I rate this scene: Sang Doo! Let’s Go To School [episode 16]

4 07 2010

Good day & gomen! m(_ _)m

I know it’s been a while since my last post but I’ve been caught up w/ the World Cup fever, & because I’m in a stupid timezone, I get live matches at ungodly hours (i.e. 12 midnight & 4:30am… did you know it’s really, really cold at 4:30am in the morning? ~~) However, I think it’s all good now since there are no more Asian teams & Brazil & Argentina have also been punched out *face palm*

I had also gone into deep depression after Roger Federer‘s quarter final exit @ this year’s Wimbledon TTTTTT_TTTTTT …but I think I can now see the daylight again lol Onwards & upwards ☆(^_^)☆

So I promise I will make a hearty effort to keep the updates flowing =D

Anyways, back on topic!

I’m posting this scene, the final passage in the finale of the 2003 Korean drama, Sang Doo! Let’s Go To School, in lieu of Bi‘s upcoming return to the small screen in his Mother land (new series title is Fugitive, co-starring one of my serious girl crushes, Lee Na Young, who is also back from an extended hiatus from drama work… Hip! Hip! Hooray!!!!!!!!!! FYI, these 2 starred in a series of CFs for the Korean phone company NATE, back in- I think– 2006. Too cute. See for yourself HERE ^_^)

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******SPOILER ALERT!!!!!!******

Following the finale of Sang Doo! Let’s Go To School, I remember there were fervent discussions as to whether or not the existence of this scene meant that the main protagonists had passed on or not. Did the traffic accident kill them?

After watching this scene over & over again, I think that it is truly up to the viewer to interpret the ending for themselves.

I believe that Sang Doo & Eun Hwan did die together (I am a victim of blooming Korean melodrama lol.) The glowing sepia coloured tones of the scene, the semi-fantasy-like element where Eun Hwan is suddenly giving birth out of the blue, the plush, peaceful greenery, the clear, unmuted, heaven-like skies… these are all elements that lure me to feel as if the scene isn’t “real.”

There is also the final monologue piece from the couple:

Even when life deceits you, don’t be sad or angry.
When the sad days passes by, a happier day will come to you.
We believe that love is the only hope in this lonesome world.
The thankful people who have allowed, yielded & permitted our love,
We love you.
And you’ll always be remembered.
People that forgave our love, we love you.

From Eun Hwan & Sang Doo
In a world without despair.

The last line seals the deal.

On top of that, we have Bori‘s words leading up & into the scene:

Dad, I’m really sorry.
You worked so hard to make me healthy.
But I keep on forgetting you, I’m sorry,
And I’m sorry I keep on forgetting your face.

I’ll try to dream of you tonight.

Goodbye Dad.

Your love, Bori. November 4th.

I think the fact that she signs off with a date may influence some to believe this is a letter that she is writing to her father, therefore meaning that he is still physically around, but I can hardy imagine that if Sang Doo was still alive, he wouldn’t even drop by to see his beloved daughter, if only it was even just once a year. I feel like Bori‘s narrative here is more like a journal recording of her own words to help her preserve her memories & feelings for her Dad as much as she can. Perhaps also, her guardians haven’t told her the complete truth. She may not fully comprehend what death is. I think she believes Sang Doo is still alive, but just living in “another world.”

I like to view this scene as Bori dreaming of Sang Doo & Eun Hwan. And in my eyes, Sang Doo & Eun Hwan are in heaven. But whatever your interpretation is, at least we can all agree that Sang Doo & Eun Hwan are finally together & living on in eternal happiness.

And I’m happy for them *tears of contentment* :’)

Please watch the scene here: (FF to the final 3:11 mark, & btw, the background track, My Love… Y_Y)

<3

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11 responses

4 07 2010
zooey

Oh yeah, they’re so dead and in heaven. LOL X) I remember how my sisters even debated over this show’s ending… and of course, no other conclusion could be reached. The monologue and the letter… yep, dead.

I also look forward to Bi’s upcoming drama with the ever-talented Lee Na Young. I really hope it’s a good one. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that it’s not another disappointing mess like his last drama, “A Love to Kill”.

5 07 2010
jicks

That’s great that you have sisters you get to share all the dorama love with! how many do you have? Are you the eldest? (you can choose to ignore my nosiness if you like lol)

I have 2 brothers, both are super cool but I think there is a better chance of Bi learning to speak fluent English than getting them to watch dramas w/ me xD

I’m glad you like Lee Na Young, too, she’s kinda quirky & not necessarily your commercial work girl but she is gorgeous & like you said, sublimely talented. I think I liked her best in Ruler Of Your Own World & also the movie Someone Special. Haven’t seen her latest film though -_-oO0

7 07 2010
zooey

LOL xD at the odds of your brothers watching dramas. Who knows? Maybe you’ll get them to see one before Bi gets his tongue straightened out to speak fluent English.

If you must know, I come from a brood of 6. I have 3 sisters and 2 brothers and I’m the eldest of the bunch. It’s sort of a drama-watching household– with me, my Mum, sister #2 and the housekeeper being avid viewers. My dad on the other hand is the occasional sageuk/taiga watcher. Sister #3 is more of a sporadic viewer while Sister #2 is married to a Korean national so she gets to watch her share of dramas and movies as well. So yeah, we do pull crazy-all-night-drama-marathons… although we don’t do that as much now. We got ourselves all sobered up, so to speak. Hehehe ;)

And yes, I think Lee Na-Young’s great. She doesn’t look like your conventional Korean actress but I guess that what makes her stand-out. She was so natural in Ruler of Your Own World and she has done a couple of nice movies (Who are You, Someone Special, Bi-mong, etc). Haven’t seen the latest one but I hope to get to it eventually. :D

5 07 2010
v

wow… ur first 2 paragraph described exactly my situation and how i feel about the world cup/winbledon… (well, except for the hrs… the game happened to be at the same time with my philosophy class… hmm.. let’s just say that i “forgot” to go to some of them.. XD)

anyways, wow… it makes me so nostlagic… i forgot how Rain was… not all buffy and muscular. at first, when i saw him wear those horrible clothes, i was like WTH!! XD i swear i cried so badly during this drama anyone watching me would have thought someone died in my family.
frankly, i’m still mad at the girl for lying and acting like she’s self-entitled to be w/ rain… and i was totally in love with the doctor lee dong gun… haha. but i was glad everything ended up well for everyone but i thought i didnt need to hear about bori slowly forgetting rain. i always interpreted that as them not being in the same town as each other and that the accident was only a cliffhanger… it wasnt until i read ur post that i realized that they might have DIED… um.. let’s just say i prefer them living.

5 07 2010
jicks

lol if only i could “forget” to go to work so i could charge up on my zzzs! but hey, don’t stress too much about not turning up to class, studying is hard, sometimes over-cramming is not a good thing. rightly timed leisurely activities can be just as helpful :))

i didn’t fully bawl until the final episode in sang doo. when bori says that she is so sorry for forgetting sang doo’s face.. OMG T_T I know it sounds corny but when she says that, your heart kinda aches for sang doo, he’d sacrificed so much for his beloved daughter but he wasn’t even going to be the best part of her life, her future.

haha you could make a case for them living on, don’t let what i say change your mind. i think that’s the beauty of this series, the message is: you write your own future, ne? (darn those Nike commercials lolol)

7 07 2010
Ender's Girl

Just got back from my 5-day vacation last night to find this post waiting “at home.” =D (jicks you were born in Malaysia? Awesome country! Can’t decide which I love more, KL or Penang, haha)

Thanks for posting this scene (actually, have I said how much a freakin’ love your “I Rate This Scene” series??? I always look forward to a new installment because you get to relive how you felt about a particular drama without having to re-watch the entire thing). And yeah, I remember participating in the (oft-vigorous) debates at the Soompi thread — well, the OLD thread, as this was before the Great Soompi Crash of ’05. And I remember beginning my kilometric exegesis with “DUDE, THEY DIED OKAY.” lolz

I totally understand why some viewers would choose to believe otherwise (I mean, that’s just how I felt with the ending of Hong Gil Dong, although that was more like… denial-but-not-really-denial-‘coz-I-know-they-really-died-but-but-why-no-dead-bodies???-why-no-dead-bodies???-*maniacal laughter*). jicks you’ve actually been very gracious & diplomatic with the “open interpretation” clause (lol), but for me, all the signs pointed to Sang-doo and Eun-hwan’s death, no getting around it. And I didn’t think the writers were being ambiguous about this fact just because there was no requisite Bori-and-LeeDongGun-standing-by-EunHwan&SangDoo’s-graves scene which is the default “they died!!! they so died!!!” ending of so many lesser melodramas out there. I like how there was no real closure at the end of this drama. Life goes on, but can you really truly ever get over the death of a loved one?

Yeah, I bawled the hardest during Bori’s voice-over… and I bawled again watching this clip. (And I love how, in an earlier scene, Lee Dong-gun stands on the rooftop of Sang-doo’s old apartment building and realizes he misses Sang-doo MORE than Eun-hwan, who had been his fiancee. Dayum but I’m sniffling again, argh!!! Can you tell I SO LOVED THIS DRAMA?)

As for the last shot of Sang-doo and Eun-hwan in a World Without Despair, once you’ve accepted the fact that they died, then this is when the scene can be interpreted differently, IMO. They’re in heaven, it’s all just Bori’s dream, etc. etc. (But — see, still dead, ne?) I always approached it a bit more cynically, I guess. I didn’t see it as SD & EH living in paradise, but more of a Could Have Been. This is what their life would’ve been like had Fate taken them down another road — i.e. IF SD had not left their hometown, become a gigolo and fathered Bori; IF EH had not become involved with Lee Dong-gun’s character, etc. etc., and endless series of Ifs and Thens. (Like you — er, Nike said, you write your future, but you also live with the ramifications of your actions and decisions.)

The way I saw it, this Could Have Been (or a parallel universe, if you believe in those) would’ve brought them less pain (no sick kid! no selling of body! no money troubles! no heartache and loss and death!), but it may also have brought them less… joy, maybe? Not happiness (which is circumstantial), but JOY. Because I think, if you asked Sang-doo right now to choose between this idyllic, worry-free Could Have Been and the hellish life he actually ended up living, he would still choose the latter, because there was no Bori in the Could Have Been. He loved his daughter most in the whole wide universe, so I don’t think he would have chosen a life without her — no matter how attractive the other alternative seemed.

Just my 2 cents (2 sen! lol)… Dayum, I’m really really really tearing up now, argh jicks!!! *shakes fist*. Y__Y

***
I can’t believe Brazil and Argentina got the boot (or… soccer cleat, heh), too! And I cried when Japan lost in the penalty shoot-out. Goodbye Asian Dreamz! And I hope Spain wins over Germany. Iker Casillas and David Villa <333333

9 07 2010
jicks

Do I believe in parallel universes?? Of course, baby, I am a sucker of a LOST fan lol

Thankyou for sharing your thoughts! I guess I looked at it as being a dream as soon as Bori said, “I will try to dream of you tonight.” I’ve never actually approached it as a “Could Have Been” scenario (never crossed my mind) but hearing your words, I am nod-nod-nodding along. Definitely think it is a perfect interpretation. This series is def one of my all-time personal favourites (this was one of the rare K-dramas I marathoned by will!)

And YES to the Lee Dong Gun scene <3 (though Lee Dong Gun himself, I've actually never really loved…)

P.S. Sounds like you had a great time in Malaysia!! The country is really beautiful even if I do say so myself lol Penang is pretty but I think I prefer K.L. … I guess I am just a shopping city gal ;O
P.P.S. Spain played freaking brilliantly against Germany!

7 07 2010
zooey

“And I love how, in an earlier scene, Lee Dong-gun stands on the rooftop of Sang-doo’s old apartment building and realizes he misses Sang-doo MORE than Eun-hwan, who had been his fiancee.” — Call me crazy but this is the one scene in this series that stood out for me the most. I’m a sucker for bromance. Their endless arguments and attempts to one-up each other was hilarious.

9 07 2010
doozy

I think Sang Doo was Bi’s debut drama and IMO, it was his most natural, heartfelt performance to-date. This was also my favorite Lee Kyung Hee drama.
I rate this scene: 15/10. It made me cry like a baby the first time I watched the show. Listening to My Love afterward brought back so many memories. Seeing it again here years later, I’m still choked up.

9 07 2010
jicks

I love (almost) everything that is going on inside Lee Kyung Hee’s head! That woman is like, the Kitagawa Eriko of the Korean world. They both have such an incredible ability to create characters that we remember always & dialogue so beautiful it burns into our hearts.

Have you seen Will It Snow For Christmas? I want to get on it badly!

9 07 2010
doozy

I have the first two eps of Will It Snow on the hard drive since the time the show aired but have yet to find enough interest/motivation to watch them. Will get to them eventually…

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