Hee-Tae Is Missing
Episode 11 of Youth of May begins at the train station with more context to those scenes from the opening episode of the season. Lip quivering, this man is brought in and shown a locket from the past which is broken.
This happens to be Hyun-Chul’s, as we cut back and see the moments leading up to this. At the hospital, Myung-Hee is devastated when she learns of the hit and run. Only, there’s only one patient wheeled in – Dr Yoo. Hee-Tae however, is gone. He’s been taken by the thugs that drove into them.
Those thugs are, of course, working for Ki-Nam. He’s the one responsible for the accident. When Hee-Tae awakens, Ki-Nam demands that he leave. If he doesn’t, Ki-Nam is going to go after Myung-Hee. Before that, he phones Chang-Keun and breaks the news that Soo-Ryeon is back in Gwanju.
Soo-Chan meanwhile, heads into the hospital bruised but thankfully still breathing. He breaks the news that Soo-Ryeon and Hee-Tae are back… but obviously she already knew. He’s desperate to find Soo-Ryeon, but when he mentions Hee-Tae he realizes how much Myung-Hee actually cares about him.
Back home, Ki-Nam keeps Myung-Hee captured and tied up in his room. Jung-Tae sees him too, prompting Ki-Nam to arrive and warn him off. As he stands over his son, Ki-Nam tells him the military force has backed off. Not in retreat though, but instead to trap Gwanju inside like a caged mouse. With military personnel set up on the outskirts, it seems there’s no way in or out.
Hyun-Chul sits with Myung-Soo and discusses the locket and its significance. Given Myung-Hee’s spirit is in Gwanju, Hyun-Chul accepts that she has something more important to do. Right now, Naju is out the question.
Myung-Soo rings Jung-Tae though and learns Hee-Tae is in big trouble. Jung-Tae is terrified too, contemplating heading back to camp. As he says to his Mother: “Anything is less scary than being home.” As she realizes what a nightmarish ordeal this much be for him, he pleads with her to free Hee-Tae and help him.
Hye-Gun is interrogated and beaten, but realizes if he speaks up and reveals what Ki-Nam wants then he’ll be killed. Despite threats of his entire family being killed, he mentions Hee-Tae and spins a story about a backhanded deal between them. Ki-Nam snaps, grabbing a baton and beating him to a pulp.
Back at the hospital, Myung-Hee is exhausted but eventually looks up and finds a beaten and blooded Hee-Tae standing before her. It turns out Hae-Ryung let him go after all, which inevitably leads to a beating at the hands of her evil husband. Jung-Tae can only sit and listen, sobbing all the while as items around the house smash and shatter.
Hee-Tae is hooked up to an IV and rests in hospital. Hyun-Chul shows up and greets him though, handing over money and the family locket. He mentions the differences between them and proudly calls Myung-Hee his precious daughter. He eventually limps away.
As he does, Myung-Hee and Hee-Tae relocate to a church. They hide out and discuss their families, with Myung-Hee eventually asking if he wants to get married.
Myung-Soo and Hyun-Chul sit on the back of a truck and eat some rice balls together. This happens to be their last meal in Gwanju as the pair are handed a map and driven to the outskirts, ready to walk and evade the authorities. A gunshot pierces the air though, prompting the pair to hide. Determined to save his son, Hyun-Chul reveals himself.
The Episode Review
Youth Of May bows out its penultimate episode with lots of simmering drama as Ki-Nam and his son come to blows and the battle lines are drawn ready for a dramatic finale to follow.
This chapter eases up on the dramatic antics we’ve been seeing across the past few episodes, bringing everything back to a more simple melodramatic romance.
It’s perhaps needed in order to serve as a proverbial deep breath before tomorrow’s follow-up but there’s definitely still some intense moments here. Seeing-Ki-Nam kill Hye-Gun along with Hyun-Chul’s evasion of the authorities are two such examples.
Overall though, Youth of May has been a really pleasant surprise this year, and a solid historical drama wrapped up in a sweet forbidden romance. Will this one have a happy ending?