All things must come to an end. In this case, Destined With You Episodes 15-16 provide a mostly fitting conclusion for our two lovebirds, even if it was a haphazard sort of journey to get there. With the events of previous episodes providing us with answers and shining a brighter light on the future of Jang Shin-yu (Rowoon) and Lee Hong-jo’s (Jo Bo-ah) romance, the final episodes aim to wrap up loose ends and put a conclusion to the stalker storyline.
At the beginning of Episode 15, Shin-yu and Hong-jo meet each other at a public park. With bodyguards in tow, it seems that the call made by Jung-beom was an attempt to lure out Hong-jo once more. But he doesn’t appear. Now that Hong-jo is out of her hiding place, Shin-yu takes her back to his place, culminating in an adorably hilarious exchange about how they will sleep in the same bed. It’s nice to see the two finally relax a little bit.
That is until they’re caught the following morning by Shin-yu’s parents. Jang Se-heon (Lee Pil-mo) berates Hong-jo for her behavior and the danger she continues to put his son in. The more forgiving Song Yoon-joo (Jung Hye-young) is understanding of their love, but her husband can’t be swayed. This results in an argument between the two parents, culminating in the final push Yoon-joo needs to divorce her husband. Bringing up her social status for the umpteenth time, she is done.
After the parents depart, Hong-jo heads back to her home to find her landlady (Kim Deok-ju) and Kwon Jae-kyung (Ha Jun) waiting for her. This is when the landlady meets Shin-yu, who has followed Hong-jo to her place, declaring that he will keep an eye on her. This puts Jae-kyung on the backburner again but, with these being the final episodes, it’s no surprise that he’s taken down a notch yet again.
But Jae-kyung does have plans on his own. As viewers saw when it came to his past self, ambition is something all iterations of him share. He’s offered a bribe to work with Haum Construction. His motivations remain ambiguous, but he does warn Shin-yu the next day that powerful people are working to bring him down.
Upon returning back to work, Hong-jo is greeted warmly by all of her coworkers, marking a full arc of completion of her track at Onju City Hall. Son Sae-Byeol (Park Kyung-hye) and Yoo Su-jeong (Mi-Ram) fill her in on the developments while she’s been gone, explaining that Gong Seo-goo (Hyun Bong-sik) and Ma Eun-young (Lee Bong-ryun) have been dating and it resulted in a cat fight in front of everyone. While it seems that the two are heading in a positive direction (and spoilers, they do eventually), other couples do not fare well.
Se-heon is served with divorce papers. He contests the ridiculousness of it, but the paperwork comes with heavily documented instances of every single time he’s insulted his wife. Yoon-joo is more than ready to move on with both her career and her life, but there’s a hint of regret. After panicked phone calls, Se-heon is forced to reckon with his behavior.
To further compound things, Se-heon’s business is failing. He lies to Shin-yu when asked about it, but there are many worries on the old man’s shoulders. When it is discovered by Yoon-jo, she returns home and tells Shin-yu it’ll only be until the business is back up on its feet. As all will find out in Episode 16, Yoon-joo stays for much longer than that.
Things ramp up in intensity for Hong-jo towards the end of Destined With You Episode 15. Not only does she have a confrontation at a school reunion with Yoon Na-yeon (Yura), wine tossing and all, but things hit a major peak with Shin-yu, as the two make love for the first time. With that emotional climax, things are looking up for the young woman. That is until a fateful encounter with Oh Sam-sik (Yoo Soon-woong) that leads to her being straight in Na Jung-beom’s (Ahn Sang-woo) clutches. Episode 15 ends with the reveal that she has been kidnapped, and looks to be unconscious in front of an altar.
Destined With You Episode 16 is meant to be the episode that ties everything up into a bow. The bow viewers get is a little loose and lopsided. The episode starts with the reveal that Hong-jo had been faking her lack of consciousness, with Sam-sik revealing Jung-beom’s plan to her. The police are on the way, but that doesn’t mean she’s out of danger just yet. While this shows some growth in Hong-jo, it’s still among the many dumb decisions she’s made across the series.
Things escalate because Jung-beom, at this point in Destined With You, has zero chill. Regardless of what Hong-jo wants, he is determined to marry their souls together and move on to the afterlife. If this development seems to have come from left field, that’s because not much has been explained outside of some expositional pieces. A chase ensues, but eventually, he overpowers her. Waking up to the full moon high in the sky, Hong-jo is forced to take a poison first as part of this ritual.
As she slips into unconsciousness, her past life passes before her eyes. Thankfully, Shin-yu and the police manage to find her barely on time. In a heartbreaking stroke of acting, Rowoon conveys Shin-yu’s heartbreak over the potential loss of Hong-jo convincingly. One would truly have to be heartbroken not to feel something in the moment. Fortunately for Shin-yu and Hong-jo, she turns out fine.
The wrap-up of the stalker storyline surrounding Na Jung-beom isn’t wholly satisfying. With his face appearing in Episode 14’s big blast from the past flashback, it felt like more should have been added to explain his connection with Hong-jo. There’s also the unexplained element surrounding his use of similar spells to Aeng-cho, culminating in the attempt at a soul marriage in Destined With You Episodes 15-16. While he fails to triumph in the end, Jung-beom’s storyline, now completed, feels like a missed opportunity for more.
Things are looking up for Hong-jo, though. After the incident, Shin-yu’s parents seem to have come around on her. Even if her cooking skills aren’t up to par. At work, a video surfaces showing Na-yeon admitting to using her father, the mayor, to ruin Shin-yu’s prospects. It also shows her assaulting Hong-jo, revealing how truly maligned Hong-jo has been all along. For both the mayor and Na-yeon, the world spirals from there.
For Na-yeon, her reputation is in shambles. The relationship she had with the man she cheated with ends and she finds out how truly expendable she is. Furious and placing the blame solely on Hong-jo, she goes to confront the woman at her apartment. The police show up conveniently then, arresting Na-yeon for her participation in aiding Jung-beom. In the end, though, she denies any responsibility, proving to Hong-jo and the viewers that she will never truly learn.
In the case of the mayor and Haum Construction, Jae-kyung enlists Shin-yu’s help after he whistleblows on them over the bribery and other activities. This provides the final step towards unification between the two, despite Jae-kyung not getting the girl in the end. Ever ambitious, the move opens him up further into the world of politics and his star looks to be bright by the end of Destined With You.
Speaking of bright stars, despite some embarrassing missteps in Episode 15 and much protestation, Gong Seo-goo and Ma Eun-young tie the knot. Shin-yu does catch the bouquet but the next step for our lovebirds isn’t marriage quite yet. They first move in together and settle the mystery surrounding a dream by Eun-wol (Kim hye-ok) in the previous episode about the two having a girl. As it turns out, Shin-yu’s parents have surprisingly conceived a child, meaning that they are unlikely to split up anytime soon.
Destined With You Episode 16 ends happily, with Hong-jo agreeing to marry Shin-yu after a beach proposal. In the series’ final minutes, they go to re-bury the book of spells at Mt. Onju. While the spellbook brought them together, it is now time to bury it away. An image of them walking through a field leaves things on a happier note, but the closing scene shows Shin-yu’s past self with the box. Alone and sad, there is a leftover ominous feeling. What it could mean? That’s left up in the air. As far as happy endings go, Destined With You ends with one.
Destined With You Episodes 15-16 had the daunting task of needing to wrap things up as best as possible. With the series having struggled with pacing and letting the mystery reveal itself, other plot points took precedence over others. It’s clear that some storylines were more developed than others and suffered from a lack of planning in these final two episodes. This shows itself in the rushed nature of some side plots like Shin-yu’s parents’ marriage issues.
As far as the romance goes, Hong-jo and Shin-yu finally get the happy ending that we were all hoping for. After all of their trials and tribulations, it was much deserved. But in some ways, particularly because of how rushed time the Episode 14 past lives reveal reads when compared to the entirety of the series, there’s a slightly empty feeling that comes with it. Destined With You Episodes 15-16 conveniently leave things with them on a high note, but whether or not it feels earned will be left to the viewers.
The Destined With You Episodes 15-16 and the complete season are now available on Netflix
Destined With You Episodes 15-16
Destined With You Episodes 15-16 conveniently leave things with them on a high note, but whether or not it feels earned will be left to the viewers.