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Tale of the Nine Tailed: Episode 15

The battle is nigh, and everyone feels the weight of what’s coming. Our hero prepares to put his self-sacrificing plan into place, spending his remaining time with his loved ones. But our heroine doesn’t intend to just sit around and be saved, so she has a contingency plan of her own. Not to be outschemed, the imoogi works behind the scenes to turn things to his advantage. It’s finally time for the showdown, folks.

 
EPISODE 15: “You are my destiny”

We open on a series of dramatic shots. The imoogi violently attacks someone. Yeon stares unfocusedly, blood dripping from his mouth and scales on his face. Jia holds a gun to her head. Rang sobs alone on the stairs.

Rewinding back to the end of the previous episode, Yeon and the imoogi shake hands. The CEO pulls a gun on Jia who tries to warn him of the danger. He fires off a shot which grazes her neck, calling out the imoogi. It grabs him and shoots him twice in the stomach.

The imoogi calls itself the CEO’s “owner,” but dying makes him honest as he grits out that he only stayed because of the life-giving lanterns and mocks the imoogi’s “complex” over being neither human nor god. The imoogi responds to that by viciously sticking Jia’s hand in his wound (ew), hastening the CEO’s death. Imoogi Jia sees Jae-hwan watching in terror from the hallway. “Did you see?” she asks with a smile.

At the mansion, in typical villain and hero fashion, the imoogi argues having nothing to protect makes him stronger while Yeon argues the opposite. “Terry” cheerily shares that Jia’s imoogi has awakened again, but he holds Yeon hostage by vowing to dissolve the alliance if he leaves.

After convincing himself the imoogi won’t put Jia in danger yet, Yeon sits back down. The imoogi scoffs, but Yeon reminds him he also has something to protect: the other imoogi whose strength he needs. “Terry” doesn’t deny it and says they need to take care of Taluipa first.

At Yeon’s, the imoogi has fun playing with a terrified Jae-hwan. It puts the gun in his hand and dares him to shoot and kill Jia. He’s got one shot or else he’ll end up like the CEO. He shakes and thinks of Jia as the imoogi gives him three seconds. When he doesn’t shoot by “three,” the imoogi takes the gun and puts it to his head.

“Nam Jia!” Sae-rom yanks Jia’s gun arm down and slaps Jia in the face, telling her to come to her senses. Ha! It seems to work, and Jia stands in shock while Sae-rom uses her own sleeve to wipe the blood off of Jia’s hands. Jia’s friends comfort her as she stares at the blood on her hands and the floor – the CEO’s body seems to have disintegrated – and cries.

Meanwhile, Yeon and the imoogi strategize. Yeon will get Hyun Eui-ong to give Taluipa the same sleeping draught Rang was supposed to give him. “Terry” can take care of the rest. They agree on noon the following day.

Yeon worries things are going too smoothly, and it doesn’t help that the imoogi asks all innocent like if it’s true Taluipa and Hyun Eui-ong had a son. (Ooh, could he have the son’s face?) Yoo-ri eavesdrops from around the corner.

When Yeon returns home, Jia tells him about what happened with the CEO and how she almost hurt Jae-hwan. He holds her as she cries, and he promises it’ll end tomorrow.

At the Snail Bride, Hye-ja nurses Team Leader Choi who asks what her late husband was like. She describes how he used to dote on her, and Team Leader Choi confesses he feels familiarity and longing when he eats her food.

At her office, Taluipa stresses over the massive death toll caused by the imoogi the previous day. She calls for Hyun Eui-ong to bring her supplements before remembering he left. Seeing all the sweetly labeled herbs in the cabinet, she angrily slams the door.

Meanwhile, when Hyun Eui-ong frets that Taluipa must’ve run out of her joint supplements, Hye-ja encourages him to go home. He admits that he loved her, but they’re just too different. Hye-ja begs him to do something to save Yeon, but he’s not sure what he can do.

Rang anxiously waits for Yeon’s call, but he’s surprised when Yeon just asks to meet after mentioning he saw the imoogi and says nothing about Jia. Rang’s doorbell rings, and he finds Jia standing outside his door.

At the clinic, Yeon explains his plan to Shin-joo. Yeon feels responsible for not only Jia’s life but everyone’s. This is the only way. “Then I’ll do it,” the ever-loyal Shin-joo volunteers. Yeon asserts that he can’t handle the imoogi.

Shin-joo starts to break down and begs Yeon not to die. Yeon blinks back tears as he grabs his friend’s shoulder and says he needs him at least to understand. Shin-joo begins to sob.

At Rang’s, Jia sarcastically thanks him for his “gift.” She acknowledges she would’ve done the same in his position. To his surprise, she doesn’t plan on telling Yeon about his involvement. Yeon cherishes him and would be sad.

Rang tries to reign in his emotions and breaks it to her that Yeon is planning on sacrificing himself to save her. She’s startled at that. When he asks why he shouldn’t kill her now, Jia recommends he doesn’t since he’d get hurt.

She places the CEO’s gun on the table. Jia plans to kill herself if she hurts Yeon at all. If she can’t do it, she wants Rang to kill her. She holds out her hand, suggesting they work together to protect Yeon. Rang hesitates … and instead touches her hand with the toy robot’s. Pfft, that is so petty.

At the clinic, Yeon asks Shin-joo to protect Jia and try to keep Rang in line if he starts to live recklessly again. Shin-joo unhesitatingly agrees. Yeon presents the deed to a new apartment he got for him and Yoo-ri as an early wedding gift.

Before Yeon leaves, Shin-joo asks why he saved him from his old mountain god. Yeon leaves him flabbergasted when he declares it was revenge for the god stealing his hardboiled egg when they had noodles together. He always saves his egg for last.

Yeon takes Rang out for naengmyeon (although he claims Rang is paying), and he notes that Yoo-ri was right about Rang using mustard instead of vinegar. Rang thinks it natural that she’s so attentive to him given that he’s her savior.

Yeon finally asks about Puppy Boy and learns that he was Rang’s old puppy. He starts laughing when Rang says he took him because his stepfather was abusive. Yeon finds it ridiculous that Rang acted like “the Joker” but actually went around saving people. HA. Yeon fondly watches Rang while he eats and even gives him his precious egg when he asks for it.

At the mansion, Yoo-ri says she wants to go home and insists Rang and Shin-joo are still waiting for her. The imoogi thinks she, like him, has darkness inside and brings misery to those around her. He advises from personal experience not to be so hopeful – no one will save her.

Rang asks why Yeon is willing to risk his life for Jia. Yeon doesn’t want her to die to protect him again, but Rang thinks that sounds just fine. Yeon asks Rang to come with him to catch the imoogi and help him handle unforeseen events. Rang is all “I’ll think about it,” prompting Yeon to wonder how he’s so blasé when his brother could die. “You won’t die,” Rang insists. Gumihos don’t die that easily.

Yoo-ri asks the imoogi what he plans to do after becoming a god. “I’ll have the world, and I’ll have Jia,” he says with a smirk. He expects Yeon won’t play fair either and orders Yoo-ri to block whoever Yeon brings with him. He threatens to make Rang or Shin-joo kill themselves if she doesn’t agree.

A nervous Hye-ja goes to see Taluipa to plead on Yeon’s behalf which Taluipa finds insolent. Hye-ja’s appeals to her empathy don’t work, although Taluipa does look affected when Hye-ja asks if losing Yeon won’t hurt. She knows Taluipa is fond of him because he reminds her of her son, but Taluipa reminds her she didn’t give in to her son’s desperate pleas for his wife either.

When Hye-ja claims that’s why Taluipa still can’t forgive herself, Taluipa grows truly angry and commands her to leave before she “crushes those hands you cook with.” Before leaving, Hye-ja “delivers” joint supplements and asks Taluipa not to abandon Yeon or Hyun Eui-ong.

Meanwhile, Rang tosses a stuffed animal at Shin-joo’s face upon hearing that he accused Yoo-ri of using him. Ha. Shin-joo, who is piggybacking the sleeping Puppy Boy, wants Rang to talk to Yoo-ri for him, but Rang refuses since he doesn’t approve of Shin-joo. And then he takes him to go see Yoo-ri.

Rang talks to her though the video intercom at the mansion and makes her laugh when he says she’s made his life uncomfortable – no one gets him naengmyeon and Puppy Boy covers him in stickers. Heh. Shin-joo takes a softer approach and just asks her to stay safe.

Rang cuts Shin-joo off as he shows the engagement ring he bought. Rang promises to save her and drags Shin-joo away before he can vow to save her too. Pfft. Yoo-ri cries to see her family did come for her.

Elsewhere, Yeon and Jia spend the day doing stereotypical drama date things like going to the arcade. Yeon struggles with the claw machine, but Jia guides his hand and wins them a fox plushie. I love how Yeon demands, “Help me!” as he goes in for another one, whereas Jia refuses to let him help her make a basket later, declaring it her fight against the machine.

Later, they eat ice cream, and Yeon confesses he must really love her. Despite his long life muddling his memories, all the time he’s spent with her is clear. She asks him not to ever forget her and says she loves him. They each get emotional, both acting like it’s their final day.

At her son’s memorial alter, Taluipa wonders who abandoned whom. She’d vowed never to forgive him, but she realizes it’s herself she can’t forgive. “What kind of mother was I?” she asks and cries.

That night, the mood turns somber for Yeon and Jia. If things go wrong, he hopes she’ll forget everything. Jia shoots that down – she plans to wait for him like he waited for her. She wishes for a miracle so they can both live.

Yeon gets a call from Taluipa and goes running to see her. She talks about how her son shut down after his wife died. Taluipa thinks he left behind the shoes she made him as an accusation, but Yeon offers a different interpretation: even in death, he didn’t want to ruin the shoes his mother made him.

She announces she plans to quit smoking like her son (and Yeon) wanted. It’s time to do things she hasn’t done. Yeon perks up. There’s a way out of this where Yeon and Jia survive, she proclaims. (Now she tells him…)

Taluipa hands Yeon a sword and instructs him to strike Jia with it when “Terry” shows up. The imoogi will desperately try to escape Jia’s dying body and merge with its other half. When they’re whole again, Taluipa will turn the imoogi to stone. She promises to save Jia, even though it breaks the rules. Yeon
grabs her in an ecstatic hug.

Elsewhere, the imoogi pays the Magistrate a visit. After he procures the “mirror of the moon,” he knocks the Magistrate out.

While sitting with Sae-rom, Jia gets a call from “Terry” who is outside her building. She arms herself and heads out to meet him. Jia demands to know the cure, but he claims to never have looked for one.

Jia curses him to hell which he finds endearing, I guess. He again asserts that he’ll have her, but Jia would rather die. He calls out the imoogi in her who immediately warns him not to team up with Yeon. But he’s not worried about whatever they’re planning – he has a task for his other half.

When Yeon gets home, he finds Imoogi Jia who informs him that her other half attacked the Magistrate and stole something valuable. Yeon looks alarmed as he utters, “the mirror of the moon.”

Taluipa stares in disbelief, asking how the imoogi has that face. (Aha! It is her son’s face.) She stumbles back as he advances and taunts that he chose this face for her.

Yeon realizes what the imoogi is planning to do with the mirror, but Imoogi Jia won’t let him go to Taluipa. All of the imoogi’s sleeper agents – Shin-joo, Hye-ja, and Rang – are activated and hold Yeon back.

The imoogi tells Taluipa her son was the only person who would talk to him. He’d thought of Bok-gil as his first friend, but he still infected Bok-gil’s wife with the plague. Taluipa is horrified as he says his friend looked too happy.

Taluipa loses it and goes to attack. Behind his back, the imoogi activates the mirror. From outside, we see the whole building light up from within.

Yeon fights off the imoogi’s agents and begs Jia to come out. There’s a way for them to survive. The others come to, and Yeon orders Rang to come with him and Imoogi Jia.

Yeon finds the imoogi waiting in Taluipa’s office. The imoogi nods to something covered in a sheet. Yeon pulls it off to reveal Taliupa turned to stone. Yeon grabs “Terry” by the throat, realizing this was his plan all along.

When the imoogi blames Yeon for resisting and causing this mess, Yeon whips out the sword and attacks him. But it’s two against one, and Imoogi Jia is much more effective at fighting Yeon since he’s afraid to hurt Jia.

Suddenly, Jia grabs her head in pain. “Terry” watches smugly as the scales spread and her eyes blink yellow and slitted like a snake’s. Yeon can’t stand to see her in pain and says he’ll ingest the scale.

Outside, Yoo-ri wields her hairpin and blocks Rang from going inside. As Rang threatens to kill her if Yeon gets hurt, Yeon prepares to eat the scale. “Don’t!” Jia surfaces and holds a gun to her head. Yeon tries to coax her into lowering the gun, but she’s determined to protect him.

Jia whispers, “Goodbye,” and starts to pull the trigger. Yeon rushes her and manages to point the gun at the sky as it fires. Before Jia can stop him, Yeon eats the scale, and Jia’s scales begin to move onto Yeon.

Rang punches Yoo-ri in the stomach and runs inside where he sees Jia holding Yeon whose face now has scales. Enraged, Rang flies at “Terry,” but he’s no match for him. The imoogi ends up wounding him in the leg with his own axe.

Something happens, though, and “Terry” seems to be struggling. Nearby, Jia holds Yeon and cries. He assures her that they won and stands. As “Terry” seethes and spits up blood, Yeon shares that he ate evening primrose from a graveyard.

Jia and Rang watch helplessly as Yeon and the imoogi trade blows. The imoogi clutches his heart and yells in pain but keeps fighting. Yeon locks him in a grip and shouts for Rang who pushes past his pain and runs to his brother.

“You know, right?” Yeon asks him. Rang shakes his head in anguish. Yeon tosses him his sword and opens the door to the underworld.

Yeon begs Rang to kill “Terry” before Yeon turns into the imoogi – he wants to be himself in the end. Rang cries and says in a small voice, “I don’t want to,” looking like a terrified kid.

Yeon spits up blood and looks like he’s losing himself. “Rang, save me,” he pleads. Rang steels himself and rams the sword through “Terry” with a scream. Below, Jia screams too.

Rang stares at his hand in shock while Jia runs towards them. The imoogi vows that he’ll be reborn, and then he’ll find Jia. But Yeon knows it’s impossible to return once you’ve crossed the river. Yeon looks at Jia and whispers, “I love you,” while he falls into the underworld. The door shuts behind him.

Jia screams in agony. Her and Rang both sink to the ground and sob in grief. Amidst her wails, Jia narrates that Yeon gave a relieved smile like this was his happy ending.


 
COMMENTS

I was hoping they’d find a way around Yeon’s murder-suicide plan, although I did have a feeling this would be the outcome. Ah-eum sacrificed herself for him the first time, so if one of them had to die, I expected it would be Yeon this time. But poor Rang! What an awful thing to have to do. He looked so terrified and vulnerable – Kim Bum killed that scene. Last time, Ah-eum forced Yeon to kill her to end the imoogi, and this time, Rang essentially took Yeon’s role. As if Rang needed more trauma to work through. He’s probably going to be a mess after this. I am glad he told Jia about Yeon’s plan, though, so she wasn’t entirely unprepared for what might happen. If only the imoogi hadn’t gotten to Taluipa first. She’d finally come around to helping and could’ve saved Yeon and Jia both had she not fallen into the imoogi’s trap.

Looking back, it was quite the oversight for them to leave items like that mirror vulnerable. I had almost forgotten about the Magistrate, and it seems Yeon and the gang did too. The imoogi planned this more thoroughly than I expected. I had thought the imoogi halves might hinder each other, but they were a united front in the end. Taking on the appearance of Taluipa’s son was a smart move to throw her off her game. I like how that backstory with Taluipa’s son was woven into the main plot. I thought he might’ve had something to do with the plague the daughter-in-law spread, but I hadn’t anticipated that the imoogi knew Bok-gil personally and was “friends” with him.

I’m still wondering if there’s something else in store. Where was Hyun Eui-ong during all this? There’s no way he decided to just sit it out. I wouldn’t be surprised if he planned something on his own behind the scenes. I’m not sure what the extent of his powers and authority are, but maybe he can do something to save Yeon. At the very least, he might be able to help Yeon reincarnate. And what happens now that Taluipa has been petrified? Is it permanent or can she be revived somehow? I wonder who is in charge of things if she’s incapacitated. There’s no way a position like hers can remain unfilled.

If Yeon is really gone, although it will be hard, I think Jia is resilient enough that she’ll be okay. She has her family back now and her extended family in Jae-hwan and Sae-rom. Those two have grown on me. At the start, they were kind of background characters that I didn’t notice much. I wish they’d been developed a bit more because I do like them. Anyone with the no-nonsense sensibility to smack an incredibly powerful and malicious mythical creature in the face earns my approval. Clearly, they should’ve had Sae-rom around more since her instincts are on point, and the woman means business. And Jae-hwan is so sweet and loyal, much like Shin-joo. Only Rang is petty enough to dislike someone like that.

Rang and Yeon both share the family trait of pettiness, that’s for sure. Watching Rang squabble with Shin-joo was amusing, though. Even while they worked together to convince Yoo-ri, Rang couldn’t help sniping at him. If they all become family, that’s going to be greatly entertaining. Jia is pretty much on the opposite end of the petty spectrum. I’ve always appreciated her maturity, like how she handled the situation with Rang. She confronted him about the CEO right away and rationally decided to put aside their animosity to work together in their common goal of protecting Yeon. I’m so glad her character has remained resourceful, tough, and determined all the way through.

From the way things went this hour, it looks like fate has won this fight. Although, we’ve still got one episode left, and I can’t imagine this is all over and handled. I’m honestly not sure what exactly I want out of the finale; there are lots of ways this could go. Mainly, I just hope we get an ending that makes sense and does justice to Rang the characters we’ve grown attached to over the course of the drama.

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Thanks so much for the detailed recap and comments.

It's not that I didn't like the episode. I did. I just didn't want to watch this. I knew we would get to this point, and I just didn't want to watch it. And I realized also how little I care about Jia and Yeon being together or not. And again, it's not that I don't like Jia (I do, she's a very consistent FL, never a damsel in distress, heartfelt, kind and resilient), it's that I don't need her in the equation. And again, it's not that the love story is not nicely done (it is) and that I don't understand how Yeon and Jia are connected. It's just that he main love story of this drama is Yeon and Rang. Blame it on LDW and KB.

Things I loved about this episode: SaeRom slapping Jia-Imoogi to come to her senses; ShinJoo and Rang, Rang and ShinJoo and they two talking to YuRi through the intercom and YuRi understanding they both love and care for her; Hyun Ui-Ong realizing how much he loves his wife; Snail Bride nursing his long time lost husband and her face when he told her that eating her meals felt so familiar inside.

Things I didn't like: Rang and Yeon suffering. Rang being the one killing Yeon, even if it was the only way possible and his way of redemption (let's not forget that my psycho distracting fox has been like forever on the "Wanted" list of Taluipa).

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I definitely got more hooked onto this drama when we started to focus on the team effort. I eventually warmed up enough to the romance to sympathize with their struggle and to Jo Boa (I've liked her since SUFBB but it did take her a bit to really settle into this role especially beside LDW and Kim Bum), but I still liked everything else better.

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Completely agree with everything in your comment. Getting the crew together has made it more interesting, and I agree about Jo Bo-ah needing some time to settle in. She definitely seems to hit a better stride mid-way through, but I think it was hard to be attached to the OTP because of it.

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Rang and ShinJoo are the best brothers-in-law. YooRi is lucky to have them both looking out for her.

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SaeRom slapping Jia-Imoogi was awesome. I wished she can go around slapping all the other characters, including the writer, who seems to have too heavy of a touch on everything and I could feel them going "THIS IS A TOUCHING MOMENT! FEEL TOUCHED!"

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“...main love story of this drama is Yeon and Rang. Blame it on LDW and KB.“

Absolutely!

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Yes and a smart show would adapt and phase out what didn't work - ML/FL chemistry-less romance with a ridiculous supernatural threat that never worked beyond campy fluff such as Imugi sucks the life out of his nasty nannies and Imugi goes to work. That's the difference between infinitely stronger 1-10 and infinitely weaker 11-16. First batch was monster of the week a la X Files with bromance at the center cause LR was the main antagonist. But once we got that 2 Imugis BS, bromance took the backseat and the focus became #saveJA. le zzzzzz.

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I was right. There was no way that CEO would be the one to kill JiA. The imoogi inside her would takeover if she is in danger.

I like that our villain is smart. I really hate cartoonish and idiotic villains. Terry and ImoogiJiA kept the war council on their toes.
Just felt bad that Yeon had to die and Rang would be the one to help him do it.

And... my heart goes out to Rang. Very traumatizing position that Yeon placed him in but they have to do it to vanquish that imoogi once and for all. Despite all his faults and viciousness, Rang is the most compelling character in this show.

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Of course Yeon will be ok. He fell into a river, and we all know that heals everything. Now if he had fallen onto a car he would have been toast.

Note - laws of kdramaland don't seem to permit landing on anything else except rivers & cars, much though I might wish to someday see someone try to jump into a river but instead go splat onto some rocks along the riverbank. Pity that the door was directly over the river and not off to the side a bit.

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Well, SeRi landed on JungHyuk. I'd rather take that option.

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You would risk riding a paraglider into a tornado. And when you survive that tornado, there is no guarantee that Captain Ri will be there to catch you. He may be busy with Seri in Switzerland. 😉

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My fantasy, my rules 🤣🤣🤣

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🤣 of course.🤣

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Or a garbage barge going under the bridge...or a speed boat...or a sailboat, depending on the desired end state.

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Magic mirror. Evening primrose. Story pulled a few too many last-minute gimmicks out of its *ss hat.

I looked up evening primrose and it seems that people use it to treat a variety of conditions, including acne & PMS. Nowhere is it stated that it is effective for getting rid of imoogis.

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Uh, no, you clearly either didn't watch the series thoroughly, or you have short memory. As mentioned above, Moon Mirror is the bear Magistrate's magic artifact. He used it during the fight with Yeon around episode 7 or 8. And graveyard primrose at least has been mentioned several times of being poisonous for gumiho, or at least Yeon. That's why Yeon has to use lightning to kill the witch doctor at that island in episode 4 or so. By poisoning himself, he makes a feedback injury to Terry using the imoogi inside him as the media. Rather than asspull, it's in fact the complete opposite, the series actually pulls smart Chekhov's gun with many things, from the primrose, bear Magistrate, and even Taluipa's son's tragedy.

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Connection to Taluipa's son tragedy made zero sense. Yes, we knew that there would be some Bok Gil/Imugi reveal cause they kept bringing up Bok Gil over and over, but the way they went about was off. For one, it added yet another grudge to Imugi's growing list of grudges (he wants to be a God...and loved...and marry JA) which is bad cause villain needs clear motivation and this is confusing. Maybe I'm just dumb but what did this character want? What was his point? So now, at the next to last hour, they throw in the "yeaaah, I knew your son and I ruined his life and now have his face to provoke you into doing the Medusa trick". How does that make any sense with what came before? In Ah Eum timeline, Imugi wasn't even corporeal but was possessing people. So suddenly he decided to just take his unrequited crush's face that he didn't before? Mess. I'm open for opinions and interpretations but this didn't click with me. It was shock for the sake of shock and it still doesn't explain why he wanted to be a God and where fixation on marrying JA comes from (since neither of these characters have anything to do with Imugi's best friend/unrequited crush).

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*facepalm* You clearly don't follow the plot then. Imoogi is the one that is supposed to be the mountain god after becoming a dragon, not Yeon. But he failed, so the role went to Yeon. Because Imoogi is a petty bastard, he wants everything that Yeon has because for him, it should have been him that have those things (the godhood, the girl, etc).

The Bokgil reveal is in line with what we know of Imoogi before, that he is a petty asshole thorough and thorough. He infects Bokgil's wife with plague literally because of what he said, "Bokgil just seems a bit way too happy for me." And when he has the chance of having an actual body through the sacrifice of that island's villagers in episode 4, he decides to mold his body into the likeness of Bokgil because he probably expects to be in Taluipa's crosshair sooner or later. And because he is petty like that.

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Petty like that is exactly why this part of the story didn't work. I see we agree here. They just didn't know what petty-ness to focus on which is why the only petty-ness that actually resonates, and is downright appalling, was treated as a throwaway reference (how he ruined the son's life despite kindness shown to him). That's actually the only interesting thing about Imugi that would have made him a compelling villain. betrays a friend. takes his face to mentally torture those who knew him. Instead, we got generic wants-the-powah-and-the-girl that never went anywhere cause he never achieved either even for a second. Instead of JA, he held Yu Ri captive (and no, JA having a piece of Imugi that can be controlled with a simple slap is not getting the girl, not to mention that that part of Imugi wasn't even interested in JA). He never usurped the Mountain God position to make it harder for heroes to take him out. It should have been like Black Panther, where Killmonger became the King of Wakanda and got BP powers which rose the stakes. Imugi never rose the stakes especially not with that LOL pandemic that had no urgency whatsoever.

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I remembered the primrose and that part was the only part that felt really clever and logical and adhered to the rule of their universe and the circumstances. The mirror redirected Taluipa's powers to turn her into stone, but I wondered why the Imoogi needed it since they already seem quite powerful? And how did they know they needed it? How did they know the bear Magistrate had it?

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Remember, the evil CEO once approached the Bear Magistrate for help in kidnapping Jia's parents. Imoogi is probably then told by the CEO. And from the way I see it, the Bear Magistrate is a famous mountain god, therefore facts about him should be known to the supernatural public.

And Imoogi's powerset relies on spreading plagues that kill humans. As we have seen from his 1 on 1 fight with Yeon, Imoogi is just that weak in a direct physical fight. And Taluipa is strong enough she can just blink a mountain god to a stone. In RPG terms, that would be a true damage, and Imoogi has no way to counter that on his own. So rather than preventing it, the petty asshole instead uses it to his advantage through intentional provoking and the Moon Mirror. Petty as hell? Yes. But it's very effective.

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I liked the pacing and twists in this episode. It didn't feel like they were trying to squeeze too many things in, to me, although I know other Beanies might beg to differ. It's interesting that Yeon and Jia separately asked Rang to be their back-up in case their first plan failed (i.e. to kill them so that the other wouldn't have to kill themselves). At first I was wondering why Rang chose to stab Terry-imoogi instead of Jia like he said he would have no hesitation doing, but it made sense when I realised that at that point, the imoogi in Jia had already transferred to Yeon's body and stabbing Jia wouldn't have accomplished anything. Onwards to the finale!

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I found this episode to be quite good and like @shuiyin mentioned, it reused elements from earlier in the show which gave it some deeper meaning. I also liked the cleverness on Terrimoogi and that it wasn't an easy fight, even though it ended as expected.

And how cute wasn't Rang and Shin-joo outside Yu-ri's door. My heart just melted. A love for Kim Bum will be what I take with me from this show.

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Honestly, for me Yeon dying for the good cause is the most "normal". He's the most powerful character and he's the one who can kill Imoogi. He's the oldest one too, he lived a very very long life that he kinda wasted by waiting for Jia and his nonchalance helped Imoogi to come back.

The hard part was to watch Rang feeling powerless and taking the decision to follow Yeon's decision.

I'm happy that Imoogi didn't kill any supporting characters like Jia's parents or friends, Shin-Joo or Yuri.

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This show went off rails during the delay and never got back. The story got too convoluted on one side (they didn't know what to do with 2 Imugis beyond Gotcha twist) and too repetitive on the other (LY and JA are such annoying, smug virtue signalers with their self-sacrificing BS that makes everyone around them miserable - who needs Imugi when you have this toxicity?). Also editing. How could they open this episode with scenes from the end of the episode? How could they show cringe Hallmark movie outtakes after CEO fired shots in Ep 14? How could they pad Ep 16's running time with so much old footage? This episode had it's moments but overall it was a hot mess. I'll start with the good:
Anything Rang. He's the MVP of the show, it belongs to him.
Hong Dae Sung is the Ramin Djawadi of TOTNT. When story crumbled, his score remained on point. It gave scenes emotion that two leads couldn't convey.
"Sit down" Best line of the show and right into Yeon's smug "I'm so awesome and better than anyone cause I'm so selfless" face. Gosh, I really grew to dislike this character.
The real highlight of the episode and one of Top 3 Scenes of the show - the hot as hell and sexy as sin homerotic fight/death between Yeon/Terry. I must have rewatched this 100 times since Wednesday. It's the kind of metaphoric-yet-almost graphic Eros mascaraed as Thanatos that you would not expect on a chaste Kdrama. It also put into sharp relief how toothless and sexless romance was in general. All forced cuteness and none of the fireworks (unlike this sex/fight/death).

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The bad:
Imugi/Imugis never made sense. The writers couldn't decide whether they were setting them up to fight each other or work together (which they did in this episode after what looked like a set up for confrontation, what's with beating us over the head with that they had different personalities and goals?). Moreover, Imugi/Imugis motivations changed with the plot. I counted the following: Imugi wants to be a God like LY; Imugi wants to be a real boy (have heart, feel, whatever); Imugi wants to marry JA; Imugi had an unrequited crush on Taluipa's son and ruined his life out of jealousy while taking his face to annoy his mom. Finally, for all the fretting about how to kill/neutralize Imugi (Sin Slaying dagger? Fox sword? Turn him into a stone?), Sae-rom's slapping Imugi's cheek instantly pacified the beast. Well, that was easy.
There's a saying that a story is as good as its villain and the villain/villains was a hot mess. Writers never figured him/them out, never focused on one motivation and in the end, none of this mattered anyway.
The Leads. They worked alright in the early episodes where they were kind of chemistry-less Mulder and Scully. But once the show started to ramp up the most cringe Hallmark filler, it only emphasized, rather than fixed, the deficiency in romance department. The spark simply wasn't there and it didn't help that the characters became progressively worse - smug, toxic virtue signalers who made everyone around them miserable. LY started to act with self-awareness (as if the actor was throwing around his star status) while JA just got so ridiculous. Case in point, when CEO pointed the gun at her, she was worried that he would trigger her Imugi and get killed! WTF? Who does that? If your life is threatened you very much hope that your evil doppelganger will come to the rescue. Oh and then she was distraught that this walking corpse who let Imugi eat his family and could have fed on JA parents' souls indeed ended up dead cause Imugi saved the day. I rest my case.
Overabundance of filler. They were clearly stretching the story to fit the 16 episode format that's mandatory for K dramas. This needs to change. Revolution is nigh. American shows moved from 20-22 episode mandatory format to as-many-as-we-need per season which is usually under 15 episodes. At least streaming shows are like that.
The show in conclusion (Ep 1 - 16 No Spoilers):
Massive disappointment. Started out great (in large part thanks to Fox Bros story being so compelling and offsetting the lacklaster romance) but lost its way after Ep 9/10 (with the resolution of Fox Bros, interminable romance was back to the front) and complete derailment coming after the 2 Imugi twist in 12. From that moment forward, the show turned into "and now what?" where loose threads were dropped, old questions never got answered, new questions were asked, only not to get the answer either. Mess. I wouldn't recommend this show to anyone because it's Lost...

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all over again. baits you with early good stuff and promise of resolved mysteries, but then loses its compass and just drops everything in the "it's about friends we made along the way" fashion. Yeah, no. Not worth the time and emotional investment.

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I knew it was too good to be true for granny’s plan to be carried out successfully. Even if there were inconsistencies in this episode of how easily imoogi managed to gain the upper hand, that last part of the episode was an emotional high which is what I’ve enjoyed from this drama.

When the main three are on screen together their acting synergy is just so good. I love that this drama not only had romantic love but emphasised on familial love, especially because Kim bum and lee dong wook’s bromance which had so much chemistry making their sad scenes that much more heartbreaking

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I kind of wish Jia and Rang wound up being friends, even though I knew there was absolutely no chance of it happening- maybe it's just because Yeon was my least favourite out of the three, but I spent the whole show wanting those two to interact more.

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Its unlikely they will be friends. Rang has deep-seated resentment towards AhEum. He also spent centuries fighting his brother because of her. Civil is the most we can hope between them.

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The whole thing with Yeon giving Rang the egg made me cry. The snail bride talking about her human husband's devotion made my heart ache. I'm glad Rang respected his brother's wishes at the end. He has really grown up!

I feel like I still don't get the Imoogis motivations, especially Tae-ri Imoogi. He wants Ji-ah, but is it the human Ji-ah that he wants or the Imoogi Ji-ah? He hates Yeon and wants to kill people. And then we learn that he also wants to kill Taluipa and become owner of Samdocheon?

At some point in the episode, Taluipa was on the phone with someone regarding the number of Imoogi-related deaths and she talked about mobilizing emergency forces, and I was like "YEAH! Get an army of supernaturals together!" Was excited to see Bear Magistrate, but then he turned out to be a robbery victim. Then I realized there is no supernatural emergency force coming to defeat the Imoogi, probably just an emergency force to handle the influx of souls from all the deaths. The Imoogi is not just a threat to humans, but to supernaturals as well, so I'm just confused as to why the gods are so chill about this.

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Taluipa said the death count is just at around 903 a day. That's like, rookie numbers for gods. How many people die everyday? For the gods, just a thousand more or less doesn't matter. In this kind of thing, gods only take matters into their own hands when the death tolls reach the hundred thousand mark. Cruel? Yes, but eastern gods have always been stick-in-the-ass assholes.

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There was a lot of good-bye-ing in this episode; the one that worked the best for me was Yeon and Rang and their noodles. The way they feel about each other played so well across both their faces, and I just find them so touching.

I really want to care more about Yeon and Ji-ah, but I just can't. I feel like LDW is really trying hard, but JBA still comes across as a high-schooler with her first boyfriend. She's been a fairly consistent character throughout, but she never managed to become a FL that I was really invested in or rooting for. To me, the biggest miss of this show was actually the OTP chemistry - if I cared more about them, overlooking plot holes, whiplash editing and bad CGI would be easier (case in point: Dinner Mate).

I love that Shin-joo and Rang to go Yu-ri together, and I love how clear it is to her how much they both care about her and are firmly, unequivocally on her side. These foxes are not abandoning each other. And that's how you know they're a family.

I'm also glad that Granny has come around in the end. Yeah, too little too late maybe, but she's on the team - and I really wanted that.

Finally, I'm sorry, but the vampire blood trail out of Yeon's mouth and his scaly face at the end...it just looked ridiculous, I cringed, I'm sorry, but at least he saved the world in the end?

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This show has been such a fabulous ride.

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I still had zero sympathy for Afterlife CEO. Having a soft spot deeeep deeeeep down does not excuse her insistance on being unhelpful for most of the show. When she turned to stone, I was like oh good can her husband take over now??

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Rang and Shinju going to see YuRi is one of my favorite scenes ever. So touching. Also, Kim Bum is officially the best actor in this show (in my mind). I came for LDW and I still love Lee Yeon, but the role he was given was a bit too much of the same thing throughout... I was more attached to him in Goblin (he was my fav character there). Kim Bum is just so good at bringing Lee Rang to life!! From the evil in the beginning to the helpless, scared baby that came through, KB was AMAZING. And he has got to be one of the cutest people on the planet.

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KB is sensational and it sucks that the show pivoted from him in 11-16. 1-10 are much stronger because LR was the main antagonist and that made the compelling bromance more central than the lackluster romance. You really didn't need Imugi (a villain that never worked and whose splitting in 2 derailed the show). The set up was already there. Older brother reluctantly takes in a younger brother. Just as they start to bond, he falls in love, prioritizes his girlfriend. She dies, looking for her reincarnation becomes his obsession, little brother is abandoned. 600 years ago, little brother is holding the grudge and older brother has found his love. Little bro plots revenge that may include unleashing a monster of some kind but the one that doesn't have convoluted connection with the leads and/or the warden of Sadocheon. Just a menace that requires brothers to team up and also a cautionary tale for the younger one. Much easier. Keeps focus on Brothers. Romance is on the side. Monster-of-the-week format that suited the show the best allows ML and FL to interact in a smart way rather than make us suffer through sugary music video montages of dating bliss.

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I thought that Lee Yeon asking Rang to be the one to kill him when Yeon is the one Rang cherishes the most is just too cruel.. but then you pointed it out, that it's just that the history repeated itself.. the scenario of when Ah Eum asked Lee Yeon to kill her although she’s the one he loves wholeheartedly. I used to question his action like “why don't you ask Shinju to do it or just throw yourself into the river? Why must you deepen the wound in your brother's heart when it just started to heal?” But now I think that it's just because Rang is the person Yeon trusted the most. He thought that Imoogi's power is just too much for Shinju to handle since he's a soft-hearted guy, and him choosing Rang is because he believe that his lil brother is strong enough to handle Imoogi. In my opinion, I think that Yeon appears to believe that if he is truly controlled by Imoogi like how Jia was and used him to attack Rang, Rang wouldn’t think twice to fight back as how Yeon hesitated to fight the Jia Imoogi because he don’t want to hurt Jia. Well, I appreciate that thought of yours, Lee Yeon. But I still think asking Rang to kill him is a bit too much (although that's what he appears to be wanting for about 600 years) . It's like he's using some absurd excuse to make Rang agree to carry out his plan. It's undeniably traumatizing, and a is a cruel way to 'ask for help' if you ask me.

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"that it's just that the history repeated itself.. the scenario of when Ah Eum asked Lee Yeon to kill her although she’s the one he loves wholeheartedly. "

It isn't the same at all. Ah Eum didn't ask LY to do it to save the third party for whom LY didn't care. OTOH, LR was asked to kill LY in order to save JA for whom LR didn't care at all. It was only LY forcing his muh true love onto people who didn't even know JA well so why would they care to protect her at the expense of their brother (LR), friend (Shin-joo), son figure (Taluipa)?

This is why the show didn't work in the 11-16 stretch. JA wasn't integrated well enough into LY circle for any of them to think that LY should sacrifice himself for her. They cared only for him. And that's a very poor foundation for the story that tries to sell #saveJA as the right choice. There's no emotional payoff if absolutely everyone but her boyfriend would rather cut her loose.

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Whoa... I totally forgot that Rang wanted to Yeon to die at the beginning. That's why they say be careful what you wish for...

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