Moment At Eighteen (Kdrama Review & Summary)
Global Granary Recommendation
- Genre: Youth, Romance, Love Triangle
- Release Date: 22 July 2019
- Origin: South Korea,
- Kdrama: 16 Episodes
- Ost: Our Story by Ong Seong Wu
- Ong Seong-Wu – Choi Joon-Woo
- Kim Hyang-Gi – Yoo Soo-Bin
- Shin Seung-Ho – Ma Whi-Young
- Kang Ki-Young – Oh Han-Kyeol
- Shim Yi-Young – Joon-Woo’s mother
- Kim Sun-Young – Soo-Bin’s mother
- Park Sung-Geun – vice-principal
- Sung Ki-Yoon – Whi-Young’s father
- Choi Dae-Hoon – mathematics teacher
- Kim Ga-Hee – Moon Chan-Yeol
- Yoo In-Soo – Yoo Pil-Sang
- Moon Joo-Yeon – Yoon So-Ye
- Han Sung-Min – Hwang Ro-Mi
- Moon Bin – Jung O-Je
This drama started very well. It is mainly a young cast but they were quite good, very believable.
Choi Joon Woo transferred to a fairly elite school because he had been kicked out by his previous school for theft and being unruly.
On his way to school on the first day, he almost had an accident. His bike was nearly bumped into by a car, who was being driven by Yoo Soo Bin’s mom.
Seeing that he seemed fine, the mother continued on her way without checking that Choi Joon Woo was really alright.
Soo Bin is a popular girl at school.
When she got to the school gate, she saw the boy her mom almost crashed into. She went to introduce herself and asked him if he was really ok.
He seemed fine.
Joon Woo went to the staff room to introduce himself as the new transfer student.
The vice principal was too busy and passed him to his homeroom teacher who was also rather taken with some other personal issues.
His teacher passed him to the class president who was Ma Whi Young. He seemed like a personable boy and very helpful as well.
He was helped by Ma Whi Young to get and changed into a second-hand uniform complete with the school blazer with a name tag of its previous owner still firmly sewn into the top pocket.
Anyway, the class president took him to the classroom and introduced him.
Soo Bin was one of his new schoolmates.
Ma Whi Young had a long-time crush with Soo Bin and was rather surprised that Soo Bin seemed to know the new boy.
Joon Woo was advised by the school to not mention the reason for his transfer but it was too late, his classmates found out online.
Joon Woo found himself a part-time job in a local supermarket. He got on with the manager as well as the owner.
He was tasked to deliver snacks to a review centre, where Ma Whi Young was one of the students.
Ma Whi Young appeared to be a perfect boy but he had some seething issues regarding his self-esteem.
His adored mother had always compared him to his older brother who seemed to be good at everything. They always told him that he had to be as perfect as his brother.
During the review class, the tutor found that Ma Whi Young kept making the same mistake and tried to explain the solution to the math problem to him step by step.
One of his friends and schoolmate proceeded to solve the problem on the board and said that it was too easy.
The tutor told the other boy that not everyone was a genius like him. This made Whi Young disconcerted. He had to be the best at everything like his brother.
Joon Woo delivered the snacks to the room and was told by the tutor to collect the trash as well as they were recyclable from the supermarket.
Joon Woo did not have any problem with this extra duty but saw that the thrash bag has a small hole on the bottom. He also noticed that there was something else in there, which looked like a watch face. But before he could ascertain what it was, Ma Whi Young told him that he had thrown something in the bag that he shouldn’t.
The next time he was at school, Joon Woo was asked to go to the vice principal office.
With the Vice Principal was the tutor who accused Joon Woo of stealing his watch.
Joon Woo denied it but because of his previous, the vice principal thought that it would be best that he was transferred to another school.
His homeroom teacher believed that he was innocent until Ma Whi Young went to speak to him secretly and said that he believed that Joon Woo was guilty.
This conversation was heard by Joon Woo.
He then waited for Ma Whi Young outside and confronted him for being such a double face.
Whi Young just asked what was he going to do about it.
The watch issue is growing into a real problem for poor Joon Woo.
Whi Young bullied at home by his strict and cold father and mother was taking out his stress with Joon Woo. He sees him a rival.
The homeroom teacher told Joon Woo to just right a letter of apology and just start over.
Joon Woo refuses to write the letter as he said he does not have anything to apologise for.
He had decided instead to go live with his mother and transfer to another school.
He went to meet his father who did not really want to have anything to do with him.
He then realised that his mother did not run away from being a single mother. She has guts.
The next day, the result of their midterm test was announced and Whi Young topped it. He was feeling proud of himself until the door opened and in walked Joon Woo.
I am really loving this drama. It is so cute, it is so sad, it is so frustrating, it is so menacing. The young cast is acting their guts out. Very commendable.
I really waited for this third episode and it was all worth it.
Anyway, Joon Woo had changed his mind. He stayed much to the silent fury of Ma Hwi but tickled joy of Soo Bin.
Ma Hwi though had not given up. He arranged for someone who knew some people to get Joon Woo to leave.
Meanwhile, Teacher Oh had tasked the students to couple up for an English recitation about their dreams.
Ma Hwi was hoping to pair up with Soo Bin but she picked Joon Woo instead. This was really the last straw for Ma Whi so he gave to go ahead to get Joon Woo.
They used his childhood friend as bait. They knew that if they can incite Joon Woo to violence, he will be automatically expelled from school.
Though Joon Woo hurried to his friend side at the last moment he remembered his promise to his mother to run away from any trouble.
But seeing how they beating up his best friend who looked after him throughout their childhood, he just can’t walk away.
He ended up collecting a few bruises as well. Thank goodness the heard the police siren, so they ran off as fast as they can.
His friend was very down and seemed to have given up on life. He said that people like them would always be downtrodden.
Joon Woo told him to move away just like he did but his friend reckoned that misfortune would follow him.
Anyway, he was concerned that he let Soo Bin down because they were supposed to practice their English speech.
Soo Bin was not having a good time as well. She got home to a houseful of women who was treating her mother like a member of the lowest of the social strata. She got annoyed with her mother for allowing it to happen but her mother said that she will do much worst in order for Soo Bin to enter Seoul University.
Her mother then wanted her to say hello and thank their guests profusely.
Soo Bin just can take it anymore so she ran out of the house. She was sad and then it rained and rained.
Along the way she met the bruised and battered Joon Woo who told her that she should never walk in the rain because it was bad for her. So cute.
Episode 10 – 11
These episodes are so cute if you were following the romance between Soo Bin and Joon Woo. They are really together now. Their confession about first liking each other was the same time I actually liked the characters. It was when Soo Bin was checking whether Joon Woo was hurt anywhere when his bike accidentally crashed into her mother’s car.
Mr. Oh is now going out with Ji Min, the girl who works with Joon Woo at the supermarket.
Jung Oh Jae dumped his girlfriend.
Ki Tae dumped his girlfriend.
Ro Mi had some guts after telling everyone that she came from a well off family, it was found out that she was actually from an ordinary household. She did not let the humiliation to get to her. She also told Pil Sang, after leading him on a bit, that she would never ever like him.
Loving this drama so much. The chemistry between Ong Seong Wu and Kim Hyang-gi is rather potent. They are super cute.
Anyway, Joon Woo’s mother found the two hiding inside Soo Bin’s house. She told them that though she has no problem with their relationship, they must tell Soo Bin’s mother immediately.
Soo Bin’s mother and Joon Woo’s mother had become quite close after the later was employed as a temporary driver/housekeeper to Soo Bin’s mother.
Anyway, the two women and bonded because they had the same sense of humour. They pretended to run over Soo Bin’s father who had been begging his ex for a divorce.
Soo Bin earlier pleaded to her parents not to get a divorce when was a little younger.
Soo Bin’s mother would not divorce her ex because as she said he did the wrongs and she paid for all is certificates and Ph.D. He owed her big time.
Anyway, not that Soo Bin is older at 18, his father went directly to her to help convince her mother to divorce.
Soo Bin told her father that it must be easy to be the adult because they force their children to study hard and now her father telling her she was mature beyond her age. She said, your change you tune whenever it suits you.
Soo Bin was so down that Joon Woo noticed. He cheered her up and confessed that his greatest regret was visiting his father but not telling him who he was. He felt that his father had erased him from his memory.
Soo Bin went with him to his father’s house and they left a letter for him on the doorstep.
Joon Woo then invited Soo Bin to his rooftop apartment and they had ramen.
Their Soo Bin let all her guilt and frustration in being part of the relationship of her parents which is currently a battlefield.
Joon Woo had his arm around the crying Soo Bin when Soo Bin’s mother found them at the rooftop.
She went for Soo Bin immediately and slapped her hard. Joon Woo protected Soo Bin.
Though Ma Whi-Young was horrifically wicked at times, I do feel sorry for him. His schoolmate, Jo Sang Hoon was forever baiting him that he was a fake.
An anonymous email then said that Whi Young was a habitual cheater.
Awww until next week.
Episode 13 -14
This week two episodes are rather emotional and heartbreaking. I shed a few tears in some of the scenes.
Soo Bin’s mother went absolutely mental. She told Jun Woo that he was not good enough for Soo Bin. Soo Bin is not on his level.
She told him that she was sure that he was a good boy because his mother was a nice woman but he was not for Soo Bin, who was meant for bigger things not for a punk like him.
She made Jun Woo promised never to speak with Soo Bin again. He had to treat Soo Bin like a stranger.
He did to start with but young love is young love, it cannot be hindered. But Joon Woo promised Soo Bin that he may not be able to speak with her but he will always be there for her.
Ro Mi was warming to Pilsang. She told PilSang that if will be in the top 200, she may go watch a movie with him. Pil Sang asked if he lands in the top 100 what would she do for him? She said she might go out with him, date him.
Oh Je inadvertently revealed that he was not into women and he has a crush on Hwi Young.
Hwi Young had finally had had enough and had a mini-breakdown. He purposely made mistakes in his math test because he kept thinking that someone knew that his previous test result was somehow changed so he will be in the top.
His father tried to hit him but he stopped him. He was ready to fight back. I do feel sorry for him.
He told his father that while growing up he promised himself that he was not going to be like his bullying father but his father had turned him into a monster. He hurts people like his father does.
Hwi Young has too much pride and despite wanting to make amends for all of his faults with his schoolmates, he just can’t do it.
Jun Woo thought that he would be having a lovely reunion with his father who called him to meet up.
His father said that he recognised Jun Woo as soon as he first saw him. He then gave the most heartless thing a parent can say to his own child. He told Jun Woo to do him a favour. Never to contact him again as they are going on different paths. This was such a tearjerking moment!!!
The father and son’s conversation was heard by the shocked and saddened Soo Bin who was lent a mobile phone by Hwi Young.
Jun Woo ended up in front of the apartment of his father. He met his half-brother who he later found out his father named him Jun Woo also. How heartless.
Jun Woo had a talk as a closure with his father, he promised him that he will never come see him again, ever.
With all this emotional upheaval, Jun Woo finally realised the career path he was going to take. He will go to an art school.
Soo Bee pleased her mother because she topped the math test with a perfect score.
It was Jun Woo’s birthday. Soo Bee and friends suprised him but he was reluctant to enjoy what Soo Bee planned for them. He kept telling her to go home as her mother would not be pleased.
Roll on next week for the final two episodes!
It was Jun Woo’s 18th birthday. Soo Bee wanted to spend the day with him but Jun Woo was opposed with the idea at first but realised the Soo Bee put a lot to the preparation. In the end he gave Soo Bin a tender kiss by the staircase.
Soo Bin accepted that Jun Woo was such a good person that he does not really want to defy Soo Bin’s mother of what he had promised her.
Jun Woo found what he wanted to do in life or what to study in college. He wanted to do painting and drawing.
He was a bit late with realising this new-found dream so he had to work double hard. Thank goodness he had the kindly homeroom teacher Mr Oh.
Mr Oh arranged for him to attend classes by a former military friend who holds masterclasses in drawing.
The new teacher was helping Jun Woo to create a portfolio to submit for his college entrance.
The art college was quite far from he lived but he was determined to do his best. School, art, part-time job had put a toll on his health. He had a nose bleed when he was with Soo Bin but he assured her that he can do it.
Soo Bin’s mother and Jun Woo’s mum had a sort of confrontation in a coffee shop. Soo Bin’s mom begged Jun Woo’s mum to transfer Jun Woo to another school because at eighteen, hormones are running rampant and she doesn’t want Soo Bin to end up pregnant or something. The way Soo Bin said what she had just opined, Jun Woo’s mom can read between the lines that Soo Bin’s mom was saying that Jun Woo was not good enough for Soo Bin.
Jun Woo’s mom got annoyed with Soo Bin’s mother, telling her that she understood that she worries about Soo Bin but she was Jun Woo’s mother and she would do anything for her son. She asked if Soo Bin’s mum talked alone with Jun Woo and whether she might have said something that would have hurt Jun Woo.
From being the most popular and most influential at school, Ma Whi Young had become a pariah.
It was the day when the Department of Education had come to investigate the alleged grade tampering and bullying.
Ma Whi Young was feeling lost and was really to admit to anything.
When they interviewed Jun Woo for the bullying against him, he declined to make a statement.
The last five minutes of this episode is a classic weepy. I cried and cried and cried.
Ma Whi Young met Jun Woo at the playing field.
Whi Young asked Jun Woo why he did not confess everything to the school board.
Jun Woo just said do you have to ask?
Whi Young said that he was dropping out from school.
This made Jun Woo so angry, he gave Whi Young a right hook on the face. He told him that he could not drop out.
Jun Woo said that Whi Young is a coward, he just runs away. He said that he had not forgiven Whi Young.
Whi Young said that he thought that the best thing he could do was to drop out and leave everything. He thought that because Jun Woo did not make a statement to the board that Jun Woo had forgiven him.
Jun Woo went ballistic. He said that far from having forgiven Whi Young, he hated him. He asked Whi Young whether he had really felt sorry for everything he did with Jun Woo?
Whi Young said sorry and then he started crying and knelt down on the grass looking so lost and pathetic, apologising repeatedly to Jun Woo.
Jun Woo was surprised and walked nearer to the kneeling and crying Whi Young.
It is a bittersweet ending but rather mature and satisfying.
Kudos the cast. Every single one played their part just right.
Anyway, Whi Young still dropped out of school because he would feel guilty knowing that his classmates studied really while he had the fraudulent back-up of his parents.
It was a sad scene seeing him leaving the school.
It seemed his parents really did a number to his brother as well as he was confined in a sanitorium/rehab centre out of his mind. He seemed to have had a breakdown.
Whi Young had become independent from his parents and now works in a petrol station.
Mr Oh had finally got together with Jiming, the girl he liked who used to work with Jun Woo.
Pil Sang really courted Ro Mi and it paid off. He looked rather handsome with his fringe brushed up or flicked away from his forehead. Ro Mi might have thought so to because out of the blue she demanded that Pil Sang should go out with her.
And as for the young lovers, their story, though really sweet, suffered a major complication and set back.
Jun Woo’s mother is struggling to make ends meet. She even closed her restaurant because her trusted Auntie Hae run off with the money which was to be used to renovate the restaurant.
Jun Woo felt that it was only right to go live with his mother to support her and soothe her stress and worries.
Jun Woo secretly asked Soo Bin’s mother to allow them him and Soo Bin to have a permitted day for one whole day. He told her that he was leaving soon to be with his mother.
Soo Bin’s mom agreed.
Soo Bin and Jun Woo had a happy day and even more interesting when Jun Woo received a message that he came second place to a painting competition he had entered.
But then he had to tell Soo Bin that he was going to be leaving to live with his mother.
Suprisingly, Soo Bin said she knew. Apparently she called Jun Woo’s mother to inquire why Jun Woo seemed to have a lot of angst lately.
The mother confessed that Jun Woo was coming to live with her. No matter how much she tried to dissuade him, he ignored it and was determined to go with his mother.
Soo Bin sadi that it was only right that he should go but then she said she was going to miss him.
Jun Woo also confessed that it was really hard to leave her. But he said that just because he was leaving it does not mean that they were breaking off. He said that he will come visit her often. But he said he was leaving soon but he does not want for her to see him off. He doesn’t like for her to see him leaving.
Soo Bin agreed.
On the day, Soo Bin’s mother was rather surprised that Soo Bin was at home and not saying goodbye to Jun Woo.
Soo Bin said that she was too busy, and she needed to go to college for study.
She was just outside their building when she noticed Jun Woo’s most treasured possession, his bike Bumbi. He had left it to her with a portfolio of drawings of them together, their most memorable and sweetest time together.
Suddenly Soo Bin longed to see Jun Woo one last time before he left.
She ran everywhere until she ended up in the bus station. She hollered his name rather piteously which was heard by Jun Woo, whose bus was about to leave.
Soo Bin was feeling defeated, she had missed Jun Woo.
But not really because he was standing right before her.
They hugged. He was still going to leave but this moment when they were eighteen was so radiant that it would last a long time.