Answer Me 1994: Speculations on the Ending

I'm sure I'm not the only one annoyed to death by the groom mystery, but at least the silver lining is Chilbongie finally returned to star in the past couple of episodes of 1994. Despite that, I have no delusions that they're going to let him win out at the end - after all, Korean drama writers are slaves to Korean popular sentiment, and for reasons I'll never comprehend, Trash somehow gained a following there. How does one watch the sibling-type, boring as dirt "romance" and somehow prefer that to the sweet, heart-achy alternative?

As much as it pains me, I'm not betting on any major reversal of feeling on Na Jung's part this late in the game. I feel like the breakup between her and Trash was done purely for the sake of the extension, to keep us guessing and to keep Chilbongie fans afloat til the last episode. Of course, I too secretly hope he'll somehow win out at the end, but I'm not putting any stakes in the ground given the lack of a base built into this relationship versus with Trash. One thing's for sure though, Na Jung needs to grow a spine and make a choice, because frankly I want to swat her for her indecisive back-and-forth.

I mentioned in my heroine review how Na Jung went from quirky, independent lady to love-dependent slave around Trash. I'm glad they at least showed her pursuing her career abroad, but it's also clear from their break-up that so long as she's with Trash, she won't ever be able to focus upon her career. The one time she picks something over him, they fall apart. That's pretty darn telling, and while of course this isn't some feminist story, it's still something to mull over as you evaluate exactly what a future with Trash will mean for her.

This is such a great contrast with Chilbongie, who would follow her til the ends of the earth, and would never make her choose between her love or her job (unlike what Trash initially tried to do). Yes, both men are great guys, but that doesn't mean a life with either with either will be equitable. But whatever, Na Jung strikes me as the type who would ultimately be happy as a housewife (given the 2013 scenes), so maybe Trash is the better fit for her in that sense.

I have to say the love triangle has made me so allergic to Trash that I wasn't the slightest bit moved during that tearful conversation with Na Jung's dad. Yes, it was sad to hear about how the loss of his son still pains Dad, but I failed to connect that with his reflections on his current relationship with Trash. Why exactly did the fact that Trash was dating Na Jung make him feel like he was "losing a son"? Is it because he knew they would break up? Was he as icked out by the sibling-relationship as I was? Because logically speaking, having Trash as a potential son-in-law should have strengthened their bond as father-son, not weakened it. Hopefully, this conversation will mark the fact that Trash is out of Na Jung's life, but that's my wishful side speaking.

I'm pretty irked by how unoriginal the show has been in terms of its love lines. Every single boarder now has ended up married to his/her first love (with the debatable exception of Binggeure, but of course I found his whole romance to be half-assed in as a way to surprise viewers). The whole Haitai-Ae Jung thing rather annoyed me, because of course he too had to end up with his first love. I know he was never seriously in the groom running, but again this proved the writer's general inability to stray beyond her self-set boundaries. So who's first love will win out - Na Jung's, or Chilbongie's? Given that the show is centered around Na Jung, I'm sadly going to have to bet on the former.

Regardless, I'm sure we won't see the groom's face until episode 21, so in the meantime there'll probably be plenty of wallowing on Na Jung's part and sucking-up on the part of both guys. In the meantime, I'll be steeling myself for Chilbongie's heartbreak.


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