My Absolute Boyfriend: Episodes 23-24
With all the threats and physical attacks our leads have been facing lately, you’d think they’d be scared to leave the house these days. Once again they team up to catch a culprit, which isn’t as easy as you’d assume by now. Meanwhile, our lovable robot is having a crisis of the heart – for a being that’s programmed for romance, he’s still got a lot to learn about how women work.
EPISODES 23-24 RECAP
Da-da is blamed when Wang-joon ends up in the hospital after a severe allergic reaction to his stage makeup. The PD yells at her and Eun-dong even slaps her in front of the entire cast and crew. But Wang-joon returns and, in front of everyone, grabs Da-da in a hug. Young-gu looks upset, but BW holds him back.
After a few moments of surprise, Da-da pulls free and asks if Wang-joon is okay. He just hugs her again, so to deflect suspicion, Yeo-woong says loudly that Wang-joon is very chivalrous, stepping in when a woman gets slapped. The assistant PD warns the PD about potential gossip, so the PD cancels the rest of the day’s shooting.
He calls the Real team aside for a private meeting, where Kyu-ri backs up Da-da’s statement that they don’t use any products with peanuts in them. Yoo-jin agrees — he’s also allergic to nuts, but he didn’t react when he modeled the exact same makeup earlier.
Da-da reveals that she saw someone leaving their prep room, and she asks to see the CCTV film. But the PD says that Eun-dong threatened to pull all of his actors from all of the studio’s projects unless the Real team is fired. Knowing that this is personal, Da-da offers to quit if the others can stay.
In the hall, Bo-won thanks Young-gu for not punching Eun-dong’s lights out when he slapped Da-da. Young-gu admits that he wanted to, but he didn’t want to get Da-da in trouble. He’s worried when he learns that only Da-da is fired, but she says cheerfully that she knows Kyu-ri can successfully lead the team.
Yeo-woong settles Wang-joon back at the hospital and asks if he knows who might have done this to him. He says darkly that it was Young-gu — wait, why? Apparently he misinterpreted the conversation he heard between Bo-won and Young-gu, which was only about Young-gu hiding that he’s a robot.
Eun-dong brings Wang-joon some porridge, and Wang-joon yells at him for slapping Da-da. He asks if he’s behind his allergic reaction, but Yeo-woong says that he didn’t even know of Wang-joon’s peanut allergy when he was handing out sandwiches. Eun-dong tells them of the decision regarding the Real team, leaving out the part where he made the demand. Wang-joon gets extremely upset but backs down when he remembers Eun-dong’s threats towards Da-da.
Back at the Real studio, Da-da hands over all of her concept art to Kyu-ri, and Bo-won asks if Da-da will work on another project instead. The others growl at him for being insensitive — word will have gotten out that Da-da caused problems on the set, so she’s unlikely to be offered another project.
When Young-gu doesn’t leave with the others, Kyu-ri asks Da-da if she’s living with her “cousin.” Yoo-jin tries to cover for them, but Da-da takes Young-gu’s hand in hers and tells Kyu-ri that he’s her boyfriend (LOL, Bo-won squeals like a true shipper). Kyu-ri is mostly upset that everyone knew but her.
Bo-won pulls Young-gu aside to talk. Young-gu is still staring in awe at the hand Da-da was holding as Bo-won says that on further thought, he thinks that revealing their relationship could keep people from suspecting he’s a robot. Young-gu gives Bo-won the pay he got for today and asks him to help him keep working.
Bo-won doesn’t think it’s a good idea for Young-gu to work anywhere alone, so he offers to help Young-gu find a well-paying job with Da-da. Young-gu notices the red dye on the bottoms of Bo-won’s shoes from the fake blood he spilled. Bo-won says it’s no big deal and leaves, but something seems to be bothering Young-gu.
Da-da apologizes to Young-gu for outing their relationship, explaining that she didn’t want the team to wonder why they have to stick together, but Young-gu says he’s happy to be her proper boyfriend. Da-da decides to take this time off to do things she’s always been too busy for, like eating at famous restaurants and shopping.
Young-gu notes that her smile seems sad, so he hugs her and says she can show her true feelings. Da-da cries on his shoulder and says that she’s made mistakes, but she’s never hurt anyone before. She sobs that she feels like she’s ruined her father’s reputation.
Director Go assigns Bo-won to keep an eye on Da-da and Young-gu and submit regular reports, promising to rehire him if he does a good job. Bo-won expresses his concerns that the changes in Young-gu may take a toll on his physical system. Director Go says they can only hope for the best, since this has never happened before.
After Bo-won leaves, Director Go receives a notification that a new robot, Zero-Ten, is being sent to their location. He looks to see who ordered it, but the owner’s information is marked confidential.
Meanwhile, Wang-joon watches the CCTV footage from the drama set and sees the shadowy figure leaving Da-da’s on-set studio then entering an area that requires an ID card, which means he’s on the crew. In Wang-joon’s estimation, the figure’s height and build match Young-gu’s, reaffirming his suspicions.
In the morning, Da-da is sleeping so hard that Young-gu has to jump on the bed and blow in her face to wake her up. Da-da gets excited about their date today, but Young-gu says they’re not going on a date — they’re going to work.
Oh LOL, the job Bo-won lined up for them is putting eyes on about a zillion stuffed monkeys. While they work, Bo-won mentions that people are talking online about how to catch the person who harmed Wang-joon, though he realizes halfway through his sentence that he should have kept his mouth shut.
He says sheepishly that he’s just worried Young-gu might get involved, and he notices Young-gu clutching his chest as if something’s wrong. Young-gu is more worried about Da-da, so he tells her to go rest. In her room, Da-da looks up an article about Wang-joon on her phone and does the one thing you never do — she reads the comments, which are full of ugly speculation about why someone would want to harm him.
Bo-won asks Young-gu why he grabbed his chest, and Young-gu says it’s just something that happens sometimes when Da-da is sad or in pain, but Bo-won makes Young-gu promise to speak up if it happens again. Young-gu asks what he can do to comfort Da-da, so Bo-won suggests getting her out into the sunshine.
Frustrated that she hasn’t received her new robot yet, Diana takes her frustrations out on the maid who dressed her dolls. But before she does more than yell, the maid’s claim that the dresses look the same gives her a nasty idea, so she lets the poor girl off the hook.
Wang-joon shows up at Da-da’s house and demands to know why Young-gu and Bo-won keep hanging around Da-da. He takes Da-da to speak privately, and tells her that he asked another special effects director, and they figured out that there was peanut powder in the prosthetic glue she used.
Da-da says the glue isn’t supposed to contain peanuts, which means someone added it on purpose. Wang-joon says that he saw someone on the CCTV cameras leaving the room, and his description sounds exactly like the guy Da-da saw. Unfortunately he was wearing a mask so she didn’t see his face. Wang-joon tells her that Eun-dong was behind the black flower boxes, and he says he’ll keep digging.
Diana is watching from her car across the street, and she wonders why famous actor Ma Wang-joon would be at Da-da’s house. Director Park says they work in the same industry, but Diana thinks they look closer than colleagues and tells Director Park to look into their relationship.
She shows up at Kronos Heaven unexpectedly to find out when Zero-Ten will be delivered, and she tells Director Go and In-hyuk that if they stay out of her way regarding Zero-Ten, she’ll forget about Zero-Nine. She does have one request — she wants Zero-Ten to have a face that already exists. Uh-oh.
Young-gu is disappointed by how little they earned with the stuffed monkeys, but Da-da still says she’s proud of him. He snuggles his face into her shoulder like a happy little puppy, then suddenly jumps back shyly and promises to work even harder next time.
On their way home, they hear a couple of girls talking about how it’s all over the internet that Da-da harmed Wang-joon on purpose. Young-gu pulls Da-da away quickly and runs all the way home, and when she collapses on the couch, he sees the same red dye on the soles of her shoes as Bo-won had on his shoes.
He gives her a flyer he found about a drama club needing an assistant. She asks why Young-gu isn’t curious about her private conversation with Wang-joon, and he says he trusts her. Da-da takes his hand and thanks him, and Young-gu leans in to kiss her, but he stops just inches away, then says he has to go take care of something. Okay, what’s up with him?
He goes to the station to see Yoo-jin regarding the fact that he and Kyu-ri also have red dye on their shoes just like Bo-won and Da-da. Yoo-jin gives Young-gu a key card for access to the set, trusting that he’s helping out Da-da.
Unfortunately, Wang-joon is also on the set looking for clues. He confronts Young-gu, who says that he’s not the culprit, and he shows Wang-joon some red-dye footprints that don’t match anyone’s shoes from the special effects team.
Young-gu determines that the culprit wears size 260 shoes, and both guys give the other the stink-eye and demand to see the size of their shoes. After confirming that they both wear the wrong size, Young-gu says that he knows Wang-joon is just worried about Da-da, and asks for his help finding the real culprit and getting Da-da’s job back.
Wang-joon reluctantly agrees, so Young-gu says he plans to check the shoes of everyone who was on the set yesterday. At first Wang-joon says that’s impossible, but then he gets an idea.
Meanwhile Da-da goes to interview for the job on the flyer, which turns out to be for a middle school drama club. Da-da says that’s fine with her, and reveals that in fact, she was one of the founding members of his particular drama club. They’re performing A Midsummer Night’s Dream (my favorite Shakespeare play!) and when he gets home later, Young-gu is excited that Da-da got the job.
She’s got two copies of the script, and while she works in the kitchen she tells Young-gu to open the older one. Da-da’s name is listed on the production crew, and she tells him how much fun she had designing the makeup for the characters, with her dad’s help.
Her father had taught her how to make all-natural makeup from food products, which is what she’s doing now. She shows Young-gu that she made lip stain from beets, and when she tries it on and puckers at him, he’s tempted to kiss her again. But again, he stops at the last second, then literally just… runs away.
He collapses in his Love Room, clutching his chest and remembering Bo-won’s admonition to play a little hard-to-get. Oh, so that’s what this is about. Silly robot, he’s taking Bo-won’s advice to hold back nine times before giving in on the tenth a bit too literally, even keeping a running tally, ha.
Da-da shows up for the drama club’s first day of rehearsal, but the club leader tells her that they learned that she’s the makeup artist who’s being accused of hurting Wang-joon, so nobody is coming. Da-da graciously bows out of the show, though she leaves behind the natural makeup she made, and a message that she promises to find the real culprit and clear her name so she’s not an embarrassing sunbae to the drama club.
The drama shoot resumes the next day, and Wang-joon asks the PD to gather everyone together so he can apologize for delaying the shoot. He just happens to be the spokesperson for a brand of sneakers, so as an apology gift, Young-gu hands out new shoes to everyone.
While one guy tries on the new shoes, Young-gu sees that his old shoes have dye on the soles. Wang-joon takes the guy to his dressing room, and he gets rattled by Wang-joon’s accusation. He blurts out that someone paid him to put the peanut powder in the makeup, and Wang-joon demands their name.
A short while later, Da-da shows up on set and says that she’s at fault for not securing the special effects team’s office. But she adds that someone deliberately tried to harm Wang-joon, and she’s worried that it might happen again, so she came back to catch them.
Just then, Wang-joon drags the culprit over, and Eun-dong looks nervous as the man confesses that he dosed the makeup with peanuts. Eun-dong demands proof, so Young-gu shows him the shoes stained with dye, and Wang-joon orders Eun-dong to apologize to Da-da (for blaming her).
Knowing that his involvement will be revealed if he doesn’t, Eun-dong apologizes. Da-da says he’ll have to do better than that — she wants her job back.
Yeo-woong figures out that Eun-dong was behind the tainted makeup, and she asks him in private how he could do such a thing to Wang-joon and Da-da. Eun-dong asks Wang-joon how he could trust some guy with a gambling debt over his long-time manager, but Wang-joon just asks how Eun-dong knows the man has a gambling debt. Oops.
He signals Yeo-woong, who reads an article online announcing that Wang-joon is officially leaving Eun-dong’s company. When Eun-dong feigns surprise, Wang-joon tells him to say one more word and the next thing he reads will be about him deliberately dosing his makeup.
He kicks Eun-dong out of his dressing room. Eun-dong turns back to say to the door, “Ma Wang-joon, this isn’t going to be pretty. It’s what you wanted, but are you ready for it?” He smirks as he looks at a photo he took of his face after Wang-joon punched him.
Da-da and Young-gu congratulate each other on how cool they were today, then leap apart guiltily when the assistant PD comes into the office. Thankfully he’s kind of a simple guy, and he’s just thrilled that he can give Young-gu a prop knife for Wang-joon and doesn’t have to track Wang-joon down himself.
As Eun-dong despairs over his agency’s finances, it makes sense why he’s so desperate not to lose Wang-joon, his biggest star. He takes a call from an investor, who threatens to withdraw his support now that Wang-joon left the company. Eun-dong summons Hwa-ni, his rookie actor who was there when Wang-joon hit him, and tells him that it’s his turn to be top dog.
Wang-joon is trying to convince himself to let Da-da go now when Yeo-woong brings him tea, and when he drinks it, it’s hot enough to burn his mouth. Young-gu comes in to bring him the prop knife and thank him for his help catching the culprit. As he sets down the knife, Wang-joon accidentally spills the tea on Young-gu’s hand.
He’s shocked when Young-gu barely reacts to the scalding-hot tea, nor does his skin blister. Suddenly everything strange about Young-gu floods Wang-joon’s mind — how he said he was ten days old, the way he could see very tiny images on a picture, and how he didn’t seem to bleed when Wang-joon accidentally cut him during rehearsal.
Wang-joon says to Young-gu that there are sure a lot of strange things about him, and asks, “You’re not human, are you? What are you??”
I think I have trust issue with this drama — or maybe it’s all dramas — because while yes, Young-gu has said and done some odd things, none of them are bizarre enough to make Wang-joon jump right to concluding that he’s not human. I feel like this is a bait-and-switch, and that Wang-joon really means “not human” in a metaphorical way, because it doesn’t feel like a natural conclusion for Wang-joon to come to based on a few easily-explained observations. I could be wrong (it’s rare but it happens!), and I do expect Wang-joon to be the first to discover that Young-gu is a robot, but I wouldn’t be surprised if this isn’t that time yet.
On a more positive note, I did like seeing Wang-joon and Young-gu working together again, and whatever happens next, I’d like to see them come to a kind of peace with each other so they can do that some more. Da-da will always be a sticking point between them, but on the other hand, prioritizing her happiness and safety is something they both have in common. It’s fun watching them grudgingly getting along while not-yet-but-almost-but-not-quite trusting each other, so maybe the fact that they’re working together on the drama will provide some more cute scenes of them struggling to get along. Young-gu and Da-da will need all the help they can get when Diana gets her new robot and goes after them again.
This show has a lot of issues, but inconsistency for the sake of plot progression usually isn’t one of them… until this episode. Is it just me, or did it feel like everyone just conveniently forgot about Eun-dong’s previous threats against Da-da and Wang-joon in order to create false suspense regarding the tainted makeup and who was behind it? At this point Eun-dong should be everyone’s first thought whenever something bad happens, so I was very frustrated with Wang-joon when he suspected Young-gu instead (and because I couldn’t figure out how anything Young-gu and Bo-won said in the conversation he overheard could have been taken as a threat towards Wang-joon). But I decided to overlook it as just Wang-joon being his irrational self where Young-gu is concerned.
But then they just kept going with it. Wang-joon finally told Da-da that Eun-dong was behind the black flower boxes, and not only was her first thought not, “OMG, I bet he messed with your makeup!” but she didn’t even acknowledge what he said! If I were Da-da And Wang-joon told me that his manager, who I’d known for seven years was the one who tried to break up us and repeatedly tried to physically harm us, that’s the point at which I would have completely lost it — but it’s like Da-da didn’t even hear him. Then Wang-joon continued to suspect Young-gu until he proved that wasn’t his shoeprint. I just… I’m flummoxed. Eun-dong has threatened you in the past, he’s admitted to attempts to harm the woman you love, and he’s told you that he’ll do anything to keep control of you — how is he not your number one suspect?? And don’t even get me started with Eun-dong asking why Wang-joon doesn’t trust him… I mean COME ON, Show. Just because you’re cute doesn’t mean you can be lazy. Don’t insult your audience’s intelligence this way.
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