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The Guest: Episode 16 (Final)

The nerve-wracking finale means a face-off with Park Il-do, who seeks to complete what he started twenty years ago. There’s no escaping now — it’s man versus demon, with no guarantee that either will survive. It’s not the first time our trio’s lives have been in peril, but we can hope and pray that — one way or another — it will finally be the last.

 
FINAL EPISODE RECAP

As the possessed villagers attempt to attack their loved ones, Kil-young and Hwa-pyung continue to desperately search through the empty nursing home for Priest Yang. But the priest is on the rooftop with Yoon, who gathers all his inner strength to begin the exorcism prayer. If Yoon must die, at least he’ll take Park Il-do down with him.

Hwa-pyung and Kil-young find them on the roof, and Hwa-pyung yells at Yoon to stop — he reassures Yoon that there’s another way so Yoon won’t have to die.

Hwa-pyung want to know if Park Il-do brought them there just to kill them. He offers himself as a sacrifice, telling Park Il-do to possess him instead and let Priest Yang go. Yoon and Kil-young protest, not wanting their friend to be possessed, but Hwa-pyung reassures them that it will be okay.

Priest Yang muses that, despite the trio surviving that night twenty years ago, their fate is still the same. Bringing them here was all a part of his plan, and even if they kill him, nothing will change — they can’t escape this trap.

They demand to know what he means, and Priest Yang screams that out of the three of them, two will die tonight. Then he pauses, deciding that he’s changed his plan — only one will die.

Lifting his arms up as in a blessing, Priest Yang purposefully leans back and falls off the rooftop, crashing to the ground below. The effects of Priest Yang’s swan dive are immediate, as the possessed villagers suddenly become un-possessed, realizing in horror that they were trying to kill their friends and family.

The trio race downstairs, but it’s too late. Priest Yang lies spread-eagle on the ground, and as Yoon crouches by the man’s body, the older priest’s last words are, “Now I am free.”

They don’t know what that means, but Kil-young realizes they need to check on Grandpa and the villagers. As Yoon performs the last rites for Priest Yang, Hwa-pyung finds his grandfather safe in the nursing home.

In the morning light, the trio stare out at the sea, wondering if it’s all really over. Hwa-pyung confirms that if the person possessed by a spirit kills themselves, then the spirit will return from whence it came. In Park Il-do’s case, they assume the spirit has returned to the sea.

Knowing that Park Il-do comes from the sea every twenty years, they worry that he’ll eventually return. Yoon also wonders why Park Il-do ended things so neatly by allowing Priest Yang to kill himself.

Now that they don’t have an evil spirit to chase after, there’s no reason for the trio to stay together. Kil-young and Yoon head back to the city while Hwa-pyung stays behind to be near his grandfather. As he sits by his grandfather’s bedside, Hwa-pyung has a dream of Priest Choi from twenty years ago telling him that “he” is with him.

Hwa-pyung doesn’t understand the dream, but there’s no time to dwell on it since Grandpa wakes up from his coma. But due to lack of oxygen to the brain, Grandpa has essentially suffered a stroke, so his abilities are limited. Even so, he manages to gasp out a plaintive call for his wife and son.

After the incidents in the village, Yoon’s claim that Priest Yang was possessed doesn’t seem so far-fetched, but he’s still on priest probation until the disciplinary committee looks further into the matter. Another priest gives him some Sharing Hand documents that Priest Yang left behind.

Meanwhile, Kil-young goes through the box of her mother’s belongings, her voice trembling as she tells her mother that Park Il-do is gone. Kil-young starts to cry as she blames herself for not being able to do anything to stop him until the moment Priest Yang took his life.

She meets up with Yoon, marveling that he’s learned how to drink soju. His new drinking habit is understandable, considering all he’s gone through — especially since whenever he tries to sleep, he can see and hear all those who were killed or possessed by Park Il-do.

Kil-young points out that a little PTSD isn’t surprising considering all they’ve been through. She muses that at least they have each other, since the three of them can understand what they’ve gone through when no one else can.

She hesitates, fighting back tears as she admits that it’s hard for her to meet with Yoon since when she sees him, she thinks of her mother who died saving him. She tries to lighten the mood by saying Yoon must live a blessed life, since Hwa-pyung ordered her to save Yoon no matter what.

Grandpa’s stroke means he’s barely able to take care of himself, or even knows who Hwa-pyung is. Hwa-pyung still carefully tends to his grandfather, getting him settled at home and tucking him into bed. Hwa-pyung’s planning to stay with Grandpa for awhile, and asks Kil-young to pack up his belongings and send them along.

Yoon returns to the village to check on the previously possessed people. He starts with Officer Oh, who says that he doesn’t remember anything, but at least he isn’t thirsty and doesn’t hear strange noises. As part of the general procedure, Yoon pulls out a crucifix and holds it near Officer Oh, asking how he feels.

The police officer hesitates, then admits that he feels a little sick, asking Yoon to put the crucifix away. When Yoon doesn’t immediately comply, Officer Oh angrily knocks it out of Yoon’s hand. Stunned, Yoon realizes that the villagers are still possessed.

Yoon calls Kil-young, who’s busy packing up Hwa-pyung’s belongings. He tells her that it’s not over — the demons Park Il-do controlled are still inside the villagers. Park Il-do is not gone. Kil-young’s so shocked that she accidentally drops the jar of homemade food Grandpa had brought Hwa-pyung on his last visit.

She stares at the mess on the floor in horror. Hidden in the jar is a crow’s head, which — besides being highly unhygienic — is definitely not a good sign. She and Yoon realize that they need to get to Hwa-pyung immediately.

Once Grandpa is asleep, Hwa-pyung goes down to the pier to pour out a bottle of soju in the ocean. He calls out to Yook Kwang, telling him he brought the soju and sashimi that the shaman always wanted, promising that he’ll do whatever it takes to find his friend’s body.

Hwa-pyung returns to his grandfather’s home, remembering that Yook Kwang died because he had been searching for something on Grandpa’s property. Hwa-pyung has a vision of where Yook Kwang dug at the ground, so he starts digging, too.

He recoils when he discovers a mummified body buried in the ground. Remembering all the warnings that Park Il-do was still in the house and that Grandpa is Park Il-do, Hwa-pyung stares at a photo that was buried with the body — a photo of him as a young boy with his grandfather.

As Yoon hurries to Hwa-pyung, he flips through the photos from Sharing Hand. They’re all photos of Priest Yang standing with volunteers and the people that Sharing Hand helped — and in one of those photos is Grandpa.

Hwa-pyung returns to the front of the house, shocked to see Grandpa sitting out front, eating on his own — something he shouldn’t be able to do without assistance due to his stroke. Hwa-pyung despairingly assumes that Park Il-do possessed Grandpa twenty years ago when Park Il-do moved from young Hwa-pyung.

But Grandpa says Hwa-pyung was never possessed. The reason Hwa-pyung couldn’t see through his eye as a child was due to his psychic abilities. The truth is, Park Il-do entered Grandpa right after the first possessed shaman killed himself.

Grandpa had tried to resist, but as Park Il-do’s demon energy started to cover the walls in black ooze and threaten to consume Hwa-pyung, Grandpa offered up himself as a sacrifice to save his grandson.

Under Park Il-do’s command, Grandpa found Park Il-do’s original body that had been buried in the field. That was the night Hwa-pyung’s mother had gone out looking for Hwa-pyung, the night that Hwa-pyung believed he — while presumably possessed — pushed his mother off the cliff. But it wasn’t Hwa-pyung who killed his mother — it was Grandpa.

Then Grandpa killed his wife, making it look like suicide, after she found him re-burying Park Il-do’s body closer to the house.

During the exorcism twenty years ago, when the shaman declared that “he should be killed” because that’s the only way to get rid of Park Il-do, they all thought she was referring to Hwa-pyung because that’s who she seemed to be staring at. But she was actually staring at Grandpa who was holding Hwa-pyung at the time.

As Grandpa reveals all of this to Hwa-pyung, the younger man staggers in pain when his eye starts hurting again. He doesn’t understand how he was never possessed if he reacts to Park Il-do, but the now-very-obviously-possessed Grandpa explains that because Hwa-pyung is a special and powerful psychic, he experiences sympathetic supernatural pains.

After the exorcism attempt suppressed Hwa-pyung’s psychic abilities, he no longer had those pains or could see Grandpa for what he truly was. That’s how Park Il-do was able to live so close to Hwa-pyung all these years.

As for Priest Yang, Park Il-do never possessed him. Instead, Park Il-do simply tracked him down, knowing he was Lee Chul-yong’s son. Priest Yang actually tried to fight back by exorcising him. But Park Il-do was too strong, and that was the moment when Priest Yang gave up on his faith and became Park Il-do’s servant.

So it was Grandpa who was doing the possessing — or at least ordering the other lesser demons to possess the zombie villagers and all the others that had been in contact with Sharing Hand over the years.

Grandpa also chuckles in glee as he — that is, Park Il-do — explains that he’s helped Hong-joo in anticipation of the disaster she’ll bring to the world as she gains more political power. Hwa-pyung demands to know why Park Il-do has been doing all this for the past twenty years, and the spirit explains that it’s fun — besides, he’s only feeding on all of humanity’s innate despair, anger, and desire to harm. He simply pushed people over the edge until their metaphorical demons became literal demons.

Hwa-pyung asks why Park Il-do killed Geun-ho, and Grandpa laughs that he killed all of Hwa-pyung’s family in order to make Hwa-pyung sad and frustrated in order to destroy his inner strength, making it possible for Park Il-do to possess him.

Park Il-do has carefully stayed near Hwa-pyung the past twenty years due to Hwa-pyung’s special shaman-inherited psychic abilities, which make him one of the few people who can withstand being possessed by such a powerful spirit.

Worried, Hwa-pyung asks if his grandfather is still alive. Park Il-do almost seems affronted when he says that he is Hwa-pyung’s grandfather. Park Il-do was the one who cared for Hwa-pyung, cooked for him, laughed with him. Park Il-do was the one Hwa-pyung slept next to when he visited home.

Furious, Hwa-pyung starts to move towards Grandpa, but the evil spirit blocks Hwa-pyung from stepping closer. Hwa-pyung drops to his knees, spitting up blood, as Park Il-do says that it’s all Hwa-pyung’s fault that Kil-young’s and Yoon’s families were killed, too.

If young Hwa-pyung hadn’t told Priest Choi that Park Il-do was still in the house, then Park Il-do wouldn’t have had to possess Priest Choi. If Hwa-pyung hadn’t been standing in front of Yoon’s house that night, then Kil-young’s mother wouldn’t have stopped to investigate.

Frustrated, Park Il-do adds that the night he led the trio to the nursing home, he was going to kill Yoon and Kil-young in front of Hwa-pyung. But instead Priest Yang killed himself, thwarting Park Il-do’s plans. He’s not worried, though, since he knows that Yoon and Kil-young are currently on their way to Grandpa’s house.

Realizing his friends are in danger, Hwa-pyung begs Park Il-do to possess him right now and leave his grandfather alone. That’s exactly what Park Il-do has been waiting to hear for the past twenty years.

By the time Yoon arrives at Grandpa’s home, the possession has already taken place — but Hwa-pyung has also taken a knife and carved shamanistic phrases into his body. He recites a shaman prayer in order to confine Park Il-do.

Concerned for his friend, Yoon rushes forward to help, but Hwa-pyung yells at him to stay away. He tells Yoon it’s pointless to try and perform an exorcism — not just because he knows Yoon will die, but because Hwa-pyung has locked Park Il-do in his body and plans to get rid of the evil spirit by killing himself.

Horrified, Yoon screams at him to stop as Hwa-pyung grabs a knife and tries to cut his own his throat. But Park Il-do seems to be fighting back, preventing Hwa-pyung from making the final move. Despite reeling from the pain of his curse, Yoon staggers forward, determined to exorcise his friend.

Park Il-do grabs Yoon by the throat, growling that he should have killed Yoon earlier. When Hwa-pyung realizes what the spirit is forcing him to do, he struggles to release Park Il-do’s grip on Yoon. Once Yoon is freed, Hwa-pyung runs away.

Kil-young arrives just in time to see Hwa-pyung run towards the sea, and she follows after him. Hwa-pyung stands in the water and tries to slice his wrists, but Park Il-do won’t let him die so easily, so he tries to drown himself. Kil-young jumps into the water to save him, dragging Hwa-pyung back to the shallow water.

Park Il-do is beginning to take over, though, as Hwa-pyung’s right eye becomes black. The demon laughs in triumph, delighting in his new body.

The possessed Hwa-pyung grabs Kil-young and tries to stab her, but Yoon arrives and pulls him away. The two men fight. Hwa-pyung soon has the upper hand as he uses his supernatural strength to hold Yoon and Kil-young under water, trying to drown them. But Yoon reaches for his rosary, pressing the crucifix against Hwa-pyung’s flesh.

That causes Hwa-pyung to recoil in pain, letting go of Kil-young and Yoon. Kil-young tries to restrain Hwa-pyung as Yoon begins the exorcism. Yoon yells out a prayer, begging for assistance to defeat an enemy that is too strong for him — but he’ll go down fighting for his friend’s life, even if it costs him his own.

Hwa-pyung momentarily writhes in pain, but Park Il-do ultimately mocks Yoon, telling him that Yoon will die from the curse before he can exorcise Hwa-pyung. Yoon wobbles in pain, spitting up blood as his body decays — but he still persists in his exorcism attempt until Hwa-pyung suddenly screams, “Park Il-do!”

But then Hwa-pyung starts to laugh, as the demon inside reveals that Park Il-do isn’t his real name — it’s just the one he’s used most recently. Actually, “Park Il-do” is a demon who has existed since the beginning of time. Yoon commands the spirit to reveal his real name, since an exorcism can only be properly conducted with the demon’s true name.

Park Il-do grabs Yoon by the throat: “Yoon Hwa-pyung. That’s my name now.”

Kil-young tries to intervene, but the possessed Hwa-pyung easily pushes her aside as he continues to strangle Yoon. He tries to stab Yoon, but Kil-young grabs his arm, pleading with Hwa-pyung to remember why they wanted to catch Park Il-do — to think of his family and that he begged her to do anything she could to save Yoon’s life.

Hwa-pyung’s right eye returns to normal as he gains momentary control of his body. He drops Yoon into the water, and then stabs himself in the chest. As his friends watch in horror, Hwa-pyung thanks him for their help, but says he’ll take care of everything now. Then he stabs out his right eye.

Hwa-pyung staggers into the sea, disappearing under the water.

Yoon swims after him, grabbing his sinking friend’s hand and wrapping his rosary around both of their wrists as he internally continues the exorcism. As he finishes the prayer and blesses Hwa-pyung, Yoon loses consciousness due to the curse.

Hwa-pyung unwraps the rosary from Yoon’s wrist and slips deeper into the water, begging Park Il-do to stay in his body.

Kil-young dives into the sea, desperately searching for the two men. She drags Yoon back to shore, and he sputters up sea water as he comes back to his senses. Because the exorcism failed, he’s still alive! His first question is to ask where Hwa-pyung is, but Kil-young sobs as she admits she couldn’t find him.

Running back into the water, Yoon and Kil-young desperately call out Hwa-pyung’s name. But he’s gone.

In the morning, Kil-young gets a call from the Coast Guard letting her know they’ve found some of Hwa-pyung’s belongings — his shoes, which were left near Yook Kwang’s body. Hwa-pyung found his old friend after all, but there’s no sign of Hwa-pyung’s body.

One year later, Kil-young is still a detective and partnered with Detective Go! Yay! She’s momentarily distracted when another detective questions a taxi driver, since it reminds her of Hwa-pyung.

Hong-joo has been elected to be the congressional floor leader, which gives her even more power. Ugh, I guess evil does continue to exist in this world. She gets a call that her father died, but instead of grieving, she laughs gleefully. It’s no wonder why Park Il-do chose this family for his 20th century incarnation.

Yoon and Kil-young meet up to honor Hwa-pyung’s memorial day — aw, both of them brought meat as their food offerings, since that’s what he always used to bug them to buy for him. They set up his memorial table in Grandpa’s house, honoring their friend who they presume to have drowned.

Meanwhile, Grandpa is back to his normal (and not possessed) self, which unfortunately means he’s still not fully functional and requires his neighbor to look after him. Grandpa believes that Hwa-pyung and Geun-ho should be returning home soon, and spends his days watching for them.

The neighbor tells Yoon and Kil-young to stop sending Grandpa money — he doesn’t need it now, since a charity keeps sending money and supplies.

Kil-young and Yoon track down the source of the packages, and it leads them to another seaside village. The person who sent the packages is a fisherman, who said he did it as a favor for a man he saved from drowning last year. That man eventually settled down in their village.

As Yoon and Kil-young approach the man’s house, they see a familiar figure — it’s Hwa-pyung. His hair has grown long and covers up his missing eye, he has scars on his body from the shaman phrases, and he wears Yoon’s rosary around his neck. Yoon and Kil-young stare in delight, realizing that their old friend is still alive.

In a voice-over, Hwa-pyung tells us that Park Il-do was sent back to the sea, but he’s worried the demon will eventually return: “When the world is in chaos and humans become corrupt, Sohn will return. Sohn comes from the East Sea.”

 
COMMENTS

What an amazing show. I’m still trying to unpack everything that happened in this final episode, but at the moment I’m just pleased that it ended in a satisfying way — namely, that everyone lived. I can excuse any quibbles with plot-holes and loose-ends, provided that my beloved trio have the opportunity to live happily-ever-after. I want to question how Hwa-pyung managed to get rid of Park Il-do and still survive, but I’m too happy he’s still alive to really care exactly what happened in the sea that night. Maybe there’s even a little bit of Park Il-do still left in him, or maybe it just happened to be Park Il-do’s time to slink off into the sea to foment a new source of terror for the next generation. This is an old demon who has lived in the sea forever, and I doubt even the strongest psychic shaman, or most faithful priest, or most kick-ass detective will ever be able to fully defeat him.

But they’ve won the victory for now, and that’s all that matters. There’s still evil in the world (hellooooo, Hong-joo!), but that’s evil that comes from people, not demons who just want some entertainment for their own ancient amusement. The final farewell “thank you” message from the production team explained that the reason they created this show was to look at societal problems from a different perspective:

All bad things eventually start from the hearts of people, which is what we wanted to depict. They say humans are the most terrifying beings, but just like viewers called Yoon Hwa-pyung “Yoon Peace” [the literal translation of his name], we hope all the viewers find hope and peace of mind. Again, thank you for watching.

It might be strange to think that a horror-filled show could be a source of hope and peace — but in a way, it was. It showed that people who come together for a common goal to eradicate some aspect of evil, despite all being from very different backgrounds and experiences, might actually be triumphant. Yes, there could (will?) be some losses and injuries along the way. But by working together, by trusting one another, by willing to sacrifice for one another, this unlikely trio were able to prevent evil from destroying more people’s lives, including their own. It’s a dark show, but there strangely is still a lot of light to it.

Speaking of darkness and light, I’d like to give all my love to the lighting director. The use of light and shadow throughout the show was utterly delightful, not just in highlighting key moments (and Kim Jae-wook’s cheekbones!), but also the way that it allowed the mind to play tricks and make me wonder “is this really happening?” It’s definitely terrifying not being sure of what you can see, and knowing that there’s something so gruesome that it can only hide in shadows. I also loved the way camera angles were used, particularly the unsettling way the camera would tilt on its axis in a 90-degree pan, giving me that flip-flop feeling in my stomach as the horizon swayed and figures that were sideways become upright.

As a horror neophyte, I’m not sure I’m qualified to comment on the way the show played with standard tropes (or even attempted to create new ones). But, despite my initial wariness as a scaredy-cat, I fell in love with exploring a new genre that isn’t very common in dramaland. Considering this is OCN’s first foray into the Wed-Thurs line-up, I think it could be considered a success. Not only did it manage to bring something new and intriguing to the table, but it had consistently decent ratings (for a cable show, at least) and generated a lot of buzz. Everyone involved with this production should be proud of what they created. Sometimes a drama is saved solely by the strength of its cast, or its script, or its cinematography. This is one of the rare dramas that reaches — if not exceeds — the mark on all three counts. It’s not a perfect drama, but it was compelling from beginning to end, and I will not be forgetting the trio of demon hunters any time soon.

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Thanks for recapping this show @odilettante. You watched the scenes I/we couldn't and recapped them so I/we didn't miss out. It was great fun watching this one with you and other Beanies - and speculating about Park Il Do.

I was a bit annoyed by the final episodes to learn that Park Il Do could have his minion spirits posess just about anyone. I was thinking they exploit some deep seated darkness or a psychic ability - but later on I thought that it made sense. We all have some darkness and hold some resentment - usually directed at the ones closest to us since they matter the most. But that doesn't mean we want to go and kill them - that was all Park Il Do picking up on that little thing, and running away with it. I didn't realise the production team left a final farewell with a similar message; and I think the show brought it out beautifully.

This was a great show! And now can we Hwa Pyung and Yoon please get together already, and adopt that little girl that they'll raise together with aunt Gil Young? ^_^

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Yay, everybody live, and there is possibility for season 2! Kim Dong Wook was truly amazing and rest of the cast didn't stay far behind.
But, Le Sigh at writers rewriting to make grandpa PID, or they were met by TOD and have collective amnesia and forget how they wrote for example meeting between Yoon and the shaman two episodes earlier? But for now I'm happy that we have happy ending, and the we have such a good run with this drama.
I really want season 2 with this cast.

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Thank you @odilettante for the recaps and thanks to all the beanies who made watching this show an even better experience with all the insightful discussion and comments.

I'm so glad that all 3 survived. I was slightly prepared for yoon's death, but not HP. I'm still not sure how both survived. As far as I can understand, Yoon didn't complete the last line of the exorcism. So did he survive because of the incomplete exorcism or the spirits were simply lying about his fate?When HP took the rosary from him, I think he recited the last line but would that be effective? Also at the same time he implored PID to stay in him. So I'm still confused about the last exorcism.

Grandpa's reveal was a bit disappointing , but it was too late to introduce a new character. So who was HJ meeting in the tunnel? Did he leave his body from time to time?

Despite the minor quibbles, this is one of the best horror shows I've seen and if they further this franchise, I'm definitely on board.

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Apparently, grandpa being PID is already decided early on and the three of them know about it from the start. I read about in from Q&A with the writers

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I'm fine with him being PID. My question is why go to such extreme lengths to raise our suspicion initially, then go to equally extreme lengths to prove us wrong, only to finally say that it was him all along? That's why the reveal lacked the emotional punch to the gut I was anticipating.

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To make HP suffering longer and to make a lasting impact on his soul , to ease the possession in mind for PID .

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Shame that the script didn't reflect and there are lot of inconsistency in writing if we look back to earlier episodes regarding granpa character as PID and HP as his chosen vessel.

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Maybe he was clinically dead before rescued by fisherman, so PID had to leave him ;)

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I think the exorcism worked and Yoon prayers was answered , but HP just wasn't so sure .

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Yes, this is my take on this too. The exorcism worked but HP was being extra cautious. Maybe he intended to stay near the sea for another 20 years, to know if anyone else got possessed, just to be sure.

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That's my take too. He finished the exorcism ritual before he become unconcious and HP regain his. HP last words, I interpret it as he trying to bind PID to him again.

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On the point of Grandpa being possessed: They definitely went back and forth on that one but it became pretty clear when we were told PID is still in the house, and dad became possessed by a minion.

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On hinsdsight, it should've been clear. But he got himself stabbed and his explanation on wanting to kill HP as a kid seemed so convincing. So I wasn't prepared to accept him as the culprit again.

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This is true. I say "pretty clear" but its more accurate to say I only suspected that might be the case. That or the spirit possessing Priest Choi was lying - but none of the spirits had lied so far, so I didn't think this was the time they would begin to do so.

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I actually late to catch that tbh. I was quite sure grandpa is PID only when Yoon found him in that nursing home, bathe in red glow and in locked room. That red glow just scream PID to me 😅😅😅
And PY kill himself after that.

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No he didn't leave his body , but the director should us the true form of PID as a superior spirit , so he won't spoil it for us when the reveal came , not as PHJ saw him ofc but the true form that a psychic like HP "before suppressing his psychic abilities" or the little girl could see .
Did I make sense ????

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Yeah you did hehe.

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I thought we gonna get to see him in that form tbh when he exit grandpa body to enter HP.

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I think the director wanted to creep us more , and at the time he wanted to keep the mystery .

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So they answered my biggest question! Hwa Pyung never was possessed in the first place! For his surviving, I think it was a mix between Yoon exorcicing him in the sea + shamanism?

The end is pretty bitter. Even they are alive, they lost all their family. While PID is still swimming in the sea and Hong Joo is more powerful.

I really loved this trio. To see how they care about each other and help each other was really moving.

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I... don't understand 😅
I mean, I understand that the show wanted to tell us to defeat the evil within us (?), but not before the evil destroys people around us (??????)

The final message was nice & it was good to see that the trio lived but, after everything that hwa pyung went through, I was actually ready to have him die (IF the show wanted it) because like kil young said, they went through something that nobody should ever go through. Poor HP, what a sad life just because he was a powerful psychic. Also his friends.
I'm just....sad that SO many innocent people suffered.
And idk what HJ represents, that bad guys will always be out there & will lead an awesome life by tormenting others(???)

The positive message that I got from the show was that if you are a good person & struggling, then keep on struggling & surviving & don't give up hope & idk love your friend & family (?)
I'm telling you I'm so confused by the finale.
But all in all good execution, they showed the events really well.

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I believe Yoon did complete the exorcism because he coughed up blood towards the end of reciting and Hwa Pyung was able to handle the rosary afterward and save Yoon from drowning.

Overall, I loved this show. Best of 2018 for me so far. Never expected to be so invested in a horror show but here I am. All three leads were unique characters and there was no unnecessary angst and drama thrown in to keep the story going. Loved it from beginning to end.

Once a different note, I am TOTALLY on board with the Yoon/Hwa Pyung ship. And I'm happy to say some very creative people on tumblr feel the same way, ha ha!

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Yes, bless the fandom's content creators! There's so much gorgeous fanart on twitter too. Plus someone wrote a Hwa-pyung/Yoon fanfic on AO3 and it's so goooood, I'm crying.

(https://archiveofourown.org/works/16549844 - hope it's okay to post the link! Just wanted to share it with you all. ^^)

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Thanks for posting. I enjoyed reading it. ;-)

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Thanks heaps @odilettante for faithfully recapping for us. Great review and recaps! 😃

I have to run out so I'll keep this short and come back to add on more... however about the exorcism of HP, I believe it was completed and succeeded, probably with the combination of the faith in shamanism (sealing in the demon) and faith in God, and because both exorcist and possessed were willing to die for the greater good. Some signs of the success:

1) Yoon once again prayed for help, this time so that he could help his friend. Again this touched me very much. I loved the exorcism in which he called HP his brother. It brought a tear to my eye, ... it was such a sincere wish and prayer in that 'hopeless' situation.

2)Yoon took out his rosary as if it were a weapon (which it is against demons) and did manage to pray the prayer of exorcism in his mind until the final blessing, and even made the Sign of the Cross, while in danger of drowning if nothing else.

3) HP allowed himself to be held on to and then took the rosary, grasping Yoon's hand for a while before sinking. He kept the rosary for himself.

I was thinking that while Det Go's exorcism only had a tub full of holy water, HP was in the sea surrounded by water, and it has been the case that baptism can take place in large bodies of water (usually rivers). So that much water with that blessing ... can we hope PID if cast into the sea, would have been destroyed in all the blessed water? He may indeed have returned to the sea from which he came, but the sea was no longer the 'same sea' as 20 years ago. 😊

[Side note: There really is a brief prayer of exorcism at every baptism.] 😇

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I wish I could like your comments more than once ☺️☺️

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Thank you so much @nomunamu Namu, that's such a sweet thing to say!! 😊

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That occurred to me, too. That Yoon doing the exorcism in the sea turned the sea into a giant font of holy water, thus destroying the demon (though perhaps only temporarily) and by doing so, it helped to save Hwa Pyung. I was confused when Father Yang said only one would die, when ultimately none of them died, but then I realized he must have been referring to himself.

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Yes, @kerry I've been thinking about Priest Yang. I was wondering if seeing the trio together each willing to die to look out for the other, he finally decided play PID out of the chance to kill any of them, by doing the only thing he felt he could control or do for himself, ie commit suicide. I've been thinking that maybe that was his last shred of goodness as well, sacrificing himself to save at least 1 or 2 of the others, and so gaining his freedom from the demon in return.

I am guessing that although PID remains hosted in grandpa, he needs an intermediary to help him get around and through whom to possess others. Yang was the minion intermediary who only had to be present in order for PID to exercise extensive power remotely (such as killing Yuk Gwang).

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I actually don't understand the Preist Yang bit. Priest Yang killed Yook Gwang right? Using supernatural powers? But he wasn'y possessed and was a willing slave like Hong Joo? Then why would he suddenly turn over a new leaf as a last shread of goodness? I'm fairly certain I've missed something here since I didn't watch some parts.

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According to PID explantion after seeing how powerful spirits he was Priest Yang simply surrener to him and served him of free will and it was hinted, because his was corrupted and jaded by his exorcists career.

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Did Priest Yang kill Yookwang though? Iirc during his convo with HP on the phone he told HP he saw PID, and I think he’s talking about the real PID, the spirit. I think Priest Yang just took care of YK’s body after the spirit killed him.
What I don’t understand is why did the spirits leave the body of the possessed people when Priest Yang killed himself?

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@giegie0384 it seemed like this but Priest Yang status as possessed one wasn't really clear in the end so who knows.

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If you remember PID saying that priest Yang is his son too , because his father probably was possessed while conceiving him , and he embraced his darkness .
Just a thought , still contemplating on that .

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@giegie0384 , we were shown that the spirits didn't leave the villagers' bodys and was just dormat , and it was to divert suspicions from the real PID that this happened after priest Yang took his life .

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I thought the same , that the whole area they were in was holy water which helped them to overcome PID .

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@kerry-murphy @greenfields @shach @giegie0384 @waadmay
Theory about Priest Yang... trying to see if this makes sense to us. The timing of Yang's 'changeover' to the darkside is not clear. The thing is that from the beginning, coming from the sea, PID was already looking for a host, along the way possessing ad hoc people who were weak.

- Yang was also an orphan and adopted by a different family from his brother, became a priest and was good as an exorcist, but was affected by the demons he battled.
- PID approached him I'm guessing at the same time he met little HP because PID recognised him as the posthumous son of Lee Chul Yong. Choi got possessed first. Yang resisted only for a while. He may already have started drinking a lot, and easily gave in to the darkness. He stopped being an exorcist, and joined PID, who was already in grandpa.
- He probably sent Yang to approach Park Hong Joo and offered to help her.
- The timing of all these is very close because Hong Joo had killed the school girl also around that time, and Yang was sent by PID to cover up the crime and bury the girl. Choi hanged himself in the same area, at the same time.
- Subsequently, with Yang's help through Sharing Hands, the lesser demons got to possess lots of weak persons without PID needing to leave grandpa's body.
- Yang just did what he was ordered to do, being the 'gateway' for PID so that his control over the lesser demons was stronger. He was however never happy.
- There was no proper lead up to why he changed his mind about helping PID, but when confronted with Yoon's questions about whether his soul existed or whether he'd ever been a true priest, he may have had 2nd thoughts.
- Before this, when Yang said that, "Humans are weak and foolish. Everyone has some darkness inside. When you walk into that darkness, you become a demon." He was, I feel, speaking about himself, meaning that although he was not possessed, he had become a demon.
- After Yoon's question, he decided to stand on the ledge. He did have some genuine care for Yoon. He had told him to stay away from HP, he had indirectly warned him against grandpa and himself. Maybe at this time on the rooftop, knowing that the little boy he had raised was going to be killed, he decided to turn the tables against PID.

It's a pity the show did not bring this out more clearly so it's just guesswork. Anyway, since PID had used Yang as his conduit for exerting power over large groups of demons, once Yang died, that control ended. PID would possibly have still been able to control those near grandpa but he seems to have stopped going about without a body or controlling the other demons without help.

He was looking to inhabit HP who was a psychic probably in order to have more 'remote' control. We see that HP was able to get those visions of PID's intent to kill, from a distance.

In grandpa's body he needed Yang's help to allow him to control more demons remotely. If he had...

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In grandpa's body he needed Yang's help to allow him to control more demons remotely. If he had taken control over HP, he might have become unstoppable in controlling hordes of demons on his own without any need for someone like Yang. 😐

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woaa thank you —
priest yang’s suicide motive still not clear for me
it’s so sudden

but maybe like you said — He is truly care for Yoon and actually tired and not happy all this time being PID’s slave

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I believe he truly care for Yoon because he too as the other priest said sees his younger self in Yoon , and about PID needing priest Yang it's true to a degree since he inhabits the body of an old man who suffers from long bus drives and the grandpa was already weak due to the blood loss he suffered but that sure would affect his ability to control other demons but I think he stayed dormat to avert suspicion till grandpa can recover and he can have an upper hand in hurting HP more by threatening him to kill his grandpa after he barely make it out alive , true evil PID .

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Yes, the salt water was also SOHN’s element, so if that was transformed to a sea of holy water, zzzt !! , similar to being electrocuted in the bathtub 🛀?

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The scene with granpa was a bit boring it was just exposition there was nothing visually interesting about it nor was it edited interestingly I would've liked if PID/granpa acted a bit more creepily and got up colse and personal with HP this was the only part where I got a bot bored other than that as a final I thought it was great.

I liked that they kept the final fight as it were between the main three since really this was thier story , this series has it flows but the the leads and the relationship between them is not one them, the way their relationship was shaped and their journey both personally and together is enough for me to recommend this drama for anybody

Another thing I liked is how beside PID the other two baddies were just regular old humans I am sure influneced by PID but still made their own choices it could be siad that thier own darkness is what attracted PID to them like they were feeding on eaxh other.

It was a good drama I am glad I watched while airing and got to discussed here on dramabeans and thanks for @odilettante for the recap.

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the final recap is here 😢
thank you for the recap!
Half of my questions already answered by the recap and your comments... haa
and idk it’s really warm my heart to read the recaps now

so..
1. priest yang isn’t possessed right? and at the end he chose to ignore PID’s plan and killed himself.. why? is he tired being PID’s slave (refer to “now I’m free)?
2. as PID’s slave, what Priest Yang can do? is he able to possessed people? (re case Hongjoo’s driver being possessed in forest, at that time grandpa is still in hospital)
3. I’m confused with the timeline... when priest choi hanging himself, priest yang already there to bury the high school girl, so at that time Priest Yang already became PID’s slave right? so how many days had passed after priest choi killed his family? when exactly the time grandpa/PID met priest yang and hongjoo?
4. so the last exorcism is not success?? tbh I’m so in love with that scene (their fight and the last exorcism in the sea) that I forgot to focus if the exorcism is work or not, and after found out everyone is alive, I just too happy to think anything else atm

okey that’s all my questions (so far that I can remembered 😅)

now I want to give my praise to this drama
I LOVE THIS DRAMA, despite being a scaredy cat, I really enjoying it ❤️
I love the trio, to the point I’m not fully satisfied with their one-year-later-meeting-scene.. why only staring, smile and teary eyed? I need to see their laugh, hug and bickering/nagging to each other to ended the scene!! 😆😆🙈

I especially love the trio fight in the sea, It’s so damn good 😭😭
PID only see a darkness in human, but human also have a kindness / selfless love inside of them

- grandpa finally let PID in, to take over him, because of HP, he loves his grandson, so he willing to be possessed
- Kilyoung’s mom
- the trio : yes at first they seek PID for a revenge, but at the end it’s because they want to save each other..

Kilyoung didn’t hesitate to throw herself during that fight (she can die at any second), shield HP’s eyes with her bare hand...

Yoon.. Oh God
I love his prayer to God to give him a strength to him to save his friend even though his life is at the stake, what a selfless love ❤️

and Hwapyung..
20 years believed he killed his mom and grandmother, believed all this nightmares started because of him..
He’s surely a person with a big heart and strong mentality (Yoon and Kilyoung too)
No matter what PID did to makes HP’s cracks/darkness became bigger he can’t goes inside HP (yups psychic ability have a role here too, but for me it’s still about your heart and soul — a kindness in you to shield a demon to enter)

at the end PID able to go inside HP because of HP gave him permission

and he didn’t want to destroy PID with cost of his friend’s life, it will better if he died instead of Yoon or Kilyoung

wow I wrote a long comment 😅😅
I will stop now 🙈
I don’t mind if we have a season 2 (with the same cast of course), but...

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I agree that the HP on top of his psychic ability was someone with a big heart and strong mind and could keep PID out, even as a child. The majority of people, it seems, give in to their dark side at the drop of a hat.

I rather wished the show had given us more instances of a person fighting more and for longer against the demons in them. It is actually possible for the good in a person to take control, but this was not sufficiently explored. Only HP's case was the clearest, when his eyes became focused and clear, and he spoke normally for a few seconds, before stabbing himself.

I was trying to see that struggle when HP was about to stab his eye and KY was trying to stop him. I thought it was so risky because she could have had that dagger piercing her hand.

It's true what you say that in the beginning the motives of the trio was mainly personal revenge, but by the end of the show, they were out to save as many people as possible, and especially each other. It's quite certain, that if they had remained bent on their own goals, they would have been defeated one by one. It was their unity and their selflessness that brought about the downfall of at least that 1 bastion of evil. 😃

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But she did get stabbed when covered HP eye with her hand. She saved his life in the end.

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@shach I was trying to see it more clearly ...
I gotta rewatch that! Thought his eye was still stabbed out regardless and at the end we see him half blind anyway.

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Knife went through her hand and damaged his eye, but since her hand took the most of the stab impact it ultimately didn't reach his brain. It was really impactful scene because she went to cover his eye without even hesitation just wanting to save.

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the knife went through her hand, between her thumb and index finger, it’s kinda miss (if it’s fully shielded his eyes, the knife will stab her hand right in the middle)
but like @shach comment below, I also believe that way

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“I rather wished the show had given us more instances of a person fighting more and for longer against the demons in them. It is actually possible for the good in a person to take control, but this was not sufficiently explored. Only HP's case was the clearest, when his eyes became focused and clear, and he spoke normally for a few seconds, before stabbing himself”

tbh there is (event though not too details like HP) — the girlfriend case ( 2nd possessions),
at first we can see her struggle to accept the demon.. she tried to suicide (slice her wirst)

first possession, youngsoo’s case, his post stroke condition make his mind and soul weaks, that’s why it’s easy to take over him completely (?)

the brothers — he accepted the demon consciously

the little girl — she finally invite them to enter (her mom words hurt her, she thought her mom not love her anymore, so at the end she lets her guard down and give them permission)

yups that’s my theory about the possession
but the villagers possession kinda ruin it 😅
why it’s so easy to get possessed
or the purpose of that scenes to show how powerful PID is? i dunno 🙈

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Oooh thanks @nomunamu, you've brought the scenes together! I was trying to recall them. Yes, they were briefly shown, but not fully explored ... it was always the case that the person gave in. I wished, besides HP, that one other person had successfully fought back and reclaimed their humanity without having to be exorcised completely. 😃

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Maybe they weren't able to fight it off on their own because unlike HP they didn't know what is happening to them?

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We had the little girl , and the brothers as an opposite to fighting demons and accepting them .

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aah I didn’t realize my comment get cut...

I don’t mind if we have a season 2 (with the same cast of course), but —
for now I satisfied enough with these 16 episodes 😌😌❤️

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Thank you Odilettante for the recap, that explains some point I'm scratching my head over.

For me, this drama is the unique case where I know and find some plotholes are kinda hard to ignore, like, why PID is so insistent to kill these three while he almost practically can get anyone he wants to die (he cant let go, eh?), or too many red herrings but the revelation of gramps being PID seems contraproductive to the tension of the story, and the lacking of HJ effect later on (unless theres def season 2), etc,

....yet it is still so compelling and I dont mind watching it till the end plus feeling all the emotions and tasting the bittersweet end in a sort of satisfied way. Guess I like the trio very much.

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@clover
About 'why PID is so insistent...' It's possible that KY and Yoon might not have been much targeted by PID, except that they ended up beside him and becoming his friends. Yuk Gwang as well and all who meant anything to him, would probably have been the targets for PID.

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that’s way Priest Yang always tell Yoon to stay away from HP

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“Worried, Hwa-pyung asks if his grandfather is still alive. Park Il-do almost seems affronted when he says that he is Hwa-pyung’s grandfather. Park Il-do was the one who cared for Hwa-pyung, cooked for him, laughed with him. Park Il-do was the one Hwa-pyung slept next to when he visited home.”

That is all levels of twisted Grandpa !

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Thank you so much for the recap... I miss this drama already... This is what I call a Perfect drama.. One of the best 2018 dramas for me.

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[Part 1] What a drama. It was one I waited on to finish before commenting, because it rarely frustrated me and kept me riveted to the screen.

My biggest frustration was that it took them so long to try and find what Yook-Kwang died for. I understand they had to draw that out to get the story across all episodes, but it was so jarring, because it felt like they forgot all about it even though it was obviously an important discovery in the middle of the fight for their lives.

There were plenty of little issues, and the amount of red herrings were frustrating at times, but overall I enjoyed the experience. Actually, I'm pretty good at guessing what will happen in shows, so the red herrings helped prevent me from ruining it for myself! I didn't figure out that Granpda was Park Il-Do until Detective Bong's possession.

The possessions were top class. I'm an avid horror fan, I've seen everything from the classics to low-budget trash to top-money show ponies. I've never seen possessions so convincing and that didn't make me cringe with secondhand embarrassment for the actors. Top kudos go to the junkyard guy, who genuinely creeped me out. I also liked that they vomited salt water when being exorcised. Not only did it make sense in the context of the show, but I've seen enough pea green goo and spinning heads in my lifetime, thanks.

The acting all around was great. I loved everyone in this, and had a special place for Yook-Kwang, so my heart broke when he was killed, and it broke all over again when his body returned to shore. Yook-Kwang symbolises the great fight against evil, I think. He deserved so much better than to die like this, but he was prepared to and was brave until his last word because he believed what he was fighting for was worth it. He didn't value himself over the fight, even when he knew he had no hope of surviving it.

There were times where Park Il-Do felt a little too powerful. It made it feel hopeless. But that makes sense, because in a lot of these stories, the darkness is always stronger than the light which is what makes the good fight so much more harrowing and important. Here we had three very different people working together and learning to love each other in the same way soldiers probably do, because they were living on a battlefield with only each other for support. And even when they had problems (like Yoon's curse) they refused to give in.

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[Part 2] Even the lack of communication that would sometimes happen between them tended to make sense when it happened, thankfully. One of my biggest gripes about kdramas is how often lack of communication is used to cause big drama.

I'm not sure I liked the ending. While that little bit of happiness and hope is important, especially when Park Il-Do can return in the future (or maybe an equally powerful spirit, since I doubt he's the only one), I feel like making Hwa-Pyung live didn't really fit the theme or even make much sense.

What seems to have happened is that Hwa-Pyung chose to die by refusing the exorcism and letting himself sink and drown. The suicide element was necessary for Yook-Kwang's spell to work, and Hwa-Pyung's heart stopping would have been the moment that succeeded.

Obviously someone found his body and performed CPR in time (how?!), but by that time Park Il-Do had been forced out of the body by the spell. The idea is there, but the timing doesn't work for me, especially since Yoon and Kil-Young stuck around to try and look for him. Surely they would have seen someone finding his body in time to give CPR? Or was the ability to revive in a weird space of time a side effect of the spell?

Not to mention...why was his eye silver? A knife went into it, so the eyeball should be totally gone. I've seen what happens to eyeballs when they get pierced and it's not turning silver, just saying.

Can we get a special episode now please? Dedicated entirely to watching Hong-Joo go down, maybe in flames?

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dear @alex8825 : are you my soul mate?? How could you so accurately (and much more brilliantly) type up all my thoughts on this show? LOL

[I am NOT a horror fan though]

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Thought twins ftw!

Horror is difficult to be a fan of, I think. I was forced into it by older brothers who had control of the TV while we grew up. I was watching A Nightmare on Elm Street when I was still a toddler and somehow managed to avoid getting traumatised!

A great thing about this show is it's standalone and doesn't require being a horror fan. And although the horror is there, I think it's way more about the human spirit and the good fight.

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I love how you’ve put everything in words@alex8825 I agree the last few episodes had a lot going on (the logic was at times a whirlwind) and a lot more loopholes popped up but I also agree that the drama was amazing. They executed it amazingly well -the wonderful acting, the cameos-brilliant, the perfectly eerie directing (the crow scene being one that stuck vividly) and the quick pacing of the script with lighter moments.
It’s probably the best OCN horror drama so far and it was a great ride.

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Thank you for recapping this show, @odilettante ! It's been a great ride and I have to thank you and the faithful commenting Beanies for piquing my interest! I REALLY like the show!

Now, I think I might be the only one with the unpopular opinion that:

1) the last 2 episodes were an anti-climatic disappointing drag. GrandPa's lengthy explanation of "everything" just killed me. It might have been the Writers way of closing some loops, etc, but... no. Just no. 30+ people died in the course of 16 episodes and you mean to tell me that it was all so that Yoon Hwa-Pyung could be as miserable as possible, so as to be better fully-possessed vessel??????? No, Writer-nim. This girl isn't buying it. I was REALLY into the "isn't this one? or this one?" chase for PID's real identity, and this conclusion truly did not sit well with me.

[sidenote: who else got goosebumps every time a character drank water? even a sip got me VERY worried. I will never watch people drinking water in KDramas the same ever again! LOL]

2) In as much as I adore our trio, Yoon Hwa-Pyung turning up alive at the end did not really make me happy. Not that I WANTED him to die, but a neatly tied bow to their horrific journey together was unexpected and for some absurd reason, my rationale mind insisted on tragedy. Call me masochistic... :-(

What I DID loooove about this last episode was Choi Yoon's sincere prayer for help, which fellow beanie @growingbeautifully so beautifully captured in the comments these last few days. The way he so humbly resigned himself to his seeming fate, laying his life for his friend... my heart!

Choi Yoon was actually the character I liked best (and not just for his good looks, tee hee!). His quiet demeanor, his internal conflict, his demons. The way he cared for people around him... See, for me, Yoon Hwa-Pyung and Kang Kil-Young were all nice, but there's a careless urgency in all their actions that always takes their sidekicks for granted. Of course, everyone being adults, each character was responsible for their own actions, but I honestly felt that both Yoon Hwa-Pyung and Kang Kil-Young took for granted that Shaman Yook Gwang and Detective Ko (respectively) would always be by their side, as they fight for the "greater good". Choi Yoon, on the other hand, seemed much more caution, if not even hesitant sometimes, which felt like he was doing a lot more "thinking before acting" than his 2 friends.

All nitpicking aside, I am so happy I watching this!

ah, and no season 2, please!! I could not bear to see our reunited trio go through more bloodshed and heartache !!!!! ha ha ha ha

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@kethysk
I was actually more worried when Yoon started drinking alcohol!! However, it's also true that every time someone took a drink, I watched them anxiously. 😅

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Yoon drinking reminds me of priest yang and it makes me worried too. I'm glad that when KGY called him out on that, he speaks honestly. That is quite out of character of him. We all see how he like to internalize everything.

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Let me sit with you on unpopular opinion bench ;)

But I don't mind more seasons, I watch through 14 seasons of Supernatural so I'm pretty okay with characters suffering neverending tragedies for my entertainment.

Back to first point, I wholly agree, when I watch whodunit mystery and that was variation of it, with final reveal I want to look back and think to myself "Yes! That's obviously it, how could I miss it" not "What the hell they were thinking, how that supposed to make sense". And that how it ended for me, how the grandpa lengthy explantion supposed to make sense in the light of what we saw earlier. Which shame, becuase it had great premise, great character and amazing pacing and I still think it's one of the best drama of this year.

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You made it that far with Supernatural?! I think I just about made it to season 11, and by that point it was only for Jensen Ackles because I'm shallow like that.

I didn't mind that PID ended up being grandpa, maybe because I was so convinced it was Priest Yang and I like being surprised. But the exposition scene was hilarious and actually unnecessary. We'd already been told through other possessions that the human spirit affects how deep a possession can be, and whether that person can be possessed at all.

Everything the old dude said could have already been guessed from everything that had happened so far. I guess the writers didn't have faith that the viewers would 100% get it, which is a shame.

I liked the camera effects during the exposition, though. I think that made it bearable for me. It gave the impression that Hwa-Pyung in that moment was not hearing this in our normal realm, but he was trapped in some sort of spiritual in-between, and the exposition was simply him coming to understand the truth.

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It's hard to break up after so many years ;)
I don't mind grandpa as PID either, but I mind that writers reasoning doesn't make sense, the most glaring one was the shamanic exorcisms of young HP where we supposed to belive now that shaman try to exorcise grandpa or pointed at grandpa at that time? Did we supposed to forget about the scene in hospital when Yoon visited shaman and she conveniently didn't mention it at all?
And the biggest plothole of them all, if the PID wanted to break HP to make him willing host, he has 20 yrs for that, being his only guardian, yet he decided to send him away to have "normal childhoo" how, why. I think the show writing would be neater if they cut out the "special human vessel and everything and everyone is connected in a very special way" and go with revenge plot.

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Yeah, those plotholes were ridiculous. At the time I blamed them for being red herrings, which this show was chock full of. It's lazy for sure.

I wonder if PID had to send Hwa-Pyung away not for a normal life, but to wait for whatever 'exorcism' or spell was done on him to wear off. I noticed that things really ramped up after his eye started hurting more again. Maybe PID would have left him alone until then, except that Hwa-Pyung was actively hunting him in the meantime.

The possession of the grandpa seemed too thorough. Is it possible grandpa actually accepted PID with open arms, which might make him undetectable to the shamans? They could have pointed fingers at Hwa-Pyung just for someone to blame and because his psychic ability scared them.

Ugh, I don't know. There comes a point where trying to figure it out and reason it out sounds like making excuses and I absolutely don't want to do that. I do wish that some of the more minor parts of the story had been sacrificed to take a longer look at cleaning up some of these plot holes and questions.

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@alex8825, it could be, BUT, waiting for the exorcims to wear out, he could so thoroughly corrupt young HP that he would willingly and eagerly welcome PID when the time comes, who would stop him?
Yeah, I agree, I went through so many mystery novels and shows that I KNOW what the writers want me to see, but I'm pretty sure they didn't really do good job showing me that, if You know what I mean.

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Grandpa sending away HP was little hard to digest but maybe because HP's exorcism made it impossible for PID to enter him and he was waiting for it to wear it off. In the mean time he must have needed other bodies to possess and thus to satisfy his instincts and dark desires. All these he could only do it without HP's knowledge.
About the shaman lady, she was in the mental hospital, though we tend to take everything she said for face value she is only a human and things could have got jumbled in her mind and it is also possible that PID was making her say that. We know PID communicated with that watchman who killed Hynju's murder witness. This was happening at a time when PID was trying to split the trio and thus isolating HP from everybody. Shaman's comments, true or not, was effective on Yoon who was convinced that PID was in HP.

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Actually, I didn't mind it was grand pa. Watching it live, the impact was really nice for me because the conclusion that Priest yang is the PID never felt enough for me. Even In ep 13 he felt like a little less PID. I would have been disappointed if PID was actually in Priest Yang.

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[sidenote: who else got goosebumps every time a character drank water? even a sip got me VERY worried. I will never watch people drinking water in KDramas the same ever again! LOL]

Me!!!
I also go the extreme
whenever I drink water passionately(?) from the bottle, I will stop myself jn the middle, and start thinking about PID 🙈🙈 silly me

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ha ha ha ha ha

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@kurama @pakalanapikake @nomunamu @greenfields @superwhopotterlock @shach @hanie @psycho
More thoughts that emerge:
I was suggesting below that the seeming logic of PID possession is that it has to remain in a host (or is merely ooze on the wall). However once in a host, the host himself can stay put, as long as a willing slave will act as an intermediary and conduit for PID's power to be exerted on all and sundry. Seems that being a conduit also works through text messages and telephone calls!! First however, the victims probably did get contact with Yang, then the messaging or calls came to activate the possession at a later time. We know that grandpa met Geun Ho first and then the call got him murderously possessed.

That explains why, the second Yang died, PID lost overt control over all the possessed people, although their bodies still contained the minion demons.

Generally it seems that the possessed people had contact with Priest Yang who was PID's slave. It's interesting that he did not bother to visit his own older brother.

When a psychic like little Seo Yoon saw possessed people, she saw the demons instead of the hosts. Therefore in the same way, when she saw her father meet with Priest Yang, she saw PID the one-eyed demon as channeled through Yang, instead of the person of Yang.

So in this sense of how people got possessed and what people saw when they looked at Yang, the writing is more or less consistent. The only time it's may not be, is when Hong Joo went into the tunnel and the large shadowy figure was shown instead of Priest Yang.

I'm glad to learn that my guess that HP was never possessed was right. It was based on the fact that he never really presented all the 'symptoms' of being possessed. It's chilling to know that PID bided his time to gain possession of HP's body, and that all the evil around HP was planned to break HP and bring him to heel. Even the blaming of the deaths of Yoon's and KY's families was meant to depress and weaken HP.

I do agree that the amount of exposition by grandpa was laughable. I guess the writers could not find any other way to wrap up and explain everything within 10 minutes. While I felt that scene of grandpa talking to be too stiff, I do appreciate that the writers made such efforts to tie up all (or most of) the loose ends for us. 😍

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On the point of Hwa Pyung being possessed, I'd also thought that he was not in fact possessed as a child because from the very begenning, he exhibited the same behaviour as some of victims/targets of those who were possessed. "He says he will kill me if I tell anyone."

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But frankly no one who was there that day (beside Priest Choi, obviously) exhibited any signs of possesions.

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Although PID could possess many, he also seemed to target some and not all. If we take him at his word, and he found it 'fun', then maybe he was sufficiently entertained for some stretches of time?

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I meant my comment at HP not showing signs of possessions. And I still wonder how possesions through priest Yang worked? Was he able to summon demons or what, it doesn't seems like he himself was possessed at all, but look like he had some supernatural power.

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wonderful write up. i will remember this as one of the BEST shows i have watched. i hate horror but this was done in such a skillful way and had an important message for all. thank you to every one who worked on this show and to the awesome actors in it!

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DELIGHTFUL!!! I'm not a horror fan, the genre is often filled with stupidity and eyeroll inducing dramatics, but this was wonderful. Kudos to the actors and circumventing of some cliches. 😎

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Thanks @odilettante for your hard work and for sitting through a gener you would never would want to watch to give us episode by episode recaps .
To me it all made sense in a non plot holes way , maybe I'm weird or in the same wave length with the writers .
I enjoyed this drama tremendously and I fell in love with it and it is The It Drama for me , The Guest Is The Best always and forever .
Hope I will see you all in the 2nd season 😊💖❤️💝 .

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My biggest question at the end is what happened to Park Il Do's body? Is it still buried in Grandpa's backyard? I was thinking they would follow some of the other arcs with destroying items connected with the demon (ie. the crow, knife).

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@newdramaaddict @kurama @pakalanapikake @nomunamu @greenfields @superwhopotterlock @shach @hanie @psycho @kerry-murphy @giegie0384 @waadmay
That's true about PID's body. If it was the thing that kept PID's power in place, and if we follow the logic of those other things that had to be destroyed, then the body should have been burnt or something.

However, maybe the circumstances were different this time, because there were 2 opposing forces at work. It was not only an exorcism (to expel) that was at work, but HP was a willing host who had the psychic power and determination to contain the spirit (keep spirit in) before sending it away.

Strangely, how it seemed to work was that by containing PID and killing himself, HP was supposedly sending PID back to where he came from. But HP didn't die, although he came close, so it wouldn't have worked on his own ... PID was still strong enough to keep HP alive (the way PID made the wheelchair man able to run around). Therefore the exorcism was necessary. PID had still to be finally expelled by the exorcism. It took a confluence of circumstances for the destruction of PID.

1) PID had to be sealed in HP
2) They had to be in the sea (maybe the same sea from which PID had come, but maybe any large body of water would have done?)
3) HP had to kill himself willingly (self sacrifice/be other centred)
4) An exorcism had to take place to finally expel the evil

By bringing grandpa and HP home, PID had inadvertently set the stage for his own destruction, because where HP was, Yoon and KY would soon be. And because where Yoon was in danger, HP would run off to kill himself, and he chose to die by stabbing and drowning.

In the beginning, the demon came from the sea and possessed a random woman who stabbed the girl who was mean to her. So HP's return to the sea to stab himself was quite 'poetic'. 😋

I liked that voice-over from HP at the end. It was a fitting bookend to the the series which began also with his voice-over telling us of the demon that came from the East Sea. 😃

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@newdramaaddict @growingbeautifully
I had the same question. Couldn't he have tried burning the body first? Or maybe it wouldn't have worked this time because PID was a much stronger spirit? Also if HP regained temporary control of himself in the water, why did he stab his eye? I thought only people possessed and still under the control of the spirit did that?

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I think HP forgot about the body when faced about the threat to kill a loved one either grandpa or Yoon at the time he was doing the shamanic ritual , and that would be a good be a reason for a 2nd season , since he should remember to go back and burn the body who was buried in the fields at first when the first relative of HP was possessed , and what if they came and didn't find the body 😱😱😱😱😱😱

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It was just odd that they made a point to show PID's physical body, and that he killed the grandmother because she found him burying it closer to the house. Why did he need his body close to him? I guess they ran out of time to explain it.

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@newdramaaddict Good question ... here's guesswork again, since we are not given the logic of demons. Something physical that has been imbued with evil is needed as a 'place holder' for demons. They seem to be hidden in or near the physical location where the demons reside or a victim died. Thus the knife in the car, crow's head in jar, etc (funny how they rhyme). PID wanted to make his home in HP's family, and so got grandpa to bring the body, to keep it close to 'home'.

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I was going to attempt to watch the few remaining episodes, but chickened out. Quickly read through the last four recaps instead. What a ride. I'm gonna try to watch the finale to see our trio and their expressions during their reunion. ;-;

Thank you to @odilettante and all the Beanies who have shared their opinions and theories! ❤️ This drama is probably the only one in the horror genre that I have tried. I'm glad it turned out to be a great show. Great cast. ^^

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Never before I have adored a squad so much. So much love to Jung eun chae, Kim jae wook and Kim dong wook and also to their characters. I think the drama was popular in SK too so this could be a career break to the trio. I still watch their bts and Instagram updates. One of my favourite scene is hp (other than the final exorcism-their reunion and all) and Yoon asking Ky about her speaking down to them and the way she snickers at them. I wish I could add the gif here. ("wae bhamaraseyo???")
Hope this will rise KJW to the mail lead status in a lot of good projects. For JEC also I wish the same and that she will be able to overcome her negative image in the public. KDW is already doing good with two super hit movies this year, keep going you all. I would like a second season or spin off or sequel with the same main cast but don't ruin the positive image of first season. I mean, do it only if you have a tight script and enough material instead of trying to milk the first season's popularity.

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Part 1 of 2

Thank you ever so much, @odilettante, for persevering through to the end with your recaps. They truly helped me understand what was going on in this twisty and hair-raising tale of evil.

I got the impression that Priest Yang's suicide was his own attempt to break free of Park Il-do's thrall, and suspect that Mateo's query as to whether his soul even still existed might have inspired him to exert what was left of his free will. Priest Yang's final words that he is free at last reminded me of the account of Jesus casting out the demon(s) whose name is Legion and allowing them to possess the Gadarene swine, who promptly drowned themselves in the lake (Matthew 8:28-32, https://biblehub.com/niv/matthew/8.htm).

The theme of self-sacrifice has cropped up repeatedly in the course of the show, with all three of the trio – and shaman Yook Gwang – putting themselves in danger while warning and protecting the others. “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13, King James Version) https://biblehub.com/john/15-13.htm. What I did not expect was Grandpa's having willingly submitted to Park Il-do so long ago in an effort to protect Hwa-pyung. I assume that he was undetectable as PID's host because he willingly allowed himself to be possessed. Now I understand that scene with Hwa-pyung's father when Grandpa comes to him in person and upbraids him.

Speaking of Yook Gwang, I was surprised his corpse was in such good shape for someone who had been dead in the water that long. I'm sure there was a perfectly good shamanic reason for that. Not to mention that I was glad we got to see him one more time during the finale, and in a condition that would not give us nightmares. I'm grateful for small blessings after all the mayhem that has gone down.

Hidden in the jar is a crow’s head, which — besides being highly unhygienic — is definitely not a good sign.

Dang! There goes Grandpa's secret ingredient in that recipe that won him the blue ribbon at the county fair. Seriously, though, it never occurred to me that there was anything metaphysically corrupt in that jar. It was nauseatingly diabolical. Then I got the surprise of my life when Hwa-pyung's psychic vision led him around behind the house where he dug up the item Yook Gwang had discovered at the cost of his life: the corpse of Park Il-do's earlier host. I was expecting it to be the rest of the crow. Sheesh.

- Continued -

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Part 2 of 2

After the time jump, I was really glad to see that Detective Go was still alive and well. Yoon's exorcism worked on him, and remained in force.

When we finally see Hwa-pyung again, he's wearing Mateo's rosary around his neck. I found that touching, and assumed it was to help keep PID inside him and under wraps. But no. PID had already jumped ship when Hwa-pyung's death was imminent. I'm a little confused by what it all means, but am just glad that the psychic survived to be reunited with his friends after all. Congresswoman Park Hong-joo is amassing temporal power, and I'm glad the trio will be around to keep a collective eye on her.

My thanks to Writer-nim and the cast and crew for turning out a metaphysical thriller that kept me guessing. The main actors were terrific, as expected. I appreciated the performances of the supporting cast, even those in minor roles. Special kudos to the child actors.

As always, warmest thanks to recapper par excellence @odilettante. And to all the Beanies whose comments and insights made for such an enjoyable live-watching experience. ;-)

-30-

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@pakalanapikake
Ah yes that rosary necklace was the best. I really loved how he wore it proudly. It felt that it was because of how much he valued Yoon and what he had done for him. He wore it as a proud badge of surviving the horrors and as a sentimental connection to his friends more than for protection, but perhaps also in acknowledgement that, that rosary had been wielded as a powerful weapon against evil and triumphed, and he was the living proof.

I'd like to imagine that despite hiding for a year (and possibly recovering from all that onslaught of evil), HP was biding his time until he would once again contact KY and Yoon. Now that they've reconnected, I'm imagining them getting together regularly to check on demonic activity and to catch up. It's strange how a horror tale gets me all sentimental for the protagonists, but this is one story where the peaceful ending felt so earned. 😃

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@growingbeautifully,

I can easily imagine the three getting together to keep tabs on demonic activity -- and Congresswoman Park Hong-joo's human evildoing. While eating beef. At Grandpa's house. ;-)

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This was such an amazing drama for me as i waited each week with thrill to see it with all it's pro and cons...yes,it could have been better but i loved it!I would have made Hwapyung more powerful(as power wise and use them against Park Il do and his minions) as i think they did make our hero a little weak for someone so spacial power wise,or gone even more darker and made as they first throw at us the red herring of Park Il do being in HwaPyung(or as part of him already detached in two parts energy wise) but loved all our main trio a lot as for me the cast was the best.I felt soooo much for Hwa Pyung,his fate was soooo tragic and despite the somewhat happy ending as all are alive i still feel sad for Hwapyung as consider his life still tragic.I would have loved if in the crucial moment they would have shown the souls of his Mom and Grandma saving him and defeating Park Il Do,it would be sooo poetic for me(if not all the souls he killed over the time)...I guess i kinda liked that the drama ended somehow on a dark note and not everything ended in a good wins as we've seen with Park Hong Joo even if the other part of me hates it.All three actors did an amazing job and maybe i'm more the minority as many awe more over sexy Kim Jae Wook but i hope OCN will cast Kim Dong Wook again as lead in another great project as i adored him here.

Also i cant end this without mentioning the amazing OST,all of it....It's sooo perfect for the show,i love it and still listening to "Somewere"

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A perfect ending. For me at least. Thanks for all the recaps!

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