Wednesday, April 3, 2013

That Winter, the Wind Blows Final Episode 16

Zo In Sung (Jo In Sung) as Oh Soo

Before I really delve into this drama, I want to get my two main critiques out of the way. First, I think 16 episodes was not long enough for this particular story to unfold. I don't think that Oh Soo and Oh Young shared enough sweet, intimate moments or enough painful moments for us viewers to really build a strong emotional attachment to them as a couple. If this drama had 20 episodes, I think we could have also seen more of Jin Sung (Kim Bum) and Hee Sun's (Jung Eun Ji) characters and their cute romance. Kim Bum and Eun Ji are two popular actors who are building quite a large fan base, but neither of them had more than a few minutes of screen time per episode. As for my second critique, I wish That Winter, the Wind Blows would have kept the same feeling of the first 3 episodes throughout the entire show. Those first scenes were  pretty but had a dark, twisted side lurking beneath the softness that the show's aesthetic displayed. To me the later episodes relied heavily on the typical Korean drama tropes like the sick person in love, the evil mother (or mother-like figure), the self-sacrificing bad guy, and the jump through time in the last episode in order to sort things out without really explaining anything, and it lost the magic I felt during the first week it aired.

Song Hye Kyo as Oh Young
Now let's discuss the final episode. It began in a rather gruesome fashion. Oh Young was bleeding in a bathtub after just having cut her wrists, and Moo Chul (Kim Tae Woo) was stabbed by a thug and proceeded to violently break the thugs shoulder and arm. Of these two bloody scenes only one is fatal, and I am sad to report that Moo Chul died. Even though he was a bit of a douche, I liked him. He was busy protecting everyone without taking any credit for it. Again, his character could have seen a lot more development had there been 20 episodes in this series. But, the important thing about the first part of this episode, I suppose, is that Oh Young survived that bloody night, and, happily her surgery a few days later.

Of course she forgave Oh Soo for lying to her about being her brother. He was the first person who came into her life and really had fun with her and made her feel loved and happy. Even though Secretay Wang (Bae Jong Ok) had taken care of Young for most of their lives, Young didn't trust her because of the deceptions she carried out surrounding her sight. I had trouble believing the resolution of Secretary Wang returning to Young because I'm not sure how Young found the strength to forgive her, and I felt the plot line involving her, Myung Ho, and the company was left unresolved.

Kim Bum as Jin Sung and Jung Eun Ji as Hee Sun
The ending that came about in the final 10 minutes of the series was a happy one for most characters. After stabbing Oh Soo to save his family, Jin Sung moves to the country with Hee Sun to live the simple life away from the city and gambling. We see this after the show jumps about a year into the future. At this point Oh Young has survived surgery and can see. Her vision isn't perfect, but it looks like a soft filter from Instagram so she seems to be pretty satisfied with it. And after a fake-out conversation between Jin Sung and Hee Sun that makes it sound like Oh Soo is dead, it is revealed that he is serving tea near Oh Young. At first I had a horrible thought, "Oh no. He better not have lost his memory." Thank god they didn't use that trick again because Oh Soo and Young needed another hot kiss to end the drama. On that note, another positive thing to add about That Winter, the Wind Blows on top of my many critiques is that Zo In Sung and Song Hye Kyo shared some soft, sexy kisses in the final episode, redeeming them from the forced kiss that happened a few episodes earlier.

Soo and Young, fighting!
Don't forget to download the beautiful and addictive That Winter, the Wind Blows OST just click here!

Watch That Winter, the Wind Blows with English subtitles


  1. Thanks for a review that contains a few thoughtful caveats. Lots of people are squeeing over the happy ending, and I'm grateful, but I too felt that the ending was rushed, and there were plot holes you could drive a truck through; for example, how did they get Kim off their back? How did an apparently dead guy, bleeding out on a rooftop, become a cheerful healthy waiter? Lots of manipulation, just to fake us out. I liked the avoidance of usual drama tropes, though: no amnesia, and we never did find out who Soo's parents were; that was actually rather refreshing.

    1. That's an interesting point (about Oh Soo's parents). If the writers wanted to go completely cliche-crazy they could have made Secretary Wang Oh Soo's real mom who abandoned him to raise Young or something ridiculous like that. I feel whiplash, though, just from watching the last 10-15 minutes of the last episode because everything resolved so quickly. It was a bit odd because I read somewhere that this drama was pre-written so it's not as if they didn't know everything needed to conclude by episode 16. I'm still kind of scratching my head about it.

  2. I agree on the abrupt ending, for such an amazing drama it could have lasted quite a few more episodes. But what this drama made me feel was, regardless of who you are, good or bad, we all strive for the same thing in this life, to not be lonely, to not suffer in pain alone, or enjoy happiness alone.

    One day I'll find her.

    1. That's a great thought, and I think you are right. Some people, like Soo Young, who have been deceived by others their whole life tend to believe it is best for them to live alone and keep a protective wall surrounding them. In dramas, though I doubt so much in real life, these characters often meet that one person who is willing to endure the initial mistrust in order to break through the wall. I think we all strive to meet someone like that, hopefully it's not just something that appears in dramas, but maybe something that can happen in reality too....

  3. You are right, could have longer 20 episodes or even 18 episodes to just explain the plot holes in the drama..Its come to an end - yeah am happy, and sad cause am gonna miss it but I still have lots of questions. So Moo Chul dies, and just before we are told that he's been protecting everyone (those who rated him as their enemy) from the evil boss (Kim, i think) and yet even after he dies, his death is just dismissed without a word of 'i don't know, thank you - or some random tribute or any show of remorse and guilt towards how they'd all treated him'. They grew up together, surely something could have come from it. Not even his funeral.....
    Am still wondering secretary Wang's love for Young. what was her motive? was it Young? the love of money (& the company)? or the love of Young's father? What was her 'end-game'? She loves(d) Young as her own, yet she blinded her?
    Then there's Myung Ho, who abruptly leaves the drama then suddenly reappears again???how's that? and am still confused about his character overall. So am guessing he was initially gonna marry Young for the company, then what, suddenly realises he's inlove with her after her fake oppa arrives (and this is even before they find out that he's fake).
    So Jin Sung, you stub your friend? why? to save your family...ok..but the episode looks like they have already been involved in the accident before you actually stubbed Oh Soo. (& does everyone know what you did?)
    What was the plan about the gambling scene anyway, & Moo Chul's right hand man? was it for Kim to lose or win?

    I watched the movie before, so my heart was already set for a sad ending, as much as as everyone looks at it as happy,after watching the ending scene again, i now think they've stuck to the orignal movie ending - 'He died 6 months before she did... :'( the surgery may have been a success, but even with chemotherpy the turmor got the better of her (i don't know). The white, fluffy,clear picture gives it like a 'skip of scenery' (heavenly look) effect.
    I think they are too scared to upset people. Do you want it sad? Do you want it happy? So they go for the apparent policy of appeasement and try to do both. Unfortunately, I’m not sure I really like having to choose but making the end vague and hazy on purpose just screams, let the reader try to decipher, and choose whichever story he/she wishes to believe. Give me an finite answer, if the characters dies just tell me. If they lived to really frolic in a cherry orchard then make it clear that they are really living! I can handle it. Maybe it goes two-ways, just have to pick the one you like best :)

    Sorry, i know am rumbling on but there's just soooo much..................Thanking you <3

    1. All of your questions are definitely legitimate. This is one reason why I really enjoyed Ice Adonis (and am currently enjoying Glass Mask). It has over 100 episodes so there is plenty of time to let every character develop and every plot line come to a resolution. I think 16 eps works for romcoms, but it's hard to pull off for a melo.

    2. The ending was definitely real. It looked blurry because Young’s sight wasn’t perfect, but just enough for her to make things out. When Hee-Sun and Jin-Sung were talking about visiting Soo and bringing Lamb’s ear flowers, they were talking about real brother Soo; visiting the river where his ashes were spread. I thought it was a nice touch. It seemed like the restaurant was Soo’s because he told her he actually wanted to cook because Jin Sung and Hee Sun both like his cooking. If the ending wasn’t real then that was s a very elaborate dream with the cafe, waitress, the fact that Soo had been for 6 months. I don’t see how the ending could be just a dream. And as was mentioned, there is no way Hee-Sun and Jin-Sung could be happy is Soo were really dead. Sure the show wasn’t perfect but it did give us a happy ending which both characters deserved. Furthermore, Song Hye Kyo and Jo In Sung stated in their interviews that it was indeed a happy ending.They actually knew from the start that it would be happy ending since Writer Noh that it would be one.So hopefully everyone is no longer confused about the ending being sad or an open one.

    3. Well said! Im impressed on how you view the drama's ending. Your right, it is a happy one. Not sad or vague. :)

  4. after watching the last five episodes straight till midnight, i got myself a splitting headache! that ending is just bizarre... i agree that the writers left it to us viewers the huge challenge to decide whether the ending was happy or tragic. i feel bad because i cant seem to get my emotions straight. should i be happy and giddy they ended up together? or should i be heartbroken because the epilogue was just a dream and that both lovers actually died? but i guess, the writers/producers just cant bear to break their viewers hearts because there was just too little time shown wherein the O2 couple were able to enjoy their relationship as a couple and bathe in their sun-kissed love. it was already the last episode wherein they really conducted themselves together as lovers and not as siblings. maybe they lacked time, as this has 16 episodes only. surely the viewers wont be as forgiving if both of them died without giving them(the viewers) good screening of how the O2 couple's relationship could have worked.

    but all in all, this is one heck of a quality drama, a masterpiece if i should stretch it. the story is just great, the actors delivered their roles flawlessly, save for director myung ho i guess. the cinematography is also pristine, you could almost feel you're beside them.

    though im still stumped, glad the headache's gone but im still confused with that ending. i have to re-watch it esp the epilogue and hopefully id be able to set my feelings straight. come to think of it, i might as well re-watch the whole thing haha XD



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