason, i have a feeling that you would relate to this one in a similar fashion as you did and felt about healer. it’s just a feeling, although this drama is very different, except they are both very good.
from what you described about your life before, it seems that you might have a very personal understanding and emotional response to this particular drama. i do not pretend to know you, it’s just a feeling that i have, and i thought i’d share it with you, please forgive me if you think that i am crossing the line in any way.
Thanks for the invite. No problem at all in your invite and you are right in every way about this drama. As I mentioned earlier it’s a great choice for group watch and I don’t know how FGV comes up with these real gems for group-watch. But honestly I have to give it a miss as my drama schedule is jam-packed at the moment and especially May is a crazy month as Vesak Day is coming soon. I am a practising Buddhist (newly inducted) and I need to do quite a bit of work/reading in this month both at the Temple and in the Tradition. So keeping May a bit free for all the extra stuff.
You enjoy the drama and best wishes to have a good time 😉
@Princess Jasmine – Thanks so much! It’s coming suddenbtoo D-Day now – 2 more days! (Eeeek! And still packing!)
Good luck with the move, @beez! We are also moving soon and so my drama time has been seriously curtailed as well. I may need to play catch up but, as they say, fighting!
Thanks for sharing the watch, everyone! I loved this drama, it is “cracktastic!” It has been added to my all-time favorites, and I’ve become an even bigger fan of the leads, Ji Chang-Wook and Park Min-Young. Thanks Kfangurl for you analysis. You have the ability to put into words what I feel as I watch.
When a drama wraps up all the plotlines and story arcs I really like it. So many dramas misstep in the final few episodes, but this one did not disappoint.
Just want to give a sympathetic shout-out to our dear Jong Soo. One of his last scenes was him driving Young Shin home in the dark and hoping she would invite him in for coffee. We see you, Jong Soo! You have so much love to give, and one day you’ll find someone. The thought of ditching you on the side of the road will never cross her mind! She’ll always be grateful for rides home and she’ll be so excited to invite you in for coffee. And you will be happy.
Totally agree with everyone here that it was a cool group-watch for me personally. Will miss Healer anytime of the day but I am also glad that I joined in this group watch and enjoyed all the discussions. Also I was a bit wary in the beginning in March whether I would enjoy this drama as much as my last 2 times and as a group-watch but I was so wrong. I enjoyed it as much and group-watch made me savour the little emotions slowly/deeply and pick on many things that I missed last 2 times around. In general I was in a very happy space whenever I was catching up on the group-watch episodes per week and reading/writing on the comments section. And this memory of happiness I will cherish forever in my life as Healer is my fave drama of all time and very similar to my personal life story :-).
Thank you everyone and FGV.
p.j. Healer is my fave drama of all time and very similar to my personal life story :-).
that sounds MOST intriguing, i mean your life. may i ask you a question – no need to answer if you do not feel like it.
is your life similar to healers (are you running and jumping on roofs) or is it young shin’s , being protected by somebody like healer? or anything else?
Ha ha ha ha….wish I could run and jump but I have a terrible slip disc and need to be careful. Jokes apart – No issue in you asking and hopefully FGV will allow my comment to get a bit personal here.
I mentioned similar because I too like Healer lost my father at an early age suddenly for “known reasons” and my mother had to abandon me for being fearful for her life and to protect my elder sister. I was kept as a collateral by my paternal father’s family for the insurance money they took from my father’s death and to intimidate my mother. And in place of Moon-Shik – I had a whole bunch of people from my paternal family whom my father had trusted when he was alive and hung out together (just like the 5 friends in the story) – who deceived the mother and the children after the father’s death. And like Master/ Ahjumma – I did have some well-meaning people in life to help me get to where I am today. And yes just like Healer I had abandonment issues, trust issues in loving someone, child/teenage/adult abuse wherein I was constantly expected to excel and provide money and persistent lying to tolerate. And just like Moon – Ho I endured a lot out of fear for sabotaging the “family” and had nightmares and finally I had to do what I had to. The list is endless but suffice to say that I totally connect with the 2 main characters – Healer, Moon – Ho – in various difficulties and emotions. So in that way this drama resonates a lot with my personal life
And I had to hire a detective to finally trace my mother and sister and though we could never be together in this lifetime, at least I got a closure and some peace of mind.
So I am glad that the drama had a happy ending and a sense of justice prevailed in the end. And these days I play “I will protect you” whenever I miss my father.
P.S – I do have a trusting partner in life but he is no yeong-Shin though 🙂 but totally loveable and a good companion.
What a life – you have made it through a difficult path and you are amazing!
Oh my goodness! Thanks so much for sharing, Princess Jasmine! It sounds like such a difficult childhood with so much pain and loss 🙁 . Do you feel like Healer is a comforting drama for you? Or is it hard to watch sometimes?
Your resilience and the fact that you can be here sharing this with all of us truly is amazing as MC says!
princess jasmine, thank you for inviting us into the sanctity of your own private life and most difficult path you had to take. i am so sorry you had to endure all that, but i am happy that somehow you had a bright candle lighting your path out of it. i am horrified by all that you described, it sounds worse than the most horrific drama a writer can come up with. but i am glad that you preserved your soul, you kept intact the sweetness of your heart and brightness of your mind. after crossing that many broken bridges in your life – you are here, with us, and know that we all support you. although we usually never meet each other, we are a community. i personally admire you, princess jasmine and i love that you have the word “princess” attached to your name, you are a true princess.
@princess Jasmine – Yup. What @eda said. That’s what I meant too. ☺️
Thank you Eda, MC, the_sweetroad, Beez for all your kind words and understanding.
I really don’t know what came off me that day to write all that but I guess I was in “Healer” mode and decided to open-up. Many thanks for your support/empathy and not judging me in anyway. I do have plans to write my own book (after 3 years) and I hope to get it across as a positive story.
Eda – You are so right about the soul, heart and mind because these are the parts that can make or break a person and I am genuinely thankful to God that I was able to keep them intact somehow. (Don’t ask me how though because honestly I myself am astonished when I look back at everything)
the_sweetroad – The drama is definitely healing because there is a sense of justice in the end. And I like the way how the story unfolds and how the actors acted so beautifully. But it is a challenging watch for me everytime as many emotions run through my mind in many of the key scenes. And I tend to spill over those emotions into my daily life and in relationships. So it is what it is.
Great to have interacted with you all and for time-being I will sit out on the group watches as I am yet to finish – When the Camellia Blooms, Crazy Love, and have to catch up on Dr.Strange in theatres/ Sound of Magic in netflix and then so badly want to watch 2521 from mid-May onwards. I also need to work and breathe and sleep in between all this 🙂
Best wishes for the forthcoming group watches 🙂
princess, i am sorry you are not going to watch with us the 2 very good dramas, but especially the “grapevine” is one not to be missed. in the end, it will simply elevate your mood, whatever it is at these moments. it’s a makes you feel good, as somehow justice wins, not to mention outstanding acting, original story (different from other dramas and topics), and on top of it all — smart-funny.
Thanks dear but unfortunately I have to give it a miss but it’s on my list to watch someday. I did read upon it and everyone says that it is an under-rated gem. So I am very sure you all are going to have a good time. Happy viewing 😉
The drama is definitely healing because there is a sense of justice in the end. And I like the way how the story unfolds and how the actors acted so beautifully. But it is a challenging watch for me everytime as many emotions run through my mind in many of the key scenes. And I tend to spill over those emotions into my daily life and in relationships. So it is what it is.
Thanks for sharing! This all seems to make a lot of sense. All the best for you as you continue to heal and live life. ❤️
The Sound of Magic is on my list, too! Ji Chang Wook looks a bit like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory there :).
And I’m a Marvel person, too. AND “Everything, Everywhere All at Once” just came to my attention and I definitely want to watch that one in the theaters. Michelle Yeoh in a multiverse movie? Yes, please! It looks amazing.
Michelle Yeoh! My first and only girl crush!
@beez, Michelle Yeoh is excellent in anything she does. Did you watch the trailer for this one yet? Here it is. The movie looks soo good. I can’t wait until it’s released here in Europe.
@the_sweetroad – I’m so hurt🤧. I suggested to my son that he take me to see the new movie for Mother’s day but he had already gone to see it with his wife! Oh well, old traditions must move aside for new ones. He got her liking Michelle Yeoh because of Star Trek Discovery 😁 (can’t wait for the Michelle Yeoh spin off!) But he and I had been watching Michelle Yeoh since 1994’s Wing Chun. 😭 Don’t worry about me 🤧 I’ll pick an ultra expensive restaurant for mom’ day. *sniff*
Ok. So all that is to say I will definitely be watching Everything Everywhere or whatever the name is. 😁
Aww, so sorry, @beez. But can’t you pick an ultra expensive restaurant AND have him take you to see the movie? Or does he have an aversion to seeing movies twice? 🙂
@the_sweetroad Since he didn’t suggest that, that tells me he wasn’t all that into the movie. But I don’t care. It’s Michelle Yeoh, I’ll love it even if it’s bad. I loved that little movie with her, Angela Bassett (and who was the third actress?)
The movie has 97% on Rotten Tomatoes, so I think it will be a good one!
So sorry, yet happy for you.
@PrincessJasmine – Wow! I pride myself on my lack of nosey-ness (or rather, my ability to control it) but your statement that Healer kdrama is similar to your personal story… ?
(Feel free to ignore me but you did cause this.)
how do we ever get anything better or equal to the best of the best? is that even possible? which leaves me in a state of constant craving for “another healer”. let me know if you discover something of this sort. thanks.
now to the last 2 episodes.
myung hee finally takes the center stage, and although it’s bitter sweet- i am so happy for her. but… the scene where she thanks moon shik for providing for her for more than 20 years, i am surprised how sincere and gentle she brings it to him, with her “quiet elegance”, but at the same time my sense of surprise stems from how could she do it while knowing that he royally deceived her for all these years. and may be she does not know yet, that he is actually the culprit in all of that, but she does know (and tells him that) that her daughter is alive. he did not disclose it ever, he did not offer to help to find her ever… and i understand her sense of appreciation for providing for her. but WAS IT WORTH for her, that is my question. was it worth for her daughter, for the tortured soul of moon ho? if given a choice, what would all these people choose, given this unthinkable, almost unsolvable situation? o, a mother’s heart…
and then there is moon shik, as i said before in my previous comments, he’s the most complex character and thus the most interesting from the perspective of a writer’s creation of a real person, as there is a crazy mix of pitiful and disgusting, he is the epitome of the most twisted, most tortured soul in this drama. i can in a way understand him, like beez said it below, but can not forgive him. and then comes the moment of “payment” – he begs her on his knees to stay and he’ll explain everything. there is nowhere to go for him anymore. he put his hand on hers, she puts her hand on top of his, and then she “discards” his hand from hers, but it’s done with such finality, it’s like a sword cutting through human flesh. the bastard is done… no more.
and the question is, what could he have done? i believe, where there is a will there is a way. he could have moved, run away with her and look for ji an, he has the media at his disposal – if all his friends had the courage to bring the truth to the people in spite of being hunted by authorities, he now was in a much better place. he could have told the whole story and disclose the truth about the elder and the farmers. once it is in the public eye, i doubt if they would have been able to retaliate very much. there would have been an investigation, he could have persisted and not give up. there is also the police,(and even with corruption, there were some people in police who would not allow it to get buried, like ahjuma was. when there is a will there is a way.
we also get a glimpse of ahjuma’s bad choice at the time – to stop the person that is now responsible for at least 4 deaths,(and most likely, many more) and she knew the danger of this person, or to go to her dying son in the hospital. these are two of her major responsibilities in life, to save people’s lives or to stay by her son’s side at the time of death. horrible choices, but from what i understand, the responsibility that she has chosen to protect the public, since that was her choice to start with, became her choice also in this horrific situation. i understand her, feel sorry for her, but my heart would not let me keep a grudge against this woman.
the scene of the 4 of them, walking step in step, with a sharp determination at the airport, to me that was their VICTORY WALK.
it could have been the finale.
what comes next, the whole story with the fake healer’s death, how it happened, for what, bringing in the character that actually was the real park bong soo (who solved the problem for healer as a murderer) etc. – it all feels to me kind of out of context, forced and rushed. i could have lived without it.
and my last question, who told mh that ja is alive? when did it happen and how? moon ho said that he’ll tell her later this evening, but i do not think it was evening yet, so did he tell her anyway? and how is she so relatively cool while meeting her daughter? and ys was talking in her head to healer before, saying that she suspects that her mother knows who she is. so, when she meets her and they both cry, but it is still cool, does ys know at this time?
healer remains the best of the best for me.
Very well put together and thanks for this detailed analysis. the only thing I want to add is that myung hee is that sincere and gentle because moon shik did help her when she was hospitalised (she didn’t have anyone at that time and neither the means to get her treated). I assume that her sincerity comes from that gratitude and I think the writer allowed her character to display a lot of grace in that scene.
Actually Kudos to the writer for not judging or complicating both the mother characters – myung hee and Healer’s mother – as mothers I do agree that they were not correct per se but then what options did they have at that time in 1992 and the given circumstances. Easy to judge but difficult to handle it when something like that actually happens.
On the question of – Was it worth it ? – Tough to answer but I am glad at least in the end there was some closure for all those people who were wronged so badly in 1992.
Yes, I feel like this time around, watching Healer with you all, some of those moral/ ethical questions have been very thought-provoking and convicting, even. What would we have done differently, if we were in their shoes? What else could they have done? I think the writer has some judgment for Moon Shik and the Elder, but more grace for Healer’s mom and even Ahjumma. Now I just want to see Ahjumma and Detective Yoon get together. I want to see Det Yoon make her smile. But she seems to think of him as a young pup 🙂
@everyone – Upon my first couple of watches, I had zero sympathy for Moon shik. But I saw someone comment somewhere and he said about Myung hee. “Thanks for wiping my a** all these years, now get lost!”. I immediately rose to Myung hee’s defense, but I must say that this commentor’s angry response (although I find him wrong as two left shoes) did make me watch and consider Moon shik more carefully in future watches.
my last question, who told mh that ja is alive? when did it happen and how?
Moon-ho and Moon- shik have a conversation in Moon-sheik’s study. He mentions JA and says something like “What did you do to her? How could you say a living child was dead—”
I haven’t read all comments, so maybe someone else already answered.
In episode 19 Moon-ho and Moon- shik have a conversation in Moon-sheik’s study. He mentions JA and says something like “What did you do to her? How could you say a living child was dead—”
Moon-shik grabs the photo frame on his table and rips off the bug.
In the next scene we see Myung-hee opening her eyes in bed. Next to her is a laptop computer, and her eyes fill with tears. She heard their conversation.
maria, thanks. i did not get the bug, and did not really understand what was her computer doing in her bed under the blanket. how did she get so sophisticated and where would she get a bug and know how to install it? do you know?
I don’t know.
I don’t think it’s a big deal to get and install a bug though. There are specialized stores that sell things like that. I imagine there are instructions. She could’ve asked one of her caregivers to get her the bug.
I don’t think it’s a big deal to get and install a bug though.
well, mh never left the house, so she herself would not go to a store. remember, when she arrives to moon ho’s pent house, she looks out the window and says with great astonishment: “there is a whole city out there” (i think that’s exactly what she says), meaning the city developed for the last 20 years and she was not even aware of it.
in regards to asking somebody to buy it for her. i am not sure she could trust anybody (they could have pointed it out to moon shik). so i still do not know how she obtained that device. and let’s say if it would be me, i would not have known how to install such a thing so that my husband would not discover it (moon shik is much more savvy in all of this). she knows it and would probably be careful about going about such a request from house help.
Do we know how MS discovered the bug? I can’t remember. Maybe someone did tell him about it.
She used to be a part of those rogue reporters. Maybe she is good with technology.
Or maybe it’s a hole in the plot. With this show, you never know.
Good thoughts, Eda and MariaF. I feel like the bugs in this show were so obvious, too, with their flashing lights :), particularly the one Healer left under the counter at the Elder’s bar.
Moon Shik may have just known to look for bugs regularly, and I don’t feel like she hid it in a very hidden place. I was always wondering why he never said anything to her about it. It was almost like he thought it was just cute that she would try to do something like that. He was amused. In the end, she heard damning evidence that he always knew about Ji An. But in that office, wouldn’t he have been scared that she would hear all sorts of incriminating stuff, anyway?
I feel like the bugs in this show were so obvious, too, with their flashing lights 🙂
Healer planted one like that in MH’s office too. They didn’t look like high tech.
I was always wondering why he never said anything to her about it
Maybe he didn’t want her to know that he knew. Or wanted to send her a message that he had nothing to hide.
Or maybe he wanted her to know what was going on, but he couldn’t have an open, sincere conversation with her. Not about JA, and not about the Elder.
And those cameras Healer planted in Amazing Dad’s office were so big. they looked like elongated USB drives.
Yeah. They reminded me of voice recorders. You’d think Amazing Dad would notice; he’s around excons enough! 😉
@the_sweetroad – I agree, Moon shik’s reaction to Myung hee’s bug was weird. And so were all the other bugs. I think Kdrama goes out of its way to “show” things, thinking the audience will miss it. In all the older dramas, when a character wanted to show they didn’t want to take a call from another character, instead of just showing them turning their phones off, they would always snatch out the battery (very dramatically) to be sure the audience got the message that they had turned off their phone. Nothing subtle back then. lol
But I also noticed that the first time Healer went into Myung hee’s bedroom as Junghoo, to talk about the past, his earpiece was very visible.
maria, do you know how sometimes you have it on the tip of your tong but cannot formulate the words or the idea? that’s how i feel about how ms discovered the bug. i kind of remember him discovering it, and yet can not really pull it out of my brain. may be somebody else can.
@MariaF – so you feel Healer as a lot of plot holes? I didn’t. Admittedly, once we all sat down o analyze every tidbit, every character’s action and interaction – there were issues in how we all felt people would or should act in certain situations that weren’t explained in detail to our satisfaction, but aside from us interpreting their emotions, I felt the story itself (what happened in the past and what was happening in the present) was pretty tight.
so you feel Healer has a lot of plot holes?
Not necessarily. It’s a show, where I just cannot tell sometimes whether it’s a plot hole or not. But, to be honest, these supposed plot holes don’t really bother me.
I read the writers’ interviews. When asked about certain situations, a few of their answers were pretty much “it doesn’t matter”. Like why the mother left Healer, or why and how YS was abused as a child.
I’ve decided to adopt the same approach: if I cannot find a reasonable explanation for certain events, I just move along.
But I love the FL/ML relationship in the show. I think it’s written, directed and acted to perfection. So nothing else matters.
By the way, you are right about the bat: you could kill a child with it.
Yes, the FL/ML relationship is hard to beat. Both for the obstacles and the trauma they individually had to overcome, and for the way they supported and loved each other through it. And let’s not forget the love triangle that pits Healer against his alter ego.
@eda – Amazon.com
amazon is a very good idea. but, is it good in moon-shik’s household? after all, people serving in this house work for and being paid by moon-shik. what is the chance that the package comes, and moon shik sees it, or one of the people working there shows it to him. and he thinks, “o, what is my little wife up to?” – just curiosity. but “the litte wife” now smell a fishy stink, and needs to get something to check her budding suspicions. she’s very broken, but smart. so would she order it from amazon, to get a package?
@eda – true. But my point is that stuff is so easily available now. I’ve seen neighborhood stores called “I Spy” (and others) in Michigan and in Florida as if it’s no big deal.
might be. i do not go to these stores. but this is …KOREA, no michigan, no florida. plus – mh is not going out of the house. so even if it is easily available in stores, she would still need to ship it to her house. which is moon shiks house. can she afford doing it this way?
Spy cameras are widely available in SK. I doubt they are difficult to install.
Maybe MS knew she ordered it, maybe he didn’t. I don’t think it matters in the end, since he is aware that she put it in his study.
The fact that she put the camera there in such an obvious manner is not very logical, but we need to put up with the situations like that, if want to enjoy the show.
you have a point. the contract with a korean drama is that you accept the lack of logic and common sense. it’s just that sometimes it just jumps up at you. but the mere fact that i continue watching the korean productions and enjoy them, means i accept it.
@eda – *head klunk* you’re so right that that stuff is probably not as available as it is here. *doink*
It’s readily a available in SK and widely used.
Thanks @MariaF 👍
@eda – sometimes I think you’re almost as bad as Myung hee! LOLOLOL At least as far as tech is concerned. LOLOL
beez, you don’t have to be that gentle – you know i’m worse than myung hee!!! not a joke. should i cry or should i laugh? sometimes reality can be a nasty thing.
Yup. Her eyes popped open then!
@eda – Well, before Healer, there was City Hunter. He was also an anti-hero. I’m not saying it’s as good as Healer, it’s just that at the time, it was the only story of it’s kind (as far as I know). I have a fondness for City Hunter. I’m the type of person that always can appreciate the original because, things that come after learn from the original so, of course, they may be able to improve upon it. That doesn’t take away from my affection for the original. City Hunter stars Lee Min Ho (King Eternal Monarch) and Park Min young (Healer).
Dear Eda, OMG OMG OMG I hear you about this constant craving for “another Healer!” I personally got here because of Kfangurl’s reply to one of my comments elsewhere. I mentioned that Vincenzo is my favorite Kdrama of all time because yadda yadda yadda, and was in desperate need of “another Vincenzo,” so thanks to Kfangurl’s recommendation I found that in Healer.
So if you haven’t, do check out Vincenzo! It’s equally action packed, just as romantic with a little more restraint, and A LOT funnier than Healer.
Anyway I am also madly in love with Healer now that I’ve watched it all. And I feel a lot of the things you’re feeling too.
I totally agree how Myeong-hui confronted and left Mun-sik with such sincerity and quiet elegance. How can she do it? I guess there’s a lot of factors at play here. If you believe in MBTI, Myeong-hui comes across as ISFJ, which is a personality that is inherently conflict-averse and tries to diffuse confrontation by focusing on the things that restore harmony between those in conflict. And that is exactly what Myeong-hui did. She kept her confrontation short and sweet, by first acknowledging the good things Mun-sik has in fact done for her and how she is unable to repay this indebtedness to him, and then getting down to business because there is something she has to do alone (find Ji-an), and she has to exclude Mun-sik exactly because their marriage had been founded on sheer lies.
I think for a personality like Myeong-hui’s, this is a totally sensible way of handling the situation. Of course not everybody handles it this way. I’m pretty much everything Myeong-hui is not, so if I were the one in that wheelchair across the dinner table, I would first try to present the facts calmly but resort into some high decible what-did-you-really-do-to-my-daughter-you-rotten-piece-of-shit when faced with his denials and emotional comebacks.
What was worth it? Appreciating Mun-sik’s provisions for 20+ years? The way I see it, Myeong-hui wanted to give up and die when she woke up in a cast having lost her family, mobility and career. Without Mun-sik stepping in to provide for her, she’d have been gone a long time ago. And we see throughout the series that despite the evil betrayals he objectively committed, it was by and large motivated by a desperation to keep Myeong-hui alive despite the odds. Back then Mun-sik was just a poor journalist who ran a junkyard on the side, so even for something as basic as paying for Myeong-hui’s steep hospital bills would have been impossible if he stayed faithful to his conscious. So he compromised on his conscious and bit the bullet of tarnishing his dead friends’ names—they’re dead anyway right?—if it meant that he could give a second chance at life to the woman he has this slow burning limerence for, and that this second chance means her being married to him like he always wanted all this time.
I mean yes, Mun-sik is, objectively, a piece of shit for all of that. But timing wise, now that Myeong-hui has learned that her long dead daughter might still be alive, after more than two decades grieving but obviously a much, much stronger person than the one lying in a cast in a hospital bed for over a year… and one who finally has leveraged bargaining power in her soon-to-end marriage… I think what makes it worth it is the fact that all this shit has led to Myeong-hui staying alive to see the day she is reunited with her daughter. And she doesn’t know it yet but it has already happened and her search is has been completed for her before she knew it had even begun. I think it totally makes sense to still have an ounce of gratefulness for what the piece of shit has done for Myeong-hui—just enough for common courtesy—and at the same time also want nothing to do with his future.
Props to Writer Song Ji-na for the way she wrote Mun-sik with, as you said, this crazy mix of pitiful and disgusting, the epitome of a twisted, and tortured soul. I mean, it’s insane that what started off as an innocent “I’m obsessed with that girl but she chose him” type of situation ends up with such brutal follow throughs like making the woman’s daughter disappear and ordering the deaths of the man she loves and their other good friend. But what’s ironic is that Mun-sik ends up choosing these for very human reasons, and not because he’s a cold blooded monster by nature. It’s like we the audience could see ourselves making the same decision if backed into the same corner. But at the same time we cannot forgive Mun-sik for the choices he made, because like you said, there could have been many alternative scenarios as well that didn’t get explored on the show like running away together, looking for Ji-an, and engaging the media and the police to prevent Omega’s retaliation. Man, this is the shit only truly masterful writers can pull off! Big applause also to actors Park Sang-won and Son Seung-won for portraying Mun-sik so well!
Oh the feels for our beloved Ahjumma! That final case was the only time we ever learned of her backstory, but man that’s deep and more than enough for us to understand what drives her into this Healer business. Underneath that prickly and grumpy exterior, Ahjumma is a good and selfless person, even if being buried by a system that didn’t appreciate her sacrifice has made her cynical and has her move onto this amoral, quasi-vigilante type of work. Ahjumma is definitely one of the most memorable breakout characters in Kdrama: this sweater knitting, gimbap rolling, crazy ditty crooning competent hacker auntie who exercises her covert sense of duty to society by putting her peers on their knees. Not your conventional definition of badass, but that’s what she is.
That victory walk at the airport at the end of episode 19 was amazing. I guess it can be epic enough as the final scene full stop, but it also depends on the scenes that precede them leading up to that moment because context is everything. Despite the sheer swoon of finally seeing the four of them walk together side by side ready to tackle their final mission, I honestly confused too because the show kinda jumped into it. I was like, “Wait, what is this? Isn’t Jeong-hu supposed to still be on the run trying to find evidence for his innocence? Did that happen already and I missed it? Where’s the emotional reunion with an anxious Yeong-sin who has been missing them like crazy—is this it, just walking nonchalantly into an airport and saying nothing? Oh, hi Mun-ho. Ahjumma! What are you doing here?”
About the final episode feeling out of context, forced and rushed –> exactly how I feel!
That’s why I wrote a super rough concept of alternative Healer ending here in the comments. You can click/tap that green dialog bubble button on the bottom left to take you to the newest comment, my alternative ending is in the reply to my own comment. Please do read if you like and let me know whether you would have preferred a finale that looked a little more like mine. I think mine comes around more full circle than the existing finale.
o, caroline, i just peeked again at healer, (i do not get emails with notifications, so i just have to check every time every thread) as i am already engaged in the new projects (healer staying my most beloved drama). and i saw your alternative ending, i read some of it (with great excitement, and thought it should somehow be sent to the writer of healer and added as exactly an alternative). i only went over it kind of on the surface, but i know it requires a more thorough examination, (when i have a bit more time – because i want to treat it with due respect as it deserves and i promise i’ll do just that and report to you then), and also tell you some of my thought’s on other stuff (from healer proper.)
meantime, i do enjoy your way of thinking and of course your very professional way of expressing your thoughts. (but probably you are aware of your talents, but it’s always good to hear it again, isn’t it?).
vincenzo has been on my list for ever, but every time i say ok, that’s next, something pops up (usually courtesy KFG) and i am sucked in ( you know how it goes). but now with your encouragement, i guess i’ll just have to start it no matter what!
somehow i have a feeling that we might process drama materials in similar ways (i might be kidding myself), but i just finished a mini series recommended by KFG, which completely enveloped me with this most tender emotion possible, which i have no other words as the softest pain cross-bred with the most exquisite, graceful, overwhelming beauty, (story, production, acting, cinematography… you name it, it has it all) although of course it’s strange to describe pain as soft, but yet it is… it’s only 4 episodes, hymn of death, i would suggest check it out. and let me know, in that order.
i just finished it last night, so still full of spilling over emotions… it is based on a true story, which have very different flavors for me, rather than something created in somebodies’ mind no matter how good or impressive it is. and in general i have a special relationship to anything in the past, kind of a feeling of connecting to akashic records, meeting these people and their entire emotional-intellectual world. so i still have to read up on those amazing korean personalities from the drama and their actual work, especially this genius play writer. and see if i can find translations of his work, the few sentences from this drama taken from his actual writings totally intrigued me…
i am curious to know whether it will have a similar effect on you, or it’s just me.
btw, the acting of lee jong suk in this is so nuanced, it’s a rare treat. the FL is also very good.
one little mistake, it’s actually only 3 episodes (i said 4).
Same here, I don’t enable e-mail notifications but take a peek at this page every now and then.
Thank you for your kind words and for recommending Hymn of Death. I could always use watching a beautifully executed, well written story based on Korea’s history. Korean dramas do have this way of stirring the emotions in ways that Western dramas rarely do. And I have a soft spot for fiction that have something to teach about the real world. I’ll let you know how HoD goes for me!
I’m currently watching the historical melodrama Youth Of May, which Kfangurl rated A, simply because it’s set during the Gwangju massacre of 1980—a similar era to the democracy pirate radio Healer’s fantastic five ran—so I watched it for more context on that particular time in South Korea’s history.
Thank you for appreciating my alternative ending. While I am a writer by trade, I honestly suck at fiction and I think I would butcher it if I were to convert my brain dump into a proper screenplay 😂
But every now and then after watching 20 hours worth of a series, with plenty of plot points I’ve invested emotions into, I do get a wishlist on how I wish to see this story wrap up. If you do get a chance to give it a proper read, I’d love to hear how my alternative ending might compare to your own expectations of how Healer would end, and points that work or didn’t work for you.
And yes do check out Vincenzo! Although Kfangurl only rated it B, it is A+ all the way for me! For a suspenseful, dark and increasingly violent show, Vincenzo has this unique way of balancing it out with a high sense of humor and a lot to relate to in the band of Geumga Plaza outcasts.
Hey Eda! Sooo… I just had a chance to watch the first episode of Hymn of Death and damnnn… I am feeling the things you felt watching it: overwhelmingly beautiful and painful.
I am definitely hooked and will likely be devastated when it ends two episodes after this. Despite the creative liberties this drama would have taken, it still is a based on true story historical drama, and anyone who’s read up on anything about the real world soprano Yun Sim-deok knows what happened to her.
Since watching Healer and having it make me feel a couple steps closer to the history of Korea, I am feeling the same way about Hymn. Well, same but different, if you know what I mean, because obviously Healer and Hymn are set in very different eras, even in different places with different people.
But both Healer and Hymn feature young repressed Koreans risking their lives to advocate for political freedoms through their craft: journalism in Healer, the performing arts in Hymn.
In Hymn we learn about the restlessness of Korean art students in Japan, having lost their homeland to the Japanese occupation, fighting to hold on to their Korean identity as they study in exile and put their lives on the line as they reach out to their fellow countrymen through the arts—the one thing that makes people feel human again in the midst of oppression.
Whereas in Healer, our fantastic five pirate radio in 1980 is not waging a proverbial war against a foreign colonizer, but against their very own Fifth Republic of Korea, which was an authoritarian state practicing martial law and incarcerating their people en masse. Amid the crippled economy of that era, the rich and powerful Elder made his wealth by killing innocent people and ruining other people’s businesses and livelihoods. He and his mafia get to be above the law because they fund the corrupt politicians running the country. And an attempt to expose this was what got Oh Gil-han and Seo Jun-seok killed, incarcerated Ki Yeong-jae Sabu, cost Choi Myeong-hui her career and mobility, corrupted Kim Mun-sik and caused both the disappearance of Oh Ji-an and abandonment of Seo Jeong-hu: all the things that led to our Healer story 20+ years later in 2014.
So yeah… although Healer and Hymn are very different stories, both strike the same chord for me. I relate to Healer because I was born and raised in another Asian dictatorship, and I witnessed how that dictatorship ended violently in my early teens to mark my country’s transition to democracy. And I also feel for Hymn because my grandfather, who I was close to, spent his youth in our then foreign occupied country. While he is recognized for briefly leading an armed fight against the occupation, his real long term patriotic fight was as an educator in the university: not unlike Kim U-jin and Yun Sim-deok in that Japanese conservatory, though my grandfather was a scientist instead of a musician/thespian.
But yeah, historical baggage aside, of course it is Ji Chang-wook nonchalantly fighting criminals and parkouring off buildings that got me hooked to Healer, and Shin Hye-sun’s operatic prowess that has me looking forward to watch Hymn, as well as the sheer aesthetics calling back to an era of such well dressed people in beautiful universities, ferry ships and theatres. Dramatic oomph that appeals to the senses and emotions first is such a powerful gateway to the heavier topics, such as the darker pages of history that the drama is set in.
So definitely, like you, watching Hymn has me curious about Kim U-jin’s real world plays and poems—in English translations, ofc, since I haven’t watched Kdrama long enough to get a hang of the Korean language. Based on the quotes we get to see in Hymn, Playwright Kim seemed to have had such a beautiful mind and a profound impact in the consciousness of Koreans who fought for their independence from Japan. And Hymn has portrayed this so beautifully on screen too.
Thank you for sharing this gem with me, Eda!
I totally believe Moon shik when he says kidnapping Moon ho and Young shin and blackmailing Healer is how he’s keeping them safe. I even get the feeling that the plan was his idea. Without Moon shik using the fact that Elder wants Healer to work for him, they’d all be marked for death.
Mion shik’s never ending smile is a result of having mastered surviving in the Elder’s world. Is he delusional as KFG says, (putting aside the fact that Moon shik actually has delusions); or is Moon ho, Healer, Young shin and everybody else delusional in underestimating the danger of the Elder and his group? I see Moon shik as a pitiful creature who didn’t have the know-how or resources to fight the Elder. He was completely alone (other than his love for Myung hee, who was asleep the whole time). His biggest fault became his, what I imagine was slow, full indoctrination into believing the Elder’s rhetoric and embracing his methods.
ROTFLMAO at SS Leader eating the bitten kimbop roll, then offering Yo-yo a bite. Yo-yo looks like “You’re crazy eating somebody’s leftover food. I don’t know if that strange lady washes her hands when she’s cooking or what. NO thank you!” 😂
The greatest mystery, for me, will forever be – What was taped to the underside of Ahjumma’s table?
It’s kind of good that Ahjumma’s lair is discovered. I feel that this pushes her back into the daylight.
After Healer’s rescue – Amazing Dad cutting Young shin those looks like “what else haven’t you been telling me?”
Our burning question finally answered (@merij1) – Jung soo is speaking totally fine, not stuttering, as he fights and talks to Amazing Dad and even while issuing instructions to Ahjusshi. It’s only after the danger is past and he needs to explain things to Young shin’s father that the stutter is back. Why? Because he’s back in regular-guy-boyfriend mode talking to his girlfriend’s family. This solidifies to me that, while in Healer mode, our boy oozes confidence, but that in his natural state, for things that are also awkward for the rest of us, a bit of Park Bong soo lives on in Jung hoo!
Young shin’s driving! Remember she stated she had a fear of driving? But I noticed that a lot of Young shin’s fears have dissipated. During Healer’s fighting, while she’s untying Dad and Ahjusshi, she’s not affected at all by the violence. It’s as if Healer has to keep reminding her not to look.☺️
It’s interesting that while KFG sees our OTP reporters as fulfilling Myunghee and Joon seok (Healer’s dad), I instead thought of and saw them as Gil han and Joon seok reunited again. Either way works. 🥰
everybody else delusional in underestimating the danger of the Elder and his group?
i agree with your assessment of moon shik’s head place and situation, although i am not entirely sure of the helplessness of the situation. may be it was that bad 20 years ago, but now moon ho has the mega-phone of the media, the microphone of the most impressive famous reporter in this country, that is bringing truth to the people (that’s how he is known for). so don’t you think that he would be able to make the biggest stink about it, even if it will implicate his brother, but for the sake of his noona, her daughter and healer (by the way, it warmed my heart when healer finally called moon ho “uncle”, like he used to call him in the old times) so for their sake and his own, i believe he would make it so that the elder and the group would not dare to kill them or hurt them seriously for fear that it will be all exposed. there is only that far and so much that this group can do.
a bit of Park Bong soo lives on in Jung hoo!
i am glad you say “a bit”. of course, park bong soo is jung hoo’s creation, so naturally there will be a part of pbs in healer. they are all ONE.
During Healer’s fighting, while she’s untying Dad and Ahjusshi, she’s not affected at all by the violence. It’s as if Healer has to keep reminding her not to look.
i think she is just affected by violence as before. healer is just warning her that violence is going to happen, (so she can get ready) i do not think that he has to remind her. she has a kind of ptsd from the events from her childhood, which is not easily cured.
our OTP reporters as fulfilling Myunghee and Joon seok (Healer’s dad), I instead thought of and saw them as Gil han and Joon seok reunited again. Either way works.
i think both of those ideas are valid and both are at work at the same time together, with the same spirit of “fighting”. this is a great ending and conclusion to this wonderful show.
@eda – and in response I say again – is everyone, including those in the audience who think that Moonshik had anything else he could do while Myung hee was lying helpless, possibly dying, are they underestimating The Elder et al? Somewhere in the story, Moon ho said that cutting the head off The Elder would only cause him to be replaced with a new The Elder. So Moon ho was still afraid. Besides the conversation with his ex-girlfriend where she tells him he’s afraid to really go full on in, and at the time Jung hoo beat Moon ho up (outside their two cars) and they talk about Moon ho really doing nothing in 20 years to expose The Elder’s group because of fear (although the word “fear” wasn’t actually used), we get to see his fear at the airport in that moment that he’s so shaken that Healer calls him Samchoon (uncle) – [and I agree that was a delicious moment]. So much so [delicious to Moon ho as well] that it snaps Moon ho out of his panic.
The physical ability that Hraler brought to the equation is what helped Moon ho finally make a stand. But even that is silliness for the show, in my opinion, because if this we’re real life, we wouldn’t have a happy ending at all.
beez, i said moon ho “would be able to do” all those things, this is from my perspective. the possibility is there, (actually for both brothers, but none acted on that) moon shik is rotten to his core, so can not expect anything from him. moon ho is paralyzed with fear – you are right about that. and i am thinking about that fear in moon ho, after all he was raised by moon shik. he probably saw him bitten up by the elder gang at the time, bloody and broken, and it just might have been etched in his memory to such a degree that he just could not override it in himself. it’s interesting though, that he DID become a reporter known to advocate for truth and real medial coverage. but he was afraid to touch this issue, which was actually the most important to his own life. he needed healer, and he needed to feel that feeling again of being “uncle”.
Very interesting point about Moon Ho, Eda. Especially as his girlfriend (and even Healer in the last airport scene??) says something about him not being willing to engage in fights to the point where he would lose something. It seems like Moon Shik completely capitulated to the Elder (for reasons we’ve talked about), and Moon Ho – while he didn’t capitulate and thankfully left Jeil News when he couldn’t take it anymore – had to reach a tipping point where he would fight Omega and the Elder all the way. Was Young Shin’s sexual assault story the key catalyst for that? And then helping Healer and Young Shin figure out their past was very important to him, of course.
I feel the need to go back and watch the story of him leaving Jeil and then buying Someday…I remember he was in a fighting mood then, but the details are getting fuzzy to me as far as why.
@the_sweetroad – HOLD THE PHONE! “sexual assault”? Who what when????
I meant to attach this
Beez, it was the case with Yu Ra! Where the politicians and other higher-ups were coercing sexual favors from women trying to be actresses.
Ohhhhhh! I misread that as Young shin’s sexual assault… Probably because I often wondered if that had happened to her because why else would a grown man take a baseball bat to a child when he is strong enough that he needn’t go that far? Sorry, I had not planned to bring my dark, dark, dark thoughts of the real world into the discussion so I had not mentioned that in all of our discussions before. But I’ve always thought our OTP were both hurt so very deeply and that childhood sexual assault could possibly be a part of YS’s story. (no emojis on this computer but picture me bawling)
I had the same thought when I first watched the show, beez – it’s a possibility that’s reasonable and sadly all too common. My cop friend said that SO many times it would be a stepfather or a stepbrother that would assault a stepdaughter or stepsister. And if Young Shin’s foster dad was evil enough to beat her, it’s not crazy to think he could have assaulted her sexually as well. It’s dark but it’s unfortunately the reality too many girls and women (and boys) have to deal with 🙁
I’m just so glad she got out of that foster home! I wish we could have seen how that happened!
Very good points by both of you. Just wanted to add-in that on the surface it may look that Moon-Ho could have done a lot of work earlier on to expose his brother and the Elder but it does not always work like that when family/personal matters are involved. For Moon-ho – he did what he could as a truthful reporter in independent societal issues but in this particular case – as Beez mentioned – he was both a bit fearful and a bit hesitant to confront the old wounds. Actually these things can be very emotionally exhausting when family/loved ones are involved (and when it goes so long back in time) and it needs lot more than courage and truthfulness to solve them. (I can personally vouch for this difficulty as I myself took years together to confront certain things with my family in spite of my overt courage and independence). So in summary I will give Moon Ho some leeway for that and I am glad that he could finally overcome that difficulty when he discovered that Ji-an was still possibly alive and that her so-called grave was filled with just stones.
princess jasmine, i agree, family matters are THE MOST complex to deal with, and since moon shik was like a father figure for moon ho, to disclose it all would be to go against his father. which is a big “no – no” especially in korean society, as i understand it. so that might be a second reason for moon ho’s failure to do something about this situation.
Thank you Eda for accepting this reasoning for Moon-Ho. Actually to be honest family issues are difficult in any society and more so in Asian societies as I understood over the years. Good day.
it’s interesting though, that he DID become a reporter known to advocate for truth and real medial coverage. but he was afraid to touch this issue, which was actually the most important to his own life. quoting eda
@eda – exactly! “to his own life”.
The Elder is hydra. Cut off one head and another springs up in its place.
Cut off one head and another springs up in its place.
yes, it’s like the mafia. but if the entire enterprise is revealed, in it entirety, then there nobody left to head it off or to serve it. at some point somebody has to put an end to it. and by the end of the drama that is exactly what will happen, so as i said before, the possibility was there.
@eda but that’s not what happened at the end of the drama. The Elder had to face a meeting by those even higher up than he is to determine if they would replace him. My impression is that the organization goes too far up in politics to ever be uprooted.
It’s crazy they weren’t all just sent to jail. The bridge incident alone was illegal, and all their other deeds since then.
i was under the impression that they will all get punished, and this group’s mayoral candidate that was supposed to be moon shik, is out, so their power is also greatly diminished. there will be another political party now, and of course, they can be as corrupt as these guys, but seems like the elder was really on the extreme side of corruption and evil doing.
also, i thought that moon ho did end up replacing his brother in il news (or whatever it’s called), (but not sure). and his ex-girlfriend (seems like they might be back on track), aired something that she would not air anything of this sort before, which gives me an indication that the public station is also free to choose more real news now (meaning the evils are gone). that is why i assume that the “most evil” is gone. at least for now.
@beez – Yay on burning questions finally being answered!
I can live with this explanation by both of you on his stuttering 😉
The greatest mystery, for me, will forever be – What was taped to the underside of Ahjumma’s table?
That’s right! I saw it again yesterday and thought they would revisit it by the end of the show, but they did not. It seemed like more small flash drives, but it is a mystery….
The greatest mystery, for me, will forever be – What was taped to the underside of Ahjumma’s table?
These were chips from black boxes that Healer collected from the cars of SS guys.
Ooh, thanks, MariaF. How did you know – did they show her putting them into that tupperware?
No. But we saw Healer getting into the cars and getting these boxes. And then Ahjumma told Healer that she forgot the black boxes that he’d gotten. I assumed she was talking about the chips from the black boxes from the cars.
And then Ahjumma told Healer that she forgot the black boxes that he’d gotten.
This was the detail I had missed. Thanks!
While that makes sense because I did hear Ahjumma say to Healer that she didn’t manage to bring the black boxes, but if they were important enough to take that extra step to hide, why did Ahjumma grab all that other crap and not grab that first? Plus, it didn’t look like sd cards from black boxes unless she put them in a Tupperware case or something. If the black boxes were in a case like that how easy would that have been to grab. It seems like the black boxes would’ve been left because the last time we saw them they were scattered on her desk in front of her computer keyboard. Lots of individual tiny things like that would be harder to grab then just one thing that we saw under that table which makes me still think that’s something intriguing under that desk. Or maybe I just like to think Ahjumma had something really juicy there and SS missed it.
I just like to think Ahjumma had something really juicy there and SS missed it.
It’s definitely possible. But it was never explained.
I read an interview with the writer. She said that the ending wasn’t what they wanted it to be.
For example, after Healer was supposedly killed, the show was supposed to pick up a year later, not right away. Other things were changed too.
She said that “she wanted to die”, when she saw the last episodes. And she felt that it was her fault.
Maybe because she procrastinated and they ran out of time and money?
You know what I think of with regards to the tupperware of juicy stuff under the table and it never being explained? Chekhov’s Gun. It did not go off in this instance. 🙂
You are right! It didn’t!
@MariaF – the story for 99% of Kdramas. In the scheme of things, Healer’s ending came off quite well when you compare it to others. So many times I would be screaming at the screen “the perfect ending is right there! Couldn’t you see it?!” when the writer had set a story up where the ending should be obvious but instead the story just abruptly cut off or they did some stupid – and then they didn’t see each other for [insert lamest reason possible] with no contact and now it’s a time jump to a year later.
Healer’s ending came off quite well
you are so right! and this is a very important factor in the drama’s story – it’s all well when it ends well, a concept that is lucking in most asian dramas. and it makes me love healer as a complete package even more.
see above: it’s not lucking, it’s lacking. damn. how did it come out this way?!
I do remember Ahjumma saying she didn’t have time to take the black box with her! I’m actually disappointed though that there seems to not be a consequence following this. If such a potential plot point is just allowed to sit around as filler fluff, I think it would have been better to leave it out altogether.
I wrote an alternative ending to Healer up here in the comments btw, if you care to give it a read 😇 While I did not explicitly write about the black box or the flash drive, I wrote about Jeong-hu finding evidence that can negate his on-cam confession to the murder of Park Dong-cheol AND incriminate the people who really committed his murder, as well as those of Go Seong-cheol, Hwang Je-guk, and maybe even Oh Gil-han and Seo Jun-seok too from 1992, since these all basically trace back to the Elder.
I guess I should have added in my alternative ending that Jeong-hu found this evidence in the black box Ahjumma said she didn’t grab. And that this black box contains a myriad of incriminating information that could serve as the basis for the warrant for Elder’s arrest—see, Someday News and Healer have spent all show trying and failing to execute this, so it would have been amazing to actually see this happen in the finale. (Without having to change the case to the new one involving the Koryo-saram virologist, and without having to fake Healer’s death!)
I wrote this alternative ending mainly as a wishlist of the plot point conclusions I wish I got to witness in the finale of Healer, that didn’t quite happen in the original ending. Not because the original ending is bad but because I guess I have different preferences from whoever tweaked Writer Song Ji-na’s script into the final version we got to see on screen.
Anyway was this interview with Writer Song in English? If so, I would love to read it. I guess I could try Google Translate-ing Korean too.
I’m super new to Kdrama, and Healer is the first one I’ve watched written by Writer Song. Apparently she’s quite the legend especially in the 1990s. Will be forever grateful that KFG herself recommended Healer to me, it’s such a gem and so hard to top!
I wouldn’t jump to conclusions that Healer’s finale not being what Writer Song would have wanted is because she procrastinated. I don’t know Writer Song personally, do you?
While I’ve never worked on a drama set, I am a journalist who sometimes works in video productions as a writer. So what I can tell you is that no matter what great a job a writer may have done in writing an ideal film, in the end what actually gets executed is in the hands of everybody else.
In my line of work, writers (as well as directors etc) answer to the client for approval, because whatever becomes of our output it ultimately has to reflect the client’s vision. In Dramaland, the equivalent would be answering to the Executive Producer(s) and whatever agenda they need the Show to accommodate.
That said, I don’t rule out your other guess that Healer may have ran out of time and/or money, such that compromises needed to be made story-wise to accommodate these limitations. I heard even Kdrama shows with very high production values typically wrap production within 3-6 months, so I can only imagine how crazy it must be to work in one of these! I don’t know if 6 months includes pre-production, which is the time the writer would be writing the series, getting feedback and approval from whoever it is they need to get approval from, and maybe coordinating with idk set builders, prop masters, choreographers, costume designers etc
Anyway I would appreciate it if you could read my alternative ending in the comments above, if you have time, and tell me whether you think this would have been more complex or expensive to film compared to Healer’s existing ending. My alternative ending is currently just under the top comment, so all you have to do is hit the green dialog bubble button on the bottom left and scroll down a little.
It’s kind of good that Ahjumma’s lair is discovered. I feel that this pushes her back into the daylight.
Love this and totally agree. It was great to see her interacting with people again. And her interactions with Det Yoon are so cute! Wish I could have seen more of them.
OK, Beez, Healer expert, one more burning question from me: did Det. Yoon actually shoot Healer with something? You could see the hole in Healer’s jacket and I think it was even smoking a bit :). So was Healer wearing a bulletproof vest, along with the blood pack tucked into his pocket? What were the mechanics of that? 🙂
sweetroad, i am also confused about this scene – i think this is really one of the weakest points of this drama, may be because they were rushed to finish. but it is totally muddled, which is a shame.
my thinking is that ahjuma gave precise instructions to det.yoon (and he trusts her and listens to her) how and where exactly to shoot (the area of the ketchup or cranberries aka blood, pack on healer) and since he must be a top of the line shooter, they trusted that he can do it without killing healer. did he wear a bullet proof vest, he should have , but it does not look from the looks of it, or i might have missed it. but who in the right mind would subject himself to such a potential, crazy. is it believable? let’s see what other think.
I also agree that this part was handled a bit quickly defying logic. And I will have to go with eda harris explanation as thats how I understood this scene as well.
It is indeed crazy/risky and thats why Ji-an wants Healer to stop at that point when they were recording the researcher testimony in the toilet in the airport. And thats why Moon-Ho is also scared on this plan when he talks to Healer in close proximity in the airport. So ya they all do understand that it is risky for Healer’s life but then thats the best way to close the case as per Healer.
Ah, is that what Young Shin was trying to mouth to Healer in the bathroom? I couldn’t follow.
@eda- I would assume that they would’ve gone the movie route and place a teeny tiny timed explosive where Healer could push something in his pocket to cause the blood pack to explode. But there is still a hole (tee hee) in the plot because it’s my understand that all police officers’ first bullet is a rubber warning bullet so that one shot would not have killed Healer (unless the rule is different for detectives).
all police officers’ first bullet is a rubber warning bullet
Really? Wow! I did not know that. Is that just in Korea? It doesn’t seem to be the case elsewhere.
I only know about S.k. and the USA (specifically Detroit, where I’m originally from). Police in America are definitely armed with real bullets.
Oh. I had concocted a much more complicated explanation in my head, namely that Det. Yoon fired a blank only and their either Healer activated the fake blood patch or that it was somehow activated by a radio signal coming from Yoon’s gun. In either scenario, the FBP was rigged to have a baby explosion outward to mimic the apparent gunshot.
I like that idea, that it was a radio signal coming from Yoon’s gun! Fancy! That would impress me more than Yoon trying to shoot a live bullet at Healer (sounds so stressful and way too risky) 🙂
What were the mechanics of that?
It would make sense to assume that they used the same technique that special effects specialists use in movies.
“Bullet hits on actors are usually accomplished using an electrical squib also referred to in scripts as a “bullet hit”. The ones used on actors are usually flat and round. Sort of like a coin. Different sizes and colors represent the “grain weight” which determines the power of the hit. They are chosen based on the outer material the squib has to blow through. This squib is placed on a plate to protect the actor and and a blood bag is taped on top of that. The clothing is prepped a bit with interior sanding to weaken the fabric and offer less resistance. When the squib is electrically detonated, it will blow the hole and fly the accompanying blood.”
This is great; thank you! I feel like Healer and Ahjumma would have the technology for this.
I love the fact that H and A used exactly the same technology that the makers of Healer would have used to fake a gunshot.
makers of Healer would have used to fake a gunshot
Not would have. The makers did use it to fake that shot.😊
Correct you are! I have had my Friday evening martini and my powers of expression are a bit diminished….😉
It’s an excellent reason for the powers of expression to be diminished!
maria, “Bullet hits on actors are usually accomplished using an electrical squib also referred to in scripts as a “bullet hit”.
i learn so much from you, maria. thanks for doing my “homework”.
@the_sweetroad – Well, you see, this is where my expert opinion comes into play, see – I have no idea! 😆 In fact, I kept rewinding trying to see if Healer was even facing Det. Yoon because from what I can see, if he had really shot him, it looked like it would’ve been in the back and not where the blood pack was placed in the front. I finally gave up and thought that I am probably mistaken about the direction from where Det. Yoon was shooting.
Fangurl – I had not planned to join in this group watch but the infectious enthusiasm of the commenters prompted another re-watch. The beauty of Healer is that is never gets boring – all the episodes were interesting. Shout out to @Beez, and company for all their lively analysis!
@phl1rxd – I enjoyed everyone too and I’m glad you came along for the ride, phl1rxd. Please, please, please tag along for …Grapevine. I so hope you do because I’m going to need to hear you put some of that perspective that you brought to NIF on that show. (Hopefully the Kocowa subs are better than the Drama Fever subs were that left me wanting and yet I still fell in love with it despite not understanding about 30% of what was happening.)
@Beez – It will be a new watch for me so that is a good thing. I will join in and I intend to do so for Queen In-Hyun’s Man as well – one of my favorites. Gonna be some busy weeks! I have had Grapevine on my Viki watchlist since we last talked about it. 🙄😏😁
I haven’t watched either Grapevine or Queen IH’s Man, but I’m so engrossed in My Liberation Notes and Our Blues that I’m not sure I’ll have time to join you all here! Now I’m having FOMO. Maybe convince me some more, everyone :).
what do you need, what do you want for us to convince you? these are both incredible dramas.
you can put aside our blues and wait until it is all on (that’s what i am doing, can’t stand dragging until they put up 2 ep. at a time). you’ll be sorry you missed this, seriously. because it’s not only the dramas, it’s the additional aspect of sharing with the group and discussing it. you will not get it with the other dramas you are involved. and i get it, when you can not let go, but you can even try to stick mln in between. after all, it will wait for you anyway, while the group discussion can never be repeated (in real time, ep. by ep).
also, what i discovered, is that if you move on to another project, it softens the urgency after a while to continue immediately on the first project. i do it to cut down on my obsessiveness when i get into a drama that takes over my life. it works for me.
Haha, Eda, thanks! The problem is that I am involved in the group watches for Our Blues and MLN over at Soompi Forum (yes, my whole life has become about kdramas now. Never saw that coming!). Can I handle watching 4 dramas and being involved in 4 different group discussions? Maybe…. maybe I will just have to try. 😀
wow, my heart goes out to you. when do you live???
but why should we loose you? how about soompi forum letting you go? just for this, temporarily.
wow, my heart goes out to you.
when do you live??? Seriously! 😁
Thankfully the kids are all older so they don’t need me as much. And, like last night, whenever I finally get the TV and put on a drama (Healer), they come into the living room for just a minute, then leave the room and close the door on their way out, leaving me in blissful peace. And thankfully I have slow pockets at work (like today) where I can do all my chatting 🙂 🙂
I feel your pain. I’ve gone the other way: the KFG group. watches are my main dramas nowadays, while I fit in an “optional” watch when I can. Right now that is “25/21” (or is it “21/25” or (25-1)/2 – I’m so confused!!). I do this precisely because the group watches are always quality shows, proven by time, the discussions are so much fun and help in my understanding, and because they usually force me out of my usual watching comfort zone.
Bottom line: you should do whatever you want, knowing you’ll be welcome if you join us here at any time in the future.
Up to Ep 10 of 21…whatever and will soon need to replace it with something to complement QIH’sM and IHITTG….sign.
Haha, I’ve heard a lot about 25/21 on Soompi. Enjoy 🙂 Will be curious what you think after you’ve watched it all. True that the group watches here are shows that have stood up to the test of time – that’s a great thing.
Bottom line: you should do whatever you want, knowing you’ll be welcome if you join us here at any time in the future.
That’s so sweet – thank you! 🙂
If you do need something to watch to complement IHITTG and QIH’sM…My Liberation Notes has been excellent so far. Same writer as My Mister, but it’s not as grim or serious, though there are still plenty of great monologues, feelings, and well-drawn characters and story. And the endings for a couple of the episodes have been – for lack of a better word – amazing!
Thanks for the suggestion, @the_sweetroad. That was not on my list, so will have to give it a shot.
Great, @j3ffc! This weekend Episodes 5 and 6 will be released, so you have a few episodes you can watch all at once (if that’s how you do things). Woo hoo!
@j3ffc – I came all the way out of my email, to the site, just so I could hit “like” on this one.
Thanks so much @beez! Your enthusiasm for all things Healer was, to say the least, infectious!! Looking so forward to Grapevine….
@j3ffc – while I am gungho for Grapevine, that’s a different sort of energy. It’s hard to explain, but you’ll see. Imagine Secret Love Affair or My Mister were dark comedies. Not the kind of dark comedy like “Teaching Mrs. Tingle” which was macabre dark comedy. Just… can’t explain it. You’ll see.
Imagine Secret Love Affair or My Mister were dark comedies.
This description makes it even more intriguing, @beez! OK, I will try to watch with you all. At least the first few episodes.
That’s great! I’m sure, if nothing else, curiosity about a different level of Kdrama character – the extremely well-to-do but who work for their money, not the chaebeoul (3rd generation conglomerate) rich live their lives.
Although maybe these types of characters have been revealed in recent years but I’m not sure because I didn’t watch Sky Castle. That may have been the same level of wealth (or not).
@the_sweetroad – I really, really hope you can join in on Grapevine. Don’t we all always look for that “something different” in Kdrama, this is it. Don’t we all wonder what happens to Cinderella once she takes off in her carriage with her prince? Does life go relatively smooth or does she have difficult in-laws?
In the case of Grapevine, Prince Charming is no nameless boring storybook prince, but has his own personality and feelings and has to fight to protect his bride from his overbearing parents despite being so young that he’s still a student with no power.
Whether you decide to join us or not, I hope you’ll watch Grapevine eventually. I, personally, view it as the continuation of every Kdrama OTP where the poor girl wins over (and marries) the rich boy who’s out of her league.
Have you ever wondered what life was like for all those Kdrama heroines [insert name of show] after they married Mr. Pompous and went home to deal with his family. Grapevine does a great job of not only focusing on the rich family, but also shows the poorer in-laws’ point of view. Grapevine has a more realistic flow so it’s not all hyperbole, or frantic, exaggerated situations like most Kdrama rom-coms even though it is a dark comedy. Much of it is in the subtleties, yet it’s never slow the way that Secret Love Affair (by the same writer) was slow (to me).
Thanks for this, Beez! That IS intriguing. I like post-happily-ever-after stories. I just checked Viki and they have it here! 30 episodes, though….I always feel so tired looking at long episode lists 🙂 🙂 . Didn’t realize it was the same writer as SLA.
@the_sweetroad – I didn’t either until somebody mentioned it during the group watch voting. I probably would not have watched it had I known. While I cannot deny the quality of SLA, that’s not my choice for drama watching – too serious. Grapevine is truly darkly humorous. Not gut-clutching kind of humor but it’s funny.
Good to know.
By the way, I can’t help but smile thinking that KFG is going to wake up to 100 comments again tomorrow. Hi KFG! Good morning! 🙂
beez, it was me, i told you about it. i went to this drama specifically because i wanted to see more of this director, and merij told me about it.
I have a question: I tried to use vpn to watch shows on viki, and it’s not working anymore. It used to. Has anything changed there, or it’s just me?
Hmm…I don’t know, as I pay $50 for a year’s subscription to Viki. And I only get what Viki has in my region. Are you still able to access Viki for free (and just watch the ads that come with it) without the VPN?