You Are Too Much has given us many surprises and reversals, even including an urgent cast replacement when lead actress Gu Hye Sun endured a medical emergency. Another big surprise is the rare occurrence of the second lead male marrying the leading lady. Now that the drama has reached its grand finale, are there other surprises? Are you happy with the ending?

<Spoilers Alert> I have watched the entire series from beginning to end. Lots of spoilers are revealed here.

Was it worth it? That was the first question I asked myself after finishing the 50-episode drama series. Watching the series took at least 50 hours of one's life over six months. So the question is valid. In this case, I can answer "yes" but with a big qualifier. 

The drama certainly kept my attention for the entire series, as I not only watched every episode but also wrote articles about it. There were certainly plenty of times when I wanted to give up, especially when I saw Yoo Ji Na getting her way, but I also wished to know what was in Hae Dang's future: Will she overcome obstacles to find happiness with a true love?

It is unfortunate that Gu Hye Sun exited the drama after only six episodes because we'll never be quite sure if the story ultimately would have developed the way it did. On the other hand, it's nice to see Jang Hee Jin, the replacement actress, develop into a leading lady whose presence became indispensable. Her character fills the role of the catalyst for change and the gel that heals a broken, dysfunctional family and brings warmth and happiness. To that end, Miss Jang has done a wonderful job and I hope to see her again in other dramas.

If you've watched the ending, then you and I may be in the same boat, feeling that some of the characters should have received more punishment for all the pain they inflicted on the other characters (and to the viewers.)

How can the selfish, ruthless tycoon deserve to live happily with his family and even move on to a new and fulfilling career?

How does the controlling, greedy diva get to live a happy life, allegedly with her own cafe where she can sing?

Why does the annoying, scheming daughter-in-law get to reconcile with her husband who has finally gotten tired of her calculating ways?

Can villains really atone and transform? Do they deserve a happy ending?

Perhaps the scriptwriter anticipated our questions because everyone gives up something to receive his or her happy ending.

Park Sung Hwan (Jun Kwang Ryul), the ruthless tycoon and unkind husband and father, is freed from prison when the truth of his first wife's death is revealed. He gains happiness by giving up his company to his sons. Becoming the (beloved?) family head when Grandmother has passed away appears to be his new calling. 

Yoo Ji Na (Uhm Jung Hwa) finds solace in her heart when she and her son get back together. She eventually leaves South Korea for a new beginning. She was responsible for the deaths of two people even if she didn't kill them herself. Maybe we can think of her new life abroad as a permanent exile.

Second daughter-in-law, Go Na Kyung (Yoon Ah Jung), gets to reconcile with her husband. Really? She wreaked much havoc by manipulating people around her, albeit not very successfully, but enough to cause heartaches and infighting. I do feel for her husband, Hyun Sung (Jo Sung Hyun, aka Eru), whose first love disappeared somewhere early in the story, and now he'll go back to school. 

The theme of giving up for the greater good doesn't stop there. 

Kyung Soo (Kang Tae Oh) gives up his personal love for the greatest love of all, by becoming a priest to love all mankind. This transformation is probably the one I'll chew over for a long time to come. Why can't he be the one to travel abroad to study and have a new future? 

For comparison, I went back to watch episode 1 again. The original story started with the focus on two women who were linked together by the fact that one was the imitation singer of the other, the diva singer. The drama could have continued to explore their relationship as frenemies who compete in life and in love to eventually reconcile. 

Hyun Joon's story actually overtakes the central focus. He starts out as the angry son, very much at odds with his father at the beginning of the drama. In the middle of the drama, he gives up pursuing Hae Dang and gives blessings to her and Kyung Soo. He later steps in at Hae Dang's request to marry her, knowing that she still loves Kyung Soo. He is the one whose change sets off the chain reaction to heal and rebuild his fragmented family. His trust and patience have ensured a happy marriage. His own transformation ushers a new beginning for him and the rest of the story.

So the final lesson is about stepping back, accepting and forgiving, in order to receive the blessing of new happiness. Ultimately, You Are Too Much is a family drama infused with traditional Korean values that still influence a modern story. Keeping the family together serves the greater good when everyone gives up something he/she previously desired. 

My conclusion is that this drama is worth watching, but temper your expectation. If you focus on Hyun Joon and Hae Dang, you'll be fine. If you want a final showdown between good and evil, then the happy ending probably won't be enough for you. After the big surprise of Hyun Joon and Hae Dang's wedding, there are other worthwhile nuggets to enjoy, such as Hae Dang finally sings a hit song, two more weddings, and the tycoon family going on a picnic just like "normal people" would.

After six months, I have come to know these characters and I wish them the best. 

May they and the extended big family live happily ever after!


You Are Too Much

Starring Uhm Jung Hwa and Gu Hye Sun

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So is anyone shipping Jang Hee Jin and Jung Gyu Woon?

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