The previous episode left us wondering what Kang Mo-yeon did to save her face after having her confession to Yoo Shi-jin (that she made while literally at the brink of death) broadcasted in the entire military camp. Episode 9 is an episode of sugar and spice. Love is in the air, especially that Mo-yeon’s true feelings for Shi-jin were already out and about. Our star-crossed lovers Yoon Myeong-ju and Seo Dae-young have finally reunited and got their relationship blessed by Myeong-ju’s father. However, before the episode ends, trouble have found a way to seep into their almost-peaceful lives.
Selected Scenes from Episode 9
1. Confession Gone Wrong
Mo-yeon’s recorded confession blares through the entire camp. What’s worse is that the person she is confessing to, Shi-jin, also happens to be listening. How Mo-yeon can save her face had us anticipating. She tries to run away from him right after removing her phone (where her cliff-side confession came from) but Shi-jin jumps down through the window from the second floor and catches her before she runs too far. To Mo-yeon’s surprise, as soon as she opens the front door, Shi-jin is already there and soon they exchange a ridiculous banter.
Kang Mo-yeon: Are you using your training as Special Forces on a matter like this? For completely personal reasons.
Yoo Shi-jin: Well, someone was publicly broadcasting her feelings.
Kang Mo-yeon: There needs to be a doctor that broadcasts. You said so yourself. This is really ridiculous. Why did you listen to someone else’s recording?
Yoo Shi-jin: I didn’t want to, but it was playing.
Kang Mo-yeon: Just because it was playing, how could you just listen to it?
Yoo Shi-jin: *laughs* You’re really cute but why are you running away? When you were near to death, you wanted to confess your feelings. But now that you’re alive, why have you changed your mind?
Kang Mo-yeon: Confess my feelings? I wasn’t confessing my feelings.
Yoo Shi-jin: That voice was definitely yours.
Kang Mo-yeon: It wasn’t me.
Yoo Shi-jin: This phone belongs to you.
Kang Mo-yeon: This isn’t a phone—goodness, what am I saying?
Yoo Shi-jin: Stop dumping me. Do you know how many times you’ve dumped me? I have to hear from you if it was a confession of your feelings or no, so stop running away.
2. She’s Dating a Soldier
Because of her untimely confession, Kang Mo-yeon becomes frantic whenever she comes across with men in uniform and it happens that Yoon Myeong-ju catches her while she is on a stealth mode.
Yoon Myeong-ju: What are you doing?
Kang Mo-yeon: I am doing nothing.
Yoon Myeong-ju: You were doing something. You looked as if you tried to hide from embarrassment.
Kang Mo-yeon: Just continue on your way.
Yoon Myeong-ju: You are so bold. How can you think about dating the Big Boss of Team Alpha?
Kang Mo-yeon: Lieutenant Yoon… let me ask you a question.
Yoon Myeong-ju: Go ahead. Don’t lower your voice though. This is a military zone and I’m in charge.
Kang Mo-yeon: Doesn’t it bother you that your boyfriend is a soldier? Aren’t you afraid that he’d die or get hurt? As far as I know, Sgt. Major Seo’s job is as dangerous as Capt. Yoo’s.
Yoon Myeong-ju: To be accurate, he penetrates into the enemy territory, to reconnoiter guerrilla wars, collects information, rescue hostages, destroy major facilities, and induces the enemy’s surrender at the risk of his life. But I’m not worried about his job. I’m just afraid to be away from him. So there’s nothing to worry about for me since we are together now. Simply put, I have nothing to fear. That’s how I feel.
Coming from her conversation with Kang Mo-yeon, Yoon Myeong-ju passes by Yoo Shi-jin and he asks the same question to her.
3. The Second Kiss and Confession
Driving back to the camp base after attending a UN meeting, Mo-yeon and Shi-jin happens to cross a road that has become a landmine due to the earthquake. What’s worse is that they are in the middle of it and the wheel of the jeep they rode on had exploded. Because their means of communication are out of service, Shi-jin decides to walk out of the landmine area by foot and fortunately, they got out of it just fine.
With their destroyed car, they argue whether they should walk back to the camp or what. Luckily, they are able to hitch a ride on a farmer’s pickup truck containing hay. During the ride, he tells Mo-yeon that he knows that she had asked Myeong-ju’s sentiments over Dae-young’s line of work.
Kang Mo-yeon: Did she really told you about that?
Yoo Shi-jin: She told me to ask from you, her answer. What did she say?
Kang Mo-yeon: She said that being apart from her boyfriend worries her more than what he does.
Yoo Shi-jin: What about us? Will we part ways soon? Is your name on the list of people who are going back to Korea?
Kang Mo-yeon: No. I’m staying.
Yoo Shi-jin: Why? It can’t be because of me.
Kang Mo-yeon: It’s because of you. I’m staying because of you. I want to spend more time with you. I think I just confessed my feelings. Should I apologize?
Yoo Shi-jin: You know how I would respond.
Oh, Captain Big Boss responds with a lip-lock and she, too. It is a longer kiss now as both have already acknowledged their feelings for each other. A much-appreciated gift to fans halfway through the show!
4. General Yoon’s Ultimatum
Lieutenant General Yoon pays a visit to Uruk to commend the soldiers and the doctors alike for giving their best during the rescue operation. Before the meeting, he asks to privately talk to Yoo Shi-jin, Seo Dae-young, Kang Mo-yeon and Yoon Myeong-ju. He commends Mo-yeon first about her successful VIP surgery and dismisses her afterward. When it is already Shi-jin’s turn, the General spoke as Myeong-ju’s father and inconsiderately asks about Shi-jin’s romantic interest in his daughter. Shi-jin straightforwardly answers that he only sees her as a friend. Accepting his defeat, General Yoon takes Shi-jin’s answer and lets him leave the room, following Mo-yeon. With only Dae-young and Myeong-ju left with the General, awkwardness starts to fill in the room. The General then asks the two if their feelings for each other remains the same as they reunite. Myeong-ju admits right away and is shocked to hear Dae-young strongly admitting to it as well. At last, Dae-young stops running away from his real feelings about Myeong-ju and finally fights for them, no matter what the odds are. General Yoon sends Myeong-ju out of the room and speaks alone with Dae-young.
General Yoon: I had only two goals during my 30 years as a soldier. First, becoming an honorable Commander, second, be respected by my daughter, who’s also a soldier. But it looks like I have failed both. My orders to you were unreasonable and my daughter does not respect me. Anyway, now that I know how you feel, it’s time to share my feelings, too. I won’t beat around the bush. You may date Myeong-ju, and of course, I also have your marriage in my mind, too.
Seo Dae-young Do you mean that?
General Yoon: I do. However, I won’t have a sergeant major as a son-in-law. You have to quit being a soldier and go work for the company owned by Myeong-ju’s mother’s side. I will find a job for you in an associated company which can relate to your previous experiences. Think about this until your overseas discharge is over. You must go come back to Korea with a decision. Decide if you are going to let go of her hand or of you will become a man who is worthy of that hand.
Welp, it looks like the star-crossed lovers are still… star-crossed.
5. Saving Private Ryan
Yoo Shi-jin and Kang Mo-yeon find themselves at the Haunted Village filled with war orphans subjected to sex-trafficking controlled by gangsters. Well, speaking of gangsters, we know one of them—Argus.
“It’s Private Ryan,” Shi-jin tells Mo-yeon when they finally get to meet each other. Just before Argus acts like a king as he is in control of the place, a girl being sold as a sex slave named Rose shoots him. Argus’ men command Kang Mo-yeon to do something and save their bleeding boss.
Rose: No, don’t. Just kill him! Let him die.
Argus: What are you waiting for, doctor? Do your job.
Rose: Please, let him die. Please.
Argus: You took an oath! Don’t take that chance away for me to kill that girl [Rose].
Kang Mo-yeon: I don’t think I’ll let him live. I think I’ll just leave him. If I let him live, that could kill more people.
Yoo Shi-jin: Let him live. You do your job as a doctor. If we have to kill someone… I will do my job.
Focus: Viewer’s Reception on the Drama
The immensely popular KBS drama Descendants of the Sun ended with a ground-breaking record of 38.8% nationwide viewership rating as reported by Nielsen Korea. This record is the highest among all dramas released in 2016 and the show truly deserves the recognition given its consistent strong ratings performance.
Its pilot episode set its track and got 14.3% audience share and immediately improved the succeeding week with 23.4% ratings. A double-digit score for a drama’s first episode is not to be overlooked. On its fifth episode, DOTS became the most-watched drama nationwide among those currently airing. It also made another record as it surpassed the 30% mark during its fifth week. It was the first drama to reach more than 30% since MBC’S 2012 historical drama The Moon Embracing the Sun starring Kim Soo-hyun. In addition, it also beat the 24% average ratings record of My Love from the Star starring Jeon Ji-hyun and Kim Soo-hyun. The average rating for the entire series was 28.6%, solidifying its post as South Korea’s No. 1 drama at that time. With its strong ending, DOTS also outperformed the finale episode ratings of the dramas airing at the same timeslot namely, MBC’s Goodbye Mr. Black with 9.9% and SBS’s Please Come Back Mister with only 2.6% nationwide viewership rating.
Interestingly, Goblin, a cable drama with the same director and writer as DOTS, also became popular and made a record. That’s another story but it made us happy that another show like DOTS was brought to life with the same people and made us curious as to where this excellent pairing (writer Kim Eun-sook and director Lee Eung-bok) will lead us next. Truly exciting!
Numbers alone may not seem impressive to anyone who does not really understand how ratings go in Korean dramas. However, one should take note that this series has made the male species (yes, boy, guy, man you name it, the ‘male species’) watch and go crazy for DOTS. In fact, some of them have claimed that it was the first Korean drama that they have watched from start ‘til the end. It may sound stereotypical but it’s really evident that girls are more fond of watching Korea dramas.
Because of its undeniable popularity, Descendants of the Sun received a lot of awards and nominations, thanks to all the viewers who have supported the series from episode 1 until its finale. Although some consider it overrated, DOTS is nonetheless one of the best dramas in 2016 as it received major nominations from Paeksang Arts Awards last year, including for Best Drama, Directing, & Screenplay. Being a top-rated and multi-awarded drama, DOTS has been translated into more than 30 languages to cater to more fans worldwide.
(DOTS A Year After is a 16-part post series that commemorates the first anniversary of the highest-rated weekday prime time kdrama in 2016. For your feedback and questions about the series, you can send an email to [email protected], message us through Facebook, or comment directly on this post.)
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 1
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 2
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 3
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 4
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 5
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 6
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 7
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 8
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 9
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 10
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 11
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 12
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 13
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 14
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 15
- Descendants of the Sun A Year After Part 16