228

Heartbeat: Episodes 15-16 (Final)

The day of reckoning draws near, and our half-vampire protagonist must either commit to reclaiming his immortal existence, or sacrificing himself for the human he loves. It’s finally time to find out whether his endeavors will grant him a heartbeat, or lead to heartbreak.

 
EPISODES 15-16

Do-shik discovers the truth behind Man-hwi’s dungeon, and he confronts him over his kidnapping of In-hae’s father. Narcissistic as always, Man-hwi blames it on Hae-won, shirking all responsibility. Appalled that Man-hwi would do such a cruel thing just because Hae-won wanted to obtain the mansion, Do-shik breaks things off with him — their agreement is null and void. In any case, he’s already obtained the most important piece of information from Man-hwi: he must prepare a knife made of hawthorn wood and silver, then stab it into the half-vampire’s scar to kill him.

Next, Do-shik confronts Hae-won, who’s appalled that Man-hwi would spread false rumors about her despite having no qualms resorting to underhanded means herself. She’s leaked the information about Woo-hyul’s identity to the neighborhood residents, expecting them to drive him out. Do-shik urges her to put a stop to her redevelopment plans, but Hae-won is resolutely obstinate.

Wanting to protect In-hae from Hae-won’s wrath, Do-shik gently broaches the topic of selling the mansion. However, not even In-hae’s father can convince her to leave. The roles have been reversed — now, it’s In-hae who wants to stay in the mansion, awaiting Woo-hyul’s return.

That puts her directly in the line of fire when Man-hwi intrudes upon the mansion, spoiling for a fight with Woo-hyul and threatening In-hae. Miles away, Woo-hyul’s danger radar activates — and the next thing Man-hwi knows, he’s tackled by a furious Woo-hyul.

Woo-hyul is sorely overpowered at first, until Man-hwi makes the mistake of strangling In-hae. A burst of power surges in Woo-hyul, sharpening his senses and allowing him to defeat Man-hwi easily.

Taecyeon Won Ji-ahn Heartbeat: Episodes 15-16 (Final)

After Man-hwi makes his escape, Woo-hyul turns to leave — but In-hae takes his hand, reminding him of his promise to never leave her side. Chastened, Woo-hyul pulls her into a tender hug, which Do-shik witnesses.

Back in the mansion, In-hae points out that Woo-hyul’s unilateral decision to leave was a selfish one. He’d be leaving her behind to pine endlessly, just as he once had. Instead, she suggests that they try to figure out an alternative solution together. Yes, one of you is a pragmatic go-getter with nerves of steel and the other is a quirky oddball with a penchant for unconventional tactics! Surely you two can work something out?

The day of the blood moon draws ever closer, ticking down the seconds to Woo-hyul’s end. Do-shik calls Woo-hyul out to an abandoned warehouse late at night, but unlike what the tense atmosphere might suggest, it’s not an ambush. Instead, Do-shik simply offers the hawthorn-silver dagger to Woo-hyul. If he can’t do anything to protect In-hae, then he could at least die for her sake. Uh, props for being upfront, I guess?

Woo-hyul declines the generous offer to terminate his own life, declaring that he has to fulfill his promise to In-hae first. He walks away, turning his back to Do-shik, which we all know is the best course of action when you have an armed opponent out for your blood. Unsheathing his blade, Do-shik tails along behind Woo-hyul, waiting for the right moment to strike.

Coincidentally, In-hae chances upon the scene, effectively thwarting Do-shik’s assassination plan for now. I don’t know how she managed to overlook the very conspicuous knife in Do-shik’s hand, but then again I suppose she only has eyes for Woo-hyul.

When the perpetually-uninvited guest Man-hwi crashes a meeting between Do-shik and Hae-won, all their illicit deals come to light. Furious at being cast aside by the humans he deems inferior, Man-hwi strangles Hae-won with his vampire strength — until Do-shik whirls him around and plunges his dagger deep into his chest. Yesss, Do-shik!! The weapon works its magic, and Man-hwi disintegrates right before their very eyes.

Utterly shaken by her near-death encounter, Hae-won scraps the redevelopment project. Calling Woo-hyul out for one last cup of coffee, Hae-won informs him that she’s returning to the States; it’s time for her to move on. Well, that certainly was a quick change of heart. Before Hae-won departs, though, she leaves him with a parting gift. Warning Woo-hyul that Do-shik is out for his blood, she urges him to stay safe.

Taecyeon Won Ji-ahn Heartbeat: Episodes 15-16 (Final)

Knowing his days are numbered, Woo-hyul wants to fulfill his bucket list with In-hae. After a tearful parting with his vampire buddies, Woo-hyul sets off on a trip with In-hae, and they enjoy a lovely date at the beach. As the sun sets, they express their gratitude to each other — through their interactions, they’ve come to learn what love truly is.

However, their blissful day comes to an abrupt end when Woo-hyul feels faint and nearly collapses. Back in their hotel room, In-hae feeds Woo-hyul some of her blood — and it sparks Woo-hyul’s memories, confirming that she’s the true reincarnation of Hae-sun.

Night falls, and Woo-hyul sneaks past a sleeping In-hae to meet Do-shik by the sea. A flashback reveals that Woo-hyul had asked Do-shik to kill him and drink his blood before the night of the blood moon. He’d rather make his death worthwhile, so if he can save both In-hae and Do-shik’s lives, he’s willing to give all of himself. All he wishes is for In-hae to be happy and loved.

Back on the beach, Woo-hyul entreats Do-shik to take good care of In-hae, and Do-shik admits that In-hae was right all along — Woo-hyul is indeed a good person. Sobs, he finally acknowledged that Woo-hyul is human!

Taecyeon Won Ji-ahn Heartbeat: Episodes 15-16 (Final)

As the eclipse begins and the shadows grow longer, Woo-hyul prompts Do-shik to follow through. Do-shik raises the dagger to strike — only to be interrupted by In-hae’s startled exclamation yet again. Do-shik halts, but Woo-hyul knows he can’t afford to dally. Grabbing Do-shik’s hand, Woo-hyul drives the knife into his own chest. Wait, but that’s not where the scar is! (Is there a twist? Please tell me there’s a twist.)

Horrified, In-hae rushes to Woo-hyul’s side, while a stricken Do-shik stands frozen in place. In a devastating reprise of Hae-sun’s death, Woo-hyul bleeds out in In-hae’s arms, promising that they’ll meet again one day. This time, he’ll find her. As In-hae wails in despair, the bite mark fades from Woo-hyul’s neck, and he grows limp — he’s gone.

The next morning, the Joo butlers and the vampire crew pay their respects to Woo-hyul, whom they’ve laid to rest in his coffin. As everyone says a few somber words of farewell, In-hae sincerely thanks Woo-hyul for coming into her life.

Later, Yang-nam pays the mansion a visit, bearing a gift for In-hae on Woo-hyul’s behalf. When the talks of redevelopment first arose, he’d squirreled the gold away to hide it from prying eyes and greedy hands. Eventually, he’d confessed to Woo-hyul, who instead told him to keep it under wraps so he could have an excuse to continue staying with In-hae. With this, Woo-hyul’s debt is finally paid, and the gold bar mystery concludes with an anticlimactic end.

Till this point, I’ve been holding out hope for a miracle involving our self-sacrificial vampire, but instead we get an ordinary flash forward. Some time later, we catch up with our crew. Dong-seop’s tteokbokki shop is finally welcoming flocks of customers, and Do-shik is paying it forward through his donations towards children’s cardiac surgeries. (His ever-supportive secretary gives him a thumbs-up, hee.) Best of all, In-hae’s guesthouse is flourishing, though she still gazes wistfully at Woo-hyul’s flower lights from time to time.

Continuing the Shaded Oasis tradition, In-hae hosts regular neighborhood get-togethers. Partway through the party, she retreats to Woo-hyul’s basement room, reminiscing about her time with him. When she comes back upstairs, there’s a familiar face gazing down at her from the balcony — it’s Woo-hyul, and In-hae smiles brightly up at him.

Taecyeon Won Ji-ahn Heartbeat: Episodes 15-16 (Final) Taecyeon Won Ji-ahn Heartbeat: Episodes 15-16 (Final)

See, I would have been more accepting of such an ending if the show had set it up that way from the start. If it had been a melancholic slice-of-life, for example, or a grand historical epic. Instead, it billed itself as a fantastical rom-com through and through, and so I can’t help but be blindsided by the unexpectedly tragic ending. Rather than emphasizing their serendipitous meeting and subsequent character growth, the ending instead reiterates the cycle of self-sacrifice, loss, and waiting. It’s clearly an attempt at bringing its story full circle, but I can’t help but think that the execution would have been much better if the repetition had been done through In-hae opening the coffin a second time, saving Woo-hyul again.

What initially started out as an innovative romp eventually devolved into a predictable trudge weighed down by its un-subverted tropes. It had the potential to craft innovative solutions for its mystical problems, but instead we got glossed-over plot threads and cliché scripts. While I commended the drama for its brisk pacing in the earlier half, since it meant we never harped on a single conflict for too long, this unfortunately worked to the show’s detriment once its story grew serious. (Also, as a Park Kang-hyun fan, I stand by my opinion that his acting chops were criminally underutilized — Do-shik’s character had so much squandered potential!)

Heartbeat’s greatest strength was its slapstick humor and outlandish antics, which meant it just had to lean fully into the campiness in order to be a satisfying watch. However, it didn’t trust itself enough to commit to the bit all the way to its final act, resulting in it petering out with a whimper. It almost reminds me of my disappointment in Joseon Attorney; the more promising a drama is in its earlier half, the more disheartening its later decline becomes.

Still, while I think the ending could have been greatly improved, I certainly enjoyed the journey it took to get here. For all its ridiculous hijinks, Heartbeat had lots of heart — its characters were earnest, likable (for the most part), and wholly relatable in their human folly. While its story closes with our lovers separated, it’s clear that Woo-hyul lives on through his positive influence on the lives around him. Ultimately, what makes someone human isn’t the heart they possess, but the love they give.

Taecyeon Won Ji-ahn Heartbeat: Episodes 15-16 (Final)

 
RELATED POSTS

Tags: , , , , , ,

228

Required fields are marked *

Comment was deleted

0
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thank you for recapping @solstices! HeartBeat broke my heart (but I'm recovering). If I had been prepared for a semi-tragic ending, it wouldn't have felt so bad. Why the heck did a fantasy have to have such a dang realistic ending?? No deus ex machina; no last-minute rule change. The worst part is that this ending wasn't foreshadowed by tone, writing, or characterizations until episode 15-16. (A) That's not fair, and (B) that's poor thematic writing. I didn't hate it, but I neither expected nor wanted a tragedy (I mean, to state the blindingly obvious). All of this being said, Woo-hyeol is still one of my all-time favorite ML characters, In-hae is one of my all-time favorite FL characters, and this drama had one of my favorite depictions of unconditional, selfless love.

I had ventured into the world of live-watching this spring (Lol after being burnt by Do Do Sol Sol when it aired, I switched to watching already-aired dramas), knowing that I ran the risk of tragic endings (or, endings that don't classify for me as happy*). I thought it would have backfired with the three sageuks I watched in spring, but nope, it was the "light fantasy rom-com." I guess I'll have to reevaluate my watching policy. Haha this was also the first drama I convinced my mom to live watch, because she prefers the bingewatching model. Oops. Even though this show tore my heart into a million pieces, I still had fun with the HeartBeat Hotties in this community! Stay hot, and stay hopeful! 😎🔥

*The HopefulRomantic Happy Ending Criteria: Both members of the OTP must be unquestionably alive and together at the end of the drama.

Current mood:

19
7
reply

Required fields are marked *

Comment was deleted

0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Comment was deleted

0
3
reply

Required fields are marked *

ARGHHHHH I'm having trouble - it's not letting me post gifs for some reason??? I'm sorry for spamming up the wall with deleted posts 😅

2
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

Oh! You can't post pics or gifs in normal comments, only on your fanwall ones!

4
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

OHH!! I didn't know that; thank you for explaining!! Haha well now that makes sense why I couldn't get anything to work!

1

That the characterizations were (on the whole) so gripping and wonderful makes this “endgame bait-and-switch” that much more painful, I feel!!!

Thanks for contributing your insights, as always, Hopeful!!

9
reply

Required fields are marked *

That's such a minimal criterion to fulfill that it makes me sad. In the western romance book genre, in order to be considered romance genre there has to be a happily ever after or happily for now. If it doesn't follow that but markets itself as romance genre, the book gets review bombed by angry romance fans. I feel like romcom Kdramas need that rule.

I wonder how Korean viewers feel about these types of endings? Is this a cultural thing or just the time-honored tradition of happily-ever-after for romances not being considered "interesting" or "deep" enough?

10
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

I hated the ending, but it does look like In-hae does still end up happy despite Woo-hyeol being gone. And I guess he was happy to go if it meant that In-hae lives. So would that still be a happy ending of sorts? I like hopefulromantic's criteria of the romantic leads being unquestionably alive and together.

5
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Yeah, HPE or HFN requires that the leads end up happy and unquestionably together

2
reply

Required fields are marked *

Whaaaaaaaat!?!?!?! Y’all I am shook. I did not expect that coming from any direction. They were so cavalier with the rules, I thought for sure there would be some loophole somewhere, and now I’m sitting here shocked at how loopholeless I am.

Ok, now let me put down some actual thoughts about this. I didn’t hate it, and there are times when I think a drama should absolutely keep one of its leads dead at the end, but nothing had prepared me to think that this would be a drama that did that (it’s so rare to begin with). Narratively it is an ending that makes a lot of sense, and in some ways I’m glad they didn’t waste my emotions when everyone was making plans for the future without U-hyeol and trying to say goodbye. On the other hand, it was such a goofy, fun drama that a bittersweet ending doesn’t really feel in keeping with the rest of the tone.

Moving on to some other thoughts (because I actually did have some other thoughts before that ending sucked all the air out of my lungs in surprise), I appreciated that Do-shik turned it around in the end, but I wish his redemption arc had been longer. He wins points for consistently saying what the audience (or at least what I) was thinking to Hae-won, who literally has no idea what love is. More points for all his cool-headedness coming in handy in the confrontation with Man-hwi. But I wish he had had more moments when he questioned what he was doing. There was that conversation in the car with Man-hwi where our resident evil vampire tells him that they aren’t that different because they both need to drink someone else’s blood to survive, and I would have loved it if that spurred him to more reflection. (BTW, does Do-shik get to live in the end? I wouldn’t have wanted to be the one prying U-hyeol out of In-hae’s distraught arms to get a little trickle of that magic-scarred-half-vampire blood. But maybe he had it handled? I can’t decide if his donation at the end was in gratitude for being able to live or in preparation for his death…)

In a perfect example of U-hyeol being more humane than most humans, he was much more gracious to Hae-won in the end than I would have been. I don’t mind that we eventually found out that it was In-hae all along who was the reincarnation of Hae-sun, and I like that U-hyeol had made a choice about who to love before he realized the truth. And finally, I loved In-hae standing in the same spot U-hyeol always did, watching over a party at the Shaded Oasis. I’ll need more time before I know how I felt about it overall, but thanks for a great commenting time, Beanies.

16
8
reply

Required fields are marked *

Hae-won had the MOST satisfying ending. She learned something, she grew, she talked it out with Woo-hyeol and then she went off to The States to make tons more money.

What????

12
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

Truly bizarre. I have no idea where her turnaround even came from. I mean, kind of the confrontation with Man-hwi? But it happened so fast that it seems very weird and forced. And all we saw was her getting drunk alone, not actual reflection or honesty.

6
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

I feel like it was also whiplash in the first place when she just became obsessed with Woo-hyeol just because he showed interest. No background story about why she is the way she is. She's pretty much an NPC for the drama.

6
reply

Required fields are marked *

Ok I can't even help it, I have more thoughts.

What I wanted so badly from this drama was our two leads working together to find a solution to the problem. They were both such determined people, and they had never encountered higher stakes than this, so they should have been so motivated to figure it out! Instead we rushed through the last few days of U-hyeol's time with no indication that they had even been working on it. Ugh.

ALSO, I feel like I need to have another rant about the rules. What even are they?!? At one point, we learn that Do-shik needs to cut out the heart of our half vampire and drink his blood. At another moment, he has to stab him in the scar for it to work. I also have a memory (did I make this up?) of Cat Man telling U-hyeol that if In-hae didn't kill U-hyeol, she would die because she opened the coffin. I think it was in the same conversation where he told U-hyeol that it wasn't a simple blood donation, but instead a full-on draining that needed to happen once In-hae's blood was full of love. So I feel like I have no idea if ANY of our main characters actually survives this, because the rules shifted around so much. I was willing to overlook this because I thought it meant we could just make up whatever we needed to in order to get a happy ending, but now that they've whiffed that, I'm just not sure what the point of all the conflicting rules was.

Up to the absolute end, I was expecting some kind of Beauty and the Beast situation - where U-hyeol would either come very close to death or actually die for a sec, and then In-hae's grief and desperation (and maybe a little of her blood) would be able to revive him. Should we just write it ourselves?

14
4
reply

Required fields are marked *

There's been alot of Beauty and the Beast references, but I always thought the structure was more Wizard of Oz where the characters are searching for something they already have - a heart. And CatMan was the conman wizard who sneaks off leaving everyone startled to their half-finished fate. Up-to-the-very-last-minute I was expecting the Good Witch of the North to swoop in and change the rules to give everyone their happy ending.

10
reply

Required fields are marked *

You have summed up my frustration with the end of the drama! I felt this ending was just ridiculous. It made no sense, it wasn’t in line with the other 13-14 episodes we had watched.

I wanted our couple - who communicated and worked together to solve problems throughout - to think of a work around. Obvious to me was blood transfusions! I mean, they drank packets of blood throughout, they weren’t vegetarians. So couldn’t we do a brief scene where In-hae donated blood, and Woo-Heol drank it? And Don-sik had a transfusion? I don’t know - even if that failed, at least they tried something. If they had tried solutions, and he died, I could have accepted it better.

I thought the ending was a hallucination - how was he reborn at the very end?

And Man-hwi is a vicious moral free vamp…he could have killed the Hae-won in a second. I wanted him to kidnap her and imprison her for 5 years (just saying, this would have been a much more satisfying ending for me! 😂).

My happy ending - other than the vicious and fitting end to Hae-won - would have been that our kindhearted and loving heart free Vampire would have “died” for love, but then wake up a human. Immediately. Or when In-hae gave him her blood drops, they would have seen how just periodic bits of her blood would keep him alive and he would slowly become “more human” if there was a way to measure that. Or stay a sweet vampire — I didn’t care as long as he lived.

Oh and in the end, did the other fairly decent character facing the death or murder dilemma , Don-sik, end up drinking the blood and solving his issue, or was he too late with In-hates dash to stop Woo-heol?

Happy endings all around except for the main couple. THIS is not playing by the romance genre rules…why do Korean dramas so often end in tears?)

I really liked this up until the end, and feel very cheated of my happily ever after - or at least status quo ever after - ending. 😡

13
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

I agree. For a second when he stabbed himself and the scar disappeared, I thought he was going to wake up and be human. I was actually pretty confident. Like 4 seconds of heart-pounding uncertainty and then he coughs and opens his eyes. Seriously, someone should fanfic this. We have IDEAS.

11
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Comment was deleted

0

Everyone's ideas/expectations for the ending were so much better than what we got 😭

5

Here’s what I wanted my post to be about: Baderich Real Estate Development? Hae-won’s company is called “Baddie-Rich Real Estate?” That’s a little on the nose, I would have said. But, no. That’s not where we are.

The central conceit of the plot was that Woo-hyeol wanted to become human to feel what it's like to love with a real beating heart, right? Well, I guess he got his exact wish, only no one told him (or us) at what cost.

You see, the problem is that this was a cautionary tale dressed up as a cute, funny rom-com (yes @hacja yes) as in, "You better watch out for what you wish for..." He was clearly human when he stabbed himself in his own heart, bled out and died. He didn't disappear in a poof of magic dust like Man-hwi did. No, he really died—may I repeat, when he stabbed his own self in his own body with someone else’s dagger—like an actual human would die if you did that.

So, the price of getting what he wanted was that he died, abandoning everyone who loved him, “allowing them” to learn “valuable” life lessons. Or run a PPL restaurant. WTF show? Sure, sure, they're a fated love and he'll totally come back to her (When though? She’s not The Lonely, Shining Goblin or anything…). And yes, of course, it is the love we give that is important. Anyway. Fine. SHOW, coping with hard life lessons wasn't the deal we struck.

PS: Do-sik didn't get his "half-vampire blood treatment" either so he's going to die soon too, I guess. Whatever. He’s a good man. I guess all of those die willingly.

19
11
reply

Required fields are marked *

Ok, but, I still laughed at your opening paragraph, so thank you!

If they wanted it to be a bittersweet tale of someone wanting to be human and then showing how human he already was over the course of the drama, that is a really lovely story that I'd be happy to watch. But this Was. Not. It.

8
reply

Required fields are marked *

When I realised the name of her company I shouted out laughing. That was my only laughter in the last 4 episodes.

8
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Me too, that was one good crackup.

5
reply

Required fields are marked *

I feel a bit stupid that I didn’t think he was human when he killed himself! I did wonder why he wasn’t ashes, but it didn’t occur to me that he was human.

Well that just pisses me off even more!

Bad-Rich-Real Estate is hilarious! Why couldn’t the drama have just stayed funny? Grrr…

4
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

He wasn't; he was semi human or whatever. Maybe leaning more toward human but I don't think he died human.

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

But how do half-vampires end up when they die? Maybe they die as corpses too instead of ash? While I think you're right that he died a human, a part of me doesn't feel sure. We don't know much about half-vampires except they are useful for curing heart disease curses.

Looks like they're intent on keeping his corpse in the basement? How are they keeping it fresh?

5
reply

Required fields are marked *

FWIW, everyone what Do-sik says in his final interview is that “He doesn’t know when his life is going to end.” This means he’s not immortal, for sure—although that didn’t seem to be the final “rules change,” which was that he needed the blood so that he wouldn’t die young.

Given that he didn’t stab Woo-hyeol at all, and given that even Woo-hyeol—can I say it again—stabbed his own damn self in his own freaking heart and not neck scar which is where the wound needed to happen, ostensibly, for the curse to be broken…I think we can safely assume that Do-sik received no blood from a vampire.

Besides, my argument was that he wasn’t really a vampire anyway when he died, a death that was, yes, by his own hand, saying: “I love you In-hae, but I’ve had ENOUGH. I don’t want a single second more with you. GIMME DAT KNIFE, MAN-FRIEND stab stab stab!!!”

As you can tell, this plot point is really still getting to me.

6
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

It got to me too. As @miso2019 said, just no.
I liked this drama and it just didn’t hold its bargain with me to the end. I know it is rather solipsistic but I’m taking it rather personally.

5
reply

Required fields are marked *

I feel it too, my friend, I feel it too.

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

You know what the funniest part about the whole stabbing himself thing was. For someone who was going out of their way to spare In-hae the trauma of watching him die (in addition to not wanting to loose control), man just straight up STABBED himself IN FRONT of her. What was the logic behind this one sir?? Because that's pretty damn traumatising, probably ten times more so than watching you fade away slowly or something omg.

10
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Exactly. From now on, I will not give any credence whatsoever to official KD characterisation/s/publicity. There will always be trauma for some of us viewers even if they call it a comedy. This seems to be the incontrovertible fact. This industry operates by rules that I don’t understand and cannot figure out.

8
reply

Required fields are marked *

A lame ending for a drama with a promising start (and middle). The only character worth watching in the last 4 episodes was Do-sik and I hope he was able to get a few drops of Woo-hyul's blood.

I already guessed that catman had the gold, but I was surprised how little there was in the suitcase. The FF button was really helpful for the trip to the seaside scenes and similar tropes.

Not the first disappointing drama ending and, I fear, also not the last.

12
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

😐 is the entirety of my response for that ending. No. Just no.

13
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

One of the reasons I was so invested in this drama and hoping it would be one I could recommend was something it didn’t have – and that was overt or sneaky misogynistic elements. No harassment disguised as romance. No incompetent male succeeding while vastly more competent females around him are knocked down. Bad behaviour had consequences. The absent father was not given a free pass.

We had a range and balance of female characters written with the same depth as the male characters. A relatable female lead character played with nuance and sincerity. The romance was centered on people growing together, not on appearance.

Disparaging comments about “women’s work” were negated by having one the most masculine of idol-actors – Capt Korea - perform these jobs with enjoyment and dignity.

And it was all just a natural part of the story-telling.

The only thing that struck me as off was the marketing that describes the female lead as cold-hearted…because she has certainly never been that. Socially isolated, yes. But always full of empathy along with her grounding common sense. The drama showed the warming of her blood as much about accepting friendship and community as falling in love.

I can’t say I’m overly concerned about plot logic. But I do like my espacist dramas to also help me escape a little from the every-day life of gender discrimination, not re-enforce it.

Watching a drama through a red haze of righteous indignation, trying to focus on the good while trying to ignore the grossly inappropriate is exhausting. But that never happened here. And it made it easy to relax into the drama, enjoy the visuals and get really attached to the characters and their relationships.

20
7
reply

Required fields are marked *

but why on earth did he stab himself?

8
3
reply

Required fields are marked *

I guess he wanted to save Do-shik too? But how can he be sure that stabbing himself would also fulfill the amorphous and ever-changing criteria of how Do-shik's curse can be lifted?

4
reply

Required fields are marked *

I think it was a timing thing; he wanted to sacrifice himself before he died naturally. Maybe the magic properties of blood would've died too and yet been of help to Do Shik otherwise.

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

With Inhae arriving on the scene, he may have been worried that as he approached the moment of the blood moon that his vampire instincts would get the best of him. Would the vampire in him attack to stay alive?

2
reply

Required fields are marked *

I love your comment. Totally agree. I don't really have anything to add, I'm just commenting because I can only "like" it once.

7
reply

Required fields are marked *

Agreed! Well said!

And Wah - again and again and again

4
reply

Required fields are marked *

Yes

4
reply

Required fields are marked *

@solstices Thank for going above and beyond your job of recapping by including links to the real life songs of the ML and SML. Incredible work!

I was expecting to be utterly disappointed by the finale given the reaction of fans, not just in DB but across all forums, but I was actually fine with the ending maybe, because I did not expect much from the drama, although I was surprised by the good writing in the first 10 episodes. In fact, I even enjoyed the 10 minute confrontation between Do Shik and Hae Won which led Man Hwi getting killed.

Regarding the OTP and love, I don't know if writer always had this conclusion from the beginning, but it sort of fits with the story of "Love is not about making your heart beat, but it is in caring for others".

I think all the actors (except for the neighbourhood people and Cat Man who continued to be annoying till the end), everyone did a fantastic job and justice to their roles. Looking forward to their next dramas and success.

9
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

First, in addition to @solstices for the recaps, which I've agreed with entirely, I want to thank @attiton for making the comment section for this drama so much fun to read. Also I’m in complete agreement with Seon-ha about Won Ji-An, the star of this drama. I thought she was great throughout.

In the end, I thought this was a moderately clever remake of beauty and the beast that was weakened by an overly sentimental sad ending.

Before I continue with my critique, there is a side question I want to ask: is it the case that small business owners in Korea benefit from neighborhood redevelopment? I find that hard to believe, especially since the principle of gentrification in U.S. urbanization is to kick out all the local business owners and replace them with high rent apartments and national luxury chains that can pay more in rent themselves. I didn’t get why the tailor and butcher were such a fan of being evicted and losing their business for a one time payment, because if it was the U.S., it would be far less than their business was worth.

Anyway regarding the ending—I predicted it 2 weeks ago because of the increasingly grim last 5 episodes, stemming from the late fantasy rule change that in order to live he had to kill her. There was nothing to prevent a totally plausible additional fantasy rule change to make a happy ending. In fact, I think written differently there could have been a nice reversal—make the story even more about the increasing agency of In-Hae, and have In-hae save Woo-Hyeol not through a kiss, or sacrificing herself as did her historical predecessor, but rather through vigorous action. Then the historical lesson would not be that the vampire simply learned self-sacrifice from a woman, but rather that human society had changed, with women finally getting an agency that they deserved. The viewers would have lost the lachrymose tributes to Woo-Hyeol as being the most noble human of all, but they would have gained a more satisfying narrative arc with In-hae, where she was not standing alone overlooking the party, which was kind of sad given her history of aloneness, but rather with Woo-Hyeol as an equal partner.

The writer, who obviously is talented, didn’t trust that the themes of what made us human could come through with a happy ending. However, in my opinion, her choices made the show at best, very sappy, and a lot less satisfying than Cocteau’s 1946 movie, Beauty and the Beast.

I felt exactly the same about 19th life, which actually was not as well written, but also had a failed attempt to be emotionally meaningful. Will the same be true of My Lovely Liar? I think it likely!

I’m as sentimental as an old man can be, but tearjerking and tragic does not automatically equal emotional profundity, yet that seems to be the way most fantasy romance kdrama writers think.

27
14
reply

Required fields are marked *

Your last paragraph is so well said. It's like dramas feel like they HAVE to end this way to have more artistic credibility.

10
reply

Required fields are marked *

Your rewritten ending is beautiful, @hacja. Thanks for contributing it to this thread. We didn’t get anything close. Instead, as you predicted rightly (not just three weeks ago, but pretty much from the premiere post, ahem), male trauma (whether Woo-hyeol’s, Do-sik’s, or even Old Butler Joo’s) took center stage and overshadowed pretty much everything else. Every other character was left picking up the pieces.

I’m going to believe you on the downfall My Lovely Liar this time, in part, so that if you’re wrong, I won’t be as crushed, and if you’re right, I won’t lose a bet.

Also, thanks for the thanks about my participation—although I know for 100% sure others completely disagree, it means a lot to hear it from someone whose voice I respect and appreciate.

9
4
reply

Required fields are marked *

I've beat this drum a million times, but MLL's writer also wrote Let Me Be Your Knight, which would have been one of my all time favorite dramas had the ending not been so awful. And it was billed as a "healing" romance. I am not holding my breath for this one. I cannot stress enough how much Let Me Be Your Knight's ending completely shattered me.

5
3
reply

Required fields are marked *

Didn't the characters end up together and the band was rediscovering their roots?

0
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

They didn't end up together, it was an open ending. He showed up in front of her and it ended there. No hug or anything!

1

Yeah my heart dried up when I saw you mention that before, Let Me Be Your Knight had so much potential and then the end was the biggest wtf 😭

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

Several dramas have had the theme of redeveloping a neighborhood or some major part of Seoul, and it's always shown as a huge gain for home/shop owners in such a place. Liquidation of the business is more profitable for them than running a business. Prices of small flats grow to prices several dozen times higher. There were stories like in "Oasis", "Penthouse".

4
4
reply

Required fields are marked *

This is really interesting--redevelopers in Seoul must be bound by different compensation rules than in the U.S. (quite likely). Also it is rare for small businesses in the U.S. to actually own the building they are occupying. Then, too, there is very often a racial element in U.S. gentrification, as small businesses owned by people of color are displaced (as are the residents.)

There's actually a pretty good (fictional) T.V. series on this on Netflix, Gentefied which focuses on the Boyle Heights neighborhood in L.A. I doubt anyone on Dramabeans would want to watch it, unless you are in Southern California, but it does focus on a families attempt to save their taco shop FROM redevelopment, rather small business's attempt to PROMOTE redevelopment, as this show and the others you mention do.

5
3
reply

Required fields are marked *

I watched Gentefied and thought it was really well done. Actually i am remembering the beginning where the well trained ambitious chef guy tried to bring his training to create fancy tacos…to mixed success. It has a Korean drama feel to it.

3
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Of course, Kogi Taco trucks in L.A. brought Korean bulgogi and kimchi to tacos, one of my favorite taco variations!

1

It depends, there was certainly displacement in South Korea’s recent history. The 1988 Olympics for example was used as an excuse for ‘beautification’ and redevelopment.
https://edgeeffects.net/pyeongchang-olympics/

Both the GOOD BAD MOTHER and the film SEOUL VIBE somewhat reference these events.

There is also the drama STRONGEST DELIVERY MAN which had a mall/chain restaurant try to undercut the local restaurants

PSYCHOKINESIS (which is on Netflix), shows forced violence being used to displace the residents and local shop owners. Both illegal violence and ‘legal’ violence by the police were used.

Thanks for the recommendation will definitely check out GENTEFIED!

2
reply

Required fields are marked *

I too love your last paragraph. Just beautifully stated.

5
reply

Required fields are marked *

I totally thought we were going to get a Beauty and the Beast deal here. Just going by the Disney version, but we got the dance, the monster who wasn't, villagers wanting to run him outta town...and I thought when we got a spoken declaration of love, the curse would be broken and we'd get our happily ever after

And awww your last paragraph. That's so true. A tragic ending doesn't have more value than a happy one

7
reply

Required fields are marked *

I didn't get why they were so into redevelopment either. In every other thing I've seen featuring redevelopment, the small business owners and renters and even home owners are getting screwed over and fighting against redevelopment. I get that they would be bought out but can they also just not sell their businesses? Why did the entire neighborhood have to be redeveloped for them to sell and start new businesses?

2
reply

Required fields are marked *

Ah, I can see efforts to balance the disappointment of THAT ENDING with the overall goodness of the show, especially its early antics and some wonderful characters. That’s true. It’s all true.

And perhaps some of that disappointment has been burned in the 300+ comments on the fan rant wall (thanks for the safe space @attiton ). But not mine. I am so utterly disappointed by this unwarranted tragic ending that I can’t see past it. The show broke its explicit and implicit promise to viewers in such a spectacular fashion, I can’t look past it just yet.

I will be sulking in my corner a while longer. Luckily, it’s late in my part of the world and I won’t be here when @hacja arrives to collect his bar of gold.

9
9
reply

Required fields are marked *

Hey--I'm a dog person, not a cat person!

8
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

Hey, let’s not start another fight. We’re all on edge.

PS: Catman is the worst. Cats are the best.

5
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

No fight, no fight. I’d promised @hacja a gold bar if we didn’t get a happy ending. Boo.

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

Oh Heartbeat, how many ways did thee fail me, let me count the ways:

1. You broke your public promise of a fun, cheerful show that was reinforced with fuchsia coats, 80s prom and sunrise kisses. You left us, instead, with cliches, heartache and a shopworn “message” that no one wanted.
2. You turned our hero’s quest futile. It mattered not if he became human because he was humane? But he always was kind and noble! He always loved Hae-sun/In-Hae and his friends. So what was the point?
3. You turned him from someone who’d try *everything* to be human/to love to a passive Kermit on the rocks in accepting his fate.
4. You also turned our go-getting heroine into a passive creature who had nothing to offer beyond a few drops of her blood. (Give him a pint at least woman!). You thought a sunset beach walk would be enough for her? Yeah, OK, maybe since you gave us that amusement park date.
5. You left her waiting for Woo-hyeol to return. Do half vampires have a soul to reincarnate? Will he remember his past life? Will he rapidly age like that atrocity that was Renesmee?
6. You left her alone, really, fated to become an old lady talking to her hallucinations and cat (cos yeah, Cat Man gets to be live. In my version, his blood would be a good substitute.).
7. You used Cat Man to bend rules any which way except at the end when you decided not to? Just to ensure tragedy?
8. You didn’t even let Woo-hyeol’s death mean life for Do-sik with the completely unnecessary, traumatizing self-stabbing. You decided we wanted two *dead* noble men. What the hell was that curse anyway?
9. You let Hae-won scamper off to a better future. And also never even told us why Hae-won was this doppelgänger of Hae-sun?
10. You told us the Woo-hyeol chose to hide the gold while his broke girl and friends struggled, just for his selfish desire? You thought we’d believe that?

I’ll stop at my Top 10. I do have many things I liked. But I am still too mad to make that list. And I want to add an 11th I hated:

11. You made Woo-hyeol his most beautiful in a crisp, white shirt in his final moments. Why do that to me show, why?

8
5
reply

Required fields are marked *

Renesmee 💀 Twilight was...not great, BUT Heartbeat could've at least taken a page out of the Breaking Dawn movie and did the whole 'SIKE it was actually all in her head, none of your faves are dead' thing. On aside, I remember how like shellshocked everyone was when that final battle started happening and then the collective sigh of relief when they revealed it hadn't actually happened in real life.

3
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Isn't it something when we think Twilight has something to teach us? SMH.

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

What 2 dead noble men? Who is the second?

1
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

I took Do-sik's TV interview to mean that he could die at any minute so he is donating all his fortune to the hospital. So, Woo-hyeol's death didn't save his life and only his soul by teaching him an *important* lesson or whatever the takeaway was meant to be. (And not that DS was noble all along.)

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

Assuming Do-shik didn't break his curse -> because WH didn't get stabbed in the right place, Do-shik didn't do the stabbing, we didn't see him drink the blood and the comments in the interview at the end where he was like "not sure how long I'm going to live for 🤷‍♀️" . From vague memory I think part of breaking the curse was also gaining immortality, but also the comments seem to hint at him deciding to not (or not being able to) break the curse.

4
reply

Required fields are marked *

Hi, I have been an active reader on here for years but this is the first time I have been tempted to participate in a discussion.
I know it is awful that a story labeled and advertised as a rom-com ended up killing off its male lead in the last episode but I have to say, I loved that ending.

I actually was in complete disbelief about WH's death and kept expecting a twist until that moment when he appeared on that balcony in front of IH, smiling and looking beautiful. That was when I burst out sobbing.
But even amidst all the sadness, I must say it makes perfect sense.

Woohyeol had already accepted his fate ever since he started looking for Inhae's dad instead of denying reality and finding ways to still be with her. He knew after him Inhae would be heartbroken and sad but he knew that now she would not be as miserable and alone as she was after her mother's death.
He also knew that the gold he was leaving behind would be a means to support his friends like he used to do in times of hardship.
He also learned that he could save someone else by giving away his own life, I believe this was the final push he needed to go ahead and actively start planning for The Day. Dosik might not have been his favorite guy in the last few episodes but he was once a person WH trusted and thought decent enough to hope Inhae would fall in love with him.
And of course, the biggest factor in his decision was the fact that there was no other choice.
I think after all these reasons if WH had still not chosen to do what he did then he wouldn't have been the kind, sweet and empathetic Woohyeol we have all come to love and adore these past 16 episodes. In my opinion, the ending was a direct parallel to the kind of person we have seen Woohyeol be in this show, beautiful, heart-wrenchingly sad, and noble.
As someone who spent the entire last episode being anxious that a poorly explained and hastily inserted loophole might dampen the extreme love I have for this show, I am happy that the ending was consistent with the rich and beautifully written characters we have come to love.

That being said, I will now go and cry under a blanket for weeks or maybe even months to come. Bye!!!!

14
14
reply

Required fields are marked *

Hey! Welcome to Dramabeans…so sorry that this is what had you posting. We do hope you stay and comment!

Thanks for sticking up for the ending. There will be those who agree with you, for absolute sure, and you’ve helped them all, perhaps, also share their experiences.

5
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thank you for hearing me out! I can see myself being active on here from now onwards. I'm glad that despite the sad ending this show gave me the push to start sharing thoughts on here.

7
reply

Required fields are marked *

I feel like they could have had Woo-hyeol stay Woo-hyeol and still end up alive. Like, have him make that sacrifice or choice and then he somehow survives thanks to some heretofore unknown rule.

4
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Til the last 10 minutes I was hoping there could be a loophole like only taking small amounts of blood from Inhae at times until he has taken the full amount, like he'd take one bag now and one the next month or so idk I was going crazy

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thank you @hydlls for jumping in and sharing your perspective. I appreciate it and find it helpful.

4
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thank you for listening to my rambling!

4
reply

Required fields are marked *

I totally get what you're saying. I think the ending makes narrative sense. And I loved reading all the reasons why you thought it was a beautiful end. I certainly agree that there were moments that I really loved. My frustration is in the fact that it was billed as a goofy fantasy romcom and that's not what we ended up with, and in the fact that the rules kept shifting so I didn't even know which ones we ended up with at the end.

I also think that the emotional moments in the final episode would have hit much harder for me if I ever believed for a second that U-hyeol was going to die for real. But I never did. I just couldn't wrap my head around how a drama in which the ML gets drunk from eating ramyeon was also going to have him die at the end.

10
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Yes!! I completely agree with you. I think the show shot itself in the foot by falsely advertising itself as a romcom, if people at least had a hint of the trauma we got hit with in the end, it would have been much better.

Also I think the show's weakest point was the ever changing vampire rules and lore, most people were expecting the show to once again create a loophole to avoid WH's fate and that made the end even more painful

9
reply

Required fields are marked *

You make perfect sense… unfortunately!

Please do not hide under your blanket for too long - ❤️

4
reply

Required fields are marked *

Also, I gotta say, I am one of the people who value characters more than I do the plot so if the characters are people I identify with and love and their arcs and behaviors remain true and consistent to who they are then I tend to forgive (or maybe it's forget?) all plot holes and mistakes.

8
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

I'm the same way!!😊 Welcome to the commenting community!!

3
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thank you!!

1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Welcome hydlls! And thank you for sharing your perspective. I may not have been satisfied with the ending, but it's always great to see different viewpoints

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

Yes, welcome! I found myself nodding along to the logic in your argument (and so de facto, the show writer), but then I thought hang on, there were a dozen other ways to write this without leaving Woo-hyeol dead *and* keeping his core personality. For example, he and In-hae didn't have to turn mopey and accept his fate but actively look for solutions. Cat Man might have revealed it was the very act of the Woo-hyeol sacrificing himself that was the real key to a vampire turning human. Or the many other alternate endings floating around.

The other issue is that even the melodrama was so campy for me, I didn't take it seriously. Borrowing some of fellow Beanies description, it was Kermit moping in the "wilderness," In-Hae wandering the streets as if she's in a 90s melo, the Twilight-esque fight scene, the Powerpoint CGI of Man-whi's death, even the final face-off with Do-sik... So, Woo-hyeol suicide, the finality of his death still shocked me. I waited till the last minute thinking, surely Woo-hyeol is going to pop up again somewhere. But no, then the credits rolled.

Yeah, so maybe it's on me. I didn't read the room. But if you've built up camp through the series (even in the romance section), the tragic ending didn't fit right.

But thank you for sharing your opinion and backing it up. I find contrarian viewpoints refreshing (and there is always a diversity of opinions so you will never be alone), and they can create a healthy debate. Pretty good for a first post!

4
reply

Required fields are marked *

Silly me. I thought the gold would be at Mar-a-Lago, hidden under piles of classified documents.

Cat-man reveals his priorities by moving the gold to save it from redevelopment but leaving Woo-hyeol to his fate -- and for all he knew, eventually some very startled demolition workers.

15
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

I'm probably one of the small minority who lost interest in this drama after the first half. I only followed episode 15 in passing and didn't even watch episode 16.

I liked the drama best when Woo-hyul still had to find his way in the world that was new to him, or every time the vampire gang made their appearance.
The romance itself didn't touch me much, I can't even say why.

Originally, I thought it was a shame that I couldn't perceive the magic that others saw in this drama. But after witnessing how much the ending devastated some, I'm glad I wasn't particularly emotionally invested.

9
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

There are some like us who did not watch (or dropped, like me) and thus could not actively comment here. I woke up this morning with the fanwall exploding about HB so I came here to read the recaps I missed. My sympathies to the beanies who were let down. I actually did like the premise of this show and I was expecting it to be campy fun but I stopped watching when it stopped being funny. But I also thought I could go back to it later. I suppose not anymore.

6
reply

Required fields are marked *

@Nefret I enjoyed in the beginning and then quickly lost interest. I half-heartedly watched the rest of the episodes. Overall, this drama was disappointing.

1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Alternate Endings Game: some complicated blood transfer would have resulted in Woo-hyeol becoming human but In-hae becoming a vampire, and the show ends with a big fat "Now what?" while Do-sik wonders whose blood he needs now.

17
7
reply

Required fields are marked *

My wife, a biochemist, figured out that if In-hae had started donating blood to Woo-hyeol the day she learned the truth, at a pint a day she could have donated her entire blood volume, satisfying the curse, and replaced it in a couple of weeks.

Now, apparently the problem is replacing the red blood cells, but that's where transfusions to In-hae from the vampires would come into play. It would have added some scientific verisimilitude to the story!

23
4
reply

Required fields are marked *

I actually had that thought during the last ep: couldn't they just do a blood transfusion? There were SO many options.

5
reply

Required fields are marked *

This was exactly what I was screaming at the screen while watching ep 16! Thank you to your wife for validating what I thought was a stupid thought I had

5
reply

Required fields are marked *

Exactly, I kept thinking there are, what? 17 units of blood in the human body or maybe less? It drove me crazy that even trying transfusions never came up 🤦🏼‍♀️ And In Hae was a nurse! Ohhhh, mollah.

8
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

OMG. Yes. She was a nurse! I completely forgot. And she brainstormed nothing medical for his condition? They really dropped the ball on her character development in the last third. FL -> Fall in love -> Lose all brain cells and initiative.

6
reply

Required fields are marked *

hehehehe!! Now THAT would have been the most fitting, campiest end to this drama.

4
reply

Required fields are marked *

My alternate ending: Do-shik drank Woo-Hyeol's blood (which wasn't shown since we just watched WH stab himself) so his family's curse is broken. Do-shik continues to be someone that In-hae can rely on, eventually DS and IH kiss, through a drop of blood somewhere in DS' lips-IH recognizes WH, like how WH recognised Hae-Sun in a drop of blood in In-Hae's lips. Convoluted, but at least a happy ending for In-hae and Do-shik, although WH remains dead.

7
reply

Required fields are marked *

Thanks for all the recaps @solstices! I had a lot of snark set to go for the recap, but now I guess I'm thinking more about what I did love about the drama. But I will say, I still can't believe Man-Hwi literally died like a PowerPoint presentation and then the show suddenly decides it wants to turn into a serious dime-a-dozen melo. I don't get what the writers were thinking.

I'll pop in with some more thoughts but i did absolutely love so much about the drama and how much fun it was sharing in the fun with the Heartbeat Hottest ❤️

14
11
reply

Required fields are marked *

Whoops, meant transition not presentation 😅 can't multitask

Just gotta get some grumbling out of the way now. The answer to the gold mystery was bonkers- all the times they could have used money, would Woo-hyeol really have kept that a secret? Think of all the plates full of bananas they could have bought!

Cat-man was the worst (the writer owes both dogs and cats, who are awesome, an apology for that one line lol) but then he gets played off as a good father figure? He wouldn't even be the best recurring father character in this show if In-hae's dad stayed missing for the entirety

Stabbing why?? Also, since they didn't expand on their goofy rules, we're given no indication Woo-hyeol and In-hae can be reunited, because it's well established no one remembers their past lives and are different people anyway

The amusement park was the beginning of the end. Not that we didn't get some great moments but they played straight into all the tired tropes after really knocking it out of the park earlier

6
3
reply

Required fields are marked *

Man-hwi died like a PowerPoint transition…

Teehee, for realz. He totally did.

6
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

Down goes Man-Hwi ! Down Goes Man-Hwi ! Down goes Man-Hwi !

Apologies to Howard Cosell, George Foreman and Joe Frazier.

4
reply

Required fields are marked *

Like how could they try to pull off a serious melo after that 😂

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

I don't want this to be all grumbles either, because there was much more to love about the drama even though that makes the shortcomings more disappointing. Others have said it better, but

I really loved Woo-hyeol and In-hae, both individually and their lovely slow-burn romance ❤️ The ending won't change the fact they are 2 of my favorite characters ever. Taec and Won Ji-Ahn were awesome!

Do-shik was a nice step away from your typical 2ML and Park Kang-hyun was also awesome!

The FangGang were loveable and I wish we got more Rose

This was camp gold too until almost the end and I was loving every minute of that haha

And!! I loved the music a few episodes ago during their dance

7
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

I am all grumbles tho I know it's because I loved so much about the show before. So kudos to you for getting past that and making the best quips.

I was trying to decide how label that cut-rate CGI. 😂 It was as corny as the rest of the show. If it had stayed in its lane, we would have love it.

3
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Haha right! That just made it so much more disappointing because it came off like they fully embraced the corniness and weren't out to tell a deep or serious story

3
reply

Required fields are marked *

HAHHAHA died like a powerpoint transition, I am in legit STITCHES 😂 thank you for the much needed laugh Cori!

For better or for worse, this disaster ending is bringing out the best in quips and creativity in the shade doled out to the writers hahahhahaha

7
3
reply

Required fields are marked *

Haha, it always helps to find the humor when things don't go how we hoped!

This is really the best of both worlds. Heartbeat was such a loveable show until the writer forgot everything that made it so, but gosh darn it if we aren't still having a heck of a good time laughing it off 😂

3
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

your comment made me think - is this a meta amnesia trope??? instead of amnesia in the plot, it was amnesia irl in the writing room 😆

5
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Hah!! That sounds plausible 😂

2

Oh man, let the group therapy commence. I kid, or do I?

I agree that the biggest issue is that the show marketed itself as a funny, lighthearted romcom and this ending was not foreshadowed or hinted at. I also feel like they kind of ran out of things for Do-sik to do, he was a very good character but then by the end it felt like he was just chastising everyone (here's a scene with him chastising Hae-won. Now here's a scene with him chastising Woo-hyeol. Again. Etc). Mr. Ko was beyond pointless. Man-hwi and the gold were the world's biggest anticlimaxes. At first I refused to believe that Man-whi was dying because they couldn't have come up with such a lackluster ending for him, right? Nope, that was it.

I'm gonna say what I said elsewhere: they could have found any way to give us a happy ending, even if it made zero sense we would have accepted it. I would have preferred an ending where Do-sik gets "cured" and In-hae ends up with him. Their relationship may not be true love but it would at least be warm and affectionate, and he does really care for her.

I can't in good conscience recommend this to anyone. In fact, I've been recommending it in non-kdrama spaces and now I feel badly that I may have led someone astray. I really did not see this ending coming at all. This wasn't even marketed as a melo. At least See You in My 19th Life, which was also sold as a romcom, had the melo vibe all along and even THAT had a happier ending.

I'm not thrilled that In-hae was Hae-sun, although I did expect it and I was happy that the drama had Woo-hyeol genuinely fall for In-hae before learning that. ALTHOUGH, why did he not have those flashbacks when he tasted her blood the first time? Did he need more of it? Questions abound.

The hallucination thing was weird, too. Like, just have her look at a picture of him and smile or something.

12
0
reply

Required fields are marked *

Oh, one more thing: at this rate, I'm gonna have to say that King the Land was the best romcom this year. It had huge flaws, but at least it understood the darn assignment.

9
8
reply

Required fields are marked *

AHH I just remembered Crash Course in Romance. But even that one had a LOT of murder.

4
reply

Required fields are marked *

I never thought I would say it, but King the Land knew it was an air baloon, stayed an air baloon and at no point did it try to become a space ship.

As I said, Junho Central will keep ruling while the other will be - OK..where did I go wrong?!!

10
reply

Required fields are marked *

That would be an awful assessment, then they would have all sucked this year. Omg, lol, I will still say I like Heartbeat better, couldn't even finish KTL, but you are right not a great year for romcoms.

9
5
reply

Required fields are marked *

Yall are WAY too nice here - it's not just a "not great" year, it's a whole current DECADE so far.

2
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

lol, it hasn't been that bad.

1
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

You're nicer than me then, I feel like I didn't watch any PASSABLE, let alone good k-romcom for years.

1

I really don't know which one is worse. The plotless one I dropped mid-series or the one that smashed my heart at the end?

Honestly, who are these writers? Why is there no "rom-com" bootcamp is South Korea? Send them all back to school.

9
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

I'm seriously open to funding one!!!!

And I don't know either! Growing old in that mansion sounds aweful!

1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Episode 1 started off campy and then it became poignant and sweet and rapidly began going downhill from episode 12. I am all for tragic endings but this was gaslighting at its finest. What was the Catmans role in all this? The walking talking Wikipedia of supernatural know how’s just couldn’t figure out a way for our WH? When In Hae said ‘let’s figure this out together’ what did they even do? Just sit around and make empty promises to each other?

And I don’t think Do Shik took a sip of his blood when WH stabbed himself so what was the point of all that? Why? We would have dropped dead anyway right?

I worry how In Hae is ever expected to move on. Thankfully she is human and her life will be short but is she expected to lead a normal life living in WH’s mansion with his memories all around her? Will she die alone with WH’s ever young vampire friends around her?

I cannot believe I have to shelve this drama as a ‘could have been’! The disappointment is real.

13
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

I mean, this wasn't a case of us assuming a romance would have a happy ending because of a MDL tag or something. They marketed this VERY strongly as an offbeat, lighthearted romcom. We were bamboozled and our rage is valid!

11
reply

Required fields are marked *

I wasn't so disapointed by the end because this drama already lost me when Woo-hyul was dying and couldn't be saved without killing In-hae and all of that in a very short period. Taecyeon was very good in the slapstick comedic scenes but kinda boring in the serious ones.

I have no idea what the writer was trying to say with this story. But I can't see In-Hae falling in love again after that, so it looks like her future will be lonely. It doesn't seem fair.

9
3
reply

Required fields are marked *

I don't think she'll be lonely, but it irks me that she promised to wait for him in a way that implies she will wait through the other lifetimes as well if Woo-hyeol is taking too long to reincarnate. The drama seemed to have supported the idea that each life is independent. They can feel free to fall in love with someone they've known in their past life or fall in love with someone else entirely. The idea is to live each life without consideration of past lives. But this line implies otherwise.

6
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

She won't be alone like before because she has her dad, the vampire friends, the neighbors, the SML. But I don't see her sharing her feelings with any of them.

It's not about to fall in love with someone in another life, it's to find someone else who will beat her goofy vampire who died to protect her... She doesn't open easily to other people, so it's hard to imagine.

5
1
reply

Required fields are marked *

Yup. Can you imagine some ordinary Joe trying to live up to Vampie? I don't think Do-sik gets to live either so no consolation prize (not that after seeing him willing to stab Vampie and eat/drink him, she'd be all that open to him anyway).

I imagine her getting all old and lonely in that old mansion of hers. No one but her hallucinations with her, the ever-young vampire buddies dropping in now and then, and a you-know-who cat in the window.

Gosh, now I've depressed myself even more.

7
reply

Required fields are marked *

thanks for the recap and guess finally i am allowed to write n share without being cornered *still hiding behind my pillow to be safe*
.
i liked the way you concluded about giving love makes someone human and not just having a heart... but just as you said the tone was so different for first 6 episodes and then suddenly it turned to altogether a different drama.. the tempo drastically changed 7 epi onwards which eventually turned even worst in last 2 episodes.
if only that tone was kept for the start by writernim obviously not by giving us spoilers but rather discretely. the human comparison lines last epispde had could hav been sprinkled here n there form first half to make us kind of suspicious as to something can happen. And then such ending could have been handled with some safety net that okay i saw this was coming... but nosedive like this fees like a criminal offence to me.. to kill us with one dagger at a time at Woo Hyeols heart.
.
Then next issue i felt was drama opened so many plot points, spread them around but it al felt so rushed by the end... some more could have been shown abt In Hae wants to share her blood to save him but no efforts from her, her tiny droplets giving angered me so much..
.
Lastly this show is good and watchable for first 6 eoisode cause it was so light, fun n fluff and Taec did the best acting of his career.. but laster half was a traumatic experience that i'd never wanna talk or even want to remember ever again in my life.
.
and this writer is blacklisted my drama watch list in future.
.
oh and thanks for the recap.. i dont read n post on recaps but i did cause i have to share my thoughts at least here.

4
6
reply

Required fields are marked *

pacing was excellent, editing was superb for first half as it kept the tempo inline with the overall flow of the narrative.. and i loved that.
only thing i felt the direction fell flat during 2nd half as it tried to make complete dish by mixing 2 different genre (2 in 1 kind of) as director had me with him all first 6 episodes.. i took tons of screenshot, posted so many posts but then 7th onwards i was like this is not the drama till last episode.. the control director had on the plot was going but by bit.
still i was hoping it wouldn't make me cry tears while i kind of saw this coming at 15th end (still had this hope for miracle) and all my worst fears came to life...
laslty.. cinematography wasnt that crisp in here... it was good.. but it had all the chances to be better... everytime we saw Woo Hyeol n Catman on rooftop those framed were so repetitive and boring for me.
everytime you saw Woo Hyeol n In Hae in mansions garden again frames were not so unique.
Especially i hv issues eith wide shots have when emotions were high on the moment. All close up were well captured, well placed and damn well paced... with Taec showing his acting capabilities close up shots were my favorite ones.
and yes in last episode that beach walking n enjoying could have been shot better with more varieties in shots and kind more time with the OTP but we lacked time cause writer nim was hurrying to kill Woo Hyeol 🗡

1
5
reply

Required fields are marked *

now more abt lack of logic
Woo Hyeol could wait for 100 years cause he was a Vampire and being immortal he was alive al this while.. but making In Hae say ill wait for you makes zero sense.. how come she can wait in comparison to A Vampire's waiting... she would die at max by 80 years waiting for him and what would that lonely life give her.. what that in complete life gave Woo Hyeol..
NOTHING
.
how come writer had no idea of this whole senseless ending... ?

then my biggest question..
how come In Haes blood had taste like Hae Sun ?
why Woo Hyeol could see himself in het eyes?
and if he cant see his reflection in a mirror how his photos came fine when In Hae clicked from his mobile at beach ?
why i dint get answer to any of these...

4
4
reply

Required fields are marked *

my reason to hate cinematography even more...
so bad placements and angles of camera for both the kisses... like i loved the one where woo hyeols carries her in air and goes in for the blood on her lips.. that was unique angle n placement n close up too..
but then next 2.. majorly had wide shots and very few close ups... last one literally end in a blink of an eye..
.

2
3
reply

Required fields are marked *

I also hated how the last kiss was filmed. Show me more of a close up!

2

@vienibenmio
isnt it.. that last was the such an emotional moment for Woo Hyeol knowing he is going to sacrifice himself and we couldnt get that trauma, that pain, that yearning form that kiss.. it could have been such a fantastic hook point (i still remember the kiss from I hear your voice when su jo kisses her in big aquarium just before leaving her)
thats the way you build up the narrative to such an extreme end... you show those palpable moments if characters being vulnerable, their tiny glances, kisses scream..
but that kiss was done as if just one random kiss before drama finishes.
The End

1

I'm so glad you came here and shared your thoughts. It's good to get them off your chest. And I do think recaps are read more widely so the rest of us benefit as well.

1

I do not hare noble idiocy, until I hate it with a vengeance.

@solstices Your recaps were as fun as the drama was, and it must have gotten harder and harder as this absolutely beautiful train journey morphed into a complete train wreck.

Drama Gods, start campy, stay campy. This risotto of mismatched ingredients satisfies no one.

13
8
reply

Required fields are marked *

Risotto... bang on word for this drama.. we call it Khichdi in India.

4
7
reply

Required fields are marked *

Which works especially well because I hate risotto

2
reply

Required fields are marked *

Kichidi is the perfect word to describe this drama. Writer-nim, I suppose, was aiming for an epic love story where the lovers are separated by death. Only it was an epic fail.

3
5
reply

Required fields are marked *

Khichdi is generally delicious....this ending is more like the delicious kheer that got stuck to the bottom of the pan :-(

3
2
reply

Required fields are marked *

OMG i ROFLed.. Kheer stuck at the bottom of the pan and now burnt badly and burnt ratings top too(the rating of this drama started from 9.3 and now stands at 8.4)
btw so nice to meet beanies who know Khichdi and khee @rhoprotein

4

Exactly khichdi is delicious! Don’t shade khichdi!

2