Episode 16 – The man between
Episode 16 of the series dives right back into the action, with Gye-Do stepping on the gas to rescue Hui-Soo and Bong-Seok. Amidst the passengers’ palpable fear, Joon-Hwa mysteriously vanishes when the police arrive.
Back at Jeongwon High, Mi-Hyun continues her probing conversation with Il-Hwan. Flashbacks reveal Il-Hwan’s past as a NIS agent and his complicated relationship with Rae-Hyuk and Yong-Jun. Tasked with identifying gifted students for the N.T.D.P project, Il-Hwan faces ethical dilemmas, especially when dealing with Gye-Do and Se-Eun, a student with extraordinary abilities.
Years pass, and Il-Hwan evolves from a reluctant agent to a dedicated teacher, despite the N.T.D.P project’s lacklustre results. In 2015, a new agent, Sung-Wook, joins him, adding to the tension at the school.
Mi-Hyun and Ju-Won arrive at Jeongwon High and the CCTV cameras capture them. Sung-Wook monitors the footage and a knock on the door startles him. A North Korean spy, disguised as a cleaning lady, ambushes him.
Meanwhile, Bong-Seok and Hui-Soo find themselves in another precarious situation, narrowly escaping the police’s questioning. Back at the school, Ju-Won and Il-Hwan share a cryptic conversation, hinting at deeper secrets and hidden agendas.
The episode culminates in a high-stakes game of cat and mouse, as Mi-Hyun discovers the cleaning lady’s true identity, and a North Korean team infiltrates the school.
Episode 17 – Awakening
Episode 17 kicks off with a sentimental flashback featuring Doo-Sik and Mi-Hyun. As they stroll hand-in-hand, Mi-Hyun is fascinated by Doo-Sik’s explanation of his unique ability to fly, a skill he mastered by conquering his fear of falling.
Switching gears, we rejoin the ever-adorable Bong-Seok and the resolute Hui-Soo, who are en route to the sports centre. Their excitement is palpable, but little do they know, they’re under Joon-Hwa’s watchful eye. Hui-Soo candidly confesses her feelings for Bong-Seok, who reciprocates with his signature disarming smile.
However, the mood takes a dark turn when Joon-Hwa confronts Hui-Soo, leading to a harrowing sequence where she’s thrown from the building’s second floor. Bong-Seok, recalling his mother’s wisdom about flying, takes a leap of faith—literally—and saves Hui-Soo, experiencing his first flight in the process.
Trouble comes to Jeongwon High
Back at Jeongwon High, tension escalates as Mi-Hyun engages in a fierce battle with the cleaning lady, who is revealed to be a North Korean spy. Mi-Hyun narrowly escapes, eavesdropping on a conversation that reveals the enemy’s deadly intentions.
Events continue to unfold as Ju-Won and Il-Hwan are interrupted by Deok-Yoon, the leader of the North Korean agents. Their mission is to obtain classified files and kill those involved in the N.T.D.P project. As the school plunges into darkness, from Mi-Hyun’s strategic power cut, the stakes rise even higher.
Gye-Do faces scrutiny over the bus incident, while Il-Hwan takes a bold step to fight the infiltrators. Meanwhile, Ju-Won finds himself in a brutal fight, revealing the enemy’s regenerative abilities. As Mi-Hyun listens in, she gears up for what promises to be a climactic confrontation with Deok-yoon.
The episode concludes with a gut-wrenching scene where Joon-Hwa overpowers Bong-Seok and Hui-Soo, leaving viewers wondering what comes next.
Choi Il-hwan’s backstory particularly moves us. Veteran actor Kim Hee-Won’s performance as the conflicted PE teacher deserves praise. While moving may have started slowly, once it finds its groove the pacing does not let up. Episodes 16 and 17 brilliantly set the stage for the 3-episode finale dropping on Sept 20. Mark your calendars and check back here as we wrap up this epic journey from Disney+.
Check out the action-packed finale here: Moving Korean Drama Review: Episode 18-20