Every year, we always have those drama moments that linger in our heads. These scenes usually stand out for their impressive script, actors’ performances, or overall brilliance. While these may not be the most important scenes in the plot, it sure does take a place in our hearts and minds this year!
The Frown Crown
Ugi’s confession and Yumi’s unrequited crush (Yumi’s Cells)
This scene just reminded us yet again that Kim Go-eun is an acting powerhouse. It’s not the cry-me-a-river scene that requires a lot of monologues and/or immense crying, but I super loved the way Yumi held onto composure before the downfall of her one-sided crush. Kim Go-eun’s stellar acting inside the bathroom was a perfect way to cap off the awesome scene!
Lee Ik-jun rushed to the emergency room (Hospital Playlist 2)
Ahhh, the pivotal moment in IkSong’s love story. This is when Song-hwa had a life-changing realization about her what-if’s in life. All the countless hesitations made no sense anymore when it’s the love of your life who appears bloodied before you in that emergency room. It’s such a quick scene, but the emotions were deeply conveyed. A single hand squeeze and a sigh of relief are all that I need to validate my two-year-long investment with this couple.
Cho Yeon-ju speaking Vietnamese (One The Woman)
Of course, we had to include this scene! This almost gave me stomach pains because I couldn’t help myself from laughing so hard! Never did I imagine Lee Honey speaking Vietnamese so well, plus her hilarious portrayal of her fish-out-of-water character is just Daesang worthy in terms of comedic value! All the interactions between Lee Honey and her fake mom-in-law Na Young-hee are just pure comedy gold!
Yangcrates grills Ye-seul in the courtroom (Law School)
I remember getting so carried away by this scene I was crying. It’s a delicate scene that dealt with a very sensitive topic, but the drama delivered justice (literally and figuratively) to its execution. I’m in awe of how Yangcrates took Ye-seul on a courageous journey to freedom – from herself, from her abuser, and from the society that judged her. Ahhhh, what a powerful script, too!!!
Hee-tae and Myeong-hee’s blind date (Youth of May)
This is such a simple scene showing two confident strangers who are destined for each other. The trope is not new, but because it’s Go Min-si and Lee Do-hyun, I’m all in with matching heart eyes!
BONUS: Bu-jeong breaks down with her dad (Lost)
I wouldn’t be able to sleep tonight if I didn’t include Jeon Do-yeon’s breakdown in Episode 1 of Lost. It’s one of 2021’s underrated gems. A story about a woman in her 40s who faces rock bottom, questions her entire existence, and finds her way through healing in the arms of a much younger stranger. We have our own worries to tell and wounds to tend, but Bu-jeong’s (Jeon Do-yeon) realization about not achieving anything in life despite her efforts also echoed everyone’s fear.
WinterGarden hug scene in Episode 10 (Hospital Playlist 2)
This couple is stuck in my heart and head forever and most of their scenes are memorable for me. But Gyeo-ul’s breakdown in Episode 10 is my favorite in Season 2 for so many reasons. One is how good Yoo Yeon-seok and Shin Hyun-been are in that scene (although the confession scene in Episode 12 of Season 1 is still the best for me). They don’t even have a line but their faces say it all – that Jeong-won will always be the summer sun to Gyeo-ul’s forever winter.
Mokpo patient scene in Episode 12 (Hospital Playlist 2)
The finale episode of Hospital Playlist 2 had been jam-packed with emotional scenes with patients but one scene left me in awe. It was when Chae Song-hwa (Jeon Mi-do) stood in the middle of two ICU rooms. She just stood there observing two different families crying – one was tears of joy while the other was tears of grief. It captures the realism that Hospital Playlist wanted to show in its every patient story.
Seoul Protest (Youth of May)
There are a lot of goosebump-inducing scenes in Youth of May. But the scene that made a huge impression on me was when Lee Soo-ryeon (Keum Sae-rok) arrived in Seoul and got stuck in the middle of a protest. She thought that by leaving Gwangju, she also left her activism in that place. But as she heard the shouts of her fellow youths, she realized she can never live in silence. Even if the consequence of joining in the rally scares her, Soo-ryeon knew through that scene she should speak for the voiceless.
Voice Phishing Group Case (Taxi Driver)
This isn’t a particular scene but out of all the interesting cases tackled in Taxi Driver, the Voice Phishing Group Case was the most interesting. Kim Do-ki (Lee Je-hoon) always had to go undercover for their revenge group’s cases but seeing him in a ridiculous fur coat and glasses was one of the most entertaining parts of the series.
Yoon Soo-hyun’s death scene (The Devil’s Judge)
Yoon Soo-hyun’s (Park Gyu-young) death was the most shocking and heartbreaking character death for me in 2021. She died in the same episode where she and Kim Ga-on (Park Jin-young) finally admitted their romantic feelings for each other. Their blooming love story has been cut short. Too short, actually. And Ga-on’s grieving afterward makes this scene more tragic.