Daily Dose of Sunshine Ep 9 Recap & Review

* This review contains spoilers for Episode 9 of Daily Dose of Sunshine

The new K-drama series Daily Dose of Sunshine shines a light on the often-misunderstood world of psychiatric care. The Netflix drama is based on a webtoon by former nurse Lee Ra-Ha, and follows the story of Jung Da-Eun, a nurse who transitions from internal medicine to the psychiatric ward. Through her experiences, viewers are taken on a journey filled with empathy, humor and the raw realities of mental illnesses.

READ | Daily Dose of Sunshine Ep 8 Recap & Review

Episode 9: I’m a Nurse With Depression

The episode opens with a disoriented Da-Eun (Park Bo-Young) in the back of an ambulance, her mind clouded and her situation dire. She wakes up in the Closed Unit of an unfamiliar psychiatric hospital. At first, she is confused, and then angry when she learns that her mother admitted her for treatment.

Da-Eun insists that she is alright, and repeatedly asks to be released. However, her psychiatrist refuses to discharge her. Da-Eun rebels, denying that she is depressed, and refusing to take her medication. Her situation reflects a common struggle among those who find themselves on the patient side of psychiatric care.

When her mother visits, she begs to be allowed home and eventually breaks down. Yu-Chan (Jang Dong-Yoon) watches from a distance, racked with guilt over their argument in the previous episode.

Accepting the truth

Go-Yun (Yeon Woo-Jin) visits the hospital, but decides not to visit Da-Eun so that she can recover without distractions. However, she sees him as he is leaving and begins to feel ashamed. Later, she realizes people around the ward are aware of her status as a psychiatric nurse, and is shocked that they are treating her like everyone else. In frustration, she has a meltdown and is sent to isolation.

Da-Eun has a consultation with her psychiatrist and tries to downplay her depression. However, she begins to recover her memories, and realizes her suicide attempt was much worse than she thought. She attempted to run into traffic repeatedly, and it was only Go-Yun’s quick thinking that saved her life. Shocked, Da-Eun finally accepts that she needs treatment, and resolves to recover.

She later apologizes to her mother and promises that she will get well. She also meets with Yu-Chan and begins to recover her mood. He begins to tell her the plot of a TV show he is watching, which is full of cliffhangers. He later admits to Da-Eun’s mother that he is attempting to give Da-Eun something to look forward to.

Mommy dearest

The subplot involving Deul-Re (Lee Yi-Dam) takes a dramatic turn. Her mother, driven by greed, seeks to exploit Deul-Re’s relationship with Yeo-Hwan (Jang Ryul). After learning that he is a doctor, she visits him at the hospital, asking him for money “for Deul-Re to live a better life”. Deul-Re catches them, and dis furious. She drags her mother away and orders her to stay away from Yeo-Hwan, saying that she is going to end their relationship.

However, Deul-Re’s mother shows up at the hospital again to ask Yeo-Hwan for money, but he refuses to give it to her. Instead, he tells her that he now understands why an “angel” like Deul-Re once referred to herself as “trash”, before walking away.

Deul-Re overhears the conversation. Later she speaks to Yeo-Hwan and asks to break up. He refuses to leave her, and says that he will continue to love and support her for the rest of her life. Moved by his words, Deul-Re accepts his love.

Life goes on

Meanwhile, the nurses are struggling with the extra workload. They all believe that Da-Eun is spending time at home. They have to care for a new patient named Ae-Shin, who has suffered a relapse of schizophrenia. She resists treatment, and refuses to take off her hat.

Just before a medical test, the staff try to make Ae-Shin remove her hat, which causes her to panic. Head nurse Song Hyo-Shin (Lee Jung-Eun) suddenly calls her name, which causes her to calm down immediately. The staff look on in surprise, as it seems the two women know each other well.

What we thought

Episode 9 of Daily Dose of Sunshine was a rollercoaster ride, and an emotional one to review. Here, the story focused mostly on Da-Eun and her experiences while undergoing treatment, giving us a look from ‘the other side’. Park Bo-Young delivered her best acting in this episode, portraying a nurse who must come to terms with the fact that she is the one who needs help.

The episode’s slower pace allows us to understand the characters’ emotions. Every storyline was treated with care, from the main story with Da-Eun, all the way to the subplot with Yeo-Hwan and Deul-Re. The episode also allowed us to appreciate the nuanced care required to navigate the treacherous waters of depression and mental illness.

READ | Daily Dose of Sunshine Ep 10 Recap & Review

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