On Lost Cause and What Is True Nationalism

Tuesday, February 01, 2022


The Korean Drama Snowdrop left a mark on me after finishing the series last night. I thought it will just be a light and cute love story, with rookie actress Blackpink Jisoo as lead girl. But it resulted to buckets of tears, something I experienced only for distinct dramas that would scar me for a long time, namely Scarlet Heart RyeoUncontrollably Fond, the Gwangju uprising movie A Taxi Driver, and the painful-to-the-gut Youth of May. I was thinking of Snowdrop's ending the whole night even in my dreams, I was that bothered!

There were scenes that were too unbelievable, though. Deaths that happened too quickly (“Ha nabaril nila isa't isa? Yun na yun!??”). The clownery of the wives who were hungry for power, I think even more than their ambitious husbands, lightened up the dark looming scenes of the last three episodes. They were annoying at first, oh but thank God they were there! I needed the comic relief and that time for "water break". The character of the actress in Extra Ordinary You also annoyed me to death, to the point that red polka dot dresses never looked the same to me again! Haha! But characters were redeemed, most got the ending they deserved.

But overthrowing these scenes, the deaths really pained me. “Whyyyy whyyyyy??” Specifically for the two comrades who were already imagining their freedom by the port to escape the whole mission they were only forced to accomplish having it disguised as being “nationalistic” and loyal to their country.

It may not have the ending that will make the majority happy, but I liked it nonetheless for being realistic. In reality, it’s a sad fact that we can’t expect a North Korean soldier to live happily ever after with a South Korean girl (who is also the daughter of the Director of National Security!) unless he defects his own country. There was no way around it unless they decide to just meetup in Switzerland ala Captain Ri and Yoon Seri… But I wouldn’t be this moved by the drama if that’s what they did. Seeing “what could have been” at the ending scene, Lim Soo Ho in Rome Coffee Shop with his guitar, made me totally lost it. Hindi pa ba enough yung sakit??? Hahaha. 

True to his Sky Castle style, the director served us a plot with never ending twists that would make me look forward to the next episodes. It was nerve wracking, anxiety-inducing, but it kept me glued to the story till the end. The one that really got me still was the death of all the North Korean comrades we’ve eventually came to love in the drama. May pinag huhugutan din sila. They were, after all, just victims of the system they were born in.

From the very beginning of the Kdrama, it was loudly screaming at me that everything’s a lost cause and I shouldn’t have expected a teeny bit of happy ending. But how can we not root for everyone’s happiness after seeing their human side?

Now all I want is a proper closure, did Doctor Kang get the ordinary, normal life she wanted?????

PS: I also can't help but love the Kdrama title “Snowdrop”. At first I was wondering what its correlation to the story is, since it’s also my birth month flower (January, or winter flowers)! Until the ending scene explained it in just a few lines. Yeongro was listening to Lim Soo Ho’s cassette recording message where he said:

"How did I become someone who shouldn't stay by your side? But I never regret meeting you. 

Young-ro, you bloomed flowers inside me who was so cold. Thank you."

A flower that still bloomed during winter. Thank you Team Snowdrop for another great drama!

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