Hundred Million Stars From the Sky: Episode 7
Moo-young seems obsessed by the power that one person can wield in the lives of perfect strangers. As Jin-kook wrestles with his own troubled past, it’s possible that there’s a connection that explains Moo-young’s singular curiosity. Moo-young’s relationship with Seung-ah has served as a real life experiment, but what exactly is it meant to prove?
EPISODE 7: “One million dollars”
Moo-young loads his birthday cake with candles while he mulls over the reason that Jin-kang considers him pitiful — he has to win no matter what, with no regard for anyone who gets destroyed in the process. Moo-young recalls how he moved very closely to Jin-kang to ask if she had any feelings for him, but she managed to answer with a firm, “No, I don’t.” While Moo-young stares at the burning candles, there’s a knock at his door and when he opens it, he’s yanked outside.
Jin-kang sits on the steps outside of her home, deep in thought, and then stands up and walks away. She bumps into someone on the street on the way to Moo-young’s place and gets a look at the man when she apologizes.
When Jin-kang reaches Moo-young’s rooftop, she witnesses his attack and hides to call the police, but she flies to his side when he’s beaten with a pole. Jin-kang throws herself protectively in front of Moo-young, which forces the men to leave, and she’s able to see how badly he’s been beaten. Meanwhile, Jin-kook wakes up in his room, the flyer about the missing boy close by.
At the hospital, Jin-kang does her best to describe Moo-young’s attackers to a policeman. The officer explains that Moo-young needs to file a report at the police station in order to bring charges and sue his attackers.
Jin-kang goes to Moo-young’s side and cries at the sight of his battered face. Later, when Moo-young opens his eyes, he sees that Jin-kang fell asleep in a chair, her head on his bed. He reaches for hers hand but stops when she stirs, and then pretends to be asleep when her phone rings. She steps away to talk with Jin-kook, who scolds that she should have called if she had to work late. By the time she returns to Moo-young’s bed, it’s empty.
Moo-young opens his door when Jin-kang knocks and she follows him inside where he invites her to sit down. Jin-kang unleashes her anger, demanding to know who attacked him, but Moo-young is more interested in why she showed up at his place.
Jin-kang passes on the policeman’s message, Moo-young needs to file a report before he can sue his attackers. Moo-young knows that the men who attacked him were hired and reasons that it makes more sense to go after the person who wanted to hurt him.
Exasperated, Jin-kang sighs, “Fine. I don’t care what you do,” but Moo-young grabs her hand when she turns to leave. Moo-young asks her to have some cake but Jin-kang pulls away and walks out without a word while Moo-young stares at his empty hand. Once she’s outside, Jin-kang pauses to catch her breath, clearly shaken.
At the station, Jin-kook sits at his desk and ignores Cho-rong, who finally walks away to take a break. He runs into So-jung, who wants to know if Jin-kook has said anything to him. Cho-rong asks what’s going on and isn’t fooled when So-jung insists that she doesn’t know everything about Jin-kook.
Jin-kang pauses in front of a porridge restaurant on her way to the police station, where she checks to see if Moo-young filed a report. Jin-kang learns that Moo-young hasn’t reported his attack, which he must do to sue his attackers.
Moo-young wakes up and grimaces in pain when he gets out of bed to look for his cat. When Moo-young sits outside as his cat eats, he notices a bag from the porridge restaurant, but when he looks down at the street, no one is around.
So-jung visits Jin-kook with the groceries needed for him to make lunch. She thinks his place looks different in the daytime, since she’s only been there when she brings him home, drunk. So-jung asks about Jin-kang and smiles when Jin-kook informs her that she’s on a date with Cho-rong.
Jin-kang looks at rental bicycles with Cho-rong, who tries to steer her to the ones built for two. Cho-rong gets a call from Detective Gun, who later reports to Chief Lee that Cho-rong must be insane because he won’t be in on his day off.
Cho-rong happily pedals a bicycle for two with Jin-kang, who looks as if she’s miles away. After their ride, Cho-rong happily shares that he has a list of a hundred things that he wants to do with Jin-kang and riding a bicycle for two was one of them. Cho-rong extends his hand to Jin-kang, which reminds her of when Moo-young grabbed her hand at his place, but she shakes off the memory to take Cho-rong’s hand.
So-jung admits relief that Jin-kook is doing better than she expected after he mentioned Moo-young’s scar. Jin-kook confesses that he decided that So-jung was right, he was being overly sensitive about Moo-young and the missing boy.
As Jin-kook and So-jung enjoy their meal, she urges him to share his suspicions that Yoo-ri is the murderer with Cho-rong. So-jung wants to know why Jin-kook hasn’t arrested Yoo-ri and laughs when he explains that he’s waiting for her to turn herself in.
Suspicious, So-jung asks Jin-kook, “Do you like her by any chance?” It’s Jin-kook’s turn to laugh but So-jung thinks that she’s right, otherwise why would he fall to protect Yoo-ri and why does he want her to turn herself in.
When Jin-kook asks, “Why are you so funny? You’re so pretty and funny,” So-jung looks stunned. After Jin-kook adds, “You’re pretty, not Yoo-ri,” So-jung abruptly ends their lunch and makes a hasty exit.
Seung-ah finalizes the sale of her studio and walks out with two million dollars. She looks at the money and thinks back to her final meeting with Moo-young, when she suggested that they could run away to Greece.
After Moo-young announced that he needed to go home to update his resume, he confessed, “We’ve reached the end.” Seung-ah insisted, “But we love each other,” only to be told by Moo-young, “I’ve never loved you.” In the present, Seung-ah pulls out her phone and calls the university that Moo-young claimed Hee-jun attended.
Moo-young is in bed when Hee-jun calls to report that Seung-ah discovered that he’s not a student. Moo-young tells his friend not to worry and right after they hang up, Seung-ah texts with a request to meet.
Seung-ah doesn’t look at Moo-young, who’s hidden his bruises with a black cap and a hoodie for their meeting. Seung-ah tells him that she chose the location by the river because she wanted to end things where they started.
Seung-ah hands Moo-young the two million dollars but when he passes it back to her, she tells him that she prefers to think that he was with her for her money. Seung-ah stands up and walks away when Moo-young goes along with her scenario, “Yes, it was because of money.”
Seung-ah sees Moo-young limping away in a safety mirror and when she runs after him, she discovers his injuries. She guesses that Woo-sang was behind his attack but Moo-young brushes it off, “You gave me two million. Nothing else matters.”
Enraged, Seung-ah drives away from her meeting with Moo-young and calls Woo-sang, who rejects her call. Woo-sang’s assistant reviews plans for an event to be held at the brewery until Woo-sang reads Seung-ah’s text, “I’ll never forgive you. If you bother him one more time, I’ll kill you.”
Woo-sang double-checks with his assistant who reports, “You won’t need to worry about him anymore. I think he has a girlfriend.” The assistant points to Jin-kang in a surveillance photo with Moo-young with Seung-ah as Woo-sang enjoys a cruel smile.
Moo-young sees Jin-kook outside a neighborhood convenience store and removes his hat as he sits down. He ignores the inevitable questions about his injuries to drink one of Jin-kook’s beers, and then admits that he was beaten up.
When Jin-kook looks at him disapprovingly, Moo-young takes out the two million dollars. Jin-kook wants to know what Moo-young has been up to, so he confesses, “Bad things. Seeing you makes me want to do bad things.”
When Moo-young rises to leave, Jin-kook warns, “There aren’t any freebies in this world. You’ll have to pay up eventually.” Moo-young admits that he likes the sound of that, “‘An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth,’ is more my thing.”
Jin-kook arrives at work just in time to witness Chief Lee berating Cho-rong for not coming to work on his day off. Cho-rong is sent away but soon he’s back when Jin-kook playfully pulls him into a head lock and delivers him to his desk. Cho-rong promises that it will never happen again as Jin-kook smiles broadly at Chief Lee.
While Yoo-ri cleans her studio, she thinks of Jin-kook’s offer that she has a couple of days. Meanwhile, So-jung ignores Jin-kook in the cafeteria and when he runs into her later, she denies that she’s avoiding him. When she hurries back to work, Jin-kook wonders, “Why is she dressed so prettily today?” (How can a detective be so clueless?)
At a laundromat, Moo-young’s face darkens when he sees the shirt bloodied by his beating. He looks thoughtful before he tosses it in with the rest of his things.
Yoo-ri is waiting for Moo-young when he returns home. Moo-young pets his cat as Yoo-ri confesses that she’s been avoiding him because she was worried that he was angry with her. Yoo-ri wonders why Moo-young was nice to her and he answers, “Because you’re pretty,” but she thinks it’s because she doesn’t lie.
When Yoo-ri wonders if Moo-young ever sincerely liked her. He says yes, but then starts to tell her about his cat. Moo-young explains that he’s never had one before, but he likes it, even though it’s lots of work. The subtext is pretty clear, and Yoo-ri angrily says she knows that Moo-young thinks of her like his cat–a pet. He then gently warns Yoo-ri, “Don’t trust people. People are nothing,” but his face falls when she asks if it’s all right to tell Jin-kook everything.
Then next day, Moo-young stands motionless at a green light as he decides what to do. Cho-rong finds him waiting around their office and asks why he’s there, just as Jin-kook appears. When Cho-rong leaves the two men alone, Moo-young explains that he came by to get his driver’s license and wanted to say hi.
After the brief exchange, Moo-young walks away and tells Jin-kook, “You seem just fine, now that I see you.” Cho-rong rejoins Jin-kook and admits that he can’t remember where he’s seen his visitor, but he seems familiar. Cho-rong’s surprised when Jin-kook tells him, “He’s Kim Moo-young.”
At work, Moo-young sees an announcement for an event at his old brewery, featuring Woo-sang. Moo-young’s new boss welcomes him back and makes sure that he’s comfortable attending the event with his new coworkers. Meanwhile, Jin-kang’s design team arrives at the event and takes a moment to appreciate the posters that they designed.
Moo-young arrives at the brewery event with his new company and he and Jin-kang are immediately aware of each other. Everyone claps when Woo-sang makes his entrance, except for Moo-young.
A courier delivers an envelope to Seung-ah’s house, which the maid hands to Seung-ah. It holds the two million dollars that she gave Moo-young and a note. Seung-ah’s eyes fill with tears when she reads what Moo-young wrote, “I don’t know if it’s love yet. But let’s go wherever.”
Woo-sang delivers his welcome speech and sees Moo-young in the crowd as he raises his water glass in mock tribute. Later, Jin-kang’s boss stares at Woo-sang and teases that Jin-kang should get all of the design work for the NJ Group. When the man next to Woo-sang turns around, Jin-kang recognizes him as the man on the street the night of Moo-young’s beating.
Alarmed, Jin-kang glances over at Moo-young, who situates himself in Woo-sang’s line of vision. When the two men are alone, Woo-sang wants to know, “What are you trying to pull,” and Moo-young teases, “I’m asking you to play with me.”
Woo-sang wants Moo-young to get to the point, so he shows off his bruises and admits that they hurt, much like Woo-sang was hurt by Seung-ah. Woo-sang smiles wickedly as he divulges that he knows that Moo-young and Seung-ah broke up, and then he mentions money.
Moo-young admits that two million dollars isn’t bad for a two month effort. He offers Woo-sang half of the money since he was key to Moo-young’s seduction of Seung-ah. Moo-young heard about Seung-ah at the pottery exhibition and had no plans to approach her because she was out of his league, until he saw Woo-sang, and realized how easily he could make her fall for him.
Just then, Seung-ah calls Moo-young and learns that he’s at the brewery event. Moo-young warns Woo-sang, “Get your one million dollar share and get lost because I need to keep seeing her.” Woo-sang sees Jin-kang and calls them a good match since Jin-kang tried to use Seung-ah to get work for her company. Woo-sang praises Jin-kang’s plan to have her boyfriend get money out of Seung-ah.
Before they part ways, Woo-sang offers, “If you beg like a well-behaved dog, I might give you a few more bucks.” Moo-young tenses as he watches Woo-sang walk away, but when he sees Jin-kang, he gives her an encouraging smile.
Seung-ah drives to the brewery as her voice shares the contents of the note that she left behind for her mother. In a brief flashback, Seung-ah looked at her room one last time and then put on Moo-young’s bracelet as she explained that she wasn’t giving up anything for him because she found love, freedom and her true self. Seung-ah’s note closed with an apology as she walked away with nothing.
Jin-kang guesses that Woo-sang is behind Moo-young’s beating and wants to know what they talked about. He’s touched that she’s worried about him and confesses that he intended to tease Woo-sang, but he got the best of Moo-young in the end. Jin-kang’s boss calls, ready to leave, and Moo-young encourages her to go because her presence puts him at a disadvantage.
Woo-sang drinks from a liquor bottle as soon as he gets to his car while his assistant prepares to drive him home. When he sees Seung-ah arrive, Woo-sang gets out and tells her that Moo-young called her easy, just as he walks up and admits that she already knows that he’s trash.
When Moo-young suggests, “Shall we go,” Woo-sang grabs Seung-ah’s wrist and vows, “If you go right now, I won’t hold back anymore.” Seung-ah throws off Woo-sang’s hand and gets into the driver’s seat and drives away with Moo-young.
Incensed, Woo-sang jumps into his car just as Jin-kang tells her boss that she can’t leave with her after all. Jin-kang runs back to the event in time to see Seung-ah drive by with Moo-young, closely followed by Woo-sang. It starts to rain and Seung-ah and Moo-young exchange a determined look as she speeds away from a deranged, drunk Woo-sang.
Jin-kook walks out of the station just as Yoo-ri arrives under the black umbrella with the Beer Festival logo.
Seung-ah speeds along a raised highway while Woo-sang honks and flashes his headlights, fueled by more liquor. Meanwhile, Jin-kang arrives at Moo-young’s place and knocks on his door and when there’s no answer, she tries to call him.
Seung-ah nods when Moo-young encourages, “Don’t let him catch you,” but she has to swerve to miss an oncoming truck. Seung-ah’s car comes to a stop just as Woo-sang’s car plows into it, sending it down an embankment. Moo-young’s bracelet breaks and the beads are suspended in the air as Moo-young and Seung-ah spin in slow motion.
The glow of a fire shines on Moo-young as he hangs upside-down and when he hears his name, he remembers a happy childhood. There was a toy robot, an angel statue, an umbrella in a corner, a radio playing a song and water boiling in a kettle on a stove. The missing boy from Jin-kook’s flyer entered a kitchen just as a gun was pointed at a man seated at a table. In the wrecked car, Moo-young remembers a gunshot and then closes his eyes.
I should have expected that spectacular accident after that tension-filled car chase, especially since I’ve been worried about Seung-ah ever since she became involved with Moo-young, but it caught me by surprise. That’s because I didn’t realize that Woo-sang was Moo-young’s target all along, not Seung-ah — she was just the means that Moo-young used to get to the arrogant chaebol. Which begs the question, why? What was it about Woo-sang that got Moo-young’s attention?
It was the elaborate hoax that Woo-sang expected Seung-ah to go along with, the pottery of an established artist that he purchased to pass off as Seung-ah’s. His fiancée wasn’t accomplished enough in her own right, so Woo-sang had to “buy” Seung-ah the reputation that his status required. At this point, we know how much Moo-young hates lies, and Woo-sang’s ruse and his smugness when Seung-ah protested, is what prompted Moo-young to insert himself into their lives. Moo-young decided to find out how much one man could derail Woo-sang’s once untouchable life and how far Woo-sang would go to stop him. The accident proves that Woo-sang was just as unrelenting as Moo-young, just as dangerous and just as unconcerned about those around him.
Poor Seung-ah, if the breaking of her bracelet serves as a foreshadowing of her fate, it’s probable that she won’t survive the real-life duel between Woo-sang and Moo-young. Even though Moo-young used her to get to Woo-sang and never loved her, I think he was drawn to her internal struggles — money or freedom, comfort or love, Woo-sang or Moo-young. Moo-young seemed to know Seung-ah better than she knew herself, and he gave her permission to be someone other than the sheltered, rich girl she had always been. Moo-young cared not one bit about money, which was Seung-ah’s kryptonite, and I think that’s the one trait that attracted her the most. Moo-young’s disinterest in material things gave Seung-ah the courage to break free, so it’s no surprise that the one thing that she valued, the one thing that she took with her when she left her family home, was the simple bracelet that Moo-young gave her for her birthday.
Even more chilling than the accident were the old memories it triggered in Moo-young. He is the missing boy who’s been haunting Jin-kook, and he was once happy and carefree, until a gunshot shattered his life. One man, one event, and lives forever changed. It’s no surprise that Moo-young developed a fascination with the power that one individual can wield over random lives, because that’s what happened to him. It makes Jin-kook’s warning, “You’ll have to pay up eventually,” sound even more ominous. Jin-kook is the one who’s been living a lie for over twenty-five years — he’s not Jin-kang’s biological brother. There’s a reason that Jin-kook raised Jin-kang and an explanation as to why the missing boy still haunts him. It seems that Jin-kook could soon be the one who’s about to pay up.
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