The plan to take the boys out of the cave is clear as we begin episode 6 of Thai Cave Rescue. Dr. Pak fills the boys in on how it’ll happen. Almost everything remains the same except for one major change: the boys will be sedated and “delivered” by the foreign cave divers to safety.
With everything being decided for the boys, Pak leaves them to decide the order in which each will be taken out. Eak talks to Pak in private and asks to go first. In case he dies, a new plan can be devised for the boys. While the coach’s courage wins our hearts, Bhak tells him this is the only plan they have.
Harris talks to his father through Skype. He confesses that as the rescue comes closer, he feels frightened that they will not be successful. His father, himself in the hospital, calms him down. He recalls how Harris went for a dive and the first time he almost died. But, what mattered was that he came back to face the sea again and conquered it.
The Governor says that for now, the risk-reward analysis is in their favor, but barely. The situation can change at any minute. And if it does, he will have to call it off, even if some of the boys are still inside the cave. They come up with the code word “landslide”, which will be used if the chambers start flooding.
John and Rick introduce the other divers in this mission to the camp. David Ellsworth (USA), Conor Roe (Britain), Clay Rasmussen (Denmark), Trevor Maki (South Africa). Capt. Anan Surawan will be positioned in chamber three with the SEALs to take over the boys from the divers. Harris will additionally be positioned where the boys are to administer the drugs. First, a Xanax, and then a dose of ketamine to anesthetize them. However, they will require another dose that the divers will have to give them mid-way. Even before the rescue begins, Rick reports a problem. The smallest mask at their disposal doesn’t fit Mark, who is in fact the smallest among the boys.
The order that they have decided is the distance of their homes from the cave. The farthest goes first. They leave it for the time being and Note is the first to go. He is successfully extracted and the news fills people on the outside with hope and joy. They eagerly anticipate the rescue of the others.
One by one, the divers are able to get five boys out, just after which one of the parents is able to learn that the smallest boy, who many think is Titan, has a problem with his mask. Only a few now, as of then, that it is indeed Mark. The divers keep coming back with different masks but none fit Mark, throwing him into a fearful state.
Pak comforts him and says he will not be left alone. Night is the last to go on the day, which is 8 July. The other remaining five boys will be taken out the next morning. Mark and Titan fight as tensions rise about the operation. Eak breaks them up and reminds them it is not over yet.
Night’s rescue runs into trouble. Midway, the boy is barely breathing. It is a scare but eventually, they’re able to get him out safely. Titan apologizes to Mark, who is painting the names of the Wild Boar roster on the wall. Mark admits it is difficult being looked at as the weakest because he will be the last to go. He fears the worst and has the possibility of never getting out of the cave in his mind.
The rising water, which has gone over the red line, worries Kelly. She feels it will pummel the divers and the chambers will completely be submerged under the water. The divers will put themselves at great risk by going in the next day. Harris says they cannot stop now when the Governor suggests stopping the mission. Pak tells Eak that he will not be going last as circumstances have changed and Mark will be the one going last. He too is successfully taken out as Titan and Mark are left alone.
They both admit they’re scared too, but also embolden their spirits by talking about it. Titan’s chance is next and his rescue too goes smoothly. Somehow, using foam, Harris is able to close the mask tight enough on Mark’s face. The boy understands and does his best to remain calm.
The ketamine shot goes in and the rescue almost comes to an end. When Harris reaches chamber 3, he is surprised to find that David hasn’t brought out Mark, yet. He dives back and sees David stuck with the child. David says he lost the way and surfaced up into the chamber to recalibrate.
Harris asks David to go ahead and brings the boy himself. The remaining SEALs also go out successfully. Divers and special forces outside await Harris’ arrival. Just then, there is a short circuit in the pumps and they break down. The water starts plummeting in and the American soldier says the codeword. They all start evacuating the cave with Harris and Mark still inside.
Mark’s mother runs up to the entrance of the cave to wait for her child. From under the water, the American soldier sees lights and Harris makes it just in time with Mark. Medics rush mark onto a table to check in on him and he is safe. The last of the Wild Boars’ has been brought out alive and the rescue mission is a success. (10, July)
The episode ends with the real Wild Boars (in Thai, “Moo Pa”) playing football and the viewers getting a chance to meet the brave survivors. Also, a word for prayer for the “real Dr. Harris”, who died while in the hospital during the rescue mission.
The Episode Review
As I said, it is difficult not to give in to your emotions watching this rescue unravel, even when you have seen it happen twice before. The final episode of Thai Cave Rescue draws curtains on one of the most united global rescue endeavours in recent history.
The way thousands flocked together from different parts with nothing to gain is exemplary. Episode 6 honors their efforts and compassion, while at the same time appreciating how the boys held fort inside. Without too much drama or hysterics, the makers of the series executed a well-paced depiction of the rescue on the final days.
When push comes to shove, decisive action saves the day. And that was the case with this rescue. Although the Netflix series doesn’t have an after-episode update for the viewers, the other documentaries revealed that just days after the rescue, the cave was fully submerged under water and wasn’t accessible till the end of October. That is how close the game of life and death was in this case. “Moo Pa” is a fitting finale, compellingly bringing together elements of drama, reality, and heroism that inspires.