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115

Chocolate: Episode 8

Between the patients at the hospice and a certain chef that he can’t seem to ignore, our neurosurgeon’s tough outer shell is beginning to crack. As he struggles with his emotions, he’s proving to be the doctor that his patients need but our chef doesn’t fare as well. Unwilling to entertain the possibility that he has feelings for her, the doctor does his best to avoid her but in spite of his efforts, she seems to be at every turn.

 
EPISODE 8 RECAP

From the roof of Geosung Hospice, Cha-young watches Kang arrive at work and reminisces about their many encounters once their paths crossed again as adults. She narrates that she’s not exactly sure when her heart began to flutter or when her feelings for Kang started to grow.

In his room, Tae-hyun is delighted when an app assigns an almost perfect score of 98 to the compatibility between Cha-young and Kang. When he and Kang score a 0, Tae-hyun’s dreams of benefitting financially from the relationship evaporate. A text message about the shoes that he’s trying to sell online improves his mood.

From her bed, Suk-ja sends all of her dishes to the floor as she orders Ms. Bong to find her hanbok and shoes. At the same time, Tae-hyun waits outside of the hospice for the buyer, who turns out to be the young nurse, Bae Na-ra.

As soon as she sees the shoes, Nurse Bae calls Young-shil to report that she’s caught the thief. When Tae-hyun meets with Young-shil, he denies knowing that the shoes were stolen, unaware that Ms. Bong confessed that she took them and gave them to him.

Young-shil has the hanbok and asks Tae-hyun to return it with the shoes to Suk-ja without mentioning Ms. Bong. Tae-hyun complains that he was set up and is about to leave with the shoes until Young-shil bribes him with an offer of stir-fried octopus.

Joon visits his pottery studio but when it reminds him of Hee-joo’s suicide attempt, he locks it up and tosses the key into a burning kiln. Cha-young texts a photo of the dish that she’s about to serve Hee-joo, arranged beautifully on his plate.

Joon replies that he doesn’t want to know about Hee-joo anymore and asks Cha-young to throw out the plate. Cha-young texts back that when Joon no longer regrets falling for Hee-joo, she’ll make him something delicious.

Ms. Bong finds Cha-young and when she complains that Suk-ja won’t eat because she’s mad at her, Cha-young offers to make Suk-ja’s favorite stew. Ms. Bong suggests pairing it with her favorite raspberry cake and runs off with a basket to gather some berries.

Cha-young follows Ms. Bong all the way to a nearby mountain and as they pick wild raspberries, she learns that Kang called her a fool. Suddenly, Ms. Bong cries and falls to the ground as a snake slithers away.

Cha-young finds a spot where her signal is strong enough to call 911 but the call seemingly drops before she reports the location. While trying get the signal back, Cha-young slips and rolls down a steep hill.

When Ms. Bong is returned to the hospice (holding a handkerchief filled with raspberries), Director Kwon treats her snake bite and compliments the first aid that she received. Distraught, Ms. Bong informs him that Cha-young took care of her and then disappeared.

After Young-shil reports to Kang, “I think something happened to Cha-young. She called 911…But the call got disconnected after a scream,” he searches for Cha-young on the mountain armed with a bright flashlight.

Back at the hospice, Suk-ja is handed some fresh raspberries and asks Ms. Bong, “You went to the mountains to pick these for me?” After Ms. Bong tells her, “I’m sorry,” Suk-ja advises her to live with her son once she’s gone. Suk-ja gently informs Ms. Bong that Sun-sik is actually fond of his biological mother, he just doesn’t know it yet.

Suk-ja smiles as she recalls how jealous she was of Ms. Bong, but that didn’t stop the young mistress from following her everywhere. Suk-ja credits Ms. Bong’s kind heart for the fact that they were able to overcome the stereotype that a wife and a mistress naturally hate each other.

Out on the mountain, Kang finally finds Cha-young and when she opens her eyes and sees him, we hear Suk-ja’s wish that she and Ms. Bong meet in another life as sisters or a married couple. As Kang carries Cha-young down the mountain on his back, Suk-ja promises, “I’ll be a lot more affectionate…Let’s meet again no matter what.”

At the hospice, Kang wraps Cha-young’s injured ankle and then crouches for her to climb onto his back so he can take her to an ER for X-rays. When Cha-young insists that her ankle doesn’t hurt anymore, Kang challenges her to walk on it.

Cha-young tries to walk and when she winces in pain, Kang calls her stubborn and accuses her of looking down on him now that he works at a hospice. Kang bellows, “Do you know how worried I was while I was searching the mountain?”

Cha-young looks up at Kang in surprise as he barks, “I’ll just stop caring altogether. I won’t care if you live or die, so just do as you please.” After he storms out, a miserable Kang sits just outside of the treatment room.

The next day when Kang checks on Hee-joo, her husband thanks him for saving her life. Kang checks Hee-joo’s pupils and something troubles him but when her husband senses Kang’s unease, he asks that Hee-joo be allowed to rest. Unable to shake his suspicions, Kang quietly orders a copy of Hee-joo’s medical chart.

In the kitchen, Cha-young eats a piece of Godiva chocolate and gets to work on the promised raspberry cake. When she’s done, Cha-young finds Ms. Bong in the garden dressed in mourning clothes and delivers the still warm cake. Cha-young is encouraging when Ms. Bong announces, “I’m going to go live with my son now.”

After consoling Ms. Bong, Cha-young escapes to the roof to grieve in private, unaware that Kang was there first. Kang catches a glimpse of Cha-young through billowing sheets on the clothesline as her sobs get louder. When she’s done crying, Cha-young limps over to pick up some pillowcases that fell from the line and sees Kang.

Cha-young is thoroughly embarrassed when she learns that Kang has been on the roof the whole time. Kang brushes past Cha-young and pettily asks if she’s crying in pain after falling down the mountain again.

When Cha-young thanks Kang for the 37th time, he turns around, “Aren’t you going back to Greece?” Cha-young admits that she’s going back soon and Kang suggests that she should leave as soon as possible. After he leaves, Kang pauses on the stairs, his immediate regret interrupted by a returned call from Hee-joo’s neurosurgeon.

Kang meets with the attractive neurosurgeon, Dr. Yoon Seong-eun, to ask why she didn’t perform the customary second surgery on Hee-joo to remove her tumor. Dr. Yoon snaps, “Why do I have to explain that to you? Even her husband agreed with my choice.”

Kang asks Dr. Yoon to convince him why the second surgery wasn’t needed, especially when the placement of a shunt would have prevented most of Hee-joo’s symptoms. Kang chuckles when Dr. Yoon bristles at the suggestion that she’s incompetent and quickly corrects her, “I’m saying this is an accessory to murder.”

Dr. Yoon runs to call Hee-joo’s husband, Professor Jung Se-un, from a bathroom stall, “What do we do, honey? I think he knows everything.” It’s not long before Professor Jung picks up Dr. Yoon in front of the hospital but before they can drive away, a police van blocks them. An officer informs the pair that Hee-joo’s family has accused them of attempted murder.

Cha-young prepares another dish for Hee-joo but when she tries to deliver it, cries of pain are coming from her room. While Director Kwon and Young-shil hurry to administer medication, Cha-young limps away.

Cha-young is concerned by the sight of a woman in the hallway with her head buried in her arms. Handing the woman a glass of milk, Seon-ae explains that she couldn’t handle her spicy kimchi stew.

Later, Seon-ae tries to decide which kimchi stew recipe to make next and tells Cha-young about the hospice’s newest patient, Michael. Michael moved to the States after being adopted as a young boy. When he learned that he was dying and opted out of treatment, Micheal longed to have the kimchi stew that his birth mother used to make so his adoptive mother brought him back to Korea.

When Cha-young announces that she’s going back to Greece, Seon-ae seems relieved. She suggests that once she fulfills Michael’s wish, she and Cha-young can quit together.

At Geosung Hospital, Hye-mi barges into her husband’s office to show him a negative article that just went online. Seung-hoon asks, “Who is this ‘Dr. L of G Hospital’…Is it me?” When he takes his wife’s hand and implores, “What do I do, honey,” she snaps, “Let go of me.”

Thanks to that article, Grandma’s brothers-in-law, both directors of the Geosung Foundation, meet with her to insist that it’s time to cut ties with Seung-hoon. Even though it was Grandma’s money that saved the hospital from bankruptcy forty years ago, they announce the directors’ decision, “We can’t let your family run this hospital anymore.”

Seo-hoon accuses one of her uncles of tipping off the newspaper so that he can replace Seung-hoon with his own children. Seo-hoon accuses both of them of using the same dirty tricks that drove her father to suicide. After insisting that her grandsons will be the ones to save Geosung, Grandma orders the men to leave.

A desperate Hye-mi kneels to apologize when Chairman Jo’s widow comes off the golf course, but she’s ignored. Hye-mi jumps up when she gets a call about the hospital’s mounting crisis and barks out orders on how to minimize the damage.

At the same time, Kang arrives at the police station where he witnesses Joon getting scolded by an officer for assaulting Professor Jung at the station. The cop advises Joon to get a lawyer because Professor Jung filed assault charges against him.

Kang returns to the hospice just as Hee-joo is transferred to a hospital for surgery. Later, he finds Director Kwon struggling to light a cigarette and reminds him, “I thought you quit smoking.”

When Kang confiscates his cigarette, Director Kwon rants about Professor Jung, “He’d better not run into me. I’ll kill him the moment I see him.” As Kang leaves, Director Kwon thanks him for exposing Professor Jung’s plot, “…I was able to avoid being part of a big sin. Thank you for saving me.”

Dressed in his space suit, Ji-yong surprises Cha-young as she stores Joon’s plate. She’s delighted when Ji-yong takes her into his confidence and tells her that he’s on Earth to establish peace as Iron Ranger Number Three.

Ji-yong explains that the sparkling light in the nighttime sky is a signal from his planet, telling him to return. Cha-young suggests that Ji-yong should answer that he can’t leave for a long time. Even though Ji-yong would like to stay, he needs to go back as soon as possible because Earth is making him sick. Before he can go, Ji-yong needs to make sure that Earth can maintain peace.

That night, Kang steals away to the roof for a cigarette but he hides at the sight of Cha-young and Min-yong looking at the stars. He watches as Cha-young points to a light and asks Min-young if it could be Ji-yong’s planet.

Min-yong explains the origin of Ji-yong’s story — When Ji-yong wouldn’t listen to his parents, their father told him, “You’re a space warrior who’s here to maintain peace on Earth. But you won’t even listen to your parents.” Kang looks amused when Cha-young suggests that Ji-yong might really be a space warrior.

Tears escape Cha-young’s eyes as she looks up and wishes, “I hope the spaceship that Ji-yong is waiting for will get lost…” From his spot, Kang gazes up at the star-filled sky.

The next day when Joon leaves the police station, his father picks him up. After blaming the family’s troubles on the bad luck that befalls their family every ten years, Seung-hoon informs Joon that they’ll be staying in a hotel because Hye-mi kicked them out.

Seung-hoon decides that Joon must have had a good reason to hit someone just as Joon gets a call. It’s Hee-joo, who’s about to have surgery but she needs to say, “I’m sorry, Joon…I hope we’ll get to meet next time.”

Kang’s car hurries to the hospice while Cha-young pedals her bike as fast as she can. When Kang finds Min-yong outside of Ji-yong’s room, the boy begs him to save his brother just like Hee-joo.

Director Kwon and Young-shil are with Ji-yong, who stares at the ceiling while murmuring incoherently. Kang nods when Young-shil whispers that Ji-yong is showing signs of delirium.

Ji-yong’s mother begs him to look at her but it’s as if Ji-yong can’t hear her. When Cha-young arrives, she and Min-yong keep vigil in the hallway.

Kang gets a response when he asks Ji-yong, “What are they saying from your planet? Do they want you to come back?” When asked if he wants to go back, Ji-yong nods but Kang suggests that the spaceship hasn’t arrived yet.

Ji-yong haltingly whispers, “I couldn’t…finish…my mission,” and Kang helps finish his thought, “That mission…where you have to maintain peace on Earth?”

Young-shil takes Ji-yong’s hand to remind him that his mother and grandmother reconciled thanks to him. She tells Ji-yong of the joy that he brought to the hospice and confesses that he’s like a guardian angel.

In his thoughts, Ji-yong wonders, “Is that true? Did I really make everyone happy?” When Kang nods as if he heard him, Ji-yong’s gaze lingers on him.

Seconds later, his mother sobs when she realizes that Ji-yong is gone while Kang struggles to hold back his tears. From the hallway, Min-yong shouts his brother’s name while Cha-young hugs him tightly.

Later, all that’s left in Ji-yong’s room is a neatly made bed, his spacesuit hanging nearby. In the kitchen, Cha-young makes a very special chocolate cake and decorates it as a spaceship.

After placing a card next to the cake that reads, “Thank you, Iron Ranger Number 3”, Cha-young lovingly sets a small astronaut in the cockpit.

Up on the roof, Kang looks at the stars and imagines a spaceship flying away. He promises, “Ji-yong…We’ll do our best to keep Earth safe without you. Goodbye, Iron Ranger Number Three.”

 
COMMENTS

Even though I knew that Ji-yong wasn’t long for this world, saying goodbye to the bubbly boy in a spacesuit was the ultimate tearjerker. The moment that stuck with me was Kang’s knowing nod at the very end, earning Ji-yong’s final gaze. Sob. Add to that Suk-ja’s departure, with her promise to be more affectionate towards Ms. Bong in another life just as Kang crouched over the injured Cha-young. It’s looking as if it’s only a matter of time until Kang’s feelings for Cha-young will be too strong to deny, just as she readies herself to return to Greece with Kang’s blessing.

In addition to the two farewells in this hour, Kang uncovered the plot between Hee-joo’s husband and his neurosurgeon mistress to guarantee his wife’s early death. It was just their luck that a neurosurgeon as talented as Kang ended up at the hospice that Professor Jung chose for Hee-joo’s final days. Joon’s reaction to Kang’s discovery proves that his feelings for Hee-joo, while conflicted, are still very strong. Even after he abandoned his pottery for good, Hee-joo is still in Joon’s heart. If Joon and Hee-joo are only ever friends, she could use a good friend as she battles to regain some of what she lost due to her lack of treatment.

Interestingly, Joon gets arrested at the same time that his father is attacked in the press. Seeing Joon in the dog house with his father was pretty funny but his legal woes will undermine his grandmother’s plan to save Geosung Hospital. Her meeting with her late husband’s brothers was very informative. Not only did we learn that Grandma used her wealth to save the hospital from bankruptcy decades ago, her husband committed suicide after his brothers betrayed him. Oh, and daughter Seo-hoon just got divorced and regained her right to participate in company matters. Who knew that a marriage certificate still makes a daughter invisible in this day and age? This family gets more interesting even though they’re still awful people.

With Grandma desperate to maintain her hold on the hospital and Joon in legal trouble, Kang’s worth just skyrocketed in spite of the tremor in his hand. But being at the hospice is forcing Kang to get to know his patients and develop actual relationships. He’s no longer spending hours in the OR with anesthetized patients covered by surgical draping. Instead, Kang was befriended by a little boy who cared enough to give him a “happy sandwich”. Kang knew enough about the dying boy to guide him gently in his final moments and cared enough to hold his gaze until Ji-yong’s eyes closed for the last time.

Experiences like that have a lasting effect and it will be intriguing to see how Kang is changed. Will he actually return to save Geosung Hospital if his grandmother summons him? Kang is just starting to make a significant difference in the lives of the hospice patients and he’s so close to realizing his feelings for Cha-young. Even though he urged her to return to Greece, Kang’s about to learn that avoidance is no longer the best way to deal with his feelings.

As Kang struggles with his feelings, Cha-young continues to use her cooking skills to say goodbye to her friends and offer solace to their loved ones. The freshly baked raspberry cake for Suk-ja and the chocolate spaceship cake for Ji-yong were beautiful ways to remember the patients who were once so full of life. That’s what’s so special about the hospice characters — they may be dying but until the very end, they laugh and love so preciously.

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I remember my sister telling me “Marina, one day we are going to cry our eyes out for this kid” and we did.

“Do you know how worried I was while I was searching the mountain?” Damn you Kang! I’ve been waiting for you to say such a thing for like ages! Now I want to see a passionate love because we deserve it!

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Yes, to your last sentence, and pray God please do not let anything or anybody come in between nor prolong this any longer.

I cried so much in this episode. I totally agree with @teriyaki that though they were dying, they laughed and loved so preciously.

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I so hope we get to see some passionate love... ep 9 preview is promising and i am crossing my fingers.

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my most favourite episode... cause that parallel editing of voice over of those halmonis while LK worried like death for CY. and the moment LK-CY stares at each other and words "lets be lovers in next life" by halmoni... i was dead. why i am so badly worried abt their love story before its even started ????

their lovestory is going to shatter my heart in zillion pieces.. be it a happy or even not happy one. cause Kang is one absolutely introvert lover who has no idea how to come across his own feelings... and i badly waiting these 2 broken souls giving the love, solace, healing in each other's company. Dramagods dont break my heart.

More abt cinematography and other aspects in next post.

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Oh, no.... I mean was it their scene together with that 'let's be lovers in the next life'? Oh, nooooooooooooooooooooo.

Oh please Dramagods, do let them live happily ever after in this lifetime!

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I seriously hope that was not foreshadowing a tragic ending.

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i am crossing my fingers and toes to not to have anything sad/melo/tragic ending... but on other hand i also feel that voiceover could also be a hint that these were like halmonis in past life and now in this one will be lovers...
so far it can have both the meanings..

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I agree. I think though it is likely to be the happy ending. When Kang bent over CY he voice over was “we could get married.” So may be at least they would do just that.

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I was full on ugly crying this episode, it was not good. I didn't care about the rest of the episode after Ji Young died. The writers are emotional terrorists, just uhgffvggfch

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Aww... have some chocolate please. Iron ranger III wouldnt want you to be so sad, afterall he went to his planet.

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Lol, I don't actually like the taste of chocolate, but thanks for the sentiment😉🙂

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Dear TeriYaki,
Thank you so much for the review. You dont know how many times I have refreshed the website to see if there was anything new about Chocolate!
Lovely christmas present :)
I have lots of questions. Kang visits the police station but why? He doesnt even help the brother!
What does the noona mean by let us meet next time when she is on phone with Joon?
My interpretation of the "i was worried scene":
CY was trying to guess his mood while he was patching her foot up. She makes a move to hop on his back but his impatience makes her think that she is being a nuisance to him, so she says something on lines of "I am ok".
I love LK's expressions. I was wondering what must his character be thinking when he sits down on that bench after losing his temper. He is always impatient with her.
He is nasty when he is like did you fall down the mountain again but he has a smile on his face when he is eavesdropping on CY and Min-yong.
I wonder if he hadnt received the call, would he have done anything to undo what he had done to CY.
Also, when she thanks him on the rooftop why does he close his eyes with that expression! What is he thinking and he is specific when he says she has thanked him 37 times... is it a korean expression or did he count?
LK is an introvert but CY is no better.
I was randomly thinking, why doesnt she cook some dish for LK?
Ok, too many nuances and weird questions.
This episode had a lot of events. I loved the short sequence with the doctor who is noona's husband's lover. Her guilt, LK playing the cool professional who knows his skill well. The interaction was interesting.
As pointed out, the editing of LK finding CY with the voice over of the almunis was interesting. I too feel it had a prophetic tone for the lovers, which is sad. However, i am happy to be sad if the team does it with style and artistically.
The fact that LK had a tear in his eye,on the iron ranger III passing away, we know our doctor has become more involved.
The way they treated the little boy's passing away was beautiful. I have said it before and I will say it again: this series is a tribute to death. Laugh and love preciously (borrowing ur phrase teriyaki :)
I am so looking forward to ep 9.
Btw we havent been introduced to more hospice characters so I wonder who would make us cry next. Also, me thinks, that something will happen to the lady with demetia, which is when CY will go to Greece and I so dont want the episode 1 first sequence to be episode 16 last sequence.
I might return if I remember more questions.

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'You dont know how many times I have refreshed the website to see if there was anything new about Chocolate!'

Same here, dear. I mean I really have no idea how many times I opened Dramabeans just to check if this recap had shown up.

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I am obsessed with this drama... and I dont know why.
And thank you for letting me know that I am not the only one. Hugs!

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You made me like reading about ep 8, when I found it so contrived & shit & just the same trick pony overworked too many times. Ep 8 with its stupid crime thrown in only to create a love line for Joon once he exhausts his romantic prospects with the FL (if he goes that way)

How is it possible that the only worthy minutes of ep 8 were it's ending one's? It showed me nothing I didn't already see in the preview at end of ep 7; except the last 8 minutes. & even those showed me yet again incompetent & unprofessional hospice staff. How dare you cry in front of the patient & his family? Plus convenient how the boys grandma wasn't on the scene.

Tha 2 halmonis scene laid it on so thick, to create tension & poignancy when the not romantic yet relationship hasn't gotten to that stage.

So freaking contrived. The writer better clean up their act & not force crimes in the rest of the story. Ep 8 was the most disappointing episode.

Your write up was way better than what was actually depicted in ep 8.

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@Shayri
Hi... i just wanted to speak about the hospice staff bit (you raised it in an earlier comment too):
Patients cant be locked in. Many hospices do not have stay-in for all patients.
The old grand-dad was brought in by the director. As long as he could move they couldnt lock him in a room. They keep check but at no place is a 1:1 ratio for patients.
Also, i was thinking that we dont know if families pay for patients upkeep,is it subsidized or is it a charity branch of the large hospital : that would tell you a lot about the questions that you are raising.

At places like the hospice,generally staff would know patients well as patients can be there for 6 months to a year... we dont know.
Thus, if a doctor cries on a patient passing away... i dont think you can call it unprofessional.doctors are humans too and i do have a doctor friend who is super emotional.

As for spiritual help: this is country specific, no? This hospice is not run by a religious institution and we dont know if it is legal to have faith based support for such places in Korea.

With regard to a psychologist: we could have that but given the asian context... realistically mental health is not that embedded in the system. But in this series case, I also think it is a creative freedom that they have taken.

Basta! Wont say more. I am not an expert so the above are just my thoughts and I could be wrong.

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And my experience with hospitals is bad. So i think you are defining an ideal hospice while this one is a literary/artistic space, which immitates reality but is not real. It is warm with people who feel and connect, not like real world where everyone is busy earning money and living lonely existences.

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Spiritual & religious guidance isn't on my radar, that they experience grief isn't my gripe either.
It's just that their patients haven't passed, yet they go blubber all over acting overly emotional as if it was their family member.
I can't see it as any other way other than unprofessional.

Ofc I'm not saying that they should lock patients up, I previously mentioned a caregiver or guardian or assigned guide. These are people that can't do strenuous activities or even normal ones for whatever reasons, but they don't register comings & goings at all & then run around like headless chicken about where their patient went. This happened 4 times already.
At this point its a pattern & sign of incompetent management & lack of vigilance. Not acceptable.

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But yet, when a patient is so distraught she attempts suicide, instead of offering warmth, empathy, and guidance, she is berated and called selfish. This is not the care that I understand hospice to provide.

And while I don't think doctors and nurses should be completely unemotional when confronted with the death of someone under their care, they are first and foremost there to provide support for that patient and their family during this time. This means they need to maintain some semblance of professionalism because this is what they have trained to do. I'm willing to suspend my disbelief pretty far, but this hospice setting is stretching it a bit too far, and as @Sharyri said, the contrivances piled up way too high in episode 8 for me.

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This episode made me think about whether to continue mostly due to the contrivances.

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My only experience with hospice was when my mother was dying of lung cancer. It was an entirely different situation in that hospice visited her at my brother's home, and in the end she died there surrounded by family, in a family atmosphere. So for this story it has to be different from my experience. Does South Korea have hospice nurses that visit people's homes to take care of their needs until death arrives? I don't know.

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@ndlessjoieo same. It's become a bit too much. I'm hoping they turn around in ep 9/10

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First of all, thank you dearly for the recap @teriyaki! I was looking forward to it for like.. well, many many days.

Reading your recap, I came to see how deeply food plays a role in this show: the mistress ajumma went to get berries to the dying woman, CY promising Jun a delicious dish if he stops regretting falling for Hee-ju. It highlights that food is indeed the backbone of this show: people offer delicious food to other people to show their love or that they care. Food means so many things. I just hope that food will heal LK, and perhaps he will become a truly happy man by the end of the show.

One thing which bugs me a little is that I wish CY had made all those lovely dishes for Sukja and the Iron Ranger no.3 to them before they are gone. I don't really understand how making these beautiful dishes for them after they passed away can be better than offering them ones when they still live.

I just hope that LK will come to understand CY soon. She didn't leave Min-sueng because she wanted to, but because it was him who was her first love is Min-sueng's best friend. And dear oh dear I just hope he realized that she is indeed the little girl who he offered food to when there were kids. I mean these are two good people, I just hope that they have a happy married life.

And for those awful family, I cannot care less about them.

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One thing which bugs me a little is that I wish CY had made all those lovely dishes for Sukja and the Iron Ranger no.3 to them before they are gone.

I thought the same but then I realized, the food here is a tribute to those who passed away. Also, like Kang offers soju to his mom, CY offers food to those she came to love.

But yes, feed them while they are alive. Feed Kang, CY!

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I wonder if Kang remembers MinSung’s warning about tasting ChaYoung’s cooking. He told him not to fall in love with her.

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I am sure the writer is saving up that bit for future episodes Mei. I am waiting to it myself. That’s why we haven’t seen her cooking for him yet. The writer is letting him falling in love with her all by himself first.

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What I meant was the writer is letting him falling in love with her personality first before letting him fall for her cooking 😊. That is how it should be I think. 😊

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I’m all for that too. But I’m sensing maybe a little bit of Kang’s hesitation to acknowledge his feelings is because of MinSung. Just as it was a reason for the kind fish vendor who gave him chocolates, he didn’t want to disrespect the memory of Kang’s dad even though he liked his mom.

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So many paralells!

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There is always a possibility for your theory Mei but I think it is low. Kang was the one to tell the fisherman to confess to his Mum. So it might be a clue that he is ok with that aspect. In addition CY and MS broke up 4 years before his death. It is not like she is his fiancée when he passed.

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In fact the writer might have thrown that conversation between Kang and the fisherman in at the beginning to preempt the coming situation that it would be ok for him to have a relationship with his deceased best friend‘S ex girlfriend. Otherwise I see no other reason for that detail besides the fact to show that Kang is kind?

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@sunset125
That’s what I thought too. I thought that scene at the pier could be intentional. And that will help Kang deal with this conflict, if it comes up later.

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Hooray for "I cannot care less about them," line. As to the food and its healing power, this reminds me so much of the Kdrama, "Kimchi Family." Although it was not set in a hospital, it showed how food could heal all the people that came to eat at Chunjiin. Whether they had mental or physical conditions, their stress was eased by the food they were served.

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Now you made me wanna watch Kimchi Family. I find the food for healing thing my cup of tea. Thankssss 🥰

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It was such a learning experience for me the watcher too--I din't know there were that many kinds of kimchi--beautiful.

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Kimchi Family is one nice drama under the radar but the stories (episodic kind of) and the food - are amazing. I learnt from it the many types of kimichi you could have.

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Yes, it has similar vibe as Kimchi Family with food to bring people together

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It's their tradition I guess, to serve the favorite food/tribute food of those who've left this world (or on the mourning days/memorial). Because it's believed that the spirit was still lingering there, or visiting, on that day. cmiiw.

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Warning: long nerdy comments bellow 😅

Thanks @teriyaki for the recap! Happy holiday!

So we are half way through the series. Our tragedy prone pair has moved on from being impacted by their own tragedies in the first 4 Eps to being impacted by other people’s tragedies in the last 4 Eps. People complain about the excessive amount of tragedies and the shortage of chocolate and romance. People find it unbelievable how much tragedies and accidents there are in this series. I find it unbelievable they actually feel that way. If people can buy the premise of a SK heiress surviving a tornado and landing on an armed high ranked soldiers with a loaded gun and holding on to him tightly while he froze (and the gun did not go off on her 🙄) among other unrealistic things in NK, then I can certainly buy however much tragedies in a show as long as the script makes good use of them. And good use Chocolate did.

It is a love story against the backdrop that is a study of how human beings cope with and survive tragedies (or so it appears to me so far half way in). There is no dispute our heroine, CY, is a tragedy and accident magnet. Even when she wants to escape, she goes to Greece, a country famous for its tragedy with the classical plays of Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides. (It must not be a coincidence or pure financial reason that the script chose Greece as its overseas location, especially given CY is a chef specialising in Italian cuisine. Not only it serves to accentuate the main theme of this drama, the writer might have wanted to pay tribute to the first country in history to make tragedy a form of entertainment and “export” it successfully it to the world, an achievement two thousands years later SK repeated?).

Just like “Forest Gump” uses one dumb luck scenario after another to make a point, Chocolate packs in most human sufferings, from natural disasters (earthquake), to war (Lybia), from broken families to murder, from accidents and terminal illness to suicide and death. Yet although there are certainly tears and sadness the atmosphere of the drama is not depressing, there is a calmness that runs through it. That is because most of our characters are stoic and their coping mechanisms are consistent with what psychology and philosophy learnt so far about what makes people happy and able to pull through adversities.

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I posted comments but do not know why it kept on saying I have to wait for moderation. I read the policy and can’t understand what I did wrong. Can anyone advise? Thanks!

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I am looking forward to reading your thoughts @Sunset125
I dont know the policies and am not registered. Maybe tagging the recap writers might help? @TeriYaki

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The first part was awkward with Cha Young's accident - really, another potentially fatal accident?? And I thought the voiceover was awkwardly laid over and intercut, even though I enjoyed the wife+mistress relationship. Hee Joo's husband trying to kill her was devastating. I wonder if she can recover her sight. Ji Yong's passing wrecked me. Full-on sobs! I knew he wasn't going to survive the series, but I didn't expect his death in episode 8. I really did love how the head nurse had let Ji Yong know that he really did complete his mission and make a positive difference in this world.

Though the writer needs to lay off the Final-Destination-esque accidents for our OTP (look, you don't need danger to push the characters together), I love the overall warmth of this drama, how the patients feel so lived-in, and how the food is so personal.

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So we are half way through the series. Our tragedy prone pair has moved on from being impacted by their own tragedies in the first 4 Eps to being impacted by other people’s tragedies in the last 4 Eps. People complain about the excessive amount of tragedies and the shortage of chocolate and romance. People find it unbelievable how much tragedies and accidents there are in this series. I find it unbelievable they actually feel that way. If people can buy the premise of a SK heiress surviving a tornado and landing on an armed high ranked soldiers with a loaded gun and holding on to him tightly while he froze (and the gun did not go off on her 🙄) among other unrealistic things in NK, then I can certainly buy however much tragedies in a show as long as the script makes good use of them. And good use Chocolate did.

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Just like “Forest Gump” uses one dumb luck scenario after another to make a point, Chocolate packs in most human sufferings, from natural disasters (earthquake), to war (Lybia), from broken families to murder, from accidents and terminal illness to suicide and death. Yet although there are certainly tears and sadness the atmosphere of the drama is not depressing, there is a calmness that runs through it. That is because most of our characters are stoic and their coping mechanisms are consistent with what psychology and philosophy learnt so far about what makes people happy and able to pull through adversities.

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(3)
“You may not be able to control your environment, but you can control your attitude towards it”. This attitude, first taught by the Stoic philosophers 2000 years ago, was what most of Holocaust’s survivors adopted to deal with their tragedy as narrated later in their memoirs. We do not see people whine about their cruel fates in Chocolate, or let it dictate how they live their life or what is left of it. They make the best of what they have. One of the most memorable scenes to me is a smiley Ji Yong excitedly told CY: “I am not going to die early, I will live till I am 10!” . Min Sung made jokes till the end. Despite being abandoned by their families, Grandpa and JY still seek to say loving things to them. Even our new hospice resident from New York is smiling. Those patients’ attitude is the reason why we love the atmosphere at the hospice.

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(5)
The best example of this of course is our heroine. It doesn’t matter what happens to CY, she preserves her personality and positive attitude towards life. She doesn’t let a miserable childhood and a disaster happened to her when young scar her or make her bitter, emotionally crippled or mean. She grew up as a compassionate person and always appreciates good things and good deeds life had given her and when she can, returns in abundance. She can’t help but has PTSD after the earthquake, but she learns the pattern of her episodes and deals with it proactively by seeking professional help. She finds herself in an impossible love triangle, she quietly withdraw from it so as not to destroy a beautiful friendship. She can’t help but has a trouble making brother but despite the love hate relationship, she chooses to stay with him and support him, because it is consistent with her personality.

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Comment 4 is missing but You are on the dot with CY’s character.
As for comment 3: isn’t the whole series about coping with death and showing how it will happen but let us not be bogged down. Ji Yong was a positive realist.
My dear Sunset you have put in a lot thought but then chocolate invites you to think.

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Thanks @ruckus. I was just trying to make out the meaning of the drama to me and give the writer some credit. And I thought I post it here too. This drama is underrated I feel. I rarely love a drama and do not watch lots of it, but Chocolate themes are my favourite so it is easy to love it.

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(6)
CY possesses a few things that made her deal better with adversities and finds joy in life. First of all, it is her calmness or shall I say her inner peace, one that all psychologists and philosophers agree is the first prerequisite of well being and one that most people strive to achieve through mediation. This permeates everything she does even during sadness or panic attack, since she always knows how not to let those things swallow her. I’m glad the PD had got this right from the script and made this quality shone bright in the series, starting from the intro, and that is what we feel watching Chocolate, what made it so soothing and special to viewers who notice this. HJW is great at acting this out. Or, perhaps, she possesses this in real life. There is a serenity in the way she looks at things and do things, of course especially when she cooks. I have seen a lot of cooking shows (perhaps way too much for my own good 😀) but I have never loved any cooking scenes like hers, it is professional but still unique to the character. Secondly, it was her work. She obviously has found a calling in her work and through it achieve flow, which is another contributing factor to happiness as modern psychologists found recently. To her, cooking is not just a job, it is a way of life, she uses cooking to comfort others and also to comfort herself (the raspberry rice cake she made after the Sukja Grandma passes away and the chocolate cake with the beautiful fondant icing she made after JY had gone). Thirdly, it is her ability to make meaningful connections with people, obviously enabled by her empathetic and compassionate nature. Ever since Ep 1, we see she has a great relationship with her boss and co workers in all of her work places from the Italian restaurant in Seoul to the one in Greece to the cafeteria at the hospice. Of course she also has meaningful connections to the patients at the hospice. As Jonnathan Haidt said in the Happiness Hypothesis, love and work are the biggest conditions for happiness. “No one is an island. We are ultra social creatures and we can’t be happy without having friends and secure attachment to other people. Similarly, having and pursuing the right goals, in order to create states of flow and engagement… and most people find most of the flow at work.” When Freud was asked what a normal person should be able to do well, he is reputed to have said love and work. Love here is not necessarily romantic love but more a meaningful connection.

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(7)
Sometimes however, to cope with tragedy, one resorts to stories and magical thinking (a set of irrational beliefs). That is what human beings have done through out our history, we love stories and rely on stories and beliefs to carry us through hard times, to make meaning of our lives and the adversities we have to go through, hence the birth of myths, religions and legends. Magical thinking has shown to be a useful method to cope with loss of a loved one. Episodes 8 shows how characters in Chocolate use this in a similar way. It starts with the dying Suk Ja telling her guardian about her regrets of their relationship in this life as the first wife and the mistress. She believes in reincarnations of the next life and wishes they could be in a better relationship like sibling or even husband and wife so they could show affection to each other without social prejudices. It then continues this with Ji Yong’s belief he is Iron Ranger No 3 on a peace mission on Earth from another planet, which is a way to cope with and make meaning of his short life.

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(8)
Most of all, CY carries magical thinking through out the series. In Ep 6, she was telling her brother the Grandpa passes away because he wants to eat noodles in heaven. In Ep8, she told MY she believes JY’s story and that he is indeed from another planet. In both instances, the two boys told her off, implying she’s too naivety . Kang overheard the later story and later uses it to sooth a dying JY, he then saw first hand how such belief could carry people through adversities and later adopts the belief himself when he said goodbye to JY on the roof top.

Perhaps the writer was trying to tell us something indirectly when she let TH say this in Ep 6 about his sister: “Noodles in heaven? Give me a break!...What a naive fool! How can she survive in this tough world?” Of course we all know who is the fool here. Having a right set of beliefs (rational or irrational) is exactly what we need to survive in this tough world. And TH doesn’t need to worry, if anyone can survive it, it is his sister.

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PS 1: What I mentioned in these comments could be found in the books bellow among others:
- The Happiness Hypothesis by Jonnathan Haidt
- Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
- A Joseph Campbell Companion and Myths to Live By
- Happiness - A guide to the most important skill by Mathieu Ricard
- The Seven Laws of Magical Thinking by Mathew Hutchinson
- The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion

PS2. Perhaps I have looked too much into it and the writer may just have gotten the idea of how to cope with tragedy from a board in a chocolate shop one day that says “Keep calm and eat chocolate” 🤣. After all it is definitely a very useful method as well 😊.

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I enjoyed ur insights! Thanks for sharing. Campbell is fun.

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Thank you @teriyaki @sunset125
You guys are awesome.

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I really like reading your post above, it enlightened me and I feel relief in the same time knowing this. Thank you so much for sharing. Your post is awesome.

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Appreciate the recap and insights TeriYaki, thank you! Thanks as well to Sunset125 for providing psychological insights into the characters’ behavior.

I’m so heartbroken over Ji-Young’s passing even though it was expected. How a little kid left a deep impression on everyone at the hospice and brought people together was very well executed. For a little kid, he has accomplished a lot and his mission, as he says, is now complete. I’m so ready for the next half of the drama. I can’t wait to see the lead characters take their story a few more notches as they navigate through their feelings and circumstances.

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He brought Kang and CY together. First it was his game that he found her in the closet then it was him that they spent time together for his birthday and that led Kang to discover CY’s traumatic experience in the department store collapse, an important milestone in their relationship. Then it was JY that brought Kang and CY closer in sharing a common world view. That is a great mission that he completed. He is the real Cupid 😍.

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Cupid is disguised as Iron Ranger 3.

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I also thought that Ranger 3 let Kang see just how empathetic and caring Cha Young is--you could see that realization register on Kang's face.

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I agree Kwan. Not only he sees her care And empathy he adopts that too. And I think this will fundamentally change him back to the boy he was before his Mum died.

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Thanks for the recap.

I think this Ep is very well done and I really love it.

I need to mention firstly that it while his JY’s end is inevitable, the writer has done a great job with the Iron Ranger story to send him off. The story serves more than one purpose in this Ep, the other I ll talk more bellow. I have teared up at the end and the child actor was really great in all the scenes he is in. I love his smile when he said “I wont die early, I will live until I am ten!” and his smile while he watches CY cooking things in the convenient store. 😭

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The best thing in this episode to me is Kang. The script shows us many different insights to his character and his feelings and YKS gave a solid performance here. This the first time I see why he was called “a man of many faces” by SK media.

First up is that highlight scene of the Ep: the piggy ride scene. Btw, I dont think the romance is slow. We were given the first wrist grab in Ep 6, then the piggy ride in Ep 8, according to traditional melo pace, we are well on our way to the first kiss in Ep 10 or 11. So I am happy. Anyway, here we are, finally at the piggy ride. Our hero is bandaging up our heroine. All going swimmingly. Even better when he was all medically efficient and then kneeled down to offer our heroine ANOTHER piggy ride, not once but twice! (Oh my heart! 😀). But then she declined it!!! Why? Why did she not want another rest on that muscular David’s back and another grab at that abs? I really don’t know. Perhaps she was just being stoic? Perhaps she was hungry and tired after everything (really Kang, the Xray could wait a bit longer)? Perhaps she needed a chocolate? Or perhaps the prospect of driving in the night with him provokes PTSD of the accident together? 🤔

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YKS plays a character with the same type of steely emotion in, "Road No. 1." He is steadfast in his quest--hating So Ji Sub until almost the end, because Ji Sub has stolen YKS's love away. I didn't think I'd ever see YKS smile in that drama, but when he thawed he was the warmest guy you'd ever want to meet. I hope the same is ahead in, "Chocolate."

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Your comment made me think of the ML in Forest of Secrets. He rarely smiled, but when he did all Beanies melted.

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I saw the way YKS smiles in some of Chocolate BTS. I hope LK will smile at CY the same way too. It was so warm and kind. I saw snippets of YKS in some of his previous works and he did not have a smile like that there.

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Anyhow, the refusal triggers strong emotion in our hero. My interpretation is that he took it as a rejection, first of him as a doctor and then as a man. Let’s recall here that at the end of Ep 7, she turns down his offer to drive her home (again she must have some strong fear of getting into his car at night 😅). Then let’s not forget their conversation at the bus stop in Ep3 where he was practically begging her not to leave his best friend but she very calmly said she was in love with someone else. He had looked so shattered then like he himself was rejected. So he was already uncertain of where he stands with her. He has all this feelings for this girl but to all information available to him at that moment, it is very likely he will be heading the same way as MS did and having seen first hand how heart broken MS was he must have been scared.

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Interesting take on Kang. It does explain some of his expressions.

I still feel for CY. She doesnt get into the car because she is also scared of him. He is enigmatic and moody. She doesnt know when he might get angry.
She would have hopped onto his back if not for his impatient "hurry up".
Then he asks her about Greece and last time when she said am going to Greece, he was like let us not meet again! I mean poor girlie.

But i was also thinking of why doesnt he use a wheelchair :D >practical me<

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He wants physical contact with her, that s why he doesn’t use a wheelchair 😀. And may be that’s why he subconsciously took the rejection very hard as well 😀 as her refusal to get more intimate. Also she was hesitant to get on his back in the first place that s why he said Hurry up. Suspension of belief regarding wheelchair 🙂, Ruckfus.

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Ohhhh! That is some physical thinking @Sunset125!

I am having a good laugh.

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Oooh is that what it was about??!
Naughty, naughty Kang LOL

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So when she refuses to get on his back, all the insecurities surface. Does she look down on him now for being a hospice doctor, not a mighty neurosurgeon like before? Or indeed she has no regards for his worries? Let s run right now before getting hurt any further. So he declared not caring for her anymore and fled though it obviously pains him.

This situation is further confirmed on the roof top. She cries. He does not know why (is she miserable here?) Then she thanks him. He closes his eyes as it pains him that she treats what he did so politely and formally, not recognising it as something very personal. He then asks her about Greece and when she says she s leaving soon, it confirms his suspicion that yes this girl indeed has no feelings for him. Better treat this like a bandaid, being medically efficient, he prefers to rip it off swiftly, so he asks her to leave as soon as possible.

It was really lovely to see Kang’s vulnerability here. If one is not scared of the risk of being hurt in love one does not truly love. Given their history and his prudent personality it is only natural for him to experience this stage. Perhaps in the next Ep, jealousy or some other circumstances will propel him out of this and on to embracing the risks to then see that there has never been any risk at all 😍.

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Btw i was thinking of zika virus and how one should just extradicate it...(episode 7 ref) thus go leave the hospice, go far to greece such that I am free from these weird emotions :D

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Yes, very medically efficient 😂😂. Just eradicate it!!! 😂

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After seeing Dr. Kang’s insecurity in front of his crush, we then see the badass confident side of him as he discovers a medical murder plot, again being medical efficient. I love how he was smiling at HJ’s Dr while calling out her true motif. We see a different side Kang here, one that is swift in action and merciless to the bad guys (how quickly he informs HJ’s family to take legal action and organise for her surgery).

We then see him being enchanted with CY on the rooftop as she is immersed in JY’s magical thinking story. He uses the story later to sooth a dying JY and for the first time seeing how things work the Cha Young way and adopts her world view. This adoption was further confirmed when he says goodbye to JY on the rooftop and sees a rocket launching into the sky as CY completed her own cake rocket for JY. This sequence metaphorically suggests that for the first time our couple is finally in the same space.

Will Kang be able to integrate this newly found perspective and tender side with his efficient professional self and get both chaebol and the girl in the end? Or we would see the old traditional melo end where the hero has to choose one out of the two? Will our hearts get broken by his choice? I guess that is risk we have to embrace if we have fallen in love with this drama.

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@sunset125, thanks for your very thoughtful Kang anatomy! It is analyses like this that makes drama watching so enjoyable.

Ep 8, among all the tragedies and the sad passing especially of Space Ranger 3, is a Kang episode as his facade is unpeeled. We see how vulnerable he is becoming in face of CY - I take it that he is still not exactly sure why he feels so much for her. Yet, the rejection he sensed from CY - in his own word of looking down on him no longer a neurosurgeon - is a self defence mechanism that it is not a man-woman thing. I totally agree that the romance development is not as slow as it seems and the inner struggle of the two, especially Kang’s, is the very attraction of this slow burn development.

Then, we see how professionally smart Kang is at detecting the murderous plot and his laser-sharp ability to face the murderer. It’s a very different guy from the emotionally shut man facing CY. It proves him the tougher grandson of the two.

KYS has come a long way from the groovy characters he played in “My 19 year old sister in law” and “Flying Boy”. His subtlety in Chocolate is what makes Kang enigmatic.

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Thanks @epyc2010 for your lovely post. Yes, YKS’s acting here is very subtle. He is very effective in expressing emotion just with a slight change of his face. When CY turns down the second piggy ride and he was asking her if really the pain is all gone and she said yes, you can see his facial muscles tense up showing his restrained annoyance at what he knows is her lying 😀.

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But doesn't CY have some guilt too, after all he operated on her to save her life while giving up the chance for his immediate treatment. Now I think she feels guilty about his tremor keeping him from being a top flight surgeon. I feel CY is like those little magnet toys I played with as a kid. When they came in close proximity of each other they both attracted and repelled each other. I think this is CY's dilemma with Kang right now.

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@Kwan
Does CY know that Kang’s hand tremors because of her? Until now that hasn’t been made clear. She asks Jun but Jun doesn’t respond, does he?

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I am trying to get myself ready for at least one of the leads dying 😭
This drama doesn’t give
me the happy ending vibe 😞

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I guess when we get back around to the opening scene, we'll know.

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Just today I happened to think about that scene when the leads are so close together in Greece. I thought to myself then that so this show has to have a happy ending. Then, I realized that that scene might not be the ending scene but a scene in the middle of the story. Guess we’ll see how it goes after that scene as you said.

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@mmmmm and @Kwan
I wanted that scene to the middle of the program scene just because Kang’s vo says: that is how our story began

And I thought uptil now we just have what happened in the past.
But it might be the last sequence as the banner on JTBC YouTube channel has a still from that scene with the hint that they are about to kiss. If that is the case then it could be that there is no kiss sequence in this drama except at the end.

Just some conjectures.

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Sorry about eaten up words but my keyboard is acting up :(

Ohhh and the poster on the beanie website is same as JTBC YouTube channel so...
(Late realization)

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@Ruckfus I thought that is a possible ending too.

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@Sunset125
How does that explain the voice over then if that would be ending sequence?
He says something like that is how our story begins... right?

And I have a question for you because I didnt understand. Tis from ep 10... so informing you in advance :)

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I was ugly crying, as well, when Ji Young passed. I knew it was coming given the past episodes but it was still really sad. The story of the two old ladies was nicely done, as well.

"That’s what’s so special about the hospice characters — they may be dying but until the very end, they laugh and love so preciously."

This, right here. I love the bittersweet quality of this drama. They throw us all sorts of tragic situations and turn it around in a warm, healing way. Still looking forward to more episodes. I don't know why but apparently I'm in the mood to torture myself through these sad moments.

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So much happened in this episode. Seriously, so much happened in this episode. Too much. Too many people died. Too many contrived emergencies happened. And too many medical professionals behaving in a unprofessional and downright mystifying manner.

First, you have Dr. Kang searching for Cha-young on that mountain, in the dark, alone. Umm, call for some help. Second, after wrapping her ankle he tells her to get on his back to be carried. Umm, aren't they in a medical facility where people are terminally ill? One would assume there would be these nifty gadgets called wheelchairs. Sigh

Next, I don't even want to talk about the contrived situation that now sets up a possible romance for Joon. At least, maybe, we won't have the dreaded love triangle with the cousins fighting over Cha-young. But seriously, that scenario didn't shock me because of the affair and attempted murder, but rather that the writers shoehorned this makjang madness right smack dab in the middle of this drama.

Finally, I knew Ji-yong wasn't going to make it alive to episode 16. I was surprised that he only lasted half the drama though. And let's be honest, I was bracing myself for his death.....in like episode 14, but because it was too soon, and because so many other significant and tragic events took place in this hour, I was emotionally completely unaffected.

Which leads me to what I said after everything was done. It's truly phenomenal that in such a short span of time so much happened, and yet, I was bored. I was bored.

Additionally, this is a medical facility, that seems to be affiliated with the hospital, and yet the Director's conduct is unprofessionally emotional in front of patients and their families, and the safety of patients seems to be of little or no concern as they come and go with seemingly no one keeping track of their whereabouts. Maybe hospice is different in South Korea than what I have seen, but somehow I don't think it's quite this different in reality.

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I don’t see the romance angle either for Joon and HeeJu. I’d rather believe that it was more of a compassionate, motherly figure that Joon was attracted to or he’s looking for based on what was lacking in his life.

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Peace to all. No hate here so happy watching to you all.

I have to agree with you! Yes, the setting IS a hospice facility, I get it, but the trend of the story has become so predictable that, like you I am becoming bored, and this disappointments me so much, my being bored. I have been looking forward to this drama as I am a huge fan of both lead stars. Also, it has been a while since i have seen a melo drama w huge, big star names on it, so I had such high hopes for Chocolate. However after the first few episodes , everything has become so redundant! They introduce a new cast/patient that would surely die in the next episode. It has become so dragging. And good grief! That annoying character that is the brother makes it even worse!
I still haven't given up hope on Chocolate though.

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I am slowly losing interest in the drama, too. The whole thing with leaving Hee Joo by herself by a LAKE was so dumb? Why would you leave a blind person by themselves even if they claim that their husband will arrive soon? Wouldn't you wait until he got that to leave? Cha-young also needs to stop taking people out without telling others...

The story/editing is starting to become really disjointed. It just jumps from one scene to the other with little to no transition. I'm not sure if it's the writer or the editing. It just seems so choppy and makes it hard to follow sometimes. I've noticed that for another JTBC drama I watched, too so I am wondering if it is the issue with editing/filming the adequate amount of scenes? I don't know, but things are just becoming more choppy and important details are left out.

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The vibe of the drama is such that while I have always felt sadness while watching butI have never actually cried at anything for the same reason. But with Ji Young it hit hard and I finally did. It was just too much.

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I cried buckets, I mean BUCKETS, for JiYoung. I had to control myself from crying some more, else my family would wonder what was wrong with me.

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- YKS is a great actor. I really love Kang's split second change of expression when Cha-young is trying to get up from the bed, he knows she's gonna feel the pain. Also during Ji-yong's final moments, when he's trying his best not to cry. His eyes alone can deliver so many emotions.

- can someone tell me why Tae-hyun is needed in the story? I would rather see more Joon instead.

- knowing how much Joon loves Hee-joo (and Cha-young loves Kang), please don't change the storyline to a love triangle, please, please, please.

- Ji-yong ah, I know it's gonna happen, but I was hoping we'll get to see you a bit longer. 😭 I'll miss you so much, Iron Ranger Number 3.

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- can someone tell me why Tae-hyun is needed in the story? I would rather see more Joon instead.

My answer would probably be in order for the show to present the unconditional love CY possesses towards all human beings no matter how nasty they are. 🤣

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🤣 ok, I can accept that, but he's still annoying. Haha

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Tae yun is needed so that viewers can have a toilet break.
Peace to all!

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@mmmmm and everyone else:

Funny thread.

I think he is here because she needs someone who is family and sibling relations get a lot of focus : Kang and Jun, Iron ranger III and his brother, CY and her bro, the two old almunis who were like sisters though mistress and wife.

Just to show a variety and how family functions, dysfunctionally.

He is bugging but in ep 9 with Jun I find the interaction funny and... I hope this doesn’t count as a spoiler.

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I'm thinking that the reason he's there will be revealed before the end of this drama. It always seems to me that Min Jin Woong plays crazy characters that tend to be like fingernails scraping on a blackboard.

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Hmmm .. so your comment reminds me of the character he played in MoA, the poor Secretary Seo. May be you’re right. We’ll see.

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The one I was thinking of was, Drinking Solo. I hated it every time he came on screen.

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May I know when will this Drama airing in Malaysia? Soon or already airing? Which channel... KBS SOne OhK TVN?
Thank you.

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You could watch it on netflix or some of the not so legal sites. Maybe check viu.
It is on JTBC :)

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People... i just wanted to say that I have enjoyed reading the passionate defence of the drama as well as feelings of frustration and boredom.
The perspectives make this an even more wholesome watching experience for me, so thanks.

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Lee Jun need therapy or get his brain checked. Jun and Kang are fighting with each other since their childhood
When Kang was in coma, he went all the way to Libya against his parents wishes and helped him even held his hand.
Said harsh words to Huiju while crying (I know he doesn't mean it) but beat her husband and go to jail, doesn't care about his family reputation.
Love the scene when he was in police station and with his father, I felt sad and funny at the same time. He looked like harmless zombie.
I think he will be fine after fighting with Kang one more time...maybe fighting with him is the ultimate therapy.🙄

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Lol.. true. May be fighting with Kang is his therapy. Your comment made me lol.

I saw men the two male characters (Kang and Jun) in this show kind of suppressing their emotions. I guess that is how they’re supposed to be like having been raised up in such family and situation. So when they love someone, they do not know how to show their love appropriately. Their feelings have been suppressed because their inability to express it and their fear of rejection. It was quite satisfying for me to see Kang bursting out and showing real negative emotions when he was with CY, because she, up until now, is the only person who got to see his moody side and the one who he is a bit more open to. His expressions towards CY have been true to his character: he does not know what the feeling towards CY he possesses is, and knowing that she was the person his best friend loved and got rejected by complicate things more for him made he want to avoid her. Still, love forces him to care about her. How Kang’s feeling towards CY has developed and how he has grown up and come out of this shell are some of the magic of this show.

And yes, I loled at the scene of Jun and his father. They got kicked out from the house and that was hilarious.

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Haha! Your comment cracked me up...

Maybe fighting is therapy for him! Haha

I thought the scene between the father and son was interesting too. It was funny and the father really dotes on his son. Joon is like silent when it comes to his feelings. He does look like a zombie.

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After Min-Seong, they killed Ji-Yong. Even if I know he didn't have a future, I still hope they won't kill this cute little boy. He reminded me Oscar in the story Oscar et la dame rose (Oscar and the Lady in Pink).

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The last picture of Ji-yong smiling in his space suit will linger on our minds for a long time. As I said many times in these forums, 2019 was the year of great child actor performances.

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That child actor made me ugly cry..!!!

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thanks for this recap...this episode was both beautifully bittersweet and heartwarming...i'm so glad that i gave this show a chance:-)

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Out of the mouths of babes--that winds up this episode for me. I cried for the first time in this drama, when Ji Yong dies and returns to his star. This reminded me of the lines from the movie, Gattica, "Of course, they say every atom in our bodies was once part of a star. Maybe I'm not leaving... maybe I'm going home."

It seems to me that the cousins Lee sorely lack one thing a doctor really needs--a good bedside manner. I still haven't warmed up to either of these 'sawbones,' but hope I will soon. I've already watched episode 9 and it doesn't seem 'warming up,' is anywhere on the horizon. BUT the cooking has me warmed from head to toe.

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Kudos to TeriYaki and Sailorjumun for their informative recaps of episodes 1 to 8. Really looking forward to the recaps for all the rest of the episodes 9 to its finale. It is easy to miss out on the subtle undertones of this drama if our attention is diverted even for split seconds from the screen. Keep up the good work. I have just watched episodes 9 and 10 and am looking forward to the said recaps.

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