Mama Fairy and the Woodcutter: Episode 10
This episode finally offers answers to a lot of the questions I’ve been asking, and while some of answers are exactly as I imagined, other revelations come as a complete surprise. Both of our fairy’s suitors are finding their feelings intensifying while at the same time, their re-emerging memories reveal a past full of anger and betrayal.
EPISODE 10 RECAP
Yi-hyun finds himself frozen in place as a deer approaches him. She tells him, “You must atone for your sins,” and when Yi-hyun finally breaks free of the magical hold, the deer is gone.
While taking the immortal trio to stay at his and Yi-hyun’s place, Geum’s hand brushes Ok-nam’s, but she pulls away. He tells her that the lotus flower bloomed, and they gaze at each other for several emotional moments before they hear a voice calling out to Ok-nam.
It’s Yi-hyun, still shaken from his mystical encounter. He fusses at Ok-nam for not answering when he called, then gasps when he notices the immortals from Ok-nam’s village. Master Gu takes Yi-hyun to task for yelling at his wife, and Geum pipes up that Ok-nam isn’t Yi-hyun’s wife.
Yi-hyun isn’t happy to hear that these strangers expect to stay at his house for the night, so Ok-nam says she’ll take them back to her place. The immortals make pitiful faces at Yi-hyun until he caves, and he even makes sure to tell Ok-nam that it’s okay since they’re like her family. Awww, Geum looks a little proud of his friend.
Ok-nam turns to go home, and within seconds finds herself flanked by two gallant gentlemen. They leave the immortals behind, wondering who’s going to let them into the house (Yi-hyun: “Geum, you should help them.” Geum: “I forgot the passcode.” LOL!).
Geum’s mom is “grilling” a dried squid on Yi-hyun’s glasstop stove when Geum finally lets the immortals inside. The moment she claps eyes on Master Gu, she falls head over heels in love.
Yi-hyun apologizes for yelling at Ok-nam as he walks her home, and he asks her how her husband died. She tells him that he tripped and fell, and again we see the deer, who found his body at the bottom of a ravine. Yi-hyun asks if it happened in winter, and when Ok-nam gets excited, he says that he keeps seeing things.
He mentions the deer he saw, and Ok-nam remembers the deer that warned her to be careful of her husband. She says that she thinks Yi-hyun is regaining his memories, and he wonders if the dead man was him. Yi-hyun drops Ok-nam off at home, but he runs back to ask her if she’d like to go back to Mt. Gyeryong tomorrow, where hopefully he’ll remember more.
After settling in for the night, Master Gu decides that he doesn’t like Yi-hyun, but Shin-seon says that he feels sorry for him because he seems lonely. Master Gu grumbles that Yi-hyun will cause trouble soon, then they all pretend to be asleep when they hear him arrive home.
They can apparently hear Yi-hyun’s thoughts, and Fairy Oh and Shin-seon soften towards him when they “hear” him wonder why they’re on the floor and not using his bed. Master Gu pouts and steals the covers, so Fairy Oh offers to share hers with Shin-seon, hee.
Unable to sleep, Geum’s mind replays his emotional moment with Ok-nam before Yi-hyun interrupted them. Ok-nam also lies awake thinking about it and wondering why her heart keeps pounding and her face flushing.
In the morning, Shin-seon waits anxiously for Fairy Oh to finish using the restroom. Geum’s mom cuts in line (and holy cats, she’s wearing enough makeup for three people), though she claims that she was there first and stepped away for a minute. She left a note holding her place, but Shin-seon can’t read, lol.
Mom objects to Shin-seon speaking to her in banmal, but he snaps that they’re from the same village, and that he’s much older. Fairy Oh finally comes out and Shin-seon runs into the bathroom, only to scream in horror at the stench (“You call yourself a fairy?!”).
Over breakfast, Geum’s mom is all sweetness and light as she flirts shamelessly with Master Gu. Yi-hyun tells them that they can stay over again, but when he says that he’s going somewhere with Ok-nam and may be gone overnight, Geum insists on joining them.
They get into a childish fight (Geum: “You’re pants!” LOL, probably the closest this cinnamon roll has ever come to cursing) outside the house over whether it’s fair for Yi-hyun to go away overnight with Ok-nam when he knows Geum likes her, too. He demands to know why Yi-hyun wants to take her to the mountain, and although Yi-hyun refuses to tell him, he also doesn’t forbid Geum to tag along.
Ok-nam can’t find Bong-dae to tell her that she won’t be working the coffee kiosk today. Bong-dae is off trying to figure out why her magic has stopped working, and her day gets even worse when the game she’s been playing goes down. She wonders if it’s “time” already and calls up to the Master of the Northern Star.
In the past, they’d played a game together and he’d told Bong-dae that he was leaving, and wouldn’t return until he found “those kids.” Bong-dae had admonished that he was the one who banished them in the first place, but he’d countered that they aren’t truly banished until he gives up on them.
He’d said pensively that without three of his seven stars, his powers were waning, and he can’t fulfill his dream of ending war and hatred without them. Then he’d turned to see Bong-dae absorbed in their game, and had warned her that she’d become addicted if she didn’t watch out. He’d referred to her by her real title: Master of the Southern Star.
Now she tells herself that without the Master of the Northern Star, the human world is in confusion. She thinks that maybe it’s time to give up games and return to the fairy realm with him.
Unable to locate Bong-dae, Ok-nam shows Jeom-soon how to make the coffee. She grows suspicious that Jeom-soon is up to something since she keeps asking when Ok-nam is coming home, but Jeom-soon blows up at her and makes a big mess. Ok-nam orders her to work hard and go home at the end of the day like usual, because she’s doing something too important today to be worrying about her daughter.
Jung-min and Kyung-shik watch Geum in amazement as he zips through his work, intent on leaving in time to go with Yi-hyun and Ok-nam. When they learn that he’s going out of town with the barista halmoni, Kyung-shik assumes it’s a weird rebound thing (he still thinks Geum is hung up on Dr. Lee) and begs him not to go.
Yi-hyun quickly wraps up his lecture and races to the car, trying to get off campus before Geum finds him. Ok-nam is too engrossed in a conversation with her flowers to hear him call out to her, but the immortal trio show up asking for coffee.
Yi-hyun jumps out of the car and says they have to go now. But Jeom-soon stepped away, so Fairy Oh offers to watch the kiosk until Jeom-soon or Bong-dae arrives. Master Gu threatens Yi-hyun not to touch a hair on Ok-nam’s head, giving him the universal hand gesture for I’m watching you, punk.
Yi-hyun and Ok-nam finally leave, but Yi-hyun looks in his mirror to see Geum running behind the car, ha. He tries to outpace Geum, but Geum takes a shortcut and pops out in front of them, making Yi-hyun slam on the brakes and let him in the car.
Jeom-soon whines to Fairy Oh that her mother gave her permission to go out, but Fairy Oh refuses to let her go without the name of the person she’s going to be with. Jeom-soon makes up a name, then makes a run for it when Fairy Oh turns her back.
Dr. Lee shows up at the coffee kiosk hoping to see Yi-hyun, and at first she thinks that Fairy Oh is just Ok-nam in another form. Fairy Oh says that Ok-nam is gone, so Dr. Lee asks with alarm where Ok-nam went and who she went with. She claims to be Ok-nam’s friend, but Fairy Oh doesn’t buy it, so all she’ll say is that Ok-nam went somewhere far away with her husband.
As they get closer to the mountain, Yi-hyun’s GPS starts to have the same issues it had the last time, and they end up driving in circles. They stop at the spot they think leads to the fairy spring, and although Ok-nam doesn’t think they’re in the right place, she does find the bright flowers that line the path familiar.
They follow the path to a little clearing ringed by the same flowers. Yi-hyun is fascinated by the flowers, which bring on another memory — Izy is being questioned by the Master of the Northern Star on why she didn’t come straight back from the bathhouse in the mortal realm.
She won’t say, but he snaps that he already knows that she goes down to exact revenge due to her hatred of mortals. She smiles happily when she spots Ok-nam nearby carrying a giant bouquet of flowers, but when Bausae approaches and Ok-nam tucks a flower in his hair, Izy’s face darkens again.
In the present, Ok-nam tells Yi-hyun that these flowers are from the fairy realm. Geum thinks the flowers look familiar, too, and Ok-nam impulsively picks one to put in his hair. She tries to take it back, but Geum says he likes it.
A rock hits Geum and breaks the spell, and Yi-hyun looks too innocent to be innocent, ha. He smirks as he shows that he’s holding another rock, but he says that this one is just in case. Yi-hyun finds another, more overgrown path, and the three decide to see where it goes.
Dr. Lee paces her office, calling Yi-hyun’s phone over and over again as she imagines him seeing Ok-nam completely naked the first time they met at the fairy spring. She goes to Yi-hyun’s lab looking for Geum, but Kyung-shik and Jung-min manage not to give anything away so she leaves frustrated.
The immortals man the kiosk until Bong-dae returns and says she’ll close up the kiosk and sends them home. Shin-seon asks tauntingly if she’s been away trying to sell her nonexistent houses, making her growl that she’d love to reveal her true level and power, but it’s not the right time.
It’s getting dark and Ok-nam is hungry, but Yi-hyun sees something in the forest. He moves closer and finds himself on a familiar cliff, then he turns to see the deer approaching him. She says, “You’re here. Do you want to know the truth? You know who I am. I am… you.”
Yi-hyun desperately begs her not to come closer, backing away until he trips and tumbles backward over the cliff. He lies at the bottom of the ravine, badly hurt but determined not to die.
Suddenly he hears Ok-nam and Geum telling him to get up, and he opens his eyes to see them looking down at him from where he fell — about four whole feet, ha. He sits up, perfectly fine other than a twisted ankle, so Geum piggybacks Yi-hyun to the flowered clearing, where they stop to rest.
Ok-nam fashions a splint for Yi-hyun’s ankle with some sticks and her sash, then Yi-hyun notices that the ground is cold and starts to remove his jacket for Ok-nam. But Geum beats him to it, then yanks Yi-hyun’s ankle into his lap to elevate it (Yi-hyun: “I hate skinship!” Geum: “That’s okay, I love skinship.” These two, I swear.)
Geum’s mom has laid out a big dinner to impress Master Gu, but Dr. Lee shows up at the door looking for Yi-hyun. She sags to the floor at the news that Yi-hyun, Geum, and Ok-nam are all out until tomorrow.
When they’re ready to continue back to the car, Yi-hyun’s ankle is too swollen to get his shoe back on. Ok-nam is worried that it’s too dark for Geum to carry him, but it’s cold and she’s hungry so they can’t stay where they are.
Geum makes a plan to charge Yi-hyun’s phone in the car then call for rescue, and Ok-nam decides to stay with Yi-hyun. But she sincerely pleads with Geum to be careful, which triggers a memory of her asking her husband to walk carefully as he left for his final trip.
This time it’s Geum who sees the deer on the path, and he asks her if they’ve met before, but she just bounds away. Once she’s out of sight, she transforms into Izy for a moment, then disappears.
Yi-hyun and Ok-nam wait for Geum, worrying when he takes a long time to return. Ok-nam thinks about going to look for him, scared that he may have been attacked by a wild animal… or fallen off a cliff. Yi-hyun tells her that Geum tends to get lost and probably just made a wrong turn.
He reassures Ok-nam that he and Geum are practically brothers, and that he would know if something had happened to him. Ok-nam is still scared, so Yi-hyun says that it’s probably because her husband left and never came back, and that sort of trauma stays with you.
He scoots closer to put his arm around her when she shivers, since he tends to generate a lot of heat. Ok-nam asks what happened earlier to make him fall, but he sighs that he can’t remember. He thinks, but doesn’t say out loud, that the more memories of her he recalls, the more he fears that she’ll leave him.
Softly, he asks Ok-nam what he can do to make her stay: “You finally came to me, and I feel so uneasy.” He pulls her closer into the circle of his arms, then slowly leans down for a kiss.
Geum finally returns, and he stops in his tracks to see Yi-hyun holding Ok-nam and kissing her.
Epilogue: How did Yi-hyun and Geum become housemates?
Not long after Yi-hyun and Geum first met, Yi-hyun had returned to the lab late at night for something he forgot. He’d gotten the wits scared out of him by a ghostly apparition that had turned out to be Geum, sleeping on the couch and using a white lab coat as a blanket.
He’d scolded a very sheepish Geum, who’d obviously been living in the lab. Geum had admitted that instead of paying the deposit on his own place, he’d lent the money to a friend to pay for his father’s surgery. Yi-hyun had heaved a heavy sigh and said that he’d clean, and Geum would do all the laundry and cooking.
Poor Geum. I feel so bad for him because he’s so earnest and honest, but somehow nothing he does is enough to break Ok-nam’s conviction that Yi-hyun is her reincarnated husband. But after this episode I’m fully convinced that Geum is both Fairy Bausae and Woodcutter Bausae reincarnated, and that he’s Ok-nam’s true husband. And it seems obvious now that Yi-hyun was Izy, then he was the deer that led Woodcutter Bausae to Ok-nam and later found his body. Yi-hyun’s memories and visions all line up with Izy’s and the deer’s version of events. But he knows so much about what happened that both he and Ok-nam have convinced themselves that he was, in fact, her husband. I do think it’s telling that he keeps saying he feels nervous and uneasy, because if he is indeed Izy, then he’s clearly sensing that he doesn’t belong with Ok-nam.
I’m really not looking forward to the part where Yi-hyun and Geum discover that they’re reincarnations of friends who became enemies, because I’m scared that history will repeat itself, and I love them together so much. It’s so great how they acknowledge that they both like Ok-nam, and that although they’re not happy about it and fight bitterly over her, they don’t let it ruin their friendship. It was so cute how Yi-hyun obviously didn’t want Geum to go to the mountain with him and Ok-nam, yet he still told him when he was leaving, and Geum was all Fine! Want me to drive? Even when arguing, they still respect each other and never get mean, and they forget their fights quickly. Their friendship is so sweet, I just don’t want to see them fall out over a fairy who can’t even figure out how she feels.
But I’m afraid that what comes between them will be a lot worse than a pretty-but-bland fairy — flashbacks to Fairy Bausae and Izy seem to indicate that something pretty terrible happened between them, something horrific enough that it got one of them kicked out of the fairy realm and the other one’s reincarnation killed. What’s left of Izy’s spirit is angry and vindictive, and Fairy Bausae doesn’t always come across as innocent as he’d like others to think. I’m worried that when Yi-hyun and Geum remember what happened, it really could be the end of their friendship.
This may really be out there, especially for a drama, but based on the way the scene where Ok-nam put the flower in Bausae/Geum’s hair played out in the fairy realm then again in the present time, I think that the three fairy friends were in a love triangle, but I don’t think that Ok-nam and Izy loved Bausae… I believe that Bausae and Izy were both in love with Ok-nam. It would explain why Izy felt betrayed, why she as the deer warned Ok-nam against her husband, and why Yi-hyun and Geum are both so enamored with Ok-nam now. If this whole thing has been about Izy’s romantic, and most likely forbidden, feelings for Ok-nam, it would make a lot of the missing pieces of the story fall right into place.
- Premiere Watch: Mama Fairy and the Woodcutter, Happy to Die
- Accepting the unexplainable in tvN’s Mama Fairy and the Woodcutter
- The coffee-brewing Fairy in search of her reincarnated Woodcutter
- Moon Chae-won sparkles in teaser for Mama Fairy and the Woodcutter
- Yoon Hyun-min up to romance fairy barista Kang So-ra