Winter Sonata – Episode 14

Out from under all the machinations of the people around her, Yoo-jin manages to find the one boy she has always dreamed about. But he is no longer a boy, and no longer quite the person she used to love. Can she find a connection with him, even without the memories to forge that link?

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Does Yoo-jin ring the doorbell to Joon-sang’s room? Nope, she turns away and runs back to the elevator. Wae?????

She stares at her reflection in the elevator wall, and chastises herself for still wanting to find Joon-sang. With that she falls to the floor and cries. Poor Joon-sang is just sipping his cocktail and staring out the window, unaware that his love is in his building just a few steps away.

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It’s morning, and Min-hyung is cleaning up the last of his stuff out of his office while Manager Kim gripes at him for leaving mid-project. The two shake hands, and Min-hyung rolls out, but not before stopping in front of the completed jigsaw puzzle. He muses that he really did have a lot of little memories come together during his stay.

At Polaris, Yoo-jin is also packing up. It seems she planned to quit once she goy married, but she also had decided to leave earlier than planned. Boss Jung-ah gripes much like Manager Kim, but mentions that Engineer Lee left her a package at the office. Yoo-jin finds out for the first time that Min-hyung was flying to the US that morning. Boss wonders if she wants to run to the airport and stop him, but why should she? Still, she opens the thick envelope and finds a CD.

It’s a copy of “First Time”, and she listens to it, sadly staring at the CD player. She picks up the jewel case and a note falls out. It reads: “By the time you read this, I’ll be on a plane. You may not want this, but I had to give it you. I can record myself like Joon-sang, but I still want you to have it. Please be happy.”

She slowly puts the case down, thunderstruck. She had never told anyone of the cassette gift from Kang Joon-sang all those years ago. And she certainly never told Lee Min-hyung. With that she desperately heads to the airport.

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He is processing his ticket as she arrives at Incheon Airport. But it’s a pretty big place. She runs through it, looking for him, while he sips a cup of coffee in a lounge, waiting for his flight. Time’s up, and he heads for his terminal. As he walks through a grouping of chairs, a little girl kicks off her shoe in front of him. He smiles and slips it on her foot, suddenly remembering when he as Joon-sang did that for Yoo-jin all those years ago. Yay! He gets a snippet of his lost memories.

As he stands there trying to force the memory clearer, Yoo-jin finally founds him. “Joon-sang” she breathes quietly. But even in that bustling terminal, he hears her and turns around. They stare at each other for a moment before she walks towards him. They both start crying as she collapses in his arms. She whispers an apology for not recognizing him, and they both fiercely hug.

Back at the hotel, they are content to stare at each other. She repeats his old name over and over again. He admits to missing many of his childhood memories, and asks her what she wants from him. She explains that she has wanted to say his name out loud for years, but was afraid that if no one answered, then he was truly gone. Especially when he didn’t show that last time, even though he always kept his promises before.

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He doesn’t remember the promise, so she described the events, and her pink mittens. But his mind is blank; he doesn’t remember anything they did: the piano, the leaves, the bicycle ride through Nami Island, or anything. She’s forgiving, but it hurts that she remembers everything, and he, nothing. They hug, but this time it is just for comfort, I think.

A ringing wakes Sang-hyuk. It’s Jin-sook, who is worried that her roommate never came home. He flies over to the apartment, and together they try to come up with some place she might be at this time of the night. Just then, Sang-hyuk’s phone calls again. It’s Yoo-jin’s phone! But when he answers, it’s Joon-sang.

Sang-hyuk is floored. Yoo-jin is with Joon-sang, and knows everything. Our memory-impaired guy begs him to let her sleep, but for him to come to the hotel in the morning, since he still plans to go overseas. Sang-hyuk hangs up, floored by the events; Doc shows up at the apartment too, and hears that their friend is with their frenemy. And that their frenemy is actually their childhood friend. Such a night for revelations!

Joon-sang tucks his sleeping woman in, and spends a moment looking at her before brushing her bangs. He spends the rest of the night sitting in a chair watching her. She is still sleeping in the morning when Joon-sang sadly leaves, but the sound of the closing door wakes her up. She finds a note on the nightstand. He wonders what he called her back then, but it doesn’t matter, since without those memories, he can’t be the man she loved. He apologizes and sincerely thanks her.

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She bursts out of the hotel, and Sang-hyuk is waiting for her. She just tears herself away from him and starts running down the sidewalk, desperate to reach that man before he disappears. When she catches up with him, she dodges traffic to reach his side of the street. But a Truck of Doom gives a evil honk, and in a split second, he pushes her out of the way, and himself right into the path of the vehicle. Yikes!

Hospital montage; he’s unconscious, bleeding from his head and on oxygen. The results show only blunt trauma to the head, but it’s unknown if there is any deficits until he wakes up.

There’s no sound but the beeping of the machines as Yoo-jin sits next to the bed. Sang-hyuk watches her for a moment when the rest of gang charges through the door. Chae-rin immediately runs to his bedside, almost knocking Yoo-jin off her chair.

She grabs his hand and starts calling to him, using his official name. It takes a moment to register that eveyone is calling him Joon-sang, but she insists that everyone is wrong. Chae-rin is sure that Yoo-jin is at fault for the accident, and the other woman doesn’t deny this. Chae-rin snarks that the men around her friend are always getting hurt, which earns her a sharp rebuke from Doc. But she doesn’t care, and snarls at the gang. Yoo-jin will be even happier if he regains his memories!

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Yoo-jin admits to being happy that she found him at last, regardless of events. Chae-rin flounces away, with the rest of gang following her outside. Yong-gook is worried about the extent of their friend’s injuries, and also at Yoo-jin’s strange behaviors. Sang-hyuk agrees, but what can he do? He brings her a snack in the hospital waiting room.

She confesses that she is scared for the man in the hospital bed. She blames herself for what happened, and doesn’t feel like eating. He all but forces her to eat, in order to keep up her strength to take care of Joon-sang. He’s angry at himself for saying it, and stomps outside for some cool air. Meanwhile, Yoo-jin obediently eats.

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There are no changes when she checks in on Joon-sang. She talks to the unconscious figure, apologizing for her momentary meltdown, and promises to stay by his side and hold his hand if only he will come back. She presses his hand against her cheek.

KangMom finally arrives at the hospital, and Yoo-jin apologizes for her part in his injuries. Outside, Mom asks her assistant to cancel her upcoming concert but it is an important one. Outside the hotel room, she exchanges some strong words with Yoo-jin. Don’t call him Joon-sang; he is officially and forever Min-hyung. Yoo-jin should have respected him as Min-hyung rather than stirring up old memories. She will find an appropriate nurse for her son, and she will not have anything else with Min-hyung.

Yoo-jin begs for the chance to take care of him, explaining that she’s missed him for ten years and doesn’t want to leave him now. KangMom doesn’t say anything, just turns on her heel and leaves.

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The changing sweaters tells us that days are going by. Asleep by his bedside, Yoo-jin wakes up to see snow falling outside. The doctors check him over, and he now off adjunct air, although he is still unconscious. Sang-hyuk shows back up at the hospital and admits that he knew who the man was long ago, and also admits to doing everything he could to get Joon-sang to leave the country. But she’s not mad; she understands his motivation even if she doesn’t agree with it.

Sang-hyuk receives a call from a drunk Chae-rin, who is drinking a salute to jilted lovers everywhere. She’s also drinking because she lost the battle for his heart and is feeling miserable. He pulls the bottle away; she offers to date him. He just wants to take her home; and begs her not to act like this. She starts a drunken bawling rant that no one loves her because they all love Yoo-jin, then bolts outside. Sang-hyuk catches up to her before she gets her own Truck of Doom, and ends up comforting her on the street median where she completely breaks down.

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Yoo-jin’s mom shows up at the hospital. She thinks it’s inappropriate for her daughter to take care of Joon-sang, but Yoo-jin is convinced that it’s umyeong, and fate can’t be changed even if she feels guilty over Sang-hyuk. She will have him back, or at least have him whole.

JongMom leaves the hospital just as KangMom arrives, but the two old chums don’t realize it. Upstairs, Joon-sang’s mom greets Yoo-jin, much happier than when she left. Just then, a herd of doctors run past to Joon-sang’s room. He’s having seizure activity, and Yoo-jin ends up praying in the hospital chapel. When she’s done, she meets up with KangMom.

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He has regained consciousness but doesn’t recognize anyone, past or present. Yoo-jin offers to stay so his mother csan tet some rest. In the hospital room she sits next to her old love and sobs while holding his hand.

In the morning, Joon-sang’s is awake and touches a sleeping Yoo-jin. His vision is blurry as he tries to focus on her. She asks if he recognizes her, and he gives a slow nod. She gets up to tell the doctor, but in a gravelly, quiet voice he says “Yoo-jin-ah” several times. Just like he called her in high school. The childhood memories flash between them as they stare at the face of the other. A tear slides down his face as strokes the face he loved long ago.

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Joon-sang is back!


Yay! And about time. It’s the turning moment for everyone involved. By introducing Lee Min-hyung to her old high school friends as a sort of thumb-back, Chae-rin has now gone a complete circle, without the boy or the man she once loved.  And Sang-hyuk, the faithful one who did his own cheating in Love’s Game, is again back to square one.  It’s symbolic that the two end up standing in a crossroads, with each other, but without the person they really want.  For the other two of the gang? Life pretty much stays the same, but then, they were always honest with their emotions.

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And the two moms?  Joon-sang’s mom seems to accept  Yoo-jin as a helpmate for her son, but I don’t think her mother sees this re-blossoming relationship in a rosy light.  For one thing, she supported Sang-hyuk to the point of practically forcing her daughter to accept him, and I don’t see her warming up to Joon-sang any time soon.

As for our couple? They are finally together!  Whether or not their new togetherness will last when reality enters the picture, is something we will have to wait for. In the meantime, let’s bask in the glow of their quiet happiness of a pair of hearts finally touching again.



About Shukmeister

I have a great fondness for chocolate chip cookie dough, 80's science fiction movies, and thunderstorms.

Posted on March 30, 2015, in Recaps, Winter Sonata (2002) and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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