Upsetting and distressing, the finale of D.P. brings sobering circumstances to round off the series.
This recap of Netflix K-Drama series D.P. season 1, episode 6, “Onlookers,” — the ending explained — contains significant spoilers.
The sixth and final chapter details the breakdown of a man that’s at his wit’s end. A man that has been traumatized to the point of no return, embroiled in darkness from relentless and unforgiving bullying. It’s difficult to swallow this finale — it’s painfully truthful and sobering.
D.P. season 1, episode 6 recap
The start of episode 6 gives the audience an indication of what life was like for Cho Suk-bong before the army; he’s getting interviewed for his enlistment, and he’s told it will be tough for him. The character had a passion for comic books and drawing. This is important; it demonstrates that the man we see in this chapter is not the same person we see for the duration of the episode. That’s the tragedy of it. How could a man that loved to draw comics turn into what we witness in this story? Anyone can be damaged and broken.
So we are back to the present day, and Suk-bong is captured, but in his manic state, he gets angry and makes the car swerve and causes it to crash. He manages to escape, and then he heads to the apartment of his main bully from the military, Hwang Hang-soo. In the hospital, Jun-ho and Ho-yeol are annoyed that they lost Cho Suk-bong. It turns out this is worse than they imagined — Cho Suk-bong has kidnapped Hwang Hang-soo.
Episode 6 escalates wildly; special forces SDT are assigned to track down Suk-bong, but this is a terrifying notion — the SDT is an anti-terrorism unit. It’s a manhunt to bring him down. The military does not want cooperative involvement, and they are uniquely surprised when they learn live ammunition will be involved. Everyone involved in the military, including Jun-ho and Ho-yeol, understands Suk-bong is on a revenge mission, not terrorism.
And so, Suk-bong has Hwang Hang-soo under hostage in the tunnels, and he’s torturing him in the same way he was tortured in the army. Hwang Hang-soo manages to send an SOS signal, so the location is given away. Episode 6 quickly turns intense as two SDT agents find them both, but at first, they believe Hwang Hang-soo is Cho Suk-bong — a fight breaks out, but Jun-ho turns up and stops one of the officers from seriously hurting Suk-bong. Meanwhile, Sergeant Park tells the commander of SDT to stand down as they are not dealing with a terrorist. However, his pleas are ignored.
The mental state of Suk-bong has deteriorated at this point, demonstrating how someone can fall so badly into the hells of their own mind. He points a gun at Jun-ho and tells him to stop following him. He heads down the tunnel and finds Hwang Hang-soo. Knowing that he’s in a dangerous position, Hwang Hang-soo apologizes and begs him to let him live. Ho-yeol finds them both, seeing what Suk-bong is about to do.
D.P. season 1, episode 6 gets increasingly upsetting — it reaches a melting point. Suk-bong tells Ho-yeol that he did nothing when he was bullied and fires a warning shot, which alerts the SDT who send their men into the tunnel. There’s an inevitability about this finale.
With things getting desperate, Ho-yeol tells Suk-bong that things can change in the army, but the man laughs it off — he knows that it isn’t true. And then Jun-ho tries to change his mind by shouting, “Seon-a got into college”. There’s a small moment you can see Suk-bong’s mind working, knowing that if he gives up, he will be able to see Seon-a again.
But then the SDT arrive; Suk-bong knows this is the end — he knows none of this is his fault, but he’s seen as the monster. He’s surrounded, and Sergeant Park tries to de-escalate the situation by asking the special forces unit to put their guns down, but his protests are ignored once again.
The ending ends in distressing and upsetting circumstances; Cho Suk-bong declares that he must do something to “change things” and shoots himself. Hearing Jun-ho’s cries hit hard — he wails; all the emotions come out at once as Suk-bong dies. The episode quickly moves forward, and at a memorial for Suk-bong, the sister of the deceased asks Jun-ho about her brother and wonders why he did not do anything if he saw him being bullied. There’s this irony that bullying is difficult to stop in these environments — all Jun-ho can do is apologize. There is no answer he can provide.
And the answer of “If anything has changed” comes quickly in the post-credit scene. Cho Suk-bong’s friend, who is still in the army, is getting bullied. Nothing has changed. The friend draws his rifle and shoots at his military colleagues.
What did you think of the Netflix K-Drama series D.P. season 1, episode 6, and the ending? Comment below.