It’s All Over
Does Na-Bi tell Jae-Eon to leave?
Episode 10 of Nevertheless begins this finale with Jae-Eon and Na-Bi still reeling from the previous night. With the rain lashing down, Na-Bi telling the boy she never wants to see him again has a big effect on them both. Na-Bi is certainly regretting her actions, unable to shake Jae-Eon’s kind eyes rather than his multiple other red flags.
At school, Na-Bi tells Jin-Soo she doesn’t need his help anymore and decides to continue on with her project alone. Well, she’s not alone for long when Jae-Eon shows and holds her hand. She pulls away, walking off after giving him a dirty look.
Both of them wallow in their own pain; Jae-Eon checks his phone constantly. Na-Bi stares out the window of her apartment.
Was the statue falling an act of God?
Meanwhile Ji-Wan and Sol sit together and flirt, looking longingly into one another’s eyes. Bit-Na rings Se-Hun though, needing to get into her laptop. Only, her password happens to be “totally hot Kyu-Hyun” which she uses to get in and retrieve her files. Kyu-Hyun overhears and teases her.
At school, tragedy hits. A tired and fatigued Na-Bi finds her entire project ruined as the clay statue she was working on is in tatters on the floor. Was this a deliberate act? Whether it was or not, this is her entire module’s work gone in an instant. The Professor is equally exasperated, realizing that with Na-Bi’s exhibition coming up then she’s essentially going to fail by default.
As rain pours down outside, Jae-Eon shows and offers to help Na-Bi try to fix her project. He promises that after helping her fix this he’ll stay away just like she asked.
And so the group work together, silently, to put the statue back together again. As they work day and night, the time Jae-Eon and Na-Bi spend together sees Na-Bi reevaluate her choice. This time though, she monologues on how Jae-Eon doesn’t even offer her a lift home (hey, you told him to leave you alone!)
Eventually though the project comes together; a rustic angel with tattered wings and a pained expression. With the project a success, everything is back to the way it was before. Jae-Eon doesn’t miss a trick, giving her some compliments about how pretty she is and walking away. Just as promised, he’s leaving her alone. Only, Na-Bi isn’t happy.
Where is Jae-Eon?
Just before she skips out, Jin-Soo hands over a green book that Jae-Eon wants her to have. At the same time, Jae-Eon packs up all of his tools and says goodbye to his butterflies. He lets them all out the window, watching as they fly away.
As day turns to night, no one seems to know where Jae-Eon has gone. However, rumours are abound that her’s left for the US. Na-Bi however, is crushed that he’s left without saying anything.
As we soon find out, Jae-Eon hasn’t left just yet and he’s actually at home, lying in the dark and thinking over what to do. He hasn’t left, he’s just depressed.
What happens to Do-Hyeok?
Do-Hyeok gets some female attention from a couple who ask for his autograph. They’re big fans of his videos and even want a photo too. With the semester over, Na-Bi shows to see him and confirms she’s going to leave Seoul and visit her Mum after the exhibition. After all, she’s been nagging her to head over.
Do-Hyeok is excited for Na-Bi’s exhibition and decides to head over and see the angel for himself after his interview. He tellingly mentions how impossible it was to fix everything up, but his face sinks when he learns Jae-Eon was the one there. I mean, Na-Bi doesn’t say it directly but the constant pauses and referring to them as “a friend” and “someone” speaks volumes. Still, Do-Hyeok remains hopeful that she’ll choose him.
What’s in the green book?
Na-Bi’s conflicted emotions are only made worse when she heads home and checks the green book. Within this are numerous different sketches. One shows her standing amidst a sea of shadowy black shades. This is symbolic of their first meeting, when Jae-Eon lay eyes on her at the art exhibit. Since then, he’s hoped to run into her again and hasn’t stopped thinking about the girl.
Well, it’s exhibition time and all the gang show up at the gallery to admire Na-Bi’s work. Her Professor is incredibly proud of Na-Bi’S work. In fact, she even offers Na-Bi the chance to “spread her wings” and go to Paris. It’s a massive opportunity but she can’t stop frowning. Why? Well, Jae-Eon’s not there.
Do-Hyeok arrives though, handing over a bouquet of flowers but unfortunately knowing the truth. Na-Bi is in love with Jae-Eon and there’s nothing he can do to change that. Although Do-Hyeok shows up as promised, Na-Bi thanks him and apologizes for breaking his heart. Do-Hyeok bows nonetheless and leaves.
What happens to the other characters?
Well, the previous episode settled most of the big dramatic points for our supporting couples. In public, Sol and Ji-Wan express how much they like each other while Bit-Na and Kyu-Hyun do the same. In fact, they outright admit how long they’ve been romantically linked, all the way back since the first year in the workshop. According to Bit-Na, she wanted to make him her boyfriend ever since they first met.
So who does Na-Bi choose at the end?
While everyone is all smiles at dinner, Na-Bi realizes she misses Jae-Eon. She heads back to the exhibition where she finds Jae-Eon admiring the angel. Na-Bi calls him a jerk, especially given he never showed up on time and skimped out on showing himself earlier on.
Na-Bi admits that she knows he’s a jerk that toys with people’s emotions but nevertheless feels better when she’s with him. She doesn’t want him to go anywhere, even if that means he’ll continue to toy with her emotions.
“I know that it will cause me pain agan,” Na-Bi says, “Nevertheless, I still…” And then the scene cuts.
As it does, we cut across to Jae-Eon and Na-Bi together walking hand in hand. Na-Bi contemplates letting go when she sees Do-Hyeok but changes her mind, deciding to continue on this path she’s chosen for herself. In fact, Jae-Eon even suggests they get some butterflies but she outright refuses.
Did Jae-Eon intentionally break Na-Bi’s project?
So Nevertheless leaves but let’s reflect on the incident at the gallery. Now, I appreciate this was an accident but what if it wasn’t?
It could well be that Jae-Eon intentionally sabotaged the statue and destroyed it just to get close to Na-Bi. After all, there had to be a reason for them to talk again and what better time to do it than at the studio?
We’ve seen Jae-Eon skulking around after-hours and the way that statue was completely wrecked to bits raises all kinds of alarm bells. It could well be that in his depressive state he intentionally sabotaged the entire project.
Jae-Eon was suspiciously jovial when he suggested they work together to fix it, and we know he’s a manipulative guy too. He could well have used this as an opportunity to win her over. He was all happy-smiley with Jin-Soo as they ate food together and even honoured Na-Bi’s wishes of staying away. We’ll never know of course – what do you guys think? Was it an accident? Or a spiteful move on Jae-Eon’s part?
The Episode Review
So after all that heartache and drama across 10 episodes, Na-Bi decides to betray her head and go with her heart. I mean, she even says at the end of the episode, “I know that it will cause me pain.” This seems to send a very conflicting message that if you’re in a questionable relationship, you should just ignore the red flags and continue on obliviously. I know that’s probably not what this show is going for, but that’s the message I get.
“I know that it will cause me pain again” is a fitting line to end this series with, reflecting back the exact feeling I have watching this play out. Na-Bi should have been alone at the end; a strong, independent woman about to head off to Paris to ignite her career.
At the same time, Do-Hyeok was never a good suitor for Na-Bi. He’s clingy, a little too self-conscious and overly nice. The possessive way he tried to win Na-Bi over isn’t a great look, although to be fair this was never really a love triangle. The writing had been on the wall for a while that Na-Bi was going to choose Jae-Eon but personally, it feels like the wrong move.
In the end, Nevertheless bows out with a tepid finale, one that skimps out on its final episode with a disappointing conclusion.