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Liar Game: Episode 4

To trust or not to trust, that is the question. For a show that’s as much about the fallibility of man as it is about the vampiric bloodsuckers who capitalize on our suffering, there’s a surprising amount of human connection to be found. Even in a setting where you wouldn’t think trust and cooperation could be possible, our jaded hero and our maybe-too-naive heroine manage to find a way, resulting in—you guessed it—yet another engrossing hour of Liar Game.

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EPISODE 4: “Minority Game II”

After Do-young tells the contestants that they have one hour to choose their answer to Sung-joon’s “I am the notorious Betrayer X” question, he leaves the broadcast to find Director Jang looking pretty darn pleased with himself.

Do-young knows Betrayer X is Director Jang’s plant, and insinuates that Jang might’ve leaked the rules of the game to him beforehand. Of course Jang demurs, and Do-young does the same when he’s asked how those pictures of Betrayer X were leaked. Let the games begin.

PD Lee wonders if Woo-jin will be able to tell which of the contestants is Betrayer X, and is surprised when Do-young replies that he’d be disappointed in Woo-jin if he proves unable to handle this latest twist.

She’s confused that he’d take it so personally, considering that Da-jung was the one who brought Woo-jin into the game in the first place. There’s something strange about the way Do-young answers: “That may be so, but when Ha Woo-jin joined the game, didn’t we all realize it? That he was born for this show.”

Woo-jin takes Da-jung aside, without the rest of the team, to explain what’s happening now that Betrayer X has thrown his hat into the ring. While they just created a team of eight, he’s figured out that X formed three teams of eight among the remaining contestants, with him as a member in each one.

And through a complicated series of mathematics which I won’t really go into here (I’m a writer, not a wizard), Woo-jin shows her how Betrayer X’s three-team formula is foolproof—no matter what, X will be the sole winner of all two billion won/two million dollars.

Da-jung gets it without really getting it, since she doesn’t see how X would get out of splitting with the remaining twenty-one contestants if he signed contracts with each team. But Woo-jin knows that if Betrayer X really did what he’s notorious for, then manipulating a contract would be child’s play to him.

But that still leaves one remaining question: If Betrayer X made himself a part of three teams, then that means he’d have to be in theirs. And since he’s survived to the next round, Betrayer X has to be one of their four remaining teammates. Eek.

Da-jung would rather believe it isn’t true, since Woo-jin can’t be absolutely certain the contestants have been split into three separate teams (including theirs). It could just be one other team, right?

“I understand that you want to trust in people,” Woo-jin tells her. “But in order to trust, you have to doubt first.”

So Woo-jin devises a method to try and smoke Betrayer X out of their group by assigning the four teammates who didn’t advance to keep an eye on the four who did. He doesn’t allow Da-jung to follow Jung-ah though, and instead assigns her to keep watch in the security room—since they can’t use their phones, whoever Betrayer X is will have to approach another teammate in person.

While they go after their targets, Woo-jin plans to meet Sung-joon to decide for himself whether he’s Betrayer X or not. The meeting doesn’t go so well, considering that Sung-joon won’t remove his sunglasses on purpose—he knows Woo-jin’s talent lies in his ability to read people’s eyes. Innnteresting.

Even though Woo-jin claims that he doesn’t think Sung-joon is X, Sung-joon neither confirms or denies it. “Think what you want,” Sung-joon says flippantly. “But remember, whatever you’re guessing isn’t everything.”

The spying teammates report nothing of note, and Da-jung says the same about watching from the security room—no one acted suspiciously. When addressing all the teammates gathered, Woo-jin tells them they can decide how they want to vote.

They bicker amongst themselves about which answer would be best, but when Woo-jin says he’ll be voting “yes,” everyone starts to rethink their earlier decisions. They naturally assume Woo-jin’s choice will be the best one.

Jung-ah is the most agreeable of the bunch, and says she’ll go along with whichever plan is best—so in the end, Woo-jin and Jung-ah will be the ones to vote “yes,” which means the other two members will do the opposite.

Voting time. The remaining contestants cast their votes, and the tally reveals that both Woo-jin and Jung-ah have passed. So has Sung-joon. Bulldog is none too happy about the results, and punches Sung-joon after accusing him of being Betrayer X, knocking his sunglasses to the ground in the process.

Do-young administers a warning to Bulldog for using violence, causing him to be forcefully removed. Sung-joon has to face all the other contestants without his glasses. Including Woo-jin.

With only four contestants remaining in the game, Jung-ah is chosen as the next questioner. She nervously faces the other contestants as she asks, “I will be the last person standing.” Oohhh.

They’re given only thirty minutes to cast their vote this time, but Woo-jin looks like he’s just figured something out. He keeps Jung-ah behind so they can decide which way they’ll vote now—and he says he’ll vote no. Waitaminute… does Woo-jin think Jung-ah is Betrayer X?

Da-jung thinks that they’ll be able to win no matter what Sung-joon does, but Woo-jin thinks differently as he says that Sung-joon is still the one holding the key to victory.

While Do-young hitches a ride on a helicopter like the rockstar he is, the minutes tick down to voting time. Da-jung finds Jung-ah hovering by the same coffee machine she’s been at before every tally count—but since she’s Da-jung, she doesn’t think anything of it.

In a surprise move, Do-young appears in the courtroom in person (hence the helicopter) to oversee the third voting round. I love that sly smile he sends Woo-jin’s way. Tell him what time it is, Do-young!

Before Woo-jin casts his vote, he briefly locks eyes with Do-young as if to challenge him. Do-young counts the votes himself, and the first is Sung-joon’s. Since he voted no, if the three remaining votes are different, he’ll be the sole winner of two million dollars.

To stir the pot, Do-young asks Sung-joon to reveal now whether he is or isn’t the infamous Betrayer X. Sung-joon gives a half-smile: “I’m sure you already know the answer.” I wonder.

When one of the female contestant’s vote is also revealed to be a no, Do-young notes that she doesn’t look too fazed even though such a vote guarantees she and Sung-joon won’t win. Unless there’s a tie, and a resulting revote.

Jung-ah’s vote turns out to be yes, which means she’ll be the winner if Woo-jin voted no. Do-young knows what makes for good TV, and asks Jung-ah how she feels about her possible win. She gets teary-eyed as she addresses her mother through the camera, as she promises to earn money for her so she can be a more filial daughter.

Then Do-young asks Woo-jin how he feels, since he already knows what the result will be even if his vote hasn’t been tallied. “Will Jung-ah’s wish come true?” the devilish host asks.

After a pause Woo-jin just says, “We won, Jung-ah.”

Jung-ah’s sniffles slowly turn to laughter. “We?” she asks hysterically. “We?!” She can’t even control herself, and Do-young’s smile shows how pleased he is with this development.

“I told you I’d be the last person standing,” she says to rest of the contestants with a confident air. All her nervousness and timidity was just an act, as she takes off her wig to reveal her real head of hair. Even Sung-joon looks shocked.

Jung-ah can’t help but laugh maniacally at how she fooled everyone, and when one of the four remaining contestants calls her out for agreeing to split the winnings, we have our answer as to who Betrayer X really is. Like there was any doubt with Jung-ah’s display of crazy.

As for why she won’t have to fulfill her end of the bargain she made with everyone, Jung-ah displays her REAL identity card—and her name isn’t Jung-ah, but Jaime.

PD Lee orders that the other contestants’ reactions be filmed, while they edit in previously unaired footage of Jaime betraying her teammate in the first round. So they knew the entire time who Betrayer X was, which explains why Do-young couldn’t stop smirking. (Sorry for jumping to conclusions by thinking it was Sung-joon yesterday, guys! I guess I’m just as gullible as Da-jung.)

Jung-ah proudly explains her whole plan from start to finish, and how she’d requested that her round one footage not be broadcasted as part of her strategy. Woo-jin looks nonplussed—he figured this out earlier, didn’t he?

I feel like Jaime’s cocky “How did you get this far by being so naive?” is going to come back and bite her in the butt, but for now, she’s happy to proclaim that she’ll take the lead roles Woo-jin and Da-jung have been hogging since the first round. Now she’s the star.

“How do you feel, ‘Angel’ Nam Da-jung? You hate me now, don’t you? Don’t you want to curse me out and beat me?” Jaime teases ruthlessly. She dares Da-jung to say something, anything, but everything changes when Da-jung looks her dead in the eye and says, “Because I already knew.”

Do-young takes that as his cue to pull out Woo-jin’s vote, and makes a production of turning the card toward the contestants… and it’s a yes. It’s a tie!

Jaime turns on Woo-jin with a vengeance, screaming that he’d told her he was going to vote no. He even told her they’d won! “I did,” Woo-jin admits. “And you revealed yourself as a result.”

Apparently Jaime thought her plan was flawless, so Woo-jin decides to give her what-for. He’d sensed that she was hiding something from the beginning and kept his eye on her, but only started to truly suspect her when she so readily pointed to Sung-joon being Betrayer X, since it was her attempt to deflect suspicion away from herself.

He knows that her defending Da-jung against Bulldog was sincere, but became certain of her true identity after the first round because she was the only one acting nonchalant about which side to pick.

Using his human lie detector skills, he knew she was telling the truth when she volunteered to take any side—but that was because she was certain she’d win regardless. He even figured out that she was using her coffee-drinking as a secret signal to alert her other team members on how to vote.

That’s all fine and well, Jaime says, but it puts them in the exact same predicament—with the revote, their chances of winning will be 25% each. “You really think so?” Woo-jin challenges.

Woo-jin is chosen as the final questioner, and his statement to his fellow contestants is: “Money is the most valuable thing in life.”

But he upsets the game when he shows everyone that he’s going to vote no in advance. Ah ha. Jaime is pissed now, and of course, Do-young is pleased that emotions are running high.

The clock is ticking, leaving Jaime all but fuming in frustration. Team Woo-jin figures out that the only way for Woo-jin to lose is if the remaining three contestants team up and agree to split the money, in which case only one of them would win as long as two of them voted no.

With only five minutes left, Jaime gathers the two remaining contestants and poses the idea of forming a team—she’s totally not lying this time, really! Sung-joon is against trusting her unless she agrees to take only forty million won (forty thousand dollars) since the contract they signed with their real identities would still be valid.

Which means that everyone else would get about one hundred forty thousand dollars, unless they do decide to split between the three of them. Even in that case, Sung-joon is firm about Jaime getting a much smaller share than the two of them.

They squabble about trusting each other, until Sung-joon says he’ll take their votes up with his. Both of them give them their “yes” cards while he takes his “no” card. But… no one signed this new contract. How do they expect him to keep to the agreement?

Sung-joon gets the votes in literally seconds before the round ends. Do-young pulls out the votes one by one: Jaime is a yes, the other girl in their team is a yes, Woo-jin is a no, and Sung-joon… is a yes. Whaaat?

This means Woo-jin wins it all, though I’ve never seen a more unimpressed face pelted by congratulatory confetti. (Wait.) Anyhow, Woo-jin has to explain what happened to the viewers, and it begins with Sung-joon.

Even though Sung-joon had protective sunglasses on, Woo-jin was still able to tell that he was lying about being Betrayor X. When he told Da-jung that Sung-joon held the key to their victory, he also instructed her to use her powers of likability to get through to Sung-joon where he couldn’t, since Sung-joon would always be on guard with him.

So Da-jung won over Sung-joon’s trust when she tended to his wounds from Bulldog’s right hook, and he became shy, puppy-like putty in her hands. She was able to get him to admit that he wasn’t Betrayer X (he just let people think what they wanted).

When he asked her how she knew, Woo-jin had intervened by revealing that Jung-ah/Jaime was the true Betrayer X. They’d formed a team between the three of them, and agreed to split the winnings between them. That’s why, in the end, Sung-joon said his answer would be no in order to fool his non-teammates into trusting him.

Eight suitcases of money are brought in according to the contract Woo-jin drafted with his teammates, while Jaime is dragged out of the room for going insane and given a violence warning just like Bulldog.

But Do-young gets an emergency page that causes them to halt filming. It’s Director Jang, demanding that Jaime’s contract still be honored even though she used a nickname—after all, they permitted her to enter the show as Oh Jung-ah, so why can’t she have signed the contract with that name?

PD Lee is fiercely protesting the move on her end, because neither her or Do-young want Director Jang to have a plant in the first place, much less one he bends the rules for when he wouldn’t otherwise.

Director Jang tries to calm things down when Do-young mentions bringing his lawyer in, claiming, “This is entertainment!” And though he griped about literally anything that could’ve caused a negative public reaction before, he fully intends to cover up any backlash regarding Jaime. Of course.

Jaime is barely saved from Bulldog’s wrath when Do-young reappears on the monitor to announce that the “producers” have agreed to hold Jaime’s contract valid. He hides it well, but his disdain for this decision is evident.

Da-jung asks what that means for Sung-joon, since they’d planned to give Jaime’s winnings to him. The other teammates balk at the idea of splitting their share again

…But before Da-jung can offer to share her personal earnings with him, Woo-jin hands his suitcase to Sung-joon. He’d already promised to give him his share when they made their initial agreement.

Bulldog seems ready to rip Jaime’s head from her shoulders when she’s called back to the courtroom for the reinstatement round, but she’s able to calm him down when she tells him she’s going to save him. How/why?

Jaime all but skips into the room to collect her earnings, and gives just a portion to Bulldog. Do-young then announces that the nine people with prize money will get to play in the reinstatement game.

To get there, they have to pass all the eliminated contestants who desperately beg to be picked for reinstatement. Since Da-jung can’t easily ignore their cries, Woo-jin takes her by the wrist to lead her away.

After Jaime uses her wiles on a staff “oppa” to learn that one contestant will be eliminated in the vague reinstatement game, Da-jung asks Woo-jin to spare some time for a talk.

They end up outside a gas station, where Woo-jin actually smiles at the sight of Da-jung stuffing her face with instant ramen. He wouldn’t let her treat him to a meal even though she offered, so it’s cute that all he’s having is a tiny yogurt drink.

When he asks her what she wanted to talk about, Da-jung says it’s actually a question. “I thought of it when I saw those people begging to be saved,” she says. “Why are we doing this? If we all agreed to share the prize money no matter who wins, there’d be no reason to fight or be in debt. Wouldn’t everyone be happy?”

Just when it seems like Woo-jin is about to compliment her for thinking of the greater good, he doesn’t. He’s ready to leave the conversation, but Da-jung can’t help asking why he doesn’t think her plan would work.

He tells her that if there were ten people just like her, maybe it would work—otherwise, if even one person were to betray the group, or if anyone even suspected a betrayal, it’d all be over. And the person who’d bear the brunt of it would be the person who wanted to trust the others the most, which they both know would be her.

“Isn’t that a way to win? By trusting one another instead of fighting and suspecting each other? Why are you always so pessimistic?” she asks.

“If it were that easy, would the world be the way it is?” Woo-jin fires back. “Would people even gather to watch such a senseless show?” Da-jung argues that’s why they should try, because they could be the ones showing other people what it means to trust one another.

He still says no, and claims that her kind of thinking will put her into debt before she even reaches the reinstatement game. “Why don’t you trust people?” Da-jung finally asks. “You said you have to doubt others in order to trust them. Do you even want to trust people?”

When she asks why he’s in the game when he’s not in it for the money, Woo-jin roughly pulls his arm from her grasp and tells her it’s got nothing to do with her. Furthermore, it’s none of her business.

Dal-goo calls Da-jung to celebrate her win, and seems to be shipping her and Woo-jin as he tells her to stick to him from now on. But he’s in for it with his boss, who knows all about how much money Da-jung won, and beats the living crap out of Dal-goo for acting like her knight in shining armor instead of her debt collector.

Even though he was just threatened with losing his job and is now black and blue, Dal-goo still acts the same when he shows up to Da-jung’s house that night. He doesn’t let her know that anything’s gone wrong, or that he’s in trouble because of her. Awww.

He does pay special attention to the way she secures her suitcase of money to the dresser with nothing more than a bike chain before hesitantly bringing up the debt she still has with his boss. Shouldn’t she, y’know, maybe try to pay off some of the interest with her winnings?

Everyone knows that the money in her hands isn’t actually hers to use, since she’ll have to pay back the broadcast company if she’s eliminated from the show. But in Dal-goo’s mind, she can afford to pay them back slowly, since they’re unlikely to charge her almost fifty percent interest like his boss is.

She nods off before he can finish his thought, leaving Dal-goo nervously staring at the briefcase. Don’t do it, Dal-goo! Don’t do it!

While Do-young drinks alone and Woo-jin walks alone, Dal-goo steals away with Da-jung’s money. But Woo-jin suddenly turns around, as if his spidey-senses are tingling…

 
COMMENTS

So I was completely and shamefully wrong about Sung-joon being Betrayer X, since I should’ve figured that this show loves its twisty reveals and that the correct answer is never the easiest. I actually like Sung-joon more because he isn’t that guy, and because he seems sweet enough to be Da-jung’s male equivalent. How did he even get this far with those tell-all puppy eyes?

I’ve said before how much I’m loving the side characters in this drama, if only because actual attention is paid to fleshing them out when they could so easily be simple stock characters. It has a wonderful effect on the entire show when side characters are given purpose beyond selling products to the audience, and so when we get someone like Dal-goo, my heart just automatically breaks for him.

Poor heroines and debt collectors always come as a packaged deal, but after so many years of nameless, faceless, loudly-clothed gangsters chasing hapless girls into the arms of the chaebols reluctantly waiting to save them, I can’t even tell you guys how happy it makes me to see a debt collector humanized in such an endearing way. The fact that he’s stuck between a rock and a hard place when it comes to his own livelihood versus a girl who’s become a sister to him makes me pity him as opposed to hating him for what trouble this’ll cause for Da-jung down the line, and puts such a different spin on a trope that causes my eyes to glaze over most times. None of it would be possible without the solid writing and directing we’re blessed with here, but character actor Jo Jae-yun’s performance is nothing to scoff at, either.

Da-jung’s idea to kill ‘em with kindness was definitely an interesting one, and I wonder if Woo-jin would ever rethink taking her up on it when he seems all but incapable of believing in people. The problem is, of course, that he’s right—if kindness and trust actually made the world go round, then there’d be no Liar Game, and there’d be no them. Likewise, he shouldn’t have to be reminding Da-jung that she’d end up the loser in situations like that every single time, since she has to realize that she would’ve been eliminated long ago without his help.

I say that she has to know that, but sometimes I wonder if she actually does. The idea of where her character should go from here is an interesting dilemma to tackle, because on the one hand, if we want her to protect herself by becoming jaded and suspicious of everyone, then Da-jung will lose what makes her such a rarity in today’s times. On the other hand, if she doesn’t wise up to the way the world works, then she’ll always be tricked, abused, and taken advantage of. I guess there’s always a happy medium to be found, but who’d want to watch that drama, anyway?

 
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This ep. was interesting for me, because from the moment I saw Jamie, she kind of stood out. I could tell she was wearing a wig, it didn’t look like that was her hair (and that made me wonder why she was wearing one). Then there was her constant writing in her notebook, her constant drinking (or holding her cup) before the voting, and the way in which she would glance across the room as she held her cup. The thing that made me think that Jamie may not win, was when she was celebrating her win, and HWJ’s vote had not been announced yet. I felt that they were spending a lot of time on her, and DY had a little smirk on his face. I remember thinking, “I think she might be celebrating too early.”

I guess we found out in this ep. who Dir. Jang’s (real) protégé really is… Thank you again for the recap!

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I thought the same thing when I saw her shiny fake wig. Like nope this one is up to something( as if everyone isn't up to something on a show names LIAR GAME).

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@ shountypoo, right?

Her fake wig really stood out. In one scene (I think when she is in the Council/voting room), her wig is actually tilted, not being straight on her head. And that made it even more obvious that it was a (fake) wig. I wonder what the meaning was, of Jamie stepping on the contact lens. Maybe that she couldn't see with her (fake) glasses, and that she didn't need contact lenses?

I rewatched the ep., and I realized I had some questions (did any of these things occur to you?):

1--At the beginning of the ep. when Dir. Jang was meeting with that man (upstairs) and was caught by DY, he (Dir. Jang) said, "that friend is quick witted." (This was after DY told him that he had come too well prepared [Dir. Jang I am assuming? Or was DY referring to Betrayer X? I am so confused]).

2--Am I right in thinking that the questions asked by the questioners/contestants are questions they (the contestants) come up with themselves, and not questions that are fed to them by jvN?

3--So, since one of the jvN staff person alerted DY and PD Lee that DJ and HWJ were meeting, is it safe to assume that they are constantly being watched? I guess even when they are in the security room (since HWJ told them at one point that they could be disqualified for violence)?

4--Since Jamie managed to get $500K before becoming a contestant, did she have to turn in that money as well, so she could join the show? I was not clear on that. It sounded like she swindled her "friend," (of her money), and based on comments I read below, she also managed to take money from another contestant (through "her friend", in the 1st round). What happened to the 500K dollars Jaimie had before?

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@ Ivoire
In an attempt to figure out the answers... I'm re-watching.

Where was the part where she stepped on the contact lens? Missed it somehow.

1) Dir Jang was speaking about Betrayer X as the one who was quick-witted. IE the person was not well-prepared in the sense that he/she was given extra info but that he/she is the right person to win the Minority Game.

2) Yes the statements for the questions are ones made up by the contestants.

3)Yes there are cameras around, not sure where, but definitely in the security room. They "showed" their contract to the camera as a means to display that they were committed to the contract.

4) No clue as to the terms under which Jamie came into the game, especially since she was brought in to rig the results. It probably did not matter whether she gave her money back or not, but maybe the station would have required it back in order for her to work towards the 2 million won. The explanation on how she got her money was given aptly by someone else here (sorry I cannot find the post at the moment!!) ie she was a helper who helped her friend win, then she betrayed her friend and so got 500K won for herself.

Enjoy!

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Oh got to the stepping on the contact lens part, it might have been a ploy to have the excuse to wear the large framed spectacles as an added disguise, since they were not exactly attractive.

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But the thing is that when she stepped on the contact lens, she WAS already wearing the glasses. Did she maybe get her glasses out, because she had "lost" her contact lens? That could be, right?...

You would think though that her glasses would have helped her see the contact lens, but they didn't (since she clearly stepped on it), which (to me) also explained NDJ's surprised look, when Jamie stepped on the contact lens. Maybe that is what the drama wanted us to know, that she didn't need contacts or glasses, since clearly, she could not see better. Her glasses were not to see better, they were just a part of her disguise...

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Her glasses were fake. She was wearing contact lenses, but one of them dropped out. She had to hide the lenses because Da-jung would have been like "uh why are you wearing glasses AND contact lenses?"

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@ c,

This is late, however I wanted to thank you for your explanation, which made sense. I could sense that her glasses were fake, which she revealed herself, when she took them off and when she was gloating about her ruse, and about how she had fooled everyone.
I was just still puzzled about that scene with NDJ, that HWJ saw from the bus. I was not completely clear on that, but you clarified it for me.

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What really stood out to me is that if they made Jamie's contract valid for her to collect. She should have had to share her winnings with the people she was also in contract with in essence saving them all. At least that's my understanding with the decision made by the producers.

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@ Growingbeautifully Hello,

Thank you for rewatching and for trying to help me figure out the answers to my questions.

Re: the part where Jamie stepped on the contact lens, it was when HWJ started to explain how he figured out that Jamie was Betrayer X. HWJ was sitting in the bus, looking out, and he saw NDJ helping Jamie look for something on the ground. In that scene, you see Jamie stepping on a contact lens, and NDJ is surprised when that happens (were they looking for that contact lens?) I wonder whose contact lens it was, and I was puzzled by that. Was that scene to highlight that Jamie actually had good vision, and so she didn't "really" need visual aids (contacts or her glasses)?

1--Re: your comment here, do you think that Dir. Jang really wants Jamie to win Liar Game (aka be the one person standing, at the very end of the game)? Because after Dir. Jang pushed for Jamie to be reinstated, I was under the impression that he wanted her more because her presence makes things interesting (and will bring more ratings and attention to the show), not necessarily that he wants her to win (be the one getting the 10 million dollars), but I could be wrong... What do you think?

2--Thank you for your answers to 2 and 3.

3--Re: your answer #4, I was wondering if Jamie had to give the money back because I was curious about that, and also because I was thinking that if HWJ had to give the money back (and he was a helper as well), then so should Jamie, to be fair. She should have started on an equal footing.
There are definitely times when I wish the writing in this drama would make clear what some of the rules are, and how they affect the people involved in the game.

Also, I DID enjoy reading your post. Thank you for joining this conversation... I look forward to more of your thoughts, here or as your own comments, or as responding to other commenters as well. have a great day, or night (depending on where you live).

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Hi Ivoire, great to 'read' you!

I applaud you for your politeness and for taking the time to reply to every one of those who responded to you! I appreciate your care in this reply very much.

If you are in the US then, I am pretty much on the other side of the world, in Southeast Asia, therefore it's early morning for me now but it might be late evening for you.

Following up on our discussion...
Re: contact lenses - It seems that when Da Jung was helping Jamie look for the lenses, she was not wearing any spectacles yet (I just checked lol!). She was looking around pathetically, holding her very false hair back. I was wondering what the reason was for this too. We had our guesses (above), but was she just trying to be more obviously pathetic and weak looking so as not to appear to be a threat? Hmmmm. Anyway, by her behaviour she actually drew Woo Jin's attention so it backfired on her.

Re: Dir Jang - motive is sooo hard to figure out. Yes at first I thought she was his mole or the one to go in to upset everything and take the money and maybe being 'employed' by the station, she was to return all that money to the station, so they would gain both in ratings and cash. I'm not sure anymore. It could be just to get the ratings, but I feel that since the beginning, Dir Jang was chafing at releasing so much money for a show. It would be more likely that he'd want to ensure the money was not 'lost' so to speak.

Re: returning money in order to join game - I too am in the dark about this. I guess I've become inured to plot holes and gaps in info in dramas, so that I did not really try to explore this. To be fair, if one helper had to return winnings in order to join the game, then the rule should apply to all; which also made we think that Jamie might have different treatment since she was planted there. However, she behaved as though the money was everything to her. A result of madness or because she had already given up the first lot of winnings??

Thanks too for continuing this conversation and making my day! This is really why I joined... ie because it nice to make a connection with another person and share our thoughts. I've really also enjoyed being here and I've gained greater insight by reading the posts of so many and yours too, and am grateful! Have a lovely day or night!!

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I think Jamie is sleeping with the director tbh. She's not been shy about using her feminine wiles so far.

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@ c,

Your comment made me LOL! Maybe you know something we don't know? I do see what you mean though, seeing how Jamie has been carrying herself, she doesn't seem like the kind of person who would be afraid (or embarrassed) to do (almost?) anything to get what she wants. After all, she did steal money from her friend, didn't she? And she managed to get money from another contestant as well, and she gloated about doing both.

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PART 1:

@ Growingbeautifully,

Hello again! My response is late, however I never like to leave a comment go without a reply, especially if I had something more to say :-) (and I do). I was hoping to be able to answer sooner, however the weekend got away from me, and the house chores seemed to be unending. That being said, I have some time now, so I will respond, with the hope that you will still see and read this reply to your comment.

Just FYI, I usually come back and check on the comments (especially if I participated in some conversations) UNTIL the next thread/recap is posted (so in this instance, I will be checking back here until at least next Wed.). I still check even after the next recap has been posted, just to see if there have been any additional comments. And even if the beanie I left a reply to does not respond (if that would have added to the conversation), I would still write, just so I would know that the conversation was “completed,” at least on my end. I hope I am making sense.

On to your response: I will refer to the points you addressed by saying “in your 1st paragraph, etc…” and I counted, and there are 6 paragraphs. Thank you for your compliment in the 1st paragraph (#), that actually made my day, really. And you are welcome!!!! I am glad that you were sensitive to the care I put in responding to those who replied to me, and I appreciate that you noticed the thoughtfulness that I tried to convey in my writing.

Even though this is a blog, and we don’t “see” each other (hence we don’t “know” each other), I usually see it as the commenters having a conversation, the way you would at a table, with tea, cookies or the beverage (or snack) of your choice. Or I see us having a phone call conference, where we exchange our views on the episode we have watched (and on the drama in general). Because I am “anonymous” does not make me want to be less polite or less agreeable. Again, I hope that I am making sense. Aaaand it seems to have paid off, based on your reaction to said politeness, as you expressed it well in this post. By the way, I appreciate you pointing those things out, very few people do or care, to be honest.

#2: You guessed it right! I do live in the US, on the West Coast, to be a little more precise. My time zone is DB’s time zone as well. And your guess about your morning being my late evening was probably right as well.

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PART 2: @ Growingbeautifully,

#3: You know, your explanation for Jamie looking for (and stepping on) her contact lens makes sense. It DID make her look pathetic, and it probably made NDJ (and some of the other contestants) not feel that she was a threat, thereby dismissing her. It also made it so that no one questioned why she was wearing the (very) fake spectacles (as you called them, LOL), when she finally started wearing them. And again, as you pointed out, it DID backfire on her, because it got HWJ’s attention. I am basically agreeing with your assumptions in this #, LOL. Jamie tried really hard to deflect the attention from herself, such as when she created the rumor about “Betrayer X.” Thankfully, eventually HWJ saw through that.

#4: Re: Dir. Jang’s motives, I am still very curious about them, and I also have to say that I love the actor playing Dir. Jang, I find him to be excellent. He is edgy, manipulative, and that actor’s face is just perfect to play a bad guy, or a guy with gray motives the viewers can spend time trying to figure out. I saw him in The Heirs, and he was scary there as well (and abusive).

If the station were to get the money from Jamie (if she won it all), they would not be gaining money, they might merely be getting it “back,” since someone had to shell it. Now that I have written that, you could be right (about the station gaining money), if the one who provided the money is not the station owner (like DY for example?) DY is also one who seems extremely invested in this game and in HWJ. DY seems to have been (or still be) wealthy. Did he invest his personal money for this game? If so, was that for ratings only, and to “help” the station financially? As we are suspecting, he probably has other motives as well.

Also, re: Jamie working at the station, I don’t think that it is the case. Her reaction when she thought she had won the money makes me think that the money would truly be hers, if she were to win the very last round (as we know, they “have” the money now, but they can’t spend it). I also think that Dir. Jang cares deeply about the ratings, and he is thoroughly enjoying the chaos that Jamie is creating. At 1st I thought Dir. Jang sent Jamie in to play, but it is also possible that she might have asked to join the Liar Game, and (maybe) based on what Dir. Jang had seen her do to swindle money off of 2 previous contestants, he decided to let her in (I hope she returned the money to get in, like HWJ), and he agreed to her footage not being showed at 1st. I am rambling on and on, but I hope I am making sense. I also think that Jamie really wanted to be in LG, because she thought she could win, and be the last one standing.

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PART 3: @ Growingbeautifully,

Also, was Jamie really planted in the game? I was curious about that, because I didn’t fully watch (with subs) the 1st 3 episodes, since the subs were not 100% ready. I watched partially subbed, so I didn’t understand everything. I remember Dir. Jang saying something to DY and to PD Lee, however I also remember that we were not given the name of that mysterious player. Maybe it was then that she was planted? I still wish the drama would have made it clear whether or not Jamie had to return her money or not. I am thinking that she might have, because she went crazy (as you mentioned) at the sight and at the thought of having that money. I now wonder if the station would have mentioned it, if Jamie had kept the money she swindled (from the others) or not.

*Sigh* The commenters are right! This drama makes you wanna care about every little detail, EXCEPT that it does NOT give you all the details. It’s kind of frustrating, because if I am going to use my brain to try and figure things out (and understand the characters and the plot), then I would like to understand EVERYTHING. Does this mean I will have to read the manga (at some point), and watch the Jdorama of LG, since some of the commenters have said that those two (manga and Jdorama) spell things out really well? *Goes to see if I can find more time in the day...* I really wanted to FULLY enjoy this drama :-)

Your last #: Awwwww… I am sooo glad you are enjoyed your experience here, good for you!!!!! And I am glad that I can be one of the people who is making you have such an experience. I was curious about what you meant here, ”This is really why I joined… ie because it is nice to make a connection with another person and share our thoughts.” Did you mean join the DB community, or join the threads for this drama? How long have you been reading DB (if I may ask)? And how long have you been watching Kdramas?
I too am glad that we connected, and I agree with you, one gains greater insight by reading and by participating in the conversations/discussions taking place :-) I hope your week started well.

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Hi Again Ivoire (I could not find the Reply option under 1.1.1.2.6, and so I hope this reply ends up in the right place!!!)

This is to let you know that I have read, with pleasure, your very detailed reply. Once again, thanks so much for taking the trouble and the time to respond so fully and with such relevance.

I've had a great Monday and to cap it off, I get to read you and our fellow Beanies tonight. By 'join' I mean joined Dramabeans. I've not been here long although I knew of it... maybe have been reading/lurking since earlier this year and started writing in only lately. As for Korean dramas, although I started in around 2008 with Goong, I was not really watching much of anything until the last couple of years. I found that I just wanted my brain to not think too hard at first, but when I started reading soo many interesting comments, I decided to be less lazy and to think more whether and why I liked something. Anyway, here I am... absolutely thrilled whenever anyone responds!!!:)

Yes, I agree with you, this is like a conversation, with the added advantage that we can take the time to read/listen to each other and share a well-considered reply. I do the same as you, ie, I check back at the places where I posted to see if there's a reply and respond if I can.

Yes, I do understand what you meant about everything, except the part about Jamie and the money, and whether her returning it had more to do with how "crazy" she appeared to be, or whether the station would have mentioned it. ... We'll discuss some more maybe with Episode 5?

WRT to Jamie being planted - It was in Ep 3 that Do Young and PD were talking to Jang. DY suggested a deal to avoid disciplinary action and said that the stock prices would be kept up if Woo Jin came back into the game as the main player (he would have to return the 250K won though). Jang felt that if Woo Jin, an ex-con won the 2million won, it would be inappropriate. Da Jung, he did not consider worthy and said they must put someone capable in the final round. PD put into words that ... he wanted to let his special participant win the game (not just play it but win it).

So it sounds like he fixed the game... but again it is not clear if the money remained the player's winnings or not.

Well it already early Tuesday morning over here!! Gotta go. Have a great Monday!

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@ Growingbeautifully,
I am so sorry that I have not been able to respond to your last comment. I will do so soon, with the hope that you will still see it and read it.

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Yeah, I felt that a lot of it was given away by camera work. I honestly was not surprised by the reveals. Also, maybe I got the logic wrong but....I thought they had figured it out and laid it out pretty clearly that the betrayer was going to have be on multiple teams. So the betrayer would have to be in their group of 8 (which means it couldn't be who everyone thought it was). And then the logic would then be that that person would naturally make it to the end so if there were only two people left it would be the other one....which he had already figured out so his moves weren't surprising. I still enjoyed the episode but I do think they sort of gave away their 'mysteries' a lot.

I actually like fake betrayer X so I hope his role gets a little bigger and more interesting for the next round.

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@ 4D Hello,

I don't think you totally got the logic wrong. I think that HWJ knew before anyone else who betrayer X was, and he anticipated her moves. HWJ also knew that SJ was important in determining the final outcome (the very last one), which was why he went to talk to him a 2nd time. I loved the way in which SJ looked at HWJ, when he gave him his money. He did look like a puppy during those few seconds, as if he couldn't believe that HWJ was really giving him his prize money. I liked that scene.

I also thought it was interesting when In Ki asked Jamie if she had seen his movie. The way In Ki acted (aggressive and very flirtatious) with Jamie made me wonder what type of movie he was referring to. Maybe he just wanted Jamie to know that he was famous at one time (and that he was in a famous movie).

Like Heads, I really like the side characters, who I find to be well portrayed by their respective actors and actresses. Jamie (the actress playing her) is really good at being a villain and an insane person. I also love the shaman lady, she makes me laugh (she is so theatrical). I have seen DG in two other dramas (Glory Jane and Gu Family Book so far), and I do agree that he is a really good character actor (I find him excellent). I loved the way he talked in GFB, it was very distinct and unique (he had a way of dragging his words when he spoke). I also love JJH (DG) in this drama, I find him to totally be in character.

It is really great how much a drama can be enhanced, when its side characters are well written or well fleshed out. Dir. Jang and PD Lee also stand out for me. Dir. Jang is edgy to me (the actor playing him), and he was kind of the same in The Heirs (he was actually abusive in that drama, but he plays those roles well). And DY has very interesting eyes in this drama. There is a way he looks at people, and a way he looks at the screen when he is hosting the game. I love those looks.

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I actually found the same problem with the original manga because Fugunaga (Jamie here in the drama) kinda stood out early on in the game so I can't fault the drama for the lack of surprise in this particular game. The drama has again grasped the essence from the original work and I really appreciated that. I do look forward to the future games which in my opinion are more complicated and provide more surprises than the first two.

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@ So3 Hi,

Thank you for your reference to the Japanese character (the equivalent of Jamie). It is interesting information, since I am not familiar with the manga or the previous Jdoramas.
So the next games will be more complicated? Oy!!!! And I already had to rake my brain to understand this one (I am exaggerating a little bit). It is a good thing other commenters and the recapper help us make sense of things.

I also saw that Jamie was in 7 Level Civil Servant, where she played the daughter of a diplomat, if memory serves me right. I also love that picture of Joo Won Heads included. I am assuming it is from Tomorrow Cantabile? I am not watching that show, so I would not know.

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Yes, the upcoming games will be more complicated with more crazy side characters.

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@ realraul2307,
Oh WOW! Thanks for the info. I better brace myself then. I am glad there are places where we can go to read others' explanations and thoughts, and understand the show better.

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The pic if is from Good Doctor. And yes I agree, the camera work gave everything away for me.

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Ok, so maybe you have to return the prize money even if you end up losing the game, so that's why it puts everyone in a bad situation because some people might have spent the prize money already??

Also, I actually do hope they develop a love line somehow. Cause in the original, Matsuda was too hot to have been single. They should give the new Akiyama/Woo-jin a chance.

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Also, I think the actress for Jaime was also the crazy girl in White Christmas? That actress is so good at playing unhinged characters.

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Yup, I recognized her in WC so then I was already wary of her character. Maybe they should have cast someone lesser known.

And her wig looked so unnatural. But I didn't really suspect her until the final voting between the 4 team members. I had been a bit suspicious of the Congressman?assistant guy who revealed the leaked photo.

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Oh I mean the team members: Woo Jin, Jamie, the Congress guy, and the other man btw. Not the super final voting.

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Sorry, I forgot to add one more thing. I don't think they made it clear why the last three contestants decided to give Sung-Joon their cards to vote. The purpose in the original was to make sure that they tied 2:2 to start a new round and gain more time to work out how to split the money. They didn't explain it too much here.

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I think they talked about the issue enough that it was still clear even if not say outright. They agreed on their yes and two nos so they all clearly wanted the 2:2 after being rushed.

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The recap kind of skimmed over that bit, but I thought they made it clear enough in the actual episode. If I recall correctly, Jung Ah said something like, "Let's make it a tie, then we can talk about how to split the money when we make it to the next round."

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I think maybe there was a problem with the subs, cause I don't think Heads competely understood it either.

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subs were fine, the original writing itself was the problem

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yeah, I agree with you. This episode did not clearly stated that the group of 3 agreed to have a tie (or is it the problem of my subtitle?). I need to watch the japanese one to recall it because I thought in the korean version, they want to win it, instead of just a tie. Then, It would not make sense that they are pulling 2 "yes" 1 "no" to win.

Seems like dramabeans recap also think that the group of 3 want to win, not a tie. I think the production team should avoid this kind of potential misunderstanding.

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It was very rushed, they only gave them 5 min to make a decision and so a lot of that logic was rushed over as they were panicking trying to figure it out. I don't see why they couldn't have given them 20 min or something and made the arguments clearer.

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They had 10mns to decide, and HWJ made his decision right away, or so he let Jamie think (that he would vote "NO"). 5mns in, Jamie did not have a clear plan, so she started to panic, called the other 2 over, and tried to make a plan.

One of the impressions I also get about this show is that DY is also (very) good at reading people, and earlier on, when he was talking with PD Lee, he said that if HWJ (Prof. Ha) did not win or pass these challenges, he would be very disappointed, and he would have underestimated HWJ. DY at times seems to be ahead of the game, knowing something that will happen later on (or something that is about to happen).

So it could be that DY gave them 10mns on purpose, to give a sense of pressure to the 3 (though SJ already had a strategy), and to create a sense of suspense to the viewers (the ones on TV , and us). And as we saw, the 3 looked like they were scrambling to come up with something they could all agree on.

I really love that SJ's "naivete" (for lack of a better word) and his youth (and sincere heart) worked for him, because he was able to trick that other lady and trick Jamie, who didn't think that he would switch the votes before voting. He got both women to trust him. It felt very rewarding (to me) to see him in the group of winners. Also rewarding was that he trusted HWJ, who did not betray him. I really loved that moment when he looked at HWJ, who was handing him his case full of money. And like some of the commenters, I do think that SJ and NDJ look cute together.

I could be reading too much into it, however, isn't it part of experiencing the drama? Trying to look at what happens from different angles? I know it is for me.

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i think your not reading enough into it is the problem.
there is actually a lot more strategy involved in just that simple final vote. the problem is that there are several other strategies that come to mind that are not at all addressed in this version. for example, if Jamie wanted to win or tie you only need 2 people not 3. if its a solid 3 its a solid win. or the strategy that makes sense for the korean version is that the three of them would make a contract with Jamies real name and have her win. since her contracts are null and void it is split up between the three of them and since the other two didn't win they don't have to split their money. pseudo-betrayer-x would of done this... because lets face it a third of 2,000,000 is a whole lot better than an eighth. But the fact is they rushed the whole thing and didn't explain the reasoning that what they were doing was the best. also if you'r so inclined to think that 10 minute is not enough time to think up a plan i strongly urge you to think how long it took for Jamie to come up with her first plan in the minority game (hint: it would've been only a few minutes)

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This is episode was great. I really wanted to see how the more intricate games would play out in the Korean version. It was very different. (the fact that they had less time to make their votes and that time kept decreasing was very surprising to me since that free time played an important part in the original) But the differences totally worked. It made everything feel more urgent. Woo jin and Da Jung's dynamic is very cute (and welcome departure from the original as well).

The dynamics of the JVN executives make so much sense in relation to the craziness of the game and the manipulation you KNOW will take place in the future. Shin Sung Rok ROCKS so hard. His evil little smirks and eye movement when no one is watching make my day.

I keep worrying that there are only 12 episodes and were already on ep 4 and they are only at game 2... I hope they get an extension because i love this show and everyone in it. Thanks Heads :D

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Isn't it only 10 episodes? they announced that when news of the remake came out. Since then, I haven't heard anything of adding episodes but somehow people keep throwing out 12 episodes. Does anyone know which is correct?

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Of the sources I checked, three said 12 episodes and one said 10.

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Hmm... but if I go by the dates at viki, it's 10. Go figure.

Still it looks like it's leaning towards 12. Here's what I found:

viki: 10
asianwiki: 10
koreandrama.org: 12
wikipedia: 12
dramabay: 12
hancinema.net: 12
wiki.d-addicts.com: 12

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Naver: 12

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I was hoping for an extension as well, but the ratings have been poor.

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the twists and turns there aren't so surprising. well except the fact DJ already knows. I thought she's still manipulated by Jamie. and the politics surrounding LG is what makes me more curious than the actual game itself. I'm not saying I'm disappointed by the tricks played during the game, still fun to watch but knowing how the jversion was carried out, this one is bit lacking in suspense.

and can I just ship DJ and Sung Hoon. they are sooo cute okay nvm. haha.

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I thought I was the only one who noticed how adorable Da Jung and Sung Hoon looked together! <3

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KSE has natural powers to have chemistry to any guys. :)

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Gosh I love that actress who played Jamie...

I already know its her based on the way she was introduced and build up in the story. And I can't understand why bulldog is back in the game? :/ or Do winning players have the power to revive eliminated contestant?

I guess I will be expecting Na jung to always be penniless every round lol.

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Yeah, it seemed like anyone who got money that round was allowed to move on. But it wasn't very clear...not to mention what if the one person had won it all? How would there have been a round 3?

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Do young said that anyone who had prize money advanced to the next round so when Jamie gave bulldog some of her money, he also advanced.

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So, the reinstatement round/revival round doesn't include Woo-Jin right? It only involves the 9 people that were eliminated with some of the prize money?

In the original, the next round is Revival Round 1, which includes any players that were eliminated from round 2. They have the opportunity to join round 3 to erase their debts. Because the main heroine had some of the prize money, she runs into some problems.

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Since this is a reality game show basically only the people who win get to advance. I'm sure they anticipated people teaming up together or bribing others to vote a majority so that more members would win. Besides being only one person as a winner was not the only outcome as they explained at the beginning. In the end 2 people could have made a minority and thus securing at least 2 people to go into the next round. If Jamie hadn't manipulated the game the chances of 2 people winning the game would have been higher.

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sorry to clarify, I meant win money. The winners of the actual game would automatically pass to the third round but people with some money still get a chance to advance to next round. Plus it makes sense, why would you let the people who got money without actually winning the game walk away with money? They don't have to battle it out in the third round and depending on how much they won they could pay their debt to the station and still have some money left so in the end the station could end up losing more money.

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Yeah, since WooJin won the game, he can advance for sure, and the others with money (9 people) will have to play the reinstatement game, right?
Maybe in the reinstatement game, Woojin will once again become DJs helper? Or he has to participate to even out the numbers.
In any way he HAS to be there because DJ would totally lose without him... and we still have 6-8 episodes to go which I'd rather not spend watching her being beat up by dept collectors.

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Sung Joon makes a great villain that you don't know whether you want to pop one on the head or just try to get away from him.

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sorry, meant Shin Sung-Rok
He is pretty good

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That gif though, LOL

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I'm confused about something ...

They announced that the 9 people with money can go to the next round but weren't there 10 ... 8 from the contract plus puppy eyes plus bulldog?

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I don't think it includes Woo-Jin. I think this next round is only for those who were eliminated with the prize money.

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If I understood correctly, the winners automatically go into the next round so even though he has no money he already qualified for the next round. This round is for the people who did not win but still have some money to battle it out and go to next round. Its basically like a way to secure that there will be another round otherwise the game would end with Woo-Jin winning and thats where the show would end.

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I need help with the last vote. Why would the 3 settle for a tie (Jamie (Yes), the other girl (Yes) and Sung-joon (No) will result in a tie with Woo-jin's No), when they can actually go for an outright win - (Jamie (No), the other girl (No) and Sung-joon (Yes)? Just wondering :)...

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They wanted to buy extra time so that they could come up with a strategy. If Sung-joon is the only who picked yes then he would have been the only winner. Why would anyone else agree to that?

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I thought the whole idea is for one of them to win and they split the prize?

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They couldn't agree on splitting the prize. The lawyer guy mentioned how the contracts became mixed up and complicated. If Sung-Joon or that other woman won, they would have to split the prize money with both of their teams. Also, Sung-Joon intentionally tried to stall time by saying that he wanted more money than Jaime.

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Ahh.... thanks, km!

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But because they knew that Jamie is a lying liar who lies, the other two didn't trust her to stick to any agreement about voting a particular way and splitting the prize. Plus Sung Joon was insisting that he didn't want to split the prize equally with her, and the other lady was just about to have a nervous breakdown from the tension of the whole thing. With only a few seconds left, they agreed to go for a tie, as a way to buy themselves some more time to try to come to an arrangement.

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Oops, I was a couple minutes slow submitting my comment -- I see someone already explained it!

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@ Because of Reasons,

I really loved your explanation, (which made sense), so thank you for that. I couldn't help but LOL at this, "and the other lady was just about to have a nervous breakdown from the tension of the whole thing." So dramatic, but very true.
Thank you for giving me a reason to have a good laugh.

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actually Jamie only needed the other girl to do the tie or win, but alas the drama doesn't explain almost anything in a decent way

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Bulldog is seriously the most annoying character. How has he not gotten warnings for violence/eliminated before???
On another note, Woo jin's smile was so cute.

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Is it bc I turn on my suspicious meter way high when I watch shows like this or is anyone else not surprised by any of the outcomes so far? I knew early on who the betrayers were and it kind of deflates expectations a little. I can't help but think it's bc the camera's on them too much.

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Nah, I think they totally gave it away. I was sure from almost the moment she appeared in Episode 3 that Jung Ah would be fishy, because of how she was introduced (plus, how could she not be with that wig?). It seemed really obvious to me.

And I figured out several of the twists in the game before they actually happened. It was more of a case of waiting for them to happen, rather than wondering what would happen. The game elements, are fun to watch, but not very suspenseful, so far.

I think what this version is doing differently from the J-version (based on what I've read in comments, because I haven't seen the J-version) is building the mystery around the TV show production, rather than the game itself. Something shady is going on with Do Young, and his interest in Woo Jin (I remember Do Young used to work in finance/the markets and Woo Jin went to jail for manipulating the markets, so I'm wondering if there's some connection there). Plus the TV station guy is trying to manipulate the game, for whatever reason, and there's a reporter investigating the whole thing. I think the producers of the k-version are aware that lots of people are already familiar with the games from the j-version, so they're trying to freshen things up with the intrigue surrounding the TV show.

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I'm really dissappointed by how they executed The Minority Game, it was my favorite game from Season 1, as well as the Betrayer X reveal.

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I didn't suspect Sung Joon of being Betrayer X because I've read enough mysteries to know that the first suspect is always a red herring. However, I didn't suspect Jung-Ah either: my bets were on the lawyer guy on their team. Since he was the one who made the contracts and he was a lawyer, he was in the best position to screw them over without them knowing, just by knowing the loopholes of their agreement, and then using that same contract to fool the people who'll be joining the other teams. I suspected that this was how Betrayer X got into the Liar Game in the first place, as well. (This was before I understood from the recaps that Betrayer X was actually President Jang's plant.)

But anyway, even though I thought Jung-Ah was suspicious, as Woo-Jin said, everyone in the Liar Game seemed suspicious as well, in varying degrees. And I loved the female friendship moments between Jung-Ah and Da-Jung enough, for me to try and overlook those bits that struck me as a bit odd.

But anyway, I really love these twists in the Liar Game. They are surprising and yet at the same time--they make sense and tie up all the loose ends. I especially appreciate the tying all the loose ends part--some dramas overlook this in favor of throwing more surprises, making for milelong plot inconsistencies and illogical narrative.

There's one thing that doesn't make sense to me though. Why was everyone so wary of Betrayer X in the beginning? From my understanding, every contestant who is in this round (except maybe Da-Young) got here because they tricked and deceived (and therefore ultimately also betrayed) someone out of their cash. Isn't it the same?

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I think Jaime stole the money from someone who already won the cash prize in round 1. It was done illegally?

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The thing is that Betrayer-X wasn't a contestant in the first round, she was a helper like Woo-Jin. So she didn't just trick an opponent, she also betrayed the friend who brought her on as a helper in the first place. X got her friend's opponent's money, and then somehow managed to get her friend's money too (even though X wasn't even a player in the game at that point), and used it to buy her way into the game, while leaving her "friend" with nothing (or possibly even in debt to the game?). That was a true betrayal, and shows a whole different level of deviousness and determination from say, what Da Jung's teacher did. So I think it was that they felt they really had to be really careful of somewhat who was cunning and sly enough to pull off something like that.

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did this drama explain how Sung-Joon still survived to the end? I know it was Jaime who kept him in the game because ppl were suspicious of him being Betrayer X.

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Ha Woo Jin made a deal with Sung Joon to betray the real Betrayer X

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Favorite airing drama. Interesting insight, that Da Jung is killing with kindness. And that makes me want to root for her even more, because it's so noble.. yet a bit idealistic. Assuming she and Woo Jin are the last survivors of the show, I wonder who's gonna win.

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Thanks for the recap!
I must say that I'm liking this Liar Game version being a show. It puts a whole other level of complexity in the game as your not only deceiving the players, you are also showing your dark side to the whole country which, wouldn't it give you a disadvantage once the game ends? I don't think many people would trust the players who show really dark sides, instead I would avoid having anything to do with them. Plus there's also the fact that the game can be manipulated more for the sake of ratings like what Director Jang did. Because it sure does feel that things are going exactly as The Host wants it.

I've seen many comments on Viki calling Da Jung an idiot for being so trusting but I don't see her an idiot. Trusting people and being an idiot are 2 different things. After the betrayal of her teacher she knows exactly what she's risking when she trusts someone. Da Jung is choosing to trust people. She is not idiot who gets manipulated easily, but I think she's trying to believe in the best of people. After all the gangster who is supposed to get money out of her by any means necessary is nice to her and gives her advice. The "murderer" who said would help her actually did as he promised. Nothing was stopping him from doing the exact same thing Jamie did but he kept to her word, so why shouldn't Da Jung trust others like that. The reason she got fooled by Teacher is because she knew him from before and he did a lot to help her out during school, I doubt she would have been as trusting with a perfect stranger. If she gets manipulated in the next round it would be because she already knows this people and believes in them and since most of them did as they promised during this round, she will be more likely to believe in them again.

So long story short: no, Dajung is not an idiot.

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I watched the episode. I read this recap. Still I don't understand anything.
I am no longer watching this Show on the grounds that it is smarter than me.
Thank you...

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Try the japanese version, the games and the solutions are explained better there - in greeeeat lenght, to be exact. :) I actually don't mind that the Kdrama cuts the explanations down, because I already know them, but they seem terribly rushed for any new viewers.

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no, i don't think the drama is smarter, maybe it seems that way because they don't explain things properly. and also, the rules are not established properly, they seem to be brought out willy-nilly as the situation calls for it... i mean, it doesn't seem to be a world set properly.

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yes, thank you. finally someone said it. I'm open to all remake. But by the time goes on, I can't help to notice that the japanese did a really great job in explaining everything and cover every details, so it would not make the audience confused.

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yeah, you cannot but help find that the kdrama has a lot of holes because its pretty lazy in terms of explaining. I mean the Japanese version went so far as to explain why akiyama's name is the last one picked in the minority game. this one I feel like if they think it doesn't have a point in the game they skip over it. they didn't even give a really good explanation as to why they tried to make it a tie in the last round. where as the manga especially goes through all the possibilities.
I find the korean version too confusing... not because it's difficult concepts but because they never bother explaining almost anything

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(I don't know the japanese ones.)

The whole money/withdraw stuff is definitely not very clear.

For the games themselves, the go stone exposition was very well done (or maybe I was just getting nostalgic, because that was how I learned to understand many game theory examples some decades ago in middle school). They should have used that to explain (or foreshadow) some further questions, though.

I especially missed the crucial argument why "betrayal" is a bad idea in their team approach to minority voting (back in ep 3).

The "lets postpone the decision by splitting the vote once again" thing was a little bit unclear, but that might have been the subtitles.
Again, by pure game theory, the villian's motivation should have been to be as transparent as possible, both in-universe as well as for the audience, a more logical breakdown of the situation would have been a better idea. It would also be more effective in terms of suspense and shock when Woo-jin's background gambit is revealed.

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this make me realise how much I love the japanese version and start watching it again.....

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@Jon G

the final vote is one of the results of lazy writing, there was a lot more strategy that could of been expanded on, such as if the three made a contract and made Jamie win, her prior contracts wouldn't matter and their prior contracts wouldn't matter(since they didn't win) and they could of split the money between the three of them which is much better for pseudo-betrayer x than his verbal agreement before. But, nope.

also to say not just you but anybody who thinks the subtitles are some how wrong being the reason for any kind of misunderstandings. No, there wasn't any problem with the subtitles, in fact the subtitles are very well done.

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I'm sensing Sung Joon will lose and later somehow reinstated but lose the ability to trust others.

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It was kinda obvious it was that woman. They should have given her a better wig.

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Cha woo jin is such a mysterious and interesting person... i wonder what would be the nxt round in next few episodes......

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I'm starting to like the game-show element more, now that the penalty/prize issues are making a lot more sense (though spelling out the rules in the drama defniitely would've helped - having to figure them out for myself was an unncessary pain).

Still, I find the background politics and the characters interesting . . . perhaps because I know all the outcomes of the games, so these little mysteries help make it feel new. Though I still don't get why Da-jung feels so guilty for all the "losers" when they're not losing anything except a chance to compete for the big prize. For a moment there, I honestly thought she was going to open her briefcase and start giving her winnings to the people in the crowd, before Woo-jin appeared and dragged her away, lol.

SPOILER :: They better still include Yokoya, and not just merge his character with Jaime/Fukunaga. I know all the contestants have been revealed already, but I'm still holding out hope since his introduction is when I thought the manga really started to take off. Plus, Jaime just doesn't have the charisma (or the brains) to pull off the kind of stuff he does - not to mention, the contestents would have to be idiots to trust her again. That, and she'll just so much more entertaining when she's teaming up with Woo-jin and Da-jung, like in the manga. I always loved their strange little group! :: END SPOILER

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I think it will it include Yokoya or someone like him. Fukunaga/Jaime doesn't seem like she can match Woo Jin. This show needs someone as intelligent as him. So, I wonder if there are other people that are participating in these rounds besides the group that included the main characters. I guess the producers of the show could just add him like Jaime.

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I know it'll make no sense if he does, because they supposedly already have their contestants, and throwing a new one into Round 3 would be weird... but then again, he's such a fascinating antognist, I'd gladly overlook it! I was actually surprised he's not the contestant the director was backing in the last round!

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I think he is the participant that they talked about being elevated (I think that means they were going to have him come in later in the game),

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omg, so excited for next episode, and the next, and the next, and the next.....

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i'm watching this show for the character exposition/development rather than for the (so far, fairly predictable) plot.

saw the jamie thing coming from a mile away, i was rolling my eyes at the unnecessary slow-mo reveals. and her dropping to her knees & doing the thwarted-villian yell and going insane as she was being dragged out of the room was way too typical - making her throw a pissed-off mega bitchfit, maybe taking her rage out on da-jung, would have been less cliched and more realistic. still, i thought her post-transformation mannerisms and dialogue (after we got the batshit insane scene over with) were natural and very convincing... she sort of reminds me of a foxier version of cheon song yi, haha.

fake betrayer x is cute now that he's no longer walking around looking like a blind man! it was a refreshing (character) twist when he practically whimpered when bulldog confronted him, i expected false bravado at least. scrap the story and just do a love triangle between woo-jin, him and da-jung please. hahaha.

also, i might have missed it but i don't think woo-jin has the ability to read eyes? and i'm not so sure about the sunglasses-foiling-his-powers thing. they might have said it figuratively at some point but so far he's relied on pretty much body language as a whole.

re: "Both of them give them their “yes” cards while he takes his “no” card. But… no one signed this new contract. How do they expect him to keep to the agreement?" i though it was just so they'd have 2 yes votes and 2 no votes and then they could renegotiate the contract before the next tiebreaker round.

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As a fan of its jdrama's version, I pretty much guessed everything correctly since the game and its execution is almost the same. However like many other commentators said, the political fights in between the game did make up for the suspense that isnt really working out for me (Im sorry!). But I must admit that this approach by the production team is a breath of a fresh air.
But there is also a part of me that wanted the game to be different from jversion since Im still waiting for a big twist that I didnt correctly predicted. Lets say...Im just sad that my predictions were right ;p
Well, I will gladly stay tune for this version^^

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This is getting really good!! especially with the background story. I really excited even though it I have already seen the Japanese version... There is definitely a lot of differences. It was really easy to tell who betrayer x was from the get go but it was interesting to see how woo jin found out it was her.

I have to agree that I'm not sure about the whole paying back bit. That is very confusing, but i do think that all the people begging at the end did indeed use their money already which makes them in debt with the broadcasting company.

I feel that the minor characters are getting more attention and back story here and that is really awesome. I also love seeing how they are so obvious in their behavior what they are thinking.

We all want the romance!!! I want it so bad but I have a feeling they will leave us wanting more at the end. No real obvious romance has developed yet but we are in ep 4 only and he already can't help smiling at her and wanting to protect her from her own weakness. It really adorable and refreshing even to see them together.Its almost has if they've known each other long before. Hopefully the writes give us some love !!! No love triangles please... it would only make the games more complicated since they are as complicated as it is.

Thank for the recap been waiting all day for it!!!

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Omg I'm loving this series so much. The Japanese version, whilst intriguing, was too wacky for me to enjoy or get invested in. So I'm loving the characters here and the reality game premise is such an awesome update to the story. The story is brilliant, and I love how everything is so well put together, the right amount of on-show and behind the scenes intrigue.

Can I just say how absolutely gorgeous Lee Sang Yoon looks with those bangs? Wish he wore a smiler look in all his previous dramas. I love his stoic expressions and big teddy bear heart, he's like Mr Darcy and Sherlock combined.

Add me to the shippers list, I do hope they develop the romance, so much chemistry!:D

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Thanks Heads!

WRT to what you said at the end "The idea of where her character should go from here is an interesting dilemma to tackle, because on the one hand, if we want her to protect herself by becoming jaded and suspicious of everyone, then Da-jung will lose what makes her such a rarity in today’s times. On the other hand, if she doesn’t wise up to the way the world works, then she’ll always be tricked, abused, and taken advantage of."

This is the ultimate challenge (to me) for the show to take a stand. A Beanie mentioned how Da Jung is not necessarily dumb but rather idealistic and following the Golden Rule ie to treat others the way we want to be treated (or to love our neighbours as we love ourselves). Can this show or will it even dare to make following the Golden Rule the real means of winning where everyone gains?

Or will it continue with the cynical point of view that it's a dog eat dog world and we need to take care of ourselves first - so there is only 1 or very few who win?

If the show chooses to sit on the fence, will it be a cop out? What do you think?

That's one of the reasons I'll stay to the end!!!

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It was so easy to tell who Betrayer X was because of Jamie's fake ass wig. Besides, it's always who you least suspect.

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Great episode!

I really feel bad for Da-jung. I want her to win, but I also want her to realize that not everyone can be trusted. She's been shown that again and again, and now, even the guy she thought she could always trust, Dal-goo, has betrayed her. I hope he brings the money back, but if he doesn't then I hope she takes this as the harsh a ruel lesson it i

Thanks for the recap.

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"as the harsh and cruel lesson it is.

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Hi Abbie,
I'd really like for Da Jung to be able to take all the harsh and cruel and still remain hopeful and un-cynical. To be childlike in the face of the dishonesty and unfairness, to keep giving even when she's been burnt before. And to show by this, that it is the real way to win.

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I guessed that Jung Ah was betrayer X because of the coffee cups -- I recognized the wig but ignored it as just bad hair. Still, she was on my suspicious list but only because all Whodunits pick the least obvious person to be the villain, and in general, it's a person introduced early in the story.

Still, do I dislike the show? Nope -- because even knowing who Betrayer X is doesn't mean you can beat that person. So it was neat to see how Woo Jin unravels all of the deceit and mathematical algorithms that the game entails. After all, knowing who the villain is, and knowing how they will vote are two different things. So much psychology, and I am sure Woo Jin adding the extra variable of 4 votes, one is known, what do you do to win . . . easy math but difficult based on motivations!

I also like Woo Jin realizing that he needs to team up with Da Jung to win. Her constancy is something he can depend on, and use to his and her advantage. I will definitely continue watching, and trying my best to unravel the puzzles as well, such a challenge! The recaps help as well, there were a few things I missed. Thanks for recapping this series -- and I look forward to the show and the recaps every week!

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Thanks Heads for the wonderful recap!

Love the show so far.. definitely my favorite among the shows airing currently. All in all, a solid, well-casted, well-acted drama is what I needed, and Liar Game fits the description perfectly, with all the surprises and crazy reveals, broadcasting politics and the 50 shades of grey that Do-young's character is emanating! I keep waiting for scenes of Do-young and Woo-Jin together.. those scenes are intense!

I haven't seen the Jdrama or read the manga so not sure how complex the next rounds might be, but I'm definitely hoping for some intricate games ahead, with the contestants second-guessing their every move, strategies backfiring, more nasty politics from Director Jang! Of course, the camaraderie that the winners (except Bulldog and Jaime) in Minority Game episode shared will not last long, cos after all in the next game, every one will scamper to save their skins again. Wonder how Da-jung will react to that.

One thing I didn't quite get, and which I didn't find mentioned in any of the above comments -> I understand that the Director Jang forced Do-young to announce that since Jaime used the name "Jung-ah" to participate in the Liar Game, Jaime's contract will still be considered valid. What I don't understand is that if this contract that Jaime signed with her false name is valid, why aren't those other contracts (the ones she signed with the remaining two bunches of 8 people each) valid? Since the other contracts were established under similar terms, I'd say they are all valid, and that every contestant in this game does win some share out of the two billion won.

Regardless, this show has me totally interested and invested in its storyline. My favorite moment in the episode was when I saw the tiny smile on Woo Jin's face when he was watching Da Jung stuff her face with ramen!

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I believe the contract is only valid if a member of your team "wins." If one person wins, they split the rest of the winnings with their team. Jaime was part of Woojin's team, so when Woojin won, she received a portion of the winnings. Even though she received prize money through that contract, because she did not actually win herself, she doesn't have to split her portion with the other contestants she made contracts with. She technically lost, but received prize money because of Woojin.

So even though her "fake name" is considered valid, it doesn't matter because of the terms of the contracts specifying that the winner will share prize money.

Hopefully that makes sense!

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Yep, that makes total sense (though I'm embarrassed to have missed such a simple detail, Lol!).. was looking at all the folks who proceeded to the next round as having "won"the game, instead of just Woo-jin.. rookie mistake!

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& thanks for the answer, Jjk!

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I was confused about this point too. Thanks for the explanation!

However, if this were the case, why did Sung Joon point out that himself and the other lady would still need to split up their prize money if the 3 of them formed a team and won?

During the last round of voting, they only agreed to a tie because they are unable to agree on a way to split the prize money. Sung Joon mentioned that if they formed their own team and won against Woo Jin, Jamie should be getting lesser money than them since they are still their own contracts with each of their teams are still valid.

That made me wonder why Jamie was still able to get the prize money from Da Jung's team (due to the contract) and wasn't required to split that up with the other two teams..

(sorry, english is my first language so it might be a little confusing to read)

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I was confused too, don't worry!
Sung Joon mentioned that if either him or the lady was picked to win, they have to split the money for both of their teams. (but is wrong and X corrected him, saying only the team of the winner has a share)

At this point they are not considering betrayer-X, so that's why X suggested that they both vote for her to win instead so that they can split just 3-ways.
However, Sung Joon doesn't want a fair share since X betrayed him. "Before dividing the money (with their team) or whatnot, I don't want to receive the same amount as this lady (X)"
X doesn't want to split 9:9:2 too.

Thus, they are unable to make a decision and decides on a tie. I hope i answered your question!

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actually this doesn't make sense to me, even knowing that sung joon talked to to da jung before, in a game show environment who would pass up the chance for only having to split the money 3-ways. it seems strange that anybody would feel so betrayed as to pass up the chance for more money in a game show. even if he convinced Jamie to take a slightly less amount his take away would of been much more than an 8th.
also isn't it strange that they all have contracts and believe to be on winning teams but the only people that are there is all of Da Jung's team and like 2 others from other teams

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I had assumed Sung Joon made a big deal about the division of profits in order to stall and make Jaime more hurried into a decision, so that he could more easily manipulate their answers and change his own to make Woo Jin win, since he was already on Woo Jin's side since they had all talked after he had gotten hurt.

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I see!
I thought there were contradicting points on the validity of the contracts in this version. I probably missed the part where X mentioned that only the winner's team has to share.

Thank you for the explanation!! It helped to clear up my confusion.

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Thank you so much heads for the recap. I have to say, i was fretting when i kept refreshing my page but i still couldnt find LG. So thanks and keep recapping ,hwating!!

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I'm finding the show very entertaining. I get lost sometimes with the penalties, splitting of money prize, etc. and I miss more suspense. But I like the chemistry between the two leads, and the rest of characters. All in all, they are doing a good job :)

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Wait...I am kind of confused.
So if they get eliminated they will have to give back all the money even from the first round?

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That's a good question, Joyce. Hopefully someone will answer it.

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Since they won the first round (The 500 million won round), I believe they do not have any debts from that round.
In this remake, it seems like those who does not get the prize money would not be able to progress to the next round.

I just watched the ep3 again and the host did not mention anything about debts / penalty / returning $$ after elimination.

This remake's rules are quite different from the jdrama's.

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ah geeeee, how did i miss this? Thanks for the recap.

I thought we the viewers were supposed to not believe that betrayer x was betrayer x. And we weren't supposed to trust Jamie.The betrayer had the costume of a betrayer. Jamie's costume was something out of drama candyland. Any ahjumma worth her kimchi would see through all that. I think the thing we were supposed to do was wonder if hero could see through external appearances.

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Hello Carole McDonnell,

I actually expected hero to see through the external appearances, because it is still early in the game (ie. ep.4). I felt that he had to figure things out, and figure them out well, so he could advance. If by ep. 5 or 6 (and later episodes) things get more complicated for him and NDJ, that would make sense to me. I could see this drama building its conflicts (and making them more complicated) as it goes down the episodes.

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But waitwaitwaitwait-- I'm so confused right now. So if they announced that Jamie/JungAh's contract is valid, doesn't it mean her contract with the other two teams are valid to and she had to split her winnings with them too? Why isn't that an issue.

The same goes with gangster douche. If giving him a portion of cash keeps him in the game, why isn't the shit teacher still in the game after DaJung gave all her cash to him?
Maybe these have explanations, but I don't follow. Can someone explain this to me?

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I don't understand. Why won't DaJung just forfeit now that she has money?

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late comment but just finished watching this episode today. If they made the contract using Jung - Ah name valid with Team Woo Jin, won't her contract with the other two teams be valid too and then she has to split the money equally with the remaining 2 teams that she made the contracts with???

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