Please support the authors by reading the manhwas on the official websites. This is where you can read the manhwa. But be aware that this manhwa is a mature Yaoi, which means, it is about homosexuality with explicit scenes. Here are the links, if you are interested in the first work from Mingwa, BJ Alex, https://bebebisous33analyses.com/2021/06/21/who-are-you-the-significance-of-masks-in-manhwas/ and the 7th essay about Jinx https://bebebisous33analyses.com/2023/01/06/jinx-%f0%9f%8c%8f-two-worlds-%f0%9f%8c%8e/ Here is the link where you can find analyses of other manhwas: https://bebebisous33analyses.com/2021/06/06/table-of-contents-of-analyzed-mentioned-manhwas/
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1. The true meaning of this statement
This statement (chapter 1) represents Kim Dan’s perception about Joo Jaekyung. But what does he mean actually here? First, he is referring to his successful career. The man has not been defeated for a long time. However, this declaration implies as well that the champion is super healthy. It is because strength is a synonym for health and vitality. First, we shouldn’t overlook that Kim Dan is also a physical therapist. Secondly, there is no ambiguity that the doctor thought this as well, because the moment he massaged his client, he kept praising him for his muscles (chapter 1) and his skin! (chapter 1) The color and texture of skin and the muscles serve as indicators to detect an illness.
2. The origins of this perception
Hence the halmoni was drawn with wrinkles and a rather pale skin. (chapter 7) Moreover the biggest proof of her cancer was the huge loss of weight! She was so thin that moving represents a huge hurdle for her. And the moment the manhwalovers compare the champion’s leg (chapter 1) with the halmoni’s hand (chapter 7), they can grasp why Kim Dan made such a statement. For him, the athlete could only appear healthy!! His body contrasts so much to his grandma’s! Hence Joo JAekyung could only appear as the strongest man in the world. However, as you can imagine, I believe that the doctor’s judgement is wrong! I came to develop this theory while reading chapter 9. Yes, Joo Jaekyung is not healthy!! For me, he is hiding an illness. 😲
3. Joo Jaekyung’s illness
But how did I come to this conclusion?
Everything started with Park Namwook’s confession. (chapter 9) He called his famous member a maniac. This idiom caught my attention, thus I started investigating what mania truly is.
“Mania is a psychological condition that causes a person to experience unreasonable euphoria, very intense moods, hyperactivity, and delusions. Mania (or manic episodes) is a common symptom of bipolar disorder.” Quoted from https://www.healthline.com/health/mania
However, mania shouldn’t be judged as a synonym for bipolar disorder. A person suffering from mania is not necessarily suffering from bipolar disorder, because depression and the feeling of emptiness or suicidal thoughts represent the characteristics of Bipolar disorder.
Bipolar disorder, previously called manic depression, is a mental health condition that involves fluctuations in thinking, mood, and behavior. If you have bipolar disorder, you may experience periods of depression or mania. […] Bipolar I involves depression and mania, an extremely high mood. Bipolar II is more likely to involve depression and hypomania. Hypomania is similar to mania but less extreme. Quoted from https://www.healthline.com/health/depression/manic-depression-bipolar-disorder
And Joo Jaekyung acts definitely as a confident sportsman. Furthermore, when Kim Dan ignored him, he didn’t get depressed at all. In fact, he even got upset and angry. (chapter 5) On the other hand, the protagonist showed huge mood swings, from extreme euphoria to anger or the reverse. But what are the symptoms for mania?
- He or she is easily distracted.
- He or she engages in risky or impulsive behavior. This includes spending sprees, business investments, or risky sexual practices.
- He or she has racing thoughts.
- He or she has a reduced need for sleep.
- He or she has obsessive thoughts. Quoted from https://www.healthline.com/health/mania#Diagnosis
Joo Jaekyung’s behavior definitely shares some similarities to these symptoms. He would engage in sexual activities with strangers (he only had met the doctor once) and at any place, then he wouldn’t sleep much. Imagine that after the sex marathon, he still woke up even before Kim Dan. (chapter 4) This scene revealed that the top didn’t sleep much. Furthermore, pay attention to his eyes. Mingwa drew him with small dark circles (chapter 7) and some redness around the eyes. (chapter 9) As you can see, I am suspecting that Joo Jaekyung is somehow suffering from insomnia. He should sleep much more, especially if he has a fight the next day. Finally, he has already become obsessed with the physical therapist. But what are the causes of mania?
“Environmental changes can trigger mania. Stressful life events, such as the death of a loved one, can contribute to mania. Financial stress, relationships, and illness can also cause manic episodes. Conditions like hypothyroidism can also contribute to manic episodes.” Quoted from https://www.healthline.com/health/mania#Causes
As you can see, mania can have a physical origin! Everything is pointing out that Joo Jaekyung is not healthy. But there exists another evidence for this interpretation. (chapter 7) Observe that when Kim Dan was praising the sportsman for his talents and as such his strength, one boxer was walking in his direction. The latter was actually injured, but no one had noticed it. The fighter had been dismissing it, thus his injury was not treated properly. Simultaneously, the doctor was criticizing the champion for his personality. So in this single panel, we have an undetected wound and as such illness combined with the champion’s mental health. And now, you comprehend why I could only come to the deduction that Joo Jaekyung was not healthy in the end. But so far, it was blamed on his personality. Finally, observe that the champion is the only one who rejects alcohol!! (chapter 9) In South Korea, this is very unusual due to History of Korean drinking culture. Alcohol serves to create connections and reinforce relationships. So rejecting to participate in such events indicate avoidance to drink alcohol. The only explanation is that the person has some health issues. Finally, Joo Jaekyung’s reaction to Kim Dan’s drunkenness exposed his true thoughts: (chapter 9) If he drinks, he wouldn’t be able to control himself. His irritability could come to the surface. And the moment I realized that Joo Jaekyung was sick, I had this thought: What if he has been suffering from the consequences of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)? Let’s not forget that he is a boxer!! And the cauliflower ears are the evidences that he was hurt in the past. (chapter 1) Finally, he even admitted to the main lead that he received blows to his head (chapter 8)
4. TBI and its consequences.
I discovered that personality changes after head injury, but the patient is not truly realizing it. Besides, if he gets compared to his past attitude, the latter could react negatively.
“The location of the brain injury can especially change how the person behaves. For example, the orbitofrontal cortex helps control impulsive behavior and plays a role in a person’s empathy. If this area becomes damaged, the person may struggle to empathize with others and might engage in more reckless behavior. To their loved ones, they may seem to have a different personality altogether. In addition, a head injury often affects a patient’s mood and emotions. This can make them seem more depressed, angry, or irritable than usual, causing others to believe that the person has had a personality change. Quoted from https://www.flintrehab.com/personality-changes-after-head-injury/
According the last website, a person suffering from TBI has severe mood swings and is as such emotionally labile. Then they mentioned the flat affect. The latter is a reference to the lack of emotional expressiveness (verbally and physically):
“Family members of TBI patients often report that their loved one seems less engaged or less interested in the rest of the family and in the activities they once enjoyed.” Quoted from https://www.flintrehab.com/personality-changes-after-head-injury/
This would also explain why he is not close to his family right now. At the same time, we would have an explanation, why Joo Jaekyung was often left speechless in front of Kim Dan. (chapter 3) (chapter 9) (chapter 9)
Finally, the website mentioned that a patient with TBI has an aggressive behavior. (chapter 1) (chapter 5) Besides, I also found out that insomnia can also be a consequence of TBI. https://neuliferehab.com/insomnia-after-traumatic-brain-injury/
Finally, such an injury can affect the patient’s sexual behavior.
“ABC News posted this interesting story about how brain trauma spurred hypersexuality in two women. Brain trauma more often causes a decrease in libido. However, sometimes it causes an increase in libido, as in the case of Alissa, a 23-year-old who suffered a car accident, and Heather, a 43-year-old who suffered a subarachnoid hemorrhage. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-superhuman-mind/201503/brain-trauma-can-cause-compulsive-sexual-desires#:~:text=When%20the%20frontal%20lobe%20is,have%20been%20in%20car%20accidents.
Hence I am suspecting that his jinx could be related to his illness, the effect of TBI, which he is hiding from everyone, because this could put an end to his career. If he has sex before a match, his brain is high functioning, so the risk that he has a problem with coordination or concentration … The power of serotonin. Moreover, there exists a high risk that boxers develop chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), the so-called “punch drunk syndrome”. And now, you would have the explanation why he left the gym without telling his manager and coach what he was doing outside the gym. (chapter 9) He could have visited the hospital. But he doesn’t necessarily need to be suffering from CTE, one TBI is already enough to have life long consequences, like I pointed out above. Since such an injury affect the person’s personality, this means that they become more violent, reckless and tend to use drugs. Therefore there is a high risk that such a person dies young.
https://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/pdf/moderate_to_severe_tbi_lifelong-a.pdf The statistics even display that a person’s life expectancy is 9 years shorter!! Thus it is important for such patients to have a loved one by their side, so that they learn boundaries. So far, Joo Jaekyung was able to control his “aggressive behavior”, as he used boxing to channel his irritability. But note that only 26% could improve their living conditions. But there is another important factor playing in these statistics: WEALTH!
“After inpatient rehabilitation for TBI, the following groups are more likely to die sooner:
People who are not married
People with fewer years of education
People with more severe TBI
People with fall-related TBI
This explicates why Joo Jaekyung was able to recover to a certain extent. With his money and fame, he could get not only support. (chapter 1), but also acceptance. They would close an eye to his “strange and aggressive” behavior due to his special status. Under this new light, his past behavior appears in a different light. He is not the strongest man in the world. His money, his muscles and fame were just masking his true condition, he is in pain. Thus he has such an expression in this image. (chapter 1) He lost a part of himself in the end. This is the result of his past injuries, but since Joo Jaekyung is moving around and is able to fight, anyone thinks that he has already recovered. But I don’t think that’s the case. Like pointed out above, the consequences of TBI are long lasting. Since Kim Dan knows about his halmoni’s sickness, I am assuming that it is the opposite for Joo Jaekyung. And as his physician, it is his role to discover it, because Joo Jaekyung is no longer close to his family.
That’s the reason why the readers shouldn’t judge the champion based on looks and impressions like the poor Kim Dan. (chapter 9) Here, he might look handsome, but what about his brain? It got definitely bruised and wounded. His lack of empathy and his projections onto Kim Dan are in my eyes the results of his past injuries as a boxer. Finally, since the halmoni is suffering from cancer, I come to the deduction that the champion’s illness is more mental. This is definitely much harder to discover. And since I am assuming that Joo Jaekyung has a family, but he is not in contact with them, it is up to Kim Dan to recognize the situation. Since he is a man full of empathy, he will be able to understand Joo Jaekyung and have a different attitude than in this scene. (chapter 7)
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