Snowdrop Episode 8

1987…Spring…

Enroute to a briefing, an agent receives a call about Director Eun Chang Soo’s son and Young Ro’s brother, Eun Yeong U. The agent yells that a clerk shouldn’t have been in that kind of situation. The car changes course.  Also, enroute to the briefing, but in another car, Secretary General, Nam Tae Il sees Chang Soo’s car turn around.

Hong Ae Ra (Chang Soo’s wife) and Cho Seong Sim (Tae Il’s wife) snipe at each other at the boutique of designer and owner Choi Mi Hye. An agent steps in and tells Ae Ra he has bad news. She quickly leaves. Seong Sim and Mi Hye wonder what that was about.

Chang Soo arrives at the hospital where his son is.

Flashback… Eun Yeong U promises at his mother’s grave he’ll care for Young Ro and make sure she marries for love and lives a happy life. Young Ro smiles and tells him she’s only 3 years younger than him.

Eun Yeong U opens his eyes and asks his father to take care of Young Ro as he promised to his deceased mother (Chang Soo’s first wife). He flatlines and dies.

Agent Lee Kang Moo (Jang Seung Jo) uses the pilfered scalpel to cut his bindings.

Mistress Pi Seung Hee (Yoon Se Ah) slips out of the cafeteria while Comrade Lee dozes.

Kang Moo hides to avoid Comrade Joo on patrol. He enters Mistress Pi’s secret room. It is full of communication gear. He’s stunned.

Mistress Pi slips into the bathroom and pulls out her radio. She identifies herself as the Rhine.


The news report blares that during an operation at sea, Chang Soo’s son, Eun Yeong U was killed. Eun Young Ro (Kim Ji Soo) can’t believe it. Then Soo Ho’s picture flashes on the screen while the reporter identifies him a North spy that has been operating in Europe before returning to Korea and creating the current hostage crisis at the university. The reporter states Soo Ho contacted Professor Han for political reasons. She promises more details later. Young Ro stares at Soo Ho with tears running down her face. She asks him to clarify what they just heard. Her brother is dead? She declares it can’t be true. Lim Soo Ho (Jung Hae In) watches her grief. She runs out of the room. Soo Ho has to restrain her from tripping the bobby traps in her need to escape the dorm. She slaps him and declares he’s evil for being part of the people that lead to her brother’s death. She falls to the floor. Mistress Pi and Comrade Joo watch then move away.

Kang Moo sees the transcripts of conversation throughout the dorm. Voiceover of Mistress Pi and the transcripts she documented. He listens to Soo Ho order Comrade Joo to add more bobby traps. He promises if the South lies to them once more, he’ll trip the traps.

Kang Moo heads back into Mistress Pi’s office. He hides when Comrade Joo enters and grabs the explosives.

Kang Moo scurries back to his room. Soo Ho bursts in just as Kang Moo tries to make it appear he’s still tied up. Soo Ho finds the scalpel. Soo Ho ties him up and walks him down the hall. Kang Moo suggests the Soo Ho could defect, marry and live happily ever after in the South. Soo Ho warns him not to try anything foolish.

Soo Ho finds Doctor Kang Chung Ya (Yoo In Na) (the secret North agent code name Moran Hill 1). She explains she gave Young Ro a sedative. She notices the look on Soo Ho’s face. In another room, Doctor Kang Chung Ya (Yoo In Na) (Tae Il’s mistress and secret North spy) points out that there are no guarantees. She asks if Young Ro hid him in the dorm. Soo Ho confirms it. Chung Ya warns him not to let his gratitude and personal feelings mess with the mission. Soo Ho claims he has no feelings for Young Ro. Soo Ho reveals the news report revealed his name and face. He wonders if the South can be trusted. Chung Ya doesn’t believe the North would trust the un-trustable. Soo Ho asks why they must remain 10 days. Chung Ya is surprised he doesn’t know why after all the time he spent in Germany.

Mistress Pi’s assistant, Kye Boon Ok (Kim Hye Yoon) wakes the others with her doubts about Young Ro which she spews to Mistress Pi. Shushing her to no avail, Mistress Pi reports the Young Ro collapsed when she heard a news report that her brother died. Young Ro’s roommates – Go Hye Ryeong, Yoon Seol Hee, Yeo Jung Min – gasp in shock.


Ae Ra arrives at the memorial service and finds her husband crying and saying it’s his fault his son Eun Yeong U is dead. Ae Ra soothes saying Chang Soo had to send his son away because he protested the current government. Chang Soo couldn’t have the president turn against him. Chang Soo declares the operation killed his son. Ae Ra hisses to keep that to himself. She tries to refocus him by declaring Young Ro must be saved. Chang Soo sobs his son’s name.

Young Ro dreams of her brother’s declaration to their mother he’d take care of her. Suddenly she’s alone and her brother is gone. Young Ro wakes with a start. Chung Ya soothes her. Young Ro clutches her heart and sobs. Chung Ya unbuttons Young Ro’s blouse to help ease her. She spies the necklace (Soo Ho gave Young Ro from his sister).

Flashback…it’s a snowy night. Chung Ya asks Soo Ho for the necklace. He refuses stating it is more precious than life.

Young Ro runs out of the room.

Soo Ho watches the news report about Young Ro’s brother’s memorial service and his last letter to his sister than he’ll never finish. Young Ro asks Soo Ho to let her go see her brother one last time. Soo Ho refuses and returns her to the cafeteria as Chung Ya watches.

The president offers Chang Soo his condolences on the loss of his son. Tae Il tries to assure the president the political fallout is being minimized. The president snaps this is neither the time or place for that. Chang Soo’s wife oozes concern for Chang Soo’s daughter the hostage of the North spies.  The president tells them to stay strong. Chang Soo’s wife smirks at Tae Il’s wife.

Back home, Tae Il and Seong Sim bemoan the president’s concern. Tae Il declares he has a plan. He urges her to help him with her poise and social skills. Seong Sim tells him unless 13 virgins die, nothing matters and shares the priest’s prophecy. She assures him the coup won’t hurt him. Tae Il calls her an idiot.

Ae Ra tells Chief Ahn that he must make sure the Chang Soo’s son’s is memorialized in the most positive way. He promises to do so.

Chief Ahn practices for the press conference. His agents tell him to relax and not yell at the reporters. Chief Ahn snaps a country wide press conference is a big deal.

Soo Ho spies the scarf Young Ro’s brother gave her in her room. He retrieves it. He gives it to her. She clutches it and sobs.

The next day (9 days before the election), the student gathers for a meal.

Young Ro’s roommates urge her to eat.

Mr. Kim asks and is granted to untie Kang Moo so he can eat. Kang Moo doesn’t understand why Mistress Pi thwarted their initial attempts to find Soo Ho. Boon Ok goes into detail about Mistress Pi, including that she leaves the dorm and returns exhausted every evening. Word is that the former hall director was livid to learn Mistress Pi would be the one to take her place. MK shares the previous mistress killed herself the same evening she complained about Mistress Pi taking her place. Kang Moo eyes Mistress Pi speculatively.

Han Na interrupts Chief Ahn’s practice for the press conference. She’s upset he’s not doing anything about the dorm room situation. He tells her there is much she doesn’t know.

Chief Ahn arrives for the press conference sporting shades. He details Taedong River 1 and the agents’ pursuit of him. Han Na enters the room and sits next to a report and suggests he look into the case beyond Chief Ahn’s words. The report asks if there is more to the hostage situation than Chief Ahn is saying. Han Na confirms it.

Soo Ho and Chung Ya watch the press conference. Soo Ho doubts they’ll ever be able to return to the North. Chung Ya tells him to release 30 hostages. Soo Ho says they’ll need to keep Chang Soo’s daughter.

Soo Ho pulls Chung Ya into the cafeteria. She sits next to Young Ro. Soo Ho announces 30 of them will be released. He hands Mistress Pi the list of names that she reads to the relief of those named.

Tae Il berates Soo Ho for deciding to release 30 hostages. The timing isn’t right. But if Soo Ho must, then Chung Ya must be one of those released. Soo Ho smiles and refuses. He reports there was a gun in her medical bag. He tells Tae Il to send medicine and at Comrade Joo’s request, cup noodles. Ha!


Young Ro’s roommates bemoan their situation. Mistress Pi tells Boon Ok to get hot water. She heads to the kitchen and starts the kettle. She finds a bag with guns and money. Mr. Kim’s sons see the money. He’s thrilled and stuffs his pockets. He also takes a pistol. He promises no one will know he took the money. Boon Ok declares she’ll tell. He grabs her and warns her to keep quiet. Comrade Joo enters the kitchen. He takes the money from Mr. Kim’s son who tries to blame Boon Ok. She denies it.

Comrade Joo pushes Mr. Kim’s son back into the cafeteria. Mr. Kim’s son pulls the pistol out and points it at Comrade Joo. He pulls the trigger but nothing happens. There are no bullets in the gun. Mr. Kim calls his son an idiot. Mr. Kim’s son and Mr. Kim beg for forgiveness. Comrade Joo hits Mr. Kim’s son repeatedly. The girls scream at the brutality. Kang Moo yells that Comrade Joo should kill him instead. Soo Ho strides into the room. Comrade Joo puts the gun to Kang Moo’s head. Soo Ho yells at Comrade Joo to stop. Comrade Joo gets a grip and reports Mr. Kim’s son tried to rob them. Seong Sim order them put in the chapel.

Comrade Joo ties Kang Moo, Mr. Kim and his son to the pews in the chapel. Mr. Kim berates his son. Mr. Kim’s son berates Kang Moo for not getting them out of there. Kang Moo gets out of his bindings. Mr. Kim declares he knows a way to escape. Kang Moo takes the path Mr. Kim describes

Back at the command tent, Tae Il praises Chief Ahn’s press conference performance. He orders Chief Ahn to send Han Na back into the dorm with the items the North spies demanded last night. Chief Ahn can’t believe they want Han Na to deliver the goods. Chief Ahn declares since Tae Il has taken over, things are going smoothly. Tae Il tells Chief Ahn to make him a coffee. Tae Il declares this is the way it should be.

Kang Moo follows Mr. Kim’s direction.

Mr. Kim’s son berates his father for helping Kang Moo to leave without them. He tells his father to leave too. Mr. Kim declares he can’t leave without his son.

Kang Moo ends up at the hut that leads to the woods. He sees the booby traps and disarms it. He rushes outside and tells the startled SWAT team they must follow him back into the dorm. The SWAT team reports the request. Tae Il declares Kang Moo must return to the dorm without any reinforcements. The SWAT agents fire at Kang Moo to force him to return to the dorm. He can’t believe it. They warn him if he doesn’t return to the dorm, they have to shoot.

Comrade Joo and Soo Ho hear the shot and rush to the stairs.  DM hides in the basement. Soo Ho and Comrade Joo reset the bobby trap in the hut. Kang Moo hides in Mistress Pi’s secret office.

Mr. Kim shows Comrade Joo the secret passage Kang Moo used. Comrade Joo goes through the passage.

Kang Moo stares at the recording material in secret room in Mistress Pi’s office. He listens to the conversation between Soo Ho and Chung Ya about the election and how the current party’s deal with the North is keeping them safe. He’s shocked Chung Ya isn’t who he thought.

Mr. Kim and his son return to the cafeteria.

Tae Il tells Soo Ho they had to shoot at Kang Moo to make him return to the dorm because of his incompetence. They can’t have Kang Moo ruining everything. Tae Il bemoans Chang Soo’s son’s death. Tae Il orders Soo Ho to maintain the status quo for 9 days then he’ll be returned to the North. Soo Ho hates the situation. He doesn’t trust the South.

Kang Moo hates the situation. He doesn’t trust the South or the North. He exits the secret room. He and Comrade Joo fight near the stairs. Soo Ho ends it with a gun to Kang Moo’s head.

Soo Ho informs Kang Moo that Han Na returning with supplies. His behavior will determine if she lives or dies. Kang Moo warns him not to kill her. Soo Ho smiles. Kang Moo declares this mess is orchestrated to win an election in the South. Soo Ho agrees the South would do that, but the North would not.  He’s sure the North wouldn’t abandon them. Kang Moo tells him to get a grip. They are all pawns. Soo Ho agrees if the North needs him to be a pawn, he’ll be a pawn.

The reporters outside the dorm report the situation.

Soo Ho considers what Kang Moo said.


The girls get their next meal. Young Ro takes her to Kang Moo and asks why no one is trying to rescue them. She’s desperate to see her brother. Kang Moo warns her to keep a level head. Soo Ho has a detonator that will blow them all up when activated. Comrade Joo breaks up their conversation. Young Ro says she needs to use the restroom.


Soo Ho sees them in the hallway. He sends Comrade Joo away. Young Ro asks for time to rest. Soo Ho agrees and tells her to follow him. He bandages her hand. She asks about the paper airplane and why he has it. She asks if he returned to the dorm because of it.  She declares returning was foolish. Soo Ho didn’t realize the hiding place he picked would lead him back to the dorm. He offers condolences for her brother. He says they’ll return to the North in nine days. Soo Ho doesn’t want to hurt anyone. He wants to release her, but can’t. Young Ro gives him a back hug. He tries to step away. She won’t let go. He gently pulls out of her grasp.


Then he pulls her into a hug. Young Ro hugs him back. She moves her hand and grabs the detonator. She pushes him away from her, holds up the detonator and asks him to confirm if she pushes the button the dorm will be blown up. Soo Ho is stunned.

My Thoughts

Young Ro took matters into her own hands and grabbed the detonator. Writer Yoo Hyun Mi continued to hit the sweet spot with the hostage situation balancing reveals, humor (from both North and South characters), and the political machinations that keep the hostage situation unresolved. Irksome characters were less reactionary or chatty with less screen time. Chung Ya realized Young Ro having Soo Ho’s necklace was a big deal. Young Ro realized she could manipulate Soo Ho. Kang Moo realized the South and North were in cahoots because of the presidential election and that Chung Ya isn’t more than a doctor, she’s a North spy.

Im Soo Ho (Jung Hae In) doesn’t want to hurt the hostages.  Again, he speaks the truth to Young Ro while maintaining the tough façade for others. Yes, he’s a hardened spy. Yes, he has feelings for Young Ro. This can’t end well for him.

Eun Young Ro (Kim Ji Soo) took the detonator during a hug. She engineered alone time with Soo Ho and manipulated him with a back hug. He took the next step and gave her a hug. Knowing Soo Ho had the detonator, she swiped it from Soo Ho’s pocket and held it aloft, much to Soo Ho’s surprise. Bold move Young Ro, bold move. Now what will she do?

The fourth song of the OST is “Wishes” sung by Jamie Miller:

I rank this episode as almost terrific8.5 on a 10-point scale.

Asian drama fan. I watch and blog dramas on https://kjtamusings.wordpress.com/.

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