Drama Recaps
Gu Family Book: Episode 23
by | June 24, 2013 | 224 Comments

I wish I could say that the episode leading up to the finale was spectacular, but I can’t. It’s a really underwhelming hour. First, the hero annoys me with his noble idiocy. Then, the villains annoy me with the lack of diversity in their repertoire of villainy. Then there’s an interlude where Dad gets a lobotomy. And finally, the writer annoys me most of all, because all this is really her fault. That’s not to say that the finale can’t still be satisfying; it just won’t have gotten any help from Episode 23.

 
EPISODE 23 RECAP

As glimpses of all the people he’s had to say goodbye to flash by, Kang-chi narrates: “I didn’t want to say goodbye. You were the first person I wanted to make mine. I didn’t want to make you cry heartbreaking tears ever again. But Yeol-woo might die…”

We return to his declaration that his third wish is to end things right now. Yeo-wool asks how he can decide something like that on his own, and he blurts out that she could lose her life.

Yeo-wool, ever the logical one, points out that all people die, and some live long full lives, or some die during childbirth like her mother, or some die protecting someone else like Lord Park. No one can know how or when death will come.

He asks how he can stay by her side when he knows it’s because of him that she might die, but she asks with tears in her eyes, “Why do we have to do this because of things that haven’t even happened yet?” YES, WHY.

He says that he ignored the monk’s warning once before, and Lord Park died because of him. Augh, but that’s not even the same thing! And he points out the fresh wound on her arm, saying that he was inches away from clawing her heart out. Listen, you’re pretty much clawing out my patience right now. Does that count?

She cries, “Don’t you know that your words right now are ripping my heart up more?!” Right? But he says he’ll never be able to live with himself if he loses her, and walks away.

He leaves her bawling her eyes out, and Gon looks on from a distance. He feels a shadowy figure creeping up from behind, but when he turns around, no one is there.

Kang-chi goes to see Lee Soon-shin late that night, and it’s kind of cute that Lee Soon-shin comes out in PJs and finds Kang-chi scrawling in the dirt like a little kid. He says he came “just because,” but as they go for a walk, he asks for advice.

Lee Soon-shin agrees that he’d do the best he could to prevent the person he cared for most from getting hurt. But then he asks Kang-chi what he fears most (the person he loves dying because of him) and what the person he loves fears most.

That question stumps him. Lee Soon-shin repeats the question: What does the person you care for most fear more than anything? But before he can mull it over, a group of ninjas jump out and surround them. I’ve already forgotten who they are and why they’re attacking.

Ah, a flashback reminds us that Jo Gwan-woong asked to borrow ten ninjas to kill Lee Soon-shin. But when the Japanese refuse to be party to that scheme, Jo Gwan-woong insists they wouldn’t actually have to do any killing.

And then his secret agent steps into the room. It’s one of the students at Master Dam’s martial arts school—the one who was so vocal about hating Kang-chi. We learn that he was actually a mole for Jo Gwan-woong all this time. This would mean more if he were a bigger character. The plan is for this guy to kill Lee Soon-shin, and then make it look like Kang-chi was the one who did it. But I thought we already did that with Lord Park?

Back in the present, Kang-chi tells Lee Soon-shin to make a run for it while he fights off the ninjas, but gets told that this is a planned meeting. The Japanese emissary steps out from behind his men, and Lee Soon-shin tells him they have three days to clear out and return to their country before he starts killing every last one of them.

Kang-chi asks Lee Soon-shin if he wasn’t worried about being attacked, but he says, “Death does not frighten me, Kang-chi-ya. The thing I’m truly afraid of is making wrong decisions while I am alive.”

He sighs that tens of thousands of lives are lost in war, so his every decision can’t help but feel heavy. But more than anything, it’s those people—the ones who would lay down their lives for their country—that he wants to protect. “And because being by their side is the best that I can do to protect them.” Thank you.

That finally gets through to Kang-chi and he remembers asking Yeo-wool a while ago what it was she feared the most. “You. That you’ll just disappear one day. That’s what I’m most afraid of.”

He laughs that that’s a silly thing to be afraid of, and she says that the more you like someone, the more worries you start to have. She says she also fears that he’ll get sick of her one day, or that when she becomes a wrinkly grandma he won’t like her anymore.

He reminds her that he’s Wol-ryung’s son—the guy who fell in love for the first time in a thousand years and then even as a demon could only remember his first love. “That’s my bloodline. We hang onto one woman, live or die. So don’t YOU go getting sick of me. Because I’m going to live looking only at you, live or die. Forever.”

Yeo-wool giggles like a little girl: “Really really? Promise promise?”

Yeo-wool tosses and turns, ranting that she can’t believe that jerk, “After he said ‘really really promise promise’ and everything!” Ha. She heads outside to blow off some steam with sword practice, when Mole comes looking for her. He says he has something to tell her, so she follows him out…

Gon discovers that Yeo-wool’s been out for a while without a word, so he runs out to find her, and then Kang-chi returns to find the search in full swing.

Meanwhile Mole takes her out to the woods, where ninjas are waiting to attack. They throw a white powder in her face, and it knocks her out cold. Gon arrives just as they’re about to kidnap her, and Mole whirls around to say that they were attacked out of nowhere.

Gon steps out in front of him to get Yeo-wool back… which is when Mole literally stabs him in the back. Ack. If Gon dies, I swear, I’ll hurt somebody.

He takes half a second to register that he just got stabbed in the back, and then takes two swift moves to kill Mole dead. Nice knowin’ ya. Thanks for being the conveniently evil plot device of the day.

Gon struggles to fight off the army of ninjas all alone, but he can’t stop them from taking Yeo-wool. He fights, but he’s getting weaker and weaker with every move. Eeee.

His wounds start to take their toll, and he falls to his knees. He’s seconds away from death, when Kang-chi arrives just in time to fight off the rest.

He rushes to Gon’s side and slices his hand to pour blood into his wound, and the blue lights come to save the day. Whew.

He runs after Yeo-wool, but the kidnappers throw gas grenades in their wake to throw him off their scent. Luckily Bong-chul is in town and just sober enough to notice Yeo-wool being carried off. Please tell me you have enough of your wits about you to follow them.

Gon wakes up in the morning, and Master Dam says that Tae-seo found him in the woods. He gets on his knees and tells Master that he’s sorry—he couldn’t protect Yeo-wool. He confirms that Kang-chi saved him, but he doesn’t know where he went.

Kang-chi walks straight into the lion’s den and confronts Jo Gwan-woong knowing he took Yeo-wool. They don’t even try to dance around it, and Jo Gwan-woong tells him exactly what he wants in exchange for Yeo-wool’s life: kill Lee Soon-shin.

He brings out Kang-chi’s family—Servant Choi and Ok-man—and adds them to the count. All three will die unless Kang-chi kills Lee Soon-shin by tomorrow.

Ohmygah, why do we keep letting this guy threaten loved ones to get people to do his bidding? Can this pony learn one new trick, please? Dad tells him to just let them die, which I hope is not the plan.

Meanwhile Yeo-wool is tied up in a box somewhere, with incense kept burning to keep Kang-chi from sniffing her out.

Everyone gathers at the martial arts school to decide their next move, and Kang-chi paces back and forth waiting for Master Dam to make up his mind. Gon snaps at him that they’re all going crazy, and that no one is as heartbroken as Master Dam, so they need to follow his decision when it comes to Yeo-wool.

Master Dam finally reaches a verdict and calls everyone together. Kang-chi asks what their next move is, and Master Dam balls up his fists under the table… as he tells them they’re going to give up on Yeo-wool.

What, now? You have an army of trained fighters, and this is your decision?

He says that they can’t cave to Jo Gwan-woong’s demands, and tells Kang-chi to give up on Yeo-wool and go on his quest to find the Gu Family Book. Oh, because he’s really going to leave right now to do that. What?

All three boys stammer in shock, and Kang-chi argues right back, asking how he’s telling them to give up on Yeo-wool. Master Dam shouts that she’s his only daughter, but this is what they have to do. But… that makes even less sense.

Kang-chi: “Yeo-wool is my only person too! What is the point of becoming human when I can’t even protect the only person in my life?!” That outburst stops everyone mid-breath, and Tae-seo gets a little teary-eyed.

Kang-chi declares that he doesn’t care to become human if that’s the cost, and says with tears streaming down his face: “I don’t care if I don’t become human. I won’t ever give up on Yeo-wool. I can’t give up on her!”

Gon steps up to say that he agrees with Kang-chi, and then Tae-seo joins in too. The boys ask for permission to go rescue Yeo-wool.

Soo-ryun turns to Master Dam and reminds him that the reason they pledge their lives as patriots is to protect the ones they love, and Teacher Gong tells him that sometimes it’s okay to lay his duties down.

He looks around the room one by one, and lands on Kang-chi, still crying with pleading eyes. And outside, Chung-jo has been listening the whole time.

Her face falls, and she wanders into Kang-chi’s room where she finds the shirt she made for him still sitting there, untouched. She cries now as it sinks in what Yeo-wool means to Kang-chi, and she wonders to herself: “Why didn’t I realize when you were by my side?

Bong-chul finally makes it to the martial arts school looking for Kang-chi, with news that he saw that pretty boy he’s always with get dragged off last night.

He followed them, and saw them go towards the storage houses in the Hundred Year Inn. That’s where they hid her? Would it kill you people to have another safe house somewhere, just for variety’s sake?

The boys split up and go digging through every single crate in the storage rooms, as Yeo-wool struggles against her ropes inside one of the boxes. Someone gets close, and she looks up just as Kang-chi opens the hatch to one of the crates…

But it’s a fake out, and the baddies get to her first and move her before the boys catch up. Jo Gwan-woong gets the report that Kang-chi did as expected and Yeo-wool has been moved.

The boys contemplate what to do next, and Kang-chi decides it’s time to go see Lee Soon-shin. Tae-seo says they can’t involve him, but Kang-chi asks, “Do you trust me? As my friend, how far do you trust me?”

As Kang-chi arrives to see Lee Soon-shin, Jo Gwan-woong tells his trusty sidekick that it won’t matter if Kang-chi doesn’t kill him—either way Lee Soon-shin will be on the move, and that’s when they’ll take their shot. He passes over the gun.

Kang-chi says he came because he wants to protect those precious to him. He asks Lee Soon-shin the same: “Do you trust me? How far do you trust me?”

Yeo-wool gets carried away kicking and screaming in broad daylight, which doesn’t seem like the stealthiest move. She gets tied up in a different shed, with Servant Choi and Ok-man tied to a post nearby.

This time they tie her to a chair that’s rigged with a giant spiked wrecking ball hanging above her. I’ll be honest—it looks kind of like paper-mache, but we’ll go with it. It’s a giant death ball, not a piñata, okay?!

They cut a hole in the sandbag that’s weighing the ball down, and then walk out. Pwahaha. Oh, ineffectual villains. Why kill her now when you can set up a Wile E. Coyote contraption and walk away?

Chung-jo comes to tell the boys where they’ve moved Yeo-wool, and Kang-chi returns from his meeting with Lee Soon-shin. They head back out, and Chung-jo tells him with tears brimming in her eyes to save Yeo-wool, and he nods that he will.

Lee Soon-shin goes to see Jo Gwan-woong to demand he release the hostages, and it buys time for the boys to fight their way towards Yeo-wool. I hope this diversion was worth it.

The totally-not-paper-mache Ball O’ Doom falls closer and closer, and Yeo-wool screams. Kang-chi hears her voice mid-fight, and Tae-seo urges him to go ahead while they fight. Bong-chul joins in too, and Kang-chi nods gratefully before running off.

He gets to Yeo-wool just in time, and breaks her ropes and pulls her out of the way just as the wrecking ball comes crashing down.

Once the moment of fear and relief passes by, she kicks him off of her and then slaps him with her foot. Ha.

She pounds his chest calling him a jerk over and over, and he pulls her in for a hug. “I’m sorry. I won’t do it again. I won’t do it again. I’m really sorry.”

He holds her as she cries, and Dad and Ok-man squirm in their ropes awkwardly. In voiceover we hear their thoughts from sometime in the future:

Yeo-wool: I should’ve said it more then.
Kang-chi: I should’ve held you more then. That I liked you this much.
Yeo-wool: That I loved you this much.

Back to Lee Soon-shin, who stops to ask Jo Gwan-woong what it is he lives for. Unsurprisingly, his answer is: “Me.” He says he lives for himself alone, and takes what he wants, when he wants it. Yeah, we kinda noticed.

As they talk, Minion peeks out from a distance and sets his sights on Lee Soon-shin, raising his gun at his target.

But Kang-chi and the gang arrive and surround Lee Soon-shin, and tell him that they’re here to lead him to safety.

Kang-chi steps forward to face Jo Gwan-woong and says: “Do you remember what I told you once? That I would reclaim the Hundred Year Inn from you one day? Well that day is today, Jo Gwan-woong.”

Minion lights the fuse…

Jo Gwan-woong just smirks back at Kang-chi without a word. That’s when he senses that something’s not right, and turns to see Minion aiming his gun right at them. He fires.

They all freeze and look at each other: Lee Soon-shin, Gon, Tae-seo, Yeo-wool, and Kang-chi…

One of them has been shot.

 
COMMENTS

Okay, so the Who’s Been Shot thing is pretty good as far as cliffhangers go (mostly for the guess-who factor, because it’s not like I expect the leads to die). But so much of this episode was pointless. Basically none of that kidnapping hullabaloo needed to happen to get us from the first scene to the last one. It was just running the guys around for no reason. If this had happened in a middle episode (which it has) I wouldn’t be this annoyed, but we’re down to ONE episode.

Instead of picking up threads for characters that got totally shunted (Tae-seo, Chung-jo, Soo-ryun), storylines that got dropped (engagement, anyone?) or actually exploring Kang-chi’s quest to become human, we turned Yeo-wool into a damsel in distress, and let Jo Gwan-woong have YET ANOTHER round of tying someone down to the train tracks to twirl his mustache, for absolutely zero advancement in the plot. You know a villain’s run his course when we’re all just sitting here going, And why haven’t we killed him yet?

Did Kang-chi really need to experience Yeo-wool nearly becoming a whack-a-mole to truly understand that being by her side was better than leaving her? First of all, that would make him dumb and I don’t want him to be dumb, and also, I think he already figured it out when Lee Soon-shin asked him what Yeo-wool’s worst fear was. All it did was send the characters through another spin cycle of stuff we’ve done before.

I’m just hugely disappointed that this is what we were working towards. I still expect tomorrow’s finale to deliver a satisfying conclusion, but this hour was a wasted opportunity. I was glad to get Kang-chi’s big speech that becoming human isn’t worth it if he can’t protect the woman he loves, but the plot machinations to get him to that outburst (Master Dam suddenly giving up his daughter’s life without a fight? Come on) were painfully clunky. I think the problem at the end of the day is, we don’t really believe for a second that Yeo-wool is in danger. So spending an entire episode to set up her kidnapping and rescue seemed like wasting the precious few minutes of story time we have left on something that had a foregone conclusion. It’s pretty much the direct opposite of building to a climax.

What you want in Finale Week is for the tension to go sky high, but this episode actually managed to sap what tension there was left. It kind of kills me. This world has so much potential for life and death stakes, for testing the limits of beast and man, for true sacrifice that runs deeper than noble idiocy. It’s all there. Why are we not doing anything with it?

 
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224 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. 51 bambledd

    The best line was the old teacher saying to Master Dam “Sometimes it’s okay to lay down the burden of always thinking of the good of all to protect those you love” (something like that; can’t remember exactly)

    I think Chung Jo will probably sacrifice her life to save KG or another

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    • 51.1 kumi

      It’s something like “charity begins at home”, isn’t it?

       (0)


  2. 52 rabbitsfortea

    I think I pretty much stopped caring for the characters quite a few episodes ago which is sad because I do love the actors. So I’m not too sure if it’s because of the story, although I do suspect it to be so…
    Sigh.

    Anyhow, because I’m a sucker for HEAs, I really hope the voiceover isn’t foreshadowing a sad ending…

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  3. 53 sunny

    tbh the whole fate thing and one must die and thus noble idiocy was starting to fall a bit flat…

    Especially when the whole dying part wasn’t even because of kangchi trying to be human or yeowool! ITS MOSTLY JO GWAN WOONG’S FAULT
    i mean i can’t be the only thinking that starting from papa Gumiho to Seohwa to Yeol wool all their deaths and near deaths were because of evil sloth Jo Gwan Woong. I mean yeah sure his targeting these people because of Papa and Baby Gumiho but if we remove that evil, creepy moustache man im sure we’ll discover that no one is dying anymore because so far all the dying has been because of creep moustache.. yes i’ve resorted to calling him that…

    actually i might just call the writer the evil moustache drama killer because this drama makes cry thinking of all the possibilities of what could have been, especially with baby gumiho. if it weren’t for the fan base of leads im sure this drama wouldn’t get half the ratings against others in its timeslot.

    wow that was a really really long rant…. time to rewatch MGIAG where cha tae woong and miho will make me forget this miseryy….

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    • 53.1 bambledd

      Plus, it’s better Kang- chi stays half gumiho. Look at all the times he or someone close to him almost died. If he were human, he’d already be d-e-a-d.

      It’s like when Superman wanted to become human but came to terms w/ his powers and kept them, even though others viewed him as an oddball/ misfit when growing up.

      Maybe Kang-chi will come to terms with who he is, too, and stay 1/2 gumiho.

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      • 53.1.1 kumi

        I also hope so! He needs to protect those who are close to him. So, in his half-gumiho form he can do it better. Why giving so much importance to something external? I guess he doesn’t want to look young, when Yeo-wool grows old, but how important is that? He doesn’t even have a tail. ;)

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    • 53.2 Carole McDonnell

      it wasn’t one “must” die but one “may” die. Which was always a tease…and which felt just like that… a tease.

      So true about everything being the Big Bad’s fault. If they wanted to tie his evil to the sorrows that happened to Seo Hwa, Wol Ryung and their descendant, then all the guilty party should be faulted. In a kind of karmic destiny kinda thing. That means everyone. Including Head Gisaeng Chun, Master Dam…and of course Big Bad.

      But as it is… ouch..it doesn’t quite work. I DO like Big Bad’s relentlessness but all villains are relentless. When the screenwriter attempted to show us the underpinnings of Big Bad’s evil with his great speech of what he was.. I thought.. Ah me, ah me!! COME ONNNNNN! Even if the villain is deluded and believes all that about himself…or even if he doesn’t believe all that and is just posing…it so DOES NOT work at this time in the drama. And it doesn’t seem believable.

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  4. 54 sophia

    all so true. I would have expected that for this episode jo gwan woong would have started to move forward with his plot. He’s trying to kill Lee Soon Shin so why the hell is he going after Yeo Wool again? Come on now, writer. I was so disappointed and I found myself rolling my eyes the whole episode. Give me something that I’m not like “uh huh.” to. And it seems that the Japanese group is there just out of convenience. “Hey, give me some ninjas”, “Hey, betray her so I can gain power”, “Hey, don’t kill me bc I don’t want to start anything, go back to your country” and they just listen to it all -____- just too easy and pointless.

    I would have wished to see Kang Chi go off to find the Book of Gu and see how the team can handle dealing with Jo Gwan Woong without Kang Chi.

    Sigh. Please make the finale amazing. Please. Please…

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  5. 55 kiboo

    something is amiss here… i clearly remember in ep 21, Sojung told Kangchi that’s using his blood to heal someone is a ‘once in a lifetime’ thing which he has used it on Bongchul already. so why is it that in ep 22, Kangchi was able to heal Gon?!?!??!

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    • 55.1 bambledd

      I think it was once/per person in their lifetime. Because he’s already healed Yeol-woo, the old teacher, Bongchul, and now Gon.

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    • 55.2 Tatiana

      He meant that each person gets one chance to be saved. Not that Kang Chi can only save one person in his lifetime.

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      • 55.2.1 kumi

        Except for himself.

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  6. 56 Becca

    I feel like the scene with Yeo-Wool being gagged with Kang-Chi saving her while hugging each other was a complete replica of The King 2Hearts Hang-Ah and Jae-Ha episode 18. I’m not kidding. I had déjà vu. AGGHH. I still like The King 2 Hearts OTP better.

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  7. 57 tangledfracture

    gawd. i cant believe this was the second to the last episode. i really hope the finale tonight is epic or else all my hope for this drama to be my defining drama would all be put to waste and i freaking want this to be my FAVORITE DRAMA of all time :))

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  8. 58 gigglegagaing

    if we’re supposed to follow the rules as in, one of them will die and kangchi cant help a person more than once, i’d say yeo wol is the who got shot. but there’s no way that this drama will end on a sad ending. so i think she might get healed by i dont know what, maybe another rule that the writers of the drama will put out just so we can have a happy ending. sometimes it’s pathetic to have it that way, but as an audience, i prefer to have a cheesy very predictable happy ending than sad ending, or even worse ending that doesnt make sense, like “BIG”, if you know what i mean.

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  9. 59 Harumanis

    Sad… What we’ve got on this episode should’ve been ended plotted around episode 8. Such a waste, 15 episodes i mean, i’m a weirdo then…

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  10. 60 zodd

    This series should have been 16 episodes not 24 eps. It would have been better paced and not dragged out like it is right now.

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  11. 61 msaamir

    The whole storyline is kind of conf using….i agree with admin….now its ep 23.. to me i actually dropped following the dramafrom ep mayb abt 11 or 12…by then i only follow up with the summary….i guessed its because of lsg only..im a fan…
    The engsgement with ts…..the cj fate and revenge to the villian…gon crush with yw…gu book?…and the villian outcome….what gonna happen to them….what we see is too much focus on the lead lovey dovey unnecessary scene(eventhough at times we love it) but the writer must not leave the rest just hang like that….those characters are as important as well. ..we love them too…..

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  12. 62 Peridot

    I tried to remain a pretty detached viewer for most of this episode. I honestly did not have high expectations, or at least I told myself not to. Girlfriday makes very valid points and suggestions regarding where this show could have (and in many ways, should have) gone.

    There were a few powerful moments…mainly involving Lee Soonshin. His character is so wise. His character is one of the best things about this show. And what a confident man he is, strolling around in his pajamas and telling those Japanese minions to go back to their homeland :)

    I will save my lengthy comment and reaction for the finale. Let’s hope that the last episode is done right at least.

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    • 62.1 Carole McDonnell

      YES! There is such gravitas with the Admiral! I love that actor. Heck, all the older actors were soooooooo good. Lord Park, definitely. But the Admiral..wow!

      I would so love to see the actor who plays the villain in a drama where he doesn’t have to play one-note evil. There were so many opportunities here where we could have been shown his loneliness and his neediness. To have someone tell him (and us) that he is really a lonely person…nah, doesn’t cut it.

      It’d be good if there was a sad ending. I hate sad endings but weird unbelievable endings annoy the heck outta me. But maybe the finale will somehow work out.

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      • 62.1.1 Peridot

        I agree with you, Carole. It always helps to have a strong veteran cast.

        Regarding our Mr. Evil, I wanted there to be so much more to his background. A complicated villain is always more interesting. While the complexity would not justify his evil-doings, it would surely add more context to his actions. Sadly, we were never given a 3d villain. When girlfriday mentioned a villain running his course, I thought, “he already ran his course twenty or so episodes ago.”

        I would only hope for a thoughtful ending (whether happy or sad), an ending that doesn’t feel rushed and that does not merely cater to the wishes of fans.

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  13. 63 Gufanatic

    If I am not such an avid fan of LSG, I would have dropped this drama long ago. The writer is not doing the cast justice, it is sad. I have also grown to like Suzy, she is better than many idol actresses out there. For the love of LSG, I shall persist till the last episode. Hope the ending is pretty.

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  14. 64 Dbsklove

    I think Master Dam did KIND OF have a point… when he started off by saying that they were playing into Jo Gwan woong’s hands… until it kind of fizzled off. oh wells.

    i was also hoping that we would get into the gu family book before, say, the last episode… one can hope.

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  15. 65 dkaoru

    I actually have only watched a few eps of this show. I find the recap much more enjoyable than the actual show. Must be because I’m looking through the show from Girlfriday’s rose-tinted love goggles of Lee Seung Gi. I even started calling him girlfriday’s puppy boy :)
    There’s only 1 ep left, thanks so much for the fun recap!

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    • 65.1 sunny

      amen to seung gi love goggles !

      they’re my bracelet to stop my beast side from coming out and making me run to korea and drop the writer some ‘suggestions’ like give me a super hardcore action sageuk ending like the way you pinky promised for 23 eps

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  16. 66 Littlehearts

    Oooh… Just one more left!!! I really hope yeo wool wasn’t the one who was shot!!! In fact i don’t want it to be anyone who was present there. Tae so.. I liked him before. N gon.. I love him now. LSS just cannot die. Oh why do i keep feeling it was yeo wool??? I really want a happy ending… Please directornim..

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  17. 67 Rovi

    My thoughts on the final scene:

    -Gon: hmmm, maybe, but I foresee a tsunami of angry Sung Joon fans cursing the writer off to her death.

    -Tae-seo: might be, since he has a new drama to be busy, but fat chance, since he has lost significance whatsoever.

    -Yi Sun-shin: he CAN’T ABSOLUTELY SHOULD NOT die. The Imjin War hasn’t even started, and he’s off to comandeer those turtle ships yet!

    -Yeo-wool: has the highest chance of being hit by the bullet. Says so from So-jeong himself. And analyzing the picture, from the angle of Minion’s rifle, Yeo-wool will get shot.

    -Kang-chi: plausible, if he dives in front of Yeo-wool and be his father 20 years ago, or sth…

    Now…contemplating whether to delete this BS off my torrent list, and save only episode 1. Will be waiting for the final episode in less than 24 hours.

    Should’ve recapped Jang Ok-jeong instead…

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  18. 68 Pam

    Girlfriday, can’t wait to read your recap and take on GFB’s finale episode! I won’t spoil anything but I know you’re going to flip-out!!! LOL!!!

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    • 68.1 ilikemangos

      LOL for someone who is not watching i think i’m going to watch this last episode JUST to see what its all about.
      Your comment just made me alot more interested.

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      • 68.1.1 Pam

        Yes. Watch episode 1,2 and 21,22,23 and 24! Everything else is filler! Lol!

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  19. 69 Carole McDonnell

    Ah, villainy, villainy. Do all villains go to ACME Corporation to learn how to set up intricate Rube Goldberg kills? The whole looming metal ball didn’t help much. And yes, Yeo Wool being a damsel in distress. And if Dad and Hong-ban were in the room before YW was brought in, why did they look up at the swinging ball o metalic doomm only when she looked up at it?

    When Kang Chi said, “Can you trust me?” to Admiral Lee Soon Shim, I thought…okay, Admiral will have to “allow” himself to be killed and Kang Chi will bring him back to life — cause baddies don’t know about that gumiho talent. They’d rescue Yeo Wool and return and pick up the dying body of the Admiral and tada! he’d be saved at the last minute. But when they’re all just standing there in front of Big Bad…it was like…really?

    I was also wondering/hoping if Chung Jo would be the one to tell Big Bad that rescuing Academicians were trying to save Yeo Wool. Heck, anything ..like female jealousy..SOMETHING!!!

    And the whole, let’s not make Kang Chi smell Yeo Wool thing. But I thought Kang Chi could also super-hear Yeo Wool, even her thoughts.

    Then there was the whole Gon dying bit. Maybe I’m just cynical but I thought Gon should’ve died. Yep, I like Gon but we should’ve seen his dead body being wept over by the governess who didn’t know that he died with Yeo Wool’s name on her lips. Yes, go dark please, Writer-nim. The whole bringing him back to life thing…so unnecessary. Then Tae-Soo could’ve stepped up.

    Now for the ending…uhm… Well, if it’s Yeo Wool, our hero can’t save her again, can he? But if it’s Yeo Wool, why the heck should Deputy Seo (who sorely needs to get some brownie points with Big Bad, after all his bad luck with Kang Chi) SHOULD shoot Kang Chi. I know I should fear muskets..but somehow the musket doesn’t make me quiver in my footies.

    That said — that ALL said– I am hoping the ending will be a good one. If not great, at least good. If it says something about living — even after the death of one’s loved one– I’ll be happy. I cannot see anyone finding the GU FAMILY BOOK in one episode. So it has to be symbolic. Maybe grieving is part of being human. I so wish we had seen what the actual work of a divine creature was…so — ya know– we (and Kang Chi) could see what all (responsibilities and joys) our semi-divine was giving up.

    Thanks so much for the recap.

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  20. 70 Hyung

    OK…JUST saw the final episode…..

    I’m not going to post any spoilers because i haven’t been posting comments on this site for very long, and i don’t know how everyone feels about that yet, and also because girlfriday (thanks always for the awesome recaps by the way!) hasn’t recapped the final episode yet….

    BUT i will say this:

    This show should have a second season. My reasons for this are:
    1) One of the shows” monikers is “Kang Chi: The beginning” To me this hints at a series.
    2) The way the story progressed almost too slowly to the point of leaving a bunch of loose ends in the final chapter seems to indicate that that the writers/producers are planning on introducing a second season to resolve these issues.
    3)The scenes of the final episode set a VERY SOLID base for a second season.

    If they don’t follow this up with another series, it will go down as one of the BEST kdramas i’ve ever seen (i’m partial to Bae Suzy…what can i say…she’s uber cute), with one of the most annoying, teasing, and half-assed written endings i’ve ever seen.

    Hyung over and out.

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    • 70.1 someone

      no season 2 please….. LSG to smart for that

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  21. 71 shelly

    this was the cliché-ed episode to end all clichés. seriously.

    the baddie kidnaps YW for… nothing. just to make KC run around for a bit. seen that before.
    oh and the writer probably saw the “i’m holding your beloved hostage til you do something for me – like kill that guy or other” in “faith”. TWICE.

    and didn’t i see that ball’o’doom in some other drama before? i think it was “chuno” but i might be wrong. i did definitely see it though…

    and the indiana jones move with the last ninja in KC’s way to YW.

    and even YW’s reaction to the idjit after he saved her.

    to sum it all up, meh.

    NOW, if the one who got shot was YW and – since KC can’t heal her anymore – he speeds her up to visit dad in his gumiho un-dead sleep, then we’re talking of something that might save the ending for me. just sayin’.

    but if gon got shot again and dies this time, i’ll be really mad at someone. let him have his hopeless bodyguard love and leave it at that. he could be big uncle to the next almost-gumiho babies.

    is it me, or did they lose the thread somewhere? the parents’ storyline was really nice, even if it was poorly threaded by the end, but still, that pair was something to talk about. the youngsters’ one – well, it was cute and sometimes a lot of fun, but the messages got all mixed up… did the writer get all fresh out of ideas?

    way NOT to end a promising story :(

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    • 71.1 shelly

      p. s. and another cliche that really annoyed me was the baddie going zorg on me (the one from 5th element).

      i got it – he’s bad and doesn’t need a justification for being bad for bad’s sake… but then why should i care why and what for he did all he did in the series? i really liked his accent, and in the beginning i thought we were going somewhere with him – and then that hope rekindled when SH returned from the dead.

      but zorg, seriously?! ZORG?!

      i don’t even

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    • 71.2 Hyung

      if this was your post about ep 23, i can’t WAIT to see what 24 brings out of you. LOL

      “did the writer get all fresh out of ideas?”

      Either he did and they’re ending the series as it did today…OR…they’re building the base for a second season….

      writers…please….a little more Vampire Prosecutor

      either way…we’ll have to wait and see.

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      • 71.2.1 Hyung

        oops forgot to type the rest:

        “writers…please….a little more Vampire Prosecutor a little less rooftop prince”

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      • 71.2.2 shelly

        i admit, i looked (no subtitles yet, but well. i can imagine what they were saying, and that it was important – and all that.)

        you know what my impression is right now? (aside from giggling non-stop atm?)

        “i am connor macleod from the clan macleod”. or the gumiho version anyway. (i wonder how that would sound – i am the gumiho baby of the gu family?… nah, not epic enough. he’ll have to come up with something at least as impressing as zorro’s Z :D)

        i think everybody kind of gave up after episode 20 :D

        (don’t get me wrong, LSG and suzy are cute together, but that storyline just… dried up so fast. choi jin-hyuk’s wol-ryung kind of stole the show. i wish for a time machine so that we all go back at the beginning of the summer, and the producers/writer/actors all realized what a goldmine the tragic gumiho’s story was, and they told THAT story for 24 eps, to start KC’s story in the next season… *wishing it, wishing it…* ah heck, i still don’t have that power yet. *sigh*)

        i can’t stop imagining a WTF moment in the production crew, when they realized this was not going the direction they wanted it to, and then they decided – cat-like – that they had MEANT that to happen all along.

        *still giggling*

        overall, the ending is not that bad… but seriously, did we go there?! LOL

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        • 71.2.2.1 shelly

          wait wait, i forgot – let’s get together and kidnap gon’s hair stylist. that persons deserves a lengthy, kind’of painful death.

          maybe we should style his or her hair for a change. i have no experience, but i just bet i’d do a better job. EVERY time.

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        • 71.2.2.2 Hyung

          LOL loving the highlander reference. I can kind of agree with the whole “make Wol-Ryung+Seo Hwa story the first season and the Kang-Chi + yeo-Wool the second season” but i’d be worried that like all good things, no sequel would ever trump the original.

          Agreed that LSG and Suzy are cute, but i don’t think they could outperform CJH alone.

          I’m a HUGE LSG fan, i’ve seen all his dramas and i think he’s a very versatile actor. And of course suzy is the cutest…ever. And i was happy to see her acting progressively get better after episode 16.

          But with the way they ended the story….i don’t know…I hope they continue with at least a second season. Don’t make it 24 episodes…i’m happy with 16. But at least have drama EVERY episode. Not like this one that had 1 good thing per episode and then the rest was crap. Episodes 17-21 were the highlight of the show. everything else felt like a filler i think. They dragged on details of too many secondary characters instead of focusing on KC+YW.
          UNLESS, they’re planning on expanding on them with a second season. But with all the channels already booked with shows until the end of the year…i doubt we’ll see a second season anytime soon, if at all.

          Hyung over and out.

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          • 71.2.2.2.1 shelly

            i’m not too sure these charas will return soon – if ever – for a sequel. that kind of open-ending is pretty similar with what they did with arang just this spring and after all… besides the cuteness, what would even compare as a storyline? the writer didn’t invent much for this one – besides the awesomeness of the WR+SH part – let alone have anything saved for the sequel.

            come to think of it, WR+SH is pretty full of clichés itself BUT the main difference is that they actually made all those clichés new again. impossible romance – check; the good guy goes down hard and can’t get back again – check; the bad girl redeems herself and redeems bad (fallen) guy too – check. and it STILL ends tragically.
            \(*o*)/

            what the… gimme that story again (please let hot gumiho daddy it in *making moonshiney eyes at would-be producers*)

            i haven’t yet seen the younger pairing (okay i know CJH is only two years older than LSG, i’m talking about the drama charas / personas) actors in anything else yet, but suzy has a charming little smile (like a little schoolgirl) and i love LSG’s smile too (makes him look so young and innocent.) i’ll be tracking down their previous work after this – i’ve already set aside K2H (just to see what else can he do.)
            but that smile of CJH’s – how did GF or JB put it – the “you smile, i smile” moments – *melts*. i could watch “heirs” only for him, if he gets a good part and they don’t make him completely insipid (like the baddie in this one.) and that little corner-of-the-mouth evil smile of the “dark” WR – that was something else.

            i bet he never shared a stylist with gon :D (seriously, one of the hangups i’m taking from this show is over the hair. i get it, he’s a comical/half-serious support chara mainly there for the bromance (where did THAT go btw?) and the hair is supposed to make him less hot – cause we know girls can’t help but be dazzled with the pretty, and let’s not raise hopes etc LOL)
            but i’ve had rugs with more personality than gon’s hair in all its appearences.
            i’ll never laugh at the mane of glory again. *or not til next time :D*

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          • 71.2.2.2.2 someone

            Sorry to disagree with you but they had too much KC and YW and too much fluff which caused the story to drag. They had one saving the other and then crammed cute down our throats every episode instead of moving the story along, and utilizing LSG with the other actors that could actually act. instead they wrote the show to suit a leads acting abilities, and make sure she got her screen time at the expense of the dramas quality and the expense of the real star of the show. I feel like LSG acted half his scenes alone . And I agree with previous posts CJ character was under used because she out acted SUZY at every turn. And I dont think CHJ can out act LSG, and from the critics articles I have seen, they dont think so either. I am glad you enjoyed watching YW, as for me I am glad that I never have to again. I have done my duty as a die hard LSG fan.

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          • 71.2.2.2.3 shelly

            err, make that “this spring” re: arang, “last year”. somehow i managed to misplace half a year. i don’t even know where it went. that time travel things might not be so sci-fi after all.

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          • 71.2.2.2.4 shelly

            @someone:

            YW wasn’t that bad. the story didn’t use either of them right, imho. too many single tears falling down in the second half of the series, if you ask me, and a lot of them not really caused by any imaginable emotional or any other type of pain. i’d rather they’d have let me cry for them, instead of making me wonder “wth happened NOW” for the nth time :D

            hey, look at it this way: AT LEAST they didn’t have a king or queen or even some small princeling in it :D (did they?)
            there, 100% novelty for a fusion sageuk. or whatever this was.

            i liked the cute moments, but yeah, some actors could act and others were confused by the strange way the story unravelled.

            i also liked the music a lot. i think yisabel’s “my eden” is pretty good, really helps the atmosphere. and there were some other BG themes that didn’t hurt the ears at all.

            i SO wish this had turned out much better than it did. still, it wasn’t all that bad. i’ll see if it passes the test of time. and my sister – she doesn’t watch dramas until they’re done and over with and THEN she passes judgement. *cat-fight time*

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  22. 72 AutumnPurple

    Thanks GF for this recaps.
    Even thought the drama has ended last episode for me (yep, i’m one of those few people that totally invested in WR-SH love story. i’m sorry, don’t hate me for this please.) but 2 more ep won’t kill. off to watch with sub.

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    • 72.1 WrSh

      Long live the Kangdam couple !

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  23. 73 ..

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  24. 74 Emaan

    The only good thing from ep 23 was “He reminds her that he’s Wol-ryung’s son—the guy who fell in love for the first time in a thousand years and then even as a demon could only remember his first love. “That’s my bloodline. We hang onto one woman, live or die.”. This quote! He sounded so happy and proud for being Wolryung’s son. aww!

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    • 74.1 AutumnPurple

      OMG. I squeal like idiot when heard that line. I just happy that he thought about his parent that way..

       (0)


      • 74.1.1 Emaan

        Me too! Lol

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  25. 75 msaamir

    Hish….really the dramakind of dis…….i gave up even the last ep…..

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  26. 76 Julia the Berkshire Beanie

    Pinata Pointlessness and giving up on the GU Family Book which is what the show is named for will be the last impressions? This show died for me with WR.

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  27. 77 msaamir

    Yeah…i try to follow up the drama up till ep 11 or 12…but it like merry go round…..kind of sad and dissapointment…but the show manage to have positive rating……for the villian…i prefer bong gu…he got to ur nerve till the end…even the otp fear him. hahaha .lasting impression…

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  28. 78 Dream

    Seems like there are a lot of negative comments for Ep 23, while I watched it before I read the recap and the comments, I actually feel okay with the way it was. I think the writer nims are trying to set up the final episode and it didn’t seem that wasteful to me.

    Sorry if I am among the minority feeling this way, but Gu Family Book by far is one of my favorite recently. Maybe the storyline wasn’t top-top-notch, but it is top-notch enough for me…and the great acting from the cast certainly help.

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  29. 79 sparkle

    I agree with GF. This episode is BORING! It seems like the only thing that the PD’s got up their sleeves is the old trick of leaving a cliffhanger at the end of the episode. This is getting old!!! UGh!!
    Thank you for the recap, GF. I’m glad that I didn’t have to sit throught this lame episode. I will only watch the last episode because I wanna see JW get killed (hopefully). Kang-Chi, please rip that guy’s heart out for all of the anguish he has bestowed on your biological and adoptive family. Or better yet, Chang-jo can stab JW in the heart. LOL

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  30. 80 mustadir

    ep 23-24 cepat-cepatlah diupload….
    seru ni film

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  31. 81 Abbie

    I agree that this episode was a big disappointment. I really wonder how everything will get tied up in the finale, because NOTHING HAPPENED! What is wrong with this writer? She set up so many good plots and most of them have been dropped or forgotten. There was so much potential here, and it’s just gone. I had such high hopes for this drama, most of which was fulfilled in the Wol-ryung arc, but now, I just don’t know what to think. How could a show with as much potential as this had, go so horribly wrong? And why hasn’t Kang-chi found the Gu Family Book yet? That’s the whole point of the show. It’s in the freaking title!

    Here’s my prediction: Episode 24 will have at least ONE time jump. Thanks to the waste that this episode was, there will have to be. Also, I think Yeo-wool got shot. *sigh* Because we have to put her in yet another life or death situation.

    So disappointed. The finale better be something else, I tell you what. Otherwise, I will have wasted the past 12 weeks on a pointless show.

    Thanks for the recap, regardless, Girlfriday!

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    • 81.1 Pam

      You must have psychic powers! Lol!

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  32. 82 Lilian

    Oh well. the previous episode was already a prelude to the noble idiocy plot but I was still hoping it wouldn’t happen. Yeo Wool was so logical in her explanation! Too bad. Anyway, I don’t think the ending was too much of a cliffhanger. Probably easy to guess thanks to so much time spent on explaining their “fate”

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  33. 83 jademwong

    Am I the only one who thinks the writer ended Papa Gumiho’s storyline too quickly? I thought it was beautiful, having him rest with Seo Hwa, but he could have been useful in this episode (and prob the finale ep too). I was hoping for an epic father/son gumiho teamup to FINALLY get rid of our villains and minions, and maybe a epilogue-ish scene at the end where papa Gumiho teaches Kang Chi how to control the rest of his gumiho abilities.

    That being said, this episode was boring. as. heck. I’m hoping the finale is much better >_>, I agree with all of your points, GF. This episode was just…pointless.

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