When it came to Min Ju’s death in A Time Called You, it was most certainly what enabled the love story of Jun Hee and Si Heon and also what caused it to come undone. In some ways, she was the catalyst for the love story of those two, including the fate of In Gyu and Chan Yeong later on.
While discussing the time travel of the series, we noted that Min Ju and Yeon Jun seem to be the transmitters or vessels that enabled the whole thing to happen. Min Ju’s death is probably what ironed out the complications of the timelines, since that was needed for the lovers to be together. But whatever fate decided, they were adamant about it because if she did not die one way, another was still waiting for her. Her continued life ended up meaning that every memory of Jun Hee and Si Heon’s story was erased.
In A Time Called You, Min Ju’s death was an intersection of two timelines, and let us take a look at how stubborn her fate really was and what it took to defeat it. In the first timeline, her death was at the hands of a psychotic person, whose only purpose in doing that was to collect beautiful things. He tried to kill her twice, and the first time was when Chan Yeong tried attacking her with a blunt object. This was when he had just discovered that time travel was possible through the recorder, and he had found his target in Min Ju. He may have killed her, but Jun Hee unintentionally rescued her by waking up Chan Yeong in the present day. That led to certain chaos of its own since Chan Yeong found that he could give free rein to his psychopathic side without facing the repercussions. Whenever he traveled back in time, he would be occupying his brother’s body, and that meant that Chan Hui would be declared the culprit and not Chan Yeong. This is why he ran away with the tape recorder and knew that he had to kill Min Ju to keep up the chain of events.
Much like Yeon Jun (as Si Heon) when he was about to board the flight where he would lose his life, even Chan Yeong had figured out that if things did not happen a certain way, the tape recorder would never reach Jun Hee, and subsequently, he would not be able to kill people the way he wanted to, which was imperative to him. Therefore, he had to go back in time to try and kill Min Ju once again. But this time, it was Jun Hee in Min Ju’s body, though the girl wasn’t letting her take control.
Why did Min Ju not let Jun Hee take over her body?
When Min Ju did not let Jun Hee take over her body, she was showing a lot of strength. For Min Ju, she had never thought that love and admiration were on the cards for her. But when she saw a way for it to come into her life, she was adamant about staying on it. That path was about how well she could emulate Jun Hee’s extroverted behavior. The point was that Min Ju’s shyness did not stop her from wanting to be a part of social groups. She did not know how to do that, and that left her feeling as if it was her fault or a shortcoming. The fact is that it takes practice and experience to learn to navigate social situations, and for that, you have to try and fail a lot without judging yourself too harshly for it. That comes with a certain amount of kindness to oneself and an awareness that small embarrassments and awkwardness do not mean the end of the world.
Sadly, Min Ju never learned that because even when she got the friendship she had always wanted, it was for Jun Hee and not her. Therefore, she felt that all she had to do was be like her, and she could have her old life back. But that was not possible. One may learn things from others and eventually adapt certain behaviors to suit their life, but they can never be the other person. When Min Ju understood that she couldn’t be Jun Hee, she felt that there was no point in her life since it would be full of loneliness and rejection anyway. That is why, even though she knew that Chan Hui (as Chan Yeong) was about to kill her, she followed him.
However, Chan Yeong was arrested in the present day, which forced him out of Chan Hui’s body, meaning that once again, Min Ju did not die, but she could have at his hands. This is the second timeline, the one that seemed to have taken effect since this is what led In Gyu to go to jail. Min Ju knew that she couldn’t be like Jun Hee, have her life, or get the love she always got. But she could let people think otherwise. Even though life hadn’t given Min Ju good memories, she could let others think well of her as a last chance. And that is why, even though Min Ju did not die at the hands of Chan Yeong, she chose not to continue her life. But In Gyu was there to save her. He had always been ready to be by her side, but it had been a blind spot for Min Ju. At this moment, since Ingyu couldn’t save her, he wanted to grant her dying wish, which is why he said that he had killed her. He did not let her leave behind a “pitiful” impression of herself, and she would forever be thought of positively by the people.
Why did Jun Hee save Min Ju?
But that couldn’t have been the end of the story. We read somewhere that something may not be someone’s fault, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t their responsibility. Jun Hee did not owe it to Min Ju to save her and sacrifice her own love since she had already done the best she could to protect her. But she also knew that she couldn’t let her die so selfishly, which is why she went back and saved her. There is something called the “doctrine of last opportunity,” which states that if you are a person who can prevent a disaster that you did not start, yet you didn’t, then you are just as responsible for the consequences. This is how Jun Hee thought, which is why she knew that letting Min Ju commit suicide would be akin to murdering her with her own hands.
At the end of the day, Min Ju’s death could have happened for a number of reasons. Firstly, there was Chan Yeong, and he had two opportunities to do it. Then there was her own suicide, and finally, if only Jun Hee had decided to not care, it would have been her responsibility as well. But Min Ju had some good luck, and she not only survived but went on to have a good life in the future. Maybe that is why the events of A Time Called You happened to begin with.