Bad Couple: Episode 9
This episode was sad! It’s a complete turnaround from the first batch of episodes, where Dang Ja and Gi Chan’s story was the light-hearted, funny one, while Young’s was depressing and sad. Now Young’s starting to enjoy herself, and Dang Ja encounters trouble…
(Random) SONG OF THE DAY
Byul – “내 남자의 여자친구” (my boyfriend’s girlfriend) [ zShare download ]
EPISODE 9 SUMMARY
Dang Ja is rushed to the emergency room and undergoes tests. (We learn that she’s five months pregnant, so a lot of time has passed.) At first, Dang Ja and her doctor (Mistress Lady Sae Yeon) don’t recognize each other, but during the examination Sae Yeon remembers that she’s Young’s friend. Although the baby is in good condition, there’s a tumor on the wall of Dang Ja’s uterus, and Sae Yeon discusses her suspicions that it may be malignant with Yoon Seok (Young’s husband).
Sae Yeon delivers the news to Dang Ja, who doesn’t believe it at first — particularly coming from someone she doesn’t respect. It’s very interesting that they played out this scene with the two women antagonistic toward each other — Sae Yeon’s pretty cold when she gives the news (she was warm and doctorly before she recognized Dang Ja). That makes it even less likely for Dang Ja to trust her opinion, who’s suspicious that Sae Yeon’s making it up to hurt her.
Meanwhile, Yoon Seok confronts Young about her new man, and insists that there’s no reason to wait out their year agreement. He finds the contract and rips it up, and finally, Young yells at him that she’ll agree to the divorce.
And so, Young goes on a trip to a remote island. Concerned at being unable to get in contact with her, Joon Soo calls Yong Gu (Dol Soon’s husband aka Wig man) to track her down, and follows her to the island, initially keeping his distance.
Young admits that she’s decided to give up fighting for her husband. He’s not going to come back by force, and it’ll just become harder for her. The reason she came to the island is because it’s where she started her relationship with her husband — and now she’ll end it here. Young shouts to the ocean, “What is this?! You told me not to worry. How could you do this to me?!” and Joon Soo lends her his shoulder to (literally) cry on.
Having gotten that out of her system, the next day Young thanks Joon Soo for being there with her, and they have a light-hearted time enjoying the sea and each other’s company. Although Young’s still hesitant and shy, Joon Soo gently initiates the hand-holding, the kiss on the cheek, and even (ha!) insists on doing “the Titanic” move. Young thinks it’s silly, but Joon Soo tells her life is about being silly and doing embarrassing things — people who are concerned with appearances don’t know how to live.
Joon Soo also tells her that finding some kind of work would be the best way for her to build up her confidence and get back on her feet. He knows of a possible position for her in a clothing shop, whose owner is a friend.
Gi Chan arrives at the hospital because he’s working with a dermatologist on some kind of skin treatment. Startled to see him, Dang Ja rushes into the bathroom, though not before Gi Chan gets a glimpse of her and positions himself outside the restroom to wait for her. Stuck, Dang Ja calls Dol Soon to help, and they swap clothes to make it appear Dol Soon’s the patient. When Gi Chan asks if Dang Ja’s feeling healthy, she insists she is, but it hits her hard when he tells her gently to take care of herself — people who are alone have a hard time being sick. She asks if his engagement went through, and he says yes. Awkwardly, they say their goodbyes.
However, Dol Soon can’t sit by and not do anything, and despite knowing Dang Ja would kill her, she meets with Gi Chan. She tells him that Dang Ja is the real patient, and believes Dang Ja’s collapse was because she’s heartsick over Gi Chan — after breaking up with him, she threw herself into work and didn’t take care of herself.
Although Gi Chan’s alarmed to hear she was sick, he says he can’t do anything. If Dang Ja wants her freedom, he won’t interfere, and he has a fiancee as well.
Dang Ja’s test results come back: the tumor is malignant. Sae Yeon tells her they must immediately operate to remove it — which means they have to lose the baby. Hearing the results in such a clinical, cold way (“We must erase the baby”), Dang Ja reacts strongly, so strongly that Sae Yeon’s unnerved. Unable to accept those words, Dang Ja storms away, leaving the hospital without any further treatment. She assures her friends the tumor was benign, and that it won’t affect the baby.
Alone, though, she can’t stop the tears from coming. It’s so sad watching her sitting in a restaurant alone, trying to hold back her sobs among all the normal customers, eating on behalf of the baby but with no real interest. (Shin Eun Kyung is a wonderful cryer, and she’s great in this scene.) She remembers coming to eat the same thing with Gi Chan previously, and how happy they were, laughing and feeding each other.
At the same time, Gi Chan goes to eat the same thing with his fiancee Jung Sook. It’s likely he’s also remembering being fed by Dang Ja, because he awkwardly takes the wrap Jung Sook gives him but doesn’t allow her to feed him. That night, he goes to Dang Ja’s apartment, but avoids running into her when she arrives home. He looks on with concern as she walks by without energy, and looks tired and unwell.
I don’t think this next segment is terribly important, but it offers some cuteness in a mostly sad episode, so here it is. Dol Soon, relieved to hear that Dang Ja’s tumor is benign, drops by to ask for some of Dang Ja’s clothes for a sale being conducted by her apartment housewives.
Yeon Doo, who we’ve already established has an eye for finery, takes advantage of being left alone with the designer clothes, and takes them to show off to her friends. But when Dol Soon returns to the booth to see all her merchandise missing, she goes on a rampage to find the thief. She makes an angry announcement over the PA system, and Yeon Doo, modeling the clothes for the other girls, has the BEST “Oh crap, oh crap!” expression. So cute.
Because Dang Ja left the hospital without informing anyone, Yoon Seok visits her at the office. They both note the strangeness of meeting in this circumstance, but he knows she’d probably refuse to come back to the hospital, so he had to come himself. He’s reconfirmed her results and tells her she absolutely must operate on her tumor immediately. Dang Ja’s resolutely unwilling to endanger her baby, but seeing that she doesn’t grasp the severity of her condition, he spells it out plainly. Not only must she lose her baby, she must lose her uterus — and even then, there’s only a 50% chance she’ll survive herself.
At first, she lashes out at him instead, accusing him of playing with her and making this up to hurt her because she hated him for cheating on Young. She can’t believe that she’s sick, that she might even be dying. She insists she’ll live, and so will her baby, and she’ll show him by living well.
Yoon Seok watches in surprise as Dang Ja walks right into the river, sobbing and flailing at the water. He silently stays at a distance while she goes from anger to despair. Aside from being really sad and hard to watch (again, props to great acting), I have to admit this is the first time I’ve felt any sympathy, or even cared, for Yoon Seok. When he’s cheating and swaggering around, he’s insufferable, but here he actually seems human. He can’t do anything for Dang Ja — and he probably still doesn’t even like her — but he has respect for her grief.
Dang Ja receives a package from Gi Chan, with a note saying he heard she collapsed and to take care of herself. “I should be there by your side to take care of you… Please don’t collapse again and cause my heart pain.”
Inside, he’s prepared herbs and medicines for her to use: “Be sure to take them, since I can’t prepare these medicines for you anymore, or take care of you. I know you can’t eat bitter things, so I included chocolates. Make sure you eat them together.”
As we see Gi Chan preparing the package for her, Dang Ja sobs, alone…