“Medical Top Team” – First Impressions

I haven’t seen much posted about MBC’s Wed/Thurs drama “Medical Top Team” (which is up against “Secret” and “Heirs”) so I decided to check it out for myself. I was excited Joo Ji Hoon is back in dramaland but I hate his hair in this one. Whoever the stylist is for Ji Hoon (and Woo Bin in “Heirs”) that believes helmet-hair is a good look should be immediately fired – both guys look horrible. But that’s totally off topic and my own personal opinion. Medical Top Team turned out to be intriguing enough that I find myself looking forward to the next episodes.
It opens on a swanky party given by hospital board members to introduce the new Assistant Director: Shin Hye Soo (Kim Young-Ae) and to outline her idea of putting together a “Top Medical Team” of doctors within Kwanghye University Hospital. We also meet Dr Park Tae Shin (Kwon Sang Woo) who is at the same hotel for a job interview – a hospital in the US is trying to recruit him. They meet his salary & research requirements but are not sure about his request for a lung transplant for his very young patient, Ba Wi. This is obviously a requirement of any hospital he chooses and he must be in demand if he can make such demands.

He notices a waitress, who looks flushed and is limping but continues his conversation, being told the hospital is still thinking about Ba Wi but they need more time. He looks dismissive after that and leaves. Inside the party, Hye San notices someone is missing from the VIP table and asks Chief Han Seung-Jae (Joo Ji Hoon) where his father is. She is interrupted by Chief Jang Yong Seob (Ahn Nae Sang) and his team, who suck up to Hye Soo – telling her the idea of a Top Medical Team is a great item. Ugh, I already don’t like this smary, greasy jerk.
Chief Han slips out and sees Dr. Seo Joo Young (Jung Ryeo-Won) on her phone. He asks if she’s eaten, she replies she has. Definite tension between these two but I’m not sure yet what their relationship is. She gets another phone call and notices the same waitress with the limp. Both Dr. Seo and Dr. Park end up following this woman around the hotel. She passes out and these two doctors end up in a fight about her treatment? I was floored – I’ve never seen that happen! Dr. Park shoves Dr. Seo and she hits her arm against a table. (Pretty sure that will come back to bite him)

The woman is taken away in an ambulance while these two continue arguing over the symptoms. Dr. Park arrogantly tells Dr. Seo its “MELOS syndrome” and she needs to study harder. He tells her to call him when the results come out, the one who is wrong will buy a meal. We learn the Top Medical Team was really Chief Han’s idea and Shin Hye is married to one of the Chairman’s sons – the one who messes around all the time. I’m sensing a power struggle here but I hope we don’t get mired in it.
Dr. Park works at the Paran Clinic and has the best bedside manner I’ve ever seen: he’s sweet, warm and caring with all the patients. We meet Ba Ni, the young girl who needs a lung transplant and they’re adorable together. Ba Ni must be an orphan, she keeps sneaking out of the hospital to look for her mother. At Kwanghye University Hospital, we meet Resident Choi A-Jin (Oh Yeon-Seo) and Kim Sung Woo (Minho) – it seems Sung Woo has a crush on A-Jin and both are afraid of Dr. Seo.

Dr. Park drives by Kwanghye Hospital and decides to stop in and see if he was right about the MELOS patient. (Of course he was) He meets Dr. Seo but she coldly refuses to buy him a mea. Ouch. Dr. Seo then meets up with Chief Han and agrees to eat with him. Ah, she likes this guy better? Chief Han discovers she hurt her arm but not the reasons behind it.
Ba Ni sneaks out to search for her mom again and passes out. Dr. Park has her transported to Kwanghye Hospital since they are the closest hospital with access to a Novalung. (A plastic module ventilator – yea, I had to look it up.) Upon arrival, Dr. Seo is contacted and is shocked to see Dr. Park there. She does agree with him that immediate surgery is needed on Ba Ni to hook her up to the Novalung and goes to scrub up. Right before surgery, she’s called that another patient is failing – an important political patient. Who wants to place bets on who gets priority?

Chief Han arrives while Dr. Park is begging Dr. Seo to let him perform the surgery. Chief Han explains since he’s not affiliated with the hospital, he can’t allow it but Dr. Park keeps begging. It works and not only does Dr. Park save Ba Ni, he ends up saving the important political patient when Dr. Seo can’t continue because of the injury to her arm. Lots of massive amounts of blood squirting all over everyone and lots of tension from all the characters but Dr. Park saves the day. Dr. Seo isn’t happy since word of this soon makes its way around the hospital. Slimy Chief Jang intends to use this to force Dr. Seo to withdraw her application to the Top Medical Team.
Dr. Park makes his way back to Paran Clinic to discover it’s been pretty much shut down due to lack of funding. His mentor and Sunbae, Cheol Goo (Lee Dae-Yeon) tells him to just go to the US and not worry about the clinic. They try to find alternative placement for all their patients. Dr. Park learns he caused the injury to Dr. Seo’s arm and apologizes but she is again cold to him. Chief Han offers to help re-open the clinic if Dr. Park will accept a position on the Top Medical Team at Kwanghye Hospital. Dr. Seo learns everyone at Kwaynghye Hospital believes she’s getting preferential treatment due to her relationship with Chief Han and decides to withdraw her application. She learns Dr. Park is being scouted and that he accepted a spot on the Top Medical Team. She doesn’t look happy about this.


This appears to be a typical medical drama with love-lines between doctors, residents and nurses but I think the actors are making the difference for me – I really enjoyed it! There are the expected blood-squirting scenes and the random oh-my-god-quick-rush-to-the-operating-room stuff but it’s balanced nicely by the relationship building of the characters.  I’m very curious how Dr. Park and Dr. Seo will work together since his priority is always the patient and her priority seems to be more earning the top doctor title. I get it – she’s in a male dominated field with jerks like Chief Jang dogging her every move so she has to fight harder for respect than her male counterparts.

I’m not sure yet of the relationship between Dr. Seo and Chief Han – does he like her? Does she like him? I do have a feeling Dr. Park will be right in the middle of that soon. *hehehe* And we also have the cute nurse Min-Ji who likes Sung Woo who likes A-Jin who likes Joon Hyeok. (LOL) If you’re not watching the dark melo “Secret” or the high-school angsty Heirs, give this one a try. I’m going to be watching all three!


  • sally_b says:

    Greetings tessieroo ~ (‘•ᴥ •’) ♥ Thanks for the intro to this show — you almost have me convinced — except for the fact that I actually reallllllly dislike medical shows.

    Don’t know what it is — especially since my dearest friend on the planet is a trauma nurse and her stories always fascinate me. I think it’s because in the past I’ve had a number of ill family members and being in hospitals – for not just hours, but days ~ ~ well, yeah…. that’s it.
    I simply don’t like hospitals and since that’s the CORE of a med-drama — it’s doubtful I’m *in* for this one.

    Though I must admit — HeadsNo2 wrote the recaps for Dr. Jin — and it was so hilarious I read everyone. (only watched 2 episodes of the actual show) So ~ if you recap it — I’ll read it for sure! 🙂

  • tessieroo says:

    Hey Sally_B! I hate hospitals too – spent too many weeks there with my Mom. I think it’s really KSW and JJH that kept me interested while I was watching this? Both actors fascinate me. (LOL) I’m not too sure yet about the story though. Thanks for cheering me on! 🙂

  • Irilight says:

    Thank you for the recap and thoughts, Tessieroo…. I loved the first 2 episodes… from the very opening of that lavish gathering….I like the premise of it.. I loved the cast..esp. the 3 top ones… (Kwon Sang-woo, Joo Ji Hoon and Jung Ryeo-won…)… I agree with you about Joo Ji-hoon hair-cut, by the way… I loved Dr. Park’s non assuming easy personality, biking on a country road to work, and even picking up the hanging laundry at the hospital… I think the conversation he had with Dr. Seo Joo Young about what is more important, one’s pride, or one’s patient, is going to be one of the issues at the heart of the drama… I am totally hooked… Will watch both this and Secret…

    • tessieroo says:

      Agree, I’m most intrigued at the differences between Dr Seo and Dr Park’s idea of medicine/treatment. Oh, and I’m watching “Secret” too! It’s so good!

  • martha says:

    I was also surprised by this drama. I generally don’t like medical dramas mostly because I work in a hospital and usually they are pretty casual about the medical facts also I hate the political stuff. But I liked the actors and the story was pretty good as well so I think that I’ll watch this one and just read the recaps for Heirs and Secret.

    • tessieroo says:

      Me too, I really hope we don’t get too much of the whole political battle in the hospital – that stuff bores me to tears. (LOL) But the relationships between all the cast is good, hoping they keep building on that.

  • I love medical dramas! But mostly if they focus more on the medicine and not on the romance; a nice balance is good. Here’s hoping that there is a nice balance. I love how Chief Han seems to be a really nice guy but Dr. Seo is the slightly full of herself; now that is a change for a medical drama. I got the vibe that Seo and Han like each other but not in a way that it will be apparent but Dr Park will be the catalyst in that relationship. The merry-go-round between the other characters is actually pretty funny (poor Minho)! So, it was a great start to begin and I’m hoping that they continue to focus on the medicine. I know, I can’t expect another Golden Time (which I loved) that was all about the medicine. But let me say, this was the first KSW drama that I will possibly like!

  • goodange says:

    You guys are going to keep me busy updating our Kdrama page. LOL.

    Great work! 🙂 Keep it up 😀

  • chasen8888 says:

    I watched episode 2 only and not the first because I was not sure whether I wanted to watch the drama after just completing Good Doctor which was not bad by the way. I liked the episode and will continue to watch. As the interesting thing is that the lead’s motivation is more the patient than the accolades/politics/ego that goes. For new shows I have decided not to watch them until it reaches an interesting point therefore I rely heavily on the recaps from various sites to determine whether to go ahead. The team’s dynamics interest me.

    That was the case with this show, I have yet to watch Heirs and will not do so until the parties go to Korea, the idea of hearing the English language being ruined especially by so called characters who have lived there in excess of 6 months, stereotype “American” characters will ruin the interest in watching for me so I will wait until episode 5 to start watching it. I’ll stick to recaps for now. As for Secrets not interested in the melodrama/makjang so will not be watching it.

    However got to admit I like Medical Top Team so far and hope it gets better in each episode.

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