Key developments in this episode:
- Yeon Joo’s marriage to Kang Chul makes her a comic book character, thus causing her to lose her invincibility.
- The killer hunts her down in the real world and shoots her, but she is teleported into the comic world in the nick of time.
- Soo Hee is saved from completely fading when Kang Chul reaffirms her purpose in his life.
- Kang Chul decides that the best way to save Yeon Joo is to make all that has happened since he woke up in the hospital a dream. That way, Yeon Joo won’t be a part of his life and she will be safe from the villain.
The first half is this series has just been the best eight episodes of any series ever, filled with jaw dropping plot twists, intense emotion, laugh out loud humour, heart stopping action, intriguing exploration of the rules of interdimensional travel, deep philosophical discussions on destiny as well as heartwarming romance. The story has just raced along and it seems like we’ve been given a whole series of plot developments within half a series.
While the episode ends with Kang Chul awakening from a dream, the person who truly experiences a rude awakening in this episode is Yeon Joo. She realizes her romantic happy ending with Kang Chul does not come without a price and also that it has implications on others, namely Soo Hee. Just as Kang Chul accepts his fate at the end of the episode (though we later learn he has other plans too), Yeon Joo also painfully accepts that she cannot change the storyline of the comic and the best would be to let the story run its course, and that being the female lead character of the comic isn’t as fun as she thought it’d be.
I usually groan at amnesia or reset storylines because I see them as unnecessarily adding pain and angst to the drama. However, in the context of W and how the drama has been constructed, it works because it is truly the only way to keep Yeon Joo safe, given that the killer at this point had been created such that he can never be discovered or killed. At the same time, it opens up some dramatic possibilities as we are given the opportunity to see how the manhwa would continue given Seong Moo’s encounters with Kang Chul. With Yeon Joo writing herself out of the comic, Seong Moo is effectively back in control and it will be interesting to see the new directions he takes the comic in.
Fun facts about this episode that I learnt through watching the behind the scenes special:
- Most of the stunts on the show were done by the actors themselves. Most remarkable was Soo Bong’s sharing that the whole sequence of him driving backwards away from the killer was done by him and it was the scariest thing he had ever done! New admiration for him!
- A lot of the stills for the series show the actors using electric fans and we learn that it’s been one of the hottest summers ever! We get a fun behind the scenes preview of the shooting of the final roof top scene and Lee Jong Suk cutting the scene because the area he stands on is way too hot!
- Not pertaining specifically to this episode, but we learn that Han Hyo Joo was the cheer leader of the team, always keeping everyone’s spirits up. Kudos to her!