How does a drama take such a sharp turn? Well, I bet some people can argue that this drama has been growing slower… and s..l..o..w..e..r… for weeks now. But I seem to recall thinking just two or three weeks ago that things were actually getting more interesting. And then… nothing happened. I mean, stuff happened, but nothing really happened, if ya know what I mean.
However, someone commented that Episode 15 is much more interesting than 14, so I’m still going to try to power through. I’m trusting in you, o faceless commenter. It’s a shame to quit so close to the end, right? (Famous last words?)
SONG OF THE DAY
A Star’s Lover OST – “하고 싶은 말” (Words I want to say) [ Download ]
But first, a word of warning:
Oh my god, this episode was so boring. SO, SO boring. The events have all been telegraphed episodes in advance, and thus, there was no suspense. It took practically a week for me to finish watching the episode, and I’ve already spent more time TRYING to write this recap than I usually spend writing them. (Frankly, I’d rather be watching Return of Iljimae.)
I refuse to waste any more time lingering over it, so I’m going to breeze through this one quickly and hope that Ep. 15 is worth sticking around for. If this will upset you, I’ll give you a second to stop reading and spare yourself the indignity of reading an unsatisfactory recap.
CRANKYPANTS EPISODE 14 RECAP
Feeling overwhelmed, Mari suggests going abroad. On the upside, that’ll give Chul-soo time to write. On the downside, that pisses Chul-soo off, because that’s just what Tae-seok suggested he do, albeit for different reasons. Taking this to mean that Mari is willing to let the evil, evil press defeat her, Chul-soo suggests they “take a break.” The meaning of which is just as unclear to Mari as it was to Ross and Rachel. Is he saying he just wants some time to think? Or that they break up forever?
This upsets Mari, who asks with a bit of desperation what she can do to keep them from breaking up. Fine, they don’t have to go abroad. They can stay and confront the press, and do everything Chul-soo’s way.
Chul-soo responds that he was fine with being vilified. But what he can’t stand is to see that his vilification has hurt her. So… he’s going to “take a break”… to make things easier… by hurting her… and rejecting her love?
The mysterious Seo Woo-jin returns to Korea from Japan, where he’s been cultivating a pretty successful photography career. Because we have two Woo-jins and two Seos in the drama, I’m going to call him Seo Jin, which is his professional name and also the reason that Mari doesn’t make the connection right away that the photographer is her disappeared first love.
He’s come back at Tae-seok’s request to do Mari’s next project, a photo collection, but remains firm that he’s only here for work and not as a mere plot device. But we know better! After all, why else would he be hieing himself over to Mari’s place at the first opportunity? (He sees her; she doesn’t notice him.)
Mari doesn’t find out about Seo Jin’s identity for a while; in fact, she’s being purposely kept in the dark by Tae-seok, who’s set up the project. Mari, who last episode was so ready to retire 4evah, has now seen the light as a result of Chul-soo’s insistence and decides she will not shrink from the press and instead get back to work. Tae-seok tells Woo-jin about the shoot, but doesn’t elaborate on the identity of the photographer.
Seung-yeon, who’s nervous about Seo Jin’s possible motives, uneasily tries to warn Woo-jin of the backstory, but doesn’t get the chance to tip him off. When Mari arrives to discuss the job, Woo-jin shows her the photographer’s book, introduces him as Seo Jin, and explains that he’s a talented artist who doesn’t usually shoot people. Mari flips through the photos and likes what she sees. Seung-yeon feels horrible about deceiving Mari and knows this is not right, so naturally she keeps her mouth shut and looks really guilty about it.
I do not understand why people in this drama simply DO NOT TALK ABOUT THINGS. They talk so much, so very very much, and yet they do not actually say anything ABOUT things. It’s all doublespeak and mysterious half-smiles and hidden motives.
A relationship triangle involving a Fateful First Love can never have too many coincidences or plot contrivances, so we next discover that Eun-young and Seo Jin are already acquainted. It’s a small world after all.
Not only does she know him, he asks her to help with the writing for his new photo collection. Eun-young recommends a good writer friend of hers (Chul-soo), not knowing of his relationship to Mari. Seo Jin then asks directly about Chul-soo, having read about him in the papers, curious about Mari’s new lover.
We finally get to see the story behind Seo Jin’s initial disappearance years ago — he’d left to go buy ice cream, but was stopped on the street by Tae-seok’s thugs. Taken to a warehouse, he was beaten, then bought off. But he cries, to show us he was sad about it.
Mari meets with a smug Tae-seok, who assumes they’re back on track now that she’s agreed to continue to work. He tries to return the money she’d given in exchange for breaching their contract, but Mari refuses to take it back, saying firmly that she won’t ever work with him again. I’m not sure how she can contend that when she’s doing the photo collection, which is backed by Tae-seok and Woo-jin, whose companies are now collaborating. It’s like insisting, “I refuse to eat!” while your mouth is full.
When Mari insists she’s going to continue dating Chul-soo, Tae-seok’s face darkens, and he asks meaningfully if she’s met her photographer yet. Uh, I think you’d know if she had, Tae-seok, from all the glaring and screaming she’d be sending your way. When she confirms that she hasn’t, he advises her to meet him first.
Sadistic bastard that he is, Tae-seok doesn’t choose to drop the bomb of Seo Jin’s relevance to Woo-jin until the last minute. All this while, he’s been alluding to the photographer as an old friend of Mari’s, but now he reveals that as Mari’s first love, Seo Jin was incredibly important to her past, and the source of a lot of her pain.
Woo-jin wonders what his purpose is in bringing Seo Jin back, to which Tae-seok merely smiles meanly and says, “You’ll have to wait and see.” Good LORD, we’ve been waiting and seeing for fourteen freaking episodes. What’s one more, eh?
Tae-seok insinuates that when Mari sees Seo Jin, she will be thrown into chaos, at which point she will need someone who understands her to be a source of support. Woo-jin guesses that Tae-seok means to fill that spot, probably hoping to take it himself. I think they’re all forgetting that someone else has already called dibs?
Speaking of whom, Chul-soo hears from Eun-young that Mari’s photographer, an old friend who “once disappeared,” is keen to meet him. The description rings a bell, so it’s with apprehension that Chul-soo shows up to the photo set on the day of the shoot — just as Mari arrives, lighting up to see him… before she notices the man standing beside him.
DUN DUN DUN! (Or, you know, not.)
The one thing that has made this drama worth watching is the relationship and acting of the two leads — and yet, when they have their umpteenth argument over “Should we date? Should we not date? Is it worth it? How can you ask that? How can you not ask that?” you’re like SHUT UP ALREADY. I apologize in advance for invoking a crude saying, but honestly: crap or get off the pot. Are you two together or not? Everyone’s allowed some time to be uncertain about a relationship, but I’m sick of watching a dozen straight episodes of you two wondering about it.
Also, regarding Chul-soo’s suggestion of “taking a break”: Dude. There is a fine line between pride and tenacious stupidity. So your exhausted girlfriend wanted to take some time off from fending off rapacious gossipmongers every day, is that such a crime to want some escape? Humans survived by use of the fight or flight response. That’s fight OR flight, both options being valid. Chul-soo can stay on his moral high horse all he wants, but flouncing around the paparazzi-lined streets of Seoul and getting himself chased and photographed sure sounds like a BETTER plan, right? His righteous indignation at Mari’s suggestion of what is basically a nice overseas vacation is pretty sanctimonious.
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 13
- Yonsama lookalike in A Star’s Lover
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 12
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 11
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 10
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 9
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 8
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 7
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 6
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 5
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 4
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 3
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 2
- A Star’s Lover: Episode 1
- From the set of A Star’s Lover
- A Star’s Lover press conference