Friday, February 1, 2013

Favourite Scene - E17 by Hanjae

by Hanjae

Let's see, there are so many meaningful scenes that I liked... But I'll go with the Imja couple scene from Episode 17, where Choi Young and Eun Soo took the first major step towards being honest about their feelings for each other after Young temporarily wrests Eun Soo away from Deok Heung's clutches. In so many ways, both the dialogue and actions of this scene symbolized their complicated relationship up until that point.


From the very beginning, I knew you wanted to run away.
From the moment we met, I knew you faced death multiple times, that you have not been able to sleep in peace for even one night, that you cried many times, I know it's all because of me.

From the very beginning, Eun Soo had tried to run away from Choi Young for various reasons that are all rooted in fear. Initially it was fear and disgust at his seeming lack of concern towards the use of violence, which was gradually replaced by fear for his life as she grew to trust and care for him despite knowing that theirs must necessarily be a fleeting acquaintance. She also fears the painful parting that would follow once she acknowledges both his feelings for her and hers for him - and so, with each step that he takes towards her, she takes one step backwards. Keeping her distance.


But still...
I cannot leave you with such a person.
There are only a few days left before you return.
And during those remaining days... I can't leave you by the side of a bastard like him.
Can't you stay by my side?

From the very beginning, Young had tried to approach her even as she tried to run away. At first it was because he had made a promise to protect her and send her home, but subconsciously her warmth, inner strength and love of life made him reach out to her for a lifeline. Each time Eun Soo ran, he brought her back. In front of the portal, he stopped her before she could step through; he chased after her to save her from Ki Chul even as she misunderstood Gyungchang's death and rejected him in disgust; he tried to stop her from leaving even though she asked him to forget his promise. Despite her attempts to escape, he tries to bridge the distance between them both physically and emotionally. For Young, his compass seems to point towards Eun Soo rather than due north; he walks steadily towards her because he cannot help himself and does not know how to do otherwise anymore. Moving towards her symbolizes moving forward and embracing the future rather than being held back by the past.

The image of him advancing towards her and her backing away echoes the scene at the portal with Young grabbing Eun Soo and refusing to let go - but in contrast, it is out of love that Young grabs Eun Soo this time, rather than a combination of desperation and despair. Ever honest, Young lays his feelings bare; his heart is Eun Soo's to accept or reject. And while fear is evident in Eun Soo's reaction both at the portal and in Episode 17, it is significant for its starkly contrasting motivations; her initial fear for her own life has been entirely replaced by fear for his safety. She backs away not because she fears him, but because she fears losing him. Rather than fighting against his embrace, she now welcomes it.

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