‘Goodbye Earth’ Ending Explained: Is It Really “Together Until The End?”


The dystopian K-drama Goodbye Earth is an apocalyptic 12-part series that dwells on the idea of what happens at the brink of the end of the world rather than the end of the world itself. The series follows a non-linear structure that shows the South Korean population’s struggle with the scientific fact that an asteroid will be hitting the peninsula in about 200 days. For the most part, there’s nothing new in the series, and as it goes in situations such as this one, the country becomes war-torn, crime increases, there’s a lack of resources, and the country is under martial law. Still, there’s something that makes you want to keep watching Goodbye Earth. As it goes with K-dramas, it’s more about the characters than the actual plot. Not to say that the plot isn’t important; however, it’s the way the narrative is carried forward through each character that makes such dramas so entertaining, endearing, and also emotionally impactful. Now you’d imagine that in a situation like this, you’d hear the story from the point of view of some political figure or maybe someone important. However, Goodbye Earth is told from the point of view of a mere middle-school teacher who is determined to keep her kids safe in this terrifying situation. Actually, for the most part, the show is quite tragic. Within the first couple of episodes, we learn that her students were kidnapped by a gang who wanted to traffic kids. However, in a chaotic situation, they end up killing off most of the kids in Se-Kyung’s class, leaving her completely devastated and feeling responsible for the situation. So, the question isn’t: Did the asteroid hit the country?; it’s more: Did Se-Kyung get revenge for her kids?

Spoiler Alert

What’s the Last Episode About? 

For the most part, the final episode of Goodbye Earth is a literal goodbye. It’s about everyone coping with the situation and imagining what the future might be like. Of course, there’s a small sense of hope for some who imagine what it’ll be like if the asteroid ends up, well, missing its mark. It’s a little bit funny, and it’s also quite human; however, it’s not real. So, let me break it to you now. The asteroid did hit. Of course, we don’t see its impact because that’s not what the show is here for. It’s to show human resilience in the face of a crisis. At the end of the day, I’d say it’s an action thriller with a teacher at the center of it. In episode 12, there are 20 days remaining for the asteroid to hit, and so everyone is finally at the end of their willpower. For most, it’s a celebratory time. Apart from Se-Kyung and, in turn, Yun-Sang, everyone in the town celebrates their lives together. In-A quits the military, Sung-Jae gives up his priesthood, and Gye-Hyang says goodbye to the little kids she’s been looking after all this time, so they can be in a safer place. We don’t actually see them go; however, I suppose we can imagine Woo-Chan and Hae-Chan escaping the asteroid. 

This lot of people is quite religious, and they spend a lot of time at the church, singing Ave Maria, and simply finding happiness in conversations with each other. Even Father Baek makes an appearance; however, he’s somewhat lost his mind, and it seems the townspeople are kind enough to ignore his mistakes and send him off calmly. In-A leaves the military and decides to spend the rest of her life, i.e., 10 odd days, by herself, traveling into an abyss of nothingness. She does manage to speak her mind to her mother, and she even thanks Se-Kyung for everything their friendship has brought her. 

Is It Really “Together Until the End?” 

Throughout the series, the Woongchun City residents speak the phrase “Together until the end.” It’s a way for them to motivate each other to stay alive, despite their collective fate. Though at the end, everybody disperses into their own homes, I suppose they kept their word to each other by surviving till the very end. I suppose the Woongchun City residents were all quite optimistic and had some great leaders to keep them together. Yun-Sang even documents everything that’s happened in the last few days before the asteroid and sends it wherever possible. Se-Kyung meets up with Kim Bo-Ae, the grandmother with dementia, whose son was a greedy politician, and speaks her mind to her. Se-Kyung is still struggling with the fact that her kids were wrongfully killed when they could’ve lived on with her. Despite her smiling face and her optimistic words to other people, in the back of her mind, it’s always been the middle-school kids who were killed for no reason. Ultimately, she decides revenge is better than dying unsatisfied. 

What Does Se-Kyung Do? 

In Goodbye Earth‘s ending, Se-Kyung decides to take matters into her own hands and goes to the club where the big bad wolf resides. Just as the asteroid comes nearer to Earth, she begins shooting at the bad guys. In the last moment, we see Se-Kyung face off with the main boss, both with guns in their hands. The scene switches to the outside, where the asteroid gets nearer, and the sound of a gunshot ends the show. I think we can believe that Se-Kyung finally got her revenge and followed through as a protector. In the meantime, even Yun-Sang, who tries desperately to keep her safe, decides to follow her with bottles filled with chloroform. From what I understand, I don’t think he actually reaches the club in time; however, he tries his hardest to make it to his wife and live up to “together until the end.” 

The end of the series is both sad and hopeful at the same time. We get a dream scenario where the kids float away on a hot air balloon as the adults all say goodbye to them from a flowery rooftop. There’s also a bunch of other balloons around them which read words like “peace” on them. I suppose it’s to symbolize that everyone is willing to face their fate. In the background, we hear Se-Kyung narrating a goodbye to all the people who were together with her this whole time—the place, the food, and everything that helped them survive. A real “Goodbye Earth.” She also fulfills her role as a caregiver, a teacher who protects her kids right until the last moment, because that’s all she really really cared about. 

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Ruchika Bhat
Ruchika Bhat
When not tending to her fashion small business, Ruchika or Ru spends the rest of her time enjoying some cinema and TV all by herself. She's got a penchant for all things Korean and lives in drama world for the most part.

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