Chocolate (2019-20) : Ep-by-Ep summary and commentary

Like I mentioned in my episode summary for crash landing on you, there were two series which I was not bingeing – but rather watching as each episode released. And that other drama happened to be this one! The point of view I had on this in the beginning, and as each episode passed changed drastically, so here goes the episode summary. If you want a spoiler free review click here!

Episode 1

We see our protagonist Lee Kang run through the streets searching for something he’s been searching a long time, he soon finds her – our heroine Cha Young.

Cut to 1992 at Wando island where Kang and his mother run a restaurant. Kang finds a hungry and money less Cha Young and offers her free food, and that she can come any time for food. He asks her to come tomorrow as he is going to make chocolate truffles.

Sadly Cha Young’s mother is angry at her weight gain as she was preparing her for an audition and they leave Wando with Cha Young crying for chocolate truffles.

As Kang unknowingly prepares the truffles they get guests.

Kang’s paternal grandmother is here. His father was the heir of Geosung businesses but left it to elope with the housekeeper’s daughter. Grandma now finding out she has a grandson decides that Kang and her other grandson Lee Jun must fight and prove whose better.

The kids get into a fist fight with Jun sustaining minor injuries and Kang unconscious. Using their influence Jun is wheeled into surgery first instead of a more serious Kang, to which his mother proclaims that Kang too is a son of Geosung and that they agreed to move to Seoul.

Back to the present Kang prepares for his mother’s memorial service along with his lawyer friend. He reminisces that although his mother wanted to be a daughter in law for the household, it never happened.

We see the grown up Cha Young who seems to be having some issues post an “accident”.

We also see that time has not healed the antagonistic relationship between Kang and Jun, as they are still as competitive as ever.

Cha Young is now a cook and a passionate one at that and prepares food for Jun who she heard had his family in her same accident. While trying to prove the food she brought was safe, she falls in pain and ends up getting an appendectomy. She then meets Kang while she was eating his leftover food (how ironic they had to meet like this) and she realises it hers first love Kang , especially from the burn marks.

At this point we see that Jun’s parents make things more favorable to make Jun seem more competent and end up seeing Kang to Libya where he is injured by a bomb and goes into coma. I didn’t expect such a huge blow to the lead in the first episode, I will be honest here!

Episode 2

Jun is furious at the decision to take off Kang from life support screaming that he’s competent enough to beat Kang. Sheesh the guy is on life support give him a break!

Kang’s friend Min Seong angrily asks why Jun is doing this and tries to beg them to not take Kang off life support. As Min Seong cries outside the hospital, a passing Cha Young who found out Kang is in Libya discreetly places a handkerchief next to him and leaves.

Cha Young then meets Min Seong a few times and he starts to grow a liking towards her. Uh oh do I sense a love traingle?

On hearing the news that Kang’s family has gone to Libya to collect his body she burns up with fever and collapses. On waking up she is in a hospital with Min Seong sleeping in a chair next to her.

As Kang flatlines we see Kang and his mother talk to each other and a flashback where Kang’s mother was caught in the rubble of a collapsed building but no one bothered to do anything to save her. His mother asks him if he is coming with her and he says he has some things left to do. Miraculously his heart starts beating again.

On the day she agrees to date Min Seong whose been asking her relentlessly she realises Kang survived and is shocked. Later we see that Min Seong doesn’t come for a movie outing and she ends up watching it alone with Kang. She eventually resigns and leaves for Greece as she can’t do it anymore.

As Kang gets ready to scrub in on a surgery for a high profile rock star he realises Min Seong has been brought in, terminally ill. Kang leaves that high profile surgery to Jun who succeeds and becomes famous and is unable to cure Min Seong and he is then taken to the hospice run by his father.

Min Seong however is not eating anything and as a final wish asks Kang to find Cha Young so that she will make him her dumpling stew.

Back at Greece she is forced to work multiple jobs for her loans and now an additional cost her brother caused by breaking an 8000 Euro wine bottle. She finds out there is a cooking competition where the prize is that bottle of wine and participates. When a member of audience is requested to be one of the judges, Kang steps in and agrees to do it, much to the shock of Cha Young.

Episode 3

Kang is furious at how Cha Young left Min Seong believing she left him for another man. He trashes her as one of the judges in the competition and eventually get into a fight with her brother thinking this is the man she went with after leaving Min Seong . Eventually Kang proclaims he doesn’t want his friends last meal to be from an evil person like Cha Young and leaves. Sigh.

Min Seong is still asking for Cha Young’s dumpling stew much to the dismay of Kang who has brought stews from all the best restaurants. Cha Young however arrives at the hospice and covers her head with a plastic basin on seeing Kang. The hospice cook mistakes her for an employee and makes her peel all the onions which she does crying all day long. The cook eventually treats Cha Young to a lavish meal but soon realises something is amiss when the cook keeps bring Cha Young bowls of rice, and forgets her own recipes when a customer asks.

Cha Young decides to use the hospice kitchen to cook the stew but sees Kang cooking one from his mother’s recipe book

He however leaves mid way as he is called in for an emergency surgery of a chairman. Jun’s father cunningly tries to keep Kang for the surgery due to it’s low success rate (Nice going doc, you’ve basically decided your patient is a goner) but eventually Jun comes in and Kang accusses him of purposefully trying to avoid the surgery to avoid failure.

As Kang finishes the surgery and starts to plan a fishing trip with Min Seong, an emergency accident calls him in and he is busy with multiple surgeries. Meanwhile Cha Young gives Min Seong’s fiance the finished soup and a message and on tasting it Min Seong’s face brightens. As Kang tired from all the surgeries slops on the floor he receives a call saying Min Seong is gone. What??!! Already? I was really liking his character! He was literally the only good person in Kang’s rather miserable life!

Episode 4

Cha Young leaves after Min Seong’s funeral and finds that he wrote a letter for her. He mentions that he knows that her Peter Pan was Kang all along after finding a picture in her purse with her and Min Seong blurred but Kang in the background clear. Min Seong says that he is going to tell Kang how she has waited for him all this time.

A sad Cha Young meets Kang at the fishing spot and the two eventually leave together. However Kang dozes off at the wheel, and they meet with an accident. At a small hospital, Kang steps in and performs a surgery on Cha Young despite his injuries and Jun scrubs in for Kang’s after he collapses from the strain.

Just before Cha Young’s surgery we see a flashback of Cha Young and Kang’s mother in the debri of the collapsed building and how she hands some chocolate she bought for her son to Cha Young to hang on until someone saves them.

We also see that Cha Young’s mother ran away with Tae Hyun from creditors leaving her alone. Tae Hyun later found her after 15 years.

We see that Kang is also having a slight tremor in his hand as well post his recovery a year later. Uh oh I sense some bad news for the neurosurgeon.

At the restaurant a little boy asks for banana rice cakes which Cha Young makes. At the same time, Kang has to drop a surgery in the middle due to his tremor and Jun has to step in. As he leaves he sees a scene where Cha Young is beat up by the little boy of the family for giving him banana rice cakes that made him sick. Kang stops the fight and learns he is transferred to the hospice.

He also sees his CT and asks Kang why he didn’t do the surgery properly to which Jun claims he passed his “golden time” in saving Cha Young.

At the hospice, Cha Young now works as a cook and meets the little boy again who confessed that he’s ill in reality and nkt because of the bananas.

She plays hide and seek with the kids and hides in the doctors room meant for Kang. Hearing the loud drills she goes into shock remembering her accident. When Kang opens the cupboard door she collapses on him saying “Someone’s down there, help.” Oohhh I like how this is going!

Episode 5

We see Jun painfully looking at a man helping his sick and bling wife into a car. This patient is later brought to the hospice as well.

Cha Young accompanies one of the patients to a Chinese restaurant outside the hospital where the man believes his son who left him would return. They meet with a small accident and Kang reprimands her for taking a patient out without even being a medical staff. More problems comes as a patient allergic to shrimp goes into shock due to the shrimp added in the food. The hospice chef who has Alzheimer’s is blamed for it and is asked to leave.

But Cha Young eventually find out that the culprit was some one else.

Jun visits the hospice and asks Cha Young to give a plate he made to the patient he was watching before and Cha Young is amazed at the skill in the plate that was gifted.

The grandpa then comes and demands to be taken out and don’t and end up beating the Cha Young and her brother and he ends up exclaiming that his son left him. Grandpa collapses and soon dies. Distraught she goes to the restaurant to get his cap to find Kang there. They order three bowls of noodles and eat it silently. We see a scene where grandpa is sitting with Kang and Cha Young and tells that he never felt sad about his kids who left him and that he enjoyed the noodles quite well and will pray for them even after death. Okay at this point I’m ugly crying. I’m seriously sensitive to such emo scenes!

Episode 6

Kang sees Ji Yong run on the road with a gift bag and find that he’s in his way to gift hsi mother for her birthday. After much thinking Kang agrees to accompany Ji Yong on the three hour drive to his mother. I’m loving the frankness and cuteness in this little boy. So far one of my most favorite supporting characters for sure!

Ji Yong runs in when Kang gets a calls and goes missing when Kang looks for him. Everyone including Cha Young frantically look for him as well. Cha Young also finds out that Kang was transferred due to his hand tremors.

Angry at the mother for abandoning the boys and having experienced it herself she hands her Ji Yong’s gift and talks to her.

The boys are hungry and Cha Young prepares a birthday party spread with food from the convenience store. She tells the boys she doesn’t spend her birthdays with her mother either and that she gets IV on her birthday and that it’s a day she would rather not remember. Kang realizes there’s more to the scared Cha Young he saw that day.

Kang later finds out about the accident and we see there is a backstory between the hospice cook and the hospice director.

Cha Young meets Kang at the Riverside drinking as a memorial for his mother and he asks her to have a drink too but gives her water as she is ill. He then wishes that she would never feel ill again on her birthday again. Looks like someone is becoming nicer! It’s nice to see a warm side in Kang at this point, very similar to the younger Kang.

Episode 7

We see things move up more in this scene with Tae Hyun going and calling Kang as in-laws leading to Cha Young apologising later. Kang of course had to say he never even considered it worth thinking about. Ouch.

He also struggles at the hospice with a family accusing him as to how he can be a doctor if he can’t cure patients, which leads to worse tremors.

We see a flashback with Jun and Hee Jui and how they bonded over pottery, and Jun ended up really liking her.

After the incident Ji Yong’s mother decides to stay with her children and gifts him the cutest astronaut suit to which he proclaims when he dies he’s going to outer space. Note that he looks so cute in it! He then offers the sandwich that Cha Young gives him to Kang saying he doesn’t need it to be happy anymore. Kang asks “Do I look unhappy to you?” Ji Yong replies “A little, yes.” LOL

Cha Young helps Hui Ju dress up and she and Jun spend a day by the lake. He leaves soon after she mentions him leading a happier life. She then walks over to the lake and tries to drown herself but is saved by Cha Young and eventually Kang. As she is recovering, Jun says goodbye to Hee Jui and leaves as he can’t believe she gave up just like that.

Things get more complicated for Kang as he starts to worry and think more about Cha Young. He tells Min Young about it’s always there, and he wants to avoid it – to which Min Young says that Kang has the Zika virus! As funny as that was we can see Kang slowly develop more positive and warm feelings to Cha Young. I’m liking how this is going slow and steady not just one or two incidents to just get you all head over heels in love. It doesn’t happen like that all the time right? I also like how their stories are wrapped around the plotlines around the hospice. Speaking of the hospice the entire set is calm, serene with the constant ebb of crickets. I’m really liking how this is going.

Episode 8

Ms. Bong asks Cha Young to help her pick raspberries and make dishes out of it as an apology to Suk Ja for her taking her hanbok and matching shoes. The two trudge up a mountain with Ms. Bong getting bitten by a snake. Cha Young administers first aid and calls 911 but stumbles and falls down as she tries to reach for a signal.

And who should find her other than Kang? As he carries her back piggy back style, we hear a dialogue exchange between Ms. Bong and Suk Ja that’s endearing and apt in both their situations. I loved that dialogue and scene overlap. A very smart bit of portraying the story indeed.

As Kang examines Her Jui he realises something is amiss. He goes through her charts and finds that her husband the operating surgeon plotted together and made her like this. Hearing Jun beats up her husband and gets jailed a day and has to do community service. Hee Jui is transferred for further treatment by her family as well.

Ji Yong tells Cha Young in on his secret that he’s only on Earth to maintain peace and happiness and that his prolonged stay on Earth makes him ill, and that the sparkling stars are the space ship calls him. Although everyone (including me) wish for Ji Yong to stay on more, he eventually succumbs to his illness but with the happiness that he maintained peace and happiness for those around him. Yes. I’m ugly crying. For an hour. This drama is causing so much emotional surges I just can’t explain. The characters really get to you big time.

Episode 9

We see another flashback where Kang begs his grandma to save his mom, to which grandam coldly refuses. And for the first time we see that Jun has pity towards Kang. Maybe, he’s not as bad as we think he is?

Jun’s mother finds out that Grandma is considering the fact of giving Geosung completely to Kang and alarmed she contacts her husband. Meanwhile her husband is having a meal with the hospice director and we get a background of his life and understand that his first wife divorced him, his second wife died from childbirth complications and his only son passed away due to a terminal illness. Ouch.

We see that Jun has started community service at the hospice for harming the husband of his first love for the crimes he did to her.

Kang and Jun then have a conversation where Jun antagonises Kang on whether the people at the hospice know that he is taking over Geosung and closing the hospice. The two then start having a brutal fist fight on the basketball court only to be interrupted by Director Kwon. Both these stubborn men are adamant that they must fight to the death – to be the better person. This is just sad, I swear they would have been such great brothers if all this tension was not there. Jun then ends up giving Cha Young a ride which drives a sharp jab of jealousy in Kang. Further along the episode we see that the two of them have increased amounts of care and affection to each other too. We also see that Michael’s birth mother and brother have arrived to make the kimchi stew he has been craving. She makes it for him and he forces out a smile saying it’s delicious. Something is definitely amiss here!

Episode 10

Both Cha Young and Kang are asked by other counterparts at the hospice on whether they like each other to which they give startled, shy and embarrassed answers that they do not. It also looks like Nurse Na Ra has a crush on Kang, and Director Kwon still refuses to eat the food that Seon Ae makes. Those flower fritters look delicious though! I’ve never had them! Do any of you know the recipe for it?

Meanwhile at Grandma’s household Jun’s mother is begging in front of grandma for a divorce.

Since Michael did not find the kimchi stew satisfactory and since his brother keeps talking about the money Michael asks, Cha Young confronts them and screams at them for abandoning him even though they’re family. His brother then man handles her and she hits her head violently and is shaken about. As the big shouts at her we see a flashback to Cha Young who was waiting for her mother only to be trapped in the department store accident, and to have her mother abandon her by taking only her brother. Cha Young had it tough. That’s for sure.

Meanwhile Seon Ae helps Ye Sol to help her invite her Grandpa for her parents marriage as he didn’t approve it the first time. But Seon Ae on a trip to the washroom forgets about Ye Sol and leaves her there only to have her tearfully return and shout at Seon Ae.

Looks like Cha Young’s head injury really did her harm. Once Jun finds out he explains to her that it harmed her olfactory nerves and she can’t taste or smell. Which is literally the worst thing that can happen to a cook basically. So at this point both Kang and Cha Young have been injured to a point that it affects their professions. Despite the consequences Cha Young is firm in not giving up, because the moment she does, then it’s over. We then see a beautiful montage of scenes where Cha Young recreates a dish for a patient and wife who had it for their first date which they eat and exchange heartfelt words of love. This set of scenes just further emphasis. The hospice is not a place where people are dying, it’s a place where they are living cherishing every single day.

Episode 11

We see a disheartened Cha Young try to come to terms to her condition. We also see Michael’s adoptive bad birth mother’s bonding over a warm home cooked meal in their own kind of way as well. As Cha Young later recounts her story about the lady that gave her chocolate while she was stuck in the rubble, Joon flashbacks to a scene where Kang’s mother is apologizing to Jun for all the troubles the adults cause, and to not hate Kang and that she is going out to buy chocolate for him. Looks like Kang’s mother and Cha Young were stuck in the rubble together. DESTINY.

We then see a scene of Hye Mi, Jun’s mother literally blackmailing grandma by telling her that she knows Jun’s father is not the legitimate heir of Geosung and that only Kang’s father is. Jun overhears this scene in shock as Grandma hyperventilate and faints to be later taken into the ER. Now that was a big shocker. So all this competition between Jun and Kang was for nothing. Jun was nothing more than a fuel for Kang to be at his best. I swear this is beyond cruelty. My heart pains for Jun at this point, really.

Meanwhile Kang and Cha Young set out to recreate a dish that Michael and his mother had. The two are quite awkward around each other but Kang suddenly gets a phone call. It’s the niece of the ahjussi that used to be close with him in Wando. His niece tells Kang that he has died and that his funeral is tomorrow. Kang must now quickly go for a.six hour drive to Wando but is drunk. This leads to Cha Young hopping in without even removing her apron and tells him that she will drive him to Wando. Looks like the two are going back to where it all started.

Episode 12

Kang is distressed and reminisces the promises he made to come back to Wando within two years since it never happened. Cha Young happened to leave her wallet and her phone in a hurry while she drive Kang and wait outside for him patiently. Jun reveals to Hye Mi that he knows the truth about his father. Seon We manages to convince Ye Sol’s grandfather to attend the wedding and tries to force Kwon to eat her food to which he says he can’t. She abandoned him once and he’s been through a lot and he doesn’t want to pick up anything at this time.

Kang finds out the truth about Cha Young’s condition and at the hospice he sees two siblings who are fighting over their fathers deathbed to be the ones to claim the little amount of money he saved, by abandoning all comforts for hismelf. Michael is finally able to get the kimchi stew that he wanted after his birth mother realises the missing ingredients are pine mushrooms.

It’s now evening at Wando but Cha Young is still dozing off on Kang’s shoulders. At this point I am surprised his knees haven’t given up. Kang then cooks a home made meal for her at his mom’s old restaurant and Cha Young happily eats it and cries and says the same.dialogues she said when Kang offered her free food when she was a child. Kang finally recognised Cha Young. Finally! About time here!

Episode 13

The two spend a day and night at Wando post that revelation where Kang tearfully spends time with Bada, a dog whose the granddchild of his pet dog, San when he was in Wando. Jun comes and tells Kang about Grandma’s condition and asks him to come back.

Kwon literally gets into a fist fight with his old friend as he sits there and insults Seon Ae for all the incidents that happened in the past.

Hye Mi is now acting chairwoman. Ugh.

Kang finally asks Cha Young whether he can like her or not. And the episode ends there. I hate these kind of cliffhangers. The next episode couldn’t come any faster!

Episode 14

As Kang and Cha Young slowly advance we see a depressed Jun who is now not returning to the hospital but us at the kiln. He makes pork belly and kimchi fried rice after Cha Young told him it tastes best when they are depressed. Kang joins him and is surprised to find Jun like this. Kang has a flashback to Hye Mi beating the life out of Jun for coming third in class. Sheesh parents like these must be thrown out!

Cha Young gets an address that belongs to her mother but on arriving there she realises that she has cheated a man there and has run away as well. She then empties her account and pays a restaurant lady to take care of that man’s meals as she knows what he is going through.

We see that Seon Ae’s Alzheimer’s is getting worse now that she is walking to the hospice to take food for her newly married husband with his favorite bossam kimchi. She is hit by a truck and all the food goes to waste and Kwon helps her up and she cries about how all the food she made for him has wasted. Kwon realises that she really needs him more than ever.

Kang and Cha Young finally FINALLY declare their love for each other.

Episode 15

Joon and Kang finally reconcile and set aside their differences. Finally, they were a duo that I did not want to see ending on a bad note. Jun tells Kang the truth about his father. Meanwhile Tae Hyun is caught by the police for a brawl and Cha Young leaves him there thinking he caused all the trouble when in reality he hadn’t. The two then shout at each other and even talk about removing each other from the family registry.

Later on in the episode Kang, Tae Hyun and Cha Young have a chance encounter with the man who was jailed for the illegal construction that led to the building disaster. As Tae Hyun screams at him it’s not just a few hundred but their families and thousands that were affected Cha Young understands Tae Hyun and the siblings reconcile. Cha Young then later reveals to Kang the identity of the lady that gave her the chocolate in the rubble to which Kang painfully breaks down, crying , at how his fate turned out to be. It really is a cruel twist of fate honestly.

Episode 16 – The Final

Kang although pained, decides to live life to the fullest with Cha Young in the name of the lady that helped Cha Young in the rubble.

Director Kwon and Seon Ae have fun at the beach as a happy couple. Although Seon Ae in between realizes this is wrong, Kwon comes in and the two reconcile.

Hye Mi is furious at Kang thinking he wants Geosung. She says that she sacrificed so many nights, her happiness, her health and her life along with Grandma to being Geosung to what it is today, and how can he just take it away just because he was the son of a man who didn’t have a bit of interest in this? Kang agrees and says he doesn’t want Geosung but just the hospice. I was quite shocked at this point. I was under the assumption that Kang will overtake Goesung and then get the hospice back but I kind of like this much better. However twisted she was, Hye Mi is right, it’s their hard work and that’s worth mote than anything. Also Kang never had an interest either. Now that the characters have reached this amicable agreement Jun is not completely at loss either . We later see Jun at a gallery helping a woman who collapsed and tell her ist okay he’s a surgeon at Geosung and goes to the hospital.

Cha Young confronts her mother who hasn’t changed one bit. According to her it better to stab people in the back than get stabbed. Give an award to this woman! Sheesh! Cha Young is upset but is comforted by Kang. Eventually though she asks Kang for time as she needs it to come to terms with her life.

We see a conclusion for the characters – a montage of scenes as things settle for the happier.

We finally see the ending scene, the scene with which we began the drama. Kang finds Cha Young in Greece, and the two embrace with a beautiful backdrop of the ocean.

And that’s the end of the recap and the commentary! I hope you liked it! If you want am overall review of this drama click here! If you’ve watched this drama let me know what you felt in the comments below!