Haeundae Lovers: Episode 12
Best episode by far! I finally went through all the emotions that usually occurs within a Korean drama in one episode. I felt that this episode hit me in all the right places – it was heartwarming and funny, ridiculously over the top and maddening, and then just when I got that hopeful feeling everything will be okay, it comes crashing down all at once. Yes Haeundae 12 – you’re quite the rocky ride.
EPISODE 12 RECAP
Oh. My. God. Someone get me a Tae Sung in my kitchen, stat. An idyllic breakfast scene begins this episode, where Tae Sung is attempting to make the most perfect, fluffy pancakes from scratch. Sora wakes up all nonplussed by his efforts at “cooking,” but she is secretly touched that he’s making her something she wanted so much while on the island.
Tae Sung touches a hot pan and pretends to be burned, but she’s not fooled by his antics anymore. (Poor him.) But something is burning – the syrup! Words cannot express his disappointment, but he does realize that all his efforts are all because he’s completely head over heels for Sora.
Since he is cooking her breakfast, for the first time he’s not ordering room service for the both of them. Their usual maid hurries to report this to Tam Hee, which makes her all excited. Perfect – it’s coinciding with the end of everything – the general shareholder’s meeting! Once again, her chauffeur cracks me up because he’s clearly tuning out Tam Hee’s rants.
But before Tam Hee can burst their bubble, Sora and Tae Sung are having their cute couple moment. Sora eats pancakes by stacking it on her fork and munching on it, instead of daintily cutting it into smaller pieces. Though it’s un-ladylike, Tae Sung can’t help but find it pretty. Now let’s all do a collective, “Awwwww” shall we?
Tam Hee barges in and reminds them that today is the day she becomes a president, and not “interim president” of Haeundae Hotel. In no time at all, Tae Sung and Sora will be ousted, and in a month, Uncle’s Fishery will be demolished. She throws a bunch of envelopes on the counter – they’re mental hospitals that Sora can bring her father to. It’s offensive, but Tae Sung reacts first: “Take this and leave. I will take responsibility for my own father.” And he throws the envelopes back at the chauffeur.
Wooo! Way to score even more brownie points with the family!
With Tam Hee’s declarations souring the mood, Tae Sung reassures Sora that it’s not the end. Even if his DNA does not match Ga Joon’s, they can still convince the stock holders. Sora plans to see President Son, while Tae Sung will visit the other stock holders. He pinches her cheeks to get her to smile – she doesn’t know how long the day will be yet!
A little prematurely, Tam Hee is already decorating her desk with a new glass name plate while her son sits and plays Go Stop on his phone. He hilariously refers to Tae Sung and Sora as his brother and sister-in-law, which shows just how chill he is with the idea of not being the eldest son. She receives a guest – and it’s none other than Min Gu!
Tam Hee wanted to know why he and Sora didn’t marry, but Ga Joon interrupts her by asking for advice on what he should do in the game. Min Gu – professional swindler he is – teaches Ga Joon how to play and subsequently win. But back to business! Tam Hee knows that Min Gu was swindling Sora, and that’s why he didn’t show up at the wedding. She throws him a thick envelope of money – anything can be done if money were involved, right?
Meanwhile, Tae Sung heads off to meet the three shareholders whom he has formed a rapport with, and they sign off on the petitions that they’ll be supporting him and the Go family to run Haeundae Hotel. They encourage him to get President Son’s support so that it’ll be easier to win. As soon as they leave, Joon Hyuk comes to his table and repeats that Tae Sung will lose, and so he shouldn’t bother trying so hard. Gah – Joon Hyuk, stop sounding like a broken record!
Joon Hyuk then notes that the name Tae Sung suits him better than “Nam Hae.” Perhaps there are things like amnesia that are preventing him from remembering the time when he was still “Tae Sung.” After all, he can’t even answer simple questions like where he went to school and who his friends are. While Tae Sung laughs it off and tells Joon Hyuk to chat with Uncle Hello Kitty, the drama expert, sometime, he is disconcerted by the idea that Joon Hyuk seems to know he’s got amnesia. No one outside of the family was supposed to know…
Tae Sung gets a call from Uncle Hello Kitty that it’s Joong Shik’s 60th birthday, and that Sora usually blows out the candles with her father. However, she hasn’t come home or answered her phone because she’s busy with President Son. The uncles seem resigned that Joong Shik won’t have a special birthday, especially for a landmark age of 60, but Tae Sung reassures them that he’ll take care of it all! He’ll pick Joong Shik up from the kindergarten later too. Then, he immediately calls up Joo Hee to help set up a children’s party.
Since they have to clean up, Dong Baek blows out the candles for Joong Shik instead, which causes an outrage. Even Uncle Hello Kitty takes Dong Baek to the other room to spank (?) him – either way, he’s being punished for what he’s done!
Joo Hee is called up to Joon Hyuk’s office. He defines a ‘mistake’ as something unintentional. Anything else would be deliberate. So if she went to both Se Na and Sora’s weddings, why did she intentionally keep her mouth shut about Tae Sung/Nam Hae? Joo Hee’s jaw drops – yep, he’s figured it all out. Since Joo Hee doesn’t know the power play that’s going on, he tells her to keep her mouth shut. She is to not tell either of them that their husbands are the same man.
Of course, Joon Hyuk has a master plan. First he knows that Tam Hee won’t be supported by the Yang family mob for much longer. He’ll be able to take care of Tae Sung easily and send him packing, and he’s going to make sure that the largest shareholders will be losing most, if not all, of their shares soon.
Sora has been busy taking care of President Son, who’s being ignored by his daughter-in-law as she plans for trips to Europe the moment he passes away. After getting some water for him, she finds President Son falling out of his bed, and Tae Sung arrives just in time to help her lift him up. She feeds President Son a straw to drink the water, which he gulps down greedily. The daughter-in-law arrives to swipe the cup away – what does she think she’s doing? If he drinks more, he’ll pee more, and they’ll have to find someone to change his diapers more often!
Sora is disgusted with the lack of conscience and humanity in the daughter-in-law. She doesn’t care if the daughter-in-law won’t sign the petition, because she’s never going to accept it from her. Sora goes off to fetch more water, and Tae Sung points out that withholding water and depriving a person of sleep is a form of torture. Under Korean law, it could count as murder, and she’d be going to jail for it for up to 10 years. I love how his lawyer side tunes in just when you need it.
Of course, President Son silently takes it all in, and one can only hope he regains his ability to speak and sign by the time of the shareholder meeting!
Dong Baek calls Tae Sung for an update on the shareholders, but he bumps into Joo Hee sitting on the stairs, still in shock over what Joon Hyuk ordered her to do. Dong Baek gets all flustered at seeing her, but he recognizes that she’s troubled and attempts to help her. “When I’m really upset, I listen to some upbeat music,” he says, and he puts his headphones around her ears and hands her his iPod.
At that moment, Dong Baek sees Uncle Hello Kitty, cleaning the floor at the top of the stairs. Before he can say anything, Dong Baek quickly runs over and pulls his uncle outside. Looks like he knows of Uncle Hello Kitty’s crush, because he plays down his acts of kindness as merely a friend trying to cheer up another. But Uncle Hello Kitty can’t stop stuttering out of anger. He finally conveys to Dong Baek that he wants to compete for her fair and square, and that it’s now his turn to woo her!
Sora’s kindness towards President Son goes another step further when she lights up scented candles in the room to help his mood and health. Though Tae Sung says that they will need President Son’s signature to do anything effective, Sora doesn’t want to get it from him anymore. Her father was bedridden for a year, just like President Son, and had someone come in looking for his signature, she would never have forgiven this thoughtless person. She doesn’t want to do that to President Son, and she won’t regret not begging for his signature.
Tae Sung then reminds her that it’s her father’s birthday. Sora immediately bolts up – she’s never forgotten her father’s birthday before! She says her goodbyes to President Son, assuring him that she will visit again, and heads out with Tae Sung so they can go to the party he planned. But President Son starts mumbling and reaching out for them. Does he want water? Nope – he wants to sign the petition!
Joon Hyuk has lunch with Se Na, but he looks constipated the entire time. I bet the truth is weighing down quite heavily on his mind, and even Se Na notices. He admits that he’s been deliberating whether or not to invite him to his party at %:30 in his office. (Honestly, that sounds like a shady “party”…) Se Na says that she’ll attend, and if it’s too boring she’ll leave. Joon Hyuk: “If you come, I think you will find it very difficult to leave.”
Seeing that nothing is going to cheer up Mr. Sourpuss, Se Na takes him shopping for a new suit. If eating doesn’t cheer one up, shopping will!
The hotel is in chaos as everyone prepares for the shareholders meeting. The members of the Yang Family Gang all arrive in their dark cars and enter the hotel, while Joon Hyuk contemplates his next move as he hold the information about Tae Sung’s adoptive family in his hand. He calls up his lawyer, who has already prepared a team of men for the Haeundae Hotel takeover. Honestly that sounds like Joon Hyuk is bringing in his own gangsters!
Sora and Tae Sung go pick up Joong Shik from the kindergarten and surprise him and his two little friends with sparklers. Joong Shik still holds a tiny grudge against his daughter for not being there in the morning to help him blow out the candles. Haha. They all file into the bus to head to the party, and the teacher reassures Sora that her father is fitting right in with the kids, despite the age difference. One of the kids chases after a stray ball in the middle of the street, and Tae Sung spots a scooter heading their way. He runs after the kid and protects him before the scooter can hit him, but they both fall, and Tae Sung hits his head hard on the asphalt.
Dun dun dun… head trauma time!?
Tae Sung can’t even get up, which makes Sora even more worried. She hurries to call the ambulance but Tae Sung slowly raises his hand to stop her… “Have you ever heard that payback’s a bitch, Sora?” PUAHAHA – he was just faking it to make her more worried, just like she had done to him on the deserted island. She hits him on the chest for scaring her, and he replies, “I’m going to report to the police that my wife beats me!” She leaves him to get up by himself, but when he sits up, Tae Sung does feel a bit woozy.
Somehow, from the school to the party, Tae Sung stops by a jewelry store where he picks up a custom-made necklace that resembles the Diamond Bridge Sora likes so much. He then makes a reservation at a fancy restaurant in the hotel for two after the shareholders meeting. Wow he is one hell of a romantic husband!
The party begins, and the uncles are dressed in their seafood mascot costumes dancing to “Gangnam Style” with the little kids and Joong Shik – horsey dance included. Tam Hee witnesses the party and thinks the world has gone crazy. (Crazy for… Psy!?) She demands the music be turned off and confronts Sora and Tae Sung, but then a couple of kids smear ice cream on her dress. (I bet done innocently of course!) She yells at them, and one kid goes, “It’s a witch!” And they start throwing candy at her. Awesome. Min Shik tries to stop the kids, but they smear ice cream on his face too. He wipes it off… and licks it… and thinks, “YUM!” What a useless henchman.
Joong Shik loudly tells Tam Hee, or “Bok Ja” as he likes to call her, to bring her son to see Tae Pyong Yang since the man is such a good singer. He starts dancing like him, which is sort of like in the style of a wannabe-Elvis, and that frustrates her to no end. As spiteful as she is, she’s also helpless against an old man, and can only run away. Sora thanks Tae Sung for thinking of throwing her father such a party, as she never would have thought of it. Her father used to throw her parties when she was younger too. Tae Sung asks for her birthday (September 24), but then winces at the pain in his head. Sora wants to go to the hospital after the shareholders meeting, but he doesn’t want to – their dinner is more important!!
But that pain in his head is becoming more bothersome than he’d like.
Sora takes her father to the roof to reassure him that she’s done all she could to try and get back the hotel. Now they can only wait and see what will unfold at the meeting. It would be great though if her father could stand before the shareholders to help convince them. Joong Shik: “Sora, I’m proud of you. Now let’s get back to the party, the kids have already left!” Just when you think daddy is normal, he goes back to his childlike phase…
The shareholders meeting begins, and Tam Hee thanks the shareholders for allowing her to act as interim president until her son returned during a “secret shareholders meeting.” Now she would like it if they could “cut off that annoying little tag” of “interim” and just make her a full on president. Tam Hee – once low-class, always low-class when it comes to addressing large business meetings. Most seem to agree (because they were Yang Family men), except for Tae Sung’s supporters. President Jo’s wife, who’s also a shareholder, interrupts the meeting and says that she never liked Yang Man Ho’s style when it came to running the place, causing an uproar. She even points out that what meeting should be held in secret if it’s to involve the shareholders? She doesn’t want the hotel to be run by gangsters, otherwise the reputation will be spread to those who aren’t gangsters, and proposes that Sora and Nam Hae take over in running the hotel.
Her side of the room claps in agreement. Joon Hyuk’s face darkens. Tam Hee points out that the shareholders have made a lot of money, and that should be all they care about. But then Tae Sung speaks up – they have a petition to hand out, signed by several shareholders, who want to see Sora in charge. Joon Hyuk just tosses the petition on the table, since it barely affects his diabolical plan.
Tam Hee laughs – so few shareholders believe this? Only with President Son’s shares can they ever beat her in this. Well then… Tae Sung hands the mike to Sora, and she announces that they do have President Son’s consent. He had asked for the petition, and with his shaking hands, he signed the petition. Even President Son’s son is surprised to see it. Now, they have Joon Hyuk’s attention because this goes against what he had hoped for. With 48% of the shares, Tae Sung wants the management team to consider their petition.
Tam Hee comes running down to their table – which is out of order for a meeting, and Min Shik hilariously tells her so – disbelieving that the signature is really Son’s. Everyone thinks that it’s a scam, especially since President Son suffered a stroke and can’t write. Tam Hee points out that the shareholders are just believing Tae Sung because they think he’s the son, but DNA would prove otherwise. She calls for a presentation to be put onscreen, and the DNA results are put up onscreen. Of course, they show Ga Joon’s and Tae Sung’s DNA not matching. Tae Sung claims that DNA testing without his consent is not considered lawful, but Tam Hee doesn’t care. (It’ll never match!)
Joon Hyuk – PLEASE do something will you!
The uncles struggle to hear what’s going on in the meeting, but only Uncle Hello Kitty managed to get inside the meeting room by pretending to be one of the servers. It’s okay uncles – don’t listen, it can’t be good… But Dong Baek sneaks inside as if he belongs, and he hears Tam Hee announce that Tae Sung is not the real son. Not like Tae Sung really cares – he just whispers, “See? I’m not the son! What would have happened if we divorced earlier!?” HAHA – I love that there’s always a silver lining for this couple.
But then Tam Hee goes and says, “Do you actually think Tae Sung and Sora are a married couple? That’s a scam too! It’s a fake marriage!”
And then – a video of Min Gu comes onscreen, with him testifying that he was the original husband, but because he couldn’t make it to the wedding, Sora took Tae Sung instead as her husband. Wow this is getting really messed up. Min Gu even adds that Tae Sung was just pulled out of the ocean and had amnesia, so he doesn’t remember a thing. That just confirms to Joon Hyuk that Tae Sung DOES have amnesia, and it also paints the Go family in a bad light because it makes them look like they used Tae Sung for their own purpose. Now the shareholders are feeling like they just got played by Tae Sung and Sora.
But now Joon Hyuk pipes up. OH SHIT. He restores order in the meeting first, then stands up: this meeting was supposed to determine if Tae Sung was the real son or not, nothing else. But first he has a few questions… and he directs them first to Tam Hee (to her surprise). He puts up a photo on screen, and it compares Ga Joon with Tae Pyong Yang side by side. Aren’t the similarities overwhelming?! Now – he shows a DNA comparison, and they’re a match! Tam Hee uneasily asks for him to take it down immediately. Did she really think no one would find out!? Joon Hyuk tells her to pipe down – haha – and asks, “Yook Tam Hee, can you explain how Ga Joon and Tae Pyong Yang are testing out to be father and son?”
Tam Hee can only insist that it’s a fake (yeah right) but now Min Shik and the other gang members are pissed. Did Tam Hee just deceive all of them and Yang Man Ho? Uh oh! Their loyalty is first to Yang Man Ho – and so now they swear to destroy her! Well there goes her dream of being the president!
Joon Hyuk yells at everyone to pipe down again, because he has another truth to present. Yang Man Ho’s son does exist and he is in the room. Tam Hee: “Who is he then?! Whose orders are you following to do this?!” (…can’t you figure it out?) She even screams that she cremated him so that no one can get Man Ho’s DNA anymore. Joon Hyuk puts another slide on the screen and asks Min Shik if he remembers it: it’s an image of his blood oath of loyalty to Joong Shik. Everyone had made that pledge over ten years ago, in fact. The next slide shows Man Ho’s oath, and Min Shik verifies that it’s real, because he was there when it was signed.
Joon Hyuk had that blood sample tested, and compared it with the son’s DNA – and it was a match. Who is it? Lee Tae Sung.
Sora and the uncles gasp – it really IS Tae Sung! The DNA evidence is presented and it’s a 99.9% match. There is no denying it. Tam Hee is now the one in despair, and Tae Sung’s supporters are now feeling vindicated. As for Man Ho’s men, they’re all confused and shocked by the revelation. But while this is all good for their plans, Tae Sung actually does not look relieved by it, nor happy at the truth. He had always thought he was not the son, and now the truth that he is is more than he was ready to bear. His head pounds again…
President Son’s son then stands up to make a statement as well, as he attended the meeting as his father’s replacement. As the heir to his father’s company, he doesn’t want the Yang family to be in charge of the hotel anymore, nor does he like Tae Sung very much as a person. He also doesn’t want the hotel to be run by the Go family. Instead – he wants to support a different company – he wants Haeundae Hotel to be the 35th hotel in line of Prestige Hotels around the world.
That third option is met with MORE outrage – what? A hotel not run by a family?! Joon Hyuk smirks – a reaction he was expecting. The son reveals that Joon Hyuk is the son of Prestige Hotel’s president, and that everyone should just agree to the merger and acquisition. This is the least desirable, and everyone just ends up fighting. Tam Hee faints; the uncles and Sora are left lost without words; Joon Hyuk leaves the ruckus and Tae Sung follows him out.
At that moment, Mr. Lee – Tae Sung’s adoptive father – arrives at the lobby of the hotel. HOLY CRAP!
Tae Sung catches up to Joon Hyuk at the elevators and tells him to stop, they need to talk. Joon Hyuk: “I haven’t even revealed the present that I prepared for you.” He lets the elevators close on Tae Sung, leaving him to run up the stairs to Joon Hyuk’s office.
Joo Hee is startled when she sees a guest arrive at Joon Hyuk’s office – it’s Mr. Lee! So this is what Joon Hyuk was planning! When Mr. Lee asks if they’ve met before, Joo Hee can only stare agape, too frightened to say anything.
And then we cut to the uncles, gathered in their truck. Uncle Hello Kitty claims that he knew Tae Sung was the son from the moment he saw him (heh, sure). They ready to head home, and the uncles ask Sora what time it is. She looks at her phone – it’s 5:51. 21 minutes past her dinner date with Tae Sung. She excuses herself, as she has somewhere to be. There’s hope yet for the couple!
Or not… Sora enters the restaurant to find a fancy dinner set for two in the backyard, but no one to be found.
Tae Sung bursts into Joon Hyuk’s office, asking him what his deal is. Joon Hyuk then points out they have a guest, and introduces them. Mr. Lee’s eyes open wide in shock at seeing his son alive and standing.
Tae Sung: Father wait a moment, I have to talk to this man….
Kaedejun: FATHER?! YOU JUST SAID FATHER!?
It slowly hits Tae Sung that he instinctively knew who the man was. He stares in shock – this man’s his father?! Suddenly, the memories come flooding back – his case, his wedding to Se Na, his leaving to Busan, his initial meeting with Sora with the belief that she was the girlfriend of the criminal he was trying to capture, and his accident. He remembers it all…
And THEN – Se Na enters Joon Hyuk’s office – and she gets a VERY GOOD LOOK at both Mr. Lee and Tae Sung.
Tae Sung: Yoon Se Na?
Kaedejun: OHMYGAWD CAN I KILL SOMEONE!?
Joon Hyuk sits there, all chill – feeling very satisfied with himself.
I can’t believe this would have been the cliffhanger for last week! I am slightly glad it wasn’t because I would have really killed someone if there wasn’t immediate gratification to this climax. I love that it’s happening now, because this series is really one of the better paced shows I’ve seen in a while. First the whole revelation about the DNA in the shareholders’ meeting, and now this reunion. If Tae Sung had met Se Na earlier, I feel like he might have instinctively recognized her, just like he did with his father. He wouldn’t have had to wait for his memories to come flooding back.
For some reason, I always thought Joon Hyuk knew that Tae Sung had amnesia. He didn’t have to know that “Nam Hae” was really Tae Sung, or about his past, but could have always assumed he was a “Nam Hae with no memories.” But it doesn’t detract from the series that Joon Hyuk only finds out now about the amnesia. It’s just, he really holds all the cards now and has the power to create misunderstandings between Tae Sung and his adoptive family and Se Na. I was truly afraid that he wouldn’t reveal anything in the shareholders’ meeting because it wasn’t to anyone’s benefit really if they knew – or didn’t know – about Tae Sung’s real father. If everyone thought that Tae Sung and Sora were scammers, that wouldn’t have hurt his plan at all. In fact, I think it would have bolstered it because the shareholders would have no one to trust immediately. He kept a good poker face the entire meeting, so I was really happy when he pointed out that Tae Sung and Man Ho were truly blood-related. I’d like to believe that he did it for Sora, so that she wouldn’t be labeled as a scammer.
As for Tam Hee – as annoyed as I am with her character, I’m really impressed at how low-class and idiotic she is. Who in their right mind announces that she had a secret meeting with only some of the shareholders? Who in their right mind blatantly admits to breaking into Tae Sung’s home to get his razor for a DNA sample? She’s really bold… or really dumb… Either way, her bravado got her nowhere because she ends up losing to both Tae Sung and Joon Hyuk. I kind of feel bad for her son though, who’s done nothing wrong and just ended up in this very dysfunctional family.
Good thing episode 13 aired the following day.