I enjoyed this episode more than I thought I might. I was concerned that the usual Episode 15 angst would frustrate me (based on past Hong Sisters trends), but I was really pleased with how the conflict plays out. Some nice acting, and a few great scenes.
SONG OF THE DAY
FT Island – “A Song For You” [ Download ]
EPISODE 15 RECAP
After Tae-kyung storms off, Mi-nyeo cries as Shin-woo looks on, unable to go to her but not turning away, either. Mi-nyeo prays to Mother Superior, “Because of my father, he was abandoned. Because of his mother, my mother and I were both abandoned. I could not say that it was okay, that I didn’t feel heartbroken. I could not hold on to him. I cannot see my star anymore.”
Tae-kyung’s reaction is more hurt than anger, although he tends to express hurt (and lots of other things) AS anger. As he sits in the dark studio, he tells himself, “If it’s dark, I can’t see anything. I’ll just think that I can’t see anything because it’s dark.” (Aw, sad! Implication: I can’t see her because it’s dark, not because she’s gone.)
The pesky Reporter Kim guesses that Mi-nam and Mi-nyeo are the same person. Heyi, to her credit, says she knows nothing about it and insists, “I don’t know. Why are you asking me? If you want to know, ask them yourself.”
He isn’t surprised by her denial; he expected her to distance herself from the whole situation. He doesn’t believe her and tries to appeal to her fear by saying she’ll inevitably become linked to the story if it gets out. How are the A.N.JELL guys involved? He vows to find out the full story, and presses her to confirm how much the others know if she wants him to leave her out of it.
With no better way of getting him to back off, Heyi fakes a faint. (HA!) This makes the reporter look around nervously, since he doesn’t want his actions to be misconstrued. He tells Heyi, who is lying on the ground as though unconscious, that based on her actions, he’ll have to assume that there IS something going on. He proposes, “Let’s make a deal.” If she lies low while he confirms the story, he offers, “When I catch A.N.JELL for sure, I’ll leave you out of it.” Still on the ground and with eyes closed, Heyi gives a small nod.
Her dilemma now is whether she should warn Tae-kyung that the reporter is sniffing around. If she does, she won’t be able to escape being implicated, but she does care for Tae-kyung and worries about what will happen to him if word about Mi-nam’s impersonation gets out. She tries thinking of a way to get Tae-kyung out of it (leaving the other three A.N.JELL members to face the scandal), “But if that goes wrong, it’ll really hurt me.”
Thinking of reporter Kim’s request for an interview with both twins, Shin-woo tells Hoon-yi that they have to get Mi-nyeo away quickly to avoid such a scenario. Hoon-yi decides that the group can do a fansigning in Japan, which they had previously declined.
Shin-woo relays the plans to Tae-kyung: since Tae-kyung wants to follow separately, Shin-woo and Jeremy will take Mi-nyeo to Japan first. Tae-kyung curtly acknowledges Shin-woo’s words, acting as though he couldn’t care less about Mi-nyeo’s plans. We know he’s feeling upset, but to the rest of the group, he’s cold and silent.
As Mi-nyeo packs for their Japan trip, Hoon-yi informs her that her return from Japan will coincide with her brother’s return from the States. That will mark the end of her stint in A.N.JELL, so she can consider her Japan trip “a farewell trip.”
Seeing that she’s packing all of her belongings, Hoon-yi tells her she has plenty of time to take those things later. She can come back with her brother after the Japan visit. Mi-nyeo answers that she would rather pack everything at once — which suggests that she’s planning on leaving sooner than she’s letting on.
Tae-kyung continues giving her the cold shoulder, and when he runs into her in the hallway, he walks right by without acknowledging her. As with their big blowup at the end of last episode, he only goes a little distance before he stops and looks back — which she doesn’t notice — and watches her struggling with her luggage. I doubt he would have helped her with her bag, but it seems like he’s conflicted about it — but then Shin-woo comes along and helps, as he watches.
The tension in the house and Mi-nyeo’s glumness are palpable, leading Jeremy to ask Shin-woo if something happened. Shin-woo advises that they feign ignorance.
Everyone has this first day off, so the group separates to enjoy some relaxation time. Hoon-yi’s always a step behind everyone, so he doesn’t know about the big rift and wishes that Tae-kyung had come, because he would have pushed Tae-kyung and Mi-nyeo together. The stylist is surprised that Mi-nyeo fell for Tae-kyung, because he’s not the best as marriage material: “When thinking of marriage, women like cute and fun guys like Jeremy.”
Hoon-yi wonders if that means he should push Mi-nyeo toward Jeremy instead. Fantasy sequence time!
They imagine a courtship where Jeremy serenades Mi-nyeo with a song whose lyrics go, “Mi-nyeo likes Jeremy!” Mi-nyeo responds in a baby voice and the two are nauseatingly cutesy. Hoon-yi and the stylist shake off this possibility — it’s too childish.
Then what about Shin-woo — isn’t he better, since he’s more mature and romantic? This leads us to — HAHAHA! — a parody of Won Bin and Shin Mina’s Maxim coffee CF! (Watch here.) In the parody, Shin-woo offers a cup of coffee that will taste special because he made it. To demonstrate, he kisses her forehead — that’s what other people’s coffee is like. He kisses her mouth — that’s what his coffee is like. Mi-nyeo replies, “You’d better not make anyone else coffee.”
Hoon-yi finds that way too saccharine, but the stylist contends that it’s still better than Tae-kyung:
They imagine what Mi-nyeo’s future would be like if she were to marry Tae-kyung, and picture them at the altar about to be married.
Tae-kyung says his vows in his curt, gruff way: “I give you permission to marry me. You should feel honored.” She replies happily, “Thank you,” and bows. She asks, “Then should I call you yobo or jagi?” (Both are like saying “honey.”) Scowling all the while, Tae-kyung answers brusquely, “I’ll decide our nicknames. Don’t butt in.” Then he stalks off down the aisle, leaving her still at the altar.
She chases after him (still calling him “hyungnim”) and he says, “I’m a busy person. I decide our schedule.”
Now feeling miffed at his treatment of her, Mi-nyeo pouts that she won’t marry him, tossing her bouquet to the ground. Tae-kyung calls her bluff, and he kicks her bouquet away: “The end! You’re out.” He leaves again, while Mi-nyeo calls him back in vain.
(HAHAHA. I had a feeling those wedding photo spoilers were going to be a gag, and here they are! This is a pretty hilarious scene, but for once the humor isn’t because it’s so outrageous — it’s because it’s actually just like how the real Tae-kyung and Mi-nyeo started off (minus her pouting), and to see them arrive at the altar with that dynamic intact is a hoot.)
The guys take a jaunt to the beach, unaware that the reporter has followed them all this way, determined to get to their secret. He keeps a close eye on the group members, angling for an incriminating photo (of Mi-nyeo looking obviously like a girl, or the others treating her like one).
Mi-nyeo comments that this is her first time seeing the ocean in real life. Shin-woo asks if she’d like to take a yacht out on the water, but she answers, “No, I enjoy just looking at it like this. Seeing something so vast, I feel like if I were only to cross this ocean, I can be so far away that I won’t be seen.”
Jeremy says, “The world is round, so no matter how far away you go, like with the bus, you’ll return to your place.” She agrees, but adds, “But since it is so big, it would take a very long time.”
Mi-nyeo takes a step forward toward the water, and Shin-woo reaches out to hold her arm. He understands her underlying meaning and tells her, “Don’t go. Don’t go farther away on your own. I’ll be behind you, holding you.”
She removes his hand, saying, “Don’t hold on to me, Shin-woo hyung.” The dual meaning is clear, and then she brings the conversation back to the moment, explaining, “It’s my first time seeing the ocean. I’ll just get my feet wet.”
Happy with Tae-kyung’s demo of the song, Hwa-ran meets with Sung-chan. However, her good mood abruptly turns when Sung-chan mentions off-handedly that he’d heard the song wasn’t originally intended for her. The producer clarifies that the song was supposed to be given to a new singer, but before he can explain further, Hwa-ran snaps, “Don’t say such ridiculous things! This song was written for me from the start!”
Next, she drops by Tae-kyung’s studio to make the excuse that she was drunk the other day when Mi-nyeo came by. If she hadn’t reminded her of her mother, Hwa-ran wouldn’t have gone so far. Tae-kyung asks, “Do you know her mother? Did you tell her who she was?” Hwa-ran realizes that she may have said something wrong, so she tries dismissing it by saying, “Do you think she’d listen to what I say?”
Remembering how devastated Mi-nyeo was to hear her mother had died, he stops his mother from leaving the studio, and asks her to explain it to him — in a surprisingly gentle tone, considering. If she doesn’t want to discuss it, then at least give him her name: “She said she knew nothing about her. I should at least let her know her name.”
After Tae-kyung gets the woman’s photo and name, he heads to Japan, earlier than scheduled.
Mi-nyeo looks up a church where a certain Sister Maria lives, and figures that she can take the train to see her. She wonders how long her money will last her in Japan, giving us another indication that she’s planning her post-A.N.JELL life.
A phone call from Shin-wo draws her to the hotel’s chapel, and when she meets him inside the glass building, he points out the clear nature of the structure and says, “You must have seen what expression was on my face from outside.” The same goes for her — he could see she was feeling sorry, that she still felt unable to accept him.
He asks, “Do you know when I first knew you were a girl?” She thinks it was the day of the press conference, but he reminds her of their fake romance story, and his story of the clumsy girl who didn’t know her secret had been discovered. He now explains that it was his story: “After I found out that you were a girl, I kept watching over you, and as I tried to help you along, at some point I started to like you. The girl I liked who I wanted to introduce to you was you.”
Mi-nyeo is stunned, and tries to process this. Shin-woo tells her, “I showed you everything today. Even if you try not to see it, I showed you everything. I’ll look over you like I have till now. So don’t try to hide yourself somewhere that you can’t be seen, and look at me.”
Naturally, this is what Tae-kyung sees when he comes upon the chapel in his search for Mi-nyeo. The guys lock eyes for a moment.
Mi-nyeo, not seeing Tae-kyung, starts to move away — and Shin-woo suddenly draws her to him in a hug. This is a deliberate move to keep Tae-kyung away, so my first thought is, Evil Shin-woo! But I can’t hate him, because I’m relieved that he’s actually taking some initiative. There’s a refreshing assertiveness to his behavior in this scene that I am very glad to see, especially since he manages to be firm without being pushy. He isn’t demanding her feelings in return, but he’s making sure she understands clearly what he’s telling her.
After an extended beat when the guys exchange long looks, Tae-kyung walks off.
Similar to the way Shin-woo shows some firmness here, so does Mi-nyeo (and in both instances, I welcome the attitude). She asks Shin-woo to let go and steps away. She thanks him for helping, but in an even tone, she makes it clear that this isn’t what she wants: “It makes me sorrier, and that hurts, but my answer hasn’t changed. Please don’t hold on to me anymore. I don’t want to make things hard for you anymore.”
After she leaves, Shin-woo tears up and says, “I took it all the way. Now I don’t have anything to hold onto.”
After the scene he witnessed, Tae-kyung doesn’t want to see Mi-nyeo in person and instead chooses to leave the photo of Mi-nyeo’s mother at the front desk. He calls Hoon-yi to make sure she gets it, saying it’s important to her. Hoon-yi, however, seems to be making good on his matchmaking desires — he tells Tae-kyung that if it’s important, he’d better leave it with him, and directs him to a meeting point.
At the same time, the stylist finds Mi-nyeo to tell her happily that Tae-kyung has been looking for her, and takes her off to meet him.
At the dim aquarium, Tae-kyung struggles to see the approaching figure of Mi-nyeo, first thinking it’s Hoon-yi. Both feel awkward when they realize who the other person is, and Tae-kyung assumes his businesslike demeanor as he says that he just came to give something to her. In a similar formal way, Mi-nyeo tells him she’ll take it and leave quickly. Tae-kyung asks pointedly, “You must be busy. Is someone waiting for you?” She reminds him, “You don’t want to see me, so I’m trying to disappear quickly.”
He mutters, “You sure are being thoughtful. If you’re not busy and nobody’s waiting, you should look around here before you go. There are a lot of fish and lots to see.” She wonders what he’s getting at, and he changes his mind and tells her to go. No need to concern herself about him.
(I like that Mi-nyeo is standing up for herself now — she’s not rude, but she’s not a pushover, nor does she grovel for wrongs she hasn’t committed. She has accepted Tae-kyung’s answer and intends to observe his wishes. Of course, Tae-kyung’s style is to want to linger while using excuses to prolong the encounter — as he did at the movie theater — while she tries to end the encounter because she doesn’t want to inconvenience him.)
Tae-kyung hands her the envelope and tells her, “That’s your mother, Lee Su-jin.” At that, she starts to tear up, emotion overwhelming her as she processes her mother’s name — she’d never even known that. As she cries quietly for a moment, he stands there uncomfortably.
He takes out his mp3 player and hands it to her, saying, “This all happened because your father wrote this song. Because of this song, my mother almost became your stepmother. Go make friends with the woman who was almost your stepmother and ask her about your mother.”
Having delivered that parting shot, he starts to leave, but she says vehemently, “Don’t speak so lightly.”
Mi-nyeo speaks with an impassioned voice that grows more heated as she continues:
Mi-nyeo: “Yes, because of this song, my mother was abandoned. You were also abandoned by your mother, so you must been very hurt. But my mother also felt such a huge pain that she gave birth to me alone and died. ‘Go make friends?’ How could I make friends with your mother? Are you so busy thinking only of yourself that you cannot bother to see anything else? I’m sorry that I knew about your mother and didn’t say anything. You looked so sad that I could not let on that I knew. I’m sorry that I knew you were remaking my father’s song and didn’t say anything. I did not know the story behind it. You told me not to show myself to you. But it’s hard for me to see you, too. That’s why I’m going far away, where I won’t be seen. So there will be no reason for us to feel pain as we see each other any longer.”
This time, she leaves. Tae-kyung takes an involuntary step as though to follow, then stops himself, his regret showing on his face.
The group holds their fansigning, after which Tae-kyung returns home first. Heyi finds him at the agency and asks if he’d like to accompany her on her shoot to Bali. He retorts, “Do you think I’d go with you?” She explains that she’s speaking out of concern for them both, since they both stand to get dragged into the kerfuffle if the Mi-nam mess were to go public. But if his image as her boyfriend is strong, then it won’t cause problems for him even if everyone finds out that Mi-nam is a girl. Otherwise, hearing that he protected Mi-nam while knowing she was a girl would be bound to get twisted around in the press.
Tae-kyung tells Heyi that she doesn’t have to worry since the real Mi-nam is arriving today. With that, they can also break up their fake relationship: “If you end things with me, you don’t have to worry about our business. I’ll let you escape cleanly, so just go your way.” He agrees to go along with whatever break-up story she decides on.
As he turns to leave, Heyi shouts after him: “You knew right away that I was being fake, so why couldn’t you see my true feelings at all?” At that, Tae-kyung turns to her — with a look that is for once more sympathetic and less derisive than usual — to say, “Maybe you don’t get embarrassed about being discovered when you’re faking, but being discovered when you’re being real will make you embarrassed.” It’s touching as he tells her, in a gentler tone, “Goodbye, Yoo Heyi.”
After he’s gone, she continues to call out threats that she’ll make up lies and ruin him. But this time, her words have no bite, since she’s spilling tears as she makes her empty threats about turning her fans on him.
The reporter continues following around the band members, angling for a definitive shot that will prove his thesis. However, he suffers from a lack of luck and his own stupidity, since he ruins his fancy camera and has to chase the guys around with a disposable one.
Meanwhile, Mi-nyeo is preparing to part ways with the group, and takes photos with her instant camera to remember them by. While Jeremy tries to decide on a cool pose, she takes a candid shot and says, “You are most handsome when you look as you normally do.”
She gives Shin-woo hot coffee and soft cake, telling him, “You always comforted me warmly and softly. I’m really sorry that I cannot give you that comfort.”
He’s looking better today, and answers that’s it’s okay. Even if she didn’t know it, he’d been rejected 100 times already, so he’d had practice recovering. They’re able to resume their joking camaraderie, and Mi-nyeo takes another candid photo of Shin-woo.
Hwa-ran meets with the other songwriter (who had previously met with Tae-kyung and the producer) to get the story straight. She confronts him about the song having been taken away from Lee Su-jin and given to her, and it seems she’s trying to downplay her part in this. (Or partially trying to forget the details because she doesn’t want to see herself as the bad guy.) However, the songwriter sees through her and calls her out, saying that Lee Su-jin had misunderstood Go Jae-hyun’s feelings for Hwa-ran. He had written the song to convince her that he loved her and had planned to give the song for Lee Su-jin to sing. However, Hwa-ran had used her money to steal the song away.
Hwa-ran tries to convince herself that the story she had maintained all this while is true, and repeats to herself, “I’m the person he loves.”
Tae-kyung runs into Sung-chan and Hwa-ran at the agency, who invite him to listen in on Hwa-ran’s recording session. In no mood to see her, he rudely turns the invitation down and heads out. On the way, he runs into the producer, who gripes that Hwa-ran is driving him crazy. He got chewed out by the songwriter for letting that detail spill about the song. This piques Tae-kyung’s curiosity, and his eyes widen in surprise to hear that Hwa-ran had actually begged for Go Jae-hyun to return to her. In order to separate him from his new love, she’d bought the song and stolen it from the other singer.
This changes everything, and Tae-kyung turns back and beelines for the studio, where Hwa-ran is preparing to begin recording.
He bursts into the studio and faces his mother through the glass separating her from the booth.
Tae-kyung: “This song wasn’t yours, was it? It wasn’t asking you to come back to him, was it? You stole it, didn’t you? You stole it so the other woman couldn’t return to him. It was all a lie. He didn’t love you. Right?”
The others look on in puzzlement, while Hwa-ran’s eyes fill with tears. Maybe this is the first time she’s hearing the words so plainly, but in any case, it looks like the truth has finally sunk in.
Mi-nyeo plans to stay behind in Japan for another week while the real Mi-nam gets settled in. The rest of the group is about to head back to Korea, and will meet Mi-nam at the airport where he is currently waiting. As Mi-nyeo says her goodbyes, she tries to keep her expression bright and upbeat so as not to betray that this is actually their last goodbye.
And so, the entourage flies back home. Once they land, they look for Mi-nam, who is lounging around with a careless (reckless?) air. Meanwhile, armed with new information, Tae-kyung drives to the airport to see Mi-nyeo.
Heyi is also there, on her way to her Bali shoot. When she hears fans squealing that Tae-kyung has just walked by, she perks up for a moment, hoping that he’d come to take her up on the offer to go to Bali. Then she remembers that Mi-nam is coming, and wonders if everything will get exposed today. She tells herself to go on with her own thing and let the A.N.JELL boys figure out their own troubles… but can’t resist and follows Tae-kyung.
As Shin-woo and Jeremy’s group makes their way across the terminal, Hoon-yi spots Mi-nam and calls out enthusiastically to him. Only, this is when Reporter Kim decides that this is time for his Big Move. He’s been following them all day in Japan and met with no success, and he’s impatient to seize his moment.
So when he spots the real Mi-nam, he overtakes the others and gets there first. He grabs the jacket off Mi-nam’s shoulders, then faces him triumphantly to exclaim, “Go Mi-nam is a girl!”
Only… he gapes at Mi-nam’s flat chest and blurts, “There’s nothing there.” (LOL!)
After recovering from this unexpected hiccup, Heyi joins the group — the others freeze, wondering what she’s going to say — and says teasingly that the reporter is so funny! Mi-nam, a girl? What a hoot!
Hoon-yi laughs that he must have gotten mixed up since Mi-nam and Mi-nyeo are twins: “You got confused, eh? Ha, and this isn’t even a drama.” Hoon-yi ushers the confused reporter away as the latter sputters that he was sure that A.N.JELL had a big secret. Hoon-yi tells him, “Think of Hallyu! If bad rumors circulate about A.N.JELL, Hallyu will suffer.”
Now, everyone faces Mi-nam to marvel at his resemblance to his sister. Jeremy in particular can’t believe it, and gapes in wonder. Mi-nam looks at them, his posture conveying a mix of coolness and surliness, then smirks. Holding out a hand, he tosses out, “Nice to meet you.” (Heyi tilts her head to take it in: “Seeing that face on a guy, it’s not bad.”) With that settled, Tae-kyung asks where Mi-nyeo is, disappointed to be told that she stayed in Japan.
On her own now and dressed as a girl, Mi-nyeo tries to navigate her way to the church. Seeing a taxi, she decides to take that instead of the bus, and waves it down.
When she gets there, it takes a moment to register that it’s indeed Tae-kyung who steps out of the cab.
Tae-kyung has come to Japan to tell Mi-nyeo the truth of the song’s backstory. She’s relieved to hear it: “I’m really glad that my father hadn’t abandoned my mother.”
Feeling bad for everything that’s happened, Tae-kyung keeps his eyes averted and speaks in a low voice. He has a little difficulty getting the words out:
Tae-kyung: “I’m sorry. It’s all because of my mother behaved wrongly. I’m really sorry.”
Mi-nyeo: “You were hurt, too. Don’t be too sorry.”
Tae-kyung: “Like you said, I was thinking only of myself, so I didn’t hear your words or see your feelings. I just got angry at you for nothing. If I had thought it out a little more, I would have seen that you were hurt more.”
Mi-nyeo: “So you see that now. But I am in so much pain right now that I cannot tell you that it’s okay. To be honest, I do hate your mother. I have a favor to ask. Please do not let your mother sing this song again. This is my mother’s song. I don’t want it stolen from her again.”
Tae-kyung: “I’ll return it. I promise.”
Mi-nyeo: “Thank you for the promise. And I am glad to be able to see you for the last time to say goodbye. Hwang Tae-kyung-sshi, goodbye.”
She bows to him, then walks away. Tae-kyung grabs her hand. He doesn’t pull her to him or face her, just clasps it tightly.
Without looking at each other, without even speaking, they both fight their tears for a long beat.
Mi-nyeo struggles to compose herself and her voice as she says, without turning to face him, “Very far in the future, if things become even a little better, without making you feel sorrier, I will let you know that I’ve become okay.”
After they stand like that, she slowly pulls her hand free.
(UGH! And I mean that in the best way. What a great scene, and all the more powerful for being so quiet and still. With lesser actors, I suppose this could have fallen woefully flat, but the acting — as they both try to keep their emotions in control and crying silently — just pops with energy.)
News breaks about the Tae-kyung and Heyi breakup, and judging from the very bland article headline and subhead, it looks like Heyi didn’t actually slander Tae-kyung in the process. (The news uses generic language to describe “the end of their love.”)
A.N.JELL proceeds with its sixth album and fan response is, as always, fervent. But these days, Mi-nam is the member drawing a large portion of the love. Unlike when Mi-nyeo was impersonating Mi-nam, now the guys all have packed schedules and are hardly ever home.
On their way to (or from) another event, Jeremy peruses the internet for A.N.JELL news, and sees that Mi-nam is winning a new poll. I LOVE that Jeremy is annoyed and jealous of Mi-nam’s popularity; he decides he’ll have to add some fun tidbits to raise his own score. As he looks at their fan cafe page, a funny user ID catches his interest: “Pig-Rabbit?”
At that, Tae-kyung’s eyes fly open. He listens intently as Jeremy reads, “The title is, ‘I am okay.'” There’s a video attached. Tae-kyung grabs the notebook and looks at the video, which shows Mi-nyeo in a noraebang (karaoke room), with her face turned aside to keep her features obscured. She speaks into the mike: “I’m much better now. You are shining brightly as always. Even though I’m far away, I’ll always be watching.”
She sings the song “What Do I Do,” which, of course, Tae-kyung recognizes. The other two wonder at his reaction, until he tells them, “It’s her.”
Now all of them snap to alert. The video was just uploaded — where was it taken? Jeremy has heard of these newfangled noraebangs that have begun to spring up, where you’re able to upload videos directly from the noraebang. A call to Hoon-yi tells them that there’s only one such noraebang in the Hongdae district of Seoul, so Shin-woo and Jeremy immediately make for Hongdae to scour the area. I love that they pay no heed to the throng of fans trailing them excitedly.
Meanwhile, Tae-kyung remains behind in the van, still looking at the computer. Jeremy grouses that he’s not out with them looking for Mi-nyeo, but Tae-kyung is feeling miffed and a little insulted at Mi-nyeo’s gesture. He says, “I was waiting for you to come to me to say you were fine, but you do it this way? It’s over this way! So you’re going to stay somewhere unseen, is that right? Then let’s not see you. Fine, it’s okay if I don’t see her.”
He snaps the computer shut, saying firmly, “It’s okay if I don’t see her. It’s okay if I don’t see her! It’s…” Then, realization sets in: “…not okay.”
That spurs him into motion. Tae-kyung heads directly to Hongdae, where Jeremy and Shin-woo have split up in their search. (Hilariously, each boy has his own entourage of fans trailing him along like eager little satellites, so altogether there are three small crowds going up and down the streets. The three-way search recalls the airport scene from Episode 1, although naturally the actions carry more emotion now.)
All the while, Mi-nyeo leaves the noraebang and walks away from her seekers, unaware of their presence…
Wasn’t this a great scene? This may be the very first Hong Sisters separation that I actually liked. (Okay, Hong Gil Dong wasn’t so bad, because it worked with the story.) But I’ve never been all that satisfied with the separations of Delightful Girl Chun-hyang, My Girl, or to a lesser extent, Fantasy Couple. In Chun-hyang, I was okay letting it slide a little because it the first Hong Sisters drama and the rest was so delightful. It was drawn out a tad too long, but Jae Hee’s wonderful, emotive acting made anticipation for the reunion that much sweeter. However, I HATED it in My Girl, because there it felt like an artificial conflict to prolong the couple’s reunion. I hate when couples stay apart for the most illogical reasons (My Fair Lady), when it’s patently obvious that they’re only apart because the writers need them to be apart, not because it works with the plot.
But I not only tolerate the separation here, I actually quite like it. It’s organic to the conflict they’ve established. You want to yell at Tae-kyung to just grab onto her, but you realize that this wouldn’t work. In other dramas, you just need the couple to acknowledge how they really feel to solve their separation angst. That’s why it’s so frustrating when they keep lying to each other and to themselves for false reasons. Yet the conflict here is great because making a grab for love actually won’t solve the problem. It’s the contradiction inherent in their situation — that they are sad because they are apart, but being together would be just as painful, at least for the moment. Tae-kyung can grab her hand but no more than that: if he wants to respect her pain, especially since he’s been as selfish as she’s pointed out, then he has to stay away until she heals.
And her reason for staying away makes sense, too. The whole parental-history issue is, frankly, not my favorite thing, but if we have to have it, at least it plays in nicely with the second generation’s woes. They may have not repeated their parents’ mistakes but they have to cope with the pain wrought by the older generation. Sins of the father and such as.
As I said, I do not greatly love the Hwa-ran/songwriter/mother thing. Well, only because it takes up so much of the angst factor in this drama. And to be honest, there are a couple times when I got confused about who knew what and when. And who was lying to whom about knowing what. And who knew the truth but pretended not to.
But given that I wasn’t enamored of the setup, I think the writers did a good job of tying it in to the other conflicts, so that the parents’ secret history actually mattered with respect to the main characters. And hey, Mo Hwa-ran IS a fascinating character. (And a great actress with really expressive eyes.) I know some sharp fans had theorized that Hwa-ran was making up the whole song thing in her head, and it looks like that’s pretty close to the truth. Still, as horrible and selfish as Hwa-ran is, she isn’t quite crazy.
I don’t think she’d actually forgotten the truth, or been misled. I think she must have truly believed she had a shot and did everything to stack the odds in her favor, then convinced herself it was true. Given how devastated she looks when Tae-kyung confronts her, I can’t believe she was manipulating everyone just because she was selfish and crazy. She fooled herself into believing it, but she knew deep down that she was only fooling herself, because she did periodically tell herself, “I’m the one he loves.”
One more left, folks! Hope you’re prepared for that crack high to crash…
- Profile on Hong Sisters writing duo
- A.N.JELL holds its last concert
- Drama theme-song ringtones
- A.N.JELL to hold a second mini-concert
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 14
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 13
- Chinese fans show support for You’re Beautiful
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 12
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 11
- Pig-Rabbit for sale (calling You’re Beautiful fans)
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 10
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 9
- Cast of You’re Beautiful buoyed by fan support
- You’re Beautiful’s passionate cult following
- Small dramas stay afloat amongst blockbusters
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 8
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 7
- Jang Geun-seok flooded with CF offers
- Park Shin-hye is tired but happy
- A.N.JELL’s music is a hit
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 6
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 5
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 4
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 3
- Behind the scenes with You’re Beautiful’s cast
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 2
- You’re Beautiful: Episode 1
- FT Island’s Hong-ki ready to return to acting