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God’s Gift – 14 Days: Episode 2

Hello! I’m solabelly, and I’ll be joining the God’s Gift recapping team. A big thank you to javabeans and girlfriday for this amazing opportunity, and a big thanks and hello to all the readers! Please give me a while to figure out all the ins-and-outs of this blogging thing. I promise to try my best!

This episode is full of suspense, mystery, and action sequences worthy of any blockbuster movie. Plus, the feels! So many feels! Mostly of the ow-my-heart variety, but still, so good! As our heroine races to try to save her young daughter’s life, we get way more questions than answers in our whodunit mystery, and discover that people aren’t always what they seem.

 
EPISODE 2 RECAP

In a tension-filled TV studio, people are in shock as our serial killer taunts the public and the police over live TV, laughing that they’ll never catch him. The host shakily asks how they know for certain that he is who he says he is, since his voice has obviously been altered (creepily). The killer laughs and gives a specific detail concerning the number of stab wounds on his second victim, which Detective Woo-jin confirms.

The killer continues, saying that despite already murdering three women, he’s bored of it and wants to try something new. He then tells someone to speak into the phone and the voice of a scared little girl calls out for her mom. Soo-hyun freezes as she recognizes her daughter’s voice.

As she runs through the studio to grab the phone, the killer next taunts the president, threatening that this little girl will die because of him. By the time Soo-hyun reaches the phone, the killer has already hung up, and people all across the city watch the live broadcast in disbelief.

At the same time, the president is catching up with his son and young family, who are visiting from abroad. Both the president and his wife want their son to return to Korea, but the son demurs. An aide interrupts and turns on the TV. As the president sees the news of Saet-byul’s kidnapping, his face turns grim.

Back at the studio, Woo-jin questions Saet-byul’s nanny and Mina, the assistant that was watching Saet-byul at the time of her disappearance. Neither of them saw anything suspicious. The police then check the building’s CCTVs and Soo-hyun cries as she spies her daughter’s last recorded moments, happily running toward her nanny.

Back at their home the next day, Soo-hyun and her husband Ji-hoon wait by the phone hoping the kidnapper will call. Woo-jin and his team of detectives surround them, having set up base in their living room.

Woo-jin suggests that Ji-hoon be the one to answer the call, and coaches him on how to keep the kidnapper talking long enough so that the police can trace the call. In a daze, Soo-hyun dejectedly wonders if the kidnapper will actually contact them. His motives were political, not about money, weren’t they?

The phone rings. Ji-hoon answers and that same altered voice demands 2 billion won by 2 PM the next day. Full of emotions, Ji-hoon berates the caller. How does he know if this is the real kidnapper? How does he know if his daughter is still alive? Until he gets to speak to her, he says that he won’t negotiate, and hangs up.

The cops shake their heads in disappointment and Soo-hyun freaks out, crying that if he’s angered the kidnapper and he kills Saet-byul, it’ll be all his fault.

The phone rings again, and this time Soo-hyun answers. She asks if Saet-byul is all right, if she’s alive, and says that she’ll pay the ransom. The altered voice just repeats that he wants 2 billion won delivered by the next day and hangs up. The cops sigh in frustration again, saying that the trace was unsuccessful.

Later, two detectives take a break outside, scoffing that the killer was just bluffing about this kidnapping being a political act; it was about money after all. The eavesdropping security guard butts in, asking if the kidnapper really did call demanding ransom, making the off-handed comment that this family had that other strange money issue in the past as well. The detectives’ ears perk up at that last bit, and they ask him to clarify.

Which leads to, of course, Dong-chan getting stopped by the detectives on his way home. He gets pushed into a waiting cop car, with no idea why.

Back at the house, the police prepare Ji-hoon for the ransom exchange, while Soo-hyun sits in her daughter’s room, thinking back to happier times.

It flashes us back to a cute exchange where Soo-hyun had found a handmade “wedding picture” of Saet-byul and her celebrity crush, Te-ho, lead singer of the band Snake. Mortified, Saet-byul had chastised her mom for going through her things, vowing to put a lock on her private box.

Soo-hyun stares at that same box now and tries to open the little lock to no avail. Downstairs, Ji-hoon, Woo-jin and the other detectives wait for the kidnapper to call. But instead of the phone, someone rings the doorbell.

It’s a package for Soo-hyun. Ji-hoon goes up to tell her to sign for it, asking if she remembers ordering anything. She doesn’t, but heads downstairs anyway. Hm, suspicious.

Under the watchful eye of ALL the detectives (ha), a nervous delivery man gets Soo-hyun’s signature and hands her her package. When both their hands are holding onto the bottom of the box, he discreetly taps her finger to alert her to his actual delivery: a small note.

While the cops are busy inspecting the box, she goes upstairs to read the ransom note. It states all the obvious: the kidnapper wants her to ditch the cops, and come to a park near the Han River for the ransom exchange.

Woo-jin comes in just then, and Soo-hyun hides the note while he apologizes for being so strict with police procedure and tells her to get some rest.

Later, Soo-hyun makes her way downstairs and faints in front of everyone, and gets rushed to the hospital. But when Ji-hoon goes to check on her, he finds the hospital bed empty. I knew it!

Soo-hyun sneaks out to the bank and frantically stuffs stacks of money into a paper bag. She’s so frazzled that people stare, and when she runs out the door, a bank manager calls the police…

…Which is how Woo-jin and his team are able to catch up to her as she makes her way to the park. They’re already set up to keep watch over the situation as Soo-hyun scans the park for the kidnapper. A hidden phone rings, and Soo-hyun fishes it out of the garbage and answers it, only to have the kidnapper scream that he told her to ditch the cops.

Soo-hyun swears that she came alone, but spies Woo-jin and the other detectives nearby, and immediately starts apologizing and begging for another chance. The kidnapper tells her to head to the neighboring subway station and jump on a train to lose the cops. She takes off running, and the detectives scramble to chase after her.

She slides under turnstiles like a pro and manages to jump on the train just seconds before the doors close behind her, leaving Woo-jin panting on the platform. He spots her through the window just as the train pulls away. Soo-hyun is instructed to get off at the next stop, and as she exits the train, the kidnapper tells her to stop moving and wait right where she is.

He then tells her to turn around slowly. And there, across the tracks, stands a man dressed in black, his hand covering the mouth of a young girl so that she can’t cry for help. Saet-byul!

The kidnapper then tells Soo-hyun to head back up the stairs to meet in the hallway connecting the two station platforms. She complies, and once there, the kidnapper approaches. Alone.

The man comes closer and grabs the bag of money from Soo-hyun’s hands. Once he disappears down the subway steps, Soo-hyun runs toward the other platform. Saet-byul is still standing there, her back to her. Soo-hyun runs to her and whirls the girl around…

Only, it’s not Saet-byul! Soo-hyun stands there in shock, as the random young girl just looks up at her and cries.

Finally snapping to attention, Soo-hyun spins around and runs after the kidnapper. He’s her only lead! She can’t let him escape! He jumps on a train, and she manages to just barely get on before the doors close. She only has until the next stop to find him on the packed train, and pushes through the crowd with increasing panic.

Just as the train pulls into the next stop, she finally pushes her way into the first car and catches up to the kidnapper. She grabs him just in time.

She hurls herself onto his legs as he tries to exit the train car, and they both stumble onto the platform. Other commuters just stare as the kidnapper kicks and punches Soo-hyun brutally to get her off of him. But she won’t let go, and clings to him with frightening determination, all the while screaming for her daughter. It is… intense.

The cops finally catch up to them, and the kidnapper gets put into handcuffs as Soo-hyun collapses into Woo-jin’s arms.

Meanwhile Dong-chan is released from jail, griping that the cops have nothing better to do than harass him. He stops to look at Saet-byul’s Missing Child poster, and sighs that he hopes she’s okay.

Later at home, he turns on the TV to see a news story about the death of a familiar face: that crazy homeless grandpa who kept bothering him. Dong-chan is surprised to hear that the old man is dead, but gets an even bigger shock when the news reports that this man was actually CHU BYUNG-HO, a rich CEO who in death donated his entire fortune of 10 billion won to charity.

Recalling that that was the exact amount that the old man had promised Dong-chan in exchange for turning his life around, Dong-chan begins to connect the dots, and wails at the thought of all the money that could’ve been his.

After getting treated at the hospital, Soo-hyun asks Ji-hoon to take her to the TV studio. Since the people who had tried to extort a ransom out of them were just scam artists looking to make some money, Soo-hyun decides that she needs to try to reach out to the real kidnapper, since he hasn’t tried to contact them even once.

Live, on-air, Soo-hyun addresses the kidnapper from a darkened studio. She apologizes for her show’s segment about him, drawing unwanted attention, and begs him to forgive her–it wasn’t personal, it was just work.

She then describes Saet-byul as a kind and thoughtful child, and apologizes again for disrupting his life, and swears that anything that she has ever said, or anything that her husband has ever said doesn’t mean anything. The president? Psh, they don’t like him, they didn’t vote for him, and they don’t agree with any of his politics. Soo-hyun and her husband, like the rest of Korea she’s sure, agree wholeheartedly with all of the kidnapper’s ideals.

She continues, begging for her daughter, asking him to take her instead, and it is so gut-wrenching and raw. As she falls to her knees and breaks down even more, off-stage Ji-hoon cries, as does everyone else (including me, SOB).

Just then, the news comes in. A bloody shoe and bag believed to belong to Han Saet-byul have been discovered in the woods. As the directors scramble to get the news out of sight, both Soo-hyun and Ji-hoon see the headline scroll across the bottom of the screen. The director tells his staff to cut to something else, but just then, Soo-hyun stands up and addresses the kidnapper once more.

With the cameras still rolling, Soo-hyun vows that if even one hair on her daughter’s head has been messed with, she will follow the killer to hell and rip him to pieces. She’s coming for him, no matter what.

At the same time, Dong-chan sits at a club, drinking away his sorrows over having lost 10 billion won. Next to him, some drunks see Soo-hyun on TV and laugh at her misfortune.

Being a human being with feelings, Dong-chan calls the drunks out on their horrible behavior and it quickly turns into a big fight, with Dong-chan getting dragged outside and pushed up against a large clothes donation bin in the alleyway. Dong-chan’s alone against the four mean drunks, but he gives it his all, saying that he totally needed to relieve some stress today.

Cut to the next morning, and Dong-chan wakes in his bed, completely hung-over. Only when he runs to the bathroom to puke does he notice the blood on his sleeve, and the scrapes on his face. He wonders what happened the night before as bits and pieces of his brawl slowly come back to him.

He curses the drunks for messing with his pretty face (heh), and tries to clean up as best he can. As he throws his bloodied shirt into the wash, his co-workers bang on his front door. As he goes to let them in, the camera pans down again to the bloody sleeve of his shirt, I wonder… whose blood is that?

Dong-chan’s co-workers, Jenny and Byung-tae, laugh at his ability to always find his way home no matter how drunk he gets. They tell him that it’s time to get to work because the cheating husband they’ve been hired to catch is with his girlfriend at a motel right now.

Said couple are indeed in a motel room, and Dong-chan barges in with a camera. He takes picture after picture, until the cheating husband literally jumps on top of him, and they both fall to the ground.

Something in Dong-chan’s back pocket pokes him, and as he fights with the angry husband, he fishes out a little girl’s hair pin and flings it into the large fish tank in the room. Uh-oh. That can’t be good.

Back at Soo-hyun’s house, Woo-jin returns the found items and yes, they belonged to Saet-byul. Soo-hyun silently grabs the bags from Woo-jin and heads upstairs. While she sobs, Woo-jin tells Ji-hoon that he thinks it’s best if they prepare themselves for the worst-case scenario.

It’s early morning, and a lone fisherman on a quiet lake pulls up a little red sneaker. As he sighs, a body bobs up to the surface.

Ji-hoon looks over crime scene photos of a small shack where his daughter was held, as Woo-jin explains how she died. Originally the police thought that she was tossed into the lake after being murdered, but autopsy reports revealed that the cause of death was drowning. Therefore, the police think that Saet-byul fell into the lake and drowned while attempting to escape, a full 7 days after her kidnapping.

Soo-hyun arrives at the crime scene, but falls apart before she even passes through the crowd of reporters and onlookers. Ji-hoon is already past the police tape, and sobs over the body of their dead child.

At a press conference, the president comments on Saet-byul’s murder. He expresses his sadness over her death and vows to do everything in his power to catch the killer. He promised the nation a strong, tough government, and he’s going to show this crazy killer just how strong he and the people of Korea can be. GAME ON.

Before the reporters can ask him for specifics, the president leaves the podium and his Minister of Justice, LEE MYUNG-HAN, addresses the audience. It has been decided: the government will be bringing back the death penalty, and there will be an execution soon. As a wave of surprise runs through the room he continues: he, personally, will choose the death row inmates set for execution.

Dong-chan’s brother Dong-ho quietly sits in his jail cell and looks out the window up at the night sky, while Dong-chan dreams of his tortured past. A man walks through a swamp, carrying the body of a dead woman. As the man drops the body into the swamp, Dong-chan’s voice cries out for his brother to stop.

Next, we see Dong-chan in court, testifying as a witness against his brother. The prosecutor asks him if it’s true that he saw his brother dispose of a dead body, and while his mother and brother both plead with sad eyes, Dong-chan wavers, but in the end answers yes. As the crowd murmurs in shock and his brother looks at him in surprise, Dong-chan wakes up, sweat streaming down his face.

Soo-hyun sits in Saet-byul’s room, going through her daughter’s belongings. She finds the locked box again, but this time, the lock pops open in her hand. A bit surprised, Soo-hyun digs through the box to find it full of pictures of Saet-byul’s crush, Te-oh.

Next Soo-hyun discovers Saet-byul’s diary. As she reads a few entries, tears fall from her face. Inside the little diary, Saet-byul had expressed all of her innermost thoughts, fears and troubles. She discusses being an outcast at school, and how she worries that she isn’t living up to her mother’s expectations of her. She also mentions her friendship with Young-gyu, and her disappointment over how her mother treated her only friend harshly. Overcome with guilt, Soo-hyun closes the diary and apologizes for making Saet-byul feel that way.

Outside the villa, Young-gyu waits for Saet-byul. The pesky guard comes by and tries to tell him to leave, softening a bit and trying to explain that Saet-byul is in heaven now. But Young-gyu doesn’t waver. No, Saet-byul isn’t dead and he’s going to wait for her. Saddened, the guard relents and leaves him in peace.

Soo-hyun wakes from a nap to find Ji-hoon packing up some of Saet-byul’s belongings. They fight, and he argues that they have to move on, and she refuses to discuss anything or let him take away any of Saet-byul’s things.

Ji-hoon storms out of the house for work and calls her to say that he won’t be coming back. He knows how she feels; he lost a child too. And while he knows that it’s not rational and that it’s not really her fault, he can’t help but blame her for Saet-byul’s death. If she hadn’t gone off with her first love that day to reminisce, and had been with Saet-byul the entire time, none of this would have happened. All Soo-hyun can do is cry.

Later at his office, Ji-hoon goes through his mail and opens an envelope. Inside are pictures which aren’t shown to us, but judging from his face, they’re not good.

Dong-chan heads home and gets a call from Jenny. She’s frantic and warns him to run, as it turns out that the woman he slept with the other night while drunk is the wife of a scary mob boss. Dong-chan can’t understand what she’s saying, and then steps inside and runs right into a roomful of thugs and their boss. Mob Boss tells Dong-chan he knows that he slept with his wife, and that now he has to die, adding the complaint: “My wife won’t sleep with me after you because she says sleeping with me is too boring!”

Dong-chan stammers for an excuse and begs for his life, but the gang members just laugh. Dong-chan creates a distraction by throwing the carton of eggs in his hands, and manages to run out of the apartment. He hides in a large clothing donation bin, as the gangsters run around looking for him.

While there, he gets a call from his cop friend, who delivers some terrible news. His brother Dong-ho is set to be executed later today. That stops Dong-chan in his tracks, and the gangsters find him. He sighs into the phone, “There’s nothing to be done.”

Soo-hyun takes a bus back to the lake where Saet-byul drowned, and misses a call from Ji-hoon. He’s also going somewhere in his car, and he leaves her a message. He knows who killed Saet-byul. And he’s going to kill him with his own two hands.

Woah.

Soo-hyun makes it to the small shack that was her daughter’s prison and cries over the cot where her daughter was forced to spend her last days. Soo-hyun wishes she could turn back time, and then walks outside to the lake in a daze.

At the same time, Dong-ho is retrieved from his cell and led to a room with a noose. When he realizes what’s about to happen, he pees his pants and cries out, begging to be saved.

Dong-chan is, by chance, dragged to the very same lake where Soo-hyun is standing. The gangsters tie a cinder block to his feet and tie his hands, ready to throw him to his death.

He begs them to spare his life, and spies Soo-hyun across the way. Dong-chan screams at her to call the police, but Soo-hyun just turns away, lost in her thoughts. She stares at the lake and tells Saet-byul not to worry anymore. She won’t be cold, scared, and alone for much longer. “Mommy’s coming.”

Dong-ho hangs. Dong-chan gets thrown into the lake and gets pulled down by the cinder block. And Soo-hyun takes off her shoes and dives in. She just lets the water envelop her, sinking further and further down all the way to the bottom.

COMMENTS

Um, wow. Just wow. That was kind of intense, huh? Let’s all take a moment to breathe some deep breaths and get back to normal. Phew. This episode did a great job of moving our story along in a smart and suspenseful way, and along with the some beautiful camerawork, it felt just like watching a mini action movie. I’m loving the tone of this drama, which is just very understated and genuine, allowing for all those gut-wrenching emotions to pop even more.

The story is suspenseful and intense, and does a great job with exciting action sequences AND heartfelt emotions. It really is a great mix of both, so that the entire time, I’m just a big ball of nerves. Whether I’m on the edge of my seat as someone chases someone else, or cringing over a beat down (Soo-hyun vs. the fake kidnapper at the train station was kinda hard to watch, yeah?), or sobbing along with a character and their grief, just oof.

At the heart, though, is the emotion. While the action and suspense are great (and also important to this story), what I’m most enjoying is all the different character studies. Take our poor grieving parents, Soo-hyun and Ji-hoon, for example. Ultimately, this is Soo-hyun’s story, but I appreciate how this episode gave us a few moments to see Ji-hoon’s grief too. It’s different from Soo-hyun’s, but that doesn’t mean that it’s any less valid.

I think because he was painted as the perfect husband and father, and has literally been in the background to Soo-hyun’s grief, standing behind the scenes while she let out her angst, it was easy to forget that he also lost his child. So I’m glad the show reminded us that he, too, needed to grieve, and gave him the chance to let out his emotions. When Ji-hoon called Soo-hyun to blame her for their daughter’s death, yes it was mean and hurtful, but it was truthful. He said it himself that he knew it wasn’t rational to blame her, and that he knew it wasn’t really her fault, but he couldn’t help but feel what he felt. It was very honest and real, and showed us that maybe there is something more behind his perfect façade.

So what is behind that façade? Who knows? We got a small glimpse, but again, it gave us more questions than answers. What were those pictures of? Why did they upset Ji-hoon so much? Who sent them? And is this photo-sender really responsible for Saet-byul’s death?

Lee Bo-young, of course, once again knocks it out of the park with her performance. She just gives it her all. So much so that I actually felt Soo-hyun’s desperation and guilt and hope in all that she did. When she went on TV to reach out to the serial killer, she just put it all out there. That wasn’t just one mother’s love and desperation and grief, it was just raw emotion. And I loved how the show played out that scene: with minimal visuals and absolutely no background music. Sob.

Of course, in the end, the ransom kidnapper turned out to be a fake (the first red herring out of many, I’m sure), but did help the show introduce surprise elements in the chase. I’m looking forward to seeing how this show will incorporate the supernatural/magic/Fate element into our story. (Because Dong-ho, Dong-chan, and Soo-hyun can’t all die right now, amiright?)

Obviously, there is some kind of magical or fated connection between Soo-hyun’s family and Dong-chan’s family. But what is it? And will Dong-chan also be given the chance to redeem his life? I hope so, because like the others, his character is very genuine, real, and complex. Sure, he pretends to be… more sleazy than good, but we’ve seen bits and pieces that suggest otherwise. There was obviously some horrible family trauma in the past (Did his brother really murder someone? Or did he just happen to find the body and move it?), that I’m sure we’ll eventually get the answers to.

I mean, I’m sure they’ll give us a zillion questions before they give us the answers, but that’s all part of the fun, right?

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Thanks so much for your recap.

Am really loving this. I might have to rewatch the first two episodes because there must be clues galore. Weird though that Big Bad has so many cronies or convenient opportunists around to help him with the kidnaping.

I have to say that I loooooooove Saet Byul. I know some folks are kinda hating on the kid or the writer for the way they depicted the kid. But I taught in the school system and there really are kids like this. She seems to have a little ADD and is on the social aptitude scale which means people are more important to her than learning. She would make a great social worker when she grows up and YES I said it WHEN she grows up. We're gonna have a happy ending. And inmate will be proven innocent, hyung will become rich and powerful from old geezers money (or will be put in jail for crimes he did while he was drunk) and Saet Byul will be alive again. And whatever that secret was will be out in the open.

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Whaaaa?

Who on earth is hating on the little girl??? That's so ridiculous.

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what the above commenter said was right, there were some comments on previous ep page where some commenters were criticizing the little girl saying things like ' she's stupid to trust strangers or dance with the intruders, also some were saying if she doesn't like English classes, doesn't like violin classes etc; what does she like then?, in my opinion all those comments were stupid to say the least, she even gave the reasons to her mom about why she hate those classes and it was a very solid reasons too.

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The comments weren't stupid. Maybe a bit assuming and even a bit arrogrant but not stupid. Everyone has different experiences from which they draw from and formulate their own opinions.

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arrogant*

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I do think the comments of the person who called the child "stupid" CAN be called stupid comments. If someone calls a kind of person "stupid" then that someone's comments may be called "stupid" as well. That's how etiquette works. When a person breaks a rule for others, then the brokkenness of the rule applies to the person as well. I think that's only logical and fair.

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When you put it that way I can see what you mean and I agree.

My comment was more in reference to those who said they found the child's behavior as annoying or silly or that she needed more discipline as opposed to those who simply called the child stupid.

I hope that clears up some things. :-)

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This is a response to three comments from two different commenters, Megumi and Carole McDonnell. I was unsure where to reply, so I'm chucking my responses here for lack of a better option.

Hi Megumi! I think I might be one of the people you're referring to (#14 on Episode 1). I said that she was 'such a muppet for a nine-year-old. Don’t play with the home invaders, for goodness sake!'

There might be some misunderstanding here, as 'muppet' is a British term of endearment more than anything else - roughly meaning 'silly person'. I did not call Saet-byul stupid at any point.

However, I stand by my opinion that playing with Dong-chan and the gang was a foolish thing to do. She may very well be a trusting child with a pure heart who does not fear or suspect the possible hidden motives of others, but she should not have trusted these strangers who had broken into her home. Of course they could have been nice people - and thank goodness they were - but on what grounds should she have let her guard down? She was alone as her nanny had gone to run errands (aka play Go-Stop). She did not know these people. Her parents were at work, so the strangers could not have been acquaintances of theirs. These people had therefore broken into her house, and were therefore criminals. If she stayed she would have been alone with them for a good long while, until her nanny returned. Instead, she should have immediately run to the nearest responsible adult (preferably the security ahjusshi), or at the very least call one using the phone hanging around her neck. I do not believe that such thinking is beyond a nine-year-old.

Saet-byul is a sweetheart for being kind to strangers, but unquestioningly playing with strangers who broke into your home - whilst you are alone and defenceless - is a different story.

Maybe I'm too much of a jaded cynic to see it any other way, so naturally you can disagree with me. But I wanted to state my argument and clear my name.

Hey Carole! I also stated that I thought Saet-byul was trusting to an unrealistic extent. Evidently I do not have your depth of experience, so thanks for correcting me. On the other hand, I heartily disagree with your comment #1.1.1.1.2, when you state that a person can be called stupid if they call someone else stupid,† and that by extension a person who breaks a rule can therefore have that rule be freely flouted with regards to them. That is in no way how etiquette works, nor is it logical and fair. In fact, that paints a horrific vision of society. Of course, I could take your reasoning to its logical extremes - validating capital punishment or rapists being raped, for example - but even on the small scale it is repellent. Using your own example: once a child calls another child stupid, it's okay for the second child to call the first stupid. Once a person uses racial slurs, he can be the target of racism too.

Obviously this is wrong. What is logical and fair is to rise above the 'breaking of the rule', and to instead teach rule-breakers so they understand that their actions were wrong, thereby avoiding such actions in the future. Because logically, applying your argument would cause society to degenerate into a vicious cycle of vengeance, where it is possible to condone wrong-doing.

†To be completely precise, you stated that 'If someone calls a kind of person “stupid” then that someone’s comments may be called “stupid” as well'. I simplified this for legibility, but...

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This got way longer and much more serious than I intended.

I blame chimek.

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I did not notice that my comment #1.1.1.1.4 got cut off, sorry.

(Cont.)

I simplified this for legibility, but I believe that my 'translation' holds, since it fits with your general argument.

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Yes. I was very very very very offended by that comment. As a mom, as someone who has been surrounded by kids. I was surprised. True she said she had never had children, but that doesn't excuse it.

There are mental health issues that are obvious. Obviously learning-disabled, obviously mentally-challenged, obviously-emotionally-damaged. And there are behaviors that are not so easily seen. Whether something is obvious as in the case as Young-gyu, semi-obvious as in the case of the on-and-off emotional-instability of the inmate, or totally non-obvious as in the case of most people out there...we can't judge people too easily...esepecially if we aren't well-acquainted with children. We can't judge evil that easily either.

I suspect there are people watching this drama who will be challenged by its portrayal of mental health issues and who will want to believe that mentally-ill people are "evil" and I hope the writer shows them how wrong it is to easily judge people.

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Uhh, I think that was me. I don't recall calling her "stupid" - I was slightly tired while writing the comments, so I might have thrown it there. I did express though my disliking towards her.

From my point of view, I found it off how she seems not to get along with anyone, yet at the same time, she is so naive and trustful of strangers. If you wouldn't manage to form any friendships, your confidence would take a blow and you would feel more reluctant to get close to other people.

Her behavior suggests she is extrovert (sociable, talkative, etc.), but on the other hand, the way she keeps all her suffering for herself, just writing everything down in her diary suggests she is an introvert. By the way, I wonder if when the mother read the diary, the writing was correct. That would be quite interesting, since whenever her mother is around her or during tests, she seems to get the spelling wrong.

It's not just about school, it's just that I don't see her inclined towards anything. I might have been harsh, so I apologize to those who felt angered by my comments (if you were talking about me), since they have more experience than me in dealing with children.

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Good point! Was the writing grammatical? If so, I wonder what the little girl is struggling with that she would fake bad grades and fake that she was struggling with school (almost like the one character in Golden Rainbow).

Could she be craving attention? Her parents seem busy enough. Could it be that like some kids she acts out to get the attention of her parents (I think I remember reading this in one of my child psychology textbooks)?

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Am not sure if it was you but there was definitely way too much judging of a child's supposed intelligence going on.

I think Saet Byul said the children disliked her, not the other way around. And such things do happen in kids' lives...they are disliked by fellow students for no reason that they know of. Or they are too immature for their peers. Or their peers sense a subtle "non-normative" way about them.

At that age, if you are naive or in anyway non-conforming to other kids, your classmates will dislike you. Because you don't have the communication skill that other kids have, or because you do something other kids don't understand. One should also not discount the horrible truth that if a teacher dislikes a kid, then the other kids pick up on it. It just seems to me that Saet Byul can get along with people who seem to be slightly different from the norm. For whatever reason, she helps the weak and needy. Perhaps because she identifies with them.

Most kids that age are also pretty naive. Cynicism is not part of a kid's make-up no matter how much parents warn them. There have been tons of studies to show that no matter how much parents warn kids against strangers, kids often just will "help" a stranger if a stranger approaches them.

I guess what I'm saying is there is no such thing as a "normal" or "perfect" child, and the heroine was trying to not see the uniqueness of her daughter by pushing her into classes that were "required." Veering away from the norm is what is considered abnormal in some circles and it seems the writer is talking about a society where those who don't fit in are forced to conform. If we see that, we will not judge the child but we will judge the people who seek to conform others to the norm -- even if they are good moms. Or good drama commenters.

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To people wondering what SB like, she probably likes guitar. I kept thinking she should play that and not violin.

My question is: why are the retarded men given bowl cuts? Is that a thing in Korea, or just to show they are someone underdeveloped or what? I somehow found it very offensive.

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I never criticized her publicly but I do think Saet Byul was really irritating. I'm probably just being ignorant about children but she never listened to her mom, didn't obey instructions, etc. So while I do think that her actions indirectly led to her death, I don't think that she deserved that death.

This is just my opinion. I did dislike her but I also wish that she returns.

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Regardless of whether or not you like or dislike the little gal, she is a real child.
You will in fact meet that kind of child in the real world, and for those that work closely with children will understand.
Plus, I hardly think 9 year olds should be judged on their likes/dislikes and behaviors at such a young age.
When i was 9 i liked to sit at home and play video games while munching on chips. I didn't give a rats ass about school except friends. I had no logic behind my actions. At that age you can be curious, emotional, immature, and unsure.. Many can honestly say they grew up to be completely different individuals from when they were 9.
For there even to be judgement on the little girl is puzzling to say the least.

Yes, perhaps some of her actions would then make her fall prey to kidnapping, but that's the whole point of this show guys. Without that we'd have no story, no show.

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EXACTLY.

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Well said, ilikemangos.

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I found Saet Byul's character to be refreshing. She seemed more real than the other 'darling' children portrayed.

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Hey there, Daydreamer!

I suspect the heroine is like a lot of viewers -- and the viewers are like the heroine. There is this belief that there are perfect children. Just as Dong Chan's mother believes in her son. And folks who think a child in a drama (or in real life) is stupid or not behaving "normally" are probably going to be seriously surprised when they have a kid who doesn't do what they think a kid should.

Let's face it, some folks have kids who don't like studying. And some folks have kids who are way too naive or way too friendly. And the viewers and the heroine will have to learn how to deal with the "imperfect" people in the world who "embarrass" them.

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Hey Carole! How have you been?

I agree with what you've said and would like to add that really, children are very much unpredictable and uninhibited. They would not know what is "normal" and do as they wish. Ironically, Saet Byul seemed "normal" to me in that she doesn't like studying (which kid ever does??), is focused on making friends, and is generally nice and receptive to those who treat her well.

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Certainly an interesting episode and a good recap of it. Clears some of the things that I couldn't understand b4 (If you get what I mean)

Well for now the only question that I can thinkk of right of the bat is Was the shop Owner from the previous episode who warns the Heroine to beware water can she be another version of Lee Bo Young from the future that is. I mean at the end of this episode LBY is planning on committing suicide to join her daughter who also met her doom in water (was left there no matter where she was killed)

On the other hand it seems that LBY seems exhausted because she looks a bit of to me from when I last saw her in a drama. I guess working hard and married life may be getting to her. So all that I can say keep up the good work and gain some more energy coz you are going to need it, (or is this just me?)

anyway thats all for now until i can recall something else. till then hope to read all your comments soon :)

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Oh, yeah, the Destiny shop owner. What is her role from here? She didn't appear in this ep, but her warning came true. Water - no good will come of it. Remember, her shop opened that day. Is it even real?

The other thought I had is when Soo hyun was reading Saet byul's diary, I thought for sure she would somehow blame or tie Young gyu's friendship with SB to her disappearance.

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Interesting theory. Personally, I don't think the shop owner is Soo Hyun herself from the future. Just that maybe she is an actual stranger who can see the future at times. Who knows. We'd have to watch how the time-travelling works out. Hopefully it's well conceptualized like Nine's was and not disappointing like Mirae's Choice was.

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Welcome to the World of recapping and thankyou for your comments :)
Hope to read a whole lot more from you and your thoughts. Remember I will be keeping my Eye on You from now on. :)

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oh my!!! I hadn't thougt of alternate futures. John Smith, you are sooo good!

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First of all I want to say that I am sorry for responding quite late had some matters to take care of and also had some problems with the net at my end.
Secondly I want to thank you for the wonderful compliment. That means a lot. One of my dreams was to become a writer sadly I am far to lazy to actually implement any of my ideas on final form. I do start but either am to lazy to continue or sometimes run out of ideas. :( If I knew any good writers I would have actually bothered to sit down with them and discuss points sadly that is never going to happen. The closest that I came to it was noting facts with one of my english teachers when I was in school but that was ages ago. :( We did come up with some good ideas but I had to leave the place due to certain issues thus I even misplaced my story that for a change I worked really hard on.

Doesn't help that I am to much into Sci-Fi and was just coincidentally finished watching a marathon of some STAR TREK episodes esp the ones in TOS and the Time Machine movie when I came across this drama. So some of the ideas may have come from there. :)

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My theory is that the shop owner also lost her daughter and got to rewind time but couldn't save her. Hence the emphasis on the photographs.

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Good theory Julia. I highly doubt that the shop owner could be a future Soo Hyun since there is a picture of the shop owner with her own daughter. I think your thoughts might be more plausible.

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But doesn't the shop owner also say that one of them must disappear at the end? That it's in her destiny, that she can't run from it, only fight it? Is she hinting at the fact that Soo Hyun needs to sacrifice herself in order to save her daughter? Would going back in time save her daughter, but with the price of her own life?

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Thanks to all of you from commenting over here and yes some of you also had good ideas out there. Will have to reconsider some more thoughts that I had. :)
Also thanks for bringing some details to my attention that I sadly missed :)

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Oh my gosh, forgot to greet you, Solabelly. Glad to meet you! Off to read your recap.

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Welcome solabelly adn THANK YOU for joining the recaps of God's Gift!

I thought that there couldn't be a drama like YFAS (as in sucking me into its world from the very beginning) that soon but man was I wrong^^

God's Gift has me fully invested and I swear when a drama makes me cry with episode 2... That means it's good! Or more importantly LBY is good (and gorgeous might I add)! That speech to the kidnapper just killed me inside!

There were so many great moments and I just hope that the drama will do the whole jump back in time right!

I absolutely LOVE the cinematography andI have never before seen a drama that looks so much like I'm watching a movie. It's awesome!

Here's for some cruel weeks with I guess a lot of thrill, supense and tears!

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Welcome Solabelly and thank you for the recap! Well done! Looking forward to reading more from you.
I honestly couldn't make it through this episode. It was toooo intense!! I'm kind of sad about the situation between the parents. I wish in the end they come together and find comfort in each other.
I have no idea where this drama is going but I look forward to seeing how everything plays out.

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Welcome, solabelly!

I thaought this drama "watched" like a blockbuster movie, too. It has the pace, suspense, and acting of a good movie and I was absolutely spellbound by it all. I was totally blown away at the raw honesty of Soo hyun's husband's feelings toward her - that he blamed her for being distracted by her first love and how she didn't escort Saet-byul to her aunt. Wow. It felt so real. I felt so deeply hurt for them both as parents who lost their child.

By the way, is there a significance to 49 days mourning?

The other scene that was unbelievable powerful was the way Soo Hyun held onto the legs of the supposed abductor when she caught him getting off the subway. Wow, such a super adrenaline burst of desperation and will. Bo Young's acting is over the top.

What does Young gyu know?

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I totally get the husband when he started to blame his wife(even if i didn't like it) -- he's mourning too and people start to look for things to blame as means of coping.. Thing is.. At a time like this the most important thing is to stand by each other's side. They both need each others support. Telling a grieving mother who just lost her child that she caused it is not exactly the smartest thing to say. I don't know if they'll still end up married after all this gets resolved, but saet byuls death will surely shift the dynamic in their marriage..

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Well, she did close to the same thing when he hung up the phone. Said it would be his fault if she died. Which obviously it wouldn't have been. I don't think you are supposed to like either thing, but you can understand why they felt like that.

As for their marriage, I wonder how much she really loves him in the first place. She didn't see too over the ex yet. With everything going on, I'm not too interested in romance though.

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" With everything going on, I’m not too interested in romance though."

Yeah, this show is a show i don't really expect any romance from, neither do I think it needs it. The story is quite compelling on its own with a good plot that keeps things moving along.

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Right, kdrama isn't synonymous with romance although it often seems that way as it is often the storyline plot (the whole point, actually) in many kdramas. This is a good example where it is not necessarily needed to make the story compelling.

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yeah...8 years after the break up.... I will of course assume that Saet Byul isn't the X's child. Am thinking the marriage is kinda not gonna survive...but for other reasons...like maybe that secret no one wanted Writer Kim to know.

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Glad you brought up the secret nobody wants her to know, because I have my own theory about that: Maybe Mina is having an affair with Soo-hyun's husband and got pregnant. He beat her (the bruises on her arm in episode 1) and told her to get an abortion. She refused. That is when Soo-hyun came in. I thought Mina seemed really shifty when Soo-hyun asked her about it. Soo-hyun blamed it on some producer, while Mina said nothing to contradict her. Maybe I'm reaching, but I wouldn't be too surprised if that is all somehow tied to Saet-byul's kidnapping, if it's even true. Just a theory.

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Ugh, an affair would be too obvious/easy..
BUT you bring up a nice insight about the whole Mina thing.. i hadn't even realized that.
Because i'm wondering what the writer's purpose in creating a character who got an abortion and was physically abused.. Although the whole abuse thing seems out of character with the husband..ynever know.

Then, an interesting conflict for hubby would then be that would also have had an indirect hand in the kidnapping (by calling mina out when she shouldve taken saet byul all the way to the grandma) and to make up for his guilt he could be blaming his wife... thus the whole "if you had walked saet byul out yourself..."

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There's a lot of sub-text here about folks jumping to conclusion and judging other folks, isn't there?

Heroine assumes she knows who father of aborted child is. Heroine assumes she knows who would be a good friend for her daughter. Heroine even acts upon her judgment and slaps an innocent person. Then there is gansta-hero who assumes the old man is homeless. There are a lot of instances of judging by appearances inside this drama. And apparently, outside.

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Perhaps the re-occuring theme would then be quite simple: things are not what they seem, do not judge a book by its cover..

So many characters are going to pay for it..

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I do find myself wondering how the genetic issues work with that family. Father and Son both have issues...so ... who is/where is Young gyu's mom?

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I have been wondering this as well.

1. Where is the mother?

2. Is the father really mentally disabled or is he just putting on a really good show even when know one is looking?

3. Could Young-Gyu be an adopted son (Ex. Can You Hear My Heart; Maru being adopted by his uncle....)?

4. Considering the shallowness of some humans, would a woman lay with a man who was handicapped or was she handicapped herself or was Young-Gyu's dad fine at first and then later his mental state became as it is presently?

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Is there some noble idiocy going on with inmate? IS he protecting someone? Other than hyung?

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I didn't even think of that!

Could he be protecting someone else other than the brother? I still think the mother of those two may have something to do with this. Maybe he's protecting his mother as well....

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dang, if all this happened because of a misunderstanding and inmate brother assuming gangsta brother killed someone therefore hid the bother and then gangsta brother saw and misunderstood.....I am sooooooo going to be angry.

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LOL!!! If the writer brings to life what you just said than I think I might just past out from having assumed and thought of all these complicated things for it to end in such noble stupidity.

Even thinking about it ending like that agitates me lol! Ahhh, dramaland, what am I to do with you...

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i am more afraid of the fact that dongchan doesnt remember anything when he is drunk, and maybe hyung is the one who protected him.

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My theory is that the brother is actually protecting his private eye investigator brother. I believe the twist in this show is that the private eye investigator is going to be the one that does all the bad deeds.

But the thing is, he doesn't remember any of it. He has a rare disease or when he drinks he becomes another person.

So when he kidnaps the main characters daughter and leaves here in the ware house, he totally forgets about it. The daughter then tries to escape, and drowns.

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If I'm not mistaken, Koreans believe that after a person's death his/her soul will stay for 49 days, and go for reincarnation after that.

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49 days is supposedly how much time the dead person's soul has left in this world before they have to leave. There is actually a drama about it - oddly enough, called "49 days" :) - it is on Viki and DF.

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I thought so, I remember reading something regarding the title., "49 Days." It was among the first 10 dramas I ever watched, and I loved how crazy it was. 49 Days is a great introduction for me to some of the bizarre and unfamiliar tropes/cultural themes that makes kdramas so intriguing. Thanks.

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49 Days is an awesome drama and it has. Jung Il Woo, for those who are his fans.

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Scheduler!!!!

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Agree with you. That scene of Soo Hyun determinedly holding onto that fake criminal was wow. And the way he was hitting her back…I was so pissed off that nobody was doing anything about it. It was just so realistic, painful, and intense.

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Yup, I was just mad at the bystanders. Why won't anyone intervene?

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Yet another recapper with a unique name. LOL keep up this winning streak, minions.
Welcome to the team!

This episode did me in. Hooked and proper.

Lee Bo Young was commanding in this episode..
Hell hath no fury like a mother scorned.
The way she held on for dear life even with the extensive beating from the conman broke me.
And the raw performance from her live on tv was absolutely compelling and moving. Not a single dry eye in the audience, if you have a heart.

Lots of clues,hints..mysteries..Very curious about how dong chan fits in all of this mayhem and even more importantly his character who seems to have some secrets of his own(which seems to be the norm in this show). I don't really trust anyone at this point but mom.

Few logic fails that can be argued through characterizations and actions...Editing needs some fine tuning due to the not-so-smooth transitioning between scenes..Otherwise the show feels very cinematic.

Trying to pay attention to little details(how did that box lock so easily unlock itself? is that a result of her changing the past?). Perhaps i should not over-analyze.
I should probably just sit back and enjoy this show, huh?

Thanks for the recap!

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Hi ilikemangos! I share a number of your thoughts as well as your criticism of the scene transitions.

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"..Hell hath no fury like a mother scorned.."

And yet, just after making that statement on TV that she will hunt down the killer to the ends of the earth, she jumps in the lake. A bit of a disconnect there.

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Well, you have to keep in mind that she made that statement before fully accepting that her daughter is dead. Remember the whole 5 stages of grief? Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance? During the live tv broadcast it was a toss up between denial and bargaining. After realizing her daughter was murdered, the woman sunk into depression and decided to commit suicide.

Perhaps the lake is the magical portal that will allow her to time travel back 14 days.. I wonder how the show will describe that mechanism.. We got a few body swaps in the water, ha.

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toss up between anger and bargaining**

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Welcome, solabelly!

I'm so in love with Lee Bo Young ever since Mr. Goodbye, I'll definitely gonna give it a try this weekend.

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Hi solabelly! Thank you for your recap.

Perhaps, when watching the show, we should take the approach that nothing is as it seems and that we should suspect the innocent-looking ones. Right now, my sister and I are coming up with all sorts of theories and only two episodes have aired! Lol!

Everything, even the most tiny detail, feels important in this show. With each episode, I will have to pay even more attention.

The killer might very well be someone whom we've already seen in the first two episodes. One scene that was important to me was when Soohyun was looking over the CCTV footage of her daughter leaving the coworker's care and heading in the direction of her nanny. We can all assume that she was happy to see her nanny and started rushing toward her, but I can't help but think that someone else may have appeared whom the daughter recognized. The coworker was already turned around and heading back to work and the nanny was not paying attention, so someone could have taken advantage of the situation. I just feel like that point is very important. Saetbyul obviously disappeared during that time but could it be that she went willingly at first before realizing her situation?

I'm also concerned about Dongchan's drunken blackouts. And it is important that in his dream, the identity of the man carrying the dead woman is not clear. It doesn't look like his brother. I don't know where I'm going with this, but I trust no one fully at this point (not even Youngyu, lol). For now, I will take the journey with all of you :). I look forward to more recaps and more brain-storming!

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Hi peridot, nice insights.

You are right. I am afraid to say that they just carried out the death penalty for an innocent man.
The man that was holding the dead body in the lake -- like you say -- does not resemble the man they have in prison in stature or built. Why does dong-chan then confirms that it is his hyung? Curious and curious-er..

You also bring up another good point that i think is important to note. The nanny was a few feet away from the entrance. If saet byul came across someone unfamiliar who tried to snatch her she would have screamed, at least. That would have alerted everyone in her surroundings(forget the fact that nanny shouldve used her peripherals and looked out for the entrance, as a normal person waiting for someone would.) The next logical conclusion would be that saet byul saw someone that was familiar to her and either ran off to meet them OR she was distracted by something else.

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Now am thinking the guy who took care of the 2 girls' dog, he wasnt just some random character was he? Maybe she saw him with the dog and excitedly ran to him.
And I have a question, what's this secret everyone's referring to, that mom's not supposed to know? I must have totally missed that bit. Enlighten a sister please.

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On the other hand, how much sense does it make (even in k-dramas) for someone to just walk up to some random person standing at a store counter and ask them to take care of a dog? The little girl did not seem to know him from what I can see.

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We don't exactly know what secrets some of the characters have, just that some appear more suspicious than others.. some who show up at the right place at the right time.

In one of JB's reported news on Gods gift... she says
"Kim Tae-woo’s character is a passionate human rights lawyer and loving husband, but he hides a secret that’ll throw a twist in the proceedings. Hmm."

That certainly had me suspicious of hubby from day 1.

Not to mention dong-chan who some people have theorized as having dissociative identity disorder/multiple personality disorder due to his black outs and waking up not remembering a single thing.. His nightmares also seem to hint at something more than what we're given at face value as of now.

Woo Jin (her first love) happens to bump into her right before her daughter goes missing, but of course that could just be a coincidence or the writer's way to use that as a distraction for the kidnapping. So him i'm not too wary of, although there's always a thought in the back of my mind that tells me that this writer is going to pick the person we all LEAST expect to be the villain. Honestly though, it wouldn't be as interesting if there's all this build up only to reveal some average joe pulling the ropes to make a statement to the president/government...It's gotta be connected somehow, and it's gotta include some of the people surrounding our heroine.

lol. Here i go with my conspiracy theories. But really, it wouldn't be half as interesting if there wasn't a twist.
Also, there's an usual surplus of male characters in this show that the writer has created -- i'm assuming there's something she has in store for at least one of them.

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an unusual**

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Woo-jin does bump into her at a convenient time, but as you can see in the first episode, she did her best to avoid eye contact with him. When she is in that cabin reading the papers, Woo-jin comes inside the other room and she sees him, but looks away when he turns his head.

He didn't even know she had a daughter. I wonder how their relationship ended, since I am not sure if she avoided him because she is afraid that the old flame might ignite once more or because of the awkwardness. Their relationship ended 10 years ago and Saet-byul is 8 years old, if I am not mistaken, which means she got preggers pretty soon after they split. Is she over him as well? Could she have fallen for someone else that quickly?

When Soo Hyun is with Woo-jin and her husband and the hubby takes her hand, Woo-jin is giving them the stink eye, but Ji-hoon also gives him the back-off-she-is-mine look. Could it be that Ji-hoon prohibited her to get in touch with him for all these years?

Even if they would go with the villain(s?) being the least expected person (Woo-jin could very well have something to do with it - everybody is a suspect), I just hope the choice will be entirely believable and not just thrown there for the sake of the shock value.

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Thanks :).

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And what I like about it is that it seems to be an intelligent drama and the writer thinks we are intelligent viewers and is allowing us to think throughout. I like that a lot.

Dong Chan saw his bro through his drunken haze alas...and I guess he assumed his brother was nearby. But as we know from TV shows, "eye-witness testimony" can be way iffy...especially from drunken hyung.

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"..as we know from TV shows, “eye-witness testimony” can be way iffy…"

Not just TV shows - but in real courts, many times. Time after time eyewitness testimony has proven to be the LEAST reliable evidence. About the only thing even less reliable is testimony from children.

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@Peridot "We can all assume that she was happy to see her nanny and started rushing toward her, but I can’t help but think that someone else may have appeared whom the daughter recognized." Given the daughter's trusting nature this is indeed a possibility.

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Ex-boyfriend, Woojin, is not excluded from the list of suspects. I know, I know...I wrote above that everyone is a suspect in my mind :). I will develop a theory around him after watching a few more episodes, lol!

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Oh, I almost forgot. Isn't the character of Snake supposed to have some relation to the plot beyond being an artist whom Saetbyul adores? Nothing, nothing is random here ;-).

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I totally forgot about that. Snake is something to consider...

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Snake would know her. She's gone to fan meetings and concerts and how many rockers get cute little 8 year old girls showing up?

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Hmm the net keeps getting wider. Soon we will start adding every character that appeared on screen. How about the security guard or Dong Chan's side kicks? It could be anybody.

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Oh man. What a wonderful episode. I haven't watched it yet, but just from this recap, I can tell it's amazing. I was crying while reading this recap, I can hardly imagine what I'll be like when I watch it.

Well done, Show, for being so good so fast! The tension and high stakes are so well done. All the emotion in it is so real too, I give mad props to all the actors and actresses, especially Lee Bo-young, who I've never really liked before. She is phenomenal here! I hope episode three sends the characters back in time, and that they (or at least Soo-hyun) remembers what will happen. Or her and Dong-chan, who I love.

Also, we haven't seen Te-ho, the Snake guy, yet which is suspicious. I kind of think he may be the bad guy. He could be traumatized by his brothers apparent suicide and has gone crazy. Who knows? I hope he's not the bad guy, but I'm not ruling him out, or anyone else, for that matter, because that hair pin in Dong-chan's pocket is also suspicious. I hope there's a reasonable explanation for it, because I do love Dong-chan, but who knows?

Thanks for the recap, Solabelly! It was great! And welcome to Dramabeans!

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I agree that DOng Chan is suspicious, especially since the hair pin that was in his pocket (39:09 epi 2) looked exactly like the hair pin that Saet Byul was wearing the day of her disappearance (49:46 epi 1).

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What a wonderful recap. Thank you, solabelly! I'm looking forward to reading these just as much as watching them. Love <3

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Ah man, this show. What an emotional ride.

I can't help but think there is more to the story of how Saet-byul died. Did she just escape randomly or was she let go for reasons we don't know yet? It's interesting the kidnapper didn't actually murder her, even if they found her body shoe, but she died from drowning.

There have been some theories of people with split personalities, meaning bad side came out kidnapped her, good side came out and let her go. Though she ends up dying accidentally anyway. Dong-chan is the most obvious suspect (almost too obvious at this point) even though he seems like a good guy on the surface. There has to be more to the story of his brother that he doesn't know. Could he be remembering himself carrying the bodies and not his brother? Plus he has that unfortunate habit of blacking out and not remembering how he ended up where he did.

The details and some hints are there, but who knows what they mean yet. Thanks for the recap.

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This drama is not failing to surprise me. The second episode - Lee Bo-young simply rocked. She is expressing her despair so violently that it makes you shiver to the core. Really captivating.

Well-knit and the suspense is handled well.

There is just one thing bothering me; is Kim Tae-woo playing the role so coldly on purpose(I haven't seen any other of his dramas, I'm fairly new), or he is just lacking in comparison to Bo-young? I don't have much clue about the parental sentiments, but he just seemed to calm, collected and composed.

I'm really glad I'm watching this show~ Worth every moment till now.

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I agree with Kim Tae Woo and the lack of draw. Then again i don't think he has much to work with considering his character. He's also paling in comparison to lee bo young. Kim Tae Woo did a good job with his villainous character in TWTWB, however..
I think it's a case of a boring (for now) character that is being upstaged by lee bo young and her portrayal of kim soo hyun. Not surprising, since this show is heroine-centered.

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Kim Tae-woo has done pretty well, both as the cuddly husband type (Naked Kitchen) and as the villain (That Winter, The Wind Blows), but I agree with you, he's registering as rather anaemic here, especially next to Lee Bo-young. I guess part of it is just the writing, but I'm having a hard time connecting with his character (not so bothered by that in the face of LBY, she is SO GOOD)

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He does a slow burn, i think. He's an easygoing guy but voila...now he wants to murder someone at the end of the episode?????

And what's with all these photos all over the place? Especially what's with Young-Gyu's camera?

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It's because the drama's main focus is on the heroine so of course you will think that lee bo young is doing more than kim tae woo, as someone who has watched kim tae woo's acting before including a movie where he plays the same role as LBY is playing here and totally nailed his character as a desperate father, I firmly believe it's not kim tae woo's acting but the character he's been given by the writers that is making him look shady, if he was given lee bo young's role I bet he would have shined as much as LBY, even though people are sympathising with LBY's character some of the things she did I had a hard time understanding, like how she seems to think that she has the only right to mourn for their daughter or make decisions herself when she secretly ran away from the hospital to meet the kidnapper, she could have at least discussed it with her husband, now I seem to believe that they did have trust issues in their marriage otherwise there is no reason to keep him in the dark like that, also the way he broke up with her and his reasons were very realistic, if you think about it if that was KTW meeting his old flame and losing his daughter because of that LBY would have done the same thing and blamed him for that...

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he is so not LBY level his weeping grieving scenes were weak there was like one tear he is just decent at best

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I think the husband is behind his daughter's killing. Maybe he wanted revenge from his wife. He got someone to kidnap the child but without the intention of killing the child of course... Somehow plan failed because she escaped and drowned... His hurt is real and his blaming the wife makes some sense in this regard. Let's see how it will end.

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I just don't see it - I can't think of a single reason why he would want to kill his own daughter. What "revenge"? - I am not following what he would want revenge for.

I could see him perhaps involved in the ransom scam, but even there I have serious doubts.

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Nah -- i don't think so. At most, an indirect hand.
But intentionally? I can't possibly think of a good reason as to why the writer would go there, unless they pull some birth secret trope (ugh) and she ends up not being his real daughter.. but then that gets so convoluted to work around..

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If this were true than it would be like Golden Rainbow where the uncle sends gangsters to kidnap his niece but she ends up dying (or so they think) from having fallen into the ocean.

With the information we have so far, I think this has a 0.1% chance of being plausible, but we never know...you may be onto something.

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If possible, I reached another level of appreciation for Lee Bo Young. So glad to see her in roles that let her really do something. Shall we start the nominations now? Too early??

I have been blown away -- we have gotten so much in such little time. Whereto from here? Wherever it is, I am fully on board.

Also, the tone is so different from the dramas I have seen so even that is refreshing. It felt more like a movie than a drama.

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Welcome to the recaps, solabelly! I really like this show so far - just enough suspense and heart-tugging to keep me invested, without going overboard. And Lee Bo-young is nailing her character, it's hard not to feel Soo-hyun's pain when she cried *sigh*. Many props also to young Kim Yu-bin, I've adored her since The Princess' Man and she brightens up any screen she's on, I just wish we saw more of her.

(and if this and Two Weeks make a trend for 'parents-saving-their-children-against-all-odds' themed dramas, this is a trend I like)

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lol it is like Dramabeans was making a recappers school and they all graduated now and are everywhere here.

I like it alot!! Thanks for you all recapping and sharing news!

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This will be long, so please bear with me. Please pretty please :)

1) Welcome solabelly! I loved your insights and your comments regarding the father, who is coping with the pain in his own way, although it's not one we can support. I see him in a different light after reading you, you are off to a promising start here on DB :D.

2) As for the episode, Jesus Christmas, that was intense! “All aboard the feels train”. It hit all the right notes on an emotional level, through our guilt-ridden and desperate heroine, who finds herself in a race against time to save her daughter. We sympathize with her not just because we have to, but because she earns it – it’s not just about her tragic situation, but about the way she deals with it. It’s a testament to the show’s quality that even though I knew the outcome of the kidnapping, I was still on the edge of my seat, biting my nails. I was literally screaming: “OMO OMO, COME ONNN!!”, although I knew she won’t make it.

3) Right from the start, we are shown just how cynical the media is. It’s all about ratings, baby. Capitalizing on a woman’s suffering by placing all cameras on her – man, that was cruel, but it was a faithful representation of our society. Even when she wants to be on the show to address herself directly to the killer, all they can think of is how her appearance will make the ratings go through the roof. Bastards! When they review the CCTV, I was so moved by the moment when Soo Hyun touches the screen…awwwwwwww.

4) And my baby Woo-jin giving the spouses holding hands the “crap-I-keep-forgetting-you’re-married” look. Gurl, he’s so not over you. I am loving his character and I hope I won’t end up terribly disappointed with him. The police is doing a great job here, proving to be not just extremely efficient, but on their toes all the time. You understand why Woo-jin is seen as the future face of the police.

5) It was easy to hate on the father this episode, first doing the exact opposite of what Woo-jin told him (“Don’t provoke the kidnapper!”) and second, with him putting the blame on the mother. Yeah, that was a d-ckish move. It was beyond cruel to tell a mother to get over the death of her daughter, just to blame her a few hours later for everything. But you can definitely see he is suffering – maybe also his job as a lawyer taught him not to put his emotions on display, so he has everything interiorized. We get a glimpse of him tearing up when Soo Hyun is doing the program, addressing directly to the killer. Soo Hyun might have all her emotions on display, but that doesn’t mean that Ji-hoon is unaffected. And even though it might look mean how he tries to take the stuff out of the room, I understand his desire to help her "let it go", although it might not be the right approach.

6) Awwwwwwwwww the mother discovering her daughter got “married” – that was so cute! Busted! Loved that moment!

7) The whole Han River – train race was INTENSE. The moment she slides with the money underneath the ticketing controller thingy (forgot its name lol) was taken right out of the action movie text book.

8) The killer is like a big brother-ish figure. He seems to be everywhere, seeing everything, as if he runs a whole CCTV system, with access to every place. There is no way he could have made it in time at the train station and guide her on the platform, yet it seemed like he knew her exact location and when she was supposed to turn around. This guy must be a...

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This guy must be a great mastermind of sorts.

9) The way she holds onto the guy with her money, despite being hit numerous time – it was gripping and painful to watch. I was actually afraid she might lose him, but there was so much desire in her, so much despair, that she wouldn’t let go off him. I kept screaming: “FOR GOD’S SAKE, SOMEBODY HELP HER!!”, but luckily, Woo-jin was there to the rescue. Talking about the guy with the money, I find it strange that 49 days pass after the murder of the daughter, yet we don’t know if that man declared anything about the one pulling the strings.

10) The way Dong Chan reacted to the news of the passing of Chu Byung Woo (grandpa) was, well, awkward. I mentioned it earlier that they might dig deeper into this whole “heart attack because of a dispute”. The “No way, it was all a dream!”, despite the billion won flashback, sounded more to me like “No way, I couldn’t have possibly killed him!”. His maniacal scream is unfunded because 1) he didn’t seem to care THAT much about grandpa and 2) He didn’t seem to be that money-driven either. That scream smells like guilt to me. Also, grandpa gave all his money to charity – you would think that he would at least leave something to Dong Chan as well, as a way of motivating him to change his lifestyle.

11) Soo Hyun claims the phone calls were all scams, but I beg to differ. I have the feeling the killer did indeed make those phone calls, but he was watching (and enjoying) her suffering from far away.

12) “She is only guilty of having me as her mother”. Awwwwww, nooez :(. When she sees on screen the news report about finding her bloody shoes and she realizes that everything she said was to no avail – that got me good. Although at the end of the episode she forgot about her promise to follow him to Hell and kill him, I was on the edge of my seat (Well, metaphorically speaking, since I was in bed lol) with her threats which felt so genuine.

13) Dong Chan !!!! What’s up with him? As I was discussing with Sunny yesterday, it’s for a reason why we never see what’s going on during his blackouts and we practically have to trust his useless memory and fill in the blanks ourselves. Could this be something akin to Fight Club? Could he have actually beaten himself for what he did and create a whole scenario with those guys in his mind, so that he can go on living? Or, worse, could he have been the one who made those remarks about Soo Hyun, but with his shattered mind putting the blame on the other two? We see his blood-stained shirt THREE TIMES in close-up. One, when he looks at the bloody sleeve. Second, when he throws it in the laundry basket and a third time, after he leaves the bathroom. Also, it might be insignificant, but WHY WOULD HE HAVE A GIRLY HAIRPIN IN HIS POCKET?? That was definitely fishy. When he goes to take pictures of the adultery, when he wrestles with the guy, he pauses to take the hairpin out of his pocket (since it hurt) and he throws it in the room. Solabelly, I see you mentioned these things as well, so there is definitely something going on. Hmmmmmmmmmmm. Not to mention that even though they found Saet-byul’s bloody shoe the night he was getting drunk, she actually died 7 days after the kidnapping and despite evidence of a struggle, she drowned. I feel the scenario with Dong Chan’s brother will repeat itself. I am guessing that woman also died by drowning. She might have been hit previously, enough to make her pass out,...

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, but not enough to kill her, so the drowning was the actual cause. Once again, probably an innocent man will be blamed for the murder. In Dong Chan’s dream (nightmare) the perspective of the scene feels way too intimate for him to be just a simple witness and as I and Sunny discussed, the killer from the dream did not have the traits of Dong Chan’s brother. What if it’s in reverse? Maybe Dong-ho actually witnessed Dong Chan killing that girl and it drove him crazy and now, maybe Young-gyu witnessed Dong-Chan killing Saet-byul, but since he is disabled, he doesn’t get what he saw and nobody believes him anyway.

After trying to get some clear screencaps, it’s definitely Saet-byul’s hairpin. I looked to see the last hairpin she had before being abducted and the one Dong Chan has in his pocket and – KA-CHING, both are shaped like strawberry. Take a look: http://s17.postimg.org/5rbysrt26/vlcsnap_2014_03_06_21h05m37s59.jpg

DUM DUM DUM, could we possibly have our killer? Even with small clues like that woman suggesting that he is a tiger in bed (since sleeping with her husband looks boring now), I feel he is a totally different person when he gets drunk. Like, totally! We don’t even SEE him drunk, EVER. We see him drinking, but not drunk.

14) Loved how the fisherman catching the shoe is a throwback at the beginning of the first episode. This K-drama is filled with details. Also, when Soo Hyun is sitting in her girl’s room, we see her from the perspective of a fish tank. More WATER!

15) Lee Myung Wan, the new Minister of Justice, seems to have wanted way too much to execute the death penalty. It’s as if he wanted this tragedy with Saet-byul to happen, just so he can convince the masses that the death penalty is the way to go. There is a lot going on here about death penalty, with Saet-byul’s father going strong against it, while others make a case FOR it.

Maybe the whole deal is money-related, since it is way cheaper to kill them off. Or maybe they want to shut up some mouths. I wouldn’t be surprised if Saet-byul was targeted precisely because of her father and because a child softens the masses. I find it strange that he also decides the list of the death-row convicts and we find out that the next day (?), there were already 5 people on the list, including Dong-ho. What are they afraid of?

16) Wow wow wow, the ending! 4 lives depend now on Soo Hyun’s return. Dong Chan, Dong-ho, hers and Saet-byul’s. I love how we will go back in time before finding out if the father had actually found the real culprit or if he was on a witch hunt.

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Your number 13(where he wakes up the next morning with saet byuls strawberry hairpin) just proves why i have watch each episode of God's Gift atleast twice.
Mindblown.
Dong-Chan definitely crossed paths with either the kidnapper, saet byul, or circumstances surrounding the kidnap. He was "drunk" the night before and woke up with blood on his sleeves. Who's blood? We don't know for sure.
Ahhhh i'm getting so excited. haha

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In that vein, i'm glad that this show doesn't treat us like idiots and instead offers up alot of hints and clues. Like playing i spy. I knew there was something more to the pin when the camera focused on the hairpin for longer than usual in the first episode.

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13: Yes to the hair-pins! Is it a coincidence or does it mean much more. I had been limited in my thinking with solely accusing Dong Chan, but could it be like ilikemangos mentioned, that maybe Dong Chan had crossed paths with the kidnapper?

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Lee Bo Young deserves another daesang for this episode alone. Her desperate plea to the killer was so gut-wrenching. I don't know how anyone could watch that without crying. The security guard explaining to Young Gyu that Saet Byul is in heaven now made me tear up, too. I would like to believe that bystanders in real life would have helped Soo Hyun getting beat senseless by the ransomer. I kept screaming at my computer screen for someone to do something, ANYTHING.

Since the killer didn't kill Saet Byul and she accidentally drowned trying to escape, I wonder if he really intended to kill her. So many unanswered questions remain, like why was the rich harabeoji sleeping in front of Dong Chan's house, but I am most curious about how Dad found out. Execution hangings make me so squicky. Kang Dong Won's movie Maundy Thursday gave me nightmares.

Welcome to dramabeans, solabelly, and thanks for the recap!!

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In this show, it seems that many evidences are built around photographs. I have the feeling that the fact that Young-gyu carries a camera with him all the time is not a coincidence. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if he was there when Saet-byul drowned and got some photo evidence. Also, we only get to see him again AFTER she is already dead. What happens with Young-gyu and Dong Chan when we don't see them?? They purposely barely had any screen time, so that we don't know their whereabouts during the kidnapping. Hmmm...

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Agreed. I also am suspicious of Young-Gyu, especially considering the fact that at the end of the episode he stated that Saet Byul isn't dead. How would he know? Is he the one that locked her in that shack? Or did he follow his uncle who locked her in that shack? Or maybe did he follow his grandmother? How does he know?

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The murderer seems to have had murdered other women, though. Unless he was given the information about the other murdered women and really had nothing to do with those murders.

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I think it is two different people, with different motives.

But I found it odd that since her daughters murder, 49+ days have passed, and have seen no more news of any new murders or calls from the killer.

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yes, wow, i hadn't thought of that. So not only do we have to find two clues to two different murders, we now have to wonder why the murderer(s) stopped murdering after Saet Byul was killed. Wow, this'll be fun.

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Interesting that it could be two different people. Could it be that during those 49s the writer simply had not shown us that there more murders or did the murders in fact really end? Could it have been that the individual who had asked Soo Hyeon for the money really was the murderer and kidnapper BUT, he was the kidnapper of another child, hence the little girl that was left behind. This would also explain why the murders stopped since that individual was placed in custody (we still have yet to find out what happened to him....)

The circumstances still throw me off. I often wonder if the mother really heard Saet Byul’s voice or if she were blocked by delusion after having learned that the nanny didn’t get Saet Byul. Could the voice of the child had been a different child? I keep thinking that Saet Byul decided to run away with Young-Gyu and Young-Gyu having been out alone a lot shows her to the shack in the woods. And then for some reason Young-Gyu may have locked her in there so that she would be safe without realizing that she would get scared. Then this small prank turns into a dangerous one and when she is finally able to free herself she ends up drowning. I keep thinking it’s Young-Gyu because there were pictures drawn in the little shack where she had stayed and they didn’t look like frightening pictures (55:10)…could she have been drawing with Young-Gyu and then got locked in there?

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It's entirely possible that there are two kinds of murders and murderers, which would also fit with my early theory (so many theories LOL) that it's odd how the serial killer (I think once you kill at least 3 people, you are considered serial, right?) suddenly changed the pattern with Saet-byul. They usually stick to one, since most of them actually want to be acknowledged for the crimes committed, as a sadistic way to boast about themselves.

Also, there is a contradiction at play...on one hand, everything seems to indicate that he is not looking for ransom, since he is against the government, suggesting a bigger network, with high-profile people involved, but the next thing you know, he calls them asking for money. It begins by being something big, threatening the president and telling him that the girl will DEFINITELY die (without asking for anything in exchange), but then it turns into something more intimate (give me the money and we're done).

I find it plausible as well that the girl kidnapped wasn't actually Saet-byul and that Soo Hyun assumed it was her, since the timing was right and she was so distressed with the phone call. Also, the first thing she says on the phone is "mommy", but judging by their relationship, you would think she would say "daddy" first. Moreover, when the kidnapper calls for ransom, this time you don't hear the child's voice anymore and they have to believe him when he tells them she is fine. What if he found out in the meantime that the child wasn't actually hers, but a different one? This would explain why they didn't let them talk - otherwise, Soo Hyun would have realized that it was not her daughter.

OR - first call during the broadcast was the real thing and the call at their home was a scam from other delinquents looking for money. This would explain why he avoids putting Saet-byul on the phone the second time around.

It is as if there are two interests involved. If we are to assume that there is a single killer, how come he didn't negotiate for the life of his previous victims, whom he didn't kidnap? He held Saet-byul for 7 days and while he didn't kill her (she drowned), the evidence shows there were signs of struggle.

There seem to be two profiles:

- Killer 1: He is against the current government, threatens the president, wants to create chaos and panic and possibly make death penalty a thing. Specifically targets drunk women found around bars (karaokes), whom he eventually kills. This killer is not on his own, having a bunch of minions working with the current administration. Says he only killed 3 women, which means he didn't kill Song, who died EXACTLY like Saet-byul did (See the first minutes of the first episode). She was kidnapped for 7 days and found dead in a river. Could be the guy who threatened the co-worker on the phone.

- Killer 2: He kidnaps children, holding them as hostages for 7 days, after which they are found dead in a river, possibly because of an accident. With Saet-byul and Song, we have two identical cases. Maybe even 3, if the girl Dong Chan's brother was accused of murdering died the same way. I think Dong Chan with his possible deranged personality could fit here - maybe he even has multiple personalities, with some of them wanting to harm the children and with others interfering to save them.

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The killer 2 could also be Young-gyu himself, following the footsteps of his father, who might not have meant to harm those people, but was unstable and accidentally caused their death. After all, we never find out the circumstances in which he committed that murder - only that his brother saw him throwing the body in the water. Maybe Dong Chan actually tried to rescue her and thus ended with her hairpin. Oh gosh, it could be anyone!! This is so nerve-wracking lol. It would be a lot easier if we would have a tracking device on Dong Chan.

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If the murderer turns out to be Young-Gyu, that'd be a very cheap way to privide a twist "don't judge a book" cover and I'd be really surprised if the writer did that -- considering how badly mentally-ill people are treated. I just don't think he would have the cronies or the scheming to plan a meeting with heroine at the park. Besides, he'd been playing with Saet-Byul for a year probably -- it seems he has been meeting her secretly-- so why would he kill her now? And where would he get the voice disguiser?

If Young-Gyu really is the murderer, then the issue would be that he is not really evil and really thinks he has not killed Saet Byul but has maybe put her in the water like a toy or some such thing.

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@Carole I would be bummed too if Young-gyu had something to do with it, although by the looks of it, any involvement of his in her death would be purely accidental. He looks way too good-hearted to be aware of his actions, there are no signs of violent outburst and throwing her into the water might have been done in a playful manner, as in trying to see how well she swims or something like that. Also, we still need to find out, among other things, what's up with the crossed legs catching Dong-ho's attention.

As for the voice changer device, my newest theory (let's see how long it lasts LOL) which is pretty implausible the more I think of it, is that the guy who called was never with Saet-byul in the first place, but with a different girl who Soo Hyun mistook for Saet-byul, because of her emotional distress. The call was uncommonly brief - no names mentioned, no interaction between the mother and the daughter. Besides, it practically occurs minutes after Saet-byul disappears, so either the killer is an orchestrator moving with the speed of light or everything was already set up and he just waited for the show to go on air, which means there is a second girl who died.

Now if presumably there was another girl, I still need to figure out why her body hasn't been found in all this time, since she is probably dead as well, so this theory might be way too far fetched. Do I make any sense lol?

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@ Buticutt:

The kidnapper did not call for ransom, the fake scammer did. Two different people.

As far as the girl that was killed not being Saet, I am assuming that the body was positively ID'd, even aside from the parents ID'ing her, it only takes a couple of hour now to do a DNA test.

I don't buy the killer that called the TV station killing people just because he is "against the government" - that is too broad and would not fit any pattern that I know of in recent history. And at the time he called, there had been no executions for 15 years. Anti-government people usually take the highly visible route to "send a message". This guy was apparently killing bar girls, or at least girls that went to bars.

Killing a random little girl is an anomaly, and I don't buy that it is the same person - but the question is why HER? The killer had to have been watching her, so it may in fact have something to do with the husbands secret, perhaps revenge of some sort.

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That's totally possible. Especially since we already have one con show up with the guy asking for money. Who is to say there isn't another. He knew the stabbing details, but he could work for police and know the details. Like the ex guy, who I don't trust.

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I was very impressed with this drama's first 2 episodes. This could very much be my new drama crack.

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Welcome solabelly! Thank you for the recap.

I feel truly excited about this drama. The acting is solid and the story has me hooked. This drama truly forces you to pay attention to every detail, every gesture, every word.

One storyline that has got me thinking concerns the conviction of Dong-chan's older brother. Assuming that he was guilty (which I doubt), I do hope that he was convicted with sufficient evidence and not solely on the quote 'witness testimony' of his brother. Yes, I'm aware that many men/women have been convicted of crimes on much less evidence. Perhaps, once Soo-hyun is given the gift to go back in time that more of that story is revealed.

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yeah...bro "assumed" something without knowing all the facts, i think.

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First of all, fuck the bystander effect. I can't believe that whole crowd just stood there watching someone punch and stomp on a woman in public.

Anyway, it seems to me that the new president and/or his team is responsible for the murders. The whole kidnap and murder may have been orchestrated to justify his stand of capital punishment, and gain favor for 'ridding the world of people who deserve it'.

Who better to endorse this stand than the man (or his wife) who argued the most against it? Driven to hysteria and grief from losing their child - would they still argue against capital punishment, or will they ironically argue to have capital punishment introduced? They may be mere pawns for the current government to further their goals.

Until Mom lays down her motherly smackdown

Otherwise the whole capital punishment thing they were yapping about over 2 episodes seems pointless.

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You have introduced some interesting points. I believe that the President's stance on the death penalty is significant. The murder speaks directly to the President during the live television broadcast.

What if the killer lost a loved one who was wrongly convicted and executed? Likewise, the character of Snake is supposed to have lost a brother to suicide. What if Snake's brother suffered a similar fate? Wrongly convicted and sentenced to death. Only, he took his own life before his sentence could be carried out? I'm sure that loosing a loved one in such circumstances would drive anyone to murder.

This is just one of the theories running through my mind.

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"..who was wrongly convicted and executed.."

There had been no executions for 15 years at that point in time.

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@windsun33 I must have missed that. Thank you for pointing that out.

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I quite like your theories. That would be smart for the writer to head in that direction, then. Makes alot of sense.

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Buticut and I were discussing the same thing (political conspiracy) within the first drama-recap (epi 1).

We both haven't put it past us that this could have been orchestrated by the government.

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@chickenwing That was horrible and so disturbing to watch, although sadly, it does happen in real life. People don’t interfere either because they are too afraid or because they believe it’s not their business. We had here a case where a woman was stabbed 17 times IN A BUS and nobody stopped the guy. IN A BUS. Beyond awful.

There is so much to digest here. Indeed, Sunny and I were discussing about the political conspiracy theory and no matter how we look at it, I find it practically impossible not to have any political members involved in one way or another in this whole mess. Moreover, if we are talking about two killers, driven by two different motivations, some big names have to be involved. There is too much emphasis on death penalty and true, if you can’t beat your opponent, make him join your side. That’s the best endorsement they could possibly have.

However, the kidnapper who called during the show is clearly against the government, which could mean that he is against the death penalty as well, which they try so much to push forward. Although pointing the finger at the president could be a way of making him look less suspicious – those threats might be a big bluff to cover a charade. Who would involve the government in this, if the president himself is threatened? There are so many BUTs and Ifs here. It’s a clash of interests and I am not quite sure what to make of it. And I love it, I love how we practically know nothing and how almost every theory could turn out to be true. So many scenarios! I think, I re-think, I contradict myself, I scratch my head. Love it! Soon enough I might end up numbering my different theories LOL - and the show barely started, it will drive me crazy. Everyone is a suspect - except the mother hehehe.

@Sirena I don’t know anthing about the lead singer of Snake, but I do recall reading somewhere that he has a tragic backstory as well, so it could be that the killer has such an agenda. Although, ironically, if he is against death sentence because of a wrong conviction, he does what the death penalty does – avenging a death with another one.

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@buticut You have introduced some interesting theories. I agree with your statement '...he does what the death penalty does-avenging a death with another one.' If we are to assume that the killer has become twisted by the death of a loved one, then his eye for an eye policy makes a little more sense. He's beyond reason.

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Not buying the political or government conspiracy either - what possible motive would they have to kill a kid, and what could they possibly accomplish from it except to draw attention?

Even it the individual happens to be in the government does not make it a conspiracy.

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What a fantastic show. Absolutely riveting. From the tone to the cinematography to the acting….so much flawlessness. My heart is in my throat in nearly every scene. Now this is what I call intensity.

Regarding Lee Bo Young. I can't believe she was the same woman who played typical catty second lead in Save the Last Dance for Me. What a remarkable transformation to Lawyer Jang in IHYV and now here as Soo Hyun. So so happy to have discovered such an amazing actress.

I am enjoying the mystery of the killer and noting all the subtle emphasis placed on certain items like the lock suddenly opening, the torn page in Saet Byul's notebook, the bloody sleeve, etc. Looking forward to see how all these things matter.

All in all, thanks for the wonderful recap, Solabelly and Dramallama. You guys are doing a fantastic job. :)

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Ah yes... the mysterious torn page..

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I went back to re-watch a bit of episode 2 and the mysterious torn page is indeed mysterious. In episode 2 at 46:49 the mom is reading that Saet Byul saw herself as a sea anemone (Viki.com's translation). The next time Soo Hyeon is reading the book we see that the torn page comes after the page where Saet Byul felt like a sea anemone (48:58). I had to satisfy my curiosity to see if the writer had previously informed us what that page was/or what was on that page, but I guess not.

I'm eagerly waiting for episodes 3 and 4.

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I wonder if the torn page and lock opening could have been the effect of the mom going back into the past. Maybe the same circumstances keep repeating and she keeps going back into the past until one time (hopefully, the time we are actually viewing/watching) the circumstances finally change.

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The lock opening so easily the 2nd time tells me that someone else was there between the first time and that time, someone that probably forced the lock, or had the key. (though a lot of those kiddy locks all you really need is a paper clip or something). Whoever was there was probably the one that took the torn page.

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Wow, just wow...if Three Days is being complained about for being slow, then God's Gift is just freakin flowing like crazy!

Just from the two episodes this week, I'm hookeddd. SH's pleas to the kidnapper on camera were so emotionally moving and you could just feel the anguish that LBY conveyed so so well -- as well as when they discover SB's body. (But I gotta say, ugh for the media to capitalize on her anguish and grief.) And of course, the first red herring with the scamming fake kidnapper was to be expected in a thriller like this...as more and more is being unveiled with each coming episode, I do expect more subsequent additions to the plot as this.

I really thought BH was related blood-wise to DC, seeing as how he was trying to convince him to make amends with his estranged mother -- by dangling his assets as a monetary "reward"...but I guess we'll have to wait and see if there really is no relation. I don't think he'd know to that extent if he was simply a stranger...so it's yet another "is it relevant or just another random person/event" in relation to the plot.

I get that people grieve in different ways, but something is really off with JH. I know he's supposed to be hiding a secret...but he just doesn't feel like a typical father. His actions yesterday when answering the phone call kinda hit a wrong nerve for me...if I was him and my child had been kidnapped, I sure as hell wouldn't try to jeopardize any ransom demand (although it was proven to be a fake later).

As for the ending sequence...there can't be no way all three would die (even with the time-slip). And how both SH and DC were, coincidentally, at the same lake? Gotta be something to it. Seeing the noose brought shivers down my spine...and something's been niggling me about DH's supposed crime. Somehow, it'll all be relevant...

Welcome to recapping, and thank you for the recap, SB! :)

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wow, i hadn't thought about halbae/ahjussi being relations in some way to the gangsta family. Good thought.

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I had actually thought that the old man (I can't help but remember him as Choco Pie Grandpa from the drama 'Thank You') was the father of the mother of those two sons since he said he got the soup from Dong Chan's mother. Why would he get soup from a random woman? It would make more sense that he got it because she was his daughter.

The only thing that bugs me though is that, if this is true, than why would the father of the Dong Chan's mother let his daughter suffer (he's a millionaire isn't he). She looks like she's had a hard life and she looks like she raised those two boys on her own for a while (dad's not in the picture) or wait could the old man be Dong Chan's father and the reason why the mom is suffering is because the two had cut ties completely and then dad became a millionaire but then why would he be going to his ex for food.....?

I am rambling, I know, but there are so many theories! I feel like I am going insane.

The old man's relationship to everyone is more complex than I had imagined. Thanks for bringing this to light.

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If you'd ask me what came to mind about Shin Gu two years ago, I would have responded the same way -- Choco Pie Grandpa from Thank You! Who pooped his pants! (or talked about pooping his pants, from what I remember) ;P hahaha... It is only after Grandpa Over Flowers and the craptastic A Hundred Year's Inheritance that I no longer think of him that way...but kudos for bringing that memory back to light for me :)

Yes yes, there are so many theories floating around and I think that definitely adds to the drama crack-like appeal of God's Gift -- and that makes me so happy :)

But yes, your point exactly reflects why I don't think he's a complete stranger to DC...how difficult would it be (if he was a stranger) to obtain soup from DC's mom, just for the purpose of feeding DC?

I think he would be too young to be DC's grandpa (because his mom looks about the same age -- or that's just because I'm aware that they're similar in age in real life). I'm thinking he's either DC's dad or uncle...and why he was a millionaire and not helping out DC's family -- that's hard to say at this point, if he is family. If he was DC's grandpa, I doubt he'd stay around and not help his daughter raise her kids (or maybe he cut off ties because of DH on death row, due to the fear of being linked or embarrassment?). If he's an uncle, he could be estranged from his sister and not support her financially because of those reasons as well. I'm leaning more towards him being DC's dad, trying hard to mend the burned bridges between his son and (ex)wife.

Maybe BH has nothing to do with either SB or the women...or maybe he has a role in it. Who knows, maybe BH is insignificant to everything?! I guess we'll see.

I, too, am filled with questions and alternative theories about what we've seen so far...can't wait 'til Monday to have a little bit more of the puzzle further unveiled! :)

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I re-watched both episodes a little while ago, and I've come to add more to my post -- which, I got to admit, I trimmed quite a bit the first time around...for the fear it'd be too long :/ But seeing the length of the spirited discussion around this thread, I no longer think I gotta cut down on what I want to say...so I'm adding to my post :)

I don't think that SB died "by accident." She was murdered, then dumped in the lake--possibly to destroy any lingering evidence (DNA-wise). Just from the blood from her shoes and things, I do think this murder was personal...much more than the three women. Which leads me to think these two crimes were NOT committed by the same killer(s) -- but whoever it is, they definitely want to make it seem like they're related.

After watching the first two episodes, I am thinking that SB's kidnapper/killer is a woman.

1) Someone who has an agenda against JH. Since he's such a strong proponent against capital punishment, whose a better person to make an example of so publically and personally by kidnapping and murdering that person's child? Would he still advocate against it for his child's killer?
2) Someone related to the secret he's hiding...which, at this point, could be an affair. He doesn't seem too loving, in the short interactions of ep1.

The main reason why I come to that conclusion is because I'm thinking, they're balking at executing anyone on death row -- most likely all men. It would just bring a hefty debate as to whether a woman could be executed for her crime(s)...and whether the President, who declared the war on crime, could possibly let the criminal justice system do that.

I do not think this person is acting alone...simply because it all seems too sophisticated and thoroughly planned out for someone to carry out all by themselves. Also...more than likely that they're getting inside help -- either or both within the police dept and in the government.

I know it's too early in the game to eliminate those in "contention" to be the killer...but I don't see it being possible that Grandpa BH or YG could be SB's killer. Grandpa has died and I think his main purpose of being in the story was about DC. YG, it would be too predictable and stereotypical that another person with limited mental capabilities would have the ability to commit such a crime. I think he's genuinely concerned for SB and is probably playing a role in all this with his camera.

DC, being male lead...I think they're trying to make him seem suspicious (from his poster shots, his drunken blackouts, to being in the house prior to her disappearance, to possessing her hair clip) -- I'm still apprehensive that they'd make it that obvious from the get-go. I think he's a wounded soul, with his family troubles and gangster-ties...but it's looking more like someone is trying to set him up (possibly from his gang pals, the police, who knows).

And I can't think why he'd give that testimony to basically enable his brother getting the first ok'd execution. There's gotta be more to what he supposedly witnessed! :/

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"..possibly to destroy any lingering evidence (DNA-wise.."

That does not compute. They can get DNA now from 50 million year old dinosaur bones. With today's tech, it is very difficult to get rid of DNA evidence except by burning or soaking in acid or bleach, and neither of those was done.

I do agree that he is not alone - but it could be anything from some cult like the Manson family, to aliens at this point we really have no clue.

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I didn't mean SB's DNA (they have her body)...I meant any traces of the killer(s)' DNA on the surface of SB--on her clothes or skin--would be compromised from the water.

But...they haven't really delved into whether there was anything found in the first place yet...right? If there wasn't anything found, that'll further prove that the killer(s) are either very detail-oriented/criminally sophisticated or got help from someone with a background in law enforcement (the inside help from either the police or the government) enough to not leave any forensic evidence behind.

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Is anyone watching the show from viki? I feel like they skipped on some scenes. I don't remember the Dong-Chan had the little girls hair pin.

Loving the intense drama. Thank you for the recap!

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It's all there -- i had to go back to that scene as well. It's very easy to miss, considering it happened in a second or 2.

go to : 39:08 - 39:11. He pulls out the strawberry pin from his back pocket and then throws it. there's a slow-mo of it flying in the air.

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This episode left me severely dehydrated. I now also have no nails to speak of.

SO GOOD. I love this drama to a ridiculous extent. Lee Bo-young was quite frankly phenomenal in this episode - it was impossible not to be moved by Soo-hyun. Her desperation as she held onto the fake kidnapper's ankle was heart-rending: I felt that he was most likely a red herring, but how could you not cheer for her as she hung on for grim death onto the slimmest sliver of hope? As for her TV broadcast, it was indescribably good. The way she changed from pleading to threatening (after Saet-byul's things were found) was simply incredible.

I must also say that the plot looks set to be taking us on one heck of a ride. That cliffhanger was outstanding: not one, not two, but three people on the brink of death. And throughout the episode there are so many little details and possible clues slipped in, so many paths to explore. This writer has clearly matured so much during the six years since 'Iljimae' - I cannot believe it is the same person. But writer-nim, you damn well better not stumble at the last hurdle again.

Now for some speculation *rubs hands in glee*. I'm not sure whether I buy that Saet-byul had an accidental death: everything was so well planned that it is difficult to believe she could have escaped. Bless her, she's just not too bright and way *way* too trusting.

I want the kidnapper to be a total wildcard because so far I could not bear for one of the main men to be the culprit. Say the dog sitter, who lives across from a school because he's a paedophile and also enjoys killing little girls. He killed and stuffed the dog to use as bait, so Saet-byul got waylaid as she ran to her nanny in the car park. Or perhaps the Minister of Justice, because he is secretly a serial killer. He committed all the previous murders too, and his pro-capital punishment stance is another manifestation of his bloodthirsty tendencies. He chose Saet-byul to hurt her father, a political opponent. Or maybe it's the rich grandpa - similarly secretly overcome with bloodlust - who donated his money as a way to atone for his sins. His first victim was his mother, hence his insistence that Dong-chan be good to his. Saet-byul fell victim because she tried to help him before - thinking that he was a beggar - and so trusted him when she next saw him in the car park. The reason why he was sleeping rough and incognito? The better to access potential victims.

Back to a more serious note, I suspect that not all the murders were committed by the same person, and that the other killer(s) will be future red herrings in Soo-hyun's quest for justice. The women were probably killed by the same person, since the modus operandi seemed the same. They were killed on three consecutive days; they were all killed in the entertainment district; they were all in their twenties and thirties; they were killed soon after the murderer approached them; their corpses were unceremoniously and carelessly dumped close to where they were killed - so the murders seem more spur of the moment rather than carefully planned. The fact that the killer would suddenly want to kidnap a small child, and let her live for a week afterwards, seems way too out of character. The only similarities are that CCTV was avoided, and that these victims are all female. However I re-watched the relevant parts: the three other victims were attractive women who dressed sexily rather than girlishly, so there's...

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(Cont.)

However I re-watched the relevant parts: the three other victims were attractive women who dressed sexily rather than girlishly, so there's really no way to conflate them with Saet-byul due to their gender. As for CCTV, the three women were killed in alleys, so surveillance was probably patchy or non-existent. It is a much more difficult feat to kidnap a child in the middle of a car park in front of a well-lit office building. Killing the women may not have needed pre-meditation, but kidnapping Saet-byul certainly did.

The proof that the kidnapper gave, namely that he stabbed one of the victims fifteen times, seems to be further evidence for having at least two different criminals. Would someone who viciously stabbed a woman fifteen times - clearly many more times than needed to kill her - really have the clarity of mind to count his stabs? More likely that the kidnapper was an opportunistic witness, who used this information to form a cover identity.

Furthermore, I also am not convinced by the kidnapper's reason for taking Saet-byul: as a form of protest against the president. From what we know, the kidnapper would not have taken Saet-byul by chance. Why would he then take the child of the president's political opponent? It seems likely that his purported reason is merely an excuse for a much more personal vendetta. Considering how difficult it would have been to kidnap Saet-byul in the first place, and that he had an isolated hostage cabin ready for use, this was a premeditated crime that was carefully planned. NB: This speculation may also have been influenced by how much I loved the Danish-Swedish drama 'The Bridge'.

Goodness knows I rambled on forever. That is just how much I love this drama already. If you got to here, have a gold star and thumbs up from me.

Finally, last but not least - welcome solabelly! It seems that you and dramallama have great luck at picking fantastic dramas.

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oh my gosh, i looooooooooooove your posts. So much to think about.

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