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City Hall: Episode 9

(written by Samsooki, editing, layout, design and City Hall dreams by 0timelost, cleown, and mead33)

(This is what you get when you mix a little bit of Michelle Obama, Sailor Moon, an old rich Korean woman together with Mi Rae)

City Hall: Episode 9 – What It Means To Be A Civil Servant, What It Means To Be A Woman.

To neutralize Mi Rae as a wild card in the upcoming Mayoral election, Joo Hwa has just offered Mi Rae a job as a mascot / cheerleader for her Victory Party’s candidate. Mi Rae, incensed at constantly being treated like a fool by Joo Hwa, rejects the offer. Mi Rae declares that SHE will run for Mayor, and she will just have to become Wonder Woman to do so! Joo Hwa is in disbelief, but recovers more than a little of her classic sneer in deriding Mi Rae’s threatened action.

Joo Hwa: You think wearing star spangled panties is all it takes for anyone to become Wonder Woman? All those people with a dot on their nose, will they be like Jeon Ji Hyun? And what about Min So Hee? She’s totally crazy just like you.

(Note: This is actually pretty funny, as City Hall writers continue to poke gentle fun at other Korean dramas and actors/actresses. Joo Hwa is referencing both the lovely actress Jeon Ji Hyun’s now-removed tiny birthmark on her nose and the popular hit drama series, Temptation of Wife. In Temptation of Wife, the character of Min So Hee is a paranoid lunatic who also has a dot-sized birthmark on her nose. Btw, Temptation of Wife is one of those dramas that turns your brain into a sandglass with your brain cells leaking out as you watch. People might label it as a “mak-jang” drama but I think it is more appropriately named a “crack-jang” drama, due to its addictiveness and resulting brain damage.)

Unfazed by Joo Hwa’s derision, Mi Rae gives Joo Hwa a pat on the shoulder and leaves, noting that Joo Hwa’s fear is clearly showing. With her plans completely backfired, Joo Hwa can’t help but look worried.

Ah, but Mi Rae is a wily one. Back at the Mexico and Chicken Restaurant, Mi Rae admits she said all that just so as to piss off Joo Hwa and put a little scare into her. Who would vote for Mi Rae anyway?

Meanwhile, Jo Gook is playing a round of golf with Governor So, the provincial governor whose jurisdiction covers Inju City. Governor So introduces his man who he wants to be the next Mayor of Inju City. Jo Gook politely refuses to manage the campaign of the Governor’s man; he’s already got a candidate in mind to become Mayor, and this particular candidate doesn’t even know how many political parties there are in Korea. Governor So is outraged that Jo Gook would pull this kind of double-cross.

Even Soo In is confused by this maneuver. Jo Gook’s candidate wouldn’t be Shin Mi Rae, would it? How can that make any sense? Not happy to be asked about Mi Rae, Jo Gook responds: did it make any sense for Soo In to betray Jo Gook? (Uhh, what does one thing have to do with other?)

In any case, it looks like Jo Gook has gotten over Soo In’s backstabbing, as Jo Gook admits that if BB had asked him to do the same, Jo Gook would have done it too, but done it better. Right down to the stylish suits, the penchant for backstabbing, the hair parts on the same side of the head, and even the faint mustache and beard outlines, Jo Gook and Soo In are alike, and it seems that both like Mi Rae too.

Meanwhile, things are moving quickly in Inju City. Joo Hwa gets her dad to run as the Victory Party’s nominee for Mayor. And on the other side of town, Boo Mi tells Mi Rae about that certain job that she is trying to get for Mi Rae. Boo Mi took all the remaining money that she had, AND, all the money that Mi Rae gave to her (which was all the money that Mi Rae had), and used it to pay for the Mayoral election application fee! Mi Rae, obviously, freaks out. She cannot run for Mayor!

Later that night, Jo Gook meets with Boo Mi and gives her an envelope full of cash, to reimburse her and Mi Rae for the application fee. But Boo Mi refuses to take the reimbursement money. She asks Jo Gook: does the former Deputy Mayor think that Mi Rae can win? Jo Gook nods. Boo Mi responds, ruefully, that she doesn’t think Mi Rae can win. Boo Mi explains herself:

Boo Mi: Mi Rae is too simple-minded, too naïve. She goes around helping anyone and everyone, and she spends all of her time trying to take care of everyone – from taking part-time jobs to donating money to schools, making snacks for the children for their field trips, rice cakes for people having birthdays. And most of all, 365 days out of the year, Mi Rae is never fake; she is always sincere and real. I have never once seen a mayor like that in my whole life.

Jo Gook: And so?

Boo Mi: And so, that’s why I am putting all of my own money in. That’s why you should take this money back. And that’s why you must make Mi Rae the next Mayor.

(That rocks. Boo Mi is one fierce and loyal ahjumma. I said that I want to grow up to be like Jung Do, but I change my mind – I want to be like Boo Mi.)

With that, Boo Mi heads back to the porridge shop where she is working part-time. Mi Rae and Jung Do are waiting for her. They tried to get back the application fee from the city election office but to no avail. The money is now gone. Mi Rae screams at Boo Mi, wondering how she could just waste all their money like that!

Boo Mi doesn’t back down and yells back:

Boo Mi: It ISN’T wasted! If you get 15% of the vote, all of your money will be refunded. So you, you must get over 15% of the vote!

Mi Rae: 15% comes so easily off of your lips! Is 15% the name of your dog? Do you know how hard getting 15% is?!!

Boo Mi: So work HARD and I am telling you, you WILL get 15%! Work your hardest to get 15%, and then work even harder to win the election. Work your hardest to win the election, and then when you are Mayor… get me my job back.

Mi Rae: (speechless, in tears)

Boo Mi: I was a good civil servant, you know. For our country, I was loyal and did my best. For the citizens, I acted righteously and I worked hard for them. In my work, I was creative and conscientious. At my workplace, I acted respectfully and spoke credibly. And in my life, I act honestly and cleanly. I swore an oath to keep all those things, and I kept all of them. And so you have to get me my job back, do you understand?

Mi Rae despairs. Everything Boo Mi has said is right, but Boo Mi has just laid the responsibility of her unemployment squarely on Mi Rae. It is too much for Mi Rae, and she cries out that now all the people that Boo Mi got signatures from will be disappointed in Mi Rae, and questions how she can show her face to anyone. It is a heart-tugging scene, as Boo Mi’s hopes for (and demands on) Mi Rae have frightened Mi Rae beyond even her own strength and courage. Mi Rae cannot deal, and runs out of the porridge shop.

Jung Do has been silent the entire time, but now he questions Boo Mi.

Jung Do: You didn’t, by any chance, meet with the former Deputy Mayor, did you?

Boo Mi: Yes, I did. In the beginning, I did start this because of him, but as I went around getting signatures, I realized that this was the thing that I actually wanted for Mi Rae all along, and so…

Jung Do (interrupting): I know YOUR intent quite well, but did you even once stop and think at what the former Deputy Mayor’s objectives are? Don’t you know that he wants a Mayor that he thinks he can easily manipulate?

Boo Mi is speechless for once, as she starts to realize how big of an error she might have made. This is a really, really good point by Jung Do. (Note: Boo Mi and I both got so caught up in the moment, we BOTH totally forgot about Jo Gook’s penchant for doing things that benefit him first. Thank goodness for Jung Do to keep us all grounded!)

The following day at the market, Mi Rae is selling her fish and trying to calculate how many votes it will take to get to 15% – it is a whole lot. As Mi Rae starts to despair again, a familiar person is walking through the market, with his child and his mother to boot! Jo Gook is making his rounds, giving smiles and handshakes. Rang looks adorable in his capri khakis, but Jo Gook’s mom could not be less thrilled with being used as a political prop. Jo Gook sees Mi Rae, and he greets her rather awkwardly.

Jo Gook: It has been a long time.

Mi Rae: Yes.

Jo Gook: (says nothing)

Jo Rang: Who is that, daddy?

Mi Rae: (looks curiously at Rang, it is her first time seeing the child).

Jo Gook: Oh. This noona is… your dad’s… colleague. (Note: in this context, “noona,” or “older sister” is merely a polite way to talk about a stranger)

Mi Rae is rocked by Jo Gook’s portrayal of their relationship, but hides it behind a warm smile to Rang. Before Jo Gook can finish introducing his mother, Jo Gook’s mother snaps that she knows who Mi Rae is since she reads the newspapers. With that she storms off with Rang as the smell of baendaengis is too much for her nose – Mi Rae doesn’t even get to properly introduce herself.

(Being able to make a good first impression to a potential future mother-in-law might be important to any woman, but in Korean culture, it is vital because the wife is expected to join the husband’s family, leaving her own behind. Historically, this would mean that the wife would be directly under the supervision, care and control of the husband’s mother. So first meetings are doubly important for the wife-to-be. But Jo Gook introduces Mi Rae as a “colleague” and Jo Gook’s mom takes the cue and doesn’t wait around long enough to meet Mi Rae. And so Jo Gook has just obliterated any chance that Mi Rae might have had at making a good first impression. Mi Rae can only interpret that as Jo Gook saying to her that they have no chance to be together.)

Outside the market, Jo Gook and family start to drive away when Mi Rae dashes out to stop the car. Even if she has no chance at a relationship with him, even if she has been labeled by Jo Gook as being nobody special, Mi Rae still needs Jo Gook’s help.

Mi Rae and Jo Gook have their face to face, and Mi Rae asks Jo Gook if he believes that she can win, and if she cannot, whether she can at least get 15% of the vote, and if she cannot even get that amount, whether Jo Gook can give her the application fee. He responds that there is no way that Mi Rae will lose, and so she shouldn’t think like that.

Jo Gook then asks what Mi Rae would be willing to give him, if he helps her to win the election. Will Mi Rae agree to whatever Jo Gook wants? Mi Rae sighs and nods.

Jo Gook: You haven’t even asked me what it is that I will require from you.

Mi Rae: I already know.

Jo Gook: You know?

Mi Rae: Yes.

Mi Rae: As guys get closer to me, they all want the same thing.

Jo Gook: Really?

Mi Rae: Yes. They all say “Get lost!” or “You should find a good man, I am not deserving of you” or “Wouldn’t it be better if we were just like brother and sister?”

Jo Gook: Who are these jerks anyway? You should call them up so I can deal with them.

Mi Rae: Oh, but there is another guy too. He’s the worst of them all.

Jo Gook: Why are there so many of these jerks?

Mi Rae (staring straight at Jo Gook): Yeah, this guy says, “Oh, this noona, she’s your father’s colleague.”

Jo Gook is truly shaken by Mi Rae’s words which hit him squarely in the heart. He looks hurt and betrayed by her comments. But honestly, WHO is the one who has done the hurting and the betraying?

Mi Rae continues – she isn’t some 20-year old girl who will hang on every word of a guy who takes her on a camping trip. So he needn’t look so serious at her comments. But Jo Gook has a few stunning words in return.

Jo Gook: These days, I’ve been doing things that I’ve never done before. And in living this life of mine, I’ve never had anything like this happen to me before. Doing the things that I did with you took a lot of courage for someone like me. Don’t you see that?

Mi Rae (frozen by his words).

Jo Gook: I admit that I am not a good man, but I hope that you won’t see me like a person that you would despise.

That has got to be one of the best responses in the history of responses. Mi Rae feels, well, she feels about what she looks like. She has had her heart crushed and inflated, twisted and straightened, and forever altered by this man, who is just so hard to understand. When he speaks the truth, it hurts. When he lies, it hurts. There is no getting around pain when Mi Rae hears words that come from Jo Gook, but no matter what, if he starts speaking, Mi Rae’s heart opens up again.

Back to the furious pace of this episode! The election nominee deadline has passed, and the candidates are gathered at the city election office to give slogans and to announce their platforms. Without further ado, we proudly present the candidates for Inju’s mayoral by-election:

Clockwise, from the top left: Candidate #1 for the newly revamped Victory Party, Joo Hwa’s dad! Candidate #2 for the Purity Party, the man that Governor So wanted! Candidate #3 for the Sovereignty Party, Father Time himself! And Candidate #4 for the Citizens’ Progress Party, well, some guy:


And Candidate #5 is… not present. Where is Mi Rae on this important day? She has searched out Jung Do, to ask for his help. But Jung Do is not convinced that Mi Rae knows what she is doing, especially since her top priority seems to be getting her money back. Jung Do challenges Mi Rae about her lack of educational background and experience. Who would be willing to vote for her? Undaunted, Mi Rae challenges back:

Mi Rae: Was Mayor Go’s education poor? Was his work experience bad? Politics! What is that anyway? Isn’t it, “For people whose lives are poor, to help them get better lives, and for people whose lives are good, to ask them to help out.” Isn’t that what it is about? At the very least, I am confident that I can do a better job than Mayor Go in that regard!!

Well, I dare say that Mi Rae has got a little bit of Boo Mi fire in her eyes now! Jung Do agrees to help out with Mi Rae’s campaign…but of course, now we have two cooks in the same kitchen. Two savvy political guys, graduated from the academy in the same year, with completely different ideas on how to make Mi Rae into the next Mayor of Inju City.

First issue to resolve – what is going to be the overall photo concept for the campaign? What kind of image should Mi Rae portray? Progressive Jo Gook likes the Hillary Clinton and the Michelle Obama looks. Traditional Jung Do likes the “dignified and noble older Korean woman” kind of look and also the “Korean freedom fighter Yoo Gwan Sun” look. They start to dress Mi Rae like a doll. Hehe!


Fortunately, Mi Rae gets the final say and she scraps these contrived looks for something that actually means something to her. the final photo concept ends up being a picture of Mi Rae, taken by Boo Mi during one of the Miss Baendaengi contest event. And to convey the Wonder Woman concept, her friends photoshop in a tiara to the hat. The words read, “For the future, let’s pull for Mi Rae! Wonder Woman Shin Mi Rae! We ask this of you, Inju City!”

Right off the bat, Mi Rae receives some good news. Candidate #3’s (Father Time’s) check has bounced and he is out of the election! Mi Rae’s chances have just risen!

As Jo Gook is driving Mi Rae home after a long day, he receives a call on his cell As Mi Rae curiously looks on, Jo Gook’s side of the conversation ends like this: “Mmmhmm… I miss you too.” Mi Rae can only hear a few bits and pieces of the conversation, but she has a pretty good idea of exactly who Jo Gook is missing. Jo Gook suddenly stops the car and tells Mi Rae to get out, as he has a meeting to attend. Mi Rae can only watch as Jo Gook speeds off, away from her…

and towards …

During their walk through the park, Jo Gook tells his fiancée frankly that he is using her to ensure that BB will help him ascend the Blue House. Go Hae answers that it is okay if he uses her, but in return, she would like to be by his side when he enters the Blue House. This is the bargain they have made with each other.

Go Hae also offers to help finance Mi Rae’s election. She gently asks Jo Gook not to refuse her money, since if he does refuse, then she might get the wrong idea about the relationship between him and Mi Rae. It is a difficult choice for Jo Gook, as Go Hae seems to be the key to both his ambitions and Mi Rae’s ambitions. And what Go Hae asks in return will keep him and Mi Rae apart forever.

As a very troubled and sad Jo Gook is driving back to Inju City, his thoughts go back to a recent memory of the camping trip that he had with Mi Rae. And now we are able to see what happened on that overnight trip, between the two of them that night.

It looks like both of them are unable to sleep, especially Mi Rae, who has a man close enough to her that she can feel his breath. Jo Gook pretends to sleep though, perhaps to give Mi Rae some measure of comfort.

But Mi Rae, in a surprising move, rolls over and Jo Gook quickly closes his eyes.

Mi Rae tentatively reaches out, like a fish testing a baited hook, and then falling back quickly. Jo Gook does not awake, and so she reaches out and strokes his face.

Mi Rae can barely breathe. Almost on their own, her fingertips start tracing his eye brows, and then his cheek. As her fingers touch his lips, Jo Gook’s hand grabs Mi Rae’s!! CAUGHT!! Jo Gook, the clever fisherman, has caught his very first baendaengi!!

Jo Gook (sleepily): Keep that up, and you will get jumped…

Mi Rae rolls back over to her side of the tent like she is on fire. As it is, she should take comfort in the fact that any other human being would have actually burst into flames. Mercifully, Mi Rae is let off of the hook by Jo Gook who volunteers to sleep outside…and the scene shifts to the present again…but this memory is no longer Jo Gook’s alone, but Mi Rae’s as well! She too has been thinking of that night they spent together camping.

Mi Rae’s eyes falls on Jo Gook’s jacket, which is still hanging in her room. Mi Rae walks over to the jacket that told her more about Jo Gook than any of his words. Shouldn’t she return the jacket? Given the events of the day, it is clear to Mi Rae that the jacket, like the unspoken promise it held, would very likely remain empty.

The next day, it is campaign finance awareness day for Mi Rae. Both Jung Do and Jo Gook finally agree on this critical point: If Mi Rae wants to have any success at all in this mayoral election, she will need to borrow a lot of money, quickly – in the neighborhood of a quarter million dollars!

To that end, Jo Gook takes Mi Rae to a hotel room to meet with a VIP sponsor. Mi Rae is fearful and sickened, thinking that Jo Gook is trying to make her spend the night with some sleazy guy. Mi Rae is now not only hurt by Jo Gook, she is disgusted by him. But as Mi Rae stands up to go, the VIP sponsor enters the room:

Comments –

If Episode 6 is the episode that made City Hall the drama series that cannot be missed, then Episode 9 is the episode that makes City Hall the drama series that must be loved. I absolutely LOVED this episode. There are so many scenes that were so brilliant, with the OST songs and lyrics matching the scenes, the powerful acting by everyone, the wonderful pacing, and the balanced direction by the PD and staff.

While Mi Rae’s and Jo Gook’s feelings for each other are easy to see, the relationship itself keeps running into the reality of Jo Gook’s world. He needs Go Hae, not just for her money, but because she is the key to keeping BB on Jo Gook’s side (or, rather, the key to keeping BB from being Jo Gook’s enemy). The only thing that his fiancée wants in return is for her to be there by his side when he enters the Blue House. That’s the arrangement, and that’s what Jo Gook has agreed to do. But that means that Mi Rae will be left alone, only able to dance with an empty jacket.

And as we see, there are lines that Mi Rae simply will not cross. She will not sell her body or her principles for money or for power. And if Jo Gook goes down an unethical road for the sake of his own ambition, it is extremely unlikely that Mi Rae would sell out for his sake either. And this makes Mi Rae and Jo Gook potential enemies.

Sitting back a moment, and reflecting on Mi Rae, it is hard to imagine how Mi Rae’s heart can take so much. As a guy, perhaps, I try to parse and break things into manageable pieces, to organize and to compartmentalize. One thing has got nothing to do with another. But for Mi Rae, her heart mixes everything together, and her emotions are the result of the love she holds in her heart for everyone in her world. And her holding onto the promise of the jacket, despite everything that tells her otherwise, it is her expression of what it means to be a woman.

The one to watch for in this Episode: Boo Mi.

If everyone in government service had as much fire, passion, and integrity as Boo Mi, how much better of a world would we live in today?

While recapping this episode, I went back to the Boo Mi scenes with Jo Gook and with Mi Rae, and I feel like her words should be etched in stone and put in every government office, as the very essence what it means to be a civil servant.

I said this before, but Boo Mi is one fierce ahjumma. And while every girl should have a friend like Jo Gook, I think that every person should have a best friend like Boo Mi.

On To Episode 10!

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thanks for the recap! Boo-mi's meeting with Jo Gook is one of my fave parts of CH!

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I'm addicted to these recaps more than I am to the drama (is that possible?!) Seriously, this is like, my fifth time coming on to Dramabeans today. :)

I loved this episode; it was one of my favorites by far. The eloquent moments contrasted nicely with the upbeat ones and the plot progressed at a great pace. I'm starting to like Joo Hwa a lot more too - under the annoying, clever face is a pretty amusing, cute character that really makes you laugh.

I wonder if Soo In will become more involved in the Mi Rae-Jo Gook-Go Hae love triangle, although I suppose that he's too minor of a character to do so, and that would complicate things quite a bit more.

Thanks Samsooki, Dramabeans, 0timelost, cleown, and mead33!

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it just gets more and more interesting fr this point on. haha .. it would be interesting to see what transpires if Soo In actually DID make more of an effort romantically in Mi Rae's direction.

I am an eager addict to all these recaps too. MUCH THANKS for keeping them coming!

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the 1st pic reminded me of jung il woo dressing up as a girl in return of iljimae :p

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I absolutely love this episode especially the bonus scene from their camping trip. I was literally screaming when this episode airing live. lol

I appreciate a lot of your input Samsooki and Team. I like how you explain why Go Hae and Jo Guk need each other for their own agenda. I didn't realize till you mention that It could also mean to keep BB at Jo Guk's good side. Coz he's been trying most of his life to gain his love/trust from BB.

I also like that part when Jo Guk showed a little bit of jealousy when Mi-rae called Jung Do on his phone. Now Im not so sure, if that look on his face was jealousy.

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Samsooki recap team: it was all worth it, the interminable (perfection can't be rushed, I know, I know) wait for the Ep. 9 recap has culminated in this - the richest emotional recap yet. And Samsooki, your prose has transcended alongside Ep. 9, as we viewers are elevated to another level of CH intensity. Bravo on a job splendidly done. We readers are so lucky.

I am putting aside the politics and the mayor-election issues for a bit, as I found the central focus of my attention in this episode recap was the emotional introspection and verbal/non-verbal cues that bring our hero and heroine into each other's orbit in tighter and tighter concentric circles (both plot driven - the mayoral election needing JG to assist MR, and the internal character-development, after the camping trip recol [Read more]

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Oh here it is...

High 5 to Candidate #5 -- the Wonder Woman!
oh I lady against 4 men, go Mirae go!

It came as a total surprise & delight when they/she decided to post the "tiara" poster for the election... so unconventional, unexpected, great choice!

This Joo Hwa lady is such a character and I am loving her, can't help but notice her circle of people are all mainly male...

Thanks 0timelost, cleown, and mead33 for another captivating layout etc... just love the ladies touch to it... Samsooki is so blessed to have you gals... and of course thanks to Mrs. Samsooki for sparing hubby to write this manuscript ^ ^

off to reading it and hear what he has to rant about in this episode...

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"This is what you get when you mix a little bit of Michelle Obama, Sailor Moon, an old rich Korean woman together with Mi Rae" Hehe....this got me interested now. Will find time to watch this drama.

BTW, why no Sarah Palin?

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The face-tracing scene in the tent is one of the most memorable in this drama for me. This recap makes it that much more special.

Thanks Team Samsooki!

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Jo Gook is so cool and calculating it's hard to believe he's falling for someone like MR. The way things are developing seem too convenient for the writer an director.
As a woman I really hated that scene of MR dancing with his jacket. I want to MR to have some dignity and cool for a change. Why is she always made to look like the village idiot? I hate that dialogue where she says all men tell her to get lost...etc. And then what he said in reply. Unless it's a calculated reply.
The drama is fun but is kind of illogical. It's only working because of the two great leads. CSA and KSA. I started watching City Hall for KSA but stayed because of CSA. He's brilliant even with the awful too tight skinny pants. Who wears skinny pants suits? Maybe aging rock stars like Mick jagger and Ozzy [Read more]

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Why do I love this drama so much? JG annoys me with his bi polar treatment or MR but I love him to death.

When I watch the two together, my heart aches with them when its sad, and skips a beat when it's exciting. I don't cry for MR when he breaks her heart because I know his is breaking too but I do want to punch him for being stupid when confusing the poor girl.

I don't understand why I love this drama so much, seriously - everything else pales in comparason now. Even dramas that I love and can watch over and over and cry everytime I see them don't compare to City Hall.

Okay I'm going to watch Episode 9 again.

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@bolt
LOL First Susan Boyle and now Sarah Palin. I don't know why but it's hysterically funny. LOL You remind me of Thundie's prattle.....you can't be her, can you?

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KSA looked so fabulous when they were doing makeovers of her image. I want more scenes like that where she looks fabulous and is fabulous so I understand why JG is falling for her. I don't want her acting too cutesy and too naive. 36 is too old for that.

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Your a guy?!!! Seriously? Sorry if I sound gender bias but your recaps are so there, from the feelings of the characters to the mood of the scene your really really good (can't emphasize this enough). Your recaps made me laugh out loud, get a little teary eyed (just a little since I'm reading this in the office) and make me long for the next episode. I hope this will not be your last recap for DRAMABEANS. Hey shoutout to Javabeans you have very exceptional friends. Thanks for sharing.

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@ 13 Sonam

"I want more scenes like that where she looks fabulous and is fabulous so I understand why JG is falling for her."

All in due course, my dear, to borrow Samsooki's pearls of wisdom lobbed at me awhile back. =-) Yes, as of episode 9, except for the Baendengi pageant, Mi Rae does look alternatively blowsy, frumpy, and weekend casual, which only serves to really press home the point - why is JG attracted to her? I am all for making our heroine pretty (okay, another admission from mz. ockoala, I know it was to make a very important point in the drama and the real world - but I still can't get over how god-awful they made KSA looked in MNIKSS), but City Hall is a journey, and Mi Rae really is a country girl at the beginning, not sophisticated like Joo Hwa, and definitely not [Read more]

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@8 Bolt

Because, IMHO, Sarah Palin is a joke.

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Mi-rae as a country girl (in general, a girl being a country girl), she has a limited mentality of what's considered as cool and uncool. But she does things or say things with heart and sincerity. So that scene of her dancing with the Jacket may seem irrational or you could say, "err, who is that woman dancing with a jacket, she must be a nut-head!" As much as I wanna defend her action, yes...i would think so otherwise. But because she lives in a small country village she can do what ever she pleases, and she's inside her property (frontyard). Some country girls are ignorant. They live a simple life. Just my 2cent worth, and you may take with a grain of salt. ^^

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“If you keep that up, I’m going to jump you.”

See, if Jo Gook said that to ME, I would have jumped HIM, and Go-hae be damned.

Great job as always, Samsooki (our resident GUY! ;-) ) and kudos to the rest of the team too!

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@14, ariel -

LOL! My wife got a kick out of that comment and @7 Janie's comment about my wife "sparing hubby to write this."

@18, langdon813 -

If I were single, which I am not, but if I were (but I am not), and Shin Mi Rae traced my face in a tent in the middle of the night (which would never happen because I am not single and I am not a crazy person living in a fantasy world), then I also would not have just volunteered to sleep outdoors, Jo Gook be damned (but I am married and so I am not even contemplating what I have typed). :)

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they sure like to put in snippets and reference do they...
the jeon jihyun mole thing, and one other thing i remember is this
"Is 15% the name of your dog?"
i believe this line also spoken by KSA in MNIKSS, when Binnie asked her to return the money...
btw, i watched KBSW last night n saw KSA in entertainment relay, She is sooo gorgeous... tall and lean... and her personality is just soo lovable...

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@19, Samsooki

But, my friend...that is precisely why The List was invented!

The strictly hypothetical, should-you-ever-get-the-opportunity-which-you-won't-but-just-in-case-you-do, get-out-jail free, his-and-hers "People You're Allowed to Cheat With List" that every couple has; which must be updated on an annual basis with the appropriate clauses and loopholes.

Come on, now! You're a lawyer, you understand these things!

:-)

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정말 감사합니다. 멋진이요.
Ok, i totally ran out of words, so i'm restorting to Korean instead. :p
Thanks again Samsooki and your cool girls 0timelost, cleown, and mead33

---

"(That rocks. Boo Mi is one fierce and loyal ahjumma. I said that I want to grow up to be like Jung Do, but I change my mind – I want to be like Boo Mi.)"

>>> I soo love Boo Mi since day one and I want her to be my bestfriend. But yes, definitely ep9 is HER episode - with Jung Soo Young's superb acting seasoned with the best-est dialogues.

"She has had her heart crushed and inflated, twisted and straightened, and forever altered by this man, who is just so hard to understand. When he speaks the truth, it hurts. When he lies, it hurts. There is no getting around pain when Mi Rae hear [Read more]

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@20 bbm
“Is 15% the name of your dog?”
i believe this line also spoken by KSA in MNIKSS, when Binnie asked her to return the money…

>> i think it's a common korean phrase/expression for something easily/casually said (someone please correct me if i'm wrong). and yes, she said it in mnikss, is 20million won the name of your dog (w/c, in another clever writing, became - literally, the name of samsoon's dog) -- oops! was it Yi Young Unnie who said it? oh no! i used to remember almost every scene and every dialogue in mnikss. city hall ruined it! :(

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@19 , Samsooki. . .

OMG ! I enjoy your re-caps ( I am not watching CH because no channel where I live carry it and will have to wait for Drama Fever hope hope) but your answer to @14 made me adore your writing even more so funny cute.

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Okay, everyone, I've watched and thought about City Hall enough times that I think I've caught all the witty references, subtle meanings and unspoken gazes, and understand what it means. However, after reading Samsooki's take on the meaning of what Jo Gook said to Rang about Mi Rae:

Mi Rae (staring straight at Jo Gook): Yeah, this guy says, “Oh, this noona, she’s your father’s colleague."

up until now, my take was the opposite of Samsooki's. Perhaps this is where not being Korean or understand Korean totally hinders my comprehension. I thought that when JG tells Rang that MR is his colleague, it is a compliment, since she is unemployed, plus when they worked at City Hall, she was just a10th level secretary. No diss on JG being an elitist, but isn't it more likely that the d [Read more]

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@25 ockoala -

That's interesting that you had the opposite take.

From Mi Rae's perspective, the relationship between the two of them isn't based on respect or class. I think Mi Rae would be the last person to think that one's social caste and/or economic power is important in terms of who someone should be with. She sees Jo Gook not as a comrade or a friend, but as the person she is falling in love with.

And so Mi Rae wouldn't see it as a compliment, but as a reminder that she should not fall in love with this man. He will break her heart, he will tell her to get lost or to just be friends with her, to find a better man than him. Now, it could very well be that Jo Gook sees his comment, "this noona, she is your dad's comrade" as being complimentary to Mi Rae (in fact, it is ac [Read more]

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"Mi Rae rolls back over to her side of the tent like she is on fire. As it is, she should take comfort in the fact that any other human being would have actually burst into flames."

Mi-rae's so cute, she was so embarrassed. Is she on fire with desire..? lol

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i love this drama ...vewry-very much ..CSW and KSA good acting .

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@26 Samsooki

Great explanation. It's fits with Mi Rae's reaction, she is not happy with what JG said, regardless of what JG's intentions were (i.e. to compliment her in the eyes of his family, or to distance himself from her in the eyes of his family). And our Jo Gook has been a very hard to read person in many instances thus far, and the devil is in the details.

This then leads me to think of how the first meeting could have happened - how could JG have properly introduced MR to his mother (in any way that could have left MR with a chance to transcend the role of "noona" "comrade" without giving that away at this as yet inopportune time), given again that he is engaged, and she knows it. As such, how to introduce a female person to his mom, that would not give away the subtleties [Read more]

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Hi Samsooki, it's nice to hear a guy tells how a guy thinks as well as how the mind of a woman works =). I think i'm liking your side comments more than the story itself. I'm only reading your recaps and haven't watched the series yet. But i think It won't be the same anymore once i really watched it.

Thank you so much =)

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thanks for the recaps!
i actually finished watching this drama about a week ago and i LOVED it soooo much and now reading your recaps makes me look at certain scenes with a differnt light, thanks!

now is it just me or can Jo Gook be any hotter/sexier?
lol :)

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Jo Gook: It has been a long time.

Mi Rae: Yes.

Wonder how long it was that they haven't met??? Anyway, was wondering too
how Jo Gook should introduce Mirae. Why was she offended? And I just love
that scene in the tent. That was indeed a naughty Mirae.

Once again, thanks samsooki and team for yet another beautifully written
recap. Am addicted to your recaps now.

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Aother great recap. thanks to the all City Hall team.

Loved CSW's acting in this episode. The subtle way his eyes showed JG's inner struggle while introducing MR : it was only a few seconds long, but you could clearly see him trying to decide what is MR to him? how to introduce her? he couldnt come up with anything better in such a short time so he used the ill fitted "comrade".

CSW's acting ability is just amazing. I loved him in that scene. After all that they have gone through it was great seeing the cool, sophisticates JG struggling to describe MR.

The next scene with JG and MR was also awesome: JG jealous of all those losers MR dated and angry because they didn't value her gets labeled the worst of the lot! But his response is shocking: JG in a moment of honesty tells MR [Read more]

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The more I re-watch CH, the more pitiful I find JG's character is. Thank God he meets MR. He is the pawn of his own ambition which is squarely tied with his longing for BB's acknowledgement and acceptance. All his self-contradictions as being tough and formidable in the exterior and the rare slip of his tenderness and weakness in those countable moments of truth come from this. And we've seen quite a bit in this episode. There is no doubt that MR is and will be the change agent.

The market trip is a revelation:

>Jo Gook: It has been a long time.
>Mi Rae: Yes.

This is the first time they see each other since the hair ruffling scene. Despite all the behind-the-scene works he has done to get MR up running for the mayorship, they haven't seen each other for quite a whil [Read more]

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The showdown between Jo Guk and Jung Do in how to package Mi-Rae to the public as a mayoral candidate is the highlight of this episode for me. The wit, the intelligence of the banter and exchanges, and flawless execution of this scene show yet again why The City Hall is special, and why this drama is a worthy benchmark against which other dramas should be judged. What I am afraid is that most others will fall short in most respects.

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Geez I cannot stay away from Dramabeans!!! Recap time - once again an awesome job recap team! Hmm where do I start. Oh before I do....where are my manners

To Mrs Samsooki (sorry if you post under a different alias!)

Have to share the thanks from upthread for allowing Samsooki to spend time on this, and the other amazing stuff on JB, when he could be taking you for a nice day out, shopping and/or dnr! *a round of applause!* *hugz*

Can I cyber-treat you to drinks and/or any food you like, as a small show of thanks? Cheers! Cause you too are awesome, sharing Samsooki like this! :) BTW if you can share the secret of how he manages to post continually awesome stuff here, keep a job, as well as have some resemblence of a life it would be much appreciated! I am struggling, hence sleep [Read more]

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I was pretty sure you were a lady too! LOL

But you write AMAZING recaps!! (So does Javabeans of course!) I always look forward to City Hall recaps these days... I hope you had as much fun writing them as I do reading them!

Random: I thought she was doing ellen degeneres at first when I saw the pic with blond hair... XD

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@12 Who is Thundie's prattle? You mean thunderbolt, the coach potato? I have google and found a coach potato appeared as Thundie's prattle?

No, Bolt is named after the dog as in the movie Bolt. OK, will change my name to Agent Darwin as in G-Force after this posting to avoid confusion.

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@Bolt. LOL again.
Love your humor.

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@ 36 bspanda

"City Hall is the masterclass on how it is done."

Bravo, truer words have never been spoken. My sentiments exactly. CH is what happens with the stars align, the right actors, right script, and right director all collide and create a cosmic explosion of awesomeness.

Another thought on how Mi Rae looks so far in this drama. I know many Hallers are also super KSA fans, and just adore her to pieces (and why not, she seems so funny, cool, great actress, the accolades just keep coming). So, KSA fans may be inclined to think MR looks cute thus far because KSA is truly adorable, and attempts to dress her down are useless to mask her star quality,

I'm not a KSA fan before CH, so I did see her as Mi Rae, this simply, country girl who is quite sassy and without artiface [Read more]

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It’s only now that I realize how relentless and yet so perfect the pacing in this particular episode has been. How could so many things transpire in only a single episode? I wouldn’t have realized it if it wasn’t for this recap. Thanks again Samsooki and the gals! And I would also like to say thank you to GuMi for translating the lyrics for Anxious Love. I’m amazed at how even the songs for this drama fits the scenes like a glove.

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Hi Mrs Samsooki,
I'm really, really curious does having a husband who is able to analyze and verbalize the feelings of our City Hall characters more "aware".
This paragraph right here, it just grabs me, it's so spot on.
"Mi Rae feels, well, she feels about what she looks like. She has had her heart crushed and inflated, twisted and straightened, and forever altered by this man, who is just so hard to understand. When he speaks the truth, it hurts. When he lies, it hurts. There is no getting around pain when Mi Rae hears words that come from Jo Gook, but no matter what, if he starts speaking, Mi Rae’s heart opens up again."
You don't have to answer if you don't want to.
This is what Mi Rae has been feeling all along, what a lot of women has, have and will be feeling a thousand ye [Read more]

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I was waiting for the water to boil but then I went away for 2 days and then what do I see? CH recaps Ep 9! Yipee! Hmmm...wonder if I should go away more often.

If there was ever a confused JG in Ep 8, in Ep 9, I definitely see an even more confused JG. So, how can a confused JG straighten out MR's thoughts? Can anyone blame JG? Can anyone blame MR if JG is confusing her?

JG couldn't have learned anything about love from BB nor GH. Could JG's mom teach him anything about love when he was younger? Looks like she didn't either because she seems bitter about JG following BB's footsteps. For sure, JG couldn't have known what love is from reading his political textbooks.

Even though I see a confused JG here, I can't fault him for being dead honest.

The market scene : JG co [Read more]

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Another captivating recap that gathers yet another enthusiastic and vocal crowd beholding the romance of JG & MR. Almost every paragraph and respond is a laugh out loud moment... plus everyone has such great perspective on things, job well done!

Oh cute Rang boy... hope those adults won't do anything damaging on him emotionally..., last I heard at Job Well Done, poor little Byul girl is now suffering from eating disorder due to all those family saga bickering and beating up at each other...

Haven't seen JG's fiancee for a while... glad she showed up and I miss her :) aish... could never be sure if I spell the f -word correctly, will just call her JG's financial planner then... looking forward to her dealing in the next epi

Just curious... is there any significant on why JG [Read more]

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I have a "technical" question here which has puzzled me for a long time: how does a candidate get assigned a number in an election? Somehow I got the impression that she's assigned as #5 before other applicants submitted their applications.

And I have another "technical" question about the trip : why would they not bring two sleeping tents? Do they expect something to happen? ;)

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I don't think Jo Guk went to the market to see Mirae in the first place, but just happened to run into her unexpectedly. Grant it, he was glad to see her, but at the same time, the situation was rather awkward -- he looked like he was getting his hand caught in the cookie jar. Mirae was supposed to be his little secret until the right time comes. But as if fate played a cruel joke on him, he ran into her while he's towing his kid (which she only heard people to rumor about, but now happen to see that the kid really exists) and his mom (who also have plenty of rumors floating around about her) around doing the publicity tour. What would a guy do in this situation?

What can she be introduced as, considering they have yet to get into any sort of commitment with each other. After all, [Read more]

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@ 43 omo

"The market scene : JG could have just brought Ah Rang but he brought mom along knowing very well mom hates the smell of fish. So why did JG bring mom? Is this a shy JG here? Ah Rang alone would not have been a good enough cover to see MR again?"

Yes, this is the first time our seeing a SHY JG. It would be good to see this scene in slow motion, ie from the point he is approaching MR's stall onward. We can see he is already half expecting to see MR as he walks closer and - bling - his eyes meeting MR's. It looks like an uncomfortable look but I agree with omo that it is more shyness than anything else :D. There are only two occasions our seeing a shy JG. This is the first one and then the other one in a future episode.

omo, I also like your confusion analysis. We oft [Read more]

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@44 Janie - Any significant on why JG suggested mom to open a flower shop or it is just a passing comment?

My take on this is because JG wants something that is more reputable and presentable as a career for his mom. Based from what we know so far from what JG revealed in various flashbacks, his mom was probably a bargirl or salon girl of some sort before. Plus she also mentioned to him that she wants to open bar when he dismissed her and suggested that she should open a flower shop instead. JG wants to get politics, therefore, he will need that picture perfect background and picture perfect family (thus the fiancee, the kid, and the homely mother). Having a mother who runs a bar obviously would be a political suicide. Making her runs a flower shop will put her into the June Cleave [Read more]

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@ 45 Eeefu

One tent or two tents - we need to ask JG because he is the one planning the trip :D

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@ 46 fishbud

The market scene can really draw in different interpretations! My take is based on JG having not seen MR for a while and their last encounter was the very awkward hair ruffling scene. In that encounter, he told MR 'you won't be able to handle the truth' and then the famous line of his using the mayor thing as an excuse to go on the trip with her. We all squeal at the 'excuse' line at first viewing, surley a heart stopping moment. But now, I think, the 'won't be able to handle' remark is actually more relevatory. He must have already internalised at that point after cross-examining himself at the things he did lately and realised his heart is drifting.

After the hair ruffling scene, he's pulling all the threads to enter MR into the mayor election - but he hasn't spok [Read more]

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