Jugglers: Episode 16 (Final)
The finale of Jugglers delivers everything I’ve been hoping for—romance, the realization of dreams, and more cuteness than you can shake a raccoon at. But before we get to the fun stuff, there’s still some work to be done, and it isn’t going to be easy to take down someone who’s dedicated himself to destroying Chi-won. It’s going to take a lot of work to bring down Executive Director Jo and restore proper order to the company, but luckily Chi-won and Yoon-yi have a lot of friends willing to help.
EPISODE 16: “Whatever it is we want, we will get it”
After getting rid of Director Bong, Yoon-yi wears her shoes from Chi-won to work, and she packs up her desk anticipating her return to the video department. But a familiar cackle echoes down the hall, and Executive Director Jo shows up to announce that he’s now in charge of the company restructuring team. Oh nooo. He informs Yoon-yi that she’s been transferred to the customer service department of YB’s department store.
He moves into Director Bong’s old office, but Chi-won soon shows up to tell him not to get too comfortable. He admits that he’s angry about Yoon-yi’s transfer, and reminds Executive Director Jo that he repays exactly what he gets. He leaves after telling Executive Director Jo that he brought him a gift, which turns out to be a huge bouquet of taffy, a clear insult in this situation. PFFT.
Downstairs in the lobby, Chi-won spots a distressed-looking Yoon-yi sitting with Kyung-rye and heads over to talk to her. He joins her, letting Yoon-yi vent about being sent to work customer service. She feels like Executive Director Jo is subliminally telling her to quit, but Chi-won repeats his promise to bring her back to his department as soon as possible. Yoon-yi asks him to take her box of belongings to her desk since she’ll be back soon anyway, freely admitting that she’s pressuring him to bring her back as soon as possible.
Upstairs, Hwangbo Minion announces that all business related to Yul’s e-sports plan are to be halted immediately. His men begin confiscating the team’s work, and Yul yanks him into his office and demands to know what he wants. Hwangbo Minion tells him to give up on his e-sports business and make Jung-ae leave the company.
Jung-ae quickly offers to leave if it means Yul could continue working on his e-sports idea, but Yul refuses to give up either. He tells Hwangbo Minion to inform the family elders that he wants his share of the company immediately, and that he’ll do whatever he wants with the money.
He threatens that if they don’t comply, he’ll tell the world that the name “YB” is an attempt to shake their humble beginnings as descendants of a servant. Hwangbo Minion claps a hand over Yul’s mouth, and Jung-ae leaps at him, hanging on his arm until he lets Yul go.
Yoon-yi is forced to deal with difficult customers at her new job in customer service. When one particularly nasty VVIP customer screeches that she’s entitled to return a blouse after getting lipstick all over it, Yoon-yi’s manager pulls her aside. She’s given the list of VVIP customers and annoying customers to look over, and she spots a familiar company name on the list — America Pictures, the contractor complaining about unfair work practices in the ad department.
With Executive Director Jo’s promotion, Chi-won decides that he needs to air his whistle-blower episode on Executive Director Jo’s department as soon as possible. His team complains that they can’t get through to anyone at America Pictures, but Chi-won says that they just need to be more creative.
Kyung-rye helps out by delaying Executive Director Jo at the coffee shop (LOL, she tells him that everything is sold out, even water and ice) so that Chang-soo can sneak Executive Director Jo’s wallet out of his pocket. He returns it a few minutes later by snuggling up to Executive Director Jo from behind, pretending to be fondling his butt.
Team Leader Gong calls American Pictures, impersonating Executive Director Jo and saying that he’s sending people over for some documents. Meanwhile, Yoon-yi calls Chi-won to tell him that America Pictures bought over a million gift cards last year from YB Group’s department store.
He says he’ll look into it, then Team Leader Gong comes to tell him that it’s time to go. The entire team stride out of the offices like badasses, flinging their coats on dramatically one at a time.
They head over to the office of America Pictures, stopping to strike a dramatic pose before heading inside to pick up the documents. Unfortunately, one of the employees gets suspicious and calls Executive Director Jo directly, so Chi-won’s team is forced to flee with whatever they managed to grab.
They’re more successful with the second half of their plan, which involves cornering America Pictures’ slippery CEO in his car. They get him to confess to bribing Executive Director Jo, but unfortunately, they weren’t able to obtain any hard evidence of the bribes.
Over dinner, Executive Director Jo makes sure that Bo-na deleted any evidence that might connect him to America Pictures. Bo-na looks uncomfortable, but Executive Director Jo seems confident that he’s one step ahead of Chi-won. Bo-na excuses herself and wanders near the customer service department, where she witnesses Yoon-yi being yelled at by another demanding customer.
Yul takes his team to his house to tell them that he’s soon going to become a president (they cheer) of his own business (they wilt). He asks them all to come work for his new e-sports company, and when they start to leave in a huff, he says that he knows they don’t trust him, but he’s confident he can do this.
They still hesitate, and Yul shoots a desperate look at Jung-ae, who says that she’ll stay until her hundred days are up, like she promised. Team Leader Baek concedes that the risk of this venture is no worse than his constant fear that he’ll be fired from YB Ad, so Yul promises everyone promotions and raises if they stick with him.
They’re all convinced except for Gye-young, the woman who’s always trying to save money. Yul reminds her that he’s a chaebol and that he wouldn’t go independent without thinking it through, and that his share of YB Group is large enough to do what he wants. They all agree, and he makes them cringe by getting on his knees to thank them, hee.
Bo-na can’t sleep that night, thinking about how she told Executive Director Jo that she deleted all evidence of his connection to America Pictures. But she has a flash drive in her hands, presumably with all the evidence stored on it, and she also considers the way Yoon-yi befriended her father.
She makes her decision, and she meets with Yoon-yi to give her the flash drive containing proof that Executive Director Jo has been taking bribes by outsourcing companies. She asks Yoon-yi to pass it on to Chi-won as soon as possible, before Executive Director Jo is named vice president. Yoon-yi worries that Executive Director Jo will know that the information came from Bo-na, but Bo-na just apologizes for taking so long to do the right thing.
She says that she won’t be able to get a job as an assistant after this, but she asks hesitantly if it’s too late to be friends with Yoon-yi again. Yoon-yi says that they never stopped being friends, then she takes the flash drive directly to Chi-won.
Bo-na gives Executive Director Jo her resignation, telling him that she’s choosing friendship over success. She says that she used to respect him for getting where he was through hard work, but then he began taking the wrong path. She tells Executive Director Jo that her last duty as his assistant is to stop him.
Chi-won and the video team stay up late analyzing the information on the flash drive. Yoon-yi drops by with food, drinks, and moral support, and soon Chi-won declares their work done for the day. They all head home happily, anticipating their upcoming triumph over Executive Director Jo, but that night a shadowy figure slips into the meeting room and steals all of their hard work.
The following morning Executive Director Jo dresses in a tuxedo and does his happy dance, looking forward to his promotion to vice president and the dissolution of the video department. Vice President Do notices when Chi-won fails to show up to the company meeting, but he asks Executive Director Jo to say a few words as the newly chosen vice president.
Standing, Executive Director Jo starts to make a flowery speech, but he’s interrupted when Chi-won runs breathlessly into the room. Chi-won says that he was showing the company chairman a video, and that he found it so interesting that he wanted everyone here to see it. The video is his conversation with the America Pictures CEO, who goes into detail about Executive Director Jo’s taking of bribes and his corrupt business practices.
We flash back to last night as the shadowy figure left the meeting room, only to find themselves surrounded by the video department team. The thief turned out to be Gye-young from Yul’s team, who had burst into tears.
In private, she’d confessed to Chi-won and Yoon-yi that her family is in a lot of debt and her contract was ending soon, so she was tempted by the money that Executive Director Jo offered for her to spy. Chi-won had told her that they’re the only ones who know about this, and that he’ll let Yul decide what to do with her. But in return, he’d asked Gye-young for a favor.
Back at the meeting, Executive Director Jo regains his wits and starts frantically denying the accusations of bribery. The audit team comes to take him away, but they stop long enough for Chi-won to remind Executive Director Jo, “I warned you not to touch Yoon-yi.” Executive Director Jo tries to kick Chi-won, but Chi-won just knocks his leg away before he’s dragged out kicking and screaming.
Outside, Chi-won finds Yoon-yi waving at him, and just like he promised, she runs to him wearing the shoes he bought her. He hugs her tightly and says that he kept his promise, but she retorts that he hasn’t fully kept his promise until he moves back into his apartment at her house.
Yul pouts and whines at Chi-won as he packs his things,offering to forget the house rules if he’ll stay. Chi-won tells Yul to stop being clingy, but Yul protests that he’ll be all alone and lonely again, and that they’ll never see each other once he starts his business. So Chi-won promises to come play with Yul sometimes, calling himself “hyung” now that they won’t be working together, which makes Yul’s entire week.
Yoon-yi cooks steak that evening to celebrate, but she accidentally sets it on fire. Chi-won rushes over and puts out the fire without even thinking. He grabs her to make sure she’s okay, and she notes that he fearlessly ran towards the fire. She says that maybe it’s because he was with her, and he half jokes that she’ll just have to stay with him forever.
Being so close to Yoon-yi makes Chi-won think of things other than food. He grabs her up, sets her on the table, and kisses her soundly. Soon clothes are flying around the room and the steak is entirely forgotten.
They lay face-to-face in bed later, and Yoon-yi reaches out to caress the burn scars on Chi-won’s shoulder. He asks sleepily, “Why do you like someone with so many scars, like me? There are plenty of normal people around you. You’re a fool.”
But she tells him that there are no normal people — that everyone just acts that way. “You’re special,” she says. “You’re very special to me.” Chi-won replies, “Thank you for cherishing someone like me.”
Sometime later, Chi-won goes to Yoon-yi’s mother’s hair salon to talk to her, using the excuse that he needs a haircut. As she works, she tells him that his head is pretty, and he says nervously that other parts of him are pretty, too, making her chuckle. Chi-won says that he’ll wait until she likes him, making his intention to stay with Yoon-yi clear.
Mom relaxes and offers to style his hair, but the results are… less than stellar. Even Tae-yi is taken aback when he walks in and sees Chi-won, but he gets over his shock when Chi-won tells him to bring his resume to the office tomorrow. Chi-won prepares to leave, but Mom heaves a big sigh, smiles, and invites him to stay for dinner.
When Tae-yi arrives at YB Ad in the morning, he’s confused when Chi-won leads him, not upstairs, but to Kyung-rye’s cafe. Kyung-rye isn’t thrilled at the idea of Yoon-yi’s little brother working for her, but Chi-won gives her a letter of recommendation and tells Tae-yi to work hard for six months and they’ll see what happens.
Everyone comes outside to say goodbye to Vice President Do, who’s oddly dressed in a leather jacket and carrying a motorcycle helmet. It all makes sense when Yul drives up on his precious bike and hands over the keys, taking Vice President Do’s money and quipping that starting a business is expensive, hee.
Vice President Do says that he’s proud of Yul, wishing him luck. He turns to Yoon-yi to thank her for the changes she’s influenced in Chi-won, and Chi-won even gives him a big hug and promises to play with him often. Vice President Do jumps on the bike, shoots everyone a finger-heart, and zooms off into his retirement. Perfect.
Jung-ae, Kyung-rye, and even Bo-na spend time at Yoon-yi’s house, enjoying some PPL skincare. Bo-na sighs that she’s having trouble finding a new job, and Kyung-rye says she can always come work for her at her new drama set coffee cart business. They joke that out of all of them, she’s the only CEO, hee.
The coffee cart does seem to be doing booming business, and ha, they’re stationed on the set of a drama titled “Jugglers,” with a poster thanking the staff and actors from actor In Gyo-jin. While aggressively buffing the poster, Tae-yi spots In Gyo-jin in line and fanboys at him.
Kyung-rye says that he looks just like someone she knows, but she waves off the resemblance, since the “Cutter Jo” she knows is in prison. In Gyo-jin tries to order a drink, but she says they’re sold out, and he stomps off in a huff.
Bo-na visits Executive Director Jo in prison, where he seems to have gotten over his resentment towards her, and he even tells her that he’s been repenting a lot lately. She says that the auditing team finally released his phone to her, and she plays him a video that he used to watch on the phone every day (that explains why he refused to upgrade his phone).
It’s a video of his mother lying in a hospital bed, where she’d gasped that she wants to see him as a senior managing director before she dies. Executive Director Jo smiles this sad, wistful smile as he starts to cry. He says regretfully that he shouldn’t have let himself get greedy, and he tells Bo-na that he misses his mother.
Bo-na says that he was very cool when he was a senior managing director, so much that he was her role model. She remembers working overtime all the time, but that she was happy then. Executive Director Jo says that when it comes to work skills or people skills, Bo-na is the best, and he tells her that he’ll pray for her to get a great job working for a good boss.
Sometime later, Yul’s e-sports youth team (named “The Queen’s Knights,” I love it!) works hard to practice for their next competition, and of course Jung-ae’s son Gun-woo is on the team. Team Leader Baek and the rest of the team are there, though they complain that they might go out of business before they win their first tournament. Ha, it turns out that Yul owned shares of YB Group, just not a lot of shares, and the fledgling business is floundering.
Gye-young is there too, but she’s been demoted to the position of Yul’s assistant. She brings him coffee, and she forgets herself and sasses him when he complains that there’s not enough whipped cream in his drink. Yul reminds her that she signed a 20-year contract to work for him, and she stammers an apology.
Aw yay, Jung-ae still works for Yul, too! She’s a lot more capable these days, running around fixing problems for everyone and nearly singlehandedly keeping the office running. And when Yul wails that their coach left, she runs downstairs, starts up the motorcycle, and drives off with Yul riding behind her. Yul apologizes for things being so tough, but she calls back, “It’s okay, we’re doing what we want! I’m having fun!”
Life goes on in Chi-won’s video department, with a new batch of interns arriving for work and Yul still requesting free PR videos, ha. The young, attractive team member has an obvious crush on Chang-soo, but he’s still hung up on Yoon-yi and doesn’t notice.
Chi-won tells Yoon-yi that he’s got some new rules for her to follow. They’re the same “rules” he issued when she first started: not to smile in case someone gets the wrong idea, not to cater to just anyone, and not to be unnecessarily nice all the time. He even complains that her heels are getting higher lately.
But Yoon-yi knows him now, and she knows that he’s just thinking of her comfort. She gently chides him for nagging, but he says it’s his interest in her. Yoon-yi asks why he never attends her lectures if he’s so interested, and Chi-won grumbles that it’s embarrassing because she always talks about him, ha. She stomps out annoyed, and Chi-won realizes that he just made a huge mistake.
The next time Yoon-yi gives a lecture (she’s teaching executives how to be good bosses), she catches sight of Chi-won sneaking in late with a huge bouquet of flowers. She sends him a cheeky little grin when she mentions difficult bosses, reminding him of how hard he was on her when they first met. When she’s finished, Chi-won gives her a thumbs-up and a proud smile.
The go for a walk, where Yoon-yi needles Chi-won to tell her when he first started liking her. He tries to avoid answering, but she keeps pushing until he finally leans close to whisper something in her ear. Stunned, Yoon-yi breathes, “Really? Your heart pounded then?”
Chi-won says it’s true, then holds out a hand to her. As she takes it, we see that they’re finally wearing matching couple rings, awww. Chi-won pulls her close and says sweetly, “I love you, Yoon-yi-ah.” She says she loves him, too, and he kisses her.
What a great finale! I’m completely satisfied with how everything ended — it’s a little on the fluffy side, but the show always leaned towards fluffy in general, so I found the conclusion completely fitting. And despite being a bit more optimistic than realistic, Jugglers stayed strong from beginning to end, never dropping its sweet tone or making me feel like it forgot the story it was here to tell.
I said in an earlier recap that it feels as though the show was made with a lot of love, from the actors down to the humblest intern, and I could really sense that love in this final episode. Everything was addressed — if anything was forgotten as Chi-won and Yoon-yi’s story concludes, I can’t think of it, and we even got a lovely kiss-and-more scene! I particularly love that Chi-won even conquered his fear of fire when called on to protect Yoon-yi, and that he didn’t forget to talk to her mother and reassure her that he’s not going anywhere.
I also loved how Yul and Jung-ae’s story was wrapped up, with him starting his own business doing what he loves and her flourishing in her capability as his partner. They even mentioned that she’s taking classes, and it’s nice to see her continuing to improve herself. I’m happy that she and Yul are still working together and supporting each other, and I have no doubt that they’ll succeed at whatever they do.
My favorite thing about Chi-won and Yoon-yi as a couple has consistently been that, no matter what happens to them and no matter what anyone says, they never let anything separate them. And there was no big drama to their relationship either — once they realized they cared for each other, that was it, they were together. They didn’t allow company politics, personal struggles, or meddling family members have a say in their relationship, or get under their skin and make them doubt each other. Each obstacle only made them stronger in this lovely, grounding way rather than through fireworks and hysterical behavior. They just loved each other, and quietly let everyone and everything deal with it if they didn’t like it.
It was great to see how they inspired each other to be better, too. Chi-won had the most progress to make, and I was honestly shocked when we saw flashbacks on him when he first met Yoon-yi, and how cold and cruel he could be. She taught him that people can be interested in him without being intrusive, and that in turn, he could be interested in others without threatening his own privacy. It was such a change to see him show compassion to Gye-young and even get her on their side, which is totally something Yoon-yi would have done. And in turn, Yoon-yi learned from Chi-won how to stand up for herself, and that being a good friend and employee doesn’t mean she has to be a doormat and compromise her own principles.
Jugglers didn’t offer anything new or innovative as it told its story, but what it did do, it did with so much love and cuteness that I couldn’t help loving the show right back. It reminded me a lot of Radiant Office, but even softer and more heartwarming. The characters were sweet and endearing, the situations were simple yet still managed to make me care, and even the villains, while mean, never really had a chance at winning. I never had to worry too much that everyone would get their happily ever after, and for once I liked it that way. With many dramas, these things would be a mark against them, but somehow Jugglers never felt flat, boring, or too predictable. I’m going away from the show feeling all warm inside, like I just had a cup of hot cocoa made by someone who loves me.
- Premiere Watch: I’m Not a Robot, Jugglers, Black Knight, Beautiful Goodbye, Rude Miss Young-ae
- Holiday posters and typing struggles in latest Jugglers promos
- Superhero secretaries save their bosses in Jugglers
- Secretary Baek Jin-hee juggles an explosive time bomb of tasks for Jugglers
- Baek Jin-hee offered starring role in office drama Jugglers
- Daniel Choi and Lee Won-geun up to join workplace drama Jugglers
- Kang Hye-jung considers returning to dramaland in Jugglers
- KBS’s Jugglers courts Yoon Kyun-sang to become stoic boss