The Whirlwind – Episode 12 Recap, Review & Ending Explained

Park Dong-ho: The Whirlwind 

The Whirlwind episode 12 begins with Yeon-suk running to Dong-ho’s office only to find his will on his desk. She was hoping to convince him to move into the safe house with his family, so she started looking for him.

From across the field, she sees him talking to Su-jin and realises what he plans to do. She hurries to get to him, but unfortunately, she is too late. Park Dong-ho jumps off the cliff. 

Does Dong-ho die? 

Sadly, he is rushed to the hospital, but he doesn’t make it. Looking back, Dong-ho lived his life on the tight and narrow path of honesty. Even when President  Jang II Jun tried to taint him, he stood firm in his beliefs.

Jeong-yeon and Yeon-suk mourn him and feel guilty for not stopping him. On the other hand, Su-jin is arrested as the prime suspect in Dong-ho’s death and brought to the prosecution office.

Yeon-suk visits her and shows her a video from Dong-ho. In the video, Dong-ho reveals that the only evidence to exonerate Su-jin is in his will. He asks her to choose between going down alone or with the 50 assemblymen.

Yeon-suk warns Su-jin that she has until the next morning to decide before Dong-ho’s burial. If she doesn’t confess her crimes, Yeon-suk will bury the evidence with Dong-ho.

Is Su-jin found guilty of Dong-ho’s death?

Su-jin orders Mang-il to find video evidence to exonerate her. She hopes one of the many cameras at the Blue House caught the truth but she is unlucky this time. Mang-il only finds a video proving that Yeon-suk witnessed the incident.

Obviously, Su-jin knows that Yeon-suk would never agree to testify on her behalf, so technically she is screwed. Right before Dong-ho’s wake, Su-jin names all the corrupt officials but insists that she knows nothing about her husband’s illegal dealings.

Unfortunately, Jang-seok is forced to set her free after Yeon-suk keeps her promise and clears her in  Dong-ho’s death. However, Su-jin is confident that they will never catch her, and she has escaped another trap.

She mocks Jang-seok, saying that she is the Acting President and can’t be tried in court. In the meantime, Jang-seok sends his team to arrest the corrupt politicians while setting another trap for Su-jin.

What is the Other trap?

Yeon-suk, Jang-seok and Jeong-yeon decide they must make sure Dong-ho didn’t die in vain. Jeong-yeon uses her relationship with Mang-il to get into Su-jin’s office, pretending to bring him flowers for his birthday. Even though they are over, she claims old habits die hard, and she is there to warn him to watch his back. 

A few hours later, Su-jin is freed, and she heads straight to her office. She finds a troubled Mang-il. Mang-il is angry because, according to the news, Min-ho’s diary revealed that President Jang II Jun was suffocated in the hospital, and Su-jin accused him of being the culprit.

He lashes out at Su-jin, asking her to come clean and exonerate him. Su-jin admits she killed President  Jang II Jun, but she tries to assure him that he will be okay because she is about to be the next president. She promises she will use Dong-ho’s funeral to her advantage just like she did with President Jang II Jun’s.

All this is caught on video thanks to the secret camera Jeong-yeon installed in the flower vase. The video is played in real-time all over the country, and by the time Su-jin gets a call from her daughter, it is too late. Jang-seok orders the police to rush into Su-jin’s hospital and arrest her. 

Throughout this episode, those close to Dong-ho think about his last words to them. For Jang-seok arresting Su-jin is a big relief because he didn’t disappoint his friend. He gave him the gift of the truth prevailing for once.

How Does The Whirlwind End?

Dong-ho’s body is cremated, and Yeon-suk places the signed flag from Gi-tae on Dong-ho’s casket. It is revealed that Dong-ho signed the flag, accepting to be the whirlwind that Gi-tae dreamt of.

Meanwhile, Su-jin is arrested and sent to jail. Ironically, she is locked in the same cell she was in when she was arrested as a protester while in university. At the time, she inscribed “ Long Live Democracy’’ on the walls. The inscription is still there, and she breaks down in shameful tears after seeing it and remembering her younger self.

How utterly heartbreaking that this is where she ended up. Her younger self must be disappointed. 

In the epilogue, Dong-ho says that he fought not for the country but himself. He couldn’t endure any more injustice. Whatever the case, Dong-ho achieved his dream of a new world. He kept his promise and became the light in the darkness. 


The Episode Review

Dong-ho’s death hit harder than we imagined. The episode focused on showing us through flashbacks just what a great man he was. Unfortunately, he never got to see the new world, but when he started this fight, he knew how this would end.

Nonetheless, we had hoped for a different outcome. It would have been nice if he got to live in a world where he fought fr justice and survived—one where he didn’t have to jump off a cliff for the truth to prevail. They say that a lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.

This show proves this statement. It took a lot to clear Gi-tae’s name and find justice for him. 

Like Su-jin once said, what if she had chosen a different path? What would have become of her? She now has enough time to reflect on her actions in her cell. Well, The Whirlwind takes its final bow, delivering quite a strong performance.

This show is certainly a masterpiece, and the viewers have much to learn from it. Let us know your favourite moments in the comments below!

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