Drama Recaps
Story of a Man: Episode 11
by | May 14, 2009 | 50 Comments

This was a very good episode for cute Kyung-tae moments. Aw!

Also, with the plot turning to Do-woo’s next phase in his master plan, we turn away from matters of the stock market and more into local government. I like that, because we aren’t overstaying welcomes in the plot points but moving on when called for. Keeps the story from getting too drawn-out or predictable (I mean, who wants 20 episodes of stock wars, no matter how well done, right?), which I always appreciate.


Bobby Kim – “바래다주고 오는길” (On my way back after taking you home) [ Download ]

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The day after his knifing, Jae-myung tells Shin that he knew a guy back in L.A. who would brag about being able to stab someone in just the right way to result in blood and pain, but not death. Shin wonders if K did that to scare Jae-myung, and whether it worked.

Knowing Shin hasn’t given up on his revenge, Ja-myung says: “Shin. You were right. Killing quickly with a gun is too nice. So what are you going to do?”

After the reporters’ stories are blocked from being published, Do-woo takes a look at their photos; his expression grows grim to recognize Shin as the leader in the resistance. (He’d known Shin had family in Myungdoshi — or Myungdo-shi, rather, but that’s a potayto-potahto affair — but hadn’t realized the extent of Shin’s involvement.)

Director Oh, who has never been the sharpest tool in the shed (and I mean “tool” in more ways than one), thinks that Shin and Joong-ho must be working another scam, and is about to report them to the police. Do-woo stops him — he’ll take care of these two on his own.

It’s a pretty easy matter for Do-woo to report troublemakers in this community of outcasts. To prove that he’s a heartless bastard, he doesn’t only report Joong-ho (for being a gangster in a known crime organization), but also a weak old grandpa and a schoolboy. The old man is accused of paying off gangsters to interfere with the demolition, while the boy is pegged for graffiti. Naturally, the charges are trumped up, but they are all dragged off by police and detained at the station.

Mayor Yang is under no illusions about the source of these charges, and confronts the police chief. One of the mayor’s strengths is his ability to sound pleasant and yet get his message across — he threatens (nicely!) to call a press conference. The police officer asks, “Are you going to say the police chief was bribed to arrest people wrongfully?” The mayor returns, “Weren’t you?”

The officer proclaims his integrity, saying he has no use for money or bribes, and has devoted his whole career to police work. The mayor sees that he’s not going to get anywhere and decides the order must have come from a higher power, so he rises to leave.

The police chief asks a parting question, genuinely perplexed: “If you’re our mayor, shouldn’t you be leading our city to progress more than anyone else?” The confusion comes from a good place, but I think the man is conflating his own greed for pride in the city — the mayor is the one with the people’s interests at heart, prestige be damned. The chief adds, “To be honest, I find your stance a little suspicious.”

Shin, attempting to help Joong-ho, is kicked out of the building just as the mayor exits. When he hears that the mayor is headed to see the landowner, Chae Do-woo, Shin realizes Do-woo’s behind these evictions. He asks to tag along.

At city hall, the mayor has a business proposal for Do-woo. He is onboard with the goal to make the city prosperous, but wants a few small concessions to serve the residents: “Isn’t your city being made so people can live within it?”

Do-woo spits out some numbers: Myungdoshi has 50,000 citizens, and the community of displaced residents numbers 263. Do-woo reasons, “Fifty thousand citizens are being hurt because of 263. Mayor, you know this, don’t you?”

The mayor reminds Do-woo of the constitution, which states that all people have the right to the pursuit of happiness. And he, as a government official, is held to a responsibility to let his citizens have that. So, he entreats Do-woo, “Let me take responsibility for them.”

Shin has entered the room silently, and now Do-woo turns to him: “You always come to see me one step ahead of my expectations.” The mayor realizes they must already know each other.

Do-woo: “I remember everyone else as data on a computer, but Kim Shin is the only one I think of as his living self. It’s like the other information is in black and white, and he’s the only one in color.”
Shin: “That’s odd, it’s the reverse for me. If I just think of Chae Do-woo, the surroundings darken.”

The mayor’s proposal has three stipulations: He wants an apartment built for the displaced residents, a school (elementary, middle), and a public health center. (Do-woo’s plans include an international school and hospital, but the mayor wants his institutions to serve the common people.) He doesn’t outright threaten Do-woo, but he suggests that if they don’t reach an agreement, it could take an awfully long time granting building permits…

The mayor’s stance is the diametrical opposite to Do-woo’s; it’s the classic plebeian-versus-patrician dynamic. Do-woo sheds some light on his philosophy, to which Shin has some serious objections:

Do-woo: “This country has 50 million citizens. Of those, if you take a select 5 million, it would only take 20 years to turn this country into one of the most prosperous in the world. I could make that happen.”
Shin: “What about the other 45 million? Will you bulldoze them into the ocean?”
Do-woo: “That’s why you’d fail. Because you have no confidence to be in that 5 million, you’re getting angry at my words. Anyone with the confidence to be part of that 5 million would forget about the rest. Isn’t that human nature?”

It would appear that his 5 million does not include his father; ex-Chairman Chae is ambushed at home by a team of hospital employees, who restrain him and take him off to a hospital. Immediately, he knows this is his son’s work, but the psychiatrist has been convinced (or bought) by Do-woo that Chae is ill, and needs to be hospitalized.

Chae shouts for Eun-soo, who has stepped out briefly to go to the market and returns home to find her father gone. Do-woo is glad to see her name pop up on his cell phone, although his pleasure fades as she says, in tears:

Eun-soo: “You told me that you wouldn’t be able to bear it if I opposed you. I didn’t go to the other side — you pushed me there. I don’t know how I can go over to your side. What do you want? What will satisfy you? How far are you going to go? What do I have to do? What can I do so that the three of us can live as a family?”

Interestingly, somewhere in the middle of Eun-soo’s tear-filled questions, Do-woo presses a hand to his chest, as though in pain. So… does he have a heart then? More on that later.

Do-woo answers, “Just… be by my side. You were always by my side. That’s all I want. Is that so difficult?” Perhaps realizing that he isn’t going to help, Eun-soo decides, “I’ll find Father, and I’ll bring him home myself. I’m sorry, oppa.” After she hangs up, Do-woo mumbles to himself:

Do-woo: “Those are the words I hate most — ‘sorry.’ All you have to do is stay with me. With you gone, I feel like I’ve lost the brakes.”

After the meeting with Do-woo, Shin’s car runs out of gas — symbolism? — and as he and the mayor sit on the curb waiting for car assistance, the mayor asks about his revenge. The mayor wonders if he can provide some advice.

Shin guesses the mayor’s going to repeat everything he’s heard before (how some things are impossible, that he’ll just end up hurt), but on the contrary, the mayor’s message is simple: “There are a lot of people like your brother.” That’s all. At Shin’s non-response, he clarifies, adding that other people suffer similar injustices. “But those people keep living.”

Oh, Kyung-ate is so cute with the girls. (More on that below.) Mun-ho offers the café to Myung-sun and the girls while the Myungdoshi matter remains unresolved. (The Dream Team will remain at Myung-sun’s home, where Jae-myung announces he’s staying “until Shin finds the next hunting ground.”)

Kyung-tae gives the place a thorough inspection, looking for wiretaps or bugs, and the girls follow him around and mimic his moves.

Eun-soo arrives looking for help, fighting her own indecision: “I hesitated a lot about whether to come, because I know how my brother feels about me coming over. But where could I go to for help? I don’t have any friends.”

She breaks down in tears, and ever so cautiously, Kyung-tae pats her shoulder in comfort.

Even though we now know that Do-woo’s bedroom drawing is a representation of his Neo-Monaco, it’s still creepy as hell, particularly as he snips out a photo from a book to add to the collage.

He adds the image of Grace Kelly (princess of Monaco), which I know is meant to refer to Kyung-ah, as the following scene confirms. But I cannot be the only person who immediately wondered whether the picture refers to Kyung-ah or Eun-soo, amirite? I mean, I know it couldn’t be Eun-soo… but he doesn’t look on Kyung-ah with the same meaningful affection.

After his last Freudian slip, Do-woo wasn’t sure Kyung-ah would come to the grand opening event (he’s establishing a city planning commission, the Myungdo New Deal Planning Group).

Kyung-ah: “I came knowing that I’m second in your feelings. Do you really need your second-place person here today?”
Do-woo: “My dream city begins here. I need a consort.”
Kyung-ah: “I told you I don’t want to be a consort.”
Do-woo: “Then be the queen, and chase me out.”

(Note: He calls her a wang-bi, which is a queen consort, i.e., the king’s mate. She wants to be the yeo-wang, which is a queen who has ruling authority.)

This is Do-woo’s big day in more than just one way, because in addition to kicking off his new city, he’s orchestrated the destruction of his opposition. Namely, he has called the mayor and promised a meeting with the displaced residents to work out a favorable compensation deal. However, he doesn’t show up, leaving the mayor and residents to wait and grumble impatiently.

That is exactly his intention, we soon find out. Since the residents are waiting for the fake meeting, their homes are left unguarded. This leaves the path wide open for the demolition crew to come in and tear down the buildings without interference.

Shin and Jae-myung are vastly outnumbered, so they do what they can to grab the remaining people — children, elderly — and escort them out of harm’s way.

Therefore, when residents come home that night, everything has been demolished, their belongings carelessly thrown outside and broken. Some sit dully, while others angrily confront the mayor, accusing him of being bribed to get them out of the area so the construction team could come in. The mayor feels horrible for this turn, but doesn’t defend himself, and can only bow to his citizens and apologize repeatedly.

Jae-myung asks if Shin has designated this as their next battleground, and adds, “I don’t like it here. I can’t hunt with these noisy people around.” Shin answers that he’s still thinking it over.

Mun-ho may feel general sympathy for these people but he’s not invested in their crises, and urges Shin to leave. This isn’t their business, and they’re no good here.

It’s somewhat expected that Shin would ignore Mun-ho’s suggestion, but not as expected when Jae-myung steps forward to help an elderly grandma gather her scattered belongings.

The mayor’s aide is indignant at being manipulated by Do-woo, but the mayor remains calm as he gets to work helping his now-homeless residents. He makes calls to get emergency supplies ready for them.

Shin tells the mayor that he knows Do-woo well; this isn’t the end of things, not by a long shot. But he advises the mayor to step aside and focus on taking care of his people, saying, “I’ll be the one to take him on.” (This gets Jae-myung and Mun-ho’s attention, because this an official declaration of his next plan.)

Shin knows someone who won’t lend money but will lend might — Bum-hwan — who will be displeased to hear that one of his guys (Joong-ho) was caught up in this. Shin figures, “It looks like Chae Do-woo wants to build something here. I’m thinking of dragging him down, one by one.”

Kyung-tae locates Eun-soo’s father’s whereabouts, and finds her sleeping. Instead of waking her, he whispers to her that he’s found her father in a nursing home in the south. It’s sort of adorable as he continues, hesitantly (even for him)

Kyung-tae: “If you need me, I can go… with you. If you want to bring him back, it’s difficult to do it alone, so… I can go… with you… I can.”

I’m rather losing patience with Kyung-ah, because I’d thought she’d be smart when her eyes were opened to the fact that Do-woo is not what he seems. But instead, she has swallowed the bait more completely, and continues to work with him, soliciting more investments on his behalf.

When she asks K why Do-woo has moved back into a hotel, he answers that nobody’s at home. She asks where his sister went and gets back no reply, so she wonders, “Should I ask him that myself?” K warns, “You probably shouldn’t.”

Do-woo comments on Kyung-ah’s enthusiasm for extracting money from businessmen. She explains that until several years ago, she’d make less in one month than what those men spend on a scarf. So she spent a month’s pay on one scarf and threw it away (as we saw in an early episode), and decided, “One day, I’m going to make these rich directors shopping in this department store greet me before I greet them.”

Kyung-ah: “Lately, they do say hello to me first. Am I childish?”
Do-woo: “You’re frightening.”
Kyung-ah: “It’s strange. If I like money more than love, people criticize me. Do they like love more than money?”
Do-woo: “I know that you like the things I have more than me.”
Kyung-ah: “But there’s something else to my feelings toward you. I think, I’d like to fill the void in this man whose insides are as empty as mine. Then maybe my emptiness would be filled, too.”
Do-woo: “Did you think my heart was empty?”
Kyung-ah: “Is it not?”
Do-woo: “I don’t know. I don’t particularly want to look inside it.”

Jae-myung’s activities in the cleanup efforts have reopened his wound, sending him back to the doctor. Waiting outside while flipping through the Myungdoshi proposal book, Shin hits upon Do-woo’s purpose in building up the city.

Shin explains Do-woo’s “5 million” theory for an ideal society, where he’d like to discard the bottom 90 percent because they would just get in his way. Shin understands Do-woo’s thought process — people like the tenants are just tumors:

Shin: “They’re tumors you have to cut out in surgery, that grow if you leave them alone, that you worry may turn malignant.”
Mun-ho: “You’re saying they’re cancerous.”
Shin: “That’s how he thinks of them.”

When Jae-myung is done being treated, Shin announces that he’s picked his next battle: “I’ve figured out his weakness. I’m going to start with that.”

Jae-myung wants Shin to make a promise: “At the last minute, you won’t say that you forgive him.” Shin agrees, “All right. I’ll remember that.”

Meanwhile, Kyung-tae isn’t part of the group today, having taken it upon himself to take Eun-soo to retrieve her father. She protests that she can go on her own, but Kyung-tae is uncharacteristically insistent and accompanies her on her trip south, which should take a day or two.

Do-woo starts the next phase of his plan by meeting with the mayor to ask a favor. Following their last encounter, Do-woo seems to have realized that money on its own will not be enough; he needs political power, too. He pulls some strings and pressures the deputy mayor into resigning, leaving that spot vacant.

Do-woo presents his proposal: He’d like the mayor to take Director Oh as his new deputy mayor. His reasoning is couched in false concern (he wants to put someone in the position who is already familiar with the city planning project), but we know that he intends to make Oh mayor, meaning his next step will be to unseat the mayor.

Mayor Yang is uneasy about this, but Do-woo assures him that Director Oh should meet with approval by the city officials. To sweeten the deal, Do-woo offers generous compensation for the displaced tenants — 1 billion won. That should tide them over until they can move into the new apartment complex.

The tenants have already heard about the offer — but instead of being pleased, they’re angry that they haven’t been paid yet. They blame the mayor for hanging on to the money, as though suspicious he’d keep it from them.

It’s actually really sad to see the mayor arrive at the temporary camp brimming with excitement, because he’s been totally suckered by Do-woo, and until now he’s proven to be very shrewd. The mayor tells Shin that Do-woo’s not such an evil person after all, because he promised the money without too many restrictions.

Shin, on the other hand, finds this very suspicious and confronts K, demanding to be put through to Do-woo.

Shin: “Chae Do-woo. What game are you playing now?”
Do-woo: “See, you’re always a step faster than I think.”
Shin: “Just once, can’t we battle fair and square? Don’t just act out in conspiracy and fraud. Beat me fairly for once. Then I’d clap for you.”
Do-woo: “Fair and square? That doesn’t sound like something a con artist would say. But Kim Shin, do you know this? If anyone over there gets hurt, it’s because of you. Shouldn’t you have figured that out by now?”


So far, Jae-myung has been a fairly straightforward character — cool and sexy, yes, but one of the simpler characters, so I was pleased to see the beginning of some development with him. Like Kyung-tae, he finally starts bridging some of the distance he keeps with others, and engages.

Early in the episode, he stakes out his spot at Myung-sun’s home, saying that he’ll stay here until Shin figures out his next move. His argument sounds like a defense of laziness — i.e., it’s a waste of energy to follow Shin around before he decides on his plan of attack. But it’s like he’s drawn to these people’s plight without wanting to be — he could always return to the more comfortable Muse Café. Shin and Joong-ho have no qualms about feeling a connection to these people and defending them, but Jae-myung may need an excuse to stay.

He’s resisted being drawn into anything that doesn’t concern him directly, kind of like Mun-ho, but less successfully. After the residents’ homes are destroyed, he not only sticks around, but starts helping the cleanup of his own volition. You get the sense he’s not comfortable with this — he’d rather be the sexy-bastard ladykiller — but he joins in, even though the efforts reopen his stab wound. Not at all what we’d expect of Jae-myung.

As for Kyung-tae, let’s just take out a moment to squeal:


I have nothing meaningful to say about them, only that it’s adorable to see the girls treating Kyung-tae like any other normal person to follow around. In their eyes, he’s not odd or socially awkward, he’s just another big toy to giggle about and mimic.

In fact, one thing I appreciate is how nobody really makes a big deal over Kyung-tae’s autism. Not that they should, of course, but after the initial meeting, nobody’s treated Kyung-tae with any special treatment, even when he shrinks back from them or runs away. They don’t speak louder, or slower, or treat him like a child, or anything that one might encounter in real life. This may be a key reason why Kyung-tae is coming out of his shell lately, as he grows more comfortable with being part of a social group.

After the initial meeting between Kyung-tae and Eun-soo, they hadn’t shown signs of doing anything further with their relationship — until now. My romance-lovin’ heart was gratified to see this thread picked up, and now I’m fairly certain we’ll see more of their relationship developing.

In this episode, Kyung-tae spent some time looking at Eun-soo while she sleeps (while in the past he kept his gaze averted and ran away), and also shows signs of concern for her welfare. First he covers her with his jacket, then he insists on being with her while she searches for her father. This is another step in drawing Kyung-tae out of his isolation: Now he doesn’t wait for someone to tell him what to do, and takes the initiative.

As for Do-woo’s “5 million” group of people:

His philosophy is obviously problematic, but he’s certainly not the first to have thought it, nor will he be the last. Anyone who espouses institutionalized classism is treading on some seriously demented ground here, not that we were in doubt over the point of Do-woo’s moral compass. However, what I find interesting about the conversation in which he tells this to Shin is that he doesn’t automatically count Shin as a bottom-feeder. He doesn’t say Shin is in the top 5 million, but his statement chiding Shin for automatically siding with the bottom 45 million suggests that he is at least willing to entertain the possibility that Shin could belong in the top. Perhaps he was just speaking hypothetically, but I believe that if Do-woo saw Shin as a bottom-dweller, he would have responded differently.

Instead, he recognizes Shin’s potential — hey, dude has smarts, and balls — but also sees his weakness, and that is his “nice” mentality. If only Shin could be more ruthless, if only he could recognize he was in the top 10 percent and leave behind the doomed 90 percent, he might have wealth and success. In Do-woo’s view, it’s Shin’s unwillingness to let go of the others that will do him in. If he refuses to let go of those below him, insisting on trying to pull them up, they’ll just drag him under with them.

If Shin could successfully leave them behind, he could be like Kyung-ah, who sold her heart for money and got a big void in addition to it. I was surprised that he challenges Kyung-ah’s claim that there’s emptiness in his heart, because that suggests that he does have a heart. Maybe he means that in contrast to Kyung-ah’s empty heart, his is full… of evil intentions. (Which is why he doesn’t care to look inside.)

And within his black heart, perhaps the one spot reserved for Eun-soo was enough of a “brake” to slow down the actions of the rest… which was another curious statement, because it hints that Do-woo wants to be stopped. Does that mean he has a conscience? Or does it mean that his inner thoughts are SO dark, so evil that left unfettered, they scare even him?

Now that’s a frightening thought.


50 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. gladi

    nice recap…tnx DB!

  2. Marres77

    Wah! It breaks my heart that i can’t watch this immediately. I’ve put it on my list with triple astrix!!! The re-caps are awesome Javabeans, THANKS!

    I am really loving the Do-woo character and the Do-woo/Eun-soo dynamics! Also the Kyung-tae/Eun-soo interactions. This is panning out to be such a great drama!!!!!!

  3. Alvina

    Brilliant javabeans; I sat through looking at all of the preview scenes with a glazed look in my eyes wondering what could happen.

    I’m a bit frightened by this drama; the way the characters interact with one another… the way that Do-woo epitomizes every psychological “problem” that is known to be early signs of psycho-behavior.

    It’s crazy but I love it.

    I can’t wait to see how it ends; I think this is one of those mystery novel type dramas. You want to know the ending so you can sit through the drama with piece but you know if you DO know the ending, it’s not as fun XD

  4. cholitaa

    okay, i dont really keep up with this drama
    but i’ve got to say
    that guy with the glasses has like the same exact look in every screen shot bahahaha xD

  5. shinhyesungluv

    Does KA mean that she wants to be a queen with supreme rule (without a king)?

    Thanks for the recap 🙂

  6. Anatisha

    Thanks for the recap, I think was another good (as always) episode… or at least the cute one. I can see how much you enjoy writing about this drama making it like a puzzle you already finished and then showing us how to put it back together… and of top of that if you enjoy it, we enjoy it…

    About the 5million… Does Do Woo think of Shin as challenge meaning tha he really can create him some trouble?? or perhaps is just entretainig himself with a fair foe…

    I totally love Kyung Tae…

  7. Carolynn

    Thank you SO much for doing these recaps! I am absolutely in LOVE with Kyung-tae, it seems like the more I see him, the cuter he becomes!

  8. angle2mx

    Most dramas I watch aren’t well tied together but for this drama every side story helps make the drama move forward.

  9. Awesome!

    Hmmm. You know, I kinda don’t like the father (Do Woo). I really think that if he was a better father Do Woo would not have gone this far. There is something about him that ticks me off. If you think about it the family could have stayed together if the father was not so antagonistic though I do kind of understand where he’s coming from. I think Eun Soo really does have a special part in Do Woo’s heart, a bigger part than I imagined. He can’t seem ti function as well without her. I think he does really love her in the only way he’s capable of. Also nowadays I feel like Do Woo is more off and rough without her. He is not as cool and collected as before though he is still awesome :).

  10. 10 obsessed

    i loved this scene:
    Do-woo: “I remember everyone else as data on a computer, but Kim Shin is the only one I think of as his living self. It’s like the other information is in black and white, and he’s the only one in color.”
    Shin: “That’s odd, it’s the reverse for me. If I just think of Chae Do-woo, the surroundings darken.”

    and the scene where the mayor tells Shin a lot of people have been victimized like his brother. does this point to a transition from a revenge-driven Shin to protector-of-the-weak-and-upholder-of-justice Shin? are the two mutually exclusive? The mayor’s comment made me think, can Shin possibly become a political figure in future episodes? like dramabeans said in a previous recap, this drama is like a curvy windy road that only lets you see what’s directly ahead. it makes me excited to think that it won’t be a draggy drama.

    i’m most curious about kyung-ah’s stance in all this. she states that she’d rather be the yu-wang and won’t settle for wang-bi, yet how does she plan to do that if she’s sticking with do-woo? like do-woo says, she’d have to de-throne him to do that in his “kingdom”, no way he would give it up on his own. and i still think kyung-ah has too much heart to become as ruthless as do-woo. even though she says she likes money more than love, i’m still not convinced that’s true. like she says, her heart is empty.

    side note: as a medical student, i’ve become hypersensitive to scenes involving corrupt doctors, in the media in general. the doctor that put do-woo’s father away was most likely bribed into it. the movie changeling (based on a true story) shows a whole psych ward that’s corrupt. i don’t doubt that there are corrupt doctors out there – they’re human too after all. but i guess as a newbie to the profession i have a lot of faith in doctors’ moral compasses, at least when it comes to the well-being of their patients. and seeing casual scenes here and there of doctors gone corrupt, i scream out no~~~, it’s not true, they can’t be all that common. i hope i never encounter one in real life…

  11. 11 jboogie

    Love it! Thank you.

    “But I cannot be the only person who immediately wondered whether the picture refers to Kyung-ah or Eun-soo, amirite? I mean, I know it couldn’t be Eun-soo… but he doesn’t look on Kyung-ah with the same meaningful affection. ”

    I think the issue is that it is for EunSoo but this most likely isn’t going to happen. At least not now. Originally sure. This is why he has this dream in the first place. I think this “dream” originated with ES and he wants her there when he accomplishes it. KA is a stand in. Also I loved how he touched is heart when he was talking with ES. It was heartbreaking. And though I threw KA out long ago, I understand her pull to him. I think that though we may want her to get it together and wake up I think she’s caught. Even when she finds out the truth, I don’t think it will matter much. Therein lies the difference between she and ES. I think she’ll be able to do what ES couldn’t, stay.

    “And within his black heart, perhaps the one spot reserved for Eun-soo was enough of a “brake” to slow down the actions of the rest… which was another curious statement, because it hints that Do-woo wants to be stopped. Does that mean he has a conscience? Or does it mean that his inner thoughts are SO dark, so evil that left unfettered, they scare even him?”

    I think that last statement is spot on. ES keeps him sane. Though I don’t think he will be stopped, she keeps him from running further than he can handle. I believe he’s much darker than we know and her light keeps him from being engulfed. Their dynamic really intrigues me.

    Kyung Tae is too stinking cute! But for JM, honestly, he hasn’t surprised me at all. He seems aloof and indifferent but he never is completely or at all even(if he were he wouldn’t have gotten stabbed…imo). This quality is one of the most endearing things about him. I do agree that he feigns a reason to stay, being that he doesn’t even want to admit this of himself.

  12. 12 dksl

    The moment I saw the bridal picture I thought “EUN SOO!” and the next word that popped in was “INCEST!” I don’t know if he really does or not because it seems like his relationship with Kyung-ah is more of business than any thing else.

  13. 13 [email protected]

    Yes, I am not the only one who thinks that Eun Soo is more than just a sister to him.
    His feelings for her are way…….over brotherly. No matter how much a guy loves his sister, it is not that way. Perhaps Eun Soo is not his real sister. Remember the episode where his father got a heart attack while Dong-Woo looked at an old family photograph? He mentioned something like “you should have listened to your real son”. His unbalanced sense of the world has to do with how he was treated by his father since childhood. And their mother were never mentioned. What happened to her? Maybe if we unravel this mystery we will have a clearer picturer of why Dong-Woo is the way he is.

  14. 14 missjules

    first screencap!

    KyungTae in the bg with the two girls! Too adorable! 🙂

  15. 15 heejung

    ooh, i remember finding that conversation between shin and dowoo really interesting – when they talk about seeing shin in color and dowoo in black-and-white, etc. it was so neat.
    OMGOMG can’t wait for 13…!!!
    i got my friend hooked today too, ehehe. must spread park yongha and kyungtae love!!!

  16. 16 yuu

    ooooh something’s interesting! Do-woo even wants Kyung-Ah to chase him out of his throne. The ‘can she?’ question came for some brief seconds…but eh. perhaps that’s not possible. Do-woo sort of look unstoppable now that he lose Eun-soo as his ‘brake’….but what great evil couldn’t be stop by the great good that is Shin~ XD heheh! 18th marked on my calendar, I’ll be watching this drama on my cable for sure! :)))

  17. 17 cosmopolite

    Kyung-tae is seriously my guilty pleasure. He’s just so adorable.

    But of course I’m still enjoying the plot. Good stuff! 😀

  18. 18 chasen8888

    This is the first kdrama that I have to watch in raw version and am in a anticipated and impatient rush to see it with the subs, its also the same with impatiently waiting for Javabeans reviews per episode. This has never happened before. The show its just that good. To me its the most unappreciated kdrama being watched out there right now. I love everything about it. The story, the acting, directing, visuals etc. You name it, this drama has it. It has beaten my prior favorite Cain and Abel which is still a good drama for early 2009, its just that Story of a Man has surpassed it overall.

    So for Jan – April 2009 – its Cain and Abel, May – August 2009 – Story of a Man. I wonder which drama will come out on top for 2009.

    Best actor award in a kdrama has to go to Chae Do Woo, he encompasses an amoral character to a T. You cannot help but love and hate him at the same time. He’s very interesting

    Best supporting actor should go to Kyung Tae, he has made autism a cool thing to be. You cannot just help but to appreciate and enjoy seeing his growth being around Shin and the rest of the crew. Now its going into a new direction with ES, he cannot help but be fascinated with her.

    Best cast award I would give it to this show because everyone is so good. You cannot find any weaknesses in anything. Everyone balances each other out, plus you don’t feel that the show is rushed.

    One of my favourite scenes for this episode was Shin’s indication that he approves of Joong Ho’s relationship with his sister-in-law. Shin just threw the phone, telling him to call her because he doesn’t want her to worry. This is my understanding in the raw version. It was so funny, Joong Ho’s expression was like hu–uh.

    Now that the first half is now over, and the second half has started with a new revenge goal and twist as they say in my country “Story has come to bump”. I wonder what will they think of next.

    For those who are not watching this show, you should watch it. You will miss something wonderful if you do.

    • 18.1 Gasenadi

      “Chae Do Woo, he encompasses an amoral character to a T. You cannot help but love and hate him at the same time.”

      No. From the very first M&A, to Sec. Do’s murder, I’ve loathed DW’s immoral, sick butt. I can see that many love him, or love to hate him, want him rehabilitated, feel sorry for him. Not me.

      I’m holding on for a juicy, tortuous comeuppance.

  19. 19 Tammy

    Even if DW and ES are blood-related siblings (and at least right now, we are led to believe they are), I have to say that I am the most intrigued by the dynamics between them. It is undeniable that DW especially leans on her and wants her to be on his side. Calling KA ES’s name in the last episode was a major giveaway and the phone conversation in this episode just further supported that theory. Although it would be disturbing if DW had more than just brotherly feelings toward ES (honestly, I already think he does, anyway), I really like how she is different in his mind and heart; she is the only one who elicits real emotions from DW.

  20. 20 netikat

    DW has a severe case of sister complex. AND I’M LOVING IT! i think there shouldn’t be any more questions about it. That forbidden romance between siblings is one of the most common plot devices–i’ve seen it in dramas and manhwas alike (and i’ve seen a lot). Kdramas aren’t exactly known for subtlety. Story of a Man dropped just too many hints of that brother-loves-sister possibility (at least two moments like that in each episode). It’s confirmed: DW is feeling something that he shouldn’t for his sister.

  21. 21 Jasmin

    OH MY GOD, I love Kyung-tae!!*_* He and Eun-Soo are so cute together. And how he tries to touch her!:3~~~

  22. 22 nikkaii

    in the scene where do woo cuts off a pic of grace kelly, the camera focuses on almost blob-like people he drew (2 episodes ago?) when they were still planning on the stockbattle(i think~).. well anyway.. amongst the male-blobs( i assumed they were male because they were bald-.-) was one with hair..(its a she-blob)

    so is that a comparison on Grace Kelly and the she-blob? could one be kyung ah and the other eunsoo?

    who do you think refers to whom???


    i might just be overcomplicating things..or imagining it for that matter
    (i have been noticing(or attempt to) these kinds of things..after reading how meaningful each shot might be~and ofcourse after watching on air..on which u have endlessly praisedxD)

  23. 23 Sawaa

    Hi (^.^)/

    Can someone plz tell me where can I watch this drama ?

    I want to watch it ^^!

  24. 24 yumi-chan

    I said this a couple of posts back BUT MAN AM I HAPPY FOR THE KYUNG TAE AND EUN SOO LINE! I also said this, we need couple names XDDDD
    Because their cuteness PWNS the cuteness of w.e drama couple out there.

  25. 25 shinhyesungluv

    @ Sawaa

    Download the drama at http://aja-aja.com/regular/story-of-a-man

    Use subs from WithS2 🙂

  26. 26 Nom Kitteh

    I feel frustrated by Eun-soona’s coldness towards Do Woo. Yes, his love for her is obviously inappropriate but only the audience is privy to his less-than-brotherly love. The affection he actually shows her is not creepy in the least so she doesn’t know that he is really, really into her. So, b/c ES was so quick to align herself with the Dream Team, I wonder if she ever loved DW. How quickly her loyalties shifted! Also, because she knows what DW is really like (who knows how many years she had been eavesdropping), was her affection for him all these years an act?

    Why does DW love her so much? At first I could see why DW loves her — she is the antithesis of what he is and possibly the kind of person he wishes he could be: she is unorthodox (she even visits Shin in prison to apologize to him) while he is more of a conventional cutthroat business man; she is super sweet and caring while he is obviously not; she likes to be around people while he is a loner. At the same time, they were similar — they both have scars from and burdens of having miserable parents and a nasty father — and the two seemed to like being with each other (DW even showed up at ES’s arranged date at the hotel and she looked happier with him than with her date).

    I had hoped that the writers would make DW’s and ES’s bond stronger, thus making the dance between appropriate and inappropriate love that much more interesting. These two survived a pretty horrific childhood so it would have made sense for ES to want to stay by DW’s side even as she is repulsed by or afraid of him. But I guess the writers have decided to take a less dark route by excising ES from that world and placing her squarely in a world that is sunny, pretty, and beautiful (i.e., the world of Kyung-ate’s affection).

    Something about Jae-myung is beginning to tug at my heart. I am not a fan of Philip Lee, but the way he is portraying Jae-myung is winning me over. He is silent, yet very present in the scenes that he is in. Also, the reason for Jae-myung’s return to Korea to always evident — he is quietly mourning the death of a man he never really knew as a father or even as a man. He wants to avenge his father’s death but he doesn’t want to deal with the larger messes of dealing with the emotions that make him want to avenge his father’s death. Unlike Shin, who watched his brother’s indirect murder, Jae-myung seems driven more by loyalty to a kin than by love — and yet … love lurks around the edges of his actions. I am beginning to savor every minute I get to see Jae-myung on-screen.

    JBeans, thank you so much for the recaps and wonderful commentaries!

  27. 27 icancrackanegg

    I, too, found Dowoo’s affection for Eunsoo to go beyond simple brotherly love. There is something deeper than that, I believe, that affects his actions and behavior in general. I’m anxious to see what that is.

    Also, I think Eunsoo is more-or-less a straightforward character. She cares deeply for her family but has now wound up torn between her father and her brother. Dowoo has no limits, and he has even hospitalized their father–I’m certain this could cause a rift in any family, much less one that includes a sociopath for a brother. Maybe the cycle will come back around and Eunsoo will be the one to somehow stop him. Dowoo seems as if he is trying hard to achieve some sort of… utopia, although with him thinking that the end justifies the means only results in causing pain and anguish to everyone else around him.

    My theory? Dowoo is in love with his sister, but for whatever reason (incest possibly being one), he cannot be with her, and so he seeks to dominate the world in order to do whatever he wants. I think he has always wanted Eunsoo to be his queen… Ok, ok, it sounds weird when I say all this, but that’s what I really believe. Only time will tell if my theory is correct!

  28. 28 Yunha

    I dunno about the whole incest thing. I do believe Dowoo has an unhealthy fixation on his sister, but that might just be because she was the only one who was really by his side since they were young. Or because he sees in her everything he could’ve/should’ve been/done, and that’s what keeps him grounded in terms of his morale (sort of like a conscience?). It’s all really hard to tell, though- I’m confused because he’s so hard-to-read as a character and I can’t tell whether his occasional sadness/guilt at some of his actions is fake or real… 😛

    IMO, Dowoo is searching for the same kind of blind devotion/trust Eunsoo used to bestow on him in Kyungah, which is why he told Eunsoo he misses the “old her” and why he got their names confused… I think if Dowoo really did want Eunsoo to be his queen, it’s because of those very features, not because he’s harboring any sexual feelings towards her (or: maybe Dowoo, who I consider practically asexual, actually liking anybody in THAT way is just too bizarre a concept for me to grasp).

    Then again, I could be be proven wrong in future episodes- you never can tell with somebody like Dowoo, anyway.

  29. 29 joy

    Shin is a tough kind-hearted man, cool and handsome. Doo woo is a cool-headed devil with a soft spot for EN. He is charming and cunning at the same time. I can’t figure his character. He is just so mysterious. I love KT too, he is the cutest in this drama, JM is also charming in his own way. Damm. i love everyone except for KA. She is so blinded with money and she look bitchy in a way more than pretty.

  30. 30 edc

    hi, been reading your recaps all the while and i must say you are doing a fantastic job! just by reading your recaps makes me all hyped up so thank you! 🙂 anyway, would like to ask your opinions on the OST? Is it good? don’t think i came across you talking much about the soundtrack, i think? correct me if i’m wrong!

  31. 31 Rissy

    ”does it mean that his inner thoughts are SO dark, so evil that left unfettered, they scare even him?

    Now that’s a frightening thought.”

    That is a frightening thought. One I hope is true, in a very twisted manner. I mean, if it were true that he were to be afraid of himself, it would mean delving into a plotline or plot point unlike what (at least for me) has ever been seen in any drama before.

    Oh and i totally agree on that Kyung-tae is absolutely adorable!

  32. 32 Love Yona

    Episode 12 recap please? This recap is so good, i am excited about what is going to happen next. 😉

  33. 33 Angeline

    Best Drama of the year – Story of a man 🙂
    Best Script Writer, Best Director
    Best Actor – Park Yong Ha ( Handsome, tough, smart and kind hearted)
    Best Villian – Kim Kang Woo ( Cool, scheming and unpredictable)
    Best Supporting Actor – Park Ki-Woong ( Cute genius), Phillip Lee ( Charming ladykiller, with a brain)
    Best Actress – The girl who played shin ex girlfriend ( Materialistic, tough cookie with a bitchy and arrogrant look)
    Best Supporting Actress – The girl who played Doo Woo sister ( Innocent, gentle and kind hearted)

  34. 34 Angeline

    Leader – Kim Shin (Plot and plan)
    Assistant Jae-myung (asist Shin)
    Brain behind the team – Kyuang-Tae
    The advisor – Mun-ho
    With the support of the ring leader in the prison, Mayor, Doo Woo Dad and sister on his side
    Leader – Doo Woo
    Assistant and lover – Kyung-Ah
    Right Hand man – K and the traitor wearing a pair of spectacles.

  35. 35 Sumaiya

    thanks! i loved the re-caps!

  36. 36 nu2you

    First, thank you so much for the re-caps. The drama is worth the time to indulge. Each character balances one another in the story. Fantastic! I must admit that I watch the raw versions, recaps and still anticipating, can’t wait to see it with the subs

    This for me never happened before. The kdrama A Man’s STory is just that good to say the least. We just love eveythiing about it, storyline, actors, scenes, symbolisms . My friends agree that its the most unappreciated kdrama being watched out there right now. It’s the best Kdrama so far. It’s someting wonderful not dragging, suspenseful and the exchanges between the 2 leads are truly powerful and the others just completes it.

    To those who want to experience the next level in a drama, you will definitely pick this one hands down. To those who haven’t, you are missing something challenging and a masterpiece that’s rare in other kdramas.

  37. 37 Sue

    jbeans you have no idea how much i get out of your recaps!! i stay up WAY too late every night watching dramas, and refuse to ever watch the next episode before reading your recaps first. they are so insightful!! i love, and usually concur with your comments on character development and fangirling (KYUNGTAE SUNSAENG~~~~!)

    but something new i’m being exposed to is taking note of directing.. ie. using certain shots/angles/settings to express MEANING. it totally takes watching dramas (and other visual media for that matter) up to a WHOLE other level! yeah, sometimes it seems like we’re finagling to wring out the meaning, but that’s the fun in it, right?! haha.

    btw, it’s 4:26AM here on the east coast…-0= shoot me now.. but NO! more DRAMAS!!

  38. 38 E

    This drama is something I would normally not watch but reading your summaries really makes it enjoyable haha….instead of watching I’ll wait eagerly for your summaries simply because I know I would be crying every episode and I have no time for that lol…


  39. 39 Gloria

    This drama is SO awesome!
    I’m in love. I swear. 😀 (All the guys. So cute. :D)

    On another note, I’m also disappointed that EunSoo left Do Woo so quickly. Aren’t family ties supposed to be stronger than that?
    Yet, I can also understand how she feels lost. How DO you deal with someone so dark? That you know is that way?

    Loving everything.
    Except Kyung-Ah.
    Ahahaha sorry Park Si Yeon! D:

  40. 40 kay

    i think i’m alone here but i’m rooting for a shin-eun soo coupling. kyung ah is just not the right person for him – they’ve both changed way too much, particularly her.

  41. 41 Anonymous

    Javabeans, are you still doing recaps of this drama (ep 12 onwards)? Because you usually do recaps pretty fast. It is not interesting anymore?

  42. 42 Sawaa

    @ shinhyesungluv

    Thank you so much >(^.^)><(^__^)<

  43. 43 k

    Wow you are good. I love reading what you wrote, =)

  44. 44 lynnie

    I don’t have much to say about this episode, except Kyungtae is the cutest guy ever!!! And Do-woo continues to prove his creepiness and evilness. I was so shocked to see the police seize the student and that old man. Can they really do that without any paper and stuff? And that old man was too weak to even defend himself!

  45. 45 jes

    ahh i dont know how kyungah will ever redeem herself. and if she doesnt whos gonna pair up with shinn?

  46. 46 Min

    OMG…I agree with you! Kyungtae is so cute!

  47. 47 elaineD


    it provides a different point of view and adds on to my own insights. as a combination, i feel like so much is being revealed here!

    ur comments make this show so much more fun, dark, exciting, and adrenalin-rushing.

  48. 48 kay

    Ahhh I’m having such withdrawals. This show was simply amazing. I wished I had watched it earlier. I liked Ut so much, I rewatched it the day after I finished. Thank you so much for your thoughtful recaps. I always read them while watching the videos to not miss anything 🙂

  49. 49 Gasenadi

    Thanks for the insightful recaps. So glad you enjoyed the experience.

    This is the second episode in a row where I’ve sobbed in frustration and rage at DW’s vile machinations. (Writing this several yrs after the drama was first aired, as banks are foreclosing on the “tumors” all over the world.) That DW’s “business practices” are considered par for the course enrages me even more! Hope he gets sent to a circle in Hell where he gets repeatedly bulldozed into a ditch.

    I am sooo happy that Eun-Soo has opened her eyes, FINALLY, to DW’s true character, or lack thereof. She should be fearful for her very life, considering what happened to Sec. Do, Mom, Dad, and indirectly, Shin’s brother. It does my heart good to see her exhibit empathy and care towards the victims of the corporate criminals in her family, the prime example being Evil Spawn DW.

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