We watch as things wrap up for our characters in this finale episode for ‘Kkondae Intern.’ It’s been a wild ride for our Sales and Marketing Team as well as for Yeol-chan who had to jump through hoops and over huddles just to keep himself and his team afloat. How do things turn out for our team? Who stays with Joonsoo Foods until the end and who doesn’t? Where does Yeol-chan’s loyalty lie? Things have never been easy for our characters, but they can only go up from here.
Note: I had just finished recapping the final and last episode to ‘Oh My Baby’ and here I am recapping the last episode to ‘Kkondae Intern.’ It’s a sad and bittersweet feeling with two dramas finishing in one week and having to wrap things up with two back to back recaps for the final episodes. Nonetheless, ‘Kkondae Intern’ was such a weird, comedic, and humorous drama with heartwarming moments mixed in between. Although I wasn’t always happy with the drama, I still enjoyed watching it and I might go back to re-watch it when I’m in need of a funny drama to watch. Until then, thanks to those who joined me in my recapping series for ‘Kkondae Intern.’ You can follow me with the recaps for other currently airing drama ‘Dinner Mate.’
Kkondae Intern: Episode 12 & Final Recap
Man-sik is held hostage in a warehouse by Executive Goo’s men. He’s threatened with his life and comes close to losing a few limbs or two until Yeol-chan barges into the warehouse to rescue our senior intern (Yeol-chan to the rescue! Woo hoo!). With Yeol-chan there, the two men battle it out against all the different guys. However, they’re still obviously outnumbered and it becomes increasingly challenging for the two guys. Thankfully, more members of the squad assist Man-sik and Yeol-chan and Ok-kyung, Joon-soo, and Tae-ri roll up to the warehouse in a car. With the assistance of three additional team members, our squad continue to fight against Executive Goo’s men. They’re so strong and overpowering, Executive Goo’s men eventually run away. Our five-member team is successful in fending off the bad guys and they all come out of the warehouse alive and safe.
Our team eventually separates and go their own ways after battling the war. Man-sik rides with Yeol-chan back home and explains that he put his own life at risk because he wanted to help Yeol-chan win. Meanwhile, Tae-ri and Joon-soo hang out by the sea for a bit before going back home. The more that Joon-soo has spent time with Tae-ri and the rest of the team, the more he realizes just how hardworking they are. His perceptions of them began to change little by little. Tae-ri adds that Joon-soo himself isn’t that bad once you get to know him. He could use a little more guidance from someone who’s good-hearted, smart, and kind. Tae-ri proposes that Yeol-chan could pave that way once he becomes President, but Joon-soo argues that he can do the same too if he was to become President. The two bicker with each other as they walk back to their car.
Yeol-chan is eventually promoted to become junior Managing Director of Joonsoo Foods. However, he still clearly misses his Sales and Marketing team and grows sad just watching them back at the office. Nothing’s changed with the team dynamic even though he’s gone. During a meeting with their new general manager, Seung-jin runs into the meeting to share new updates: Yeol-chan’s being considered as one of the candidates to become the Managing Director. Joon-soo too is one of the candidates, but he’s eventually eliminated so the top two candidates left are Yeol-chan and Executive Goo. He’s bummed at the elimination and ponders what Man-sik has been up to. Man-sik was supposed to help Joon-soo in getting rid of Executive Goo.
Back in the office, our team also learns who out of the interns and Jung-eun earned a permanent position at Joonsoo Foods. It turns out Yoon-soo got the position which doesn’t sit well with Jung-eun. She’s reminded of the reality Executive Goo threw at her during their last meeting. If Yeol-chan really did care for Jung-eun, why is she still a contract worker to this day? So that night, Yeol-chan discovers Jung-eun in the office all by herself and has a talk with her. She notes that the Vice President’s evaluation takes up 30% of the employee’s overall evaluation and assessment. In other words, Jung-eun blames Yeol-chan and assumes he was the one who prevented her from getting the permanent position at Joonsoo Foods. The exchange between the two is recorded by one of Executive Goo’s men and the executive receives updates regarding their conversation. She’s reassured that she will get the position in the end. Jung-eun also calls her shortly after her meeting with Yeol-chan.
With Yoon-soo declared permanent at Joonsoo Foods, it’s time for our team to bid farewell with the interns. However, right at that moment, Seung-jin comes running into the office with yet another update: Yeol-chan’s office is being seized and searched by the Inspection Department. It turns out Yeol-chan had money wired to his bank account from a subcontractor who was in charge of Joonsoo Food’s 55th anniversary promotional event. Yeol-chan is clueless as to what the inspection team is referring to, but Yoon-soo has an idea. He knew something was off the moment he gave the list of the event winners to Assistant Manager Oh. It seemed as if Assistant Manager Oh realized one of the names on that list. Executive Ahn and Joon-soo too aren’t thrilled with the audit that Yeol-chan is being investigated on. Executive Goo is clearly winning the race.
Man-sik attempts to get Assistant Manager Oh to spill the tea. Man-sik is aware that Assistant Manager Oh knows something about the list so he briefly meets up with the assistant manager. It’s obvious that the higher-ups set up who the first prize winner was so who exactly is that first prize winner? However, Assistant Manager Oh keeps his mouth shut and doesn’t reveal anything to the senior intern. At least he tried. Yoon-soo does some investigating himself. He visits the subcontractor of the event and questions why he gave Yeol-chan money. Of course, the subcontractor lies that he merely just lended Yeol-chan some money. Yoon-soo also grows suspicious when he finds that the phone number for the first prize winner is a fake number. HmMmM. Tae-ri also does her part in helping out with the investigation. She ends up meeting with the first prize winner, Eun-young, who seems like your normal college girl. Eun-young explains that her dad sold the car she won as part of the winner of the event. Tae-ri communicates this with her dad.
Our three interns (I’m still gonna refer them to interns even though they’re not really interns anymore) continue their investigation at Man-sik’s house. While looking at Eun-young’s SNS account named ‘Paengpaeng58’, they discover that her boyfriend named Paeng Min-woo – who’s tagged in her photo – was the winner of last year’s promotional event. He was somehow able to acquire all the prizes to this event which means the event must be rigged. But who was behind the event? That’s when Assistant Manager Oh enters the house and finally shares details that he’s aware of. He explains that there’s a subcontractor of a food company who’s always involved with Joonsoo Food’s events. The owner of the company’s name is Paeng Ho-joon. He originally used his family and relative’s online account at first and has now moved onto using his son’s girlfriend’s account. Min-woo must have sold his girlfriend’s ID to his father and it’s obvious because of the girlfriend’s SNS account name ‘Paengpaeng58.’ Assistant Manager Oh also reveals the rumors surrounding Executive Goo’s connections and ties to Mr. Paeng. His bidding process wasn’t the best at the event, but he still managed to win. Assistant Manager Oh assumes it’s all because of Executive Goo.
Yeol-chan is eventually invited to the investigation party and he listens in on what the rest of the team has gathered. They have a feeling that Executive Goo’s the one behind Mr. Paeng’s win in the event every year, but they still need to gather more sufficient evidence. Yeol-chan decides to take the lead, but our team won’t let him deal with the consequences all by himself. They’re willing to risk everything to also find out about the truth. Even Yoon-soo wants to participate even though he had just been promoted with the permanent position at the company. Meanwhile, Executive Ahn and Joon-soo listen in on the conversation that’s taking place back at Man-sik’s house. Someone must be recording the conversation secretly. They also realize that Ok-kyung might have connections to Mr. Paeng himself since she was in contact with him at one point for the event.
So our team goes out to get some work done! They head to the sauna where Mr. Park, the subcontractor of the event, is resting. Yeol-chan and Man-sik lock him inside the sauna room in an attempt to get him to spill some tea. They want him to share what his connection with Executive Goo is. Although Mr. Park doesn’t budge at first and feigns ignorance, he eventually tells all to the two men when he’s unable to leave the room thanks to Assistant Manager Oh and Tae-ri who are blocking the door from the outside. Meanwhile, Yoon-soo and senior intern, Han-gil, work on finding Executive Goo’s connections to Mr. Paeng. They find the two on a romantic date at a house and Han-gil snaps some photos of the couple using his camera. Things are going well until they get caught by one of Executive Goo’s men and the memory card is taken away. Nooo. However, not all hope is lost when Yoon-soo discovers a love lock with Executive Goo and Mr. Paeng’s name written on it.
Yoon-soo presents the love lock to Assistant Manager Oh, Yeol-chan, and Tae-ri as evidence that the two are connected to each other. However, that’s not the only thing that Man-sik and Han-gil has also noticed about Executive Goo. They’re not surprised at how greedy and selfish she’s become. She always made sure to be the one first to step up whenever there was a problem in Joonsoo Foods and she’s not one to turn down any money. Now everything makes more sense for Assistant Manager Oh and the rest of the team. When Tae-ri arrives to her place that night, she finds everything in an entire mess and in shambles. All the evidence they’ve gathered about Executive Goo was raided by her men and even the online files have been taken away. Tae-ri is eventually called into Executive Goo’s office for a meeting. She starts off by stating that she can get both Tae-ri and her dad jobs at the company. All Tae-ri would need to do is get rid of the evidence against Executive Goo. However, Tae-ri is well aware of what Executive Goo’s plans are and remains wary of the woman greedy for power within the company. Tae-ri is eventually caught for recording their conversation with her phone and it seems like for a second Executive Goo is winning again.
But things don’t last too long. Right at that moment, Jung-eun makes an announcement to the entire company using the speakers in the recording room. She plans on leaving the company. Today will be her last day of working at the company. However, before she leaves, she wants to expose all the corrupt deeds and sexual harassment that she’s experienced in her years of working at Joonsoo Foods. After exposing all the men who’s sexually harassed her at the workplace, Jung-eun goes on to thank Yeol-chan for always trusting her and believing in her despite everyone else looking down on her because she was merely a contract worker. She describes Yeol-chan as the team’s “one and only angelic superior and colleague.” Everyone listens carefully to Jung-eun’s strong and sweet words. She ends her message by giving a shout-out to Yoon-soo who she still has feelings for. After exiting the recording room, the two lovebirds reunite and run into each other’s arms. They’re still very much in love.
Jung-eun worked with Man-sik a few days back to plan out the best way she could leave the company. She was already confident in her choice to leave, but she also worked with Man-sik so that they could expose Executive Goo to the best of their ability. Although Jung-eun had originally rejected to work with Executive Goo, she ended up meeting with the woman again so as to make it seem like she wanted to side with her. Oh and that meeting with Yeol-chan a few nights ago? That was all staged as well. Jung-eun never had any ill feelings towards Yeol-chan. She purposely set things up to make it seem like she harbored hateful feelings towards Yeol-chan so that Executive Goo would fall for the trick. That was also the same night that Jung-eun shared with Yeol-chan her decision to leave the company.
Everyone in the office commends Jung-eun for her hard work. At that moment, she receives a call learning that she had originally passed her evaluation for the permanent position, but got dropped due to Executive Goo who merely used Jung-eun for her own agenda. Frustrating! Jung-eun is enraged at the new information and her anger towards Executive Goo grows even stronger. Meanwhile, in a meeting with shareholders, Joon-soo exposes the conversations between Executive Goo and Tae-ri as well as Jung-eun. Our two smart ladies had secretly been recording their conversations with Executive Goo without her knowledge which is how Joon-soo was able to play those recordings in the meeting. With this, the shareholders all decide that they’ll select Yeol-chan as the candidate for the Managing Director position in their next meeting. But wait, what about Joon-soo? Won’t they consider him too? At that moment, Chairman Namgoong marches into the meeting. He doesn’t look happy.
Tae-ri and Yeol-chan meet up that night to have a talk. She admits the truth to Yeol-chan and confesses that she did have feelings for him. It was just rather that her dad was also at the company so she didn’t want things to get too messy. Yeol-chan feels much better about him getting rejected because of this reason rather than because he was too much like a ‘kkondae.’ Lol. Yeol-chan also has great news for Tae-ri: she’s been offered a contract position at the company. The same with Man-sik. Tae-ri is thrilled and exhilarated at the news and she’s happy to accept the position. She loves working at the company. Meanwhile, Yeol-chan is selected to be the Managing Director for Joonsoo Foods. However, it’s not just him for Joon-soo too will be Co-Managing Director. In a meeting with all the shareholders, they agree to the co-directing positions with both Yeol-chan and Joon-soo. This was the Chairman’s plan all along.
However, Yeol-chan decides to resign shortly after his promotion. Sure, it sounds like a great idea being co-Managing Directors with Joon-soo, but he also just wants to work and focus on himself at the moment. So with that, he packs up the belongings in his office after announcing his resignation to Chairman Namgoong. He wishes Joon-soo the best of luck as Managing Director and stops by the Sales and Marketing Team office before leaving. Yeol-chan watches as the team all hang out and drink some milk tea together at the office. He’s reminded of all the great moments and experiences he’s shared with the team and becomes nostalgic just by watching them. Yeol-chan has come a long way.
Two years pass and Yeol-chan is now the founder of his own ramen company, Yeol-chan’s Ramen. He watches as his employee taste the delicious ramen that he’s come up with for his company. Aww. Meanwhile, Tae-ri and Man-sik’s contract at Joonsoo Foods end so they leave the company after not being given permanent positions. Although the father-daughter pair has ended their time at Joonsoo Foods, they remain hopeful. They’ve learned a lot by being at the company and feel as if they can do anything now. Joon-soo and his dad visit Executive Goo who’s now in jail for all the corruption she’s caused when she was still working at the company. When Joon-soo returns to the Sales and Marketing office, he imagines an office with Yeol-chan, Man-sik, and Tae-ri. However, he faces reality and the fact that neither Yeol-chan nor Tae-ri and Man-sik are working at the company any longer. He grows sad at the sight of the truth.
Tae-ri gets accepted to be an intern for another foods company. Right as she prepares to head in for her first day of the internship, she receives a call from Joonsoo Foods who wants to offer her another contract since one of her original ideas that the company launched has been met with explosive responses. Yay! Man-sik and Yeol-chan still maintain their relationship even though they haven’t worked together in two years. Unfortunately, Yeol-chan’s business was shut down due to all the complaints and lawsuits he’s gotten from consumers who complain about the spiciness of his ramen noodles. Lol. Man-sik nags at him for making his ramen only spicier and spicier and then receives a phone call at that moment from Joonsoo Foods. Yeol-chan too receives a call seconds afterwards and it seems like both men got great news.
And so Yeol-chan and Man-sik enter Joonsoo Foods once again. Man-sik sports on his usual brown trench coat while Yeol-chan wears a nice formal suit. They encounter each other as they walk in the lobby and grow confused at the sight of each other. Wait, why are they both at the building? Just then, they glance at the signs next to them that lists the two different orientations being held on that day: there’s an orientation for experienced general managers while there’s another orientation for middle-aged and senior interns. This time, the roles have been switched and it’s Man-sik who’s attending the orientation for experienced general managers while Yeol-chan is attending the orientation for middle-aged interns. Man-sik slyly smiles upon realizing their situation and he’s thrilled at the new possibilities. It seems like Man-sik and Yeol-chan are back to where they first started.
‘Kkondae Intern’ was such a wacky, comedic, and funny drama, but it was an enjoyable drama nonetheless. It was at times confusing not knowing what type of mood and feeling the drama really wanted to go with, but once I let all those expectations go and just watched the drama for what it is, I came around to enjoying it a lot more. ‘Kkondae Intern’ was never a serious drama in the first place and things stayed that way in the end. Although there were moments in each episode where things were serious and where there were serious issues that was threatening to our characters, we were also reminded that the show was meant to be comedic and wonky. ‘Kkondae Intern’ might not be a favorite drama of mines, but it’s one where I don’t regret watching it. I didn’t feel like I wasted 12 hours of my life watching this drama.
Of course, I have my fair share of complaints and issues with the drama that I already expressed in earlier recaps. The primary one being that I felt like the drama was confused as to what type of drama it wanted to be. We knew that ‘Kkondae Intern’ was meant to be funny, but what type of funny did it want to present itself as? Did it want to be a ‘Welcome to Waikiki’ kind of funny in which everything is just super outlandish, peculiar, and direct or did it want to be just be funny in which there’s great comedic timing and pacing but there’s also bits of heartwarming moments in there? I think the drama originally started with the latter, but then soon transitioned into the former without really warning us which was why I became disappointed and taken aback by the show. The drama eventually gave off more ‘Welcome to Waikiki’ vibes at the end of episode 11 and the start of episode 12 with the whole warehouse rescue scene. I mean, in what world would Yeol-chan and our team rescue Man-sik who’s trapped inside of a warehouse by men that Executive Goo hired? I mean, I’m not even going to go there with the whole father-daughter relationship between Man-sik and Tae-ri (which was another ridiculous plot twist in and of itself). I don’t think I would have been so surprised at the sudden turn of events if this was something that the drama had hinted to us halfway into the drama. If the drama wanted to turn into a funnier and weirder drama, I would have liked it if it had just given us some kind of preview. Instead, ‘Kkondae Intern’ became ridiculous and went all out with the comedy at the very end of the drama. It was at this point that I realized ‘Kkondae Intern’ was not the same exact drama that I watched at the beginning and that things had changed.
Along the way, many more things changed as well including the focus on our team’s dynamic. Until the very end, one of my favorite episodes was the episode of our team retrieving all the spicy ramen boxes from the elderly village that was accidentally sent out. I choose this episode as one of my favorites because we witnessed our team have to work together for the very first time with this incident. Our team barely began working together and they weren’t so opened to the idea of Man-sik being the senior intern, but they had no choice but to accept him anyways. And then here they were, being thrown into a situation where lives were at risk and they had no choice but to urgently work together as a team. That was one of the first situations where our Sales and Marketing Team had to work as a team and that’s why that episode remains one of my favorites out of the entire series. I also really enjoyed the episode when Yeol-chan was in trouble and he stayed trapped in the waiting room so our team stopped by to visit him. That was such a touching moment in that the support and love between Yeol-chan and his team was mutual. As the team leader, Yeol-chan felt this responsibility and obligation to always be there for his team and to be strong and confident, but doing this came at a price. It was nice to see his team also be there for him in times of difficulty. As the drama progressed, the show began to focus less and less on the team and more on the politics within the company which dragged on and made things less interesting. We get it, Executive Goo was the villain in the company and had so many tips and tricks up her sleeve. Why did it take so long for her to be taken down? Ultimately, more teamwork and less company politics would have been great.
I do appreciate that the drama decided to show us the various facets of working in a team though. There’s going to be moments where people feel excluded, where people feel like they aren’t good enough, when team members feel as if they’re underestimated, or when the competition in the team is too overwhelming. I know I feel that way with work often so I liked how the drama introduced those perspectives to us with our Sales and Marketing Team. Yes, they were working together, but not everything went smooth and well all the time which was a realistic approach to the teamwork aspect of everything. Yes, I liked watching our team collaborate and work together to resolve work issues, but it was also interesting to watch things unfold when there were issues within the team. That is another part of being in a team itself that sometimes gets overlooked. Externally, the Sales and Marketing team might have seemed like they were doing fine, but internally, there was fierce competition and rising issues. It wasn’t easy being in a team that was constantly being thrown at with work challenges and hardships, but they overcame it together. That’s what I enjoyed watching about ‘Kkondae Intern.’
This leads me to my next point which is that I wished the drama focused on the teamwork and not so much the work predicaments and conflicts that were brought up in every episode. It felt overwhelming watching the drama at times because of the constant issues that were happening at the company. Yeol-chan and his team never really had a break. Just when they overcame a battle together, another one presented it quickly afterwards. Even until the very end, Yeol-chan and his team was battling against Executive Goo herself and her men. But what about the Taeseon Foods scandal? Or Mr. Cha stepping in as General Manager while Yeol-chan was away? Or Yeol-chan’s Spicy Webfoot Octopus Ramen which was being used against him to overthrow him? Maybe it might have been that ‘Kkondae Intern’ didn’t know what else to use as content so it decided to just bring up new issues within the workplace, but it got repetitive, redundant, and boring after a while. How many more times are we going to watch Yeol-chan be punished and penalized for something? How many more times are we going to watch our team contemplate on what to do next to save their general manager? I think the first few times made for a refreshing watch because it was interesting to see our team’s dynamic and bond be tested, but after a while, things got tiring when the same thing was happening over and over again. I love teamwork, but I want to watch our team work together and bring all their skills and abilities onto the table. I don’t want to watch Yeol-chan and our team have to weave their way out of situations that are being thrown at them in every single episode.
Despite all the company politics and the constant work issues that kept on involving Yeol-chan (he seriously had no break once Man-sik began the internship at Joonsoo Foods), I still enjoyed the drama for other reasons. Along with the teamwork, I enjoyed watching Man-sik and Yeol-chan bond and grow closer after clearing out their misunderstandings from the past. As we saw with episode one, the two didn’t have the best start because of the torture that Man-sik put Yeol-chan through. It was heartbreaking to see Yeol-chan go through so much as an intern under Man-sik and watching him suffer while he was at Ongol Foods. I think we can all agree that Man-sik was absolutely harsh and brutal on Yeol-chan for really no reason which made it difficult to root for him at first. But the more the two spent time together (against their choice at first), the more they began to really understand each other and eventually even befriend each other. They gave their relationship a second chance and even though they were originally each other’s enemies at first, they grew into becoming something else and something more. They became colleagues. They became mentor and mentee. Yeol-chan seeked advice and leadership guidance from Man-sik who was a leader himself at one point. Sure, he wasn’t the best leader to Yeol-chan, but there’s no denying the 30 years of experience that Man-sik has under his belt.
Although I would have definitely wanted more Yeol-chan vs. Man-sik antics at first (we all sort of knew Man-sik would come around to being on Yeol-chan’s side eventually) since that was the premise that ‘Kkondae Intern’ set up, I liked the way that the drama got the two to bond and connect. It was really only after the ox head rice soup restaurant owner’s death that they both cleared up misunderstandings from the past and was able to let go of their past to move forward with their lives. Any guilt and regrets they had been holding onto the past five years was finally let go once they had that difficult and honest conversation with each other about their history at Ongol Foods. That was what Man-sik and Yeol-chan needed to finally be on the same level and to really start anew. It might have came a little bit too late given that this conversation didn’t happen until five years after the incident, but it happened nonetheless which was a good starting step for the two men. It was what both men needed to give their relationship another try and to bond even more. It was only after this that they were finally able to let go of their complicated and dark past.
I also think it was interesting in the way that the drama focused on Man-sik as a senior intern at the company. His story was so interesting and bittersweet in that he’s obviously a lot older than the rest of the team members, but he was so willing to adapt and adjust to things. Sure, he might have had a little bit too much pride and ego at first, but he worked hard to fit in and to prove his worth to the rest of the team who doubted him at first. We were first introduced to Man-sik as a spiteful, rude, and unpleasant man as the manager at Ongol Foods and then started to slowly see this change in him once he arrived at Joonsoo Foods. I liked the way that the drama slowly changed our perceptions of Man-sik. It wasn’t a change that happened within just one episode nor was it a smooth transition. I slowly started to warm up to Man-sik the more I saw him putting in effort, time, and energy to learn things, such as attending the computer academy. I also began to warm up to him with how honest and loyal and kind, such as with the campaign where our team had to purchase ramen noodles at the grocery market. He didn’t cheat and he donated all the ramen noodles that he purchased with his own money. Although I don’t judge the other guys in the team for relying on Yeol-chan during the campaign (they had their reasons for doing so), I appreciate how genuine Man-sik was in that campaign.
Our first impressions of Man-sik might not have been the greatest, but he proved to be a genuine, creative, and hard-working guy as the drama progressed which made it easier to root for him as time passed. He became an asset to the team and a mentor to Yeol-chan who looked up to him in times of difficulty, uncertainty, and stress. Man-sik possessed knowledge and experiences that he aided Yeol-chan with (such as with Taeseon Foods) which was nice to see. Although Yeol-chan was the team leader and he put on this perfect, smart, well-rounded, and talented facade at work, he still needed guidance and assistance during specific moments. Man-sik was that source of support and guidance for him and it showed with the way that Man-sik was also always trying to save Yeol-chan. With Man-sik, we learn that it’s never too late to try something new or that you’re never too old to do things. Man-sik’s reasons for wanting to work at Joonsoo Foods was just as valid as Tae-ri and Yoon-soo’s reasons for wanting the permanent position and he was qualified enough to be considered. Man-sik was such an interesting and compelling character.
The same thing could be said about Yeol-chan whose facade fell through the cracks as he faced an increasing amount of challenges and struggles at work. The image and personality he tried to keep together for his team disappeared as he got looped more and more into the politics at work. I don’t blame him for suddenly breaking down and not being the person that his team saw him as. I think the disappointment from his team made sense and of course they would be taken aback to see this mean and harsh side to Yeol-chan. However, it was also a change that his team needed since they were taking advantage of him. Yeol-chan was just going through a lot too at work and he felt like he was losing himself the more he was being dragged into difficult situations and conflicts. Yeol-chan was never perfect by any means, but he always tried to be for his team which is telling of the type of person he is. As the team leader, he felt this responsibility to be strong and confident. He didn’t want to showcase any other characteristics or traits because doing so would taint the image and perception that his team had of him. While Yeol-chan might have caused his team to see him differently through the course of everything, his team still appreciated everything he did for them, as we saw in this episode with Jung-eun’s speech. He’s always been that hero for them and that’s how he will be remembered.
I thought it was interesting in the way that Yeol-chan went on to create his own ramen company after he left Joonsoo Foods. A part of me would have loved to see the team join him at his company and I even thought for a second that Tae-ri and Man-sik was going to work for him once their contract at Joonsoo Foods ended. However, that was all just wishful thinking and everyone eventually returned to Joonsoo Foods. While I’m not exactly opposed to the ending to this episode and I don’t have a problem with Yeol-chan and Man-sik’s new situation, a part of me also yearns to see Yeol-chan as the manager of the Sales and Marketing Team again. I understand what the drama was attempting to do with the ending, but I just miss seeing Yeol-chan with his team so much that I wished that was how the drama ended things. All the scenes of Yeol-chan watching the team interact and hang out in the office doesn’t help either. He was that bridge that brought his team members together and it was bittersweet to see them be so friendly and comfortable with one another without him there. Although Yeol-chan’s new company would have been interesting to watch, I would have liked it if he returned to Joonsoo Foods as the general manager like we originally were introduced to. It would have been nice to see Yeol-chan return to the position and place he feels is most fitting for him and with the people that he feels the comfortable working with. The Sales and Marketing Team went through so much together as a team, it would have been nice to see a reunion. *sigh* But then again, that’s just wishful thinking and not everything can turn out the way you want it to.
‘Kkondae Intern’ definitely did not turn out the way that I wanted it to, but it gave me a drama full of hard-working and funny characters coming together to better their lives. Everyone on the team had their own story and reasons for working at the company and it was nice learning more about our characters throughout the show. As we witnessed, there is always potential for new beginnings and second chances such as seen with Man-sik and Yeol-chan’s relationship or Man-sik’s internship at Joonsoo Foods. In between all the chaos and mess that unfolded at Joonsoo Foods came experiences filled with teamwork, honesty, loyalty, and determination. Our characters will never give up in the process of achieving their dreams and the connections they built at Joonsoo Foods will be ones that last for a long time. It wasn’t easy getting to this chapter in their life, but it was well worth it in the end. Our characters have come out of all of this stronger and bigger and better.
Extra screenshots from episode 11 & 12: