Fear can be a frightening thing that can either slowly creep up on you or take you by surprise. In those cases, it's nice to have someone by your side to help you overcome that paralyzing reaction, but often times being the stronger one means facing the fear head-on on your own, to protect the ones you care for the most.
It's almost here (again) everyone: Good Doctor dances at the border of 20% with a 19.6% this episode. So close, Show. Just a couple more blips.
EPISODE 15 RECAP
Shi-on wraps his arms around Yoon-seo in a hug, a gesture which takes her by surprise. She pushes him away moments later, puzzled, and Shi-on explains how he merely wanted to return the favor to comfort her for all the times she did the same for him.
Still discombobulated, she asks if that's really all it is, and Shi-on nods. She lets out a relieved sigh.
Then to our next pediatric case: a young girl sits alone on a bench; her mother having gone to buy drinks. Nearby, a woman rides her bike, signaling her presence to passersby with her bell. A stranger on the path whips around to throw her off the bike and stab her.
The young girl screams at the sight, and Stabby approaches her, knife in hand. WTF—you stab innocent women out of the blue? Totally messed up.
Yoon-seo and Shi-on look up at the cloudy full moon, making small talk to fill the awkward silence. Yoon-seo apologizes for getting angry earlier and tells him not to claim responsibility for her actions in the future.
She suggests that they keep to their platonic noona-dongsaeng relationship, surprised when Shi-on readily agrees. People have always felt uncomfortable around him, Shi-on explains, to the point where he can pick up on that sense pretty well now. He knows it's the same with Yoon-seo, and he doesn't like the idea of her feeling uncomfortable because of him.
Yoon-seo says it isn't true, but her defense doesn't sound all that convincing. She tells him they don't have to go back to the way things once were between them if it makes him uncomfortable.
But Shi-on says that it won't. He figures it'll take some time for his heart to mature, but he'd rather continue hanging out with her than not. Moments later, they receive a call about the stabbing victims.
They rush back to the emergency room where the little girl a stab wound in the abdomen. The doctors hurry to transport the patient to the operating room and treat the hemorrhaging and damage to her internal organs.
They save the girl, but the crying mother is still racked with guilt for nearly losing the only family she has left after losing her husband a year ago. Unfortunately, Stabby is still on the loose, and Do-han silently stands vigil by the little girl's bedside, troubled.
He returns to the staff room just as the residents exclaim their horrified reactions to how anyone would have the audacity to stab a little girl, let alone six other victims. Eek.
When Shi-on walks Yoon-seo out, she notes how he admits to doing so this time, and laughs when he says that going to the hardware store is too much of a hassle. It's his job to protect her from the scary world out there, Shi-on says, since he's stronger than she is.
She wonders if he's actually that strong, and Shi-on nods, saying how he can open a can of tuna with one hand. Heh. He says he wants to go eat tomorrow night, and even offers to pay for dinner. She agrees, beaming.
As Yoon-seo walks away, Shi-on thinks to himself: "This is enough for me. Seeing you smile; staying by your side. These past few days, it feels like my heart grew [several] centimeters."
At home, Yoon-seo takes out the rose from the trash and pins it back to her corkboard.
Jin-wook finds In-hye sitting alone, her head hanging. He apologizes for not telling her that he knew about her sister, but that isn't what In-hye is upset and angry about. Now that Jin-wook knows unni's line of work, there's no way her sister and Jin-wook can ever be an item.
Jin-wook admits he was surprised at first, but he could sense that In-young loved her little sister so much that she would willingly work as a bargirl. That kind of sacrifice is difficult even among family members, he adds.
For him, he tends to believe the things that can't be seen: "There are more things that can't be seen that are most precious in this world."
Dad throws a fit over his porridge diet, grumbling that he wants rice instead. He orders Shi-on to buy him some food, but Shi-on refuses. Good for you.
Dad mutters something about his good-for-nothing son, and Shi-on loudly says that he knows what he's talking about because he's a doctor. Dad's eyes nearly bulge out of their sockets at this act of defiance, and then Shi-on shuffles outside trying to catch his breath.
Elsewhere, Chae-kyung confronts her stepmother about Creepy Chairman's involvement in her father's death. President Lee apologizes, saying she didn't want to upset Chae-kyung with the truth, but that only angers her further.
Do-han is consulted about a pediatric surgery case in Boston of a little boy who has a buildup of fluid in the brain after sustaining a head injury. The child has already undergone numerous surgical procedures and the doctors are asking if there are other treatment possibilities.
Shi-on walks in and overhears the tail-end of the case. In particular, the child was treated in Korea and then transferred overseas. Hm, is this Assistant Chief Kang's child perhaps?
Do-han asks for Shi-on's opinion on the matter, and Shi-on agrees with the idea that there are no other possible methods other than to drain the fluid. Yoon-seo tries to press Shi-on for more information, but he tells her that's it.
Speaking of whom, Assistant Chief Kang merely chuckles at Chae-kyung's threat that she'll see that Creepy Chairman pay for deceiving her. "Payback isn't something the weak does to the powerful."
He points out that Chae-kyung will soon get what she wants when she sits as the new hospital board president, as a way to atone for her father's unfortunate passing. But she tells him that her plans have changed, and she neither needs their apology nor sympathy.
The nurses are warned to be wary around the little girl, since she could still be paralyzed in traumatic shock. Sure enough, that's exactly how the little girl is when she's wheeled in, her eyes unblinking and shaking.
To make matters worse, the police drops by in hopes to get a description of her attacker. Although they're all apprehensive about the little girl's fragile psychological state, Do-han appeals to the mother, who reluctantly steps away.
The officer asks if she recalls Stabby's face, and we see in flashback that she had seen a glimpse when he revealed himself (?) for a split second before masking his face with his bandana again. The little girl starts to shake anxiously at the memory.
After Do-han and Shi-on leave the room, Shi-on says that people don't realize how much childhood trauma can impact someone's life like a big bruise in their head that doesn't easily go away.
Do-han point out that Shi-on must know how to handle the case then, and Shi-on answers: "We just need to get her to believe that there is someone strong by her side. Someone who is warm and stronger than the attacker who scared her." That was Hyung for him, and there was also someone like that for Do-han, too.
To that, Do-han sighs and walks away as Shi-on trails behind him. And then we see Stabby sitting in the waiting room. Creepy.
Shi-on sees the children punching a balloon bop bag as practice to take on the kids who bully them at school. He scolds them not to resort to violence, but the kids counter that they can't stand around to be punching bags, and invite Shi-on to join them. He gets a few light punches in, to the children's delight.
In-hye gives her sister the silent treatment when she comes to visit until In-young says that she's sorry. But In-hye says that she's upset because she doesn't want to be a burden to her sister for the rest of their lives.
She tells unni that she doesn't want to stay at the hospital anymore, to which In-young says that she already quit working at the bar, and now they have enough for In-hye's surgery.
Things are still strained between Shi-on and Mom when they briefly lock eyes at the cafeteria. For now, we move on to Doctor Pomade, who has noticeably softened since the beginning of this series.
He jumps when Shi-on sits beside him for lunch, but even more alarmed at Shi-on's offer to come visit his place again. HA, the shock on Doctor Pomade's face (and Il-kyu's amused expression) is priceless.
Yoon-seo sympathizes with Mom's disheartened mood, telling her that Shi-on will come around soon enough, adding that Shi-on is working to become more mature than he already is.
Mom wipes her tears and says that Yoon-seo is doing all of the things she should have done for Shi-on as his mother, and thanks her for being such a warm and caring person towards her son.
Later that evening, Shi-on says that he isn't on-call tonight, and Yoon-seo immediately brightens to ask if it's because he wanted to buy her a meal. Hee, I like that her playful banter is back, though I'm still wary because Shi-on still likes her.
She asks where he's taking her, and Shi-on just smiles, telling her that it's a secret. Cute. She keeps throwing out guesses as they walk outside, completely oblivious to traffic.
Then Shi-on whips her around to prevent her from walking into an oncoming car, bringing them to close proximity. They break apart a moment later, and Yoon-seo quickly plays it off like it was nothing, though her voice breaks slightly as she asks where he's taking her again.
Cut to: Shi-on slaving away cooking at the stove while Yoon-seo pouts in the background, complaining about what's taking so long. HEE.
She gapes at their menu—spaghetti made with somen noodles—and figures it doesn't matter as long as it tastes good. Then she takes a bite… and coughs. Aww, and here I was hoping that Shi-on might be a good cook.
He looks up at her expectantly, and she just tells him to try it himself. So he takes a big bit and grimaces at the hot ketchup-minced-onion-rice concoction in his mouth. Yoon-seo suggests they strike a deal: never to cook for each other ever again. Yeah, that might be best. Then she tells him to bring out his usual triangular kimbap.
Do-han is relieved to hear that Chae-kyung has cut ties with Creepy Chairman. But Chae-kyung doesn't seem all that reassured, since she's already handed over the hospital's information into enemy hands.
On the verge of tears, she says that she doesn't know why she tried to take over the hospital board. Do-han answers that he did it for his sake. But Chae-kyung shakes her head and honestly replies that she masked her true selfish intentions by saying it was for Do-han's sake.
Chae-kyung confesses that she wants to find purpose in her life again, admitting that she lost the good memories while erasing the bad ones: "The times we were truly in love, our happy memories. I feel like my mind has become empty. Like a house without any occupants."
Yoon-seo is on the phone with her mother, trying to wave off her mother's attempts to set her up on a seon (a blind date with the intention of marriage). Ha, she even pulls the ol' I-can't-hear-you-there's-too-much-static trick. Now I'm getting high school flashbacks.
After she hangs up, Shi-on encourages her to go anyway, saying how he'd like to go on a blind date someday. Yoon-seo suggests that she'll find someone for him, and he nods in agreement.
Then when Yoon-seo holds up a picture of the aforementioned date, Shi-on involuntarily snorts in laughter. "He looks like Voldemort in Harry Potter." Ha. Yoon-seo wonders if that makes her aka the "God-given body" Hermione then, to which Shi-on immediately calls her out for giving herself that nickname nobody else knows.
Yoon-seo gets annoyed at that, telling him that he should have stuck up for her. Shi-on replies that he was distracted by the beef. Hee. He adds that he couldn't have said it was true since he only saw her face, not her body. Touché.
At the hospital, the little girls waves off Shi-on's attempts to check her heartbeat. Shi-on says that she seems afraid of the stethoscope, but I'd venture that she's also generalizing her fear of her male attacker to any male who draws near.
Our ever-so-helpful psychiatrist echoes those thoughts, adding that she should be treated for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) soon, but her physical wounds needs to heal first.
Shi-on spots the children sneak out with their shirts full of snacks. He's about to give them a talking to when the kids invite him into their group, this time with no strings attached. Aw, it's cute how they've accepted him, and you can see Shi-on contemplate this for a moment.
The next thing we know, the children are back in their beds as Shi-on tattles on them in front of their mothers. He lectures them that they have to keep to their diets in order to get well soon and confiscates the snacks as the mothers look on, impressed and amused.
On another note, Nurse Jo gasps when he sees the facial cream he presented to Nurse Nam in the trash, only to brighten again to see that it's empty. So he's all smiles when he gifts her with a spa gift certificate, which piques her curiosity. But then she barks at his suggestion that they go together and rejects it.
Do-han thinks back to Shi-on's words of how he also must have someone who is by his side. He then notices Yoon-seo still working on the Boston hydrocephalus case.
Shi-on hardly makes any progress with the little girl when Do-han arrives. To his surprise, Do-han takes out the toy stethoscope and smiles at the girl. He tells her that there's nothing to be afraid of because he's a good fighter. Shi-on jumps on that bandwagon: "He's like Won Bin in Ajusshi." If only.
Afterward, Do-han calls Shi-on out for laughing at him earlier. But Shi-on points to the toy stethoscope instead, and thanks him for using it to alleviate their patient's fears. Do-han gruffly responds that it's not like he'd keep the toy stuffed in his pocket, but breaks into a smile after Shi-on leaves.
Then we see Stabby creeping in the hallway.
Back in Dad's hospital room, he sneers at Mom that she must be so happy that he's terminal, but he'll make sure she suffers while he's still alive. Geez, thanks for that wonderful overdue present.
But Mom tells him not to talk nonsense, and tells him to take this chance to be a good father to their son. He throws her words back at her and nearly pops a vein in his neck when he hears that she'll continue to beg forgiveness from Shi-on for as long as she lives.
Shi-on's voice pops in from the door before Dad launches at Mom, shouting: "Don't hit her! I don't like hitting!" Dad turns to strike him instead, but Shi-on grabs his wrist before he gets the chance. "Now… I'm stronger than you," Shi-on says."So… so… don't do that. Don't hit Mom either."
Shi-on speaks with Mom outside, and she thanks him for protecting her earlier. He asks how long she intends to be a victim to his abuse, saying how nothing has changed from when he was a child to the present.
Mom says that she's sorry, but Shi-on tells her not to say that anymore and asks why she's always sorry towards him. Shi-on walks away as tears well up in his eyes.
Doctor Choi is astounded to run into Assistant Chief Kang at the hospital since the man was already dismissed. But the former assistant chief says he's here to show around the group of investors behind him and gives the backhanded compliment that the hospital is in tip-top shape thanks to the chief of staff.
Yoon-seo has a eureka moment on the Boston case, and she excitedly pulls Shi-on over to share her alternative treatment idea. Shi-on ahhs in understanding, and then pictures the case in his head to confirm the idea that draining the cerebral fluid towards the gallbladder will work. She pumps her fist in victory.
She beams when Do-han agrees with her as well, acknowledging that it's worth a try. She says she used Shi-on's strategy to envision a mock surgery in her "God-given brain," which earns her a playful retort to report her recommendation.
Doctor Pomade channels the Thinking Man on the roof as he recalls the conversations he's had with Shi-on. He orders Il-kyu to dig up the surgery files for the past two years, and then drinks in the fresh air… which is when a bird poops on him. LOL.
It seems that the Boston case in question is in regards to Assistant Chief Kang's son, and he fumes to hear that the new treatment plan was proposed by the university hospital's pediatric department.
Down at the cafe, Chae-kyung invites Shi-on to sit with her since it'll be awhile before the others come out of surgery. I actually kinda like that Chae-kyung enjoys his company and is genuinely interested in how his confession went. She figures that his non-answer means it's not a full no yet.
With a smile, she thanks him for everything, and then relays her wishes that he and his crush end up together. She says he can seek her for advice anytime. Aw okay, that's sweet. Then Yoon-seo spots the two with a curious eye from just around the corner.
She probes Shi-on with questions about his friendly rapport with Chae-kyung shortly afterwards, wondering why he's never mentioned it before. He says that he simply forgot and Chae-kyung is nice enough to listen to his troubles, which prompts Yoon-seo to ask what he confides Chae-kyung in.
She scoffs when he answers it's the everyday sort of troubles. Ooh, is noona getting jealous? He says that they're not that close, but Yoon-seo tells him to keep being friends with the other pretty noona, leaving him confused.
Yoon-seo walks back inside to see Do-han check up on the little girl after his work hours. They relocate to chat, and Yoon-seo notes how Do-han seems to be following in Doctor Choi's footsteps by checking in on his patients even after his shift ended.
Do-han has been asking himself a lot of questions lately like whether he's a good doctor. He laughs to think he reflects on such textbook-like questions thanks to one resident who often gets in trouble.
But then they're called back into the little girl's room where the patient stutters fearfully: "Mus.. tache. A scar… on his eyebrow."
The pediatric team worries that their patient may be in danger if they know what the perpetrator looks like, but the officer tells them that the attacker usually flees for fear of recognition. Uh, this guy's stabbed at least six women; I think showing his face is the least of his worries.
But the cop says that there's nothing to worry about (bleh) and that they're the experts on this (ugh). Worst Cop Ever. The hospital security guards can only patrol the halls, and Do-han sends Yoon-seo home while he stays behind.
Do-han stands outside the little girl's room before he walks down the hallway, unknowingly crossing paths with Stabby, who walks right past the dozing nursing station. Shi-on spots Stabby too, but doesn't think anything of it.
Do-han is at the elevator when it occurs to him that something was off about the stranger in the hallway. He doubles back just as we see Stabby sneak into the room and slowly approach the mother-daughter pair.
That's when the door opens to reveal Shi-on, who asks if Stabby was the one who hurt the little girl. He stands at the door, shaking, while Stabby draws closer to him…
… and then Do-han kicks Stabby back into a gurney. The two men engage in a tussle while Shi-on takes the women outside.
We cut back to the fight as the men kick and punch each other. Do-han grabs Stabby's neck, but then Stabby reaches for his trusty knife and stabs him. ACK!
I'm going to need a minute here before we move on *deep breath* Okay I'm back. This episode was much better as a whole than last week. It's hard to name one possible factor that attributes to this improvement; perhaps it was that we spent more time on building long overdue relationships or just the lack of hospital politics, an instant episode pick-me-up. Whatever it is, it's a welcome change as we breathe life into our leads, giving them a chance to brush through the marked development in their characters.
We continue to see change in Do-han's character in particular as he inadvertently allows Shi-on to slowly become a larger presence in his life. We see that shift in the way Do-han treats the little girl with more empathy and concern for her psychological and physical health.I love that he uses the toy stethoscope Shi-on to diminish the fear in his patient, and also for the obvious reason that he carries it around in his white coat.
Speaking of Do-han, I do wonder if or when we'll ever return to the younger brother Soo-han storyline since as far as we've been told, (former) Assistant Chief Kang is in possession of that information and hasn't made his play with it yet. But even if it's not used in the hospital takeover plotpoint (which I could frankly do without, but alas), I do wait out for the possibility of that family connection being a cornerstone to Shi-on and Do-han's building bromance.
Chae-kyung's character was never one that I particularly invested in, since she seemed to run more in the political circles than get involved in the pediatric team's dynamics. To her credit, I do enjoy the rapport she has with Shi-on and that she genuinely enjoys spending time with him and getting to know him. I don't think their budding relationship will develop into any romantic feelings this late in the game, but I do find it a little satisfying that Yoon-seo is jealous that Shi-on has another noona to turn to. Chae-kyung's vulnerable monologue didn't strike me on an emotional level that I'd hoped, since she too has a sad familial background. She dabbled a bit in evil-making before pulling back, and it would take something big to bring her back to the Dark Side. For the most part, I find her character harmless, adding nothing more or less to the screen.
Building upon last week's lesson of courage, this episode delves into the idea of a protector who's strong enough and greater than the fear of the perpetrator. We saw that strength take different forms from being physically stronger to emotionally stronger, especially in Shi-on. I love that Shi-on takes that step to establish his identity apart from his abusive father and stand up to protect others from being physically hurt and to say no. It's the first step of a long journey for Shi-on, but at least it's in the right direction.
- Good Doctor: Episode 14
- Good Doctor: Episode 13
- Good Doctor: Episode 12
- Good Doctor: Episode 11
- Good Doctor: Episode 10
- Good Doctor: Episode 9
- Good Doctor: Episode 8
- Good Doctor: Episode 7
- Good Doctor: Episode 6
- Good Doctor: Episode 5
- Good Doctor: Episode 4
- Good Doctor: Episode 3
- Good Doctor: Episode 2
- Good Doctor: Episode 1