Healer Episode 10. The end of this episode takes a serious turn as Healer learns more about his father’s death from Teacher (original Healer). The unanswered questions force Healer down a path that will collide with another key character’s agenda. Don’t worry, there was flirty fun in this episode too.
Healer (Ji Chang Wook) and Young Shin (Park Min Young) manage to talk themselves past the gate keepers of Congressman Kim’s press conference posing as posh guests of an engagement party. Jong Soo (Moon Ho’s former associate at the TV station and Moon Shik’s spy) follows as a waiter.
Waiting to enter the press conference, Min Ja tells Healer that he was photographed by the police investigating Young Shin. She urges him to leave the press conference and avoid further exposure. Healer calmly states he cannot because he has a new job…protect Young Shin…and Healer has hired himself.
Cyber detective Dong Won instructs his officer to verify the background of all the newspaper employees including employment history, identity, etc.
Kim Moon Ho (Yoo Ji Tae) calls Producer Min Jae to distract her while Young Shin disrupts the press conference. I did feel a bit sorry for her, but only a bit. Moon Ho has the grace to apologize for the disruption happening during her watch.
Young Shin disrupts the press conference when she asks Congressman Kim about ledge lady. Flustered, Congressman Kim does not answer and attempts to answer another question diverting attention from Young Shin. Young Shin recalls Moon Ho’s advice that she must take control and be forceful during interviews. With that in mind, she strides to the front of the room, drops her trench coat, and asks Congressman Kim more questions in her eye catching red dress.
Elder and Moon Shik watch the live press conference and see the disturbance Young Shin makes. Moon Shik orders right hand man to suppress the story. Elder recognizes with Young Shin’s thrust into the spotlight, they cannot do anything against her. He correctly surmises this was a warning from Moon Ho. Right hand man tells Elder and Moon Shik, so sad too bad, but he cannot suppress the story completely. Internet sites are picking it up. Elder laughs the laugh of a man that respects his opponent’s tactical moves but isn’t necessarily happy at being thwarted.
Elder declares Congressman Kim is finished and no longer a viable candidate. He tells Moon Shik there is an opening for a candidate for mayor of Seoul…is he interested? I did not see that coming. Well played Elder, move your biggest chess piece, Moon Shik, into a more powerful position.
Moon Ho finishes his broadcast with a respectful flourish declaring his newspaper is not a puppet of the powerful. It will not bow to the powerful but report the truth even if it exposes the powerful. Everyone is impressed at his eloquence. The phones light up and the website has a ton of hits as people view his on-line report.
Moon Ho calls Young Shin. She turns her back on Healer and Joon Soo to take the call. She glows with pride at his praise. Joon Soo wryly notes that either that call is professional or personal between Moon Ho and Young Shin. Healer feels an odd emotion…is it jealously?
Moon Ho tells a beaming Young Shin that she did better than expected at the press conference. Young Shin tells a pleased Moon Ho that he is a better person than she expected. The unexpected compliment brings tears to Moon Ho’s face. After he hangs up he softly thanks Jiam (Young Shin’s birth name). I am loving Ji Tae’s emotional dexterity with this complex character.
Healer notices police watching the car as they load the equipment. As Young Shin approaches the car, he thoughtfully has her slip out of her high heels into comfortable shoes. What woman doesn’t like consideration for her tired toes? Healer notices the police follow them and manages to direct Joon Soo to lose them. He pulls Young Shin from the car and has Joon Soo return to the newspaper alone. To cover for his abrupt departure from the car, Healer claims he wanted to ask Young Shin for drinks, just the two of them.
Moon Shik flashes back to his first meeting of Elder. After the accident? Moon Shik is bloody. Elder dangles the carrot of Myung Hee getting the best medical care. Ah, the Elder knew which button to push to get Moon Shik to commit to him.
Young Shin struggles with entering the elevator. Healer talks her into it. While the elevator ascends, her hands ball into fists of tension. Healer sees this and in a caring move, steps next to her lightly brushing her hand with his. Young Shin grabs his hand with a death grip during the elevator ride. Healer is drawn to her vulnerability…leans towards her…and almost kisses her head, but the elevator arrives at the top floor. Young Shin rockets out of the elevator, aware of the tension between them.
Young Shin practically makes Healer swoon as she picks the lock to the rooftop.
Healer’s rooftop lair includes a shelter with couch, beer, and fire. Young Shin encourages him to talk about himself. Instead, he informs her that her father warned him not to let her drink or handle metal objects lest she cut herself. He opens her beer before handing it to her. They sip their drinks companionably. In a bold move, Healer suggests Young Shin consider dating him. Young Shin asks if he is confessing his feelings for her. He confirms he is. Young Shin asks if his feelings are genuine. He confirms they are. She explains regrettably she has no room in her heart for another man. He asks if it is because Healer is in her heart? She confirms he is. Healer shrugs off the rejection claiming “it was my first confession and I got rejected in 3 seconds”. They banter, secure in their friendship. This was a well acted scene. I felt the budding romance, her regret at the bad timing, his regret at the bad timing, and their consensus their friendship would continue.
The police officer is about to report to cyber detective Dong Won about his background checks, which would reveal Healer’s (Bong Soo) picture does not match the drivers license, but Dong Won gets a call that President Hwang has apparently committed suicide.
We see right hand man lurking outside President Hwang’s house. The police conveniently find a suicide note that confesses his part in the video tapes and his murder of scared rabbit client (from episode 1). Dong Won finds this all too perfect.
Healer returns to his lair and finds Teacher (Ki Young Jae) waiting for him. Healer flashes back to his first meeting of Teacher as he exited juvenile detention. We see the training from youth to adulthood by Teacher. We see the blindside desertion of Teacher on Healer’s birthday. Cold teacher, that is cold! As he exited Healer’s life, he leaves him with Min Ja’s phone number aptly describing her as crabby. Present day Healer is not brimming with happiness to see Teacher.
H: Why are you back? Why didn’t you call even once? Why did my father kill himself?
Healer notes a man happy with his friends wouldn’t kill himself. But when he saw the same picture in Myung Hee’s bedroom, the fantasy shattered.
T: Why did your father kill himself? If you knew, what would it change?
With surprising emotion and candor, Healer admits he has no reason to live and fears that one day he will end it like his father.
T: Your father, Joon Sook, was a reporter. He was chasing a story. He found money without an owner. They say he killed someone over that money.
H: My father killed someone?
T: That’s what the reports say. They say he killed himself during the investigation.
H: My father is a killer? That’s why he killed himself?
T: Get yourself together. I never believed the stories.
H: Father is a killer. I am a thief. (upset) Why do you answer my questions now?
T: Your father is not someone that would kill a man. That’s what I know. If you want to throw a fit, get your facts straight. Find out who killed your father.
T: I gave up trying to find your father’s killer. Will you?
T: There is a sixth person, the person that took the photo (Moon Ho). He was a little brother to us all.
Young Shin prepares an email for Healer requesting a consultation.
Healer searches Moon Ho’s apartment. He finds the chest and the briefcase.
Moon Ho leaves his office and knocks over the bag with Healer’s clothes.
Young Shin’s email to Healer introduces herself. She requests to meet him as a client.
Inside the briefcase, Healer finds the identical picture he has, video tapes, and a book titled “Healer”.
Moon Ho finds the broken flip cell phone in Healer’s pocket (this is Young Shin’s mother’s cell phone). Does he recognize the phone?
Young Shin stares at the computer before she hits send on the email…
Healer stares at the book titled “Healer”…
Moon Ho stares at the flip phone…
* The writer, Song Ji Na, steered the episode into serious territory at the end of the episode. Teacher finally gave Healer some answers but an even bigger question – who killed Healer’s father? Not surprisingly, Healer had to investigate, which led him to Moon Ho’s apartment and the discovery of the picture, the tapes, and the book about Healer. At the same time, Moon Ho finds Young Shin’s mother’s cell phone. Does Moon Ho recognize the cell phone?
* Cyber detective Dong Won has yet to win me over as a viable character. He seems determined to find and convict Healer. Why? Isn’t a good opponent worth respecting?
* The parallel first meeting flashbacks were perfect. First up, we saw the first time Moon Shik met Elder right after the accident? Moon Shik was desperate and Elder offered options. Second, we saw the first time Healer met Teacher (original Healer) as he was released from juvenile detention. Nice job casting the child actor who looked similar to Chang Wook. As Healer transitioned to adult (and Change Wook as the actor), Teacher stuns him by dumping him and leaving him only Min Ja’s phone number. That was a real kick in the gut to Healer to be abandoned without warning.
* Chang Wook as Seo Jung Hoo, Healer, had his best episode as the unsure but surer than normal Bong Soo. You felt Healer’s commitment to find his father’s killer. I’ll admit I’m a bit concerned that a serious Healer will become obsessed with finding his father’s killer and abandon his pursuit of Young Shin. City Hunter made this error and abandoned the romance as the lead character pursued his revenge agenda. Next episode should allay my concerns. I cannot believe writer Ji Na would jettison the budding romance, which is a huge story (and draw for viewers). As Bong Soo, Chang Wook’s elevator and rooftop interactions with Min Young had moments when their potential was revealed. To her credit, Young Shin admitted her heart was filled by Healer. The irony was evident on Healer’s face knowing his alter ego was the obstacle to Young Shin.
* Park Min Young as Chae Young Shin, was bold but unsure at the press conference. She didn’t magically transform into super reporter. She faltered and fought back to gain the attention for her line of questioning that effectively killed Congressman Kim’s political aspirations. Her pleasure at Moon Ho’s praise was palpable much to her co-workers chagrin. Her innate comfort around Healer is lovely to watch (hand grip in the elevator). I can see their happiness in the future because instinctively Young Shin trusts Healer. I hope the writer lets us see that future happiness.
* Yoo Ji Tae as Kim Moon Ho manipulated the press conference, the producer, the on-line broadcast like a pro. Ji Tae portrays Moon Ho with sincerity edged with an agenda. Truly, this character is beautifully unclear. There are many more layers to his story. What is on the tapes? What is the Healer book? Does he know anything about Healer’s father’s death? What is his plan to expose Elder? Does he plan to expose Moon Shik or protect him? What is his plan for Young Shin? Does he have a plan for Healer?