Drama Recaps
Best Love: Episode 13
by | June 15, 2011 | 311 Comments

I’m sort of in love with how the metaphors have blossomed (ooh, metaphor!) by this point. Rather than just sprouting up in haphazard patterns, they’ve actually managed to work their way together and grown into a whole new thing, proving that the sum is indeed greater than the sum of its parts.

SONG OF THE DAY

Baek Ji-young – “아이캔`t 드링크” (I Can’t Drink) [ Download ]

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EPISODE 13 RECAP

Ae-jung is about to go to Jin, and potentially straight into the showdown currently in progress between the two men. (Pil-joo asks if Jin might die; Jin warns him not to say a word to Ae-jung.) However, she finds Mina in front of her house, who asks her, “Please save me.”

Flashback: Mina had met with Manager Jang to keep him from making good on his veiled threat to spill the beans to her husband. He’d asked for the reason behind KBSN’s breakup, because if not for Ae-jung’s insistence, they could have recovered and continued. What’s Ae-jung’s secret? Was she in a sponsor relationship?

Mina had kept up the cool, detached act and said she’s forgotten everything from her former life, but Manager Jang had rattled her nerves by asking, “Then was the problem with you?” He’d warned that even with a new life and name, one story could bring her back into the spotlight.

Mina asks Ae-jung to keep her secret, apologizing for hiding behind her again but afraid of ruining her current happiness. Ae-jung is torn, telling her “I have something I want to protect too,” and sighs that she wishes she were Superwoman so she could protect everybody.

Jin comes by to find Ae-jung feeling down after that conversation. He requests that she sing her old song for him, but she says she’s done singing that one, because she’s putting those days behind her. Her new song has come out, though, and they sit there cutely listening to it.

They note that the demo singer’s pretty awesome (Baek Ji-young, singing “I Can’t Drink,” posted above), even better than Ae-jung. She teases she was never known for her vocals anyway; it was her looks and body: “Don’t you like me because I’m pretty?” He joke-grumps back at her, “Forget it, I’d rather not see you.”

By which he really means, I’d rather by lying down with you on top of me, and no that is not a euphemism but quite literally what happens.

She says lightly that if he’s so broken, shouldn’t his broken mouth follow suit by telling her she’s pretty? (Meaning, as long as you’re broken, you may as well stay out of character and shoot me a little praise.) But he lies there with tears in his eyes, agreeing, “Yes, I’m broken.”

He thinks back to his conversation with Pil-joo, who had told him the kind thing to do for Ae-jung is to cut her loose, so she’s hurt less and can recover quicker. I’m mightily relieved that it’s Mr. Second Lead who says this, because this has been a favored tactic in a few early Hong sisters dramas — I’ll leave you now to spare you greater hurt later — and while the cliche has been effective in its day, I’m happy to see it fade away.

Jin had countered by telling Pil-joo that because he’s a star, he can’t disappear quietly, nor will he be easily forgotten even if he dies: “Through Dokko Jin’s image, I’ll remain in the public eye and continue to hurt her.” I do love that this is spoken without ego because it’s totally true — it’s the fate of the star whose image surpasses the reach of his physical life.

Now, Jin complies with her joking request, and tells her, “Gu Ae-jung, my eyes are broken so you appear as the most beautiful woman to me, and my mouth is broken so these words just spill out. I adore you to death!”

Ae-jung loves it, and says contentedly that he must’ve spilled some oil, and “Because you’re so greasy, I’m about to slip.” (The word for greasy also means cheesy, as in dialogue.) He asks, “Since I’m already greasy, should we spark a fire?” She considers it: “Should we play with fire and set off some fireworks?” Ahhh, more metaphor mating! And it’s about actual mating! My inner word nerd is ecstatic.

Even more than the metaphor play, I love the double entendres built into the conversation: Ae-jung decides against playing with fire, because she can’t “take responsibility” for him through the end (taking responsibility is used as a euphemism for lots of things, and in this case suggests a man marrying a woman after sleeping with her, rather than leaving her after sex). So rather than loving and leaving, she decides, “I have to protect you.”

Thinking of the other meaning (heh, boys!), Jin says, “You don’t exactly have to protect me…” But she promises, “I’m definitely going to protect you.” And neither of them is immune to the serious turn of the moment, tears springing to both their eyes.

Ae-jung tells him that once he’s “fixed” and therefore zooms past her, she won’t grab onto him — so if one day she wakes up and comes to her senses, don’t grab onto her, either. She asks for a pinky-swear, and he obliges.

It’s so sadly sweet that they’re both talking about the same thing, and yet completely different things: He’s thinking of his potential death, and she’s thinking of him leaving her, and both are just torn up about it but putting on a brave front. Aggggh, this kills me.

As Pil-joo drives home, he thinks of his conversation with Jin, who had declared that pulling back to spare Ae-jung pain isn’t possible — but what he can do “Is to give her more love to help the recovery. That’s why I have to stick by her side for every minute, every second that I can, and to see her just one more minute, one more second. This may be the last of my time — just leave it be.”

When Se-ri apologizes, Pil-joo says she was right (that he wasn’t over Ae-jung). He feels like he’s just come back from a strange land, and asks if Se-ri is familiar with the manhwa Paul’s Miraculous Adventure (whose Korean title includes the words “strange land”).

He explains the story of Paul, who finds a portal to a land of wonders and meets its evil ruler, who kidnaps his friend Nina. He tries to rescue her, but is unsuccessful. Se-ri: “All manhwas are like that. If he saves Nina, the story’s over.” But Pil-joo says no, because there was one time that he succeeded in saving her — only to have Nina say that she felt sorry for the ruler, and she returned to his land.

Pil-joo wonders, “Let’s say Paul were to go argue with the ruler to ask him to let go of Nina, but was told that Nina was happy here so he shouldn’t interfere. Then Paul wouldn’t return to the land of wonders again to save her, would he? And if he were to keep going back to save her, Paul would be…a really strange kid, wouldn’t he?”

Se-ri knows he’s talking about himself, and asks who she is in this story. He thinks, and names the character who’d initially been with the ruler, who ends up friends with Paul. She likes that.

Ae-jung is surprised to hear that Pil-joo has requested an end to the Couple Making program, and admits to the producers that Pil-joo had made up an excuse to spare her, but that she was who ended things with him.

Manager Jang informs Se-ri that Mina who wouldn’t say a thing, but figures that a good shake-up will get her to open her mouth. Se-ri asks uneasily if Manager Jang means to mess with her as well, and is told that if Mina reveals the truth about why Ae-jung slapped her, Se-ri’s bound for trouble, too. He insinuates that Se-ri can stay on his good side if she does one thing for him: Say that Ae-jung was the cause of her breakup with Jin.

Se-ri tries to find Mina, but she has skipped out on her latest appointment and changed her phone number. At the clinic, she runs into Pil-joo’s mother, turning all sweetness and light when she realizes who this is, and this gives her an idea.

Se-ri sighs about the demise of Pil-joo’s show, saying with mock regret that the producers were partially to blame, because Ae-jung already had another man — and since he’s also a celebrity, the relationship was kept secret. She feigns innocence and does the whole “Oops, I shared too much. You’ll keep this a secret, won’t you?” trick designed to get the news spread as far and wide as possible.

All things considered, it’s a shrewd move on Se-ri’s part, because she’s managed to oblige Manager Jang’s demand, yet kept her name out of it, to keep Pil-joo from getting angry with her.

As it is, Mom storms into the producers’ office to berate them for putting Ae-jung on the show when she was already dating someone. A reporter overhears (not too hard, with Mom’s shrill voice), and approaches for an interview, smelling a scoop.

Jin helps Hyung-kyu with his homework, to clear his schedule for a family picnic — where his role will be “fire extinguisher.” Haha. If you don’t trust yourself not to burst into flames, I guess it’s wise to keep a damper nearby. He instructs Hyung-kyu in a signal that means he is to leave him alone with Ae-jung, which is a combination of hand gesture and verbal cue.

The two parties arrive separately at a rest stop, Jin with his manager and Ae-jung with her nephew. The couple talks on the phone while picking up lunch, and they send Ding-Dong back and forth as errand boy. Ha. That’s not conspicuous AT ALL, the boy scuttling back and forth between the tables of two famous celebrities.

(I know it’s not intentional since the song playing is a frequent player in the background music rotation, but I do love that it sings “Hold my hand” as they look at each other sweetly, totally unable to touch.)

Trouble brews when news hits the internet — thanks to meddling Mom’s interview — about Ae-jung’s secret boyfriend, painting Ae-jung as a lying seducer who hoodwinked Perfect Man Pil-joo in the name of scoring airtime for herself.

Ae-jung is unaware of this latest development as a couple of women from the next table recognize her, and speculate that she’s here to meet her boyfriend. Thankfully, Jin is no longer sitting nearby as he’s gone to the store to pick up snacks, and Jae-seok manages to find him in time to caution him to go home quietly before people catch wind of his date.

However, Jin isn’t swayed by the warning and tells Jae-seok not to tell Ae-jung the news, preferring to keep their date despite the situation. He gives Hyung-kyu their agreed-upon signal and continues on his picnic with Ae-jung.

Pil-joo’s clinic is mobbed by reporters frothing at the mouth for juicy details. Unfortunately, his explanation actually adds fuel to the fire, despite his best intentions: He says that he and Ae-jung quit the show after mutual agreement, that he did have feelings for her but that she was entirely honest with him about the situation.

The media version twists this into: The poor doctor betrayed! Perfect Man confirms that he knew about the boyfriend!

Pil-joo asks the producers to fix this, feeling sick that his words have made things worse, but they can’t do anything about it. He turns to Se-ri, who says the same thing, and asks him not to go running into that land of wonders. After all, Nina’s got that ruler man to help her, right?

Speaking of whom… Jin confiscates Ae-jung’s phone for the day, unintentionally reinforcing Pil-joo’s own strange-land metaphor by telling her she’s barred from “communicating with other worlds” until their picnic is over.

At the office, the team of managers works damage control, even as public opinion turns more strongly against Ae-jung. Speculation runs rampant over her famous boyfriend, with some wondering if she’s in an adulterous relationship.

Jin drives out to the countryside, where they can escape people’s prying eyes, and sets up their picnic by a rice paddy. The farm, the view, the conditions — all are less than ideal, but the couple doesn’t really care.

There’s a cow nearby, and Jin warns it jokingly to keep its mouth shut about their date, “Or I’ll sue.” Ae-jung says he should talk to it in cowspeak, not humanspeak, so Jin obliges her and moos the message absurdly and adorably.

He suggests taking a photo together, but Ae-jung thinks it would be unwise to leave any evidence. To which he says, “Just one photo. I want evidence, that we had a picnic here.”

How much do I love that they take a photo with the cow? They set up a timer and get their poses ready…and at the last moment, Jin swoops in and kisses her instead.

Ae-jung remarks that despite the lack of ambiance, it’s not so bad here after all, and suggests having more dates at rice paddies. He offers to call up Section TV to do another date interview in a place she likes, but she says that would be too obvious. That’s his point, so he asks, “Then should I do an interview with Section TV and tell them I’m Gu Ae-jung’s man?” At least then, they could have proper dates rather than hiding out on farms.

Ae-jung knows he’s partly serious about this, but she dismisses his offer as joking, then stops by a store to buy him a cool drink. While she’s gone Jin gets caught by an excited grandma who recognizes him and asks for a photo — she can show all her friends and send it to her relatives in Seoul — which makes his pride die a little on the inside, yet his star nature can’t squelch that impulse to smile prettily for the camera anyway.

I love that he can’t turn that switch off in his brain, to not be the cool top star. It’s funny, but more importantly it’s clever; it fits right in with our recurring motif about the value, both monetary and otherwise, of image.

In Jin’s momentary absence, Ae-jung sneaks a look at her phone, and discovers the storm brewing in Seoul. She calls Jenny, who fills her in and warns her that if she’s seen with Jin, the news will explode.

Ae-jung guesses that Jin knew about the scandal all day, and while she’s not upset with him for hiding it (he says he didn’t want to ruin their picnic), she does declare the picnic over and decides they’ll return to Seoul right away. She also tells him firmly that his crazy idea to announce their relationship is out of the question.

Jin muses to himself, “If you want to protect Gu Ae-jung, you’ll have to talk about this,” indicating his heart.

Thankfully they make it back to Seoul without further incident, and Ae-jung tells Jenny that Jin wants to go public. Jenny says that unless the announcement is accompanied by Big News — say, wedding plans — it won’t help much to just say they’re dating, given the circumstances.

Ae-jung’s used to scandals, but Jenny warns her that this time feels different — and of course it would be, with Se-ri and Manager Jang both actively working against her. Manager Jang spreads entirely invented stories to reporters, saying Ae-jung had betrayed her KBSN sisters back in the day by trying to ditch them to go solo.

He also points out how well she’s been doing all of a sudden, planting the idea that Ae-jung has a sponsor, like she allegedly did ten years ago. To cap that off this round of mischief-making, he advises them to look into the reason for KBSN’s breakup, just for funsies.

To stanch the bleeding and reverse the tide of public opinion, President Moon sets up an interview for Ae-jung, since they can stop the sponsor speculation if they “lay everything bare” to the audience. Meaning: Show them her shabby house, where she lives with her family, and explain that they got there through her father’s failed business venture. Put on camera how hard she and her brother work going from event to event, and set the record straight about the nephew rumored to be her secret child, when in fact she’s raising him after his mother left. Explain the reason she slapped Se-ri, and reveal whatever it is she’s hiding for Mina.

Ae-jung understands that doing this may rehabilitate her image, but would invite scorn on her family: “Are you telling me to sell my family and friends?” President Moon tells her calmly that she has to do it to survive, but if she doesn’t, “This is where it ends.”

I’m pretty sure that President Moon knows Ae-jung won’t do it, so she has one last request: “If you choose to end things here, don’t drag Dokko with you. This one isn’t a request, I’m begging you.”

With the surgery date approaching, Jin meets with his doctor, who assures him that preparations are going well. The doc has also been following the news about Ae-jung, and warns that if Jin is linked to her scandal, he’ll take a fall too.

Jin answers that he’s trying to find a way to protect her regardless of his surgery results, which is to say, a solution that will not depend on either his survival or death. (Which, phew! All that talk about his death lifting her up was not the most reassuring stuff.)

He reminds the doctor of the saying, “Even if we have to roll in dog shit, this world is a better place.” He says, “These days, I’ve been rolling around in shit enough with that woman to make me insane, but I want to live.” Meaning: no matter what hardships we have to encounter, I want to live here with her, rather than leave for the afterlife.

The effects of the gossip are quick and severe, though. Hyung-kyu overhears neighborhood ajummas talking scornfully about Ae-jung and sobs (while clutching his superhero-themed snacks, aw), and Ae-hwan reports the bad news that Ae-jung will have to take a break, and her album put on hold.

Ae-jung feels the indignity and asks her family tearfully, “What did I do wrong that the whole country hates me? Did I do something that despicable? I was just doing my work diligently, smiling even when I felt hurt, and keeping that smile on my face. Is that a crime?”

Oh, this is breaking my heart. Se-ri, I hope you’re happy, and after this stunt I’m revoking any thoughts of possibly, maybe, wishing you well with the sweet doctor. BOO, you.

Pil-joo tracks Mina down to deliver a semi-satisfying smackdown (which is only semi-satisfying because Pil-joo is a reasonable and nice human being who’s above coarse words, even if they may be deserved). He reminds her that she’d called Ae-jung her savior. How can she ignore Ae-jung now, and only focus on her own happiness?

Mina answers that she can’t do a thing, other than ask Ae-jung to continue keeping her promise not to talk about the events of a decade past. Pil-joo isn’t satisfied with that: “How can everybody be so selfish? Why are you all standing in the background while she gets hurt alone? Do none of you have anywhere else to hide?”

Ack, and here I thought my love for Pil-joo couldn’t be any stronger. That’s my lesson of the day: Never underestimate the power of love. (For hot fictional characters. But who says that the imaginary nature of the object means it can’t be love?)

Ae-jung sits with Jenny at the cafe when two reporters come by, and slips away to evade notice. Jenny shoos her away, but ruins her escape by mouthing oh-so-conspicuously at her to run. Naturally the reporters notice Ae-jung and descend upon her eagerly, ignoring the fact that their pursuit causes Ae-jung to fall to the gravel.

She’s so caught off-guard that all she can do is mumble, “I don’t know,” and this is the scene Pil-joo sees when he arrives. Angrily, he steps in and tells them she has nothing to tell them, not caring that they recognize him, and escorts her away.

As he treats her scraped knee, he tells her that she shouldn’t just leave it alone. Either she misunderstands his meaning or she deliberately responds that way, because she says she’ll just let the scrape heal on its own. Pil-joo can’t contain his frustration, telling her that she always leaves things alone and tries to heal on her own: “That’s why you end up with scars that stay with you for years!”

Ae-jung goes with the metaphor although they clearly aren’t talking about her scrape anymore: “But what else can I do? If I dig deeper, it’ll get infected and my leg will become useless.” Pil-joo entreats, “Come out. Leave this strange land that only hurts you. Dokko Jin and entertainment industry may have moved you to excitement, but you were always hurt — it hurt you — and you’re always preparing yourself to be hurt! If you need, use me to escape it. I’ll help you run far away.”

Awwww. I LOVE that the strange land metaphor has seemingly, out of nowhere, meshed with his earlier wish to carry Ae-jung out of this crazy, mixed-up, backwards showbiz world.

Ae-jung tells him, “If I leave now, I can’t protect it. Even though I’m hurt, there are things I have to protect. If I run away, I can’t protect anything.” (In Korean, the first sentence doesn’t need a pronoun so she doesn’t specify what she’s protecting, but we understand that she really means “I can’t protect him.”)

That night, Jin sends her the photos of the kiss on the farm, with the subject title “Promise for the next picnic,” and she decides, “Let’s protect [him].”

With that, Ae-jung gives her decision to President Moon: She can’t hurt the ones she loves, so it would be best to end things (i.e., her career) now. President Moon urges her to reconsider, because it’s not like she can just get another job in the real world, but Ae-jung won’t sell out her family.

With the furor over Ae-jung turning to the old KBSN breakup, the Couple Making writer sighs in relief that their show has been spared, since the arrow struck a different target. Se-ri seems to be feeling pangs of a woefully undersized conscience, saying, “Ae-jung unni always gets hit by the arrows.” And while Mina reads the articles with a heavy heart, she can only say, “I’m sorry, Ae-jung unni.” Yeah, how’s that happiness when it’s been bought with the tears of your long-suffering unni?

At the agency, Ae-jung prepares to make her official statement — which is that she can’t make any statement about the scandal. She fights angry, hurt, sad tears while rehearsing the words announcing her withdrawal from the industry.

Jin arrives at the agency intent on taking the fall alongside Ae-jung, which President Moon urges him not to do. Yet he declares that he’s doing this “So I can live.”

He tells Ae-jung to forget about the other stuff in the scandal, and talk only about him: “Just talk about you and me. To everyone.”

She thanks him for the thought but assumes he’s not being serious about it. He counters:

Jin: “What I said isn’t a joke. Telling you to reveal that we’re dating isn’t a joke. And being prepared to beg you to marry me right away isn’t a joke.”
Ae-jung: “Thank you for not joking.”
Jin: “And this is the most serious one: I might die and disappear. That’s not a joke, either. Gu Ae-jung, I’m severely broken. I may not be fixable.”

Interpreting his words in a slightly skewed way, she asks if the reason he’s okay with going public is because he might die. He just tells her, to her growing disbelief:

Jin: “The saying about this world being better even if you’re rolling around in dog crap — right now, I can feel it down deep to my bones. But even if I have to leave this world, I can’t leave you to struggle in that crap alone.”
Ae-jung: “Tell me you’re joking.”
Jin: “You have nothing else to sell. Sell me. Dokko Jin is tremendously expensive enough to cover up anything, and I’m giving him to you. Sell him.”
Ae-jung: “Tell me you’re joking.”
Jin: “And to do that, make me your man.”
Ae-jung: “I said, tell me you’re joking!”

 
COMMENTS

I suspect that Mina’s going to have to come out at some point, because otherwise what’s the point of her being a character, right? I’m holding out hope that she does the right thing, although I think it’ll probably be at a non-critical moment, so as not to undercut the huge freakin’ deal that is Jin’s grand gesture (more on that in a sec). I look forward to that, ’cause I’m hating her a little bit right now.

Ae-jung’s the kind of woman who makes decisions based on what she can live with, so if she had to do everything over again I’m pretty sure she’d pick the same path. But knowing it’s the right thing doesn’t make it any easier to have taken that road, and I liked seeing her reluctance to continue shielding Mina — not that she would ever have gone back on her word, but that she acknowledges that Mina’s asking a lot of her. ‘Cause she is, and it takes a leetle bit of the aggravation off of Ae-jung being so quietly suffering.

Which is why I LOVE Pil-joo in this episode, even more than previously, because he actually got mad and yelled and was a great wonderful horn of common sense. His exasperation was so satisfying when he basically asked, incredulously, What is wrong with you people?! I love his angst about wanting to help Ae-jung and being utterly unequipped to do so — not just because she loves Jin, but because she’s actually IN this strange land where he doesn’t understand the rules and he’s in danger of doing more harm than good, and he can’t help her until she’s back in his world, but he can’t force her out, and that manhwa metaphor was just so perfect for this conflict, even as it came totally out of nowhere. This is what good writing does — if a drama makes sense along every step of the way, even new introductions will work into the story with logical clarity, fitting it even more tightly together rather than feeling like jigsaw pieces jammed into the wrong puzzle.

We’ve mentioned before the way this drama, which on the surface is so lightly comical about a crazy couple in love, actually manages to work in some deeper insights. Sure, you’ve got your low-brow sight gags and such, but there’s also a level of cultural commentary that we don’t get in a lot of trendies, or even dramas in general.

The idea that image is worth something tangible, when the very nature of image is so inchoate and ephemeral — that’s kinda deep, man. And that in their strange land within the showbiz bubble, it’s a commodity traded regularly, bartered between parties and assigned numerical value. It’s fascinating, and it’s weird, and it’s entirely moving that Jin’s offer in this last scene is honestly the most valuable thing that he could ever offer her — not his physical body but his image. It’s worth big bucks, but more importantly, it wields great power, and he’s vesting it into her hands. GAH, that’s so cerebrally sweet that it kills me, in a good way.

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311 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. ekyung

    Wow!

     (0)


    • 1.1 Ace

      Love Pil-joo, dislike Mina, feel sorry for AJ & Jin, adore ding-dong, hate the media, Seri, & ugly manager, love Pil-joo.

      Don’t think Hyung-kyu is Mina’s kid. There are valid points that he could be, but I’m not buying it at this time.

      Oh, and did I mention that I love Pil-joo?

       (0)


      • 1.1.1 Respect Your Readers

        Ding Dong! Ding Dong! Ding Dong!

        Ding Dong IS Mina’s SON! Baam! :)

         (0)


      • 1.1.2 Kiara

        I think its obvious that he’s not her son. Ding Dong is 7, the National Treasure girls broke up 10 yrs ago.

         (0)


    • 1.2 Lorlena

      WOW! Exactly!!

       (0)


    • 1.3 yakunamojing

      I hope Jin does not die in the end like most of So Ki Sub’s dramas????!!!!

       (0)


  2. Molly

    Please let me be first!

     (0)


    • 2.1 Kangling

      Heaart BREAAAKKKK!!

       (0)


  3. ricky the royal highness

    Yay!!! The recap is H.E.R.E. !!!

    Been waiting for this, thanks :)

    With every paragraph that I read, I find myself loving Ae Jung and hating that spineless Mina more and more. I know WHY she did it – I just can’t bear the thought of Ae Jung hurting.

    *runs off to class*

     (1)


    • 3.1 th em

      So on the one hand, I totally get the Mi Na hate going on in general.

      But on the other hand, I just keep remembering that it seemed like the girl was legitimately suicidal back in the day. I think when she said AJ saved her, she meant it pretty literally.

      Not that it makes any of her actions/inactions morally right, but I dunno. There’s some level at which I can’t hate her for the old stuff, if it really was a question of letting AJ protect her or taking her own life.

      The new stuff… The new stuff we could maybe talk about. ;)

       (0)


      • 3.1.1 ping

        i agree with you. Mina and AJ both didn’t know that the consequences of the lie ten years ago was gonna last THAT long. Aj said so herself.

        the present Mina is still the scared little girl. She must stand up for her son, husband, and dignity.

        More than Mina, Se Ri is upsetting me real bad. The past ten years she has been trampling all over AJ intentionally, and that I cannot forgive her!

         (0)


      • 3.1.2 Hiromi

        I am guessing Mina got pregnant and that Ae jung’s nephew is not her nephew at all but Mina’s child.
        This is the big secret she is keeping for her friend and taking responsability… if my theory is correct I would say Ae Jung is no longer protecting Mina but Hyung-kyu, this is the real reason why nobody is talking! What else could it be to even make Seri keep quiet? It doesn’t make sense otherwise.

        Just imagine the scandal it would be for all of them if this is my theory is correct.
        Probably, Mina confessed to Ae jung and asked for help, Seri didn’t want to take responsability for Mina’s scandal (nor the baby’s daddy) and called her a whore, Ae jung slaps her! The reporters see everything and Ae jung took the opportunity to help Mina.

        Yes, this is what I think truly happened ten years ago.

         (0)


        • 3.1.2.1 Amg1

          I will agree with you! I do believe that Ding Dong is Mina’s son, and Ae-jung took the fall while taking care of the boy!!

           (0)


        • 3.1.2.2 mardie

          hmm… i think ding dong cant be mina’s child, as ding dong is 7 years old, but the group disbanded 10 years ago…

          i thot ae jung slaps seri cause the prank seri played by putting that powder(or something) in her drink that mina drank?

           (0)


        • 3.1.2.3 Eve

          But Hyung-kyu/Dingdong is 7 years old. He should be 10 or at least 9 years old by now if he’s Mina’s child from the scandal.

           (0)


          • 3.1.2.3.1 Eve

            @th em

            wow… great work on explaining it all with the timeline!
            well I guess i got confused about the debut and the breakup timing.

            whenever the national treasure girls’ scandal/secret is mentioned they always refer it to “10 years ago”… i noticed this on episode 13 that i just watched also. so i guess that’s why it’s confusing.

            i really don’t want to believe Dingdong is part of the scandal in any way though. honestly, if that’s the case, the story is going to be a bit absurd. how come Mina, a mother who right now have a baby and seems to love her baby so much, would feel at peace to have abandoned “another child” that she knows still alive, being taken care by someone else.

            i think Mina was probably pregnant but I don’t think Dingdong was the baby. she might have miscarried or something.

             (0)


        • 3.1.2.4 dramabliss

          I started to think along the same lines, but then, why is Ding Dong only seven years old when the pregnancy occurred 10 years ago?

           (0)


          • 3.1.2.4.1 th em

            Let me explain. No, there is too much. Let me sum up.

            1. The National Treasure Girls’ debut was 10 years ago. (Confirmed in ep 4, when they were talking about the anniversary.)

            2. The National Treasure Girls’ breakup was 7 years ago. (Confirmed in ep 9, when Ae Hwan cried to the Couple Making team about how Ae Jung’s been surrounded by scandals for 7 years.)

            3. Ding Dong is 7 years old. (Confirmed in multiple eps, but ep 9 when Jin tells him he doesn’t have to worry since he’s only 7 is an example.)

            4. Ae Hwan has explicitly referred to Ding Dong as his son. (See ep 10, conversation with Pil Joo’s mom.)

            5. Ae Hwan told Pil Joo he didn’t know why Ae Jung broke the group up when she did. However, Ae Hwan and Jenny were also making shifty eyes during that conversation, so you can take that however you want. (See ep 11.)

            6. This episode, Representative Moon mentioned that Ding Dong is rumored to be Ae Jung’s secret kid when it’s really that his mom took off. (See this recap above: “…and set the record straight about the nephew rumored to be her secret child, when in fact she’s raising him after his mother left.” You know I’m going to be looking at that part in detail once the rough subs are up.)

            7. Mi Na may have been pregnant back in the day, and that may have led to the Treasure Girls’ breakup. (Unconfirmed but likely, considering the reaction to Se Ri’s “prank” and the fact that they’ve had a baby glued to Mi Na in almost every contemporary appearance.)

            So… I think those are all the major points of evidence that can be used to debate this theory one way or the other. Have fun, everyone!

            (And don’t I feel like the Best Love reference librarian tonight…)

             (0)


          • 3.1.2.4.2 b is for bea

            @the em, all the evidence you presented had me convinced Ding-Dong is Mina’s child. Great detective work. Now I look forward to the big revelation :D

             (0)


          • 3.1.2.4.3 anais

            There’s a very strong reason why Hyun Kyu wouldn’t be Mina’s kid. When Mina turned up and half-assume/half-asked AJ to protect her, AJ responded that she has people of her own that she wanted to protect. As in she thought about not protecting Mina. If Hyun Kyu is the reason for protecting Mina, AJ would not have vacillated or shown resentment for even a second. Preserving the secret would have been a given, especially if Hyun Kyu were Mina’s child.

             (0)


          • 3.1.2.4.4 dramabliss

            @th em, thanks for the details. You really have become the BL librarian.

            Didn’t pay much attention to when the National Treasure Girls disbanded; thought it was a year after the debut. Anyway, I am starting to buy into the theory that Ding Dong is Mina’s child. Eagerly awaiting for the reveal.

             (0)


          • 3.1.2.4.5 th em

            UPDATE: Rough subs for 13 are in at DSS. The lines in question haven’t been cleaned up yet, but they do seem to have Rep. Moon mentioning AJ’s sister-in-law and a divorce.

            Is that enough to put this Ding Dong is Mi Na’s kid thing to bed yet?

            Oh well, not long until we find out for real anyway.

             (0)


          • 3.1.2.4.6 b is for bea

            Let me add that 7 is Ding-Dong’s Korean age. That makes him only 6 years old.

             (0)


          • 3.1.2.4.7 bananabee

            @ th em: you have some very valid points! to be honest i’ve never actually thought about Ding Dong being such a huge part of the plot…
            about your 5th point though, you said that ae hwan and jenny were making shifty eyes but jenny has said many times that she does not know what went on to cause the break up. if she did, she would’ve went straight to the reporters (said in this episode).

             (0)


          • 3.1.2.4.8 th em

            @bananabee

            The point was more about Ae Hwan, as he would presumably have to be in on the cover-up whereas Jenny wouldn’t.

            BUT! Just for the record and so I don’t go down as the girl who was obsessed with Ding Dong being Mi Na’s kid for the rest of my drama-lovin’ days…

            I have never actually supported this theory. If you go back a recap or so, you will see me whining about not wanting it to be true but being too lazy to look up the counterpoints at the time. I’d since delazified, and the above list was the result.

            I thought it pretty clearly included facts that ran counter to the theory as well as those that supported it, but apparently it was mostly read as an argument in favor of Ding Dong’s secret past. Which I guess may have been bound to happen, because how many people write comments that long on fan blogs that have a completely neutral stance? Just dorky BL-librarians like me…

             (0)


        • 3.1.2.5 yoonah

          I hope not.

          I want Ding Dong to just be Ding Dong, not some makjang plot device.

           (0)


          • 3.1.2.5.1 mardie

            agree! hope there wont be a birth secret. haih… too much of that already..

             (0)


          • 3.1.2.5.2 th em

            That’s exactly the reason I know everything I listed above. From trying to find proof that Ding Dong is just Ding Dong. :)

             (0)


        • 3.1.2.6 antonia

          please i don’t want Ding Dong to be mina’s child. he doesn’t deserve such a bad mother!!!!!
          no wayyyy

           (0)


      • 3.1.3 Leina

        @th em–you are Sherlock Holmes! :D Thank you for sharing all the minute (but very interesting and possibly very relevant) details you’ve unearthed so far. Keep sharing! :)

         (0)


    • 3.2 MJP

      Ricky the royal highness,

      You almost made #1…. Good JOB!!!

      I give you an A+ for Absolutely Amazing!!!

       (0)


    • 3.3 LeMonS

      Mina had to have been pregnant before, when they were a girl group. Something her husband is unaware of. If that is the case, there are three options.

      She either miscarried. So her husband could potentially be shocked at finding out her wasn’t first on deck (okay).

      She gave the child up for adoption. I could see the husband being pretty thrown finding out the mother of his child already had a child. That is information you should probably share with your future husband (future, as in before the commitment is made – cards laid bare).

      OR, she had an abortion. The is pretty scandalous for a lot of people.

      I could see why Mina would look scared. If she wasn’t pregnant, I don’t know what else it could be. Why else would they put unnecessary emphasis on idols secretly dating.

      Oh, that was a long ramble…

       (0)


      • 3.3.1 anais

        I can think of a lot of words I’d like to say to Mina, no matter which one of the above outlined possibility is her problem. I’ll just say two PG rated ones.

        Own up.

        Clean up your own mess. It’s obvious that her problem is big enough to overwhelm her husband. However, guess what. I was just about to say that making lemonade from life’s lemons, but that’s giving Mina an unduly easy way out. She made her choices and, while they may have had some suicidally depressing consequences, ten years have passed. If her husband can’t get over the breach of trust or mere shocker that he’s not her first, the possibility of losing her husband is one of the consequences she ought to own up to. If the former, she brought it upon herself. If the latter, better to leave someone who can’t accept you, warts and all.

        Seri sucks, but really I find Mina the most despicable at this point. Mgr Jang sucks. Seri sucks, but we all knew they suck. Mina, that’s a different story.

        And, if the theory that Hyun Kyu is Mina’s child turns out true, I’ll be furious for so many reasons. It’s just not a necessary plot point. It’ll feel so contrived. Secondly, I’ll hate Mina all the more for valuing her self-preservation over her son.

        And I LUUUUURVE Dokko. I LUUUURVE Piljoo.

        At this point, I want to slam AJ. Noble idiots suck. At this point, it’s hardly selling out her family and friends. It’s about finally standing up for oneself, demanding that all the others own up for their failures. For her father, brother, and Mina to let her go down, that’s BS. You aren’t being a good role model for Hyun Kyu. You need to teach people how to stand up for themselves. Sheltering them = giving one fish. Teaching them how not to take BS = teaching them how to fish.

        K – I’m gonna go blow off some steam now.

         (0)


        • 3.3.1.1 MEK

          that’s why I get frustrated watching this actress…she always does that – the better person crap…it annoys me to no end…I know its the writers but it still annoys me.

           (0)


        • 3.3.1.2 arielifeoma

          Ditto EVERYTHING you said. The people that are currently pissing me off the most in this drama, in order of most to least are: Mi Na, AJ, Manager Jang and Se Ri. Yep, Se Ri is last because without enablers like Mi Na, AJ and Manager Jang, she’d be easily dealt with.

           (0)


  4. Aidan

    love this show!

     (0)


  5. Molly

    My heart is breaaaaaking! Mina really needs to intervene and grow a spine; even with Jin, Ae Jung can’t do this alone.

    On a side note, I totally had a dream where I was supposed to marry Pil Joo. Then Jin showed up; OMG moment for me. And then guess what? Hyun Bin appears out of nowhere! A love rectangle with me in the center? Awesome…yet so stressful. Who would you all have picked? :)

     (0)


    • 5.1 zakuropanda

      That is a FANTASTIC dream lol xD When did you wake up?

      I am really hating on Mina and Se Ri in this episode — seriously what is their problem?? They need to man up. -___- U

       (0)


      • 5.1.1 Molly

        I woke up while I was frustratedly debating who to pick. Binnie appeared, with a beam of light coming down from the heavens on him, though, so I’d say I was probably subconsciously leaning towards him. ;)

        I know! I thought Mina would reciprocate and save Ae Jung all along. When it became clear that wouldn’t happen, I thought Seri would do good and help Ae Jung out – and start to win Pil-joo.

         (0)


        • 5.1.1.1 mrmz

          Me too I thought that mina came back to do the right thing, to only turn out as selfish as ever. Hate her the most!
          I thought Seri would make up for all her past evil deeds, but after today, I hate her too!! And now I really hope she DOESN’T end up with Pil Joo, she certainly doesn’t deserve him! He deserve a MUCH better person than her.

          Loved Pil Joo the most today!! Always loved Jin but today PJ said all the things that needed to be said in this episode!

          I understand Ae Jung not wanting to speak the truth. Telling the truth now will make, at least for her, everything she did in the past and al the sacrifices meaningless. She’s just continuing on the path she had chosen 10years ago.

           (0)


          • 5.1.1.1.1 Molly

            Gosh I know. She’s grown so much as a person and certainly doesn’t deserve any of this; she deserves acknowledgment for all the good she’s done for everyone else.

            Btw, I realize that there’s another Molly here (#2); I’ll probably change my name to Moll next time so we can distinguish between ourselves. :)

             (0)


    • 5.2 come2noona

      Decisions decisions….. I think I’d have to go with Binnie.

       (0)


      • 5.2.1 Sherlyn

        i would have go for pil joo…
        dorky nerds always work for me…
        just like um tae woong !!!

         (0)


      • 5.2.2 hookedonmonix

        Yeah, probably Hyun Bin, too. But I wouldn’t say no to either of the others as a consolation prize. Although…. I just watched City Hall, and if Jin kisses anything like CSW’s city hall character did, I’d totally pick him.

         (0)


        • 5.2.2.1 hookedonmonix

          watched ep 14- I pick Jin.

           (0)


        • 5.2.2.2 martan267

          Before this drama… I would have picked Hyun Bin hands down…. He was my “first”. My first kdrama I’ve ever watched was Secret Garden. Secret Garden led me to My Name is Kim Sam Soon. Kim Sam Soon led me to City Hall. City Hall led me to Greatest Love… Definitely, at this point in time, I’m picking Dokko Jin aka Cha Seung Won!!!

           (0)


    • 5.3 My2Girls

      Yikes! That is a tough question. I am closer in age to CSW and I adore him – however, I LOVE HB and YKS. No! I can’t do it I can’t choose just one – it’s like Sophie’s Choice.

       (0)


    • 5.4 VanillaSalt

      ugh, i know! Mina and the whole media is really getting on my nerves, so annoying!

      your dream sounds amazing! I had a dream that i got burned in the ass with a firework and i somehow ended up in my house which was infested with centipedes. it terrible! I would’ve picked hyun bin AND dokko jin ;)

       (0)


    • 5.5 iamhere

      LOL..WINNING

       (0)


    • 5.6 antonia

      i pick Jin ;)

       (0)


  6. faye

    Awesome episode and awesome recap! I was crying along with Ae-jung. Dokko Jin better not die.

     (0)


    • 6.1 czak

      I don’t think he is gonna die…
      if that happens I am pretty sure many netizens will have a Hong *errhhh* Witch hunt for the Hong sisters.

      Anyway my only wish for this drama is that MY PILJOO BETTER NOT CRY NO MORE
      cause I am pretty sure that AeJung and Jin would live Happily ever after.
      so the least that PILJOO should have until the end is a sincere and happy smile

       (0)


      • 6.1.1 ykslove

        I think I’ll call for a public demonstration on street AGAINST Hong sisters if they decide to pair Se-ri with Piljoo at the end. I mean, I love Inna in Secret Garden and High Kick, but I CANNOT let the writers ruin the character of Piljoo simply because they want to appease the fans of Inna. Dramagods….Would you please listen to my prayer?? Finally. we have a substantial and ordinary second male lead in Hong Sisters’ dramas. Would you please just this character as consistent as possible til the end??

         (0)


        • 6.1.1.1 martan267

          I agree with you and will join you on the picket line. Se-ri’s character took a turn for the worse and I really don’t know if anything can redeem her at this point. The fact that she cared for her own hide and by doing so throwing Ae Jung once again under the bus really made my blood boil. She does NOT deserve our Piljoo. It may be understandable if she had done it to make Piljoo change his mind about Ae Jung.. but what she did was purely to save her image which to me was unforgiveable and shows that she hasn’t grown since the 1st episode. I hope she NEVER gets Piljoo… in fact, I hope Piljoo finds out and HATES her… Inna fans sorry, but that’s how I feel.

           (0)


  7. djinni

    i love you guys

     (0)


  8. leonardswench

    If we survive this drama, it will be some kind of miracle. It’s zoomed past every other Hong Sisters drama EVER and I don’t think there’s an equivalent for television storytelling on the entire planet right now.

    I know the Hong Sisters refuse to do extensions (bless them, they have power and use it WISELY), so we are wrapping this up next Thursday. I expect to be (1)out of Kleenexes and sniffling into my shirt hem and (2)more in love with Cha Seung Won as an actor than ever and (3)re-watching this in a marathon next Friday/Saturday so I can breathe on Sunday. This drama marks my soul.

     (0)


    • 8.1 Molly

      My epic celebrity crush on Cha Seung Won only reinforces my friends’ opinions that I like older men. Sigh. If only they knew.

       (0)


      • 8.1.1 leonardswench

        EXACTLY. It’s okay, WE get it!

         (0)


    • 8.2 Viola

      LW, you and me both. :( Pass the tissue.

       (0)


    • 8.3 samgetang

      I feel the love as much, leonardswench.

      I love that the Hong sisters set this drama in the backdrop of the entertainment world because only this kind of love will shine so brightly in a setting that is strongly driven by images, appearances and shallowness. It is a most powerful rom-com because of this. How could anyone elevate rom-com to this amazing level…only the Hong sisters were able to dare and successfully pull-off.

      We are all much favored because of this drama…marks our souls…i echo that!

       (0)


      • 8.3.1 leonardswench

        I think they have single-handedly set the benchmark for good dramas very high, and few writers meet with such consistent success, both in terms of ratings and DVD sales. In a re-watch of all their dramas from start to finish, you can see The Hong Sisters growing, and it has me in anticipation of what they will do next. That gives me something to look forward to as Viola and I collectively use up all the Kleenexes …..

         (0)


        • 8.3.1.1 samgetang

          And because of BL, I’ve decided to marathon-watch all Hong sisters dramas…at least those I’ve not watched yet. I wanna see/experience for myself. Once we come face to face with this kind of amazing excellent work we cannot help but be inspired to do the same/be the best in our own field of work or endeavor. That is why we are forever looking/hunting/searching for all that is great, mighty, noble, excellent and true. Thank God for the Hong sisters and kdrama overall!

          *uses up all the kleenex and reaches out for more*

           (0)


    • 8.4 nabila

      u’ve said what’s in my heart! thank you :) the fact that the dynamic+awesome storyline of hong sisters, this story has it owns level! im totally in love with all the characters, no, the overall story!!! THUMBS UP!

      we just got to be ready with our kleenex+a quite moment to feel the story!

      …just when i thought se ri ‘s gonna change and admits to Ae jung, she disappointed me by throwing the bluff again..sigh…i love that yoo in na succeed in carrying her role! :)

       (0)


      • 8.4.1 Glomp

        “…just when i thought se ri ‘s gonna change and admits to Ae jung, she disappointed me by throwing the bluff again”

        But I think I would be surprised and be all confused if Seri were to suddenly admit her mistake in this episode. The sudden change would be terribly illogical. Why would she suddenly realise that she’s in the wrong?

        She’s not much different from the maknae of the group 7 years back. Back then, she decided to play a prank on Ae Jung in the name of “fun”. Similarly, she didn’t intend to blow things up when she decided collaborate with Manager Jang to … sabotage Ae Jung.

        However, I do appreciate the Hong sisters showing the fact that Seri’s starting to think more about the hurt that Ae Jung suffers (like, in the scene where she’s talking with the producers). That way, it’s not THAT sudden when she finally realises that she was being a b**** to Ae Jung and decides to redeem herself.

         (0)


        • 8.4.1.1 yoonah

          Their interactions are cute enough and I like that Seri isn’t totally evil, but she’s still such a selfish meangirl that no amount of redemption in the remaining 3 episodes could possibly make her worthy of Pil-joo.

          At the rate her character is going, she needs like 162 episodes. A sageuk!

          If they were the endgame, then the Hongs should’ve started the Seri Rehabilitation Project gradually and much earlier. Or made Pil-joo less Perfect.

          Because actively trying to destroy someone’s career and happiness is WRONG. It should not be negated by pretty tears of unrequited love, nor should it be rewarded with a Pil-joo.

           (0)


          • 8.4.1.1.1 leonardswench

            Yeah, I don’t think the Hong Sisters are going for complete rehabilitation of Seri.

            She feels some remorse, pangs of guilt, yes, but her selfishness has been unchecked too long and she doesn’t curb her own behavior and is only in check when a Piljoo or Dokko Jin comes along and says, “here’s the line and no further”. Dokko Jin allowed the Seri relationship as it added to both of their images and bank accounts, but he never let it go beyond that.

            Piljoo sees her too clearly, as well. There’s no love for her there, understanding, yes, but not love and not even sympathetic understanding. No happy ending for Seri and Piljoo, thankfully.

             (0)


          • 8.4.1.1.2 samgetang

            “No happy ending for Seri and Piljoo, thankfully.”

            *so relieved…can sleep now*

             (0)


          • 8.4.1.1.3 yoonah

            I hope you guys are right.

            I’m just worried they’ll give us a pat happy ending where everybody’s paired off. Like that b!tchy girl in Gumiho getting Jeremy. (Nooooo! Run away, Jeremy, run away!!!)

            On the other hand, I can maybe live with that as long as they don’t kill Jin.

             (0)


      • 8.4.2 leonardswench

        I’ve been very pleased with the full spectrum brought by all of the cast: very rare in a drama to get such an even and balanced mix across the board. And just where do they find these cutest kids EVER???

         (0)


        • 8.4.2.1 samgetang

          cant agree w you more! ding dong is a gold mine! he can hold his own even, or especially, with such good actors like CSW and GHJ….and sometimes even grabs the limelight from them…

           (0)


      • 8.4.3 ykslove

        Ladies and Gentlemen, wait until you see episode 14. Se-ri all of the sudden has become a nice woman and I have an inkling that Hong sisters want to pair her and Pil-joo, which piss me off!!!!!!!!!!!

        Poor YKS….why does the script writers always ruin his character, just like his role in Triple?

        Anyway, he gained a lot of popularity now because of Best Love and Poongsan Dog. There are tons of news and interviews of him. I love him!!!

         (0)


    • 8.5 martan267

      Hear, hear! This is the best kdrama I’ve ever watched in my short life as a kdrama addict… And yes, Cha Seung Won is my Greatest LOVE! I’ll be doing the same thing as you… watch every episode all over again… laugh all over again… cry all over again… then press REPEAT… (sigh) I’m really quite a mess over this drama and Cha Seung Won…

       (0)


  9. anh

    *tears*

     (0)


  10. 10 grasya

    ummm, but Jin’s not dying here, right? please, please, please, don’t make him die. please. ^ — ^

     (0)


  11. 11 Yuki

    Thanks so much for the recap! It’s awesome! Just everything I want to say, period.

     (0)


  12. 12 come2noona

    Thanks so much JB! I broke my own rule and read the recap before watching the episode…totally worth it!

     (0)


  13. 13 Sobia

    What a beautiful recap!

     (0)


    • 13.1 Kiara

      Absolutely. I love every word of it. Now this is what I call a RECAP. Thank you JB and Girlfriday.

       (0)


  14. 14 Pavella

    After reading the recap, I feel like crying. Dokko Jin …..
    I really hope for the happy ending, so I can rewatch it again.

     (0)


  15. 15 th em

    Even with the album on hold, glad to see they continue to make progress on the potential new life-saving song. This has got to be one of the biggest things in Jin’s favor, because how silly would it be if they:
    A) Passed up the chance to play Ae Jung’s new song during Jin’s second surgery, or
    B) Let Jin die after they played it during surgery.

    Pretty darn silly, I think. Then again, I’ve been in the “Ae Jung: the human defibrillator” camp from the start.

    Meanwhile, this episode finally gave some reasons to allay the worst of my fears regarding the past skeeviness of Skeevy Manager. I was relieved. But it did so while somehow finding a way to make him an even more reprehensible person in the present. Boo.

    Thus the balance of hate is restored.
    *hate hate hate*

    On a mostly unrelated note, I put together a “Did You Notice?” for episodes 1-12 of this series. It includes a possible explanation for Pil Ju’s weird puzzle, in case that was bugging you as much as it was me.

     (0)


    • 15.1 zakuropanda

      WOW you’re AMAZING for noticing all of those details!!!! Thanks so much for putting it together :)

       (0)


    • 15.2 jessybee

      hahahahaa.. thats a great note you compiled there! goes to show how much detail and thought the Hongs put into their drama and it definitely paid off!

       (0)


    • 15.3 come2noona

      Your “Did You Notice?” was AWESOME! What a lot of work you put into it. And yes… Pil Ju’s puzzle was really bugging me. Actually, I found it kind of disturbing. But now I have been enlightened and I can finally accept his puzzle choice. Thanks!

       (0)


    • 15.4 samgetang

      wow! you sure got a sharp eye for details.

      i’ve noticed more than half of what you mentioned but your fine detective work on the puzzle is without compare! thanks, th em!

      i love hans christian andersen…i even went to copenhagen to visit the statue of the little mermaid there…so im wondering why is it so popular in korean dramas? (MGIAG and SG…)

       (0)


      • 15.4.1 anais

        Hans Christian Anderson, when I was growing up, was big. There was a very popular Little Mermaid comic book and animation. Little Mermaid, Tin Soldier (ah… Dokko Jin), Little Match Girl, Princess and the Pea, etc. The first and the third are my fave, especially because they end so sadly. Perhaps it’s the melodrama in them. The shinpa. Koreans lurve their sad, pitiable endings.

         (0)


        • 15.4.1.1 samgetang

          hmmm…i see the connection now…thanks, anais!

           (0)


    • 15.5 Jomo

      So cool how you did that!

      I still think the dolphin is creepy because of, well, it just is.

       (0)


      • 15.5.1 th em

        Oh, it’s definitely still creepy. I agree with you and Sethe 100% on that front.

        Not enough meta in the world to fully negate how weird that was.

         (0)


    • 15.6 dramabliss

      @th em

      Awesome detective work! Much appreciated. I think you will make a great production designer.

      Yes, I have noticed that Hans Christian Andersen’s stories seem to receive a lot of references in kdramaland. Am not complaining as HCA is a favorite. Like samgetang, one of main reasons for visiting Copenhagen and Odense was HCA. One of my treasured photo mementos is of me sitting in the shadow of HCA statue next to the city hall.

      Also noticed the use of MBS for MBC but entirely missed the signs. Shows how amazing th em’s concentration powers are.

       (0)


      • 15.6.1 samgetang

        love HCA….yeah! ;-)

         (0)


      • 15.6.2 th em

        “I think you will make a great production designer.”

        While everyone else fangirls the actors, I’ve totally been fangirling the crew.

        No, wait, I’ve also been fangirling the actors.

        But the Best Love crew really is great. I couldn’t have done this with most other K-Dramas. (I want to say any other K-Dramas, but it’s not like I’ve seen all of them.)

         (0)


        • 15.6.2.1 samgetang

          fan-girling the crew! wow! that’s the first time i heard of such kind. this is what the Hong sisters, and maybe the director/production design, has achieved through this drama! Unbelievable.

           (0)


    • 15.7 MJP

      th em,

      I just have one teeny little question:

      How long did it take you to do this, start to finish. Please include the intitial thought, brain storming, etc.

       (0)


      • 15.7.1 Sethe

        I know, right? You’re amazing, th em.

        I have to say, though, I don’t think the whole Little Mermaid thing is a sufficient explanation for Pil-joo fondling that dolphin puzzle so much. That’s just… strange.

        (I shouldn’t be judgmental, though… I’ve probably done even stranger things in relation to people I’ve thought I was in love with.)

         (0)


        • 15.7.1.1 samgetang

          “I’ve probably done even stranger things in relation to people I’ve thought I was in love with.”

          LOL! ;-)

          you are right, sethe. i think pil joo was fond of the puzzle because he was connecting it to his affection for ae jung and how she is like a puzzle to him…that he cant entirely understand. its a mystery to him why she would choose to remain in the showbiz world that caused all the pain in her life and also why she would choose someone like dokko jin who is totally opposite her pragmatic and sensible self. she is a puzzling puzzle to him…which adds to her desirability for him ;-) se ri should take her cue from ae jung :-) if she wants to get the guy ;-)

           (0)


          • 15.7.1.1.1 Sethe

            You put my thought into words so beautifully, samgetang! Thanks :)

             (0)


      • 15.7.2 th em

        Uh, okay, let’s see…

        I remember posting a status update after Episode 6 (May 19) saying I needed to write a love letter to the GL props crew. This is essentially what I had in mind.

        Since then, I’ve kept a list on my computer desktop of things that might be worth including, and haphazardly collected screenshots. That part didn’t take much time, since I was already looping the eps anyway to help with subs.

        Once they put the itty-bitty Jin on the ice cream bucket, I decided I really had to go through with this.

        Once I figured out the puzzle thing, I decided I really had to go through with this right now.

        Four hours downloading the high-res version of Episode 11 so I could make sure I was really seeing what I thought I was seeing on that puzzle box…

        Several hours getting all the screenshots from my list that I was still missing, highlighting the details, and composing the post…

        And at least an hour trying to Google up someone who sells that darn mermaid puzzle so Pil Joo fans could buy it and pet it sadly when he doesn’t get the girl. Alas, no luck on that front. Sorry, Pil Joo fans.

        So in total: enough time that I will probably be embarrassed when one day someone who knows what I actually should’ve been spending time on finds this post.

         (0)


        • 15.7.2.1 dramabliss

          @th em

          WOW x WOW!!! You DO really love this drama. Most (all?) of us here do likewise, but you really went the extra mile.

          I wonder if the Hong Sisters and the BL production crew, much less the cast, get to read our blogs here and see the lengths to which fangirling can take us.

          You deserve an award for what you did. MBC, take note!

           (0)


    • 15.8 hookedonmonix

      You’re pretty much made of awesome for noticing all that- and walking us through it so eloquently.

       (0)


    • 15.9 Viola

      Dear Lord!! Your “Did you Notice” Is AMAZING!! Thank you for the hard work!! :)

       (0)


    • 15.10 anais

      Loves it!! Fantastico!!

       (0)


    • 15.11 b is for bea

      Great work, th em. That was amazing :D

       (0)


    • 15.12 VanillaSalt

      That was soo awesome! I know this probably took you forever, but will you be making one for episode 13-16?

       (0)


      • 15.12.1 th em

        Erm… maybe? Let’s see if I’m awake enough to notice anything else over the next week.

         (0)


    • 15.13 tari

      Awesome. Thank you for that :)

       (0)


    • 15.14 yoonah

      That was awesome!

       (0)


    • 15.15 hehe

      wow, thanks for that! Also, The Little Mermaid was also mention in Fantasy Couple, I guess the Hong sisters must have the liking for the fairy tale

       (0)


    • 15.16 mandelbrotr

      That’s great! I noticed the Klimt in the hospital room more because I was stunned at the lavishness of room. But I missed it in the other locations. This make me think that the non-meta or metaphor in the show is the exception.

       (0)


  16. 16 Pepper

    Thanks!! Been waiting all day. It’s almost over. It’s actually sad I want more Pil Joong. Another great drama Hong sisters. Really, two heads are better than one. Must fun at your house , I wonder if you Hong sisters spend your days swapping ideas back and forth for funny lines and metaphors.
    Still waiting for subs .. I’ll get my Kleenex ready for later.

     (0)


  17. 17 jessybee

    its finally here!!! gaaaaa!!!crazy episode! can’t wait for tomorrow’s press conference showdown!

    thanks jb for the fast recaps!

     (0)


  18. 18 afuro

    HOLY MOLY this drama is killing me. haven’t been this excited for a drama since secret garden. and even for secret garden i didn’t constantly check for recaps/eps to be subbed =\

     (0)


  19. 19 Hadeel

    I can’t stand this anymore….life is so cruel…MBC…and the Hong Sisters…. if it ends up without happy ending….This will be my last comment ever…..non the less the BEST KDRAMA ever…huhuhu…sniffffffff

     (0)


    • 19.1 emy

      ditto

       (0)


    • 19.2 twinkle

      indeed.

       (0)


  20. 20 vagicle

    Huzzah! Another brilliant recap! Been waiting all morning for it. Now I can keep coming back to it through the work day to keep me sane until I can go home and watch the episode.

     (0)


  21. 21 love 49

    okaay…done reading…now off to watch city hunter…”lee min hot” :)

     (0)


  22. 22 FunnyBunny

    AHHH Another good recap!
    And just when I was getting to like Se-ri (Sorry her cuteness with Pil-joo has scored her some points) she pulls crap like this… And now I’m suppressing the desire to slap her around and then kick her down a few flights of stairs, Mina may as well join in too.
    Drama, why must you trample on my dear Ae-jung? Especially when she’s down on the ground to be gin with? Why drama WHY???
    Oh yeah, it’s for plot development and a greater feeling of achievement when she succeeds-stupid film class, teaching me things…

     (0)


    • 22.1 asianromance

      I’m sad for Seri too – just when I thought the character was beginning to see the light! I’m almost sure that Seri will reform into a recognizable human being by the end of the series. I think I’d like to see a reformed Seri with Piljoo in the end- she really needs a steady moral compass in her life and their scenes are cute together.

       (0)


      • 22.1.1 FunnyBunny

        I agree with the steady moral compass thing. She’s usually too busy falling in love her own reflection to care about petty things like right and wrong.
        Another good reason Pil-Joo’s good for Se-ri, is he keeps her ego in check. He’s not her fan, so he’s never treated he like the goddess of tv she believes she is-along with her numerous actual fans.
        Together, they’re almost as cute as Jin and Ae-jung, almost.

         (0)


      • 22.1.2 martan267

        Sorry – I don’t know what Seri can do to redeem herself. Her last action in EP 13 indicates that she is still the same selfish, only caring about herself kind of gal. I don’t know what she can do or how she can convince all of us that she really has changed for the better and would deserve to be paired up with Piljoo. Her last action was pretty unforgiveable with what she did to hurt Ae Jung… Sorry Seri.. no Piljoo for you.

         (0)


  23. 23 EvaBoo

    *bawls into Kleenex*

     (0)


  24. 24 Fabmari

    What a tear-jerking episode and tear-jerking recap. Sob.

    Your recap always explain the hidden meanings. Without these explanation, we non-Koreans wont ever understand. Thank you.

     (0)


  25. 25 enjay

    i was crying oh so hard with aejung and her family…i dont want to see dingdong cry hard…poor kid…i totally hate mina…she is worst than seri…and please let jenny know the reason behind the breakup so she would just smack down those two biatches to wake up and get a taste of real physical pain….

    also please…please dont let dokko die….thdepressere’s gonna be massive depression…

     (0)


  26. 26 Lahlita

    @javabeans Random: Do you proof your recaps and articles before you post them, or does Girlfriday or someone else do it for you? I ask because I do freelance copy editing work, and I think I’ve found about three typos in the nearly two years I’ve been reading your blog. That kind of accuracy is just not normal. How the heck do you do it? What is your process?

    Thou may’st answer on the Open Thread since my question doesn’t have anything to do with Best Love.
    http://www.dramabeans.com/2011/06/open-thread-191/comment-page-3/#comment-484248

     (0)


    • 26.1 Ani

      Uh, just three? I think I’ve found a bit more than that (spelling stuff with a ‘she’ missing an ‘s’ or a ‘he’ accidentally becoming a ‘her’ and other missing A’s and An’s). I’m not complaining though since jb and fri have explained in a previous post (which I can’t find right now) about the hard process of recapping. From another comment jb made:

      Writing the recap is the fastest part of the process for me; it’s watching, screencapping, and formatting that is really time-consuming, and I’d have to watch the same number of episodes regardless.

      And with May Madness upon us (okay, it’s June now, but you know what I mean with the millions of dramas the girls are recapping right now), I am thankful that they even bother. I’m just surprised that for a copy editor you’ve only found three, cause I think there might be a bit more than three. But than again, we can’t all be Adrian Monk.

       (0)


      • 26.1.1 Lahlita

        I’m just surprised that for a copy editor you’ve only found three, cause I think there might be a bit more than three.

        Lovely. Way to get personal, Ani. A seemingly innocent and questioning statement that impugns my work and questions my professional ability. You’ve got good aim. Le sigh. I guess I deserve that for using hyperbole. I retract my statement and will rewrite and clarify.

        @javabeans There have definitely been more than three typos in the two years that I’ve been reading this blog. I thought that using a randomly low number would drive home the point that for what you do (the number of words you write, and the speed and frequency with which you post), your grammar and punctuation are impeccable. I was just hoping for some pointers. Have you any? I’m always looking for ways to speed up and improve my craft.

         (0)


        • 26.1.1.1 Ani

          Sorry. Sorry. Infinity times sorry. I really didn’t mean it as an insult. *facepalm* Ugh. Really really sorry. *headdesk* Me and my big mouth… Or should it be fingers since all this was typed? Either way, I really wasn’t trying to insult anyone.

           (0)


    • 26.2 dramabliss

      Agree with Ani below that there have been more than three typos in DB recaps but these do not bother me, considering the speed in which JB and GF do these, on top of the other things they need to do as well. What’s a few typos when the writing itself is so good, substance-wise and style wise? I adore the wit, too.

      What bothers me more are the typos in the English subtitles (which I watch because I cannot understand Korean). There have been a lot of “you’re” instead of “your”, for instance. Not to mention some grammatical lapses.

      I want to offer my services to copy edit the subs but just don’t have the time.

       (0)


      • 26.2.1 dramabliss

        Sorry, should be “agree with Ani above”.

         (0)


      • 26.2.2 Ani

        I totally agree about the “What’s a few typos when the writing itself is so good, substance-wise and style wise” part, as well as the grammatical errors in the subtitles recently. EEK!

         (0)


  27. 27 Joon

    I officially hate Mina right now! It’s incredulous how she can think that she will be happy by sacrificing the happiness of her friend.

    But I agree with the hunch that she might spill the beans in the end after all. Since her character has absolutely no purpose in the present life of the main characters except to be the catalyst that started the downward spiral of Ae-Jung’s career.

    The Hong Sisters are really fantastic with how smart and well-written their dramas are. I was blown away by the multiple metaphors that kept coming one after another. ^^

     (0)


  28. 28 samgetang

    Thanks for an amazing recap as always…but this one is a notch higher in awesomeness.

    You are so right, Javabeans! This drama is “so cerebrally sweet” and its taking us to high heavens and back!

    Cha Seung Won is so made for this show. And Gong Hyo Jin is the perfect pragmatic foil to his metaphor-lovin’ persona.

    It might also be the reason that some people cant get it cos its kinda too cerebral for their taste.

    While Lie To Me is just exploding in chemistry between the two leads despite its weak and spineless writing.

    I guess to each his own. Im just glad somebody in the blogosphere is as crazy for smokin’ metaphors and cerebral lovin’ as me. I thank thee, drama gods.

     (0)


    • 28.1 dramabliss

      My thoughts, exactly.

       (0)


    • 28.2 anais

      I do wish that Gong Hyo Jin showed a wee little bit more passion toward Cha Seung Won’s Dokko Jin. Woman, I get that your feelings run deep but would it kill ya to let them to the surface a little bit more often? So goddamn wooden, or at least more so than I would like her to be. Something that shows me that she goes weak in the knees, that she hasn’t evaluated every damn thing for their future value twenty years out ten times over. I usually LURVE Gong Hyo Jin, so I’m really, really frustrated with her characterization. I get it that she’s pragmatic to her core, but really she’s supposed to be in love. Gob smacking love. And, even if she were not, it’s Cha Seung Won/Dokko Jin doing all but bleeding tears of love for her. Even the hardest piece of granite would shake and crack a bit for him.

      I know, I know. Most of you probably are very, very happy with the portrayal. I know I’m into being more emotionally transparent.

       (0)


      • 28.2.1 anais

        And by the above, I’m saying her shedding of tears on that bench just weren’t enough for me. I wanted her to hold him a little more tightly. To press into him or yield to him holding her a bit more. To go weak in the knees for at least a split second when he surprise kissed her, before she regained composure and common sense. Something!

         (0)


        • 28.2.1.1 samgetang

          anais…i get yah! yes, she could be a wee bit more emotional at this point ;-) wouldn’t hurt. but i guess, it might also be cultural. imagine if it was YEH playin’ that role at this point in the drama? whoa! she’d be explosive. but she might be challenged at the start of the show when she had to endure everything and yet appear okay with it just as GHJ played it. i know, cant have yr cake and eat it, too. anyway, I’ve seen her kick ass in the Biscuit drama with Gong Yoo so she can dish out spirit if she really wanted to :-) must be CSW’s fault — he is much too attractive, haha! that she had to force herself from being too touchy-feely with him? :-) or maybe the thought that he’s married in real life makes her more err formal? i dont know ;-)

           (0)


          • 28.2.1.1.1 yoonah

            Lee Seon-kyun is married too, and she didn’t have a problem being all adorably googly-eyed “Chep! Chep!” at him in Pasta.

            I think Gong Hyo-jin is just playing it how the character is written. Ae-jung is nothing but pragmatic.

            But I feel ya, anais. I really wish by this time Ae-jung would be more proactive/expressive with Jin. It’s episode 13, fer crying out loud!

            And it’s probably not gonna happen on account of his bum heart, but gawd do I want a bed scene. If there was ever a Hong sisters drama to write that in, it’s this one. The two have danced around the topic for ages, and they’re not kids anymore. Come on, just a little skinship, then you can cut to the morning after with some awkward hilarity mixed in.

            Too bad the Hongs have always been disappointingly G-rated.

            At least make them kiss more. Ok, fine! One more memorable kiss! And no, a chaste peck in front of a Nikon (however sweet) does not count.

             (0)


          • 28.2.1.1.2 Sethe

            It’s such a shame that they’re wasting Cha Seung-won’s kissing…uh… prowess.

            I’d kill for a bed scene — or even some serious making out. Although I do agree that Ae-jung’s not showing much passion or physical attraction. Why is she playing the chaste maiden?

             (0)


          • 28.2.1.1.3 anais

            OK – she brought it with episode 14. I’m satisfied now. Dokko Jin, don’t die!

             (0)


  29. 29 chloe

    Great recap. Looking forward to tomorrow to read the recap for ep. 14. Can’t wait for the weekend to watch episodes 13 and 14.

    Based on this read, REALLY disliking Mina and Se-ri. My frustration with these characters are beyond words. How can anyone be so selfish? My heart cries for Jin and Ae-Jung. Pil-Joo touches my heart.

     (0)


  30. 30 kcj

    Damn, this is just an amazing episode and drama. I love the extra layer of analysis on showbiz in general. Seriously, I was right along with Piljoo screaming at my laptop at all the stupid people who were trying to cover their asses or just making things worse.

    I wonder if the media/news in Korea is really that ruthless? I mean I don’t have much faith in the media in any country but I feel like Korea with its scary netizen culture makes everything so much worse and dangerous.

    O_O

     (0)


    • 30.1 anais

      Yes. Most recent example? A certain female actress who was among the cast of a certain drama named after the Greek goddess of war? We had a field day with that scandal on this very forum, didn’t we?

      Actresses have committed suicide over scandals. Yeah. I’d say it was harsh.

       (0)


  31. 31 Sherlyn

    seriously….
    i was taken aback from the “did u notice” post…
    the Hong sisters sure are meticulous in their works…
    not many ppl are capable to that extent!
    kudos to the Hong sisters!!!

    and thanks javabeans once again for the awesome recap…!

     (0)


  32. 32 ocs7

    LOVE UUUU….always love reading your re-caps…….cant wait for teh next one already !!! Wohoooo

     (0)


  33. 33 beth2005

    I don’t understand why AJ needs to protect Jin? Can anyone tell me the logics?

     (0)


    • 33.1 celest1al

      her way of protecting him is to make it seem like he’s not involved with her. she doesn’t want him to take the fall with her due to her unpopularity.

       (0)


    • 33.2 dramabliss

      This issue has been explicitly referred to in several episodes. The problem with them being an item is AJ pulling Jin “down to her level” rather than him pulling her up to his. It’s the image thing.

       (0)


  34. 34 Jomo

    “How can everybody be so selfish? Why are you all standing in the background while she gets hurt alone? Do none of you have anywhere else to hide?”

    YES! PJ, our love for you as a different sort of second lead is not unfounded. You are not just hear to piss off First Lead, Male.

    I aslo loved how PJ went out to help AJ with her ridiculously selfish friends. Poor AJ has been living knee deep in sh*t for 10 years, and Mina is asking her now to stick her head in it, too?

    I did not like how I felt watching this.

    I did like how natural and comfortable DJ and AJ are with each other. I can see them in 10 years kindly insulting each other, making out in the rice paddy’s, worrying about their two kids they left with Uncle Ding Dong.

    But let me ask this, what do you think? After all those years of game shows and bad press and appearances on roller coasters, would AJ actually miss the celebrity life? Whether DJ dies or not, he can take her out of it. Whether it is by marrying her and living, or dying and leaving her a mountain of cash. AJ can tell them all that she is happily retiring to do charity work. Who needs ‘em?

     (0)


    • 34.1 moomooye

      Haha, that would suck all of the dramatic tension out of the show!! I think AJ is just trying to be honest with herself and live a life that she can be proud of and protect the people she love at the same time.

      To be honest, I never did quite understand why AJ had to stay in the entertainment world to begin with. Surely, there could have been something else she could do.

       (0)


      • 34.1.1 Sethe

        I agree. There must have been something else, in all the world of possibilities, that she could do.

        Maybe once the fame bug bites you, you’re infected forever? (Was that a strange metaphor? Maybe I should say, once you get a taste of fame, nothing else will ever fill your stomach? Anyway, you get my point :) )

         (0)


        • 34.1.1.1 yoonah

          I don’t think so.

          Like she said, she’s just doing it to survive, i.e. for the money. She certainly hasn’t experienced any upside to her “fame” in the last decade. And the drama hasn’t shown us that she derives artistic satisfaction from the “craft” of acting/singing/hosting simply because she hasn’t done any of those in years. It’s not like she loved music so much she’s got a drawer-ful of songs she’d written. It’s not like she’s been itching for a comeback. All she’s been doing is going on variety shows like a salaryman.

          We haven’t really seen Ae-jung show any real world skills that would make her qualified for a particular job. I don’t mean that unkindly.

          If the money she’d earned in her heyday had been invested well, maybe things would’ve been different.
          She could’ve gone to college (like most idols, she probably got recruited out of high school). Or not. I mean, just having the space to figure out what she wanted to do with her life, like most people growing up.

          Jenny, for instance, probably knew/learned she was good at cooking, so she poured her KBSN earnings into a restaurant.

          But not only did Ae-jung’s father/brother mismanage their businesses, they didn’t even look for jobs themselves to at least offset the finances. They merely continued relying on her as the family’s sole source of income. So she had no choice but to stay put. And the longer she stayed in showbiz, the older she got, the harder it would be for her to just leave and start over (with 3 dependents). Sadly, showbiz is all she knows. It’s a vicious cycle.

          I think the Hongs are showing us the unglamorous side of showbiz, that there are probably many D-listers like her who hang on, not because they’re famewhores, but because it’s a paycheck.

           (0)


      • 34.1.2 samgetang

        I think the entertainment world is a better place with the likes of Ae Jung. Although she can definitely do other work in other fields (which may even be better for her), if she is a real person, I think she has given integrity to the business. In a philosophical sort of way, she is the antidote to all the shallowness that one would usually find in this line of work. And people like Jin need people like her to balance things off and provide stabilty but remain non-judgmental of their lot in life.

        If she happens to leave this world, she might be as adaptable as how she’s been all this time…but it will be the loss of the show business world more than hers.

         (0)


        • 34.1.2.1 izzie

          And this show reminds me of how many Ae Jungs are out there in the real world, who are quite misjudged because of unbelievably skewed rumors. Hurting stories proliferate, esp. when they are about celebrities, because there are lots of regular Joes and Janes who feel better about themselves when they hear bad things about famous people. It’s like leveling the playing field for them. It’s just sad that even with the number of AeJung types in the entertainment world, more Se-Ri types are out there. Some even pay for bad publicity just to be noticed.

          Being around people who work behind the cameras make me more accessible to “true celebrity stories.” It’s just amazing how much the insiders’ stories differ from what come out for people to hear. Although, sometimes, I also doubt the integrity of so-called true celebrity stories for although people don’t mean to edit, the stories change depending on the listener and the relayer’s interpretation.

          Also, I’m pondering about how the twists and turns in the celebrity rumors that were presented in this show are applicable to non-Korean cultures, since one culture’s taboo is perfectly normal to another. (Like… would “sponsorship” be an issue – or applicable at all – in the States?) And how non-Koreans relate to the perils of the characters entangled in the rumors even though these issues do not matter at all in their culture?

           (0)


          • 34.1.2.1.1 Jomo

            Good question!
            Marie Antoinette had horrible press when she arrived in France. Her French was bad so she didn’t do a good job talking to the people. There were scandalous pamphets circulating that accused her of lots of bad sexual things.

            Yes, she spent lots of cash on useless things, but she was a rich girl who became Queen, not a demon.

            She was maligned centuries ago, and look how history remembers her.

            Same with Richard III. Shakespeare’s play turned into fact.

             (0)


        • 34.1.2.2 samgetang

          hi izzie and jomo, yes, being in the limelight do magnify people’s faults and flaws to epic proportions. and people love to hear stories (gossip) about other people because small minds dwell on those things, as one saying goes.

          basing on this kdrama, it looks like there are many common traits/practices within the showbiz world across different races/nationalities. as to the degree of acceptance/rejection of the viewing public, there might be differences depending on the culture/norms. like it may be taboo in korea but not an issue in other asian or even western countries.

           (0)


          • 34.1.2.2.1 izzie

            hey sam! :)

            But it’s amazing how the story still tugs everybody’s heartstrings pretty much the same way even though we come from different backgrounds.

            Maybe it’s from having been exposed to many kdramas before that we get the context of the issues. And thus affects us. Which is why I want to find a kdrama newbie and make her watch Best Love and see how she reacts to it.

             (0)


          • 34.1.2.2.2 samgetang

            hi izzie dear! still up ;-)

            that’s a great idea! where can we find that newbie? maybe there is already someone like that lurking here? (hey,newbie, please speak up…)

            the Hong sisters are no doubt bold and brave to capture and show the travails of their own kdrama ent world without any apologies nor judgement…even using humor in a way that is not condescending…i wonder what their industry peers say about this show, honestly…

             (0)


    • 34.2 Linda165 in Fangirl Mode

      I don’t think AJ will miss the celebrity life and its good and bad things. She just use it as a way of making a living for her and her family. It’s the only thing she knows how to do.

       (0)


      • 34.2.1 Jomo

        When is Linda165 not in fangirl mode?

         (0)


  35. 35 tisyamey

    Whoa! So early! I’m so deliciously surprised! Now, I’m off to read! THANK YOU SOOO MUCH!

     (0)


  36. 36 Sethe

    Is there another actor in the world with eyes as expressive as Cha Seung-won’s?

    Seriously, is there? I’ve been drawing a blank.

    Maybe it’s just that he was given a character who’s so multidimensional, going through such a range of emotions in each episode, that he has the fortunate and unusual opportunity to show so much expression. Or maybe his ability to emote made the character that way?

     (0)


    • 36.1 Jomo

      It is so rarely said on this site, but I would like to add to your rather descriptive post:

      <3 I LOVE CSW with all my heart!! <3

       (0)


      • 36.1.1 Sethe

        Ha ha. I could write post after post doing nothing but saying how much I LOVE CSW, but I try to limit myself to just a few with each episode.

        Oh, and did I mention I love CSW, and think he’s the greatest actor and the hottest/sexiest man in the world?

         (0)


    • 36.2 dramabliss

      None. I draw a blank, as well.

      CSW, you’re the best! xxx

       (0)


    • 36.3 Daniela

      Agree.He uses his eyes very well.

       (0)


    • 36.4 samgetang

      Sethe, ditto!

      I did not realize Cha Seung Won can top his Jin Gook in City Hall but he did with his Dokko Jin here in Best Love in a most awesome, captivating way.

      It’s quirky to love both characters played by just one actor…but I do! ;-)

      I hope he does what he does best and more for the next 20, 30, 40 years and beyond…

       (0)


    • 36.5 swui

      Actually Sethe,

      I’ve just found one! Kim Nam Gil!
      I’ve just marathoned QSD in 1 week.
      Reasons for watching :
      1. LYW in 49 days..loved her
      2. Heard great things about this sageuk
      3. Dokko Jin reference to KNG in the earliest episode
      4. While waiting for BL to air…

      Anyway, I’ve found two gems now…CSW and KNG…

      And if I would be real good, I wonder if the dramagods would put them two in a drama…Would die of happiness…now tentatively thinking of watching BadGuy…would it be a good idea???

       (0)


      • 36.5.1 Sethe

        Uh, isn’t Queen Seon Duk a really long drama? I don’t usually have the stamina or attention span to make it past about 20 episodes.

        Thanks for the recommendation, though. :) I’ll check out Kim Nam Gil as soon as my withdrawal symptoms from Best Love start next week. (Or maybe this weekend, while I wait in no doubt agonized suspense for the last episodes of BL.)

         (0)


        • 36.5.1.1 swui

          Uh yes, it’s a 62 epi drama….mind you , I also had to like remind myself countless times of that fact, the last long drama I saw being Jewel of the Palace…

          But I was hooked by the story (I actually do like political craps…lol) and I love the actors and actresses (Go HyunJong was fab)…actually KNG only appeared after epi21…but his character, Bidam was very complicated and I’m impressed with how KNG brought him alive. His face was very very expressive…

          I have a thing for expressive eyes…so CSW and KNG are now two of my fav korean actors ever…

           (0)


          • 36.5.1.1.1 laya

            Hehe, it aired here in the Philippines on weeknights, dubbed in Filipino, and because we have shorter timeslots, one episode aired over two days. Made Mishil and Bidam household words, too.

             (0)


        • 36.5.1.2 Kiara

          Well, KNG doesnt show up until eps 2o-ish (23 I think) but you should watch from the beginning because the first 10 eps are some of the best imo.

           (0)


      • 36.5.2 laya

        Ditto this. KNG was amazing as Bidam in QSD. I’m waiting for him to come back from the army and hoping he stars in another drama.

        *points at DB’s Bad Guy recaps*

         (0)


        • 36.5.2.1 swui

          Oh Laya,
          Did you watch Badguy then…I actually did read the santa claus recaps for Badguy and from all accounts I KNOW it is a trainwreck…oh well, I’d just FF to his parts then LOL…

          Me too, I can’t wait for him to be back from the army…then again, I;m waiting for Lee JunKi too…Gosh …so many of them in the army..

           (0)


          • 36.5.2.1.1 laya

            I watched parts of it, then read the recap of the final episode and gave up. >__< I wish they'd give him dramas where his character has a happy ending, because I'm still traumatized by the ending of QSD. Still doesn't take away the fact that he's a very good actor though.

             (0)


          • 36.5.2.1.2 recent k-addict

            ohmygashh, i’d like to join the rave on Kim Nam Gil, ive only seen him in movies. portrait of beauty, no regret and several questions that make us happy. 3 totally different characters and he rocked in all of it. He was such a jerk in SQTMUH and i really thought he was gay for real in no regrets.

            hot damn, the guy could really act and wow he really is good in choosing his roles. very versatile actor.

            BTW, i was actually thinking of watching Bad Guy coz of the rave reviews here in DB….everybody seemed to like it except for the ending?

             (0)


        • 36.5.2.2 recent k-addict

          hi laya,

          fellow pinay here. sorry but haven’t been watching local TV lately (last time was Kimerald pa, lol) … is this shown in GMA or ABS-CBN and is the drama still ongoing? i dont rly like watching kdramas dubbed in Tagalog but for KNG I just might. heehee

           (0)


          • 36.5.2.2.1 laya

            Oh! Hi :D Sayang, you missed QSD. Maybe because it aired around the same time as Kimerald…? QSD aired on GMA-7, the timeslot that is now Secret Garden’s. I think it replaced Shining Inheritance, and was replaced in turn by East of Eden after it ended, but people still remember Bidam with fondness– and that heartbreaking ending, aish, still makes me cry when I remember it. Try asking your friendly neighborhood pirate about the drama, chances are they have it. :)

             (0)


    • 36.6 Linda165

      Yes, there are: Go Soo, Yoon Sang Hyun, Lee Seo Jin.

       (0)


      • 36.6.1 Sethe

        Wow, so many? I’ll have to look up the other two, but I can see where you’re coming from with Go Soo — I just haven’t happened to encounter any dramas of his that really appealed to me.

         (0)


        • 36.6.1.1 Jomo

          I LOVE GO SOO with all my heart, too.

          So you didn’t like Will it Snow for Christmas. or didn’t see WISFC?
          He was freaking beautiful in that. He was perfect.
          He reminds me of the pretty young Al Pacino.

           (0)


        • 36.6.1.2 Linda165 Still in Fangirl Mode but Dialed Down a Notch

          I adored him in WISFC and my heart broke watching him in Green Rose. I cried my eyes out. Injustice gets me every single time.

           (0)


          • 36.6.1.2.1 Sethe

            Huh. I tried watching both of those dramas, and they never really engaged me. With Green Rose, I think I just kept falling asleep, so I never really knew what was going on. And with WISFC, I really liked it at first, but Go Soo’s relationship with that chick (whoever she was) really started to bug the hell out of me… I just couldn’t see what was likable about her, so I dropped the drama.

            Maybe I’ll give them another try, though :) After all, the one thing I really took away from my aborted attempts to watch was that Go Soo had really great eyes.

             (0)


          • 36.6.1.2.2 Jomo

            (I have never stepped back from Fangirl. I don’t even think I could try….)

            I pretty much chucked Green Rose out after three episodes. I could see where it was headed, and I was NOT in the mood to scream at my PC for 12 hours.
            Don’t you hate that feeling when the character is suffering when they don’t have to? AAAAAAAARRRRRRGH!

             (0)


    • 36.7 izzie

      Kim Soo Hyun.
      You put that kid in any character and the character comes alive. Great acting he does. It all starts with his eyes.

       (0)


  37. 37 YerVang

    I haven’t watched this episode yet and even though i’m just reading it, tears are coming down already. I’m such a cry baby ;(

     (0)


    • 37.1 Sethe

      I NEVER cry during dramas or movies or anything like that, but even I was tearing up while watching this episode.

      I suspect more tears may be in store for me before the HAPPY ending. (If Dokko Jin dies, I don’t think I’ll cry, I think I’ll be enraged.)

      Anyway, this just may be the best drama ever! Definitely one I’ll watch again. (Unless DJ dies.)

       (0)


      • 37.1.1 samgetang

        hahahaha!

        enraged might be putting it mildly ;-)

        we are so into this drama that if anyone dies at all, even Ding Dong, we might take it very very personally…

        (well…except Seri or Mina? :-)

         (0)


  38. 38 Einna

    *reads* yah, what’s this blurring my eyes? *weeps* my heart, it’s breaking into a million slivers!

     (0)


  39. 39 crazedlu

    oh. my. fuh-reakin. GOODNESS! now i’m starting to fall for you, best love. excited! the hong sisters threw me off with miho and woong-ah’s bead exchange towards the end of “my gf is a gumiho,” so i’m sure they’re gonna throw me off here too. i don’t know what to expect with the rest of this story really. the sisters are getting better with this writing thing, it’s awesome. ^^

    can’t wait for the end!!

     (0)


  40. 40 myo

    Awesome recap JB! Been waiting all day for this and can’t wait for ep 14 tom. This is such a great ep totally in love w/ DJ & AJ. I’m with the rest of u..really really dislike Mina and hopefully she’ll come to her senses soon. I love the hong sisters and been watching every drama of theirs so they better not make Jin die.

     (0)


  41. 41 Chris

    Holy sh….what is up with this show!!!??????? I freaking love it….

    Please let it without a coma.
    Please let it without a coma!
    Please let it without a coma!!

     (0)


    • 41.1 Jomo

      I don’t think there is enough time for a coma.
      I am thinking breaking scandal, heart surgery, more bad things, AJ to the rescue!, reconciliation, MARRIAGE, baby in the baby carriage!

       (0)


      • 41.1.1 samgetang

        LOL!

        Would there be enough screen time for a movie together? or maybe a drama series with love triangle/quadruple opposite kang seri/pil joo?

         (0)


        • 41.1.1.1 Jomo

          He still has to appear in her MV like he promised.
          That would be one f-ing hot music video, if you’ll excuse my alphabet.

           (0)


      • 41.1.2 madly in love with best love

        baby in the baby carriage – i like the sound of it. so it’s not too much to hope for a bed scene eh? or at least a couple of CSW shower scenes again like in the early episodes , pretty pleaseee!!!!!

         (0)


    • 41.2 MEK

      Please no death!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

       (0)


    • 41.3 izzie

      Will it be right to not want the Scheduler to be involved in all this?

       (0)


      • 41.3.1 Jomo

        That is the one thing I am clinging to as we head into the homestretch. No matter what people say, the reaction to 49 Days was way too negative for this show to pull a death.

        I almost think the production company is seeding the internet with the “clues that DJ will die” so there is that much MORE satisfaction when he lives.

        Plus, what purpose would it serve the story?

        Is there no other way for the couple to show how much they love each other? It’s not like SHE needs his heart, or HE needs hers.

        Put down that death certificate, Hong Sisters. Don’t make any sudden moves and nobody will get hurt.

         (0)


        • 41.3.1.1 samgetang

          LOL!

          That’s such a relief, Jomo! Now, I can die happy :-)

           (0)


  42. 42 Evita Daya

    Thanks javabeans for the great recap

    I find myself so in love with TGL. Potato-Chicken figting.
    Jin can not die, Hong sisters pleaseeeee. And Ae Jung deserves his greatest love in their long life

     (0)


  43. 43 annieee

    ohh how my heart aches for ae-jung!! and our sweet dokko, sacrificing everything he’s lived for to protect her–i’ve anticipated this big gesture somewhere down the line, but the hong sisters built it up really well. my heart hurts for my OTP, but the angst hurts so good! and oh, pil-joo! you perfect man! how i wish there were guys like you in real life!

     (0)


  44. 44 Elllen

    The only thing that keeps me watching is Pil Joo. He’s the man. Good looking, good, stable person.

    I will never choose Jin. Immature. If he really loved AJ, he should have waited to get her to fall in love with him deeply after his heart operation. Maybe he thinks he might die so he takes his last chance of happiness before his operation. That’s greedy & selfish. But then if AJ knew it earlier she would probably love him just as much, if not more, thinking he might die soon. Give the dying man his last wish.

    I was so moved when Pil Joo was crying over AJ.

     (0)


    • 44.1 martan267

      Actually, I disagree with you and agree with what JB wrote in her commentary about this:
      “He thinks back to his conversation with Pil-joo, who had told him the kind thing to do for Ae-jung is to cut her loose, so she’s hurt less and can recover quicker. I’m mightily relieved that it’s Mr. Second Lead who says this, because this has been a favored tactic in a few early Hong sisters dramas — I’ll leave you now to spare you greater hurt later — and while the cliche has been effective in its day, I’m happy to see it fade away.”
      Dokko Jin believes that loving her more and making sure that Ae Jung as wonderful memories with the 2 of them together would make her stronger and help her if he should not survive his heart problem. He’s going against being the “noble idiot” mode..

      “Oriental doctor, I’m too famous. I cannot quietly disappear without hurting her. In case something happens to me, I’ll surely die spectacularly. Even after I die, I will not be easily forgotten. Why? Because
      through the image I leave behind, I’ll continue to hurt her. So what I can do is not to hurt her less but to give her more love for her to overcome it. So I have to seize every minute, every second and be by her side. Even if it’s just for another minute or second, I have to be with her. This might be all the time I have left.”

      He’s not doing it for himself (although it makes him happy to be with Ae Jung) He’s doing it because he believes it will help Ae Jung.

      Who can call that selfish and greedy?

       (0)


  45. 45 Abbie

    OMG! Can’t wait for the next episode! Thanks for the recap, Javabeans!

     (0)


  46. 46 laya

    Thank you for the recap!

     (0)


  47. 47 JD

    Javabeans, you are seriously so insightful. I swear you got a degree in English or some sort of major requiring critical analysis of theory and literature.

     (0)


    • 47.1 alove

      I was just thinking the same. JB, the analysis you provided for this episode seriously blew me away!

       (0)


    • 47.2 MJP

      I don’t know how she does it… I guess this is why she is the writer and we are the readers. :-)

       (0)


    • 47.3 dramabliss

      I think I read somewhere in this site that either JB or GF, or both, are writers.

      If I am teaching a course in humanities/drama/film, Dramabeans will definitely be on my online resources list.

       (0)


  48. 48 antonia

    amazing recap thanks
    i hurt so much while watching the epi, reading your recap make it worse
    hope a happier ending tomorrow.. please!!!!!

     (0)


  49. 49 Ani

    Man, I hate the paparazzi. With so much of it going on right now in the states, what with Arnold’s family getting stalked and Tori Spelling getting into a car accident while driving her kids to school because she was getting chased by the paparazzi. It’s crazy!!! I understand that being celeb means that you have practically zero privacy, but the papps have gotta not go overkill on it. So when the reporters descended on Aejung without caring that she fell on gravel and hurt herself, I really got pissed. There is such a thing as courtesy. ya’ know. Look, we need the media, whether it be on politics or celebrity life, but killing someone in the process *cough*RememberPrincessDianaanyone??*cough* won’t do much good. GEEZUS!

    P.S. Dear Se-ri, you do not deserve Piljoo. That is all.

     (0)


  50. 50 Daniela

    I don’t know why, but when she was talking to Moon I cried a little. I do know why I cried a little more when she was with her family. I remeber that I liked Ae-jung first because she is a fighter, despite her situation, she continues with a smile on her face and she is good-hearted. But everyone has their limits.
    Mina is afraid and I can understand her reasons to keep quiet, but her world won’t end if she speaks. I understand her but I want her to speak NOW.
    Yeah, the metaphores are well done. My favorite of this episode was the “fire extinguisher”.
    When I was younger, my brother used to mocked me saying that I could speak to cows. But the joke was on him because it was so funny hearing him when he was imitating the way I allegedly talked to cows. I remembered that today when I saw Jin talking to the cow. He was funnier than my brother, though. (But my brother was cuter, he was a little kid)

    Thank you for the recap!

     (0)


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