It’s Okay to Not Be Okay – Episode 16 (The Finale) Recap & Review

And They Lived Happily Ever After

After an emotional roller-coaster ride, It’s Okay To Not Be Okay ends with an excellent finale. There’s a great conclusion for all the characters too, making it one of the strongest K-Dramas this year.

Episode 16 of It’s Okay To Not Be Okay starts with Kang-Tae kissing Moon-Young. The sound of a deer interrupts them though, but Kang-Tae shouts at it to shut up before carrying on with the kiss. 

Some time later, Kang-Tae tells Moon-Young that he hung their family portrait on their mother’s tree as he wanted her to know that they are now a family.

Meanwhile, Sang-Tae tells Jae-Su he wants to quit his part-time job to be an illustrator. This seems to upset Jae-Su who tries to offer him a pay rise but Sang-Tae is determined. He then reveals that he’s sleeping with him as he wants to make sure his brother and Moon-Young are left alone to reconcile.

The next day, both Moon-Young and Kang-Tae wake up next to each other and talk about their future plans during breakfast. Kang-Tae wants to go back to school but Moon-Young wants him to take a course online. He then mentions her writing so she shows him Sang-Tae’s drawing, which makes him emotional. She then reveals that this picture changed her mind on the story of the camper van which she has decided to finish.

In Ok hospital, Director Oh has his last session with Pil-Wong and gives him walking shoes as he wants him to walk out.

Back in the mansion, the trio has breakfast together. Moon-Young tells Sang-Tae she will publish the story as a reward but explains that she won’t give him a camper van but money instead, which seems to please him.

Later on, Moon-Young meets with Sang-In and shows him the manuscript of her mother’s last book. She also gives him her last story as well and tells him to choose between the two. Sang-In doesn’t hesitate and chooses Moon-Young’s as he doesn’t want to publish a book from someone who made her suffer, even if he would benefit more from it. They leave the other manuscript in the cafe and it gets picked up by a waitress.

In Ju-Ri’s house, Sang-In tells Soon-Duck that Sang-Tae is now going to work for his company so he will be leaving soon. When Seung-Jae arrives, Sang-In asks her if she picked up the manuscript as he text her to get it from the cafe’s table. Unfortunately, we see that he has sent it to Moon-Young by accident.

Moon-Young decides to visit her mother in prison but tells her it will be her last time there. She reveals that she now has a family which makes her mother angry. Moon-Young insists though, telling her she’s happy that she hasn’t become a demon like her and promises to forget about her completely.

Hui-Jae screams that she will never be able to erase her from her memory. Moon-Young turns around though, saying the butterfly will now be a symbol for them of a cure. She then heads into hospital where Sang-Tae has painted over the butterfly but both decide to get another pretty one drawn instead.

After speaking to Jae-Su and calling him his big brother, Kang-Tae heads back to the mansion to find Moon-Young and Sang-Tae busy working on the book. However, they quickly throw him out as they want to keep it a secret while Sang-In and Seung-Jae look for the manuscript in big trash bins. Seung-Jae finally gets fed up with her boss and leaves him there. However, we later see that Seung-Jae found the manuscript but has decided to keep it for a month before giving it to Sang-In.

Some time in the future, Sang-In and Seung-Jae arrive in the mansion with the newly published book “Finding The Real Face.” Sang-Tae is very excited especially when he sees his name and picture on the book. However, Sang-In is worried the book won’t do well as it isn’t Moon-Young’s usual writing.

The trio then heads to the tree where Sang-Tae speaks to his mother and shows her the book. He tells her about the story which includes three people living in the woods who had their face stolen by a witch. As he narrates the beginning of the tale, he starts crying, which prompts his brother to hug him.

At the Ok hospital, Director Oh suggests meeting Soon-Duk for some food sometime while Jung-Tae is reunited with A-Reum. Eun-Ja and Gi-Doo arrives too as today is the book launch. As the book reading starts, both Moon-Young and Sang-Tae take turns narrating the story which happens to be about their journey. After a few pages though, both begin to argue about whose turn it is to read and the reading stops.

Kang-Tae then heads to see Soon-Duk to give her a copy of the book Sang-Tae has set aside. He’s written a note for her, calling her his fake-real mum and thanking the woman for all the meals. Kang-Tae then hugs her while Ju-Ri finds Sang-In looking depressed about the book launch.

Sang-In then reveals that he will not be leaving as the rent is expensive in Seoul. He’s also unwilling to leave because she’s here. He then touches her hand slowly and this time, she doesn’t pull away.

As the trio leaves, Director Oh shows up and gives them a camper van as a present. Sang-Tae is excited but Kang-Tae tells him that it is too much. Director Oh insists though and makes them promise to hang with him from time to time.

In the evening, Kang-Tae is frustrated as neither Moon-Young or Sang-Tae are agreeing to go on a trip in the camper van. He then has drinks with Jae-Su and Sang-in to tell them all about it, as he now feels like an outcast after they have published a book together.

As he returns home drunk, Kang-Tae is surprised to find Moon-Young and Sang-Tae all packed and ready to leave on a trip. They tell him that they wanted to surprise him which is why they pretended they didn’t want to go. Kang-Tae gets emotional and the trio head out for their journey.

One night, Moon-Young sits with Kang-Tae by the fire and apologises for hurting him. She hopes that she won’t ever again and confesses that she loves him. This time though, it’s for real.

The next day, Sang-Tae tells Kang-Tae and Moon-Young that he wants to work. Another writer wants him to illustrate his book. He tells them to keep going and when Kang-Tae asks him if he will be OK without him, Sang-Tae replies that Kang-Tae belongs to Kang-Tae. The latter gets emotional and repeats the same words to himself. The brothers hugs and thank each other before Sang-Tae bids them goodbye.

Sang-In arrives to pick him up and the episode ends as we see the ending of “Finding the Real face”, which shows the trio finding their face after fighting off the witch.

The Episode Review

The finale thankfully brings a happy ending for our trio who really deserved it after everything they have been through. It has been really interesting and emotional watching them deal with their past and present as they helped each other overcome their different issues. Their stories complimented each other well and they now form the perfect little family.

It has been a tough journey for the trio though. Throughout the series, the main cast have done an excellent job with their performances and I’d imagine this will bag them some awards in the near future. 

I have thoroughly enjoyed this drama thanks to its original, dark and fun story. It’s also a show that’s tackled some very important issues on mental health but done so in a pretty skillful way.

The last few episodes in particular have brought some heartwarming scenes as we watch the character finally find their faces and true happiness. All in all, this is easily one of the best Korean dramas of the year.

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2 thoughts on “It’s Okay to Not Be Okay – Episode 16 (The Finale) Recap & Review”

  1. Perfect ending. Everyone grow and healing at the end. Kim Soo Hyun’s subtle way acting is amazing.

  2. I really love the characters, each and everyone done their roles extraordinarily ,deeply love with this drama

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