Drama Recaps
Incarnation of Money: Episode 17
by | March 31, 2013 | 64 Comments

It’s time to fight fire with fire as Team Shudal turns up the heat on their enemies. Our characters learn that though motivation, drive, and ambition are all good things themselves, too much of it can be a glaring weakness. And sometimes, dangling a little money in front of their eyes is enough to blind themselves from anything else.

Having a brilliant lawyer at the helm on this revenge ship can be both a blessing and a curse – he’ll lead you in the right direction but he might list off a million directions at once.

EPISODE 17 RECAP

Now behind bars, Angelina is miffed to see that her first visitor is Jae-in, who is here about the bank’s embezzlement. Neither woman is particularly happy to see each other, and Angelina cuts the visits short, storming out in a huff.

Cha-don runs into Jae-in on her way out, not surprised in the least when she barely acknowledges him. He mentions to Chief Yang about the safe in Angelina’s apartment; he’s sure that the incriminating documents are hidden there. Chief Yang is on board to help Jae-in but what about the passcode?

Next thing we know, Team Shudal is at work to crack the code and quickly runs into a dead end. Which is when Cha-don dramatically rises, deep in thought, and quickly calculates the probability in his head.

Then he starts rattling off all the possible combinations as Team Shudal tries to keep up… and they hilariously get locked out. HA. This is going to take all night.

Cha-don’s response? “Doesn’t matter. Keep writing the combinations down.” LOL.

At the office, Se-kwang runs into the budding lovebirds where the news of their upcoming marriage confirms his suspicions that Kang-seok just may be right about Prosecutor Kwon.

The senior prosecutors grab a drink and Prosecutor Kwon laughs in amusement about the so-called “spoils of war,” unconcerned about his own stake in the savings bank. In fact, he’s decided not to let the words of a long-lost heir shake his resolves and advises Se-kwang to do the same.

Their biggest problem at present is to make sure that Angelina doesn’t rat the rest of them out. Prosecutor Kwon has come prepared and hands over a photo. We don’t get to see what it is, but it’s enough to blackmail Angelina with. “Remember,” he reminds Se-kwang, “I’m the only one who’s helping you.”

Digging out past secrets is the same tactic the defense would like to use. Cha-don urges Angelina to tell him her hidden card about Se-kwang – what does she know about his relationship to the late Chairman Lee?

She tells him that she’ll say it herself in court and gets upset when she’s told the prosecution knows that she’ll crack under pressure. “Why did I kill Lawyer Hwang? Because I loved him, because I wanted to protect him.” Angry tears welling up in her eyes, she vows that she won’t ever forgive him.

We get introduced to a new character: a mysterious homeless man who lingers outside Boss Bok’s restaurant. He shuffles away before Assistant Kim can figure out who he is, though he does note a tinge of familiarity. Hm, is this Jae-in’s dad?

Things in court don’t start off on a positive note as an accomplice confirms that he stole a car and phone on Angelina’s orders. Furthermore, Se-kwang presents the indisputable evidence that points to Angelina as the murderer.

Next, it’s Angelina’s turn on the stand and she cautiously states that on the night of the murder, Lawyer Hwang informed her that Kang-seok was alive. Se-kwang objects, calling it irrelevant information, but Cha-don insists that it pertains to the case.

So Angelina continues, saying she had to keep someone’s secret. Cha-don declares to the court about the late Chairman’s murder, and asks if the true killer was someone else. Angelina bites her lip as Se-kwang casts a furtive look in her direction.

She doesn’t answer the question despite Cha-don’s urging, and stares at Se-kwang instead. Cha-don walks up to her, whispering that this is her chance. Seconds tick by slowly as Cha-don repeats himself, his question almost a plea now.

Tears stream down her face before she finally ekes out that it isn’t anyone else. Se-kwang quietly sits in his seat with a satisfied expression. A flashback teaches us that Se-kwang approached her once more before court and showed her what left him thunderstruck: a picture of her with her son. Omo – well I certainly didn’t expect that.

Unaware of this exchange, Cha-don is left shocked as Angelina denies her own claims and the court breaks for a short recess.

Looks like Team Shudal has been up all night trying to crack the safe and practically jump up for joy when they finally do. Cha-don tells them to relay the documents over to Jae-in.

Cha-don turns around to find Se-kwang approach him and scoffs at the prosecutor’s concern for the defendant. He tells Se-kwang to cut to the chase. At his explanation that Angelina was a victim to constant threats, Cha-don asks if the prosecutor is suggesting they push for an accidental death.

He sarcastically comments, “I never dreamed that a just prosecutor would suggest such a clever idea.”

He tells Se-kwang that a sentence of three years is too long and plans to get his client out sooner. Why, by way of insanity plea and mental institution, of course. That plan jogs Se-kwang’s memory of when he proposed the same idea to Mom so many years ago.

Once Se-kwang leaves, Cha-don thinks to himself: “The plan has changed. What you did to my mother, Eun Bi-ryung will feel the same pain. With fierce bitterness.”

They follow the plan when court resumes as Cha-don presents Angelina’s anti-anxiety pills to the court. In a shaky voice, Angelina testifies that she’d been threatened and that night, Lawyer Hwang planned to rape her. Therefore in self-defense, she pushed him off the ledge.

Afterward, Cha-don praises Angelina on her performance and asks if she’s given thought on the insanity plea. When she asks if going to prison guarantees her parole, he returns, “Don’t you trust me?”

She insists that she does. Then Cha-don repeats Se-kwang’s words he once spoke to Mom, now to Angelina: “This is the last present I can give you.” Taking his hand, Angelina promises with a smile that she’ll never forget his graciousness towards her.

So Angelina is sentenced to three years in prison and her haughty attitude earns her a beating from her cellmates. That night, she vows that she’ll take revenge on Se-kwang. Anyone else getting tired of her constant threats?

She bears an impressive black eyes when she sees Cha-don the next morning and then reels when Jae-in enters the room a few seconds later. Jae-in is back with evidence for embezzlement but Angelina isn’t willing to hand over money anytime soon and orders Cha-don to sell her stocks.

But Jae-in yells that doing so will ruin the company. “As a bank president, you don’t even know that?!” Answer: Nope.

Jae-in continues that if Angelina doesn’t want to face more prison time for embezzlement, she’ll hand over her shares this instant. Angelina looks to Cha-don for help, but he tells her that there’s nothing that he can do.

In a shrill voice, Angelina wails over the situation as Cha-don casts her a stern look.

Team Shudal gathers at the church as Cha-don symbolically burns Angelina’s picture in the candlelight. His next targets are Prosecutor Kwon and Se-kwang and Chief Yang pipes his concern that it won’t be easy bringing those men down.

Cha-don shares a story from his time at the orphanage where two boys were once best of friends and were caught by a gang. Told to face each other, they first slapped each other in jest that snowballed into a vicious brawl. He’ll make sure the prosecutors do the same to each other.

Back at headquarters, he identifies the prosecutors as men of ambition. He names an inner circle within the Chungrok Literary Society – a committee who support politicans in Korea.

According to Boss Bok, each of the four members can nominate a candidate and make a unanimous decision on their beneficiary.

This means that they’ll need Boss Bok’s help and Cha-don immediately calls her over. Just as she leaves, the mysterious hobo makes another appearance and beats himself up over leaving his beautiful wife. Dad it is, then.

It’s just as I feared when Boss Bok arrives at her destination. She panics on the sidewalk, unable to identify her surroundings. Oh man, it is pretty heartbreaking to see her roam around the neighborhood, completely helpless.

Meanwhile, Assistant Kim picks up when Cha-don tries to call her phone, and tells him that Boss Bok has been experiencing some memory lapses lately.

Cha-don runs out to find her as Assistant Kim’s voice booms in his head that he found Boss Bok’s Alzheimer’s medication. He tears through the streets, asking anyone if she’s seen her along the way.

He finally hears her voice around the corner as she angrily waves off some pedestrians. Aw, and she can’t even recognize him, taking him as some hoodlum. Cha-don pulls her into a hug: “It’s okay. It’s me, Cha-don.”

Boss Bok pulls him off of her and cries for help. He reassures her that he’ll take her home. As she cries in his arms, Cha-don thinks of how she once asked him to become her son, and how she fed him as her soon-to-be son-in-law.

Which makes it all the more sad when Boss Bok finally comes to and breaks down in tears again.

Boss Bok warns both Assistant Kim and Cha-don to keep her illness from Jae-in, citing that her daughter is too weak and still has a far way to go. So what’s the final count on Secrets We Keep From Jae-in?

She changes the subject and Cha-don answers that it’s nothing. But she takes out her recording device and tells him to talk. Oh man, now that her secret’s out to these guys, I kinda love how she’s still so brash.

Cha-don collects himself and fills her in about the Traitagon and how they ruined his family. She immediately answers, “You have to repay people like them back with a 100% interest.” She’s on board with the plan, though Se-kwang and Prosecutor’s Kwon’s names floor her.

She lets out a deep sigh in the car, disgusted that money can make people fight, hate each other, and even kill. But that won’t deter her from helping Cha-don as much as she can.

Jae-in is ushered in as the new Yellow Sea Savings bank president and Team Shudal watches her give her inaugural speech. Cha-don winces a little when Hyuk gives her a congratulatory bouquet and hug, and then walks out.

Jae-in sets up a mini congratulatory party at home and even her mother praises her on her accomplishment. But Boss Bok’s expression immediately turns sour when Jae-in mentions that it would have been nice if Dad was around to see her on her proudest moment.

They hear the sound of a saxophone playing outside, but they don’t put two and two together as we learn that Dad is an accomplished saxophonist. Then we hear Boss Bok rattle on about how dad was a playboy who wasted all of his money.

Mayor Jung makes a reappearance and offers his help to bring down the two senior prosecutors. So both Prosecutor Kwon and Chief Prosecutor Jo get their nominations.

Elsewhere, Representative Oh confides in Se-kwang that he’s been ousted from his position in the inner committee. He’s heard that the Gentleman of Jingogae has yet to make a nomination but getting an audience with the elusive benefactor is virtually impossible.

Team Shudal waits outside and watches Se-kwang storm out of the restaurant, fuming. They rack their brains trying to figure out how to get a trustworthy person to act as the Gentleman of Jingogae to deliver the invitation.

They nearly run over the mysterious hobo who walks with a limp just outside the Bok estate. Cha-don picks up an old picture the man mistakenly drops and his eyes widen when he looks at it.

Now that we get confirmation that this is Boss Bok’s husband and Jae-in’s father, Dad tells them to keep his reappearance a secret. Seriously, this family and their secrets.

He’s eager to show off his saxophone and excitedly shares that he was once a well-known saxophonist by the name of “the Gentleman of Jingogae.” Well, now we know how Boss Bok got her philanthropist nickname.

Team Shudal gets a glint in their eyes now that the original Gentleman of Jingogae is before them. Dad gets nervous and jumpy at this, wondering if they’re trying to scam him.

As the senior prosecutors play a round of pool, Se-kwang relays that he’s heard rumors that Prosecutor Kwon will resign from his position. Prosecutor Kwon dismisses the rumblings and then takes off early.

Se-kwang is sure that he’s being lied to and is about to go for another round when Cha-don blocks his shot. He orders Cha-don to move, unmoved by the bait, “You’ll regret it if you don’t listen now.”

But he follows Cha-don out anyway and rightly wary about his invitation. He knows that hardly anyone has ever come face-to-face with the Gentleman of Jingogae and casts the invite inside. He wants to hear the reason behind his nomination and Cha-don casually tosses out, “If you’re so curious, go ask him yourself.”

And who should walk into the same restaurant as they’re about to leave but Jae-in and Hyuk. Cha-don marches over to sit right between the couple and orders a slew of food, berating Hyuk for not knowing his fiancee’s tastes.

He laughs when Jae-in addresses him formally and blurts how Jae-in used to like him and how foul-mouthed she is. Omg, I’m so embarrassed for you. Hyuk asks if the two dated before and Cha-don silently nods.

Jae-in’s eyes are as wide as saucers by now and reminded of her mother’s warning not to reveal their relationship to Cha-don, she suggests that she and Hyuk take their business elsewhere.

Se-kwang receives a call from Cha-don that the Gentleman of Jingogae would like to arrange a meeting. Se-kwang suggests a place and time, and Cha-don has no idea that it’s the same location as Boss Bok’s meeting with Prosecutor Kwon. Uh oh, I see smoke up ahead.

Cha-don runs through the names Dad will need to keep straight and identifies the third member in the Chungrok inner committee… who also turns out to be Ji-hoo’s dad.

Ji-hoo and her father are here for a daddy-daughter dinner date (how cute) and run into Se-kwang on their way in. Oy, this is going to get awkward.

Cha-don and the “Gentleman of Jingogae” meet Se-kwang outside the elevators. They exchange pleasantries as Se-kwang takes in his first meeting with the elusive man.

But then Cha-don checks behind them and hears Boss Bok heading towards them. He panics.

 

COMMENTS

We were in for a few surprises in this episode that I’ll admit that I didn’t necessarily predict. I wondered which Traitagon member we’d tackle next and had an inkling that either Prosecutor Kwon or Se-kwang would be left. Therefore I thought that Cha-don would disintegrate their alliance before anything else and take them down one by one. But no – he chooses to let the dogs attack themselves and merely plant the seed of doubt that only needs to grow.

I did find it a nice change of pace to see our resident prosecutor baddies keep their alliance through thick and thin, since we usually see the opposite happen in different dramas. Either they maliciously betray each other multiple times or they work alone. We’re slowly seeing how that has infected their previous sunbae-hoobae relationship and now it’s the pillar, Se-kwang, who is beginning to doubt whether he’s working alone or in a team.

We can safely say that his affection for Angelina is long gone, and I was indeed surprised that she had a young son that we didn’t know about. Though as of now, it doesn’t seem more than convenient plot device to find another one of Angelina’s weaknesses, it was still a surprise. In the strangest of ways, what I’m looking forward to is what her prison time, however short, will look like. Will Cha-don uphold his word that she’ll suffer a hundred, a thousand times more than his mother did? Doesn’t that mean you have to bring back Dr. Bug Eyes? *shiver*

The other character in this drama who always keeps me engaged is Boss Bok. It’s clear that her memory is deteriorating at a rapid pace and now her memory gaps are lasting longer every time they occur. It still aggravates me that Everything Must Be Kept A Secret From Jae-in, because we’ve seen that she’s more resilient than she lets on and drives strength from her adversities. I so want this relationship between Jae-in and Boss Bok to be restored before Boss Bok’s condition worsens.

There’s still so much to learn about Boss Bok and her past and why everything is so hush-hush. What might have happened between her and husband in the past? An ambition and drive for money that they couldn’t see eye-to-eye on? And now that Dad is back in the picture (but not back in her life yet), how will Jae-in’s life change knowing who the real Gentleman of Jingojae is?

 
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64 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. Saner

    Wow, fast! Thanks :)

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  2. DayDreamer

    Thanks for the ever lovely recap, Gummimochi.

    This episode did not hold the same excitement as some of the previous ones did but it wasn’t utterly annoying/boring either. It was just a good episode.

    Two parts deeply affected me. One was when Angelina didn’t spill the beans in court leading to Cha Don’s anger rising while his voice became gruffy as he teared up. I wanted to strangle Angelina for not taking her revenge in that instant. But I guess since she’s a human being after all, she was worried for her kid. I hope this is not the last we see of her because she’s the only link I can see to opening up the past and clearing Gi Soon’s name.

    The other part was when Boss Bok was in amnesia mode. Felt really sorry for her but was happy to see Cha Don take care of her. That was very touching. They’d have made a great, heartwarming adopted mother-son duo if the show went that path. As for Jae In, I wish she was also told about the Alzheimer because I don’t see it doing any good to withhold it. Boss Bok claims it will make her soft if she told but I think it would be the opposite. A person often toughens up to face the world when they’re going to face impending loneliness.

    Meanwhile, Boss Bok’s hubby was clearly a convenient plot point. I groaned but I’m willing to overlook it. Overall, I wonder how next episode will play out. I predict that maybe Boss Bok, upon Cha Don’s silent gestures and cues, will say that her husband is really the Gentleman thus saving Cha Don’s plan.

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    • 2.1 delicatecloud

      There are indeed showing a more human side of Angelina – that of a mother protecting her child at all costs. I hope that she will finally realised that she was wrong and admit to what she has done to Park Gi Soon and to Lee Kang Seok. From a mother to another – how her actions, in that she was an accessory to the crime (although masterminded by Se kwang) she had put Park Gi Soon through hell in those 20 years in mental institutions (the last 5 years were the worst) – she should have deep self reflection and finally admit what she has done was so wrong and inhuman.

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      • 2.1.1 Carole McDonnell

        Let’s see how the redemption arc works. It’s easy to redeem women and mothers. Not sure if that is good. Cause it makes women seem like pawns. Angelina was in on the whole meanness to Mom. So even if she’s redeemed, i would like some sort of punishment for her.

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        • 2.1.1.1 delicatecloud

          my sentiments as well. That’s why i do not feel sorry for her or her current plight at all. She deserves all that she is getting now. What i want in addition is that she repents her wrong doings – she is not there yet. She is blaming everything on Se Kwang and not at all recognizing that it is also her choice to make in following him and being self satisfied and smug when Park Gi Soon was wrongfully convicted and later committed to an institution. She is still in a self pity mode.

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          • 2.1.1.1.1 Saturtledaisy

            I’m just hoping that being concerned over her kid will make her realize her actions affect other people’s lives as well. Not only her own family, but also the victims of the crime and their families.

            Or, you know, simply put: ‘Other people are hurting me now and it sucks. I’ve done this to other people so that must have sucked just as bad for them as well. Maybe I shouldn’t live like this anymore.’

            Maybe /then/ she can start asking for forgiveness.

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    • 2.2 Dominique

      “This episode did not hold the same excitement as some of the previous ones did but it wasn’t utterly annoying/boring either. It was just a good episode.”

      Precisely. You will see that Episode 18 is even more so.

      As the revenge phase of the drama finally unfolds, the drama delivers impressive attention to watertight details, connection to original sins, masterful deliberateness and disintegration of ties between the villains.

      Yet, Incarnation of Money UNDERWHELMS. The sum is far less than its parts.

      In comparison, City Hunter, for all its plot holes, split directions, inartful dialogues, uneven pacing, etc., it delivered far more. Moreover, City Hunter did not even have a leading lady to speak of, where as Incarnation of Money has several.

      For now, I attribute successs and failure of each drama to the leading men. Gang Ji Hwan, who is capable of only two modes (either a Star Trek Vulcan or a lovesick oaf) just cannot hold candles to either Lee Min Ho or Lee Joon Hyuk. There is no charisma bubbling out of Gang Ji Hwan that soars above stupid lines or underdeveloped situations.

      Also, while City Hunter wasted no time to get going by launching its revenges in Episode 2, Incarnation of Money waited 12 long episodes that could have been either discarded in total or condensed to two.

      Finally, in City Hunter, casting of actors playing villains either did not get in the way of the drama or enhanced its dramatic effects by not looking like common thiefs. In Incarnation of Money, villains (except Angelina) were typecast so that their common faces don’t go with their intellect or eviltry. And the worst casting is Prosecutor Ji Se Gwang who holds fatal attraction to Angelina. Beginning in Episode 1, he never looked the part.

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      • 2.2.1 Carole McDonnell

        I think in Incarnation we have a larger picture. Powerful and powerless women, abandoned or unloved women, the power of money, questions of justice versus the power, questions of what makes an alliance, an exploration of appearance –seeming and being. It’s got a lot on its plate. Incarnation doesn’t handle it as well as it could but I definitely laud its attempts.

        You don’t think Se Gwang is gorgeous to Angelina? Not to us, i mean…but to Angelina? I’m addicted to true crime shows and Fatal Attraction often involves some really normal looking people. Also, the baddies looked like such good people before they went bad. That’s where the seeming thing comes in. I recently saw a J-drama (Maou, I think) where all the good people looked good, all the bad people looked bad, and it was very predictable. You could tell a baddie a mile off. Not so in real life, i think.

        Is Ji Hwan so bad? I know he’s not perfect but even Lee Min Ho fails at times.

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        • 2.2.1.1 delicatecloud

          In addition to what you have said, which i fully agree, Incarantion of Money explores the duality in each of us – we are not all bad or all good all the time. That i find fascinating in this drama and the writer explores effectively the corruptive power of money, both when you don’t have any or when you have too much. The corruptive power of power, having too much ambition – how all these elements do corrupt a person and how it damages a person’s character and his own sense of justice. IOM is more of a psychological thriller – who can out-think and outsmart the other. It is not an action genre.

          Whereas City Hunter is a straight forward revenge drama – a group of men were betrayed by another group of men; one survived and planned out his revenge. The baddies were baddies and the good guys were good guys. The twist of Lee Min Ho being the illegitimate son of the President i saw a mile away (or many epsidoes before the end). It is more action orientated.

          Kang Ji Hwan shows emotions in a slow smile, a lift of an eyebrow – all these facial details do potray his thoughts and his emotions. Have you seen him when his mother died? That was fantastic acting. Unfortunately i don’t see that in Lee Min Ho in City Hunter. Like you said, Lee Min Ho fails at times…..

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          • 2.2.1.1.1 Carole McDonnell

            Totally agree. I like it that we have an avenger who maintains his humanity in the face of his hurt and anger. Lee Cha Don is required to do so much. To be in love, to be jealous, to play both sides, to be a doting semi-adopted son to Alzhemer-victim Mom figure. He manages well. Better than i could.

            And the actor who plays Se Gwang…wow! HE is very good as well. Hard to be vindictive, self-righteous, weirdly self-aware, and smugly proud. Did you see the way his face beamed as the Gentleman of Jingojae stroked his ego? Looooooved it. I thought, “what a silly, silly, vain man!”

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      • 2.2.2 DayDreamer

        Hi, Dominique. I’m sorry I cannot fully express my views to what you said because I haven’t watched City Hunter to merit a fully informed opinion. However, there are some other things that I can respond to.

        One, I wholeheartedly agree with you that IoM does underwhelm. Out of all the episodes that have aired, I would say that only 10 episodes ranged from decently good to super exciting while the remaining eight made me scratch my head, wondering why the show was treading on this path. The writing was a clear mess: there was disconnect in the events happening then and the overarching storyline, personality transplant of hero, and unclear motivations for some of the characters. Even now, in episode 17 and 18, the character appearances for sake of plot convenience and setting up stages for next step in revenge reminds me of those terrible episodes. As for leading lady, frankly, I would rather this show had been without Jae In because she has not been useful for the most part.

        Concerning Kang Ji Hwan, I can understand what you mean when you say he’s capable of only two modes. From the dramas I’ve seen (Coffee House, Exhibition of Fireworks), he doesn’t display that much variety in his roles but I kind of feel that it’s because of how similar his characters seem. Whenever he dons his specs in this show or walks in a slow purposeful way, my mind is instantly reminded of his Coffee House image and role. Despite that, I do think he fits this role well and does it justice: I am able to care for his character (unlike, say, Oh Soo from TWTWB).

        Concerning Se Kwang, the actor playing him certainly doesn’t fit the villain mould to me either, because in several scenes he could definitely pass off as a normal guy. His relatively short height, in particular, makes me chuckle at times because it doesn’t make him look menacing. The only thing that makes him remotely menacing is when he does that hard stare and the camera looks up at him. Anyways, despite this actor not being my choice to cast as villain, I would say it’s alright. The character is plenty smart and a smart villain is worth it. His “inappropriate” appearance as a villain also adds a dimension of unintentional humor to the show. So I’m okay with overlooking it these days.

        Overall, I know IoM will not be the best drama out there but for now it is doing well enough for me to care about it and feel a burst of excitement. I had invested a lot of emotion into this drama during its early run that once its revenge part got kicking, I was able to forgive its earlier missteps. Also, it may be interesting for you to know that this wasn’t the show’s original storyline. I went back to read earlier to read Javabeans’ posts as she covered the drama casting and news and discovered that the storyline had been largely different. I think, the writers for some reason had changed the storyline completely, thus leading to those weak episodes.

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        • 2.2.2.1 Carole McDonnell

          Once i accepted the fact that there would be major plot glitches/holes/and hyper-conveniences, I could ride with it. That’s the weird thing about Incarnation. Because I wasn’t so patient with the silly contrivances in ALICE. There’s something about Incarnation that makes me want to watch it.

          The likableness of the hero, the solid acting of Boss. One rarely sees a woman that age being portrayed as powerful in k-drama…at least she’s not a powerful mean mother-in-law.

          There’s also some other unknown factor which i can’t put my hands on… but it pulls me along and will be one of my favorite dramas, i think.

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      • 2.2.3 Saturtledaisy

        I actually kind of like Kang Ji Hwan~ I’ve never seen any of his other works, though (not that I remember anyway D:) But he’s made a solid Lee Cha Don/Lee Kang Seok for me. I like how he can look like an adorable puppy (when he was hugging boss bok ; ;) but also comes off as a much darker character when he’s busy with his revenge. But I guess it’s true that his acting is more subtle… in a way than City Hunter’s Lee Minho who just has this weird way of reeling you in and making you care about his character.

        As for the comparison with City Hunter, I think City Hunter was more story-oriented (also action) and straightforward, whereas Incarnation seems to be playing more with /ideas/ and the huge grey area between right and wrong. I admit though that City Hunter was probably more solid and consistent and therefore easier to trust while watching(as in you don’t think they’ll let you down) when Incarnation has been a bit wishy-washy here and there when it comes to keeping the viewers interested. But when it does shine, it definitely shines just as bright as City Hunter did.

        Underwhelming? Not really, not for me. I went in with no expectations, and it’s doing a LOT better than some other dramas I won’t name. Might even be my favourite amongst the dramas I’m currently watching.

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        • 2.2.3.1 San

          I boarded the train a little late! But tremendously enjoyed/ enjoying the recaps and the commentaries in here. So thank you all for this blog and the opportunities to share thoughts…

          In City Hunter, the male lead was brought up to carry out revenge. In Incarnation of Money, our hero lost his memories at a very early stage of the series, so revenge was not in his development. Hence, we had Ep3 – Ep12 (?) to inform us of his development into adulthood, and how and when he regained his memories, what life was like for him before he came to know revenge, in contrast with his Mom and the villains. So, in my opinion, the earlier Eps are connected and necessary.

          It was interesting to watch his path already intertwined with the baddies, before his memories came flooding back, rather than seeking them out when he actively sought revenge.

          I love the unexpected and unpredictable direction of the drama

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          • 2.2.3.1.1 San

            P.S. i like our hero enough to want to watch his other projects.

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  3. Shiku

    I loved the episode. Angelina was great in her courtroom scene even though I wanted to pry her mouth open so she can talk. The kid’s appearance didn’t surprise me at all and I wonder if its Sekwang’s. If its his it would hurt twice as deep to have him threaten his kid.
    I was crying when Boss Bok temporarily lost her memory. It was so saaad! Her scene with Cha Don was so touching!
    I kinda knew they were bringing her husband back as he was mentioned a few episodes ago when she was doing her monologue and the fact that the writers didn’t let her expand more on their relationship at that time.
    Thx for the recap!

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  4. delicatecloud

    This is super fast Gummimochi. Thanks so much. Have not seen this episode yet as I am travelling. Will comment more later.

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  5. Carole McDonnell

    I totally agree with everything you wrote in the commentary. I felt so weepy looking at the frail old woman our formidable Boss has become.

    The entrance of long-disappeared but suddenly-returned hubby felt like a plot convenience, as did Angelina’s baby. What, she fell in love with another guy….even though she’s been in love with Se Kwang all this time? Or is baby Se Kwang’s? She has a boyfriend or former boyfriend in the
    States? What the___?????

    But even so, I didn’t feel angry at the writers for their little plot-scheming. They’re taking us on a lovely ride and i like it that they keep surprising us.

    What I’m getting really ticked at is the not telling Jae In bit. It’s like…REALLY???????? I like it though that Cha Don is stepping up to woo her (or mess up her courtship with Hyuk.) I’d been thinking she would be his enemy and would give in and fall for Hyuk THEN she would find all the mp3′s and .wav files on Mom’s laptop and her eyes would be opened. Which –come to think of it– would’ve been a passive way for hero to get the girl back. So I’m glad he’s doing something to win the girl …while destroying his enemies.

    Poor Angelina. Beaten up by tough street-ahjummas in prison. How have the mighty fallen!

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    • 5.1 DayDreamer

      “Poor Angelina. Beaten up by tough street-ahjummas in prison. How have the mighty fallen!”

      LOL! Seriously. But what made me laugh even more was how wimpy their beating up was. I don’t know why…but looking at girls fight like guys (with punches and kicks), it just looks funny for its wimpy appearance. With guys, I kinda feel a “Oh damn, he’s gonna really hurt the dude.” I’d have felt more seriousness if they did pulled Angelina’s hair and yanked her around or scratched her face, lol.

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      • 5.1.1 Carole McDonnell

        LOL!!!! So true.

        I thought, “Oh, they got some nice solid women who are supposed to look ‘rough’ to go all chained-heat on K-drama’s version of Martha Stewart.” Angelina definitely could’ve looked a lot worse after her beating. Not that I’ve seen Caged Heat or anything but I thought, “Dang! That’s a beating????? Or did Fluffy just walk over her tummy?”

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        • 5.1.1.1 DayDreamer

          “Or did Fluffy just walk over her tummy?”

          Ha, your one-liners are funny.

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          • 5.1.1.1.1 Carole McDonnell

            Thanks, Delicatecloud and Daydreamer.
            Wow, I love your names btw!

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      • 5.1.2 MAC

        I had the same feeling, DayDreamer — the kicking and punching were too soft ;) It doesn’t have the same impact when men are shown doing it. And you’re right, the hair pulling may have given more impact.

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        • 5.1.2.1 delicatecloud

          I thought the same too. I guess we are all pretty blood thirsty when it comes to justice for Angelina. LOL….

          @Carole Mcdonnell – love your one liners – so funny…

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    • 5.2 delicatecloud

      We maybe getting the back story of Angelina. If Se Kwang is her son’s daddy she could be thinking of a way to get back at him that hurts him most and I am sure something that would involve the son and she would make good her many threats.

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      • 5.2.1 MAC

        Thought for a moment that this may be Se Kwang’s child, and she couldn’t tell him about it because she may lose the kid to Se Kwang since she’s in jail.

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        • 5.2.1.1 DayDreamer

          It doesn’t seem like it’s Se Kwang’s kid from next episode.

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    • 5.3 asianromance

      Yeah the hubby felt random, but I thought the kid made a lot of sense given what happens in episode 18. The kid makes Angelina more or a parallel to Gi Soon – incarcerated and separated from her child. I am weirded out by how she thought she can just marry and go live with Sekwang without telling him abt the kid. She probably never planned to tell him…

      I am pretty annoyed about everyone keeping Jae In in the dark. I feel like if Jae In knew her mom was in such a state, she would actually work harder to make her mom proud. But Boss Bok is convinced that it would soften Jae In.

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      • 5.3.1 DayDreamer

        I think Angelina was probably waiting until she and Se Kwang were married before she told him about the kid (whether it was his or not) because to her, marriage was like a guarantee of Se Kwang’s feelings.

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  6. delicatecloud

    Omo omo…. I am concern for Ji-hoo. If Se Kwang finds out how influential and important person her father is he may woo her for his personal gain. She is already half in love with him. Mama Mia I really hope not as she deserves so much better.

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    • 6.1 Carole McDonnell

      oh my gosh! I hadn’t thought of that. Yes! Se Kwang was definitely looking at her with interest. But i didn’t pull it all together until now.

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      • 6.1.1 delicatecloud

        You and I have watched the next episode …. boy oh boy…. couldn’t watch those scenes!!

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        • 6.1.1.1 Carole McDonnell

          dang! Okay.. i have to go watch it now. Did some perfunctory writing so i wouldn’t feel too guilty. Off to episode 18.

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        • 6.1.1.2 DayDreamer

          Ha! When I saw Se Kwang trying to woo Ji Hoo, I cringed. He was so predatory that he kinda looked like a pedophile rather than seductive, lol.

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        • 6.1.1.3 asianromance

          I had to watch something light on tv while watching those scenes on my phone! Too icky! And it just disgusts me that he would prey on her trust in him and on her feelings.

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  7. houstontwin

    Thank youfor the great recap! It’s really getting good, isn’t it?!?

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  8. snow_white

    thanks…..still need to watch the episode!!

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  9. amie

    “Doesn’t that mean you have to bring back Dr. Bug Eyes? *shiver*”….hahahaha…this made laugh!!! And I hope they don’t he is kinda creepy. I love this drama though. At the beginning I wasn’t so sure about it but now I am hooked.

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  10. 10 asianromance

    Thanks for the speedy recap! Episode 17 was another awesome episode, though it slowed towards the second half as we enter a new arc – pit Se Kwang and Prosecutor Kwon against each other. Again, the combination of the writing for Angelina and the actress really brought out a despicable character that I end up feeling a lot of pity for. There were moments when I felt she was being unjustly locked up, until I remember that she really did kill Lawyer Hwang! Inhuman of Sekwang to use her child to threaten her. And you know, Sekwang isn’t above arranging hits on kids to get what he wants.

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  11. 11 Fun-Lugha

    Forget Se Kwang, what if the kid is Cha Don’s half brother…dun dun dun! Plus i kinda wanted to tell CD to treat that Gentleman better, that’s his future father in law!

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    • 11.1 Saturtledaisy

      Oh my god. Cha-don’s half brother? That WOULD be an awesome plot twist! But I don’t think it adds up timeline wise =/ the kid should be about… eighteen or sth by now then? But then of course it depends on when that picture was taken…

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      • 11.1.1 Fun-lugha

        My reasoning was 15 years passed after CD’s dad died and Angelina left for US b4 she returned. So unless she ‘cheated’ on SK after getting back together when she returned, then that means the kid was born during those 15 years so it could be anybody’s! I hope the simple explanation is its an old picture so CD’s half bro it is…i want moar drama!

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        • 11.1.1.1 delicatecloud

          It is still a possibility – like you said it could be an “old” photo. I believe, in total 20 years have passed since LCD’s dad died i.e. 15 years since the murder and 5 years during which LCD was a corrupted prosecutor before he found his mother. So, the child should be at least 20 years old by now. If so i am waiting for the secret to be revealed and how it will be done. Surely Angelina will not let this opportunity passed….

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    • 11.2 Carole McDonnell

      Am seconding the Oh My God!!!!! But doesn’t it take a long time for a trial to happen in Korea? Did the trial happen within three months?

      If the kid is Cha Don’s half-brother, then there is a possibility that Cha Don’s bro could inherit the Dad’s money. Heck, Cha Don could die and the money would return to the ….noooooo I don’t want to even think about it.

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      • 11.2.1 Saturtledaisy

        Oh god I didn’t even think about that. Even if Cha Don doesn’t die the money could partially go to the half-bro, because he’s probaby legally entitled to part of it since there was no will (at least not about that bit of money). …
        I don’t want the money to go back to Angelina D:

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    • 11.3 asianromance

      Yikes! Please no birth secrets!! I want CD to keep his lovely money all to himself and not have to share it with the spawn of Angelina.

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  12. 12 Saturtledaisy

    It’s silly how I’m just torn now by watching what happens to Angelina, when she used to be such a minor and annoying character.

    On one hand, I think she definitely deserves to be locked up in jail. She DID murder someone after all, even if she ‘did it for love’.
    On the other hand, I don’t think she deserves the treatment Park Gi Soon got. Nobody deserves to be treated like that, except for maybe Se Kwang and dr. Bug-eye. I’m not sure how much she knew (or understood) about locking Mom up in that asylum, or even anything else about Se Kwang’s plans, but she sure as hell didn’t feel guilty mind all the money she got.

    So in conclusion, she deserves the punishment she deserves, but I hope Cha Don won’t take his revenge too far and continues that vicious circle of revenge. The kid in America is innocent after all, and I hope he doesn’t have to live through his mom disappearing and going crazy, being locked up in an asylum screaming for her child.

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    • 12.1 DayDreamer

      Angelina may not merit the same treatment as Gi Soon did but I think sharing the same experience will finally open her eyes to how her role in the Traitagon made a woman lose her husband, son, sanity, and even her own life. As far as I’ve seen, despite all that happened, Angelina never repented over what happened to Gi Soon. Now that she’ll experience what Gi Soon did, she will feel regretful and probably turn a new leaf wholeheartedly. She will finally accept her own crimes to her own self.

      Because of the way Angelina’s storyline had been constructed (making viewers feel pity despite her actions), I can say she is the one who merits the most a redemption arc. It will also fit into the story since there’s no need to have Lee Cha Don-Park Gi Soon Take Two.

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      • 12.1.1 delicatecloud

        OMO – you and I have the same thoughts. I posted similar line of thinking in response to your post!! I love this exchange of views!! I want to have Angelina repent before Lee Kang Seok!!

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        • 12.1.1.1 Carole McDonnell

          I think Cha Don has it in him to forgive. I think. yeah..yeah..i think he does. At least Angelina.

           (0)


          • 12.1.1.1.1 delicatecloud

            i echo your sentiments that he at least has the heart to let bygones be bygones with Angelina.

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        • 12.1.1.2 DayDreamer

          Yeah, I read your post up there. Great minds think alike, eh? :P I think it’s because we drink the same NY water, lol.

           (0)


  13. 13 delicatecloud

    This is such a heartbreaking episode seeing the decline of Boss Bok. That scene where she forgot where she was and what she was doing there was soooo good that it hurts… her being stuck in the middle of the road with the cars whising by, i couldn’t keep my eyes away and hoping against hope that she would not be caught in an accident and we have another twist to the drama. Thankfully not and it was soooooo touching that LCD found her and embraced her as a son would. When she remembered – what a emotional roller coaster. I am so glad that she finally told Assistant Kim and LCD. She is such a toughie that she pushed ahead with the plan to assist LCD and showed that she has been coping with her memory failings by recording her conversations/thoughts/decisions. What a woman!

    I am also not too happy with the decision to keep it from Jae In – me thinks that the mom underestimate the strenght of her own daughter. Jae In is tougher than many of them think. Remember how she decided to take her mother’s money and do something to change her physical outlook and her life? Is that an act of a “soft” person? This could be a plot to be used later…

    Yes – i am surprised that LCD is taking them down together or rather letting the two dogs fight it out. There can only be one Alpha male in the arena – it will be a fight till death! But i like how this is developing and agree with gummimochi that having too much of anything, be it ambition, greed etc, is never good at all. LCD knows their grand ambitions and what they are capable of doing in order to achieve their goals to the extent of even murder!! What a brilliant idea to have them pitted against each other.

    Angelina’s child? That’s a surprise and an added twist to the story…. is he Se Kwang’s child or LCD’s half brother?

    LCD is showing his jealous streaks now. Why oh why do men always want what they think they could not have? He is falling into the trap that was set by Boss Bok without realising it. He is finally, albeith a bit late, recognising his feelings for her. I will not be surpised if Hyuk, despite having to date her on his father’s orders, have developed feelings for Jae In.

    I like the slow built of tension that the writers are setting up with regard to the next two targets!! Love this episode and cannot wait to see what happens in the next episode.

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    • 13.1 delicatecloud

      I love the scene where she had to sign away her shares to Jae In in order to save the bank and to avoid being jailed for embezzlement. Goal achieved – taking away her “hard earned” money!! I LOL when she screamed so heartbreakingly that she is loosing all her hard earned money – yeah right money that you assisted in the murder of a man to get your greedy hands on.

      Another reason for self reflection ….

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    • 13.2 Saturtledaisy

      Boss Bok totally got me right in the heart. It just felt so wrong seeing her so lost ; ;. I mean, she’s supposed to be the badass Lord of the Underworld or sth, not a frail old grandma trying to get home ; ;.

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      • 13.2.1 DayDreamer

        In a way, this show does a good job with the dualities. Like you said, Boss Bok is like some powerful head honcho but in another perspective, she’s also a frail grandma trying to get home. Then as Delicatecloud and Carole have mentioned in some posts above, Se Kwang is smart baddie but in another perspective, he can be like a normal bumbling person (re: the scenes with Jae In).

         (0)


    • 13.3 Carole McDonnell

      I’m glad Boss’s hubby returned. He will be able to redeem himself from his past cruelty to her. She will of course forgive him because she’s thinking of him. AAArgh..i have to watch the next episode but i know if i do that I’ll be watching other dramas as well.

      Is it possible that someone will clue Jae In about her mother’s condition. Folks in k-dramas keep secrets so darn well (well, unless it’s a woman’s doctor and gyno, then they blab it to family, friends and potential fathers.) So maybe..hey, maybe someone will sit Jae In down and say, “Now look here, Girl, Mom is failing. Cha Don is helping you succeed. Your dad has just arrived.” Just saying.

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      • 13.3.1 delicatecloud

        I think that someone will be Assistang Kim – he is like a father figure to her and he wants her to know too. He cannot say no to her if she wants to have or know something. It is time they clue her in as well – so that there will be no mishaps with their plans.

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      • 13.3.2 DayDreamer

        “Folks in k-dramas keep secrets so darn well (well, unless it’s a woman’s doctor and gyno, then they blab it to family, friends and potential fathers.)”

        Ha! Seriously….the people who should be keeping secrets are blabbing away and those who shouldn’t be are the most tight-lipped.

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  14. 14 TS

    And Se Kwang *just* found out Ji-Hoo’s dad is super important in Korea? Wow, he’s even more self-centered than he looks, which is extremely so.

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    • 14.1 DayDreamer

      I just find it funny how this show keeps on bringing the coincidences just to keep all the characters connected one way or the other.

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      • 14.1.1 Saturtledaisy

        It’s a small world~

        But I guess it’s not surprising that somehow all prosecutors are related to or acquainted with Rich, Important and Influential People, since it’s probably really expensive and presitigious to become a prosecutor in the first place =/
        It’s a small circle up there where the money is.

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      • 14.1.2 asianromance

        So true! I smirked a little when I saw the corrupt mayor. At lease this coincidence is much better than them all happening to work at the same company or bumping into each other at the Only Coffee Shop in Seoul. I do like how some of the connections were built up earlier, with Boss Bok and Corrupt Mayor and their influential literary society.

        Before finding out who Ji Hoo’s dad was, I don’t really get how Se-kwang seriously thought he had a chance against Prosecutor Kwon when:
        1. he had doggedly pursued the mayor for corruption and then sent him to jail.
        2. had authorized a search of Boss Bok’s house looking for evidence of corruption.

        Then again, did Prosecutor Kwon assault Boss Bok’s assistant once in the restroom?

        And now it’s all bygones be bygones.

         (0)


        • 14.1.2.1 Carole McDonnell

          Yeah, i tend to find the coincidences in IoM way more “believable” and tolerable than in other dramas.

           (0)


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