‘Revenant’ Episode 5 Recap & Ending, Explained: Did Gang-Mo Write The Letter To Hae-Sang?

This has got to be the most thrilling episode of Revenant by far. Already, so much has happened in this show, and we’re seeing the full effect of Kim Tae-Ri’s impeccable performance skills. The role is ideal for her, and she’s fantastic at playing both the sheep and the wolf! It’s incredible. A horror show like the Revenant is rare to come by because it’s fast-paced, but it doesn’t feel rushed. In Episode 4, we saw Hae-Sang and San-Yeong visit the village that did the ritual to ward off evil spirits. They’re searching for Jangjin-ri, the place where the little girl Lee Mok-Dan was killed by a shaman for a ritual. This week, we learned a lot more about the ritual and why Mok-Dan is tormenting the people of Seoul.


Spoilers Ahead

What Happens In Episode 5?

Hae-Sang finds the dolls used for the ritual in the village burnt to ashes. He can’t use them to save the village anymore and tries to figure out a new way to get rid of all the wandering ghosts. He plays a video of the ritual on the town speakers so that he can buy some time until he has a solid plan. The village uses a Jangseung, which is a piece of wood bark that protects the village as it channels deities to keep spirits away, but they also acted as navigation tools way back when. Now, the grandmother, who wanted to meet her daughter, decided to use the Jangseungs to show the spirits the way to the village so she could spend time with her dead daughter. By changing the south to the north, Grandma was able to bring all the wayward ghosts to Baekchagol village.


At the same time, San-Yeong sees numerous ghosts and tries to run as far away from the village as possible. She falls down on the street, and when she looks for help, she sees her father’s face in the window of a store. San-Yeong decides to talk to her father because she has so many questions. While she’s trying to communicate with her father, Hae-Sang finds the bark and begins to cut it down with an axe. Before all the ghosts disappear, thanks to Hae-Sang’s quick thinking, Gang-Mo tells San-Yeong that it isn’t him and that he is sorry, but he had no other choice. Before he can say anymore or she can respond, he’s gone. San-Yeong can’t make anything out of this information. San-Yeong faints soon after, and she wakes up the next day in a hospital nearby. She tells Hae-Sang that she “met” her father. San-Yeong’s mother arrives then, furious that she would come to this place without telling her anything.

Why Is San-Yeong’s Mother So Afraid Of Gang-Mo?

San-Yeong’s mother finally tells her why she ran away from her father all those years ago. She looks terrified even while narrating the story. At the house, San-Yeong had found a calendar that had a marking around a date in 2002. San-Yeong asks her mother what was so special about that date, and her mother says it was the due date of her sibling’s birth. In the flashback, we see the family getting ready for bed, looking just fine, until suddenly Gang-Mo says the second child has to die. San-Yeong’s mother becomes worried immediately and starts to step back before San-Yeong begins to cry. This is when Gang-Mo comes to his senses and runs out of the room. San-Yeong’s mother felt the urge to leave the house at that time to save her second child. She went to her mother’s home in Baekchagol and told her how afraid she was. Ultimately, she lost the baby anyway, and her mother told her that Gang-Mo was there that night. San-Yeong’s mother feared for San-Yeong at the time, and she wanted to get away from Gang-Mo as soon as possible. San-Yeong’s grandmother had brought San-Yeong back to Baekchagol. Later at night, San-Yeong’s mother heard screaming and went to check on her own mother. San-Yeong’s grandmother had jumped inside the well in front of San-Yeong’s mother after telling her to run as far away as possible. Shocked and terrified, San-Yeong’s mother had taken her to Seoul and never spoken about that place or that time again. According to San-Yeong’s mother, Gang-Mo had told her when they first met that in a village called Jangjin-ri, the second child always died. Whenever there was a large disaster, this ritual was conducted to protect the village from evil.


According to the book that San-Yeong had found, the specific ritual of making a juvenile ghost required the death of a second child because, according to Confucian philosophy, the first child is always protected. The ritual was performed to protect the village from evil every time a huge disaster struck.

Back in the village, Hae-Sang had checked San-Yeong’s grandmother’s home for any clues. He and the village head had found a rope but hadn’t thought much of it. San-Yeong and Hae-Sang come to the same conclusion: Gang-Mo, too, was possessed by the same spirit as San-Yeong. In his findings, Hae-Sang sees a note that reads only a dead spirit’s energy can suppress an object that contains the loose-haired spirit. At the same time, the detectives find a bunch of people who had committed suicide after having met Gang-Mo (all with marks on their hands), leading them to realize he is the link they’ve been searching for. The detective comes by to Hae-Sang’s house and shows him the many people attached to Gang-Mo’s case. Hae-Sang didn’t know that Gang-Mo, too, had died by suicide. Now he understands what Gang-Mo meant by “it wasn’t me”; it was the loose-haired spirit that made him hand down the red hair accessory to San-Yeong.


Now, San-Yeong is sure it’s Mok-Dan’s spirit that’s possessing her, but at the same time, Hae-Sang wonders what the spirit inside her actually wants. When San-Yeong leaves the house, she looks changed. Hae-Sang doesn’t seem to notice because he is concentrating on the ghost beside him. Previously, we wondered why the young boy in a school uniform was talking to Hae-Sang informally; it turns out he was a ghost and used to be Hae-Sang’s friend in school. After seeing San-Yeong, the ghost begins to look vengeful, and Hae-Sang says that a hungry ghost is always insatiable. But the ghost reminds Hae-Sang that he was the reason he died.

Se-Mi invites her to the wedding celebration party of the friend who insulted San-Yeong at their last dinner together. Se-Mi has passed the civil exam and wants to celebrate, so what better way than a free dinner? Since it’s the spirit that reads the message, San-Yeong shows up at the party as a different person altogether!

What Happened In The Restroom Of The Hotel?

We see an influencer in the hotel who happens to go to the washroom with a really expensive bag. Se-Mi sees this bag in envy, and it almost feels as if she’s going to steal it from her. In the washroom, the influencer sees a lot of bugs and complains about the hotel, only to see that the bugs keep increasing outside the window. When she turns back, a woman is standing in front of her, but we don’t see her face. It’s San-Yeong who visited the influencer, and we can assume soon enough, there’s going to be a suicide report. San-Yeong, on the other hand, uses her bank card to get a makeover for dinner as a clap back at the girl who had insulted her “casual clothing.” As we know, the spirit always works on the person’s innermost desires. San-Yeong behaves like a completely different person, drinking too much alcohol and behaving in a promiscuous manner. Se-Mi doesn’t know what to make of all of this, and neither does the detective Hong-Sae.

San-Yeong admits to Hong-Sae for a second that she killed all those people and then laughed it off. He’s totally stunned by her behavior and calls her drunk. Se-Mi is insulted by the host for telling everyone she passed the exam when it’s a celebration of her wedding. San-Yeong throws wine at the woman and insults her back. She even tells Se-Mi that she looks desperate for having come to this party. Finally, it is San-Yeong who wakes up and doesn’t know why she’s there. She tries to run out of the room, completely shocked by what she’s wearing and her new nails. She can’t even run far in heels. Hong-Sae follows suit with her bag and jacket that she leaves behind.


The episode ends with San-Yeong on the bridge again. She screams for it all to stop after hearing the voice of the spirit telling her that she’s only doing everything that San-Yeong wants. Hae-Sang, on the other hand, has returned to Baekchagol in a rush to find clues in San-Yeong’s grandmother’s house. Since the rope was tied in the opposite direction, he realized it was to keep spirits away. Ultimately, he finds the thing that his mother had buried in the sand all those years ago before she died. San-Yeong, then taken over by the spirit again, smirks because she’s found what she needs.

The next episode looks extremely intense as we find out more about Mok-Dan and get closer to saving San-Yeong from the spirit. It also looks like Se-Mi is in danger! We hope San-Yeong can save her and everything can go back to normal between them soon enough!


Ruchika Bhat
Ruchika Bhat
Ruchika, or "Ru," is a fashion designer and stylist by day and a serial binge-watcher by night. She dabbles in writing when she has the chance and loves to entertain herself with reading, K-pop dancing, and the occasional hangout with friends.

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