Goblin episode 9

Side dish: The internet tells me that Olive Chicken is a fried chicken restaurant. But in case you wanted to know what chicken and olives tasted like together, here’s a recipe for Skillet Chicken with Orzo and Olives from Budget Bytes.

Episode Recap

Shaken by the discovery that pulling out the blade lodged in the chest of Shin (Gong Yoo) will end his life, Eun Tak (Kim Go Eun) decides to pack up her things and leave the house they share.

Shin returns home from his own shocking discovery, that either he dies or Eun Tak will, to find her gone. In a panic, he only pauses in his search for her when death god, Yeo (Lee Dong Wook) admits that he told Eun Tak everything, because he didn’t want Shin to die. Not sure what to do with his feelings about this, Shin goes to Eun Tak’s workplace, but runs into her boss, restaurant owner, Sun (Yoo In Na) instead. Rather than tell him where Eun Tak is, Sun give him a piece of her mind for breaking Eun Tak’s heart.

In the end, Shin’s increasingly desperate measures to find Eun Tak don’t work, and it’s chaebol, Duk Hwa (Yook Sung Jae) who uses conventional means to track her down to a ski resort. Shin goes there to bring her back, but Eun Tak refuses to return. When she finally confronts him about playing with her feelings, Shin tells Eun Tak that he’s scared to die, and that he’d like her to need and love him, so that he would have a reason to continue living. Betrayed and hurt, Eun Tak can only refuse again.

The next day, as a defeated Shin returns to the house, Eun Tak goes to the snowboard repair shop, where a shelf full of snowboards falls on her and knocks her unconscious. Back at the house, Shin doesn’t even get a chance to take his coat off before he’s confronted by a baffled Yeo, who has received a death card for Eun Tak with a time of death in one hour.

Frantic, Shin goes back to the ski resort, but can’t find her. Instead, the dying Eun Tak makes her choice and whispers that she loves him. Moments later, she’s rescued by Shin.

Eun Tak wakes up in a hospital, with Shin nowhere to be found. She goes back to the ski resort when she’s discharged, and lights a match on the ski lift to summon Shin. She panics when he doesn’t appear, but in fact, Shin is already waiting for her at the end of the ski lift. When she yells at him for not appearing, Shin hugs her from behind and tells her that he loves her too. Eun Tak tells him that she can no longer see the blade in his chest, and that she won’t remove it, since he’s already pretty to her.

Back in Seoul, a fortune teller warns Sun that she should stay away from Yeo, since he’s a death god. Sun doesn’t take her seriously, and is about to leave, but stops to ask about the tall, dinosaur-faced stranger whose voice made her feel like she was in a cozy café. The fortune teller guesses that he’s Gong Yoo, then warns her to get rid of the ring Yeo gave her. Back at the restaurant, while Sun debates whether to text Yeo, an invisible Yeo tries frantically to turn off his phone and fails. When Sun hears the text alert but sees nothing, Yeo laughs at her antics in trying to ward off what she thinks is a ghost (but is actually a death god; not much better).

Back at the ski resort, Eun Tak announces her intention to stay on at the job until February. In a panic, Shin calls the Chairman and tells him to have her fired or he’ll melt all the snow at the resort. Shortly thereafter, the two of the return to the house, where an angry Yeo awaits. Yeo drags Shin off to his teahouse to force him to help with his paperwork. Both of them are shocked when a human walks in to use the bathroom, but Shin takes it as a sign that the strength of a human’s will can change his destiny.

Life falls back into a normal pattern as Eun Tak gets her job back at Sun’s restaurant, then discovers that she got into the university of her choice and that Shin paid the tuition bill. When Eun Tak gets a gift of a digital camera from the Chairman, it’s time for a photo shoot!

The two of them go on a date, while Yeo and Sun do the same. Later, Shin walks Eun Tak to work at the restaurant, where Sun and Yeo are still on their date. The four of them end up sitting together, in the most awkward double date ever, as a hostile Sun and a flippant Shin square off. It’s all fun and games until Yeo makes the mistake of calling out Sun’s real name, Kim Sun, when ordering more beer, much to the shock of Shin.

Sun is immediately suspicious, as she has no memory of telling Yeo her real name (because Yeo wiped it), and takes him outside to confront him. Yeo has no explanation but his attempt to dodge the question leads to Sun grabbing his hand. Suddenly, Yeo sees her past life as Kim Sun, Shin’s sister.


Expectations can be problematic, especially when you get something different from what you expect. Yeo didn’t expect that Sun was going to turn out to be the reincarnation of the tragically short-lived sister of Kim Shin, Eun Tak didn’t expect that her sole purpose in life was to remove the blade from Shin’s chest, and I didn’t expect that a drama about a goblin, his ghost-seeing bride and a death god was going to be all about talking and relationships and drama. Given the writer, maybe I should have seen it coming, but I assumed that there would be some amount of action involved. So, let’s say the problem is my expectation, and let me try, from this point forward to deal with what I have in front of me.

So let’s deal with Shin and Eun Tak. I’ve never understood why Shin didn’t tell Eun Tak about the true consequences of pulling out the blade. So, I can see why it would be traumatic for Eun Tak to find out belatedly, especially given the fact that she was beginning to feel that she had a place to belong and a person who genuinely cared about her.

So yes, I get that she had to be hurt. But why exactly, other than product placement, did she have to run away to a ski resort? Why not just have it out with Shin, and demand an explanation? It seemed like an immature move, which given the already problematic age difference, might not be the best thing in the world.

Shin, meanwhile, appears to be compounding his original mistake about not talking to Eun Tak, because when he’s given the chance to tell Eun Tak what’s going on and let her make an informed choice, Shin again chooses not to. Their confrontation in the forest is a great moment, but imagine if, instead of speaking cryptically about his feelings and forcing her to grab the blade, Shin explained that she would die if she didn’t pull out the blade. Not doing that makes Eun Tak look like a child he has to protect, rather than someone who has agency of her own.

Gripes aside, I’m glad that Yeo and Sun’s story is progressing to the point where he’s figured out who she is, and maybe even who he is. I hope the two of them aren’t going to end up paying for their past lives or repeating those mistakes, given that Yeo has spent 900-odd years atoning, and Sun has no memory of what happened. Can we get a happy ending here? It would be nice.

Goblin (쓸쓸하고 찬란하神-도깨비)

goblin 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 || series review

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