Oasis – K-drama Episode 2 Recap & Review

The Fall Out

Episode 2 of Oasis begins with Cheol-woong being fined for the ‘assault’ against Young-tak. It cuts back to Du-hak and Jung-shin waiting for Cheol-woong for a movie outing. Du-hak looks around for him while Jung-shin spots Cheol-woong watching them from afar and goes after him.

She finds him being beaten up by Young-tak and tries to help him but the thug beats her up too. A furious Cheol-woong tries to go after him but Jung-shin stops him. She tries to take him to a pharmacy for his wounds but he stops her. He calls her out on her deal of waiting for a year before dating and she tells him that she cannot control her heart. 

Upset, he goes home to find Du-hak and Mrs. Lee worried about him as they hear he got hurt. Cheol-woong’s mother spots them and scolds them for coming to their place so late which offends Mrs. Lee.

The next day, Du-hak tells Cheol-woong that Jung-shin wants to talk to him. As for Mrs. Choi, she meets Hwang and apologizes for her husband’s decision. He tries to give her back the bribe money and as she refuses their hands meet and both are flustered. Hwang heads back to his office and we see he keeps a picture of Mrs. Choi.

He asks Captain Oh about Mr. Choi and is told that he may win the election since the district loves him. There is no dirt on him and in hopes of a scandal, Captain Oh tells Young-tak to get beaten up by Cheol-woong. 

While Cheol-woong waits for Jung-shin, Du-hak finds a drunk Young-tak and beats him. He takes him to Cheol-woong in hopes of an apology but Young-tak just mocks him. Cheol-woong falls for the bait and gets into a fight with Young-tak who doesn’t go easy on him. Having bled enough, he beats Cheol-woong senselessly and turns to leave.

Blinded with rage, Cheol-woong runs after him and hits him in the head with a rock. The boys rush him to a hospital and he falls into a coma. Hwang is informed about the incident and he looks thoughtful. Du-hak tells Cheol-woong that they need to report to the police even if it is self-defence.

Cheol-woong tries to gaslight him by saying it is all Du-hak’s fault for bringing Young-tak. He pleads with Du-hak to lie and say he is the one who hit Young-tak. In return, he will take care of Du-hak for the rest of his life. Du-hak is furious and leaves. 

Mrs. Choi tries to take matters into her hand as she begs on her knees for Lee to convince his son to take the blame. She says they can save Du-hak if her husband wins the election but if he loses because of Cheol-woong’s scandal they will all die.

A crying Lee goes to Du-hak and the next day the police arrest him. Cheol-woong looks conflicted while Lee cries and asks for Du-hak’s forgiveness from afar as Mrs. Lee and Jung-shin run after the police car. Meanwhile, Hwang is furious that Du-hak took the fall and tells Captain Oh to keep pushing the trial date till they can frame Cheol-woong as a murder accomplice (did Hwang have the comatose Young-tak murdered?). 

During a campaign, Captain Oh pays some men in the audience to chant “father of a murderer” at Mr. Choi and pelt him with stones. Turns out Choi had no clue about the incident and tries to find out the truth from Mrs. Choi. Lee steps in and claims that while Cheol-woong started the fight, Du-hak killed Young-tak.

Mr. Choi apologizes to his party members and resigns. Mrs. Choi tries to stop him as she confesses that she put up all of their assets as collateral. Furious, he pushes her while she simply scoffs as she says she bet her all for his political career.

At court, Jung-shin notices that Du-hak has a public lawyer and Mrs. Choi reveals that Lee refused her help. The prosecutor asks for 3-5 years in prison for Du-hak while his lawyer’s only defence is that the boy is regretful. Mrs. Lee follows her husband outside and asks why he refused a good lawyer as she breaks down. He claims that the Chois don’t have the money and that if Du-hak has committed a crime, he should pay for it.

Back to the present, Young-tak’s brother stabs Du-hak while an inmate finds him and calls for help.

4 years later, Jung-shin gets down from a bus at Gwangju and runs into Cheol-woong. Turns out he is a college student from Seoul, while she dropped out of school and is running the theatre as her father passed away after Mr. Choi’s death. She asks about Du-hak and he reveals that they’ve not met as Du-hak would always refuse his visit. He suddenly spots some cops who start chasing him.

As for Mrs. Choi, Hwang visits her and tells her that he will be leaving soon. He finally gives back her bribe money and says he will not be seeing her anytime soon but she can always contact him. 

A well-dressed woman stops in front of a busy theatre and the staff calls her boss. As they head in, Jung-shin stops them and asks for a print of the movie Bushman. They try to go past her and she pretends to light the theatre on fire. The woman sees through her act and calls her in. Jung-shin needs to first screen the movie in her theatre before she can pay for the print as they are in financial trouble.

She threatens to burn the Gwangju theatre again and the lady just tells the director to give her the print after they are done. The director is shocked but the boss points out that he pocketed the money they were supposed to give for Mr. Oh’s funeral who happened to be a colleague.

A happy Jung-shin heads back to her office but sees a money lender waiting for her and it turns out to be her aunt. She says her brother owes her 50 million won and Jung-shin needs to pay it back in a year otherwise she will take the theatre. 

Elsewhere, Lee and Mrs. Choi are worried about Cheol-woong who has yet to show up for his father’s memorial. As Lee again goes to the bus station, a police officer watches him. 

On the bus, Jung-shin is heading home and as she sees Mr. Lee, she remembers the last time she saw Du-hak. He had given his condolence for her father’s passing and told her to break up as he cannot bear to see her anymore. He blames her as he tells her that he would have never killed Young-tak or fought Cheol-woong if he hadn’t fallen for her. She doesn’t believe him but he tells her that she is his prison.

It is Seoul 1988 and student protestors create a scene on the streets along with Cheol-woong demanding an end to the corrupt government. Cops show up with tear gas and chase them. Some corner Cheol-woong and beat him up but a mysterious masked man saves him. As he takes off his mask, we see it is Du-hak who punches Cheol-woong.

They have a meal together and while Cheol-woong is happy to see him and do whatever he wants, Du-hak tells him that he is to do his bidding. Cheol-woong tries to make small talk but Du-hak just tells him to stop participating in the protests and become a prosecutor. As he leaves, a man shows up and Cheol-woong looks scared.

Meanwhile, Go Poong-ho, the same inmate who had helped Du-hak is busy waiting for him along with his team. He is the leader of a group of real estate scammers and introduces Du-hak as their newest team member who is to run errands. They start their recce on Seongjin Constructions and we are introduced to the other three team members – Jang Jang-deuk, the liaison, Son Soo-gong, the forger and Ma Cheon-ja, the face.

Elsewhere, Jung-shin and her aunt sign an agreement where she will leave the theatre alone once she gets the money. As Jung-shin bids them farewell outside her Gwangju office, Du-hak spots her and follows her from afar.

The Episode Review

Okay, while we may understand where Lee is coming from as he feels like he is indebted for life to the Chois, his decisions have been pretty extreme. Despite Mrs. Choi and Cheol-woong promising to help Du-hak, his father refuses a good lawyer and for what? Because the Chois are in a financial bind and his son is a criminal? Does he like Mrs. Choi and wanted to ease her burden? My man, not only are you the poor one, you very well know the truth.

And the time-lapse may have been the best move that Oasis has made after that frustrating prison plot twist. Portrayed as a melodrama set in the turbulent times of the 80s and 90s, we were expecting a little bit of Snowdrop, Youth of May or 1987, and episode 1 was pretty confusing. But Oasis finds its groove in the second episode, as the trio struggle with their individual challenges against the backdrop of the infamous Gwangju Uprising of the 80’s. 

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