The series ends with a superior episode.
Uncontrollably Fond Recap Episode 20 (Final)
Shin Joon Young (Kim Woo Bin) takes No Eul (Bae Suzy) to the hospital and tells the doctors that if she wants to die, go ahead and kill her. He walks away from her hospital bed. The nurse brings Joon Young No Eul’s phone. He passes the time looking at the contents of her phone and runs across a video where she interviewed herself while she waited for him to return from his visit to his father. She comments that she’s a patient woman, but what makes her afraid and sad is that the day will come where waiting for Joon Young will no longer be needed. She cries. He cries.
When No Eul wakes she finds Joon Young their gently stroking her face. He tells her that the doctor determined it was an issue with her pancreas and she won’t die today. The nurse tells Joon Young that he can do the paperwork to have her released immediately.
No Eul and Joon Young walk along the road. I don’t know why they’re not in a taxi. Joon Young gives No Eul his scarf and coat which she accepts but declines his offer a piggyback. She slowly walks forward. Joon Young looks out to the sea and yells ”I want to live! I don’t want to die! Who will take care of my mother when I’m gone? I’ve never been a good son to her. I’ve only caused her pain. There many things I want to do for my mother. How can I die like this? I want to live! I don’t want to die! All the people I love her right here. I just got the chance to be happy with No Eul, why are you taking this away from me? I want to live! I don’t want to die! I’m scared. I’m scared!” No Eul runs back and hugs him. As they both cry she says it’s all her fault. It was good to see Joon Young finally release the anguish of his pain. He’s been so calm and collected when he must have been boiling with rage inside. Woo Bin can get angry and bark lines with ease. This was a good scene for him.
The news reports that a newly uploaded video will shock everyone. We see the clip of Joon Young and Yoon Jung Eun where she tells him that she’ll get away with it this time just like she got away with it last time. Choi Ji Tae (Lim Ju Hwan) watches stunned. Ji Tae’s mother watches stunned. The reporters say that the identified parties are Jung Eun’s father, Jung Eun, Joon Young, and Assemblyman Choi. They show live feed of Assemblyman Choi arriving at the police station. A gaggle of reporters around him and pepper him with questions such as is the video true, is Joon Young your son, etc. Assemblyman Choi tells the reporters he will be truthful and fully cooperate with the investigation. Now we know that Assemblyman Choi did let his conscience be his guide, the conscience that No Eul and Joon Young prodded to awake again, and he uploaded the video that No Eul gave him. I’m glad to see he chose the right path, though it’s the hard path.
Uncle finds Joon Young’s mother in the kitchen cleaning dishes. He tells her the news report where Assemblyman Choi’s aide stated that Assemblyman Choi told him to upload and incriminating video. Uncle says that Assemblyman Choi isn’t as bad of a guy as he originally thought. Joon Young’s mother keeps in her bubble and does not react.
Assemblyman Choi admits his part in the hit-and-run incident to the police during the interrogation. The policeman can hardly believe the details that Assemblyman Choi is willingly telling him.
Jung Eun is at the airport ready to make a run for it. She tells her father that she’s leaving the country. She yells at her father that all she’s ever done is follow his directions in this matter, but now she’s in trouble. Behind her the police approach and call her name. Is anyone surprised that in Jung Eun’s alternate universe, that this is all her father’s fault?
No Eul listens to her brother, No Jik, cry now that he knows details about their father’s hit-and-run from the uploaded video.
No Eul walks out onto the deck joining Joon Young as he looks at the sea from their home. He asks why she gave his father the video. No Eul says he must stolen it from her. Joon Young stops her lies with a look. No Eul admits that she did give his father the video. No Eul said originally when she found out who killed her father, knowing what happened was sufficient. Joon Young tells her if she satisfied with that than the people that did the crime will never pay. No Eul tells Joon Young that his father didn’t hide the video, instead he’s confessed to his crimes and is willing to pay. No Eul says this is the kind of world I want to live in, and the kind of world I believe in. That’s a nice tie back to Joon Young telling her last episode to make the kind of world that she wants to live in. Excellent follow-through by No Eul on that.
Delivery guys drop off something. No Eul has them leave it outside. Joon Young asks what it is. No Eul says that it’s a doghouse for his dog. She tells Joon Young to bring his dog to their home so she and the dog can get acquainted. Joon Young is surprised because No Eul is allergic to dogs. No Eul surprises him when she says that she got allergy shots and should be able to handle his dog without discomfort now. She makes a sign for his dog to go on the doghouse. Joon Young adds his own touch to the sign. They end up painting each other’s noses and having some well-deserved fun. Joon Young’s voiceover says ”that night No Eul woke me and told me about the life that she would live once I was gone. She wasn’t morbid or sad. She spoke of a common sense type of lifestyle where she would follow her gut instincts.”
Joon Young hugs No Eul from behind. She turns and looks at him. He puts her hand to her face, and kisses her. Joon Young’s voiceover continues “when she fell asleep and the sun was starting to rise, father called. He told me he was proud to be my father and he would cherish the memory of having been my father is a happy one.” Finally we get to see our couple have happy moments. I was pleased and touched that Joon Young’s father reached out to him and expressed his pride in having him for his son.
But not everyone is happy… Ji Tae’s mother is livid with her attorney. Assemblyman Choi arrives and tells his wife that he dismissed the attorney. He says this was his decision. He tells the attorney to go home. Assemblyman Choi tells his wife he’s going to the proceedings without legal representation and he won’t appeal the decision. Stupefied she asks why. Assemblyman Choi says this is what he wants to do. He says his son Ji Tae was right. He says he became monster somewhere along the way. He want both of them to stop their machinations. Stunned his wife asks if he knows how hard she worked to make him the man that he is today. She tells him she took him from nothing and she has no intention to be poor again. Ji Tae enters the room and tells his mother to stop. But she won’t. She tells her husband because they were poor his mother had to die because they couldn’t afford the transplant. She reminds him that he declared in that moment that power and authority would be his goal so he would never would be in a similar situation again. She asks him if morality and ethics could have coexisted with his quest for power and authority. She tells him that sacrifices have to be made. She looks at Ji Tae and says “that’s why I arranged for our son to be hit by a car, to protect you”. Ji Tae looks at his mother surprised that it was her, not his father, that had him pursued. She tells her husband to get out of the house. She tells him to go back to where he came from. She leaves the room. Assemblyman Choi shakes his head unable to believe what he just heard. Ji Tae tells his father he no longer needs to keep the promise to stay with mother. Ji Tae tells his father he’ll be responsible for his mother for the remainder of his days. Assemblyman Choi counters that she is his wife, mother of his children. He vows to stay by her side. Even if that’s worse than going back to where he started in life. Ji Tae cries. He smiles at his father. His father smiles back. Terrific scene. Ji Tae’s mother once again showed the value structure of her life. Herself and status is first. Her husband and status is second. Her children and status is third. Even knowing that her husband protected her, she just couldn’t live with the reduction in status that his confession will generate. So she was willing to get rid of him like an old shoe. That’s why she told Ji Tae that she had him followed. Then the second part of the scene was the touching part. Ji Tae, as usual, promised to protect his mother as long as he lived. But his father would not let his son continue to take that burden. Their smiles and tears showed the two men truly love and support each other. Nice!
Choi Ha Roo doesn’t see No Jik (Lee Seo Won) at his place of employment. No Jik taps her on the shoulder, and they go for a walk in the cherry blossom laden park. She tells him he’s got a pimple. He tells her she’s got a pimple. No Jik comments things must be difficult for her. Ha Roo gets on her toes and kisses his forehead. She asks what that made him feel. He tells her he made his heart beat faster. She states he lied about being gay. She guesses that he knew about her father and lied to her that he was gay. She hands him her cell phone and asks him to put his number in it. Recall when they broke up she deleted his number and forced him to delete her number from his phone. No Jik is surprised. He asks her to confirm that they broke up. She confirms they broke up. She tells him she’ll never go to see him at work. She won’t call or text either. But…if later in life she can’t find a man as good as him, she’ll call. He puts his contact information in her phone. He tells her to give him a call. She tells him to have a good life. He wishes her the same. They shake hands. That was a lovely scene between our young couple. It didn’t gloss over the fact that her father was someone that No Jik would be angry at and link with her. What it did brilliantly was set up the possibility that they could reunite down the road when sufficient time had passed. Nice!
No Eul is having issues communicating with customer service in English. Ji Tae arrives, takes her phone, and talks to the service advisor. When he hangs up he tells her that the item in question has been reshipped. No Eul tells Ji Tae that he is super cool. Ji Tae asks where Joon Young is. When No Eul hesitates he asks if something’s wrong. When Joon Young comes down the stairs he looks at Ji Tae without recognizing him and tells No Eul he’s going to go for walk. He passes both of them and heads outside. Ji Tae confirms that Joon Young didn’t recognize him. No Eul confirms that for the last week Joon Young has recognized her less and less. He’s forgetting his name too. No Eul says she’s pretending to be a housekeeper. Nice scene that reminds us that Ji Tae and No Eul have a friendship, one that will extend into the future.
As Joon Young walks the boardwalk, Ji Tae follows him. Joon Young asks Ji Tae if he’s following him. Ji Tae confirms he is. Joon Young asks if Ji Tae knows him. Ji Tae confirms this. Joon Young asks what’s kind of person he was. Awk, tears! Ji Tae tells him that he was a jerk that thought he was cool. Ha! Ji Tae continues with a litany of Joon Young’s shortcomings and doesn’t stop even when Joon Young tells him to. Ji Tae tells Joon Young that he had the ability to make guys like him feel worthless. Joon Young asks if that’s a compliment. Ji Tae confirms that it is. Joon Young asks what kind of relationship they had. He asks if they were close. Ji Tae says they didn’t like each other. Ji Tae states he once wished Joon Young would be wiped off the face of the earth. Ji Tae tells him that their paths must cross again so he can be nice to him next time. He promises to treasure his younger brother. Awk, tears! Joon Young declines his offer. He walks away. Ji Tae smiles and cries as he watches his brother walk away. Wow! That’s exactly the kind of scene I was hoping for between Joon Young and Ji Tae. It acknowledged their antipathy for each other, but put the bonds of brotherhood and love front and center.
Uncle finds Joon Young’s mother, takes her hand, and puts an engagement ring on it. She takes the ring off and gives it back to him and asks why she would accept this. Uncle admits that he likes her. She tells him he’s out of his mind. He tells her that he’s finally in his right mind. He grabs her hand and puts the ring on her finger. He turns to leave and she throws water on him. She yells that her child is dying. How could he talk marriage? Calmly uncle tells her the next time she sees Joon Young to have that ring on her finger. He tells her to show the ring to Joon Young. She doesn’t understand and calls him a jerk. Keeping his calm, uncle tells her that Joon Young asked him to take care of her. This ring will fulfill that promise. This ring will give him peace. He tells her he will assume responsibility for her. He knows that she’s been avoiding seeing Joon Young because of the pain that causes. Firmly he tells her to get a grip. She’s Joon Young’s mother, and he’s her son. He tells her to go and see Joon Young before it’s too late. She falls to her knees and cries. Another good scene. I love the calm uncle dealing with the emotionally overwrought mother. Joon Young’s mother has always led with her emotions, and it hasn’t made her the most pleasant person to deal with.
Ji Tae goes to see Jung Eun in jail. She claims she will be out of jail soon. She says she won’t be punished like everyone hopes. She promises to get revenge once she gets out of jail. She says her father will crush all of them. She tells him his father will be a major target. Ji Tae says nothing. Jung Eun asks why he’s not responding. Ji Tae asks her which she would believe that there was a moment when he almost loved her? Jung Eun says nothing. Ji Tae asks if she would believe that once in his life he thought that she be a wonderful girlfriend. We see a flashback… Jung Eun lists all her accomplishments to Ji Tae. She tells him she could not be talking to him if she hadn’t passed an extensive interview with his mother. She wants him to think of her as the persistent Jung Eun, who is comfortable with unrequited love…for now. Ji Tae is charmed. Back to present day… We know they both thought of the same moment. Ji Tae tells Jung Eun that she can use her power to avoid punishment. But he asks her not to. He asks her to pay for her crime and come back…to him. She gets angry and demands to know he means. Ji Tae states her actions will let him know whether or not she’s irredeemable or there’s a worthwhile person still inside her. He tells her he’ll be back. She yells at him to never return. That was a decent scene. Again we have the gentleman being calm while the lady freaks out. Frankly I don’t want to see Ji Tae saddled with Jung Eun. She is reprehensible with no moral fiber. But Ji Tae is a man that is willing to protect unstable women. Just look at his track record with his mother.
When Joon Young’s mother visits him he doesn’t recognize her. He asked why she’s come. He asks if she’s there to sell something. She asks where No Eul is. Joon Young says she went to the market. He asks if she came to see No Eul. His mother confirms this. Joon Young invites her to wait inside. As he serves her tea he explains that No Eul went to the market because he wanted spicy beef stew, but she screwed it up. Awk, tears! Joon Young’s mother makes him the spicy beef stew. Joon Young watches her cook. No Eul returns to the home and watches Joon Young watches mother cook. She smiles.
To give them some time together No Eul walks and thinks. Nice!
Joon Young’s mother’s serves up her spicy beef stew. She asked Joon Young to taste it for her. They both sit at the table. He tastes the stew. He tells her it’s good. He eagers eats it and tells her it’s amazing. He tells her it tastes like the stew his mother used to make. Awk, tears! She wipes away a tear. He stops eating. He grabs her hand. He calls her mom. Awk, tears! He cries and apologizes for not remembering her.
Joon Young washes his face returns to his mother. He tells her she looks pretty today. I always like the way that he calls her Madam Shin. She tells him that she went to the hairdresser and is wearing a new outfit. She shows him the engagement ring. She tells him uncle proposed to her. He’s pleased. He congratulates her. She tells him when they marry she will have two new stepchildren to care for. She tells him she’s blessed. Joon Young says that he feels bad because all he did was drive her crazy. Awk, tears! She tells him that he was a good son. He tells her not to lie to him. She tells him he was a wonderful little boy. She says he always made her happy. Joon Young says if you keep talking like that, then I might think that I was a good son. With tears in his eyes he tells her that he always tried. He tried to live the best life he could. But he apologizes to her again. His mother smiles and tells him she’ll keep her doors open so he can visit, whenever he wants. She tells him that when a flower blooms, she’ll imagine he’s visiting her. When the wind blows, she’ll imagine he’s visiting her. When it rains, she’ll imagine he’s visiting her. Joon Young cries. She cries. She thanks him for being her son. He thanks her for being his mother. That scene ripped me up. Maybe it’s because his mother finally said what was in her heart. Maybe it’s because Joon Young finally got to say what was in his heart. Maybe it’s because that was a beautiful healing conversation.
No Eul stares at the sea and sighs.
Ji Tae holds a press conference announces that he and his mother will be stepping down as management of the company. Ji Tae’s father stands in the doorway and smiles proudly at his son. Ji Tae tells the reporters that management of the company will be entrusted to a professional management company. Ji Tae’s father walks down the hallway happy that his son is handling matters. His assistant runs up to him and tells him that he will be arrested shortly. Assemblyman Choi suggests that they go eat spicy food at a little place he knows. Nice!
Ji Tae’s mother sits alone in her house.
Joon Young finds No Eul taking a selfie and asks if she’s a narcissist. She counters that her brother wanted a recent photo of her. She asks if he enjoyed his visit with his mother. Joon Young grabs her phone and says there are no pictures of them. He asks why she hasn’t taken advantage of dating a big star like him. Ha! He holds the camera in front of them they take a bunch of pictures together. Later the evening she tells him he looks tired. Joon Young agrees he’s very tired today. She tells him to lean on him and get some sleep. As he falls asleep she asks if she’s pretty. He tells her she’s so pretty he can’t even look at her. Later when she asks if he’s asleep he doesn’t respond. She tells him that he must be tired. She promises not to wake. She says everyone he loves is there for him. She tells her not to worry about a thing and get plenty of rest. She thanks him and tells him she’ll see him in the morning. She cries. Awk, tears! That was a lovely scene showing the strength of No Eul. She has a determined streak in her. Once she decided that she could love Joon Young again, she was all in. She didn’t turn her back on him and is staying with him to the end. That is love. That is worthy of respect.
Joon Young’s manager is dating No Eul’s best friend. Their hair is much better.
Joon Young’s CEO finds the videotape that Joon Young made.
“This is Joon Young. A few months ago I received word from a doctor that I don’t have much time to live. I was shocked but then realized that everyone dies eventually. The thing I’m most worried about is that people that I love will think I was miserable in my last days. I was truly happy. And I was able to have a good time. I’ve learned in realizing how finite time is, that truths about yourself surface. This illness is a blessing that allowed me to find courage. Yesterday the doctor told me I three months to live. If you’re watching this video, I am alive? What kind of life is the woman that I love, No Eul, living now?” He smiles.
No Eul yells at her boss. His boss tells her to calm down that she’s dealing with a highly sensitive investigation. She tells him they need to expose the bribes by this big company. He shows her bribe money. He asks her to take it just this once. She tells him the media should be slaves to capitalism. But she says she is suffering, so this money would help settle the tab. She offers him part of the money. He shows her car key and says he’s been taken care of. She asks if he realizes that she’s recorded all of this on the hidden camera. She points to the camera. She waggles her finger at him and says with his confession, she can now include the role of moral media in her report. She promises to hold onto the footage so it doesn’t get lost.
No Eul looks at a large picture of Joon Young as she waits for the bus. No Eul tells Joon Young that she worked hard today. No Eul kisses Joon Young. No Eul tells him she will see him tomorrow. She smiles.
This episode was everything I hoped the final episode would be and more. In thinking about this series, when you look back to episode one, when Joon Young, as an actor, had a death scene, but railed against it, but then agreed to die; this foretold his fate. Surprisingly I’m completely okay with Joon Young dying. This episode the writer, Lee Kyoung Hee, put all the pieces of the puzzle together and wrapped everything up beautifully. All the scenes were loaded with emotional impact. I cried as everyone, including Joon Young, grappled with the loss of Joon Young. All the actors gave their best. This is one of the better final episodes I’ve seen in a while.
Shin Joon Young (Kim Woo Bin) accepted his death and accepted the love from those that loved him. Joon Young had important scenes with everyone that mattered this episode. The closure with his father, Ji Tae, his mother, and No Eul were lovely. Woo Bin brought his ‘A’ game in this final episode. If you didn’t like Joon Young, this series would not have worked for you. I liked Joon Young and rooted for his self discovery journey that his terminal illness granted him.
No Eul (Bae Suzy) supported Joon Young to the end. As I said in the recap the best thing about this character is her dogged determination once she makes up her mind about something. Once she decided that Joon Young was worth the risk of openly loving again, she didn’t falter in her love and support for him. Again and again he pushed her away often in very hurtful ways. But she didn’t back down or waiver. I was glad that our couple got a few more snatches of happiness, and photographic proof that theirs was a loving relationship. I loved how this character took Joon Young’s advice to make the world one she wanted to live in. It was also a superb explanation of why she gave Joon Young’s father the copy of the video. Bravo writer! Suzy did a good job in this final episode.
Choi Ji Tae (Lim Ju Hwan) continued to support the crazy women in his life. He offered to take care of his mother for the rest of his life. But his father, with newfound realization of his own culpability, told his son that he would take that burden. He offered to take care of Jung Eun if only she would admit to her wrongdoing and take her punishment. Frankly I was relieved when she refused to do that. I did not want Ji Tae to be saddled with her for the rest of his life. His mother is enough of a burden. Finally Ji Tae and Joon Young had their moment. It was more effective because Joon Young didn’t know who he was when they had that moment. Ji Tae was brutally frank about his assessment of Joon Young but capped the conversation with his admission that he cared for his younger brother and wanted to be an older brother to him. Lim Ju Hwan delivered excellent scenes again.
Jin Kyung (Shin Young Ok) finally made peace with Joon Young. She was mired and frozen with grief. Thank goodness the men around her love her in spite of herself. This time uncle proposed and told her to see her son before it was too late. She finally bought a clue and did this. The mother and Joon Young scene was simply lovely. Never underestimate the power of a parent in your life. Never underestimate the power of love in your life.
No Eul’s brother No Jik (Lee See Won) came to an agreement with Ha Roo. I was pleased that she sought him out. I was pleased that she addressed the elephant in the room, her father. I was pleased that she kissed his forehead and asked what he felt. I was pleased when he admitted that it made his heart flutter. I was pleased when she realized that meant he was not gay. I was pleased when she opened the door for a future relationship. I was pleased when he concurred and opened the door for future relationship. That was a brief scene that satisfied.
Joon Young’s father (Yu Oh Seong) finally proved himself to be worth of respect. He approved the release of the video. He admitted his culpability. He got rejected by his wife. He made peace with Ji Tae and took the burden of his mother. Joon Young finally had a father her could respect. Ji Tae finally got the respect of his father. I especially liked when Joon Young’s father told his assistant to join him for spicy beef stew, at Joon Young’s mother’s restaurant no doubt, just before he was arrested.
Did the final episode grant my wish list?
* Life – It may be foolish, but I wish Joon Young would NOT die. Based on this episode, this seems unlikely.
Not Granted – Joon Young did die. It was the only option. It made the series stronger than if he had lived.
* Justice – I wish Joon Young’s father cracks and exposes Jung Eun, her father, and his own culpability. I would assume he’d continue to protect his wife. Bonus points if she’s exposed.
Mostly Granted – Jung Eun went to jail. She probably used her father’s power to get her out. But she was exposed and her father was exposed. Joon Young’s father exposed him. No bonus points because his wife was protected. She did admit to Ji Tae she caused the accident to save his father. She ended up alone. That was fitting.
* Bonding – I wish Ji Tae and Joon Young to have a face-to-face brotherly moment.
Granted – They did have a moment, made even better by Ji Tae’s blunt assessment of Joon Young who didn’t know who he was. The sweetness of Ji Tae wanting to be his older brother was lovely.
* Love – I wish Joon Young and No Eul either stay together because he lives, or No Eul is there when Joon Young dies. They deserve to be together to the end.
Granted – Our couple finally had moments of happiness. No Eul stayed with Joon Young until the end.
* Young Love – if there could be a reconciliation between Ha Roo and No Jik, that would please me.
Granted – Their scene together was short, sweet and satisfying.