Drama Recaps
A Star’s Lover: Episode 14
by | January 29, 2009 | 48 Comments

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?)


A Star’s Lover OST – “하고 싶은 말” (Words I want to say) [ Download ]

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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.


Ready now?


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 Ye-rin, Jang-soo, and Byung-joon triangle is again played up for laughs. First, Ye-rin discomfits Jang-soo by suggestively offering to “help” him rehearse his screen kiss… then looks mighty upset to see him performing said kiss with aplomb during filming.
  • But she likes having her cake and eating it too, because she may not want either man, but she sure likes having them both around like little puppy dogs eager to do her bidding. It seems like a bit of retaliation, then, when she accepts Byung-joon’s flowers and offer of a date when he (somehow, creepily) has found out it’s her birthday, which nobody else knew.
  • But everyone ends up tagging along, again, and as the guest of honor, Ye-rin is prodded to drink, leaving her completely inebriated by the end of the night.
  • Byung-joon tries to usher her home, but in his drunken stupor, he takes the wrong woman into the taxi, leaving Ye-rin behind with… Jang-soo! See what they did there?
  • Chul-soo’s mother talks to Mari and insinuates that she should compensate Chul-soo (ergo his family) for his troubles. Chul-soo hears of this and grows angry; even Yuri knows this is crossing a line, and tells her mother that if she keeps interfering, she won’t see her anymore, either.
  • Byung-joon The Idiot compiles a list of possible suspects to the recent newspaper article, and because he has such a wee little brain, he cannot see that Tae-seok’s is a more obvious culprit than, say, Osama Bin Laden, who occupies a key space on The Idiot’s chart of possibilities.
  • Mari reads Chul-soo’s novel and likes it.

    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.


    48 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
    1. canyayasis

      Amen? Amen!!

    2. sonam

      You deserve an award for sitting thru this. Just looking at the picture of Choi Ji woo’s eternally tearful face is giving me the heebie jeebies.
      Thank heavens for wonderful LMH on Mon/Tues.

    3. morchel

      thanks for the recap. Its been really slow but i really appreciate your effort on doing this. Im a big fan dramabeans.com and i regularly check this website for recap and updates. Please don’t give up on Star’s Lover!!!

      All your hard work is much appreciated 🙂 !!!!

    4. lovin it

      hope ep 15 is better….

    5. whatttt

      omg, you don’t have to sit through all the episodes if you can’t handle it any longer :[ it’s a shame to quit so close to the end, but what if the end is just as BORING as this one. i really really don’t know how you put up with this drama and choi ji woo’s other one, air city. she has like only three facial expressions >:[

      sometimes, i just wanna get up to my computer screen and smack her face o.O that cutesy face she makes that only ends up making her look like a weird lady ;askdjf;adkjf ;urhgghhg!

      so anyway, this drama had such a potential :[ hopefully they’ll pick the pace up- SOON.

    6. JK

      yes. me too want to thank you dramabeans for doing all the recap coz i am a big fan of Star’s lover!!!!!

    7. Auntie Mame

      Totally agree with everything that you said.

      Honestly, I don’t know why they have the love triangle storyline. It’s not really adding anything to the drama. It may be that I fail to see anyone, except the idiot, being attracted to YR. Of course, being the idiot’s attraction is no compliment.

      As always, thank you for the recap.

    8. The Reader

      Thanks for the recap. It means a lot to me who’s been enjoying Star’s Lover a lot.

    9. Winnie

      When I saw the song was called “하고 싶은 말” I thought it was a VOS song that contains those words in the refrain. It’s one of my favorites, but it turns out that song is actually “그대여서 고마워요”. My mistake. Anyway, I actually really like the one you posted too. Who’s the artist?

    10. 10 Tushka

      Thanks for the re-caps. I love it. Yeah, and I’m loving the drama. I know it’s slow, but, I do like the two leads.

    11. 11 bla

      Im still wondering why you have sticked around for so long. Usually you drop the drama if you dont like it.

    12. 12 javabeans

      #11, Honestly, i think part of it is because i liked the first half (or third) a lot and had high hopes… I’ve liked the quickly-dropped dramas a lot less, so I had less of an investment in them. And I HATE the thought that I wasted fourteen hours… although really, is 14 wasted hours better than 20?

    13. 13 k john

      Thanks for the recap. I really enjoyed the Crankypants viewpoint of the episode!

    14. 14 debby

      to no 2 and 5 comment, if you have more time, watch another show rather than bismirch here and there. you’re live longer when you dont have any hatefull unnecessary comment. i really want to smack my computer reading unnecessary and wastefull people like you.

      for Javabeans..tks for yr effort to make this review. thought this one is not the best one, but we can call this entertainment…

    15. 15 azzuri

      I only managed ep 1 and followed the rest via your recaps. Coz I figured….better you than me…..:P Thank u!!

      Will you be recapping Return of Iljimae? I haven’t watched it yet but I’m cautiously optimistic.

    16. 16 irugnotmis

      all I can say is: I totally feel ya

    17. 17 merl

      I agree that episode 14 was slow and took a really long route to it’s purpose which is to have Mari meet Seo Woo Jin again…BUT, I still love this drama…for the good acting and the great chemistry between CJW and YJT…the early episodes were so believable that now I can no longer stop without knowing the ending. The writers really know how to keep things hanging without really losing steam. I like to look at the overall picture and taking all things into consideration, this series deserves an A minus rating at the very least.

    18. 18 jb

      Ok, ok, so it was draggy but you are right, we are all ranting about the storyline and to top it off, maybe they think it might spice things up a bit with Seo Woo-jin in the picture. His acting is quite stiff, all I see is his unmoving bee-stung lips…. It was a laugh out loud moment when you literally have Chul Soo, Seo Woo-jin, Woo-jin and Mari in a fix. I mean so many men, so little episodes left…Why wouldn’t CJW cry…I would…hahahahaha

      Anyway, after watching Ep 15 & 16 without any idea of the dialogue, I still cried when Mari ran after Chul Soo when he submitted his writing for her pictures…

      Don’t give up now dear, you are only 4 episodes away…You have come this far and even shortening the recaps, there is something tugging at your interest right…just like many of us out there even if we don’t make up the numbers like Boys Before Flowers.

      As always, thank you for all your efforts, much appreciated by the non-Korean speaking people out there (me!) Have a good week..

    19. 19 gelato

      Thanks javabeans. CS’s reactions may not be your cup of tea, but he is true to his character, isn’t it? Right from the beginning he is a self-righteous and self-conflicting man. Love his portrayal of conflicting and complex emotions. There are repetitions, but I just love to see CS and Mari’s interactions. They compose “A lover’s discourse” which tugs at our heartstrings. Their acting is superb, esp Ji-tae.

    20. 20 moi

      episode 14 almost killed me…can someone eplain to me why is Eun Young still around? why can’t TaeSeok die accidentally? why is Woojin even relevent at this point? why did they allow that crook of a mother to move back?? where does Chulsoo always walk to?? ( the guy is hated by all, but still walks around..)AND WHY THE HELL CAN’T THEY JUST MAKE UP THEIR MINDS?!?! …so frustrating….i’m very disappointed. because i truly love this drama…i wouldn’t have cared if i though the drama was doomed from the start…but this USED to be amazing…doesn’t even feel like i’m watching the same series anymore… i really hope epi. 15 is going to make mr want to jump up and down in excitment……make it good, before i go beserk on the Bae Young Joon wannabe… (irks me so much)

    21. 21 chajjye

      it’s a slow drama. really, slow.

      but i see episode 14 better than episode 13. cause at least we get to go back to why things the way they have become (i.e. seo jin leaving), and i see chulsoo for once more being quite undecided, because he IS kind of rash especially with mari. as he has said, he can’t think when he’s with her, and so he has to have time to think. i like the separation as it gives them more time to think about reality and how they really are. (mari gets to read his writing, when she has never done so before; mari realises that its not all rosy, that it is impractical to just give up all her savings and think she can survive; chulsoo finds a job, etc.)

      (is it just me or that both get their jobs ‘back’ after they broke up say something? it’s like those shows when the guy likes a unlucky girl, gets unlucky as well, and then when the girl leaves, he gets his luck back…?)

      as for chulsoo forcing mari to make a choice, isn’t it his character towards her? in the sense, in previous episodes, you have said that chulsoo is that kind of person who doesn’t give mari all the answers, wanting her to think. she has been too dependent on taeseok and so became a ‘product’ as she is. though there is some admissible reason for her to run away, he has run away before and he knows that it will not be long before they will regret it. (i.e. he was regretful that he ran away from eun-young, his first relationship, after meeting mari.) all the more, chulsoo was wanting to take the blame for himself, cause he is after all the guy who took up the ghostwriting thing and he was the one who caused her to ‘ruins’, per se.

      honestly, i like it when he shed tears when he sees her. the strong emotion provoked within him…though i have no idea why he must cry in epi 13.

      and oh, philp choi always make me want to gawk at his lookalikeness with yonsama. this is freaky. i was half-expecting people in the airport to suddenly spot him and say “bae-yong-joon-da.” like how ppl spotting mari in the market.

      anyone notice that eun-young changed hairstyle?? does say something, doesn’t it?

    22. 22 sydney

      SO agree with your points.
      oh GODDAMN hurry up!!!!!
      i just.. im SO tired of this drama now. i love the leads and their chemistry but freaking HELLO. the worst part is i know im going to stick with it to the end.. after all this, i cant just read a spoiler and be done with it. sigh.

    23. 23 Starbucks

      Hey Java,

      THank you for the recaps. I didn’t watch this episode because my attention has switched to from Yoo JI Tae to F4 . And I figured that I could just read your blog to see what happens to this drama since I invested so much time on it. Well, I saw ep 15 and I think it’s worth watching till the end. It does get better. not alot better but better. Keep up the great work.

    24. 24 Mummycow

      Am amazed you are still at it. I gave up on this drama since ep 10….just simply too draggy… and like you say NOTHING HAPPENED.

    25. 25 Fansubber Fan

      Thank you for the recap. I think I’m only watching this to see the main couple finally together. It is so so slow and they better be together at the end. This had better not be another Powerful Opponents type ending. I do not want to be going WTF at the end. This drama would have been so much better if it had been 12 episodes but I suppose they have to make their money back or whatever.

    26. 26 birdscout

      @ 21 chajjye

      Is your name what I think it is? lol

    27. 27 12Dose12

      Again, big thanks for the recap. i’ll still stick around till the end. I think this is the rock bottom of the drama. No way but up right? Gawd! I’m still hopeful!

    28. 28 Emma

      A yonsama lookalike, tsk…tsk…., I did quit watching this drama since ep10. I only read the recaps now.

    29. 29 jusash

      Ep 14 has to be the most eventful NON-event. Thankfully there’s FForward.

      Recent 15 and 16 looked slightly better in comparison.(but the increasing to and fro … gawd! give it a break already please!)

      Also amazing how their previous problems (stalking media, anti-fans, residual ghostwriting issues and all) suddenly pale and are trivialised with faux Yonsama in the picture (I can’t stand looking at the dude btw – the likeness turns me completely off!).

      So now Seo Woo Jin’s the main issue keeping them apart?

      Despite waning interest …. I will be stubbornly sticking it out right to the end for the wonderful chemistry (and Yoo Ji Tae!) although it kinda lost me around ep 13.

    30. 30 jb

      Just watched Ep 15 & 16 WITH subtitles now. Hmmm…heartwrenching but slow, really trying to persevere to the end of this drama and yes, if Chul Soo & Mari go separate ways, I will tear my hair out….. 😛

      Meanwhile, yes, to someone’s comment, I noticed Eun Young changed her hairstyle but it made her face look rounder. Also, for a down and out writer, Chul Soo sure has some nice winter coats…

      Btw, Seo Woo Jin has to exit, he is the shortest of the suitors. If he is not wearing man heels, he is probably the same height as Mari…hahahahahahahahahahaha

    31. 31 chajjye

      @ 26:

      sorry but what do u think it means? blurr here. 🙂

      @ 30:
      but i like episode 15. esp the part where mari reads chulsoo’s confession through writing..it improved from epi 14. at least the editing improved and it got me on my toes a little bit compared to epi 10-14. those episodes were very low peak.

      usually when a woman changes hairstyle does say something about her moving on from the relationship, notice how she is more lenient towards the relationship albeit being so hurtful towards her…but i don’t know whether the writers purposely wrote it in or what.

      …i am just swooning over the ost. it is one of the reasons it kept me going on. star’s lover is not bad. just slow.

    32. 32 agasshi

      this drama…….make me sleep…..and very sorry to say that….very boring…..

    33. 33 merl

      no problem agasshi…go right to sleep…the drama won’t miss you 😉

    34. 34 YJT Fan

      Dramas don’t really all have to be fast, yeah?

    35. 35 javabeans

      I don’t think dramas all have to be fast, but they really ought to be interesting, and that’s my problem with the recent weeks of this one. Obviously that’s just my opinion, but I think there are a lot of people who feel the same way.

    36. 36 jO jO

      I must admit of all the k dramas I have watched this one is getting on my nerves. You said it exactly right – SO SLOW!!!!!!!

    37. 37 Bolt

      Different taste, I guess. I tried watching Coffee Prince (as per Javabeans review), but could not even get through beyond Episode 2. I feel like watching teletubbies acting…”Eh-Oh” Whereas for the SL “yeom”, I feel like watching Alvin and the Chipmunks which I enjoy very much!!

      SL is draggy and slow, but somehow, I did not fast forward as much as in Winter Sonata. Have not watched Episode 15 and 16, may change my mind after watching them. ^________^

      Thanks Javabeans.

    38. 38 Jin Sun

      Okay – another booooooooooorrrrrrrrrrrringgggg episode awaits us in 17 & 18. I can totally see why javabeans has not been motivated to recap 15 & 16 :-).

    39. 39 B-word

      Episode 17 & 18 are not boring at all. In fact, there’s a big twist in episode 18. Getting really good. Can’t wait till next week for the finale. I watch a drama based on how much I am moved and connected with the characters. I feel that I am more and more involved in the characters and feel their love and pain. A good movie should move you , inspire you, and I believe Star’s Lover does just that.

    40. 40 JK

      Yes. I did agree with you Bolt that different person has different taste. For me, I really like this kind of sad love story. It really touches my heart and feeling. I think this series is very realistic because to me life can never be that fast and funny- dreamy series like Coffee prince and Boys over flowers. Indeed, the message sent thru Star’s lover is so deep and it really touches my heart. Though there maybe some little errors in it but that is okay to me as long as the story is still good and touch my feeling.

      And for sure, Star’s lover will be another K dramas that will be in my heart and memory forever.

    41. 41 Tacobell

      Javabeans, I know that the story may seem a bit slow to you but man..the emotional connection between these two lead actors is just getting so much better in the later episodes to the point that I can’t tell apart between CJW and Lee Mari or YJT and Kim Chul Soo. The acting of these two is just phenomenal. There’s subtlety and nuance in their acting that is not easily duplicated by amateur actors. No offense to Boys Before Flower’s fans, the acting of F4 boys is just not good enough. No comparison to YJT. Even the main lady (gum Jan Di), she is not that good either. I hate to see you missing out on such great chemistry that I haven’t seen in K-drama for a long time.

    42. 42 joomk

      Tacobell, I definitely agree with you!!!
      Their chemistry (CJW and YJT) in SL is just so speechless!! I am loving them more and more now and could not let go of my thinking about them.

      This is another best k dramas for me after years!!

    43. 43 Bolt

      Hello Dramabeans: No more recaps?

    44. 44 javabeans

      ^ Bolt, frankly I haven’t decided yet. I never intended to stop recapping — and I hate dropping them mid-series — but every time I try to watch this drama it irritates me.

    45. 45 Bolt

      Thanks Dramabeans. No worries, do a consolidated recaps or comments after the series, just to close the loop!!

      A 10-episode series will definitely make it a classic. Many unnecessary interludes have appeared after Episode 10.

      After Episode 15, it is getting more and more wishy washy….I have to run around the block twice after watching Episdoe 18!!

    46. 46 K dramafan

      Hi Dramabeans!!!
      yes. I agree with Bolt. you can just do the recap of what is most interesting and watchable parts for each episode. No need to do recap for whole episode.

      I am sure we, readers, are satisfied already with the recap of those important and watchable parts.

      Like you always said in your recap, this drama has some very loveable parts but it also has some parts that are irritating as well. This is probably the thing that make this story diferent from others…

      Since you have been doing the recaps for 14 episodes now, and there are only 6 episodes left, therefore, I want to encourage you to finish the recap of this drama…You know people are coming here to check if you have done the recap after each episode of SL ends…and I am one of them… 🙂

      I will be waiting for your recap patiently…and hope to reading your recap soon!!!

    47. 47 lala

      I think this drama good enough. I just watch this drama in 3 days. Some scene look boring, but overall this drama is good. Ji woo play her act naturally. And although she cries a lot in her character but i see a cheerful side in her character and look a little bit cute. And Yo Ji Tae have very good act.

    48. 48 michelley

      that was the most hilarious/cute/enjoyable post, ever. i was getting equally frustrated by the plot, but your post really livened up my dreary plodding through this drama. thanks a bunch (:

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