An imperfect but satisfying finale doesn’t wrap up every loose end but still achieves a depth of feeling that most shows would be jealous of.
This recap of Extraordinary Attorney Woo season 1, episode 16 contains spoilers, including an open discussion of Extraordinary Attorney Woo’s ending.
I’m not going to keep you in suspense, so here’s the bad news: “Though Unusual and Peculiar” isn’t necessarily as comprehensive and satisfying an ending to Extraordinary Attorney Woo as many might have been hoping for. Sorry about that.
Extraordinary Attorney Woo season 1, episode 16 recap
The good news, though, is that this show overall has really been quite something, a consistently enjoyable ride that uses its bumper-length finale to really wrap up the majority of its ongoing storylines in a sweet way. Sure, it doesn’t cover every base, but it covers enough not to undermine everything that came before. All told, at the time of writing, I think this is the best k-drama of the year.
That’s nice, isn’t it? In its acting, and especially its writing, Extraordinary Attorney Woo has never failed to impress on some level. The extra wiggle room here allows for the machinations of the ongoing Raon case to be swept under the rug without leaving the character drama idling, so it’s a decent balance all told.
Anyway, Raon. As we learned in the previous episode, the hacker was Tae Su-mi’s cybersecurity genius son, Sang-hyeon, who you know is smart because he has shelves full of Rubik’s cubes – they come with instructions! – and confesses to his mother almost immediately, though she implores him to keep shtum since she’s vying for a Ministry position. You know how it is.
Nevertheless, Sang-hyeon admits his involvement to Hanbada and records a confession to be used if necessary. By folding the development of this case into Young-woo’s personal life we actually manage to kill two birds with one stone, as a lot of development leads to Young-woo personally visiting Su-mi at Taesan and imploring her to allow Sang-hyeon to testify; to be the mother to him that she never was to Young-woo. A touching, great scene this, and amounts to something substantial, since Su-Mi is there to see Young-woo question him on the stand, and even steps down from the Ministry position.
Even at this latest of late stages, Extraordinary Attorney Woo pulls off, I’d say, the best interweaving of plot and character thus far in the season.
And it’s one among several satisfying character developments. Min-woo doesn’t betray Young-woo. Myeong-seok recovers. And, more crucially than anything else, Young-woo and Jun-ho don’t break up after all.
It’s that last one that’s really important, and while the outcome is a mite predictable, it was certainly satisfying. And don’t get me started on the ending scenes. I mean, I’m not an especially sentimental guy, but blimey, seeing Gwang-ho’s pride at Young-woo being given a full-time contract, and seeing the whole thing come full circle as Young-woo boards the subway, I was pretty choked.
And that’s what matters, isn’t it? Some loose ends or clipped arcs notwithstanding, Extraordinary Attorney Woo accomplished something that so much art fails to – it made you feel something.