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Series / Healer

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A 2014 - 2015 action thriller Korean Drama which focuses on a mysterious night courier, a tabloid reporter who aspires to be a 'real' reporter, and a renowned journalist, united by the mystery of a decades-old incident involving a group of friends who ran an illegal broadcasting station.

Tropes used in this series:

  • Affably Evil: Moon-shik is so damned affable that even his own brother (an eye-witness to some of his deeds) can barely believe he does the things he does.
  • Attempted Suicide: The plot kicks off when Young Shin talks a woman down from killing herself, in part by admitting she was nearly driven to suicide, too...when she was seven years old.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: lampshaded. Young Shin has crushes on both Moon Ho and Healer... and then meets them both.
  • Badass Biker: Young-jae / Teacher, who during the pirate radio days, protected the mobile station (aka, Moon-shik's truck) by blocking and diverting the police.
  • Badass Driver: Young Moon-shik.
  • Beware the Quiet Ones / The So-Called Coward: Bong Soo tends to cower, squeal, and run which point, Healer generally arrives.
  • Big Bad: Kim Moon-sik.
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  • Bigger Bad: The Elder aka Park Jung-dae.
  • Cute Bruiser: Tae Young, although she's not in Healer's league.
  • Cain and Abel: Moon Shik and Moon Ho.
  • Casual Danger Dialogue: Healer and Ahjumma.
  • Cool Shades: The Healer's sport glasses, which include cameras, hands-free phones and face-recognition. Slightly less cool are the glasses he wears in disguise, which have the same capabilities but also look dorky.
  • Cool Old Lady: Jo Min Ja, aka "Ahjumma", Healer's boss/handler.
  • Cool and Unusual Punishment: Jung Hoo takes advantage of Secretary Oh's OCD to torment him by....knocking books off the shelves of Moon-Shik's office and threatening to smash expensive vases.
  • Dark and Troubled Past
    • Jung Hoo was abandoned by his mother, stigmatized by his father's "suicide," sent to reform school, and finally, abandoned by the last adult he placed his trust in (Teacher).
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    • Young Shin was abused by her foster families and nearly Driven to Suicide—at age seven.
  • Deal with the Devil: Sang-soo is offered a lucrative contract by Secretary Oh, and warned that the price is selling his soul.
    • Moon-shik made one in the past to protect Myung-hee.
  • Dirty Old Man: played for laughs with Teacher, who, after scoping out Young Shin, decides to put Jung Hoo on a plane to Australia:
    Teacher: "A girl like her would prefer a man with some experience and knowledge of the world. As soon as he's gone, I'll just step into his place and pick up the slack."
    Min Ja: (gagging noise over radio.)
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Moon Shik freely admits his brother and wife are his Achilles' Heel. He is emotionally destroyed when they both turn against him.
  • Evil Laugh: Ahjumma's telepresence announces itself with a signature cackling laugh. As does Teacher.
  • Faking the Dead
  • Genre Blind: Jung Hoo walks right into a Two-Person Love Triangle.
  • Glory Hound: Moon-ho is accused of being this, milking his reputation as "the honest reporter" for fame and adulation. Tellingly, he doesn't deny it.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Young Jae takes Jung Hoo's place when the latter is cornered by Double-S goons.
  • He Knows Too Much
    • Go Sung Chul is killed and Healer framed in episode 1 because of this.
    • Hwang Jae Guk is killed for knowing about the Elder. (And for being a pain in the ass.)
  • Hollywood Hacking: Healer's boss Min Ja is one of these.
  • Holding Hands: used thematically. Young Shin tends to grab Jung Hoo's wrist in his Bong Soo persona; he does the same to her as Healer. By the end of the series they are holding hands with Intertwined Fingers and she lampshades the change.
    • Moon-Shik and Myung Hee initially hold hands warmly; later, as Myung Hee finds out more of his illegial activities, she allows him to hold her hands but does not reciprocate. when she finally leaves him, she actively pushes his hands away.
  • Generation Xerox: Ji Hoo looks exactly like his father, to the point that Myung Hee recognizes him on sight.
  • Honey Trap: Yeon Hee is accused of this.
  • Intrepid Reporter: Young-shin yearns to be one. Moon-ho plays the trope straight.
  • In the Hood + Coat, Hat, Mask: defines the Healer getup, with mask replaced by Cool Shades. Impractical, but quite cool.
  • Kick Chick: Healer's "minion" has a fighting style that relies on this.
  • Knight In Sour Armor: Young-jae and Min-ja. The former admits that he forbore to dig into the true cause of his friends' deaths because he doesn't want to lose what interest he has in humanity; Min Ja resigned her position in the police when forced to destroy evidence against the Elder.
  • Kubrick Stare: Secretary Oh's default expression.
  • Lap Pillow: After being drugged by the Elder Jung Hoo lays his head in Young Shin's lap while trying to recover.
  • Lethal Chef: Jung Hoo cannot cook.
  • Loners Are Freaks: Near the beginning of the series, Jung Hoo mentions that he only has three numbers saved to his phone: his boss's, his sidekick, and his favorite fried chicken takeout.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Moon Shik begins as one of these; the Elder is behind him;
  • Makeover Montage: When Jung Hoo and Young Shin have to go undercover to sneak into a screened press conference. Complete with Jung Hoo fidgiting, fighting back, and trying to run away from the stylists.
  • Missing Mom:
    • Jung Hoo's mother, although he later contacts her and is on friendly terms with her now.
    • Young Shin's adopted mother is dead; and she begins the series believing her biological mother dumped her.
    • Min Ja, a former police detective, was one of these to her son—who died while she was working a case.
  • Morality Chain / Love Makes You Evil: Myung Hee manages to be both of these for Moon-Shik, who accepted a Deal with the Devil to save her life from the Elder.
  • Nonchalant Dodge: A beautiful one in the final ep. Sang Soo attempts to slap Jung Hoo, who is supposedly working with them and will theoretically have to take it. who dodges, causing SS to slap his own sidekick.
  • Not a Morning Person
  • Omniscient Council of Vagueness: played for chilling realism. The council isn't a group of supernaturally or technologically advanced supermen—it's merely a handful of wealthy and connected politicians and businessmen using their power to control the media and sway public opinion, buy politicians, intimidate the police and murder whoever gets in their way.
  • One Degree of Separation
  • One-Word Title: Appears to be a Job Title.
  • Parkour: Healer, Tae Young.
  • Plucky Girl
  • Post-Dramatic Stress Disorder: Myung Hee has an epilepsy-like condition that could possibly kill her if she is exposed to too much emotional stress. Young Shin has panic attacks when exposed to violence, as a result of past trauma.
  • Parental Abandonment: Young Shin believes she was subjected to this.
    • Jung Hoo's mother remarried after his father's death and left him with his grandmother.
    • Jung Hoo's Teacher (Young Jae) left the country after training him and hasn't contacted him in eight years.
  • Pet the Dog: Subverted example. Although Moon Shik sincerely congratulates Young Shin on making an impression (crashing his press conference), Moon Ho is quick to point out that this doesn't absolve him for abandoning her as a child and telling her mother she was dead.
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner: Teacher gets one on himself.
    "I told you. I don't have much time."
  • Punctuated Pounding: In the final ep, Jung Hoo beats up a couple of thugs who tried to kidnap Young Shin's father and uncle, while formally introducing himself to the latter, apologizing for having decieved them earlier, and warning Young Shin to keep her eyes closed.
  • Protagonist Title
  • Rape as Drama: Chae Young Shin exposes a prostitution ring involving high political figures as clients.
  • Roof Hopping: How Healer gets around CCT Vs.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Ahjumma usually loafs her computer lair around in pyjama pants and unkempt hair. When she dresses up to go out in public, however...
  • She-Fu: male version. One fight literally takes place with Healer bouncing off a construction scaffold as if it's uneven bars.
  • Smug Snake: Secretary Oh.
  • True Companions: One of the driving questions of the series is how the friendship was broken, by whom and in what way.
  • Voice with an Internet Connection: Literally in the case of Min-ja, who functions as Healer's eyes and ears.


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