See You In My 19th Life – K-drama Episode 11 Recap & Review

No Such Thing As Retreat 

See You in My 19th Life episode 11 starts with a flashback to Ji-eum’s first life. In this life, she was a lowly birth woman named Su. She was tasked with dyeing clothes that would be used to form knots of the sacred shaman bell. The person who commissioned her was Master Cheon-un (Min-ki). He stops by her workshop with Do-hyun. Let me point out we don’t know his name in this first life, all we know is that he worked under Master Cheon-un. 

As Master Cheon-un leaves, Seol, Su’s elder sister (Cho-won), stops by to check on Su and encourage her. Seol is sick, and she’s looking for a way to save her. The doctor informs Su that there is a way to save Seol, but it is dangerous. For Su to get the rare medicine from the palace in Seorabeol, she must give them a spiritual item that can end the ongoing drought.

The doctor believes the shaman bells have such power. Su is determined to save her sister and is willing to take the risk of angering the gods.

She opts to steal the shaman bells after Master Cheon-un completes his ritual. The next morning, she and Seol try to run to Seorabeol but are captured. Su begs Master Cheon-un to spare his sister’s life and promises to face the consequences. Sadly, her pleas for mercy fall on deaf ears. Master Han-ya (Seo-ha) pulls out his sword and kills Seol. Su tearfully vows to avenge her sister after she passes away in her arms. 

In the present time, we circle back to the day Ji-eum choked Seo-ha after seeing him kill Cheol in her first life. She is holding the shaman bells and is in a deep trance reliving the painful events of her first life. Seo-ha is by her side, worried and trying to snap her out of it. When she comes back to reality, she sees Seo-ha, who has the same face as Han-ya, and starts strangling him. Seo-ha is taken aback and tries to stop her from choking him to death. 

Ji-eum has a brief moment where she comes to her senses, realizes she is choking Seo-ha, and quickly releases. She starts crying and explaining she saw her first life and experienced her sister dying.

Seo-ha tries to comfort her, but she then loses touch with reality, calls him Han-ya, and accuses him of killing his sister.  Seo-ha does his best to calm and remind her that he is not Han-ya. Min-ki stands outside and watches all these transpire before taking his leave. After calming down, Ji-eum apologizes to Seo-ha and asks for some space. 

On his way out, Seo-ha gets a call from Min-ki asking him to meet. Once they meet, Min-ki tells him about the dangers of knowing Ji-eum’s secret. He warns him that he might end up like Ae-gyeong. Min-ki explains that they are both in Ji-eum’s first life, but they can do nothing to help her. He also explains to Seo-ha the pain people like him and Ji-eum go through by remembering all the painful memories from their past lives. Seo-ha admits that it must be hard to live like that. 

Seo-ha patiently listens to Min-ki but sees he is not being helpful. He stands to leave, and Min-ki advises him on how to save Ji-eum. He tells Seo-ha that he has to convince Ji-eum to choose to be normal. 

Meanwhile, Ji-eum sees the flowers Seo-ha bought for her and his message on the card. His word of support and affirmation touches her. She regrets choking him before. She reflects on what Min-ki told her and worries about Ae-gyeong’s fate. Remember, Ae-gyeong is at the hospital with an unknown ailment.  On the other hand, Ae-gyeong is grateful that Ji-eum returned to her and won’t trade their time together for anything in the world. 

Elsewhere, Do-jin visits Cho-won and tells her he accidentally overheard what Do-hyun said to her on th night he got drunk. He tells her about Do-hyun’s sadness after she walked away and how he cried for her.  Cho-won is confused about what to do with this information. She was under the impression that he didn’t like her as much as she did him. 

She feels terrible for only thinking about her pain when Do-hyun also went through the same. Her conversation with Do-jin helps her see Do-hyun in a new light, but will it change things between them?

On the other hand, Seo-ha goes home and feels pity for Ji-eum. He realizes she is always smiling, so he never knew she was in such great pain.  The next morning, he heads to work and is bombarded by reporters asking about his uncle’s case. He ignores all the questions and later meets up with his dad. 

Mun Jeong-hun asks if he feels better after his uncle confessed. Seo-ha insists that the matter isn’t something an apology could take care of. Two people died due to his uncle’s actions, and it is only fitting he pays for his mistakes. He also tells his dad about his heart-to-heart talk with Ju-won’s mom. It turns out Mun Jeong-hun revealed the truth to Ju-won’s mom a long time ago and begged for forgiveness. They then agreed to keep the truth from Seo-ha because they wanted to protect him.

Seo-ha feels that was the wrong answer, and Mun Jeong-hun regrets his decision. This was what Ms Jang used to threaten him. He thought he was protecting Seo-ha and gave in to her threats. We must admit that this information changes how we saw Mun Jeong-hun in the past, but it is not enough to redeem him. Ultimately, he failed his son on many occasions. 

Min-ki and Ji-eum run into each other at the hospital the following day. Ji-eum asks him why he hid the truth about their first lives. Min-ki insists that he had to let her remember on her own. He believes the only way he can save Ae-gyeong is by remembering the person who gave her the ability to remember her past lives. He gives her the shaman bells and asks her to contact him when she has seen everything from her first life. Ji-eum is desperate to save Ae-gyeong and is determined to do whatever it takes. 

She promises Ae-gyeong to save her and continues caring for her while she is hospitalised. Ae-gyeong is happy to have her close and feels blessed to have someone care for her. 

A few days later, Ji-eum meets with Cho-won as they have plans to visit an art gallery. Ji-eum embraces Cho-won eagerly and tells her that she missed her. They walk through the gallery while they talk about Ae-gyeong’s illness. Cho-won tries to cheer up Ji-eum and assure her everything will be fine after Ae-gyeong’s surgery.  Ji-eum also has faith that Ae-gyeong will be saved. They also discuss Do-hyun, and Cho-won says she is ready to let him go. 

Ji-eum calls Do-hyun and informs him that if Cho-won lets him go, it will be his loss. Seo-ha is around and wonders why Ji-eum called Do-hyun. Do-hyun puts the phone on loudspeaker, and Seo-ha listens to Ji-eum’s request. She asks Do-hyun to take care of Seo-ha until she is ready to face him again. After Do-hyun hangs up, Seo-ha decides to go to her. Before he leaves, he advises Do-hyun to be bold and face his feelings for Cho-won.

In the meantime, Do-hyun tries to get Cho-won’s schedule and waits for her to return to the office. On the other hand, Seo-ha corners Ji-eum at the hospital and accepts her apology. He tells her he understands her struggle and pain, knowing what he signed up for when he agreed to date her. He asks her to allow him to be there for her.

Ji-eum shares that she is scared because she hurt him. But, after hearing Seo-ha’s loving and comforting words, she decides she wants to try and be normal.

Seo-ha agrees to help since he remembers Min-ki’s words. He takes her to his house, and she uses the shaman bells again to see her first life. This time, Master Seon-un is the one who kills Cheol and wants to kill Su too. Luckily, Master Han-ya saved her life, but it was a futile effort. That night, Su attacked Master Seon-un at the bridge on his way to perform a ritual. Sadly, Master Han-ya sacrificed his life to save Master Seon-un.  

While Ji-eum is in a trance, Min-ki is in his office. In his hands is one of the shaman bells. He has a flashback to his promise with Han-na, helping her return to normal. He told her there was more to be done after she remembered her first life. As he holds a piece of the shaman bells, he mumbles, “ How could I  forget  you?” It is unclear if he is talking about Han-na or Ji-eum, but it’s certainly curious! 

The episode ends with Ji-eum still in a trance. She sees  Su getting shot by an arrow, and on the verge of her death, she takes the shaman bells and makes a vow never to forget until she gets her revenge. In the end, she is the one who sealed her fate.

The Episode Review

We are almost at this show’s end and still have many questions. First, it looks like Min-ki is manipulating Ji-eum’s memories. How is it possible that the memories keep changing every time, and which version is accurate? The more we see Min-ki, the more suspicious he gets. Let’s pray that we will have answers in tomorrow’s finale. 

As for Do-hyun and Cho-won, hopefully they will have a happy ending. As the wise men say, it is not over until it is over. Do-hyun still has a chance to accept Cho-won’s love and be happy. How long will he let naysayers have a say in how he lives? Someone ought to tell him that the best revenge is being happy. Imagine how that would get on Ji-Seok’s nerves!

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Expect a full-season review when this season concludes!

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1 thought on “See You In My 19th Life – K-drama Episode 11 Recap & Review”

  1. Omg, her grief and anger were so intense my heart was literally breaking. My gawd she’s an incredible actress. I’m so sad there were only 12 episodes but it’s incredible how much they packed in! I don’t care so much for Seo-ha the character or actor though. The men in this drama were all kinda lame. The only one I remotely liked was Do-yoon. But he was the typical silently suffering 1st born male.

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