Do Hee In ‘My Demon,’ Explained: Does She Stop Blaming Herself For Her Parents’ Deaths?


The naming of the leads in My Demon strikes us as a rather interesting way of connecting the characters and their journey. “Do Hee” is said to mean ‘proud’ and ‘haughty,’ and it is no surprise that she is introduced as the ‘devil in Hermes.’ Meanwhile, “Gu Won” means ‘salvation, and that is what Do Hee and Gu Won turn out to be for each other.

Right from the beginning of My Demon, it is unclear why Do Hee has been called the ‘devil.’ She is generally shown to be a workaholic and rather capable when it comes to holding her own against difficult people and situations. If that is what it takes to be a ‘devil,’ then it is a rather sexist characterization. On the other hand, if that was not the case, then it is a serious lapse in the writing of Do Hee’s character. Regardless, Do Hee’s life was shown as being lonely and ridden with guilt. Since she was a workaholic, she did not have any friends. The only people she could count on were Ms. Shin, Seok Hoon, and Cheon Suk. Do Hee treasured her relationship with these three, and one of the reasons she did not marry Seok Hoon was that she could not jeopardize their equation.

Do Hee says that her time with her parents, which were the first eleven years of her life, was the happiest she had ever been. It is sad that she has never experienced something close to it since then. Do Hee did not celebrate her birthday because she blamed that for the deaths of her parents. She had only acted like any other eleven-year-old, but its consequences weighed on her heart and on her life in a way that she was never able to get over.

Some people just need more love in their lives, and Do Hee was one of them. To compensate for what she lacked, she immersed herself in her work. Maybe that is what gave her a prickly personality—the fact that she had to deal with people either trying to bring her down or looking for their own interests through her position. However, Do Hee was only accused of being untraditional. Unlike Gu Won, nobody ever said that she had a bad personality.

Wolsim was suffering due to the kind of life she had to lead in an unequal world. She had just lost her friend, yet she wasn’t allowed to grieve because it was considered to be a ‘luxury’ way above a ‘lowly courtesan.’ Wolsim was famous and one of the best in her business, but even that did not grant her humane treatment. She tells her fellow courtesans that, whether they are famous or not, all of them are courtesans and will be treated the same. It had to be the limitations of that life that made her want to give it up. That was when she met Yi Sun and fell in love with him. Wolsim did not see a future with him at first, but it is the nature of love to be hopeful, and that gives rise to the will to live, to see what else life could offer and whether it could open any doors that would allow her to be with her loved ones. Yi Sun opened that door by discovering Catholicism. He found a religion that allowed them to stand as equals next to each other, and for once, Wolsim was happy. It wasn’t just love but the dignity of this new life that made her want to live. When Wolsim died, she did not have any regrets because she had already found what she wanted. For the sake of Yi Sun, she wished that he would forget her so that he could be peaceful in this life or the next.

In the present day, it is worth asking why Do Hee wanted to inherit Cheon Suk’s company. Do Hee had already made a name for herself and did not need Cheon Suk’s money or connections to settle in life. She could have felt competitive or possessive, thinking that protecting the company was a way to protect Cheon Suk’s legacy itself, which she was sure would be destroyed if it went into the hands of her son or daughter. But Cheon Suk did not care about all that. She just wanted Do Hee to be happy, and if the only way to get that was to remove oneself from the toxicity of the company, then so be it. Do Hee initially resisted this idea, but when she fell in love, she realized that she may take on the danger for herself, but she wasn’t willing to risk someone else for it. Do Hee had married Gu Won for her protection and seamless ascension to the company; therefore, letting go of it did not make sense. It was the ultimate proof of her love for him and her own happy ending. If Gu Won had not come into her life, Do Hee would have continued fighting for the company. Maybe she would have been successful, but her happiness was never guaranteed. That is the reason she called Gu Won her salvation. He opened a world of happiness for her with his presence and love. Do Hee was aware that her life with him was far from perfect, but it wasn’t that great to begin with. This is why she did not mind the pitfalls of his job. Do Hee was shocked when she saw him in action and also when she came to know that he had taken her father’s life. It was a difficult moment for her, but she wasn’t hypocritical. She had always known the nature of his job, so to break up with him because it personally affected her would be illogical. Do Hee would have gotten over it if Gu Won had wanted to, but he chose to leave instead.

When Gu Won was supposedly dead, Do Hee must have once again wondered whether it was her fault. Technically, she had lost her life first when she came in the way of a bullet. Gu Won perished while trying to bring her back, so, at some point, Do Hee must have accepted that guilt couldn’t cloud her love forever. The only thing left was to reunite with Gu Won, which she eventually did. It was God’s way of granting a Christmas miracle that had brought back Gu Won, but would Do Hee ever wonder that if she hadn’t asked, it might not have happened? God granted her wish because she asked for it, and that counts for something. At the end, Do Hee realizes that her father had staked his life for her sake. Her staying alive had given her ten beautiful years with her parents, and she couldn’t smudge that with unnecessary guilt. Along with Gu Won, this realization was Do Hee’s happy ending.

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Divya Malladi
Divya Malladi
Divya spends way more time on Netflix and regrets most of what she watches. Hence she has too many opinions that she tries to put to productive spin through her writings. Her New Year resolution is to know that her opinions are validated.

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