Gwang-ho's realization of Jae-i's identity hits him like a ton of bricks, but time is of the essence even for time travelers, as Jeong Ho-yeong's arrest means that evidence needs to be found. As Jae-i assumed, the criminal's mother seems to be a key figure and so the importance of guardian and society influence is a concept which is present throughout the episode. Meanwhile, Mok Jin-woo is eying a new chess buddy.
Putting Gwang-ho's (Choi Jin-hyuk) miraculous fatherly instincts aside, his realization wraps up his family history. With everyone's fate and issues known, we can move forward to the reason why Gwang-ho is here, which is Mok Jin-woo (Kim Min-sang). Before moving on, however, the episode briefly contemplates Gwang-ho's absence from Jae-i's (Lee Yoo-young) life and how family and later society shape us. It does the same through the fate of Jeong Ho-yeong (Heo Sung-tae).
Jae-i has grown up to misjudge her needs and also the dangers around her. Hye-won (Min Suk) makes a good point about the pitfalls of upbringing, because while Yeon-sook (Lee Shi-ah) wanted to make Jae-i feel safe, her obsession over the loss of Gwang-ho and the words delivered to Jae-i contributed to her trauma upon Yeon-sook's loss. As for Jae-i's suicidal decision, the episode covers the previous writing mistake by making it a part of its point. Jae-i wants to believe that she has control over every situation.
On the other hand, a neglecting or abusive parent brings about more direct and often more dire consequences in a child's life. Jeong Ho-yeong's mother did not make him mentally ill or a murderer, but she and the other caretaker figures in his life who were in charge of managing his condition failed him and his victims. He is evil and his acts are ultimately his own, but society could have still cut such development at the bud with proper measures.
Speaking of prevention, I wonder if the time travel will ever be adequately addressed. Few works tackle the topic in-depth and Korean drama is not really the medium to try very hard with science fiction elements. Even so, this relentless optimist hopes for some twist of a cosmic emergency making the solving of this case so crucial to the world or at least for the characters to wonder if such a reason exists.
Now that Jeong Ho-yeong is out, it is time to face Mok Jin-woo. His offering of a chess game to Jae-i probably means that he is abandoning Seon-jae (Yoon Hyun-min) due to his lack of appreciation for his unique work. I am interested to see what he will do from now on and whether the entirety of what we see in the present of "Tunnel - Drama" will eventually be altered by Gwang-ho going back.
Written by: Orion from 'Orion's Ramblings'
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Vasia, also known as Orion or Ori online, is currently doing opinion pieces and database upkeep. She has a love for good TV and a penchant for rambling in written form. Vasia can be contacted via email@example.com.
"[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Tunnel - Drama" Episode 11"
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