Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 17
It seems obvious that the choices you make in life determine the shape your life takes, but not everyone understands how it works. It’s easy to embrace the darkness inside, and much harder sometimes to take the right path. But the ripples of one good deed can spread and affect others, making the effort worth it whether a person understands how or not.
EPISODE 17: “I could die today with no regrets”
Hae-young is thrilled by Do-kyung’s love confession, but he cutely hints that he’d like to hear something back from her in response. She hollers her answer: “I also love Park Do-kyung!!” and he immediately shushes her, ha. Be careful what you ask for from this lady.
On the bus ride home, they sneak little grins at each other, and Hae-young moans that she’s so pathetically happy just from hearing him say “I love you.” He stops her from her confession again, so she yanks the window open and shouts it to the streets. HAHAHA, he quickly changes seats.
Hae-young’s mom and dad accidentally witness Hae-young being silly, kissing Do-kyung’s hands outside her house, and Mom makes a noise when they hear their daughter ask if she can go to Do-kyung’s place tonight. That sends Do-kyung scurrying home, bowing apologetically, and Hae-young runs inside the house. Mom is pretty angry about Hae-young dating Do-kyung, but Dad defends her and says that Mom used to act the same way when they were dating.
Do-kyung finds Jin-sang sleeping in his office the next morning, and Jin-sang complains that he can’t go to Do-kyung’s, and all his old girlfriends know where he lives. Do-kyung takes him to a sauna to get cleaned up, and afterward Jin-sang pouts that Do-kyung didn’t even notice that he put his pants on first this time, just for him.
Awww, he’s so vulnerable — he meekly plucks Do-kyung’s sleeve and asks for a compliment. Do-kyung pats his head and listens while Jin-sang vents that he feels like a total bastard lately. He says that he was planning to marry Soo-kyung, but she kicked him out.
He tells Do-kyung how Soo-kyung caught him smoking and knew it meant he was struggling and upset, and sighs that he’s embarrassed. He’s just so distraught, and asks Do-kyung for a hug, which Do-kyung does even though they’re on the street in broad daylight. The contact makes Jin-sang cry, and even Do-kyung looks a little snuffly.
Jin-sang asks after Soo-kyung, and we cut to her doing yoga in her office and talking to the baby. She tells the baby that it may not have a father, but it has a strong mother and a father-like uncle, and if she has to she’ll find it a wonderful father later. A knock on her office door has her swiftly dressing and putting away the yoga mat, and she slips easily into her bitchy-manager persona.
At the studio, Hoon informs Do-kyung that he and the ducklings have no intention of taking the job he lined up for them — they’ll be starting their own sound studio, and expect Do-kyung to come with them. Do-kyung’s mom bursts in to beg him again to apologize to Chairman Jang and break up with Hae-young so that everything can go back to the way it was.
She accuses him of going bankrupt just to stick it to her, which wow, that’s the height of narcissism right there. Do-kyung calmly says that all of this is his own fault, and his mother is shocked silent for once. She’s confused by his unemotional behavior, and calls Soo-kyung to ask if he’s sick.
Hae-young talks to her flowers as if they’re babies, until her coworkers tease her that she looks like a loon. Do-kyung invites her to dinner with him and Soo-kyung, and HA, Soo-kyung just saunters past and shoots a “Tell him to forget it!” at her. He must have called Soo-kyung first.
But the two ladies share a taxi to Do-kyung’s place, and Hoon asks Do-kyung why Hae-young’s here when her boyfriend ruined their studio. Do-kyung retorts that he’s her boyfriend, and forbids Hoon to bring it up. Hoon entertains himself teasing the new couple, earning shy smiles from Hae-young and death glares from Do-kyung.
Hae-young serves melons since Do-kyung said Soo-kyung likes them, and Soo-kyung warns her to never tell him she likes a food or he’ll buy it forever. She mentioned liking melons thirty years ago and he’s still feeding them to her, heh. She gets serious, and asks Hae-young to give Do-kyung a lot of love, showing her own love for her brother.
Hae-young asks if she can keep him, and Soo-kyung tries to scare her off by telling her to take him and keep him forever. Hae-young doesn’t back down and says she will — unless she dies of happiness first, which seems to worry Do-kyung. Hae-young asks where Jin-sang is today, and Soo-kyung says he’s not here anymore. Hoon growls that he’d better not have run away.
Do-kyung and Hae-young head up to his place after dinner, and into his little sound studio. Hae-young asks if they can make their own recording of the song he sang as a child, “The Daydream,” so that they can listen to it together when they’re older.
Do-kyung refuses at first, but he softens when Hae-young says she wants the voice of the man she loves, at the moment she loves him the most, recorded for all time. She’s got him in a backhug, and he slips a bracelet on her wrist, making her ask if it’s a handcuff. Ha, girl’s got a one-track mind.
This time, Do-kyung says that it’s not a gift of something he already had — he bought it especially for her. He’s being so sweet that it makes Hae-young suspicious, and she wonders if she’s just anxious from being too happy. Do-kyung tells her not to think about it too much, and just to enjoy being happy.
Jin-sang attempts to go back to his old party-boy ways, but it’s obvious he’s trying way too hard. Hoon finds him cuddling up to a girl at a club and hollers a loud BROTHER-IN-LAW!!, calling out for him to think about his child. Jin-sang chases Hoon out of the bar, but he sneaks right back.
This time Jin-sang chases Hoon all the way out and down the street, Hoon calling to him that a loveless marriage might not be so bad. He yells that Soo-kyung loves him, but Jin-sang yells back that he doesn’t understand women. They end up wrestling on the sidewalk, Hoon screaming about Jin-sang’s baby the whole time, and they finally collapse in a heap.
Jin-sang makes his way back to his friends, claiming that Hoon is just some guy who likes to harass him. But the melon on the fruit tray they’re served reminds him of Soo-kyung, and suddenly he’s not having fun anymore.
Do-kyung drives Hae-young home, and on his way back he sees Tae-jin by the side of the road, so drunk he can barely stand. Do-kyung starts to drive on by, but ends up going back to help. He doesn’t see Tae-jin and gets out to look, and spots him staggering across a bridge over the street, looking like he plans to jump.
Remembering that it’s Tae-jin driving the car that mows him down in his vision, Do-kyung hesitates. Tae-jin stands with his back to the street below, tears falling down his face, and just as he lets himself topple backwards, a hand grabs him by the lapel.
Do-kyung yanks Tae-jin back onto the bridge, and Tae-jin collapses, only seeing Do-kyung’s shoes. Do-kyung leaves him there, thinking to himself that he won’t look back on this as he dies and regret it.
The other Hae-young goes to see Chairman Jang, and asks on her knees for a favor. Jang complains that he used to like her because she never asked him for anything, but she’s willing to put her pride aside to beg for him to forgive Do-kyung. She wants to move on, but she feels responsible for this whole situation, and she can’t move on if he’s still suffering because of her. Jang listens, but dismisses her without giving her an answer.
She runs into Tae-jin on her way out and says it’s childish for them to be ganging up on Do-kyung. Tae-jin is confused — shouldn’t she want Do-kyung and Hae-young to break up? Hae-young admits that she doesn’t want to look that deeply into herself for fear he may be right, so she’s doing the right thing before she gets bitter.
Tae-jin sighs that he also felt that way at first, that he felt bad for doing these things to Do-kyung and Hae-young. But then he realized that he was conflicted because he didn’t want to admit to himself that he isn’t a nice person, so he decided to follow his heart and embrace his anger.
As he turns to go, Hae-young says that now she knows why people say you don’t really know a person until you break up with them. She didn’t know what a great person Do-kyung was until she broke up with him. “But it seems like Hae-young won’t be sad over her break-up like me.” Oh, burn.
As Soo-kyung is headed to a meeting, she hears her name — it’s Jin-sang. She tries to ignore him but he trails after her, fussing at her in French for wearing heels when she’s pregnant, and she retorts that he has nothing to do with it. He replies that he most certainly did have something to do with it, ha.
Jin-sang is nearly frantic because Soo-kyung is ignoring his calls, wondering if her kicking him out means she isn’t his noona anymore. She says that of course she can’t be, and says in French that they slept together, she got pregnant, so how could she still be his noona?
Heh, apparently Sung-jin majored in French, though he pretends he can’t understand a word they’re saying. Soo-kyung waves everyone on, and Jin-sang calls after her that they’ll never see each other again, he’s perfectly fine with that.
Soo-kyung and her group file into the elevator, but the doors are stopped by a hand — apparently, Jin-sang is not fine with that. In French, he says in a manly voice that they should try the kiss again. Sung-jin shoves everyone out of the elevator, and Jin-sang gets in and the doors close.
When the doors open, Jin-sang and Soo-kyung are engaged in a very passionate kiss, and Sung-jin quickly closes the doors again. HAHA, his boss keeps hitting the button to open the doors, but Jin-sang and Soo-kyung don’t even notice. They finally let the doors close when clothes start flying.
As it turns out, our Hae-young has asked the other Hae-young to ask Chairman Jang to stop harassing Do-kyung, and the other Hae-young says that she was happy to do it.
Alone at his office, Do-kyung has another painful vision, again of Tae-jin driving a car straight towards him. The vision is so immediate, Do-kyung tries to get away, but everywhere he turns he sees the car barreling down on him.
It finally stops, but a few minutes later he sees it again, and this time he sees himself running. He goes to his doctors, who discuss how Do-kyung feels like something will happen soon. Dr. Park decides to hypnotize Do-kyung, and Do-kyung sees himself lying in the street as an ambulance arrives.
He notices the cherry blossoms in the air, and he can see a billboard announcing the death of singer Lee Byung-joon (we’ve been seeing him singing on billboards in the background all throughout the show, and interestingly, he’s the same man who was giving advice on the radio when Hae-young told her embarrassing story).
Another billboard announces a sale in June of 2016, but Dr. Park says that it makes no sense — there are no cherry blossoms left in June. He urges Do-kyung to just leave the country, but Do-kyung just drives away without a word. All he cares about is telling Hae-young before it’s too late.
He calls Hae-young out, promising to have her home before dawn, and her mind naturally goes to the naughty place. He takes her back to his place, and asks if she remembers where they first met. She remembers it was at the coffee shop, when he ran into her and gave her a nosebleed.
Do-kyung says that they met on the street before that, and after a moment she does recall seeing him there for just a second. But Do-kyung says that he knew her even before that, from images he saw in his head. He says they felt like memories, and that he even saw her moving into his room before it happened.
He explains that at first, he thought he was seeing the future. But then he realized the real reason he was seeing her: “In the future, when I’m dying, it’s what I’ll think about with my last breath… before I die, you’re all I’ll think about.”
He tells Hae-young that originally, his memories showed that they never got back together after she moved out, and that it was what he regretted most as he died. He wonders now why he was always scared to feel anything, and why he always said the opposite of what he was feeling to her.
So he decided to forget his pride and say what he was really feeling, and it led to their reconciliation. Until now he’s always hidden his feelings, and her emotional openness scared him. “But I liked it. I was touched. If I died without experiencing such love, I’d be very sad.” He says that now when he dies, he won’t have any regrets, and he thanks her.
Hae-young grins at him, happy that he didn’t get married after breaking up with her, and muses that he’s so serious that he must be telling the truth. Do-kyung confirms that it’s all true, and Hae-young decides to believe him.
Do-kyung climbs into Hae-young’s arms, and she tells him that she’s been keeping a diary lately because she wants to record her happiness. They thank each other, and kiss, and then there are no more words between them.
Mom is already up when Hae-young tries to sneak in early the next morning, and she tells Hae-young to invite Do-kyung in for breakfast. Ha, busted. Breakfast is subdued, but it’s clear that Mom is trying to accept Do-kyung, and she even puts meat on his rice for him (which he previously told her had touched him). Awww, Dad sees his tiny smile and pushes the entire bowl of stew towards him.
Tae-jin drives his partner, Chan-soo, to the airport, and notices with unease that his shoes are the same ones he saw at Chairman Jang’s home. He also notes that he’s checking the weather for a place he’s supposedly not flying to, and his expression grows hard.
Tae-jin arrives back at the office to find everything being seized by the authorities, and learns that his so-called partner took everything. He finally learns the full truth, that it was Chan-soo’s fault Chairman Jang withdrew his investment.
Chairman Jang refuses to see him, and of course Chan-soo isn’t answering his phone. Tae-jin rushes to the harbor, where he sees his partner preparing to board the ferry. He runs when he sees Tae-jin, but Tae-jin follows him, calling out that he trusted him.
Chan-soo admits that he never cared about the company — he always planned to take the money and run. He breaks into an actual run and Tae-jin chases him, kicking him to the ground and punching him when he tries to fight back. Tae-jin learns that Chan-soo is also the reason he went to prison, having encouraged the investors to sue him.
Chan-soo laughs at Tae-jin, saying that he and Do-kyung are both being played by Chairman Jang. He tries to make a run for it, and Tae-jin beats him to a pulp.
At work, Hae-young starts to remember little things Do-kyung has said to her that seem to lend validity to his claim that he’s been seeing things happen before they actually do. She remembers how her mother told him not to come to her cousin’s wedding if he’s not planning to marry her.
She suddenly realizes that if he’s really seeing the future, he must know that he dies before they can get married. She gets a text from Tae-jin with a simple, unexplained apology, and at that moment, the flowers on her desk begin to drop their petals. Hae-young runs to find Do-kyung, telling herself that it can’t be true but somehow knowing that it is.
As Do-kyung leaves his office that evening, he finds himself in the headlights of Tae-jin’s car. Tae-jin looks angry, but Hae-young’s plea not to hurt Do-kyung runs through his head. Her words fight with the other Hae-young’s comment that he can’t measure up to Do-kyung.
As he hesitates, Do-kyung calls Hae-young and leaves her a message that he recorded that song for her. “I love you. We didn’t get to take a photo together.” Tae-jin hits the accelerator, and Do-kyung drops his bag and runs.
We hear Do-kyung’s voice singing the song for Hae-young, as we watch him desperately run for his life. He runs out of steam and whirls to face the car bearing down on him, and somewhere, his older doctor struggles to hold a man up as he’s hanging from the ceiling.
Suddenly Tae-jin hits the brakes, and his car stops just inches from Do-kyung. He gets out of the car and looks down at Do-kyung’s shoes, recognizing them as the shoes of the person who saved him from throwing himself off that bridge. He breathes one word, “Bastard…” and gets back in his car to drive away.
Do-kyung walks back to his building, and runs into Hae-young on the way. The run to each other and hold each other tight.
The psychiatrist sits next to the singer Lee Byung-joon, who Do-kyung’s vision said would die today but whose life he just saved. The doctor tells him to try to live, and Byung-joon just replies sadly, “To continue to suffer like this…”
Do-kyung and Hae-young cry and kiss, relieved that he’s alive and well. Over Hae-young’s shoulder, Do-kyung sees the billboard from his vision, which now only says that the singer Lee Byung-joon has canceled a concert.
Back in his studio, we see Do-kyung recording the song for Hae-young, his voice shaking and his eyes closed, as he sings his love for Hae-young.
I don’t even know where to start. I love that Do-kyung’s different choices managed to change his fate, though it makes me wonder – if he’s avoided facing the last moments of his life, how did he have the visions to change things in the first place? The show is so tightly written, it’s been obvious that it’s known exactly where it was going since the beginning, and there have been no cracks in the storytelling up to this point. I hate to think this is an oversight, but I have a feeling we’re not done learning exactly what’s been happening quite yet. The introduction of the singer and his attempted suicide is intriguing, and I’m anxious to see how that ties into Do-kyung’s story.
Tae-jin really came through and did the right thing in the end, and I was actually kind of proud of him. He’s one of those characters I want to like, but he just kept making all the wrong choices. I don’t even think that Tae-jin so much loves Hae-young, as just that he can’t stand the idea of Do-kyung having her. When he had the chance to explain himself and try to win her back he didn’t take it, and his deepest feelings have always been directed towards Do-kyung in the form of anger and violence. Not that I blame him — from his point of view he did nothing wrong, and this guy came out of nowhere to ruin his business, then while he’s serving jail time he scoops his girl out from under him. I think that’s why even Do-kyung doesn’t begrudge Tae-jin his revenge, because he knows that he deserves it (and even though we know Do-kyung wasn’t the reason Chairman Jang withdrew his investment, the point remains that that was Do-kyung’s intent). But I’ve never felt that Tae-jin is upset because he loves and misses Hae-young, just that his pride has taken a hit and he can’t stand to know that he lost.
Tae-jin himself spelled out the difference between himself and Do-kyung, and the reason that he lost the girl all on his own merit — when it came time to choose, Tae-jin chose the vindictive, mean side of himself. He gave in to his anger and hurt, and stopped trying to be nice. Do-kyung had that same choice, but he choose the good half of himself, and that path led him to love and happiness. We all have good and bad sides of ourselves, but it’s all about which wolf you feed, and in the end the happy person is the one that decides to feed the good wolf. Do-kyung got the girl, not because he’s a better person than Tae-jin, but because when it was time to decide what kind of man he wanted to be, he chose the side of himself that led to love. Hopefully Tae-jin’s decision to spare Do-kyung’s life in thanks for his own will be a new turning point for him.
What I’ve really appreciated about Do-kyung’s journey is how it didn’t really change him as a person — he’s still the same taciturn, guarded man he always was. He didn’t have some sort of dramatic personal turnaround, or turn into a different guy. He’s just more aware of himself now, making conscious decisions rather than going through the motions of life, doing what scares him the least. While I do think he cared for the other Hae-young, I think that he mostly planned to marry her because he felt that that’s what you do when a relationship gets to a certain point, not because she was a Great Love in his life. Even he admitted that mostly what he felt for her was pity — and while that was a way to love her, it wasn’t the same as what he feels for our Hae-young. Loving (and being loved by) our Hae-young has forced Do-kyung to really think about what he says and does, and to make more conscious and meaningful decisions. But his driving force isn’t even love — it’s that he no longer wants to live with regret.
I like that the overall theme of the show isn’t “love conquers all,” but a lesson in living life consciously, and doing the things you know you won’t regret when you’re on your deathbed. It’s so easy to do what we think we should do, to follow social conventions and take the smooth path in life. But Do-kyung’s learned that he doesn’t just want to live an easy life… he wants to live a life he’s proud of, and that’s a pretty wonderful way to be. No matter what you do in your life, if you can look back and be proud of the person you are, that’s a real gift.
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 16
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 15
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 14
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 13
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 12
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 11
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 10
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 9
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 8
- Oh Hae-young Again climbs in ratings, gets 2-episode extension
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 7
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 6
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 5
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 4
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 3
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 2
- Oh Hae-young Again: Episode 1