Reunited Worlds: Episodes 37-38
Hae-sung has a lot to do before he leaves, and he has no idea how much time he has left. As he feels his time growing short, he starts to worry about what will happen to his family and friends after he’s gone. But he doesn’t forget to stop and enjoy the time he has left with his loves ones, giving them the time they need to prepare to say goodbye.
EPISODE 37 RECAP
After Hae-sung tells her that he wants her to be with Min-joon after he leaves, an upset Jung-won spends the evening at a pojangmacha, drinking with Ho-bang and Jin-ju. Her cheer is obviously forced as she congratulates her friends on finding happiness with each other. Min-joon joins them, feeling awkward when Jung-won forgets that she’s the one who called him, ha.
At home, Hae-sung makes another recording where he says that they had their first fight today, and he chuckles at how scary Jung-won is when she’s angry. He asserts that he meant what he said, but he immediately takes it back and admits that he’s lying.
Jung-won slurs at her friends to tell Hae-sung that she’s good at doing things by herself, and a sympathetic Min-joon offers to take her home. She blurts out that Hae-sung is leaving, and at first, Ho-bang and Jin-ju don’t fully process her meaning. But Jung-won repeats herself, starting to cry, and the truth of what she’s saying begins to dawn on Ho-bang.
Tae-hoon and Young-in come to see Hae-sung to tell him that Soo-ji is sick. He runs to the hospital to find her in bed with Hae-chul watching over her, but they reassure him that she’ll be fine once she gets a kidney transplant. Hae-chul tells Hae-sung that he and Young-in were tested to be donors, so as soon as they get the results, they can proceed with the surgery.
Soo-ji says that she used to hate having so many older siblings because she’d always get hand-me-downs, but now she’s grateful to have them around her. She tells Hae-sung and Hae-chul to just focus on the restaurant, promising to be their first customer when they open.
Min-joon follows Jung-won as she walks home, helping her up when she stumbles and takes a bad fall. She tells him that ever since finding out that Hae-sung will go back, all she can think of is being with him. She says that it’s painful just thinking about it, and Min-joon reminds her that Hae-sung is probably hurting even more.
He says that all they can do is to help Hae-sung leave with an easy heart, advising her to use this time to prepare to say goodbye. As they walk, Jung-won asks Min-joon if she should do what Hae-sung wants so that he can leave comfortably. He says she should, so she tells him about Hae-sung’s plan for them to be together after he’s gone.
She admits that she was angry at first, but now she thinks that if that’s what Hae-sung wants, then maybe they should try it. But she bursts into tears, and Min-joon can see that just the thought of it makes her miserable.
They’re close enough to home that Hae-sung can see them from the landing, and he rushes down to join them. Jung-won looks at him reproachfully and walks away, and Min-joon turns on Hae-sung, berating him for saying such a thing to Jung-won when he knows how she feels about him.
Hae-sung follows Jung-won and apologizes. She says that she knows it will be sad when he leaves, but she wants to be happy while they’re together. Hae-sung agrees to do whatever she wants as he hugs her and apologizes again.
Jung-won sobs that she’ll live alone forever if he’s gone, and this time, Hae-sung doesn’t argue. She says that she wants to be selfish and just think of themselves and tells Hae-sung not to worry about her, because she’ll be fine. They stay out all night and watch the sunrise over the river, just appreciating that they’re together for now.
Hae-sung gets home in the morning to find that Ho-bang has packed all of his things. He tells Hae-sung to go live at Jung-won’s place, blaming this decision on Jin-ju and their new relationship. He says that Jung-won told them everything and gruffly kicks Hae-sung out, and Hae-sung just goes with a smile, understanding why Ho-bang is really doing this.
Jung-won is surprised when Hae-sung shows up with all of his belongings in tow, but of course, she lets him stay. They fall into an easy rhythm, joking about being newlyweds, with Hae-sung cooking the meals and even helping Jung-won choose an outfit when she decides to go talk to that editor about making a comic book of her story.
He accompanies her to the bus stop to see her off to the meeting, and says that he’ll be going to the hospital later to get Hae-chul and Young-in’s test results. They wish each other luck, and as the bus pulls up, Jung-won surprises Hae-sung with a kiss on the cheek.
The editor is thrilled that Jung-won changed her mind about making a book with them, and her partner asks how she came up with the idea of a dog who comes back to life. Jung-won hesitates, but the partner just continues that a lot of people probably have someone they wish would come back like that.
At the hospital, Hae-chul and Young-in get bad news — neither of them are eligible to donate a kidney to Soo-ji. The doctor explains that it’s difficult for half-siblings to be tissue matches (Hae-sung and Hae-chul’s father married Young-joon and Young-in’s mother, and had Soo-ji together). Since their parents have passed away, the doctor asks if there are any other family members.
Hae-sung goes to Young-joon, pleading with his brother to let him get tested, but Young-joon reminds him that officially and legally, Hae-sung is dead. Disappointed but forced to accept it, Hae-sung tells Young-joon that he’ll be going back soon, adding that this could be the last time they see each other.
Young-joon seems to take the news hard, though he typically doesn’t betray much of a reaction. Hae-sung says that it’s true that they don’t share blood, but he reminds Young-joon that Soo-ji is his sister, and he asks him to look after her and keep her healthy.
When Jung-won gets the news, she asks Soo-ji’s doctor to let her get tested. But he tells her that even in the rare event that she were a match, the law forbids direct transplants between non-family members (to avoid organ selling).
Young-in overhears this and talks to Jung-won afterward, telling her that Tae-hoon also begged to be tested and was turned down. Jung-won feels bad that there’s nothing she can do, but Young-in says that with Hae-sung back, she feels reassured. She’s confident that Soo-ji will get better, Hae-sung and Hae-chul will open the restaurant and get Gong-ju back, and everything will be fine.
Later, Jung-won and Hae-chul arrive at the restaurant together, and Hae-sung pulls out his video camera. Hae-chul presents their business registration certificate, which lists him as the owner, and he says that he’s looking forward to bringing Gong-ju home and being here with all of his family.
Hae-sung tells Hae-chul to learn the recipes, saying that he’ll need to know them when Hae-sung isn’t here. Hae-chul asks why he wouldn’t be here, and there’s just a short beat of awkwardness before Hae-sung grumbles that he can’t be in the kitchen all the time, and that the food needs to be consistent regardless of who’s cooking.
As they walk home that evening, Jung-won asks Hae-sung when he’s going to tell his siblings that he has to leave. He says that he’ll do it after the restaurant opens and Soo-ji gets her surgery. Jung-won chirps optimistically that Soo-ji will have her surgery and get well and the restaurant will be a huge success, and Hae-sung adds that her comic book will be a bestseller.
But Soo-ji soon takes a turn for the worse, enough to scare Young-in into running for her doctor. Young-joon stops by Soo-ji’s room while she’s alone and sees that she’s getting sicker, but he doesn’t go inside. Suddenly, he’s grabbed by an angry Hae-chul, who calls him a heartless human being for not even going in to check on his own sister when she’s ill.
At least there’s good news in one arena — Ho-bang informs Jung-won and Hae-sung that he’s found the hotel where Park Dong-seok is staying. He preens about what a great detective he is and tells them he’s on his way to the hotel now. But when Ho-bang arrives at Dong-seok’s hotel room, he’s already gone.
EPISODE 38 RECAP
Jung-won finally gets a chance to talk with Yoo-min, Gong-ju’s mother, who says that she’s decided not to pursue custody of her daughter after all. She confesses that her lawyer is actually a man she met in the States, who originally promised to help her take Gong-ju back to the U.S., but who now says that it will be too difficult.
Yoo-min asks Jung-won for a favor — to help her spend just one day with Gong-ju before she moves back to the States with Dong-seok.
Young-joon shows up for his wedding photo shoot with Seo-won, but when he doesn’t leave the dressing room, she asks if something is wrong. He finally tells her that he loves her, but he can’t marry her.
He goes to tell her mother, Director Sohn, who slaps him for breaking her daughter’s heart. He humbly accepts her harsh words, even when she vows to see that he never practices medicine again.
She asks for a reason, and he confesses that everything he’s told her is a lie — the truth is that he hasn’t seen his father since he was ten years old, that his mother remarried but passed away, and that he has four siblings, one of whom was branded a murderer.
He explains that he left his family and lied about them in order to have a career and date Seo-won. Horrified, Director Sohn screams at him to get out of her office, so he leaves her with a respectful bow.
Meanwhile, Soo-ji’s doctor delivers the good news that a donor has been found, and that she’ll be getting her kidney transplant in the morning. Soo-ji asks weakly who the donor is, and the next we see Young-joon, he’s in hospital pajamas being thanked by Hae-sung. Awww, Young-joon is Soo-ji’s donor, I knew it!
Young-joon asks if it’s true that Hae-sung will go back and tells him that he broke off his engagement. Hae-sung sighs that it would have been good to see his brother married, then suggests that they have a drink together once Young-joon is recovered from surgery, something they’ve never done before. Young-joon admits that he’s always been envious of his friends, who could drink with their brothers.
He heads back to his room for the night, but he stops outside the door when he realizes that Hae-chul is inside. He listens in as Hae-chul practices several ways to apologize and make amends, which is just the sweetest thing ever.
Soo-ji tells Young-in that both Hae-sung and Hae-chul have thanked Young-joon for coming around and doing this for her, and she asks why Young-in won’t thank him, too. Young-in refuses to discuss her brother, so Soo-ji tells her where Young-joon was on the night that Hae-sung died, something he’s never told anyone but her.
She says that Young-joon and Young-in’s father had contacted him and offered to take him to the U.S. to study. Young-joon had been at the bus terminal that night to leave with their father, but at the last minute, he hadn’t been able to leave his younger sister Young-in behind.
In the morning, Soo-ji and Young-joon are taken to surgery, and they stop so that their family can wish them luck. Young-in apologizes to Young-joon for disappointing him, but he shakes his head at her and just gives her a tentative little smile. The doctor comes to take them then, promising their family that he’ll take good care of them.
But Hae-sung can’t bear to see them off, and Jung-won finds him sitting alone, crying his heart out. She tells him that everything will be fine, but he can’t stop crying even as he nods his agreement.
Not long after, Hae-sung and Hae-chul’s restaurant holds its official opening, and all their friends and family come to wish them well. There’s a round of speeches, and Young-in mentions that Soo-ji’s surgery went well. When a potential customer peeks his head in, Moon-shik tells him that they aren’t open yet, and Jin-ju growls that she wants to “talk” to him later about running off their very first customer.
Grandmother gives a little speech about how hard it is to open a restaurant, asking Hae-sung and Hae-chul’s siblings to help and support them. After Min-joon says a few words, Jung-won pronounces the restaurant officially open. They serve plenty of customers on their very first day, with Hae-sung and Hae-chul working well together in the kitchen while Young-in takes orders.
Jung-won picks up Hae-sung after closing, and to celebrate, he takes her shopping for a couple outfit. They look adorable in their matching shirts and hats, and Jung-won suggests that they go for drinks next. But Hae-sung says he has to meet with the guys for a few minutes and promises to see Jung-won at home as soon as possible.
As she waits for him, Jung-won prepares a delicious-looking meal as a surprise. But Hae-sung doesn’t come home for several hours, and by the time he does show up stinking drunk with Ho-bang, Tae-hoon, and Moon-shik all piling in behind him, Jung-won is in a real snit.
She fusses at Hae-sung for bringing his drunk buddies home at this late hour, and the guys settle in to enjoy an entertaining fight. But when Jung-won tells Hae-sung to choose her or them, he says that he’ll choose her every time. He pouts adorably and wheedles at Jung-won to forgive him, she apologizes for yelling, and they devolve into a disgusting display of aegyo that has the guys protesting loudly, ha.
Hae-chul takes Gong-ju to meet Yoo-min, introducing her as an “auntie” who’s going to take her to the amusement park for the day. He watches them go with a sigh. (This is making me very nervous.)
Yoo-min and Gong-ju have fun at the amusement park, until Dong-seok joins them and Yoo-min introduces him to Gong-ju as her daddy’s friend. But Hae-chul is also there, watching them from a short distance away. He calls Ho-bang, who is also at the park, and he warns Hae-chul not to show himself and chase Dong-seok away.
It turns out that this is all a plan to lure Dong-seok into the open and catch him, and thank goodness, it looks like Yoo-min is in on it. Yoo-min takes Gong-ju to ride the merry-go-round, and while the ride is going, Dong-seok steps away to use the restroom.
Seeing their chance, Ho-bang and Hae-chul follow Dong-seok, with Ho-bang going into the restroom while Hae-chul circles around to the back door. Ho-bang knocks on the stalls, finding one occupied, and prepares to burst in and confront Dong-seok.
But as Hae-chul enters the back door of the building, a glass bottle is smashed over his head by Dong-seok, who figured out that they’re following him. Dong-seok rejoins Yoo-min and Gong-ju outside, and it’s obvious from her nervous body language that Yoo-min wasn’t expecting to see him again.
Ho-bang finds Hae-chul injured and bleeding, but he’s more worried about his daughter. They run outside to find Yoo-min alone, and she tells them that she went to get ice cream and came back to find Gong-ju and Dong-seok gone. Hae-chul begins to panic, terrified for his missing daughter.
Over at the restaurant, Min-joon gathers Hae-sung and Jung-won to tell them that he’s decided to take a job in Paris. He says that he’s leaving next week, and Hae-sung wilts, fearing that this means he’ll never see Min-joon again.
But Min-joon says that he doesn’t think Hae-sung is going anywhere, because he and Jung-won are so happy together. He says that he wants to focus on his work again, but he promises that if he ever senses anything wrong, he’ll come right back.
He wishes them luck with the restaurant and Jung-won’s book, and Hae-sung smiles and says it’s good to see Min-joon challenging himself again. He picks up his teacup, but suddenly he starts to fade out, and the cup falls right through his fingers to shatter on the floor.
With Jung-won and Min-joon watching, Hae-sung continues fading until they can barely see him anymore.
I’ve been trying not to think too much about Hae-sung leaving again, but seeing him disappearing like that brings it home that he really will be gone soon. His time is running out, as he’s accomplished nearly everything he needed to do before departing this world for good. We still need him to help find Gong-ju and expose Dong-seok for being a killer, but we’re fast approaching the time when we’ll have to say goodbye, and I’m not ready.
I wish it had come a lot sooner, but it’s nice to finally see Hae-sung and Jung-won (mostly) acting like a real couple, even living together and having fights. They wasted so much time dancing around their feelings for each other, acknowledging them but not really doing anything about them, and it’s sad that the knowledge that Hae-sung will leave again is what finally pushed them to enjoy the time they have together. (You’d think that his dying the first time and the miracle of his return would have done that, but what’s past is past.) I enjoyed seeing them doing normal couple things like cooking together, shopping together, and even seeing Hae-sung make that blunder that every guy has made at least once of staying out drinking with the guys when his girl is waiting for him at home.
But what I want to know is, why is Dong-seok so intent on taking Gong-ju? We know that getting custody of her was his entire reason for coming to Korea, and now he’s resorted to kidnapping her. But I don’t understand what his motive is — the only thing I can think of is that maybe he’s trying to keep Hae-sung’s family quiet about the fact that he was the real killer all those years ago. It makes sense at this point in the story, because he knows they’ve been looking into the case, so I can see him getting desperate and deciding to kidnap Gong-ju to force them to drop it.
But he’s been planning to get custody of Hae-chul’s daughter for a while now, since long before he even came back to Korea. Before he showed up and saw Jung-won and Ho-bang, Dong-seok had no reason to think that his secret might be exposed, and by the time he realized that they were suspecting him, the custody dispute had already been filed. If Hae-sung hadn’t come back from the dead, something nobody could have predicted, the truth about that night would have remained a secret forever. So why would Dong-seok cook up a plan to get control of Gong-ju in the first place, before he had any reason to think that his guilt might be discovered?
If you’d asked me even last week, I’d have said that there was nothing Young-joon could do to make up for abandoning his family for all these years. And I still think he has a lot of making up to do, but giving his little sister a kidney and admitting that he will spend his whole life making amends goes a long way towards earning him forgiveness. He’s realized that he was wrong, and he’s sacrificed the woman he loves and possibly even his career in an attempt to be a better brother, which is a lot more than most people would do. At the very least, he deserves a chance to earn his way back into the family again.
I think Min-joon has firmly ensconced himself as one of my top favorite second leads, just because he’s such a good friend to Hae-sung and Jung-won, even though it means that he has to give up what he’s wanted for years. He truly puts their friendship above his own feelings for Jung-won because he sees how much she loves Hae-sung, and more than having her for himself, he wants her to be happy. Rarely do you see a character in dramaland who is so selfless and understanding, who never pushes the heroine to choose him over her true partner and in fact, regularly gives her advice about her relationship with the hero. Hell, he even usually takes Hae-sung’s side, advising Jung-won that she’s not thinking about how Hae-sung must feel and urging her to be more understanding. Min-joon is just so sweet, and I believe that he genuinely loves Hae-sung and will suffer as much as anyone when he’s gone.
- Reunited Worlds: Episodes 1-2
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- Premiere Watch: School 2017, The King Loves, Man Who Dies to Live, Reunited Worlds
- Reunited friends and reunited loves for Reunited Worlds
- The long, desperate wait in Reunited Worlds
- Yeo Jin-gu dies and comes back to life in Reunited World’s first teaser
- Yeo Jin-gu goes back to high school in Reunited Worlds
- Reunited Worlds holds first script read, adds to supporting cast