Doctor Stranger - Episode 9 (A SqueeCap)

What happened in episode 9? The short version: a lot of running around and hurt feelings, with a little baby-saving and attempted murder on the side. Oh, and we finally get to the big competition everyone's been talking about for what seems like forever. But yeah, a lot of running around. As if to make up for the it, though, this episode is especially pretty. So many great screenshots unused, ladies. It killed me.
JoAnne: Email them to me in a plain brown wrapper, please.  Call it Vitamins or something.
bcook: There's nothing that says we can't do a screenshot post. It's your duty to the public.

Episode 9

As the babies are prepped for surgery, Hoon hears that Broom-Alike is in danger and suddenly runs out. Soo-hyun follows and literally has to drag him back inside. Soo-hyun brings him to look at their team's baby and asks what will happen to him if he goes now. Hoon closes his eyes, as if trying to block her out, and remembers Broom-Alike's promise to come back and save the baby.
JoAnne: It is a measure of the nothingness of this show that I honestly don't remember if she shows up or not. I'm just here for the pretty. I can admit that.
bcook: And this is why I don't like their love story! Who does that? Who forgets about the baby.. you know...the one you fought so hard to operate on. Hoon. That type of "love" is not healthy. Shame on the show for allowing young minds to get that impression.
Still aiming the gun at Broom-Alike, Lollipop Ajusshi makes it clear that Jae-joon's team has been chosen to do JangBastard's surgery. She argues for the original plan to use Hoon, but he says it's been changed. She figures there's no use arguing about it, then, and shifts his hand so that the gun is now pointing at her head. Ha! Is this her signature move, now?
JoAnne: She's taunting the netizens. It's quite brazen.
bcook: For a second I felt relief and then disgust because is that really her only move?!
The water drops reluctantly fall. Even they don't want to leave that gorgeous elbow
She has one question, though: did the North Korean side agree to this? Ajusshi isn't interested in getting their consent, and she asks if they seem that laughable. Suddenly she and Cha leap into action. While he takes a gun from one of the goons, she manages to turn Ajusshi's back on him, and then they all freeze, with guns pointing every which way.
JoAnne: That shot on the right is hilarious, not gun(na) lie.
bcook: I believe this is called a Mexican stand-off?
Hoon washes his hands again, and Soo-hyun asks where he was trying to go and where Broom-Alike is. He glances at the clock, which reads 40 minutes until the surgery begins, and promises she'll be here.
JoAnne: He is one faithful guy.
bcook: faith is good I guess.

Up on the observation deck, Chairman Oh and Choi hammer out the details of how the winner will be decided. If both operations are successful, it will come down to speed. They'll have a maximum of 45 minutes to create the aorta while the Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation machine is stopped, or the babies will die. The less time it takes, the better.
JoAnne:  So now it's 'Save all the babies! But faster!'
bcook: It's all so clinical (pun fully intended).

Both sides are all set to begin, except Broom-Alike still isn't here. Hoon keeps insisting she'll come and refuses to find another anesthesiologist.
JoAnne: His dictionary pages got stuck together.  He reads the word for loyalty but gets the definition for stupidity.
bcook: hehe
We go back to the spy stand-off, which is suddenly interrupted by the appearance of JangBastard himself. Broom-Alike asks if it's going to be Hoon or Jae-joon, and he admits that he's not sure after seeing her. He asks if she's Song Jae-hee or Han Seung-hee, saying he can't trust her until he knows. She looks to Cha, and everyone lowers their weapons at last and walk away, leaving Broom-Alike and JB alone.
JoAnne: So funny that they all know immediately, without words, what she has to do.
bcook: That's the joy of extras. They appear suddenly and silently and disappear just as quickly. I wouldn't mind some in my life.
Outside, Ajusshi explains to Creep Cha that the only way they can be sure of her identity is by checking to see if she has any scarring from kidney transplants. He offers Cha a lollipop, which is reluctantly accepted, and pops another into his own mouth. Ha, now I just want them both to turn good and become Hoon's Lollipop Protectors. That is sooo not going to happen, but the thought makes me laugh.
JoAnne: HAHAHAHAHAHAH it could be a code, like, if he sees someone with a lollipop it's like seeing a cop, he knows he can turn to that person for help.
bcook: This reminds me of a detective show I used to watch when I was young. Remember Kojak/Kodak? Bald, lollipop eating detective? I think that's where my fascination with bald guys came from.
Becca: Who loves ya, baby?
JoAnne: That was a good show.
Inside, Broom-Alike re-buttons her shirt, and I just now realize that she had to take it off for JangBastard. Yeck. I need a shower now! He laughs and says Hoon really is pitiful, then promises to give him another chance. He reminds her that he only needs one card, though. And we still don't know definitively if she's Jae-hee or Seung-hee
JoAnne: I'm perfectly fine with never actually knowing, if they do it right. Right now I know what they've told me to believe, and I believe it, but part of me really hopes that in a little bit they seriously FFFF with my head.
bcook: I would prefer she not be Jae-hee. I agree, the creepiness of that scene cannot be emphasized enough.
Becca: I've seen too many scifi shows. I will trust nothing until we get the two Brooms in one room and/or have some definitive DNA testing. Even then, I might still be suspicious.
JoAnne: You said two brooms in a room and now all I can think of is two girls one cup. THANKS.
Outside, Broom-Alike climbs into her car, and Cha warns her that if Hoon loses, she'll die with him. She drives away, and that's when Cha notices Chang-yi's truck across the way, as she has trouble starting the engine. Before he can get to her, though, he's intercepted by JB, who reminds him that he'll have to kill Hoon and Broom-Alike if he loses. Cha assures him that he'll do it neatly.
JoAnne: Cha, are you really even necessary? She calls the shots. What do you do? Why are you here? Are you just participating because you hate Hoon?
bcook: He's here to kill. I think the interrogation has shook him up a little so the thought of killing hoon is less patriotic more personal.
Becca: I just watched episode 10. I don't really blame him.

While he's talking to JB, Chang-yi is able to get away and tries calling Hoon as she drives, but of course he doesn't have his phone in the OR. It's in the break-room, and KimChi picks up and tells her Hoon is in surgery, then hangs up. He and his girl elect to skip the sexy-times for once and go watch the competition.
(Side-note: I have wanted a loveline for these two since day one, and I've heard that it's happening! Wheee!!!)

It's time to start, but Broom-Alike still isn't here. Chairman Oh orders that they go ahead. In Jae-joon's OR, Flirty starts administering the anesthesia, while Team Hoon is still waiting for Broom-Alike.
JoAnne: Is he not a doctor?  He's just going to order them to begin without a proper set up?
bcook: We've already established he's an ass. Makes total sense if you keep that in mind.

The door slides open and they all turn expectantly, but it's KimChi who comes in, having arrived in the wrong room. He leaves, only to raise their hopes again when he comes back to ask why Soo-hyun is here. She orders him out, and he gives Hoon a "fighting."
JoAnne: I'm confused. He was just going to watch. Why is he in there now? 
Becca: I guess he went in for close-up observation? But then later he's up above with his girlfriend again, so... just a random moment of levity?
When the door slides open yet again, Soo-hyun is ready to yell at him, but it's Broom-Alike this time. She thinks of all that's riding on this match and quickly sets to work, as Hoon watches, relieved. Soo-hyun worries that they're already too far behind, but Hoon orders her not to think that way. The baby is their priority.
JoAnne: Well the 45 minutes should start when they start, not at some arbitrary minute - it's not Oh saying 45 minutes it's a limit of the surgery itself. So how are they behind? #WhenAWriterWritesBadly #WTF

Jae-joon makes his first incision, and thanks to Broom-Alike's expertise, Hoon is able to start just seconds later. Choi tells Chairman Oh that these surgeons are the future of cardio thoracic surgery in Korea.
JoAnne: Great. Korea, your hearts are in the hands of a guy wearing an assumed identity who plans to destroy your biggest hospital, and a guy who spent his formative years being forced to kill humans for experimental reasons; he's only a little messed up though, so you're probably fine.
bcook: *nods* sounds totally normal.
Shopping Ajusshi's phone starts ringing, so he steps out. Chairman Oh gets up for a better view as we reach the critical point of the surgeries as the ECMO machines are turned off and the countdown started. Jae-joon is still ahead, but Hoon is close behind.
JoAnne: I forget, is he in the surgery or is this after
bcook: After accident

Soo-hyun keeps watching the clock, until Hoon finally has enough and yells at her. She jumps, though, and one of the baby's blood vessels rips. Hoon orders her to perform anastomosis (basically, reconnect the blood vessel), but she's nervous now, and her hands shake so hard that she drops her instrument.

With ten minutes left, Broom-Alike urges Hoon to do it himself and even Soo-hyun says she can't do it fast enough. He tells her to look at the baby, and reminds her that she's practiced for this (in the mind palace). Does she want to be a quack forever?
JoAnne: That moment when your crush embarrasses you into doing something dumb and then insults you into being brave.
bcook: This was so annoying to watch. Probably when she started falling in love with him.
Broom-Alike looks up and sees Cha watching from above, wearing a lab coat to blend in, and practically begs Hoon to take over. Soo-hyun closes her eyes, remembering Jae-joon's and Flirty's words that she couldn't do it and Hoon's belief that she could.

Finally, Hoon decides to do take over, but she opens her eyes with renewed composure and is able to do it herself. Yay!
JoAnne: I really do like her.
Meanwhile, Jae-joon's team finishes and restarts the ECMO pumps with nearly five minutes to spare, winning the competition.
JoAnne: Again I say that the overall times should be compared against each other. Finishing first is irrelevent when you don't start at the same time.  The competition is about who is the better surgeon, not who is the best at following a schedule. #WhenTheLogicFailsMakeMySkinItch

The news is relayed to JangBastard, and Creep Cha goes back to his car, where he gets out his gun again and attaches a silencer.
JoAnne: Not even slightly worried.  It's way too early for anyone to die, including Jin Se Yeon.
bcook: Sadly.
Hoon's team finishes, and Soo-hyun starts to apologize. He cuts her off to say that because of her, the baby lived. It doesn't matter that they lost. As the babies are taken back to the NICU, Hoon and Jae-joon lock eyes through the window, and Hoon gives him a tiny nod. He tries to say something to Broom-Alike, but she brushes him off and won't make eye contact.
Moon congratulates Chairman Oh on the victory, and Oh replies that soon Moon will be congratulated for something, too. As they leave, Choi tries to convince Oh that Hoon shouldn't be thrown out, reminding him of his dream of Myung Woo becoming the best hospital, but Oh says Jae-joon will be enough. He wants Hoon gone.
JoAnne:  Of course he does, he can't stand the guilt. Wait, does he feel guilty? Nope. Ok, then he's just being a dick.
bcook: You know I've thought about this anti-hoon-ness. He's basically afraid Hoon is in the hospital to do what Joon is in the hospital to do. There is a certain symmetry of karma that I like about that.

KimChi finds Moon all alone, sighing in defeat, and offers early congratulations for being transferred to the branch office, admitting that he's happy to see him go. Moon chases him around the room, ready to give him a beating for his insolence.
bcook: Little scamp. It's the flashes of comedy that make this show watchable...but also add to the WTF. It can't design what genre it wants to be.
Later, he runs into Soo-hyun and asks her to speak to Oh on his behalf. He grabs her by the hand, promising to serve Myung Woo to the best of his abilities. She manages to extricate himself and suggests he tell Oh himself.

Next he goes to Hoon, who brushes him off, and he falls to the floor in tears, as Cha passes by unseen. *sigh* Moon. Sometimes funny. Sometimes not.
JoAnne: It's weird because it seems like he needs MORE of a story to really fit in, don't you think? I mean he's treated like fairly important plot mover - and without him Hoon wouldn't have a leg to stand on at the hospital - but he's just sort of laid on top of everything like an afterthought half the time.
bcook: Has he not explained his reasons for being a dr douche yet?
Becca: The story about his dad? Yes, but having a reason doesn't give him an automatic pass.
Hoon goes looking for Broom-Alike, but Chang-yi finds him first. He makes her promise not to tell anyone what she saw tonight, and she asks if Broom-Alike is really Jae-hee. He nods, and she realizes Broom-Alike must be a spy, then. He reminds her to keep quiet and asks to borrow her truck.
JoAnne: She's another one who's just kind of there and cute but does she have an actual PURPOSE? #WhenAWriterIsSoDisorganized
bcook: clearly she's there to worship Hoon from afar and never quite deliver the message in time to be helpful.
Becca: He doesn't deserve her loyalty.
Over the phone, Cha tells Broom-Alike that he's going to kill Hoon. She argues that he won't be able to live either if they give up now, but he's says their mission is already a failure. He watches from a distance as Hoon chases after her. Broom-Alike says it's up to the party to decide if they failed, not him, and insists there's still a chance. They come face to face on the observation deck, and he says Hoon blew that chance. She looks down to see Hoon below, and when she turns back, Cha is gone.
JoAnne: So what were his marching orders, exactly? 'Go to SK. Do what JB says, sort of.  Whatever happens, at the end we'll let you kill Hoon. K?'
bcook: Sounds about right.
Hoon finally sees her and smiles, not knowing that Cha is behind him with a gun pointed at his head. But just when I thought our hero might be doomed, KimChi and his girl arrive, and Cha slips away, still unseen. They stop short at the sight of Hoon and slink away to find another make-out spot, passing Cha on their way. When Cha reenters the OR, Hoon and Broom-Alike are gone.
JoAnne: In order for a potential death scene to be suspenseful, there has to be a chance that someone will actually die.  So we know HOON isn't going to die. Then, is Cha? 
bcook: I thought it was just a nifty reference to when his dad was about to do the heart surgery.
Jae-joon and his team congratulate each other, and when he asks about Soo-hyun, Dorky Doc says she isn't answering her phone. Flirty says happily that they won thanks to her mistake.
JoAnne: Why you gotta be such a bitch about stuff, Flirty?
Becca: And I used to like her, too.... *sigh*

In Chairman Oh's office, Soo-hyun is scolded for helping Hoon, but she figures everyone got what they wanted: Oh and Jae-joon won, and the babies are okay. She reassures him that she and Jae-joon are fine, then says she wants to move out and promises give him her reasons later.

She meets Jae-joon on the way out, and though she acts friendly, it's clear she doesn't want to talk to him right now. She congratulates him on winning and walks away. See, Jae-joon? I told you you'd regret it.
JoAnne: *Nods vigorously* She was right, Jae-Joon. You are so not getting any snuggles any time soon.
bcook: Not even comforting glances. *mortal kombat voice* Jae-Joon ... fail.
Chang-yi debates whether or not to report Broom-Alike as a spy, then makes the call. Meanwhile, Soo-hyun is looking everywhere for Hoon, but when she finally finds him, he's still looking for Broom-Alike and doesn't have time to talk. She watches him go with a sigh.
JoAnne: So she reports her, then? That's funny, considering.
bcook: nothing happens after that call though. I've been wondering about that too. Maybe it takes a while to investigate. 
Broom-Alike calls Hoon and urges him to leave the hospital right now, while he keeps asking where she is, but then they both lower their phones, as if sensing each other nearby, and slowly come face to face. Just as Creep Cha comes up behind Hoon again.
JoAnne: Oh for Pete's sake. If we didn't fall for it last time, writer-nim, why would THIS time be any different?
bcook: It's in a different location tho!
JoAnne: They do say location is everything.

Hoon steps closer, and she cries, "Stop!" He thinks she means him, but no, she's looking over his shoulder at Cha. She pleads with Cha that it doesn't have to end like this, and there's still a chance.
Just as Hoon gets an inkling that maybe she isn't actually talking to him and starts to turn, Cha raises his gun, and Broom-Alike pulls Hoon out of the line of fire just in time as Cha shoots. They stand gazing into each others eyes, but they're pulled out of their little dream world when word comes over the hospital intercom that there's an emergency in the ICU.
JoAnne: It's the weirdest thing, honestly. A random bullet came out of NOWHERE and killed the baby Joon operated on!
bcook: Did Hoon realize he was being shot at?
Becca: I honestly doubt it. Boy is stupid.
Lollipop Ajusshi watches from around the corner as Creep Cha slinks away.
JoAnne: I wonder if he would have interfered? Is his prime directive 'Save Hoon' or is it 'Do Jang's evil bidding' ?

Back in Oh's office, Jae-joon is lightly reprimanded for letting Soo-hyun help Hoon's team. Then Oh softens a bit and tells him to treat her well. She may act strong, but she's soft-hearted. He jokes that Jae-joon should go ahead and take her off his hands, and there's this split second where Jae-joon kind of widens his eyes in this amused way. It's a throwaway bit, but it makes me giggle and squee so hard. Maybe if I'm really good, Kakashi will gif it for me? Pleeeeaaase?? *bat eyelashes adorably*
JoAnne: *joins in the adorable batting of lashes, but less successfully - it doesn't go that well with crow's feet*
bcook: *wonders where the breeze is coming from*
They hear about the emergency, and Jae-joon rushes to the ICU. Turns out Dorky Doc made a mistake during surgery, and now they'll have to operate on the baby again. Hoon is all ready to operate, but Jae-joon insists on doing it himself. This his patient.
JoAnne: I liked my idea better.
bcook: See what happens when you try to practice revenge Joon-a? Hajima! Focus your nose on winning the girl.
As the baby is moved back to the OR, Moon rejoices that this means they won after all. Choi and I both chastise him for having messed up priorities.
JoAnne: Seriously. You and Flirty are some messed up people.

Jae-joon's team operates again, and as soon as he doesn't need him anymore, Jae-joon orders Dorky Doc out. He's seething with rage, so much that his hands are shaking. When Soo-hyun rushes into the OR, he tells her to get out, yelling at her when she tries talking to him. She walks away, stunned, and then Jae-joon looks up and locks eyes with an unamused Chairman Oh. Whoops.
JoAnne: She may be his bastard daughter, but she IS his daughter. Although actually, I think Oh's only pissed that the surgery went wrong, not that Joon yelled at his Precious.
bcook: Nah. He's morally twisted but nobody puts his illegitimate daughter (who he wretched from his mistress's loving arms and thrust into a hate filled household where he pitted her against his spineless dickhead of a son for years before finally admitting that he loved her only after her mother died) in a corner! Got that?
As Oh leaves, he passes Choi and Moon, and though he doesn't say anything, it's clear that he admits, however reluctantly, that he's lost.

Moon is still jumping for joy when he runs into KimChi, and he forces him to do reverse push-ups as punishment for his earlier insolence. Moon cackles that Jae-joon will be the one going to the branch office, though I'm not so sure that's gonna happen. The story needs him here.
JoAnne: In a universe where unnecessary characters abound, though...who knows what this writer will do?
bcook: I can see into the future and must tell Moon not to celebrate too soon.

Lollipop Ajusshi informs JangBastard that Hoon lost, after all, and JB figures they're back to using Hoon. The important thing about this scene is that JangBastard has teddy bears on his pajamas. O_O
JoAnne: That's NOTHING. In Trot #2, Screamo wears a shirt that has cartoon slices of pizza and cans of coke all over it.
bcook: Fabric design is harder than you'd think. Also...didn't know they made teddy bear pajamas that size.
JoAnne: Twenty years ago this designer messed up Jang's pale blue polyester wedding tuxedo, and he had him sent to NK to 'design uniforms.'  The guy's son managed to get back to SK and also works as a designer, and JangBastard held this competition...
Broom-Alike finds Cha in the parking garage and points out that Hoon won after all, and Cha's haste to kill him could have ruined their mission. When she raises her voice, he pushes her against the wall and yells that she almost ruined the mission, too, by telling Hoon to run away. He warns her to be careful because he's always watching, and her life and Hoon's are in his hands.
JoAnne: Um, no. Her doing that didn't in any way  jeopardize the mission. It might have  caused a problem for your personal private mission to kill  Hoon, but ain't nobody care about that shit but YOU, Cha.
Hoon is looking for Broom-Alike again and sees her being dragged out of the hospital. (He still hasn't seen Cha clearly enough to recognize him.) He chases after them and sees her car drive away. As he climbs into Chang-yi's truck, Moon comes out, ready to celebrate with him. Hoon just drives away, while Moon shouts after him, "I LOVE YOU!!!" HAHA!!!
Hoon follows Broom-Alike's car back to his clinic, where he fails to see the third car, from which Creep Cha is watching. Hoon rushes inside, but it's empty, except for the Jae-hee video, which is still playing. Video Jae-hee calls his name, as he hangs his head... but then he turns around, and there's Broom-Alike.
She smiles at him and calls, "Hoon-ah, Hoon-ah," just like in the video. (It really creeps me, out. ESPECIALLY because it reminds me of that time she mimicked the video.) Then she rushes into his arms and they hold each other close for a long time, before pulling away to stare and gently touch each other's faces. Hoon finally breaks out into a smile and leans in for a kiss. A really good kiss, too, even if the 360˚ camera-shot makes me a little dizzy.
JoAnne: His mouth is just..I can't even talk about it. That's a good mouth, used well. Go ahead, imagine things. I do.
bcook: SMH Jo always reminds me that I'm still too young for somethings ...*stops. Imagines. * Oh look! A maturing moment. 
JoAnne: I think you should stick with ChanYeol.  Such a cute couple.  *runs away with Shin Omma very very quickly*
The next morning, Hoon sits watching the video again, and then Broom-Alike pops up. It's just like his dream from episode three, as they smile at each other adorably, and he fixes breakfast. While she eats, he just stares at her, grinning from ear to ear. He's so cuuuuute. Ultimate Puppy, indeed.
JoAnne: The Once and Future Puppy. One Pup to Lead Them All. I don't even care that he's so damn skinny and a stiff wind could snap him in two, forget about an actual-sized woman. Not that I'm actual-sized. No, I'm the CostCo version of womankind. I almost said BJ's Club, know where that would have gone.
bcook: *Pulls a Mary and blinks innocently* where? where would that have gone?
Ah, but it is just a dream, and he wakes up alone. He rushes outside, calling for Jae-hee, but she's long gone.
JoAnne: That HAIR, though.

So... I don't really have much to say about this episode. It was fairly straight forward from start to finish with very little time spent on the characters, with perhaps the exception of Jae-joon. While everyone else was busy chasing each other all over the hospital, Jae-joon is well on his way to losing everything he's worked so hard to achieve. If Soo-hyun was having doubts about their relationship before, she certainly is now that he's made it clear that winning comes first. And I doubt he'll be enjoying Chairman Oh's goodwill for awhile, after the way he shouted at his daughter. There are a lot of things I dislike about Oh, but on one thing I cannot fault him: he genuinely cares for Soo-hyun. Maybe he's not the best father ever. Maybe he's not even close. But I do think he cares in his own way. Just to be clear, though: I still dislike everything else about him.
JoAnne: Yep, he's a jerk. And Joon is quite jerk-like.  Which is interesting because it makes me think that perhaps his personal mission to make Myung Woo the best turned Appa into a jerk (and he wasn't ALWAYS one) just like Joon's vendetta has the potential to do so. Because he loved her mom, you know?

In the last couple episodes, I started to get excited by the prospect that Hoon might step up and actually get some agency instead of just reacting to everything that happens. I still think it's going to happen soon, but I was disappointed to spend so much of this episode with him just chasing after Jae-hee. It felt like a lot of filler, and I'm thinking fifteen minutes could have been shaved off without sacrificing anything important. Anyway, here's hoping that Hoon can become a major player in his own story before I go crazy.
JoAnne: Episodes, Bec. Episodes could be shaved off without any problem at all. Except that it would mean less of Hoon and Joon sightings, which is a crime against NATURE.
bcook: They could just pack Hoon and Joon into more minutes in less episodes. Much of this show has felt like filler. I think we'd be at the same level of understanding if we'd skipped every other episode after HoonAppa died.