Rating:
Average user rating 3.4
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Spy: Episode 4

What a tragic family situation, but at least it’s one born out of love. Mom has to do the unthinkable in spying on her son, but soon finds that her foe is a more formidable opponent than she’d initially given him credit for. Her dilemma is still the same, only much more pronounced this hour—in the act of protecting her son, could she be harming him as well?

Ratings-wise, KBS knew it was taking a chance with its experimental format, though the steady downward trend in ratings might not be the feedback it wanted. Still, it’s not like Spy is tanking at 5.9%, even if it has fallen from the 8.5% netted during its premiere.

SONG OF THE DAY

Gummy – “갈 곳이 없어 (Nowhere to Go)” from the OST [ Download ]

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EPISODE 4 RECAP

After Ki-chul agrees to let Mom do the spying in her son’s stead, he gives her a few tasks to complete as a way to test her loyalty. They all involve Sun-woo, as she’s to report to Ki-chul everything her son does or says—especially when at work.

Mom would rather get straight to the point, and asks Ki-chul what he wants from her son. “We don’t want anything from Sun-woo,” he explains cryptically, insinuating that he’s too low in the rung for them to care about just him.

Ki-chul seems to take offense when Mom says that there must be some greater plan at work here, since the North wouldn’t send a monster like Ki-chul down just to collect intel. “People change,” Ki-chul replies. Just look at her—a North Korean spy turned South Korean housewife.

She’s hesitant at first to take bugs meant for Sun-woo’s computer and phone, at least until she hears Ki-chul’s reassurance that nothing that bad will come from it.

But she’s firm about refusing a trip down memory lane with Ki-chul, and shuts him down when he says they used to be close before Dad came onto the scene by admitting, “You’ve always disgusted me.” She proves she’s a force to be reckoned with when she deftly cuts a minion’s cigarette in half while it hangs from his mouth.

Poor Dad can’t even focus at work until he hears his wife is okay, while elsewhere, Chief Song calls a meeting after watching the footage of Sun-woo promising his help to Soo-yeon in exchange for information about the scarred man (via a hidden camera Sun-woo wasn’t aware of).

Hyun-tae and Eun-ah are at the meeting as well, and it’s hard to ignore the eagle-eyed stare Hyun-tae keeps sending Chief song’s way, almost as though he’s suspicious of him.

But they all listen to Sun-woo’s plan to turn Soo-yeon into a double agent and send her back out into the field so they can learn the whereabouts and motives of the recent influx of North Korean spies, and then capture them.

Chief Song is suspiciously dodgy about all this, and insistent that they keep this whole matter within their tiny analytics team. When Eun-ah raises the point that this is a job for field agents, Song gestures to Sun-woo, an expert field agent (though recently demoted). He’ll lend him some spare field agents if he needs help.

Now that Chief Song has left all the planning to Sun-woo, Hyun-tae brings up some concerns with him only to get yelled at in banmal. Hyun-tae’s place isn’t to think, it’s to do what he’s told until he’s told to do otherwise.

While Sun-woo makes some sort of deal with someone in Chinese, Mom is flooded with guilt as she places bugs in his room. Staring at a picture of their whole family together, Mom cries, “I really tried my best. I thought… it was all over.”

With Hyun-tae in the control room, Sun-woo broaches the double agent idea to Soo-yeon, who agrees as long as she can get enough money to resettle herself and her family abroad when it’s all over.

Even though Hyun-tae is in his ear telling him not to promise anything, Sun-woo removes the earpiece and does the opposite by assuring her that they’ll make sure she reunites with her family, unharmed. Soo-yeon’s eyes are wide but trusting as she says, “I believe you, Kim Sun-woo.”

She puts a call in to Ki-chul, making up a story about her absence before claiming that she has the money he requested and some intel about the Supervisor he’ll want to hear. Ki-chul says he’ll call her back with a time and place to meet.

When Hyun-tae asks Sun-woo why he added the Supervisor bit, Sun-woo answers that it was because his sunbae was curious about the man’s whereabouts.

If Hyun-tae’s secretly happy with him, he hides it behind a gruff exterior as he takes him to task for making promises to Soo-yeon he won’t be able to keep. “I’m going to keep that promise,” Sun-woo replies matter-of-factly.

Mom and Dad are nervous wrecks when Sun-woo comes home, knowing what they have to do. Sun-woo claims he’s only stopped by because he had a break, but that he’ll be returning straight to work. Mom works quickly to hack his phone and computer…

…While we get a shower interlude with Sun-woo. Go on, enjoy.

Dad stops Sun-woo from going back into his room before Mom is through with a bogus excuse, so that by the time he does go back, Mom looks as though she just came in to offer him a drink. I love their marital spy team.

The minute Sun-woo leaves, Mom and Dad follow in a rented car he won’t recognize as theirs, using the tracker she put in his bag. They’re kind of funny as nervous spies, especially Dad, who still seems to be getting a grip on this whole not-looking-conspicuous thing.

Of course, Mom’s a little huffy when they follow Sun-woo not to work, but to Yoon-jin’s house. Dad is the one who knows more about turning on the microphone placed in his bag, with the concession to Mom that it’s been a while since she’s had to use this stuff. (Shouldn’t he be in the same rusty boat, though?)

What’s even more surprising is that Yoon-jin’s served Sun-woo curry, which Mom thought he hated. Dad tries to ease her frustrations by saying that people’s tastes change, only for Mom to cross her arms over her chest: “Then he should have said so.”

When things start to get a little steamy between the couple inside, Mom is quick to turn off the microphone. But then she decides that they have to listen because it’s their mission… only to turn it right back off again when only kissing noises can be heard. Dad jumps out of the car for some fresh air. Awwwkward.

They’re back to listening again when Sun-woo gets a call from Hyun-tae—apparently Ki-chul’s named a time and location to meet Soo-yeon. Yoon-jin doesn’t know the specifics, only that he has to go back to work, and laments the fact that he could get hurt when he was supposed to take a desk job.

This comes as a surprise to Mom, since it means Yoon-jin knew all about Sun-woo’s job when she was kept in the dark. Meanwhile, Yoon-jin asks Sun-woo if he can refuse the job, but he can’t when he made a promise.

She still doesn’t want him to go, prompting Sun-woo to ask her if she trusts him. Since she claims she does, he promises her that he won’t get hurt and that he’ll call her when he’s done with work.

Mom is concerned about whatever Sun-woo said was going down tomorrow, since she knows her son will be in danger if it involves Ki-chul. After Sun-woo calls her to tell her not to wait up, Mom turns to her husband with conviction as she says that she’ll erase the bit where he talks about tomorrow before handing the recording to Ki-chul. She won’t let what she does put her son in danger.

For whatever reason, Chief Song is against taking extra precautions for Soo-yeon’s meeting, despite Sun-woo’s insistence that making a mistake could put the girl in severe danger. Has no one but Hyun-tae noticed how shady this guy is being? (And who keeps moving the light back and forth? Is the key grip drunk?)

But in case we weren’t sure about Chief Song’s shadiness, we get proof when he holds a secret car meeting with Deputy Director of the National Intelligence Service JUNG KYU-YONG (Lee Dae-yeon) about his plans.

We don’t know exactly what’s going to go down, only that Chief Song is counting on making someone—likely Sun-woo—take the fall if tomorrow’s plans go south. Man, everyone’s got it out for poor Sun-woo, don’t they?

Sun-woo’s team accompanies Soo-yeon to a cafe they’ve taken over, preparing the fake money she’s to give with a tracker as well as outfitting her with a GPS locater on her clothing.

Turns out that the man Sun-woo was talking to in Chinese and promising money to is a smuggler he charged with finding Soo-yeon’s parents. Having done so, Sun-woo hands the phone over to her so she can talk to her mother.

Soo-yeon is overwhelmed with emotion, even though her mother tells her not to worry about them and worry about herself instead. Her mother doesn’t know of her plans to get her out of the country, and when the call is cut off, Soo-yeon can only cry as she thanks Sun-woo.

He tries reassuring her that she won’t get hurt because he’ll be watching, and at the slightest hint of danger, he’ll get her out of dodge. “Promise me you’ll save my family,” she asks, to which Sun-woo’s response is the same: “I promise.”

She makes him repeat himself multiple times to allay her concerns, even going so far as to say that she doesn’t care what happens to her—she just wants him to save her family. Sun-woo promises to do so.

Soo-yeon is sent out to the public street where she’s been told to wait, while Sun-woo monitors all the cameras set up as well as the field agents they’ve placed near her. He stresses to all of them that Soo-yeon’s safety is their first priority, the mission second.

They’ve got a bug in Soo-yeon’s phone that allows them to listen when Ki-chul calls her. He frightens her when he mentions the whereabouts of her remaining family, right before a conspicuous motorcyclist causes a car crash right in front of Soo-yeon.

In the ensuing chaos, Ki-chul appears before her as he asks, “Are they also going to pay the price for betraying a comrade?” Oh no. Oh no.

Sun-woo runs through the crowd and toward Soo-yeon, stopping dead when he reaches her and sees the pained expression on her face. He’s able to catch her when her knees buckle beneath her…

Mom gasps in shock from her unseen vantage point nearby, receiving an angry call from Ki-chul just then: “I just killed your son’s informant. Do you remember my promise? Your son is mine!”

Sun-woo calls for an ambulance as Soo-yeon coughs blood in his arms. “My family… my family…” she ekes out.

His eyes fill with tears as he watches her slip away, while Mom remains nearby, paralyzed.

 
COMMENTS

What did Mom think was going to happen when Ki-chul found out she wasn’t doing as she promised? Then again, we’d be here questioning Mom if she had told him everything and put her own son in danger by doing so. There is no right or best answer in this scenario, so I feel Mom’s pain at her own inadequacy, but at the same time I don’t quite understand why Ki-chul is so dead set on getting his talons on Sun-woo either.

It seems like a foregone conclusion in dramaland that promises just don’t keep when made by well-meaning characters, so the more Sun-woo assured Soo-yeon of her safety, the more assured her fate became. I’m still holding out hope that she somehow survives this since she’s been a neat character to have around thus far. I’d even had hopes that she’d join Sun-woo’s team somehow, since their ragged little bunch is starting to really grow on me. I wish they’d get more screen time together as a unit though, and without Chief Song looking like the lazy, uninterested uncle at the family meeting.

As we’ve seen with Soo-yeon, four episodes is enough time to establish a character as being relevant, so I’m left scratching my head a little as to why that hasn’t happened yet with Yoon-jin. On paper there’s nothing wrong with being the supportive girlfriend, but she’s been the only character thus far to have the least impact on the plot. Which is to say, almost none. Aside from allowing for some funny scenes between Mom and Dad, Yoon-jin’s part here could have been taken out and the episode would’ve been no worse off for it.

Speaking of, Mom and Dad continue to be adorable together, and the fact that they compliment each other in their team makes it all the better. Dad certainly is a bit mysterious himself, since we know little about how he and Mom came to fall in love despite her previous alliances, but it was cute how he knew how to do some of the things she’d forgotten. Methinks his former life wasn’t spent languishing in an office like he is now, even though his bumbling nature doesn’t seem to allow for the possibility that he was ever a super spy like Mom.

If Mom’s afraid of what Sun-woo might think if she reveals her past, I hope she’ll soon get over it, because imagining the three of them working together on the same team seems like a comedic goldmine just waiting to happen. Though we may not know why everyone and their mother wants a piece of Sun-woo yet, or even why his own superiors seek to destroy him, at least we know his mother has the skill set to kick some ass and take some names to protect him. If that cigarette-cutting trick was the appetizer, then count me hungry for the main course.

 
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Ugh, my feels when Soo Yeon was coughing up the blood. I'm sure she's dead because she's already finished filming :-/

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I read the text preview for the next ep, and it says 'following SY's death'... so yeah i think shes dead T_T

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She is death and the funny/good thing for the actress is the day Spy episodes had aired, although haved a shower scene and two kissing scenes, Sooyeon's death was the most talked about topic and still regretted. Soobin is a great actress and the chemistry and harmony between her and Jaejoong was perfect. A pity she had left so early in the drama. Like all comments, I want more action and less talk and if another character dies, please do not kill the dad, kill the girlfriend instead that no one will miss anyway.

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Maybe she has a twin? She kept insisting on saving her family. Maybe the twin shows up and woos sunwoo? Ok. That's too makjang but I really love the actress and want her back on screen with jaejong.

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Haha really to makjang. Who knows after Jaejoong army they can not work together again? because unfortunately in Spy she will not return :( KBS chose the wrong actress to play the role of Yoonjin, this role was to be giving to Soobin. WooYeon couple Fighting!!!! Haha ^^

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Didn't Ki Chul say that she's dead?

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I'm hoping she's not dead and comes back as a surprise somehow, I want more of her in this drama

(hey, that other North Korea spy drama last year did it, you know, the one that shall not be named)

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@ pogo

Oh No You Didn't. You did not just go there. :)

We can only hope that Soo-Yeon survives somehow but, the likelihood is slim to none.

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she is dead =,(

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Applaud to the production team for managing to insert a showering scene that isn't lover angst related.

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Agreed on that! Haha xD

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Hahahaha! so true XD

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trueee

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Bae Jong Ok is perfect for the female spy role. I can't wait to see what other moves she has up her sleeve, with that cigarette in your face move. And what was her past, exactly, with baddy Ki Chul (who will always by baddy Ki Cheol from Faith to me). There can never be to many gratuitous shower scenes, thank you.

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I thought Bae Jong Ok's knife moves and the sound effects were kind of cheesy. Overall, I think she's doing a good job, but I want to her to be a little tougher and less feminine. She's a little too expressive with her emotions IMO.

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I kind of like her being more wifey than spyish, seems real. They have to kill off Dad, if they want to make a complete badass I-fear-nothing spy out her.

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@eva: noooo you take that back >_< lol I know they're 99.9% likely to kill off dad but I have a shred of hope that maybe just maybe they won't kill.him. Dad is so awesome :D

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I know, he´s super awesome! But considering the tendency in kdramas to get rid of the nicest parents ever, I won´t be too surprised if it *spits three times over the left shoulder* will happen at some point. Then again, he´s survived four ep already, maybe they won´t go that far for a change.

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Haha, right? Holding him hostage should be effective enough!

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I need them all in action! More action please! Spy shenanigans can be funny and tense and exciting.

Ki-chul is fun, but it's annoying when he spends lots of time just threatening mom back and forth. You're spies, please go do more spy-ish stuff.

(This sounds like a rant but I'm still liking the show so far. Thanks to Mama and Papa Spy's rusty comeback.)

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Little less conversation, little more action, please! Then again, it seems that whenever they have some action, someone´s going to get killed. Maybe we should be content with the shower scenes?
Baddy Ki-chul is intriguing and the little moment he had with badass Mom at the beginning of the ep had my curiosity piqued. That look was both hurt, very angry and chilling.

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Thanks for the recap! Just wanted to say that I laughed so much when Mom and Dad where eavesdropping on Sun-woo and Yoon-jin, that was just pure gold! Also, the spy-parenting! Mom putting a tracker on her son´s phone etc with fidgety Dad ordering oh so casually his son to bring him a glass of water. I know it´s serious and all, but it was just so funny!

Otherwise, the show´s a little too predictable. Chief Song was just so supportive considering Sun-woo´s risky plan, that it smelled "weird intentions" a mile away. Even when you have enough man-power, what´s with the unnecessary cut-downs? Ok, get it, he´s not the type to cuddle with his team-mates, rather a tyrant, who regards his underlings as mere objects at his disposal. Wonder if he´s the Supervisor? Then again, the show´s still young, more characters may come in.
Same goes with the endless promises that Sun-woo kept on making...*sigh*

On a side note, both Sun-woo and badass Mom seem to have a very keen eye reading people, but are completely blind when it comes to family, heh.

This show is also educating. Made me look up Jang Sung-taek and now I know a little more of North-Korea´s recent history.

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The eavesdropping on Sun woo and Yoon jin was by the parents was hilarious.

I agree that the NIS should have more prepared and anticipated the trap.

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Wonder...if the mom could be the Supervisor? I'm not watching the dramas, just reading the recaps...so maybe it's completely improbable, I don't know.

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OMG the last scene broke my heart. I love SY, and was secretly rooting for her and SW (yeah i no itll never happen, but they have more chemistry than YJ). her death will definitely have a huge impact on SW :((

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Noooooooooooooo, Soo-yeon's dead?! Funny how we all seem to have got so attached to an actress in such a minor role, but that's what a good actress can do I guess. I did like her scenes with Sun-woo a lot, she had genuine chemistry with him and was actually good.

But I think my favourite part of this drama is Mom and Dad. I love that Dad is in on the plan and Mom's secret identity, not some clueless bystander like we assumed at first and like spouses usually are in such cases. I might not have got one ship I wanted, but I will spit nails if Dad gets killed off too.

(oh, and the scene where they were listening to the wiretap of Sun-woo and his gf having smoochies.....that was GOLD. Mom's outrage over everything from his tastes in food to the gf's knowledge of his job, Dad's discomfort, and finally the smoochies. There may as well have been a giant "TMI!" sign floating over their heads in that scene, hehe)

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I'd really like to know what everyone wants from Sun-woo. And like many others I agree that more action would be nice since the director of this show has proven to be really good (in maintaining the suspense and giving us the right amount of action and drama, among other things). Speaking of the right amount of drama, I was teary eyed from the moment Soo-yeon spoke to her mother until the end. I wish she didn't die, but she did. So now I can only hope that Sun-woo learns a valuable lesson from this loss and gets tougher.

Also, this is a bit late, but I'm still curious about the identity of the girl following Mom around in the previous chapter. I mean, they could have used instead one of Ki-chul's men we've already seen to keep tabs on her. I wonder if she'll be significant to the story. The fact that they didn't show her face (just her lips) made me think she's someone we already know. I even thought it was the little sister. But, no. I hope not.

Looking forward to the next episode.

Thank you for the recap, HeadsNo2. I agree with your opinion on the characters, especially Chief Song’s.

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yeah, that's a question the show had better answer asap - what's so great about Sun-woo that the North wants him this badly? (and it can't just be because he's pretty)

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I agree with you that they should answer this ASAP. The longer they hold off providing this, the better or more impact I expect the reason should be. Does it have anything to do with his real father? Incidentally, who is his real father? Sigh... so many other questions come to mind. Can't wait for the next episodes to have some answers....

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@pogo Hahaaa! I think it´s definitely because he´s pretty!

- Wouldn´t be nice to have some sleek-looking young men on our side, you know, the ones who dress nice and look like they use BB cream? Just for the image.
- What a lovely idea! Bring me the list of SK spies under 30!

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I actually thought the girl following mom was Yoon Jin (the gf). It might just be me being super suspicious of her right now though.

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Gosh they killed her!!!! How I hate this!!!

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I don t want to believe she died in just ep 4 ..

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Noooooooooooooooooo! :(

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My sentiments exactly.

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" Though we may not know why everyone and their mother wants a piece of Sun-woo yet, or even why his own superiors seek to destroy him,"
THIS, tbh
i'm itching to know what mission is Kichul or whoever in North wants him to do.

Thanks a lot for the recaps!

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I am liking this show so far. In my opinion, mama Kim is a ruthless spy when it comes to other people besides her family. So, that's what we get when Ki Chul threatens her family. You will definitely be emotional and overreacting. What will you do when someone threatens your family? I will definitely be all over the places regardless my identity as a spy.

Another thing, some of us said that mama kim should tell her son about her past. I dont know, isn't it dangerous for her to tell him? she was an ex North Korean spy. His son's worst enemy. Maybe he'll accept her but their relationship will never be the same. Both will definitely suspecting each other.

and that supervisor..... what's your motive?? hmmmm..
cant wait for the next episodes!!

:D

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T_____T My OPT is dead... my OTP is dead... my OTP is dead...

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You are not alone :( it hurts, I know. Just because everyone liked Sooyeon and Sunwoo together, pd goes and kills her. Noooooooooo!!!!!!

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Just caught up to reading the recaps for this drama. I lol when I realize the bad guy that played Ki-Chul in this drama is the same actor playing the bad guy in Faith also name Ki-Chul.?

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I'm going to trust your opinion and try to watch Spy again. I found the first episode entertaining, but I quickly became frustrated and bored with the writing by the second episode. The girlfriend character contains no entertainment value for me at all at this point. I much prefered the chemistry between Jaejoong's character with Soo Yeon. I greatly value the synopses and comments put forth by dramabeans and the viewers. Excellent writing quality and affection for kdramas.

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its funny when spy lovers wants soo yeon alive and shipping her with sunwoo instead of his gf yoon jin.

well sorry Go Seung Hee, looks like this girl have to work more harder to make people in kdrama land love her. Lol

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Yeah, the only character im not connecting to is her....

Ship SW with SY so much more...

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No one likes Yoonjin and Sunghee's acting. New pics is showing Hyerim spying YJ because she don't trust on her and Jaejoong in his fanmeenting today hinted that Yoonjin is really spy, writers have not decided for sure whether to put that to SW's gf. If Sunghee did not convince us as gf, will her convince us as a spy? Friday we find out ^^

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I kept thinking that hacking into Sun-Woo's phone and laptop would give Ki Chul a link into them, so that he would be able to see every thing SW was doing and that seemed incredibly dangerous to me. Given the way the episode was played, that seems not to be the case, which surprised me. I still feel that by doing that Mom was putting her son in immense danger, but perhaps the North Koreans are using old technology. In a way, they must if Mom's bugging machine works. I mean isn't it from when she was active as a spy which would have been 20-25 years ago?

I am heartbroken over the death of Soo Yeon though I knew it was coming from tweets I'd seen before watching. She was so pretty and she and Sun Woo had such good chemistry. I do hope they will act together again, though I guess we'll have to wait two years for that.

So far, I think Mom's initial reaction to turn herself in was the right one, and safest for her family. I mean, what would they do to her. She's lived there as a model citizen for 20 years. She really needs to let Sun Woo know what's going on so her genius analyst son can figure out how to use the situation to his/South Korea's advantage.

Perhaps I am naive, but as an outsider looking in, I can't imagine what South Korean would have any interest in helping the North, unless they were being paid big bucks to betray their country.

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I can't help but think: Mommy Spy could've seen KiChul killed SooYeon. She could've done something abt it. I know it's writer's plan to kill SY off and another reason being she might've done that to protect SW. But it still doesnt make any sense that she was basically NEAR the area and could see everything (even his son "embracing" SY at her last moments awww~. The ONLY skinship between SW&SY. bummer) You can't fool the eyes of a spy, no?
[For some reason, I wish Mom could've seen the potential SY has in becoming her daughter-in-law. I approve of her dirty looks towards YJ] lols. And in my opinion, it wasnt only the awkwardness that Mom (and Dad) felt - She just doesn't like that gurl from the beginning. We feel ya, Mom.

How did they cover Jae's "TVXQ Soul" tatoo on his back? excellent waterproof concealer they're using. More shower scenes pls!! (Bathtub with bubbles is also advisable)

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