You Could Be Happy – Itaewon Class Ep 16 Review

This is a review of episode 16 of Itaewon Class, or 이태원 클라쓰 kdrama on Netflix. This is the FINAL episode of the series.

Check out the previous episode review here.


I don’t think Itaewon Class could have ended any better!

There was closure for all of the characters, and the succession of closing arcs all flowed effortlessly.

Nothing felt out of place, or forced even. I’m not mad at where any of these characters ended up.

Geun Soo realized he still had some work to do, and is going to go abroad to grow up. I hope he succeeds in that endeavor. The space between he and Yi Seo has expanded so much since this series began. They were both the “little kids” working at DanBam, except one matured.

One became CFO of an internationally renowned company, while the other had choice connections through nepotism.

In the end though, it didn’t work out. Geun Soo learned nothing productive, just underhanded tactics. Going stateside, those types of tactics are prized here under late-stage capitalism. I wonder… just how much he will change?

Or if he even can at this point. As Geun Soo pointed out, he was aware of his actions. Or at least had a moment of clarity while bleeding out on the hard concrete under the nighttime sky. Despite it all, he kept going. Geun Soo kept doing terrible things, and hurt himself more in the process than his intended targets.

He’s got to break that vicious cycle before truly moving on.

Seung Kwon and Hyun Yi finally going on a date made me squeal, I’m not going to lie. Since that club scene early into the series there has been this weird tension between them. Hey if they’re happy, I’m happy. I personally feel like it was a long time coming. Like almost five years in the making haha ☺.

I loved that conversation between Soo Ah and Chairman Jang’s manservant, Mr. Kim. When confronted and asked why he did all of the things he did, his only answer was “because I am a salaryman.”  That was such a powerful statement. Park Sung Yul was also a salaryman, but he didn’t lose himself in the process.

Sure, he did give his all to the company, but he refused to sacrifice his son. That made all the difference in these character’s lives, especially Sae Royi.

Had his father threw him under the bus that fateful day fifteen years ago, none of this would have happened. Jangga would still be reigning supreme under fear, Geun Won would still be a miserable, insufferable cusp. Revenge King Lee Ho Jin would have never found closure…Don’t confuse my meaning, it is sad that Sung Yul had to die. It is a tragedy just how much Sae Royi had to suffer at the hands of outside forces.

But, it happened. It was necessary for him to keep moving forward after this incident, and he did.

Sae Royi’s drink is now sweet. It’s no longer bitter. His life, is no longer bitter.

He can be happy now.

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I’m so glad that was one of the last lines of the show before the after credit scene. That one sentence made the series come full circle for me. Sae Royi had closure.

Sorry if it seems like I’m kind of rambling, I already poured my heart out earlier in my last post about this series. I dealt with the show’s ending there, and got my own form of closure before moving into the final episode.

I guess I just want to mention how pathetic Chairman Jang really was at the end. How he kept repeatedly saying that he was Jangga corp.

“The strong prey on the weak.”                                       

In the end, he was a feeble old man who lost sight of his original goals. He got too greedy, and gorged himself on food. So greedy, that he thought he could (yet again) eat without paying, and still get what he wanted.

Yes, he was Jangga. And Jangga fell when he did.

Chairman Jang lost the corporation’s main goal. Or rather, he forgot. And in the very end, all he cared about was his vain sense of pride. There’s a cautionary tale in that sediment somewhere, but tonight I am too tired to find it. ☺

This has been a hell of a ride reviewing this series. I want to sincerely thank each and every one of you who read, commented, shared, and enjoyed this series along with me! It’s been fun, and Itaewon Class has become a very special kdrama to sit down and watch each week. I’m going to miss it.

Also shout out to Soo Ah’s ingenuity. No one will hire a whistleblower? Fine, she’ll make her own job. Create her own restaurant franchise, and get her groove back with a young chef. I respect it!

Oh Soo Ah stands in front of her new establishment. Itaewon Class Episode 16
Oh Soo Ah stands in front of her new establishment. Itaewon Class Episode 16

So, I’m going to leave you with a few abstract questions before I disappear into a cloud of smoke.

  1. Are you happy?
  2. If you are not, what could you be doing right now to work on your dreams?
  3. Will you keep going, even if it doesn’t work out the first time?

I’ve got to say, this website is my dream.

Choi Seung Kwon's reflection. Itaewon Class Episode 4
Choi Seung Kwon’s reflection. Itaewon Class Episode 4
Choi Seung Kwon's reflection. Itaewon Class Episode 4
Time is not something you can get back.

I just didn’t know it for years, until it happened. Each day I wake up and it makes me happy just looking at the homepage. Looking at the cute mascot, Musabi. Meeting new people and making new blogging friends. Being a part of a community I’ve cared about nearly half of my life.

This was one of my dreams that I made come true.

Choi Seung Kwon's reflection. Itaewon Class Episode 4
Think about the time you have here.
Choi Seung Kwon's reflection. Itaewon Class Episode 4
This moment really hits hard. Itaewon Class Episode 4

Are you doing the same?

What are you waiting for? ☺

Jo Yi Seo beside a picture of the DanBam crew. Itaewon Class Episode 16
Jo Yi Seo beside a picture of the DanBam crew. Itaewon Class Episode 16

Thank you!!

The full Itaewon Class review list.

More on Korean Culture.

Don’t fall for any schemes in the workplace, read: The Art of War by Sun Tzu

시리즈 종료.

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Author: In Asian Spaces

I write in my personal time and I haven't published much at all. I don't know if that qualifies me as a writer or not, but I'd like to change that. I have a deep passion for travel, cinema and (mainly) East Asian things, but I plan on writing various things to keep it spicy. Let's prosper together ~ よろしくおねがいします。

11 thoughts on “You Could Be Happy – Itaewon Class Ep 16 Review”

  1. I loved the ending as you said, it couldn’t have ended any better. Compared to some other dramas, it was complete at the end and I didn’t feel like something was missing or it’s not the end yet. I really enjoyed this drama. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I completely agree with you, this is one of the best dramas I’ve watched. It was nicely unpredictable and captured (and held) my attention for the entire running. A beautiful range of diversity and fleshed out characters was a nice change from a lot of the dramas I’ve watched recently and The ending as very fulfilling. Thoroughly enjoyed every second of it and really enjoyed reading your review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I already miss this drama. I’m watching The King: Eternal Monarch right now and although I like Lee Min Ho as an actor and the storyline is beautiful, it’s not leaving the same impression as Itaewon Class thus far.


  3. So I sat through one episode of Itaewon the night it aired and it was then I knew I’d never get to watch the rest of it..
    The first episode sent me down the emotional path I was not ready for 💔
    Completing the episode was in fact a surprise to me..
    Every time I see a review about it.. I think to myself, “do i have it all wrong and therefore I should give it a go” but oh boy😅

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha I can understand that. The first episode is pretty heavy. But if you want to, you really should check the series out. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed – and it has a very satisfying ending! (=

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi, I loved your review and thoughts and omg, I absolutely loved this KDrama! I’m new to them, since Oct of last year and have watched quite a few (My Love from the Stars, Am I Human, I’m not a Robot, Strong Girl Bong…and loads more). This by far is my favourite one and the OST, i’ve downloaded and listen non-stop! So many twists and turns and each time he comes back stronger. The romance between Sae-Royi and Yi-Seo, I wanted them to get together and the scene where he tells her he loves her, was just brilliant. Thanks again and yes, I am doing what i love also…I worked as a Scientist (Pharmaceutical, researching new medicines) and was given redundancy last Oct…this allowed me to retire, so Oct Vegas, Nov Agadir, Dec Paphos, Jan New York, Feb Singapore and Mar Cancun…..I had to cancel Mauritius, Seychelles, Vegas, Berlin and Canadian Rockies (pandemic), but will be travelling all around Asia when I can again! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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