Dr. Champ: Episode 10
Such a bitter win
So, if I just continue with my first idyllic love introduced in episode 8’s recap, this one was like finding your boyfriend holding hands with your best friend. Whom he hated. The same day he had said he loved you, and bought you a puppy. What in the nine circles of hell is this? I hope you have an explanation, and a good one, if you value your life. I have a knife and I know how to chop dirty pigs like you into tiny pieces. Start talkin’, babe.
Jeez, give Ji Heon a break!
SONG OF THE DAY
짙은 (Zitten) – 곁에 (By my side) [Download]
I know this song’s somewhat grim melody doesn’t fit the easy going first half of the episode. But it sure does fit the second half ¬¬
Episode 10 recap
While getting ready to compete, Ji Heon and Sang Bong talk about their plans to prepare for the Asian games. Sang Bong proposes going on vacation to Jeju Island, but Ji Heon refuses – is this a honeymoon or what? Hah, I love when writers mess with our bromance-lovin’ heads.
Yeon Woo, a tad anxious, will get to witness the competition, but she absolutely can’t enter the mat unless she’s asked to. Yi Reum, on the other hand, can’t go to the match, so he just calls his uncle to wish him luck.
At this point, I’d really wish I knew something about judo, but since I don’t, all I can say is that the match begins and this is pretty much what happens.
Ji Heon wins!
Meanwhile, in Batcave, Do Wook has to handle an athlete’s fracture. Predictably, he won’t accept a resting period (hey, boy, you’re fractured for heaven’s sake!), as this would make it impossible for him to participate in Asian games. The doctor finds a solution which can make him heal faster and without so much pain – setting his broken tailbone. The problem is that the procedure involves sticking a finger in his anus (ouch). Facing the dilemma of dilemmas, the athlete can only utter the words: “Put it in gently”, while Do Wook wishes Yeon Woo was there to do it. Awkward LOL.
Back to our judo guys, Taek Woo, Dong Ho and Woo Ram find their way to success. Okay, forget about that. Dong Ho and Woo Ram find their way to success, while Taek Woo’s vanishes with a killer diarrhea. It’s no time to spend in the bathroom, since Sang Bong is about to compete and he’s really remarkable – the guy finishes his opponent in 20 seconds. He’s a judo beast.
The two friends find some time in between to have a nice chat. Sang Bong’s only concern is that his friend does well in front of the person he likes, while Ji Heon wants him to be prudent in front of Go Bum.
After the morning matches are over, Yeon Woo goes to have lunch. Jung Dae (aka the coach) is there too, belittling Ji Heon victories as if they were mere luck strikes for being against easy opponents. Yeon Woo takes this chance to express how she regrets having written that medical note – Ji Heon recovered quickly, maybe six weeks were exaggerated.
Ji Heon’s sis-in-law can’t help but thinking about him, and the promise they made when her husband was still alive – they’d follow Ji Heon anywhere, cheering for him. After the accident, she simply refused to fulfill it. However, she isn’t some random insensitive gal, and Ji Heon knows it, so he sends her a text with a report on his progress. She doesn’t answer back, but smiles relieved.
Still a little bit flustered for not getting an answer, Ji Heon brightens up when Yeon Woo runs into him, asking about his knee. That means she’s worried about him! Yeon Woo also notices that he’s different when he competes, a remark he misunderstands for an underlying “I’m falling for you” (since he’s a “bolmae”, someone who looks better the more you see them).
Yeon Woo: Yesterday, I couldn’t say thank you for the guitar.
Ji Heon: I couldn’t tell you this either. You must show me your performance, playing the guitar. Because I bought it for you. You must, to me first.
She tries to excuse herself, she lacks vocal skills and he knows it from the other day’s performance. Well, then, Ji Heon will make her play the guitar, minus the singing. They’re suddenly interrupted by Do Wook’s call, and this is a minor but awesome scene, just look how Ji Heon’s expression changes when she says “Ah, hi, Director!”.
He does the possessive so lovable… *sigh*
Anyway, Do Wook congratulates Yeon Woo on her first competition as the national team’s representative and wishes Ji Heon the best of lucks. How does he know that Ji Heon is there, you may ask? The guy’s been complaining and making loud noises the 5 seconds the call lasted. He refuses to accept Do Wook’s message.
Yeon Woo: I was planning to wish you luck too. Shouldn’t I do it now?
Ji Heon: Wish me luck now.
(I don’t know how would that sound in real life, but *LALALALA* I don’t care)
She just wishes him luck with a big teasing smile and goes away.
Afternoon’s session begins, and Ji Heon makes it to the finals! Every one’s favorite judoka is making it, in your face coach! (?) His rival will come from the other semi-final: Sang Bong vs. Go Bum.
(Fraking spoilers – I knew what would happen and my happy mood suddenly plummeted)
Go Bum may lack skills, but he’s proven hard to beat. While struggling for the first point, Sang Bong ends up covered in blood because of a clumsy (intentional!) head blow. The medical team bandages him so he can continue, after telling him they’ll have to seal it up later. Finally, Sang Bong wins.
Sang Bong’s wound could be a mere scratch, but Yeon Woo slides the idea of retiring anyway. He definitely won’t do it, he’s had some experience with unexpected wounds and nothing bad happened (in fact, when he won the gold medal, he had a broken rib). While Yeon Woo finishes her treatment, he highly recommends his friend.
Sang Bong: If I had a sister, I would introduce her to him.
Just after Ji Heon gets Yeon Woo’s report on Sang Bong’s condition, Go Bum runs into him to say that now there’s no debt between them: Go Bum injured his knee, but now his chances to win are greater (because Sang Bong will be worried about his injury). I’ve never had anything against Go Bum, he can be a prick but he was inoffensive (if being an official injurer can be considered inoffensive, ehem). Now, his words are still echoing while my hatred starts growing.
At the National Village, our emo swimming coach, Hee Young, is complaining to the head nurse because of Do Wook. She’s torn between not wanting to see his face, and wanting to start over where they left. With so many fishes in the bowl, Hee Young can find someone else, so the nurse is completely against the idea of them being together again.
Curiously enough, after this chat, the head nurse has to further investigate into this matter as if it was something of life or death. She goes to Do Wook, but he’s in no mood to receive advice from her – his personal life is personal. She won’t shut up so easily, after all Hee Young was the reason why he’s like that. I don’t know if he’s in denial or if the nurse misunderstood something, but he’s stubbornly affirming that Hee Young wasn’t guilty of that.
Way to make us wait for the (rather tragic) com-pe-ti-tion.
Ji Heon and Sang Bong are like two kids, fighting while at the same time enjoying it like crazy.
First half-point goes to Sang Bong, while Yi Reum from his house is asking his dad to make his uncle win. After some serious struggling, it’s Ji Heon’s half point and after that, Sang Bong’s. The tragedy comes running to slap our faces as Ji Heon makes an involuntarily dangerous move, injuring his friend’s neck and compromising his possibilities of ever standing up.
Did I ever ask for this kind of angst from you, drama? Did I? ANSWER ME!
No one’s aware of this, until Sang Bong is visibly agonizing on the mat (while Ji Heon is celebrating *sigh*). They rush to the hospital, with a cervical spine injury diagnosis. In the meantime, as Sang Bong is being tested, a shocked Ji Heon calls Yeon Woo to ask for any news on his friend. I’m sorry to say that his prognosis seems pretty gloomy.
Ji Heon’s still at the competition place, with his mind fixed on his friend. His coach won’t let him go to the hospital before getting his medal – what would be the point of that day’s matches if he retires like that? Ji Heon is stunned at his coach’s cold-hearted attitude. However, grudgingly, he receives his bitter first prize, while Go Bum is second place. With an incredible nerve, the latter thanks Ji Heon because he’s now a national athlete.
If we’re going for angst, can’t we give that guy a mortal disease? Or at least they should shave his ridiculous quiff.
Ji Heon goes immediately to the hospital, arriving just as the doctor was giving the surgery’s results to Do Wook and Yeon Woo – Sang Bong’s lucky not to be dead or completely paralyzed, but he’ll have to deal with paraplegia.
Yes, he’s paralyzed from the waist down. Thank you so much, drama.
Having heard the devastating news, Ji Heon’s first instinct is to run away, torturing himself over all the cute bromance they shared before the tragedy.
At the hospital, Do Wook feels remorseful for having sent Yeon Woo to the competition – she’ll have horrible memories from her first official assignment. She tries to contact Ji Heon, but he’s turned off his phone.
The medical staff is deadly worried too, but the head nurse tells them to cut it off. They must be calmed, in order not to alarm the other people at the National Village.
The committee meets to analyze this complicated issue, and it’s confirmed that the medical check up after the injury was well performed. The vice-president asks about his previous injury (the one Go Bum was responsible of), pushing Yeon Woo, accusing her of allowing Sang Bong to compete when she shouldn’t have. Jung Dae excuses her – no athlete would abandon a match for a cut so small, and on top of that, his everyday condition was perfect.
Pointing out that this meeting is meaningless, Do Wook just tells them to cut the crap – what happened was an accident, that’s the truth. Then, they ask about the “athlete at fault” (referring to Ji Heon), but he objects to the use of that derogative term since the guy didn’t do it on purpose. The vice-president won’t retire from the argument so easily as the bureaucratic mutt he is, he needs someone to take responsibility for what happened. He asks them to look at it from an athlete’s point of view (how cynical), but he’s inadvertently using a double edged sword…
Do Wook calmly informs them that he’s like that because of an injury he suffered when he was national skating athlete 13 years ago. He had a terrible ache in his back, but he competed anyway knowing that it could be dangerous. While competing, he bumped into another skater, ultimately crashing into a fence. During the time he had to bear in bed, (after he was diagnosed with paraplegia), he didn’t want someone to be kicked out, all he wanted was to be visited. Because every one was so sorry and afraid, they left him alone. So, he’ll be responsible, if there must be one; they should just think about how to help Sang Bong, not about putting the blame on someone.
After the meeting, Do Wook encourages Yeon Woo to keep calling Ji Heon. Surprisingly, when he’s about to go home, Hee Young appears out of nowhere, telling him she’ll drive. All this mess has awaken her lost memories… She takes him, and when she’s about to leave, he urges her to stay… just this once.
At the hospital, Yeon Woo receives disheartening news: Sang Bong hasn’t even opened his eyes. On top of that, Yi Reum calls her, asking the whereabouts of his uncle, and she promises to find him. Yeon Woo tries to contact Ji Heon for the gazillionth time, and finally, he picked up. Speaking through all the stress she’s been enduring, she reproaches him for having gone missing in action.
Ji Heon (on the verge of crying): I missed you… I’m scared.
Sensing that something’s seriously wrong, she wants to know where he is, but he hangs up.
JHbsjkcbxhdskduybbchdchjkdscbksdieuuwioipqw, solve this now, kaedejun!
Why so tragic, drama? It didn’t help that while I was writing the last part, I had the amazing idea of checking out 2AM’s new song. Needless to say, I started cursing my damn luck.
I’m so glad that this drama seems to lack the angsty love triangle scenario. SO GLAD. Frankly, I’ve never seen any interest from Do Wook towards Yeon Woo, and how he acts to bring Ji Heon and Yeon Woo together is beyond adorable. His relationship with Hee Young is plain boring, mostly because of her – she’s so emotionless that from “hello” to “I hate you”, I would never be able to decipher her feelings. So, here, I’m going for a “he ends up alone” ship (methinks it’ll sink embarrassingly, but hey, I can hope till the very end). I don’t care about her, she could drown and her frigging face would be still the same, and so would mine.
I was wondering where they would place the angst if the couples wouldn’t be its main source. Well, there I have ¬¬
I’ve always said that what I loved about this drama was over optimistic vibe I got from it, so I must hang in there and wait for next week’s episodes, since I can’t believe they’ll take the “gloomy road” this easily. Ji Heon must feel (keyword feel) responsible for someone’s tragedies twice? I’m not saying that Sang Bong will be miraculously cured, because a broken spine is irreversible, you know, so we could just get some really emotional moments when he wakes up (he WILL wake up), faces Ji Heon and ultimately starts his long rehabilitation.
Still, even when I try to pull “the cool”, I can’t lie to you; this episode pissed me off like no episode has, this year. Mostly due to the surprise effect – who would foresee that they’d torture JiBong ( 😛 ) in this crude way in a drama like this (I mean, there are dramas that are so overly tragic, that you reach a peak in which you stop suffering, as if you were immune to blindness plots and intricate revenge plans)? Getting rid of Sang Bong as a judo rival was a bit too much. What’s done cannot be undone, but I’m hoping for a heart wrenching step forward in the character development department.
This sudden turn of events made me realize how much these characters have grown into me. When the “crack” moment took place, I felt a despair that honestly surprised me. I started worrying not only because of Ji Heon’s unfortunate connection with involuntary tragedies, but also because of Sang Bong’s truncated life plans. It shocked me in a personal level, as if they were my friends, and it left me anxious to see how Sang Bong will cope with his new reality, and how the two friends’ relationship will develop in the future.
To finish, was I the only one who got the “cop about to retire” vibe every time Sang Bong appeared (as a lighter version of the Retirony)? The guy who’s about to leave the field to spend the rest of his life travelling around the world… until he’s killed during his final mission. Wasn’t Sang Bong like that? All nice and lovely, just to take him away from us?
No one felt it?
Okay, FINE. *grabs coat, opens door, leaves the room*