It’s Okay to Not be Okay Ends with Episode 16 Ratings High of 6.224% and 7.348% and a Perfect Complete Story With Heart and Soul

Two decades of Hallyu dramas under the belt leaves me a bit jaded and always guarded for the other shoe to drop, namely a really crappy ending. Not that an ending is unhappy for the OTP, even happy endings have been crappy because it’s unsatisfying in tying up loose ends and giving the characters their proper conclusion. Everything about the last episode of It’s Okay to Not be Okay was perfection, from first to last frame. My heart gushed, it soared, it teared, it laughed, this was what is asked by a viewer/reader when we sit down and say “tell me a story”. Moon Young and Kang Tae got their romantic happy ending, but more importantly Sang Tae got his life happy ending, independence and agency and best of all the ability to express his emotions as he made his own decisions.

Evil mommy was a catalyst and a boogie man but the three leads conquered not just her seeds of evil but also their own limitations, ending with the ability to seek their own happiness. And that ability doesn’t guarantee everything will work out, but at least they have the courage to try and the safety of having their family unit and a greater friend unit around them. This drama was my balm in an otherwise hard year and I highly highly recommend it now that it’s over even moreso than the exciting creative beginning episodes. This is a drama that will have lasting power. As for ratings, the average is 5.425% which is just below what Arthdal Chronicles averaged last year. It’s not the hit that the quality should have gotten but for cable network tvN it’s squarely in the middle of the ratings pack. I’m thrilled Kim Soo Hyun picked this as his comeback project, his Kang Tae was nnnnnngggggg so amazing and so hot to behold, coupled with Seo Ye Ji and Oh Jung Se’s equally riveting performances and the trio brought a fairy tale to life.


It’s Okay to Not be Okay Ends with Episode 16 Ratings High of 6.224% and 7.348% and a Perfect Complete Story With Heart and Soul — 47 Comments

  1. Masterpiece drama. When I watch the last episode, I felt so warm. Truly healing drama. The chemistry among the cast is superb especially the trio. It will be fun to see them in variety show since three of them are so hyper lol

    • Oh my gosh, Kayla. It was just so perfect! I laughed, I cried, I tingled and sizzled (guess you know which scenes ?) and I healed.

      I’d love to see them in a variety show, too. Or anywhere else really. ?

  2. This one enters my top K-drama list of all time at #2. So creative, innovative and just amazing. I hope this crew of director, writer and actors can reunite for a new project together down the line – I will watch it.

  3. I don’t like how her ASPD is a gimmick and at the end, this is just another story about surviving trauma and “mental health” with love and childhood connection, at least have some therapy and not use the “bizarre medical” to cure people.

    The one that actually has good story is t sangtae and the supporting characters.

    • So true. Completely agree with you. It started out well but in the end its just another k drama where love magically cures everything.

  4. Thank you ockoala for enjoying this masterpiece. I am a huge fan of KSH and the way he emotes is just wonderful.

    However, my parallel and more illiterate version is more into LMH and I had to relay the following message from her to you: IOTNBO IS CRAPP, TVN RATIINGS ARE LOWE, BICK FLOPP ON NOETFLAX

  5. This drama will be one of my all-time faves for a very long time! This is the gold standard for a healing drama. Loved the character development and growth of each character. Loved the cast and crew and all their hard work to make this a tight, deep, coherent, emotional, visually-pleasing drama. Loved, loved, loved how KSH acts with every cell in his body, you can just feel the sincerity and how easily he reacts to his co-stars acting, so natural. I don’t think there’s anyone better among his peers. Loved how the final episode shows us that they are still close but no longer co-dependent with each other. It’s like they’ve morphed into really beautiful butterflies with their own wings. So happy KSH chose this as his comeback project, he should be very proud of his work. The rest of the cast and crew should be very proud of this drama. Congrats to all of them!

  6. Kinda disappointed that all the Mom’s mystery was simplified and not satisfyingly explained, considering all the stories and complexities told in earlier episodes. Sang Tae’s character is the best and my most favourite. He grows up so much more than the two, becoming a fully dependent individual and a real hyung to his two dongsaengs. Too bad the focus on Mun Yeoung and Gang Tae stopped on them being a couple, not much on them as individuals finding new purposes in their life. The show had much more potentials underexplored, but I agree that the final episode is good enough in making the conclusion and sending message to wrap the story. Still very good drama with unique plotline and topic. I love the final message that what the witch stole was not their faces, but their courage to find happiness. In the end it depends on you how your destiny will be. Love the drama very much.

  7. The story about the psycho mom was not really explored and it was so far-fetched. But the ending really gave me a warm feeling. Everybody in this drama did some growing up in their own way. And finally it was love and kindness that melted the icy heart. Love the growing up Sang Tae did and his growth frees Kang Tae to explore himself. And it’s true what Kang Tae said that Moon Young will not be able to live alone again because now she knows warmth and full stomach. So good to see the 3 of them embark on their journey courageously finding happiness while having each other’s back.

  8. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this drama. Could not say it enough that this tops my K-drama for the year. I didn’t even mind if the evil eomma skit was short lived, since she was not really the focus of the whole story. A lot of lessons to hear and true to its meaning, it definitely was a healing drama.

  9. BEAUTIFUL Drama! Wonderfully nuanced and crafted – by both writer, and actors

    Ep 16 = One of the best final episodes of any drama (and I have been on KDramas since 2001).

    Tying up loose ends fluidly without losing steam, and so satisfyingly. Everyone, still keeping in character. It had me riveted; in tears, in laughter, cheering … and also sad we won’t be seeing Sang-tae, Kang-tae, Mun-yeong and Mang-tae anymore.

  10. I don’t have enough words to describe how much I LOVE this drama. And all the beautiful ways it’s broken me and healed me at the same time.

    This insightful Tumblr post shed some light on why the nurse’s backstory wasn’t explained and I’m content with it: wasn’t the focus

    IOTNBO is an absolute masterpiece for many reasons, the best being the emotional impact, healing and joy it’s brought to a lot of people, myself included.

    I’ll definitely be rewatching this one again and again.


  11. I knew this drama was popular with Ifans but had no idea the extent till i saw it trending number one one Twitter worldwide trends yesterday and i heard it not the first time.

    Anyways i have heard good things about the drama and i am glad they at least were able to break their pilot ratings

  12. The international craze surrounding this drama is definitely a factor why this should be considered a success in Korea and why BSR fans should stop proclaiming that their faves’ drama is the number 1. Hahaha.

  13. Love this drama. Cannot imagine my Saturday and Sunday without Its Okay To be Not Okay. Especially kim soo hyun antic behind the scene

  14. So, so good. I laughed, I cried. I’m bereft that it is over. I’m really going to miss this Masterpiece drama. I’ve been blessed by some awesome kdramas this year – IOTNBO and Train, and some good ones: I’ll Come To You When The Weather’s Nice, Hospital Playlist, CLOY and Itaewon Class. Wonder what other surprises this year has in store?

  15. Love this drama…the writing, directing, production, acting! It wasn’t a perfect drama but it came pretty close. Definitely one of my all-time favorites that I will re-watch and recommend to others. I am happy that KSH picked Psycho as his comeback project to show off his acting chops. Oh Jung Se’s performance was masterclass. This was the first drama that I have ever seen Seo Ye Ji in, and I am now a fan.

  16. I don’t say this lightly because I’ve seen sooo many dramas in the past 10 years. But man this had one of the best endings I’ve ever seen. I was in tears practically the entire episode. In particular the last scene had me sliming and crying every time I see it. And I’ve seen it 4 times so far. Sang Tae letting Kang Tae go and allowing both of them to cut off their leashes – that’s one of the best scene in this drama and any drama I’ve seen. It’s the meaning behind it, the thank you, the thank god you’re my brother – it was simply heart warming. What a beautiful ending.

    SYJ was amazing and I hope she’s able to take this career defining role and performance to establish herself as an A-lister because she truly deserves it. But the Daesang worthy performances came from the brothers who were simply phenomenal. OJS and KSH were another level bringing home their characters with such devastating pain and also so much hope. I’m genuinely looking forward to next year’s Baeksang because I’m expecting this drama to sweep a lot of wins in many categories. It’s been a glorious ride.

  17. I recommend it . I’m happy that KSH choose this project, he show us a maturing in acting unlike Ji Chang Wook and lee Min Ho who couldn’t via their projects . His performance was a perfection of sincerity , Seo Ye Ji was his alter ego as for Oh JUNG SE ‘s acting , it was amazing (but he aces all his performances). It is a heart warming fairy tale . I don’t know much about others areas but in Europe Perrault , Grimm or Andersen’s fairies are very interesting if you study them via a philosophical point of view . You can see the dark side and learn a lot of life lessons .For me This drama was that . A life lesson .

  18. What an amaaaazing military comeback from KSH. Not only was it such a high quality drama from its writing to its direction; I thought he was able to really show another level of acting. I didn’t know it being possible but he’s improved even more. The ending of ep9 remains the best acting performance I’ve seen so far this year. Really looking forward to his next project. Hopefully sooner rather than later.

  19. Good to see the comments section praising the drama and actors instead of bringing fan wars. It’s been a while for a Top Hallyu actor’s thread to not be invaded and there’s already 25 comments.
    This drama was everything. I liked KSH in the past, but this made me *love* him. His acting range is really quite incredible for someone so young. I haven’t seen such rave reviews for an actor of his age group in DC for a while now. He’ll reach insurmountable heights if he continues to pick great projects and continue honing his craft!

  20. The ending was as perfect as it can get. It made my heart full. I did not like the mom’s arc. It was unnecessary, over dramatic and the show could have explored a better final conflict. Having said that, it still gave us plenty of great stories and arcs through out the extent of the show. I am glad Kim Soo Hyun picked this up. It was a gamble and it did pay off for him. Seo Ye Ji, Oh Jung Sae and the rest of the cast also did splendidly. This one will stay with me for a while.

  21. Do KSH and SYJ date each other??? The kiss scenes… oh my… i hope they do.

    Gonna miss this drama a lot.

    One of my faves this year.

    Gonna miss this troublemaker trio.

  22. I was worry that it’ll be a crappy ending and I’m glad that it’s not. As much as I kinda want to know how the mother survived but I really don’t really care all that much. To me she represented a traumatic past that Moon Young didn’t want to re-live and she’s doing everything she can to move pass it, so I’m okay with it. I can identify with that thought process, some of our past mistakes or traumatic events can be very difficult to shake off. Since we can’t change it, so there’s no point in thinking about it but to move on.

  23. A great drama, albeit a meandering storyline. It’s a real treat for K-drama fans who like this type of genre and plot. Indeed superb casting and acting by the leads and they look amazing on screen together. Kudos to the whole IOTNBO team.

  24. Okay I know I’ve harped on about this before but does anyone know what happened to Mangtae? Anyway this drama journey with the PBIO nation/Okay family has been a blast! Fun times with a tonne of tears but worth it nonetheless. I’ve enjoyed the reaction videos by Lance A lot vlogs on You tube to just get me through this winding down and the separation anxiety from IOTBN. If you want something to lol over just watch his reactions to the episodes which are absolutely gorgeous! His impersonation of the Head Nurse is fricken hilarious and especially the kiss scenes oh my gosh I find solace and just can’t stop laughing. Thank you Koala for your write ups too.

  25. A person who used to be in mental health institution commented in IONTBO Reddit that Director Oh’s gesture of giving the patient shoes is a real life symbolism of setting him free. In mental health hospital the shoes are taken away from patients (considered a dangerous object) and only returned when the patient is recovered..

    Love that the drama paid attention to details 🙂

  26. Exaggerated commemts.
    KSH is so hyped. and the FL, I dont know what her name is, always see her face on IG. her face and voice- more masculine than than Male lead. she looks much much older than KSH
    Her body- just asking- are they natural? . hahhaha.

  27. I don’t like his acting in it. I like Seo Ye Ji Acting more. She is basically stole the show away from the suppose male lead. She is sooo pretty too.. That height, body and face is too die for.

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