‘Trolley’ Ending, Explained: Whose Side Did Hye-Joo Finally Decide To Take? Will There Be A ‘Trolley’ Season 2?


“Trolley,” directed by Kim Mun-Kyo and written by Ryu Bo-Ri, is a compelling mystery drama with unpredictable twists and turns that shake up the narrative and deal the characters a new deck each time. The series comes to an end with the 16th episode airing on Valentine’s Day and it comes laden with some mixed reviews. “Trolley,” the Korean drama, would be better defined by the domino effect than the trolley dilemma, and the series really played with our emotions throughout its latter half. The characters were well written and did portray the situation that the sexual abuse victims experience; however, certain twists really did feel a bit of an overkill, but they played out well in the end. “Trolley” will keep you guessing about what is to come, and the actors have played their parts really well. Almost too well because, at some points, they do tend to become rather frustrating.

Spoilers Ahead

‘Trolley’ Plotline: What Is The Series About?

“Trolley” follows the career of a politician, Nam Joong-Do, who is faced with some conflicts that affect both his personal and his political career. Nam Joong-Do is at first portrayed as a loving husband and a loving father; however, trouble strikes when he discovers his son Ji-Hoon’s death while searching for his disappeared daughter, Yoon-Seo. The events that followed changed the family for the worse as Hye-Joo, his wife, found herself confronting her past. New characters join the narrative as Ji-Hoon’s pregnant girlfriend, Soo-Bin, seeks shelter at Joong-Do’s home. Hye-Joo’s estranged friend, Seung-Ho, enters the scene to make her pay for her past as Youngsan, where Hye-Joo had escaped after being accused of making false allegations toward Seung-Ho, Seung-Hee’s twin brother. He had killed himself after Hye-Joo had reported him for sexual abuse. Meanwhile, Joong-Do finds out about the land Assemblyman Kang of the opposite party owned, and Kang is coincidentally related to Yoo-Shin, the mother of Seung-Hee and Seung-Ho, and had been the real owner; Kang had advised her to buy it. This ensures a long fight between the Daehan Party, the Nation, and the People’s Party. Strong evidence and the circumstances of the past put them at a standstill, while Hye-Joo later discovers her husband’s manipulation. Joong-Do coldly uses his son’s death to fuel his career and pass the Namgong Sol Act, while some harsh truths come to the surface. “Trolley” ends with Hye-Joo finding out about Joong-Do’s actions, and she ends her marriage while the other problems resolve themselves.

Was Ji-Hoon’s Death Really An Accident Or A Murder?

Ji-Hoon’s death had been shrouded in mystery from the very beginning of the series. Many fingers had been pointed at many of the characters, all the while concluding that it had been an accident. In the earlier episodes, “Trolley” threw some major shade at Joong-Do and Woo-Jae by almost painting them as murderers. Soo-Bin had been convinced that Joong-Do would murder his own son after Ji-Hoon witnessed his father having an affair. On the day of Joong-Do’s death, he brought Soo-Bin over to his home to help her out of her situation with her boyfriend, Jung-Dae. He had told her that his mother, Hye-Joo, would help her get away from him as they made their way over to meet Hye-Joo. However, Hye-Joo had been out, and the two kids had witnessed a conversation between Joong-Do and Yeo-Jin, which had led to Ji-Hoon mistaking the conversation for an affair.

Ji-Hoon later reveals to Soo-Bin that he had, in fact, witnessed Joong-Do having an affair with Yeo-Jin on the night of his graduation five years ago. The conversation had been the last straw for him, and the night before his death, he had gone to confront Joong-Do about the affair. Ji-Hoon, after their conversation, made his way to accept a drop from Jung-Dae to keep Soo-Bin safe, as she had informed him of her pregnancy right after their confrontation. He was intercepted by Woo-Jae, who had made him throw away the drop. Ji-Hoon had then made his way into the water to retrieve the packet and had thus died by drowning. This is what Woo-Jae had led everybody to believe, and the evidence that the dashcam held pointed to this narrative as well.

The finale episode of “Trolley” revealed that Woo-Jae had, in fact, acted just like in the footage, as he had made his way back to Joong-Do to help find Yoon-Seo, but before driving away, he had checked the rearview mirror and gotten out of the car immediately as he had seen Ji-Hoon drowning. However, instead of saving him, Woo-Jae watched Ji-Hoon drown because, to him, this was a service to Joong-Do’s career. Ji-Hoon had talked about destroying Joong-Do’s career after he had found out about his actions; he had taken steps to implicate his father more and had been on his way to getting arrested by the police for being in possession of meth, which is illegal in South Korea. This led Woo-Jae to remove the inconvenience that Ji-Hoon had portrayed so that Joong-Do could stay on track and focus on making the world better. Joong-Do got his punishment, but Woo-Jae walked away without being affected by what he had done by the end of “Trolley” Season 1.

‘Trolley’ Ending Explained: Whose Side Did Hye-Joo Finally Decide To Take?

“Trolley” Episode 12 could be marked as the beginning of Hye-Joo’s suspicions toward Joong-Do. Her illusions of being in a happy family shattered as Soo-Bin confessed about Joong-Do falsely accusing Ji-Hoon. Joong-Do had tried manipulating her into accepting a press conference because of her past exposure to the media. Later, in “Trolley” Episode 13, Soo-Bin told Hye-Joo about everything she knew. She even alerted her of the affair that could have been the reason behind Ji-Hoon’s untimely death. She warned Hye-Joo against trusting Joong-Do, and Hye-Joo quickly confronted Yeo-Jin and Joong-Do about the affair right after she returned home. She called Yeo-Jin to the study, and although she hesitated to step inside the room, Yeo-Jin put her discomfort aside and shut the door behind her. Hye-Joo confronted them both together; Yeo-Jin confessed to having an affair, while Joong-Do refused it. Hye-Joo believed Yeo-Jin over Joong-Do and asked them to leave the house. She gave Yeo-Jin the ultimatum while she prepared herself to get done with the press conference, as Seung-Hee’s appearance had given her the push she needed.

After all these years, Hye-Joo had finally gathered enough courage to stand up for herself. She revealed her past to the public and had to agree to accuse Ji-Hoon as well so that the Namgong-Sol bill could be passed. However, she received the news that Yeo-Jin had attempted suicide and therefore rushed to inquire after her in the hospital. Hye-Joo here learned that Joong-Do had, in fact, raped Yeo-Jin and had been pushing for the law to pass to atone for that mistake. Hye-Joo, after learning the truth, paid a visit to Chairwoman Woo to ask for guidance. She had been advised to keep this secret under wraps so that the law could be passed. Soo-Bin’s arrival had been crucial, as she could not understand how Hye-Joo could do such a thing. Hye-Joo had not refuted the accusations that Ji-Hoon had faced and had also agreed to keep the information about Joong-Do raping Yeo-Jin a secret as well. Yeo-Jin, advised by Woo-Jae, had also opted not to air out this situation.

Hye-Joo, as she went back to her home to confront Yoon-Seo and inform her of her father’s actions, realized that she needed to publicize this, and with the help of Woo, she held a press conference confessing to everything. She told the public that Ji-Hoon was innocent and also that her husband had sexually assaulted a close friend five years ago. Meanwhile, Ki-Young handed the evidence of the land, which could be disastrous for Kang, and used it to make Yoo-Shin confess the truth about lying to Seung-Ho so that the blame lies on Hye-Joo to Seung-Hee. On the other hand, Joong-Do seemed to be lost and attempted to drown himself in the ocean before Hye-Joo stopped him. He then, though repeatedly told otherwise by Woo-Jae, decided to turn himself in after Hye-Joo told him to face the shame and the blame properly and not take the coward’s way out. Joong-Do apologized to Yeo-Jin in public as he let himself get arrested and was held responsible for his actions.

Will There Be A ‘Trolley’ Season 2?

Joong-Do turned himself in as Woo declared that the Daehan Party had expelled him from both the party and the National Assembly. Seung-Hee, after she was told the truth, realized that she had trusted the wrong person, her mother. She realized that she had been brainwashed against Hye-Joo and had treated her like a murderer when, in fact, her family had been the ones in the wrong. She was quick to go to Hye-Joo after releasing Ki-Young from the burden of looking after her mother, as she herself could not bear to share a house with Yoo-Shin. She genuinely apologized to Hye-Joo and told her to sue her and her family, as she would atone for the harm that she and her family had done to her. Hye-Joo had never been the one to blame Seung-Hee and did not seem to take her up on that offer.

Meanwhile, Soo-Bin decided to tell Jung-Dae that the father had been him and not Ji-Hoon, while she also went to report him to the police station. She gave them her bank account and admitted to Jung-Dae using her bank account for the transaction of meth, saying she was ready to accept any punishment if it meant he was punished. She also confessed to an underground prostitution racket that had been created by Kang. Soo-Bin walked with just a fine while the police began raiding and investigating both Jung-Dae and Assemblyman Kang. Meanwhile, Joong-Do’s office got dismantled as Woo-Jae walked away with no repercussions.

If there is to be a “Trolley” Season 2, which is highly unlikely because the season ended with Hye-Joo being rid of her burdens and having decided to open a new sheet of paper to mark new beginnings, then if there is one, I would really like to see Woo-Jae get convicted for Ji-Hoon’s murder. Although Joong-Do had decided to turn himself in, all of Woo-Jae’s plans and manipulations had been for naught, as he lost his career in the blink of an eye. All of his work for nothing did serve as a good punishment; however, it wasn’t enough for murder and manipulation.

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Alokananda Sen
Alokananda Sen
Alokananda Sen holds a bachelor's degree in Journalism and Mass Communication. She has a keen interest in graphic designing, reading, and photography. Her insatiable appetite for cinema and pop culture enticed her to work as a content writer. She is currently pursuing a Post Graduate Diploma focused in Animation & VFX to explore a new dimension in her career.

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