Forest of Time 2 & Tree 1
Episode 4 of Tomorrow begins with Ryung-Gu saving Jae-Soo’s life and in doing so, breaking one of the rules that the Reapers have. As you may remember, they’re not allowed to interfere in human affairs. That’s also something Ryeon and Jun-Woong break as they work together to stop Jae-Soo’s father from killing himself.
The truck narrowly misses Jae-Soo’s dad, as Ryeon uses her powers to stop his car completely. The thing is, this has far wider implications, given a very young Jae-Soo is at the hospital. The doctors aren’t doing anything with Jae Soo’s mum given they haven’t paid their hospital bills yet.
The IMF situation is hitting them hard and Ryeon eventually slaps Jae-Soo’s father across the face as a way of helping him see sense. After all, will Jae-Soo and his wife be happy with a paycheck without him there? Of course not.
Part of righting this injustice sees Ryeon and Jun-Woong head off and make fried chicken from scratch. After boxing them up, the pair don chicken suits and head back to the present. There, Jun-Woong hands over the chicken with a message on the front, his father’s old catchphrase “Failure means you need to try again.”
This is something Jae-Soo’s father takes to heart too as he remains dead-set on trying to do right by the family and make sure he does better.
Jun-Woong and Ryeon skip back to the past and bundle into the hospital room with their chicken suits, wishing Jae-Soo a happy birthday and consequently helping to jog his memory in the present too. Simultaneous memories intertwine as one, allowing the suicide rate indicator to go down.
Still in the past, Jun-Woong rushes out and grabs a kid. This happens to be Jun-Woong as a child, whom he drops off by his father. Older Jun-Woong admits that he misses his pa and in doing so, brings him back for a family photo. Jun-Woong’s father just fades back in. No word yet if this is going to have an impact on the future.
We then jump back one year ago. Several Death Angels chase down a runaway while holding a tablet. This runaway – Seo Ju-Wan – has been involved in sexual assault but his punishment in the land of the living barely scratched the surface of what he deserves.
However, a young Ryeon is interrupted in the middle of all this by team leader Jung-Gil. He admits there’s another soul out there. And as they look across a balcony, they see him almost fall. This happens to be the man whom Ryeon tried to save back when she was a rookie.
Ryeon has come a long way since then though and with the Jae-Soo case all but wrapped up now, saving his life and changing the future as a result, what’s next for our Reapers?
Well, the King of Heaven has caught wind of this and she’s not happy. Ryeon faces disciplinary action after breaking the rule about interfering with human affairs.
As a result, she’s forced to wear a ring that can’t be removed. This also nullifies her powers, meaning she can’t actually be effectively in the field for 7 days.
Jun-Woong follows Ryeon out the office, believing he’s responsible for what’s happened. He encourages her to punch him but instead she scoffs at that and asks him to get her three coffees.
Whilst at the coffee shop, she finds a fellow spirit (Na-Young) there, who’s delighted that he can see her.
Na-Young actually passed away in the hospital earlier on this episode but when Jung-Gil arrived to take her to the afterlife, she fled. Before she did, she was shown the RM team and since then, she’s been hiding out. When Ryeon and Ryung find out, they’re not exactly thrilled. They immediately decide to report her to the Escort Team… but there’s a problem.
Na-Young’s distraught partner is on the verge of committing suicide. After overdosing on pills, he’s in a critical state and this seems to have been as a direct result of what happened to Na-Young.
This puts Ryeon and the team in a real conflict of interest, as they decide to help out the runaway. Now. given she’s related to saving Woo-Jin, it technically falls under Ryeon’s jurisdiction rather than Jung-Gil’s. When he finds out, he’s furious, holding Ryeon up against the wall by her throat. Eventually he relinquishes his grip and walks away.
It’s here we learn more about Na-Young. She used to do ballet but when she hurt her ankle, she felt like giving up. With rain lashing down it was Woo-Jin who showed, with an umbrella to keep her dry (despite her being drenched by this point) and convinced her to carry on.
Although it was only a chance encounter, Na-Young actually saw him again, busking out in the street. This time when the rain starts pouring, she’s there to help him and use her umbrella.
The pair continue to spend time together, eventually messaging more and seeing their feelings blossom from friendship to romance. It’s a really beautiful set of scenes, especially as the pair share their first kiss under the pink-lit lights of the café.
Fast forward to the present and Ryeon tries to convince Woo-Jin not to commit suicide. Na-Young isn’t the reason why he’s unravelled like this though… it’s actually because he killed her. But how?
The Episode Review
A nice little twist at the end of Tomorrow helps to finish off this week’s double bill on a high. The conflicting ideas between Reaper departments is a nice way of actually adding some tension between the afterlife characters.
Not only that, we actually see Ryeon punished by not being able to use her abilities by breaking the code about interfering in human affairs. Of course, that opens up a whole can of worms unto itself given they’re actually interfering with human choice by physically stopping them from committing suicide and changing the future. Or, well, a little part of it anyway.
Unfortunately we don’t really see any repercussions for Ryeon as she’s immediately using her abilities anyway, especially if that end scene with Woo-Jin is any indication. The Jae-Woo case is tucked away pretty neatly though but it’ll be interesting to see if this series actually starts to tie together all these cases and the mistakes made along the way.
Jun-Woong is more of a passenger during the second half of this chapter, although seeing more of Ryeon’s history is certainly welcome. Hopefully we see the same thing for the other Reapers. Either way though, this “Tree” chapter actually looks to be quite the intriguing case, especially if it’s true that Woo-Jin did kill her.