Instructions On How to Survive Watching This Episode: (1) Don’t watch alone, and if you must, keep a friend on speed dial handy. (2) If you have a defibrillator lying around, get it charged. If not, put a lifeguard/medic/random friend who knows CPR on speed dial. (3) Write the words “Breathe” and “It’s just a TV show” on your hands, and that way, every time you freak out and cover your face with your hands, you’ll remember not to die. Ready? Here we go…
SONG OF THE DAY
Loveholics – “그대만 있다면” (If Only I Have You) [ Download ]
EPISODE 17: “Without your eyes I can’t see what’s in front of me”
After finding out that Hye-sung now knows the whole truth (and more importantly that he lied to her again after swearing he wouldn’t), Su-ha nervously picks up the payphone to try calling. He starts in on a plea begging her not to hang up, but suddenly Min Joon-gook’s voice answers on the other end: “Are you looking for Jang Hye-sung? She’s with me.” Su-ha breaks down in panic and rage, and screams that if he touches her, he’ll die.
But Min Joon-gook is the one with the threats: “Listen carefully… your actions will determine whether she lives or dies.” He orders Su-ha to come alone in an hour, and if he spots anyone else with him, Hye-sung dies on the spot.
Su-ha: “Let me hear her voice. Let me hear that she’s alive!” Oof, what a different meaning that carries now. Min Joon-gook has to prod her to speak, and then finally she does.
Hye-sung: “Su-ha, don’t you dare come. Send the police. Don’t come alone! Don’t worry about me—” she gets cut off and the line goes dead. He drops the phone in his hand and throws himself against the booth in helpless fury.
And then we catch up to Su-ha’s ominous narration that ended the last episode, that in two and a half hours, their eleven-year story would come to an end. We’re jumping around with time in this episode, so I’ll use their time markers to help keep it straight. The phone call is at 3:10 PM.
Rewind to three hours ago. 12:10 PM. When Su-ha comes out of the mall with the necklace in hand, the cell phone thief is already tailing him on foot. He waits for his opportunity on the street, and swipes Su-ha’s bag. As soon as he’s safely away, he calls “Ajusshi” to say he’s picked up the package.
At the same time, Hye-sung is confronting Kwan-woo about the mysterious letters. She finally gets him to talk, and he tells her that the reporter is Su-ha’s father, that the grandma and boy found dead were Min Joon-gook’s mother and son, and that Min Joon-gook has been sending those letters to all of them.
He tells her that Min Joon-gook’s saga begins with the death of his wife, and he thinks that Su-ha’s father had something to do with it. When he came to see Kwan-woo a while back, he had said that he’d see it through to the end. Hye-sung panics at those words: “The end? What’s the end?”
12:55 PM. The motorcycle thief hands Su-ha’s bag over to Min Joon-gook, who only takes the cell phone and gives the bag back. He turns off the tracking app, and then notices the locket.
He opens it up to see a picture of Little Su-ha with Mom, and he yanks it off and throws it to the ground with a sneer.
Hye-sung calls Su-ha over and over, thinking it weird that his cell phone is turned off completely, which is never the case. She calls Sung-bin to ask if she’s heard from him, and Sung-bin says he’s just probably in class and ran out of battery or something.
Sung-bin wonders if that’s really something to get so worried about. Choong-ki (who’s back at the nail shop for another manicure) overhears and thinks it’s a sign that Hye-sung likes Su-ha back.
Sung-bin insists Su-ha’s crush is still a one-way street, and that Hye-sung will never ever ever give in. She swears she’s an expert in these matters… and then in the same breath has to ask why Choong-ki’s so into hand-care. Hahaha.
He blusters that he works with his hands so obviously, he has to take care of them. She buys the lame excuse, even though he has I’m here to have you hold my hand written all over his face. As soon as she leaves him alone he bursts into giggles just looking at his hand. Adorable.
1:10 PM. The motorcycle thief gets arrested and Su-ha’s bag is recovered. Hye-sung sits at her desk screaming into her phone at Imaginary Su-ha to turn on his goddamned phone.
Kwan-woo comes by to pick her up with the reminder that they both have 2:00 cases in court today, and she jumps to see how much time has passed.
Pretty the Paralegal watches them leave and wonders why Kwan-woo came all the way back here just to escort her to the courthouse when he could’ve gone straight there. He sighs that she’s giving him mixed messages and stringing him along.
Lawyer Shin flicks him on the forehead and explains that this isn’t about romantic feelings, but guilt and responsibility—Kwan-woo could never live with himself if something happened to Hye-sung after he helped set her mother’s killer free. She knows that, and that’s why she lets him protect her.
Su-ha gets his bag back, and he’s so fixated on the necklace that he doesn’t even notice his phone is missing until the detective asks. He figures they can take their time with that and runs off, with nothing but happy thoughts of necklace-giving in his head.
And then from a rooftop, Min Joon-gook takes out Su-ha’s phone and turns it on. Ohgod. I already know what’s coming but I’m still nervous. In the courthouse, Kwan-woo promises to wait so they can return together after their hearings, and Hye-sung gently tries to tell him it’s okay. But he says that it’s never a bad thing to be too careful, and leaves with a smile.
Hye-sung checks her watch and sighs that she still hasn’t heard from Su-ha. Notably, this whole time the thing she seems maddest about is that Su-ha isn’t picking up his phone, not that he lied.
Suddenly, her phone rings. It’s Gum-wad, so she answers with a litany of complaints about him not keeping his phone on and how worried she was. But it’s Min Joon-gook who answers: “Do you remember my voice?”
He asks if she’s looking for Su-ha. Oh noes. I knew this was coming, but why am I scared? She asks in a shaky voice why he has Su-ha’s cell phone, and he says that he has Su-ha, and that he’s okay… for now. He lies that he doesn’t care about the kid—what he really wants is her.
He tells her where to meet, and says if she doesn’t come alone, Su-ha dies. She panics for a split second, but then immediately springs into action. She runs out the front door but then realizes she’ll pick up her police detail that way, and goes around the back.
She literally hops a fence barefoot and gets to the street, where she picks up a cab and races to Su-ha.
But Su-ha is racing to her at exactly the same time… and they actually zoom right past each other in the street. NO. Augh, you’re killing me. He runs right past her cab, smile on his face, necklace in hand. And she races away without seeing him, at her wit’s end.
2:30 PM. Hye-sung gets a call from Judge Kim (whose number is saved as Fan Judge, har), waiting for her to show up for the trial. But she ignores the call, and so he’s forced to postpone the hearing.
Min Joon-gook waits on his rooftop, and watches as Hye-sung arrives down below. She’s come alone, as promised. He actually laughs out loud, calling her vision so far gone (as in, so swept up in her feelings) that she was lured here so easily.
And this is when Su-ha arrives at the courthouse looking for Hye-sung, and finds that she never showed up to her trial.
Hye-sung carefully makes her way into the abandoned warehouse, and takes out her taser. She inches forward, and with every step the hair goes up on the back of my neck. Could they have picked a scarier building? This place is gonna give me nightmares.
Aaaaaaaaahhhh… Min Joon-gook creeps up behind her and just follows her silently, two steps behind her. He gets closer… and closer… and closer…
He finally gets right up behind her, and in one swift move he grabs the taser with his hand and grabs her in a headlock. She screams.
When we cut back inside, she’s lying on the ground, unconscious. Joon-gook ties a rope nearby, and then answers a call from Kwan-woo. He hangs up right away. This is the call we saw only on Kwan-woo’s end, after which Su-ha finds out that Hye-sung knows everything. He races off in tears.
3:05 PM. Hye-sung comes to, tied to a chair. She looks around her, and judging from the stuff around her, this must be where Min Joon-gook was hiding out for some time.
He sees that she’s awake, and calls her brave for coming here with nothing but a taser to fend him off. He tosses it aside like a dinky toy. She asks where Su-ha is, but he smiles as he shows her the phone and tells her he doesn’t have Su-ha.
Joon-gook: “No matter how rational the person, in a situation like this you see nothing. You become an idiot. I’ve been there, so I know.” Curious. Does he mean that literally?
She asks what he wants, and he tells her that at first, he was just planning to kill them both. But then what Su-ha said to him on that fishing dock… he pauses as his eyes change and he lets out this tiny twitch that sends shivers down my spine. “It really… pissed me off.”
We see it in flashback—the moment when Joon-gook had egged Su-ha on to kill him, to prove that he was no different. But we know that Su-ha stopped himself and said that he’d never live as a beast like him.
Joon-gook repeats those words, “A beast like me… a beast like me.” He says he began to wonder if it could be true, so then he realized he could paint a different picture to find out. If Su-ha truly ended up like him, and lost everyone he loved, could he really endure and not become a monster?
And then the call. Joon-gook puts it on speakerphone and lets Hye-sung listen in. When Su-ha flips his lid and screams that he’ll kill him if he touches her, Min Joon-gook points at the phone and smiles, See, look, he’s a killer already.
Joon-gook says that’s what he’s hoping for, actually, and gives him instructions for where to find them. Hye-sung’s eyes fill with tears, terrified that he’ll come, and that it’ll all go as Joon-gook wants.
She refuses to answer at first, but then hurriedly tries to tell Su-ha not to come. Joon-gook hangs up. Now we’re finally caught up to the present.
Su-ha walks away from the phone booth in a stupor, covered in tears and sweat and not knowing which way is up. “What do I do? What do I do? What do I do?” He stands there for another second, and then takes off running. By now his detective has caught up, but when Su-ha bolts he falls behind again, gasping for air.
Choong-ki is back at work, and stops to gaze at his pinky finger that Sung-bin painted for him. He gives it a little kiss (so cute) and then jumps out of his skin when he sees Su-ha run up. He stammers for an excuse, but Su-ha only asks for his cell phone and takes off running again with no explanation.
The detective arrives a minute too late, and Choong-ki tells him that Su-ha’s acting weird. He looked like he was crying, and he stole his phone out of the blue. That’s enough for the detective to know something’s not right, and he asks for Choong-ki’s number. Aw yeah.
Back at the warehouse, Joon-gook observes that for an eleven-year relationship, he and Hye-sung have had very few real conversations. She tells him to turn himself in because this is the end for him, and he doesn’t disagree with her: “This is my end. I brought you here to witness my end.”
She asks what that is, and he says it plainly: “I’m going to turn that kid into a beast before I go.” He says that Su-ha will prove to the world that anybody would become a beast in the situation I was in.
Hye-sung holds her head up high: “Su-ha will never end up like you.” Joon-gook tells her not to be so quick to judge—he didn’t think he’d end up this way either. She says she knows his story, and why he blames them. He thinks his wife died because of Su-ha’s father, and then because of her testimony in court (that put him away), his mother and son died too.
He gives her a gold star for figuring it out and says that Su-ha’s father started all of this. But Hye-sung corrects him: “No, YOU are the one who started this. Don’t act like the victim. You’re just a murderer. The moment you killed Su-ha’s father and my mother, all of your excuses, your reasons—they all disappeared. That’s the beginning.”
Thank you. Man, I love her. Joon-gook cries that no one would listen to him—not doctors, not cops, not lawyers—what was he supposed to do? Just stand by? She remembers now what Mom told her in her last moments, about not wasting her life away with hate and revenge, and to pity those who do.
She says she understands now why Mom said those things. She looks over at Min Joon-gook with a hint of pity in her eyes, wondering what kind of hell it must have been for him to live in such hate and resentment for eleven years. He turns to her with that same look of rage when her mother had pitied him the same way.
She says defiantly that Su-ha will never be like him: “Su-ha isn’t as low as you.” That strikes a nerve and Min Joon-gook raises his wrench above his head to strike her… “Shut up!” ACK I can’t watch.
But she doesn’t lower her gaze, and just stares up at him without moving a muscle. He freezes, wrench in air.
3:45 PM. Kwan-woo gets a call. Oh phewwww, it’s Su-ha. He tells Kwan-woo the truth, that Hye-sung is being held hostage and that he’s just arrived outside the building. Kwan-woo urges him not to go in—he’s feeding right into Min Joon-gook’s hands.
But Su-ha screams, “If I don’t go in there, she’ll die!” Kwan-woo screams right back that he’ll die, which isn’t what Hye-sung wants. Su-ha hesitates as a tear falls, “…That’s why I need you to save her.” Omo.
Su-ha: I don’t want to die. Before, I thought that it didn’t matter if I died protecting her, but I don’t think that now. If something happens to me… it’ll scar her. So please, save her, save me.
He asks Kwan-woo to call the police or whoever he wants, and that he’ll do what he can to stall until he gets here. *fistpump*
But Su-ha doesn’t wait as long as I’d hoped, and walks right up to the building. Gah, I’m a nervous wreck. Can’t we wait until the police are nearby?
Min Joon-gook stands up on the roof and watches as Su-ha comes closer. We pan down to the wrench tucked under his arm, and OHMYGOD it’s covered in blood. Ugh, my heart just sank five stories. Joon-gook confirms that Su-ha came alone and motions for him to come in. He puts sunglasses on to cover his eyes, and prepares to face him.
Kwan-woo hauls ass into a cab and calls Detective Hyung, who’s already caught on to the kidnapping. What he doesn’t know is that Su-ha is on his way there to save her by himself, and both sides race to the location.
Kwan-woo warns that this could get ugly—Min Joon-gook lured them both there and plans to die himself, and based on past actions, he’s pretty sure Joon-gook means to make Su-ha a killer.
4:10 PM. Su-ha makes his way up to the roof where Joon-gook is waiting for him, calm as you please. He even gives a little wave with his prosthetic hand.
Su-ha says he came alone as promised, and demands to see Hye-sung. Joon-gook decides he’s way too calm, disappointed that he’s not attacking him like before. Su-ha says he knows exactly what he’s trying to do, but he won’t fall for his tricks.
He reminds him that he won’t live as a beast like him, and Joon-gook asks, “Do you think I was always a beast? I was a person once too.” We finally see Past Joon-gook in flashback, before he became a killer. He slaved over every odd job he could find to make enough money to save his sick wife and get her the heart transplant that she needed in order to live.
Finally the day came and they got a heart from a donor. But then an hour before her surgery, that heart that was meant for his wife was stolen by someone else—Su-ha’s father. He cut in line with a few articles heaping praise on the hospital, and with that, the heart that was supposed to save his wife went to Su-ha’s mom.
Joon-gook asks if he knew. He did. Joon-gook: “So you see, the one who started all this was your father!” But Su-ha answers almost verbatim the way Hye-sung did: “No, the person who started all this was you. The moment you killed my father, you just became a murderer.”
Joon-gook laughs that Hye-sung said the same thing, and Su-ha asks where she is. Down below, Kwan-woo arrives first. HURRY.
Min Joon-gook says that when a person truly loses everything, you can’t help but become a beast. Because you can’t see straight. He picks up the wrench and throws it at Su-ha’s feet. It’s covered in blood, and Su-ha freezes at the sight of it.
He stumbles back, struggling to eke out a word or a breath.
Joon-gook says he didn’t initially plan on killing her. He was just going to lure her here as bait for Su-ha. “But then that girl kept pissing me off, saying that you’d be different from me. It made me so angry…” Su-ha finally gathers the words and asks, “Did you… kill her?” Joon-gook: “Yeah, I killed her.”
He smiles, knowing he’s got Su-ha teetering on the brink. And then we get a close-up of Su-ha’s phone by Joon-gook’s side… and it’s been on a call with Hye-sung’s phone this whole time. Oh phew, that means she’s alive, right?
She is. She’s tied up and taped up and sporting a gaping head wound, but she’s alive and listening to the call. She can hear Su-ha start to lose it, and panics.
4:40 PM. The cops finally arrive, and rush into the building. RUN FASTER.
Hye-sung shudders as she hears Min Joon-gook ask Su-ha how he feels. “You want to kill me, don’t you? Kill me. Kill me.” It would almost be funny, except for the part where it’s bloody terrifying.
Su-ha struggles to fight it, but he can’t think straight. All he can see is Min Joon-gook in front of him. He staggers closer and picks up the wrench. Oh hell.
Snipers arrive on the rooftop, and get Su-ha in their sights. Wait, are they going to mistake Su-ha as the bad guy in this scenario? That’s not what’s happening, right? Aaaaaah, how many things do I have to worry about at the same time?!
Joon-gook says he knows now exactly how he felt eleven years ago when all this began, and smiles as if welcoming him. Su-ha grips the wrench tighter and tighter, his eyes filling with uncontrollable rage.
The sniper locks onto Su-ha…
Su-ha’s whole body shakes as he looks at Min Joon-gook smiling back at him… and then he shuts his eyes. He takes a deep breath, and hears Hye-sung’s voice in his head: “No matter how much you want to kill him, don’t. Because the moment you do, all the reasons disappear.”
He takes another breath, and lets go. The wrench falls to the ground with a clang. Was I not breathing until now?
Joon-gook looks up in utter shock. Su-ha: “She’s alive. The fact that you’re covering your eyes from me right now means that you have something to hide. And it means that you’re lying right now.” Yeeeeesssssss! I love it when you use your brains.
Joon-gook’s voice falters as he swears he killed her, but Su-ha’s done listening. He screams her name from the rooftop: “Jang Hye-sung! You can hear my voice, right? Listen carefully! I won’t ever kill this person! I’ll keep my promise to you! I swear I’ll keep my promise, so don’t worry, and wait for me!”
Hye-sung hears him from the next building over, and breaks down in sobs of relief. A moment later, Kwan-woo finally finds her and runs over to untie her. He urges her to go downstairs to safety, but she breaks free and screams that she has to go up. She takes off running. Ack, don’t go up there!
Joon-gook ends the call, but he doesn’t change his story—he swears he killed her. Su-ha says she’s still alive, and then adds shakily, “But even if she isn’t, my choice is the same. I won’t live like you. She wouldn’t want me to spend my life on revenge… just like your wife wouldn’t have wanted for you.”
Su-ha says if his wife knew how he’d spent his life, she’d be in pain. He calls him horrifying and pitiful, and at that Joon-gook starts to twitch in anger again. Su-ha: “I’ve made my choice, so don’t try to use me as an excuse for your life anymore.”
He turns around, giving Min Joon-gook just the opportunity to grab the steel pipe sitting next to him. He screams in rage and raises the pipe to Su-ha’s head…
A gunshot. I don’t even want to open my eyes to see who got shot.
Oh phew, it was just the steel pipe. Wait, the sniper shot the pipe out of his hand? Dude. That’s some sharp-shootin’. Joon-gook reaches for the wrench and that gets shot away too. Su-ha sighs in relief as the SWAT team closes in.
Su-ha tells Joon-gook it’s all over, but he’s not acting like it’s over. He starts to back away, and he takes off his sunglasses and lets Su-ha look into his eyes.
He sees a flashback of Past Joon-gook, pleading with the doctors to bring back that heart, begging them to save his wife. “It was her turn! Please!” And then in her final breath, she pleaded, “I don’t want to die! Save me.”
He held onto her hand and had to lie that he would. Oh my god. That’s horrible. As his wife dies, Su-ha’s mom gets saved by that very heart, and Joon-gook stands by and watches as Su-ha’s dad thanks the doctor.
And we all know what happens next: he rams a semi into Dad’s car and bludgeons him to death. As Su-ha reads all this in his thoughts, Joon-gook inches back little by little until he’s teetering on the tiny ledge. Su-ha hears him think: “This is my end.”
He runs to catch him, and grabs Joon-gook by the collar, just as Hye-sung and Kwan-woo arrive on the rooftop. He’s the only thing holding Joon-gook up, and they’re just suspended in the air like that for a long moment. Joon-gook smiles, “Park Su-ha, let’s go together.”
He grabs Su-ha’s collar, and in a split second they both lose their balance, and go flying over the edge. WHAT.
I swear it’s just one second, but it feels like a hundred. They fall and fall and fall, and Hye-sung faints in shock.
And then they land… on the SWAT team’s inflatable landing pad.
JIMENY CHRISTMAS. Are you trying to kill me??!?!??! I don’t even care that it’s crazy that they happened to land on the one spot where they pitched that thing. Thank god he’s alive.
The cops rush over and drag Min Joon-gook away in cuffs, kicking and screaming that he wants to die. Su-ha staggers to get up, bleeding from the head. He asks where Hye-sung is, if she’s okay. But the detective down below doesn’t know yet.
A second later Kwan-woo carries her down, bloody and unconscious, and augh, she looks dead. We know she isn’t, but Su-ha doesn’t know that, and he freeeeeaks out as she gets carted away in an ambulance. I know she’s alive, but still he’s breaking my heart.
5:05 PM. The crime scene is secured, and evidence collecting begins. Do-yeon races to meet Kwan-woo and Detective Hyung outside the hospital, and the first thing she asks is if Hye-sung is okay. She sighs in relief to hear that she is. Aw, you luff her.
She swears up and down that she’s not going to let Min Joon-gook slip through her fingers this time, and plans to charge him with every single crime she can think of. She and Detective Hyung both agree that a person like Min Joon-gook shouldn’t exist in society.
Kwan-woo hesitates before speaking up, and he starts by saying he knows this is going to sound crazy, but he feels sorry for Min Joon-gook—just a little. She agrees, on the crazy part.
Su-ha’s ambulance arrives just then, and he’s brought out of it kicking and screaming just as much as he was going into it. He screeeeeams for Hye-sung over and over, out of his mind with blind panic. PEOPLE. Somebody tell him she’s alive, for crying out loud!
Kwan-woo asks Do-yeon what she thinks is the difference between Park Su-ha and Min Joon-gook. She doesn’t care to know, but he tells her anyway. As Kwan-woo narrates his answer, Su-ha races through the emergency room like a lunatic, frantically searching all the beds until he can see Hye-sung for himself.
Kwan-woo: Min Joon-gook had no one. No one to believe him, no one to listen to him, no one to love him. And he didn’t have anyone he needed to protect. If he only had that one person, Min Joon-gook might’ve lived differently… like Park Su-ha.
As he says that’s why he feels just a little bit sorry for Min Joon-gook, Su-ha finally finds Hye-sung in the emergency room. She’s awake, and alive, and they just grab each other in the most grateful embrace, each having believed the other was dead.
She cries that she thought he died, and then says, “I heard you. I heard your voice.” Su-ha just cries into her shoulder, “Thank you, for being alive.”
Su-ha narrates: “July 26, 2013, 5:40 PM. Min Joon-gook was arrested, and the three of us and our eleven-year story came to an end.” They lie on the tiny hospital bed facing each other in an explosion of cuteness (which we SO DESERVE right now), and Su-ha tells her the whole story as he holds her hand. She asks how his mother died, and he says she died a month after her surgery, because her body rejected the transplant.
She guesses that’s why Min Joon-gook was doubly furious, because the heart that could’ve saved his wife ended up being wasted (from his point of view). Su-ha apologizes for not telling her right away: “I kept getting greedy and that made me scared—that I might lose you.”
She finally gets to give him the talking-to that I’ve been waiting for: “Do I seem like the kind of person who would throw you away over something like that?” She starts to give her I’m-way-above-that speech, but he says it along with her as he reads her mind, and they erupt into laughter.
She reaches up to his face and tells him not to blame himself—it wasn’t his fault. He hugs her close and thanks her, and as we pan up, Su-ha narrates again. Augh, I’m starting to dread your voiceovers.
Su-ha: “There’s one thing the two of us forgot in that moment—that with Min Joon-gook captured, his past would come to light. And that if his past was uncovered, my hidden past would also be uncovered.”
We relive the moment when he stabbed her by accident as she rushed to keep him from killing Min Joon-gook. Uh-oh. This is bad. But how bad? How bad, exactly? Like attempted-murder bad? As they snuggle, he kisses her on the forehead and adds, “And I love you.”
Voiceover of Doom: “We were so drunk on the happiness that we were alive that we had completely forgotten…”
Damn, I spent the entire episode with my heart in my knees. The rewind to three hours ago drove me crazy. Not in a bad way, since I did want to see the B-side and be with Hye-sung this time around, but it was prolonging the tension to near excruciating levels of impatience. And the moment when they pass each other by in the street? That put me over the edge. If I wasn’t dying to find out what happened, I might’ve just stopped and had a good cry right then and there.
I’m happy with how Min Joon-gook’s murder spree and backstory got tied up, and also breathing a huge sigh of relief that we didn’t take any left turns into makjangville. I think his story is complex and interesting enough without needing any crazy twists, and even though I swore I wasn’t going to feel sorry for him, they totally made me feel sorry for him. Bah. He still deserves every punishment he gets, but man, when he had to lie to his wife in her dying moment, that gutted me. It’s Jung Woong-in’s fault, for playing him with such interesting color and pitiable pathos—you can’t help but have your heart break for him, despite knowing what horrible things he’s done, and is still doing, even in the moment of the flashback.
Thematically, I like that the Min Joon-gook/Park Su-ha comparison is essentially the are-monsters-made-or-born question. In that sense I Hear Your Voice is almost the hopeful counterpart to White Christmas. In this world you can take two people, put them in the same situation where they’re drowning in murderous rage, and the one who has someone who believes in him, someone who loves him, someone to live for—can choose not to become a monster. It’s the idealistic version (and therefore a little pat, to be sure) but it’s in keeping with everything that this drama is about—that people can save people with trust and forgiveness.
My one gripe is that if this was the endgame as far as the Min Joon-gook arc goes, then I wish we had touched on it less as a theme. It’s actually a fantastic closing to the arc and I’m happy with where we end up, but we dabbled with this conflict thematically not once but twice before—with Su-ha stabbing Hye-sung and again at the pier in flashback, where Su-ha refuses to kill him. Basically, the theme is great, but it would’ve had an even bigger impact had it not been overused. It’s a matter of degrees, of course, since Su-ha needed to be pushed to the absolute edge for Min Joon-gook to have his say and for Su-ha to prove once and for all that he wouldn’t become a monster, but by then he’d answered the question in various forms many times over. It felt just that two percent shy of having that perfect impact because it was a fear we’d already faced (whether or not Su-ha would become a killer) and it was a huge deal that he kept his promise to Hye-sung. Had this been the first time we were faced with those questions outright, then yes, you’d probably have to peel me off the floor, but it would’ve packed a bigger punch.
But in the end, of course, Su-ha’s speech makes it all worth it—when he understands that throwing himself into harm’s way to save the woman he loves isn’t the heroic thing. The heroic thing is to call for help and live, knowing that his death would only cause her more pain. It’s the total opposite of everything he was before he met her, but that’s the difference between harboring a one-sided self-sacrificing love for the woman in your fantasies, and knowing that that woman actually loves you back and would rather die than lose you.
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 16
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 15
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 14
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 13
- I Hear Your Voice confirms extension, scores star cameos
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 12
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 11
- I Hear Your Voice in talks for extension
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 10
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 9
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 8
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 7
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 6
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 5
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 4
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 3
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 2
- I Hear Your Voice: Episode 1