And so it begins…another series where I delight in watching Jang Hyuk. Thank goodness he is a workaholic.
Beautiful Mind Episode 1 Recap
A passenger on a flight gets ill. The crew uses the intercom to request a doctor. A flight attendant approaches Lee Young O (Jang Hyuk) asking him to confirm that he is a doctor. Without feeling, Young O tells the attendant this isn’t his work place. She leaves.
Two police officer chase a motorcycle rider who ducks into the hospital. Gye Jin Sung, police officer, gives chase.
In the hospital, Kim Myung Soo, politician, gives an impassioned speech at the opening of the Cardio Center. Mr. Kim is introduced to Shin Dong Jae (the hospital’s director) and Dr. Lee Gun Myung (Head of the Cardio Center). Mr. Kim offers his hand and asks Dr. Lee to work with the Government to advance medicine and research. Dr. Lee coldly says “the only thing I’m good at is patient care.” Mr. Kim withdraws his rejected hand and laughs. Dr. Lee and his team leave. Dong Jae stops Dr. Lee and tells him to play nice. Dr. Lee rejects becoming a puppet to men dangling money.
The motorcycle rider runs past Dr. Lee and Dong Jae with a pole in his hand. He runs into the room, points to the dignitaries (Mr. Kim is one of them), and declares he will expose the truth. He runs to them and is pushed to the ground. Jin Sung runs into the room. The dignitaries exit the room quickly. The motorcycle rider has a rash (or something) on his arm. Security removes the motorcycle rider.
Officer Gye rejoins her partner, staring at the abandoned motorcycle, and writes a ticket.
The upset motorcycle rider is thrust into a car and driven away.
Mr. Kim tells the doctors that he’s no longer an unwanted politician but a victim of an acting protester. Dong Jae tells Dr. Lee to escort Myung Soo to the press conference. Young O arrives and calmly states the press conference must be canceled. Mr. Kim and the other doctors sweep past Young O ignoring him. Young O taunts Mr. Kim that there is a time bomb in his head. Mr. Kim demands to know who Young O is. The other doctors buzz amongst theirselves. With supreme confidence, I’m digging his swagger and hair, Young O declares before the elevators open, everyone will know he is right. When the elevator doors open and nothing has happened, Mr. Kim gets on the elevator and scoffs at Young O’s prediction. The elevator doors close. A moment later they reopen and a distressed Mr. Kim clutches the door. He falls to the ground. The gaggle of doctors rush to Mr. Kim. Young O watches cool as a cucumber. Young O states there will have to be another grand opening for the Cardio Center. First impressions of Young O? Cocky, god-like confidence. Yep, he’s a surgeon.
Young O tells Mr. Kim he has a brain aneurysm that could erupt during surgery. Mr. Kim can’t believe the Young O diagnosed his condition with only a brief interaction. Young O lists the tell tale signs. He tells Mr. Kim that he may die during surgery. In fact, Young O thinks “live surgery” would be interesting. Are they going to televise the surgery?
Young O’s coworkers are amazed how Young O treated Mr. Kim. Young O was a sought after doctor in America. His coworkers wonder why he is practicing here.
In the operating room the medical team can’t believe Young O’s moxy.
Dr. Lee (is he Young O’s father?) rejects the live surgery idea. They don’t need to bring unnecessary attention to a difficult surgery. Dong Jae asks Dr. Lee if he’s rejecting the idea because it came from Young O.
Mr. Kim asks Young O what he would choose. Young O states it’s better to be the politician that overcame a medical issue than the politician that tested positive for illegal drugs. Young O shows Mr. Kim that he tested positive for cocaine. Young O declares he’s willing to hide Mr. Kim’s transgression. He offers Mr. Kim 2 choices – drug offender or live surgery patient. He offers Mr. Kim the live surgery consent form.
There’s a big banner with Young O’s face proclaiming the upcoming live surgery by Dr. Lee Young O, Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery. Dr. Lee tells Young O that he should have discussed the live surgery option with him before suggesting it. Young O says this is his gift to his father. Yep, Dr. Lee is Young O’s father. I’m thinking their relationship is not sugary sweet. Dr. Lee tells Young O he knows what happened in the United States. Young O tells his father the weekly reports keeping tabs on him were not necessary. Young O tells his father to watch and see what kind of doctor he becomes.
Jin Sung nervously primps. Her partner, Sargent Park, teases her about being nervous about her first date.
Jin Sung enters the eatery to wait for her date. She fiddles with her hair. She waits and waits but her date does not show up. She goes ahead and orders food. Her date does not show. She hesitates calling but when customer jostles her the number for “Bottle Top Opener” is dialed. When the man answers, she quickly tells him she was only calling to say hi. Was it a date or not? In the car, Jin Sung puts a bottle top opener ring on and dejectedly starts the car.
A car drives by dumping a man from the back seat. It is motorcycle rider! OMG! The car backs up and smashes into motorcycle rider who flies high in the air! Motorcycle rider’s body smashes into Jin Sung’s windshield. The car speeds away and Jin Sing notes the make and model and license plate number. Atta Girl! She calls her partner and asks him to run the plates. She frets there were not CCTV cameras in the area. She sees the scars (or something) on his arm. Now she recognizes the man from earlier. The man asks her not to kill him. He promises not to tell. She tells her partner this wasn’t a hit and run. This was murder.
In the ER, Jin Sung is surprised when Dr. Hyun Suk Joo attends to the man. Is he bottle top opener? He directs her to find the man’s guardian. She walks away to do so. He goes after her, gives her money for a drink, and tells her to let him do his job. What is their relationship? He turns and apologizes for not eating with her today. He’s been crazy busy and it slipped out of his head. He says after surgery they should get together. Yep, he’s bottle top opener! Jin Sung smiles.
And who do you think the neurosurgeon is? Yep, it is Young O who looks impassively at the film of the man’s head. Wait a minute, Young O declares he will not operate. Dr. Hyun is stunned. Young O states there is a 90% chance the man will die. It’s not worth the time or resources. Dr. Hyun tells Young O he can stop the bleeding. Young O doesn’t change his mind and walks away. An outraged nurse yells at his back.
Young O sees the eyes of a boy walking past him. Is he motorcycle man’s son? Jin Sung must have contacted him as the next of kin. Dr. Hyun asks Young O to reconsider surgery. Young O declares the man will not live a full life again. It is game over. He walks away. Jin Sung stops him. She shows her police badge. She says under law he must treat an emergency patient. She puts him under arrest and handcuffs him! Go Girl! Make that lasting first impression! Dr. Hyun suggests that he and Young O operate simultaneously. That surprises everyone. Young O declares the patient will die during the operation. Dr. Hyun says they must try. Hey, I’m liking the moxy shown by Dr. Hyun! Young O holds up his wrists for Jin Sang to uncuff him, so he can perform the surgery.
I hope there isn’t much blood and gore.
Dr. Hyun and Young O enter the operating room. The game plan is discussed. I close my eyes. Jin Sang hangs with the patient’s son. Things go well, but then the patient takes a turn for the worse. His heart fails. Dr. Hyun works to save the patient but to no avail. Young O calls the time of death. Dr. Hyun is stunned it all fell apart.
Jin Sang asks Young O how the surgery went but he strides past her without answering. Dr. Hyun comes out and it is obvious what happened. He tells them the patient died. Dr. Hyung apologizes to the patient’s son. The boy starts screaming and point at his ears. OMG! He is deaf! He signs “bring my dad back”. Tears spring in my eyes at the raw pain and abject faces of the patient’s son, Jin Sang, and surgical team.
On the rooftop, Dr. Hung thanks Young O for his efforts, they did the best they could. Young O tells him that he only operated because he wanted to know which would come true – his predicted failure or Dr. Hung’s passionate hope for success. This was a game, who would win? Dr. Hang is surprised at this rationale to operate. He watches Young O walk away.
Young O’s father learns that the surgery ended in death.
Young O finds Dr. Kim Min Jae sorting items in his office. He says she knows he doesn’t like other people touching his stuff. Min Jae counters that she’s more than “other people”. Yes, she confessed first that she liked him. Then Young O put her on hold for 5 years when he studied abroad. She suggests they end things. As she walks past him, he grabs her arm and stops her. He whips out a jeweler’s box and asks Min Jae to marry him! He thinks they’ll be “great partners”. He promises that he’ll never look at another woman. They smile at each other. I like that he’s got enough interpersonal skills to have a love interest from the get go.
Jin Sang is upset when Sargent Park tells her that as the only witness to the hit and run of motorcycle man, the police cannot investigate the case as murder. Plus the man is dead because he died on the operating table. She sees motorcycle man’s son down the hall. Sargent Park tells her that the boy has no living relatives and will go to a shelter. Upset, Jin Sang walks away. When Sargent Park finds her, she’s upset that she had nothing positive to say to the boy. She feels that she let him and his father down today. Jin Sang wants to investigate the car and request an autopsy. The declares she’ll find out what really happened to motor cycle man.
Dr. Hyung relives key moments of the surgery over in his mind and Young O’s rooftop conversation. He and Doctor Nam Ho Young agree it was odd when Young O predicted what would happen at a key point in the surgery. He finds Young O and asks how he knew what would happen. Young O wonders why he asks. He notes any mistakes Dr. Hyung made should be kept to himself. Once again, Dr. Hang is surprised at Young O’s line of thinking. He tries to get details from pathology, but the doctor is not forthcoming. Next he asks Dr. Nam if he can watch the surgery video. Wait a minute, the surgery video has been deleted. The doctor in charge of videos is unconcerned. He tells Dr. Hyung that the police autopsy should be interesting.
After the autopsy, the corner tells Jin Sang that the cause of death is excessive bleeding for multiple injuries. Jin Sang can’t believe the corner’s words that nothing unusual happened.
Young O’s father is waiting outside his office. He tells his son that the live surgery and simultaneous surgery have Young O in the spotlight. Young O moves out of view of the CCTV and tells his father “I wasn’t caught”. What does that mean? Young O smiles and walks away.
Sargent York says the car revealed nothing of interest in the investigation. Jin Sang remembers the rash (or burns) on motorcycle man. She recalls she did not see the rash in the autopsy room. She rushes to the coroner who tells her per the surviving son’s phone call, the body has been cremated. She thinks the body was switched at the hospital with a quick cremation to hide the fact. Did Young O switch the body? Jin Sang reviews the morgue CCTV footage. She sees Young O look at the body and then looks directly at the CCTV.
Dr. Hyung can’t get Young O’s words out of his head. Jin Sang goes to Young O’s office. She looks at his computer. She recalls that surgery video was deleted. Bingo, she finds the surgery video on Young O’s computer. Young O enters the room and asks what Jin Sang is doing there. She accuses Young O of deleting the surgery video and switching the corpse. She accuses Young O of killing the patient during surgery. He grabs her throat! Jin Sang repeats her accusation that he deleted the surgery video. Young O pulls out a scalpel! Young O raises the scalpel and appears to plunge it into Jin Sang!
* Not everything was perfect, but this was a solid first episode (and I’m not saying that because I’m a Jang Hyuk fan). First episodes have the difficult task of setting the story stage and introducing the characters.
a. Jang Hyuk made Young O intriguing
b. Story drew me in and surprised me in several spots. I want to know why motor cycle man was killed, I want to know what happened during the surgery that guaranteed death, etc. The first half of the story focuses on the politician Mr. Kim and the second half focused on motorcycle man.
c. The after surgery scene was emotionally on point.
a. Lots of characters and it was difficult to know who was who.
* Jang Hyuk portrayed Lee Young O as a confident, calm, with a cocky edge. Young O and his father have a different vibe between them. Color me surprised that Young O proposed to Min Jae and smiled! I was thinking Young O would be emotionally regressed and the female lead would teach him to get in touch with his feelings. But no, Young O has emotion but he’s guarded and tactical in his interactions. It’s like he’s observing the action from a distance and his reactions are measured. I liked Young O.
* Park So Dam was fine as Jin Sang. My favorite moment was her cold schooling of Young O in the emergency treatment law and putting the handcuffs to make her point with Young O.
* Yoon Hyun Min gave Doctor Hyun Suk Joo an earnest vibe. He cares about his patients. He was willing to take on a difficult surgery with low odds. He stood up Jin Sang on their date, but he was so scattered with work, Jin Sang understood and forgave.
* Heo Jun Ho’s portrayal of Young O’s father, Lee Gun Myung, made me curious. What is his backstory with Young O? Why was he rude to politician Dr. Kim?