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Mask: Episode 19

Our heroine’s in danger, and everyone scrambles to simultaneously cover up the scandal and prevent the fallout. But secrets this big are hard to keep, especially when so many people are in on it, and time is running out. Everyone’s masks are starting to crumble, and it won’t be long before the full truth is discovered.

EPISODE 19: “Vacancy”

Ji-sook collapses from smoke inhalation inside the burning villa, as Min-woo wakes and finds himself trapped on a boat in the middle of the lake. He struggles against his phobia of water, then jumps in and swims to shore. He breaks a glass door to get inside the fiery building, and finds Ji-sook unconscious on the bedroom floor.

Min-woo carries her as far as the living room, where a chandelier explodes and falls on them. But Min-woo gets back up and manages to carry Ji-sook to the lawn, where they both collapse. As he lays in the grass holding Ji-sook’s hand, he remembers their times together when they were happy. Eventually he passes out.

When Min-woo wakes, he’s alone, and there’s only a scrap of fabric from Ji-sook’s dress to show that she was there. He definitely rescued her from the fire, because he’s streaked with soot, but the piece of her dress is covered in blood.

Later, a dazed-looking Min-woo is questioned about Ji-sook’s disappearance and the blood on the fabric, which has not yet been confirmed to be Ji-sook’s. Seok-hoon acts as his lawyer, and Min-woo can only ask if his wife has been found and if she’s alive. The cop says that they found blood on a rock near where she disappeared, and that if it turns out to be hers, then it’s doubtful she’s alive.

Stepmom wrings her hands, worried that Min-woo’s “illness” is back and that he hurt Ji-sook (she still thinks she’s Eun-ha, and that Min-woo was responsible for her near-drowning). Papa Choi and Mi-yeon deny the possibility, defending Min-woo’s honor.

Mi-yeon talks to her brother where he’s busy worrying in his room, and he asks if she knows anything — after all, Ji-sook did sound like she was planning to go away somewhere, and he clutches at the idea like a lifeline. Mi-yeon remembers reading and destroying the letter meant for Min-woo, and takes pity on Min-woo. She tells him that Ji-sook is alive, though she claims she just has a strong feeling about it.

Min-woo goes to Ji-sook’s family’s coffee shop, but they’ve sold it to a new owner. Next he checks with her old coworkers from the department store, who are just confused as to why he thinks Seo Eun-ha would contact them for any reason.

A body is found that matches Ji-sook’s age and build, and Min-woo is called to come identify it. Thankfully, it’s not her, and he nearly collapses with relief. On his way out, he calls the prosecutor and begs him to please find his wife and the person who set the villa on fire, breaking down in tears as he insists that she’s not dead.

In a small hospital somewhere, Ji-sook wakes, calling out Min-woo’s name. The doctor addresses her as her new identity, Kim Yu-jin, and tells her she almost drowned. But for some reason, when she asks him where she is and where her husband is, the doctor ignores her.

Butler Nam-chul, Maid Yeon-soo, and Chang-soo are all worried sick over Ji-sook, upset that they can’t give Min-woo better news when he asks if she’s called. Min-woo corners Seok-hoon to accuse him of starting the fire and locking Ji-sook in, but in a move that surprises exactly no one, Seok-hoon denies any involvement.

He actually accuses Min-woo himself, bringing up Eun-ha’s accident and saying that she wouldn’t have drowned if Min-woo hadn’t been afraid of water. He screams that Min-woo did nothing while Eun-ha died, conveniently forgetting the part where he himself had drugged Min-woo into oblivion.

Seok-hoon snarls that if Min-woo had jumped into the water sooner the day of the fire, instead of being scared, Ji-sook could have been saved, too. Min-woo explodes and shoves Seok-hoon into the wall, saying that his only regret is not stopping Seok-hoon sooner. If anything happens to Ji-sook, he’ll expose everything Seok-hoon has done.

Seok-hoon invites him to do just that, though he’s sure Min-woo won’t be able to. Even if Ji-sook is gone, there’s still her family who could be in danger.

Ji-sook begs the nurse to let her make just one phone call, to find out if her husband is alive. The nurse deflects, saying that she’ll find out once she’s recovered. Ji-sook flees the room when the nurse’s back is turned, and escapes down the hall just as Director Shim turns the corner.

Ji-sook gets out the the road, but the car she waves down turns out to be Director Shim and his lackey and they manhandle her into the car. We see that, as expected, it was Seok-hoon and Scar who took Ji-sook away the night of the fire, leaving an unconscious Min-woo with a bloody strip of her dress.

Stepmom makes a point to rattle Seok-hoon’s cage, asking how he feels now that his lover has disappeared, wondering if he can eat or sleep. She asks what she has to do to make Seok-hoon let go of Mi-yeon, who’s been miserable and done nothing but drink since they got married. She even offers him a chunk of her SJ Group shares to leave.

This infuriates Seok-hoon, who fires back at her: What does he have to do to be accepted? He refuses to leave Mi-yeon because, he says, he loves her.

Director Shim lies to Ji-sook that he saved her from drowning, but she’s not buying it and knows Seok-hoon is behind this. She figures out that they’re not heading back towards the hospital, and begs him to just tell her if Min-woo is alive, but he refuses.

He takes her to an abandoned warehouse where Mi-yeon is waiting, and Mi-yeon says that she’s the one who saved her. She won’t let Seok-hoon become a murderer because of someone so worthless — so Ji-sook can’t die. Ever. She’s to get on a flight to Australia and go away forever, and Mi-yeon promises to send Min-woo and her family after her.

Ji-sook can’t fathom trusting her after what she did to Mom, but Mi-yeon counters that if she doesn’t go, this will all just continue and who knows who could die next. Ji-sook won’t leave unless she hears Min-woo’s voice to confirm he’s okay, so Mi-yeon offers her phone to call him. But there’s no answer, because she’d had a maid take his phone.

Mi-yeon snatches her phone back, saying that any more calls could clue Seok-hoon in that she’s alive and not dead as he thinks. She tells Ji-sook to decide now — stay and die, or leave and survive?

Min-woo sits on their bed, blaming himself in a million possible ways for causing harm to Ji-sook. He flips through their photo album, caressing Ji-sook’s picture and remembering how she’d touched his face to remember him. He realizes his phone is missing and asks the staff, and the maid who took it says she found it turned off. He sees the call from Mi-yeon’s phone, but she claims she was just checking on him.

Mi-yeon and Seok-hoon share a drink, and Mi-yeon asks if Seok-hoon really doesn’t know anything about where Ji-sook disappeared to. He denies it, but she says she knows everything. She wonders what will happen to him if she tells, and if he could endure being vilified.

She says that she’s done a lot of terrible things for him, and if he still can’t see her after all that, then she should just die. She wonders if he would see her then. Seok-hoon actually grows emotional, and seems alarmed at the thought of Mi-yeon dying. He either really does care for her on some level, or he’s a damn good actor.

Seok-hoon gets a call that the police have caught the person who started the fire at the villa, and Mi-yeon says pointedly that whoever it is, he must know the magnitude of his crime. Stepmom is concerned that Eun-ha’s parents will find out she’s gone missing, and Papa Choi worries that Min-woo might have done something to her (though he does at least think it’s impossible).

Seok-hoon knows that Min-woo used to sleepwalk when he was younger, and Papa Choi says it was a long time ago, but Seok-hoon thinks the police could use that against him. Min-woo is on the phone with his prosecutor friend finding out about the arrest, and asks him to make sure the arsonist testifies in court.

The news gets out to the media, who report Ji-sook’s disappearance as a possible murder by Min-woo — and unfortunately, Eun-ha’s father finds out by seeing it on television. He starts to panic and orders his aide to do whatever it takes, call in all his contacts, to find her.

The only people who aren’t worried are Ji-sook’s father and brother, who knew of her plan to disappear. They’re hiding in an apartment, and remind themselves to wait patiently for her to come back like she promised.

Ji-sook offers Director Shim everything she has to let her go, but he remembers that she gave away most of her money. Besides, he already took money from Mi-yeon to hold her here. He also refuses to let her call Min-woo, but accidentally lets slip that Min-woo’s being framed.

A strange guy enters the room, and Ji-sook takes advantage of Director Shim’s distraction to grab his phone. She manages to elude them and hide, but she struggles to find the unlock code for the phone.

The police report to the Choi family that the blood on the clothes, and the rock found near Min-woo, both match Ji-sook’s DNA. Min-woo is arrested for murder (Can you do that without a body? And since when does a few tablespoons’ worth of blood mean the person died?), and he turns down Seok-hoon’s offer to be his lawyer.

Upset, Mi-yeon promises Min-woo that she knows he’s innocent, and that she’ll make sure to clear his name. Papa Choi and Stepmom also voice their support, and even Chang-soo, Yeon-soo, and Butler Nam-chul come to say they believe in him.

Ji-sook finally gets into Shim’s phone and calls Min-woo, but by the time he answers, Shim and his lackeys have found her. Min-woo answers the phone to hear the men hollering Ji-sook’s name, and he begs the police to track down the location of the phone and find her.

The police refuse, and Min-woo shakes them off and runs. He leads them on a car chase while he calls Chang-soo to trace the phone call, and reassures himself that at least now he knows Ji-sook is alive.

Seok-hoon meets with his SJ Group informant, who tells him that public opinion is very against Min-woo right now, due to his history of mental illness and now the reports that he killed his wife. Not to mention, the stocks are going down at an alarming rate. Seok-hoon basks in the glow of the bad news, and just tells his informant to buy up the stocks while they’re cheap.

Chang-soo can’t find the exact location of the phone Ji-sook called from, but gives Min-woo the general area. Ji-sook limps down an isolated road, and ohthankgod, Min-woo finds her. He runs to grab her in a relieved bear hug, breathing that he knew she was alive. They pepper each other with questions, and Min-woo just apologizes for taking so long to find her.

Ji-sook asks what it means that he was framed, and he says not to worry about it. She wants to go to the police right away and tell them everything from the beginning, even if it means having to pay for her crimes. But Min-woo convinces her to just think about themselves and be happy for one day.

Eun-ha’s father storms into the Choi home demanding to know where Min-woo is, but the Choi family doesn’t know, either. Mi-yeon says she’s sorry for what happened, and they all ask if she knows something. She just says that “my sister-in-law” will come back soon, but she thinks to herself sadly that his daughter will never come back.

Min-woo takes Ji-sook to an isolated cabin, and she stops him from leaving to get medicine for her wounds because she doesn’t want to be alone. He at least cleans up her stained hospital clothing, and fetches some medicine he has in his car.

While he’s getting the medicine, they both take a moment to look at themselves in nearby mirrors, a little shy about being alone together. Min-woo doctors Ji-sook’s scraped knee, and she apologizes with a smile for always putting him through so much trouble. He grouches at her to stop doing it, then.

Quietly, he asks why she would want to leave him (meaning, voluntarily go to jail), and Ji-sook says it’s only temporary. Instead of answering, he just grumbles that she needs someone to take care of her since she ignores her own needs, so she cheerfully promises to take care of herself so he won’t worry.

She says she has no choice if she wants to get her name back, and Min-woo apologizes for not being a better husband. Ji-sook strokes his hair and says he’s a very good husband, and they smile at each other sadly.

Stepmom finds Mi-yeon drinking again, and assumes that Seok-hoon has done something. Mi-yeon just sighs that life is hard, and remembers confronting Ji-sook at the villa about how difficult it is to keep secrets. Ji-sook had said Mi-yeon will only live in fear while she and Seok-hoon keep secrets, which still eats at her.

She says to her mother that the truth will come out anyway, and promises to tell her mom all her secrets if she will promise to keep them. She reminds Stepmom how they discovered Eun-ha had had a doppelganger, and tells her that the doppelganger is her sister-in-law, and Seok-hoon is behind it all.

She even tells her mother that the fingerprint evidence is in her room, but Seok-hoon walks in as Stepmom is looking at it. For now, she just gives him an angry, “How could you?!” and leaves the room.

Mi-yeon staggers upstairs, and nearly pitches over the railing before Seok-hoon catches her. He asks what she told her mother, but Mi-yeon brushes him off and says to ask her himself. She suggests they turn themselves in, saying that she promised Min-woo she would get Seok-hoon to turn himself in and offering to join him.

Seok-hoon says he has no reason to turn himself in since he did nothing wrong. Mi-yeon offers to tell him exactly what he did wrong, and he just says she’s drunk. But she’s sobered up now, and tells him that Eun-ha was right — he’s like this because she kept her eyes and ears closed all these years. They can pay for their crimes then start a new life. Seok-hoon just calmly says that they can never pay for the crime they’ve committed.

In the cabin, Ji-sook says this may be their last night together for a while. Min-woo asks her not to go, worried that they’ll have to break up if they tell the whole story. Ji-sook promises she’ll come back to him.

Min-woo silently traces Ji-sook’s features with his fingertips, the same way she did with him, and says that he’ll remember her face. He asks if they can be happy again, and Ji-sook smiles and says they deserve to be happy.

Too emotional to speak, Min-woo leans in, and tenderly kisses her.

COMMENTS

Aw, I can feel the separation coming. I understand, and even admire, that Ji-sook feels it necessary to pay for her crimes in this whole fiasco, since she’s not the kind of person who would be happy living someone else’s life. She wants to come to the man she loves as herself, free and unburdened, and live with him openly. She wants her own family to be involved in their life together, and she would never find real happiness if she kept living as Eun-ha. Not to mention, Eun-ha’s family deserve to know of her death, and Seok-hoon and Mi-yeon need to be held responsible for their own crimes. So even though I hate it for the characters, this is actually one drama in which the forced separation won’t bother me, because it makes narrative sense and is true to the characters and their situation. It’s not just thrown in to create tension — it’s necessary for them to move forward.

I still can’t tell if Mi-yeon is really helping Ji-sook or not, though it would be interesting if Mi-yeon became an ally of Ji-sook’s after all, though in an entirely roundabout way. Not because she’s a good person, or because she’s guided by any sort of moral compass whatsoever (because goodness knows that ain’t the case!), but to protect another murderer. Ironically, the person she most wishes would die is the person she should protect at all costs, in order to shield Seok-hoon from being outed as a murderer. I find that pretty clever on the part of the writer, because it’s certainly a lot more interesting then Mi-yeon having a sudden change of heart. Goodness knows, the only redeeming feature about Mi-yeon is her unfailing loyalty to her husband. It’s a shame she got such a dud, because that loyalty, when directed at a good man, could have been a wonderful thing.

So if she was trying to help Ji-sook, then I tip my hat to the writer — but if she wasn’t, and is really still trying to get rid of her, then my admiration all goes to Yoo In-young for playing Mi-yeon with such depth and skill that we still, even with only one episode left, can’t tell what she’s thinking. At least now, in the final hour, she realizes that allowing her husband to do these terrible things attributed to his madness, and she wants to do something about it. She’s been a fascinatingly complex character throughout the run of the show, because I think we’ve all alternated between wanting her to be a good person, and marveling at the depths she will go to to get what she wants. She really could have been the villain of the drama all by herself, because the way she’s wavered between her good side and her bad side all the way throughout has been my favorite character arc of the drama.

Not that Seok-hoon isn’t a chilling villain himself, but he’s predicable. He’s bad, and he wants everyone dead, and that’s that. I still wish we knew why, other than a vague wish for revenge, but his reasons and the object of his hatred are still unclear. I’m still hoping that that’s planned, and that we’ll learn his motives in the final episode, and not just that the writer hopes we accept “his dad got screwed over and so he’s angry” as a motive for lifelong murderous intentions. He’s scary enough without needing to know why, but if you set up this elaborate of a plan to get revenge on a family, we’re gonna want to know exactly why.

Not to mention, he started out this cold-blooded killer — but by this point, he’s full of threats but no follow-through. It’s hard to maintain a sense of foreboding around a character who hasn’t actually done anything (other than start a fire then manage to lose his hostage within a day) in several episodes. We need motive if we’re to believe that he’s the Big bad he’s been built up to be, so I hope he’s got something truly horrible up his sleeve for the finale. Which I realize sounds morbid, but I want a reason to be afraid of him again. Otherwise, what was the point of his whole elaborate plan? Don’t hold back, Show, Min-woo and Ji-sook can take whatever you’ve got to dish out.

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Yay first to comment !!!

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This show went off the rails at the midpoint for me. Crazy Min Woo was an interesting idea but they barely used it, Director Shim is a psychic teleporter, and for the love of pete will someone please talk to the police.

Twenty episodes was too long.

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The show went off the rails for me when they didn't seem to know how to write Seok Hoon and Mi Yeon. And they had these great (and great-looking) actors playing them. Who had chemistry with each other. Why couldn't they have had him torn between her and revenge for his family, the way they had her torn between him and her family? All along I found them the more compelling couple because Min Woo seemed sweet but simple, and sexless.

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Totally for me too - the last 2 eppies especially more so.

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And finally their marriage is consummated with candles and a bed and no one around ready to barge in. Love was in the air for so many episodes and it was about time to be in other places, too! Good choice indeed, LOL! :-)

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and no one to spy them via secret cameras as well

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LOL... No peeping Toms on their first night together. You're right!

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Frankly, it was time...;-) no? Did not we expect this since end of episode 16?

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@Beckett62

Me expecting this far earlier (episode 5) :D

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@QueenBi
Let's say end of episode 6, when they are skin to skin at night in the car, in the middle of nowhere...but at this moment they don't even share the bed at night!
And when Ji Sook undresses in the night, half hidden beneath a bush, I am not quite sure that she is conscious of the erotic load of the situation :-)!

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Sigh, this drama is a one giant plot hole at this point... When I start to analyze all those things that don't make sense my head starts to hurt. Thank God for the actors, at least they are really trying to do something with this shitty story.

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People were seriously praising this drama just a few episodes ago, now it's crap writing with major plot holes? When did that start?

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Imo it was kinda ok up to 16th episode, there were some moment when you thought "um, that doesn't make sense" but still, you were able to overlook it and just enjoy the ride. But then those even more insane things started to happen and it all went downhill. Seriously, the last 2 episodes defy ALL logic.

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Yes, I agree..
Actually the drama was good till ep 16.. Then came ep 17-18 will little bit over the top angst and the we still don't know our villains' motivations actually. Then came ep 19 that just doesn't apply logic and common sense anymore.. If it's not for the actors and the fact I already fall in love with their characters, I would stop watching by ep 18.

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I quit watching after 17. Just lost interest because the story got weaker by the episode.

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Thanks for the info guys, I'm still on episode 11 and was really starting to enjoy it. Now I'm deciding if I should bother continuing.

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It seems to be writer's choice to maintain anxiety and angst until the near end, and keep just a little timespace for solution ( or resolution? ).Isn't it a common habit in Kdramas?
Without trying to play spoiler, it seems to me that most of the plot holes will be filled in episode 20. But at the end of episode 19, when you consider all the remaining plot holes, you are sure that all this will be rushed. Just to keep watchers in alarm and hinder them to think about it too long?

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Poor writers! They have to indulge the networks, the sponsors, the live-shooting system, the actors' restrictions (it doesn't apply here) and their only freedom must be the last 2 episodes, when no one's looking unless the audiences. The number of dramas with multiple speedy scenes in their final week increases disturbingly; as if there's a sort of a deal between the writers and the production team- especially, when the drama has very good or very poor ratings. Perhaps that's why they are the least expendable than everyone else who works in this industry.

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@kalel

Do you believe the freedom of writers only covers the last 2 episodes? Of course I see PPL, etc. but what is the weight of the network in a case like this? Ratings for Mask were good since a time ago, were not they? Ain't it enough to give freedom to the writers? Or I am wrong?

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I'm under the impression that better ratings don't automatically lead to more artistic freedom. On the contrary, sometimes success means more pressure for even higher ratings, hence more ppl and sponsors, less sane script. This is probably how most plot holes and loose ends do appear on our screens and make us scratch our heads or write long angry comments in DB, lol :-)

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I don't know about artistic freedom, but the fact is most kdramas in the penultimate and mostly final episode include way larger number of scenes than normal. Let's say that if the average is 25 scenes per episode (plus cut-to-scenes), some have over 40. To me that proves the writers were restricted in most of the duration of the drama and try to show the industry their "abilities for future projects" while implying to the audience: "I was under pressure in most of the show but here, audience, this is what I intended to say". In my opinion Mask was initially a "noir" that for some reason turned into a melo romance; I'll never forget "When a man loves" where the final episode was a "patch-work" of scenes changing in the speed of light; and hell, even the Hong sisters for some reason put in their finale the concept of the "pearl" for the leading couple.
Of course, if you think about it, the industry seems to know that and never holds accountable the writer for the flop of a series (except in rare cases) and they are always given another chance. And rightly so. Imagine if the failure and the mess of Faith was attributed to the writer. We never would have had Healer. And that is the reason why the viewers crucify the writers and absolve the cast in case of a flop while accrediting the actors with the success of a series. Actors are in a way "dispensable" but writers are harder to get. This is how the system works.

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@kalel
@korini

Thank you for your clear explanations! :-) interesting...
After next recap we'll see if last episode of Mask is not too much a patchwork...

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Despite my previous comments that could be seen as disappointed, I must say I've never been so addicted to a drama.
The four leads did a very great job. Min Woo and Ji Sook, after these 10 weeks, seem to me real persons, and you want them to build their life together...For me the love story between them became the central point of the show, since episode 14, I think. Well, maybe it was a bit unexpected.

Before that, it seemed that they could build a team to find back evil couple, but in the end that's their love that builds their spirit to survive, to get free, to conquer happiness...

But "the more convincing is the villain, the better is the movie" said Hitchcock, and here Mi Yeon and Seok Hoon were very convincing, specially Mi Yeon, taken between her love for her husband, her way to seek love and acceptance from him, and her feelings for her brother. One time good, one time evil, as if she tried to wake herself from a nightmare...and realizing it was not a dream you can escape from...

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I wish to write " fight back evil couple"

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@ Beckett62,

I really liked what you said. I actually loved the villains in this drama, and a lot of it had to do with the actor and actress portraying them. I thought they were excellent. I loved SA as well, and she so shines in this role (I know she is a good or great actress, but I have only seen her in another drama, and I didn't finish it). JJH grew on me (over the course of the drama), and though I loved the love story, MY and SH kept me coming back for more.

I did feel (or think) that MY was indirectly helping JS, because she didn't want her husband to be seen as a murderer, since MW would know (or figure out) what had happen with the fire, and he would speak out, eventually. So I am not sure that by ep.19, MY is sympathetic to JS, truly. I kind of don't think so (and I am willing to be wrong though). In the end, MY still wanted JS to leave the country, and by ep.19, I don't see MY having the moral compass LollyPip is talking about.

And now I have a question: would this have worked, "Ironically, the person she most wishes would die is the person she should protect at all costs, in order to shield Seok-hoon from being outed as a murderer"?
How would SH have been outed as a murderer, when MW had already been (successfully) framed? And with his history of mental illness, who would have believed him? Could it be that in protecting JS, MY also wanted to protect (and save) her brother (from being framed as a murderer)? That would be what it would look like to me.

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@Ivoire

We do not know much about the times preceding episode 1, but it seems clear that Mi Yeon and Min Woo shared affection for each other during childhood. Maybe Mi Yeon was the only friendly contact for Min Woo when he lost his mother and was admitted in the family home... None of both has a single friend. If childhood was a Paradise for her, it is a paradise with Min Woo within...
Remember when she begs her brother not to going to the chase in the forest...(ep.16)
She is torn between two men: her husband and her brother. She loves the more Seon Hook, but not to the point to let him kill her brother...

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Thanks for the recap, LollyPip!

I also found MY's way of dealing with this situation interesting--preventing SH from committing murder saves JS. And she even ventured to suggest to SH that they should turn themselves in.

Love MW and JS together. They are definitely fighting the odds as a team and though they will need to separate, it is only temporary. =) Off to watch the last ep!

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Such a pity considering how good it was at the beginning :/ so many loopholes!

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Despite all the craziness, I can't help but fall for our 2 couples. At this point, I am glad that Mi Yeon still loves Min Woo in a way. If not, I'm really fearful for our otp. I don't like that Min Woo is written more like damsel in distress in first half and fool in love in second. The writer made the female characters really intriguing. Like how they are similar but opposite. They both would do everything for their loved ones and how different they represent their love. Maybe that's why Ji Seok is the only one who can make Mi Yeon questions about her actions and the reason Mi Yeon is so furious that Ji Seok can live a happy life.

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+1!!! I had the same thought but didn't know how to write it. Thanks!
About Minwoo being the damsel and the fool, he isn't so much of it in the final episode. And I didn't really mind because Joo Ji Hun potrayed Minwoo's vulnerability excellently.

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Between this show and I Remember You, I don't know which I'm more disappointed in. Both had strong starts - IRY the strongest - and then just got wonky at the mid-point.

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Just out of curiosity, how did I Remember You get wonky? In my opinion, that show is only getting better, the acting and writing even stronger. Mask on the other hand devolved into a complete mess as from Ep 17. I still love the leads whose chemistry could melt icicles, but the writing has huge holes, even for makjang, and is losing steam.

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The acting in I Remember You has always been solid.

The show began to shift its character focus in the later part of episode 8. Episode 9 and 10 were almost written for a different drama. By episode 11, the mystery underlying the high concept had been sacrificed completely (although there had been foreshadowing for several episodes.) Episode 12 had some great acting, but plot wise was utterly boring. And, without the strong characters that began the show, it's now devolved into something far more cliched than it began as.

I'm not sure why I should care about any of the characters or outcomes any more. There certainly isn't much character growth - just understanding that can come out of the story at this point. And that's no longer clever. There's also some weird back plot, but it's anti-climactic at this point.

The short answer to your question is that I Remember You isn't smart and intellectual anymore. It isn't mysterious, enigmatic, surprising or challenging. If you love the characters you won't care, but if you like high concept, having the intellectual underpinnings of the show sacrificed for a new tack (probably due to low ratings) is very disappointing.

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This should have been a super exciting episode but I knew they lost me when I started cackling when MinWoo found JiSook on that road before the gangsters. He manages to evade the cops and happens to be on the road she's on. Then instead of fleeing, they decide to chat on the road.

At first, I was hoping it was a dream from a captured JiSook but nope.

Then, I got super distracted that MinWoo decided to take his coat off to get the medicine in the car and then put it back on when he got in the cabin. I know this was a continuity error and it happens but I would rather like to think it was done on purpose cause nothing they've been doing makes sense.

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Thank goodness for your comment now mine will be shorter because you saw the mess too.
What about how fast they tracked the location of the calln? Min woo had his phone when the police tried to arrest him before running away,so how and when did his assistant get his phone.
The chase *eyeroll,the sand was tiny when minwoo passed then the frame jumped to a huge pile of sand,first of all who damp sand in the middle of a road,2.the Road was still wide enough for the police car but it just went straight for the sand,3.Wouldn't it have been easier and more effective if the truck blocked the road instead.
Sukhoon took Ji sook, how did she end up in MY 's hands
Oh and that tiny plaster used to cover a large scrape plus that scene would have been the best time for min woo to sob In relief to have her alive safe and sound,wasted.
I won't ask where Ji sook got clothes to change into
This show was like the best icecream with raisins,sprinkles, bits of chocolate and waffles that suddenly melted and you now have to drink with a straw.

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I think Seokhoon took Jisook and drowned her, but then Miyeon saved her. And here's a tip: thinking logically while watching Mask is painful. ;)

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@ hyemin,

Thank you for the warning :-) I did see MW apply some ointment on JS's knee, but I didn't see him cleaning it first. Was I the only one who thought that? And yeah, I thought he would put 2 Band-aids (instead of 1) considering how small the one he had was. I was also expecting JS to want to take a shower at some point, however MW nor JS seemed to think that it was necessary. Do I need to mention that she was gone for what? 1 or 2 days? (I am not sure), then she was running away for a while, she fell, etc... So how long had she been in those hospital clothes again? Maybe because I have never been reunited with a romantic loved one after going through such traumatic events, I don't know what matters... :-) Should I asked when was the last time she brushed her teeth before the kiss? :-) OK, I will stop nitpicking :-) (though that is fun to do :-) )

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The single bandaid for that large scrape KILLED me too.
Who's house did they run off to?
Why did he just leave his car out in the open? I"m assuming since he's wanted for murder, there would be numerous reports and police looking for him.

If my husband's sister was keeping me locked up, the first thing I would say is "You sister is CRAY CRAY", not "let's look sad and bone"

I don't want to nitpick but this show was too good to fall apart like this. I guess I'll go and watch the finale now.

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@ bapgongju,

Since MW's family must be one of the 1% wealthiest families in Korea, I assumed it was one of their many properties. Also, I love the set of their house (the estate). Anyone knows where they are filming that house (the outside, that is).

And I was curious about how a fire scene like the one last week is filmed. JJH seemed to be wearing protective gear under his clothes. Does anyone know enough about film-making to tell me how they do it? I did see that the bedroom and living room scenes where shot in studio, and I am sure they had all the protective things needed on hand.

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@ivoire

The single band-aid Min Woo puts on Ji Sook's knee is exactly the same she wore in ep.1 when, after her night of drinking, she meets her doppelgänger Eun Ha. She is on her knees, collecting the pearls of a madame, Eun Ha pursues her rolling ring , ant they meet.
Ji Sook wears the same band-aid. The night before, Min Woo saw her drunk and and sitting on the ground in the street, believing it is Eun Ha, and he saw her knee was hurt. After bringing her in some room of an hotel, he dissapears before morning, and it is impossible to say if it is him who puts this first band-aid on her knee...:-) not impossible when you think he is obsessed at this moment with hygienic matters...

For the hospital clothes, the scene seems the exact opposite of the beginnings of the drama, where Min Woo seemed afraid of the least physical contact, as if contamination could kill him.Now he does not fear dirt on Ji Sook's clothes. His feelings for the person comes before his hygienic concerns...

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The day after the drinking night of Ji Sook, Min Woo and Eun Ha share a dinner near by the swimming pool. Just before Eun Ha leaves the table to go to her death by drowning, Min Woo looks at her knee, do not see any scar, any band-aid , and thinks : " skin-colour stockings".
Band-aid is the first clue that there is two women who look alike, like twins, and the one with the band-aid is surely Ji Sook. Funny how this band-aid repeats itself. An intention of the writer,like a counterpoint, hidden in the screenplay...?

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I loved what the cast did and stuck around for them and Mask was a great show for making me cackle like a maniac.

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I can truthfully say that I've continued watching Mask because of one sole reason, the great and believable acting of the casts..
Other than that, I just go with the flow because I'll just make my head ache once I start questioning what's going on..haha..
It'll ruin my enjoyment with this drama.

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Yeah me too! I have turned a completely blind eye on the plot haha. But the actors were splendid!

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true ! and i'm a big fan of Park Joon-geum. She is Always cast as the typical korean chaebol mom or mother in law and she does it with so much gusto and emotion, she's like a korean Joan Collins :)

But when you see her in the rare varity shows she has been in, she is so much fun and so happy and sweet. What a wonderfull lady. I love seeing her play, even if the drama sucks,,if she's in it i know i will get my share of quality "b**mom things" :) :)
the girl who plays MY too, my hat off to her, she really does nail the part and makes you constantly swing between feeling pity, anger, empathy and and loathing.

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+1

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Remember the truck that dumped to stuff on the road to let our hero escape from the police ? It looked like sand, but considering how overused that plot device is, it should have been manure.

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Hahahaha!!!!! I love this...

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''...He screams that Min-woo did nothing while Eun-ha died, conveniently forgetting the part where he himself had drugged Min-woo into oblivion." Um, wasn't it Miyeon who had drugged him?
Anyway, the last scene was so unbearably sad and emotional. Even when they weren't kissing, I could feel the feels (pain). OTP forever~♥

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God what an f****** hypocrite Seok Hoon is. He's screaming at Min-woo for not saving Eun ha when he was passed out cold at the pool, but has he forgotten that it was his wife, Mi Yeon who turned her back on the drowning woman? Why didn't he reproach her? I can't understand their relationship, at times I am convinced Seok Hoon has some feelings for Mi Yeon however obfuscated and opaque they are. At other times, I'm not too sure.

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i think he does not realise how much he loves his wife.
He told himself he only married her to get into the family hence does not accept he lives his wife, i think he does, a lot, even more then EH, but he deludes himself because loving the daughter of his enemy is not befitting his plan.

My mom and her first husband were forced to get married because of pregnancy ( know but hey, it was 1961). he Always blamed her for it and they did not get along despite having 5 children, lways fighting, then she left him....

Only after she left did he realise how much he missed her and loved her, they remained the best and closest friends after that (go figure) even more so after my father died and on his deadbed he even proposed to her again. (poor soul, in his PJ's grabbed her hand, "wife, let's get married again and go home", he died the day after, my life really is a makjang drama sometimes ) :)
Sometimes people really do not know what they have.

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@ hyemin,

About this, "Anyway, the last scene was so unbearably sad and emotional. Even when they weren’t kissing, I could feel the feels (pain). OTP forever~♥" I agree!

And I agree with what LollyPip said here, "Too emotional to speak, Min-woo leans in, and tenderly kisses her." I don't know about you, however in many ways, I loved this kiss more than the one in ep.16. I also love how different both kisses are. The one in ep.16 to me conveyed the passion (and yes love) (and desire) that MW felt for JS. In this ep. I totally felt the tenderness (and again love) MW had for JS. That gentleness, that sensuality, that tenderness that MW (and JS as well) showed through that kiss and through their body language (the way they looked at each other, closed their eyes, the way JS smiled before the 2nd kiss, etc...) said so much (to us the viewers) about how the characters felt for each other, no words were needed. I think I could write a few pages about that scene, but I will stop here :-) I could be wrong, however that kiss did not feel like a sexual one to me, more so an emotional one (that is just my take, mind you). Needless to say, I loved this kiss :-) I also thought the way it was edited was interesting...
@ GB unni, if you happen to read this comment, let me know what you think.

Also, I couldn't help wondering how long it took them to light up all those candles. I guess the lamps in the room were not enough?... And by that scene, I was hoping JS would be out of her hospital clothes :-( OK, I did say earlier that I would stop nagging about that.

Also I was wondering if you could help me: in ep. 17 (the beginning), MW says (on the bed) that (flirting) with JS "is so ticklish, [he] can't do it any more." This is a way of saying things I wanted to understand better. When you feel tickled, you want to laugh right? I am sure what he said made perfect sense in Korean, however, I tried to figure out why he would say it that way (what was the connotation there?) He looked like he was filled with good, and warm and loving emotions (about his relationship, and JS). Why was "I feel so tickled, I can't do it any more," said here? (he wasn't laughing). On a linguistic level (and probably culturally as well), I feel that something was conveyed, and I didn't fully get it (actually I don't think I got it at all). Sorry, I know you don't want to think, but if you think you could help, please do.
Also, hoping to read your thoughts on this, GB unni (if you happen to read this post), or Cocobeans (I have seen your comments on Mask recaps :-) ). I find it interesting that one could say what he said in Korean, but it would not occur to say that in French, for example. I don't think it would flow, and it would not make sense.

@ Hyemin, sorry, and thank you for indulging me.

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Oh, I meant to respond to Hyemin's comment (#15), and I commented instead. Oh well... Please feel free to chime in (anyone), if you have any thoughts. Thank you!

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Love this drama!!!

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@Ivoire hi~

Oooh don't be sorry! I feel so honored to be asked...well, I'm not sure but I think maybe Minwoo isn't used to flirting, which is when you say all those cheesy, lovey-dovey words? He has said some cheesy lines before, but maybe that was really from his heart, and not just...playing around with words. (Seriously what am I talking about)
Also I rewatched that scene and while Minwoo was saying: "I feel so ticklish, I can't do it anymore" , I couldn't see his whole face exactly but I think he was half-smiling, so maybe he was joking. And before he had said that line, I noticed a tiny pause after Jisook reply: it looked like he was thinking of something to flirt back, but couldn't, so he said "I can't do this anymore".
But, as you said, if something really had been conveyed, then I don't know what is it, so these are merely my thoughts...and I hope I've helped you! :)

And about the candles, I thought that the lighting team shouldn't have put that large white light outside the window, it kinda spoiled all the mood. ;)

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@ivoire

The kiss reminds me of the Twilight first kiss between Edward and Bella (Book 1). Where the scene had been freeze edit was when MW (or JJH?) about to swoop in a more passionate yet intimate kiss to JS (or SA?).

I do a bit curious there's been an inappropriate scene (to be shown to the audience) that make the production team decided not to air the rest of the scene. Because what's the point of light up lots of candles, ...and the slow fore play is juust..for us to get quite unsatisfying morning scene (sorry about a little spoiler). The hand movements and embrace should come after that (look how I am becoming a kissing expert because of Mask...omooo). The following scene could have been deleted (or cancel) for some reason. Not because of the acting, but ...more to protect our lead stars personal secrecy. *_^

I know this is merely my personal opinion and I should kick my b*tt off to the shippers land :D

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hello Ivoire !! i think in ep 17 with the ticklish he meant that all the lovey dovey things gave him goosebumps (comme des papillons dans son ventre) (thickles) from it being so cheezy, i think it was his way of saying "listen to us goofballs, this is so cheesy,i'm gonna wash up before we keep doing this all day :) " he was genuinly happy. But you can't lie in bed and cuddle all day. Although if so ji sub or sung shi kyung ever pass my way i would make a very dedicated effort to try and do just that :) :)

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Your right abt the tenderness in that kiss. It was different from the first two. The editing to me was also cleaner. They really are great actors since they could convey a wide range of emotions every time they kiss. I still loved ep 16 kiss more. And I found the first kiss much more romantic than the consequent one.

And the chemistry was so sweet, romantic, tender and swoonworthy! I felt the chemistry through the screen. When MW was caressing her leg, I thought that was so hot tho!

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Hi @Ivoire

I didn't have the time and the thoughts to comment on this recap thread LOL! And just noticed by chance that you've been addressing me and hoping that I'd comment on the kiss.

OK I just re-watched the Ep 16 and Ep 19 kisses (BTW did we only get 4 kiss scenes plus a forehead kiss in this show? or only 3?)

In both Episodes, those kiss scenes were more about communicating feelings, assurance, commitment.... maybe in Ep 19 even hope rather than sexual tension. I felt that even if Ep 19's kisses could have led to sex, they did not need to and it seems they probably didn't which is appropriate under the circumstances. Defintely Ep 19's kisses were more tender and full of promise, Ep 16's were more as a seal of understanding and continued partnership.

As for the 'ticklish' bits. I agree with the others here who say that Min Woo 1) could not come up with a cheesier rejoinder and 2) found it too cheesy already so that it made him cringe, but in a good way. He was half serious and half amused by it and wanted to run off before it got more 'embarrassing'.

To tell you the truth, Ep 20 made me cringe, so I could not really enjoy all the OTP moments LOL!

Read ya again on another thread!

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Well that was a crazy rollercoaster ride if there ever was one. Having come fresh from finishing the last episode, I won't try to spoil anything and keep my final comments for the final review.

I do have to commend the writers for keeping almost ALL the characters till the very end of the show - I thought the loan shark dude's would be gone by now but they're still there!

I know Seok Hoon is the casted villain of the show but Mi Yeon has really stolen the spotlight from him - this woman, she's literally CRAZY.

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Yeon jeong hun is soooo good at playing a crazy bad guy. He's so sexy yet all i want to do is to rip his hair off. In bed n out of the bed. ?
Him as sokhun is so cruel!!! Makes me frustrating mad!

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Yes,for the past few episodes,the drama was a mess but for me,i will just turn a blind eye on it as i had fall in love with the drama particularly the characters and actors.the casts are superb wonderful.

Sometimes we will have a not-so-good storyline but great actors,but the actors cant save the drama.mask is an exception.the beautiful portrayal for each characters by the actor make the show great and beautiful eventhough we can see weakness in the writing and directions.i really salute the all the cast.

*Spoiler*
I really love the ending. Beautiful,yet so heart-breaking.

#TeamMaskForever

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There is good crazy-plot-holes-unbelievable dramas and bad crazy-plotholes-unbelievable dramas. And Mask was definitely one of the good ones.

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Totally agree!

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Yep It certainly is.

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The only good thing comes from this episode is the kiss!! Major swoon!

I started to not care about the plot from few eps ago and just go with the flow and enjoy the OTP and the leads' acting.. If I care about the plot, I would over-analyze the drama and head-desk continuously because of the plot holes.

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I just love Mi yeon's outfits

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I love this couple, they are so sweet and their chemistry is perfect and i love Mask.

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Poor MY, i like her. She is excellent actress and i hope she will have lots of amazing drama like Mask.

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Well what can I say? I left my brain at the door so I didnt have any headchaches at all. Lol So my heart took over and completely loved the OTP so much that I will miss them. Still swooning at the kiss ~~~~~

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Same for me too :)

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Mask isn't perfect, but it's definitely guilty pleasure viewing. It was so unbelievable that MinWoo would find JiSook by the side of them road, but I really didn't care. I just wanted the couple to finally have time away from all the crazy. They deserved it! And I feel so bad for MiYeon. She definitely isn't innocent, but I think of all if the ways Seok Hoon manipulated her, and she really is a victim too. I doubt anyone could keep their sanity in a marriage where they knowningly lied to each other all the time.

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THE KISS THOOOO! I enjoyed the ep, craziness and all. Loved it. The actors are great and believable.

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LOve to watch korean dramas in urdu

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