Episode 8 shows how the series has heavily shifted from Geu-ru to Sang-gu as we learn more about his family history in another heartstring-pulling chapter.
This recap of the Netflix K-drama series Move to Heaven season 1, episode 8 contains major spoilers.
After that tragic chapter, learning about Sang-gu and his tale of painful brotherhood with a close friend, episode 8 begins with Sang-gu grieving for a short moment before entering outside and taking in the fresh air. He then gets a phone call from the woman in the underground fighting ring — she asks about Su-cheol. Sang-gu promises he will pay off the debt, but he isn’t interested in talking to her. Meanwhile, Geu-ru is worried that his uncle is not coming back after receiving a text from him stating he isn’t returning. He wants to find him, despite Na-mu wanting to move on without the man. Geu-ru heads around the neighborhood, placing missing posters up of his uncle.
A quick kidnapping and the deal
In a turn of events, a group of men in suits pick Geu-ru up and put him in the back of a car. The elusive woman (now named Madam) texts Geu-ru a photo of his nephew. He’s now compromised, he clearly wants to pay back the debts but differently, but Madam has other ideas. Madam speaks to Geu-ru and assures him that his uncle will turn up, and so he does. Madam offers Sang-gu her condolences regarding Su-cheol but reminds him that a deal is a deal. She believes his new Achilles Heel is Geu-ru and threatens to hurt him. Sang-gu agrees to fight in exchange for Geu-ru and the house deed. When they return home, Na-mu is furious at Sang-gu and tells the man that Geu-ru is all he has, and for Geu-ru, he is all the family he has left.
This was a point worth raising by Na-mu — with little family left, these two should cherish what they have.
Geu-ru is glad Sang-gu is home, but Sang-gu offers cruel words
The story has come a long way since episode 2, and Geu-ru seems to have formed a warm bond with his uncle; however, he’s dealing with a man that holds a range of insecurities.
Geu-ru tells Sang-gu that he watered the plant while he was gone and that he’s glad he’s back. Sang-gu tells him that this is not his home, nor is he his family, and that if he goes missing again, he doesn’t want to be searched for. These are cruel words from Sang-gu but he doesn’t mean it, as when Geu-ru walks off, his eyes fill up.
Every year, on the same date, Ge-ru went on a trip with his father — Na-mu tells Sang-gu that he should follow Geu-ru to make sure he’s okay. So Sang-gu spies on him, putting a hoody and sunglasses on so he isn’t recognizable on the bus. He follows Geu-ru to a theme park, but the young man seems to be looking at all the rides and checking off the list rather than going on them. In a bathroom, Geu-ru ends up being bullied by a group of kids, but Sang-gu uses a police siren noise on his phone to scare them out of the bathroom — when they leave, he knocks all the kids down and asks for their cigarettes. He tells them that the boy in the bathroom is a genius and has a bigger brain than them.
It didn’t take long for Sang-gu to show that he cares.
The uncle persuades his nephew to go on rides
Eventually, Sang-gu reveals that he’s at the theme park with Geu-ru and forces him to go on one of the rides. It’s only a small ride, and Sang-gu asks him to open his eyes. Geu-ru is amazed, and suddenly, he goes on more rides. It’s wonderful to see the young man go out of his comfort zone, brought on by his uncle. He wants to end the day going on the merry-go-round “with his father.” As he rides the mechanical horse, Sang-gu imagines his brother (Geu-ru’s father) alongside him on the horse.
The old railway station
And this is where Move to Heaven season 1, episode 8 deals with unresolved family issues; it’s clear that Sang-gu has insecurity about the past and not just about his parents but also his brother.
Geu-ru takes Sang-gu to an old railway station, and the uncle recognizes it — it flits back to 1994, and Sang-gu is with his brother at the same place, who asks him to make a wish for his birthday. Sang-gu wishes for a theme park and food. Later on, his father berates and abuses Sang-gu, and his brother defends him. When he was younger, Sang-gu clearly had a good relationship with his brother, however, one day his brother made a promise to meet him at the railway station at night, but he never turned up — Sang-gu was devastated.
Why his brother never showed up
Geu-ru tells Sang-gu that his father took him to this old railway station every year to make a wish and that his father wished for someone he loved to be healthy and happy (his brother was wishing for him). This infuriates Sang-gu, believing he is getting played by Geu-ru and he kicks the stones over that his nephew had piled up. Sang-gu tells Geu-ru that his father abandoned him. Geu-ru raises that his father had a big scar on his back from a “big accident.” Sang-gu believes this is a lame excuse, but Geu-ru gives the date his father got the scar — it’s the same date he was meant to meet his brother. A structural collapse hurt him in a department building. There were many casualties, including 501 deaths — old news footage shows what happened.
This is a sobering context for Sang-gu, who had a complicated childhood and a ruptured relationship with his brother.
The memories continue as Sang-gu gets out an old shoebox at home– when he was younger, he wanted Nike trainers. His brother got him some from the same building that collapsed. Flashbacks show Sang-gu’s brother trapped in the rubble, holding a box of sneakers that he promised to get him. In the present day, Sang-gu is sobbing. Further flashbacks show his brother showing up to his underground fighting before he seriously hurt Su-cheol, and then Sang-gu avoiding his brother’s visits when he was in prison.
As the episode ends, Sang-gu believes he’s found paperwork that suggests Geu-ru was adopted. Keep pulling at the heartstrings!
Move to Heaven season 1, episode 8 shows how the series has heavily shifted from Geu-ru to Sang-gu as we learn more about his family history in another heartstring-pulling chapter.